Labyrinth of Inspiratoin 6/20/24

Labyrinth of Inspiratoin 6/20/24
How to begin to make sense of the centuries of beauty witnessed during my recent trip to the gardens of Venice and the Veneto?  With some jet lag and a full plate of work awaiting me this weekend, it seems like a labyrinth to decipher.    So let's make sublime Italian inspiration a multi-Monday journey, and for today, we'll just start with the spectacular gardens of the Villa Barbarigo.  READ MORE

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Full Color Living 6/13/24

Full Color Living 6/13/24
You know those weeks that just rev nonstop full tilt?  I'm in a stretch of  them.   That's not a complaint, it's more like an embarrassment of riches - life in full living color.   Usually, my garden's peonies reaching peak bloom just about now would be plenty of excitement for one week.

Don't get me wrong - I've also been working non stop.  I'm just enormously lucky in that work often feels like play for me too.   I have some really big drops in today's note, AND I'm heading to Charlottesville today for my annual peony pilgrimage to Pharsalia Farm, AND on Friday, I'm heading to Venice and the Veneto visiting the villas and gardens of Andrea Palladio.  READ MORE

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Mothering Sunday 5/6/24

Mothering Sunday 5/6/24
Sometimes I don't know what to write here.  Sometimes it seems there is too much to encapsulate into this little space, and I, the eternal optimist, am poorly equipped to feign with my usual, "Isn't this lovely" epistle.   Mother's Day is such a time.   I am overly lucky, having been dealt the world's nicest mother.   But for some, the holiday can be packed with a kaleidoscope of emotions.   I'm thinking today about the young women in the throes of IVF treatment and their sisters in the universe who have lost a child.  We are ALL with YOU and those pretty tulips above are for you.   Then there are our friends whose mothers were, well, just not that great.   You didn't deserve that hand.  READ MORE

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Dogwoods, Wiggles and Giggles 4/30/24

Dogwoods, Wiggles and Giggles 4/30/24
It's been a busy week!  We had a great response to last week's bangle drop - and I'm now talking to some fantastic clubs and other institutions about custom designs for their iconic places, which is soooo much fun - hope to share soon.  THANK YOU.   And, we sold out the Marie drops once again, (please send me an email if you missed out and would like to be on the wait list).   I played a little hooky on Friday, and traveled with some friends to see the Historic Garden Week tour of the Middle Peninsula.   So much fun.  More of that, please.  READ MORE

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Magnificent Places, Beautiful Spaces 4/22/24

Magnificent Places, Beautiful Spaces 4/22/24
We talked last Monday about classic style.  Yet we just scratched the surface.   Let's pick up again with classical design.  A friend of mine wrote a book about the physical response you get from seeing beauty, “Feeling Beauty”, by Gabrielle Starr Harpole.  While I can't do justice to paraphrasing the neuroscience she lays out in exquisite detail, I do intimately know the physical feeling she's describing.  You walk into a magnificent building or a beautiful room, and your involuntary response seizes control - you take a pause, an audible deep breath, then emit a sigh, while a smile takes form.  

One of my favorite spaces in Washington is the National Building Museum.  I get that pause/big inhale/sigh/smile every time I walk in.   READ MORE

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