Goodbye, Domino - What can we do?

Women's Wear Daily has just announced this morning that Domino Magazine will be closing it's doors. I am amazed. I remember when I first read Domino frankly, I did not think it was worthy of friends like Elle Decor and Veranda. But in time, they became a favorite friend on a plane or a lazy weekend, who shared my passions. While they were always trendy and in the know, they offered inspiration and a very fashionable way to mix the high end with the affordable.
And isn't that what we need right now? Yet, so much of the familiar is disappearing...companies we trusted, magazines that inspire, stores that help make everyday dreams comes true like Williams Sonoma (stores closing), Target ( too many jobs lost) and Home Expo (closing it's doors yesterday).
I truly think if there will always be celebrity and reality shows, there surely will always be well decorated homes and fashionable wardrobes. Like art, homemade food, dance and music, they are not frivolous; they are creative expressions of our culture and who we are as individuals... and they have been from the beginning of time.
I know it is all a numbers game in sales and advertising and the tough ones will survive before the demand rises again...but what can we do to help? What can we do to stimulate our own creativity and entrepreneurial plan?
Please comment with any ideas...here are a few little things to get us started:
  1. DO subscribe to our favorite magazines - they are worth .02 -.05 cents a day
  2. DO challenge our own creativity whether it is decorating or cooking.
  3. DO shop locally, support favorite stores, local boutiques & fairs, American designers.
  4. DO take pride in your home. Take the time to discover and invest in your own personal style.
  5. DO donate something used for every new item you bring into your home.


Brand New: Hand Painted Furniture

I am so excited to share our latest find from Miami...our new, hand painted furniture by Jen & Ale. Jen and her artistic team shops locally for furniture with great vintage detail; adds their own "rockin" spin....and ta da....recycled, timeless treasures that are young, happy & fresh.

Each piece is hand painted with environmentally safe, non toxic, low - no VOC paints and sealers and shipped with recycled packaging.

Have you priced hand painted furniture for your kids recently? These tables & chairs are in stock at an affordable $325 each.


Michael Smith - White House Decorator

Michelle Obama has appointed Michael Smith as the White House Interior Decorator. He has created designs for Hollywood's who's who including Stephen Spielberg, Dustin Hoffman and Rob Reiner.The design magazines love him. And his signature product collections are showcased at exclusive showrooms across the country...in the residences of many homes across the USA.

Simply Elegant

It is interesting yet kind of fitting that the very approachable Domino Magazine (from which these photos are credited) was the first to release this information late Tuesday. Michael Smith's work also has a casual, well balanced style.

A blend of European Charm with a Fresh Twist

"Michael shares my vision for creating a family friendly feel to our new home and incorporating some new perspectives from some of America's greatest artists and designers." says Michelle.(Chicago Sun Times)

The best art shows and auctions are coming up in New York. Will the Obamas be buying? Or will they be heading to Williams Sonoma for accessories? I look forward to seeing how he will decorate the rooms for Malia and Sasha? eco friendly paint?


Resolution: Organize

I have to admit I watched the end of the Bachelor the other night and noticed one of the girls who spoke of her Vision Boards did not receive a rose. I think the Bachelor may have been a bit spooked by her passion. However, they are a great way to visualize and express your goals. Like most fashion houses and Interior Designers, we use them all the time to create a collection or project, from concept to reality. Here are a few tips on how to develop your own story for 2009 & get organized in a green way for the New Year:
  1. Create a Storyboard/ Vision Board - Add a cork Bulletin Board to your office. And if you have children consider the laundry area or playroom..and make it a family project. Flip through old magazines and favorite items and create a collage about what is meaningful to you and your family for 2009. Post special family photos; inspirational words; favorite activities; places you would all like to explore or vacation to this year; a pet you may hope to rescue; a school you may be applying to etc. Throughout the year take the time to look at the board, add new images and follow your dreams.

  2. Prioritize Time for Yourself - Taking a few minutes of personal time for special thoughts will help clarify each day. Honor the moments with a new, beautiful journal or eco weekly planner.
  3. De Clutter & Donate - It's time. Clean out your office, closets and your kid's rooms. If you have not worn it in the last two seasons, you must get rid of it because you will never wear it. Box up financials and return holiday gifts that have not been used. When it comes to toys, ask your child to name their favorites and let them participate in the process of cleaning up. Those that are still taking up too much space but may be special can be moved to a best friend's or Grandma’s house. Then take a trip with your child to the nearest goodwill or consignment shop and donate the remaining toys and clothes.

  4. Personalize your Space - Add stylish, personalized buckets and boxes to every room. Whether it is the remote, magazines, papers or toys, every family member will enjoy knowing that their is a special, designated personalized space for them to store their favorite things.

  5. Protect Photos & Drawings - Go through your old photos and any drawings by the kids that may be laying around and organize and label them in shoe boxes or containers that you may already have in the house. They will hold and protect many more memories than old albums. If you have young children, you may want to select a few favorite drawings, frame them and hang them around your home.


Another Beauty Must Have

The first item I purchased for my husband this year was a L'Occitane moisturizer and it is really the first skincare product that he actually liked. There is something very chic about this French company and the natural, seasonal ingredients they infuse in each item. For 30 years they have been committed to the environment with no animal testing.
I love everything Provence so the lavender collection from their soaps to hand cream are all time favorites. Just the sheer scent transports me to the South of France.

Today I tried the Olive Express Eye Treatment and was thrilled with the results. In seconds my under eye area was radiant. For $10 it's a CLB Must Have for all of us on the go.


Resolution: Be Gorgeous & Green

Is becoming more Green one of your resolutions? Here is the easiest way to begin without sacrificing style, and certainly one of the most fun, look into your own beauty box. Read the long lists of ingredients in those products. Part ways with as many cosmetics as possible that are artificial and unhealthy. Then, shop for your cause...and incorporate all natural ingredients into your routine. My Fave:

Bare Escentuals. 100% Pure, All Natural, Easy To Use, No Makeup Remover Necessary, Lasts Forever...and oh the packaging is super cute! So who could resist being good to yourself. And don't miss the little pots of color for your eyes and every mood too. I just found the lid primer in a stick which helps them last all day. My Fave: Faux Tan, the perfect all over bronzer.

Now for the even better news, if you are in South Florida check out their new boutique at the Aventura Mall.
What are your faves?


Happy New Year!

Here's to the first week of 2009! How quickly time goes by. We hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season, celebrating the New Year to come with friends and family.

What are your New Year's resolutions? One of mine: More blogging. We'll focus on a few favorites this month. So, please feel free to comment, email us and send in questions. What is inspiring you? Are you thinking of decorating, but need to affordably and not sure where to begin? Valentine's day gifts, already? Trying to go green - not sure how?

We thank you so much for reading and look forward to a great year. We are also thinking of all those who are in need and so hopeful for the promise of change.

Wishing you all our very best for a healthy and happy 2009!