Wild Beauty

Africa game reserve Slim PaleySlim Paley photo

While it would be a bit of a stretch to say that “Sauvage” is having a Moment right now (being that its popularity never seems to wane)

Sauvage IS Having a Moment.

leopard print interiorThere. Said it.

black & BrownFrom runway to residence

Sauvagevia French Essence

We just can’t seem to resist The Call of the Wild.

Peter Beard diaries

 Taschen is even re-issuing Peter Beard’s classic collection of his collaged African diaries, originally published in 2006

Peter Beard book

According to Tashchen, the original is now selling for $1,900 (score!)

The new edition will be priced at a more reasonable $69.99

peter beard

A Life in Full


Searching for your Peter Beard?

A python print outfit, sunglasses, a lean-to and a little bit of luck…what else does a girl really need?

Snakeskinvia Tumblr

alfredo-paredes-brad-goldfarb-new-york-apartment-07-study-lgvia Architectural Digest

A chic and cozy blend of earthy tones and textures combine to create this great sauvagey corner


Croc-embossed leather hot off the presses on Tom Ford’s runway this week

Screen Shot 2013-09-19 at 8.29.39 AM

Burberry Prorsum

From manicures (I’ll pass on the leopard nails) down to our little hooves,

the lion’s not sleeping tonight :-)

Screen Shot 2013-09-18 at 5.14.48 PM

 Burberry Prorsum Men Fall 2013

givenchy-rtw-fw2013-accessories-07_150458981888Givenchy Fall 2013


Even faux fur is looking awfully convincing these days

I bought the cutest fur vest-no one would ever guess is faux. Except I’ve told everyone. Which is always my issue with faux. I get so excited when it’s done well I end up pointing out to anyone within earshot that it’s fake. Good idea with fur. Not so good with floors & wall treatments.

Kendall Conrad

From Kendall Conrad‘s newest collection, this printed calfskin wrist wrap

African beads Slim PaleySlim Paley African beads


Geometric Sauvage


Erdem Spring 2014

tribal rugCan’t beat the tribal rug for connecting to your wilder shores.

girl with catOr, you know, casually strolling with a wild animal. In chiffon.

burberry-prorsum-rtw-fw2013-details-010_170956347139Burberry Prorsum Fall 2013

burberry-prorsum-rtw-fw2013-details-022_171006381523Burberry RTW Fall 2013

Screen Shot 2013-09-19 at 8.14.19 AMDiane Von Furstenberg Spring 2014

018c2f2a1cd826a48b222d1d828beb2bmore glamping on the wild side

Cara Delevigne

Cara Delevigne. This year’s Wild Child.

Zebra print wallpaperA sauvage statement in black & white


Burberry’s Ladies Who Lunch Gone Wild

street fashion zebra print pants

Wish I could find these zebra print pants. I’d live in them.



Kendall Conrad‘s new “Siberian Tiger” Pacha bag. Sigh.

zebra rug

A cool interpretation of Sauvage at home.

Karlie Kloss

6 and a half feet of Zebra. Karlie Kloss at Diane Von Furstenberg Spring 2014


Tom Ford Spring 2014

Beautiful makeup too.


Christian Louboutin

I know I’ll be dusting off my “vintage” zebra print Marni coat, and happily carrying my newish leopard print laptop case.

See you in the main tent for cocktails!

(FYI; Peter doesn’t like it if you’re late-you’ll miss the sunset :-))

xox SP


*Please note: The Kendall Conrad items are custom, handprinted, ethically raised calf skins from Italy.


It feels, at least to me, like it’s been quite a while since I’ve done a “Colour” post.

In fact, it’s been quite a while since I’ve written a post :-)

So what better combination to jump back in with than Black & White?!

Especially since I started compiling these, and scads of other images way back in the Spring, when the runways were absolutely choc-a-bloc with black & white stripes-particularly Marc Jacobs, Michael Kors & Balmain, to name just a few.

Alas, the summer has slipped by as quickly as those looks hit the shops and streets

and look who’s finally getting around to the “White & Black” post”?!

(I’ll be sharing that “Best Sunscreens” post any week now too!)

window shopping London, Slim Paley

But seriously, the combo was positively inescapable this summer.

I snapped this Harvey Nichol’s window in London in June.

white roses in black vases, Slim Paley photo, Sri Lanka

This cool arrangement, a particular favourite of mine, I shot at The Tintagel Hotel in Sri Lanka last year.

 The round  black vases sit on a large lacquer tray perched on a leather ottoman. So chic and unusual, and even more beautiful in person.

best black & white bedroom


Just one of my all time favourite black & white bedrooms ehvver, that’s all.

I wish I knew where it was and who to give credit to.

black & white exterior

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again (then protest that I did not already say that)


Black & white stripes work in every possible permutation



more contemporary


photo Jeff McNamara

or flat out modern

black & white straws


They worked for Matisse and his models

black & white striped ottoman

and with every shade in the colour spectrum (speaking of Matisse)


They’re the perfect touch of homespun textile in an industrial space


A cheeky, yet classic addition to an eclectic vignette


And don’t even get me started on how cool these stairs are.

Of course you’d have to install railings in America, by code, which would totally spoil the look-

but you could then remove them after inspection.

Woops-was that my outside voice again??

black & white dishes, Target, Slim Paley Instagram

Speaking of being naughty, I pinched this great set of china for practically nothing at Target. I might have posted this Instagram photo once before, but it fits so well here, I couldn’t pass up the humble brag.

I think the ‘china’ looks great with the linens-

From the markets of Sri Lanka to Target in Ventura- a truly International table setting!

black & white striped risotto pot

Seriously coveting these black & white pots but don’t know where to find them- I just know they’re made in Italy.

black & white stripes

black & white tin buckets Target

I also scooped up about a dozen of these mini metal beach pails at Target for like 99 cents. Filled  with herbs and interspersed with votives, they’ll be fun down my  long barn table. That’s the plan anyway. If I ever get around to throwing a dinner party again.


(but that’s another post, right? I guess getting up at 5 AM helps)

black & white stripe accent wall

How about striping just one wall for a great effect that’s easily removable if you tire of it-

which you probably won’t, but I always worry about that. Virgo.

black & white striped chair

Cute chair, no credit, help me out here Pinterest People.

*Ahh-and already “Linda” has written in with the credit here Thank you!


Super simple to paint your own floor, right?

Says she, with the lantern still on the floor of the garage…

Mark Hotel bikes, NY, Slim Paley Instagram

My Instagram pic of the bikes outside the Mark Hotel in NY this summer.


Let’s forget about stripes for a moment.

In my next life I want to be able to carry off six wacking great bangles on each arm and act all blasé about it.

“Oh, these? these old things?? I wear them all the time…don’t even notice they’re there”

Screen Shot 2013-06-28 at 3.15.56 PM


I’m also loving this poncho by Rag & Bone, which I would wear to death.

Screen Shot 2013-08-14 at 10.24.58 PM

Keds by Kate Spade

Love the pic but I wish the shoes weren’t so pointy.


I SO coveted these sequined pants from Etro. I figured (justified) they were a timeless investment.

But were they in any of the shops?


loved the sandals and the toenail polish colour, which I bought but looked totally vile on me.

Black & white Paris

Is it Kate? So French, so cool. Even though I hate smoking.

Vintage Conde Nast


Carolyn Murphy via Vogue

Daria Werbowy

My favourite model, besides Christy Turlington, Daria Werbowy.
OK, so in my next life, I’m coming back as Daria with a whole armload of cuffs & bracelets.

I won’t say no to the jacket if that’s thrown in either.


Edie Campbell by Peter Lindbergh

This was one of the best editorial spreads of the summer-I’m still saving one of the other photos for an upcoming post.

But I think what we’re really learning here People is that we all need to get some black & white striped trousers.

Sooner than later.

black & white stripes


and how about that face?!

black & white striped bikini

BTW, Summer still isn’t over, especially for us here in Southern California

For those of you Down Under, it’s just about to start (lucky!!)

Kate Moss in Bathing suit

Kate Moss in Dolce & Gabbana. Photo Patrick Demarchelier

vintage beach shot


Screen Shot 2013-08-26 at 9.56.54 PM

Hat by Monet, photo Herman Landshoff, Mademoiselle, 1959


vintage black & white stripe fashion shot

In fact, Really timeless!

and if you’re still left with even a sliver of a doubt…


a glimpse of Anne Demeulemeester Spring/Summer 2014 Men’s collection.

black & white French Bull dogs

White & Black Forever!

wpid-Photo-17052011-655-PM SP


Last year’s “Black & White Redux” post HERE

black & white striped balloons

Balloons & pencil photo via Pinterest


Meanwhile, Back in London…

David Bowie

Meanwhile, back in London…

The town was abuzz not only with the 60 year Coronation anniversary, but also the Bowie exhibition at the Victoria & Albert museum.

Needless to say, being the dyed in the wool Bowie Fangirl I am, there was no way we were going to miss the show!

V & A

A beautiful summer day on the steps of the V & A, London

David Bowie

The show was good, slick and definitely worth seeing

David Bowie

In my humble opinion however , it could have been bigger. Granted there was and continues to be SO much great material to document over Bowie’s decades long career, but it’s not like the V & A doesn’t have the room…and I’m sure the budget must have been formidable.

David Bowie Aladdin Sane

Then again, perhaps it’s fitting to leave the show feeling the man still remains a bit of an enigma (aren’t you glad I didn’t say chameleon :-) )

Royal Academy of Arts London

We were also just in time for the Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition Preview party

London Royal Academy of Arts

Where the fashion and art world’s ongoing love affair with fluorescents was to be clocked everywhere.

People,  the “Red Carpet” was green!

fluorescent belt

Even the canapés were served on glowing fluorescent green trays. (fyi-I didn’t eat all those)

Though I felt slightly underdressed (it’s a long story) at least my belt matched the theme of the evening.

Louis Vuitton Summer 2013

Cute young girls in Louis Vuitton SS13 frocks


and stripes were certainly a popular fasion statement.

Screen Shot 2013-07-14 at 11.37.14 PM

A triptych of pics from the party

PrawnsPrawns on fluoro ice.

fluorescent bar

and a glowing green bar

Royal Academy of Arts London

Leaving the party to go to “Le Caprice” off Piccadilly for a late dinner with old friends

Le Caprice London

A restaurant we frequented-yikes, often and more years ago than I really care to divulge, and it’s still as busy as ever.

Though the signage remains the same, the interior has enjoyed a subtle face-lift.

Hmmm…oh forget it. I can go back to the same places, but I’ll never get the old face back, and that’s OK.

No, really, it’s fine. Pass the whine. I mean the wine.

Purple Bentley

BTW, If you were going to buy a Bentley, would you pick purple?!

Louis Vuitton windows London

More fun to be had window shopping in Mayfair


The new Assouline book shop next to Claridge’s Hotel.

Windows Harvey Nichols London

and Knightsbridge at Harvey Nichols


Where I bought this Christopher Kane silk jacket that is amortizing nicely.Harvey Nichols London

More Harvey Nic’s

Black door, Mayfair, London

and simply strolling in the streets of my old ‘hood sharing my old memories with my husband.

Window boxes Mayfair

And lest one precious moment of London time was wasted, a girlfriend and I also took in the arts & antiques fair at Olympia.

Modern art

Where I became quite fascinated with this 3D piece. Doesn’t it look like an aerial view of a crowd of people milling about?

Art, London

Closer inspection reveals it’s simply tiny dollops of layers of paint. Very clever.

Sadly, I’m unable to find my program from the show at the moment so I cannot credit the artist.

Gerard Mas

My friend was taken with this cheeky Bazooka bubblegum snapping Renaissance-looking maiden, carved in alabaster no less, by the artist Gerard Mas.

The subtly veined and translucent nature of the alabaster made her appear unsettling life-like. It also made me want to wear more sunscreen.


Our last evening found us at the ridonkulously chic “5 Hertford St.”  in Mayfair, just off Curzon St.

5 Hertford St. London

The good news is it’s owned and very personally presided over by Robin Birley, son of the infamous Mark Birley who ran “Annabel’s” in Mayfair for forever and a day


The family are true restaurant and private nightclub royalty-oh the stories they could tell! and wow, Birley’s newest establishment does not disappoint.


Robin and Lucy Birley

The decor was conceived  by 80′s & 90′s renowned fashion designer Rifat Ozbek, though I can’t imagine that Robin Birley and his wife (Bryan Ferry’s ex) didn’t also have a strong hand in final ambiance  of the place.


The bar area in “Loulou’s” downstairs

Downstairs is like Safari-meets-The Water Babies. Sorry if that’s a difficult visual to summon up, but that’s how it felt, so overcome was I with the general effect. Upstairs, you just want to live in every single room, sit by the multiple fire places, smoking cigars whilst reading Maugham and discussing the merits of whippets above all other canines with Mr. Birley himself. (Who I just happened to see carrying his one grey whippet down the stairs in his arms, with the other close to heel. It was The Perfect English Moment)

The Bad News is, and this is pretty bloody bad-it’s private.

One must know Some One in order to get One’s self through the very discreet little door of “5 Hertford St”


So, if your travels include a trip to London on the horizon, One best get on the horn and start calling friends, friends of friends, bosses of friends, and listen, if things get desperate, even rebuilding a broken friendship bridge or two if necessary.

This is one of the chicest, coolest places I’ve been to.

And I really don’t think it’s just because I love London so much.

PS. Don’t flipping tell anyone I snapped the photo of the dining room  with the roses above-I imagine they don’t take kindly to people clicking away with their iPhones.


PPS. Can’t tell a porkie-pie, I also snapped the flowers in the Ladie’s room.

Who could resist these and who does it hurt, pray tell??

OK, and really, really, lastly…cause it’s like 2am in the morning here,

Royal Baby in the Bedroom

We’re on High Alert Royal Baby Watch now are we not?!

I shot this little “Instagram”vignette in our guest room in honour of the Big Event.

I love that CNN announced today that ‘Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge are eagerly awaiting the birth of either a boy or a girl!”


Righty ho, time for me to go to bed and dream of England!

What are you doing in your part of the world right now?!


*all photos of “5 Hertford St.” except my first Instagram pic and the Ladie’s room flowers are via “Vanity Fair” magazine.

It’s now even later than 2am so excuse any typos-I might as well be running a nightclub at this hour.

Coat check tag,please. And No, I don’t have any change.


Red & White Stripes Redux


It’s that time again!

When I go to my “happy place” with the annual red & white stripes post.

And what better day than on the eve of celebrating America’s Independence?

I have so much to be thankful for living here and not, say, in Egypt right now.

Not that I’ve ever even been to Egypt, so it’s not like it was a close call or anything,

but still…

I’d love to go there someday. Prayers for the situation there to settle peacefully and soon.

and now let’s get back on a much lighter note,

Red & White stripes window shopping Marrakech

 I’ve always got an eye out for a good red & white stripe when I’m traveling.

I’m delighted by what the smallest dose of it can bring to a room.

On my recent trip to Morocco I spotted this lovely display in a great  shop in Marrakech.

They had wonderful linens, textiles, place mats etc. so I hope someone will leave a comment reminding me of its name.

*LATE ADDITION: The music I forgot to add last night! Great summer song

(must be turned up really loud)



An All American classic porch vignette


Ice cream filled watermelon rinds via Bakers Royale


Glasses via Taigan.com

989f5c6dd5b7364ae47a332308c41e40via Pinterest

How cheery is this kitchen wall painted like a dish towel?

If you’re in a bad mood in the morning in a room like this there’s pretty much no hope for you.


I spotted these cute “vintage” serving boxes in an antique store in Carpinteria and bought the entire stash of them. Perfect for popcorn or hot dogs and chips by the pool.  I propped them on my cotton throw/tablecloth in the “new” conservatory (which has basically become my new office!) for this photo.

Ask me if I painted the vintage lamp hot pink for the conservatory yet.



Screen Shot 2013-07-03 at 5.16.59 PM

OMG Ines-copy me much??

ED0112_Provence_001-400-lgnand Ines de la Fressange’s home in Provence

Screen Shot 2013-06-30 at 7.22.12 PMimage via Tumblr

Costa Nova, Portugal

great bunk bedsLovely to make up the bed with crisp, cool rouge stripes in the summer.

Screen Shot 2013-07-03 at 1.49.06 PM

cotton sheets via West Elm


 Stripes Then. Jean Shrimpton


Stripes Now. Kate Moss in Dolce & Gabbana


photo Cihan Alpgiray

Screen Shot 2013-05-19 at 8.30.34 AM

Adorbable striped ‘kini from Ete via Moda Operandi

Screen Shot 2013-07-03 at 4.50.31 PM

Or a one piece from Golden Goose Deluxe Brand




le Bristol hôtel, ParisI shot this photo in the courtyard of hotel le Bristol in Paris last summer.

I highly recommend it for the perfect combination of luxury & friendly ambience. Not too stuffy for kids and wonderful restaurant, bar & room service.


It’s amazing how well red & white stripes work in old world interiors as well as new.

They can feel totally Euro or quintessentially American. Take your pic.


They’re the Switzerland of stripes.

Screen Shot 2013-06-30 at 7.45.59 PM



OK, so I know this is not red & white exactly but how could I not put these 5 photos together? I wouldn’t have been able to sleep otherwise.

It’s not easy being me.




No stripes at all here in fact, but don’t you think this room was “inspired” by Matisse’s “Checkers”?!

BarbaraElle7French Elle Magazine

But back to  red & white stripes

Consider the turban.


Screen Shot 2013-06-23 at 3.14.05 PM

Conversely, the Converse


How about Roasted Strawberry & Toasted Coconut popsicles from Joy The Baker

Snow cone machine, Williams & Sonoma

Or classic snow cones (snapped at Williams & Sonoma)



And just in case you missed it the first time; my Red & White Stripes post from last July.

Timeless is timeless after all.

HAPPY 4th of JULY to All You Wonderful Yankees!

Be safe and joy-filled this holiday.

And thanks as always to the troops that afford us this day to celebrate.

xx SP

More Stripes for the die-hards;

“Red & White Stripes (II)


An Indian Dinner



Happy Saturday to you!

I’m a little jet lagged, having just recently returned from London. I’m excited to share some highlights of our trip once I’ve had a chance to download and compile all my photos. I actually went away with just my tiny Leica and the download cord, but no battery charger. So dumb. Don’t you just love packing?

Those of you that follow me on Instagram though have seen several of my holiday snaps there already. The old iPhone (and I do mean the old one) takes a pretty good shot in a pinch.  OK so, wait…I’m off track already, bloody hell…the London post will be arriving shortly (it is coming from overseas after all!)

In the meantime, I thought I’d share a few photos from the Indian Dinner table I set at ‘Casa Paley’ shortly before we went away.

890A8441We were excited to be having very dear old friends over for dinner and inspired by the spate of beautiful late May weather in Santa Barbara (before  “June Gloom” arrived, right on schedule as I’ve been informed, June 1st) I thought it would be fun to serve up a big old curry with all the fixings.

09ea16a6bd9e11e299e522000a9e28c4_7My Instagram shot of the cookbooks we used:

“Mangoes & Curry Leaves” (gorgeous book, somewhat complex recipes),”Tangy Tart Hot & Spicy” by Padma Lakshmi (easier recipes) and “Vij’s” from my favourite Indian restaurant in Vancouver-even though they don’t take reservations which drives me insane. Maybe because I’m mentioning his cookbook I might not have to wait outside the next time.  Do you think??? Hey, It could happen. If you know him, please put in a good word for me :)

I’m afraid I don’t have any photos of the food but this is what we served:

Vij’s Family Chicken Curry (OMG-SO good. and I’m not just saying that because of the no reservations thing. Swear)

Prawns in Coconut Marsala

Sauteed Arugula & Spinach with Tofu (because we couldn’t find Paneer)

Ginger & Jalapeño Basmati rice

Green Beans with Toasted Coconut & Cashews

Cucumber Raita

Shredded Carrot, Cranberries & Cilantro Salad (Gorgeous & delicious-so wish I’d taken a photo) from Padma’s book

Huge crispy Poppadoms, Naan bread and lashings of spicy chutneys


890A8452Different flavours of salts on the table are always a nice touch.

I found the porcelain and copper “burning match” votives “At The Table” in LA  years ago.

890A8462I actually have a “Salt” post in the hopper as we speak. Keep an eye out for it. I know. Exciting, right?!

890A8457As usual, I like to really mix it up, so here we have a huge vintage Suzani used as the tablecloth (that’s how much I love/trust these friends :) )  little silver votives from Pottery Barn, Cristofle silverware, vintage ocean liner water goblets, black & white striped cotton napkins from “Paradise Lane” in Sri Lanka, and all the black & white dishes are from Target. The roses are “White Iceberg” and “Hot Cocoa” from my garden.

Here’s the recipe for the curried chicken:

photo 2 photo 1photo 3

Taken from “Vij’s” cookbook with love and respect… and patience.

What?? I’m not hinting at anything!

890A8520Christofle silver vase (a present for our 25th wedding anniversary last month)

For another Suzani inspired table setting check out this older post HERE -I just noticed that it was also done in May, in 2011. Goes to show how much Spring inspires us to bring the colour indoors (you might also recognise that suzani from my recent post about updating our conservatory) Vintage textiles are such a worthwhile investment, aren’t they?!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend