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11 Jan 19:39

Study: Legal marijuana could generate more than $132 billion in federal tax revenue, 1 million jobs

by Katie Zezima
An analysis by the New Frontier Foundation shows that legalizing marijuana nationwide could create more than a million jobs by 2025 and create $131.8 billion in tax revenue.
04 Jan 21:07

NEKO: A See-Through Modern Cat Tree by RINN

by Caroline Williamson

NEKO: A See-Through Modern Cat Tree by RINN

Let’s face it, pets aren’t just pets. They’re a part of the family and because of that, they deserve all the comforts we do. You may have noticed that more and more designers are cleverly finding ways to incorporate furniture for our furry friends – the kind we’re not embarrassed to live with as soon as guests enter the front door. Cat furniture especially has been on the rise and the latest comes from RINN, the same Japanese brand that brought us their minimalist, automatic cat feeder, Petly. This time, they’re launching NEKO, a modern cat tree that gives your feline several spots to nap and a pillar to scratch.

The mostly wooden (from forests in the Hida region of Japan) cat tree features a marble base that holds a hemp cord covered pillar with three elevated levels for rest and relaxation. Each level is partially covered in Kvadrat fabric for additional kitty coziness.

Who would have thought that something so elegant would be designed for a cat? Gone are the days of those carpet-covered monstrosities, which can now be replaced with the wood and marble NEKO that will have your guests inquiring immediately.

31 Oct 20:13

accidentally wes anderson.

by victoria

dock with pink poles on the beach. / sfgirlbybay

if you’ve been reading here for a while, you know of my fondness for all things wes anderson (and more specifically, the charming mister anderson himself). so it would come as no surprise that this is my absolute new favorite instagram account: @accidentallywesanderson. it’s pure perfection with so many cinematic gems reminiscent of classic ‘wes-ness’ i had a hard time choosing just a few images to share with you. i’m obsessed with the color palette and symmetry of wes anderson’s eye so this account just brings me endless pleasure. should you also be a fan of the man, you might also enjoy this video which i found fascinating.

accidentally wes anderson. / sfgirlbybaywood door labeled postmaster in pink hallway with forest mural. / sfgirlbybayinspiring image from accidentally wes anderson feed on instagram. / sfgirlbybaypastel pink and blue building. / sfgirlbybayinspiring movie theater entrance via accidentally wes anderson Instagram. / sfgirlbybaysmall hotel in the mountains via accidentally wes anderson on instagram. / sfgirlbybaypink and blue hotel room via accidentally wes anderson on instagram. / sfgirlbybayinspiring building exterior via @accidentallywesanderson on instagram. / sfgirlbybayphoto of stunning estate via @accidentallywesanderson on instagram. / sfgirlbybay

• all photographs courtesy of @accidentallywesanderson.

The post accidentally wes anderson. appeared first on sfgirlbybay.

03 Oct 20:35

peace for all.

by victoria

peace for all / sfgirlbybay

honestly, i don’t know quite what to say to you all, but yet again i find myself wanting to say something because ignoring this latest tragedy seems naive. we can’t just go on looking at pretty pictures, can we? i mean we have to but i’m sure you’re feeling much like me and thinking it feels a little bit shallow at a time like this when our country (our world) is grieving so much. and then i think, well that’s giving in to this terrorism, isn’t it? and i want to try not to do that. yesterday i was a ball of mess. i couldn’t focus, i cried most of the day and felt pretty well broken. and i wasn’t even directly affected like the poor families that were torn apart, forever shattered in one way or another. senseless sorrow that doesn’t have to keep happening. i am tired of hearing from our government that nothing can be done. Tragedies like this one don’t happen in other countries with stricter gun laws. it’s proven. and you can’t tell me that anybody in this country needs an semiautomatic weapon to protect themselves or their families. it’s utterly senseless to say that, so you can have your 2nd amendment but we have to have stricter laws to keep our world safe. jkrowling had this to wisely point out, and  jimmy kimmel was so logical to me the other night when he tearfully spoke. he called out the senators who are in the pocket of the NRA, and asked for common sense and action from our elected officials to ensure that something like this doesn’t happen again. there are some things you do if you feel the same — you can join everytown against gun violence or americans for responsible solutions. i’m not here to lecture, and if you disagree, i’m sorry, but i cannot keep hearing that there’s nothing we can do to stop this and i refuse to believe we simply have to accept this is our new normal. we can also be kinder to each other, we can love our families harder. we really just to do better as a country and as human beings. stay safe my friends. perhaps listen to this beautiful song, grieve and do what you need to do to get through this, but then i hope you’ll help fight to stop the cause of all this unnecessary sorrow.

xo, victoria

• iconic poster by artist jean carlu.

The post peace for all. appeared first on sfgirlbybay.

02 Oct 19:05

On the Street…Les Marais, Paris

by The Sartorialist


02 Oct 18:02

Ambra Rose Volcanic Rock Lamps by Studio davidpompa

by Caroline Williamson

Ambra Rose Volcanic Rock Lamps by Studio davidpompa

Mexican design brand Studio davidpompa explores two timeless materials, cantera rosa and copper, and combines them to create two new lamps. The Ambra collection consists of a table lamp and wall lamp made from simple forms yet unlikely proportions. The results are the perfect examples of sculptural fixtures that are both striking and minimalist.

The Ambra Table lamp features contrasting textures with its copper cylindrical interior structure which partially fits inside the pink volcanic rock body. A round cantera disc rests on top of the copper tube and acts as a reflector for the hidden LED light. The lamp is outfitted with a dimmer switch to adjust the light’s intensity.

The Ambra Wall light comprises two round volumes, a copper base that attaches to the wall and a larger, cantera one that rests slightly skewed above it.

Studio davidpompa is presenting the Ambra collection at Diseño contenido during this year’s Design Week Mexico from October 4 – 8th, 2017.

02 Oct 18:02

The ToDD Residence by SkB Architects

by Caroline Williamson

The ToDD Residence by SkB Architects

Designed by SkB Architects for a growing Seattle family, The ToDD Residence was built on a corner lot with limited space available and a tight budget. The design references an urban farmhouse with a two-story, pitched roof structure attached to a single-story volume with a flat roof. The exterior is fairly scaled back with a contrasting color palette of gray and white, simple forms, and no extraneous details.

What would typically go in a backyard has been moved up to a side terrace that’s raised above the street for added privacy.

The home’s 1,970 square feet was thoughtfully designed to make the most of every square inch. The ground floor maintains an open floor plan, except for a guest bedroom, that comprises a living room, dining room, kitchen, and home office.

The living area benefits from two fairly private terraces, which expand the feel of the space.

Upstairs marks the private areas with bedrooms that are no larger than they need to be since most of the time is spent downstairs.

Photos by Lara Swimmer and Tim Bies.

02 Oct 16:52

A Remodeled Mid-Century Eichler Home in Northern California — House Tour

by Esteban Cortez

Name: Karen Nepacena & John Shum
Location: Walnut Creek, California
Size: 1,663 square feet
Years lived in: Owned 4 years

Karen and John knew they wanted to raise their family in not just any mid-century modern home, but one specifically designed by the renowned real estate developer Joseph Eichler. "We fell in love with Eichler homes and mid-century modern design after seeing a nearby open house for a thoughtfully restored and renovated Eichler," Karen says. "We decided we wanted to live in an inspiring home like that one, as a place to raise our boys and entertain friends and family." When they toured this home and saw it's potential and the dreamy outdoor atrium, they knew it would be a perfect fit.


02 Oct 16:23

Wasabi on 82nd - Revisit

by Erin in Indy
If you are a regular reader, you know I have been on a quest for a new sushi place near my house. None of the ones I have found have been bad, but I have yet to find one to declare my allegiance. So we decided to go back to Wasabi on 82nd because it was a place we used to go on occasion and hubby always liked their nigiri. (Note: I am not confident about the prices listed here. I got them from the website, but I think they might be outdated).

So, it was a little sketchy from the start, because it was 7:00 on a Saturday and there was literally one other table there. A sushi place with no business is always a little scary to me. We sat down and decided to get a little appetizer and ordered the agedashi tofu ($5.50). It was two large chunks of tofu that were lightly fried and sitting on top of some tempura sauce (which is a fish broth base). It was covered by lots of bonito flakes, which are cool because they are so light; they kind of move, making the dish almost look alive. It has a nice crisp exterior and soft interior—the only thing I would change is to make the pieces a little smaller in order to have more crunch ratio—the inside of the tofu was a little too creamy when you got to the inside bites. Anyway, hubby was sort of against it, but in retrospect it was one of the best things of the evening.

For rolls, we ordered the Indy roll ($15), the Fantastic roll ($16), and the Chop Chop Crab roll ($12). The Indy roll is shrimp tempura inside and salmon, tuna and avocado across the top drizzled with mayo and eel sauce. The Fantastic roll is spicy tuna and crunch topped with salmon, yellowtail and avocado. The chop chop crab is soft shell crab mixed with spicy mayo inside and out. Ok, so the first two look pretty good in the picture right? But none of these rolls were good. I can’t put my finger on it totally, but the fish was just flavorless. And some of it seemed sort of like it might have not been the freshest. The spicy tuna in one of them was a mushy paste-like substance. The chop chop crab had lost its crunch and tasted like it could have been made with fried anything. These were not good rolls. I had maybe one or two pieces of each and just stopped eating. It just wasn’t worth the calories.

My daughter had the katsudon ($10), which was a fried breaded pork cutlet sautéed with onions and egg over rice. This dish did not look very appetizing and the taste wasn’t much better. It was also extremely bland and lacking in flavor.  My son’s New York strip teriyaki ($20) was the other best thing on the table—the steak was tender and cooked just right. He was quite happy with his and we all kept sneaking bites.

All in all, Wasabi will not be a place we will be returning. Honestly, with the amount of business they had that night (maybe one or two other tables came in and one carry out order was filled), I am surprised they are still in business.

Wasabi on 82nd
5025 East 82nd Street
Indy 46250
28 Sep 20:41

Bloggers' Secrets for Avoiding Shipping Fees, Snagging Amazing Deals & Becoming a Pro at Online Shopping

by Marlen Komar

Online shopping can sometimes be a science when it comes to saving money. With all the coupon codes, social media campaigns, free shipping hacks, and surprise sales, a person needs to be savvy in order to tap into all of the available resources. In order to help you get the cheapest possible price the next time you go shopping, here are online shopping tips from real thrifty and money-minded people. Buy more for less from now on!


28 Sep 16:56

Feature: When ‘Not Guilty’ Is a Life Sentence

What happens after a defendant is found not guilty by reason of insanity? Often the answer is involuntary confinement in a state psychiatric hospital — with no end in sight.
10 Aug 16:44

A Mid-Century Design Buff Hits the Jackpot Outside Minneapolis, MN

by Garrett Fleming

A Mid-Century Design Buff Hits the Jackpot Outside Minneapolis, Design*Sponge

Design director Sam Soulek and his wife Natalie, an esthetician, had been hunting for the perfect mid-century house for two years when they finally came across this ideal option 10 minutes from downtown Minneapolis, MN in Golden Valley. The space boasted everything the pair wanted: untouched original details, an open floor plan, and a patch of woods just outside the back door. Such a well-preserved gem came with a hefty price tag, though — one rather far outside Sam and Natalie’s budget. Ignoring pleas from their realtor to pass up the expensive option, Sam and Natalie decided they simply had to bid even if their number was well below the asking price.

That night, with the couple’s paperwork likely sitting at the bottom of a stack of competing offers, Sam couldn’t get the house out of his mind. Fearful their modest offer would be ignored, he decided to appeal to the homeowner Tom’s softer side. By the light of a desk lamp he wrote a very sincere and heartfelt letter detailing his adoration for the house and how he would build a wonderful life for his wife and child inside its walls. His final touch, a page full of charming family photos, would accompany the note and play backup in case his words didn’t do the trick.

The following days seemed to drag, and the house becoming theirs seemed to stray further and further from reality. That is, until their astonished realtor gave them great news: their offer had been accepted! Even better, Tom loved the letter so much he requested they tour the space with him before he moved out. Shocked and thrilled, Sam and Natalie immediately agreed.

As Tom’s son pushed his father’s wheelchair around each room, the 96-year-old man talked of the original makers he’d worked with and of the wonderful time he had bringing his architectural vision to life. He even gave the couple a binder full of 1960s-era manuals and the receipts for everything he’d purchased for the space. Charmed by his kindness, passion and generosity, Sam and Natalie then graciously accepted the keys.

Over the years the couple periodically visited Tom in his retirement community, not only giving him updates on the renovations but catching him up on life in Golden Valley. The couple recalls one visit in particular: “I have something for you,” he said with a twinkle in his eye as he handed them a set of scrolls. Rolled immaculately and meticulously labeled, they seemed ancient. There, on cobalt blue, were the original plans for the home he had painstakingly configured all those years ago, a final gift to the family that had touched his heart. Enjoy! —Garrett

Photography by Wing Ta

Image above: Updates weren’t solely reserved for the home’s interior. Many dingy, foggy windows were replaced, and the home’s railing was given a powdered, smokey paint job. But the most impactful change has to be the exterior’s new hue. Its retro, white-and-mint scheme has been given a moody facelift through grey-and-black hues and wooden touches. “It was amazing to see how the bold color shift changed the vibe of the house and made it feel more at home in Minnesota,” Sam says.

10 Aug 15:49

An Intro to the Parisian Art Deco Style

by Brady
Chambre 01 Henrietta 0009Chambre 01 Henrietta 0009

Croissants, The Mona Lisa,  Brigitte Bardot – the french really do ‘timeless’ well, and yet are always setting the trends both in fashion and home. And while we don’t want to box up all french design into one single post or style there seems to be a large ‘Parisian Art Deco’ movement that we are loving, that has bled into the design world an ocean away.

So put on your dark red lipstick, your LBD, spritz that Chanel No. 5 on your wrists and let’s rendezvous. We’ll break this style down and dissect what this look really entails and how you can get it.

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Curvy but Streamlined Furniture:

If you haven’t noticed already the french love their curves and that love is echoed in some of their furniture choices. For the most part this Parisian Art Deco look is filled with statement furniture pieces that have exaggerated curved lines in very simple forms. You will see couches with large overstuffed arms, chairs with rounded backs and small or no legs at all, as well as plenty of ottomans and tables that continue to echo that round and curvy movement.

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Graphic Black and White Accents:

They really know how to bring the drama by playing up the light and dark in spaces. This space below which is located in Hotel Panache and designed by the insanely talented Chzon design firm brings in the drama and contrast with the black panels on top of the white molding as well as the black and white check on the edge of the tables. It’s in the details folks.

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And if a wall to wall paneling project is not in your foreseeable future then the graphic black and white element can also be brought in through art and accessories like the spaces below.

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I mean, come on – how chic is the person that gets to call this apartment home?

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Modern Art or Sculptures or Architectural Salvage Pieces:

If you haven’t noticed already cues from classical architecture are big in this style of design. Most the spaces (lucky them) have built in character like some of the rooms you have seen already what with their huge paneled rooms and carved moldings and doors, but in addition to letting this original architecture shine, they echo it in the room with additional architectural pieces like the column topper below that is used as a table or the obelisk on top of it.

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Mixing old world with new world is something they are VERY good at and this style of design always brings in modern art or sculpture right next to say a century old bust or carving.

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Sculptural Lighting:

You won’t find a generic piece of lighting in any of these spaces, in fact most of the lighting is a statement sculptural piece on its own. Like in the previous example this style will always mix modern lighting with old world elements to help modernize the space. The below pic is from Hotel Panache again – I love this oversized ceiling pendant that they used above the bed that would typically go above an island or dining table. Breaking the (design) rules and getting away with it are something the french seem to be good at, and I like it.

Brady Tolbert Blog Hotel Panache Boutique Hotel Glam French Paris Visit Vacation Modern Design 12
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Claude Missir 1 Paris
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You’ll also notice a mixing of styles with lighting. Although the sconce and the floor lamp in the below picture may not be from the same style they work well together because they are both statement pieces on their own and are in the same gold tone.

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Velvet and Lux Fabrics:

This style tends to steer clear of anything too patterned or flourishy when it comes to fabric and instead brings in the interest through the texture of the fabrics. You will find lots of velvets, textured linens, sleek leathers, hides, furs and suedes in this style.

Hôtel Panache, Paris
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Which brings us to the next point – textural accents. They love throwing in a shearling chair or a flokati upholstered pouf in the room. You can see in the room below that they have the fur covered chair, the flokati pillow as well as the metallic cowhide on the floor. Texture on texture on texture which plays well with the all neutral color palette so that it doesn’t get boring or flat.

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Wall and Ceiling Moldings:

Rarely will you see a room in this style that doesn’t have some sort of adornment on the walls or ceilings. It may be modern like the image below, or it could be original and centuries old like some of the images you have seen previously but this style is typically not one for a modern unadorned wall.

Hotelpanache 88
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Floor to Ceiling Window Treatments:

Rather than chopping the room or walls in half with a window treatment that starts closer to the top of the window, the majority of them stretch all the way from the ceiling line to the floor with some even having that dramatic puddle on the floor, and who doesn’t love a dramatic puddle of crushed velvet on the floor? (hint: many people but not us).

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Bold Pops of Color:

Although most of the walls stay fairly neutral in color you will see bold pops of 1 or 2 colors in the lighting, seating, or accessories. This rather neutral room is brought to life with an orange sofa, and if you know me you know I am not typically a fan of orange but this room is making a good case for the color.

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They also love a good red moment, which is very scary for some people. Pierre Yovanovitch who designed the room below brought in the color through the fabric on the sofa and the art on the walls and kept everything else neutral to balance it out. Kudos to you Mr. Pierre.

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See, another big pop of red with that bright blanket below. Is the red of the 90’s dining room everyone seemed to have coming back people?

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Let’s also not forget about green…

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Or blue and yellow…

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Or Pink…. this style doesn’t discriminate with color.

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Sculptural and Ornate Mirrors:

Mirrors are a big element in this style as well. Whether it is a modern shaped one like the next few pics below:

Captured’écran2016 03 21à22.53.23
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Chambre 01 Henrietta 0009
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Or an antique finish and gilded mirror, mirrors play a very big part in this style of design.

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Oversized is always a plus, and a leaning wall mirror is never a bad idea either.

Gilles Et Boissier Home
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Separated and Distinct Seating Areas:

It might be because the rooms seem to be overwhelming large, but you will also see a lot of smaller seating areas used in this style rather than one centrally located seating area in the middle of the room. Not only does this break the space up in a good way but it also allows for multiple vignettes in a room which always helps to bring in interest.

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See, if you were at a party at this house you can have a convo with your friends on this yellow sofa while the stranger you are avoiding could take a seat in one of the corner vignettes. And below there is a seating area in front of the fireplace as well as the main seating area in the foreground of the room. You should also take note of the mirror, the pop of red, and sculptural furniture and lighting choices which we have already discussed. Is it making sense yet?

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Play with Scale:

Last but certainly not least is how well this style plays with scale. Whether that be a pair of oversized lounge chairs that seem far too large for the space, or a tiny little stool paired with a curvy armchair like below, the juxtaposition of scale with large and small is always welcome in this style. Now you don’t want to get carried away with it and end up looking like you live in the set of “Honey I Shrunk the Kids” but one or two cases of this can work within the space if it is balanced out by the rest of the furniture in the room.

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So, who is into this style as much as we are? Do you think you could handle the drama in your own space? Stay tuned where we break down the style even further and pull together some roundups of some of our favorite products from this style to help you get the look. Until then we’ll be practicing our french conjugations.

The post An Intro to the Parisian Art Deco Style appeared first on Emily Henderson.

03 Aug 20:55

The Senate Finally Gives Trump His Administration

by Russell Berman

And just like that, Donald Trump finally has the semblance of a presidential administration.

In the span of a few minutes on Thursday afternoon, the Senate confirmed dozens of the president’s stalled nominees to key posts in several departments. The departments of Justice, Homeland Security, Veterans Affairs, and Commerce got long-awaited deputy, under, and assistant secretaries. NATO, the United Kingdom, and a bevy of other countries received U.S. ambassadors. And three districts got federal prosecutors months after the president fired nearly all of the U.S. attorneys who served under Barack Obama.

The flurry of approvals marked the Senate’s biggest step yet toward filling out an administration that had sat historically empty nearly 200 days into Trump’s term. As of July 31, the Senate had confirmed nominees to just 51 out of the more than 1,100 positions that require the chamber’s consent, according to a tally kept by the Partnership for Public Service. Each of the previous four presidents had more than 200 nominees confirmed at around the same juncture. The president had already gotten a late start filling his Cabinet; the Senate did not confirm his final top-level choice until just before the 100-day mark in April. And he still needs to nominate many more for his administration to be complete.

“The Senate has confirmed more executive-branch nominees this week than all of the executive-branch nominees confirmed this year—combined,” Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said after the Senate actions, which all came by voice vote after Democrats agreed not to raise objections. Almost immediately afterward, senators raced for the airport to begin a monthlong summer recess that had been delayed by a week.

For Democrats, the confirmations were an easy trade to make: They gave Trump his government and got to keep the Affordable Care Act in return. The party had been stalling nominees for months in protest of the GOP’s effort to repeal and replace Democrats’ prized health law without their input. Having eliminated the 60-vote threshold for executive nominees a few years ago, Democrats in the Senate minority could not block Trump’s picks outright. But under the direction of Minority Leader Charles Schumer, they used their power to draw out the process, forcing McConnell to take multiple days to advance a single nominee.

As the GOP’s health-care bill floundered, Schumer hinted that Democrats would relent on their obstruction once Republicans abandoned the budget-reconciliation process they were using to repeal Obamacare and return to what legislators refer to as “regular order.”

“You can’t avoid regular order when you want to and then say Democrats should use regular order whenever you want us to,” Schumer said on Thursday. “But now that health care is done I think we can tie the two together—normal way of legislating, [and] clearing noncontroversial nominees as we move forward in September.”

In actuality, McConnell hasn’t officially given up on jamming through a health-care bill with 50 Republican votes. The GOP has until the end of September to try again under the rules, but once the Kentuckian announced the Senate would move on to other issues, he and Schumer began negotiating which nominees Democrats would allow to be confirmed before the August recess.

The deal came together so quickly on Thursday that aides could not immediately say exactly how many nominees were confirmed. Senator John Cornyn of Texas, the second-ranking Republican, said in a floor speech the total was “roughly 65” and that the Senate might confirm even more before the day was done. Because no roll-call votes are being taken, senators would not necessarily need to be present for more confirmations to occur as long as none planned to object.

None of the initial batch was particularly controversial, and Democrats all but acknowledged they were holding them up as a procedural protest, and not on substantive grounds. (Republicans did the same to many of Obama’s nominees over the years.) Those that were confirmed included former Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison as ambassador to NATO; New York Jets owner Woody Johnson as ambassador to Great Britain and Northern Ireland (formally known as the Court of St. James); and Lewis Eisenberg, a longtime GOP donor, as ambassador to Italy.

The Senate still has dozens more nominees to consider, including judicial vacancies and most federal-prosecutor posts. And Trump has hundreds more to nominate, including a pick to replace John Kelly as secretary of homeland security after the retired Marine general took over as White House chief of staff on Monday. According to the Partnership for Public Service, the president has nominated people to fewer than 300 positions—about one-quarter of those he needs to fill. But after the Senate’s busy Thursday, Trump’s administration is at least not quite so bare.

02 Aug 21:11

A Historic Family Home Brought Back to Life

by Sofia Tuovinen

A Historic Family Home Brought Back to Life | Design*Sponge

There are houses whose stories span not just over decades, but centuries. Their stories intertwine with those of their owners, and become meaningful pieces of history in their communities. Today we get to share one of these special historic houses, whose new owners have gone above and beyond to turn it back into its original purpose — a home, in the true sense of the word.

When Natasha and Jason Meininger moved to Hannibal, MO to start a family, they wanted to eventually find a great old home to do up. After their second son was born, the couple began looking for this type of house in earnest. An old house that had been converted into a bed and breakfast had been on and off the market for a decade. Although it wasn’t for sale at the time, Natasha didn’t hesitate — she tracked down its owners and, as it turned out, they were willing to sell. Natasha and Jason spent the following winter visiting the house numerous times, and couldn’t help but fall in love with the possibilities it offered. Comprising of 18 rooms all in need of some major TLC, this would be no small project. Natasha and Jason weren’t afraid of the challenge, and felt confident about bringing the 160-year-old house back to life. “The inspection took two days and read like a novel of maladies. We took it anyway,” Natasha says.

Natasha and Jason started work on the house while still living in their old home. During the first six weeks, every spare moment was spent pulling up 30-year-old carpet, removing painted-over wallpaper and preparing the rooms for various reparations. While the contractor worked on the three bedrooms that the family now use, Natasha, Jason and their two sons camped in what was once the servants’ quarters. Once the bedrooms were move-in ready, work started on some of the main rooms downstairs, followed by a kitchen conversion.

Natasha and Jason have worked hard to restore the beauty of their historic house, which was once stripped down to its bare bones. In the 1990s, the then owner of the house foreclosed, and all of the original contents were auctioned off. Over 20 light fixtures, a fireplace mantel and built-in bookcases from the library were among the pieces that were removed. Amazingly, some of the original light fixtures have made their way back to their rightful home. When Natasha and Jason bought the house, the father of one of their friends contacted them. He had purchased some lights in the auction two decades earlier, and wanted to return them! “Talk about kismet. He had stored them in his basement in shoe boxes all this time,” Natasha shares.

Today, Natasha, Jason and their three sons Oliver, Beckett and Jude reside in eight rooms in the main part of the house. With over half of the house yet to be touched, there’s a lot more work to be done to restore it completely, but the feeling of love and family is already there. Turning the house into a home that suits the family’s needs has been an exciting and rewarding project for Natasha, who works part-time as an interior stylist. She wanted to celebrate the grandeur of the house and still make it modern, comfortable and child-friendly. Natasha loves thrifted treasures, and several old pieces have found their way into the family’s home, where classic shapes are brightened up with color, pattern and various textures.

Four years in, Natasha and her family are enjoying every moment in their beloved home, and look forward to renovating more of it as time goes by. Future projects include the restoration of stained glass and various other windows, a rebuild of the historic two-story porches as well as the exterior, which is up next. The to-do list also includes tackling the servants’ quarters, laundry room and any of the eight bathrooms that need attention (two of which are original from the 1880s!). Most of all, Natasha and her family are thankful for being the stewards of this great home, and for being able to save it from an otherwise inevitable demise. “I love this house as if it were one of my children!” Natasha exclaims. 160 years ago, the house was built for entertaining friends and family. Natasha, Jason and their three sons have allowed the house to blossom in the way it was originally intended — once again, it’s full of love, life and laughter.  Sofia

Photography by Natasha Meininger

Image above: The colorful vintage kilim runner greets guests at the front door. “I want guests to instantly know when they walk in that this is the home of a modern family and is not a museum, [it’s] a place where they can feel welcome and have fun!” Natasha says. 

02 Aug 17:33

On the Street…The Fortezza, Florence

by The Sartorialist


01 Aug 14:51

A Selective Kudos

by Sheila
I’m sure it didn’t have anything to do with gender bias (cough, cough), but during the fevered coverage of the GOP’s “repeal and replace” efforts, there was virtually no media coverage of a heroic Senator who–despite suffering from Stage Four cancer– came to Washington last week to cast a vote against repeal of the Affordable […]
01 Aug 14:50

Feature: She Was Convicted of Killing Her Mother. Prosecutors Withheld the Evidence That Would Have Freed Her.

By the time Noura Jackson’s conviction was overturned, she had spent nine years in prison. This type of prosecutorial error is almost never punished.
27 Jul 15:09

Are We Into The Reinvented Memphis Trend?

by Emily
Photo Source

I think we can safely say that there is no style that won’t make a comeback – no matter how much we dislike it at this very second. They just all come back, often in a different form or an updated color palette but at some point in our life every trend will return.  I once joked that the only thing in fashion that I didn’t think would ever come back is the bolo tie, but I was wrong (not that I embraced that trend, please). So it should be no surprise that the Memphis Trend has been popping its bright, geometric head up lately. It wasn’t even very big or well-loved the first time around (in the 80’s) but that doesn’t mean that its all bad (in fact there are some awesome pieces on our roundup).

But first, lets revisit the horror:

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Wow. That furniture sure had a LOT of character. I’m terrified to say that if I were 8 years old in the 80’s I probably would have been into it. I love me some ‘funky’ furniture (hell, I do own a hand chair after all). And what little kid wouldn’t love this – I read a quote that it’s Memphis is if Bauhaus had a baby with Fisher Price.

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While many elements of the 80’s are certainly back in home design (with the 90’s also happening, too) I think it’s safe to say that the 80’s was not a decade where ‘timelessness’ really mattered and generally it wreaked havoc in fashion and home (P.S. I’m getting the new ‘perm’ soon … and I’m absolutely not joking.)

They like REALLY designed things. Going all out like this is so fun and I’d love, love, love to be in this bathroom for a very short time.

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No words.

Now in this photo, below you can see a glimmer of hope. When you take most of the color out of it it becomes far more interesting and almost attractive… the 80’s referenced art deco a lot and I’m very into that original style.

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This is one of the better versions from the 80’s – Karl Lagerfield’s Monaco apartment.

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Totally normal…. but pretty awesome. You couldn’t pay me to live there but I would absolutely airbnb the heck out of that place for a week and the kids would think we went to disneyland.

This guy, Dennis Zanone, REALLY likes this Memphis style, so much so that he has amassed the largest collection in the world in his Tennessee home. I wonder if it’s because there maybe aren’t a lot of competitive “collectors”. Here is a link that talk more about him and his collection.

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So how could that possibly be back, even a little bit? Let’s break down the elements – geometric shapes, bright colors, color-blocking and a lot of WACK. Sound familiar?

It may not be what I’m super into right now (or you) but those things are trending but in a more modern 2017 way.

I think that Orlando’s design of Design Milk Jaime Derringer’s bedroom is certainly 80’s inspired,could even lean Memphis and I love it:

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We’ve notice it popping around more and more in editorials …

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I love this shot below. Yes there is bright red and some ‘funky’ happening, but it’s restrained enough with sculptures that are balancing it in a neutral color palette.

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The color blocking of the door, the melon cart and that piece of art are all we need to get the feeling of Memphis without the you know, total insanity.

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It’s still pretty terrifying to be honest. And terrifying things always create good content, right? So we gave ourselves the challenge – could we create a collection of contemporary products that feel Memphis that we actually like and would own or buy for a client?

And we did.

Emily Henderson Trends Design Eighties Mempis Get The Look 11

1. ‘Fun Patterns with Pink’ Print | 2. Patterned Stool | 3. Winslow Sleeper Sofa | 4. Zig Zag Floor Lamp | 5. Black Coffee Table | 6. Rug | 7. Confetti Throw Pillow | 8. Black and White Sprinkle Pillow | 9. Grid Pillow | 10. Lips Throw Blanket | 11. Terrazzo Halfmoon Arc | 12. Neon Pink Candlestick | 13. Bottle Vase | 14. Buckle Jar | 15. Shape Up 5 Piece Chandelier | 16. Margot Pyramid Table Mirror | 17. Charcoal Dinner Plate | 18. Plastic Cereal Bowl | 19. Grid High Ball Glass | 20. Tea Towels Set | 21. Circle Wire Hook | 22. Triangle Wire Hook | 23. Pink Chair | 24. Striped Box Side Table | 25. Yellow Digital Print | 26. Neo Laminati Chair No. 34 | 27. Janis Metal Shelf | 28. Platform Bowl | 29. Scribble Vase | 30. Yellow Lamp | 16. Wave Trivet

Now not all of these would work in my current house (or perhaps “none of them” would be more accurate ) but let’s just say we had a client funky enough to go for this look, I could absolutely get behind it.

Are you slightly convinced that some references from this Memphis are back and awesome? Or are you over and out?

The post Are We Into The Reinvented Memphis Trend? appeared first on Emily Henderson.

13 Jul 20:19

Getting Personal with Frank Lloyd Wright: Taliesin and Taliesin West

by Amy Azzarito

The following post is brought to you by The Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation. Our partners are handpicked by the Design Milk team because they represent the best in design.

Getting Personal with Frank Lloyd Wright: Taliesin and Taliesin West

We’ve spent the last couple of months celebrating the 150th anniversary of the birth of iconic American architect Frank Lloyd Wright. From top designers explaining just how Frank Lloyd’s Wright’s design philosophy impacted them to a tour of some of our favorite Frank Lloyd Wright sites worthy of a road trip, we’ve hit some of the high points of what make Wright so integral to modern design and architecture.

However, there’s no better way to get at who Wright truly was as a designer and architect than to look at the spaces he designed for himself. Taliesin, in Spring Green, Wisconsin and Taliesin West, in Scottsdale, Arizona both provide that insight. At the request of an aunt, Wright built a windmill on the Taliesin estate in 1896 when he was 29 years old. He continued to experiment with designs at Taliesin and Taliesin West until his death at age 91—that’s 62 years of work represented in two estates. Together, Taliesin and Taliesin West are often considered to be Frank Lloyd Wright’s autobiography in wood and stone.

These two pivotal structures continue to be relevant today. Frank Wright Foundation CEO Stuart Graff points out that the Foundation’s goal is to examine the values associated with each home and not only take care of the physical buildings themselves, but “to preserve the spirit of the buildings as well, continuing to use them as Wright used them in his own time.” He notes that some of the innovations in these homes are so ubiquitous today that it may seem as though they’ve always existed. “Thanks to Wright’s forward thinking, many of us have grown up with open floor plans, wide expanses of windows, and many other innovations that seemed radical at the time.”

Taliesin exterior by Andrew Pielage


Frank Lloyd Wright built Taliesin, a home, studio, school, and 800-acre agricultural estate, on his favorite boyhood hill in the Wisconsin River Valley property homesteaded by his Welsh maternal grandparents. As a nod to his Welsh ancestry, he named the entire compound Taliesin in honor of the Welsh bard whose name means “Shining Brow.”

“Taliesin contains many examples of Wright’s forward thinking, from contour farming to structural experiments,” Ryan Hewson, the Foundation’s Collection and Preservation Project Manager at Taliesin points out. In 1896, he designed a windmill for his aunts to provide water for the Hillside Home School. It not only functioned, but became an iconic structure. “The name is derived from the structural conceit—which is that Romeo, the diamond shape has his prow pointing towards the primary wind direction, helping to direct the wind around the structure; while Juliet is the octagonal shape, is the stable shape that is responsible for the structure standing up. Finally, at the top of Juliet is a balcony that provides views of The Valley,” explained Hewson.

Romeo & Juliet Windmill at Taliesin

In 1911, Wright designed and built the home after leaving his first wife for Mamah Borthwick (who also left a husband for the architect). The home was intended to be a refuge for the couple from the prying eyes of the public increasing media attention.

Taliesin interior by Andrew Pielage

Taliesin breaks away from traditional prairie style houses, and is an excellent example of what wright calls a “natural house” due to the site’s strong connection with the landscape and the use of the local area materials. Wright biographer Robert Twombly has written that his Prairie School period ended after the loss of Borthwick. The property used local materials to echo the expansiveness of the Wisconsin landscape with a layout that the architect described as “low, wide, and snug.” Local farmers helped Wright move stone from the yellow limestone quarry nearby, which he then mixed with sand from the river to create Taliesin’s walls. Taliesin features many architectural elements that Wright used in many of his structures such as cantilever roofs, wide windows and an open floor plan.

Taliesin by Jeff Goodman Courtesy of Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation

The Taliesin estate was his laboratory of organic architecture, with designs from nearly every decade of Wright’s life. Many of the most iconic buildings of Wright’s career were designed here, including Fallingwater. As he worked on commissions, he also continually worked on improving and adding to the estate. The property showcases the evolution of Wright’s thinking. In addition to the residence, there are four other Wright-designed buildings, including the Romeo & Juliet Windmill (designed in 1896), Hillside School, Tan-y-Deri (home for his sister and brother-in-law), Midway Barn, and the Frank Lloyd Wright Visitor Center.

Taliesin Preservation since 1990 has served as steward of Taliesin in a partnership with the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation.

Taliesin West by Foskett Creative, Courtesy of the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation

Taliesin West

A near-fatal bout of pneumonia coupled with the high cost and hard work of heating Taliesin during Depression-era winters convinced 70-year-old Wright to search for a place to create a desert “camp” where he could live and enjoy winter sunshine with his wife Olgivanna and their apprentices. Wright was able to purchase several hundred acres of land in the then-rural foothills of northeast Scottsdale. He had a vision of a desert utopia comprised of low-slung buildings designed to reflect the sweeping expansiveness of the desert. Wright wrote: “Arizona character seems to cry out for a space-loving architecture of its own” and then set about creating it. In an effort to preserve the local landscape, Wright would construct Taliesin West largely of “desert masonry”—local rock set in wooden forms and bound by a mixture of cement and desert sand.

Taliesin West by Andrew Pielage

During his lifetime, both Taliesin and Taliesin West were actively used, with Taliesin West becoming Wright’s beloved winter home. After his death, Taliesin West became the bustling headquarters of the Taliesin Fellowship. Deeply connected to the desert landscape, it was built and maintained almost entirely by Wright and his apprentices, making it among the most personal of the architect’s creations. Over the years, the complex was continually altered and expanded, eventually including a drafting studio, dining facilities, two theaters, a workshop, Wright’s office and private living quarters, and residences for apprentices and staff. Each building is connected through a series of walkways, terraces, pools and gardens. Wright designed much of the interior furniture and decorations, the majority of which were made on site by the apprentices.

Taliesin West sunset by Foskett Creative; Courtesy of the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation

Wright would continue to spend winter in Arizona until his death in 1959. Today, Taliesin West continues to serve as the vibrant home of both the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation and School of Architecture at Taliesin, carrying on many of the Fellowship’s traditions.

“The Frank Wright Foundation continues Wright’s legacy at Taliesin West by using it as a living laboratory for innovation,” explained Graff. “We installed a solar field in 2012 to offset our traditional energy sources, along with new LED lighting throughout the campus. With these innovations, we are more than halfway to our goal of net zero energy consumption, which is quite an achievement for a building that began construction in 1937. I hope that the exploration of values-based decision-making will aid the adoption of values-based conservation principles, and that the work done by the Foundation will provide a useful example for the field.”

For a truly unveiled look at the mind and thought process of Frank Lloyd Wright, Taliesin and Taliesin West are unmatched in importance. The two properties are world renowned not only as two of the most important landmarks of 20th-century architecture, but also as home to their creator. It’s through his own homes that we can really come to understand Wright’s legacy. So what are you waiting for—schedule a visit at

Pro tip: bring a notebook—you’ll leave with more ideas than you came with.

To learn more about the 150th anniversary celebration and find events near you, visit

For more information about Frank Lloyd Wright and his legacy, visit

28 Jun 20:39

Lindsey Adelman Studio Shines a Light on New Works at Afterglow

by Vy Tran

Lindsey Adelman Studio Shines a Light on New Works at Afterglow

During NYCxDesign week, Lindsey Adelman Studio hosted the public Afterglow show at her gallery to showcase new works created by her, as well as designers Mary Wallis and Karl Zahn. Inspired by the idea of an afterglow, a meteorological term for that magical rosy light that appears in the sky during twilight, the three designers created light fixtures that are modern, physical interpretations of the beauty of this natural phenomenon.

Mary Wallis is a Senior Designer at Lindsey Adelman Studio and designed Edie to be romantic, rebellious, and wild, all at once, with a design that can blend into a modern home or old-world spaces.

Like her other works, her Empire chandelier explores the theme of beauty in fragmentation.

Karl Zahn’s Kingdom fixture definitely commands attention in a room and resembles a plant found in nature. This idea is apparent in the rational yet wild design (like a Fibonacci sequence found in succulents). Karl currently holds tenure as the studio’s Design Director.

Lindsey Adelman’s own Cherry Bomb collection of fixtures aren’t to be missed. With bulbous orbs connected to willowy, slender branches from which metallic fringes descend, her sconce and chandelier fixtures look like something you’d find in a mossy forest.

Photos by Lauren Coleman.

28 Jun 20:38

A Penthouse Apartment in Poznan Gets Revamped

by Caroline Williamson

A Penthouse Apartment in Poznan Gets Revamped

A top floor apartment that overlooks the city of Poznań, Poland, went from builder grade and unfinished to being a modern slash industrial space with bold details. Mili Młodzi Ludzie reworked the layout to make better sense and to take advantage of all of the windows, which span two exterior walls. The goal was to have glimpses of the view from the moment one enters the apartment.

They added another design layer into the interior by outfitting the built-in cabinets with geometric door fronts.

The new layout affords an open living and dining room with uninterrupted window views in the corner of the apartment. Since the designers came into the project durning construction, they were allowed to incorporate their ideas more easily, as well as keeping some of the raw, industrial elements that add charm to the space.

The kitchen, guitar room, and guest room can all be entered from either side, which gives the apartment more of an open feel and lets light further into the interior.

So the views weren’t disturbed, the study, which actually functions as a guitar room, has two walls made of glass so the sight lines are kept open.

28 Jun 19:55

The Agrarian Handpainted Collection from Fireclay Tile

by Caroline Williamson

The Agrarian Handpainted Collection from Fireclay Tile

Fireclay Tile chose to pay homage to its Aromas, California roots with its latest collection of handpainted tile. The Agrarian Collection, which features eight graphic patterns, was inspired by the rich Northern California landscape of crop formations surrounding its factory. The geometric layouts can be seen from the sky or aerial photography and translate perfectly into modern tiles.

With eight patterns and three color motifs (warm, cool, and white) to choose from, the possibilities for layouts are endless. You can stick to one pattern in one color, or create a patchwork using every color if you choose.

Every tile is painted by hand where they let the glaze pool as it’s applied from the tip of the bottle.

28 Jun 19:55

ames Launches CARIBE, a Colorful Outdoor Collection Made of Recycled Plastic

by Caroline Williamson

ames Launches CARIBE, a Colorful Outdoor Collection Made of Recycled Plastic

Designer Sebastian Herkner adds another outdoor furniture collection to his portfolio, but this time with German brand ames. CARIBE is a series of colorful seating and tables that were inspired by a traditional weaving technique called momposino from Colombia’s Caribbean coast. The pieces consist of powder-coated steel frames with woven recycled plastic string in bold color combinations.

The CARIBE furniture collection includes a dining chair, lounger chair, 2-seater lounge, a vis-à-vis bench, a dining table, high table, low table, and basket table, all in a multitude of colorways. The furniture is made exclusively in small Colombian factories that specialize in traditional weaving techniques.

Photos by Andres Valbuena.

28 Jun 19:54

FICT design studio Reimagines Uses for Mother of Pearl

by Caroline Williamson

FICT design studio Reimagines Uses for Mother of Pearl

South Korea-based FICT design studio, where FICT stands for ‘From Craft to industry’, focuses on using traditional elements and experimental processes to create modern objects. Their latest project, Nacreplus, brings a modern approach to jagae, which is a traditional Korean lacquering technique that uses mother of pearl.

The project consists of terrazzo-like trays and coasters with chips of mother of pearl suspended within resin where it creates reflections off of its iridescent surfaces. The pieces are then finished with bands of gold-plated brass or stainless steel around the edges.

28 Jun 17:34

Andy and Lisa Montgomery

by The Design Files

WA Home

Andy and Lisa Montgomery

Anna Flanders

Today we visit a home in Perth that we’re pretty confident is the only home we’ve ever come across with a two-level scooter gallery in the living area. Yes, you heard right! Home to Andy and Lisa Montgomery, their daughter Audrey and Irish Setters Finley and Fleur, it’s a quirky addition that fully embraces their passions and family life. The home has also just recently picked up a commendation at the AIA WA Chapter Awards, in the Residential Alterations and Additions category. 

Our Perth contributors Anna Flanders and Jack Lovel recently visited the family to talk about their unique renovation and peruse the amazing Vespa collection!

A salt-water pool (Bluewater Pools) was one of those essential inclusions for Lisa and Andy Montgomery in their quest to combat Perth’s summer heat. The back of the house is a strong line of Gertrudis Brown from Bowral Bricks in Sydney, while the window frames are Cedar from Cedar West. Andy and Lisa made the outdoor table from an old frame and new marble top. The Turkish towels are from Remedy  and the blow-up Cactus is from Urban Depot. Photo – Jack Lovel. Styling – Anna Flanders.

‘We love relaxing with Audrey and the dogs by the pool – the salt water makes the experience so much nicer. We also love the colour of the pool (Black Pearl) because it reminds us more of fresh water lakes and rivers than ocean. The balance of paving and grass means we can have fun, run around and play games,’ says Lisa. ‘And that’s Finley in the picture – he swims in the pool and likes to cool down by lying on the top step. Fleur is not so keen!’ Photo – Jack Lovel. Styling – Anna Flanders.

‘We loved our alfresco area and deck at the old house, so we really wanted a space that replicated but enhanced that – this space does that. It has northern light in winter and balmy evenings in summer. There is a great indoor-outdoor relationship between the kitchen, the outdoor setting and the barbecue, which is really easy and convenient,’ says Lisa. Planted here are Japanese elms and a combination of natives and succulents. Photo – Jack Lovel. Styling – Anna Flanders.

The family use this seating area daily, particularly in the evenings in summer,’ says Lisa. The paving is granite bluestone by Bernini Stone & Tiles in Subiaco, which contrasts beautifully with the cedar. Photo – Jack Lovel. Styling – Anna Flanders.

Burnished concrete flooring, berber rug from Temple Fine Rugs, most furniture from The General Store, indoor plants and pots from Let it Grow Co and Areaware gold turtle is from Andy’s store, Urban Depot. Shelving unit was designed by Andy and Lisa and built by Alternative Kitchens, to accommodate the couple’s vinyl collection and record player, while the Project 2 Experience turntable and Kef LS50 speakers are from Urban Records. Photo – Jack Lovel. Styling – Anna Flanders.

Much of the family’s furniture is from The General Store, while the coffee table is an original mid-century Hans J Wegner for Andreas Tuck coffee table from Angelucci 20th Century in Melbourne. It’s one of the family’s most prized possessions, along with the Vespa GS 150 (1959), Vespa GS 160 (1962) and Lambretta T 175 Series 2 (1959). Photo – Jack Lovel. Styling – Anna Flanders.

‘Our brief for the kitchen was open-plan, but not too fussy. We wanted a fun and functional space, and a modern and easy kitchen that was an integrated part of the living space,’ explains Lisa. Photo – Jack Lovel. Styling – Anna Flanders.

The family spends a lot of time in this area and loves the light that comes in throughout the day. The walls here are painted in Dulux Whisper White, and the Sketch bench seat is from Oopenspace. Photo – Jack Lovel. Styling – Anna Flanders.

Accessories throughout the home add fun and colour to soften the interior, and add a warmth and relaxed feel. The dinosaur bottle opener is from Remedy, and the green pot from Urban Depot. The pot and plant in the background are from Let It Grow Co. Photo – Jack Lovel. Styling – Anna Flanders.

‘The kitchen is very practical – we love the galley layout. We also love the marble bench top. It’s already getting a bit ‘distressed’, which we like as we want it to be a living and breathing kitchen, not a show kitchen.’ says Lisa. Photo – Jack Lovel. Styling – Anna Flanders.

Is this the coolest design feature ever?! Andy comes up the scooter lift from the basement (scooter workshop) to the front door and the upper level! ‘We decided on the lift for practical reasons, but also aesthetic as it brings a real recycled, industrial and raw feel to the space,’ says Lisa. ‘We basically built the house around it, and it’s not going anywhere!’ Photo – Jack Lovel. Styling – Anna Flanders.

The bathroom is in part of the old dining room of the original house. The stained glass window was revamped when the couple first moved in, and they decided to keep it when the dining room was morphed into the bathroom. ‘We love the effect it has in the bathroom and it reminds us of the old house,’ says Lisa. Photo – Jack Lovel. Styling – Anna Flanders.

Photo – Jack Lovel. Styling – Anna Flanders.

Audrey’s room is at the front of the house in an original bedroom. The walls are in Dulux Whisper White,  rug and Miffy lamp are from Urban Depot and the bedding from Remedy. Photo – Jack Lovel. Styling – Anna Flanders.

Andy and Lisa  Montgomery had been living just five minutes away, when the original house on this block came up for sale. ‘We weren’t actively looking,’ says Lisa, ‘but we knew our beloved terrace wouldn’t suit our needs forever.’ At the time it was 2005, so their daughter Audrey hadn’t been born, the dogs weren’t on the scene, and Perth’s mining boom hadn’t yet sent house prices soaring. It was great timing.

The home is nestled into a leafy, multicultural pocket of Perth that’s central to North Perth, Leederville, Northbridge and Mount Lawley. From here, the couple can walk or ride their scooters or bikes to parks, Lake Monger and the busy eat streets of those surrounding suburbs. Conveniently, Andy’s shop, the much-loved Urban Records and Urban Depot, is in Oxford Street, Leederville, so also just an easy ride away, while at the time of purchase Lisa had an office nearby (though today she works in the city).

The original house had been a three-bedroom, one-bathroom character home with a 20-year-old kitchen renovation, all set on 500-square-metres. Andy and Lisa lived in it that way for 10 years, welcoming Finley and Fleur the Irish Setters (now eight) and Audrey their daughter (now three-and-a-half years) into their lives during that time. With the house starting to burst at the seams, a few years ago it was time to move out and renovate.

The pair wanted a semi-industrial feel, but were keen to retain the warmth and welcoming vibe of the original cottage. Having seen the work of Klopper & Davis Architects (KADA), Andy and Lisa knew they were the studio to bring their vision to life. What they didn’t know, however, was how far they would take it.

‘We loved their aesthetic – it’s mid-century inspired, and warm materials and palettes that just feel very comfortable,’ says Lisa. ‘Sam Klopper came back with a concept design that was completely different to anything we had ever envisaged. It put the vintage Vespas and Lambrettas front and centre in the living space – like artworks. We loved the idea!’

‘Bikes and music have always been my passion,’ says Andy. ‘I started collecting in 2000 and am quite discerning. I source rare and unique bikes from around the world that I restore in my workshop and add to my collection’.

The new design retained the front of the original home – the three bedrooms were retained in full, while the original dining room was sectioned up to create a walk-in-robe for the main bedroom, and a new bathroom. The rest of the house and its outhouses were knocked down and levels across the site changed to accommodate a new study, combined kitchen/living/dining area with scooter gallery, outdoor entertaining area to the North, pool on the Eastern side and a scooter workshop, spare bedroom, second bathroom and laundry tucked underneath the new part of the house. ‘We had a great team that we could trust and work closely and collaboratively with,’ says Lisa. ‘We were involved in the concept design, working with Sam and the team, while Andy was very hands-on with our builder, Danny of Saxon Construction.’

One of the tricky elements of the design was working out the best way to raise and lower the scooters from the basement workshop and onto two super-strength ‘shelves’ in the living area. While they toyed with different options, Andy remembered a contact of his had access to an old brick lift, so that was brought in and modified for its purpose.

The scooter gallery wall and lift have given a unique edge to the family home, while adding some unexpected colour to the living space. Surprisingly, the Vespas and Lambrettas live happily and easily alongside mid-century furniture and quirky objects from Andy’s store – once you get over the shock, it all feels quite normal!

‘The house functions so well and brings us all together,’ says Lisa. ‘The living, dining and kitchen space is seamless, especially when entertaining; the study is just the other side of the kitchen, so very integrated into everyday living, whether for our home office or a homework station for Audrey; and we were conscious of making sure the scooter workshop could be used for something else – an entertainment room, a studio or a kids’ zone – particularly if we ever decided to sell the house… which is unlikely – we consider this our forever house!’

The green chair is from King Living, with parrot cushion from Oopenspace (cork stool and watering can also from Oopenspace). The gold turtle is from Andy’s store Urban Depot, and the plants and pots (except the yellow one) is from Let It Grow Co. Berber rug is from Temple Fine Rugs. Photo – Jack Lovel. Styling – Anna Flanders.

27 Jun 18:28

Three is the Magic Number: A Kanban Primer

by Caitlin Kelch

I’m turning 50 next month and I can’t believe it. It’s all good, but I had no idea that my subconscious would take five decades so seriously. I haven’t become a somber, serious woman — but I’ve noticed some changes that I didn’t consciously enact. One of the major ones is the feeling that I’m simply not that flexible any longer. My schedule has finally become just that. My schedule. If it hasn’t been scheduled and isn’t an emergency that affects what I hold dear personally or professionally, it moves to the rear of the queue. In that spirit of only supporting what I truly love and value, I’ve found myself back into the Kanban method. (Kanban literally means billboard or signboard in Japanese.)

Kanban is a visual productivity method developed by Taiichi Ohno, an industrial engineer at Toyota, and it was originally used as a way to track projects or systems, where it was helpful for detecting issues that clog production. The method made its way into the world of software design here in the states at a time when design thinking was being considered as a plausible approach for managing one’s time and stress in everyday life.  When our daily to-do lists exceed one digit, it can produce stress and lower our productivity. It’s why we pull the covers up over our head and hit the snooze bar.

If you know each day you’re going to be doing or moving forward only three things, life becomes manageable. When life becomes manageable, it also becomes more enjoyable and allows you to more easily identify the sources of that joy. Armed with that positive knowledge, you’ll know how to and when to recharge. This is exactly how I want to spend the rest of my life.

Here’s how you can incorporate a little Kanban into your life. These are the big ideas to keep in mind as you read and consider practicing this method everyday.

  1. Try to do as few things as possible at a time
  2. Finish the work you have stared before taking on anything


To get started, grab some Post-Its or uniform size paper squares you’ve cut out. On each of the squares, list all the things, projects, tasks and worries that you’re responsible for at work and/or in life. Only include one project, task or to do on a square. You may want to break large projects down to the tasks that it will take to complete the project as a whole. This activity should be pretty simple. It might be a bit painful, so have a reward lined up for when you’ve completed it to thank yourself for taking this step towards creating less stress for yourself. Here’s an example of some washi tape frames you could create & use for your wall kanban.

For those things in the To Do column that have a deadline, make a note of the due date in the corner and estimate the time you think it will take you to complete it. If it will take days, add an extra day. If it will take several hours, add an extra hour. If it will take 60 minutes, add another 30 minutes.

In other words, give yourself some extra time so that the inevitable roadblocks don’t derail you & have you question or abandon the system.

Next create some type of grid pattern with masking or washi tape if you’re using a small section of wall. Of course, a grid on paper will work too. Clearly label the columns TO DO, IN PROGRESS and DONE. If you’re like me and get overwhelmed with the amount of To Dos, feel feel to cover that column with a blank piece of paper and only uncover it as needed to populate your In Progress column. I do prioritize the tasks in my To Do column so I don’t have to spend much time in there when I go to grab something that I’m moving to the In Progress column.

So, working this method, you’re going to work on only one thing at a time. While your working, you’re not going to check your phone or email. You will only have three things in your In Progress column at any given time. That means you should create a note for even things like checking email and move it back and forth from the To Do to the In Progress column multiple times per day. If you can, limit your email checking to 2 – 3 times per day, unless you’re waiting for some timely information.

Don’t worry about what anyone will say regarding this new system when you explain that you can’t get to their request immediately. You can tell them this is how you do your best work — by completely focusing on one thing at a time. Let them know that when you’re focusing on their request, you will be exclusively focused on that work and that’s how you can best serve them.

At the end of the day, break at least 30 minutes before you plan to leave your desk. Take this time to review what you’ve done, see if your priorities in the To Do column have or need to be changed and pull the three To Dos you plan on working on tomorrow. Don’t move them into the In Progress yet. You’ll do that first thing to get oriented and start your day. If you still have leftovers from the day in the In Progress column, move them back to the top of the To Do column.

After doing this daily for a week or two, you’ll have insights that a consultant would if they observed you and your business. My insights were astounding. I knew email was a endless stream, but I didn’t realize I spent almost 40% of my time reading and answering emails. That’s insane, and leaves me set up to be behind on projects that my team has identified as important and we’ve designed to advance our shared values. By giving away 40% of my time, I was not living according to my values so, of course, I felt stressed. (I now profusely use Canned Replies as much as I can.)

I also realized that I always needed to take a break after doing my email tasks. Once I took a break, it was harder to go back and start a new task. After I limited checking my email to twice per day, I had my lunch break and end-of-the-day to recover and reward myself with a big stretch and long, slow deep breath.

Here’s hoping this method can help you tame your day so you can enjoy it more! If you have any tried and true methods that help you manage your time or organize your day, please share them in the comments. I’d love to know and have them in my arsenal as I approach the big 5 – 0.  –Caitlin 

26 Jun 19:44

Elena Ruz Cuban Cuisine

by Erin in Indy
First of all, Elena Ruz is actually located within the building that holds Black Circle Brewing. It’s on 46th right near Keystone, in the back of the old Double 8 foods building if you know the one I mean. It’s sort of hard to realize there’s a Cuban place in there unless you just know. You go into the bar, order drinks at the bar (lots of beer choices, and even a record player) and then order your food from a doorway nearby. Sort of food truck style.

You can’t take kids in there obviously though, since it’s a bar. And we live in Indiana. They do have some limited outdoor seating though. Anyhow, my friend Suzanne and I wanted to try a variety of things so we got the Cubano sandwich ($8.50), the beef empanadas ($6.99) and ended up with a side of tostones ($3.99) because they were out of the plantain chips. 

I thought the best things were the empanadas. There were three of them, and they were filled with super juicy and flavorful beef. A pet peeve I have is when an empanada is all dry inside and these were the opposite. At one point the liquid from the thing was running down my arm. The fried pastry was nice and crisp and held everything in. The cilantro cream sauce was the best. There is no need for other sauces, this stuff was so good, and I wanted to dip everything in it.

The Cuban sandwich was very traditional—layered with roasted pork, ham, Swiss cheese, pickles, and mustard. I like Cuban sandwiches because; duh, pickles and mustard are two of my favorite things, but also because they are inherently flat and easy to eat (I know, I am weird). This one was solid, although I would have liked a couple more pickles (the ones that were on there were nice and thick though). It’s totally worth getting, or doing what we did, and splitting it along with something else.

I did not care for the tostones. They were really dense and didn’t have a lot of flavor. The garlic sauce that came with it was interesting—pretty much just like crushed garlic in oil, but it wasn’t the right mix with the tostones. I liked them better with the cilantro cream, but even then, not my favorite. 

There are a lot of good sounding things on the menu though—I’m intrigued by the rice bowls. And it’s a great place to have in the area, that doesn’t have a lot of sit down independent places to grab lunch. They’re not open Mondays or Tuesdays though, so plan accordingly. And let me know what you get and what you think.

Elena Ruz Cuban Cuisine 
(Located in Black Circle Brewing Company)
2201 East 46th St, Suite 207
Indy 46205
26 Jun 19:42

Main Street Pokē

by Erin in Indy
I have been excited to try Main Street Pokē since my hairdresser next door told me it was coming soon. I met my friend Suzanne there, as she lives close by and had already been several times and liked it. So it’s set up in the Chipotle style, where you go down the line and pick what you want in your bowl. There are A LOT of choices to make, so you may want to look over the menu online before you go. It’s like healthy fast food though; so don’t expect a fancy restaurant or anything.

The first and most important choice is your size and protein. You can get small, medium and large bowls (2, 3, and 4 scoops of protein respectively). They are $9.95, $11.95 and $13.95 with a few upcharges on certain items. There are several proteins to choose from, but I am guessing the most popular (and I would even go so far as to say probably the best) choices are the tuna and salmon. You can either get it marinated or plain. There are also things like tofu, chicken, beef, cooked shrimp, and even hamachi and unagi, but for me, I was focused on the tuna. I had the medium bowl with marinated tuna (you can also mix your proteins). You get to choose your base as well. I had half steamed rice and half mixed greens. They also offer brown rice or potato chips. Then, there are the toppings—starting with the first sauce over the fish. I chose the house, which is a soy-based sauce with some ponzu. I then added green onions, seaweed salad, avocado (+.50), marinated shitake mushrooms, and they give you a scoop of spicy crab as well. Then you can add some crunch (I had sesame, furikake and fried onions) and a topping sauce. I did half spicy mayo and half miso delicious. (I told you there are lots of choices—and there are tons more options than I described). 

So what did I think? I actually really love this concept—and I really enjoyed my bowl. I wouldn’t make any dramatic changes, although I would like to try the salmon next time. I was torn about whether I preferred the rice or the greens better, so I think I might just stick with the way I ordered it—half and half. I would probably skip the seaweed salad, just because there were just so many things going on, I didn’t really think I needed it. Surprisingly, even though I think the spicy crab is not real crab, it was pretty tasty and I would get it again. I thought the tuna was good quality and everything tasted very fresh. Honestly, I can understand why Suzanne says she often goes multiple times in a week, because if it were close to me, I would probably eat here a lot. There would be a ton of carry out going on. I really like to eat this kind of food, and I like that you can make a bowl that is very healthy if you want, but still has a ton of flavor. I overheard staff mention they are opening one in Fishers, which is awesome—but I would like to request one near Castleton if possible. And I bet a downtown location would do well too. But I am happy that they have opened up and appear to be doing very well. If you like this kind of food, you should check it out.

Main Street Pokē
110 West Main Street #106
Carmel, IN 46032
23 Jun 16:16

the ikea museum in sweden...

by Joy

The Ikea Museum in Sweden

A few weeks ago, I went on a special trip to Sweden with the Ikea US team for a press trip and tour of the Ikea Headquarters. I saw all of the new collaborations they are working on, meet with designers (many who have been there for over 15 years!), visit the studio where the Ikea catalog is shot, and visit the Ikea Museum! The museum had such an amazing collection of items from the very beginning of Ikea history in Älmhult, Sweden in 1943. Here's a peek at some of my favorite things from the Ikea Museum...

The Ikea Museum in Sweden

The Ikea Museum in Sweden

The Ikea Museum in Sweden

The Ikea Museum in Sweden

Of course, the textiles were my favorite part. Decades of patterns and fabrics lined the first floor...I could have just stayed in that room all day long!

The Ikea Museum in Sweden

The Ikea Museum in Sweden

The Ikea Museum in Sweden

There was an entire timeline of Ikea's evolution—from the beginning to today. It was fun to see how style has changed but also come full circle. Some of the spotlights were fun to see where they highlighted some of their iconic pieces—like the Poang chair...and of course, the Swedish meatball!

The Ikea Museum in Sweden

If you grew up with Ikea like I did or even if you just love the store, it's a really fun place to go and get a look at the history, nostalgia, and legend of this iconic brand!

{Photos by Joy Cho}