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around the shop

By 5/28/2015

travel tips made easier

By 5/27/2015
you'll notice a new look around the blog.  i tried to get with the times and clean things up a bit, organize some and generally pretend i'm a jurassic world kinda dinosaur more than a jurassic park one, ya know?

things are categorized over there on the right.  two categories yal were asking for specifically-- travel, and raleigh favorites are now easy to navigate.  you can now click and find my posts all in one place on travel recommendations far and wide, and my favorite places to dine, stay, and shop when you come to raleigh.

another great resource for fun travel recommendations is taste buds, a series on youtube presented by ford, featuring two friends who adventure around the country and share their favorite finds in places like LA, portland, and in their latest episode, austin.

i'm planning a trip to austin in august (first time!), and would love any recommendations you guys have in addition to krissy and jessica's picks!

inspired by the tastebuds series, you'll find in my raleigh faves category all of my go-to spots for a day well-spent in raleigh, including lunch at capital club 16, a pampering at parlor dry bar, some afternoon shopping at raleigh denim and vermillion and dinner and drinks at the stanbury.

ford is the sponsor of the taste buds series and they are also responsible for sponsoring this post.

black and white and kooky

By 5/25/2015
although i love to decorate with color, i'm aiming for a personal uniform of black and white. this theory skirt is a bit girly on it's own, but i sought some angst with a black crop top, my is-that-the-only-pair-of-shoes-you-own booties and a ridiculously kooky furry blue clutch.

newbury booties black

the theory skirt is on sale, the top is theory too, both from neiman marcus.  the booties are rag & bone, the clutch river island and the lightning bolt necklace is furbish.

furbish memorial day sale!

By 5/22/2015
all the items, all on sale.  15% OFF! - your best chance to save this year on the fancy stuff you've had your eye on, like one-of-a-kind pillows, waylande gregory, serape weekend bags, kilim rugs, artwork, gorgeous bedding and more!


i had a birthday and here's what i know.

By 5/21/2015
i celebrated a big birthday this week.  and i feel pretty fine about it, all in all.

after a certain few decades and a half of living, i've learned that some things just work for me.  they're what i do, and who i've become.

  • i do my hair now.  every morning.  i get it did and dyed, often, and i do my part daily.  i feel much better in the morning if i start out with good hair on my side. 
  • i workout regularly - at least three times a week.  pilates.  it's my thing.  it changed the game.
  • i splurge on vacations.  i stay in the nice hotel.  i get the bigger room.  i order a glass of champagne, and room service.  i go with my friends.  i go with brian meares.  and sometimes i go by myself.
  • people will come and go, but if you have 5 you can call when things go sideways, you're doing great.
  • i have a house keeper.  it's worth my sanity to have someone fight the good fight with me.
  • i get up early now.  like 7am early.  and i get a lot of shit done.
  • i go to therapy once a week.  it's great to pay someone to listen to you talk about yourself.  
  • i get things waxed.  puts a little spring in your step.
  • i still act like a fool about quarterly at the bar.  and dance inappropriately.  and have the best time doing it.
  • it's ok to sometimes appreciate the planning more than the executing, and the fantasy more than the reality.
  • i love trends.  enjoy them while they're in, and then onto the next.  what's fun about staying the same?
  • but i did buy a nice classic sofa that should last a while.
  • if you tell people you're going to make something happen, even it you're not sure how, it's more likely it will.
  • i know that life won't turn out how you thought it should, or would.  and that's the most exciting thing in the world.

closet cravings

By 5/20/2015
1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8 

SoGood Dinner with Couture Knots

By 5/19/2015
i had the pleasure of styling a very special dinner in charlotte last weekend at ali nikrooz's showroom, couture knots.  ali partnered with the SoGood, an app featuring a highly edited collected of amazing local businesses, to host a dinner celebrating art and design.  an enchanting cast of creative entrepreneurs gathered for a memorable evening of fantastic food, delicious cocktails, and shared stories of their fascination with design.

a moroccan table setting 
ali nikrooz, owner of couture knots
hillary crittendon, jimmie johnson, barrie benson
encouragement to enjoy the evening
the rug showroom 
interior designer charlotte lucas
cocktail tables
charleston artist dorothy shain
gifts for guests included moroccan boxes with personalized fortunes
ali nikrooz and hillary crittendon
me, and that dress
jan kath's rug made for a dramatic backdrop
showroom manager casey bogarad and jessica swaney
organic vodka and gin by topo mixed with jack ruby for the cocktail hour
gorgeous vintage flatware c/o vintage charlotte
photos by richard isreal


By 5/18/2015

teil duncan print // halcyon hotel // bri emery instagram

put an egg on it. then eat it.

By 5/13/2015
i don't have the aptitude to put together an entire post, whatever that may be, but i did fix this last night and then i ate it, and it was enjoyable.  i get real excited about eggs on most anything.

recipe here.

warm weather vibes

By 5/13/2015 ,
pink chair // bone tray // striped rug // red coral // garden stool // fern prints // pink pillow // suzani // tie dye towels

planting a container garden

By 5/12/2015
when we opened the new shop at cameron village, we knew we needed to plant to impress. the sidewalk there is flush with vibrant blooming containers outside each store. i sorely lack the green thumb my mother and grandmother had, so i knew we needed to call in backup.

jessica and i went to fairview garden center in raleigh, where we spent the morning with heather rollins and her grandmother-in-law, jo ann dewar, learning about the best choices for a container garden, choosing the perfect pots, and visiting with a family with a passion for plants that rivals my grandmother's verdant touch with anything planted and potted.


jo ann is 83, and as sharp as the exotic cactus plants they offer.  she, along with her family, celebrated their 40th year of business recently.  jo ann has her hands in the dirt at the greenhouse daily, as enthusiastic now as she was in 1947 when she started the company by growing poinsettias in coffee cans, and selling them to the winn dixie grocery chain.

keep reading for tips on creating your own container garden this summer that blooms as brightly as the beauty ann and heather created for furbish.

location, location, location.
the first step in planning a container garden is to decide where you want it to go.  inside or out?  sun or shade?  pick the spot and monitor the area for a full day to determine how much light your container garden will receive.  you will need to choose plants with similar light and water requirements to plant in the same pot.

map it out. 
next, give a method to your madness.  measure the size of your space.  remember, some plants grow quickly; the size of your container will change from the time you bring it home until the end of the season. plan your color scheme.  do you want the color to come from the pottery, flowers, foliage or all of the above?  having a plan in mind will keep you focused while you peruse a greenhouse filled with thousands of flower choices.

contain it.
choose a container that is the right size and style for your chosen location.  your container must have proper drainage.  over or under watering is the number one killer of plants.  adding pebbles or rocks to the bottom of the pot can help with drainage, along with selecting a good potting soil specially formulated for container gardens. 

dare to mix. 
playing with fun and funky plants is the best part of container gardening. here are some things to consider when shopping & planting:

the focal area is where the eye is drawn to first. develop focus by using large, coarse, or bright colored plant material in that area.

vary the form of the plant material you choose; use tall linear plant species to add height; mounded species to add mass; and low growing, cascading species to fill in, add depth, and soften the edges of the container.

add coarse, medium, and fine textured plants together.  three to five different plant species will achieve and assortment of forms and textures.

repeat color at regular intervals around the outside of a round container or along the length of a long rectangular container.  repeat color in several containers to “tie” them together. graceful lines of plant foliage add flow and rhythm.

don’t overcrowd your container.  give plants room to grow.  use larger and/or more plants in larger containers, and less and/or smaller plants in small containers.  a good rule of thumb: the height of the tallest plant should not exceed 1X - 2X the height of the container excluding pedestals.

container gardens tend to dry out quickly and require regular watering.  be sure to water the soil, not the plant in order to prevent leaf damage and the spread of disease.  regular fertilizing is essential for bright blooms.  organic fertilizer options like blood meal or plant tone are great in container gardens. regular applications of synthetic, water soluble plant food with micronutrients can also help increase bloom size and improve color.