Boarding in the Berkshires

Monday, March 19, 2012 5 comments

Port, her best friend and I fled the city's crazy Celtic chaos over the weekend for a good dose of nature. Looking out for nothing more that a "good looking joint up north" I discovered the exceptionally handsome Hawkrise in East Chatham, NY. The Berkshires were absolutely nowhere near either of the places we had to be on either side of this adventure (Westhampton and Youngstown, NY), but this is what happens when you let an aesthete handle logistics. If you haven't checked out AirBnB for little jaunts like this, you absolutely must. The place was only $200 a night and could've easily slept seven people (with cuddling).

The place was designed and built by its owner, furniture designer Clarke Olsen. Many of his beautiful Danish-modern looking pieces are in the house.

Me, in my Armor Lux Breton sweater (that I wear about three times a week...I hope my co-workers like the sailor look) on the balcony in the morning.

Mr. Olsen designed this great rope bench in the '70s.

This was the view from my room. I was hoping a deer would pass by. I just got Porter, waking me up in the morning, instead.

...and this was the light fixture in the guest bath - Benjamin sockets galore (and glorious!).
A Lot of White and Some Scarlet Feathers

Wednesday, March 14, 2012 10 comments

Our attempt to turn our home into a 3-D version of the Hovey Design Tumblr page is almost complete (almost). While much of the stuff is old, it looks transformed and fresh against the icy white...and a few key upgrades are fast becoming slippery slopes for new shopping urges. The newest and grandest find: a taxidermied scarlet ibis in a glass box. This little touch from Trinidad (via Craig's List and Rye, NY) makes the whole joint glow and sparkle like we live in some grand Parisian flat (that would definitely have herringbone floors). It's made me want to trade in all my land creatures for delicate feathery exotics. We've replaced all our Edison bulbs with those silver topped buggers and the difference is lovely since they give off a clean white light - not a golden yellow.

Tragically, our beautiful Venetian mirror slipped and shattered while we were repainting, so we've hung this great 1970s framed Hermes scarf that our mom bought in Paris in its place. The tiger is papier mache from John Derian and, as mentioned previously, those tusks are made from little melted toys. Port got the tube-shaped lawn ball bag in London and I found the orange portfolio (for a relative steal) at the Bergdorf Goodman home section, the gator gladstone at the Pier Antiques show a couple years back, the Vuitton suitcase on a coffee run in SoHo and the wicker folding chair for $5 on 14th Street. Our mom used the Vuitton tote as a diaper bag when we were babies.

We added moulding to our horrible, hollow, cheap closet doors - and dressed them up with some great antique brass rope pulls that we found in Montclair, NJ. A wonderful friend gave me that first edition of Osa Johnson's Four Years in Paradise (with dust jacket!) for Christmas and the kimono was a vintage find that never sold at Porter's Possessions, our parents' attempt at retail in late-1970s Lincoln, NE.

And for the entry, we swaddled our railings in Brooks England handlebar tape, replaced the curtain with thick Army Duck No. 10 version from Restoration Hardware and added a Chinoiserie mirror that used to live in my bedroom. I think it's the first time in 6 years that we've had a full view of ourselves before leaving the house...and the first time ever that we've been able to see our things so clearly. It's actually hard to leave!