Monday, November 12, 2012

Thank you Veterans

Thank you to all Veterans, both human and canine, both alive and deceased, who serve or have served our country with American patriotism. Thank you for protecting this great nation. I am proud to be an American!
Today, I will take time out of my schedule to show my appreciation for your years of service to our country. I will be making cards with my Girl Scout Daisy troop and delivering them to local Veterans or if deceased, their families. It is a tradition that I am proud to be partaking in this year. The least I can do for protecting my freedom is to show up in person and say thank you.

Have you thanked a Veteran yesterday or today?

Monday, October 29, 2012

Albert Hadley's Rooms With A View showhouse

It is with great enthusiasm that I announce my participation as a designer in this year's Rooms With A View showhouse located in Southport, Connecticut. With total artistic license, twelve designers will be transforming their 5'6" x 8" cookie cutter spaces into spectacular spaces. This past weekend we started the installations and the vignettes are looking impressive!
The theme, Design On A Shoestring, plays tribute to one of Albert Hadley's earlier projects. In 1959, Mr. Hadley was commissioned by Vogue Magazine to transform a young gal's beach house room on a "shoestring budget." His first editorial that continues to be publized is confirmation that with a good eye and purposeful purchases one can create a fabulous interior while mindful of budget.
It was Albert Hadley's wishes that Thom Filicia (one of his former protege's) take over his chairman position and continue with this preeminent design event of the Northeast.
Rooms With A View is certain to be a fun escape for a morning, afternoon or evening after a week of hurricane preparations. If you plan on attending the show, let me know and I'll look forward to meeting you!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

A Pirate Birthday Barbeque

My handsome little fella just turned four, how that happened I'm not sure. He went from this sweet little munckin to a little guy always on the run exploring the world with great enthusiasm.
Given that he has an August birthday, we decided that two little celebrations, one in the Hamptons  and one in Westchester with his neighborhood and preschool friends is how we will celebrate while he is young.

We brought together our close friends at the beach, their kiddies who are close to our kiddies, and sprinkled in a few grandparents for a fun summer gathering on our deck and in our yard. Basically, a BBQ that we enhanced with lots of outdoor pirate fun for his celebration.

We had a pirate treasure hunt where each child carried their bucket while searching for loot. The kiddies "walked the plank" on my daughter's low to the ground balance beam. They sported pirate head gear, hook hands, eye patches, big hoop earrings, and mustaches.

The menu allowed for us to spend the day at the beach and come home 1 1/2 hours prior to the 5pm gathering of 26 people. My goal for the menu was good food that required little prep time or could be done in advance. 

The Menu:
Farmstand local tomatoes with "made fresh daily" mozzarella from Villa Italia Specialties (my absolute favorite mozzarella!) 
Farmstand local corn on the cob 
Greek salad
Bread basket of Ciabatta and baguette slices
Easy to prepare and aways a huge success, shrimp with feta, by Barefoot Contessa
Grilled barbeque chicken
Grilled chicken with olive oil, salt, and pepper
Haricot vert with sauteed shallots (image not shown)
Does your child have an August birthday when many seem to be traveling? How do you handle the birthday celebration? I've worked out having him celebrate on his birthday and then a few weeks later with his classmates and neighborhood buddies. What I really miss is that we don't get to do storytime in his class to celebrate the special day, like I've done the past three years for my daughter's March birthday. The little issues of parenting (wink, wink!) Happy entertaining!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Q & A with Painted Bird

It is rare that I find a summer shoe that makes me consider wearing anything to cover my Hamptontoes! I thought I was happiest wearing my Havaianas flip flops during the warmer months. Several weeks ago I was introduced to Painted Bird sandals via Tiptoe Butterfly. I was instantly smitten with the colorful options and eye catching designs. 
I had no idea that these shoes would become conversation starters. Every single time I have worn my sandals I have been stopped by many admirers of the shoes!

Painted Bird just launched this summer with "deleting the inventory and waiting to be replinished" type of success! I jumped at the opportunity to interview one of the two owners/designers, Nicole Halpern.
Hamptontoes: Painted Bird is the creation of you and your business partner, Jennifer Samson. You ladies have very impressive backgrounds in design, fashion, and public relations with such companies as Style Network and Ferragamo. How did you conceive the idea to create your own shoe line?
Painted Bird, Nicole: It is an idea that we had been marinating since having kids. We combined our experiences and expertise to follow our passion for creating stylish shoes that are vibrant, comfortable, and easy to wear. As beach gals, we needed shoes that would tolerate sand being shaken out of them and look chic enough to wear on outings day or night.
Hamptontoes: How did you come up with your company name and logo of a peacock?
Painted Bird, Nicole: Jennifer and I have a love of birds. The peacock is the bird of India, where our shoes are hand crafted.

Hamptontoes: Wow, I love that your shoes are handmade and not machine produced. Can you tell me more about this process?
Painted Bird, Nicole: Our shoes are created by a group of female artisans in a small community in India. Each pair is hand crocheted. These shoes are like indivdual jewels, every pair is one of a kind. Each artisan makes about two pair per day using pesticide free dyes.
Hamptontoes: Where can Painted Bird sandals be purchased?
Painted Bird, Nicole: At this juncture in our endeavor, we are primarily online. We do have a few shops in our town of Laguna Beach, California that are carrying the shoes and one shop in Los Angeles.

Hamptontoes: How did you come up fun shoe names such as Zell, Chickadee, Ruby, etc?
Painted Bird, Nicole: Jennifer and I, along with our families, reside in Laguna Beach, California and decided to name the collection after local street names.

Hamptontoes: Will you be adding a Fall lineup to your collection?
Painted Bird, Nicole: We plan to do a limited edition utilizing metallics. 

Hamptontoes: Right now there is a sale going on, I bet the shoes are selling like hotcakes!  
Painted Bird, Nicole: Yes!
All images were used with permission by Nicole of Painted Bird.
Hamptontoes: What does the future hold for Painted Bird? I bet stylish moms are begging you to produce a children's line?
Painted Bird, Nicole: We will continue to focus on our shoes. Perhaps, adding a children's line next Spring? 

Hamptontoes: How can Painted Bird enthusiasts keep up to date with your happenings?
Painted Bird, Nicole: Like us on Facebook , follow us on Twitter, view our Instagram and Pinterest pages too! 

Need inspiration for pulling together a color palette for a room? Check out their collection, these shoes offer many ideas.

Kudos to the Painted Bird ladies! Who is off to look at their website and perhaps, add to their shoe collection?

Friday, August 10, 2012

Hamptons Magazine - the Saturday Morning Dash

Truth be told, I had never been to a yard/tag/estate sale until three years after having a home in the Hamptons. I had the mindset that it was someone else's junk. Little did I know that everyone who told me that "treasures" were to be found was right, so right! I'm still not a hard core treasure seeker, however if I'm driving down the road and pass a sale I will usually pull over to peruse the offerings.

The headboard in my header is a "gem" of a find from former Domino Magazine's Hamptons yard sale in Amagansett several years ago.

Check out my most recent article for Hamptons Magazine online! Let me know which of the treasures I featured is your favorite? Do you yard/tag/estate sale shop?

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Hamptons Magazine - Equestrian Chic

More and more homeowners are introducing equestrian chic elements into their home despite having never been "in the saddle." The admiration of such a regal creature is reason enough to enhance a home with equine touches.
As a contributing columnist to Hamptons Magazine online this summer, check out my most recent tips on this topic.
Have you incorporated such design touches into your home or have you left that to the "horsey set?"

Have you traveled to the Hamptons? Have a favorite photograph that symbolizes what the Hamptons means to you? Share your captured moment with Hamptons Magazine online and tweet out your upload for others to view!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Hamptons Magazine

Summer is in full swing and reading Hamptons Magazine is exciting, even if you aren't frolicking on the East End. You'll be thrilled to devour the online version of the must read magazine of the Hamptons!
As a contributing editor to Hamptons Magazine online this summer, today I shared a few of my tips for pulling together a quick, but fab Friday night al fresco meal. Line up your guests and feel relaxed while entertaining!

Want to get in on the Hamptons Magazine action? This season there is an exciting photo sharing campaign on their site where you can share your Hamptons happiness images with other Hamptons Magazine readers! Start's fun and great to see the Hamptons through other peoples eyes!

Here's to a weekend filled with Hamptons happiness!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Blogfest Recap

What do you get when you mix interior designers, design bloggers, amazing shelter magazines, chic venues, fabulous parties, inspirational panels, informative sessions and the ability to meet and mingle with like minded individuals? One answer...the second annual Blogfest 2012 talentedly planned and executed to perfection by KravetLee Jofa and Brunschwig & Fils. More specifically, Beth Greene, Executive Vice President of Marketing and Strategic Branding for Kravet Inc. and her team Jennifer Powell and Ann Feldstein.

When I stepped out of the elevator on the 44th floor of Hearst Tower I knew I was in for a treat!  The centerpieces were simple, beautiful and eye catching.
The view of Columbus Circle and Central Park was spectacular despite the rainy morning.
Sharing the experiece with two friends I met through blogging, Elizabeth of Pretty Pink Tulips and Sue of the Zhush added to my excitement.
Dara Caponigro, Editor-In-Chief of Veranda fabulously rocked a black leather dress and captivated attendees while interviewing design giants, Darryl Carter and Timothy Whealon. Both men took circuitous routes to interior design and both are proof that passion and talent are a successful blend! Their work graces the pages of the current Veranda!       

At the D & D Building we assembled at Kravet where Ann Maine, Editor in Chief of Traditional Home interviewed Alexa Hampton. Loved this duo's interactions! Alexa is not only wildly talented, she is an absolute funny, brilliant and down to earth. Listening to her speak about being immersed in design from a young age with super star designer father, Mark Hampton was interesting and engaging.  
Tomorrow I wrap up my experiences at Blogfest 2012.  A huge thank you to Kravet for yet another amazing Blogfest 2012!

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Hamptons Magazine

I'm not even sure where to begin, but between being a family gal, working, sitting on a board for political advocation for education, chairing a beautification (gardening) committee, being a Girl Scout troop leader, being a classroom parent, volunteering at an animal shelter and well, the list goes on and in the interim Hamptontoes has been a tad neglected the past several weeks.

Well, I've got my blogging groove back and I'm kicking it off with some exciting news! I am thrilled to share that this summer I will be writing a bi-weekly column for the online version of Hamptons Magazine.  My first contributing editoral is three tips about inspiration for your own garden.
Whether you are in the Hamptons or experiencing it from afar, Hamptons Magazine online will have you inspired and informed...add it to your daily reads!

Want to get in on the Hamptons Magazine action? This season there is an exciting photo sharing campaign  on their site where you can share your Hamptons happiness images with other Hamptons Magazine readers! Start's fun and great to see the Hamptons through other peoples eyes!     

Between my bi-weekly line-up of stories and my blog, I will be covering the Hamptons lifestyle all summer. What insider tidbits would you like to see or read about here? Here's to enjoying the warm weather!   

Monday, April 23, 2012

Museum Monday - Winterthur

Museum Monday is here! We all know and love the big name museums such as, the Metropolitian Museum of Art (the Met) and the Louvre, yet I created this series to introduce you to some of my favorite cultural "gems" with a little less name recognition. Winterthur is hands down one of my favorite museums. The museum, gardens, events, yuletide experience and educational courses are amazing!
Used with permission, photo courtesy, Winterthur
Winterthur is located on 1,000 beautiful acres in Delaware and houses the world's largest collection of early American furnishings and decorative arts. The former 175 room childhood home to Henry Francis du Pont contains more than 90,000 objects dating from 1640 to 1860. What a treat to visit of one of the former homes of the prominent du Pont family.
Used with permission, Winterthur.  Photo courtesty, J. Lindvig
Used with permission, Winterthur. Photo courtesty, J. Lindvig
The interior spaces are not only stunning, but truly a study of America's finest interior offerings. Each room is a treat beyond words.    
Gorgeous space. I'm smitten with the settee, and its bolster pillows. Such a timeless space.   
Used with permission, Winterthur.   
Used with permission, Winterthur. Photo courtesy, Gavin Ashworth.  
Winterthur's Point-to-Point steeplechase is a day of horse racing and exquisite tailgate picnics. I've attended many and can share with you that family and friends dressed in sundresses, hats and ties feasting on food makes for wonderful memories. Get your tickets for Saturday, May 6th! 
Used with permission, Winterthur. Photo courtesty, Pat Crowe.
Used with permission, Winterthur. Photo courtesty, Bob Hickok.
This year's Point-to-Point will feature food demonstrations by Dana Herbert a previous winner of TLC's Cake Boss and Fox's MasterChef season two winner Jennifer Behm, both from Delaware. Sounds like this year's event is going to be superb, as always!

Have you been to Winterthur? Thinking of planning a trip now? What are some of your favorite museums? Happy Monday!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Design details that caught my eye

My oh my, have I missed all of you! I was away on a family vacation and completely unplugged. Since returning I've had so much on my plate that even squeezing in one of my favorite activities, blogging, wasn't an option the past two weeks. Glad to be back!

While vacationing I took notice of design details from Atlantis in the Bahamas that are worth sharing. The chevron stone tile in this bath was eye catching.   
Look at it close-up, it is little pieces of stone laid out in the chevron pattern. Very impressive installation.  
In one of the lobbies I found several of these side tables. The natural element of the twig coated with a varnish made for striking, yet practical tables. The tops were super smooth. Fun for a beachside resort. 
Bobby Flay's Mesa Grill was such a culinary treat. The decor combined with the food made for a memorable dining experience. In the past I've mentioned pushing boundaries when it comes to the backs of dining chairs, as they aren't spaces that normally get wear and tear. Look how cowhide was used on the chairs.     
The waiting area consisted of several chic, vinyl covered seating surfaces. I'm a huge fan of using vinyl in areas with high traffic. 
Every morning poolside, we were greeted with these towel creations. I enjoyed them so much that I asked one of the workers for a tutorial. I will now be making these all summer long. Simple happiness!   
In a lobby I found these chairs with roping and knots.    

I have a love for orchids. The usage of bamboo to hold the individual stems up caught my attention. I wonder if I can duplicate? Have you seen this look before?  
Are you one who is inspired by your travels?

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Loving Society Social

Are you loving Society Social as much as me? Since the launch of this company in August of 2011 it has been on my radar screen. Society Social offers fun pieces for the home at an affordable price point. Roxy, the gal who followed her passion in creating Society Social is someone that I look forward to meeting...she signs all her emails with "cheers" and has a zest for life that I feel through our email communications. Believing that life was too short to continue the rat race of the corporate world she had been living, she ventured out on her own...kudos to that spirit!

With her passion, Hollywood smile and colorful offerings, Roxy's Society Social is off to a running start.
The Darlington set of chairs offers thirteen different color choices and each one is a winner. I'd love to see  these around a kitchen table, at a desk, in a foyer or placed in a living room for extra seating...the pops of color are perfection yet the classic black one is eye catching too. Where would you use this chair?    

I am wild about the Draper end or accent fabulous are these? Available in ten colorways this accent table can be used anywhere in a home.  
Society Social's pillow collection  makes a wow statement!  

All images were used by permission and can be found on Society Social 
Society Social is not a to-the-trade only have fun shopping! See anything you like?