photographer's friday: david duncan livingston

david duncan livingston resides in gorgeous marin county of the sf bay area, but he travels all over the world to photograph interiors, landscapes, people and art. he has a great way of telling a story with his artful photo direction and keen sense of style. i have worked with him on several occasions doing photo shoots of my own work (some of which i've blogged about here in the past) and he has taught me a multitude of things: tricks for making the camera capture just the right look and feel of a space, the right color combination and quantity of still life objects to add to a tableau to enhance it rather than detract from it, how to make floral arrangements just the right size and shape to perfect a scene, and how to look for shadows & light in a whole new way. so i suppose this post is as much a thank you to him as it is a showing of his great skill.

also here is a list of books his photography has been published in:


how to host stylish parties, + more

i have become enthralled with a blog i just found called at home with kim vallee.
from her homebase in montreal, kim offers great advice & innovative ideas on everything from kitchen gadgets:

to themed party decor:

to inspiring interior design :

to stylish pet care:
these were just a few of my favorites images, but there are tons of detailed information and tips to explore on her fun blog. enjoy!


a modern side of outdoor furniture

a friend recently asked me about contemporary looks for outdoor furnishings, so i collected a few ideas to share with her and then thought, why not blog this too? just as i told her, even if a particular piece here isn't your favorite there are tons more options available from each of these companies, so their websites are definitely worth a looksie.
(heller's gehry collection has several unique and interesting outdoor furniture pieces. they resemble many of the new archteypes gehry has created with his buildings. the pieces curve and twist, functioning as much as sculpture as they do seating and surfaces. composed of rotationally molded plastic and finished in silver. the collection features a sofa, a bench (doubling as a long low table), two twist cubes (side tables or individual seats), an armchair, three-sided cube, and large coffee table. found on unica home)
(the voltair armchair comes from the plastic-fantastic series by studio jspr. the collection uses vintage and restored pieces in a baroque style and gives them a very contemporary twist ~ each piece has been treated with a special soft skin rubber coating causing the forms to become somewhat homogenized with the unification of a single color. found on retromodern)

(patricia urquiola has designed these gorgeous outdoor tables for kartell. the surface of the "t-table" top alternates fullness and space to create an elegant effect reminiscent of embroidery. it’s available in a clear transparent version or in six different opaque colors, as well as three different heights. first see on mocoloco)

(quinze and milan's club 01 arm lounge is both comfortable and resilient, employing the technology of rigid foam with a special lacquer finish making it resilient and carefree. great for use indoors and out, the club 01 exudes elegance and simplicity)

(eros swivel chair designed by phillipe starck ~ made from polished aluminum and polycarbonate. for a contemporary patio bar i think these would be the perfect fit. found on hive modern)

(constructed with aluminum and covered with woven man-made fiber, belinda, from the in-out collection of charming tables and welcoming armchairs, offers a whimsical alternative to traditional patio furnishing. available in blue, red, yellow, green, and mocha colors, one can mix and match. found at momento italia)


a nursery gets a new look

i just got back from an extended weekend visiting my family in oregon, including my 9 month old niece. what pure joy! i brought up several things from san francisco to re-decorate her nursery. and we had a ton of fun re-arranging, re-organizing, and getting crafty. new curtains, new wall decals, new art, new lamps, and two best friend sisters all make for one very entertaining day with beautiful results. come see for yourself.....
(this is my sister's cute farm cottage in oregon. she is a very talented gardener and every year her house is surrounded and even enveloped with gorgeous blooms and the delicious sweet scent that comes from them. it's a two bedroom one bath house, the perfect size for a small family, and the setting couldn't be better: nestled amongst farm land and oak trees. my niece's bedroom is in the back and had to be converted from my brother-in-law's sports/music/manly room to become a nursery when she was born.)

(above the crib we hung some art and a star lamp. the bottom piece below the star was painted by yours truly. the other two pieces were gifts from other friends and they all just so happen to go together really nicely. also, three of the walls are a soft apricot and one wall is a sage green)

(a new wise little owlie lamp from urban outfitters found its place near the crib)

(i ordered these wall decals from blik and after figuring out what the instructions meant, my sister and i were pleasantly surprised with how easy they were to put up. the branches, leaves, and birds you put on separately so you can really customize them however you want)

(ilia was fascinated by the branches & leaves. a huge success!)

(owl and hedgehog hooks from urban outfitters go up beside the closet. and simple, but lovely homemade curtains adorn the window.)

(an owl and a hedgehog find a new home and get a welcome touch from their new care taker)


it's summertime!

happy summer, officially. it's my favorite season, when the living is easy. i love everything about it, including the word itself. time to relax, bask, enjoy, and celebrate!

robin's egg bliss

i'm all a-flutter for this fabulous color right now!

......and it's all because of this little box. funny how something so small and simple can cause such swooning!


uhuru design

this small design + build furniture company creates sustainable pieces in their red hook brooklyn studio all by hand. uhuru design strives to make furniture and products that are beautiful in their simplicity with an acute awareness of materials and craft. most of their creations use materials that have been reclaimed, recycled, repurposed, reused or otherwise rejected from their original function. definitely worth checking them out!


roses climbing in san francisco

blog break today ~ back tomorrow!


summertime at designer's guild

designer's guild brings another season of gorgeous prints and patterns in lovely, inspiring photo collages.......

(as many of you know i'm not a big fan of pink, so this photo selection might come as a surprise. even though i might prefer to see this with yellows or greens or blues or purples, i still really like the space with the mix of furnishings and textures.)