I love the simple elegance of beeswax candles and have had my eye on these beauties since last year when I discovered this French brand, Apis Cera, via Jamie Beck of Ann Street Studio. It was a pleasure to befriend the owner and I was so pleased to receive two boxes of the Lucienne tapers which come as a set of 9 this past month, just in time for the holiday season (and our Thanksgiving table, see below). The packaging is exquisite but more importantly, the candles are light and lovely, burn beautifully and free of all the pollutants and additives which make up many taper candles. I love that each is rolled by hand with natural ingredients and think that they would make the most wonderful hostess or holiday present this season.
They look beautiful in these crystal candlestick holders and also in silver, and I love the idea of burning this oneon a cold gray morning while you’re working at your desk, and would use these for bath time — the epitome of simple luxury! Below is a picture of the box and tissue, a beautiful presentation.
It’s hard to believe that we’re already transitioning away from the crib into a larger “big boy” bed but here we are! Everybody tells you how quickly it goes but it truly is exceptionally swift. The bed arrived before we left for the summer and he was hooked, it was our number one toy for a period of time. Now that we are settling back in at home, we have quickly adjusted and he couldn’t be happier.
I love crawling into a bed which has enough space for us to read a book side by side, rather than cramming into our rocker. The side rail is critical for now but can be removed later as he grows.
When searching for his bed, I wanted to find an eco-friendly piece (which I did for our crib and mattresses, too). In steps ducduc, a NYC-based, Connecticut-constructed custom furniture brand which makes each piece to order and so you can control the design and colors. We also ordered a matching table which holds a spool of paper for endless arts and crafts. These pieces will transition well as our son grows and are durably made ensuring that they will last for years to come — of course, they are already being thoroughly enjoyed!
The room is softened with all of our lovely Annie Selke textiles, from the layered rugs to the soft sheets and pillows, I can always count on her to provide cozy pieces which complete the room! Here are my favorites:
Last month, we opened our home to the India Hicks Tribe and hosted one of their Get Togethers in Charleston.
Having long admired India’s style and burgeoning lifestyle brand, it was a great opportunity to get an in person look at the new Collection, and find out a bit more about the Ambassador opportunity. I have to say, I have had such a positive experience with the brand, and with the brand ambassadors. Everybody I have encountered through the program is just lovely and it was a pleasure to host a Get Together in Charleston.
I adore India’s latest collection because it’s all about stars — my favorite! I particularly love the jewelry and little star bag which would be perfect for evening. And, regular readers will know that I am partial to a scented candle and I have to admit that since receiving the Casuarina Candle from India Hicks this summer, I have become hopelessly addicted to the fragrance, which now travels with us & is a great present to give as well (a really good one for the present cupboard as it’s universally loved).
It is true to say that we have travelled a great deal this summer and often we have adapted our plans as new opportunities have arisen. The gracious and charming IH Ambassador who helped me plan my Get Together was beyond patient and accommodating in setting up our date, after many stops and starts.
Our Ambassador was Margaret, a seasoned member of the Tribe, who was an absolute joy to welcome into our home, a power hostess in her own right, so kind, thoughtful and efficient. It was a real joy to discover that we already had so many connections in common, which is one of the other benefits of these events: making new friends. Here are some pictures of the set up, what fun it was to see it all laid out in our home:
As a host you have the choice – in IH speak – to make the event about ‘goods’, where the Host can purchase items from the collection at a discount, or about ‘goodies’, where a percentage of the sales from the Get Together go to a charity of the host’s choice. We are pleased to say that proceeds generated from our GT have been donated to the Surfrider foundation, which is dedicated to protecting and enjoying the world’s ocean, waves and beaches.
I wandered into this shop on Martha’s Vineyard that was packed to the brim with piles and piles of quilts, table cloths, napkins, blankets, pillows, robes, nighties, soaps, and lots and lots of European glassware. It was fantastic and an instant favorite! I shared some photographs on my stories and the response was overwhelming. The store does not have a site but you can certainly call in for shipping information, everybody who works with Jane, the store’s owner, is lovely and extremely helpful. I wanted to show you a bit more about what I found there and also say that I have struggled to find anything similar online. We do, however, have an opportunity to list some of these wares on our site, so do let us know if you’re interested!
This is just a tiny glimpse of the shop. There were many patterns that I was drawn to and I found it hard to decide. These napkins and tablecloths are fun, colorful and easy; they can be dressed up or down. I particularly love using busy patterns on the table for breakfasts, which we set out the night before (if we can) when we have guests to stay. They remind me of France, and of summer, and I definitely had intentions of finding things like this for our online store should we decide to launch one! The owner of the shop, Jane, is a delight, so do go in if you’re on Island and send my regards.
I also couldn’t help but fall in love with the many quilts and blankets. The thicker ones seen below are reversible and so offer two patterns per piece. This blue pattern (napkin) below might be my favorite, so subdued and the prettiest shade. It also comes in a blanket.
I love all of the yellows, browns and pinks. Ultimately, after many visits to the store, we settled on this camel which goes well with the colors we have at home but it also fun and unexpected. Xo!
One of the reasons I love travel so much is that I feel most inspired when I am in a new place. I am at my most observant upon arrival, taking in what I want to photograph, what I find the most special about the environment, what feels fresh and what I can create there. After a long summer away, I took in our home with similar fresh eyes and excitement but also with a newfound appreciation for how important it is to feel rooted at this stage in our lives.
Perhaps some of that fresh excitement was also due to our new bed which arrived just before we left for most of the summer. We were so grateful to have an opportunity to design it with The New Traditionalists in New York (made in Connecticut) this past winter, and were thrilled to see it come to life. Some of you caught a peek in this post here which explained more about our design process/experience but we just showed a snippet of the bed in that post. This was because we still have things we’d like to do to our bedroom and were only home for a flash and a flurry but, I wanted to show you a bit more of it in context now that we have started nesting again.
While our bedroom still has some aesthetic changes I would like to make (swapping out bedside tables, adding some lighting, etc.), we are over the moon with the bed and so taking the rest at a leisurely pace; truly we have more than enough already and feel the ingredients for a serene bedroom are all here: cozy fabrics, candles, textures, gentle colors…
The bed is obviously the central feature of the room. I absolutely adore the Schumacher headboard, and have always loved four posters (I grew up sleeping in a much narrower one). One thing that I loved about working with The New Traditionalists is that you can select any paint color for your piece. I went with a very clean white which felt appropriate for our sun-drenched city. I have always loved the peaceful combination of white and blue, and the headboard lends a less obvious french blue shade. Also, we are also both sleeping very well so high off the ground…
We aren’t the only ones who are thrilled with how it is all coming together…
A few other touches I always try to add to make our room feel more complete, no matter what “stage” it is in are: layers of soft textures for coziness, photographs of family to bring joy and happy memories, peaceful art (in this case, I have Japanese mirrors and English plates, both from my grandmother), and good coffee table books which I often look through in the morning to maximize time off my phone….
We are just back to the Vineyard after traveling down to New York this past weekend to photograph a huge wedding weekend. It was a beautiful and joyful few days with the most loving (and in love) couple who have become fast friends. I spent most of the day culling and editing, I like to get cracking as quickly as possible, and after a long evening run and a visit to the market, threw together this simple, easy table for our supper.
When we drove on to Martha’s Vineyard at the start of this month, it felt like entering a movie set: sail boats drenched in the last light of day, balmy perfect weather, polished streets and old cars. This time, we arrived to sixty degrees, pouring rain and whipping wind — and I loved it!! We had a cozy stormy night with a hot soup and crusty bread with melted cheese — hit the spot. The market is full of autumnal hues of dark burgundy, dirty pinks and mustard yellows. Dahlias and sunflowers are in full swing.
I have been collecting colored candlesticks since I arrived. I usually favor ivory but I love these salty gray blues which mirror the sea right behind the stone wall at the edge of the garden. This is just a a simple set of five vases with mixed wild flowers, four candle sticks, a handful of votives, white plates and floral napkins — but a moment to pull together and endlessly romantic as the candle light flickers next to the rich, vibrant flowers. Big, squishy pillows make the rustic chairs more tolerable for late evening chats, and there are a few spare wool blankets off to the side as the night air is a bit nippy (and I tend to run cold).
We drank a full-bodied chardonnay and a bottle of light red wine, perfect for the transition into fall, and had leftover soup, garlic bread and a salad full of vegetables from the farms. Xx!