Monday, May 31, 2010


Saturday was opening day of the Kingston Farmers’ Market.  Justin and I had been anxiously awaiting it since we moved in and it did not disappoint.  Lots of local fruits, vegetables, flowers, artisanal cheeses, breads, and delicious baked goods.  We walked away with strawberries, swiss chard, russian kale, chives (with purple flowers!), snap peas, arugula, easter egg radishes (so beautiful!), honey crisp apples, broccoli, cilantro, fromage blanc, fresh mozzarella, rhubarb bread, pane rustica, and two bouquets of dried flowers.  That's a picture of our haul above.  And below a close-up of the world's prettiest radishes.  

Tuesday, May 25, 2010


While looking for possible wallpaper patterns for my bedroom I stumbled upon Trustworth Studios, which makes reproductions of designs by C.F.A. Voysey.  I absolutely LOVE his textile designs. Lots of birds and animals and flowers...all beautifully stylized. He started designing wallpaper in 1883 and worked until the his patterns were influenced by both the Arts and Crafts Movement and Art Nouveau.  

They have a lot of Voysey's original sketches and textile designs at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. Some of the pieces from their collection have been digitized and are available for viewing online here.  And you can even order printed reproductions of some here.  Next time I'm in London I'm definitely taking a field trip to see them in person.

Saturday, May 22, 2010


Justin and I have accumulated an unbelievable amount of books.  When we packed up our old apartment we ended up with about 40 boxes of them.  And since we moved in to our new house we have acquired about 10 MORE boxes.  So, one of the first things we have to do to get this place in shape is build bookshelves.  LOTS of them.  

I love the look of statement bookshelves.  You know....ones that go wall to wall, floor to ceiling, over doors, around windows.  And if there's a big tall ladder involved that's even better!

Here are some images I pulled for inspiration:

There are two spots in our house where we are going to do some form of wall to wall books.  The first is in the living room around the pocket doors that lead to the foyer (photo below).  The plan is to build bookcases that fit on either side of the door and that connect with a shelf above the door.  My dad is going to help with this one.

And the other spot is in the attic studio (photo below...please excuse the mess!).  Since there are exposed beams that go vertically from floor to ceiling we decided to go super utilitarian and put metal shelf tracks on each one.  We've already done the area to the right of the window....but we're going to do the whole wall...all the way up to the tippy-top.  

Sources: (from top to bottom) 1: design is mine, 2: flickr, 3: flickr, 4: apartment therapy, 5: katy elliott, 6: flickr, 7 & 8: apartment therapy, 9: katy elliott, 10: flickr.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


I guess it's official.  I need a bird cage.  Even BEFORE I had a bird I wanted to get an antique art deco cage for our bedroom.  Specifically one with a stand and a big hoop on top that the cage hangs in.  I am SO smitten with these.  Bird or no bird...they look lovely.

The cages above are all from North Fork Pets and Antiques.  They have by far the biggest and best selection of antique cages online....but, unfortunately, they are all totally out of my price range. 

It seems like the best way to do it is to buy the cage and the stand separately.  You can find some nice less expensive ones on craigslist, ebay and etsy.  And if it isn't a full set (stand and cage) they are much more affordable.  I found the cage below on craigslist for $50 and the stand on ebay.  Currently the stand is at $13 (plus shipping).  The auction ends in two days and so far I'm the only we'll see. 

The antique cage will be in my bedroom...and won't be Little Admiral's primary residence.  It will be more like his pied-a-terre.  I want to get him a bigger cage that we will keep in the guest room...which has been renamed the bird's room.  

Oh...and Little Admiral is currently his official name....but we mostly call him Budge.

Monday, May 17, 2010


About a week after we moved in I noticed a robin building her nest right outside our dining room window.  I'm trying not to bother her...but when she's not around I peek in to see if there are any little blue eggs.  None yet...but my fingers are crossed. 

You would think that was the most exciting bird related news I have...but it's not.  I found a lost parakeet wandering down my street this morning.  He walked right up to me and jumped in my hand.  I basically dropped all of my plans for the day, brought him home, gave him food and water, and then we took a nap in my bed.  He spent the rest of the afternoon on my shoulder while I worked on the house....and he is currently living sans cage in our guest room. We have asked all of our neighbors if they know whose bird it is...but no one does.  So, looks like we may have a new member of the family.  

We haven't decided what to name him (I keep saying him...but we actually have no idea if it's a boy or a girl). We're considering The Superintendant or Little Admiral.  Anyone have any suggestions?

Saturday, May 15, 2010


Well...I haven't been that impressed with any of the houses that have come on the market since my last real estate post...but this week these two beauties showed up in my inbox.

The one in the photo above is a circa 1860 three story with a mansard roof and wraparound porch. It has the original pine floors, 9 foot ceilings, a glass sunroom, mature gardens with hydrangeas, roses, and magnolias, and a 4 room suite on the third floor currently used as a studio and darkroom.  Pretty awesome...right?  Apparently it needs a little TLC...but the listing price is only $214,900! Details are here.

This one is a 19th century farmhouse located on a quiet country road in Accord.  It is on over two acres with big, old maples tree, a barn, another large outbuilding perfect for a studio or guest house and a STREAM!  It's pricier than the other listing...$299,000...but it has already been updated (the bathroom looks amazing), and seems like it's in great condition.  Details are here.

I mean...THIS could be your backyard.  Come be my neighbor!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


Lord knows I don't need to start collecting ANYTHING else...but vintage Hornsea pottery is SO tempting.

The Hornsea studio line was made in England from the 1950s to the 1980s and was popular there...but unfortunately, it's not that easy to find in the US. If you're willing to pay a pretty penny you can get pieces on ebay and etsy (mostly from overseas)...but the chances of stumbling upon some while thrifting aren't great. Unless, of course, you are lucky enough to live in the UK.

image above from Pips Trip

photo of blue bird ashtray above from Pips Trip

Here is the bird ashtray reappropriated as salt cellar! Love it. -- from H is for Home.

Most of my favorite pieces were designed by John Clappison. I kind of want to get this book on his life and work. From amazon UK, of course.

photos from: Hornsea pottery collectors flickr group; H is for Home; Pips Trip

Monday, May 10, 2010


A few weeks ago Tina and I went to the Metropolitan Museum to see Playing with Pictures: The Art of Victorian Photocollage. I had read a few things about it beforehand...and it sounded like it was right up my alley...but seriously? turned out to be one of the most inspiring exhibits I've been to in a while!  

In the 1860s, the popularity of the carte de visite (affordable tiny paper photos you could have taken and then hand out to whomever you please) started a kind of photocollage craze. Women would cut out these pictures of their friends and family and place them in hand-painted vignettes. What I found surprising about these collages was how thoroughly modern they seemed. They were so wonderfully weird and witty and playful and surreal. Not at all what you would expect from a bunch of aristocratic Victorian ladies! The show ended I decided to do a quick post with a few images from the exhibit for those of you who didn't get to see it.