ZING!

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Don’t get me wrong.

It’s not that I don’t love the whole GREY/BEIGE/GREIGE  thaing that’s swept through the global design community and settled upon us like a tasteful, gunmetal scrim…

but right now, with it being summer and all, I’m feeling much more of a

ZING!!!

in my heart.

I want to bring all this lovely colour and light into my home for these long summer dayz…

How about you?

Come, let’s listen to cool new music and get  some  Zingy  inspiration together!

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“Golden Light” by TwinShadow


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“Aurora” crystal via http://www.theresienthal.de

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.Theresienthal crystal

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Melodious Cacophony 

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..Anyone can throw together a bright & charming splash of summer flowers in a simple mason jar

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The Moroccan sensibility is perfect for creating a colourful yet chic ambience

Have you seen Maryam Montague’s new book;

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Slim Paley photo

It’s full of fun ideas, and you may also read her blog HERE

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A modern take on the traditional Suzani pattern

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C’est Moi!

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.Often simple is best!

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Kallianthi Fabrics

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Roche Bobois  (Also having a sale right now)

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Art by Kathe Fraga- explore HERE

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via Remodelista

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Love this tunic!.

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Dior Summer 2012.

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Slim Paley Instagram photo

My new Pottery Barn (on sale now!) cushions make me and my porch very happy

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Sherbet colours

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…and then the Jewelry Fairy came and put a Tamara Comolli  bracelet under all our pillows!

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Tanja Lippert

Exuberent! Exhuberant  Exhuberent  #@$%^%^&#

FULL OF JOY!!

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Have a Zingy Weekend

xoxo

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~

That 70′s Post

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Slimmer, Paler, Slim Paley

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Me at 14 or 15 yrs. old

I was working in an art gallery/tea house on Sundays and I’m going to say this was taken at the end of a really long day.

(btw, why were all our photos so badly cropped in the 70′s? just wondering…)

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Today I’m taking a stroll, or rather a drive, back to the 70′s

to celebrate the release of my dear friend Rita Wilson’s brand new CD

Rita Wilson AM/FM

The album is a fab collection of Rita covering some of her favourite songs from the 60′s & 70′s.

You must get it- it’s fantastic!

and I’m SO not saying that because she’s my friend!

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Now we all know Rita as a super talented actor and producer, but I bet it might surprise you to learn she is also a really great singer.

 I know, right? (but I’ll let you in on a little secret- she bites her thumbnails. Quite a lot.)

  Don’t we all feel a little better now?!

 

Just check her version of “Good Time Charlie’s Got the Blues” out here;

Link:


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Rita WilsonPhoto Steven Sebring

..Rita’s song choices will resonate with anyone who grew up, or shall we say ‘passed through’ this era and I can guarantee you’ll be singing along with every song.

This is a definite ‘Embarrass Yourself in the Car’ CD.

Bring it on. Hell, hang some Pukka shells from your dashboard.

Will you ever see those people driving beside you again?  Chances are slim.

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I love the premise of the album;

The 60′s “AM” songs are the ones you listened to from the back of the car while your parents were driving;

songs filled with an innocence about what the future held in store for you.

As the 70′s arrived, you’ve shifted to the front seat. You’re driving and controlling the FM station now-and did we work those dials, ladies, or what??!

The  songs become more poignant, the message that love doesn’t always work out begins to resonate because, damn it, HE still hasn’t called…

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Slim Paley & friends

Me and my friends in the 70′s. Names will be omitted to spare the not-so-innocent :)

I’m on the far left. I always stuck my tongue out to cover my big bottom lip & overbite.

Man, I loved that long denim jeans skirt.

While we’re on the subject of the 70′s and driving …

I”ll share the story of my mom picking my friends and I up from school and us begging, as usual, to be driven past the house where several of the Cute Older Boys we  swooned over all lived together. The regular drill of course, for any of the ‘Normal’ parents was to drive slowly BY the house, usually throbbing with the bass of Led Zepplin or Pink Floyd, in hopes we might catch a glimpse of a truck being worked on in the drive, perhaps some corkscrew curls haloed in the blue glow of a TV through a open window…

No ‘Normal’ for my mom.

 She pulled INTO the driveway and started honking the horn.

Honestly, we were so traumatised that to this day I don’t remember exactly what happened after that.

Funny Mom.

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Watch Rita talking about her first album

HERE

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and then we’ll drive a little farther, shall we?

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Did you steal splashes from your Mom’s “Jean Nate’”?

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Did you cry because you were too puny to wear “Big Boy Lees” with the leather patch & have to suffer the humiliation of VINYL patch “Little Boy Lees” like me?

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Did you imagine you would look just like Christie Brinkley after a summer weekend of using

“Lemon Go Lightly”

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Lemon Go Lightly

only to go back to school on Monday with hair the actual COLOUR of a lemon??

Snap.

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Yardley Pot o' gloss

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Did you swoon over your first pot of Yardley’s “Pot O’ Gloss” and can’t you recall that delicious scent even now?

How many pots did you leave in your cut-offs and find melted to the pockets

and how in the hell did we forget so many incriminating things in our cut-offs when the actual pockets hung down longer than the shorts?!)

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Love's Baby Soft

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Remember what appears now (at least to me) the wildly inappropriate  “Love’s Baby Soft” ad.

Was that girl 9 or 19??  But we LOVED our “Love’s Baby Soft”!

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And may we have just a moment

Robert Plant

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Robert Plant

or two,

or three, for our Robert Plant posters??

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Robert Plant

Gosh..

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My favourite models were Lena Kansbod

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And Lisa Taylor

How iconic this photo became.  She just looked so…wonderfully American.

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Just like Rita!

Rita WilsonPhoto Steven Sebring

I think this song might be my favourite.

Seriously, how can lyrics about a telephone repair man be this romantic and beautiful??!

“And I need you more than want you…and I want you for all time…”  sigh.

Jimmy Webb, the composer of the song is playing the piano on this track-just gorgeous.

Link:


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Well, I certainly had fun putting this post together. I could have gone on and on.

Do you remember the 70′s as fondly as I do?

I might have to go for a ‘Part II’ in the near future…I mean we didn’t even touch on Disco!

Find “Rita Wilson AM/FM” on Amazon,  Barnes & Noble, and lots of other places.

It would make a great little Mother’s Day gift- have I ever steered you wrong?

and please, don’t forget I’m still in the damn contest so VOTE people! It’s ONE click HERE 


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Peace Out

xx

Cirrusly

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Slim Paley photo

Africa

 

One of the most vivid cinematic memories I’ve retained from my childhood was the first time I went to see “Mary Poppins”

I was utterly gobsmacked  that Mary could  turn spoonfuls of medicine from one bottle into multiple flavours and colours-what a nifty and useful trick!

But most of all, I was totally entranced by the concept of sitting on clouds.

So much so, in fact, that there’s probably been but a mere handful of times (or should I say a spoonful :) ) that the memory hasn’t floated back into my consciousness  whenever I’m passing through clouds while flying.

I cannot tell a lie…

 I’m always looking for Mary.

Slim Paley Photo

A cirrusly beautiful sky above downtown Santa Barbara

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What in the world would Mary have made of our present day “Cloud”s?

Actually I should think Steve & Mary would have gotten along very well, don’t you think?

I was at a dinner party the other night when the subject of ‘Clouds’ of the internet variety came up.

I must admit that I was left feeling a wee bit overwhelmed and a tad paranoid after about 5 minutes.

Who is reading what’s stored in my “Cloud” of choice? Will my information be sold, stolen or tampered with? Have I chosen a secure enough cloud?

and damn it if when the two words “secure” and “cloud” came together; guess what I was visualizing as I raised my  glass to my lips and feigned understanding of how cyber space really works??

Will I ever grow up?!

 


 from “The Pearl” Brian Eno

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Cute idea for a play house but I’d hate to have to clean it

The designer Iris Van Herpen obviously has a thing for clouds

And no one did ‘ethereal’ better than Alexander McQueen

Slim Paley photo

Almost 6′ high these sculptural mirrors by designer Christopher Guy  add 3-D drama to a modern space.

..It seems I can’t pick up a shelter or interior design magazine without seeing clouds of every permutation .

Roche Bobois

“Clouds” by Kvadrat

Artist Berndnaut Smilde creates momentary cloud art with the aid of a fog machine but captures them for posterity on film

 horse in the clouds…

Dior Couture

Iris Van Herpen

.An ethereal table setting, I would imagine for a wedding.

Who knew Baby’s Breath could actually look  good?!

Slim Paley photo

I’m thinking Van Cleef & Arpels but I think my husband has secretly dis-connected the Van C & A. neurons in my brain.

Ayala Serfaty

Cloud Lounge Chair by Debbie Palao

plates by JD Wolfe Pottery via Etsy

Slim Paley photo

A raucous thunder & lightening storm rolls across the lush jungles of Sri Lanka.

Incredible to behold as we sat outside under shelter, savouring sweet wine and tear-inducing chocolate mousse.

A permanent memory to be sure.

Iris Van Hepern

Mario Testino photo

Zeppelin light fixture

Claire Anne O’Brien knitted stool

Dark cloud

Iris strikes  again

Michael Casker photo

Cloud as pet.

Doesn’t eat much but tends to be temperamental  and difficult to train.

Perhaps she is looking for Mary too…

Did you know we should all be looking to experience a cloud phenomena known as “The Morning Glory”?

Have you ever seen it? Perhaps if you live in Australia you have…

The Morning Glory Cloud Phenomena 

and this new book is supposed to be very good if you like to have your head in the clouds;

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.Keep your head up :)

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Green Gold

Ceylon teaSlim Paley photo

Fields of TEA, the most consumed beverage on the planet

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Being an Irish lass, what better day to post about my visit to the tea plantations of Sri Lanka than on the eve of St. Patrick’s Day?!

And ye of little faith, thinking I wasn’t going to post this week!

Why I was just getting settled back in, unpacking, battling jet lag and eating Coldstone’s ice cream at 5:00am in the morning.

You know, the usual…

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tea plantationsSlim Paley photo

Certainly one of the highlights of our trip was the time we spent along the Tea Trails.

Imagine falling into a Genie’s bottle of Hendrick’s gin and you’ll get some idea of the verdant atmosphere of this area.

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Did you notice the tiny church nestled at the top of the fields of tea? The most beautiful little church in the world, which I’m saving for another post.

Did I just mention gin and church in the same sentence? :(

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white teaSlim Paley photo

Who knew that all tea; English Breakfast, Earl Grey, Jasmine, Orange Pekoe, green, even white tea (which, seen above, is the healthiest tea of all) comes from the same tea plant?!

White tea is made from the silver tipped uppermost leaves with the barely perceptible hairs you see on the leaf above. For high quality teas no more than the top 3 leaves of the plant will be picked.

Various flavours such as “Earl Grey” are infused into the tea after the leaves have been processed by the tea factory. To Earl Grey for example, one of my favorites, bergamot is added, for Lady Grey, simply a lighter note of bergamot. For Jasmine tea the jasmine flower is added during the fermenting process, Green tea is unfermented and black tea is fermented for exactly 2 hours and 40 minutes, a minute less and the tea tastes soapy, a minute more and the leaves start to acquire a bitter taste.

And yes, that is the sound of my fingernails brushing against my lapel :)

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Slim Paley photo

Our journey to Hatton began from the most adorable train station, built in 1867 and located in the beautifully named town of Peradeniya.

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Train stations, Sri Lanka.

Whaaat?! that can’t be right! It’s definitely my laptop.

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We had booked ahead and managed to score seats in the “Super Luxury A/C Cabin”

…or so we thought…

Only to find our “First Class” carriage doing a shockingly good imitation of a sardine tin… Ahhnd whatever happened to that air conditioning??

The train immediately pulled out of the station and as the journey was supposedly to last 4 hours (I say supposedly as Time is a rather fluid concept in Sri Lanka) we were, needless to say, horrified. The entire situation was so messing with my ‘Meryl Streep getting off the train to glimpse Robert Redford in Africa’ fantasy. Different continent, and duffel bags rather than steamer trunks & fine china but really, that was beside the point. My upper lip began to get dewy. My hair continued to expand.

After much pushing, yelling, and jostling of body bag-sized backpacks, the conductor was able to insert his way into our car and inform all those passengers from a certain tour group from a country that shall remain nameless, that they simply had to disembark at the next station TOUT de SUITE.

EXCUSEZ MOI.

.Slim Paley photo

A seat at last, and who needs air conditioning (which I abhor really) when you can throw open the window to a warm breeze and this kind of view?

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waterfalls, Sri Lanka

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travel Ceylon

Nuwara Eliya “The Little England of Sri Lanka”

The.

The tiny white spots you see in the photo below are the tea harvesters.

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Leaves are picked every 7 days. Each picker has their own zone and the rotating is very methodical. The bushes can live to be 135 yrs. old, are fertilized every 3 months and cut back every 4 years. One single branch is left uncut to stop the plant from going into shock. I’m going to try that with a few rose bushes next year and see if it makes a difference.

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Sri Lanka

The tea pickers are given housing by the tea plantations as well as electricity and good schooling for their children.

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A lady walking down the road, though this doesn’t look to be tea she is carrying

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We visited the Norwood Factory in Bogowantalawa where we were given a delightful tour by Andrew Taylor, a direct descendant of James Taylor, the first tea planter in Sri Lanka. Although the factory was not in production the day we visited we were able to take a nice quiet tour and receive Andrew’s undivided attention.

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freshly picked tea leavesSlim Paley photo

Here we begin with the freshly plucked leaves.

They must be moist enough to not break up when they are rolled between your palms.

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The freshly picked baskets of tea leaves are put into this elevator and brought up to the second floor of the factory

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Where they are spread out on these racks

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and dried for a very specific amount of time by these incredibly powerful fans

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Then lots of other crazy stuff happens.

What can I say- I lost some of my notes and was nervous about going up Adam’s Peak later that night- I was trying to preserve energy!

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I thought a few people might enjoy this sign :)

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I know that this machine shimmied and shook like crazy

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and I believe this one cut the leaves but don’t quote me

Towards the end of the process the leaves are put into a huge oven heated entirely by burning wood.

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I was rather taken with the Norwood Factory’s “5S System” which they’ve adopted from the Japanese.

I might add that the factory and all the machinery was immaculate.

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.tea country, Sri Lanka

3 stages of tea

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The entire process of taking the tea leaf from the bush to finished product is accomplished in a single day.

7 days a week. 365 days a year.

There is no down season in the tea world.

From every batch of tea, a small sample is sent to all the brokers in Sri Lanka representing purveyors from around the world, from Lipton’s to Fornum & Mason. Their agents will expertly inspect the quality of leaves for colour, consistency and taste and then bid on individual lots at auction every week. A tea taster can manage 800-1,000 tastings A DAY. Take that wine tasters.

So from the field to the bank for the tea producer is a 3 week turnaround. What a great business!

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Finally, our taste test lesson, which involved swilling, slurping, spitting and face making whilst we searched for hopefully a lack of any ‘foreign’ perfume or wood smoke, while trying to ascertain a fresh citrusy scent, slight tingle on the tip of our tongues, and a general feeling of well being.

In other words, we had great fun!

Lastly, just a couple more things to remember;

Authentic tea leaves from Sri Lanka should have the name “Dilmah” on the packaging.

In order to keep tea fresh you should remove it from cardboard boxes and store in metal tins. If tea is wrapped in Aluminum foil it will keep for 3 years as opposed to 18 months, at best, unwrapped.

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And how, being a child of a certain era, could I resist adding this??!

Tea For The Tillerman


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What young girl didn’t drink copious cups of tea listening to the Cat??!

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Slim Paley at tea plantation, Sri Lanka

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God Cat

Stop following me!

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The fine tea of the Norwood plantation ready to be sent around the world.

Of course this post has only barely brushed against the fascinating world of tea. There are a zillion books on the subject, one being “The Empire of Tea: The Remarkable History of the Plant That Took Over the World” by Alan & Iris Macfarlane.

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Slim Paley photo

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Wishing my Irish relatives and everyone that cares to celebrate A Very Happy St. Patrick’s Day

And for those of you in Ireland, Boston and New Orleans-take it easy on the green beer and “Kilt Lifters”!!

xoxo

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Light As A Feather

Slim Paley Photo

Devigarh Hotel, India

 

Hallelujah!! The sun has finally come out here! What a glorious feeling to wake up with warm, bright rays dancing beneath my curtains today. I’ve left the cave and moved towards the light!  This post is simply a collection of images and things that make me happy,  including something very special; My friend Patty Smyth’s amazing new song “Hard For You to Love Me”.

I’m  sure you’re going to love it as much as I do, so I’m not even going to talk anymore.

Happy listening!

“Hard For You to Love Me”


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Slim Paley photo

My treasured Edwardian feather tiara

Roe Ethridge photo

Nicholas Kirkwood Fall 2010

Slim Paley photo

A Favourite Badgley Mischka Bag

Laura Mercier

Pat Mcgrath for Dior Fall 2010

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London Milliner Gabriela Lagenza

 

Matisse’s The Joy of Life

Devi Kroell oxfords

Banco de Areia Swimwear

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Tiffany

Solve Sundsbo photo.

Marc Jacobs Spring/Summer 2010

Lizzie Buckmaster Dove

Emile Oton Friesz

Guiseppe Zanotti map boots

Emile Oton Friesz

Chanel

Roger Vivier

Jean Puy

Pat Mcgrath for Dior fall 2010

Valentino Fall 2010

Slim Photo of photo from Vogue Australia 2008

Manuel Canovas “Lima Stripe” hangs behind a collection of Indian saris from Soraya Devi Raju

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Photo from House Beautiful

Yes, Please :)

Lara Merrett

Love this!

Lanvin Fall 2010


Dom Perignon commissioned the Design Library of St. Martins School of Art & Design to create these limited edition, Andy Warhol inspired champagne bottles.

(Vintage 2002, Available in October 2010)

Cheers!


Are you dancing around the room yet??!