A Mad Exuberance

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With the romantic pressure of Valentine’s Day well behind us

(but hopefully still a few chocolates left) we can move on to something truly important;

 FASHION!!

Between trying to keep up with the Winter Olympics, ‘Downton Abbey’, ‘House of Cards’ (husband; finished, me; Fail) and, lest we forget, plain old Real Life, staying on top of all the shows during NY & London Fashion Week this season required a supremely valiant effort.

Sometimes a girl’s just gotta do what a girl’s gotta do.

You strap on that (hand painted) helmet and forge ahead.

There were oh SO many heart-stopping collections but one of my favourites took place just a couple of days ago at “Burberry Prorsum”.

Burberry Fall 2014

Christopher Bailey knocked it out of the park for me with his “Bloomsbury Girls” Fall 2014 collection.

A couple of months ago I was asked to weigh in on what trends I was hoping to see prevail in terms of Fashion this Spring and my answer was;

“Keep an eye out for an exuberant abundance of colour, texture and pattern. Take a break from clean lines and mix…”

Of course for me it’s never just about one subject  :-)

I’ve also been feeling the same way about interiors. Now first, let me say that I appreciate the spare beauty of a mininalist room as much as anyone, except perhaps John Pawson, but I’m starting to fear we’ve become so focused on the ‘coolness’, dare I say safety of the almighty ‘clean line’ that the soul of interior spaces appears to be drifting away.

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 I’ve a sense of longing for the well layered space again.

Rooms that feel utterly lived in, proudly displaying the history and personality of their inhabitants.

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In other words, where’s your stuff, people?!!

I’m not by any means advocating the acquiring of Things for acquisition’s sake, I’m simply wondering how all of a sudden it became so déclassé for living spaces to actually look lived in?

Who amongst us doesn’t have a huge pile of unread books & magazines, an overly used and frayed chair, or items worth virtually nothing, yet priceless with memories?

slimpaley.comWho hasn’t had a puppy that’s left a little memory (or two)?!

Dan Marty Design hb7

Dan Marty

Burberry Fall 2014

But not to veer off track too much (well, it wouldn’t be me, would it?)

I simply loved the mad exuberance of Bailey’s collection. The mix of florals, lace & leather. The luxuriously  long scarves tucked into skinny  knotted belts. The whimsically hand painted oversized bags-impractical as their handles and heft may be…the baggie open-toed ankle boot reminiscent of vintage Vivienne Westwood’s Buffalo Girls again

( Viv IS having her moment, isn’t she?!)

Burberry Fall 2014

Lisa Fine's Paris apt. Elle Decor

Elle Decor

Burberry 2014 Fall

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Tamara Comolli

Tamara Comolli ocean jasper coconut bracelets and ring in sterling silver would be perfection with this collection.

Burberry Fall 2014

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.“Yvonne Printemps on the Sofa”: Edouard Vuillard – 1919-1921.

Loulou Falaise's living roomLou lou de la Falaise living room

Who doesn’t love a room that feels comfortable in its own fabric?

A ‘house’ is a roof over one’s head. A ‘home’ tells a story

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As does the way we dress

(although, speaking for myself these days, not exactly a bodice-ripper)

edouard Vuillard

Edouard Vuillard

NY Times slimpaley.comA cozy Sunday afternoon in front of the fire.

I don’t have to tell you why my ottoman has a Suzani over it.

Homes have their little secrets as well as stories :-)

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majolica plates

A wall of fine majolica.

Tamara Comolli

And in gold. Sigh.

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Burberry Fall 2014 finale lead by Cara Delevingne

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Burberry Prorsum Fall 2014

Mix, don’t match

Elle decorvia Elle Decor

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Viva la Exuberant Abundance!!

inspiration slimpaley.com

Inspired? Encouraged?

Exhausted?

Me too!

xoxSP

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One Year Ago: Heads Up

All uncredited photos via Pinterest or Tumblr. If you have a credit I will be happy to include it.

Seeing Red (II)

Valentine's chocolates slimpaley.com

Here we are already, just a day before Valentine’s.

 A day that has everyone seeing red-whether they like it or not.  Many will partake of romance, roses & chocolates, while others will take issue with the overt commercialization of Cupid.  I agree the bloat of mylar hearts, pink bears on a stick and tightly bound fluorescent flowers invading the local markets can be off-putting.

Valentine’s may also strike a sensitive chord in those who are sweetheart-less on the day and truth be told, that’s a lot of folks, as the plethora of on-line dating sites will attest. Being forced to assess our romantic status whether we want to or not…just what we need-more pressure!

As I’ve mentioned in the past, the day could be quite an emotionally scarring affair as far back as elementary school (in the old, less sensitive days before everyone received a token Valentine) It was usually the girls with double hook bras that received the most cards. Single hook, or worse, training bra girls received a small stack (oh dear-no pun intended)  including a pity card from the teacher. Ladies, you know what I’m talking about.

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Funny the things we remember. NOT.

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But let’s kiss and make up.  All is forgiven if not forgotten!

And let us get back to RED, shall we?

Whatever you make of it, it’s certainly THE Colour of the Moment.

red hair slimpaley.com

There’s a chunk of it in my hair. You heard me.

Negroni slimpaley.com

and happens to be the colour of my new favourite cocktail, the Negroni Unknown

Go Red For WomenThe 11th annual “Woman’s Day Red Dress Awards” at Lincoln Centre in NY on Tuesday.

Most importantly, it’s the colour of the month to honour Heart Disease Awareness For Women.

Many of us still associate heart attacks with men, but heart disease is actually the #1 killer of women in this country.

Why not sport the colour red in whatever fashion or form you wish this month to help raise awareness?

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 Segueing back to a little lighter fare…

Le rouge, le rouge is everywhere!

roses slimpaley.com

roses slimpaley.com

I too was in the hunt for a red gown for a dear friend’s big birthday bash this month. Ladies in red, gentlemen black tie.

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I was slightly worried  (panicked) as red, as I’ve also mentioned, is definitely NOT my colour.

There isn’t a time after the age of 30 I’ve applied true red lipstick where I haven’t thought of Bette Davis in “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane” and off it comes.

Plus it really interferes with my eating..

chocolates slimpaley.com

Screen Shot 2014-02-11 at 7.50.10 PMPaperFashion via Instagram

RED

 I’m neither light enough or dark enough to wear it well. It brings out the red in my chest, the white in my face and the mouse in my hair.

Did I mention I wear earth tones well?

Eventually, after my usual pre-party angst-ing  I found something.

655653 It wasn’t this.

It wasn’t even close to this.

Screen Shot 2014-02-12 at 7.23.08 PMDennis Basso photo via Paperfashion

The runways were absolutely throbbing with red for Fall 2014/15 this month.

ed5164a0f062366bef89bb7dbb68635cPrabal Gurung Fall 2014/15

Zac Posen Fall 2014

Zac Posen Fall 2014

Roses slimpaley.com

Pink & red roses in the window of one of the most beautiful rose shops in the world in Paris

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Karlie Kloss being fierce in red. Donna Karan Fall 2014

Roses slimpaley.com

Sneaking back for another shot at night (The Hotel Costes Bar is next door!)

523a3d99c4d6142c562e2caabe5a172dPrabal Gurung

carolina herrera Fall 2014

Karlie again in Carolina Hererra Fall 2014

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Ralph Lauren Fall 2014

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Even Andre Leon Talley was wearing a red dress this week.

No wonder there was a scarcity.

Screen Shot 2014-02-12 at 7.24.17 PMvia Vanity Fair

Oscar de la Renta Fall 2014. Wow.

Elie Saab

Elie Saab Fall 2014-15

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And what a stunningly beautiful, magical birthday celebration it was.

In fact after this week there are two more things I’m adding to my list of

‘Things I’d Love to Do When I Grow Up’

1) Design male figure skater’s costumes

2) have a party planned by Colin Cowie.

Visualisation is the first step to realisation!

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Wishing everyone a Very Happy Valentine’s Day!

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(I mean, if you go in for that sort of thing…)

and remember…

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Mwah, Mwah

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Blasts from the past;

the last time I was Seeing Red

A Valentine post from 3 years ago today; Romance & Roses

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GoRedforWomen.org

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Can We Talk? (#3)

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I‘m just going to come clean and confess.

I’ve had such a bad case of blogging ADD lately that I’ve worked myself into a corner (bed)

   My computer desktop is a mosaic of partially finished posts I can’t quite ferry into port.

Meanwhile, Life’s clipping by at an almost comical speed and the end of each day sounds a chastising gong;

‘You didn’t accomplish enough!’ gonggong

February 6th and already my New Year resolutions are in the “Fail” column.  I know that’s pretty much a given, but man, Feb. 6 is early-even for me.

Nike Fuel Band , slimpaley.com

My Nike Fuel band has registered this just once since January 1st :-(

I’m not proud, but there it is.

I think it’s broken.

The re-design of Slim Paley remains inert and that, my loyal readers is truly just the tip of the iceberg.

Patagonia slimpaley.com

Speaking of icebergs, I’ve yet to go through my Patagonia pics to write the two more travel posts I’d been planning.

 I sit down at my computer, commence a blogging and then perhaps Pinterest, sultry siren that she is, curls her comely finger at me.

BTW, did you read this on Remodelista? How I learned to Love Pinterest by Diane Keaton (don’t read it ’til you finish my post!)

See what I mean? You peeked, didn’t you?

(I know I’m not the only ADD person around here )

Then, oh, I don’t know…the phone rings, the dishwasher breaks, my credit card gets hacked, more emails & texts pop up.

 I go back to editing photos…hold the phone, wouldn’t this look great Waterlogued?? Wow-that looks so cool-I should have it printed!

In fact, I should print a bunch of them as gift cards, or maybe a book of Waterlogue photos on Artifact Uprising

Are you Waterloguing your face off?!

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“Oh my — In the past 24 hours, I have Waterlogued EVERYTHING … old family snapshots, my friends’ houses, flowers, palm trees, sunset/sunrise, postcards, impressionists’ paintings, my toes, and on and on. Truly an impressive amount of fun for $2.99. Did you know that the creator has two other photo editing apps: percolator and popsicolor? Percolator looks kinda klimt-y.”

(Thank you to Slim reader Susan Hodges for her comment above on my last post)

Are you also aware of the oil painting App Glaze”?

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and, and, and,

 That book mentioned in the NYT’s this Sunday sounded fabulous, I should download it on my Kindle-whoah-what’s this? A choice of a free book a month as well as one from the Amazon Prime Lending Library…what else should I get? I’ve never read “Middlemarch” and this one recommended on Instagram looks good!

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This could be the answer to all my problems

Wait, is that the time? I have to get to physical therapy!

797142e90277f393a9e3d0769fc426d3 I continue to make good progress-this is just about my range at the moment.

I haven’t even touched on the fact that it’s hockey season (I’ve switched allegiance from the Vancouver Canucks to the LA Kings who are killing me-nope, I take it back, they just scored! I have to go on Twitter for a minute)

Yes, I am watching hockey as I post.

K, I’m back. We won! Where was I?? Oh, and the Olympics are starting tonight.

Are you going to be watching?  I’m torn. I’m worried that Sochi’s like the kid who has a birthday party and nobody comes. Crap cake, bad party favours.

I want to support the athletes (not just the hockey players!) BUT it’s  just…

Let’s face it, it’s another thing to DO.

It will keep me from…DOING other things!

And believe you me,  I haven’t even touched on all the boring sh#%

Not going there.

Is it the weekend yet??

Have a Focused one :-)

x0xSP

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Past chats

Can We Talk?  07/09/2012

Can We Talk?? (#2) 11/12/2011

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A Hat, an App and The Fab Four…

watercolours slimpaley.com

Newport RI. slimpaley.com

It’s Friday and

I’m in love…

with a new App that I must share, in case you haven’t discovered it yet.

 It takes your photos, like the one above

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and does this.

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Painted in Waterlogue slimpaley.com

and this. In like 10 seconds.

It’s called

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 Here’s the link;  WATERLOGUE

Amanwella, Sri Lanka slimpaley.com

The Amanwella hotel, Sri Lanka

Waterlogue slimpaley.com

The watercolour I did not paint when I was there.

The Ivy slimpaley.com

A very blurry and rushed iPhone photo

Painted in Waterlogue slimpaley.com

just became a little more interesting.

Here’s Waterlogue’s story;

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vintage ice machine slimpaley.com

Original iPhone photo

ice machine slimpaley.com Instagram

makes its way onto ‘Instagram’

Painted in Waterlogue Slimpaley.com

and then ‘Waterlogued’

I’ll admit it’s a bit of a cheat, and certainly doesn’t come close to a real hand-done watercolour (except, ya it does!) but it’s so much fun!

Perhaps it might even inspire one to really paint.

marble kitchen  counter slimpaley.com

Our kitchen counter

Painted in Waterlogue

becomes a sweet little vignette

slim palsy beach house

A bedroom at the beach house (photo via House Beautiful)
Painted in Waterlogue

Ta-fricking-da!

There are plenty of options to play with; depth of colours, brush strokes etc.

 for example,

Waterlogue info

but don’t let this scare you in any way- click 3 times Dorothy and bam, you’re an artist.

It’s THAT easy.

beach house slimpaley.com house beautiful

Another pic from the beach house (photo via House Beautiful)

Painted in Waterlogue

You can get as abstract as your little artistic heart desires

Waterlogues may be instantly emailed, tweeted, Tumblr-d, Instagramed, even sent as snail mail postcards directly from your account (for an additional $1.99)

The Front Porch, Sun Valley, slimpaley.com

  “The Front Porch” store in Sun Valley, Idaho

Painted in Waterlogue slimpaley.com

I really like this one, even if I do say so myself, but that’s part of the fun.  You never know how the pics will turn out. Some photos I think will be great don’t translate well and vice-versa. I’ve only just begun to play.

‘Waterlogue’ may very well have created their ultimate monster in me.

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Lastly, as my post title promised, a flashback…

Not sure how many of you caught the Grammy Awards last Sunday, but much ado was made of Pharrell’s choice of “chapeau”

Now I’m not one to toot my own horn ( except every possible chance I get :-) ) but the moment I spied that HAT I was transported right back to 1980′s London faster than you can say “Kajagoogoo”!

I couldn’t resist chiming in to the Twitter Universe immediately ( I believe I was the first to call it-cue horn) to inform all the haters that, in fact, Pharrell was sporting an uber cool vintage Vivienne Westwood/Malcom McLaren “Buffalo Girls” hat.

Yes, I’m that old and also apparently proud of it on occasion!

Pharrell's Vivienne Westwood hat

Pharrell's hat

These were early, East Coast feed tweets, People!!

BTW, Ronan never tweeted me back. Whatever…see if I watch his new show now.

Although I realise Malcolm McLaren & Vivs Westwood weren’t as well known Stateside, if you’re young and even vaguely interested or, um, perhaps just wish to ignite old memories too, you can click to view the original video HERE

As I hash-tagged in my tweet…nothing’s ever really new, just re-intrepeted.

Pharrell  Beatles special slimpaley.com

PS. Pharrell wore THE hat again the next night at the taping of ‘The Night That Changed America; A Grammy Salute to the The Beatles’  which I was most awesomely lucky enough to attend.

The Beatles 50th anniversary show , slimpaley.com

And what an brilliant show it was. I don’t want to spoil the surprises-just watch if you possibly can. It airs February 9th on CBS-50 years to the day The Beatles first appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show.

50 years.

George Harrison slimpaley.com

Have a FAB weekend and we’ll chat again…

in February!

xoxSP

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PS. I have no affiliation nor receive any free stuff from Waterlogue

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The Goldfinch

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Carel Fabritius (1622-1654)
The Goldfinch, 1654

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So we haven’t talked books in awhile. Way too long actually. I admit to suppressing a little shudder when I recall that the desire to chat about books was one of the main catalysts for starting my blog. A book club where I always had the floor :-)

 Alas, what the Gods of Blog don’t tell you is that blogging is The Enemy of Reading.  At least in my case…any other bloggers out there concur?

Anyway…no doubt by now most of you have heard about, if not read, Donna Tartt’s latest book “The Goldfinch”.  It was listed as one of the “Top 10 Books” of 2013 and I can’t imagine it won’t be made into a film very soon. I took the opportunity to read it when we traveled to Patagonia recently.  Weighing in at 784 pages, it’s not a book one would take in hard-cover on holiday, but the perfect choice to christen the new Kindle “Paperwhite” my sister bought me for Christmas. And to uncharacteristically veer off track for just a moment, I LOVE MY PAPERWHITE! Not only is it awesomely convenient and great for my eyes, it’s been a no more stink-eye from the husband relationship-saver when it comes to reading in bed. Such a blessing when you’re on different schedules (He-sleep, Me-What is sleep?) It’s small enough to hold in one hand and even with the backlight dimmed way down, very easy to read (especially, ahem, if I INCREASE THE FONT)

kindle paperwhite , slimpaley.com

But back to Donna…I just need to say this really fast because I know with certainty I’m in the minority here;

IjustlikeditIdidn’tloveit.

There. I actually do feel better getting the confession off my chest.

Perhaps my expectations were simply too lofty-always a problem with good books and films if you don’t get there quickly enough. And the reviews for this book from both critics and people very close to me have been tremendous. Which makes it that much more difficult to admit I had issues.  The main one being that I simply felt compelled to hit my plausibility button just a few too many times. Suspension of belief is all well and good in certain genres of novels but I guess I wasn’t expecting this to be that (and I’m critiquing her writing-God forgive me!)

American_goldfinch_winter_f

 I also felt like The Goldfinch was written for a younger audience than myself, which quite frankly, I didn’t see coming either. Big font and all.  Not that that is a criticism of the book, just a contributing factor as to why it slipped into my ‘like’ as opposed to ‘love’ category.  Though I haven’t read any, I’d venture there have probably been some comparisons of the main character, Theo, to Holden Caulfield. Caufield is a literary star in my deepest heart of hearts, but he earned that place when I was in my early teens. I guess it made me feel a little sad that I couldn’t get to the same place emotionally with Theo, if that makes any sense. Which, maybe it doesn’t.

Please don’t misunderstand me-there was never any time when I wanted to bail, swear at, or even take a break from The Goldfinch. It’s an entertaining, easy and well-flowing read.  But…oh dear, I just have to sneak in one more slightly presumptuous criticism…I think it might have been a better book with tighter editing (at least 100 pages) and may I remind you, no one loves a good long read more than me. I’m the Extended Tasting Menu of readers. When a book is great, I’m in. Hell, I’ll overstay on occasion.  But in this case, long and in my opinion, unnatural conversations (Theo in the bar with his friend’s older brother) and unrelentingly bleak side stories veering wildly away from the plot line for half the book derailed it. That being said, Goldfinch does tie up satisfyingly in the end.

Ok, phew. That made me want a cocktail. I feel so very alone.

I’m going to leave you with a few pretty captive bird related images to redeem my presumptuous old self.

Vogue Livingvia Vogue Australia Living

I had intended to get this post up before The Dutch Masters exhibition at The Frick closed last Sunday. Unfortunately my New Year’s resolution of slowing time and speeding up personal production hasn’t quite manifested as yet. I will tell you that my son and his friend were able to go and said it was fabulous.  Crowds of people lined up in the frigid NY weather to view Fabritius’ Goldfinch, some long stashed away Rembrandts and Vermeer’s The Girl with the Pearl Earring .

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Vermeer’s Girl with a Pearl earring

I’m sorry I don’t know where the Dutch Masters exhibition is headed next. Anybody??

Hotel Das Cataratas, Brazil slimpaley.comThis is the lovely, old world bar in the Hotel das Cataratas, located on the Brazilian side of the Iguassu Falls, the second to last stop on our trip to South America.  I loved the hand-painted birds against the old mirror and the broken wires of the cages. Clever.

Bartender, Hotel Das Cataratas, Brazil, slimpaley.com

Brazil, slimpaley.comWhat the clever bartender conjured up

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HauteCulturePress.com ‘s first book is a translation of Flaubert’s “Felicity”.  Handmade using silk, gold and a parrot feather bookmark the volume is signed, numbered and comes complete inside its own birdcage. Also clever!

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Available through Assouline 

Habitually Chic

via HabituallyChic.com

The Biltmore Hotel, Santa Barbara, CA  slimpaley.comThe front entrance foyer of The Biltmore Hotel in Montecito, California last week.

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Versace

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Earrings by SolangeAzagury-Partridge

Paradise by Way of Kensal Green,  Bloomsbury Life“Paradise by Way of Kensal Green” in London (via ABloomsburyLife.com )

Timorous Beasties wallpaper

Wallpaper via Timorous Beasties

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Dolce & Gabbana

McQueen

Alexander McQueen Fall 2013

Elle Decor

bird wallpaper

EnVoguewallpapers.com

bird wallpaper

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Alexander McQueen Fall 2013

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Wishing you a beautiful weekend with a cozy place to nest and lots of reading time!

For more cagey birds visit my post “Tweet Tweet” 

xox SP

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