show & tell (japan part III)

this post features interactive captions - hover over each image for the caption 'dot' to appear.japan haul / show & telljapan haul / show & tell japan haul / show & tell japan haul / show & tell japan haul / show &amp japan haul / show & tell japan haul / show & tell japan haul / show & tell japan haul / show & tell japan haul / show & tell japan haul / show & tell japan haul / show & tell japan haul / show & tell

Just as we prepare for movers to pack everything on Monday morning, I'm admiring all of the new pieces we've added to our home. Japan turned out to be quite the haul of goodies even though we knew we'd be boxing it all up for at least two months. It was so hard to say no!

Looking at each piece I realize why we couldn't help ourselves ... they're all made out of natural materials. Paper, wood, ceramic, glass, enameled cast iron, cotton, and wool - the type of goods that when held feel familiar, comforting, genuine, and that much more special.

I've added descriptions to the caption 'dots' on each image so make sure to check those out. I also searched for websites to share in case you were interested in doing some shopping of your own but the only product I could find sites for was the Noda Horo Tea Kettle. And wow, what a price difference between buying it from Japan and from the US! Luckily there are plenty of Japanese-made treasures worth browsing through this weekend, too. Here are my fave sites to find them:

Analogue Life



Fog Linen

Okay it's time to pack these babies up! Have a great weekend!


show & tell: souvenirs from colombia

made in colombiamade in colombia made in colombia made in colombia made in colombia

What's a trip without bringing home a few souvenirs?

These treasures from Colombia - a beautiful representation of the weaving done by indigenous women of the country - are adding so much life to our home ... and my wardrobe.

The blue cross-body bag's leather was stitched in Bogota but the colorful strap was woven by the Wayuu women who are known for their large bucket-style purses and skillful hamacas. The home accessories were made by women of the Waounan tribe in the department of Choco. The palm fibers used to create these beauties are woven so tightly that the vase piece we bought could hold water without leaking! Amazing.

The one store we loved unfortunately doesn't have a website. Such a shame since their products were all so modern leaning and tastefully done and displayed. But, if you find yourself in Cartagena, their address and phone is below. If you'd like to shop for a vase of your own online, here are some shops that carry an assortment: one, two, three.

Colombia Artesanal Centro, Callejon De Los Estribos No. 2-40, Cartagena 301-788-8108

{show & tell} LA souvenirs

The best part about traveling? Coming home and unloading your loot! I've had my mind and eyes on a few things so I took advantage of being in LA to tick them off my list. And here they are....

The Old:

An antique hourglass from my mama that she dug up when we went through her storage. Joe always played with it when he was at my folks' house so she let me bring it back for him. Aawwwww...

An old brass bottle opener in the form of a Pre-Columbian figure from my grandpa. The last time I visited him in Colombia I asked him to take me to wherever they sold "old stuff". He thought I was crazy but now he gets me.

Plastic Plates from POKETO that Joe bought for me when I moved into my own apartment (oh how I loved my DTLA studio!). Now they'll be perfect for our BBQ meals by the pool and if you like them, they're still in stock!

The New:

I was so excited when Everlane launched their collection of luxury basics several months ago. Not just because everything is under $100 but because most (if not all?) items are made in the USA. They don't currently ship internationally so I ordered a tank for me and a t-shirt for Joe but I really should have stocked up!

It's still bikini season where I am so I was on the look out for a new suite. I found my perfect set at Undrest by the Sea in Venice. Since the bikini was on sale I splurged on the shorts. I love the knit fabric and the Brazillian cut - and they're each made in LA so extra extra brownie points, had to support! I think the swimwear sale is still happening online so hurry, click click click!

I recently got new Moo business cards so naturally I needed something to put them in. The EAYSRLEE wallet is perfect in design, quality, and function. I've completely ditched my big wallet for it since I can stuff it in my pocket and go. I bought it through Of A Kind so you just know that it's 100% indie-designer goodness.

Chunky or statement necklaces are what I'm good at collecting but sometimes a girl needs something simple. I've been searching for a small pendant that I could wear every day and I fell in love with this golden nugget necklace by Timka Jewelry. She has a table on Abbott Kinney in Venice and is there every weekend selling her designs at 30% off. SOLD!

And last but not least, my new travel companion: the awesome upcycled leather passport holder by ECO PARTY MEARRY purchased at POKETO's new shop in DTLA's Arts District (see, here's proof that I was there!) I've been wanting one easy place to keep my boarding pass stubs and receipts while traveling and this one does it all in style!

The new case will come in handy tomorrow when Joe's packs me in his suitcase for a business trip to London (eeee!!!) I can't believe that we get to go back to visit our other home city - it's going to feel so great. Better dust off my sweaters, polish those boots, and, of course, make sure to save some room for more souvenirs ;)


{show & tell} three new things

show and tellshow and tell show and tell

One of the fun things about moving to a new city or country is discovering new products and stores to shop from. Here are three of my recent finds:

Albarcas (or Menorquinas) - a traditional Spanish leather sandal that I struggled to find while in Spain. At first I thought they were a little funky but then I fell in love with the minimalist styling and durability - you can tell that locals wear theirs out for years! I recently picked up a pair by Little Abarcas who sells in Malaysia and Singapore but you can shop online for USA and international here here and here. With TOMS and J.Crew making the espadrille slip-on style popular with the US market I can totally see these becoming the next summer must have. Handcrafted, classic, and comfortable - that's one fashion craze that I'm happy to support!

Rice plant art object - my heart (and eyes) did a happy dance when I walked into The Jekyll & Hyde Project shop. If design, fun, form and function lived in one happy little accessories heaven then this is it. I wanted to buy everything in there because it was all useful AND crazy cool. But, I kept my wallet in check and just bought the rice plant object that I thought would be a nice zen piece/paperweight for my desk. Check out this product page for an animation of how it's so nice, even if the "wind" is just my air conditioning.

Embroidered zip pouch - you know that "little Ikea" that I mentioned we found? Well right next to it was a table full of handmade goodies by women refugees from Myanmar. I picked up a leaflet to learn more about their work and after I get a few projects out of the way this month I'm going to learn what I can about it. This part of the world is full of amazing textile heritage and skill - I'm definitely intrigued.


{show & tell} collected

collected jewelry by Ana Maria Munozcollected jewelry by Ana Maria Munoz collected jewelry by Ana Maria Munoz collected jewelry by Ana Maria Munoz collected jewelry by Ana Maria Munoz collected jewelry by Ana Maria Munoz

Okay so I did do one thing this weekend despite having a banged up foot: I finally organized my jewelry and by organize I mean I finally took the tape off of this hanging storage thing I keep it in. With every tape-rip and pull it was as if I was liberating each piece so that it could be enjoyed the way it was intend. I say this all the time but I really should wear my jewelry more often. I've been steadily growing my collection of wearable art for years finding them at flea markets, yard sales, charity shops, during travels, and even making them myself. Each one of them has a story or memory and feels extra special since it was found rather than picked off a's how I like to shop and it's how I like to remember the places I have been.

Shortly after I took these photos I caught up with Sussie Bubble's fashion blog and then it hit me. The problem with having a collection of unique pieces (and plastering them all over my blog) is that I can end up sounding like the type of annoying world traveler she describes in a recent post:

"Oh this old thing?  I picked it up in a random market in Thailand when I went travelling around Asia" which vaguely translates to "You will never find this awesome thing I have on because I bought it in an obscure and far-flung place, which is my little secret..." 

After reading this I thought, oh geez, am I that type of person? I mean, I can recall a few sarcastic comments from friends back home whenever they'd ask about a piece and I'd say it was vintage but now add the new "world traveler" aspect of my life and it sounds even worse! What can I do though, it is what it is right? If I were re-modeling a house, going to school, training for a marathon, or making babies then I would be blogging about those things. These days I'm living as an expat who travels a lot and as Sussie puts it "the world is getting smaller". Collecting treasures from different places is bound to happen.

I think her post really hit home since I'm still in disbelief of where life has brought us (I'm sitting in a hotel room in Bangkok for crying out loud!). I don't ever want to take any of it for granted and I want to keep finding new treasures that excite and create conversation...even if it's at the risk of being labeled one of those types. Some things are too fun and beautiful to not share and at the end of the day, that's what this blog is all about - sharing the things I see, do, enjoy, and love, with you.  One day I'll have other things to blog about but for now, this is what's happening. Jewelry stash and all.


{show & tell} LA souvenirs

la show and tellla show and tell la show and tell la show and tell la show and tell la show and tell la show and tell

After returning from our visit to LA a few weeks ago it really hit me that London is my new home home. Los Angeles is where I'm from but when I unpacked souvenirs from the trip like gifts from friends and found storage items, I did so in our London flat - our home. It's been really strange to go back and forth between calling LA and London home...I only really ever had one to consider. When strangers ask me where I'm from they inevitably follow up with "which place do you prefer?" That used to be an easy question to answer but I genuinely love and enjoy different things about each city. Also, they're apples and oranges so it's practically impossible to give a straight answer. I often think back to the metro rides to/from work in LA while Joe was living here for a month before I joined him. I would listen to Edward Sharp & The Magnetic Zero's song home on replay and remind myself why I was leaving the only home I had ever known. Now when I look at some of the goodies I brought back from LA (and Joe's hometown, Anchorage) I think yes, "home is wherever I'm with you" but it does help to have a few personal mementos to remind you of your roots...or at least from the shops where your roots are ;)

Images from top/bottom left/right: card by The Great Lakes Goods bought at Lula Mae prescription glasses, frames by Chanel bought at Specstacular 1986 Ovation guitar, gift from Joe's parents ballet flats by TOMS, gift from friends (no a child will not receive the same ballet flats, click here to learn about TOMS's One for One) vintage dress bought at Shareen Vintage art square by a former co-worker's talented mother childhood photo of Joe, we'll get the entire album next time joe's ID bracelet from when he was six years old. fits me perfectly and of awesome CA necklace from one of my besties, Vikki



{show & tell} souvenirs from marrakech + giveaway!

marrakech souvenirs marrakech souvenirs marrakech souvenirs marrakech souvenirs marrakech souvenirs marrakech souvenirs marrakech souvenirs marrakech souvenirs marrakech souvenirs marrakech souvenirs

I've been thinking of what to pack for our visit to LA and I'm pretty sure I've forgotten how to dress for 60/70 degree weather - it's going to feel like summertime to me but just how much??? I do know, however, that I'll be taking a few souvenirs from Morocco for family and friends. Weeks after our trip to Marrakech, I still find myself totally inspired by the city's colors, patterns, and textures. Thankfully we brought back a few things to keep the design love going and boy am I enjoying them.

It's hard to pick a favorite but if I base it on what I use the most, the leather slippers are it.  After seeing tons of traditional pointy-toe or heel-less styles, these caught my attention with their modern silhouette and ultra bright colors. On closer inspection, you can see the handmade details in the contrast stitching and pen outlines on the sole. It's details like these that reeeaaaaally make my heart sing.

We did find a rug after all and I cannot wait to get it cleaned, roll it out, and enjoy it - such a tease having it just sit there. It's a vintage Berber rug and we spent a good amount of time choosing it while sitting amongst hundreds of colorful woven beauties and drinking sweet mint tea. I totally envision styling it something like this in our future's a lifetime souvenir for sure.

Two other exciting finds were a solid brass antique camel with the coolest designs ever and a hand-carved aluminum mirror that now helps keep the feng shui flowing in my office/guest room/closet. Apparently your back should never face the door but you can correct it with a mirror. I think it's a nice complement to the diy wall display, too.

And those rad leather tassels? Those were a gift from the rug merchant and now I will give one of them to you! Put it on your purse, car rearview mirror, door handle, use as a (very large) key chain, or even jazz up a curtain tie with it - there are so many ways you can have fun with it.

If you'd like a shot at winning the tassel simply comment below with your favorite souvenir of all time; truck stop convenience store finds totally count too. I'll pick a winner at random next Thursday and ship it to you asap!

Yay free stuff!



{show & tell} car boot sale finds

show and tell: car boot sale One of the things that I miss about LA is driving past yard sale signs, slamming on the breaks, and parking the car to go hunting for new (to me) items on the cheap. Though I know that I'm not guaranteed to find anything vintage, yards sales are a great way to buy second-hand goodies without having to dig through a thrift store. In fact, yard sales, vintage/thrift stores, Craigslist, and flea markets have always been my main source for home-decor shopping. I guess I just really enjoy the satisfaction of finding something rather than picking one-of-many off the shelf.

This Saturday morning was perfect for a yard sale. It was bright and crisp but the only thing missing was, errr, a yard sale. In London - due to the obvious lack of lawn space - they have community car boot sales instead. These sales, often located in church or school lots, began with people hawking items directly from the trunks (or boots) of their cars. Now the norm is to set up tables or lay everything on the floor or on a blanket. This was only my second car boot sale but I've quickly learned that to find even one thing that you like, want, or need,  is to call it a shopping success. Here are the items we found that made us pretty happy...

1) A single cotton pillow case that will make a great set of napkins - i love little sewing projects!

2) Pair of heavy duty glass containers that we can use for anything. They hold our grains for now but I think they'd be great as vases, too.

3) A lock for our next trip to Paris. You can bet we'll be throwing the keys into La Seine :)

4) A nicely textured brass vase...perfect for displaying the cabbage flowers we bought later that afternoon at Portobello Road Market.

Still on our list of items to buy for the home are dining chairs and a side-table. I think I'll have to go down to Sunbury for that as they seam to sell more furniture than any other London-city market. It'll be a great excuse to pick up a few items for the shop, too ;)

{show & tell} london finds

show & tell I haven't done any serious vintage shopping since Margate but here are four pieces that I've recently picked up while out and about in London.

1 - Hand-hammered brass necklace purchased at a charity shop (thrift store in the States). It has the ethnic/tribal feel that I love in jewelry + it's brass (I LOVE brass).

2 - Re-purposed vintage skirt from Pop Boutique in Covent Garden. Skirts are where I tend to like my prints so I couldn't resist this comfy cotton number. It's definitely going to Madrid and Sicily with me!

3 - A social commentary cartoon from 1924 that depicts two women in the "pre-bobbed period" - see damsels in distress - to "and today" where they appear to be liberated, chatting it up in their short skirts and pants while checking out portraits of different men. This was too good to pass (purchased at Portobello Road).

4 - Ceramic vase that has a great sand texture on the top half. I bought it at a charity shop, and am pretty sure that it's not vintage, but since it was thrifted I figured it was still worth sharing.

Do you have any recent show & tells?

{show & tell} margate vintage finds

IMG_4952show and tell - margate

Our trip to Margate was almost two weeks ago but it's never too late to show & tell! Here's what we got:

1. An old ceramic decorative piece that Joe thinks was a fancy liquor holder (it has a plug hole on the bottom). I fell in love with the shape and metallic center.

2. A WMF Germany steel tray that has a very cool engraved (is that the right word?) pattern. We're currently using it as our "catch-all" for mail, keys, wallet, etc. when we get home.

3. 1950's rolling pin with fun bright handles. Perfect for making flour tortillas!

4. A stainless steel and clear plastic mini-bar set. I literally gasped when I saw these + the brass rivets are really the cherry on top! I have a great complementary ice bucket in storage in LA. One day these pretty things will meet.

More to come after this Sunday at El Rastro, I'm sure! Has anyone been there? What were your favorite finds?

{show & tell} vintage finds from sunbury antiques market

vintage finds from Sunbury Antiques MarketCrown Devon espresso cup and saucer Paris-made brass buttons Dunragit Creamery stoneware jar

I'm still smiling from my trip to Sunbury Antiques Market yesterday. It was exactly what I was looking for in/around London in terms of market size, merchandise mix, and price points. I'll share more on the market experience I want to give you a peek at what I brought home with me in a new blog feature I'm calling show & tell.

Now, feel free to imagine me standing in front of your second grade classroom holding up my new found treasures...

1. I've desperately been wanting a serving tray to use while lounging on our bed. We don't have a sofa so I spend A LOT more time on there than I normally would (maybe that's why I'm always so sleepy?). This Picquot serving tray is absolutely perfect. I love the texture and color combinations of the sycamore wooden handles, aluminum sides, and etch printed laminate center.   Turns out that the tray is a sibling to a Picquot kettle we bought at Camden Market (as pictured on the manufacturer's home page). I love that kettle just the same.

2. Joe likes his cup of joe (and espresso) so I bought him a swanky espresso cup with saucer by Crown Devon Fieldings of England.  Based on the style of their stamp - and a google search - I learned that this set could be from anywhere between the 1930's to the 1960's. Awesome. I love the matte look of the black paired with the gold...just can't seem to get away from this combo. I've literally been buying black and gold/brass things for years!

3.  With an eye for DIY, these brass buttons made in Paris beckoned me to think "necklace." All I need is some chain and I'll be ready to sport a new baubly accessory :)

4. We don't have many country-esque elements in our decor so I thought that this stoneware jar from Dunragit Creamery of Scottland would be an easy touch - just add some flowers and voila! A bushel of billy balls would look really nice, si?

And with that, ladies and gentlemen and fellow second graders, we wrap up our first show & tell. Did you like? Let me know what you think, your comments always make me smile!

P.S. There were more treasures that came home with me but they aren't for show and tell just yet. I promise that you'll see them soon!

sweet little night stand...

homehome home home make me so happy. In fact, I smile and do a little dance every time I walk past you. You've given me permission to get rid of the box and give our cherished pieces a proper home. You were meant to display Joe's alarm clock radio, a framed photo of us sent via care package while we were on opposite ends of the world, and a thrifted champagne flute turned vase. Let us not forget, a warm cup of tea.

Thank you, little vintage night stand, for making our room so special.