Category Archives: Pretty Pictures

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Find Wine Country Design Inspiration at Napa’s Brown Estate

Create this rustic chic look for your own dining room. Key elements from the Brown Estate's Napa tasting room can be found at Restoration Hardware.

There’s a certain similarity about most winery tasting rooms. There’s a tasting bar, bottles of wine waiting to be taken home and hopefully a picturesque view.

Few tasting rooms are sources of design inspiration, but Brown Estate in the remote section of Napa called Chiles Valley, is a striking exception. Before my visit, I admired the winery for their elegant cabernet sauvignons and juicy zinfandels that don’t knock you out with the first sip. But now I’m loving the design savvy of Coral Brown, who’s also the family-owned estate’s wine educator.

The subterranean tasting room is done in luxurious and soothing shades of brown. Each detail in the cozy retreat could easily be found in the lobby of a boutique hotel. If you want to incorporate this look into your own dining room or parlor you’re in luck, as many of the key pieces can be found at Restoration Hardware.

The tasting bar here was an elevated concrete topped table with convenient purse hooks. We sat on metal Vintage Toledo Bar Stools, topped with fluffy free-form lamb throws, kind of like those flokati rugs. A massive armoire filled with wine and decorated with objéts like an overside letter B, a Chinese ginger jar and chalkboard with the day’s tasting selections dominated the area. But the most striking feature of this area is the Adirondak Antler 6-Arm Chandelier, which is crafted from resin.

A barrel pendant lamp casts a soft glow over a high table ringed by armless leather counter chairs draped in warm faux fur throws.

Soft lighting from a Barrel Shade Pendant light and the ring of Army Duck No. 10 Grommet Drapery created a cozy place for tasting wines along with perfectly-paired cheeses. Another elevated table is ringed by Hudson Camelback Leather Counter Stools draped in Luxe Faux Fur Throws.

April in Paris: A Vacation of the Mind

Scallops in Paris

Coquilles St Jacques in the shell were one of the memorable culinary delights at the Bastille farmer's market.

I’m not sure if it’s the recent rains or the need for a real vacation adventure, but I’ve been longing for Paris. The last time I visited the city of Light was in April 2009 and it was perfect. Rainy and sunny at turns, full of surprises and new discoveries.

Since I don’t have a plane ticket, I thought I’d take a little vacation of the mind by reliving some of my favorite images from the trip. I was groggy from a night spent dozing in coach as a new friend helped me navigate the Metro and dump my overpacked suitcase at the hotel.

Then we went in search of breakfast and spotted the peaks of white canopies off in the distance. We walked towards them and this is what we discovered at the Sunday morning Bastille Farmer’s Market.

Pretty Pictures of Autumn Leaves

Autumn Leaves
(French lyrics by Jacques Prévert,
English lyrics by Johnny Mercer,
Music by Joseph Kosma)

The falling leaves drift by the window
The autumn leaves of red and gold
I see your lips, the summer kisses
The sun-burned hands I used to hold

Since you went away the days grow long
And soon I’ll hear old winter’s song
But I miss you most of all my darling
When autumn leaves start to fall

C’est une chanson, qui nous ressemble
Toi tu m’aimais et je t’aimais
Nous vivions tous, les deux ensemble
Toi que m’aimais moi qui t’aimais
Mais la vie sépare ceux qui s’aiment
Tout doucement sans faire de bruit
Et la mer efface sur le sable les pas des amants désunis

More lyrics: http://www.lyricsfreak.com/n/nat+king+cole/#share

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