Friday Five

This week was a blur of “Midnight in Paris” and junk food. Pretty standard material for whenever Boyfriend is out of town on business. There’s no one to tell me to eat real food or like, get off the couch. I had a lot of uninterrupted time at home to pull together this week’s Friday Five, and for what I think is only the second or third time since I’ve been doing these, I actually had to pare it down from a longer list of stuff. I love it when that happens. My wallet on the other hand…

Herewith, this week’s Friday Five.

 1. Makeup Brush set / 2. Scarf / 3. Bowl / 4. Lip Gloss / 5. Gary Oldman Video

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Like a Picture

Clearly my wanderlust from yesterday hasn’t subsided, because last night I watched “Midnight in Paris.” Twice. I’ve always been one of those people who can watch a movie a million times and find it just as amazing as the first time. I never tire of my favorites, books included. I’ll re-read books over and over again, and each time I’ll find something new that I missed before. I think today’s Like a Picture plays with that idea.

 1. Blanket / 2. Candle / 3. Picture

That candle is especially romantic, given that it says “A room without books is a body without a soul.” In French, swoon. I love that the gold lettering is mirrored in the gold trinket box in the photo and the typography of the book cover. The creaminess of the photo is picked up in the blanket and the frosted glass of the candle. Picture of course comes from Veanad. Again. And again, that blanket is from Lands Downunder (I’ve used them a million times in this series so far). They are the softest and most wonderful blankets I’ve ever felt.


I found my iPod (in my own bag), the internet is back on, and I apologize for being a grumpy brat yesterday. And for potentially being one today when I tell you that I am dying to go on another vacation. Yes, I know I just got back from Belgium and Paris a month ago, but I’m itching to get on the next plane back going anywhere exciting. Obviously my first choice will always be Paris, and I’m only making it worse by watching “Midnight in Paris” every chance I get (twice this week so far, tearing up at the opening shots of the city). What’s so wrong with going to Paris once a year? Surely that’s why I’m working, right? So I can enjoy my money?

Maybe not. To satiate my wanderlust, I’m doing what I used to do whenever it got really bad: playing around in Google Earth and “visiting” foreign locales. It helps a little bit, and is significantly cheaper than actually going to all these places.

Bexhill-on-Sea, England

The French countryside

The Amalfi Coast

Interlaken, Switzerland

Lake Martin, Louisiana

Which of these is not like the others? Don’t ask me why the swamps of the dirty South are appealing to me right now. It just goes to show that my desperation is not to be taken likely. I want to go to Paris, but I will gladly visit whatever alligator-infested swamp that is because it technically qualifies as a trip. And Louisiana has French roots after all.

If you could beam yourself anywhere in the world right now, and money was no object, where would you go? Annie, I love you but you don’t get to play because you’ve spent 2 of the last 4 weekends in Paris and Cannes.

Two of a Kind

I’m having one of those funky, not-myself days today. I lost my iPod sometime after work on Friday but didn’t realize it until yesterday on my walk to the subway, our internet is out at home and I’m pretty sure the crazy neighbors across the hall who fight about their pet rabbit at 3am and who conned Boyfriend into giving them our wireless password have something to do with it, and our upstairs neighbors’ washing machine is leaking into our water heater closet again.  Not even a little retail therapy yesterday could lift my mood. I just want to crawl back into bed and mope around.

But I won’t, since I’m an adult. Kind of. I still sleep with a nightlight sometimes.

1. Pillow / 2. Skirt / 3. Shoes / 4. Mug

This week’s Two of a Kind was the easiest one I’ve ever done. Everything came so quickly and so effortlessly, it makes me think I spend too much time on the internet (I do). I have this giant rolodex of objects in my head from scouring sites all day, so when that pixelated mug popped up I knew instantly I’d seen the same pattern on a pair of flats before. In compiling yesterday’s Black & White post, I found the pillow and skirt separately, but within minutes of each other. It’s as if the Blog Gods are smiling down upon me.

Black & White

This will come as no surprise to anyone that knows me in real life, but I rarely dress in color. I inherited this (along with my tendency towards night terrors and my sense of humor) from my dad, the man who would rather die than wear something that wasn’t black, brown, dark green, navy, or tan. I’ve one-upped him and pretty much wear only black. I just looked down at my outfit today to check and proved myself right.

I naturally gravitate towards minimalist, monochrome interiors as well (duh). I don’t think there is a color combination out there more perfect than good old black and white (hello, black and white cookies), so I decided to round up some of my favorite examples of the classic duo.

1. Blouse / 2. Bows / 3. Candle / 4. Shorts / 5. Cups / 6. Jeans / 7. Toothpaste / 8. Calendar / 9. Bag /  10. Shoes

I’m not sure what’s wrong with me, but I’m half a second away from buying $13 toothpaste solely because of the packaging. Has anyone tried Marvis before and can attest to its worthiness? Also, to my UK contingent: how have I just now discovered Wallis? That store is amazing! I’ve mentally bookmarked a bunch of future work clothes.

Friday Five

To answer everyone’s burning question (another pun!! I am on a roll) from yesterday, NO WAY will I burn that fishy candle. No sir. That is purely for decoration and I’m keeping it far away from matches in case it somehow spontaneously lights itself. You can never be too careful.

This week absolutely flew by for me, did it feel that way for anyone else? I can’t believe it’s Friday again so quickly.

1. Dress / 2. Light / 3. Pitcher / 4. Dr. Bonner’s Soap / 5. Keane

When we were in Bruges I stopped into a Mango store to browse and fell in love with that pleated dress. I don’t know what stopped me from buying it (the conversion rate wasn’t awesome, I guess?) but I’ve been thinking about it ever since. Well, up until Monday, when I found out that Mango has US stores (who knew?!) and it was on sale. I adore the micro-pleats and the colors are just spectacular. There’s a pretty deep slit down the back that I’m probably going to sew up with a light stitch  so that it’s work appropriate, but it just seems like the perfect dress for summer. And since summer means cook-outs and iced tea and sangria (to me, at least), this glass drink pitcher seems like the perfect vintage-y touch. Plus, it will look cool just sitting on your counter, too.

Not that I have a need for yet another West Elm light in the house right now, but I’m pretty smitten with the industrial chicness of that sconce. I love the antique look of the mirror and that Edison bulb. Sam, it would look pretty neat in your new bathroom, don’t you think? My dad always used this Dr. Bonner’s peppermint soap in the bathroom, and the smell will always remind me of him. I love that it’s all purpose, meaning you can wash your face or your hands or your hair with it (not that I would), but I love the cluttered typography on the label even more. Have you ever used it? I’m always amazed at how seemingly universal this stuff is.

Ever since I saw Keane last Saturday I’ve been listening to them non-stop on my iPod. Reading on my commute has been replaced with popping my earbuds in, and keeping them in at my desk all day. I’ve drained the battery on my iPod twice just listening to their albums over and over. I think I’ve reached a totally new level of adoration after seeing them live. Now if only that screenprint would get here…

What are you guys up to this weekend? My twin nieces turned 6 (oh my god I am old) this week so we’re having a family party on Sunday. And let’s be honest, I’ll probably end up at IKEA at some point, too. Have a great one, lovelies, and stay cool!

There’s Something Fishy Going On

I had to pun, you guys. I had to. Times of extreme joy call for it.

Remember when I got back from Belgium and the first thing I wrote about was that I finally got to visit a Zara Home store in Brussels? Leave it to me to turn a vacation into a post about all the things I wish I could have bought, right? Anyway, in that post I mentioned my love of a certain giant candle, shaped like a big gold fish (at the time I was jet-lagged beyond belief and I actually collapsed into giggles at the gold fish/goldfish joke I made. Awesome). I lamented that I couldn’t buy everything in the store, but that candle should’ve been a no brainer. I guess I was too nervous about it making the journey back home safely or was too concerned with getting a very sneezy Boyfriend out into unscented air.

Annie, my darling, my dreamboat, the blogger who started it all for me and found me through our mutual love of the West Elm Parsons desk, just so happened to be near a Zara Home last week and just so happened to mention that if I just so happened to still be in love with anything in particular, she could maybe pick it up for me and send it to me. It just so happened that I deafened half a city block screaming so loud with delight at the prospect.

Cut to two days ago, when I arrived home to an overflowing mailbox. The other half of the street that had retained its hearing was swiftly deafened as well. Also: holy crap Airmail is fast these days. That was a 4 day turnaround!

Remember when I said I had been worried about the candle making the journey in my luggage without getting broken? Ironic, since the first thing I saw on the outside of the package was this:

WTF is that?! I got kind of deflated, obviously, but figured there’s nothing superglue can’t fix, right? Plus, how can anyone stay upset when they see the package addressed to them like this:

I mean, COME ON. This almost makes up for all the times she’s called the lead singer of Keane a hobbit.

Even if the candle would be crushed to bits or broken in half or missing a fin or something, I was still beyond grateful that Annie would send it to me because she knew how much I loved it. It’s the gesture that counts. So imagine my surprise when I pulled this out of the package:

THERE’S NOTHING WRONG WITH IT. It’s perfect! It’s even better than I remember. Fitz immediately tried to eat it. I tried to make out with it. And to complete the circle of life, it’s now resting on my West Elm Parsons desk.

Annie, Annabel, you have made me so ridiculously happy. Thank you thank you thank you, from the bottom of my gold-fish-loving heart. The next time I’m in London I’m buying you all the gin you can handle.

Two of a Kind

I took last week off from compiling a Two of A Kind post only to regroup and get re-inspired. This series is one the most nebulous and time-consuming for me, but I’m not complaining. I’m the only weirdo forcing myself to do this, but it’s like getting an assignment in college from that one hippie Philosophy professor where the requirements are so vague and you don’t even understand the question let alone how to begin answering it. A better analogy for those like me who crumble at tip calculation: it’s like getting any math question, ever. But you know, way more fun.

So yes, this week I feel good about my comparisons and excited to track some more down for next week. But, one post at a time.

1. Heels / 2. Clutch / 3. Tote / 4. Shorts

Before you say anything, yes I know those shorts are hideous and look as if you waded crotch-deep in some overflowing sceptic tank in your grandmother’s lace curtains. Not a pretty mental image, now is it? But apparently dip-dye is back in, as is evidenced by that Zara tote bag. It’s like ombre, only sad. But I can totally get behind those gold-toe heels, even if I couldn’t ever put them on my feet. They’re kind of sexy, aren’t they? The clutch could be better quality leather (or leather at all, for that matter) but it matches the shoe nicely, even still.

Keane (!!!)

Saturday started with a trip to IKEA and ended with 2nd row seats to see my favorite band, with a marathon of Gossip Girl in the middle and some delicious Greek food thrown in for good measure. It will go down in history as the best day of all time. If someone had offered me macarons, I might have dropped dead. I am a girl of simple needs.

I called the venue last week to see if cameras were allowed; imagine my potential dismay in finding out my second row seats afforded me a great view if I were to show up without the option to capture the memories, or worse, if I assumed falsely and had my camera confiscated. It turned out to be the latter, kind of. While the lady told me photography wasn’t allowed in the theater, no one would check my bag. I took that as permission to sneak in my little point and shoot and hope for the best. Though there were signs in the lobby that said “No Photography,” I swear almost everyone in the theater had a camera and was using it without any consequences. And you guys, this is my favorite band and the first time I got to see them live, of course I took pictures, too. (Full disclosure: Boyfriend took a lot of these as I was too busy singing my heart out.)

You know when I saw the Eiffel Tower for the first time on our trip and I broke down and cried on the street in Paris? That, um, totally didn’t happen the moment Keane started playing on Saturday night. Or anything.

You know how sometimes bands don’t sound as good live as they do on recordings? This was absolutely not the case with Keane. If anything, they sounded somehow exactly the same as they do on their albums, only BETTER, more full and more incredible. Tom’s voice is amazing, you would almost think he was lip-syncing, as pitch perfect and strong as his voice was. I was less than 5 feet away from the stage, only one row of creepy groupies in front of me (seriously, they follow them around the country and are gross-looking. I thought groupies were supposed to be hot?) and could not believe my luck. They played all of my favorites, including “A Bad Dream,” “Bedshaped,” “Spiralling,” and even “Atlantic,” which I never in a million years expected to sneak into the encore.  It was an amazing night and I left the theater on a total high.

Here are more pictures, the full setlist, and all the merch I bought…

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