Friday, December 31, 2010

happy new year!

white quince branches, prosecco, friends ...
photograph by jeff mcnamara

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

kindling bundles

so glad I stashed away a few bundles of kindling from The New General Store holiday sale...these are days to keep the fireplaces going!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Cedar trimmed stairway

A cedar roping trimmed with berries and herbs and hurricane shades with votive candles on the steps are a beautiful holiday look for this country house stairway...
photograph by Wm P Steele

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmas lunch setting

A natural look for the table means a few simple touches such as votive candles, crates of mossy paperwhites and packaging with a bit of red and greenery...photograph by Wm P Steele

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

christmas films to get in the mood

I have a list of favorite Christmas movies that I look forward to seeing each year,to keep me wrapping and cooking and getting ready for the family invasion Christmas eve...Here are my top 10!

White Christmas
The Holly and the Ivy
Christmas in Connecticut(1946)
Its a Wonderful Life
Little Women
Miracle on 34th Street
The Bishops Wife
Joyeux Noel
A Christmas Carol
Love Actually

the Christmas tree

A family tradition for my brother Dennis is to decorate his old pickup truck with a red bowed wreath for the season and take the kids for an outing to find their Christmas tree ... photographs by Wm P Steele

Sunday, December 19, 2010

berries + branches

Simple greens with branches and berries are perfect for this 18th century the black berries from the privet hedges to tuck into wreaths
and fill the small woven basket on my front door...
photographs by Laura Resen

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Christmas at Terrain

I made a field trip to Terrain to do some Christmas shopping and meet up with friends for lunch
and loved every minute of it from the winter garden setting to the cafe lunch to the gifts I found for my list (and myself)...favorites were the candles in old mason jars lining the windows, hot bread from the oven baked in flower pots, the natural green trees and wreaths and the firepit with log stump seats with vintage blankets ...found lots of hard-to-find gifts for designer friends with beautiful natural packaging and great ideas to take home from the styling and presentation
of the greenery and simple sophisticated country decorating for the holidays...

Monday, December 13, 2010

a champagne tea

Looking forward to an afternoon gathering of friends for tea and champagne
with ginger cookies, my mother's shortbread, and an angel food cake...

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Loved seeing my bedroom mantel styled for Christmas
in the Habitually Chic are a few more images
from that setting! photographs by John Bessler

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

vintage ornaments

I add to my collection of cream, silver, pearl, glass ornaments from antique shops, flea markets, yard sales throughout the year and love remembering where I bought them on my travels when decorating the tree each year...

Sunday, December 5, 2010

A seaside Christmas

One of my favorite White Christmas stories was created in a seaside setting at Meadowcroft, Long Island ...natural trees, scallop shell lights , pine roping and berries, all looking right at home at this turn of the century country house ...
photographs by Jeff McNamara

Friday, November 26, 2010

The New General Store Holiday Sale

One more day until The New General Store holiday event...we are busy unpacking all our gifts to get ready for Saturday November 27th from 11-6pm

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

an early morning walk on the beach... beautiful palette

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The New General Store Holiday Sale

Getting ready for The New General Store holiday sale this Saturday...unpacking rosemary olive oils and lemon vinegars and burlap market bags...

Thursday, May 6, 2010

the tent

Bought a natural canvas and net tent at the Design on a Dime benefit from Laura Bohn's booth and can't wait to set up my new outdoor room down by the river...just can't decide if it should be a dining room or living room...

Monday, May 3, 2010

It started raining during the night, which will be great for the garden, and I remember a beautiful piece of music I just heard called “The Raindrop Prelude” by Chopin…

Sunday, May 2, 2010

The wisteria has gone wild with the warm weekend we’ve had and is now spreading over the pathway…I leave the front door open as the fragrance wafts through the house… The only problem is that the dandelions have gone wild too!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Lily of the valley are spreading everywhere under trees, and against the fencing, and in the field… I’ve cut bunches to give to friends and put little bouquets in my bedroom on the fireplace mantel in a mix of small glasses in a row…

Friday, April 30, 2010

Met with the painter to touch up the house for summer….I’ve asked him to paint the porch floor in a stone color, and repaint the front and back doorways in glossy white…will give everything else a good scrub down to freshen up.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Went to Bloom in Sag Harbor as they got a shipment in from France and found lots of new things for a project I’m working on…

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Fabric sourcing for new cushion covers for the outdoor furniture…a beautiful soft grey sunbrella fabric matches the weathered wood frames and will transform the setting, but keep it all natural.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

An early morning walk on the beach is inspirational,- the soft colors and textures are perfect for a beach house I’m working on…

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Newspaper recycling time: I still get the New York Times delivered every day as I love the ritual of reading the morning paper…I’m also a “clipper” and have a razor blade ready to cut out articles, inspiration, recipes, new shops to visit, etc. for various projects. What’s left I use for fireplace starters, window cleaning and for my friend Thomas’ puppies . . .

Monday, April 5, 2010

Back to the spring cleaning list …off to Home Depot to stock up on the new Martha Stewart natural cleaning supplies…everything from heavy duty scrubs to dishwashing liquid all in well designed, simple packaging of course…

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Easter brunch at my parents house is a tradition…my mother makes a baked ham, with pencil thin asparagus, assorted quiches, and after lunch we go for a walk at the beach and return for pots of hearty English tea and coconut cake…

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Sunset at the boathouse: The days are getting longer and I look forward to a mug of tea at the end of the day to unwind and check on the swans and make the list for the next day…
Our little farmstand down the road is all set up with rows of potted flowering bulbs in beautiful spring colors…I always look for the grape hyacinths and apricot tulips for my nieces, pale lavender pansies for my mother and find some white tulips and hyacinths for myself and my sister…I love supporting the local stand and when the blossom’s fade I plant them outside in the garden for next year!

Friday, April 2, 2010

I have a stash of clay pots in the garden shed which I re-use when buying Easter plants in those foil covered plastic pots… I keep a crate of moss ready to finish them off which looks good and keeps the plants moisturized longer as well…

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Will pot up a large Easter lily in an old white mixing bowl for my dining table . . .
I also have bowls of Auracana eggs in that perfect color and handblown stone colored ones that I bought years ago and bring out every year to put on my big white farmtable.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

A walk on the beach is the perfect early morning way to start the day…hope to find a few more white smooth white stones to add to my collection. I use them for paperweights, in piles in tablesettings to hold candles in clear glass jars outside on the picnic table…

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

It’s still chilly in the evenings, so re-stocking the firewood baskets with bundles of lichen covered branches down from the storms …a good walk around outside down to the boathouse with a wheelbarrow to gather them is a great break from all this paperwork!

Monday, March 29, 2010

An hour in the herb garden now that the frost is over…the chives are coming up already, so a cream cheese and chive omelet and a pot of tea will be perfect for lunch today…

Sunday, March 28, 2010

A perfect rainy day project…time to sort out the bookshelves…I promise myself to give one book away for each book I add to my collection, so time to pack up a few boxes to pass along to friends and family and the rest go to the Book Barn in East Moriches for their spring sale…a donation to their historic restoration fund for the Ketcham Inn.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Time for spring cleaning…can’t wait to get the storm windows off and the put the screens up…a sunny day to wash windows with vinegar and warm water and newspapers like my grandmother did!

Friday, March 26, 2010

The snowdrops are out, a sure sign that spring is coming . . . I just read that snowdrops are one of Jane Austen's favorite flowers, too.