1.26.2011

Gift Show and Fab French Pastries

Last Sunday, my friends, Claire, a jewelry designer and Debbie, an interior designer and I attended the California Gift Show in downtown Los Angeles.  A few of the days highlights:
Selecting ribbon for gift packaging and wedding events.


Checking out beautiful imported handstitched quilts

Furniture and antique linen pillows from Davenport Home.




Another oversized clock from Eloquence.  Great ceramic bowl.

Accessories from Two's Company.

We will go back to spend more time with the regular vendors 
at the Merchandise Mart next week after the show.

Grande Finale:  We had a late lunch in downtown LA at:
Bottega Louie Restaurant here.

Wood fired pizzas made on an ornate antique counter.  Delicious~



The music was blaring and you had to shout directly into the servers ear to order but
Yum...

These macaroons were even better than Laduree's in Paris (yes, hard to believe)...
Loved the salted caramel and passion fruit flavors.  
Crazy colors but the tastes are intense and such elegant packaging.  
I purchased a "Louie" box of macaroons for my mom, Louise.

It was colorful day with sweet friends.

Have you had a fun and/or productive outing with a friend lately?

Best wishes,
Mary Ann

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1.20.2011

Classically Casual Dining • Before and After

This is an "after" photo of our recently remodeled 1950's beach cottage dining room.
Here's what it looked like before, right after we bought the house.  
I wanted the window removed to have a feature wall.
 Plus, we live so close to each other on Lido Isle, you looked right into the neighbor's front door.
 The low opening to the dining room was slightly arched to raise it.  The door to the kitchen on the left was removed so that we could have a walk-in pantry (see here) on the other side.
Where the door used to be we created a small alcove.
 The alcove now houses a Napoleon III marble topped bookcase and an 
oil painting that we bought in Paris. 

Also, displayed is a painting that I love done by my cousin, 
Janice of the apartment where we lived in Paris.
The Louis Philippe commode above (behind the loveseat)
is in our current living room featured here.

My mother gave us the antique sconces that I had refurbished.  
They are sentimental as I remember them from my childhood hanging over the 
living room mantel and later in the dining room.

We moved the peak of the ceiling to center it more in the middle of the room and added a tongue and groove wood treatment.  The iron chandelier is from Circa Lighting by Suzanne Kasler. 

 I hand applied some gold to the quatrefoil design and added candle wax covers.

The original watercolor and ink shell engravings are from the antique book
"Conchology, the Natural History of Shells" by George Perry, London, 1811.

We have dinner here most nights.  I shouldn't admit this but you can eat here
 and also watch the television in the living room.  Anyone else watch television during dinner?

 Have a seat and join us for dinner!  I'll turn off the television.

Best Wishes,
Mary Ann

1.16.2011

The Neighbor's $23 Million Beach House

Lido Isle in Newport Beach, California is a beautiful place to live. 
photo by Hom Realty

Granted, there is a BIG difference in price between the 
houses on the water and those on the interior, like ours.  
But, we all enjoy the same mild weather and 
fresh Pacific Ocean air.

This country French style home, a couple blocks from ours 
is listed for $22,950,000.
photo by Hom Realty
photo by Hom Realty
photo by Hom Realty
The "bones" are good, but the interiors could use some updating.
photo by Hom Realty
photo by Hom Realty
This home has five bedrooms and five and a half baths.
photo by Home Realty
It has a large private dock. For more information 
about this home see here.
(I'd love it if we were neighbors).

Another home on the water, just around the corner from us, 
was featured last year in "Traditional Home".  
I took the above photo (and incidentally, even the inside of their garage is gorgeous.
I walk my dog, Rocky at a snail's pace and gawk when the doors are open).
The following photos are from the magazine.
View of the house from the water




Lots of nice detailing and it feels like a classic • casual • home.  

My Photo

Even though our house is not on the water we
ALL have lovely views of the sunset...
Rocky and I just have to walk across the street 
to the little park to see it.
Do you have a place you like to walk to in your neighborhood?
Best wishes,
Mary Ann


PS.  Super tasteful Linda at The Lennoxx bestowed on me The Stylish Blogger Award.  
Please check out her site here.

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