THE RED WHITE & BLUE

The Pursuit of Style

Oversized Hepcat Shades | Seersucker Bikini | Linen Scarf | Blue Dragon Picnic Set | Turquoise 360 Studs | Tri-Color Tote

Have I ever mentioned that the Fourth of July is my favorite holiday? I’m obsessed. It’s the perfect summer day and one that triggers many memories of lazy days spent on the beach or boat, low-key barbeques with friends, and bonfires at night with the fireworks in the background. Perfection.

We decided to make a last minute trip up to the Cape to celebrate, and even though it’s looking like there might be rain, there’s still no place I’d rather celebrate. If I had gotten my act together, my packing list would have looked a little bit like the above: oversized white sunnies, a seersucker bikini, a linen scarf to warm up inevitably sunburned skin when the sun goes down, and a perfectly festive beach bag.

I’ve also been meaning to share these genius tin picnic plates by Mottahedeh. Our wedding caterer tipped me off and now I have to buy a set or two. So chic, right? I’ll be signing off early to enjoy some time at home, but I hope you have a wonderful Fourth!

BITS & PIECES

The Pursuit of Style | shot by Kate Headley

The Pursuit of Style | shot by Kate Headley

The Pursuit of Style | shot by Kate Headley

The Pursuit of Style | shot by Kate Headley

The Pursuit of Style | shot by Kate Headley

The Pursuit of Style | shot by Kate Headley
A few weeks ago we met up with friend, and our talented wedding photographer, Kate Headley, to snap our engagement photos. I wanted to share a few photos of the setting because in my opinion it’s truly one of the most beautiful but surprisingly unknown places in DC.

We decided on the gardens at Dumbarton Oaks for the same reason I decided on our wedding venue–stunning architecture and a sense of history. It was actually The Orangery that sold me. It’s breathtakingly beautiful in person (fourth and fifth photos) and Kate totally caught me obsessing over those lanterns. Typical, right?

As camera shy as I am (no future in fashion blogging here!) it was so fun to spend an afternoon wandering the gardens with Garrett and have Kate as our very own paparazzi. I know we’ll cherish the photos for years to come.

For our garden photos I wore this eyelet dress and these espadrilles, which are probably the most comfortable shoes I’ve ever owned. I highly recommend them and already have my eye on another pair!

DC friends and out-of-towners, definitely put Dumbarton Oaks on your must-visit list. Next time we’re going back with a picnic packed!

All photos taken by Kate Headley

DESIGN DICTIONARY: HAINT BLUE

The Pursuit of Style | Haint Blue | Capitol Hill

I’ll admit without shame to being a wannabe Southerner. Get me started on the topic of my favorite city, Charleston, and I’ll happily talk your ear off for an hour or two about my daydreams of moving to the Palmetto state and making my Southern Belle fantasies a reality.

When it comes to hospitality, design, and casual elegance, the South (at least my idealized view of it) gets a lot of things right. So, in the spirit of the summer in the South, let me introduce the next entry into the Design Dictionary: Haint Blue.

If you’ve ever noticed the charming painted blue ceiling of a porch, or sunroom, you’re already acquainted with Haint Blue. Introduced to the Lowcountry by the Gullah community who brought the practice with them from Africa, the blue paint is meant to be a bit of a ghost buster.

Ghosts or ‘haints’ were thought to be kept at bay, and misfortune kept from a household by painting porch ceilings, door, or window trim with the blue hue. There are mixed reports as to the significance of the color, some say the blue is meant to represent heaven (a place an evil haint would surely avoid), others that it’s meant to represent water which haints cannot cross.

In the lore of blue painted porches, there’s also a camp that believes blue paint is an insect repellent–the blue mimics sky and dissuades creepy crawlies from nesting. We may not be pulling a fast one on the bugs, but historically paints were milk based and mixed with lye, which is a known insect repellent. Rest assured, your Great Grandmother wasn’t pulling a fast one over on you when she told you to paint your porch ceiling blue to stay bug-free.

Whether you’re trying to keep away bugs or haints, a blue painted ceiling will always be beguiling!

P.S If you’re searching for the perfect paint color, Benjamin Moore’s Palladian Blue and Polar Sky are popular choices.

1/2/3/Lindsay Souza for The Pursuit of Style

ART LESSON: JENNIFER AMENT

Jennifer Ament

Jennifer Ament

Jennifer Ament

Large Seaweed 2Large Seaweed 3Large Seaweed 1

I was introduced to Jennifer Ament’s work a few years ago when I spotted a piece in a blogger’s home. Since then, I’ve been following her success and coveting a piece or two along the way.

Last night, I was browsing Serena & Lily’s art collection–which I happen to think is one of the most well curated on the web–and came across the series above. I’ll spare you the hyperbole, but love would not be an exaggeration to describe how I feel about them.

I found myself attempting to find a way to scrap our entire wedding registry and somehow explain that, yes, a toaster might be more practical, but I really can’t continue living without these pieces in our home. Sigh, the drama.

Aren’t they stunning?

BEFORE & AFTER: MING COCKTAIL TABLES

A few months ago I picked up a pair of Ming cocktail tables for a steal. Never mind that we had zero need (or space) for them, I wasn’t about to let those quadrangular legged beauties pass me by.

So, into the back of my SUV they went, and I’ve been driving around like a modern day pioneer on the Oregon trail (forge the river!) ever since.

The Pursuit of StyleBefore

Needless to say, when the opportunity to collaborate with Glidden® paint presented itself,  I had just the project in mind. Their simplified palette spared me hours of agonizing and I quickly picked up a quart of Glidden paint Peacock Blue in High Gloss finish. This iconic Miles Redd bedroom was my inspiration.

The Pursuit of Style

Thankfully, I snapped a photo before I spilled it everywhere (oh, the perils of an early morning DIY!) but at least it was a beautiful mess.

The cocktail tables were great condition so this was as easy of a paint job as it gets. First, I wiped down the tables with a damp cloth to remove any residual dirt and grime. Next, I gave each a light sand with fine grit sandpaper to smooth away any imperfections and give the paint something to adhere to.

Another once over with a damp cloth and I was ready to paint! I used a cheapo bristle brush and was honestly shocked at how smooth the coverage was. After two coats, I let my foreman supervise the drying process while I spent a few hours by the pool.

The Pursuit of Style
The tops were a little more scuffed than the base so I opted for three coats to really get that lacquered finish I was after and allowed for a full 24 hours of drying time.

A quick styling job and it was time for these leggy ladies to make their debut!

The Pursuit of Style

After four years of living with a lucite coffee table, I’m loving the bold punch of color.

The Pursuit of Style
Ta-dahhhh!

The Pursuit of StyleAfter

In interior design, paint is as close to instant gratification as you can get and I’m so happy to finally have these cocktail tables somewhere that they’ll actually be used and appreciated. Thanks for making it happen Glidden paint!

Keeping it Real: This post was sponsored by Glidden paint through their partnership with POPSUGAR Select. While I was compensated to write a post about Glidden paint, all opinions are my own.