Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Shopping in San Luis Obispo

I have been very late in getting through all of the photos from our little jaunt to the Central California Coast over Spring Break, but I am determined to let you all in on the fun.

San Luis Obispo, home of my Alma mater California Polytechnic University, is known for its weekly Thursday Night Farmers Market. We decided to partake of the festivities, do a little shopping, and eating! The girls were all about the shopping, and poor Tim, our very patient escort, was happy when he realized food was involved all along the way.

We stopped first at Urban Outfitters.... what better way to let our college bound teens know there is shopping outside the big city? Forget the clothes.......I had fun looking at the way this particular store was put together. The lighting on the second floor was stellar, and the stairs were a plywood phenom.....

Honestly, the rest of the boutiques were so great, I kind of forgot to take pictures. There are a LOT of great women's clothing shops in SLO town y'all!

I did stop to click a few at two very fun shops that surpassed the touristy type establishments one might expect to see. Powell's Sweet Shoppe was amazing.....

 EVERY candy known to man or woman must be in here. All of the oldies and goldies.... bubblegum cigars and cigarettes, Black Cow, Charleston Chews.....

Gelato heaven......Mascarapone Lemon Zest, Blackberry Cabernet, Honey Lavender..... 

And everything is better with bacon....Bacon Mints, Bacon Toothpicks, Bacon Drink Tabs, Bacon Lip Balm, Bacon Lolly Pops...did I forget anything?....

And then we have the Movie Candy Department....yes there are "departments" in this place.....Mike n' Ikes, Good n' Plenty, Jujubees, Dots, Milk Duds, Twizzlers...you name it. And what is playing on the Movie Screen? Charlie and the Chocolate Factory of course!....

 I am pretty sure I have never seen so many types of candy....ever.

And then we discovered Rocket Fizz Soda. Think you are the soda aficionado? Not until you have stepped into this place. It is the Smithsonian of soda......

...I had to share a few of my favorites.....Snookie's Wild Cherry, Judge Wapner Cola, and the Always "Ask for Averys" collection......

There was Pete's Pumpkin Patch Soda, Sweet Corn Soda, Nuclear Orange Bomb, Cream My People Soda....Shake real hard and open....

Lots of Blue colored pop: Goody Blue Pop, Jic Jac Blue Rasberry, Blueberry Breese, and don't forget the Toxic Slime.....

Citrus was popular....

And what life would be complete without a shot of Buffalo Wing Soda washed down with Coffee Soda, or Peanut Butter and Jelly with a Rocket Fuel chaser......

And you thought the choice was between Coke and Pepsi.....

(I did walk away with a wonderful Ginger Beer with Jasmine Tea Soda that was delicious!)

More later on the gems to be found on the Central Coast!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Recent Project in Sacramento Magazine

Photo by Keith Sutter 
I was thrilled when Sacramento Magazine recently published a story about an ongoing project of mine for a wonderful couple and their two kids. We have been working on the whole house, but the Family Room and Home Office was one the first rooms to be completed. Object: a multi-functional room that is kid-friendly, flexible and fun!  The color palette is ivory white, indigo blue, natural linen and a citron green....fresh and pretty. I started with a Chesterfield sofa in an almost kid-proof fabric in a soft natural linen hued velvet. We found a great rug from West Elm in dark and light blue stripes that added a punch of pattern. I layered on more pattern in the same colors in the curtains and pillows, with a bit of citron as well.

Photo by Keith Sutter
A green Chinese table under the TV adds a bit more of the green color to the mix....

Photo by Keith Sutter
The coffee table lets the kids move it out of the way for play time....

Photo by Katie Denham
And a few family antiques made their home in the mix as well....

Photo by Katie Denham
In the opposite end of the room, I created a home office area for mom to work while kids are occupied. At the request of the client, I designed a white board wall which can be hidden behind panels that are made of frames for family vacation photos....Everything can be quickly hidden if guests are coming over.....

Photo by Keith Sutter
For the FULL story....you can click on over to Sacramento Magazine HERE!

AND, if you are in the Sacramento area, you can see the home in person during the 

Curtis Park Home and Garden Tour 

this coming Saturday, April 28th.  For ticket and further information, click on over HERE!

Photo by Katie Denham

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Amanda Nisbet Presale

If the cover is any indication, it looks like THIS will be another addition to the library.   

Amanda Nisbet also has beautiful fabrics, lighting and linens. You can check them all out on her website HERE

Presales on Amazon now for the September release date.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Looking Forward To TRADhome.....


TRADhome the new online magazine being put out by Traditional Home is debuting next Friday, one week from today. Traditional Home has partnered with Lonny Magazine to come up with a chic, younger, hipper, new take on Traditional, and this is a little preview of the cover you will see next Friday. We will be meeting the TRADhome 10.....their stable of designers who have a new take on traditional. I am sure you may recognize some of those included, and meet some fresh new faces as well!

The link takes you to the Lonny website right now, but check back next Friday for the online debut of TRADhome!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Never Enough Time, Morro Bay Getaway

Spring Break....it conjures up all sorts of things doesn't it? But no matter how one spends their time during this somewhat notorious week of Spring, it never seems to be quite enough.....time. And so it was with our little getaway to Morro Bay on the Central California Coast.
We rented a house across from a park on the bay. There was a balcony perfect for sitting with morning tea and watching the boats a kayaks floating by..... 

There were little nooks for reading......

And plenty of room for gatherings where we ate the local catch of the day freshly grilled, with salads and warm sourdough and rosemary rolls.....

All cooked up in a very well appointed kitchen....and what a pretty place to put together a feast....

When the day wore on and the eyelids drooped, it was a pleasure to have this bedroom to retreat to and dream happy dreams...

You can't quite see it, but there was v-groove paneling on the ceiling. Very charming room, and VERY comfortable!
Lovely antique touches to charm us....

And reminders of the sea all around.....

I believe we will be back to spend more time.

If you would like more information and photos about this house and perhaps spending a little time here yourself, click on over HERE!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Waking Up

Things are waking up around here in the yard....

The rain is finally here after a little hiatus during December and January.

But everything seems to be catching up and doing their job.....growing....blooming....swimming....

 and scampering.....

Me too.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Spring Gardens at Hearst Castle

One of the many white marble statues scattered throughout the gardens of Hearst Castle
Last Saturday, we found ourselves at the beach in San Simeon enjoying a picnic lunch and a perfect day of sunshine and light breezes wafting over the Pacific. It is not everyday that one gets to see such perfection on the Central Coast. Often there is fog or too much wind. But this day was, in fact,  perfection.

A view of the towers of Casa Grande through the gardens of Hearst Castle. Note the detail of the glazed tile step risers which blend into a flagstone pathway.
The group we had for the picnic separated in two. There were some who stayed at the beach for swimming and fishing, and others who decided to take in the gardens at Hearst Castle, just up the hill. We drove across the highway to the Visitor Center, which has built an IMAX theater since the last time I visited! I am not sure what will be next. But we did take in the movie about the history of Hearst Castle, which was really quite well done. I felt like I was at Disneyland's Soarin' over California ride. Gorgeous filming!

Another of the White Marble Statues gracing the grounds of the Castle. The vistas stretching for miles were spectacular this Spring day.
Then it was time for the bus ride up the hill. We took the Cottage and Kitchen tour and of course the gardens. In a word....spectacular! The gardens were filled with Spring flowers....California poppies, tulips, daffodils, pansies, bougainvillea, roses, calla lilies, azaleas, fuchsias, citrus trees and magnolias....and the brilliant green of new growth was everywhere.

View past one of the Guest Cottages, Casa Del Monte to the surrounding hills
It was all we could do to keep our attention focused on the gardens around us, because the views of the surrounding hills was equally as gorgeous and provided an amazing backdrop to the Castle.

Entrance to largest of the Guest Cottages, Casa Del Mar, from the Formal Gardens
Many of you already know the history of this Castle on the hill. If not, you can read all about it HERE. But in short, William Randolph Hearst, renowned publishing magnate collaborated with architect Julia Morgan, the first woman to graduate from the Ecole Nationale et Speciale des Beaux Arts in Paris in architecture. Starting in 1919, these two visionaries worked together for 28 years in the creation of Hearst Castle.

The Formal Gardens leading to Casa Del Mar, tulips surrounded by boxwood and rose topiaries.
The architectural style used by Julia Morgan is Mediterranean Revival, a vernacular which is in keeping with much of the architecture of California. The towers of the large house or "Casa Grande", which started as one tower and became revised to the two towers, was inspired by a Spanish cathedral. Every detail, every carving, roof tile, stone carving was fashioned by collaboration between Hearst and Morgan. As a note to the stability of the engineering of the reinforced concrete that Julia Morgan used, I was told that there was a recent significant earthquake which caused no damage to the structure whatsoever. 

The hillside view of the Casa del Mar Guest house, quite grand!

Again, Hearst and Morgan collaborated in the design of these beautiful gardens modeling them after the many European gardens they both studied. The flora was designed to show flowers blooming year round, but I think Spring must be the most beautiful.
Casa Grande's twin towers. The main house is 68,500 square feet with 38 bedrooms.
Side courtyard where the main part of the Casa Grande meets the new service wing that was never completed on the exterior. It reminds me of a European village square with the fountain.
The Magnolia trees were still in bloom around the main koi pond in front of Casa Grande
I hope you enjoyed the view!

Next up, the kitchen, baths and wine cellar....and then the Cottage rooms and architectural details. 
I hope you come back!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Back from Spring Break!

Hello everyone! 

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday weekend. The "fam" and I were away last week enjoying all of the sunshine on the Central California coast, and I have lots to share! We stayed in Morro Bay, toured  California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, with teen daughter, did a bit of kayaking in Morro Bay, hiked out to Spooner's Cove to fly kites and check out the dramatic seascape, hung out in downtown SLO shopping and enjoyed the legend Farmer's Market, spent a day in Avila Beach and enjoyed a reggae band at their Farmer's Market, and spent a gloriously gorgeous day at Hearst Castle. 

Driving home on Easter Sunday, we made it home in time to put together a delicious dinner. And now it is time to get to work!

I will be back tomorrow with the gardens of Hearst Castle.