Friday, January 29, 2010
Thursday, January 28, 2010
Next up, from Haus Proud:
Which one do you like?
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
First, I would have that vodka.
Then, I would order these:
Then my husband and I would take some lovers, legally adopt them, and have them move right on in.
Monday, January 25, 2010
Doric-columned pool courtyard for Alphonzo Bell, Jr.
This is the work of an architect/interior designer team, John Elgin Woolf and Robert Koch Woolf, pioneers of the early modern Hollywood Regency style beginning in the early forties (the only set of early forties I can get excited about at the moment, if you're feeling me) and tapering off in the early sixties. Woolf was considered by many to be a master of modern innovation in the traditional style, and the signature mansard roof and comparatively delicate scale of the rooms and structures became so popular that other California architects copied it like gangbusters.
A noteworthy nugget is that after he learned he had Parkinson's disease, Woolf legally adopted his lover Robert Koch and Robert's other lover Gene as his sons (and later adopted Gene's lover William), and they all lived together as a legally sanctioned family in a remote hillside compound in Montecito, outside of Santa Barbara, until John Elgin Woolf died in 1980--hence the same last name of the architect and interior designer.
I know such flagrant flouting of familial boundaries sounds pervy, but it wasn't--it was the only way in a stylish but less-than-liberated era that his fortune could legally transfer to the people he considered his family and the rightful recipients of his estate. That is extremely awesome for its ingenuity and sheer oddness, if you're asking me. You're not asking me? That's OK. Enjoy the photos.
Friday, January 22, 2010
Thursday, January 21, 2010
Wendy says, "The address plaques and frames that we make come from wanting that oh-la-la wow factor of a great piece of mid-century modern "art" without the price tag! We think they scream high style. What I dig (about the products we make) is that we can totally customize them to each person's taste. I mean, we are so ready for amazingly crazy ideas to roll in and turn them into stunning plexiglas creations. The colors and clean lines of plexiglas open the door to making fabulously mid century modern styled pieces. We have even more ideas we're trying to streamline right now because really, the possibilities are endless, for realz!"
Here's a little taste...
You can visit Modplexi at their blog here, and at there ETSY store here.
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
This light fixture AND...
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
Next up, the "Changalite" series lamps. The ad says, "Full range variable lighting from one standard 150-watt bulb. Just turn the knob for the softness of a night light (7.5 watts) all the way up to full brightness."
#19 is strangely compelling!
Monday, January 18, 2010
On my way to work this morning I was listening to a song (Eliza Gylkison, "The Beauty Way") that triggered a set of memories about my old house. Pre-marriage, I lived in this sweet little 1940s bungalow, passed down as a rental from Meredith -- as it had passed from several friends to her -- in the now highly desirable Travis Heights neighborhood of Austin. It was the last deal in Austin and the dog on the block, but I loved it.
My house was more than the sum of its parts: pier-and-beam construction with a crumbling stucco facade, sweet built-in corner cabinets in the dining room, a sunny-yellow kitchen that got too hot in the summer, original hardwood floors, a floor furnace that you had to carefully step over in the middle of the night on your way to the bathroom, and 900-ish square feet of affordable ($550ish), cozy space that was the backdrop to countless experiences.
As that song played this morning, a series of memories flashed through my mind as if I were flipping through snapshots in an album:
- Moving in day with the ex-boyfriend (EBF), giddy that we had a HOUSE to spread out in.
- My nephew's birthday party, with my family gathered in the small living room for cake and presents.
- Sitting at the dinner table with the EBF and realizing he didn't want to be there anymore (ouch).
- Hosting the ladies for our weekly happy hour on the front porch (Stephanie and Meredith were there!), drinking wine and talking.
- Cuddling with new dog Ginger (now 11) on the little purple couch after EBF left.
- Crying and drinking (sad!) copious amounts of red wine at night on the porch after EBF left, looking at the stars past the huge tree in the front yard, while listening to Eliza and Jeff Buckley blaring from the living room.
- Sitting frozen on the porch steps, letter from the landlord in hand. Afraid to open the new lease I knew was coming, then pure relief to read the apologetic notice of the $25 monthly rent increase.
- Opening the front door for first date with husband-to-be (excited!!!) -- on Valentine's Day, no less.
- Standing in the doorway the first time husband-to-be told me he loved me.
- Making space in the closet for husband-to-be's stuff, then the garage sale we had on the front lawn after consolidating households.
- Sitting on the bed in the front room, discussing marriage with the husband-to-be.
- And finally, moving out day, driving off to our "new" old house 5 miles down the road, where many more memories were waiting to be made.
So, looking at this list, it strikes me that while I loved the house itself, what made it so special were all the relationships that took place there -- some beginning, some ending, many deepening. [And just think -- there were decades of that going on before I ever moved in!]
Today that house is gone. It burned to the ground a week after we moved out and someone else had bought it and moved in. In its place, a colossal 3-floored Tuscan-esque structure was erected, towering over the little houses around it. But in my mind, I still see my old house in all its memory-filled glory.
Friday, January 15, 2010
Thursday, January 14, 2010
"My house is me and I am it.
My house is where I want to be and it looks like all my dreams."
A recent post by Back Garage here, coupled with a few emails from some readers who have just moved into respective their dream homes, as well as seeing these lamps, reminded me of this gem of a tale. Eschew the rules! Your house should always reflect who you are. You don't need granite countertops, Madeline Weinrib rugs or Saarinen furniture to make it lovely. But if you love those things, go for it. Retro-luxe wants you to be happy, cupcakes!
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
I may have to scan every page for you. Here's a start with the light fixtures:
Those chunky resin lights that you're paying hundreds for on ebay? Their 1969 price was $18.97. Actually the most expensive light on this page is number 18, the "vivid interpretation of the gay nineties oil-lamp" coming in at $47.97.
These drool worthy, retractable lamps are sweet! Number 9 is the priciest at $36.97. You can click on pictures to make them bigger.
Monday, January 11, 2010
Friday, January 8, 2010
Thursday, January 7, 2010
Madison Quilt from West Elm
Fieldcrest luxury coverlet from Target
Ashley Cooper Satin Coverlet Set for $21.00!
Carol Wright Satin Hearts Bedspread for $15.99! Perfect for that Malibu Barbie-inspired bedroom!
Wednesday, January 6, 2010
Image from Dear Designer's blog.
Dear Retro-luxe friends,
As you may know, I've been interested in a bedroom makeover! Don't get me wrong, I've enjoyed the Ikea curtains and thrift store mid-century modern furnishings that have graced our home for decades. Lately, however, I've been longing to inject some grandeur into my lair. I want a more luxurious bedroom, one that speaks to me, a hard-working woman worn down a bit by the mundane details of having to work at a job and cook dinner for people, but no less glamorous for her trouble. I want my bedroom to say:
Put on a peignoir!
How about some chocolates?
Pick up the white telephone and call a friend...
What would Barbara Stanwyck do in this situation?"
I'm so happy to share that a fellow blogger, Carole, over across the pond at Dear Designer, has graciously posted about my bedroom dilemma. You can read my query here and her response here.
I love what she did! These mood boards, in the right hands, are fantastic, no?
I really loved how she managed to incorporate my beloved bamboo rugs and my existing dresser and nightstands. And I love the bamboo stencil idea! It's so mid-century glamorous! Additionally, she demystified a few things about curtain hanging, rugs on wall-to-wall carpet and coordinating colors that I've been wondering about.
If you would like design advice from Dear Designer, email firstname.lastname@example.org sending photographs if possible, room dimensions and details of what you have, what you need to keep and what you desire. Perhaps Carole can help you too!
I can't wait to start shopping...How fortunate that this exciting plan for luxury has been revealed to me just in time for the white sales...
Super cool 1950s chair AND matching couch! $225