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I know there is a huge difference between want and need.  Many times I catch myself making statements such as, “that skirt needs to be in my closet.”

Hello, no it doesn’t.  I would like it to be there. That is a want.

I have written before about my lack of clothes for cold weather.  Now that I no longer spend the majority of my working hours in my house writing scripts, I really need to step up my fall/winter wardrobe.  I cannot meet with clients or vendors looking bananas.

Thank god I live in a city that is not as casual as Los Angeles.  If I wear a dress or a skirt to a meeting in Rome, nobody asks me why am I so dressed up.  Sometimes, wait for it, I even wear thigh-high stockings!

There are many things I would like to purchase this year but have narrowed down the list to five.

Long leather gloves. 

I’m thinking black or chocolate brown.  Why does Olivia Pope look so sad here?

KERRY WASHINGTONPhoto: ABC/Danny Feld

Ankle boots with heels that can handle cobblestone streets.

I have a pair of ankle boots with a narrow heel.  They have been destroyed.  RIP.

02964_BK0001Prada

A LBD.

Love the cut of this dress from J. Crew.

02991_BL8133J.Crew

A camel hair coat. 

i do need a new winter cloth coat but I think I can get another season out of my current one. This will go in the want column.  Max Mara’s coats are classic.

people magazinekatie-holmes-660Photo: People

Last but not least, I do need a short winter sports jacket.  I look like the Michelin Tire Man in puffy jackets.  I like the lines of this one.

AUMXJK3The Northface

What’s on your list?

One of my favorite American stores has recently announced their collaboration with the incredible, Milan-based architect/interior designer, Paola Navone.  To say I’m a fan of her work is a huge understatement.

I would like to buy so many things in this collection.  The darker blues remind me of Rome at dusk or the color of the sky above the mountains in St. Martin.

I wonder how much it would cost to ship a few items to Rome.  Okay, I need to stop.  I once had to pay €40 to get a pack of Girl Scout cookies out of customs that my sister had sent to me.  I love Samoas but come on, that’s bananas.

I will have to appreciate this collection from afar.   It’s the very definition of Stylish Simplicity.

como-dessert-plates mallorca-linen-napkinsmallorca-serving-bowls

For more information about Paola and to see the entire collection, HERE is the website.

Great news here at AGD.

The house in Tuscany is almost done and I’ve signed two new clients.

For one project, I’m helping my client redo his terrace.

The other project also includes working on a terrace and collaborating with my client to furnish her new apartment.

Both apartments are in Trastevere.

One thing I love about this type of work is that each project is unique.  My other Rome project is understated glamour.

The apartment I’m working on in Trastevere is contemporary with a very streamlined palette, white, black, gray, and some pops of red.   A few pieces came with the apartment and most of the additional furniture will be custom-made.

My client would like a home that is minimal, light, and yet cozy.   Minimal decors can be cold so I’m all about texture and natural materials.

I have an inspiration board for the apartment on PInterest.

For the terrace project, we are going to redo the plants, buy new furniture, and make the space flow better.  My client entertains often and it’s important that his guests feel comfortable.

My landscaper is amazing and I cannot wait to see how the terrace will look once the plants grow in a little.

I real enjoy working with my clients.  I know this something not every decorator can say!

I’ve been to Bologna once before for a very quick day trip with friends.   This time I went for work.

Bologna is consistently rated as one the most liveable cities on the planet.  The cuisine is amazing, there are many companies based in the area in a variety of sectors, and a well educated population (the oldest university in the Western world was founded in Bologna).

I knew this before I started researching my trip.  I didn’t know, however, that there were so many fantastic stores for interiors. I was in décor heaven and I could not get over how friendly everyone was.

My sister’s former colleague, John, is in Bologna writing his dissertation and we had lunch at Drogheria della Rosa.  It was just as delicious as I remembered and it’s one of John’s favorite restaurants in Bologna.

John was kind enough to bring me a bunch of shelter and cooking magazines from the States.  Later I met up with the lovely Tina for an aperitivo before catching the Italo train back to Rome.  It was a nice way to end a long but productive day.

I hope I will be able to return to Bologna soon.

Here are three of the showrooms I adored:

BORGO DELLA TOVAGLIE

Borgo delle Tovaglie

Borgo delle Tovaglie

Housed in a former furrier’s workshop, this store blends design, art, and fashion.

Borgo delle Tovaglie began as a tablecloth manufacturer in the early ’90s.  In 2005 Valentina Muggia and her husband Giuliano Di Paolo bought the company.  Today the brand is internationally known for it’s quality and style.   

This is their first store and it’s a beauty. They carry a variety of brands in addition to their own.  There was so much to see (and buy).   I loved their plates in a bucket.  Very clever and useful.

Borgo delle Tovaglie

Via Farini, 10

+39 051-330938

www.borgodelletovaglie.com

CAMERA CON VISTA

Camera Con Vista

Camera Con Vista

This store is located in the very pretty Piazza Santo Stefano. Owned by Matteo and Rebecca, here you find one of kind objects from Italy, France, Spain, Sweden, and other countries.

They carry jaw-dropping antiques and stunning modern pieces that have been refurbished into furniture.

There are always new pieces coming in.  You never know what you might discover during your visit.

Camera Con Vista

Via Santa Stefano 14/2a

+39 051-22468

www.cameraconvista.biz

FABRIZIO COCCHI

Interior designer Fabrizio Cocchi’s showroom has an elegant, glamorous vibe.  It’s bold and full of color.  The photo below is of the neutral section.  When I first walked in, there was a lot of orange and red.

Cocchi also had quite the collection of design books.  I would have gladly sat on one of his custom sofas and read for the afternoon.

Okay, that would’ve been weird and rude as it’s a store not a library.

Fabrizio Cocchi

Fabrizio Cocchi

Photo: Fabriziococchi.com

Fabrizio Cocchi

Via Castiglione, 17d

+39 051-264358

www.fabriziococchi.com

I was recently in the lovely city of Bologna for work.  I saw this skirt in the window of Dolce & Gabbana and it stopped me in my tracks.

Dolce-And-Gabbana-Stripe-A-Line-SkirtPhoto: Closet Candies

Stripes are huge this summer.  I adore them but must be careful with horizontal stripes unless I want to look like a Weeble.  I don’t.

I love the black edging and think this skirt is very versatile.  I could wear it to work, to an outdoor summer dinner party, or on a date to aperitivi with friends.

It’s stylish simplicity.

I don’t even drink coffee or have an espresso maker, yet I would love to own these cups.  Stylish, simple, elegant… I adore them

Designed for Alessi by Massimiliano and Doriana Fuksas

Designed for Alessi by Massimiliano and Doriana Mandrelli Fuksas

Photo: Amazon.uk

Speaking of Fuksas, the world renowned architects recently renovated the flagship Benetton store in Rome.  I haven’t stepped into a Benetton since college but I’m very curious about this building.

 

The design and fashion blogosphere is buzzing this week about the debut of DOMAINE Magazine.

This online publication was created by the same women, Katherine Power and Hillary Kerr, behind another favorite, WHO, WHAT, WHERE.

Sara Ruffin Costello's, former creative director at DOMINO, living room.

Sara Ruffin Costello’s, former creative director at DOMINO, living room.

This site is fantastic.  There are articles about home décor, fashion, and yes, even recipes (bacon mac and cheese).

Plus, it’s interactive.  You can leave comments.  Love it.

I enjoyed the article about interior designers Jeffrey Alan Marks and Ross Cassidy.  I’ve never met Jeffrey but Ross is a sweetheart.  I’m not saying that just because he complimented my skirt in L.A. last year.  Ross was very kind to pose in his red pants so I could Tweet the photo to my friend, Erica, a noted Red Pants Pathologist.

Looking forward to checking out the rest of DOMAINE.

Buon Weekend!

 

 

I saw this short clip about Jenna Lyons and her shoe collection and had to write about it.

Jenna is the President and Executive Creative Director of J.Crew.   She has been with the company for twenty years.

Her aesthetic is deeply embedded in the company’s DNA.

They do take fashion risks but haven’t forgotten their core customers who love J. Crew for its cool take on classic style.  It’s the only American store where I can find jeans that fit my body.  J.Crew does have killer sales, which is great for some of their pricier items.

In the film, Jenna  briefly explains how their shoes evolve from a drawing to the store.  The shoes are hand-made in Italy.

Yes, you could buy knock-offs of these shoes at Zara for a fraction of the cost.

While the CEO of Zara is worth 57 BILLION  (the third richest man in the world) how much does Zara pay the people who make their shoes? How long would the shoes last?

I doubt they are paid anything close  to what the workers in Pisa, Italy are making for J. Crew.  The manufacturing sector in Italy, along with other Western countries, is facing serious challenges in a global economy.

However, one advantage Italy has is her artisans.  There’s a reason why companies from all over world chose to have certain items, like shoes, made in Italy.

Fast fashion is here to stay, but I’m glad there are companies like J. Crew who care about quality and profits.

 

 

 

I’ve been a fan of these glasses for ages.   I saw them in Kathryn Ireland’s kitchen last year and thought to myself, “I need to buy some when I move to a bigger apartment.”

I had to find a new kettle.  I decided to go ahead and spend money on a solid one, as the cheap one I bought fell apart way too soon.  Off I went to C.U.C.I.N.A. 

I try my best to avoid this store as every single time I stop in to buy one specific item, I get sucked into picking up a few things.

It happened again.  I walked past the glasses section and somehow two glasses ended up in my basket.

La Rochere French Bee Tumbler.

La Rochere French Bee Tumbler.

It’s okay.  It makes me happy when I open up my kitchen cabinet and see these two little glasses.  Once I move, I’m getting a set.

In the States you can find them at Sur La Table.

As for the kettle, I bought a Le Creuset that was double the price of my old one.  However, this one is built to last and very pretty.

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