Burning Man in French VOGUE!


Has BM become chic? Might have to step up my game with the outfits next year, but I don't think we'll see Carine Roitfeld on the playa anytime soon.

Shot by David Mushegain for Paris VOGUE, Nov 2010.


This has become my new favorite way to breathe new life into unfortunate pieces of furniture. Here is a little ottoman from Target. I'm not even really sure how this came into my possession but it's a good size so I'll keep it, but it definitely can't stay looking like that.
I was debating whether to cover it in this snakeskin from New Mexico or this vintage kimono belt from a flea market in Sendai, Japan.

I figured two animal skin ottomans would be too much for one room.
"Have you met my pet ottomans Zebra and Snake? Don't worry they're very docile."
Uh. No thanks.

On second thought... an ottoman as a pet? Maybe I don't need to get a dog after all!

Just kidding! The kimono belt won.

I bought it seven years ago on a trip to Japan, but never figured out what to do with it. Finally this beautiful material can be showcased! I cut four strips to cover the top. Luckily it fit perfectly and there was enough of the embroidery to put together a nice design. I used the second half to cover the sides, but there wasn't enough to go all the way around. I had to rip the seams and split the two sides apart in order to get enough material. While taking it apart I discovered this beautiful Japanese linen, but there was only enough for one side. I realized the delicate old silk would not hold up on its own, so I cut strips of red denim (from the legs of some old jeans I turned into cutoffs, I just knew they'd be useful someday!) to reinforce it.


Now all that's left is to cover those awful aluminum feet!


I bought a beautiful Kilim rug at the Rose Bowl flea market on Sunday. It's the perfect size for my closet, which has become my favorite room. 

A friend told me she and her mom bought some in Turkey. They serve you tea and just roll out rug after rug and you pick and choose. Must plan a trip to Turkey soon.


This is a couch I found on craigslist. It's faux suede and pretty terrible looking, but it laid flat and was the perfect length to fit into a nook on the other side of my patio.  I went for it, figuring I would throw something pretty over it, but when the couch arrived it was just a few inches too wide. So, with the help of my friend Anthony, we ripped off one side of the armrests and MADE it fit.

Now, I've decided to move it to the other side and lay it flat as a daybed. Thing is, not many places make slipcovers for my newly customized shape, so I did it myself using a beautiful Ikat fabric.

When Tessa suggested we make Indian food last night, I knew exactly who to turn to... Manjula's Kitchen.  I discovered Manjula after I came back from India last year with spices and chickpea flour and was convinced I was going to make Indian food every day (which I didn't). Anyway, one trip to Whole Foods and a newly stocked spice cabinet later, we were cooking up Indian food like it was no big deal. She makes it so easy, all you really need are the right spices.  We made chana masala (chickpeas), baingan bharta (eggplant), raita, cauliflower, brown basmati rice, roti, and steak (which is very un-Indian but whatever I'm vegetarian), along with some naan, chutney, and some Indian beers... What a FEAST.


The way she prepares the eggplant here blows my mind. It becomes so soft and creamy and is cooked with zero oil.


I've lived in my apartment roughly a year. It's been a lot of fun decorating my own place, finding things everywhere from flea markets to craigslist and Bed Bath and Beyond, but after devoting all my attention to the interior (especially my closet!) my patio seemed sad and neglected. My table and chairs had taken quite a beating from the harsh salty wind and the untreated wood was turning gray.  Same goes for my hammock, stools, and plants... (my poor palms, hibiscus and bougainvillea tend to go thirsty when I'm not in town, which is quite often).

I had this idea for the awning about a year ago. Its nice for privacy and creates a whole outdoor 'room', making my little apartment seem that much bigger. I made it out of Sunbrella, and it's held in place with hooks and grommets. It's easy to take up and down and all you have to do is fold it up and store it. Soon I will make curtains to close off the sides as well.

I also turned the couch into a daybed, which is waaaay more conducive to laying languidly in the sun than before. Working on a cover for that as well. As for the plants... I needed to get something much more low-maintenance (read: less watering) so the answer was of course, succulents!

For the furniture, I couldn't decide on which shade of blue to pick, so I got a quart each of three different paints and painted the table one shade, and two chairs in each of the other two colors. Man, this job was a bitch. Sanding, priming, plus two coats of paint, and do you see all those slats that I had to get between? Thank goodness I had some extra hands (thanks Ryan and Paul!) My favorites turned out to be the darker blue and the turquoise on the table.

Still a work in progress, but I'm happy with the way things are going!

This is what I looked like for two days painting the table and chairs...

not a bad view for the little guys

New BBQ as well. Grilling is my favorite way to cook!