Wednesday, January 26, 2011


And so it begins again. But I am not complaining. I'm off to Barcelona for 5 days and this is where I'm staying!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Faking It

Hilarious. It's minus 7 degrees celsius here today and I'm shielding myself against the brutal wind in Nolita, careful not to slip on the sidewalk ice. Amongst all the black asphalt and grey snow, my eye is suddenly drawn to a store window that is green and leafy! But wait, that's not a store, it's a park! Well, sort of. It's a "Pop Up Park".

The current resident of the store, Openhouse Gallery is an exhibition and pop up retail location. "Park Here" has been installed for the pleasure of New Yorkers during the chilly month of January. The once basic white space has been converted into a warm and green fake park, resplendent with faux grass, evergreens, a pond, benches, a see-saw and trilling bird sounds. There is even "sunlight" and heat to overcome your seasonal affective disorder! And a little wooden stand where you can buy steaming hot coffee and cookies. And like every type of park in Manhattan, it was full of people and dogs lying about. Whoever said New Yorkers were a superficial lot! So long as it is warm and green, they will come.....

Images:  (1, 3, 5-7) openhouse gallery, (2) green design hq,  (4) ny curbed

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Snow by the Sea

We went for a walk on the weekend to Greenwich Point Park. It was a perfect winter's day; very cold, deep blue sky, no wind and a perfectly still Long Island Sound. The best part? I saw snow right next to the sea for the first time ever! Pure, white, crunchy, deep snow. So much more beautiful than the snow that falls in Manhattan. And all touching the water's edge! The only colors in the whole landscape were blue, white and brown. It was amazing. And silent.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Sunday, January 16, 2011

A Hearth in Winter

When the thermometer refuses to budge above zero, the city is covered in snow and you are trudging through this every day,

All you really want to do is sit in front of this:

My favorite of favorite places here in winter is the lobby of the Bowery Hotel. It has the feeling of an old hunting lodge and is perfect for a weekend afternoon tea or drinks. It is full of persian rugs, oak chairs with tapestry seats, sofas that you sit back in and never want to extricate yourself from and huge roaring fires framed by marble mantlepieces.

The wood paneled ceilings and wrought iron lighting help lend a middle aged feeling. I keep expecting Aragorn to walk through the door.

Although I think this interior is too heavy for spring/ summer, they do have a lovely outdoor area with wicker furniture under a glass roof, overlooking fruit trees and grass on a vacant block behind.

And if you get sleepy and decide to stay, check out one of these rooms that have featured in numerous movies. Sleep soundly under Frette sheets and dream of your favorite Lord of the Rings character.

images: (1-2) mine, (3) elle decor, (4), (5) agent smith, (6) hotel chatter  (7) cool gadget concepts, (8) flixster, (9) bowery hotel

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


'Shack' Def: A roughly built hut or cabin (Oxford dictionary)

A girlfriend and I were discussing the power of positive thinking last night. She is skeptical to a degree, whereas I am totally into putting what you want out into the universe. Case in point: When I was pounding the sidewalks of New York in high summer trying to determine where I wanted to live before I moved here, I arrived at a certain street in the West Village and said aloud, "this is where I want to live". I can't explain why I chose that particular place. It just called to me. So 3 months later when I finally moved here, where was the first apartment the agent showed me? Directly across the street from where I had made my proclamation! Needless to say I am still in the same apartment 3 years down the track.

Some people use positive thinking to get better or feel better or to try and articulate what they really want in life. I know one girl who made a scrapbook of happy family clippings because she was channeling this dream for herself. That was a few years ago and I think she is still going, so I'm not suggesting the universe works quickly. (I have to admit here that I actually also started one of these scrapbooks but only got as far as a John Frieda ad with 2 older looking adults and one child. At least I can say I got the grey-haired partner.)

Anyway, the point of all this is that this year, I am going to put into the universe my desire to find a shack. I have always wanted a simply built place somewhere in the country and this dream was cemented when I saw recently in Oz the beautiful new book by Simon Griffiths called Shack; in praise of an Australian Icon.

I wish I could show you some of my favorite shacks featured, because you would definitely hear the magpies and smell the eucalyptus and feel the fresh country air, but alas there are limited shots on line so far.  Here are a couple anyway, to get a taste:

So all I have to do now is start looking at realty websites, visit quaint towns in upstate New York and keep thinking positively that I will find a little piece of land somewhere with a ramshackle hut that has a fireplace and good bones. And one day, I know I will find it.

images: (1-2) penguin, (3-4) flotsam friends, (5) simon griffiths

Sunday, January 9, 2011

New Year begins in snow

Brrrrr. I arrived back from sunny Melbourne on Friday night, landing at JFK airport to find a world of white. I thought I had missed the snow storms, but it seems the flakes keep falling. Not that I am complaining, because my philosopy is if it's going to be cold, it may as well snow! But it was a shock to my suntanned system to see the rubbish piled up and the Christmas trees discarded on the side of the icy streets. 

In light of this I am already dreaming of blue sky, beach and a piece of Slim Aarons lifestyle. I must book a long weekend to Palm Beach in Feb.

images: (1-4) mine, (5) heartthrobs and villains, (6) fad website (7) photographer's gallery