Wednesday, October 29, 2008

A Laughing Foundation

"No joke is needed to get members of more than 500 laughing clubs in India to erupt with glee. 
Instead, they breathe deeply, yoga-like, reach for the sky to reduce inhibitions, then force a 'ho, ho, ha, ha' until the laughter becomes contagious. Laughing reduces stress, claims Dr. Madan Kataria, the founder of SAKTHIFOUNDATION ( 'Laughing is my mission,' he says, 'I want to spread it all over the world.'"

Rock on, Dr Kataria!

Click on the link below to reduce your stress and spur on laughing:


OR paste this link in your browser:

Sunday, October 26, 2008

French Hospitality from a Stranger

On one of my trips in France, I was walking through the 15e looking for an obscure junkyard based on a tip from a fellow dealer. I had left my pied-à-terre at 5am as this was said to be the witching hour to locate the best of the best at the treasure trove of a metal yard. About an hour into the walk I realized to my horror that the jet lag from the previous night's landing was more severe than I had originally thought: I had on two different pair of boots! Given that I had on a knee-length skirt, the mistake was glaring! Faux Pas enough in the States, but in Paris?! Quel Horror! I wanted to crawl away and hide, but was too invested in the thrill of the hunt.  To make matters worse I had dribbled coffee all over the front of me...ok, not so much dribbled,  as much as SPILLED.  A frumpy American stared back at me at every turn of each window shop's reflection.

Lost and confused on winding one-way streets unfamiliar to me, I focused on enjoying the opportunity to discover a part of Paris as if opening a vibrant, perfumey pomegranate. Layer by layer, each pod revealing a bit more of the bounty. Each seed offering a variety of color and shape.

An hour or so had passed and  I soon stumbled upon a wonderful petite stone house surrounded by several pockets of lavender bush. The faded grey stone had a magic patina to it and ironically seemed just perfect upon realizing this sweet home doubled as a hardware store. Gingerly walking in so as not to disturb or create glare over my garb, I approached the sweet silver-haired Madame and asked for assistance in my very best {broken} French.

To my disappointment: unknown dialect. The communication couldn't have been more missed.  I quickly pulled out a wrinkled napkin from my tote and drew out a makeshift map. After several minutes, the woman abruptly got up, rushed the only patron out the door, shouted something to her husband, and grabbed me by the hand. With three of us now walking towards the door, they turned the sign hanging to read FERMER (shut/closed) and proceeded to walk me towards my intended destination all the while clutching my hand....

Despite my obvious lack of understanding her million-miles-a-minute French, Madame jabbered on and on without pause. Monsieur interjected nods and "hmmms" when he felt it warranted. I smiled, laughed,  looked agreeable and frowned in solidarity when I felt it warranted.
"Ok, Kath, how much longer can you fake your way through this one-sided, intense conversation? Did I just laugh inappropriately? Oh good, she's smiling and nodding so timing was right.  Wait, WHAT was that word? Did this sweet little woman just say......Oh God she DID, didn't she?! Oh my, did she just use that word again? I just know I'm blushing. How juvenile of  me"
It was exhausting and funny and charming all at the same time! After many turns lefts and rights,  the chain link fence surrounding the infamous junk yard stood before me.
"Viola Mademoiselle!"...and a bunch of unrecognizable other stuff"

Warm hugs were exchanged, and this girl practically ran through the gate to see what metal objects could be unearthed. 

Tell me now. Really. Can you imagine any merchant in the States actually closing their doors in the middle of the day just to help in a similar situation?

75 vintage Champagne buckets and various pails later, I remember thinking:

French Rudeness?
Severely blown out of proportion.
French Hospitality?
Like No Other.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Driving Miss Pumpkin

{updated 10/26: all antique wagon carts have now sold! Sorry if you were placed on the wish list!}

{Antique Cart, circa late 1800's; $780 at Several available; each varies slightly}
Five Houses Down!
Four Houses to Go!

Busy decorating for the Fall/Halloween season for many clients.  Front porches transformed, fences  swathed, buffet tables set, and the pumpkin deficit has been adequately impacted!

Nuthin' but fun, laughter, and more fun!

{Fall burlap bottle wraps; $17.50 by contacting}
It's a busy weekend driving up and down the coast and back down and up again playing Fall Kringle! Back to blogging sometime soon...

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

French Tea Towels

I'm a sucker for vintage tea towels, especially those that hail from France or England in the white and red hues, with a touch of monogramming from the family of years long past who so lovingly used them:

Dried dishes with them....
...... Carried hot pots with them..... Wrapped bread in them... part of their every day lives....

Vintage homespun with red monogramming varieties ABOVE (Style HS2 $66/ea)

Vintage with touches of red and yellow or sometimes green (Style RC3 $25/ea)

Vintage white with uneven monogramming probably sewn by a loving grandmother whose eyes were starting to go (Style WW1 $25/ea)

Burlap with the right touch of red. Newly crafted by our friends at Cote Bastide in Aix en Provence (Style CBBurlap $22/ea)

When combined, a lovely creation is born:

Vintage French tea towel patchwork pillow w/down insert ABOVE($300); 18" square made from vintage French tea towel w/down insert BELOW($80)

All available now at VINTAGEWEAVE.COM

Monday, October 20, 2008

Fall Decorating au Natural

{Judy's amazing creation for us to enjoy ABOVE!}

Usually we go all out for Halloween decorating. This year has us busier than we've ever been with decorating here and there for clients, leaving us little time for WOW ME holiday decorating...

This year we decided to focus on a more Au Natural Fall Decor Theme, pulling in inspiration from Dear Mother {NATURE,] that is

Clock faces abound at Vintageweave, as does any vintage typography we can lay our hands on! Since none of this is glued down, you can rotate any holiday theme.

{Cloche Halloween Theme; $64 -- VERY LIMITED quantities available by contacting}

Of course at VW we are most crazy for French Textiles....pillows in muted fall colors....
{French Fall Pillow; $300 includes down insert available by contacting}

Friday, October 17, 2008

MERCURY Rising (at my house anyway)

{Napoleon's Chalice; $59 at}

When these arrived, I must confess, I took several to my car before we had unpacked it all. Usually I will wait a bit and live with it in the boutique for a while. Not so with this latest addition to the Vintageweave Mercury Glass collection.

Reproductions at their finest. Warning: these are made to resemble their antique counterparts so these aren't meant to be perfect looking. Making them, well, just perfect....

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Vintage Vignettes

Dear friend, Jackie, recently relocated from Los Angeles to North Carolina. I first met this amazing woman as a customer of Vintageweave. Her visits became more frequent and within a month she became a client. Shortly thereafter, she became a friend, a treasured friend. Jackie loves to shop almost as much as I do! Her home is filled with lots of Vintageweave treasures and other wonderful finds discovered during her frequent vintage hunting trips. I miss her daily visits, but now enjoy her daily emails...we have fun trying to decorate together over the phone or via email...

"....move the small blue atop the large yellow and the big pink near the green..."

I trust any government employee scanning our emails doesn't think it's Russian Code for a chess game of spy warriors!

Note the Vintageweave Mail Holder in the lower left...Jackie turned it into a unique spice rack...LUV IT!

Jackie has many talents and if you're in the NC area and are interested in becoming a Casting Director, she occasionally teaches classes on this topic when she's not, well, casting.... IF YOU KNOW OF GREAT VINTAGE SHOPS IN/AROUND NORTH CAROLINA, PLEASE SHARE AS SHE CRIES THAT THE AREA IS BARREN and she's needing a fix that UPS can't always deliver from our doors to hers....

Our email decorating discussions are due in anticipation of a November photo shoot for Country Home magazine.(Out around this time next year).

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Hollywood Homes

Busy working on a two clients' homes in the Hollywood Hills. One a Hollywood producer, the other a Hollywood's only fitting that they live in the hills among the stars in the sky and stars on the ground!

Logistically-speaking, I lucked out in that both live near this interesection. Can you imagine driving past this gorgeously-maintained public corner everyday?

More to come once there's stuff to show. Nothing but contractor work right now...

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Au Revoir Boutique

They call me pinkladymannequin.

Today I leave the comfortable boutique where I have lived as a mascot.  Our visits will end. Memories of unearthing me in an off-beat Paris flea market at 6am in the rain will remain. Green paper has been exchanged for my new adopted family and now I am carried off to add whimsy to my new home..... A home created by the magical mind of Tim Burton and his exceptionally-creative set designer team.
They say I am perfect. They say I have just the right amount of torn, tatter and wear....

...they say my falling and stained body is a muse for the dark, quirky fairytale.

Look for me again, friends, when the visions come alive on screen in 2010. Alice never had THIS wonderland so good!

Friday, October 3, 2008

For the Love of Red!

French Red.

"What exactly is that?"....this is a question I hear far too often.

Well, it evokes a feeling, a time, a place, a land far, far away.

I see a certain hue of red and my heart beats faster. Roll in faded red to a shade of pink, dolled up next to a more vibrant red and I can hardly contain myself.

Enter the antique French enamel pitcher above. I saw a sea of them and nearly fainted.'s so easy to make me giddy. Really. So, so easy. {D&A Rug in Framboise color-varies sizes; French zinc pitcher. All available at >

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Succulent Maven

Vintageweave is not a garden center, but we are OFTEN called upon to create something wonderful for the garden....we keep a steady variety of unusual offerings in the boutique to help inspire our visitors to plant out of the box...or in some cases, IN the box! Inevitably these are begged off us to be sold or commissioned to be duplicated for their own homes.

If you're looking to add interest to a corner of your home or table, here's my simple trick that's fast, inexpensive and EASY for those from green to yellow to black thumbs!

Step 1: Find your choice of unusual or pretty vessel. If using wood or cast iron, line the edges with ziploc baggy or moss to prevent wood rot or plant burning (in the case of the latter);

{Vintage box $49 and small Parisien Urn $41 both sold at}
Step 2: Drill some holes! Be sure the holes are large enough, or if you only have a small drill bit, increase the quantity of the holes. If you've lined your vessel with plastic, be sure you've added holes in that or it won't drain properly;

Step 3: Plant your favorite small varieties, using a mixture of heights and shapes. For added interest, choose vessels with colors that complement the plants you choose. Green and red go great with white and brown, for instance. Sit back and enjoy your mini project!

Feel free to share your planting ideas with our blog readers (and me!!)!