On the Coast

Just imagining a week on the Amalfi Coast.  A beautiful villa embedded into the cliff-side that over looks a cerulean sea.  Crisp white interiors, huge windows that fully open and let sunshine and fresh air in, and of course the occasional reminder that you are vacationing in one of the oldest cities in the world.

Happy weekend!

Images via Serendipity Villas

Design News: National Post

I am thrilled to share that Anvil furniture is featured online in the National Post today!  Toronto based Interior Designer, Lisa Ferguson and I have been collaborating for a few months now on a product line that incorporates a beautiful mix of materials.  The Gwen console above is just one of many pieces that have been realized! Lisa's article today gives you tips on how to take your foyer three ways.

Hope you enjoy it and would love to know what you think of the Gwen console!

Elegant in Madrid

Today, I am delighting you with some fabulous eclectic style.  We are in Madrid, where the home of decorator Isabella Lopez is a joyous union between modern, traditional, classic, and industrial.  The home used to be an old factory, and after a three and a half year renovation, the results are quite spectacular! It's a bit of a cultural mix as well.  European homes are often easily recognizable,(stone floors on the main level)  and although this home has many  European features, it also has an American feel, which I kind of love.   And how about that dressing room?  And this gorgeous outdoor room?  I think i need to make an outdoor canopy day bed like this one.. It's stunning!  

Images from AD

American Classic

For as long as I can remember I have always loved floral prints and lace.  I have to scan through my old magazines, and post some of the pictures I have saved.  I still have those images  ingrained in my head from D&G, Emanuel Ungaro, and so many others.  This fashion spread just took me there. Don't you just love the classic cuts of these pieces? Now I am on a mission to find some new pieces for spring.  Something with beautiful flowers, and something with pretty lace!  

What are you thinking of adding to your wardrobe?

Images via FGR

Eco-Chic - Formaldehyde, What is it?

Hello Everyone!  Eco-Chic Jo Alcorn of Whitewash  & Co is back with another great topic.  Formaldehyde, we heard it's bad, but what is it and where is it?

We have all heard through the grape vine about the deadly chemical Formaldehyde and how we should stay clear of it. But does anyone really know why or what is it?


I turned to good old Wikipedia to get a clear definition of the silent killer, “Formaldehyde is an organic compound with the formula CH2O. It is the simplest aldehyde, hence its systematic name methanal.” Methanal like the volatile flammable liquid alcohol? Now why would that be needed in fabrics for our sofa’s, clothing or bedding?

“Formaldehyde is a colorless gas with a characteristic pungent odor. It is an important precursor to many other chemical compounds, especially for polymers. In 2005, annual world production of formaldehyde was estimated to be 23 million tones (50 billion pounds).[4] Commercial solutions of formaldehyde in water, commonly called formalin, were formerly used as disinfectants and for preservation of biological specimens.”

Hence why they use it to embalm humans now that should say something right there a chemical that keeps us intact longer then Mother Nature would like us to be? 

“Formaldehyde is more complicated than many simple carbon compounds because it adopts different forms. Formaldehyde is a gas at room temperature, but the gas readily converts to a variety of derivatives, which are often used in industry in place of the gas.”

Awe, so peaceful and clean or is it?

Fun fact that I learned Formaldehyde had been detected in outer space.

“Formaldehyde is a naturally occurring substance in the environment made of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen. Natural processes in the upper atmosphere may contribute up to 90 percent of the total formaldehyde in the environment. Formaldehyde is an intermediate in the oxidation (or combustion) of methane as well as other carbon compounds, e.g. forest fires, in automobile exhaust, and in tobacco smoke. When produced in the atmosphere by the action of sunlight and oxygen on atmospheric methane and other hydrocarbons, it becomes part of smog.”

So apparently Formaldehyde does not accumulate in the environment for long because the sunlight and bacteria in our soil and water breaks it down. Also our bodies quickly break down formaldehyde which converted into formic acid in the body. So why is everyone so afraid of this chemical if it breaks down in a couple of hours?

Because even a small amount of this gas chemical can cause serious health problems, that will be with them for the rest of their lives.  Such symptoms can be as simple as a runny nose, sore throat, cough, dermatitis, sleeping difficulties, headache, fatigue, breathing difficulties, sinus irritation, chest pain, frequent nausea, and decreased lung capacity. Hum, the whole world suffers from all or some of those symptoms. Could Formaldehyde be the main cause or link to all our health problems that we deal with today, since it weakens our immune systems and leaves aseptic to decease? Other health problems are abdominal pain, anxiety, coma, convulsions, diarrhea, and respiratory problems such as bronchitis, pneumonia or pulmonary edema.

 I have a headache now, am I breathing in Formaldehyde sitting at my desk? You can find this killer chemical in, cosmetics products such as foundations and powders, blush, mascaras, eye shadows, eyeliners and pencils. Durable press (wrinkle-resistant) fabrics, textiles, cleaning products, waxes, glues, polishes, paints, rugs and wallpaper. Tobacco and cigarette smoke, skin care products such as creams, lotions and moisturizers, personal hygiene items such as soaps, cleansers, and shampoos. It is also in building materials, particle board, cabinets, insulations, plastics material that found in our computers.

Formaldehyde is literally everywhere you turn. So how can we protect ourselves from something which has taken over our atmosphere?

First, the chemical is less concentrated outside so make sure to have good air circulation, open windows, and use fans. Temperature plays a role in when this deadly stalker will attack, so moderate your temperature and beware of the humidity levels. Second, try to buy and find products that do not have formaldehyde in it by reading the labels and asking questions.

This is a war that we have entered without knowing, but knowledge is the key in winning this battle. So spread the word and start to be aware of the products you buy and the health affects you feel after bringing certain products into your home.

Be safe with your purchases my friends.

Until next time,
Eco Jo 

Reading Room

Have you noticed homes today, especially new ones, lack a formal living room.  I kind of agree that there is no real need for a formal space, unless you are doing a lot of "formal" entertaining. My idea of entertaining is very informal.  Come in, find a comfy spot; eat and drink.  I have to tell you that the lack of space is a draw back though.  I don't want it to be formal, just a great space, for reading, or great conversations, or just hanging out with a sandwich.  This is room by David Kleingberg is listed in the library section of his portfolio, and yes there are books, and you may do some reading here.  But it's so much more no?

All images via DKDA

Classic and Collected

It's no surprise that the foundation for great design is routed in classic style.  This San Francisco flat is a perfect example of a great formula.  Look at that dining area; great seating, interesting table, vintage light and fresh fabrics!  It sets the tone for the entire space.  The home is designed by Alison Davin of Jute. Her motto is antiques, art and modern family life.  You have to appreciate how well she ties them together, especially the color play between the main art piece over the sofa, and the fabric choices throughout! 

It's going to be a fabulously warm week, i hope you have big plans to enjoy it! 

Images via Jute

Spring Coats

Too early to talk trench coats?  I think not!  After I saw the orange leather trench it was pretty hard to concentrate.  I looked no further than Burberry. You just can't beat the details.  

Happy Friday Friends!

Images Via Burberry

A Gold Lining

I can't even describe for you how beautiful the morning sky was as I drove in to work.   It was as if it rained gold, and the clouds were left with a hint of gold dew, and the glow around it was a dusty pink.  It was lovely, and set the tone for a beautiful day.  Finding the images to capture it is next to impossible, I can only tell you, it evoked calm and energy at the same time. 

Images via pinterest

In the Deep

It takes a little courage, but look at the result!

Images Via Jean Allsopp

Modern Europe!

Although this home is in New Jersey, I love it's laid back and modern European feel! Interior Designer Frank DelleDonne is the designer and owner of this fabulous place!  The living room has to be my favorite.  The layout is perfect for entertaining small and large groups.  I love how the chaise's are positioned.  And the dining table off to the side can be stacked with tasty treats for the crowd!  The rest of the home takes it's cue from the room with an equal mix of elegant and casual! 

Hope you are off to a great week friends! 

Images via House Beautiful

Italian Coffee

How do you take your coffee?

Images via 1, 2, 3

Style in the Woods

Can you feel spring in the air?  I totally can,  and this sun kissed fashion spread is really getting me excited about warmer days ahead.  I am totally adoring that ridiculously ruffled brockade jacket by   Malgorzata Dudek,  (In fairness, I could never pull this off, but it's lovely just the same.) But I can work with the beaded dress by Dolce & Gabbanam, and the Black and Copper full length lace dress by Loris Diran

Images Via Fashion Gone Rogue


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