1. 3 years

    our wedding | saint chrysostom’s church & the racquet club | chicago



  3. blue & white & everything right

    [plus a little bit of orange]

    now that the weather is on the up and up, here’s my list for spring and summer in my all-time favorite color palatte.

    st. frank organic indigo $225 | 2 nomess copenhagen balsa wood boxes $25 | 3 splendid light indigo knit pullover $118 | 4 toms cutout wedges $94 | 5 cowry shell necklace $88 | 6 splendid dark indigo knit pullover $118 | indigo dye pillow $22  | 8 indigo dip dye napkins $40 | 9 woven iringa basket $65


  4. in bloom

    a month and a half ago, a friend texted me out of the blue:

    'any interest in a freelance styling / design gig? it's for a luxe baby furniture company…'

    considering this is something that always seemed fun, i was thrilled by the prospect. it also seemed random, and i had little experience, but i’m not one to say no to a project. i also thought it might be a good omen: we’re hoping 2014 is the year of the baby for us.

    and then when i found out the luxe baby furniture company was bloom? that totally sealed the deal. between their dedication to sustainable, thoughtful design and their famous alma mini (the ultimate urban space saver), i’ve loved their products for a long time - and i’m not even a parent (yet)!

    these are just some quick snaps of two of the vignettes, highlighting their new retro crib. it calls on mid-century modern design influences and i think the look is elegant and extremely chic. i also did vignettes with their alma line (mini, medium, large - or mini, papa, max as they call it) which are a bit bolder and brighter in scheme (i’ll share those, too) and show off other products like the coco lounger which i think is so, so cool.

    overall, it was an awesome experience. as an architect, our timelines and processes can be long (my current project will finish in 2016), tedious, painfully stressful, and, frankly, not a lot of fun. you tend to only hear the negative drama on a construction site (out of necessity) and the positive reviews only roll in at the end, usually after a drawn-out punch list at which point you’re ready to sprint in the other direction.

    but this was just 100% fulfilling. the clients were fabulous (no surprise that cool products are designed by cool people) and i was smiling from start to finish. turns out selecting cool blocks and adorable cable knit sweaters is seriously fun! it was a happy and creative process. i did it quickly, with a limited budget and made a lot of decisions on the fly based on an open and productive dialogue with the clients. everyone was thrilled with the final results - myself included - and that’s something i take great pride in saying.

    to new experiences, in bloom!


  5. a song for spring

    john wizards | muizenberg

    (Source: vimeo.com)


  6. project love

    a portable house


  7. get there | rincón

    the overarching theme of our trip was ease and warmth - two things i know all of us desperately needed after this epic winter.

    flying down was completely chaotic because of the weather (mixed with the fact that flights into aguadilla, while cheap, land in the middle of the night), but once wheels were up, the non-stop flight had us in paradise in 3.5 hours. we rented a car, quickly zipped down to rincón proper and immediately fell asleep to wake up a few hours later at 10AM, ready to get in the way of some sun and some waves.

    our itinerary was deliberately loose. a few friends who go down throughout the winter (because it’s the closest warm weather winter surf spot to nyc) shared their favorite restaurants, and only one required reservations. other than that, there’s not much to do. in the best kind of way.

    … 6AM wake ups, guzzle some coffee, in the water by 6:15. i surfed each day with a private instructor i’d highly recommend: former pro ramse morales. this allowed pat to go off and surf his own stuff while i did my thing. plus, i prefer taking pointers from a stranger rather than from my spouse (i’m not the only one, right?)

    … after a few hours (usually when my wimpy arms gave out from paddling and the sun was almost directly overhead) we’d go grab breakfast at puntas bakery / happy bowls (a delicious acai bowl bar that also has an outpost in montauk) or banana dang for wonderful puerto rican coffee and a smoothie.

    … our best meal was sunday brunch at the english rose - the only place where a reservation is a good idea. located high up in the mountains, the view from this b&b was breathtaking.

    … the afternoon was for snorkeling, lounging and reading… the beach vacation holy trinity. highlights: floating in the tide pools and following a sea turtle along the reef’s edge. other activities we didn’t delve into: yoga, horseback riding and waterfall hikes.

    … an unexpected highlight: we went exploring in the opposite direction of the tourist area and found mr. donuts where $1 gets you a dozen of the best donut holes you’ve ever had.

    … in absence of resort amenities (i.e. a spa), i hired a guy to come do 90 minutes of thai massage at our cottage. after a few days of surfing, my muscles were tight and painfully sore and richard did an excellent job working it all out. he even ended it was some acroyoga (which turns out is a thing) and i’m just so grateful there is no photo documentation of it. i am also now sure i never need to go to burning man.

    … in the evening, we’d have a sunset session on our deserted beach, a habit we picked up during our trip to costa rica a few years ago. perfect sunsets, every night.

    … for dinner, we hit 3 awesome spots: ode to the elephants, la copa ilena, and saltaire. each was a total scene in the good way: friendly (locals and tourist alike), lively yet relaxed, and the perfect places to close out the day.

    this trip was restorative, happy and fun. it was also easy, affordable and perfect for a long weekend (especially from the east coast). rincón is such a special place, one that has a unique natural beauty and charm, but without the volume of tourism of, say, costa rica, or the scene of some other islands (this is not your beautiful people / fashion set, and i mean that as the highest compliment). puerto rico’s economy is still in the thick of recession and in many ways it’s visible. i’m at a loss why more people don’t get to the northwest part of the island, but i also got the vibe that it is totally fine by the locals if no one ever shows up.

    and with that comes the luxury of feeling like you’re the only one there. spending a weekend walking around barefoot in a bikini, with nowhere to go (or be) and no one to see, is the best feeling.

    this is all to say: get there.


  8. blue

    rincón’s geography provided diverse shades of blue. at different times it reminded me of the caribbean, or hawaii, or costa rica, or even of summer on the east coast. 

    the surf was pretty calm all weekend. for instance, domes beach was perfectly surfable for me as a beginner, though it’s usually bigger, swelling enough to host championships and the like. 

    [and it goes without saying that when the waves were at their best, we were in the water, not taking pictures! so, sadly, no action shots - but that’s probably for the better…]

    most of the shoreline was rocky with coral, save for a few gorgeous white sand beaches. a natural upside to this was that our beach at tres palmas had fabulous tide pools, protected by coral and warmed to the temperature of a bathtub. in other words, heaven.

    corcega beach | tide pools at tres palmas marine reserve | sandy beach break | waiting for things to kick up at domes


  9. golden

    for our surf trip to rincón last month, we rented a little yellow cottage via airbnb. originally, we had planned to stay at the horned dorset - but between its distance from the good surf spots and the recent negative reviews

    [i was terrified we’d splash roughly $1,000 a night for a place that was starting to look like grey gardens / paradiso perduto, ms. dinsmoor’s house from great expectations]

    we figured now was a good time to try airbnb since the hotel options seemed to be the horned dorset and little else that looked appealing. our cottage was easy and peaceful, situated on the tres palmas marine reserve and 5 minutes from every place we wanted / needed to go. two vast, green lawns on either side of the property rolled right down to the beach where we lounged in the afternoon and watched sunsets every evening. the elkhorn coral reefs directly out in front of our sand were gorgeous and otherworldly and served some of the best snorkeling i’ve ever done - better than the BVIs, the bahamas, the caymans, etc.

    we had the smallest of the 4 houses on the property, but if we ever go back with a group of friends (which is already brewing) we’d take the main waterfront house.

    i’m so grateful we lucked out in picking a good spot - it made the trip.

    tres palmas inn and villas | surfboards in front of sandy beach break | pat, so relaxed, apparently, he was wearing his clothes inside out | mr. carrero & sons family love castle, an amazing, inexplicable building in town


  10. and we’re back

    thawed out, tan, and well-rested after an awesome trip to rincón. full recap to come… 



  12. warm wishes

    this nasty little storm we’re having will most likely thwart our attempts to get out tonight for our vacation. and as bummed as we’ll be if this trip to rincon doesn’t pan out, what can you do? it’s been a wild winter weather-wise.

    it’s also been a relatively hectic winter for us and, true to form, i never got my act together to do any pre-trip shopping.

    (well, aside from some new krysos + chandi bracelets that i will hopefully be wearing in the sun this time tomorrow.)

    so to distract myself from the whiteout outside my window and the prospect that our vacation might not happen this president’s day… and to ensure that it gets rescheduled for the next available weekend, here’s my shopping list:

    lemlem cover up $200 | pilyq shorts $66 | basta surf rashie $194 


  13. drift

    my latest freelance project is designing the new york showroom for a super cool, modern baby furniture company (exciting! vague!) so i’ve been searching high and low for interesting mobiles to hang over a few of their famous cribs.

    the best so far has been this mobile from sunset driftwood, a unique etsy shop out of CA where everything is made of… driftwood. i love these so much, i’d say a nursery isn’t even required. their sculptural spheres would be perfect for a chic table setting, too.


  14. little black grey dress

    tibi | marled french terry mini dress