Friday, January 29, 2010

Catalog Love: Gudrun Sjödén

I have more pretty pictures for you today, this time from the Spring 2010 Gudrun Sjödén catalog.  I had never even heard of Gudrun Sjödén before moving to Germany, but once I admired some of the unique clothing and accessories in a German magazine and found the wonderful styling in her catalogs and on her website, I knew I had to get on the Gudrun Sjödén mailing list right away!

The fairytale boho aesthetic is right up my alley.  I'm especially liking this collection inspired by Provence.

You know how much I love the COLOR!
Isn't it great to see a mix of younger and older models?  And I'm loving this caravan, or cottage--whatever it is, I want it!

Here's a different colorway.  Isn't the little bag necklace cute?  The setting here is Aix-en-Provence, a lovely place I'd like to visit again sometime soon!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

A Perfect Vacation, or Staycation

Why hasn't anyone thought of this before?  It's quite possibly the most wonderful weekend getaway idea imaginable--at least for an idler gal like me.  Leave it to India Knight to bring me news of the The Reading Weekend, which is held regularly throughout the year in the U.K. and occasionally abroad.

I would love to go, but honestly, for those of us without the available cash or proximity to Sussex, the idea behind it can be recreated at home as a staycation, right?  Well, you won't be waited on hand and foot, unless your at-home experience includes a butler and cook, but as long as you can cook a bit or even order in, you'll be okay.  Your home may not be a famed Georgian farmhouse an hour from London, but if it's warm (at this time of year), comfy, and reflective of your personality and aesthetics, it'll definitely do.  So get ready to round up your family (perhaps, after some gentle persuasion and promise of hot chocolate and cupcakes),  and get going on the preparations:

  • make sure the house is reasonably clean--so you won't feel the need to go around cleaning up junk while you're on your Reading Staycation

  • collect the Dining Necessities: hot chocolate, tea, chai mix; other drinks for the adults, if they wish; ingredients for a delicious and easy breakfast; some frozen fun hors d'oevres-y things or something homemade that you'd frozen and forgotten about; and ingredients for another wonderful and cozy dinner

  • gather some warm blankets--maybe like this one from Pendleton

  • or one like this from Anthropologie

    • a Scrabble board, for cut-throat games next to the fireplace or woodstove, mug in hand
    • bath salts and candles for any Bathtub Readers (how could you not be one, really?)
    • a few literary movies or TV shows, for a bit of a break from reading and Scrabbling--I'll suggest these:

    • Oh, and let's not forget the books--head to Brocante Home to check out some great vintage domestic fiction titles from Alison's 2010 read-along, or pick up something from your own shelves that you've been meaning to read for the longest time (and I'm thinking magazines are perfectly okay to throw in)--just don't forget to select a nice read-aloud for the whole family to enjoy.
    It goes without saying that cell phones, internet, outside errand-running, and non-literary TV should be restricted or kept to a bare minimum--otherwise, your Staycation could be in danger of turning into an ordinary weekend.  Outdoor rambles are encouraged, though--as long as they quickly lead back to a warm couch.

    Now go read, eat, relax, and make memories!

      Monday, January 25, 2010

      More Magazine Loveliness

      Since I can't think of anything else I want to blog about on this snowy Monday, I'll give you some more eye candy from Living & More.

      More colorific fabulousness in the January issue!

      Friday, January 22, 2010

      Curious Pages

      I love books, have kids, and have a husband who is an elementary school librarian. Really good children's books make me happy.

      So you can imagine that I find this blog to be pretty darned hilarious. You can tell what it's about by the subtitle ("recommended inappropriate books for kids"). There are dolls (and people!) without heads, houses (and people!) who catch on fire, bizarre German stories which should never have met with translation, and dubious tales about the health benefits of ice cream. If you have a thing for vintage illustrations, you'll have a field day just glancing around this blog. If you share with Lane Smith (if you have children, you know about him) and Bob Shea (the author of Big Plans, one of our new favorites in The Husband's library) a delight in the snarky and the absurd, you'll take to reading this blog--and likely look up, snickering, from the screen an hour or so later.

      Thanks to the funny folks at The Observer's Very Short List for the share.

      Thursday, January 21, 2010

      Magazine Obsession, Part 1: Living & More

      It's (almost) a little embarrassing when I count up how many magazine subscriptions I have.  I just love them, especially design/lifestyle-related ones--though I'm actually surprisingly picky about them--and I'm always delighted to find a new one to buy (The Husband is not quite so delighted).  When we arrived in this country, naturally one of the first and most important things on my "to-do" list was to check out Germany's mag selection.  Incidentally, if you ever read either of my Japan blogs, you probably noticed that I have no problem buying magazines that I cannot read.  But back to this German one, which I am hopeful of having the possibility of reading one day.

      Isn't it pretty?  This is the latest issue, which I just nabbed from the grocery store yesterday (paid for it, of course--though I paid for one last week that I didn't manage to place in my cloth grocery bag, as I got so flustered at the next patron all riding up on me from behind at the register--slow down, already!).  I haven't figured out how to subscribe to it, as the website is rather cryptic.  I did somehow order another German mag subscription online--more on that another time.  Anyway, I think this is my favorite magazine here, though the page count is a bit skimpy.  But if you love color and lots of it, the way I do, it's hard to resist.  Have a look at this:

      Miriam Strehlau's home in Goa, India

      Flower Fairies--yay!

      the home of Susann Krebs--matryoshka and kokeshi doll love

      Nice, ja?

      I'll share from another Living & More issue soon!

      Wednesday, January 20, 2010

      London Town

      More from our December trip:

      Tuesday, January 19, 2010

      Thoughts on London, and Travel in General

      Years ago (I won't say exactly when!), The Husband and I spent a month and a half backpacking around Europe for our one-year anniversary.  We met another American couple in Switzerland and ended up corresponding with them later and even visiting them in their home the following year.  During that visit, we were shown an elaborate, beautiful scrapbook that our friend said she'd put together so carefully because, after all, this would be their only trip to Europe.

      I recall being so surprised by this--shocked, really--that someone so young (they were our age, and again, this was years ago) couldn't envision herself returning to the continent I had so enjoyed twice and already looked forward to visiting again.

      Even as a teenager visiting New York City, I vowed to return at least every five years to places I visited and loved.  I haven't quite been able to keep this up, though I've been pretty close with regard to the Big Apple.  I (we) took a good bit longer to return to Europe, owing to some years of birthing children, living in genteel near-poverty, travel to other places closer to our Texas home, and oh, yes--moving to Japan.

      But we have indeed returned to Europe--and not just to visit this time, but to live.  And on our December trip to London (my third time there), I remembered what our friend had said.  I still find her sentiments depressing, though I now see that my dreams aren't necessarily hers, and maybe she really didn't want to come back to Europe, anyway.  Maybe she felt that since she'd seen St. Peter's, The Louvre, and the canals of Venice, she could check those things off her "list" and move on.

      I get it--I really do.  I used to be much more inclined to rush manically, rabidly, from sight to sight, country to country, just so I'd have an impressive running tally to show.  I kept strict Travel Schedules, that, frankly, were more than a little insane.  The Husband followed along as fast as he could limp.

      But after having kids, all of that stopped.  Not the travel itself--oh, no, our children and travel have never been mutually-exclusive.  It's just that now we see what we really want to see, when we want to see it--if we can find the time.   We slow down and actually do smell the roses (and eat the ice cream, nap in the mornings, and spend imprudent amounts of time looking at shoes and books--some of us more than others, of course).

      I don't fall apart when we can't fit in three museums in one day.  I rush past monuments to take in the condiment aisle in a grocery store.  Now I take pictures of random things I like--things that enchant me and give me a "feel" for the place I'm visiting, even if those things might not interest someone else in the least.  After all, these are things that make our memories more than mental postcards of all the "must-see" sights a place has to offer.

      On this trip, don't think we avoided the British Museum or Festal Evensong on Christmas Day at St. Paul's.  Those were a couple of our favorite experiences, along with seeing the musical "Oliver!" and taking the requisite red phonebooth photos.  But Persephone Books and the graffiti along Brick Lane meant an awful lot, too.

      And yes, I'll admit that it helps when you're able to make plans to return, in five years or less.

      Friday, January 15, 2010

      Pushing Daisies

      I am really, really going to miss this show.  It's chock-full of a bunch of the things I love:

      1. mystery
      2. snappy, witty dialogue, like that of grand old screwball comedies or The Gilmore Girls
      3. color and more color--truly vibrant sets, made to look much like the world of Amelie
      4. retro style
      5. truffle-hunting pigs and bee skeps aplenty
      6. general quirkiness galore
      7. and, of course:  PIE!
      The premise of Pushing Daisies didn't attract me at first, but I'm so glad I gave it a try--I now own both seasons on dvd.  Fairytale Hausfrau favorites, absolutely!

      Thursday, January 14, 2010

      Creative Inspiration with Nathalie

      So, how about some creative inspiration for the day?  Have you still not seen this video of artist Nathalie Lete painting live in the Tokyo shop Usagi Pour Toi in November?

      Isn't it lovely?  I like that you can hear jazz and Japanese giggling in the background--that just adds something to the experience.

      I've admired Nathalie's work--which fits quite nicely with the Fairytale Hausfrau aesthetic--for several years, and I've kicked myself for not buying (while still in Japan) this Jeu de Paume book in which I first saw her art.  Of course, she has a website, where you can admire her art and find out where to buy some of her products.

      Oh, and her home was featured in the October '09 issue of now-defunct Cookie magazine (unfortunately, I don't think it can be found on the Cookie site).

      Wait!  I've just discovered that it's now possible to buy Jeu de Paume books directly from their website, even if you aren't in Japan!  Hooray!

      *For more on Nathalie Lete, and especially on where to find some of her products in London, see this post by Wee Birdy.

      Wednesday, January 13, 2010

      Can somebody please turn this stuff off?

      Enough with the snow, already.  I mean, how about just a quick break in the action--say, ten minutes or so?  As I write, snow is blowing around the yard--blowing.  As if falling straight down from the sky for hours isn't enough, it has to blow.  Being a daughter of the American South, I am simply not accustomed to snow at all, so blowing snow?  Nuh-uh.

      Like a good faux-German, I was out front sweeping and shoveling this morning--although not quite before 9 a.m., the Magic Time by which any Germans worth their weight in rock salt are supposed to have taken care of this delightful chore.  As I scraped, swept, and flung, I tried to meditate on the idea that because of the workout I was getting, I wouldn't have to pretend to feel bad about not doing the Wii Fit later this afternoon.  But the blowing snow was not adding cheer to the situation, and it wasn't helping my hair any, either.

      But what was this?  Our friendly DeutschePost mail-frau alighting from her yellow car-truck-thing and coming toward me with these two adorable packages in hand.  She presented them with a pleasant "Bitte-schön," (here you go, sista), and I accepted them gratefully and ran inside so I could see what I got before my eyes froze.

      Of course, I already knew what it was, because it was (obviously) from Cath Kidston and I had (obviously) ordered it for myself.  I know, you'd think I'd have gotten a decent fill of Cath goods during our Christmastime trip to London (more on that later), and I did indeed buy a couple of items at the Covent Garden-area shop.  But when I saw the after-holiday Online Sale, I couldn't resist.  I needed a Spring purse and skirt, you know?  Anyway, the lovely floral print on the bucket bag provides a moment of encouragement for someone who is experiencing blowing snow.  See, it's almost medicinal!

      Tuesday, January 12, 2010

      Haus to Home

      Well, hello there!  Thanks for stopping by.  I've just moved house (isn't that what Brits say? I love that!)--literally, from Japan to Germany, and blogularly (well, maybe it should be a word!) from Typepad to Blogger.  Pardon the random couch photo, but I wanted to give you a visual touchstone.

      I've been settling into the literal haus for a few months now, but the blog haus is brand-spankin'-new!  The lovely Happy at Happy Loves Rosie hopped right to it after I contacted her, and she came up with this rockin' design for the Fairytale Hausfrau.  I defy you not to love it!

      So anyway, I'm glad you're here, and I hope you'll be back.  Expect posts about German village strongmen,  burgeoning worm farms, itinerant lace-sellers, and the fantabulous money drain that is London--among other topics.  Random couch photos will be kept to a minimum.

      Sunday, January 10, 2010

      Test Blog

      This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post. 

      This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.

      This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post. 

      This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.This is some text to test out what the layout would be like of this post.

       Love Diane xx


      Related Posts with Thumbnails

      Disclosure Time

      • I may occasionally receive monetary compensation for my recommendation, endorsement, and/or link to certain products and services. In the case of affiliate links, no advertiser will ever directly influence content on this blog. Some links are added based solely on merit, without any compensation whatsoever. Any and all content written on this personal blog is by me, Fairytale Hausfrau.