Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Goodbye, Mr. Swatch

As a young girl of the '80s I definitely had my fair share of these wondrous timepieces. The Swatch introduced me to one of my favorite accessories. And since the days of my first one I haven't gone a second without a watch. My first Swatch was a bluish-green with fish on it, and I absolutely loved it. 

Turns out, the Swatch brand has quite a history. One I had never read about until the death of Nicolas Hayek, the founder of the Swatch brand, on Monday. Turns out Mr. Hayek was quite the man. He is credited for saving the Switzerland watch industry in the early '80s when he introduced the brand. The Switz watch industry, known for its perfectly crafted analog watches,  was suffering as a result of public taste turning to digital watches and the introduction of the Japanese watch industry. That's when Hayek stepped in and reorganized the group and introduced the Swatch. It was cheap to produce, appealing to the eye and lightweight, making it a great collectors item; for the first time people considered buying multiple watches. AND the rest is history, as they say. Thanks to Mr. Hayek for turning the industry around and bringing us these practical and stylish (dare I say timeless?) accessories!

(check out that double-watch style)

Photo credits:
1. Fashionista.com
2. New York Times.com

Swirl sales

Just because you're a member of Gilt Groupe, ideeli, and HauteLook, too name a few, doesn't mean you shouldn't give Daily Candy's Swirl a whirl!

It's the latest addition to the fun city guide site and offers up to 80% discounts on accessories and clothing from topnotch designers and hip up-and-comers. So far this month they've had designers such as Le Bulga, Habitual and Tart. They even have free shipping between now and July 5 - nothing better than that!

In their own words "Those in the know have always looked to DailyCandy to bring the latest news on the goings-on in the world of fashion. Now we're bringing you the merch as well - it's the best of the best handpicked by us. So staying ahead of the curve is even easier. Who can resist?"

While the site is still in it's Beta version, sign up here. Also check out Daily Candy if you haven't already.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Pets of the Week: Milie and Sadie

Here's to our first feline POW's, Millie and Sadie, from Atlanta!



Full Names: Mille and Sadie Attaway
Breed: Long-Hair Domestic Cats
Age: 8-month-old sisters
About Us: Originally Mardi Gras rescue kittens, we have minds of our own. We run from corner to corner, end to end of our apartment chasing our tails that, by the way, are so long you might mistake us for Meerkats. We love having company but Mom locks us up when people come over because of something about being called a "cat lady".

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Bravo's latest work of art

I'm a little dissapointed that I'm late on the news of Bravo's latest show, Work of Art: The Next Great Artist. It sounds pretty intriguing. In a Project Runway style show fourteen aspiring contemporary artists are pitted against each other in hopes of achieving the grand prize: a solo show at the Brooklyn Museum as well as a hefty cash prize, of course.

Hosts China Chow (who apparently forgot she was wearing Spanx...) and Simon DePury

In every episode the artisits are faced with the challenge of creating unique works in different mediums - from sculpture and collage to painting and photography. Through a gallery display at the end of each challenge, the pieces are judged by the show panel and its weekly celebrity guest. Hosting the creative series is art enthusiast China Chow and world-renowned art auctioneer Simon DePury. Joining Chow and DePury on the judging panel are New York gallery owner and literary art contributor, Bill Powers, New York Magazine's art critic, Jerry Saltz, and esteemed curator and gallery owner Jeanne Greenberg Rohatyn.

I'm interested to see how this show ends up and if I even like it. It sounds interesting and I'll be pleased if I've found a new summer show! 

Two episodes have already aired, but the third one shows tonight - 10/9C.

To read more.

Images from Bravo.com

Monday, June 21, 2010

We'll call it Pet of the Week...

Fox Terriers Waiting by Arthur Wardle 

In lieu of a real POW this week, we're going to pay homage to dogs everywhere through an exhibit at the National Sporting Library. The exhibition, entitled Lives of Dogs Viewed Through Literature, Art, and Ephemera, provides a look into the complex history of the relationship between man and dog.

Matchless by Gustav Muss-Arnolt 

Want to know how they trained hounds circa 1576? There's a book on display for that. What does a letter of admission in to one of Queen Victoria's kennels look like? That's on display too. 

Books from the National Sporting Library (1758-1897) and Victorian collars from the Collection of Timothy and Jocelyn Greenan.

Varieties of dog collars over the centuries as well as paintings and books on dogs of all kinds are on display. 

World War I German message collar and photograph. 

The exhibition ends December 2010.

To read more.

1. Arthur Wardle (English, 1864-1949)
Fox Terriers Waiting
Oil on canvas. 19 x 23 ¾ inches 
Signed Arthur Wardle 
From the Collection of Timothy and Jocelyn Greenan

2. Gustav Muss-Arnolt (American, 1858-1927)
c. 1890
Oil on canvas
11 5/8 x 8 ¾ inches
Signed GMA
National Sporting Library Collection

3. Books from the National Sporting Library (1758-1897) and Victorian collars from the Collection of Timothy and Jocelyn Greenan.

4. World War I German message collar and photograph. From the Collection of Timothy and Jocelyn Greenan.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Happy Friday!

In honor of the US Open and the weekend, fix yourself a John Daly and watch this video:

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Lilly scarves

Going to school in the South, Lilly Pulitzer was quite prevalent around campus. Girls sashayed around in everything Lilly - skirts, dresses, polos, sweaters. Personally, I was never a huge Lilly follower but I do think some of the prints are bright and cute for the right occasion.

Like these scarves ... easy to wear, great colors and fun patterns!

Attaway or Andrews??

Which Erin is it?

Attaway or Andrews?
(minute 2:43-2:56)

Congrats, Attaway, I see a real future in broadcast for you!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

"Fried Chicken and Champagne? Why the Hell not?"

Good news San Antonians, Max's Wine Dive is coming to the Quarry Village! The latest addition to the shopping center, nestled between the Quarry and the golf course, will open in Fall 2010.

Known for their gourmet comfort food, Max's has been very successful in Houston and Austin already. I've dined at the Austin location quite a few times and have yet to be disappointed. They have an extensive wine selection and great food.

Quarry Village

It's a great place to enjoy a happy hour or a Sunday brunch. I am thrilled that San Antonio is finally getting some of the fun places Houston, Austin and Dallas have been enjoying for years. It's about time!

Pet of the Week: Mason

Say hello to this week's POW, Mason!




Full name: Mason "Madness" Register-Neal
Breed: Old English Bulldog
About me:  I sleep about 20 hours out of the day. I eat anything, including dust bunnies. I don't like to walk on the grass in the morning dew because I don't like getting my paws wet.  I am afraid of small dogs.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Viva Argentina

I love everything about Argentina...

The scenery...

The history....

and the food...

But right now, I'm really liking this guy:

Argentina's wild-eyed soccer coach, Diego Maradona.
Next to Pele, Maradona is probably South America's most famous soccer player. Known for his party boy antics, Maradona is also known as one of soccer's most controversial and talked about players of all time. He is quite a character and really fun to read about and watch.

To read about some of his latest craziness, check out this article from ESPN a couple of weeks ago. It'll also give you a feel about soccer in general and what rock stars these guys think they are!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Gaga about Gadabout

If you haven't already heard of Hannah Brooks Nation, stationary designer extraordinaire and owner of Gadabout, you should definitely check out her site. I've been a fan of her stationary designs since I first laid eyes on the magnificent illustrations and vibrant, fun colors she uses in her custom note cards and stationary. The designs are a juxtaposition of elegant but funky and bold yet classy. Each unique design can be personalized to your liking or left as is.

The 22 year-old resident of Atlanta actually designs and illustrates each of the original prints. She also takes the time to name each design and provide a little tidbit as to what the name means. Her designs range from plain, initialed note cards and interior design illustrations to drawings of fishing lures and high heels.

Here are a few of my favorite designs: 

Thissur Poram


Why Put Off Tomorrow, What You Can Do Today?


Needless to say, I was thrilled when I recently heard about her iPhone application. The app, called Post, allows you to customize designs and invitations to send via email or text in a few short steps. There are over 50 designs to choose from including categories such as Classic, Birthday and Holiday. And if the designs don't convince you maybe the price will, it's only $0.99 - probably the chicest dollar you can spend on iTunes!

Image via apple.com

All other images via agadabout.com

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Not your everyday classic

In late October 2009, Penguin Group released a series of classics with a new look. Designed by Penguin senior cover designer,  Coralie Bickford-Smith, the books range from Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights to The Picture of Dorian Gray and Cranford.

Each book is intricately decorated with a theme from the story line - like waves for The Odyssey and peacock feather's for Dorian Gray (to play on the book's themes of vanity and the superficial). The illustrations are of matte colored foil on cloth.

What better excuse to decorate your bookshelf and revisit the classics than with these vibrant, beautiful books.

The brilliantly bound books are available at Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie and Amazon. I can't wait to  add a little life to my bookshelf with a row full of the fabulously designed classics!

For more on Coralie Bickford Smith read her interview  in October on Design Sponge

Record your "Passions" in a Moleskine

No notebook has a history like the Moleskine line. For centuries educators, writers and artists alike have relied on the line - including characters such as Picasso and Hemingway (two of my favorites by the way). The "nameless black notebooks," as they were known, have held, within their leather covers, sketches and notes that we have learned about in history and English class. 

To this day, the legendary line is still famous for their versatile books. They are available in many sizes and as of recently they have been coming out with some great colors (think: rose pink and deep turquoise). I am a big fan of the line and typically have one in my purse, on my bedside table and in my desk. They are also great travel companions.

While perusing their site the other day, I happened upon their latest set of notebooks: The Passion Book Series. As if sketchbooks, storyboards, planners and notepads weren't enough, Moleskine has come out with this series for Book, Film, Music, Wine, Wellness and Recipe collectors. A brilliant scheme by the company, as peopling have been chronicling their "passions" in these notebooks for centuries. I plan on purchasing the recipe one for myself and picking up the wine and book ones for some friends. At only $20 a piece they make a unique, thoughtful gift.

"Reflect on what you're currently reading, reminisce about past favorites, and capture your list of future ones so they don't fall through the cracks. "

"Archive everything from favorite family recipes to your own inventive culinary discoveries. Document, organize, and plan all upcoming occasions or reflect upon your past successes."

"Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced collector, the wine journal will organize your wine-tasting information and palate preferences. Keep track of your old favorites and new finds, whether at a formal wine-tasting or buying at your local wine store."

I haven't had any luck finding these in person yet, but I can't wait until I do!

To see for yourself:

Images and quoted text via Moleskine 

Monday, June 7, 2010

Pet of the Week: Charlie

This week's POW hails all the way from Hot 'Lanta. He belongs to one of my close friends from college and I know he and Gloria will be instant best friends as soon as they get to meet!



Charlie and his brother, Ranger, a Boykin Spaniel.

Full Name:  Charlie Captain Clappier
Age: 11 Months (on June 14 officially)
Breed: West Highland Terrier
About: Charlie is mischievous through and through.  He has the personality of a 10 year old boy, but only weighs-in at  about 15 pounds.  He is an aggressive chewer, and prefers peanut butter to anything else in the world.  
Hobbies: gazing out the window for squirrels/cats, chasing squirrels, playing with Ranger, hopping through ivy, chewing on his favorite toy: a deer antler, having his tummy scratched, and making new friends.

*** Would you like your pet to be Pet of the Week? Just send a few photos and the information above to afullerlifeblog@gmail.com. All pets are welcome!!

Artsy snail mail

While email proves to be fast and convenient, I still believe it is no where near as personal or thoughtful as a handwritten note. So as a huge fan of art and the handwritten letter, I was thrilled to see that USPS has come out with a line of stamps commemorating 1940s and '50s abstract expressionists. Each stamp displays the artist's name and the title of the painting, as well as a brief tidbit about the artist. The pane of 10 stamps costs only $4.40 and is a great way to spice up a boring envelope.

Image from USPS.com

Friday, June 4, 2010

What does your email address say about you?

While randomly trolling the internet the other day I happened upon this comic ... pretty funny if you ask me.

Have a great weekend!


If money was no object ...

and I had somewhere more exciting to go than just Rockport this summer, this would be my carry-on:

Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci

but I'd definitely opt for this faux crocodile version seen in this month's Vogue Last Look:
(sorry for the poor quality I couldn't find it online!)

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Jenna Lyons

As a loyal fan of J.Crew, I am a serious of admirer of their creative director Jenna Lyons. A Southern California girl at heart, Lyons started at the company 20 years ago as an "assistant's assistant". She then climbed the ladder until 2007 when she was crowned creative director of one of America's favorite companies.

If you've followed J. Crew at all over the years you've definitely noticed a difference in the brand since Lyons became CD. In an interview with Style.com, Lyons noted many of the changes she has brought to the company, including carrying non J. Crew brands, from Rolex to Sperry. " Why try and re-create it? Some things are amazing the way they are. Alden shoes, Sperry Top-Siders. They come with tons of history and brand integrity that we might not be able to offer in shoes. "

Lyons' inspiration board:

As the brains behind the classic American clothier, Lyons has turned the timeless line into a swimmingly popular brand with her frilly tops, tweeds and sequins. And for that she has been vastly rewarded.

With the intention of keeping Lyons at J. Crew for the next several years, she received a $1 million bonus in October 2009 according to the Wall Street Journal, who can blame them? She's turned a brand for the masses into a fun, unique shopping experience.

Lyons shares a Brooklyn townhouse with her husband and their three-year-old son Beckett, and as you can probably imagine, Lyons' life is quite enviable. Just check out her shoe "closet" where Beckett picks out her shoes every morning:

In a recent Oprah appearance, Lyons takes us through a day in her life:

Jenna on Oprah

Not bad for a girl who started out as an "assistant's assistant".

Photo credits:
1.Elle Decor
2.Huffington Post
3. Huffington Post
4. Elle Decor