GETAWAY: 72 HOURS IN DALLAS/FORT WORTH

I’ve come to realize that blogging is a lot like going to the gym – it’s really easy to miss a day, which suddenly turns into a week, and then two. The only difference is when you’re a lazy blogger you’ll probably lose a few instead of gaining… followers that is. ūüėČ

Last week I tagged along on one of Garrett’s work trips to Dallas/Fort Worth. After cramming seven presentations and half as many installations into the last month I found myself buried in paperwork and starting to feel a bit tapped creatively.

A change of scenery was exactly what I needed, and thankfully Dallas has a Design Center (the one thing I find myself sorely¬†missing in Raleigh!) so I was able to make it a working visit. I packed a ton into a short visit and left feeling re-inspired so I thought I’d share my highlights.

Ceylon et Cie | Dallas

SHOP:
Ceylon et Cie: the¬†Dallas design district is filled with gems, but Michelle Nussbaumer’s Ceylon et Cie is truly like walking into Aladdin’s cave. From blue and white porcelain, to stacks of suzanis, and all manor of curiosities from across the globe, it’s an expertly curated collection. My stop here alone left me feeling re-energized and excited to get back to work. I picked up a huge gouache painting of an original textile design from a postwar artist turned textile designer that I’m planning to frame for our bedroom.

Madre: this children’s boutique initially caught my attention on Instagram thanks to its covet worthy snow leopard and coral lantern. Though there may not be any little ones on the way for us¬†just yet¬†(much to my parents’ chagrin), it didn’t stop me from basking in the adorableness within.

Cabana: right next door to Madre you’ll find Cabana, another boutique I’ve been known to Insta-stalk. Go for the Ulla Johnson (these are my pick) and stay for the chic setting – Madeline Weinrib galore!

Mashburn: Speaking of chic settings, oh what I would give to chat with the interior designer responsible for Sid and Ann Mashburn’s eponymous shops. I visited the new Georgetown location last month in DC which is stunning, but the Dallas outpost also doesn’t disappoint.¬†I debated between adding these and these to my espadrille collection but am still undecided – any tie breaking votes?

Mecox:¬†I’ve now visited 4 of the 7 Mecox Gardens locations and love that each has its own flavor. Their buyers have the best eye and I always discover something new just begging to be incorporated into a project. Their selection of accessories for styling, art, and case goods are especially good.

SEE:

The Modern: I spent a morning at¬†the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth and am so glad I paid a visit. The collection was more impressive than I was anticipating (sorry for underestimating¬†you Ft. Worth!) and filled with pieces by new-to-me artists I was all too happy to be introduced to–like the stunner above by Joan Mitchell. There’s just something so restorative about wandering through a quiet museum and getting lost in the artists’ color palettes.

The Sixth Floor Museum: the history nerd in me couldn’t leave Dallas without a visit to The Sixth Floor Museum which documents President John F. Kennedy’s 1963 assassination. The museum is on the sixth floor of the building Lee Harvey Oswald fired the fatal shots from (allegedly depending on who you talk to)–you can see a recreation of “the sniper’s nest” in the southeast window. All visitors receive an audio headset and you’re guided through the exhibit via short 1-2 minute clips recorded by a reporter who covered the assassination back in 1963. I found it to be exceptionally well done and not at all dry.

Ellerby Fine Foods | Fort Worth

EAT/DRINK:

Ellerbe Fine Foods: in 2010 Ellerbe Fine Foods made Bon App√©tit‘s list of Best Restaurants in America and it’s easy to see why. We grabbed an early dinner and enjoyed the inventive farm to table menu, gracious service,¬†and relaxed ambiance.

Shinjuku Station: another Ft. Worth fan favorite, this¬†izakaya style restaurant didn’t disappoint! We loved the pork buns, seared baby octopus, and the super fresh sashimi. We stopped in just fifteen minutes before closing and the atmosphere was still lively.

P.S if you find yourself on Magnolia Ave. (where the two restaurants above are located) and looking for a spot for pre-dinner drinks check out Proper and The Usual.

Toulouse: grab an outside cafe table for moules frites at this French inspired bistro after shopping at Mashburn across the street.

Mi Cocina: we stopped by the Highland Park Village location after reading about it on a few blogs. Maybe I ordered poorly, but we found the margaritas to be more memorable than the food.

Torchy’s: normally I try to avoid chain restaurants, but this seemed to be a local favorite. Worth a stop for a quick, no-frills bite.

Buda Juice: fun fact: Michelle Nussbaumer’s husband owns this green juice company. I wandered into their headquarters (which happens to be across the street from Ceylon et Cie) in need of a pick me up and found it in their Blue Lemonade.

The Dallas/Fort Worth area has so much to offer I just barely scratched the surface, but hopefully these recommendations will be a good jumping off point for anyone planning a trip. I’d love to hear¬†favorites in the comments!

 

OUT OF AFRICA

The Pursuit of Style | Safari

The Pursuit of Style - Zebras

The Pursuit of Style | Safari

The Pursuit of Style | Safari

The Pursuit of Style | Safari

The Pursuit of Style | Safari

The Pursuit of Style | Safari


The Pursuit of Style | Safari

The Pursuit of Style | Safari

The Pursuit of Style | Safari

The Pursuit of Style | Safari

The Pursuit of Style | Safari

The Pursuit of Style | Safari

The Pursuit of Style | Safari

We’ve been back from South Africa for a few days, and ohh where to begin? Simply put, it was the trip of a lifetime. Over the past year of planning, everyone I spoke with who had been said that it would be, but perhaps in an effort to manage my own expectations, I brushed off their words as hyperbole and steeled myself against potential disappointment. I was so wrong.

The landscape of South Africa is of another time. The craggy mountains and dusty bush dotted with pistachio colored fever trees are in complete contrast to the verdant valleys of the Cape Winelands, and the brilliant blue waters of the Western Cape. Each only hours to the south.

And then there are the animals. I hope I never forget the elegance of grazing giraffe, the goofy laughter of a hippo braying, the beauty of a leopard’s coat, how a lion rolls on it’s back just like our Golden, Brody, and the¬†tenderness of elephants with their young. It will break my heart if rhinos do become extinct in the wild within the next 8-10 years as predicted due to poaching.

Needless to say, life back in our little apartment is feeling a bit ordinary ūüėČ , but I’ve come back with so much inspiration that I’m eager to put to use. We stayed at some really lovely places and if you’re interested I’ll share more of our itinerary in the coming weeks.

LONDON CALLING

Sketch | London

Sketch | London | Afternoon Tea

Sketch | London | Afternoon Tea

“In a room refined by a curious mind, a touch of humour… It‚Äôs a work of art, a striking backdrop‚Ķ It’s David Shrigley’s Gallery…”

Our bags have been packed, reservations double confirmed, and one epic itinerary has been made, but in the midst of my Type A revelry I forgot to give one leg of our trip some much deserved attention–our day¬†in London!

We decided to extend the requisite layover en route to Johannesburg to allow for a full day of sightseeing since neither of us have been. There are¬†a few must-visits I’m hoping to squeeze in: Sir John Soane’s Museum, the Fabric of India¬†exhibit at the V&A Museum, and visits to Pentreath & Hall¬†and Robert Kime¬†to soak up interior inspiration.

Of course I also wanted to fulfill my clich√© American in England tea time fantasy and started researching with gusto last night, which led me to¬†sketch. Basically¬†sketch¬†is a triple threat that¬†allows me to simultaneously fulfill my Anglophile aspirations of¬†Afternoon Tea, pretend I’m in a Wes Anderson film, and continue my campaign for pink walls.¬†Truly a win on all fronts.

What makes the location even more special is it’s actually an art installation–watch this short video for a bit of background–such a brilliant concept!

 As always, I would love any and all recommendations as to how we should best utilize our day in London!

GETAWAY: THE SUNSET TOWER HOTEL, WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA

While we were in L.A. last week, we spent a few days at the Sunset Tower Hotel, an art deco gem in West Hollywood. Built in 1929 by architect Leland A. Bryant, the property exudes old Hollywood glamour.

The Sunset Tower Hotel | The Pursuit of Style

Originally built as luxury apartments, the Sunset Tower has counted Elizabeth Taylor, Frank Sinatra, Marilyn Monroe, John Wayne and Howard Hughes among its residents.

Thanks to a 2004 restoration by hotelier Jeff Klein, the hotel¬†is once again a favorite among celebrities–especially for its famed Tower Bar¬†whose cozy ambiance provides a discreet oasis.

The Sunset Tower Hotel | The Pursuit of Style

We didn’t spot any celebrities during our stay, but even if we had, I’m pretty sure I’d¬†still have been more impressed by the amazing collection of Cecil Beaton books lining the lobby. As a collector myself, I was more than a little envious!

The Sunset Tower Hotel | The Pursuit of Style

We didn’t make it to the¬†Tower Bar, favoring the more casual poolside cafe,¬†The Terrace, for breakfast each day instead.

Since we were on East Coast time, we woke early enough to have the entire place to¬†ourselves–providing me with ample opportunity to take an embarrassing amount of photos of the bullion fringe trimmed umbrellas and chic cabana tents. Future pool goals. I couldn’t get enough!

The Sunset Tower Hotel | The Pursuit of Style

If you’re visiting L.A. I’d highly recommend a visit. The staff were incredibly accommodating–assisting us in a last minute rental car crisis–and the atmosphere is truly from another time. Plus, those umbrellas. ūüėČ

L.A. BOUND

Gracias Madre | Los Angeles

Gracias Madre | Los Angeles

Gracias Madre | Los Angeles

Gracias Madre | Los Angeles

Garrett and I are L.A. bound today for a long weekend with¬†his family on the West Coast! The last time I was in California I was 12 years old, super jazzed about my new vacation wardrobe from Limited Too (anyone remember that brand–apparently it’s coming back!) and not too jazzed about the tropical storm that¬†coincided with our ill-fated trip to Disneyland.

Needless to say, I’ve got a lot of catching up to do! We’re staying at this art deco beauty¬†and I’m really looking forward to soaking up some sun without the 100% humidity we’ve been experiencing in DC as of late.

I’m hoping to visit¬†Gracias Madre, a plant-based Mexican restaurant (shhh not mentioning that detail to Garrett!),¬†which was¬†beautifully designed¬†by¬†Wendy Haworth. Yummy food with a side of inspiration? I’m there.

I’m also hoping to make a pilgrimage to the La Cinega Design Quarter to visit shops I’ve only been able to admire from afar like Hollywood at Home, Harbinger, Hollyhock, and Nathan Turner. Garrett has been quick to remind me that I’m only packing a carry on… just wait until he sees my expandable tote. ūüėČ

As usual I’d love any and all recommendations!

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