Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas

Have a happy holiday. Wish I looked as calm & collected as this Viennese lady by Mela Koehler (Austrian, 1885–1960). She was part of the Wiener Werkstätte artists’ collective founded in Vienna at the turn of the century. This card was in the Metropolitan Museum of Art's catalogue this year (it's on sale now). If you are or will be in NYC before 17 January, you can stop in to the Neue Galerie & see an exhibit of postcards from the collective. The online site is very pretty (as is the gorgeous catalogue). Cheers!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Eve Day

...and I'm running in place. So off to do so for real. Herewith a few not-so-great photographs but we do what we can. Are you sure you want a cat? It does give one the opportunity to practice patience, I suppose. Cheers to pals in Australia where it is past midnight & therefore Christmas Day. I maintain the Twelve Days of Christmas policy--it really does take the pressure off, as I see it. Back later. Cheers. PS: There's still time to donate to Toys for Tots, if you're going to be at IKEA, the Soft Toy campaign goes until they close today.

Thursday, December 23, 2010


"Poetic Illusions" Illustrations by Mats Gustafson. I saw an orchid at my neighborhood market that looked like this (if you squint). Yes, I'm goofing off more than usual. (Vogue China, December 2010) Via the Fashion Spot, on Vintage Rose Garden)

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Byrne on Burton

I cannot explain how I ended up on the Irish Times website reading Gabriel Byrne's remembrance of Richard Burton/review of Furious Love. A visit to a few Irish newspaper sites & there is Byrne at every turn; he was appointed Ireland's cultural ambassador (to the States) earlier this year.

Studiously ignoring the baking of cookies, the cleaning of the apt. More fun to read things like "a flame of love never quenched...". I'm just's a quick & interesting read--especially the anecdote about a dinner in Vienna with Olivier, Burton, Gielgud, & Richardson.

(The photograph is from The Burtons tumblr. I saw it earlier this year but it seemed more of a winter thing. There's an amusing entry about the meeting of a bellhop & Burton, here.)

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Shoot Your Sandwich

From the Saveur website: Everyone has a favorite sandwich, whether it’s a homemade Dagwood pulled together from leftovers, or a cult hoagie that waits at the end of an hour-long line. SAVEUR wants to know what you think is the best thing in sliced bread — find your best photo of your favorite sandwich, and upload it to our photo contest. One winner and six runners-up will be picked by the SAVEUR editors to be featured in the pages of our all-sandwiches April issue. (photographs from the contest. I kind of overdid it, but I'm hungry.)

The rules.

The prize - glory, bragging rights, & your sandwich.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Clair de Lune

There's a total eclipse of the solstice moon overnight. The last time this happened, it was 1638. Wow. I could make much of this but I'll spare one & all. This very pretty Isabel Marant boutique window in Paris by Fan & Gab. (To be fair, I saw it on this Dreaming in White Pinterest board. But just like FB, it is having some sort of mini-breakdown today.)


These are from the so-much-fun Strasbourg Christmas Market, here. (Christkindelsmärik is Alsatian.) Julie continues to wrestle with her ambivalence towards fairy lights, here. You can listen to Mon Beau Sapin, here. Here is Kristin of French Word-A-Day on donner (a mignon Provençal tabby caught my eye). More anon.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Christmas Lights

Same as on Giulia Geranium tonight. No pudding recipe yet. Freezing cold here. Cannot decide how much I like the song...maybe it's the balloons & fireworks over London in the video. Actually, I put this up on both sites to say hi to a friend who is seriously downhearted. Cheers! (photograph via Vintage Rose Garden via Pinterest) Thursday Update - here's a link to video playable in Europe.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Pumpkin Ginger Vanilla Pudding

The cat-pudding has repaired to the room with The Dragon (a heater), freeing up my Aran pullover upon which she snoozes quite often (see grainy photograph). One more holiday do-gooder event in which I have admin duties.

I did make a pumpkin ginger vanilla pudding & it went over well. More of a custard but the word 'pudding' is much more fun to say. It's a combination of three recipes, so a codified version is forthcoming. If the power stays on. (Hiss)

A few notes: Angie has a Romanian childhood holiday memory & chocolate recipe, here. Also, Vanessa's very helpful & delicious index of recipes. Carina in Copenhagen's "I want to" series is fun.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Week's End - The Nobel Peace Prize Ceremony

Unless you've been under a rock (man, I hope not), you know that the ceremony was today but that the award could not be given. Liu Xiabao was not allowed to be there as he's in prison for 11 outrageous years. Those who have been in contact with his wife Liu Xia have not heard from her in at least 3 days. It's believed that she is under house arrest.

The last time a Nobel Peace Prize was not handed out was 1936. Guess who nixed that one? You can watch the video on the Nobel Organization page, here. By the by, today is International Human Rights Day & Amnesty International's Write for Rights campaign runs through the 13th. Wherever you are, you can do something without joining anything. A letter with a stamp. That's it.

Sadly, I can't have comments on these posts due to spamming.

(The lovely holiday candle photograph is by Aimee White)

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Back Where You Belong by Tina Tarnoff

This elegant & romantic piece was a summer surprise from San Francisco-based artist Tina Tarnoff. I wore it frequently with two linen tunics, too low-cut for comfort. Worked like the charm that it is, no sewing & lots of compliments. The last photograph shows two winter possibilities. I highly recommend that you hop over to Tina's justly-popular Etsy shop & her inspiring Thought Patterns blog. (Her husband, novelist Terry Tarnoff has a terrific website, too.) Tina's 18 sets of cards (update - 17 sets, sorry) are based on her intricate original papercuts. If you're like me & can't afford much this year, these are a great deal. I've given several sets to a variety of people & they are always loved. Thank you so much to super-generous Tina.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

An Early Christmas Gift

A lovely old friend from Strasbourg days sent me a teeny leetle Kodak camera, battery charger, & batteries (so thoughtful). He thought this might keep me from total madness until the real bigger deal comes along. A terrific photographer, he said, "I prefer film, always will...". I hear you, buddy. Already, I'm swearing up a storm. Many bisous, baci, & asstd xoxo to B & his kind wife Mary Lou in NY.

Julie the Cat is exceedingly annoyed because I keep moving her around to take a snap. Poor bunny. It's so cold & windy here that moving back into the bedroom (with The Dragon space heater) is necessary. On Netflix Instant (if you have it or the UK/Euro-zone equivalent) are, in no particular order:
Hannah & Her Sisters, Manhattan, About A Boy, 84 Charing Cross Road (highly recommend), Charade, The September Issue. Vanessa in Berlin recommended Metropolitan & I hope to watch it tonight.

Liberty London Girl (aka Sasha Wilkins) is here in town for the TEDWomen conference. Highly recommend checking in on her blog. It's a terrific mix of the fun, stylish, & serious. And the seriously stylish.

The sun is sinking & so is the temperature--inside. Sometime soon I hope to regain energy to post on what's happening here. (One thing is that
Patti Smith will be at the Portrait Gallery on Saturday--naturally, I have an ironclad commitment that afternoon. Bah.) (photograph via Rebecca Schley via Pinterest)

Elizabeth Edwards RIP

Elizabeth Edwards died this morning. Condolences to her family, especially her children Cate, Emma Claire, & Jack. The loathsome boor who smeared her in a book was invited to speak about her this afternoon. Such breathtakingly bad taste, even for Washington, it's making me dizzy. Here is EE's Senior Fellow page at the Center for American Progress; you'll get a much better idea of her accomplishments there. (Update - the CAP link changed after Elizabeth died; I've put in the link to the CAP Fellow announcement press release.)

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Reindeer Cheer

Sunday Update (5 Dec 2010) - It's been that kind of week. I hope to be back by mid-week. Meanwhile, please check out Made4Aid, IKEA Soft Toy Aid, & Tina Tarnoff's Etsy shop (here's a Giulia G. post about a beautiful pin Tina sent me this past summer). And of course, check out all my comrades here in the right sidebar & on my profile page. And yes, I have a thing for reindeer. This cute dude is by John the Finn, here. xo/Susan

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Change in the Weather

This illustrates what happens when you haven't really done the seasonal clothes rotation. Yet. UK Tights is a good tight-site. If you order enough & get them on the right day, little to no delivery charge from UK to US. Wolford are gorgeous but out of my reach (for now).

Just about everyone I know in the States, Canada, & Europe is trudging around in the snow. Here it's been in the 50s/60s & now zooming to a freeze. The last 15 hours have brought torrential rain, winds, & who knows what this afternoon-into-evening. This is mainly to switch over to December. Strasbourg at Christmas holiday soon, I hope, but things are still rather tangled here. Oops, there flickers zee lights.

Everyone in my sidebar & also on the profile page if I've not linked yet, have some great suggestions for holidays. (Joanna's always-entertaining Cup of Jo Gift Guide has just begun.) Giulia Geranium has ideas for good gifts that help. (photograph via audrey hepburn complex)