Image Attribution

(Owlet header image found via a Google Image search, and came from Etsy artist Bestiary Ink)

29 April 2011

Head Gear Awesomeness

I made my comment earlier about the Royal wedding hullabaloo, so I won't repeat myself. Nor will I post photos of Kate and Wills, or comment on all the goings-on, because it's only 9:40am Central Time, and it's already been done to the nth degree. However, I will comment on the HATS! Because I freaking love how the British ladies do hats. As my friend A said in an email this morning, awesome hats are why American ladies want to go to the horse races, and I agree. One day I'll rock a crazy overly-feathered, majorly-veiled number to the Derby. In the meantime, my favorite hats from all the Brit-coverage today so far:

(Gotta start with the piece de resistance: a) he's carrying a top hat! and looks crazy-good; b) her hat rocks my universe, and she looks absolutely gorgeous. They rule. It cannot be argued.)
And now we take it to to the next hat-level... First, some important hats:

(not so mumsy mums' hats)
(proud parental hats)
(seriously fabulous - hat-to-lip color-to-dress)
(in the grand scheme of this thing... kinda boring hats? we'll go with "demure")
(what the what?! awesome hats, princesses!)
(side-view hat-greatness)
(rear-view even greater hat-and-coat greatness)
(chic and beautiful blue hat)
(wheelchair hat)
(more guest hat competition)
(solo hat arrival-with-grand-wave)
(Princess Victoria hat - what a gorgeous color!)
(same hat, different view)
Crowds of hats:

(hats: top-view)
(patient and proper in hats)
(hat chaos)
(so much international hat variety!)

And a couple cool random hats:

(photog hat-in-action)
(Patriotic Hat-Happiness)
I simply cannot get enough of these.

Photo Credits: Reuters, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel/AP photos

28 April 2011

Major Confession...

... I'm *still* a giant New Kids on the Block fan. Their appearance on this week's Dancing with the Stars results show gave me major heart palpitations and had me as giggly and giddy as I felt when I wept when I saw them in the flesh, walking in front of our row at the Red Sox game when I was nine. I cried that day. And I think if I saw them today in a similar way, it might conjure a similar reaction, though with way more shame (not because I love them, but because I'm 31 and I'm way more self-conscious than I was at nine). I'm now listening to my NKOTB Pandora station and it's making the work day way more pleasant than normal. I love how Pandora works. I put in "New Kids on the Block" (and a few other boy bands), and I'm already enjoying Bel Biv Devo and Madonna! Good one, Pandora algorithm!

(then... amazing)

(now... still amazing)
Sigh and swoon. (Please don't judge me too harshly... okay, go ahead. I am who I am.)

27 April 2011

Pop! (of color)

Well, it's another gray day here (I feel like I've started far too many posts like this lately)... and I have been feeling fairly uninspired all day. I was thinking I'd probably just skip posting today altogether, which was sort of sad, and preemptively disappointing. And then I saw this in my reader (thanks to The Style Files), and realized that all I really needed was a pop of color. So off a-Google image searching I went. I literally typed the word, "color" into the search, and clicked on to see what that would bring my way... here are some eye-catching colors that popped for me:

(from here)
(from here)
(from here)
(from here)
(from here)
(from here)
(from here)
(from here)
(that's a little better...)

26 April 2011

Chicago Photography

There's a small photography studio in the mall next to my office building. It's pretty Chicago-ey. While I love this city, and this skyline, I often find that the photos of it I see around are a little cliché, or too touristy. But a few shots I've seen in the window of this studio/shop, as I passed through, have actually always caught my eye. So last week, I went in. And I found that I really liked *a lot* of his work. The artist is Cesar Russ. Even his skyline shots are more interesting than many I've seen. But what I am loving, are these:

and the rest of his Crown Fountain Collection.

He's not all about Chicago, but he's clearly found interesting perspectives on a city that he loves, and I'm really enjoying the discovery of his work. I would love a huge wide print of one of these hand-splashy ones...

Regally Gorgeous

Everyone's all caught up in anticipating Kate Middleton's wedding dress (I will admit I want to see the dress - but I have to say, I don't care that much about this wedding... there, I said it.), but I was struck by how royally amazing Beyonce looks in the photos from her Harper's Bazaar shoot:

and how beautiful is she in this in-between-shots moment:

(photos from here)

25 April 2011

Honeycomb Design

It's no secret that I a) watch a lot of television, b) love reality TV, and c) can weep at the drop of a hat (or at the sight of a touching commercial even), so it it should not be that big of an insight into my makeup that I enjoy Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. I enjoy it for the tears and for the good, warm, happy feeling you get when you see people at their happiest. I love the tears so much, that I know if I need a good cry, I should just go online or to my On-Demand and watch an episode and I'll be good for a while! But I also love it for the design -- the homes that the teams create for their deserving features are just overflowing with creativity, and ingenuity, and customized beauty. This week's episode had such a great idea in it that I went on a hunt to find images, so I can try to recreate it.

The host, Ty Pennington, described the mother of the family as a Queen Bee protecting her hive. Back story: she was a foster mother who ultimately adopted five girls she was fostering so as not to break siblings apart, and on top of that, she feeds, clothes, and visits the homeless in her area, all at her own expense. All of those people (her girls and the individuals on the streets that she cares for) are her hive. So Ty designed the master suite with the theme of the Queen Bee as his inspiration. The honeycomb pattern took the lead. It was the design detail in the headboard:

as well as in the nightstands:

as well as in other details throughout the room, including linens.

But most impactful to me was this beautiful framing system he and his team created on the wall:

I love how the family fits in, and that there's room to add more photos as life evolves for this family. I love the organic nature of the piece, and the way the individual "cells" are connected on nearly all sides to each other. There's so much strength and symbolism in the honeycomb as a concept, and I love it. I would love to recreate something like this in my own bedroom... or to utilize the skills of some of my craftier and more talented friends to make it happen for me! It's just really so special.

Chanel Nails

I love Chanel. It's my fantasy label. I want to be fancy and only wear Chanel scents and makeup, and only carry a Chanel bag, and in spite of my aversion to the style, maybe even have a Chanel skirt-suit for extra special occasions. I bought some Chanel lip color for my wedding nearly two years ago, and I use it sparingly to make it last... I also got a Chanel perfume sample with a purchase that I want to have forever. One day I'll gift myself a WHOLE BOTTLE (I want a signature scent so badly -- my grandmother had one, and I keep a bottle of her perfume on my nightstand just so I can smell her. It *is* her.).

Recently I've seen a bunch of ads and a few other postings referencing Chanel's new summer nail color collection, available only for a limited time.

So pretty. So delicate. So fancy. And so perfectly named. Mimosa, Beige Petale, Morning Rose. Is $25 for a bottle of fancy nail color ridiculous? Too indulgent? Or totally warranted?!

22 April 2011

Earth Day

In honor of Earth Day, and denial of the gloomy, cold, generally gross weather we've been having here in Chicago, I wanted to celebrate moments in nature that just make me smile or reminisce... These are shots I've captured in my own life and travels... of the natural, beautiful, wonderful world around me as I live in it... uploaded at random. I hope you enjoy. Happy Earth Day!

(Virginia, USA)
(San Fransisco, CA, USA)
(Cape Cod, MA, USA)
(Cape Cod, MA, USA)
(Cape Cod, MA, USA)
(Chicago, IL, USA)
(Culebra, Puerto Rico)
(Door County, WI, USA)
(Door County, WI, USA)
(Puerto Rico)
(Tahoe, CA, USA)
(Chicago, IL, USA)
(Chicago, IL, USA)