If you're like me, you spend nearly every lunch at your desk, trying not to get crumbs in your keyboard or condiments on your papers. It can be costly to buy your lunch every day as most of us did in Manhattan. When I was pregnant, I was very good about bringing my lunch and extra snacks from home. Now that I'm working at an office part-time, I don't want to spend the money to buy lunch or the time to go out in search of it. So I bring my lunch and sometimes my breakfast.
For the last couple months, I've been happily using Island Picnic's insulated organic lunch bag set. It's a four piece set consisting of an insulated lunch bag with hidden handle, sandwich bag, snack bag, and napkin, all made from 100% certified organic cotton.
While they have their place and purpose, zipper-lock plastic bags make me crazy. Instead, I use a mix of the bags from the set and plastic lunch containers I've amassed from various places. Island Picnic doesn't use any plastic materials to line their bags, but rather un-dyed, unbleached organic cotton sateen. The lunch bag insulation is 100% certified organic cotton batting.
You can use these bags for nearly any kind of food, even messy PB&J sandwiches which I often do. Just brush off the crumbs to use again tomorrow, or flip the bags inside out and toss in the washing machine. All the pieces are machine washable. I usually put a handful of baby carrots in the snack bag and even though they're wet from rinsing when they go in the bag, the outside of the bag does not get damp and it doesn't affect any of my other food. The lunch bag is big enough to fit extra bags or containers and I like that I don't have to rely on paper napkins.
There are a bunch of fun color and pattern options and if you're not in the market for a full set, the snack and sandwich bags are available in a separate set of two.
Do you bring your lunch to work (or play)? What do you use?
images via island picnic
'Tis the season for limited-edition collaborations! If you read shelter magazines regularly, you know that Farrow & Ball is the high-end paint brand widely favored by magazine editors and interior designers. And if you read fashion magazines, you've likely seen the handbags by The Cambridge Satchel Company in both classic and neon colors. Now the two British companies have joined forces on a small collection of exclusive bags that has just launched.
I think it's almost always a no-brainer for great fashion and home brands to match up and offer a tactile combo of both their strong suits. With this partnership, you get the benefit of the exceptional craftsmanship that is a hallmark of both brands: a chic durable leather bag in a bespoke shade formulated by color experts.
One of Farrow & Ball's latest colors, Stiffkey Blue is inspired by the remarkable color of mud found at the beach in the hamlet of Stiffkey on the north coast of Norfolk in England. I would love to know what makes the mud this unique shade!
The nautical/beachy background of the color makes the satchel perfect for summer and beyond. The shade is a bit moody, which you know I love, and it will go well with other neutrals, metallics, and brights as well.
The bags are handmade in England and will be available in four sizes as a limited edition of 200; each piece will be embossed with a number inside.
I hope you all had a wonderful weekend! We were very happy to run around and play outside, both on land and by the water.
Several years ago, when I interned at Bridal Guide magazine, I was responsible for photocopying important pages from magazines we received at the office that our EIC wanted for her files. Fashion ideas, interesting page layouts, anything that triggered a thought for the future. Rather than just go up to the Xerox machine, do the copies and file the magazines, I would pore over each one, and often I'd make a second copy of certain pages for my own files. This was a great way to learn about the other magazines but also a different way of reading magazines because I was looking at ideas and trying to think of how they could be adapted for a different market.
Though the name of the magazine and exactly what else was in this article escapes me, there was an article in a woman's magazine, and the gist was something like, what piece of clothing changed your life? And that sounds like it could be superficial, but one response was from a woman who talked about her first Marimekko dress in the 1960s. It's been so long that I can't remember anything else she said about her style or the pattern of the dress (though I'm pretty sure if I delved deep into my own files, I have a photocopy of this article somewhere), but I distinctly remember that when she wore the dress, it totally transformed how she saw herself as a woman. Ever since then, I've had an interest in Marimekko. I've also loved mod 60s style since I was a child watching reruns of 60s comedies.
So, I was very interested to belatedly learn that Marimekko and Banana Republic have teamed up for a limited-time summer collection. The collection just launched a few days ago and is selling out very quickly already. These two pieces are some of the few still available online and in select stores.
Of course, there's always the real deal, too. I love these new dresses available on Marimekko's site:
Well, it seems like a million years since I had a chance to last post, but I can finally share one of the reasons I've been so busy. I was totally caught off-guard and flattered when Arhaus Furniture asked me to be the first guest blogger on their blog, Greenhaus. I've worked with Arhaus for years on editorial stories and it's always been a pleasure and I remember how fun it was to get a preview of their Manhattan flagship store before it opened.
It actually took a long time for me to figure out what I should write about for the post. I was trying to think of some grand theme I should try to create but finally it occurred to me to talk about what I know, dinners with my family, and make it look exactly like it would if I were buying it for myself with no online attention.
I knew I wanted something bright and fun, something that would make me smile, and even though I was stressing out until the very last second, I think it came out well and somehow from my brain translated to the table exactly how I wanted it to.
This was the first "full-scale" shoot I've done since I moved and let me tell you, it was as fun as I remember but so much harder! For a typical magazine shoot, you put your concept together but you can order lots of options to choose what works best together. I couldn't do that so I just had to hope that my idea would come out right and make me look like I know a little about what I'm doing and not criminally insane.
I really love the pieces I chose and I can't wait to keep using them in different ways. I had a great time digging through my own things and finding a few new pieces (can't get enough of these zebra glasses) to pair with them.
If you read the post, let me know what you think!
full disclosure: I was allowed to keep the products that I selected to photograph for my post, but all opinions are my own.
One of the things I miss about New York is easy access to the zillions of great shops with modern and cool home goods (everything here leans pretty conservative). The Conran Shop, now closed, was one of those shops I liked to take a spin through, especially their lighting department. So occasionally I check out the website of the original London shop. You can't find pieces like these beautiful glass pendants here (though, luckily, you can find them in New York).
Designed by Czech partners Jan Plechách and Henry Wielgus for Lasvit, these handblown crystal glass lampshades are directly inspired by the grand chandeliers found in opera houses worldwide. There are five designs of the Neverending Glory collection:
Designer Plechách said, "We wanted to create just a ghost of the original chandeliers, or just the soul, the shadow, the shine of the original ones. If you imagine the grand, original chandeliers in these opera houses, they’re glorious, and the ‘neverending’ part relates to the profiles and the idea of infinite rotation—a neverending glory."
I love the sketches below showing the process of translating the original design to the modern interpretation.
Another thing I love about these pieces is the scale of them. Each is between two and three feet high. I think every house needs a statement light fixture.
Each light certainly holds its own, but they look quite striking together in a row.
I'm not sure which is my favorite though I'm leaning toward either La Scala, or probably not surprisingly, Metropolitan Opera. Which is your favorite?
It doesn't get any more functional than the power cord for your phone. And the way our phones have virtually become additional appendages, having an extra charger handy is always a good idea. But why should we be resigned to making do with plain white pieces when these little lovelies exist?
Ban.do's Power Trip charger sets (for iPhone 4/4s and 5/5s only) are so cute: one set is soft and feminine and the other is bright and cheery, but both are super stylish. If you currently have the 4/4s, the set includes an adapter so it isn't made obsolete if you upgrade. When you're at the airport around one of those charging stations and everyone's phones are trailing off in identical fashion, yours will be the one that stands out (and I'm always about that).
images via ban.do
This time of year makes me think a lot about my grandparents: April marks the birth dates and death dates of three of the four—though all of them have been gone a long time—and Mother's and Father's Days will be here soon. I lost my maternal grandmother, Helen, when I was just 4, my paternal grandfather, Marvin, when I was 8, and my other grandmother, Sylvia, and grandfather, Bill, within three days of each other when I was 19.
Because we lived a few hours from both sets of grandparents, and because I was so young, I didn't really know grandma Helen at all. My mom's parents lived in Rochester. I distinctly remember hiding in the space between grandma's fridge and the wall, listening as she came down the hall. I would pop out and "surprise" her and she would call me a rascal. That's really the only memory I have of her. Long after she died, we were at my grandfather's house and found a copy of Playgirl that I guess she got from her friends. I really liked thinking of her making jokes with her friends about something like that. She was my only grandparent that wasn't one of five siblings. My grandfather Bill would go to places like AC and bring us back t-shirts with little animals and rainbows on them, super 80s stuff. He would call us Petunia McGillicuddy, which my sister and I loved. His father died of Spanish Influenza when he was around 6 so he had to drop out of school after eighth grade and start working to help take care of his mother, brother, and three sisters. He also was a boxer and apparently there's something about him in the Boxing Hall of Fame, but I haven't seen it yet. He also earned a Purple Heart in WWII. I don't have anything of theirs, though my mom has some things.
When I was 8, we moved to Syracuse which is where my dad's parents lived. I recall the time I asked about a little mark or scar near the corner of my grandfather Marvin's mouth. He told me it was from eating red onions on his bagels and lox. I was scared of eating onions for a little while after that. We would celebrate the Jewish holidays at their house. A few years ago, we uncovered a video where they came to visit us when we were young and he's saying something about cherishing the time we have together because they [my grandparents] won't be around forever. It's on VHS but I want to put it on DVD so I can watch it sometimes. My grandmother Sylvia is the one I knew best. She loved swimming and always wore a swim cap. She would just do laps and laps while we splashed nearby. She was funny. After my grandfather died, she would perform in skits at the JCC and have everyone in stitches. She would come over for dinners often and we'd talk on the phone a lot since she and my dad spoke every night. She had clothes left over from the 70s and I wore one specific technicolored shirt and a pair of bellbottoms through out high school and college. When I started driving, I got her car because she was unable to do anything after her stroke. I like that she met my husband (then-boyfriend) at least once before that. The stroke wasn't the end of her life, but I don't think she would call the subsequent years living.
Right now my husband and kids and I live in my grandparents house. Four generations have now lived in this house. We're wrestling with whether we should buy the house and try to update it or buy something different. I'm not sure what we'll do, but I like that I had a chance to live here.
I wish I had asked more questions of all of them. I wish I had more knowledge of what they were like as young people. I wish I had more pictures and tangible pieces of them. I would share some of the things I have, but I'd have to dig to find them. I decided to write this post on a whim after seeing the wonderful and charming video above, created by animator and illustrator Gemma Green-Hope about her grandmother, Gan-Gan. I love the Roger & Gallet soap and the photos and bits of her life.
I wish we could all have something so beautiful to remember each of our loved ones.
video via colossal/vimeo staff picks, family photo my own
#checkout this blog with shop-themed puns
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