Friday, July 30, 2010

Two Reads...

As I was running around my house this morning, doing some last minute packing for Northern Michigan, a story came on the Today Show that left my intriqued, to say the least. The "mystery heiress" is a puzzle that left me only wanting more. With a tale of love, money and amazing estates scattered across the country, I am sure we will all be in for a juicey tale of scandal.  The "more" will apparently air on MSNBC sometime in August. Now, if that isn't a teaser I don't know what is. Check out this link and prepare to set your DVRs!

This morning's story also reminded me of an article I read this past week that was sent to me by my friend, Avery (Thanks, Avery!).  Read about the amazingly delapidated, yet vibrant Hudson Valley estate in this New York Times article.

Enjoy your weekend!

Thursday, July 22, 2010


It's simple. Not the Unplugged wave that MTV made famous in the mid eighties, with the eclectic performances ranging from Tony Bennent to Nirvana, but the actual, simple act of removing the technology that dictates our lives and getting back to knowing ourselves and observing the world around us. Being of a generation where when we have a lull in being bombarded by texting, bbming, facebooking, youtubing, foursquaring, we may be as bold to state that we are bored.  Don't get me wrong, I am the first person that needs to listen to this advice. I think I am getting carpal tunnel from texting and my posture is suffering from sitting over a key board all day, but I do feel that we could all go out an explore a little more what is beyond our virtual world.  This all probably sounds very hypocritical as type away at this blog entry, listen to a Pandora station and occasionally switch over to the tab. Well, I guess we all have good intentions.

While in Bermuda Scott and I put a halt to the tech barrage that gets so ingrained into our routines everyday. No email. No phone. No Ipod.  I do admit, the Ipod-less vacation began as an unfortunate mistake.  Mine is lost. No real surprise here for those who know me... it is probably in the big, black hole that consumes many other objects in my life.  Scott's is the casualty to a water prank gone wrong. Karma.  This was the most refreshing thing we could have done to really recharge. For starters, I think it was the first time in ages I had sat at the beach and not drowned out the sea gulls and waves with some blaring tunes (if it had been Palm Beach circa 1998 you better believe those tunes would have been from the Mariah Carey #1's CD). Hearing the crashing waves was just the beginning. Being able to read books, play board games and have conversation not sparked by the daily new controversy was all amazingly rejuvenating.

Ok, onto the design portion. We all have these special places that allow us to unplug.  But, if we are able to take this opportunity it is all up to us and what our life style permits. It was when I was babysitting this weekend that I came across an Elle Decor issue I had not seen. Now, if we want to discuss a place to get away from the hustle and bustle of life, this is it.  I was excited to read this article detailing a barn renovation in the Hamptons for Ralph Lauren creative director. Doesn't that just sound like it would carry a blessing from the decor gods! Well, it does.

This home just has soul. I loved how the home has a spirit and a history that is communicated in the patinas, textures and materials. The barn carries a nostolgia of yesteryears but also is able to achieve a very modern purpose.  I am a firm believer in historic preservation, but for us to all be able to use historic buildings effeciently in the modern age there is no doubt that changes have to be made. One of my favorite comments in this article is from the architect, Calvert Wright, “We wanted to treat everything that was there originally with total respect—and then make the clashes artful”. Artful is the key word here. We have all seen a building adapted for modern use that really just erases many of the aspects that give it the unique historical charm.

Check out the pictures below and, if ya feel like it, imagine yourself relaxing and unwinding admist the artfully styled rooms in this fantastic rural hideaway.

 Photographer: Roger Davies

Thursday, July 15, 2010


Well,I have to start out by saying that life has really given me an amazing couple of weeks. I feel so lucky and this clear sense of happiness is just incredibly natural.  Our wedding played out to be such an amazing sequence of events.  I am just glad we were able to provide all of our nearest and dearest a night to remember.  At the end of the day, I feel like while people were all gathered because we were tying the knot, for me it was more about thanking our guests for all playing such an important role in our lives.  The outpouring of consistent love and support that family and friends provide, all in their own unique ways, is a reason in itself to have a party- if not one of the largest things in life we should celebrate. 

Well,  Now it is back to reality, which really isn't so bad when you come back and realize 'reality' can be pretty fun too.  Michigan is a fabulous place to live and easing back into a routine isn't horrible when you can mix it up with lake visits, bike rides (the cruiser now has a pretty cute wicker basket. Only after 14 months.) and a few glasses of wine on the back patio (even better when it stays light until 10).  Anywhoo, the time spent away from reality is why I started this blog post tonight... so I guess I really need to just cut to the chase!

Tucker's Point was absolutely amazing.  Talk about a place to go and kick back and relax! I don't know if I have ever let myself get this relaxed, but let me tell ya, it felt amazing. You better believe I was armed with my new, snazzy Nikon to document ever twist and turn of this hotel, which really felt more like staying in a magnificently designed home rather than a hotel.  The design was intimate and the materials flawless.  It was cozy, classic, and tasteful.  Everything got me excited. From the bathrooms to the menus (to the trim, artwork, flatware... it just goes on and on!) there was not a detail that was over looked. When we first walked in there were orchids, blue and white Chinese porcelain (if you were a guest at the wedding you would know this is riiiight up my alley) and... get this... the butterfly prints that are hanging on the wall of our living room were also adorning the wall of the reception area. Design fate if I've ever seen it!  If you ever wanted to have a personal conversation about this place and the unreal decor I would love to discuss... but, I don't want to risk sounding too boring on this platform. I think when Scott noticed I was taking a photograph of how the bathroom toiletry products were packaged he commented that I had reached a whole new level of a design driven enthusiasm. 

Okay, now to the pictures... 

The view from our room was amazing... I could have almost stayed in the room the whole time!

 Alright, it's time for me to hit the hay. I hope these photos can translate even a fraction of the beauty of Tucker's Point Hotel.  It was so refreshing to go to a hotel when you really just feel like you were on a getaway to an awesome Bermuda estate. While sitting on the beach, under a huge umbrella, sipping on my dark and stormy, I finally had time to catch up on some wonderful design magazines. While reading the June issue of House Beautiful a certain quote caught my eye. When Jeffrey Bilhuber was asked a question on how people connect to his Early American country home he responded, " Oh, the atmosphere. When they leave, they don't remember the chairs or the lampshades. They remember the spirit of the house, its goodness and hospitality".  Mr. Bilhuber, I could not agree with you more. This trip will forever be a very fond memory.