Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Birthday Present

Despite the lousy weather on Saturday and Sunday, the weekend was a great one. I couldn't ask for anything more. Lot's of great food, R&R, family, friends, two little toe-heads that crawled into my bed in the mornings, and then finally a nice hot summer-like day.

On Saturday night Dan took me out to oe of our favorite little french bistros, Bistrot Margot, in the city. (Let me highly reccommend the mussels and the chocolate chip bread pudding!)

And on Sunday night, he not only made a fantastic dinner for me, but also hung my new birthday present ...

This was not as easy of a task as it first appeared to be. But with the gracious help of my father-in-law, who is most definitely our favorite go-to handyman, they got it up in time for dinner and to my great delight.

If you read my post on chandeliers, you may remember that I have been wanting to swap out the builder-installed chandelier in our breakfast area for sometime now. It just seemed to scream "Home Depot" to me. (Not that there's anything wrong with the store.)

I have gone back and forth over several chandeliers for awhile, but finally decided on this one from Wisteria. This is, after all, a breaskfast room. I thought it called for more of a simple elegance than some of the bolder, more ornate choices I was looking at. I really love it's vintage-lantern look. It is also a large, substantial size (perfect for high ceilings) but still manages to have a light and airy feel.

I also saw it featured in the home of another great designer, Brooke Giannetti. who's blog, Velvet & Linen, I adore. That sealed the deal.

It definitely makes me swoon.

(Especially when being served a fabulous orechiette with sun-dried tomatoes, rapini and sausage made by my husband. Mmmm. Did he treat me right, or what?)

And these two other men in my life are pretty special too.

Thanks to my parents and everyone yesterday for making my birthday the perfect day.

More of our weekend adventures to come later this week ... stay tuned.

Black & Spiro Today

I quickly snapped this photo as I was leaving the shop tonight of our front desk.  Today we replaced the black and white ikat desk skirt, which we've had on the desk since our re-opening last year, with a new gathered navy and white ticking skirt.  This photo gives a very small indication of our new look for the entire shop which will hopefully be in place within the next 3 weeks.  There is going to be lots of red {I am very into red}, navy, pale blue, green, yellow and a softer/warmer pink than the one I am normally known for. 

I wish that all of our lovely new things would arrive sooner as the shop is a little bit empty due to our recent annual sale.  However, as I keep telling myself - beautiful things take time to come to fruition and as my mother always says - good things come to those who wait!!

Monday, May 30, 2011

I absolutely have to share this!


This weekend I was surfing on the internet, to find some antiques dealers addresses in the UK, and came across some wonderful websites, not only related to antiques but even to the English gardens! As this address of ARNE MAYNARD, one of the most talented garden designers in the UK.


“Attention to detail, both in the planting and the structure of the garden is paramount, and natural materials, from stone to timber, figure prominently and these are always sourced and selected for highest quality. Arne's designs draw on a wide range of references from architecture to garden history, and from interior design to often long-forgotten traditional crafts and techniques. He will use details such as the coping for a wall, the design of a gate or a garden building to add another dimension and bring to a garden a further layer of interest and complexity.” is explained on Arne’s website.



Arne Maynard’s garden in Wales.



Arne Maynard has a holistic approach to design and believes that to succeed, a garden must relate and respond to its surrounding landscape, its history and to the buildings within and around its confines, as well as to the needs of its owners.






11 13


Arne Maynard has some wonderful garden related products you can order on his site, as this apple collecting sedan. Isn’t that just gorgeous?


To see more of the beautiful gardens of Arne Maynard, visit his website HERE.

To order one of his products, click HERE.




Arne Maynard Garden Design Limited
Second Floor
14 Baltic Street East
London EC1Y 0UJ


The second address I absolutely want to share with you is LANTIQUES, an antiques dealer situated in the heart of the Antiques region of West Sussex. Although Lantiques is renowed for its wide selection of French farmhouse tables for everyday living, you will also find some beautiful individual pieces of period painted furniture and seating.

I posted some of my favorites!



19th century English chair in walnut with charcoal linen



19th century French carved walnut table



Gustavian style mirror with original distressed paint



19th century French daybed in the style of LXVI



A set of 6 povencale chairs



Rare large tilt top vineyard table with poplar top on oak base



19th century Swedish clock with original paint



19th century Swedish corner cupboard with original paint


To discover more of the gorgeous tables and furniture, please visit the Lantiques website! You won’t be disappointed!





I hope you enjoyed this post about my UK finds!

Wish you a nice new week!



Sunday, May 29, 2011

It's Fire Time...

I think we have lit our fire every night over the past few weeks.  We are actually a little bit obsessed with lighting the fireplaces at our house.  Even on nights when it hasn't been very cold, we have lit the fire.  Brad chops the wood and Harry collects the smaller bits and Max and I watch.  It is a big family event every single night!!

We just received some beautiful paper mache pots into the shop last week as pictured below and I think I might need to take one or two home as they would be perfect to hold the pine cones and sticks.  And then when Winter is over, I think they would look wonderful with our Christmas tree placed in one...I love things which have varied uses!!!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Starting the weekend early ...

Please excuse my lack of a substantial post. I am attempting to get to bed early to fight this cold I have and keep it from ruining my weekend! Well, it won't ruin my weekend, because it's my birthday and Memorial Day all rolled up into one ... but I want to feel good for it! And we are off to a good start  ... my seven year old, who has just been dying to lose his first tooth, ("I'm the only one in my class who hasn't lost one, Mom") came out of bed shouting "Mom! Mom! My tooth fell out! My tooth fell out!" at a little before 9 pm. Well, the excitement was just too much ... we were up taking pictures, videos (he wanted to reenact how it happened and then show me what he is going to do when he wakes up in the morning.) I am so happy for him.  He has been wanting this so bad. He did not want to finish first grade without losing at least one. Still not sure what the going rate for the Tooth Fairy is these days. I think she may be a little more generous for someone who's waited so long, right?

Anyway, looking forward to some warm weather, a date night with my dear hubby,  maybe a little pool time, an excursion into the city and a party at my parents'  house.  Mom, I know you're planning something like this, right?

Elements of Style

Just a small intimate gathering?  Maybe whip up a little something like this?

Style Me Pretty
(Seriously, my parents could almost pull off something like the party above. They've got a beautiful deep yard with a waterfall and koi pond. That's where we'll be on Monday. )

Hope everyone has a great long weekend! Let summer begin!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Fresh as a daisy

You might notice I have a new look.  I think it was well overdue.  This little vignette was one I put together at home last Summer.  I was inspired by it's fresh and happy vibe this morning and I thought what a perfect picture to post for the start of a new era here at ABT....

image - elouise van riet-gray

Beautiful spaces & corners and A Thank You


A huge Thank You to my blogfriend Marie of the Swedish blog Classic Style for including me in her Sunday Profile series!!

To read the interview with me about my job in our company Lefèvre Interiors , click on the Classic Style logo :


Logo Classic Style


Lefèvre Interiors Lefèvre Interiors


Thank you Marie! I feel honoured to be included in your wonderful Sunday series!


Beautiful spaces & house corners which inspired me this week!


6 image source : Homes & Gardens May 2011


18 image source : House & Home  Photo Credit Michael Graydon


7 image source : The Essence Of The Good Life blog


Kopie van 1 image source : Orangeries Lloyd Hamilton   Photo Credit Claude Smekens


Kopie van Lambris 382 (the art of living - de blauwe kamer) image source : De Blauwe Kamer via Magazine The Art of Living


2 image source : Eclectic Revisited blog


8 image source : unknown


20 image source : Thomas Hamel & Associates

 10image source : William Eubanks


image source : Maison du Dragon Bruges


12 image source : Art & Décoration Juin 2010


5image source : Campagne Décoration May-Juin 2011  Photo credit Christophe Rouffio


14 image source : Art & Décoration.Dekio


19 image source : Campagne Décoration


Kopie van Living 158 (chateau de mossaic) image source : Château de Moissac


16 image source : Matthew White via 1st dibs


15 image source : Windsor Smith


3 image source : Pamela Pierce via Veranda


22 image source : Kevin Harris Architect


21 image source : unknown


23 image source : House & Home

I hope these images inspired you as much as they have inspired me!