Thursday, July 31, 2008

Make It Your Own

When you are framing something large, framing can get expensive very quickly. One great solution is to buy frames at Ikea and make them your own. The key is to buy frames that are made of natural, unfinished wood. I just used markers on this frame.

Photo in frame by Eileen Travell

All you need is time, art supplies, and the frame; this could be a great project to do with friends or kids!

U r 24K!


Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Outstanding Otto!

Otto is a very casual restaurant owned by Mario Batali, Joseph Bastianich, and Mark Ladner.

The amazing view from our table made us feel like we were on vacation.

Iced tea refills, what more could I ask for?!

We ordered 2 pizzas as appetizers. I guess I was pretty hungry because I forgot to take pictures of them! They were both excellent; one was potato, anchovy, and ricotta and the other was tomato, anchovy, capers, chilies, and mozzarella.

Bucatini with guanciale, onion, and black pepper

Linguine with zucchini, chilies, mint and bottarga

Penne with sweet Italian sausage, garlic and escarole

I had the penne alla Norma (tomato, basil, roasted eggplant, buffalo ricotta) which I very highly recommend; it was off the charts delicious.

The gelati and sorbetti are hand-made daily, and come in many unusual flavors such as salty caramel, olive oil, lemon verbena blackberry swirl, and lemon basil. The gelati and sorbetti are not to be missed.

Espresso with whipped cream and vanilla gelato

Another Excellent Dessert

The prices are extremely reasonable. All the pastas are $9, and the pizzas are from $9 to $14. Because Otto is such a great value, it gets

out of 3 glasses of iced tea

Otto's Vitals

1 Fifth Avenue, at 8th Street
(212) 995-9559

Otto's website

U r 24K!


Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Superfabulous Paperclips

Look at what you can make with paperclips. I think it's a pretty cool bib necklace!

You can make many awesome things with paperclips. This Paperclip Chandelier made by Drew Leshko was my inspiration.

U r 24K!


Monday, July 28, 2008

I Heart Isabel and Ruben Toledo (Part III)

As my sista and I were leaving the penthouse, Ruben asked us if we had seen Isabel's studio downstairs; since we had not, we HAD to check it out! Even going from the penthouse to the studio was easy on the eyes. It's like visiting a museum.

As we approached the door to the studio, these mannequins and lions welcomed us.

She was ready for her close-up.

Isabel's studio is divided into 3 spaces: her office, her sewing room and a hallway connecting the two.

This is her office. Everything about it is beautiful, and artfully arranged. Although with Isabel and Ruben, you get the sense that it all occurs naturally and unintentionally and wherever and whenever they happen to lay something down it becomes part of a magical composition.

Behind the Desks

A Newspaper Clipping about the Isabel Toledo Ensemble Worn by Michelle Obama and Isabel and Ruben at the Met's Costume Institute Gala

I had written a post about Michelle Obama's style or lack thereof, Is Michelle Obama Stylish?, but Isabel Toledo + Tom Binns = Total Superfabulousness. I've never seen Michelle look better!

More Brilliantly Arranged Stuff behind the Desks

This mirror hung high on the wall looks majestic; upon closer inspection, you can see the common materials used in its construction.

Even the dress form looks like a work of art.

This dress stands guard in front of Isabel's office. I love this dress in all its seeming simplicity.

The details at the neck are exquisite.

In the hallway, there were racks of magnificent dresses. I wanted to try every single one of them on.

Her sewing machine is a thing of beauty, at least to my eyes. And to think, this simple machine is capable of making such a glorious collection. Of course, Isabel's ingenuity is the driving force behind the machine's accomplishments.

The fabric of and the details on this dress caught my eye.

I'm a huge fan of trompe l'oeil! The fabric is so rich looking.

This mannequin decorated by Ruben would look great in the dress above.

Come to think of it, this mannequin would look great in anything or nothing!

I hope you enjoyed the Studio tour!

U r 24K!


Friday, July 25, 2008

I Heart Isabel and Ruben Toledo (Part II)

Now that you know your way around the penthouse (from Part I), it's time to meet some of the superfabulous celebrants.

Nichelle (who has an excellent blog of her own, 55 Secret Street) shared some cocktails and secrets from the blogging world with my sista and me.

Patrick McDonald is chatting up Carmen Dell 'Orefice. Doesn't her blouse look excellent against the backdrop of the wall mural?

As my sista and I were snooping around the apartment, we came across this doll. I thought it was a doll modeled after the great Isabel Toledo. My sista thought that Ruben saw the doll and bought it because it looked just like Isabel and was named Izzy. We had to find the honoree immediately to congratulate her, of course, and to get to the bottom of this mystery.

Well, I'll put it to you this way, my sista hit the nail on the head. You can learn a lot from your little sista. Isabel and my sista posing for the camera.

My sista and I were just hanging out, and who walked by, but none other than Matthew Modine. My sista thought he looked familiar, and I told her he was probably someone she knew from boarding school. Afterall, most celebs look like someone you went to high school or college with before you realize who they are. Matthew thought my sista looked familiar so they started chatting. I asked Matthew if I could get a picture of him with my sista, and Patrick McMullan (celeb photographer extraordinaire) took my camera and offered to get the three of us. Bonus for me!

Two stylin' guests enjoying the evening. The girl on the left is wearing 3.1 Phillip Lim and a Chanel bag, and the girl on the right is wearing Kloset, a new designer label from Thailand.

I'm a huge fan of the union jack so I had to get this picture of the Baroness who by the way is a very genteel lady.

Lastly, I leave you with Ruben Toledo, a very gracious host, and as usual Isabel is on his mind (note: painting above his right shoulder).

Because the remaining guests are so famous, I leave you with a list: Simon Doonan of Barney's, Linda Fargo of Bergdorf's, Kate Hudson, Maria Cornejo, Cecilia Dean of Visionaire, Iris Apfel (there was an exhibit of her clothes at the Met), Pamela Fiori of Town & Country, Marjorie Gubelmann Raein, Gillian Miniter, Narciso Rodriguez, Cynthia Rowley, Stan Herman, Vera Wang, Gabi, Ange and Adi of ThreeAsFour, Bill Cunningham of the New York Times, Mickey Boardman of Paper, Teri Agins of the Wall Street Journal, Yigal Azrouel, Michael Vollbracht and Cathy Hardwick.

Next week I will show you Isabel's studio. Have a great weekend!

U r 24K!


Thursday, July 24, 2008

I Heart Isabel and Ruben Toledo (Part I)

Tuesday night at the Toledo penthouse, there was a cocktail party to celebrate Isabel and her Couture Council Award for Artistry of Fashion that she is to receive in the fall. Glenda Bailey of Harper's Bazaar and Valerie Steele of the Museum at FIT were the hostesses of the celebration. It was announced that Isabel's work from 1985 to 2008 will be exhibited at the Museum in June of 2009. The occasion was a real who's who of the fashion world, but I will go into that in my next post. This post is about the Toledo atmosphere.

Upon entering their apartment, a fan was handed to you. A very welcoming gesture as this was one of the hottest evenings both in terms of temperature and company.

The space is beautiful and vast.

As you walk down the stairs, you pass this amazing mural.

Looking around the room is a feast for the eyes.

A glimpse of the bathroom makes it a covetable destination.

Incredible Murals by Ruben Toledo

The bathtub of ice looked like heaven.

The whole bathroom looked like heaven, ice or no ice.

My sista was hanging out in the B-room, looking chic in vintage Pucci.

Well, it was time to make our way back to the main space.

There was much more to see from the library to the stairs... the 10 feet or more tall cactus adorned superfabulously... the spectacular view... what's hiding under the stairs...

(a better view under the stairs) all the exquisite artwork.

(She looks like the perfect guest).

Their penthouse is the embodiment of the souls and generosity of these two artists.

U r 24K!