Beyond The “Pantry”: Kitchen Essentials On Display

On Display:  Essentials Of Everyday
On Display: Essentials Of Everyday

The “Pantry”.  Rethought, indeed.   Not every home has the luxury of a separate room appropriately deemed as “The Pantry”.   But alas, small spaces or kitchens that are void of a separate area to store the kitchen essentials of dining and culinary fares must creatively find storage to house the key items and surplus effectively.

“Let there be a place for every article, and when not in use let every article be in its place.”
-Mrs. Elizabeth Ellet, written in ‘The Practical Housekeeper’,1857

Of course, a brief history…
The actual word “Pantry” is termed as “a small room or closet in which food, dishes, and utensils are kept”.  The word “pantry” comes from the Old French word “paneterie” derived from the latin word “Panis” and “pain” which is the French word for bread. In Medieval times food and supplies were stored in specific rooms and bread was stored in the “Pantry”. Who knew?  Following this kitchen division, during the 17th and 18th centuries colonists in New England built rooms off kitchens for food storage called the “Buttery”.   It was during the 1800’s, however, that the era of the “Butler’s Pantry” is said to have begun in England as well as America. The “Butler’s Pantry” was a small pantry between the kitchen and the dining room where china and silver were stored and meals were often plated.  Elegance and luxury, indeed.

It is interesting to note that in American’s 1869 Catherine Beecher and Harriet Beecher Stowe wrote in their seminal, The American Woman’s Home, promoting the idea of bringing the pantry into the kitchen with the addition of more shelves and kitchen cupboards. However, that ingenious idea would not be utilized for nearly another century.  As a departure from the pantry “room”, it was during the 1900’s the American wooden Hoosier cabinet would become an instant icon  in American kitchen and serve as a pantry. Yet in the 1920’s and 1930’s the idea of a “breakfast nook” begins to replace pantries all together in kitchen design, furthering the merge of the pantry with the kitchen. Alas, the brilliant idea of Catherine Beecher and Harriet Beecher Stowe would finally see its formation with extended cabinetry and cupboards in kitchens.

Indeed, the pantry as we know it today has certainly evolved to be housed in a myriad of forms. The pantry today is certainly utilized based upon the surrounds and space that we have within our personal interiors. Although the term “Pantry” includes food storage, it is the display of household basics, such as bowls, china, dishes, glassware and kitchenwares, that my focus is upon.  Attractively on view.  Whether on view behind glass cabinets, open and exposed shelving or hidden attractively behind a closet door in small spaces, the storage of pantry items can certainly be a creative endeavor that can bring an attractive visual appeal to one’s space.  An organized ease of seeing one’s essentials and inspiration to use them more frequently, indeed.

Yet to reiterate, what is stored must be pertinent and essential.  To store what is not necessary is simply using valuable square footage.  Simply stated…

“The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak”   -Hans Hofmann

Perhaps each year, when the urge hits us to “Spring Clean” after the blur of the holiday’s have passed, we have looked at our collections of dishes and kitchen wares and have realized that edits lie ahead.  Yes, less is more.  But in the world of culinary fare, there are those that loudly claim more is more.  That said, organized, grouped and readily accessible those essentials will most certainly find more use and visual pleasure when attractively set before you.  “On Stage”, indeed.  Rethink. Edit.  And attractively find a nook, a shelf or align those pantry shelves!

Inspiration awaits…onward!

Stylish Storage:  The
Stylish Storage: The “Pantry”
The Pantry:  Everything On View
The Pantry: Everything On View
Storage & Interior Style:  The Pantry
Storage & Interior Style: The Pantry
Shelved Style:  The Pantry
Shelved Style: The Pantry
Lined, Stacked & At-The Ready:  The Pantry
Lined, Stacked & At-The Ready: The Pantry
Pantry Variations:  Stored & On View
Pantry Variations: Stored & On View
Kitchen Display:  Storage In Full View
Kitchen Display: Storage In Full View
Kitchen Basics In Stylish Presentation
Kitchen Basics In Stylish Presentation
Creative & Unexpected Storage Of Kitchen Essentials
Creative & Unexpected Storage Of Kitchen Essentials

Consider the “Pantry”.  Whether you are creating a space with shelves or only have room for a simple rolling cart, find inspiration in how to use what you have.  Since we only have the space that we have– maximize it!  Rethink with an organized format with an attractive and visually appealing presentation, onward!   You may just be inspired to entertain and enter the culinary world more often.  Remember, edit first.  Remove the unnecessary, so that the necessary may speak-And be used!

Cheers to organized entertaining ahead!

Onward,

Kristin

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A Year Of The Fashionable Windows Of Max Mara: Chicago 2016

Fashionable Windows & The City Scene:  Max Mara/Chicago
Fashionable Windows & The City Scene: Max Mara/Chicago

A year of the fashionable windows of Max Mara from behind my lens. Chicago. The Magnificent Mile. Michigan Avenue and the stylish and changing windows of fashion. Max Mara style. For one who over the last 3+ years has photographed every month the fashionable windows of Chicago, Max Mara stands out to be one of the highlights from behind my lens. Striking mannequins posed in changing Max Mara style. Sheer delight for one who loves fashion. Above fashion itself, Max Mara, located on the corner of E. Delaware and Michigan Avenue, offers windows that are key in reflecting the city that I love. Look closer and you will see the distinctive architecture of the John Hancock Building and the iconic silhouette of the Fourth Presbyterian Church. A look back at a compilation of images I have shared on this blog in my City Inspirations of Chicago over the year…

Max Mara: January 2016
Max Mara: January 2016
Max Mara:  January 2016
Max Mara: January 2016
Max Mara:  February 2016
Max Mara: February 2016
Fashion In A City:  Max Mara 2016
Max Mara: February 2016
Max Mara: February 2016
Max Mara: February 2016
Max Mara:  March/April
Max Mara: March/April
Max Mara:  April 2016
Max Mara: April 2016
Max Mara:  June 2016
Max Mara: April 2016
Max Mara:  May 2016
Max Mara: April 2016
Max Mara:  May 2016
Max Mara: May 2016
Max Mara:  June 2016
Max Mara: May 2016
Max Mara: June 2016
Max Mara: May 2016
Max Mara: June 2016
Max Mara: June 2016
Max Mara:  July 2016
Max Mara: June 2016
Max Mara:  August 2016
Max Mara: July 2016

 

Max Mara:  June 2016
Max Mara: July 2016
Max Mara:  July 2016
Max Mara: July 2016
Max Mara: July 2016
Max Mara: July 2016
Max Mara:  August 2016
Max Mara: August 2016
Max Mara:  August 2016
Max Mara: August 2016
Max Mara:  August 2016
Max Mara: August 2016
Max Mara:  August 2016
Max Mara: August 2016
Max Mara:  August 2016
Max Mara: August 2016
Max Mara:  August 2016
Max Mara: August 2016
Max Mara: September 2016
Max Mara: September 2016
Max Mara:  September 2016
Max Mara: September 2016
Max Mara:  September 2016
Max Mara: September 2016
Max Mara:  October 2016
Max Mara: October 2016
Max Mara: October 2016
Max Mara: October 2016
Max Mara: October 2016
Max Mara: October 2016
Max Mara:  November 2016
Max Mara: November 2016
Max Mara: November 2016
Max Mara: November 2016
Max Mara:  November 2016
Max Mara: November 2016
Max Mara: December 2016
Max Mara: December 2016
Max Mara: December 2016
Max Mara: December 2016
Max Mara: December 2016
Max Mara: December 2016

As the famous saying goes…“Fashion changes. Style endures”.  Onward, from behind the lens in capturing yet another year of Max Mara. Style will endure from behind the glass panes of visual merchandising to the world that passes by.  Behind the lens of a camera, they are merely images that freeze a moment in time. Fashionable time.  Changing fashion. Enduring style.  The art of fashion and the love of photographing fashion, onward. With Max Mara style….

Onward,

Kristin

For The Love Of Fashion & A City Reflected:  Max Mara 2016/Chicago
For The Love Of Fashion & A City Reflected: Max Mara 2016/Chicago

Behind The Lens: Life In Focus

Composing Life:  Through The Lens
Composing Life: Through The Lens

Life in focus. Perhaps life can be compared to the art of photography. We are like the photographer who peers through the lens, bringing an image intended to capture into focus. Capturing everyday moments, a daily documentation of small details or grand details. Those things in life that impact our life…

In the language of the photographer’s world, it is about the depth of field that you are capturing. Setting the aperture to choose the shutter speed. Whether using a wide angle lens or a telephoto lens, the sharpness of view will determine the picture quality intended to capture. Indeed, like the photographer, life through our lens should not be blurred, but vivid renderings of the life we intend to create. Perhaps rethinking what we focus on. I strongly agree with the phrase “What we focus on expands”. Focus is key. And of the photographs we take while looking through the lens? Reflections and recollections of what our life is and what it represents captured in images. But of today? Images of inspiration through our lenses? For certain. Each passing day, life as we see it. Perception is reality. Composing the image that meets our personal satisfaction and savoring life intensely while doing so. If a photographer is trained to “Freeze the frame of life in order to convey a story”, so too, are we, when we peer through the lens. In some instances, a photographer is said to manipulate reality. Interesting. But what we focus on in life, however, becomes our reality. In the world of visual arts, the basic techniques of photography can be described as “Finding the angles, the theoretical background behind setting up a scene to photograph, using lighting & different types of lenses, cameras and creative techniques that enhance the final outcome”. These techniques showcase how to properly use a camera and creatively interpret and create a stunning image. And of photography in relation to how we live and what we see behind the lens of our own camera? Our own life? Bring it into Focus. Clarity. Knowing what we desire to create and a determination to bring that reality into focus. Yet of key in that journey is the enjoyment along the way. Seize the moment. From behind the lens…

Releasing The Shutter:  Seizing The Moment In Our Lives
Releasing The Shutter: Seizing The Moment In Our Lives
Shots Of LIfe:  Images We Compose Through The Lens
Shots Of LIfe: Images We Compose Through The Lens

To focus on life and the images of life from behind the lens, I would like to share the writing excerpts of photographer Matthew Ferrara:

“Insights come in ordinary moments……. We live in an era of abundance, for which we’re grateful for the opportunities of modern technology. Yet we’re increasingly stressed, overwhelmed, under-rested and distracted- as the endless array of attention-grabbers beep at us…. We must all respond. To update. To upgrade. To announce. To express. To contribute. To engage. To exist in multiple virtual dimensions, and in none at all. Even my camera plays this trick on me. Twenty years ago, my Nikon 2000 had a single focal point in the lens. Align the two halves and your image was in focus. Today, my D7000 has 39 focal points…That’s the paradox. Modern technology can focus on 39 things at once, but does it follow that so can we?….
I take my camera everywhere because it helps me slow down in an otherwise rushed schedule. I stop to look around me, when I know I should be thinking of other things: It’s a struggle…. I can’t keep track any more….I just missed a shot. Life is about taking shots. Not all of them will be great. But you can’t take any shots if you’re not looking thru your lens. Patient and persistent and prepared to seize the moment. Using all 39 points of your tools and skills to improve your chances of success. But ultimately its up to you to release the shutter. We often look ahead and imagine ourselves in the future. We then try to set up the conditions for success. We adjust our stops, speed and sensitivity. We make a few practice tries…and then….something happens. Things start ringing, flashing and whizzing into view. We return to the tempest, our view buffeted everywhere. We risk losing our focus….Somehow, the solution isn’t to organize the overwhelming. It’s to get into focus. To select the frame and concentrate. To choose the people, places and things that will contribute to the big picture. To compose the shots we want to take in our lives.” – Matthew Ferrara

Matthew Ferrara, The KCM Crew
Matthew Ferrara, The KCM Crew
For The Love Of Capturing Images...
For The Love Of Capturing Images…And A Life In Focus…

Mastering the art of framing an image, shooting it and creating the art of life itself. Composing life. One image at a time. Don’t miss a shot. The frame within the viewfinder is yours to select. Our choice. Our life from behind the lens. Every day is our shot of a lifetime. Remember the principle , “what we focus on expands”. A life in focus. An evolving process yet certainly an inspiration to others. Don’t lose focus. And if you do, simply regain clarity. Your choice. Your life. From behind the lens…

Kristin

Myself. "Behind The Lens"
Myself. “Behind The Lens”

“There is only you and your camera. The limitations in your photography are in yourself, for what we see is what we are”- Ernst Haas

“There is a vast difference between taking a picture and making a photograph”- Robert Heinecken

“Large or small, our actions forge our futures, hopefully inspiring others along the way”- Howard Schultz, Starbucks CEO

HOUSE APPEAL: A One Year Visual Reflection

A blogging journey. The first year. I thought I would share compilations that comprise of a few of the 168 blog posts from the first year. A visual look back on the journey of the first year.

Thank you to those that follow my blog and a warm welcome for those that may visit “HOUSE APPEAL”!

Kristin

Floor Mirror/Spiral Staircase/Framed Black & White/Sculptural Bust
Floor Mirror/Spiral Staircase/Framed Black & White/Sculptural Bust
Convex Mirror/Farmhouse Table/Desks/Lanterns
Convex Mirror/Farmhouse Table/Desks/Lanterns
Neon/Antlers/Trophies/Black & Orange
Neon/Antlers/Trophies/Black & Orange
Animal Print/Inspiration Board/Beach House/Chalkboard
Animal Print/Inspiration Board/Beach House/Chalkboard
Copper/Lemons/Fromage/Towering Cakes
Copper/Lemons/Fromage/Towering Cakes
White Shirt/Denim/Anorak/Breton Stripes
White Shirt/Denim/Anorak/Breton Stripes
Winged Eyeliner/Sequins/Black Lace/Red Lipstick
Winged Eyeliner/Sequins/Black Lace/Red Lipstick
Faux Bois/Chiavari Chair/"His & Her"/Equestrian
Faux Bois/Chiavari Chair/”His & Her”/Equestrian
Courtyard/Boxwood/Ivy/Espalier
Courtyard/Boxwood/Ivy/Espalier

Nature As Art: The Enduring Craft Of “Faux Bois”

“Faux Bois” Style

The term “Faux Bois” is French for “False Wood” and has been used as a natural element of design since the 1800’s in France and England. Faux Bois is the spirit of wood grain, an imitation of the rustic texture and characteristics of wood. During a time when exotic woods were expensive and difficult to import, European designers are said to have relied on the talents of artisan craftsman to recreate the look of popular woods of the time, such as rosewood, burl and mahogany. Great strides where taken by these artisans to showcase the difference between these diffferent woods. In France,“rocaillers”, or highly skilled stone craftsmen used a technique called “Ferrocement”, a technique that joins the flexibility of iron (steel) and the resistance of cement, to create wire mesh or rebar framed furniture covered with the application of cement. The cement itself was carved and molded into intertwining shapes of branches or logs, creating a fantasy version of chairs, benches and arbor-like structures. In fact, if one visits the park of Jarin Montessori in Paris, it is said that one will find at the edge of the park wooden bridges, benches and planters sculpted into stone to resemble logs of wood. Perhaps a step into a timeless and almost magical world of concrete. A durable substance that has certainly endured time. The French notion of “Trompe-l’oeil”, the art technique involving realistic imagery to create the optical illusion that the depicted objects exist in three dimensions, can be found in the art form of Faux Bois. A forced perspective of nature.

During the early 20th century, it was the skills and vision of Mexican born artist, Dionisio Rodriguez that brought this European craft and form of sculpting cement to the United States. In Mexico, this art style was referred to as “El Trabjo Rustico” (The Rustic Work) and reflected the sophisticated and refined skills of the French creations. However, it is noted that it differs from European Faux Bois in its more realistic finishes, such as peeling bark, broken branches and even worm holes. Rodriguez’s whimsical creations in America of graining in concrete certainly pay tribute the charm and allure of ancient and weathered wood. Today, his famed creations are carried on by the third generation of Rodriguez’s family in San Antonio, Texas. 100 years of Faux Bois. Quite an enduring craft of family artisans.

The popularity of faux bois began to fade among its collectors after the 1920’s. It was during the age of Modernism and Art Deco that the naturalistic style of Faux Bois declined in its demand. It was not until the turn of the 21st century that the emergence of this naturalistic art form has returned as a prevalent style to grace our interiors and exterior garden spaces. The appeal of bringing elements of Faux Bois into our interiors would be a daily reminder of the natural elements of our external world. It is said that the contemporary creations of Faux Bois style retain the influence of the 18th century designs. These old world techniques employed by artisans provide striking structures, furniture and accessories that provide a world of possibilities to infuse in our own personal domains. Nature brought within. Modern and mass produced versions of this stunning art form of wood graining can be found today in ceramics, cast resins, metals, textiles & rugs, furniture, lighting and wall coverings and even paper. Let’s not forget the fabulous skills of the faux finish painted wall! Endless possibilities to grace our realms with nature…

Art & Nature: Faux Bois Interior Style
Faux Bois Style In The Garden
The Rustic Wood Grain Of Faux Bois In Entertaining & Events

Inspired by the greatest art form, nature, Faux Bois is certainly worth our appreciation and attention. Whether an interplay of twisted tree limbs or the stunning showcase of grains of wood, Faux Bois is an art that echoes nature which can be incorporated into our surroundings, year round, for appreciation and enjoyment. Nature as decor that can be interpreted with unique style with the limitless variety of materials and techniques used today to emulate the appearance of wood. The Art of Woodgraining taken as a stylish statement for the modern interiors, indeed.

And what of “Faux Bois” styled events? Nature appreciated with sophisticated and stylish modern entertaining. Nature presented with elegance and natural flair. A memorable occasion, for certain.

Consider Faux Bois. Whether in its purest and original form or a revision of modern style, perhaps there is an element of “Faux Bois” that can adorn and embellish any interior or exterior space. Nature’s wonders appreciated throughout the year, in style.

Kristin

Acknowledgement Of The “Beautiful Blogger Award”

Earlier this week I was honored to be nominated for the “Beautiful Blogger Award” by Jeni Johnson of the inspiring website http://www.jentendesigns.net, entitled “J&J collections- Sharing Sicily”. Her delightful and stylish site incorporates not only style and decor, but also art & photography. A fresh approach to life and its joys, indeed. Jeni is also an avid follower of my blog, which I am thrilled and pleased to have her in my audience! Thanks, Jeni, for the acknowledgement!

Kristin

The Versatile & Stylish Olive Green “Anorak”

As the seasons change and extra layers are required, perhaps the perfect addition to any wardrobe is the classic anorak. The hooded and rugged style of these practical and versatile jackets are a worthy investment for any wardrobe.

The term “Anorak” and “Parka” have often been used interchangeably, although there are differences between the two garments. “Anoraks” and “Parkas” typically have hoods but an anorak commonly has a cinched drawstring at the waist, are a shorter coat than a “Parka”. A “Parka” is typically longer (knee-length) and is a less fitted jacket that is often lined with real or faux fur for added protection from the elements. The common feature between the two is that they are both usually waterproof or water repellent– perfect for any time of the year!

Of course, a bit of history always brings additional intrigue to the mystique that seems to swell around this durable yet stylish fashionable statement….
The word “Anorak” or anoraq comes from the Greenlandic dialect of the Eskimo-Aluet family known as Kalaallisut. The word anoraq, is losely related to the Intuit languages of Canada and Alaska. The garment was originally made from caribou or seal by the Intuit Eskimo of the Arctic region for protection from the wind chill and wetness experienced while hunting, fishing and kayaking. Who knew? The word “Anorak” did not appear in English until 1924. In the early 1950’s the anorak was made from nylon and in 1959 the fabric was changed to poplin when it was featured in Vouge magazine as a fashion item. During the 1950’s the anorak took on a military influence with variations of the anorak into a ‘Snorkel Parka’(USAF N-3B Parka) made for the US Air Force. Interestingly, the term ‘Snorkel Parka’ took its name from the hood that could be zipped up leaving only a small tunnel (or snorkel) for the wearer to look out of. Originally this parka was made with a sage green DuPont flight silk nylon outer and lining with a wool blanket type material. During the 1970’s the padding was changed to polyester, making the jacket lighter and warmer. The outer shell material was altered to a sage green cotton-nylon blend. In 1951 the United States Army created the M-51 “Fishtail Parka“. This parka had a longer tail in the back (thus, fishtail) and a hood that could be folded down inside the jacket collar when not in use. The updated M-65 Fishtail Parka had a detachable hood. Both parkas were designed primarily for combat and to be worn over other layers of clothing. Of interest, the British English term, Cagoule,cagoul or kagoule is a term for a lightweight, weatherproof anorak or parka, usually without the lining and sometimes coming to the knee. By the 1960’s the cagoule was designed to be rolled up into a very compact package and carried. Portable and versatile fashion, indeed! In the 1960’s UK, the Fishtail Parka was said to be a “Symbol of the mod subculture”. It is also stated that in the UK, during the 1970’s and 1980’s, the Snorkel Parka attained popularity when inexpensive versions (with the addition of an orange lining) of the parka were made available. The resistant jacket became a popular choice for students and was seen as the ideal garment for protection from the elements and from the effects of riding on the culture’s mod vehicle of choice: the scooter. Again, Who knew? However, as fashion trends change and fade, in the late 1980’s the parka became unpopular as the term also took on the meaning or reference to the word “geek” or “nerd”. Amazing! In fact, the term anorak was used in 1984 by the UK Observer Newspaper as an alternative term for trainspotters, of whom were not interested in fashion. In British slang the term anorak also referred to a person who had a very strong interest, perhaps on the verge of obsessive, in “niche” subjects. The term itself seemed to have taken on a derogatory connotation for any group not interested in fashion and uninterested in their outer appearance or engrossed in activities others found boring. Perhaps the allure of this anorak that has traveled through time has connotations that do not seem to relate to its stylish and versatile offerings to the world of fashion and style today!

Perhaps, we owe the fashionable edge of this garment to iconic British “Supermodel” Kate Moss and the “Grunge Scene” that revitalized the 1990’s fashion scene. Grunge glamour with an anorak, indeed. Kate Moss was a combination of youth and raw, fresh glamour that seemed to pair the unexpected to the unprepared world of fashion. Natural style paired with a bold, radical and unconcealed beauty. Modern, edgy and youthful beauty with pure attitude…

Iconic “Grunge” Glamour: Supermodel Kate Moss
Hooded & Versatile: The Classic Anorak
Stylish Pockets & Drawstrings: The Fashionable Anorak

For men or women of diverse ages, this unisex style statement with its zip front closures, detachable hood, draping lapel, cinched drawstring waist and bevy of cargo pockets to hold essentials provides a no-nonsense approach to outerwear and the elements of nature that fall upon us. The stylish, breathable and sensible lightweight anorak, with its low profile hood and drawstring detailing, paired with its use as a highly weather resistant 4-season jacket lends a sharp look with a lightweight feel. Often found in cotton duck canvas, which is highly wind resistant paired with its packable and portable style, this rugged jacket adds a streamlined and minimalist stance to one’s wardrobe options. Hooded style suitable for all seasons and occasions. A traditional jacket with a heritage and a modern edge when paired with personal fashion styles. Cut in such a way as to provide ample movement and layering, this hooded outerwear jacket presents an allure of urban chic and sleekness. A contemporary edge that certainly goes beyond “Grunge”. Indeed, whether paired with jeans or a more mixed ensemble that verges on glamourous, it is certainly a jacket that one will fall back on for years to come. Is it a trend? A sporty fashion? Or is it a juxtaposition of style? An edgier version and perhaps alternative of the trench coat, this effortless jacket provides a stylish and modern, yet timeless addition to our wardrobes. If it is a ‘trend’, it will be an enduring trend that will not wear out its allure. As always, it is how one wears a garment. Indeed, this can be worn in an elegant fashion. Attitude is perhaps the key in successfully using this garment with heritage

A classic? Although the Anorak has undergone many changes throughout its history, perhaps it can be stated that the anorak has earned classic status in the archives of the fashion world…

Kristin

Acknowledgement Of The “Reader Appreciation Award”

Last week I was honored to be nominated for the “Reader Appreciation Award” by blogger and Interior Designer, Iris of Iris Interiors, LLC (www.irisinteriors.wordpress.com and http://www.iris-interiors.com). Iris has a fantastic website and blog which is certainly an inspiration to me. Iris has stated her goals as a designer on her website so perfectly: “…marrying elegance and current trends to reflect your passion and personality”. My sentiments exactly. Life should be about elegance paired with current flair, reflections of our own passions and personality, indeed.
Thank you, Iris, for this acknowledgement!

Inspired by the grand flower incorporated onto the logo of this award, my next blog post centers its attention on the majesty of the sunflower itself…

Kristin

Olympic Inspirations Of Personal Determination & Style

Inspired by the sheer determination and drive of the Olympic athletes…
A dream of a lifetime and a lifestyle of choice, a life of training to develop the skills necessary to successfully compete and go for the gold….

It is said that beyond the elite athlete’s physical condition through endurance, commitment and training is the basic skill of visualization to achieve peak performance; achieving goals. We can all relate to that aspect of the Olympian’s journey. An appreciation of their ability to surpass the intense pressure, anxieties and possible fears of failure are life’s lessons for us all. Consistent mental training paired with intense physical training is the stated key to their success. The Olympic spirit of these athletes is immersed in expectations, determination, strength, endurance, coordination and focus. Intense focus and drive. Again, life’s lessons for us all. Perhaps, as we admire and ponder in awe at the accomplishments of the athletes of the 2012 Summer Olympics, and of those that came before them and those that will yet claim the Olympic medals of achievement, we can gain a renewed appreciation for the skills they developed and utilized to achieve a dream of a lifetime. A golden experience, indeed. Perhaps their self-motivation and laser-like focus can inspire us all within our own lives to act, set goals, accept failures and strive onward to meet our own personal goals and dreams. Focussing not on the struggles and challenges ahead, but rather, thriving in the journey itself as we set our sights on the end goal. Responsibility, accountability and consequences.

Life is certainly our own journey and the gold we strive for is our personal aspirations that may change through time. The goal is not the end result but the journey. Congratulations to the Olympians and to those that are inspired to emulate their personal determination. Live life with drive and intensity. And do so in style.

Kristin

“The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not winning but taking part; the essential thing in life is not conquering but fighting well”
– Pierre de Coubertin (founder of the modern Olympic Games)

The Enduring Fascination Of Architectural Salvage

Fragments Of History: Architectural Salvage

Oh, the thrill of the hunt! The sourcing of interesting vintage and timeworn elements to add interest to our spaces is certainly thrilling. Perhaps there is no other time than Summer and Fall in which some of us peruse the many paths lined with tables at flea markets selling vintage wares, our eyes scanning what is ahead so as not to miss that glorious treasure. Or, perhaps, we are fortunate to have near us an architectural salvage warehouse that lures us inward throughout the year. Possibilities with vintage treasures and elements of the past. The glory and fascination of architectural salvage. Architectural Salvage is the reclamation or reuse of architectural materials. Dignifying the past that carries with it a history of the past. Timeworn and perhaps with the one-of-a-kind nature of salvage, the artifacts of eclectic variety that can be found within the vast spaces of architectural salvage warehouses, within the open air antique flea markets or quaint antique stores, can uniquely fill our interiors and exteriors with character and a sense of timelessness. Historied and unique, indeed.

Salvage found in architectural salvage warehouses are typically elements removed from buildings slated for demolition that often cannot be prevented. Alas, the sad disappearance of vintage structures have found their remnants in this go-green movement of reuse and reclaim! The promotion of reuse of materials and the promotion of restoration is the goal with preserving the history and integrity of the buildings and the jewels that are found within. Inspiration abounds in these warehouses that hold these treasures!

The removal of significant elements and details of architecture from houses, churches and commercial properties is certainly an exciting concept to reduce the impact of the loss of these structures. A vast array of materials range from aged barn wood flooring, doors, fireplace mantles, claw foot tubs, ornate radiators, handcrafted decorative hardware, windows, lighting, wrought iron pieces, pillars, porch posts and columns, railings, shutters, fretwork, pediments, trim, tin ceilings, and a multitude of unusual building ornamentation, including entrances and staircases. The array of vintage interior and exterior light fixtures, including chandeliers, is stunning. Lots filled with garden implements, such as urns, statuary and fountains sit among the piles of old brick, cobblestone, marble, terra cotta and iron. All of these elements providing tremendous possibilities and options for contractors, designers, artists and the intrigued homeowner. Again, possibilities are endless!

The world of salvage is a treasure trove of choices of feasible and imaginable details to incorporate into our own private or commercial spaces. History with a purpose. For those whose spaces lack architectural interest and details, the addition of these timeworn and aged details will surely add to creating a unique atmosphere that not only adds interest, but also reflects your own individual style. The addition of these details in properties that already have the vintage character and charm can only embellish and add further intrigue. Architectural elements, when used appropriately, will add classic and enduring appeal, indeed.

Treasure Trove: Architectural Salvage Yards
Storied Past: Elements of History
Architectural Inspirations: Salvage In The Interiors
Style Of Substance: Architectural Details

Consider the world of architectural salvage. Source these architectural warehouses for a journey into the past that will inspire you to create a new future with their worn charm and patina. Perhaps simply appreciating the craftsmanship and artistry of these artistic elements is sufficient. The craftsmanship alone of the elements that line the walls and ceilings of these warehouses is an inspiration for us all. The visual heft and subtance of these pieces and their history will carry them through our own personal history with them. Their appeal and timelessness will never fade away. Indeed, whether a modern and contemporary space or a traditional setting, there is an architectural element for every space. Chosen carefully, these details will not only add character, but will perhaps become a showpiece in your spaces. Rethink, reuse and restyle with the past. Elements of history and fragments of the past. Timeless. Life can certainly be embellished with the details…

Kristin

“Architecture is an art when one consciously or unconsciously creates aesthetic emotion in the atmosphere and when this environment produces well being” – Luis Barragan