Monday, December 8, 2014

Artist: Myoung Ho Lee Tree Series

This originally posted back in May of 2013, but as winter takes over and the cold becomes palpable, I am reminded of these stunning and dramatic images of isolated trees by Myoung Ho Lee. There are also spring images, but it's the cold bare trees that just kill me. I think it's worth a second look-see. 

I saw images of Myoung Ho Lee's Tree series in the NY Times T Magazine and I am totally crazy for them. Lee, a native of South Korea, shot the images in his homeland, creating these tree portraits (?) by simply separating the background, allowing part of the landscape to become the subject.
By framing out a lone tree with a white canvas, he has managed to make such a strong statement...and show such a beautiful image that might have otherwise been lumped in with the entire horizon.   These are really wonderful to my eyes.

After the jump there are more images. I love them. What about you? Xo.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Thoughts & Tips: Glitter Pinecones

Here's another Smarter Alec yearly how-to re-post: Glittery Pinecones.  I pulled down the ones I made last year (which I wrapped individually in a little tissue paper, ps) and they look just wonderful, proving my point that, with care, these really do last. Enjoy!

When it comes to decorating for the holidays, I am of the mind that less is more. I find an overly decorated home ends up looking too kitchy for my taste. I much prefer the subtle additions of a few key elements that blend into the home. Case in point: The glittery pinecone.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Smarter Alec is now on Instagram

Finally on Instagram and it feels like home.  Follow me, won't you? Thanks! Xo.




Thoughts & Tips: Orange & Clove Pomanders

'Tis the season! Here's my now yearly re-post of a great DIY classic holiday decor: Pomanders.  There is also a video of yours truly talking about holiday decorations, which you can watch by clicking on my image just over there on the right. Enjoy!

Pomanders are my kind of holiday decoration. They are easy to make, are classic and elegant, and they fill the room with the wonderful scents of the holiday season.
 

Monday, December 1, 2014

Beauty Just Because: Un-Titled Project Magazine

I have always loved glossy magazines. Be it shelter or fashion, there is nothing like flipping through the pages of a great magazine. And, as publishing houses are closing up shop all around, it's nice to see a gorgeous hard copy hit the stand.

Un-Titled Project is a sexy, uber-creative fashion quarterly  that I just love. Oh, and I wrote the interview for the latest issue's cover girl, Mad Men's Jessica ParĂ©. In it, we talk about those Mad Men sets, particularly the Draper's New York apartment(!!) and her character Megan's new LA digs (!!), both beyond stunning- a mid century fanatic's dream.

Pick up Un-Titled Project, support the hard copies and enjoy the mini vacation of the mind and spirit that a magazine can bring. Xo.

Friday, November 28, 2014

I am super excited to be working with the fabulous Rachel Dratch on a new web series called Eyesore! And we are looking for our first round of contestants. 

Could that be you?!

Do you have a great space, but can't figure out how to fix that one problem area? Maybe it's a cluttered bookshelf, or you still don't have any art up because you've been too intimidated to put that first nail in the wall. Maybe you have a room that has become a catchall and you dream of making it an office, or your once pristine living room is now cluttered with kid toys and you need a way to contain it. If this sounds like you, you might just be the person we want to help!
SO... if you live in or near New York city and have an eyesore you need some help with, email me at:

smarteralec@outlook.com
Include a brief description, and attach clear pics
of your home AND of your eyesore.
Be sure to put "Eyesore!" in the subject box.

Now, remember, this is NOT for folks who want a full home makeover. It's for people who have worked hard to create a beautiful space, but have that one spot (that eyesore!) that they just can't make work.

We will pick our first four contestants by the end of the month.  Xo.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Peanut Butter Balls. What Thanksgiving is all about.

Peanut Butter Balls

2 sticks butter
1 box powdered sugar
1 cup peanut butter
2 cups graham cracker crumbs.

mix together until smooth and roll into small balls. Put them on a cookie sheet with wax paper.

Melt 16 oz bitter sweet chocolate. Dip the balls into the chocolate and place back on wax paper. Chill in fridge until chocolate is hard. Watch your family and friends devour them.

Have a wonderful holiday. Be happy and safe. Xo.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Stores: Homenature

I love a happy accident, which is what happened yesterday as I randomly chose a new side street for my stroll home. It was getting dark, but the huge glowing window front of the new Homenature pulled me in like it was Oz.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Five Things: Backless Shelving With Storage

Sometimes bookshelves and cabinets can be heavy and daunting. Here are five backless shelving units with storage that pack a punch while feeling airy and open.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Beauty Just Because: Plus Grinder From DWR

The Plus Grinder ($75.00) from Design Within Reach is adorable. It looks like children's blocks and it cracks pepper. Win/win. Xo.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Thoughts & Tips: Replacing Doors With Drapes

The subject of space saving came up with a client the other day, and so I thought I'd re-post about the simple trick of removing doors and replacing them with a curtain. 

It's funny how the things you take for granted, like a door, can become a stumbling block when trying to gain space. Doors are great for slamming when you're upset, but really, we're not sixteen year old girls anymore (not to self: stop acting like a sixteen year old girl). Of course, if there is a need to shut out sound, or you need complete privacy, then yes, keep your door. But if all a door is doing is staying open and blocking three feet of perfectly good wall space behind it, lose it and hang a drape

Monday, November 17, 2014

High/Low: "Rangoli" Rug

I will say these two are a shock side by side, since one is literally ten times more expensive. Both seemingly based on Rangoli patterns, can you tell which is which? My give-away hint is that I DO think the much pricier one is better. The answer after the jump.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Unattainable Beauty: 11 Artist Models

These Artist Models, available on 1st Dibs are amazing. The eleven unique French beauties are dated between 1890-1900. I am pretty confidant these guys will NOT come alive at night and terrorize your soul, but you never know. That's the risk you'll have to take (assuming you have the $85,000 to purchase them). Xo.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Five Things: Outdoor Mats As Rugs

I have mentioned the genius of using an outdoor rug inside before. They are practical, can be super economical and are sleek alternatives to a shag or other pile. Here are Five Outdoor Mats I am crushing on right now:

Monday, November 10, 2014

Gun! To! Head! (Video Edition)

Look guys! It's a new episode of Gun! To! Head! (video edition!), the game where I flip through a catalog and pick the one thing I'd buy (gun to head) before throwing said catalog into the landfill. Enjoy. Xo.