31 December, 2011

"Happy New Year . . . "

From Rue Magazine, Holiday 2010.
(image by Tinywater Photography)


Sending wishes for an amazing new year!


30 December, 2011

"Kiss Me . . . "


New Year's Eve.   Midnight approaches . . .

Hepburn and Stewart

Newman and Woodward
Grant and McDowell

Taylor and Clift

Curtis and Monroe

Redford and Streisand 

Peppard and Hepburn 

Grant and Kelly

And, easily the best screen kiss . . . from the Italian film - "Cinema Paradiso" . . .

Cheers - and Happy New Year!

28 December, 2011

"Top Hats. And Trees . . . "


I've had the last few days - most likely like you - with precious little to do.  Been in the office a bit.  Catching up with friends.  And reflecting on the holiday that has just passed.

I'm always fascinated with the build up to any holiday.  And the inevitable aftermath.  We seem to absolutely submerge ourselves in Christmas carols and shopping.  Decorating and cooking.  Mailing cards and hosting parties.  But, usually by around noon on Christmas day - it's over.  And it all immediately looks dated.  Wrapping debris everywhere - and piles of dirty dishes in the sink.

I've discovered a theme in the images that I had been collecting for the last few weeks.  Sometimes when I open one of my image folders - I see thoughts and ideas that I had never planning on.  Images of a holiday - that can stretch beyond the 26th of December.  Kind of a late December palate cleanser.   An etude in black and white.  A time of the longest night.  But, the beginning of longer brighter days.  Years ending.  Years beginning.

A bracing sorbet for those of us who are visually stimulated . . .


25 December, 2011

"Happy Christmas . . . "

SMW Design, Lake Tahoe Project

Just a simple greeting from our home to yours - happy Christmas and best wishes for an amazing new year.


24 December, 2011

Christmas Eve . . .


As the sun begins to set here on the west coast - we're busily getting ready for Christmas Eve . . . so I leave you with one of my favourite Christmas tunes (in fact, it's one that my own chamber choir performed a few weeks back at our SF holiday concert) - in the glorious setting of King's College in England.

Enjoy . . .


21 December, 2011

"The Envelope Please . . . "


Well y'all . . . it's been another great year of our annual Holiday Decorating Contest.  All combined, we had over 200 entries from all over the country - and a few from around the world.  It has honestly been one of the best parts of my day - seeing everyones creativity - and sensing the great joy that you all take in celebrating the holiday season with great style.

But you've not stopped by today to listen to me prattle on . . . you've all come to see who our winners are.  But firstly - let me thank our judging panel.  I think we all know what a difficult job it was to determine a winner.  So a big tartan 'thank you' to :  Grant Gibson, Megan Arquette, Tobi Fairley, Ronda Carman, Michael Devine, and Kathryn Greeley.

Even though it's kind of an awards show - I decided not to make you suffer through any opening dance number by the "SMW Design Dancers" . . . so let's just get right to the announcements . . .

*drum roll . . . . *

The Best Dining Table
from Jennings & Gates, Virginia

who will be receiving 
An autographed copy of Kathryn Greeley's beautiful new book, The Collected Table.

The Best Mantel
from Noreen Kloc, Georgia

who will be receiving
A beautiful 11X17 inch Serving Tray from Michael Devine Home.

The Best Christmas Tree
Steve Fuller, Massachusetts 

who will be receiving . . .
A collection of ornaments, hand-selected by me, from Gump's San Francisco.

And in Second Place . . .  

for Table Top
Lori Cropp, Pennsylvania 

for Mantel 
Katie Denham, California 

for Christmas Tree
Mark Sunderland, Georgia 

who will each be receiving . . . 
The Holiday Scented Candle, from Ralph Lauren.

A big plaid congratulations to the winners . . . and a huge 'thank you' from me to everyone who participated, and commented, and generally shared in my delight to seeing these beautiful spaces.  


20 December, 2011

"It's Not Quite Time Yet . . . "


Be sure to check back later in the day . . . I've got a fun little surprise for everyone . . .


19 December, 2011

"And Just In Under the Wire . . . "

Carol Beck, Massachusetts 

You know what?  If I were you, I'd get a fresh cup of coffee or tea first.  And maybe check your voicemail messages.  And then snuggle into your favourite chair . . . and get ready for a nice relaxing journey through some amazing homes - all dressed for the holiday season.  All of the entrants in this year's Holiday Decorating Contest have been such a delight.  It's truly been one of the favourites parts of my day when I get to the office - and start opening your emails and seeing all of your wonderful pictures.

Here's a few more of the images that came in just under the wire . . .

Jamie Harris, Tennessee 

Cristin Bisbee Priest, California 

Erik Retzer and James Josephson, Illinois 
Katie Denham, California 

Jane Peak, Ohio

Tracy Westwater, Illinois 

Amy Atkins, California 

Elizabeth Moyer, New York

Angela Duritza, New Jersey 

Lauren Starkey, Vermont 

Cindi Ornstien, North Carolina 

Lori Cropp, Pennsylvania 

Eva Ohlsson, Sweden 

Mary Chapman, Michigan 

Elizabeth Keogh, California 

Jane Peak, Ohio 

Betsy Berner, New Jersey 
Check back on Wednesday for the announcement of the winners - and be sure to stop by tomorrow as well . . . I'm working on a little surprise for everyone . . .

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