Art

Books: Review of Why LA – Pourquoi Paris

I recently received a copy of the book Why LA? Pourquoi Paris? to review. While I have been to Los Angeles, it was a short trip, and I didn’t really get to live the LA life. Paris, on the other hand, is one of (who am I kidding – it is) my favourite city.

In this book, Diane Ratican compares the two cities on multiple aspects – food, culture architecture, fashion, art.

What’s really special, in my opinion, is that the text is in both French and English, and descriptions are followed by pages and pages of beautiful artwork. The illustrations were done by Eric Giriat and Nick Lu. It’s easy to stare at the pages for a while to see all the detailed work.

Over the long weekend, I read the book in one sitting. The text is informative and well-written. I learned a lot about LA, and learned a few new things about Paris, too.

Many thanks to Why LA? Pourquoi Paris? and Sarah at Smith for sending me this book.

All photos and opinions are my own.

 

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Travel: Review of Hotel Henry, Buffalo

When I first learned about Buffalo’s newly opened Hotel Henry, I was intrigued. And I was curious. And I was dubious, too. A must-see hotel? Sure. In Buffalo? Not so sure. You see, the Buffalo I have known up until this summer is all outlet mall and Target. Honestly. I have not seen much more than that on any of my trips to Buffalo. Well, let me tell you, Buffalo surprised me. Really! So much so that I’d definitely make a return trip! Isn’t that what you’d like the result of every vacation to be? I was pleasantly surprised!

You’ve seen a couple of photos of my trip on Instagram (#WhiteCabanaGoestoBuffalo), but here’s a proper tour of the hotel.

Hotel Henry, a national historic site, was built in the 1872 as a psychiatric hospital (aka known as the Buffalo State Asylum for the Insane). I didn’t know much of this history before I arrived which I think is a good thing. I was too googly-eyed over the design and architecture to get too engrossed in all the historical – and spooky!? – stories. As we pulled up to the property, I was floored. Amazed at the large scale and the absolutely beautiful architecture. I was definitely excited as I stepped inside.

The hotel has been part of a 3-year, $102 million renovation project. The hotel is located on a 42-acre site and occupies three of the eleven buildings of the former asylum. The project was led by Deborah Berke Partners and Flynn Battaglia Architects. Just to give you an idea of the scale and work involved, the restoration of 600 windows cost $7 million.

 

Check in was smooth and quick. My room was spacious with ridiculously high ceilings that definitely caught my attention! Beds were comfortable, and the bath products were lovely. Towels were fluffy, and the coffee/tea station was a nice addition. There was plenty of space to spread out, rest, and work (the desk in front of the window was well-planned).

I think it would be lovely if Hotel Henry added robes to the room and a mini fridge, too. These items aren’t essential, but they’re nice pluses for a luxurious stay.

 

Beyond the room, the hotel is absolutely stunning. The foyer and lounges are well-appointed with beautifully designed furniture and accessories. Interesting and unique art is everywhere in the public spaces and guest rooms. The lighting is dramatic and eye-catching.

During my stay, I had the chance to enjoy the bar one evening and breakfast by 100 Acres – the hotel restaurant that is becoming one of Buffalo’s hot spots! I enjoyed both, and loved parking myself in different areas around the hotel to enjoy my drink and meal. Each area offers lovely seating options and great views of the architecture and art.

The next time I go to Hotel Henry, I’m definitely going to sign up for a tour of the abandoned/non-renovated part of the Richardson Olmsted property. If I had known about these public tours before I arrived, I would have signed up, but it completely escaped my research and planning path. In addition to the tour, I’d like to explore other architectural, artistic, and neighbourhood gems.

Prices per night vary depending on day and month, but they average about $150 USD per night. Check the availability calendar for the most accurate price.

Thanks to Hotel Henry for sponsoring this post. All photos and opinions are my own.

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The Friday Five: Beach Art

Oh, you know, I have the beach on my brain big tiiiime because I’m heading to my summer home-away-from-home soon! I’m pretty excited for some major relaxation time on the beach under the hot Floridian sun! So, in anticipation of long, lazy days and nights at the beach, I’m bringing some beachy to the blog today in the form of art!

white beach club, Italy, Gray Malin

white beach umbrellas, Italy, Gray Malin

white hot, Erin Beutel, Minted

iconic lifeguard tower, Kate Houlihan, Minted

collection, Sadie Holden, Minted

Have a great weekend, everyone!

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Two for Tuesday: Zebras

Do you have any zebra print in your home? I don’t, but it seems like of all the animal prints that I could have, this would be it, right? I wouldn’t be ready to install Scalamandre‘s zebra print wallpaper anytime soon, but a zebra print in smaller doses could easily find its way into my home.

Scalamandre by Lenox zebra decanter, $171, Bloomingdales

Zebra print, $25+, Sharon Montrose

Interiors: House Tour, Chapel Hill, NC

One of the things on my North Carolina “must-see” list during my recent visit was “tour Kristie’s house.” Seriously. Have you ever asked an almost-stranger for a house tour? Because I have. Okay, so Kristie isn’t a complete stranger. She’s one of my sister’s good friends, and I have actually met her a couple of times.

So, on this visit, Kristie graciously opened her home to me for an after-school visit. And lucky for all of us, she allowed me to snap a bunch of photos to share right here on White Cabana (no styling involved, btw!). You may have seen a few photos floating around Instagram (the kitchen, the porch, the art), and I know that if you did, you were itching to see more. Well, today’s your lucky day.

Let’s get to it.

The foyer is bright, welcoming, and so beautifully curated. Kristie’s collectibles are from all over – furniture stores, HomeGoods, antique markets, the ReStore, consignment shops, and Craigslist.

The kitchen’s waterfall marble island and chandeliers are show stoppers. In fact, the lighting throughout the home is so well-chosen.

(custom cupboard doors will be painted soon!)

Are you drooling? Yes, I know you are! I had the same reaction, so there’s no need to be embarrassed!

Kristie made much of the art in her home including the colourful pieces framed in gold on the dining room gallery wall. Stunning!

(side note: I took a page out of Kristie’s design book, and picked up this swan for my bedroom. It’s nowhere near as refined as the one in this dining room, but I love it. #copycat)

The powder room is almost done. Kristie is just waiting on a mirror. I think it looks great as is, actually!

In the living room you’ll see my most favourite piece of art – made by Kristie! It’s a 3D piece made of paper! In.cred.ible. The 10+ foot ceilings are a nice touch, too. ¬†

Hallways were given attention, too.

ink art made by Kristie and her daughter (and a pineapple for good measure)

Kristie paid careful attention to the design of her kids’ rooms, too. I could move into either of them. I really wanted to grab the federal mirror off the wall and stuff it into my carry-on, but I thought her little boy might notice. Darn.

  

We’re just about at the end of this tour, unfortunately, but I’m leaving you with one of my favourite spaces – the screened-in porch. The porch is a common feature in homes in North Carolina. It’s a pleasant room for lounging and entertaining during the fall, spring, and summer months. I’d easily sip on a mint julep while lounging on this sweet soft blue sofa.

Kristie – or Dr. Kristie, I should say, since she has a PhD in textiles (who knew that was an option!?) – and her family recently moved into this home and undertook a great renovation where the kitchen space was re-jigged and expanded, walls were painted, hardwood was installed, and art was hung everywhere.

There are still things on the must-complete list as all renos seem to have, but for now, this place is set, and the whole family is enjoying their new home.

Thanks, Kristie and family, for letting us peek into your gorgeous home!

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Art & Hotel: 21c Museum Hotel, Durham, North Carolina

While most of my weekend in North Carolina was spent playing with my three nephews and niece (#ZiaJojoComesToTown), my sister, brother-in-law, and I did enjoy one night out in Durham sans cute children. One of our stops was the 21c Museum Hotel and Counting House. The concept is unique. On the main floor, you’ll find the Counting House – a bar and restaurant. Above, you can wander the floors to explore the art exhibits and historic building, which is open 24/7/365 with free admission if you’re curious. Cool, right? In the basement, visitors can explore the old bank vault since the 21c Museum Hotel is housed in an old bank. Food, drinks, art, history, and a place to stay all in one gorgeous building in central Durham? What’s not to love?

Here are some of the photos I took, if you’d like to see.

Mujer de Blanco, 2015, Marlu Palacios

Spoonfall – water trickling down hinged spoons making the most soothing sounds

Sleeping, 2007, Anthony Goicolea (available for purchase at Caviar20 if you have $18,500 to spare)

The bathroom was wild. I felt like I was in an episode of CSI. Art and function. Awesome. The signage is part of the We Don’t Care exhibition.

You’ll notice fuchsia penguins hanging around the hotel. Guests are encouraged to move them around to create new scenes – or surprises – for others. (Each hotel in the 21c collection has a different colour for its penguins.)

While I did not stay at the hotel, the rooms do look very White Cabana worthy! Perhaps on a future visit to Durham…or Nashville…or Cincinnati…I will check into a 21c Museum Hotel!

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Art: The Artbarn Auction

I love when people see white goodies and think of White Cabana! That’s what recently happened to Shannon (8foot6) who emailed me this photo of Tamim Sahib Zader’s white-on-white silkscreen.

silkscreen by Tamim Sahib Zader

This art piece is up for grabs at the Artbarn art auction online (currently) and offline this Thursday, February 9th in Toronto. The funds raised are going to support the Artbarn art school.

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Art: Lauren Clay

I’ve got loads to share from my weekend and a neat blog link up in the works for this week, but I thought I’d start the week off with some art because I think it would do us all some good to get some exposure to different kinds of art in 2017.

So, today, let me introduce you to Lauren Clay‘s large-scale sculptures. I see them as large, tamed marshmellow shapes.

  Hand of Devi

For the Big Bellied

Monochrome with Cowlick

Monochrome with Roof and Loops

Thanks to Design Crush for introducing me to the work of Lauren Clay.

Art: Beauty in White

I’m starting off 2017 with art. While I have written about art regularly on the blog, I would like to add more art content to the pages of White Cabana this year. There are so many stunning pieces of affordable – and beyond my budget – art out there that I’d like to share it with you.

Under $100

 

Ballroom 2 by Haley Warner, Minted, $25USD for 10″x8″

Linger by Sarah McInroe, Minted, $25USD for 8″x10″

Scoring Through by Van Tsao, Minted, $25USD for 8″x10″

Under $200

Rose Petals by Jelena Kostic, $175, 20″x28″

Under $500

Diver II by William Stafford, $295USD, One Kings Lane

Molten Ecru by Simone Webb, $260CAD for 12″x14″

Think by Tommy Ingberg, $375USD

Over $1000

Queen drawing by Charles Pachter, $9500, Caviar20

Eileen Lake by Adolf Arthur Dehn, $3314CAD, 1stDibs

The Party is Over by Gemma Gené, $6400USD

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Marketplace: Minted Cards for the Holidays

Around this time for the last few years, I’ve ordered my Christmas cards via Minted. With Minted, I can personalize my message, have my return address printed, and use my saved recipient address list (free service!) to ensure my cards are perfectly addressed.

I have been a fan of Minted’s collection of art and stationery for years. And each year, I’m impressed by the new additions of artistic cards. While I do appreciate photo cards from my friends and family, I opt for the classic card.

Here are some of the cards that made my short list:

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evergreen merry

min-mqx-hpc-001christmas_a_pz joy

min-bxv-hpc-001holiday_b_pd

Christmas trees

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holiday bouquet

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Merry Christmas, My Deersmin-bid-hmc-003_a_pd

snowfall

One of the things that I really like about ordering my cards at Minted is the personalized printed message options. Last year, I decided to go all-out with the everyone-gets-the-same-message, and I ended up mailing my cards out without a personal message or signature. Let me tell you – these did not go over well. On my end, prepping my cards was very time efficient. Some of my honest friends and family members, however, were quick to inform me that they didn’t like the lack of real-live ink. So, this year, I’ve toned the automatic-standard-everything down a notch. I’ll be picking up my pen to add notes of well wishes.

Minted cards are printed on high quality paper. Its Signature paper is thick and luxe. I just love how the cards look printed…they’re so pretty and professional. And here’s hoping my friends and family enjoy the design I ordered this year!

Thanks to Minted and BlogPodium for this partnership opportunity.

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#WhiteCabanaWearsPink: Superheroes

Today’s #WhiteCabanaWearsPink theme is all about the superhero!

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flying superhero costume, Etsy

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Wonder Woman postcard, Etsy

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superhero printable download, Etsy

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Princess Power Super Sparkle Barbie

***

Every Monday in the month of October, pink will be taking over White Cabana. This month, #WhiteCabanaWearsPink to raise awareness and funds for breast cancer research. Read more about #WhiteCabanaWearsPink.

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Marketplace: The Spartan Shop

In one of my various online surfing adventures, I came across Spartan Shop and fell in love with just about every product in its inventory. One more beautiful than the next. Let’s just say I lingered a little while on the site.

Look at these beauties:

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Gabriela Artigas two-tone infinite cuff, $270

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Scosha brass double opal cuff, $225

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takara jade coron necklace, $275

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spotted door mat, $80

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Lyngby porcelain vases, $87

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clam lab pointed spout pitcher, $290

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marble spice grinder with brass ball, $150

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#WhiteCabanaWearsPink: Beautiful Pink on Instagram

Over the last few weeks, I’ve come across so many gorgeous photos on Instagram featuring pink lovliness. Many of the photos I’ve saved, I have to admit, I’ve collected from Leslie Shewring who is the co-author of Decorate for a Party. Have a look….

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Leslie Shewring

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Leslie Shewring

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Sketch London by Leslie Shewring

pink-tulips-leslie-shewring

Leslie Shewring

pink-paint-art-leslie-shewring

Leslie Shewring

pink-dragon-fruit-leslie-shewring

Leslie Shewring

pink-cloud-alice-in-her-palaceAlice in Her Palace

cake-pink-erica-cook

Erica Cook

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Erica Cook

pink-balloons

Little Big Bell

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Tiffany Pratt

Aren’t these images so pretty?

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

***

Every Monday in the month of October, pink will be taking over White Cabana. This month, #WhiteCabanaWearsPink to raise awareness and funds for breast cancer research. Read more about #WhiteCabanaWearsPink.

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#WhiteCabanaWearsPink: Art

Hold on to your hats, dear readers, because I’m bringing pink to the pages of White Cabana today!

As you may recall from my post last week, #WhiteCabanaWearsPink every Monday here on the blog. I ran 5K on Sunday at Kitchener-Waterloo’s CIBC Run for the Cure, and so far, I’ve raised $1148 for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation. Woohoo! During my 5K run, I was thinking of all the people in my life who have been affected by breast cancer (and other kinds of cancer, too) as well as all my family and friends who generously donated to the cause (thank you!). I ran for the cure. And now I’m blogging for it.

To get the #WhiteCabanaWearsPink series going, I’m starting with some soft shades of pink and pretty artwork .

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Peony, Eye Candy Prints, Etsy

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Leave Behind the Shadows by Emily Jeffords, Minted

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Tower #4, Bree Madden, Etsy

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Flower Market 2, DENY Designs Catherine McDonald, Target

gold

Gold by Nastia Cloutier-Ignatiev, Citizen Atelier

erica-cook-art

Erica Cook

janet-hill-studio

Janet Hill Studio

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Leigh Viner

Wishing all of you a wonderful week!

***

Every Monday in the month of October, pink will be taking over White Cabana. This month, #WhiteCabanaWearsPink to raise awareness and funds for breast cancer research. Read more about #WhiteCabanaWearsPink. Affliliate links have been used, so get click happy!

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Photography: Chris Jordan

This term, I’m taking a course in my MBA program called Strategy for a Sustainable World. I’m three weeks in, and It’s been fascinating. In the course, we discuss how businesses are (and can and should be) operating with the environment in mind. Not so that the environment is an after-thought or embedded in a random policy that is tack on to an annual report, but that the environment plays a central role in how businesses are formed and how they operate.

In a recent lecture, we were introduced to the photographic work of Chris Jordan. He depicts the effects of consumerism (and other issues in America) in his works. Have a look:

paper-chris-jordan

Office Paper: “Depicts 30,000 reams of office paper, or 15 million sheets, equal to the amount of office paper used in the US every five minutes.”

cigarettes-chris-jordan

Cigarettes: “Depicts 65,000 cigarettes, equal to the number of American teenagers under age eighteen who become addicted to cigarettes every month.”

paper-cups-chris-jordan

Paper Cups: “Depicts 410,000 paper cups, equal to the number of disposable hot-beverage paper cups used in the US every fifteen minutes.”

birds-chris-jordan

Silent Spring: “Depicts 183,000 birds, equal to the estimated number of birds that die in the United States every day from exposure to agricultural pesticides.”

pain-killers-chris-jordan

Pain Killers: “Depicts 213,000 Vicodin pills, equal to the number of emergency room visits yearly in the US related to misuse or abuse of prescription pain killers.”

I encourage you to click each one of the links so that you can zoom-in/zoom-out on the photographs.

Images and descriptions from Chris Jordan.

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The Friday Five: Beautiful Art

Now that school (MBA life and teaching life) is back in session, I’m totally swamped. My days and nights are pretty full, and although I am getting into my routine, things still feel quite hectic.

I feel like I need a breather, so an artful pause, it is!

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Pine Cone by Alexis Arnold, Minted

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Aspens at Altitude by Kaleb and Marilyn Nimz, Minted

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Casa by Annie Montgomery, Minted

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Stepping Stones by Little Bird Paperie, Minted

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Shadow Shimmer by Design Lotus, Minted

Have a great weekend, everyone!

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Hotel to Home: The Palladian, Seattle, WA

I came across The Palladian on Apartment 34 and my jaw dropped. The hotel is stunning. I’ve never been to Seattle…hmm…

I wanted to recreate so many of the rooms, but since I’ve done quite a few bedrooms recently, I thought I’d move into the bathroom for today’s hotel to home post.

The Palladian, A Kimpton Hotel, Seattle. Designed by Nicole Hollis.

The Palladian, A Kimpton Hotel, Seattle. Designed by Nicole Hollis.

photo via Apartment 34

White-Cabana-inspired by Palladian

mirror, faucet, vanity, towels, sconce, soap, art, easel

I just love the addition of the old portrait artwork, don’t you? It’s sort of unexpected in a bathroom, isn’t it?

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Travel: 10 More Things To Do in Copenhagen

As Copenhagen is a city rich with history, art, design, and culture, it was hard to write a list of just 10 things to do in Copenhagen, so I’ve created another list. Here are 10 more things to do in Copenhagen.

1. Eat a Smorrebrod

Smorrebrod is an open-faced sandwich, and it’s one of the famous foods of Denmark. I only had one during my stay (at Paper Island), and it was delicious (but not ridiculously filling). I like the concept of the open-faced sandwich because its focus is on the toppings, in my opinion, and the bread is just a bonus.

Smorrebrod-White-Cabana-Copenhagen

White-Cabana-Paper-Island-Copenhagen

2. Rent a bicycle (if you dare)

Copenhagen is jam-packed full of bikes. I loved it. I wish we had more of a cycling culture here in Kitchener-Waterloo. I am not a die-hard cyclist, but I do like the convenience and affordability of commuter cycling. Copenhagen is well-designed for cycling because of it’s car-sized bike lanes.

Renting a bicycle is easy enough to do (learn more about bike rentals), and hotels may even have options for you (WakeUp Borgergade does). I didn’t end up renting a bicycle during my vacation, but if I return to Copenhagen, I will. .

White-Cabana-Copenhagen-1

3. Illums Bolighus

If you’re looking for a crash course in Danish design, visit the Illums Bolighus department store on the pedestrian shopping street in the city centre. If you time your trip right, you can land in Copenhagen during summer sales (this is what happened to me…my credit card worked hard!).

While I wanted just about everything at Illums Bolighus, I only walked away with the Stelton vacuum jug (in white, naturally) and a few gifts (all made in Denmark!). (My Stelton made it back to Waterloo in one piece, but when I washed it, I dropped the glass jug and it shattered. It was a very sad moment! Stelton – and Amazon – sell replacements, so not all is lost.)

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Unfortunately, I didn’t take too many photos at Illums Bolighus, so this is all you get!

While you’re in the shopping mood, pop into Hay, too. The architecture is lovely and the products are beautiful (although much of what I saw was made in China).

Side note: If you spend over 300DKK in a store (approx. $70CAD), then you’ll be able to receive the tax back (the Value Added Tax/VAT) at the airport. Ask shop clerks for assistance. It’s a straightforward process and worth doing if you’re keen on getting some money back post-vacation.

4. Visit Nimb, and see the peacocks, too.

When I arrived at Tivoli Gardens, I first stopped in at Nimb because I was debating having a meal. I was more interested in food than the amusement park, if I’m being honest. I arrived at an off time though, and since I wasn’t hungry, I didn’t end up eating at Nimb (but I’ve read that it’s delicious). Once I saw the place, I was amazed by the dramatic architecture. The white building certainly makes an impression!

White-CAbana-Copenhagen-Nimb-Hotel

Beyond the building, Nimb is a playground for peacocks. I couldn’t believe it. I loved them!

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5. Relax on a dock by the canal.

The weather was beautiful when I was in Copenhagen, and although I spent the majority of every day outside, I was walking around a lot, and I was eager to see all sorts of sights. When I spent time by the canal, lying on the dock, on the afternoon of my last day, I had wished that I had done it more often. It was so relaxing, and I liked watching the boats. I’d recommend grabbing a picnic lunch and a drink, and bringing it here. People were swimming, too, so give that a try, too!

White-Cabana-Canal-Copenhagen

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6. Climb the ramp in The Round Tower.

I had such a pleasant visit to The Round Tower first thing one morning. The round tower is a 7-storey tall tower with a hollow centre. The tower has a circular ramp from bottom to top (with only a few stairs at the very top to get to the lookout point). I loved the brick floor and the white walls.

White-Cabana-Copenhagen-round-tower

White-Cabana-round-tower-Copenhagen

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7. Sit at a café (and stay warm with a blanket)

I strongly encourage Waterloo caf√©s and restaurants to adopt Copenhagen’s have-a-blanket-on-every-chair approach. It makes for such a cozy outdoor dining experience during the cooler nights (or days). It’s a brilliant idea, and it works!

White-Cabana-Copenhagen-cafe blankets

8. Watch the highschool graduates celebrate.

Copenhagen, compared to Italy, is a very quiet and calm city. With the small(er) number of cars, there’s definitely less noise pollution than in other major cities I have been to. The people aren’t waving their arms around widly discussing politics and food (as far as I could tell) like they were in Italy. People barely even jay-walked (from my observations). That said, on June 24th, the city’s highschool graduates caused a fuss! It was highly amusing. I loved it.

The highschool graduates dawn personalized caps and walk around town wearing them during the last weekend of school. On that same weekend, they pile into open-topped trucks, blast music, honk horns, and have a moving dance party. It was awesome to watch, and the students were having a great time.

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(This is proof that not every Dane is tall and blonde.)

White-Cabana-Copenhagen-highschool graduates

Can anyone help with this translation? All I know is tak = thanks. (Google translate was of little help.)

9. Look at all the statues of women.

After a couple of weeks in Italy surrounded by statues of David, Dante, and others, I was surprised to see so many female statues in Copenhagen. I haven’t had a moment to read about the history of the city/country, or to Google all the statues that I came across, so if anyone has any insight on this, do tell.

White-Cabana-Copenhagen-2 White-Cabana-Copenhagen-1 White-Cabana-Copenhagen-5 White-Cabana-Copenhagen-3

10. And here are even more places to see in Copenhagen (that I didn’t actually get to!)

Looking for more ideas? See my first list 10 things to do in Copenhagen.

All photos by Jordana.

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Travel: 10 Things to Do in Copenhagen

Well, dear readers, I’m now into my second week back from a wonderful European vacation, and I’m getting a handle on my photo organization.

Thanks to Expedia.ca, I was able to spend almost two glorious weeks in the chaotic, passionate, delicious, sunny, and inspiring Italy! (A full recap on Italy in the weeks ahead, I promise.) After Italy, though, I decided to extend my stay in Europe by a few days. As I always like a good travel adventure, I booked an EasyJet flight from Milano Malpensa to Copenhagen, Denmark! It was a brilliant decision if I do say so myself.

I have much to share from Italy, naturally, but this week, I’m sharing my take on¬† Copenhagen. I have loads to report – hello, Copenhagen, design, design, design – but for today, I thought I’d start things off with 10 things that I did in Copenhagen that I would recommend (or do again).

10 Things To Do in Copenhagen

1. Stay near Kongens Have park in WakeUp Copenhagen (Borgergade location).

Booking a Copenhagen hotel in June (for around $200/night) was nearly impossible. I needed 4 nights in a hotel, and it seemed like everything in my price range was absolutely full. Hotels in Copenhagen were more expensive than I was expecting, and when I was planning my holiday, I was getting a bit discouraged when it came to the hotels (and my budget).

I ended up booking a stay with WakeUp Borgergade, and I’m quite happy with how things worked out. The “budget” hotel (just under $200 night including breakfast) was bright, modern, and the staff were friendly at check-in. While my room was small, it was very well designed, efficient, bright, and clean. I cannot get over the design of the bathroom and the use of frosted glass. The bed was very comfortable, and the duvets were fluffy. The room’s large windows expanded the space, and, although the large window opened, I appreciated the air conditioning.

On the downside, since the room was small, there was barely any room to store luggage, unpack clothes, or spread out toiletries. I made do, of course, but a closet would have been useful…especially for an extended stay (and luggage full of 2 weeks worth of clothing).

What I hadn’t realized when I booked the hotel was the convenient location. It was just perfect! The WakeUp Borgergade is in a clean, high-end part of town and close to shopping streets, Kongens Have park and Rosenborg Castle (so so lovely!), restaurants, Nyhavn (harbour), and more. When I walked down to Tivoli on my third day and saw some of the hotels I was originally considering, I realized that I wouldn’t have been as happy with the locations of these places. I really enjoyed being within minutes of the park.

Another major plus of the WakeUp Bordergade was the breakfast. It was full of plenty of healthy options like eggs, cheese, meats, yogurt, muesli…as well as less healthy options (i.e., my top pick) like Nutella! I noticed at least four or five fresh bread options each morning which really impressed me. In general, I enjoy the convenience of hotel breakfast packages. I dislike searching for food before my morning coffee when I’m traveling to a new city.

White-Cabana-Wakeup_Borgergade_Copenhagen-1

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2. Design Museum Danmark

At the top of my “to see” list in Copenhagen was the Design Museum. Thankfully, I really enjoyed visiting the Design Museum Danmark. It’s a medium-sized museum which meant that I wasn’t there all day long. It was a great place to be first thing in the morning before the crowds arrived.

After my visit to the museum, I walked to the Nyhavn area on Bredgade. There are furniture and antique shops all along Bredgade which made for great window shopping.

White-Cabana-Copenhagen-Denmark-8 White-Cabana-Copenhagen-Denmark-2 White-Cabana-Copenhagen-Denmark-3 White-Cabana-Copenhagen-Denmark-7

3. The Little Mermaid

This sweet mermaid is always ready for a photoshoot. I walked by The Little Mermaid early one morning, and the area was already full of tourists. She is over 100 years old! She sits pretty on the water, and she doesn’t complain about being stared at by tourists.

She’s a 4′ tall bronze sculpture by Edvard Eriksen based on The Little Mermaid fairytale by Hans Christian Andersen.

White-Cabana-Copenhagen-Denmark-4 White-Cabana-Copenhagen-Denmark-5

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4. The Amalienborg Palace

I loved the architecture of the four royal residence buildings. I watched the guards walk back and forth for a while…I was sort of mesmerized. That would not be a job for me, but I do wonder how many steps they get in per day. Do you think they reach the recommended 10K?

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5. Canal Tour

On the recommendation of a friend (thanks, Emmy!), I opted to take the Netto Badene canal tour. It cost 40DKK (about $9CAD) for about an hour tour. We saw a ton of things from the boat and learned a lot, too. Unfortunately, I don’t remember much about the history of what our tour guide told us. (Shame on me.) I do remember, however, going by the Royal Yacht. I didn’t see any royalty, but the crew was aboard working away!

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6. Paper Island

Paper island can be accessed by foot, but I opted to take public transportation in the form of a canal boat. Next time, I would probably want to rent a bike and take the long route around. Although, there is a pedestrian bridge that is due to be complete this summer, so you’d be on Paper Island from Nyhavn in just a few minutes.

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Go to Paper Island when you’re hungry because here’s where you can feast on diverse food. While many were going for burgers and Korean food, I opted for the traditional open-faced sandwich.

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After lunch, spend some time watching the world go by from a chair on the edge of Paper Island. When the sun is shining, this is a great place to be!

7. Street meat – hot dog with the works

Eating out in Copenhagen is expensive. Everything, really, is more expensive in Copenhagen than in Waterloo, if I’m honest. But the street meat stalls (hot dog stands) are reasonably priced and actually good. I’d definitely recommend picking up a dog-with-the-works. The stands are everywhere in the city (similar to the pretzel stands in Manhattan).

White-Cabana-Copenhagen-Hot Dog

8. Kongens Have

As I mentioned above, I really liked that my hotel was so close to Kongens Have park during my stay. It is beautifully maintained and manicured. Go for a morning walk or run around the park, so grab lunch to go and bring it here. It’s such a nice place to be.

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9. Tivoli

Tivoli Gardens is an amusement park in the city. This wasn’t on the top of my “to see” list, but I was so glad I made time for it on day 4. It was pretty magical and charming. I only walked around the park, but you could definitely buy tickets for rides, grab an ice cream, eat a meal, or a see a show.

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10. Norrebro

I read about Norrebro on the Design*Sponge Copenhagen City Guide, and I’m so glad I crossed the river to see it for myself. Norrebro has attitude, character, interest, and diversity. I liked it. The antique and design stores on Ravnsborggade and Elmegade were definitely highlights for me. Although I wasn’t hungry when I went to Norrebro, it looked like a great place to find more affordable meals.

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Stay tuned because later this week I’ll be sharing more from Copenhagen. As I discovered, there are definitely more than 10 things to do in this happy city!

All photos by Jordana.

p.s. Happy July 4th to all of my American readers!

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Art: Anna Church

Take a closer look at Anna Church‘s photographs, and you may be surprised at what you find. From afar, you may see a beetle, a heart, or a row of feathers, but on closer inspection, you’ll find trophies, shoes, and teacups. Anna Church is a sculptographer – she takes photographs of the sculptures she creates with interesting, unusual, and everyday objects.

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Crowning Glory, from $795

Swan-Lake-Anna-ChurchSwan Lake, from $795

MyHeartsContent_ByAnnaChurch-1

My Heart’s Content, from $650

AnnaChurch__Impermanence_CareerGirl-1

Career Girl, (sold out)

AnnaChurch_TaxonomyI_StagBeetle

Taxonomy I – Stag Beetle, from $650

In addition to her own collections, she also offers bespoke commissions whereby you provide your bits and bobs, and Anna will create an incredible display of them for a beautiful, original photograph. In addition to this, she offers custom wedding insignias, like the one below, that brides and grooms will enjoy for years to come.

Anna-Church-Wedding-Insignia-1

Wedding Insignia

Learn more about Anna Church’s approach to art and business in this Design*Sponge feature.

 

Hotel to Home: Macalister Mansion in Malaysia

Let’s jet off to Malaysia today, shall we?

Today, I’m bringing you to the Macalister Mansion in Georgetown, Penang. Cond√© Nast put this hotel on its 2013 hot list, and it only takes a moment to discover why. This restored colonial mansion (built in the early 1900s) is luxurious and charming. The eight rooms are individually designed and feature beautiful furnishings and art.

Room 6 caught my attention because of the art above the bed. It is a commissioned piece by Indonesian artist Albert Yonathan called “Sailing the Celestial Sea”. Oooh…I love all the “s” sounds in that title! The porcelain ship pieces were hand cast, and the work was inspired by the sea voyages of Sir Norman Macalister who was one of the first British Governors of Penang from 1808-1810 (when Penang was known as Prince of Wales Island).

Macalister-Mansion

Macalister Mansion

If I were to infuse the feeling of Room 6 into a new space, here’s what I might include:

Macalister-Malaysia-White-Cabana-Inspiration-Hotel to Home

bed, nightstand, table, armchair, hangers, sheet set, art, rug, speaker, lamp

The Friday Five: Art at Citizen Atelier

I have featured Canadian-curator Alessandra Salituri’s Citizen Atelier several times here because Alessandra carries such an interesting collection of art in her online shop. It’s also been interesting to see how Citizen Atelier has grown over the years. The current shop has its pieces organized by limited editions, originals, and prints, and I’m using this same categorization to share my top five picks from the current collection (all prices are in CAD).

Limited Editions

hippodance

Hippodance by Darius Klimczak, $395+

silk

Silk by Ashley Woodson Bailey, $140+

Originals

moontower-e1408125561721

Moontower by Jenny Andrews Anderson, $625

Prints

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Ballerina I by Vanessa Paxton, $120 (I featured this one before, and I still love it.)

he_lion

HE lion by Francesco Formisano, $60+

Have a wonderful weekend, dear readers!

 

Design: NewWall Wallpaper Designs

My friend Tim works so well with wallpaper*. Christine does, too**. Me, on the other hand? Not so much.

I was basically traumatized when I moved into my own home 2.5 years ago, and I had to spend hours (and hours and hours) peeling off old wallpaper from my bathroom walls. It was absolutely a big pain in my arse.

And then there’s the ol’ commitment issue. If I install wallpaper, that would mean I’d have to commit to it. For a long while. Yikes!

So, why, you may ask, am I writing about wallpaper today? Well, let me tell you! While I do not like paper in my own home, I am definitely impressed by the art of wallpaper. There are so many beautiful prints out there that put a smile on my face, that make me curious, that make me contemplate wallpaper’s uses, and that demonstrate people’s creativity. It’s amazing, really.

When I came across NewWall’s Holden anchor print, I needed to have it. I’m going to turn it into a non-permanent work of art for my parents’ condo in Florida, and it’s going to look fabulous up on the wall. Holden is from NewWall‘s Abnormals Anonymous collection, and it’s such an amusing collection, that I thought I’d share it here.

Bruce_men_in_blackBruce – Men in Black

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Buggie – Men in Black

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Ernest – Gulfstream

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Gossip – Men in Black

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Mr. Blow – Bone Thugs & Harmony

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Wheel of Fortune – Concrete Jungle

I’m also surprisingly keen on the vibrant Lobby – Red Pepper lobster pattern. If I lived on the east coast, I would just have to put this in a sweet powder room.

If you’re interested in seeing more cool wallpaper patterns, I encourage you to check out NewWall.

*See Tim‘s recent feature in Style at Home magazine.
**Peak inside Christine’s office.

Marketplace: Valentine’s Day Gift Guide

This Valentine’s Day, I’m thinking hearts, hearts, and more hearts are the way to go. I’ve never been a major Valentine’s Day fan as I think love – and hearts – should be spread around generously throughout the year, so considering this, I think it’s as good a time as any to share some lovely items here (yes, even though we haven’t even yet entered February).

tictactoe_bw_imgJonathan Adler tic tac toe set, $98

modern-neon-letter-heart-a-jonathan-adlerJonathan Adler neon heart lamp, $95

vase-golden-heart-pep-reverterSister Clara vase special edition golden heart, designed by Pepa Reverter, $410, 1st Dibs

heart-slippers-Chapters-Indigofaux suede slippers, $40

cucinapro-heart-shaped-waffle-makerCucinaPro heart waffle maker, $58

bkr-heart-water-bottlebkr water bottle, $49.95

heart-coffee-tableheart coffee table, $2300, 1st Dibs

family-timeline-heart-Mintedfamily time line by Aubrey Bonneau, from $24, Minted

il_570xN.737812475_kldmheart pillow cover, $43, Etsy

Charmajesty-pj-setpjs, $185, Charmajesty (oh, how I love this set!)

hdc0080_color.whtcl_view.1fractured heart marble, $795, Kelly Wearstler

Okay, okay, for all you diamond lovers out there, here’s one exceptional piece to end this post:

diamond-heart-necklace-10-carat10.14 carat heart shaped diamond pendant, $785,000, 1st Dibs

Design: Lost in Cube Land

Make note, dear readers, we are going to be seeing more cubes in interiors this year. The cube fascination has already begun popping up in tile work, art work, wallpapers, and sculptures. The repeated pattern of 3D cubes in 2D work has a mesmerizing effect, and it has been created in just about every colour combination.

main.original.640x0cvia My Domaine

PRIVAT APARTMENTvia Flodeau

I painted a piece of cube art about a decade ago (in shades of green if you can believe it), and it still has a safe spot in my office. These days, however, I like the more muted and tone-on-tone versions using shades of grey, white, black, and gold. The pattern can be full of contrast or a gentle progression between shapes.

While flooring may be a complete investment of the cube trend (I don’t think it’s actually a trend. I think it’s a very classic design, but patterned floors, in general, are very on trend for 2016), an easier way to go would be via cushions and tea towels.

T12095_01gray cube pillow cover, Wisteria

hmprodcube pillow cover (on sale), H&M

via Heirloom and Knotvia Heirloom & Knot

Hollie-Coopervia Hollie Cooper

MIN-02K-MFC-003_A_PDcubist fabric, via Minted

36264000_004_brug via Anthropologie

dezeen_Paris-New-York-restaurant-by-CUT-Architectures_15bParis-New York restaurant via Dezeen

cube-tiles-Caro-Somersetvia Caro Somerset

Livettes-cube-wallpaper-Etsycube removable wallpaper, via Livettes

 What do you think? Can your eyes handle this pattern?

Art: An Adoring Angel

The North Carolina Museum of Art in Raleigh is an absolutely beautiful place on the inside and out. The building as a whole is a sight to see, and the variety of art housed inside is quite impressive.

Many works caught my attention when I was last there, but it was this Adoring Angel that made me really stare. I love her, and I think today is a perfectly good day to share her with all of you.

White-Cabana-NCAM-2White-Cabana-NCAM-3 White-Cabana-NCAM_1Adoring Angel, German, Bavarian School, circa 1735-1760; photos by me

The Friday Five: Paper Christmas Trees

Last week, I shared five black and white Christmas trees. This week, I’m sharing five paper Christmas trees. Who will be doing a bit of DIYing this holiday?

trees.pngREDDIY paper Christmas trees in black and white, Therese Knutsen

79ideas_the_invasion_of_the_paper_treesDIY paper Christmas trees in black and white, Seventy Nine Ideas

tks_hir_tre_1_largeDIY pop-up Christmas card, Maurice & King

v12523(1)5576b61561cc4via Creativ

paper-Christmas-treevia Craftaholics Anonymous

 Have a great weekend!

Marketplace: Spotlight on DLK

I recently came across online market DLK, and I would love just about every item in my own home (even though the shop is definitely more targeted to items for kids and families). The product collection is so carefully curated, and the high-on-design items have the whole family in mind. While I featured a few of their organizational items earlier this month, I’d like to share more of what I’m liking from this shop.

EscapeIG2_1024x1024 Escape utility bag, $100, Forest Bound

CestMagnifiqueAdultC’est magnifique tee, $40, Young One Apparel

unnamedfluffy face bag, $65, The White Pepper

c1luDJn6NKDS37Bg7CK6Fqph1RRbS39ET78H5673GBohi sweatshirt, $39 (kids), Organic Zoo

fw15-oeuf-rabbit-hatrabbit hat, $60 (kids), Oeuf

whiteflatmountains blanket, $75, White Fox & Co.

349ef731cd6ddd8a4ca53624adfe0e34binchotan charcoal toothbrush, $9, Morihata

PWs5Juupc_QQEtsjAjUfzYaZ5nSPR50y1RP8ap0uCx0keratin krew pillowcase, $35, Sack Me!

Modern+Hello+Kitty+Lamp+on+DLKHello Kitty lamp, $220, BaselNL

3600639_Pepe_Marble_Mirror_Studiopepe_Brass_White_2048x2048Pepe marble mirror, $600, Studio Pepe

Pop_Gallery_Balloon_Letters_Acrylic_Tray-Angle_Original_White_1024x1024shine bright acrylic tray, $59, Michael Revil Madjus for imm Living Studio

sieben-iQ08gn50xG-snow_1_grosssnowball music ball, $100, Siebensachen

thumb_2104207_500x500POV table candleholder, $80, Note for Menu

PRETTY+POSTER+ON+DLKpretty poster, $40, MiniWilla

MODERN+BLACK+PEELER+ON+DLKmodern peeler, $16, Normann Copenhagen

I606iSS7mJQXZehXXyw-UY3m0PJM8U9lFfhP8mrDeeQ,QdEpI0sXx3BmlzsRqSrz-wVsYFd2xQWXCLeViDE9NyUalphabet pebbles, $22, Rock & Pebble

PuzzleHeadS_largepuzzlehead, $20, Richard McGuire for Areaware

Travel: Savannah, Georgia

While I was in North Carolina a few weeks ago, my sister and I took a road trip down to Savannah, Georgia, and Charleston, South Carolina. It was a quick trip, but we managed to see quite a bit and really enjoy ourselves too!

I took these Design*Sponge Savannah guides with me, and here’s some of what we did and saw.

After parking the car, we walked up and down Broughton St., which is one of the main shopping streets in Savannah. We first stopped into at The Paris Market – a gorgeous shop that has all things French. I was in heaven! Every vignette is so beautifully styled, and the mix of old and new items definitely works.

White-Cabana-The Paris Market-Savannah_1White-Cabana-The Paris Market-Savannah_2White-Cabana-The Paris Market-Savannah_6¬†¬† White-Cabana-The Paris Market-Savannah_3 White-Cabana-The Paris Market-Savannah_9 White-Cabana-The Paris Market-Savannah_4 White-Cabana-The Paris Market-Savannah_7 White-Cabana-The Paris Market-Savannah_8 White-Cabana-The Paris Market-Savannah_5Isn’t the birch log storage system so artistic?

We then stopped into the Savannah Bee Company shop to be spoiled with samples of honey. Sweet. Sweet. Sweet! I picked up some of the delicious Tupelo honey, which is considered to be the gold standard in honey.

White-Cabana-Savannah-Bee-Company-1 White-Cabana-Savannah-Bee-Company-2Next up, Prospector & Co. This store’s styling was on point. The space is white and bright and the collection of wares is very carefully curated.

White-Cabana-Prospector and Co-Savannah-4 White-Cabana-Prospector and Co-Savannah-2 White-Cabana-Prospector and Co-Savannah-1 White-Cabana-Prospector and Co-Savannah-3After popping in and out of the stores, we opted to stroll along Bull St. to Forsyth Park. It as an absolute pleasure to stroll along this street as it is surrounded by spanish-moss trees and beautifully manicured public squares/gardens. In addition, the buildings surrounding each square had me wondering all about the history of the city. I must go back and spend more time investigating! For now, here’s what we saw along our Bull St. stroll…

White-Cabana-Savannah-Georgia-1White-Cabana-Savannah-Georgia-5impressive architectureWhite-Cabana-Savannah-Georgia-2statues in each square

White-Cabana-Savannah-5spanish moss everywhere!

White-Cabana-Savannah-Georgia-3Forsyth Park covered with Spanish moss trees  White-Cabana-Savannah-Georgia-4White-Cabana-Savannah-Georgia-6fountain beauty

You can imagine that after the 5-hour drive from Chapel Hill, NC, and an afternoon of a lot of walking, my sister and I were quite hungry. We opted to eat at the Gryphon Tea Room, and we feasted on a prosciutto and fig panini (yes, I realize this isn’t the most southern option) as well as a delicious southern take on the cobb salad (including pecans…always a nice touch!). Gryphon is located in the old apothecary, and the building is stunning inside and out.

White-Cabana-Savannah-1Version 2 Version 2  bathroom decorWhite-Cabana-Savannah-4original stained glass ceiling detail

And there you have it…a quick tour of Savannah. I’d easily go back!

Art: A Welcoming Pineapple

As many of you know, the pineapple is a symbol of warmth and hospitality. So when my sister and I spotted Joni Tyrrell’s Pining for Pineapple in Minted’s art shop a couple of months ago, we thought it would be a perfect addition to her family’s new home.

MIN-XY3-GNA-007_A_APZPining for Pineapple by Joni Tyrrell

It has finally been placed on the wall near the entrance, and it certainly offers visitors an inviting welcome.

White-Cabana-home-Minted-pineapple-art-3 White-Cabana-home-Minted-pineapple-art-1 White-Cabana-home-Minted-pineapple-art-2 photos by me

Gorgeous, right? The sideboard will be painted eventually. We can talk about the impressive ceiling height, the archways, and the gorgeous moldings another day, I promise!

Thanks to Minted for sponsoring on this post. All opinions are my own.

Holiday: Getting Ready for Christmas with Minted

I know, I know, we haven’t even reached Halloween, and I’m already talking about Christmas! I realize that this is too early for some of you, and honestly, it’s a touch too early for me, too.

But…

When it comes to Christmas/holiday/New Year’s cards, it’s a good idea to plan ahead. It takes time to choose, write, and address cards, so why not start early? Who’s with me? I’ve just placed my order through Minted (this seems to have become my new holiday tradition…and it’s a good one if you ask me!), and the collection this year is a good one.

This year, Minted artists seem to be offering quite a few watercolour-inspired designs in mint and pale pink. Traditional green and red cards are plentiful, too, as are beautiful golden ones. And, as always, there are several black and white designs that catch the attention of people like me.

MIN-9Y2-HCP-003_A_PZGilded Pine by Kristie Kern

MIN-XQP-HCP-001HOLIDAY_D_PZLettered Thanks by Dawn Jasper

MIN-ZYJ-HCP-001CHRISTMAS_D_PZPaperclip Snowflake by Hooray Creative

MIN-AY7-HYC-003_A_PZModern Angles by Peony Papeterie

¬†If you’re looking to send out very personal cards, you may opt to turn your child’s drawing into a card or if you’d rather send online cards, Minted will offer this service soon as well. I’ve enjoyed watching this company expand its services, and its growing community of artists continues to impress me. I’m thrilled with my card selection this year, and I know you will be too if you head on over to Minted to place your order!

Thanks to Minted for sponsoring this post. All opinions are my own.

Event: High Point Market

In just a few days, I’ll be joining crowds of other design enthusiasts at High Point Market in North Carolina. I’m pumped! I’m excited to see what’s up-and-coming in the design industry, and I’m hoping to be amazed by cool pieces of furniture and textiles. For anyone writing about, talking about, or dreaming about design, this is the market to attend.

In preparation for the trip, I’ve read these handy High Point Market tips-and-insights articles (avoid being overwhelmed by the scale of the market; map out secret places to eat), and I’ve browsed the list of exhibitors. I’m also keen to follow #designbloggerstour, which is a hashtag that a group of design bloggers will use as they explore the market. I also found this Rue article to be quite useful as well. Can you tell I like to research?

High-Point-Market-1image via High Point Market

High-Point-Market-2images via High Point Market

09-25-15-Sponsor-High-Point-MainSliderimage via Rue

High Point Market has just about 12 million square feet of space to shop. 12 million! This boggles my mind. (Note to self: wear comfortable shoes.)

I’ll be sharing my High Point Market highlights on Instagram and Twitter as quickly as I possibly can. I’ll also be sure to share my experiences right here in a few weeks.

In the meantime, if you’ve been to the Market, please do share your advice!

Waterloo: KW Symphony at the Centre in the Square

Last Friday, I had the opportunity to attend one of Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony’s Beethoven concert at the Centre in the Square, and I’m pretty excited to share my experience with you. This was the first time I had ever been to a symphony. I have been to the ballet, I go to random concerts, and I’m a regular theatre goer, but the symphony…I was a total newbie! Was it ever good!

The Beethoven concert that I attended was the first of a three-part Beethoven marathon. It covered his piano concerto no. 1 in C major and no. 4 in G major. The second and third shows, which occurred on the Saturday, covered additional concertos. Full disclosure – I don’t really know much about Beethoven or his concertos…even though it may have just sounded like I do!

White-Cabana-KW Symphony-Centre in the Square-1

The evening started off beautifully with an appearance by the Grand Philharmonic Choir. With them leading (and taking centre stage), we all sang O Canada. From there, the Symphony’s conductor, Edwin Outwater, welcomed everyone, and began the concert. Obviously, I couldn’t take pictures during the performance (obviously), the photos I’m sharing here are pre- and post-concert. They should give you an idea of the orchestra’s organization and presence on stage.

White-Cabana-KW Symphony-Centre in the Square-2I am convinced that pianist Stewart Goodyear has magic fingers. Watching him play (via a close-up video streaming on a screen) was incredible. He was completely poised, played without any sheet music, and really seemed to love every moment of the concert. I really enjoy watching people who are so passionate about their art.

I have always appreciated the arts, but watching this talented team of musicians work together so seamlessly was pretty amazing. I know actors do it on stage, but this seemed like a completely different approach to team work, you know? Alone, noone could have achieved what was created as the whole.

White-Cabana-KW Symphony-Centre in the Square-11Version 2I enjoyed the concert for more than just the music. The traditions and routines of the performance also caught my attention. The fact that the musicians wore black made their wood instruments really stand out. The pianist, wearing tails, artfully took his place at the piano on a black tufted bench. The conductor graciously thanked his orchestra for the performance and made certain that they shone throughout the evening.

White-Cabana-KW Symphony-Centre in the Square-10the view from my seat – amazing!

Now, as Waterloo region is a major tech hub, we were treated to yet another something special. A while ago, the region hosted a 36-hour hack-a-thon in collaboration with the KW Symphony. Hackers came together and worked with the musicians and the space to create new experiences. The winners of the hack-a-thon were Adam Fancey and Justin Safa who developed Fractal Orchestra. Essentially, they recorded the performance and ran it through a too-complicated-for-me-to-figure-out program which created algorithms-or-something-equally-complicated that then led to pretty images. Pretty images – very cool. I know I’m not doing justice to their complicated work, so if you’re interested in the details, I’d encourage you to visit their new website. Here’s a look at some of their creations:

Fractal-Orchestra-1 Fractal-Orchestra-2images via Fractal Orchestra

I know the images aren’t as clear here as they are in real life, so I’d encourage you to learn more here. They really are interesting pieces of modern art.

Now, on to my initial thoughts of the venue. This was my first time attending a show at the Centre in the Square, and I was pretty impressed by the architecture and decor. The stage was wonderfully lit, the wooden seats were modern and well-maintained. The reception areas outside of the concert hall surprised me, too. They were full of over-sized loung-y grey casual sofas and sleek gold side tables. The audience definitely made use of these spaces pre- and post-concert as well as during intermission. It was really good to see the large space filled with excited audience members.

The lighting was also something to note. Totally modern! Completely hip! Who knew? Kitchener-Waterloo continues to surprise me with its approach to design and architecture. I feel proud to promote this city (read this).

White-Cabana-KW Symphony-Centre in the Square-5White-Cabana-KW Symphony-Centre in the Square-6White-Cabana-KW Symphony-Centre in the Square-8¬† White-Cabana-KW Symphony-Centre in the Square-7¬† White-Cabana-KW Symphony-Centre in the Square-9 White-Cabana-KW Symphony-Centre in the Square-3At some points throughout the concert, I caught myself thinking about how great it is to live in Kitchener-Waterloo. Attending the symphony at the Centre in the Square was easy, convenient, and approachable. I’m curious about whether or not my Waterloo region readers have had similarly positive experiences. Do tell!

Many thanks to Kari at the KW Symphony for generously arranging my visit. Learn more about the events being held at Kitchener’s Centre in the Square.

The Friday Five: PM Lotto Oakville Showhome + Brunch with Brian Gluckstein

Last weekend, I had the opportunity to go on a tour of the Princess Margaret Lotto Oakville Showhome. As Canadian readers may already know, the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre’s Welcome Home Sweepstakes is a huge fundraising event with incredible prizes to be won. Tickets are $100 each, $250 for 3, or $375 for 5. Each year, many local residents, Princess Margaret supporters, and the generally curious crowd anticipate the reveal of Oakville Showhome. The home is always in an exclusive Oakville neighbourhood (Oakville is about 30 minutes from Toronto, for the non-local readers of this blog), it includes top-of-the line electronics/appliances/gadgets, and it is designed by one of my all-time favourite Canadian designers, Mr. Brian Gluckstein.

For the past few years, I’ve been lucky enough to preview the home, and each year, I’m blown away. This year was no exception. Mr. Gluckstein – or Brian, as I like to call him (um, first name basis with Brian!? Crazy!) – and his team worked magic once again. The house is beautiful. Rooms include traditional lines, soothing colour stories, beautiful artwork and objets, and a few surprises thrown into the mix as well.

I know I’m a day late with this week’s Friday Five, but here are five things that I learned about this year’s Princess Margaret Oakville Showhome:

1. A white bedroom is always in style, and when it includes a gorgeous lucite table, it becomes a little more special.

White-Cabana-PMLotto-Gluckstein-1810 pillows – how many do you have on your bed? (I have 5)White-Cabana-PMLotto-Gluckstein-17seating area with lucite coffee table in the master bedroom

2. Art is essential. Brian’s designs always include some stunning pieces. Here are some of the ones that caught my eye.

White-Cabana-PMLotto-Gluckstein-12art in the kitchen

White-Cabana-PMLotto-Gluckstein-6art beside the massage room (see #3)

White-Cabana-PMLotto-Gluckstein-5art in the hallway

3. A massage room is a ridiculously luxurious room to have in a home. I have never had a massage myself, but if I had a room for it, you can bet I’d be taking advantage of it! I adored the fully-lined walls in this space. The wall curtains are made of terrycloth fabric, and Brian told me that it was only around $3 a yard. Adding texture to the wall in this way is brilliant, in my opinion.

White-Cabana-PMLotto-Gluckstein-10the massage room

White-Cabana-PMLotto-Gluckstein-84. Brian makes interesting lighting selections for the Oakville Showhome each year. This year, three pieces caught my attention. First – the kitchen light was formerly black and brass, but Brian (or his people) sprayed in white. Yes! Second – the light in one of the bedrooms had a pretty scallop which made it a pretty addition to the already-delicate room. Third – the chandeliers that lined the entrance hall are light and airy. Floating cubes of goodness, really.

White-Cabana-PMLotto-Gluckstein-11white pendant in the kitchen

White-Cabana-PMLotto-Gluckstein-13scalloped light in a bedroom

White-Cabana-PMLotto-Gluckstein-3airy chandelier in the entrance hall

5. I am the first to admit that wallpaper makes me nervous. I much prefer plain walls and art work to wallpaper. I’m pretty sure it’s because I was traumatized by the 80s wallpaper chaos that I had to deal with in my own home. The wallpaper designs that were included in some of the bathrooms in the Showhome, however, caught my attention.

In the jack-and-jill bathroom, the wallpaper is whimsical yet serene.

White-Cabana-PMLotto-Gluckstein-14Hi there!

The blossoming wallpaper in the master bathroom creates a cozy nook around the stand-alone bathtub.

White-Cabana-PMLotto-Gluckstein-21¬† White-Cabana-PMLotto-Gluckstein-19 White-Cabana-PMLotto-Gluckstein-20Bonus: Since it’s Saturday, I’m going to make the executive decision to add one more item to today’s list. I could not leave the living room out of today’s Showhome recap because it is such a magnificent space. The oversized windows mean that light fills the room, the walls are a beautiful tone of grey, and the furniture placement (in true Brian fashion) is symmetrical. This room also includes a mirrored coffee table with a perfectly-arranged collection of silver boxes and luxurious drapery to match the wall colour.

White-Cabana-PMLotto-Gluckstein-1White-Cabana-PMLotto-Gluckstein-23¬† White-Cabana-PMLotto-Gluckstein-2There you have it – five six things I adore about this year’s Princess Margaret Oakville Showhome designed by Brian Gluckstein. The golf room and library fascinated me, too!

Photos by Jordana. For more photos of the preview event, check out #BrunchWithBrian on Instagram and Twitter. You can’t win this house if you don’t buy a ticket – tickets can be purchased here.

The Friday Five: Animal Kingdom

I have featured my growing menagerie around my home here on the blog over the last few years. While I haven’t added any new pieces to my collection recently, I do still keep my eye out for interesting items.

dragonFurstenberg dragon glass, $236, Luisa Via Roma

35251156_007_belephant earrings, $14, Urban Outfitters

35874809_010_dwhite owl costume, $94, Urban Outfitters (I’m keeping this in mind for Halloween!)

504051113_1_tabletoppolar bear beanie, Eugenia Kim, $225, Barneys

811770029050_hiblack and white lion art print, Christian Meerman, $35, Chapters Indigo

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Art: Black and White Photography

I’ve been spending loads of time staring at black and white photographs online lately. Maybe I’m secretly itching to switch up some of the art around my home. Or maybe I just love browsing art collections. Either way, I’m happy to share some of my favourites with you.

phillip-lr-2_2The Glass House, $60+, Raquel Cayre & Nicole Cohen

78073-1439919816-Anderson_Elliot-xlAverage Chandeliers, Elliott Anderson, (starting bid $300)

MIN-LOY-GNA-007_A_APZStaredown, Amy Carroll via Minted

MIN-RQY-GNA-007_A_APZAnemone, Monica Janes via Mintedklein_rome72Simone & Nina, William Klein, 1st Dibs

ifacschulmanTheStahlCaseStudyHouse22_lCase Study House #22, Julius Shulman, 1st Dibs

Vivian MaierVivian Maier

Vivian-MaierVivian Maier

Art: White-on-White

When I bought my house 2 years ago, my nephews gave me a trio of all white art (seen here). My sister thoughtfully gave them a bunch of white supplies (e.g., paper, feathers, glitter, tissue paper) and let each of them create a piece of art for me. I really love this trio and they have a prominent place on my living room wall.

I find monochromatic art to be interesting, clever, and serene.

CAVIAR20-PACHTER-HAMMOCK-2_largeHammock by Charles Pachter, $4000, Caviar20

CAVIAR20-YVESGAUCHER-17_largePhantom Structure IV, Yves Gaucher, $2450

300_De_lDe.Fragment IV, $4500, 1stDibs

cropwmUntitled by Franz Klein, $212.99, Art.com

sparkleSparkle by Georgianna Lane, $80+, Citizen Atelier

DSCF3999Time Forgot, $60+, Nicole Cohen

Art: The Beach in Washington, DC

In the most recent issue of Architectural Digest, I read about a new all-white art installation called The BEACH at the National Building Museum in Washington, DC. As I often do, I opted to do a bit more research about The BEACH online.

The-Beach-Washington-art-4The-Beach-Washington-art-3Essentially, a large area was walled off in the middle of the Museum’s Great Hall. The installation, a collaborative effort with Snarkitecture, has covered 10,000 square feet with one million recyclable translucent plastic balls (Remember those from your childhood?).

The-Beach-Washington-art-5¬† The-Beach-Washington-art-6 The-Beach-Washington-art-1¬† The-Beach-Washington-art-2The-Beach-Washington-art-7 The lounge area is outfitted with comfortable chairs and white AstroTurf “sand”. The scattering of rolling plastic balls at the “water’s edge” are reminiscent of real waves.

This beach is only open until September 7, 2015, so if you’re in the area, get there before summer ends!

Learn more about The BEACH, including ticket information, here. Photos via The National Building Museum Flickr.

Art: Beach Vibes with Minted

While I was in Florida last month, I took a bit of time in between beach walks to zhush up the dining room in my parents’ beach-front condo. Minted, one of my long-time fave destinations for art, stationary, and (now!) fabric, lent a generous hand to this project, so I’m giving the company and its designers a major shout-out here!

Here’s a before of the space:

Florida-before-dining room-2 It’s a mess, isn’t it? Beach towels are everywhere, the lamp and dried flower arrangement serve no purpose, and the buffet is serving as a sunscreen station.

I knew I wanted to get rid of the lamp and flower arrangement tout de suite and hang a large piece of art above the buffet. I was looking for something light, bright, modern, and beachy. After reviewing Minted’s website and lookbook, I landed on Anchor in Ink by Two if By Sea Studios, and I knew it would be just perfect!

MIN-UU4-GNA-007_A_APZAnchor in Ink (available in black, navy, fuchsia, and aqua)

While I would typically be drawn to the black version, for this condo, I knew that navy would be the most suitable choice (how cool is it that it comes in different colours?).

White-Cabana-art-Minted-Florida-3In addition to the art, I added some fabric (Sailboat Splash by Lindsay Megahed) to my cart. At the moment, I used the fabric as a table cloth, but my mom will soon be sewing it up into pillows for the living room. Since the living and dining room are open to one another, the future sailboat pillows will work nicely with the anchor print.

White-Cabana-art-Minted-Florida-6 White-Cabana-art-Minted-Florida-4¬†¬†¬† White-Cabana-Minted-art-Florida-7 White-Cabana-Minted-art-Florida-5This is the first time I ordered fabric from Minted, and I have to say that I’m impressed with its weight. It’s heavier than I thought it would be. It will definitely be perfect for pillows.

Many thanks to Becky L., Molly B., and Minted for supporting this project.

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