Thursday, September 30, 2010

Beautiful Decay

Is that an oxymoron? Is there such a thing as "beautiful decay?"

Nothing pains me more than watching old buildings being demolished. Abandoned homes. Theaters. The most beautiful architecture is being replaced with, in most cases, cheesy modern structures, strip malls and the like.

So tell me, why do I see some sort of beauty in these images? Do you? Perhaps it's the photography, or is there some sort of beauty in decay?

Some of these images are from Beauty of Decay; a special photo community site dedicated to all who are addicted to urban exploration and art. Its main focus is not the location itself, but the outstanding photos.

Most of our communities have preservation groups where we can donate money or volunteer our time to protect, preserve and celebrate the beautiful workmanship of the past. Let's keep the beauty alive before it becomes decay...

Cheers to the wonderful photographers! 1. never ends 2. Rosita Moerkens 3. Roman Solowiej 4. Raymond Larose 5. Diane dc 6. Jon DeBoer 7. Daniel Cheong 8. Alain Dejealfve 9. Rosita Moerkens 10. Sven Fennema 11. antitude 12. Noel Kerns

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Flower Power at Versailles

Currently on display at the Ch√Ęteau de Versailles are the works of Japanese artist Takashi Murakami. Murakami has created a juxtaposition of of 17th century monarchy against contemporary modern Japan and it's quite controversial.

While some French monarchists have denounced the exhibition as “illegal,” the artist himself says that he is quite used to what he calls “Murakami-bashing.”

Many tourists who have came to the palace for its history are unimpressed by the novelty juxtaposition. Others see it as whimsical and refreshing. The museum’s director is well aware of the controversy these exhibits provoke, but insists on drawing a line between debate and censorship.

What do you think? Do you like pop-art inhabiting the palace?

"Murakami Versailles" runs from now until December 12th and is part of the standard museum entrance fee.

Monday, September 27, 2010

The Most Ornate Parking Garage

The former Michigan Theater in Detroit (built in 1926) is now an indoor parking garage. That's right. After a period of closures and re-openings, the Michigan Theater was permanently closed and partially demolished in 1976. Due to problems with the structural integrity of adjoining office building, the main hall and lobby were gutted and converted into a parking structure.

The ceiling is still the same, so one can get out of the car, look up and see the gorgeous inlay. Sad isn't it? I just hate to see old buildings destroyed, and yet in some way I appreciate the beauty of it.

image 1; Sean Hemmerle via Pinterest, image 2; Wikepedia

Sunday, September 26, 2010


If you're just tuning in I wanted to let you know that tomorrow is the final day of our "seasonal sale" at Paris Hotel Boutique. Some wonderful selected markdowns up to 40%. Click here to browse the site for the sale items such as this faux bamboo coffee table!

Hope everyone has had a wonderful weekend!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Yes or No?

{from here}

Happy Weekend!

Whatever your plans are, have a fabulous weekend!

image credit: Me and Alice

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Are We Still Hip?

Last night I had dinner with a lovely group of impressive, trend-setting bloggers. At some point in the evening I looked around the table and realized that everyone at the table was in their 20's and 30's. Bright, successful, fun and happening ladies. Then it just hit me like a bolt of lightning. I realized that I could have been their mother.

Where did the time go?
30 years ago I had a 9 year banking career, then an 8 year career working for a blues musician, and some time in the middle of that I started selling antiques -- 15 years ago. I wore the mini-skirts, hung out all night at blues clubs, hob-knobbed with celebrities, and immensely enjoyed those years. Now it's their turn.

I'm not saying that it's over at 40 or 50 or 60 years old. Quite the contrary. We "baby boomers" are keeping up with the times with blogging, websites, Facebook, Twitter...whatever is thrown our way. We have the experience behind us to move ahead to a whole new chapter of great things and live our lives in a most meaningful way.

I guess I'm just starting to realize that 50 years fly by so quickly and suddenly it's all different. I can no longer buy the clothing featured in Lucky or InStyle magazine. Well, I could, but let's just say, it wouldn't be pretty. I get tired really early. When did that happen? Even a simple dinner out with fellow bloggers requires a bit of energy.

Suddenly I'm shopping at those "older lady" boutiques that I used to quickly pass by. Strolling through stores like J. Jill. Reading magazines like More. Conversations with girlfriends are about hot flashes and anti-wrinkle creams. Who would have thunk?

When I was in my 20's or 30's I certainly didn't want to hang out with my aunts or my mom's friends. I'm wondering, do you think that we "baby-boomers" seem hip and relevant to the younger crowd? Is that even important?

I think the reality of age is finally starting to set in. But, I'm gonna keep on truckin,' schlepping those antiques and embrace the lovely age of 50!

images from Mom Style Icons

Cartolina Cards New iPhone App!

One of my favorite people, Fiona of Cartolina and Cafe Cartolina blog has just launched an amazing iPhone app. So exciting!! The app is all about sending beautiful messages using one of their customizable Cartograms in lieu of a plain email or text message.

The Cartolina app supports multiple languages and allows you to send to multiple recipients. Great for announcements and invitations. A customizable calendar with automatic reminders mean you'll never miss another birthday! There are so many lovely designs to choose from as well!

To view all the Cartogram designs you can visit their website here. Perfect for any occasion (you create the message), and for less than the price of a card, $2.99; click here for the iTunes link! {Also, available for the iPad in October!}

Congrats Fiona!!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


I absolutely love Art Deco architecture. In fact that was one of the factors when buying our little 1939 Streamline Moderne house. With its geometric shapes, symmetrical or asymmetrical, nautical themes, glass block accents and vibrant colors, Deco architecture just thrills me.

Take for instance the historic Art Deco district in the South Beach area of Miami Beach. It contains the largest concentration of 1920's and 30's resort architecture in the world. Some years ago I had the opportunity to visit and was mesmerized by the rows and rows of colorful Art Deco hotels.

These gorgeous images of Miami hotels were photographed by New York-based interior designer, Lissette Carrera. Aren't they fabulous?

Perhaps it's time for some sun and fun in Miami Beach! No Autumn there!

image credits: Lissette Carrera via Flickr

Monday, September 20, 2010

Seasonal Sale at Paris Hotel Boutique!

Happy Monday Everyone!

We're making room for our Fall/Winter inventory and are offering several selected items that have been reduced, from accessories to furniture. You'll have to browse around a bit to see the selected markdowns. {Sale runs through September 27th}

Click here to enter our sale!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Happy Weekend!

All of you folks in New York and New Jersey, hoping you weren't affected by yesterday's devastating storm. Thinking of you all.

Wishing everyone a wonderful weekend!

image: IrenaS