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The Now

The Now: April 2011

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Sarah Burton it is??

AHA! A mystery woman in a very furry hat matching SB's description entering the Goring Hotel Today!
Gosh, I am REALLY getting in to this wedding dress ordeal!!! I will just be so so so happy if Kate Middleton chose a McQueen dress for the Royal Wedding.

image dailymail

xoxo E

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Royal Wedding Timeout... Blake's New Haircolor!

Stop the press... Blake Lively has traded her gorgeous blonde locks for a new hue - red?  She debuted her new look at the Time Magazine "100 Most Influential People" award gala last night. 


While I LOVE her Zuhair Murad gown, I'm not feeling the red locks on her.  (And let it be noted that I'm a HUGE redhead fan... Christina Hendricks, Julianne Moore, Amy Adams, etc.) 

But Serena was meant to be golden... go back to blonde, Blake!!!!

Who's with me?

xoxo A


Wedding Wednesday...Royal Wedding Edition!

Happy Wedding Wednesday, everyone!

With the Royal Wedding just days away, how could today NOT be focused on the Princess-to-Be and her gown?  Today I'm spotlighting Sophie Cranston & Sarah Burton... the two designers who many believe to be the frontrunners for Kate's wedding dress.

What do we know about the dress so far?  London's Daily Mail is reporting she designed the gown herself, drawing on the fashions of the Renaissance period for inspiration.  We've also heard that the ivory, satin and lace dress will include a "nod" to the Emanuel gown that Princes Diana wore, including a 10 foot train and pearl buttons.

For the past two weeks, the UK has been abuzz that Libelula label creator Sophie Cranston is the latest frontrunner.  Cranston started her career working for Alexander McQueen, and then helped set up Temperley with Alice Temperley in 2000.  Two years later, she decided to move to Spain and follow her dream of creating her own line.

Yes, you've seen Sophie's work before... she designed the black velvet coat Kate wore to a friend's wedding just a few months ago.

However, Cranston recently made a public statement saying that the rumors of her creating the world's most anticipated dress are untrue.  Hmm, maybe she's just trying to throw us off?

Just in case, here are a few of Sophie's signature wedding dress looks:
via HuffPost Style

Clearly these styles are entirely too simple for a Princess being married in the Westminster Abbey, but you can see that Cranston does have the Renaissance influence that Kate is supposedly going for. 

The next major contender is Sarah Burton, the creative director of Alexander McQueen, and a protege of the late fashion icon.  Even Nina Garcia has been quoted saying that she is “holding [her] breath for a miracle that she will wear a beautiful Alexander McQueen by Sarah Burton.”

Burton's designs are said to have caught Kate's attention when she designed an off-the-shoulder wedding dress for Sara Buys, a fashion journalist who married Tom Parker Bowles, the son of the Duchess of Cornwall, in 2005.

Sarah Burton (L) / Sarah Buys in the Burton dress that reportedly caught Kate's attention (R)

Here are some McQueen wedding-worthy gowns that may have also gotten Kate's attention...

If it's between these two, my hope is that she goes McQueen all the way!  I'd love to see her in something completely detailed and ornate, but with a modern silhouette.

What other potential dress designers have you heard chatter about?  It won't be long before we find out!

xoxo A

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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

In The Clutches

I have never been a huge "day clutch" kind of girl, but of course, leave it to my muse, Taylor Tomasi Hill, to make me want one! She has been seen everywhere with her brightly colored Celine pouches and now I am dying over them! And Taylor isn't the only one loving these bags. They are being carried by tons of trend- setters...especially in bright colors! Whether it's a pouch, envelope bag or portfolio clutches, I am obsessed with these grab bags!!!

1.Givenchy 2. Commes des Garcon 3. YSL 4. Celine 5. Balenciaga 6. Victoria Beckham 7. Asos

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A Little Mud Lovin'

I have been searching high and low for the perfect everyday dinnerware, and let's just say that the search hasn't been going well.  I don't want white, I don't want it to look country, I don't want Fiestaware... well let's face it - I don't know what I want!

That was until I came across Mud Australia... a Sydney-based husband and wife-owned business that makes the most amazing porcelain dinnerware.  One look at this line and I fell totally in love with the smooth shapes and soft colors of their pieces.  It all looks so delicate and fragile, but the saleslady assured me that it's rough and tough... everything is dishwasher, oven and microwave safe.

Mud Australia’s brand new Melbourne store

Mud porcelain comes in 21 gorgeous colors - ranging from icy blues to eye-popping reds

My favorite color combination...

So where can you buy it?  I saw that you can buy Mud online from Elements in Chicago.  Only problem - this stuff is pretty pricey, but it may just be worth it.

Oh, PS.  Word on the street is that Brad and Angelina have just purchased Mud’s entire citrus yellow series.  Don't you love being in the know?

xoxo A

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Monday, April 25, 2011

NOLA in Ten...

As most of you know, I took a fabulous little weekend getaway to the Big Easy last weekend.  Sure, I had been there a few times before, but never like this.  I had plenty of exploring time just for myself, and I actually dedicated an entire day to getting lost and wandering around.  All I had with me was an iPhone camera, a few recommendations, and a little bit of spending money. 

In no particular order, here are my 10 Things I Love about New Orleans...

Felix's Restaurant & Oyster Bar
739 Iberville Street, New Orleans, LA 70130
Now this is one of those places that I have NO clue if it's touristy or a local favorite, but I stumbled upon Felix's and I'm in loooove.  I'm a huge raw oyster fan, and let's just say that this place did NOT disappoint!  You walk in and it's a no-frills place, with people lined up to the counter eating oysters directly off the bar.  Love it! 

Marion Cage
3719 Magazine Street, New Orleans, LA 70115
I admit that I had never heard of Marion Cage before stumbling upon her quaint showroom on the famed Magazine Street, but I'm so glad I did.  I started chatting with the sweet, chic saleslady, and soon realized that it was Marion Cage herself with whom I was speaking!  When I mentioned that I was from Dallas, she said that I could find her collection at Forty Five Ten in Dallas.  Now if seeing her incredible jewelry wasn't enough, hearing that her pieces were in Forty Five Ten further conveyed exactly who was standing before me.  (Forty Five Ten is only THE most insane boutique in Dallas... it's really more of a curated museum of Derek Lam, Celine, Balenciaga, Alaia, etc.)  So you can see that Ms. Cage is in GOOD company, to say the least.  All that said, chatting with Ms. Cage in her fabulous showroom was incredible!

3025 Magazine Street, New Orleans, LA 70115
E is actually the one who tipped me off on Sucre, as her parents brought her back macaroons from there once.  She promised me that they were the most delicious little treats she had ever had, and I'll just say that she was right!  Walking into Sucre is like stepping into a Parisian patisserie... it's adorable.  Oh, and PS,  the macaroons I had were covered in a very faint edible glitter.  Perfection.

2844 Magazine Street, New Orleans, LA 70115
I didn't even have to walk into Perch, and I knew that I'd be blogging about it.  The exterior is To. Die. For.  It's an old little house with the most beautiful landscaping... and it has the prettiest aqua door & shutters.   Then I took one step inside and it just got better.  Perch is FILLED to the brim with a mélange of antiques, modern decor, fabulous fabrics, Venetian chandeliers, and more.  You simply have to see it to believe it!

Only in New Orleans
This isn't a person, place or thing, but I just LOVED walking through the residential blocks of Magazine Street and seeing the way people live.  There are rows and rows of gorgeous Southern homes, many fenced in by petite iron gates.  My favorite were the gates covered with Mardi Gras beads.  What fun! 

2103 Magazine Street, New Orleans, LA  70130
I LOVED this store.  It actually reminded me a lot of Blueprint in Dallas... as it combines a perfect mix of modern pieces with antiques dating back to the 18th century.  They have everything from furniture and art to little home accessories, and I did notice in the back that they offer design services.  I could EASILY outfit my entire home with goods from this fabulous store!

The NOLA Wedding
Talk about luck, but on my last morning in New Orleans, I was heading back from breakfast and heard a ton of commotion outside of a nearby hotel.  I ran down the block to see what was going on, and saw tons of feathered umbrellas bobbing up and down.  A band was playing, and people were marching down the street like a parade.  I finally asked a couple what was happening, and they mentioned that a wedding had just taken place!  I still need to do some more research to understand the tradition behind the umbrellas, but it was really incredible to watch! 

Agora Galleries
2240 Magazine Street, New Orleans, LA 70130
I stumbled upon Agora and found myself walking through a maze of about 20 different vendors within one roof.  Some vendors were more my style than others, but all were really cool to see.  I was INSTANTLY drawn to a booth in the back corner featuring the most fabulous Mid-century and Hollywood Regency finds.  The star of the show was an antique Chippendale sofa that had been newly upholstered, refurbished and painted, and was selling for about $1900.  The only problem was I didn't have a truck to get it to Dallas! 

Pat O'Briens
718 Saint Peter Street, New Orleans, LA 70116
There couldn't be a more obvious place to put on the list, but I just had to add it.  Carl and I couldn't leave New Orleans without a trip to Pat O's.  He drank one of their famous Hurricanes, and I opted for a more citrus-y Cyclone.  Pat O's is always good for drinks and people watching!

3637 Magazine Street, New Orleans, LA 70115
Did I save the best for last?  Quite possibly!  My lunch at Lilette was actually planned based on reviews I had read on Chowhound.  Since I was eating solo, I parked myself at the bar, and had the most fabulous little, err big, lunch ever!  My picks?  Grilled black drum with mixed green salad of hearts of palm and sugar snaps, with a tarragon orange grapefruit vinaigrette.  For dessert?  Their famous Nutella custard.  Heaven on Earth! 

Well, that's my vacay in review.  I hope you enjoyed my NOLA picks as much as I enjoyed experiencing them!

xoxo A


Friday, April 22, 2011

Olivia in Marchesa

Does she ever get it wrong??!? This Marchesa dress is absolutely stunning and looks amazing on her. AND I LOVE that she paired it with red shoes!! Oh how we love Olivia. her boyfriend!?!? He's not too bad and by not too bad I mean, kill me, he's so H-O-T!

images via VogueDiaries

xoxo E

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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Wedding Wednesday

Happy Wedding Wednesday, Friends!

Today I'm going to give you a sneak peek into my New Orleans trip... and shh, don't tell my fiancé, but what I'm about to share with you was EASILY, the best part of my little vacay. 

Backing up a minute, there are many reason why I'm THRILLED to be getting married.  Of course, I'm marrying the most wonderful person with whom I will spend the rest of my life, etc., etc., etc., but also, I will finally get to purchase Leontine Linens.  After all, why on earth would I have splurged on them prior to having my "rest of my life" monogram?

I've loved Leontine ever since seeing them in a 2007 edition of Domino. (How was it that Domino introduced us to everything good in life?)  Many of you probably remember the article, which featured two sisters who bought identical apartments in a Manhattan building.  While Merrill's bedding was SUPER cute (she mixed Leontine shams with an existing duvet), it was Nicole's bedding that sent me into a full-blown obsession over the line.

Domino Magazine, Oct. 2007

So when I found out I was going to New Orleans I was THRILLED, as I knew that Leontine's Flagship store and showroom is right on Magazine Street in the heart of the city.

But I'm not going to lie... when I approached the address, I was confused.  This fabulous linen company that I've been reading about for all of these years... the moment I had been waiting for... and the entry looked like - THIS????

Luckily I just took one step inside and it was Love . At . First . Sight .  

photos by me

The salesperson, Brooke, was so much fun.  She was INCREDIBLY helpful and spent a lot of time walking me through some ideas for my bedroom.  What I really appreciated about her was that she understood that I wasn't a bazillionaire ready to spend my entire savings monogramming very nook and cranny in my house (which would be easy to do at Leontine). 

She gave me some good "bang for your buck" suggestions, like selecting an applique vs. monogram (much less costly, and great for those of us who like really bold and graphic design!).  Brooke even looked at photos of my house to help suggest which appliques would look best with my style.

Here are my two front-runners...

Sooo... which do you like better???

photos courtesy of

And I think I'm leaning towards Alcott... although Maxwell is Aerin Lauder's favorite, which is a bit of a selling point in itself!  But regardless of which style I choose I'm going to be very careful selective about which pieces I monogram / applique around the house.  After all, nothing is worse (in my opinion) than a girl who goes a little nutso with the initials!

Can't wait to update everyone on what I select!  And I'm not sure that I'll be able to wait until November... so you may be seeing an update sooner rather than later =)

xoxo A

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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Moroccan Roll

It's pretty clear that we love eclectic rooms, but my latest obsession is adding some Moroccan flair to the mix!! Adding a moroccan berber rug or moroccan pouf or wedding blanket are great ways of combining a little Marrakech to your world.

Morrocan Berber Rug via smallshopstudio
via Table Tonic
Moroccan Wedding Blanket @ The Parker Palm Springs by Jonathan Adler

via table tonic
Another wedding blanket by the tub. Can I be in this room right now??

Moroccan Doorway in Jessica Stam's NYC Apt. 
Moroccan wall print

a classic pic from Domino

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Monday, April 18, 2011

DVF Obsessed... Party Pics and Fashion Picks!

Last Week, E and I joined our friend Haley (Nonsense & Sensibility, High Gloss Magazine contributor) for some sips and shopping at Dallas's very own DVF boutique.   The event was hosted by the Bag Snob herself, Tina Craig, and Dallas fashionista Krystal Schlegel (love her blog, btw!).  E, Haley and I browsed through the latest DVF collection, sipped a little champy, and had fun running to old friends, like Kyle from Knight Moves.

Oh, and get this... the winner of the event giveaway could choose from a Harper bag (obsessed!!!) AND a pair of shoes from the Spring line.  Are you kidding me?

Here are the highlights from a VERY fun evening!

Oh, and rumor has it that Bradley from Luella and June won the Harper Bag from the raffle... we are SO jealous, but are also super excited for her!

So while we're talking DVF, here are some of my favorite pieces and looks from the Spring collection.  After all, while E and I were in the store, we seriously couldn't get over how AMAZ everything was!

1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 / 9 / 10

Look #3 is a modified example of what Krystal wore to the event.  She looked FABULOUS and I must say that I will be copying that outfit immediately if not sooner!

So is it just me or is DVF better than ever this season?

xoxo A

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