Art, Inspiration and General Musings

September 30, 2010

No More Friends

{All My Friends Are Dead by Avery Monsen and Jory John}

A little depressing? Sure. A tad twisted? You bet. A whole lot of funny? Totally! These excerpts from All My Friends Are Dead by Avery Monsen and Jory John had me busting up so I thought I'd share. Here's a small sampling from the book's 96 pages of twisted humor. Enjoy!

September 28, 2010

A Nod to Yod

{half vases by Visuallyod

I love the concept behind these "half vases" by UK-based designer Yod (aka Pacharapong Suntanaphan, but that's just way too difficult to pronounce). Basically, the vase tops are designed to fit on neglected or under-appreciated household objects - think glasses of various shapes - instantly transforming them into something that warrants your upmost attention. I'm partial to the gold collection, but they're also available in white and black silicone rubber.

September 25, 2010

Have a Fabulous Saturday!

{Me & Darcey at the Renegade Craft Fair :: August 1, 2010}
Happy Saturday, everyone! Hope you all have something fabulous planned. As for me, I have a play date with my lovely friend Darcey. First, we're going to catch a matinee of Easy A and then we're off to partake in some much-needed retail therapy. Have a great day!

September 24, 2010

Light Up :: Win a $25 Gift Card to Lumens

{Ken Plumlee, owner of Lumens Light + Living}
I've lived in Sacramento for many years and Lumens Light + Living has always been one of my favorite local shops. Aside from all the gorgeous lighting options, the showroom also features a drool-worthy selection of home goods by the likes of Alessi, Angela Adams, Missoni Home, Blu Dot, Littala and Jonathan Adler. Whenever it's time to pick out a gift for one of my design-savvy friends, Lumens is one of my first stops. Even when I'm broke, I still like to peruse all the stylish design goodies and lighting fixtures for inspiration.

Well, after starting a virtual relationship with the shop on Twitter, I decided to see if Lumens' owner Ken Plumlee would be interested in doing an interview for my little blog. Thankfully, he was happy to oblige, even offering up a $25 gift card to one lucky reader. Oh, and since Lumens has an even larger selection online and ships internationally, this baby is open to readers around the globe. All you have to do is leave a comment telling me what lamp you're currently coveting and remember to include a way to contact you. The deadline to enter is Thursday, September 30th. As for my interview with Ken, read on.

{Louvre Light and Torch Light by Established & Sons}

Bows & Sparrows: How long has Lumens Light + Living been open?

Ken: We're just about 6 years old.

{Torch Light by Established & Sons}
B&S: Can you tell us a little about Lumens?
Ken: Lumens is really focused on design-oriented lighting and home accessories. We tried to build a retail concept that was life-style driven. There's are certainly a lot of design stores around the country, but we wanted to be broader than that so we look for products that have a good, clean design aesthetic but across a much broader range of manufactures. Lighting is really the nuts and bolts of what we do, but because we appeal to a customer who appreciates design we try to bring in the furniture, accessories and gift items that compliment the lifestyle that our customers appreciate.

{Buttercup Swivel Chair by Blu Dot}
B&S: How about the lighting style?

Ken: We look for well-designed lighting across many styles. A lot of people think that Lumens is only contemporary lighting, but that is not the case. No matter what kind of style your interested in, we have those resources. You may drive by the place it may look all sparkly and modern, but when we sit down with you to work on your project we have access to hundreds of styles.

{wooden toy cars by Playsam}
B&S: Is Sacramento the only brick-and-mortar store?
Ken: Yes, but we are primarily an online retailer, that is by far the biggest part of our business. The Sacramento showroom is an important part because it gives us hands-on experience with our products, let's us be part of the community. It's where we started from.
{Bubble Pendants by George Nelson}
B&S: Lumens has been offering lighting seminars, can you tell us a little more about that?
Ken: We've been doing it for about 8 months, and it's usually a once a month thing. It's to give people who may be planning a remodel an opportunity to start thinking about lighting early in the process. Lighting is often the last thing people think about during a remodel and it usually happens when the contractor says, "oh, by the way, you need to pick out your lights." By that time, all the wiring has probably done and it's too late to start thinking about all the controls and where to place things. Most contractors tend to plop one outlet in the middle of the room and assume that will do the trick. If you think about it in advance you can design your lighting in a thoughtful way and it can make a huge impact on that space.
{Caboche Pendant lights by Foscarini}
B&S: How important is lighting to a space?
Ken: I think lighting is huge. Think about being in a restaurant and how you feel when the lighting is well done. If you've ever been in a restaurant at like 8 p.m. when the bring all the lighting down and all of the sudden you go "oh, wow." It's like it becomes an entirely different place. The ability to layer light is important - you want light at different levels of the room, at different heights, you want to be able to backlight and use accent lights. Bringing that all together has a huge impact on a space.
{various art glass pendants}
{A gaggle of Anna G. Corkscrews by Alessi Design}
Find Lumens Light + Living at 2028 K Street in Sacramento, CA or online here, here and here. Oh, and you can give the shop a ring at 877.445.4486.

September 23, 2010

Bag Lady

{bold peacock lili clutch, $76}
I spotted these adorable purses by London-based bagatelles & co over on Daily Candy this morning and couldn't resist the urge to share. I'm a total purse junky - with probably more than 40 purses (of various shapes and sizes) in my collection - still, there's always room for one more, right?
{festive bouquet gigi purse, $46}

{delicate dandelion lili clutch, $82}

September 21, 2010

Tim & Tanya's Fixer-Upper Turned Dream Home

{table from Crate and Barrel outlet, lamp from IKEA}
When Tim and Tanya purchased their South Land Park home two years ago, they knew full well that transforming the quaint little fixer-upper into their dream home was going to be a huge undertaking. Still, they were up for the challenge and after a lot of hard work, some tough decisions and many gallons of paint the couple has nearly completed their modern, yet cozy home. I say nearly because the backyard is still a work in progress. After some gentle prodding, Tanya agreed to let B&S snap some photos of her lovely home - minus the yard. Hope you enjoy the tour!

How much has your home changed since you moved in? Completely. We added central heat and air, new windows, all new electrical, new doors, refinished floors, remodeled kitchen, remodeled bathroom, new plumbing, appliances and new furniture.

Describe your style. Modern, comfortable, practical, with a little bit of sentiment sprinkled on top.

{a collection of photos & prints are the "little bit of sentiment sprinkled on top"}
Where do you look for inspiration? Everywhere! Modern style magazines, retail displays, catalogs and anything else that strikes me.

What do your friends say about your place? "It's so clean."

{the kitchen - love the cork flooring!}
{custom cabinets by California Interiors}

{backsplash by 3form is made of Ecoresin, which is a recycled resin}

{chairs from Target, coffee table from West Elm, sofa from Scandinavian Designs}

Biggest indulgence...Leather couch from Scandinavian Designs and all new appliances.

Biggest challenge...Right now it's our yard!

{Tanya's proudest DIY project is the headboard above, which she constructed out of wood left over from other home-improvement projects. The headboard features built-in lights - can you say awesome?!}
Proudest DIY project...The headboard in the guest bedroom is made out of scrap wood from various projects. It's also backlit and has a switch to turn the light off and on built right in.

DIY project you're currently working on? Probably some pillows from scrap material. But, after the remodel, we had enough DIY to tide us over for quite awhile.

{while they didn't completely gut the bathroom during the remodel, it did get quite a makeover}
Favorite resources: Scandinavian Designs, Target, Ikea, Crate and Barrel, and West Elm.

{I love the bird print in the master bedroom, which Tanya scored at a second-hand store}

More photos on the Bows & Sparrows Facebook page.

Shelf Life

{all images from Knife & Saw}
Bay Area-based designer Chris Brigham, the brains behind Knife & Saw, has created a solution for indoor bike storage or, as he calls it, "elegant bike management." Brigham's "bike shelf" - which is what he's calling it until he comes up with something more clever- is fashioned from solid wood (walnut or ash) and a steel rod mount. The sleek shelf provides a means for storing (and displaying) your bike and whatever else you want to place on the shelf (flowers, books, your helmet...the sky is the limit). The shelf is designed to hold most frames, but you can check out the specs just to make sure.

September 20, 2010

Word 'Em Up

{word charm/a token of love necklace by tickette, $42}

My friend sent me a link to these wonderful "Word Charm" creations by design duo Tickette, aka Tal Margalit and Ellia Nattel. The collection's tag line? "Jewelry that literally defines itself." Love it! 

{word charm/necklace in gold by tickette, $48}

{word charm/black necklace by tickette, $37}

One Nightstand

{screen grab of my nightstand featured on the lovely blog sincerely, cecelia}
Awhile back the ever-so-lovely Cecelia (of Sincerely, Cecelia) asked me to participate in her "what's on your nightstand" series. I snapped a photo of my bedside table and sent it off along with a little blurb about what's you can find on it at any given moment. Well, it's finally head over here to check it out.

September 8, 2010

Cape Town

{Check print cape by Zara}

Louis Vuitton fashion director Daniel Piette once described the Spanish fashion retailer Zara as "possibly the most innovative and devastating retailer in the world." Well, now that Zara finally has an online shop (see below before you get too excited), the company is truly ready to start conquering the world. There are some very covetable pieces in the collection and the prices are totally reasonable. Take for instance this check print cape, which retails for a mere $129. I absolutely love it...and if you don't, it's likely that there is something seriously wrong with you. I'm serious, and if you need a ride to the hospital just let me know.

Update: It looks like the online shop is only open to those in France, Spain, Italy, Portugal and the UK. Total bummer. So sad.

September 6, 2010

Soul Collective

{the packed dance floor at Hard French}
This past Saturday, my friend Sarah and I headed to San Francisco to meet some friends and to check out the daytime soul party known as Hard French. The outdoor party is held on the first Saturday of the month from 3-8pm and is a place where "drag queens mingle with lesbians, leather daddy's soul dance with cholas, sharps share hot dogs with activists, jocks make out with twinks, brown meets white meets purple meets gay guy meets ladies meets q and everyone leaves excited for the next party." In other words, this party is for anyone and everyone who wants to get their dance on to some good soul music.

We didn't arrive at the party until 4:40pm...and when we did, there was quite a queue waiting to get inside the already packed El Rio. It took us nearly two hours to make our way to the front of the line, which could have really sucked save for the fact that we spent that time meeting cool people, eating take-out from Baby Blues BBQ (which was delish!) and drinking tall-boys out of brown paper bags (can you say classy?). Some of our friends who had already been inside even came out to kick it with us in line...thanks for being so awesome Jen and Theo!

Once we were finally inside the party, we grabbed some drinks and headed straight for the dance floor. DJ Carnitas and DJ Brown Amy kept the tunes coming as the elated crowd danced and sang along to songs by the likes of Sly and the Family Stone, Fats Domino, Gladys Knight and the Pips and the Marvelettes. It was so much fun! The only downside was that the party ended way too soon. Next time, I'm arriving early so I can maximize my dance time. Word on the street is that there's only one more party before Hard French breaks for the, mark your calendars for October 2nd!
{Why yes, yes those are crayons in her ears - I was totally obsessed with this chick}
{Fur balls dig soul music, too!}
{DJ Carnitas puts a record on}
{You can donate your bra or fork over $2 for a turn in the Hard French "photo booth"}
{me, Jasmine & Sarah}

September 5, 2010

Take It All Off...Well, Most Of It.

{photos by Tom Hines for the Lake & Stars}
I am loving these sultry images from the Lake & Stars' fall/winter collection - they're so very Bettie Page. Plus, I need those stockings!

September 1, 2010

Total Rubbish!

{rubbish military knit jacket}
All I have to say is: "Damn, all you lucky jerks who found this rubbish military knit jacket before I did!" It's super cute and totally not in stock anymore. Ugh. Now begins my search for another retailer. Wish me luck!

Leather Heads

{Holly Clutch, $3,200 - all images by Stephen Lewis for Tiffany & Co.}
As is Tiffany & Co. didn't already offer enough swoon-worthy goodness to make us all drool, the company just launched its Leather Collection, a treasure trove of hobos, totes, clutches, wallets and other covetable leather goods. Created under the direction of Richard Lambertson and John Truex, the collection ranges in price from $145 (for a card case) to a whopping $17,500 (for the Manhattan satchel)...yowza!
{various accessories}
{Laurelton top-handle bag, $4,800}
{Manhattan satchel, $17,500}
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