A New Year Celebration: 5 Years of House Appeal!

January 2012-January 2017:  5 Years Of House Appeal
January 2012-January 2017: 5 Years Of House Appeal

Another milestone. 5 Years of a blog that began in January of 2012. 5 Years of sharing. Five years of compiling images. From behind my lens and sourced from the vast world of the internet.  All with the continuing goal of delving deeper into creating a greater appreciation of what surrounds. Life is a gift. Attitude is destiny.  Appreciation and gratitude is a worthy goal, indeed.

Thank you to each and every one of you that have stumbled upon this blog and have followed along on my journey of sharing and expounding on those things that comprise our world and our lives. With the intent of redefining appreciation for what surrounds us in all aspects of life.  Awaiting our focus. Perhaps it is a greater awareness that brings furthered appreciation. For certain, in every moment there is something beautiful to focus on.  Something to find appreciation for or merely gain a renewed appreciation upon connecting historical background. Renewed perspective. Life moves swiftly. What better goal in our daily lives than to look at the world closer. Ponder with appreciation what surrounds. Ponder what is beautiful, timeless and enduring…

It was in 2014 that I had deemed the word “Onward” as my mantra. In 2017 that word still holds true. A word that is defined as “In a continuing forward direction; ahead” and “going further than coming to an end or halt; moving forward”.  Since 2012 my life has changed vastly. I made personal choices and decisions in 2015 that would change my life forever. Yet change is good. Deciding to make changes, no matter how difficult the journey through them, and actually following through with those decisions, is the key. When you know without any doubts that you are forging in the right direction, it is merely owning the challenges every step of the way. Moving forward. Moving onward. Never doubting yourself. That, therein, is personal growth. Onward, indeed.

So for a blog that covers the world of fashion, interior design, nature, life’s events and city inspirations…onward with the goal of inspiring with ponderings and inspirations of living a beautiful life. Although the blog posts have lessened, the desire to share has not faded. That passion will never fade.

Thank you for being a part of the journey thus far. Onward to inspire…

Onward,

Kristin Abrahamsen


“You must do the things you think you cannot do” – Eleanor Roosevelt

Selfie.  New Years Eve, 2016
Selfie. New Years Eve, 2016

New Year. New Opportunities. 2017.

Chicago
Chicago.  New Years Eve, 2016.  KDA

 

“The book is called opportunity and its first chapter is New Year’s Day”

-Edith Lovejoy Pierce

So it is a New Year. New beginnings. New opportunities. New challenges and changes. 365 days of opportunities in which to grow, be inspired and change. Holding to our commitments. Celebrating our successes and forging onward when we stumble. Onward. Always.  Each day ahead is an opportunity to find appreciation and dwell in gratitudes. Onward in all of that…Happy New Year.  Happy new beginnings.  It’s a brand new year.  Forward we go.  Upward and onward, indeed…

Onward,

Kristin

Christmas Wishes…

christmas 2016.JPG

This Christmas,  consider the gifts that have been bestowed upon you that do not have a price tag. Consider with appreciation the simple joys of life that surround you and the beliefs you hold in the future that will inspire you forward.  Belief. Trust, Faith and confidence in someone or something. As Christmas is upon us and a year’s end approaches, find appreciation and joy in the past and present moments that you were gifted to experience.  For life itself is a gift.  And of the future? Believe in the good things that are in front of you and that await you.  Life changes.  We change.  So at Christmas and beyond, always believe….

“I believe, I believe.  It’s silly, but I believe” – Miracle On 34th Street

Wishing you and yours  joy and peace at Christmas…

Onward,

Kristin. Abrahamsen

2016 Travel Reflections To A City I Adore: Chicago

Train Tickets To Chicago:  January, February, March & April
Train Tickets To Chicago: January, February, March & April 2016

Travel. Twelve months of traveling by train to the great city of Chicago with a single purpose: seeking and finding inspiration from behind the lens. Energized by the city streets. City love.  From behind the lens. For three years now I have not missed a month by train to my downtown oasis with the purpose of photographing a city and its offerings (and yes, fashion).   This year, I decided to capture the moment of traveling from the simple lens of my iPhone. Each ticket. Each journey. My visual escape with intent. To travel, even if the distance is short by a city’s Metra train, is to expand your world. To travel is to change your viewpoint. To change your state of mind. To travel is to see the world beyond your immediate reality. To travel is to dream. To wish. Collecting moments that last a lifetime. To take yourself on a journey.  And that is a beautiful and worthwhile experience and venture.


“I think one travels more usefully when they travel alone, because they reflect more”

– Thomas Jefferson

My Destination...Chicago
My Destination…Chicago

And of these train journey’s of mine? Solo.  For it is when you travel alone that you gain deeper insights and clarity. Moments to be alone in the vastness of your changing surrounds. There is comfort. There is peace in being alone.  Confidently moving forward wherever your feet may take you. That is just what each journey provided. A path for me to wander freely through the city streets. My own journey to discover and in the process, discover more about myself in the process. I was once told that Chicago was an escape for me. That it is and will always be.  But again, we have the choice to expand our world and be exposed to more than what is immediate in our worlds. Create the state; don’t wait.  I choose to loose myself in what gives me joy and inspiration. The city of Chicago. Onward in that. One day it may be a different city.  Change always lies ahead. 2016 was full of change for me.  Embrace the changes and forge onward, always.

Years ago, upon graduating college, I was asked to provide a quote for incoming freshman. Simply stated, it still stands true today for me and has followed me as a constant truth through the years:

Learn as much as you can.
Expand your horizons, and be yourself.

Opportunity. Opportunity to learn, to grow, to expand our horizons.  All the while being confident in who you are. Always being true to yourself. That therein is a beautiful life goal. Every day is truly a gift. Every day is ours to discover and embrace. Always seek to find something beautiful. Something inspiring. Perspective, indeed…

Train Tickets To Chicago:  May, June, July & August 2016
Train Tickets To Chicago: May, June, July & August 2016
Train Tickets To Chicago:  September, October, November & December 2016
Train Tickets To Chicago: September, October, November & December 2016

As a year ends and a New Year is about to begin, I challenge you to seek inspiration in the New Year. Move outside of what is familiar and move forward into the unknown in search of expanding your horizon.  Onward. There is always a ticket waiting to be purchased. A means of travel awaiting you. A destination of your own choice is around the horizon. Sometimes, it is merely a simple and short train ride away…

Onward!

Kristin

Inspiration:  What Moves Me
Inspiration: What Moves Me

The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page.” – Saint Augustine

Chicago and Me. 2016
Chicago and Me. 2016

City Inspirations Year In Review: Fashionable Windows Of Chicago 2016

January, February, March & April 2016
January, February, March & April 2016

City inspirations. A year in review. A year of fashionable visuals photographed from behind my lens and compiled to inspire.  Three years of photographing a city and its fashionable windows each month. The Windy City of Chicago and art of fashion. A monthly journey to the great city with the purpose and intent to capture fashion’s changing scene. The essence of each month’s visual and fashionable change. A visual journey of fashionable form and fashionable style. The art of visual merchandising. Whether timeless and classic or whimsical fantasy, fashion continues to inspire and excite.  My love and appreciation for fashion continues.  Enduringly so…from behind the lens.

For all of those that have followed along in my visual journey, onward into a New Year of fashion ahead in Chicago.  Fortunate am I to have access to this great city by Lake Michigan. To endure the seasons of this city over time holds a treasure in my memories of each one of these monthly jaunts.  I recall them with fondness.  Moments in time of fashion captured from behind the lens of a camera.  Fashion, onward...

May, June, July & August 2016
May, June, July & August 2016
September, October, November & December 2016
September, October, November & December 2016

Below…the months in review. One of the many compilations of fashionable style composed in each month.  Follow the links to view the full monthly post for further inspiration.

Fashion's Windows Of Chicago In January
Fashion’s Windows Of Chicago/January 2016

January 2016

Fashionable Windows In February 2016
Fashionable Windows Of Chicago/February 2016

February 2016

Fashionable Windows In March 2016
Fashionable Windows Of Chicago/March 2016

March 2016

Fashionable Windows In Chicago April 2016
Fashionable Windows In Chicago /April 2016

April 2016

Fashionable Windows In May 2016
Fashionable Windows  Of Chicago/May 2016

May 2016

Fashionable Windows In June 2016
Fashionable Windows Of Chicago /June 2016

June 2016

Fashionable Windows In July 2016
Fashionable Windows Of Chicago /July 2016

July 2016

Fashionable Windows In August 2016
Fashionable Windows/August 2016

August 2016

Fashionable Windows In September 2016
Fashionable Windows Of Chicago/September 2016

September 2016

Fashionable Windows In October
Fashionable Windows Of Chicago/October 2016

October 2016

Fashionable Windows In November 2016
Fashionable Windows Of Chicago /November 2016

November 2016

Fashionable Windows In December 2016
Fashionable Windows Of Chicago/December 2016

December 2016

Consider with appreciation the fashionable world that surrounds you. With a renewed perspective, look closer at the visuals presented. An art form of window dressing with mannequins of visual delight. A changing form of fashion. Perspective of time and place in a world, like fashion, that is constantly changing. At the close of a year, a New Year awaits. It is with anticipation that I await the windows of fashion’s changing scene. Always from behind the lens. Always with appreciation. And always, Onward

Onward,

Kristin

“Fashion changes but style endures”- Coco Chanel

Behind the Lens...Selfie
Behind the Lens…Chicago Selfie 2016

City Inspirations: Fashionable Windows Of Chicago In December

From the Windows Of Chicago:  Fashion In December
From the Windows Of Chicago: Fashion In December

Chicago in December. Magical. Although my early December trek through the Windy City was not in the full swing and frenzy of the mass of Holiday shoppers as it would be in late December, the streets were certainly filled with those pondering or embarking upon their Christmas and Holiday lists. The holiday season in the great city of Chicago. Excitement always fills the air when one ventures onto the streets of any city. Yet the holidays seem to bring a different festive spirit that is fueled by the festooned buildings and lighted trees bedecked in holiday greens with twinkling lights…city wonderment, indeed…

Bedecked With Holiday Greens & Lights:  The Chicago Tribune Building, Michigan Avenue
Bedecked With Holiday Greens & Lights: The Chicago Tribune Building, Michigan Avenue

The embellishment of crimson red and boughs of pine against the backdrop of Chicago was a stunning view to behold. For certain, I adore this city in all seasons.

Oh, how I love and adore this city and the color red…

Chicago In December
Chicago In December

Of the fashion that filled the windows through the city and on the Magnificent Mile? Delightful. Some more festive than others, but each a representational of holiday flare and style. Fashion and its season’s presented in a visual compilation from behind my lens…

I begin with Holiday fantasy behind the windows of Neiman Marcus…Cheers to the mannequin and the artistry of visual merchandising!  “A little bit of  fantasy…”, indeed…

Fantasy & Fashion:  Neiman Marcus Elegance
Fantasy & Fashion: Neiman Marcus Elegance
Holiday Elegance Behind The Windows Of Neiman Marcus
Holiday Elegance Behind The Windows Of Neiman Marcus
Enticing Windows Of Holiday Appeal:  Neiman Marcus
Enticing Windows Of Holiday Appeal: Neiman Marcus
Enticing Windows Of Holiday Appeal:  Neiman Marcus
Enticing Windows Of Holiday Appeal: Neiman Marcus
Louis Vuitton...Holiday Style
Louis Vuitton…Holiday Style
White & Black: Winter Delights
White & Black: Winter Delights
Michael Kors:  Shiny, Bright & Classic
Michael Kors: Shiny, Bright & Classic
Moncler:  Winter Delights In Tweed & Fur
Moncler: Winter Delights In Tweed & Fur
Prada:  Holiday Delights Of Fashionable Appeal
Prada: Holiday Delights Of Fashionable Appeal
Holiday Style: Prada Style
Holiday Style: Prada Style
Macy's State Street:  Homage To Chicago
Macy’s State Street: Homage To Chicago
Macy's State Street:  Homage To Chicago
Macy’s State Street: Homage To Chicago
Macy's State Street:  Homage To Chicago
Macy’s State Street: Homage To Chicago
Party Ready At Hugo Boss
Party Ready At Hugo Boss
Red, Red Delight:  Burberry
Red, Red Delight: Burberry
From The Windows Of Burberry...
From The Windows Of Burberry…
Salvatore Ferragamo:  Red & Gold Delights
Salvatore Ferragamo: Red & Gold Delights
Golden Treasures:  Salvatore Ferragamo
Golden Treasures: Salvatore Ferragamo
“Land Of 1,000 Delights”….Magic Behind Saks Fifth Avenue
Golden Delights:  Saks Fifth Avenue's Holiday Style
Golden Delights: Saks Fifth Avenue’s Holiday Style
Golden Palms Behind Tommy Bahama
Golden Palms, Comfort & Holiday Style
Max Mara:  An Abstract Holiday
Max Mara: An Abstract Holiday

A word about the windows of Max Mara. Typically my favorite windows.  Yet unexpected was the abstract Holiday window in unexpected hues. Regardless, Holiday-esque it certainly alludes to. And of the white and black topped hats? A love behind my lens, for certain…

The Fashionable Windows Of Max Mara
The Fashionable Windows Of Max Mara
The Fashionable Windows Of Max Mara
The Fashionable Windows Of Max Mara
Black & White Delight:  Max Mara
Black & White Delight: Max Mara
Black & White Delight:  Max Mara
Black & White Delight: Max Mara
Style & A City Reflected:  Max Mara
Style & A City Reflected: Max Mara
Stylish Impact:  Max Mara
Stylish Impact: Max Mara
Stylish Toppers, Max Mara Style
Stylish Toppers, Max Mara Style

Perhaps beyond the Holiday visual, a visual conjured up of an escape to warmer temperatures behind the windows of Chanel on Michigan Avenue…

The Windows Of Chanel...
The Windows Of Chanel…
Walk This Way:  Chanel
Walk This Way: Chanel
Tod's Circus:  Defining Visual Of Style
Tod’s Circus: Defining Visual Of Style
Snow White Behind Tom Ford
Snow White Behind Tom Ford
Crimson Red & Escada Style
Crimson Red & Escada Style
Fashion Captured From Behind My Lens...In Black & White
Fashion Captured From Behind My Lens…In Black & White

From behind the lens my eye will never tire to seek and capture a mere visual of the artistry of fashion and its windows that seek to beckon those that pass by. Onward to another year of capturing fashion and a city ahead. For one who has photographed the fashionable windows of Chicago every single month for over 3 years…onward!

Inspiration and fashion, Onward, indeed…

Onward,

Kristin

 

“Photography can only represent the present.  Once photographed, the subject becomes part of the past”- Berenice Abbott

Reflected:  Fashion & The Photographer's Selfie
Myself Captured in Reflection: Fashion & The Photographer’s Selfie.

Gratitude on Thanksgiving…

Gratitudes and Thankfulness
Gratitudes and Thankfulness

“Thankfulness is the beginning of Happiness” – Anon.

Thanksgiving.  Simply stated.  Gratitude.  Perhaps there is no other moment during the year when we are urged to contemplate and find gratitude.  Thankfulness.  What a wonderful virtue and focus to find appreciation, gratitude and thankfulness for our life and the gifts within our life.  Gratitude really does turn what we have into enough.  May your Thanksgiving holiday serve as a reminder to you today, and each and every day, that thankfulness truly is the beginning of happiness. Onward in that.  Onward in appreciation, thankfulness and gratitude…

Onward,

Kristin

City Inspirations: Fashionable Windows Of Chicago In November

Fashionable Chicago In November
Fashionable Chicago In November

Chicago. Fashionable inspirations behind the windows of fashion. To photograph a city and its windows shortly after a World Series win by the great Chicago Cubs was memorable. After a city celebration and massively attended parade for our World Series champs, the city took on a camaraderie that was moving. The excitement in the air penetrated all those that walked the streets while strutting with Cubs blue, white and red attire. Beyond that, the storefronts proclaimed victory and acknowledgement for the team that Chicago has stood by relentlessly. Faithful for the red, blue and white. An iconic moment in time, indeed….Onward, Chicago Cubs!

A City In Celebration:  Chicago & The Chicago Cubs/
A City In Celebration: Chicago & The Chicago Cubs/”Fly The W”

Fashion’s windows showcased the winning team with a fashionable nod to the Cubs. “Make some noise”, Chicago did. And the “W” flag? “Fly The W” was everywhere. This moment in time will be marked in my memories as a unique moment to be in Chicago…

Neiman Marcus:
Neiman Marcus: “Make Some Noise”/ A Nod To The Chicago Cubs World Series
Celebration Bus Post World Series Celebration Parade:  Tourists On Michigan Avenue
Celebration Bus Post World Series Celebration Parade: Tourists On Michigan Avenue
Oak Street & Rush Street:
Oak Street & Rush Street: “Fly The W”

Of the windows of fashion in November, hints of the holiday’s arrival filled the storefronts. Layers of warmth and fur lined appeal paired with Fall and Winter’s accessories on stylish display. November brings the Autumnal season to a brisk end as the leaves drop and the bare trees will soon be filled with twinkling holiday lights. The holiday’s are upon us. A compilation of fashion’s presentations from behind the large glass panes awaits.  From behind the lens of my camera, onward…

Fall's Neutral Fashionable Appeal On Oak Street
Fall’s Neutral Fashionable Appeal On Oak Street
Distinctively Poised Style:  Versace
Distinctively Poised Style: Versace
Party Festive Display:  Burberry
Party Festive Display: Burberry
Holiday Festivity Appeal:  Burberry
Holiday Festivity Appeal: Burberry
Michael Kors:  Sparkle, Shine & Warmth
Michael Kors: Sparkle, Shine & Warmth
Accessories & Embellishments:  Michael  Kors
Accessories & Embellishments: Michael Kors
Black & White Fashionable Delight Behind Barney's
Black & White Fashionable Delight Behind Barney’s
Winter Ready:  Max Mara
Winter Ready: Max Mara
Fur Layered Warmth Behind Max Mara
Fur Layered Warmth Behind Max Mara
Window Appeal:  Max Mara In Layers Of Fashionable Style
Window Appeal: Max Mara In Layers Of Fashionable Style
Layered Warmth Of Fashion:  Max Mara
Layered Warmth Of Fashion: Max Mara
Details Of Fashionable Winter Style:  Max Mara
Details Of Fashionable Winter Style: Max Mara
Pom Pom Topped Delight:  Max Mara
Pom Pom Topped Delight: Max Mara
Fashionable Winter Forecast Behind Max Mara
Fashionable Winter Forecast Behind Max Mara
Sitting In Style:  Max Mara
Sitting In Style: Max Mara
Prada: Hued In  Red, Green & Black
Prada: Hued In Red, Green & Black
Salvatore Ferragamo:  Autumnal Appeal
Salvatore Ferragamo: Autumnal Appeal
Sequins & Tulle:  Party Ready Behind Marc Jacobs
Sequins & Tulle: Party Ready Behind Marc Jacobs
Visual Delights Of Fashionable Appeal:   Gucci
Visual Delights Of Fashionable Appeal: Gucci
Fashionable Windows: Sax Fifth Avenue & Oscar De La Renta
Fashionable Windows: Sax Fifth Avenue & Oscar De La Renta
Sax Fifth Avenue:  Mannequin Styling/Oscar De La Renta
Sax Fifth Avenue: Mannequin Styling/Oscar De La Renta
Behind Fashionable Windows Of Chicago
Behind Fashionable Windows Of Chicago
Fashionable Display Behind Fashion's Windows
Fashionable Display Behind Fashion’s Windows
Autumnal Hues Of Red & Black:
Autumnal Hues Of Red & Black:
Autumnal Impressions Of Fashion
Autumnal Impressions Of Fashion
Saturated In Holiday Red:  Macy's/State Street
Saturated In Holiday Red: Macy’s/State Street
Fashionable Impressions On The City Street:  Michigan Avenue
Fashionable Impressions On The City Street: Michigan Avenue

Consider with appreciation the fashionable world, in a moment in time, that surrounds. For certain, inspiration in the visual styling and fashionable statements will endure to gain my appreciation from behind the lens. Season’s change and the windows of fashion embark to entice us with changing style. Timeless or trends, appreciation from the shutter of my camera, always….

Holiday’s Onward,

Kristin

Caught In A Fashionable Reflection:
Caught in a fashionable reflection: “Selfie”

The Striking & Enduring Appeal Of Harwood Floors

Hardwood Floors:  Distinctive Interiors With Wood Appeal
Hardwood Floors: Distinctive Interiors With Wood Appeal

Hardwood flooring. Perhaps there is no other interior flooring that not only imbues floors with color and luster but also adds character, warmth and a spacious, visual appeal. Considered one of the most desired and treasured part of a homes décor, hardwood flooring seems to evoke interior richness with a timeless, classic appeal. If wood floors last a lifetime and gain character with age, for certain the newer hardwood flooring options of distressed and hand-scraped hardwoods also will also offer an appealing timeworn appearance.

Hardwoods can vary from blond to black, depending on the type of wood and the finish. Of course, hardwoods also vary in durability, grain patterns and color. The most common hardwoods for solid wood floors are red oak, white oak and maple. Preferred for their hardness and durability, oak, maple, and cherry are among the most common. However, exotic woods such as mahogany and Brazilian cherry are prized for their distinctive striking appearance over durability. Personal design choices, indeed. Of course then there is the style of the wood flooring. Narrow strips (that seem to create the illusion of space), wide boards (which can impart a rustic appeal) and the distinctive, geometric design of parquet floors (which are often found embellishing more formal interiors). All present different effects within an interior. Choices. For those of use fortunate enough to have original hardwood, with its timeworn appeal, we can merely relish its beauty and appeal within our own personal spaces. In  a visual  appreciation of hardwood flooring within the interior world, a compilation of collected images awaits…

Glistening Hardwood Flooring: Interior Delights
Glistening Hardwood Flooring: Interior Delights
Enhancing A Home: Hardwood Flooring
Enhancing A Home: Hardwood Flooring
Warmth & Character:  Hardwood Flooring
Warmth & Character: Hardwood Flooring
Glossy Finish & Hardwood Floors
Glossy Finish & Hardwood Floors
Hardwood Flooring Appeal
Hardwood Flooring Appeal
Hardwood Flooring Delights:  Interior Spaces
Hardwood Flooring Delights: Interior Spaces
Wood Flooring Finishes Within The Interior
Wood Flooring Finishes Within The Interior
Hardwood Distinction Within The Interior
Hardwood Distinction Within The Interior
Beautiful Interest Within The Interior:  Hardwood Floors
Beautiful Interest Within The Interior: Hardwood Floors
Glossy And Visually Spacious:  Hardwood Flooring
Glossy And Visually Spacious: Hardwood Flooring
Light Wood Appeal:  Hardwood Floors
Light Wood Appeal: Hardwood Floors
Hardwood Floors & Interior Design
Hardwood Floors & Interior Design
hardwood-floors-p-12
Interior Appeal With Hardwood Flooring
Timeless Flooring:   Hardwood
Timeless Flooring: Hardwood
Personalized Space:  Atop A Vintage Wood Floor
Personalized Space: Atop A Vintage Wood Floor

Consider the beauty of wood flooring. Distinctive and timeless, the natural wood flooring surface will live on in the world of interior design. My personal love affair with wood floors has endured over time and will surely remain my coveted flooring of choice. For those that prefer the underlaying of carpeting, beauty can also be found in quality fibers underfoot. Yet for me it is the glossy and natural appeal of hardwood flooring that seems to present the perfect backdrop, along with the painted walls within an interior, which sets and presents the decoration of a space and personal display at its best. Onward in appreciation of hardwood floors within the interior. Whether old or new, wood endures with timeless distinction…

Onward,

Kristin

“Like the walls of a room, the floor is a background: It should not furnish the pattern, but set off whatever is placed upon it” – Edith Wharton

A Fashionable Nod to Halloween…

Fashionable Halloween: Models In Guise
Fashionable Halloween: Models In Guise

Halloween. A nod to the occasion with a fashionable appeal on the day in which we transcend ourselves into a world of mystery and fantasy. For me, it is the beauty that I seek from the masqueraded moment. Thus, Fashion. Models. Intrigue. For certain, even Halloween can offer up a beautiful rendering in which to disappear behind a mask that offers fascination and curiosity. Life can be beautiful at all times. Elegance can certainly prevail. Even on Halloween.

Lights & Halloween Vibes:  From The World Of Fashion
Lights & Halloween Vibes: From The World Of Fashion

To those that don a masquerade of style, onward into the night when pumpkins glow in the moonlight…A fashionable halloween, onward
Happy Halloween!  

Onward,

Kristin


“There is magic in the night when pumpkins glow by the moonlight”