Santa’s Modern Makeover,,,,,,,,

With a twinkle in his eye and a design trick or two in his bag, here comes Santa. This year’s nod to the big guy in the red suit is marvelously modern and smartly stylish; and proof that St. Nick may be old but he’s forever fashionably young.  Continue reading

B is for Bread

Erin Kunkel, The New Sugar & Spice cookbook;,,,

Erin Kunkel, The New Sugar & Spice cookbook;,,,

I come from a long line of home cooks who love to make bread. We like to mix and knead dough by hand, then wait impatiently for it to rise and bake before slicing off a big piece and slathering it with butter. In my mind, there’s nothing like a great loaf of homemade bread.  Continue reading

IKEA Pops the Cork on a Great Idea for Fall

Those clever Swedes are at it again. This month, IKEA is all about cork -one of the trendiest sustainable materials going- with their debut of the SINNERLIG collection by London-based designer Ilse Crawford. A soft, sound-dampening material once reserved for utilitarian uses like bulletin boards and floors, cork has gone cool and this is the proof.  Continue reading

A is for Apple,,,,,,

Autumn is just around the corner. Time to sink your teeth into one of Fall’s tastiest trends–apples. Whether you’re decorating or cooking, apples are ripe for the picking this year and it’s easy to see why. Apples add a refreshing touch of nature to interiors and spin the color wheel from green to ruby red; while delivering crunch and contrast (tart or sweet?!) to recipes. But if you think just any old apple that falls from the tree is spotlight-worthy, think again. The apples getting an “A” for awesome think outside the box in contemporary ways.  Continue reading

Chill Out

#1 Chill out collage

Summer’s in full swing and the heat is on. Every night before bedtime, I give thanks for my trusty Trane air conditioner and for inventive products like these, designed to help us keep our cool whenever we dare step outside. A mix of quirky, practical and posh, each thrill with their ability to chill. Continue reading

The New Look of Laminate

Don’t know who’s more excited about this trend–Mom or me. Mom’s been into laminate since the Sixties when our kitchen, like others on the block, got outfitted with a groovy laminate countertop. And although I could always see why she loved its durability and easy-care, I stayed somewhat less than impressed with laminate’s suburban mom styling. Continue reading

Soap Stars

Looking for a summer hostess gift that doesn’t take much space to pack, yet packs a stylish punch? Decorative bar soaps are trending high as a witty way to make a splash in the bath of every home you visit, whether it’s for a weekend stay or a long getaway.  Continue reading

Mother’s Day Gifts For Gardeners

Want to give a gift this Mother’s Day that’s both trendy and tasty? Then garden up. Chances are your mom is eager to make like Mother Nature because gardening is all the rage and at its highest level in the U.S. in more than a decade. Continue reading

Silhouette Style

Silhouettes have been part of the design scene since the 1700’s when French artists began scissor-snipping profile portraits of everything in sight, from people and animals to objects and landscapes. Now this classic art form is back but with a modern twist. Continue reading

This Easter’s Sweetest Treat? Lemon Mini-Pavlovas with Fresh Blueberries

Alexandra DeFurio,

Alexandra DeFurio,

When hosting Easter dinner, I always like to finish the meal with a wow dessert. These lemon mini-pavlovas from “Meringue” by Linda K. Jackson and Jennifer Evans Gardner are that, and then some. While the authors dub their recipe as ideal for summer, I think it’s also just right for Easter, too. The mix of flavors are springtime fresh. And who wouldn’t want to indulge in one of these pretty little pavlovas while sipping tea in the shade as kids hunt for eggs on the lawn? Continue reading