Thursday, January 31, 2013

E. Chambré Hardman and the art of pet portraiture

Margaret and Dog in a Boat

Irish photographer Edward Fitzmaurice Chambré Hardman (1898-1988) may be best known for his studio portraits and landscapes, but I've become smitten with his images of animals, particularly his cats and dogs. Some of the animals were his own (like Pep, above, with the artist's wife), while others belonged to friends and sitters. As an animal lover and cat owner (and as my fiancé and I begin the search for a puppy!), this sort of imagery just tickles me. Hardman captured their personalities brilliantly, and I suspect he had a very good time doing it.

Mr. and Mrs McDonald's Spaniel


Mrs H. S. Strother's Dog

Mr. and Mrs A. M. Blessett's Cat
The Last of the Leisured Class

A Cheshire Cat

Withinlee Witness (English Setter)

For more information on Hardman's work, visit the The Hardmans' House blog. You can also purchase prints of Hardman's work (including those posted here) through the National Trust.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

A love note for Instagram


I'm a huge Instagram fan. In fact, as you can see by my account, I've become quite obsessive about it! Was thinking about ways to print my images the other day, when I stumbled across The canvas prints don't thrill me, I admit, but I do love the note card and prism options. You can work with your own images, offer your own photos for sale, or purchase the work of other Instagrammers. Pretty clever stuff. Must be all that fresh ocean air blowing into the firm's Santa Monica office!

Here's a round up of a few fun Valentine's Day-themed cards (they're sold individually for $3.95, or in packs of 10 for $29.95):



Monday, January 28, 2013

Make it a bright New Year with Room & Board

This morning, Room & Board began its twice-annual media tour. I'm a fan (maybe you've seen earlier posts on the shop) and a client (we bought a new sofa last fall), so I always love going to see what's new. And what's new this year is... color -- brilliant bright pops of it! The store has long been known for its neutral, natural palette, so to walk in and be met by a dazzling green sofa (Pantone's definitely in effect here) was exciting. 

With an expanded range of textiles (from blankets to rugs), and a burgeoning tween/teen department, as well as a booming outdoor collection, there's no shortage of great, easy, affordable pieces to add to your home. They've even restyled their catalogue to read -- and inspire -- like the pages of a magazine, right down to the pull quotes.

A quick run-down of my favorite finds:

The Murphy sofa, dressed in emerald green, and one of the few remaining hide rugs in the store. They can hardly keep them in stock. 

A sampling of the gorgeous new rug designs, handwoven in India: (clockwise from top) Medici, Kayseri, and Bokila.

I can't see a velvet sofa and not think of Mae West. I just can't. 

Colorful new textiles... with a delightful air of legendary designer David Hicks.

Snuggly alpaca blankets from the Danish manufacturer Elvang, one of the few European suppliers to Room & Board. Some 90% of the company's suppliers are American.

New this year: tabletop items from the Oregon firm Pigeon Toe. Lovely, smart pieces.  And more designs are on the way. (Yay!)

It's a lucky kid whose parents put together this kind of bedroom! (There's a clever storage drawer at the foot of the bed. Am eyeing this one for our own bedroom redo.) And I love the idea of using Josef Albers prints in a child's room, they're so bright and cheerful. And let's face it, it's never too early to start learning a little art history.

"Slip-colors," let's call them! Also new this year is a range of not-neutral Sunbrella slip-covers for Room & Board's outdoor furnishings. Would that I had a patio, I'd buy a few of each and rotate them through the seasons. 

For more information on Room & Board, click here. Or, visit them on Facebook, and enter to win a $5,000 sweepstakes! All you need to enter is a snap of how you're keeping their 2013 catalogue in your home. Dare  I admit that my cat's been sleeping on it? It is a lovely soft paper... I can't really blame her.

Happy shopping!