Lately I’ve been thinking about online shopping and the kind of atmosphere a web store creates. The more that technology evolves, the more shopping begins to move online and become “mass” – meaning almost anything can be found in more than one online store. While I think accessibility can be a good thing, I also think it can be sort of unappealing. I enjoy looking long and hard for those special things, whether it’s clothing or objects or accessories. I love the thrill of discovery and of seeing something new that inspires me. I live for it, so much so that I created a job focused on just those things. (This is also one of the reasons why I love vintage so much, but that’s another blog post!) Don’t get me wrong; I like knowing that there is sometimes a second shopping option if the shoe I want sells out on a favorite retailer’s site, but I also like to know that something is so special or so exclusive that it will only last for a moment. There are a few online retailers who are really making a mark with creativity, innovation, exclusivity and discovery. One of my favorites is L’Arco Baleno run by curator Ambra Medda. Ambra never ceases to amaze or inspire me with her unique discoveries of people, places, art, etc. I always learn something new while reading her blog and browsing her site. It’s fresh, completely inspired, and all carefully articulated through her perspective. While catching up on the L’Arco Baleno blog this week I came across the South African artist Hylton Nel who is known for his playful and charming ceramics that he paints over. I am particularly in love with his plates, some of them also sold on L’Arco Baleno. Each of his pieces is one-of-a-kind, making them even more desirable and precious. Photos below, and more here.
Today until June 5th, Kneeland Mercado Small Thick Loop Rugs in Grey and Natural will be 10% off! Visit Kneeland Mercado for more info.
I love scouring various flea markets in Paris. There is nothing quite like a flea market in Paris, especially when it comes to vintage artwork. I found some truly special paintings on this trip that I just added to Kneeland Mercado. One collection is from a French artist by the name of Marie Louise Arnol. These psychedelic beauties were painted in 1978 and I was in complete awe when I discovered them at the booth of one of my suppliers. I also found some Art Nouveau Ornament designs as well as this delightful gouache painting of birds against a black background. It is so hard to part with these!
A couple of weeks ago I wrote an article for the NYT about a new beauty brand that just launched in Paris and I was so happy to see it in the Sunday Styles section. Dream come true! The brand, Buly, was re-launched by former Cire Trudon co-owner Ramdane Touhami. With the launch came a new store on the left bank, right around the corner from my favorite store in the world, Dries Van Noten. It’s safe to say that Buly now sits at the top of my list of favorite stores around the globe (think turquoise terra cotta tile, marble encased candles, apothecary style furnishings, and literally the most divine rose perfume I have ever smelled). I had read about Buly opening soon, and the funny thing is that I was actually the very first customer on opening day, right before I hopped on a flight back to LA. I went on and on about it to an editor at T Magazine and ended up writing the piece, and I couldn’t be happier. You can also read it online at T Magazine here.
These photos of broken porcelain in a palace in Vienna have been on my inspiration board for the past couple of months. They’re from a past issue of World of Interiors and I found it fitting as a post since there is so much Wedgwood and Chinese porcelain popping up in magazines and on websites these days. Unfortunately I couldn’t seem to find the byline from this story, but it goes like this: “Schloss Loosdorf, tucked away in the hilly wine country north of Vienna, had been renowned for its porcelain collection, which was predominantly 18th-century Japanese Imari and Chinese porcelain, late 18th-century and early 19th-century Vienna, Meissen, Berlin and Davenport, along with some Wedgwood and majolica. The collection was all sealed up in a cellar room when the owners, the counts of Piatti, were forced to flee in the late spring of 1945 (the final days of WWII). During their absence, Soviet soldiers took up quarters there and tossed out its rare books, hacked at furniture, and located the hidden porcelain collection and destroyed it in a rage. When Count Ferdinand Piatti again took possession of his ruined palace in June 1945, he had the porcelain and other remains of objects arranged in piles by manufacturer in an attempt to salvage at least something. More than 60 years on, the damage, in all its wantonness, is still debilitating to view, though the monumental nature of the installation Piatti created both assesses and addresses the damage in a solemn, thoughtful way.”
Last week I was invited to attend the preview of Design in Time, an installation by Heath Ceramics celebrating ten years of design and making. Eight artists were chosen to create one-of-a-kind clocks to be featured in the San Francisco and Los Angeles Heath locations, and all of them are available for purchase including a few of my favorites below by Roger Herman, Adam Silverman (Studio Director of Heath Ceramics LA), Commune and Geoff McFetridge. I had never visited the actual Heath studio in LA, and it was really inspiring to take a peek behind-the-scenes. I love a good inspiration board, and Adam’s was no joke. I especially loved the black & white ballet photos as well as the “I heart Texas” sticker, which is where I grew up. If you live in LA or SF, you should definitely stop by Heath to check out Design in Time.
From L to R: Roger Herman, Roger Herman, Adam Silverman, Commune
Prototypes and soon-to-be-finished product in the studio