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Live Every Day Like A Final Destination Movie

There's a saying "live every day like your last." But that's just stupid. Don't go out and do reckless things because today might be your last day. What you really should be doing is waking up every day, putting on your inside helmut, and going through life on high alert of dangerous situations. But I'm also a scardy cat. I think a more appropriate saying is "live every day like a Final Destination movie."You know the movies. They start with a group of people narrowly avoiding a freak accident only to then realize that the world is going to kill them in another freak accident, because they cheated death. The movie, or movies (whats the word for a five movie sequel?), then kills the characters off in another crazy way. One girl was in the drive through line for Burger King or something, sets of a chain of events starting with a drop of water, that ends with the car in front of her's engine flying off and slicing her head in two. Another one that really stuck with me was when a guy was driving behind one of those trucks with giant logs on the back, set off another chain of events and the logs flew off the truck and into his head! If you live everyday like a tanning bed accident is around the corner, you stop doing dangerous things. While some everyday things, like driving, can't be avoided, at least don't drive behind the truck carrying poles that are roughly eye socket size.
I think watching these movies before I turned ten could be the cause of my extreme anxiety of dying in a freak accident. Thinking Ted Bundy was cute at age eight, is probably the jumping off point for anxiety of getting murdered.
During my last trip to Paris I had a mini panic attack. Ty and I were getting ready to go to bed. I was on my sixth gin and grapefruit juice (excellent diet cocktail) when I finally realized how vulnerable we were. The Air BNB we rented was a ground floor and basement apartment. Our front door to the living room was in the courtyard. We had windows facing the courtyard, eye level to any potential intruders. It was basically like we were camping. The bedroom was in the basement. Basement is probably the wrong word, the downstairs was the farthest thing from a basement. It had a steam shower. Part of the bedroom ceiling was glass that looked up into the living room. Other than that, we couldn't see any proof of daylight. I was laying in bed looking up at the glass ceiling square and noticed I could see the light moving in the courtyard. Every time someone walked by the movement sensor, the courtyard would light up and the light would trickle down to the bedroom. I felt it was my duty to observe and report the comings and going of the light. Around 2am, all the street noises settled down, so I was able to hear when someone entered the main building door, I could hear them walking through the courtyard, I could even hear them using their keys to open up their own doors.
I don't do well with silence at night. I sleep with the TV on, which is both a trait genetically inherited by my mom as well as a way to be oblivious to the axe wielding murdered entering my apartment. I'd rather be killed in my sleep to reruns of The Office than know what is coming for me.  I also just find Michael Scott's voice to be soothing. But, that night in Paris, I let my anxiety get the best of me. I turned the TV off and just listened to all the noises I heard around me. I started to breathe a little bit heavier every time the light outside went on. "Who in the hell would be coming home at four in the morning." I didn't take into account that I used to be one of those coming home at four in the morning. I now believed that it was the witching hour and time to die. I started to sit up slowly, preparing myself for the inevitable noise of our front door opening. I  looked around the room for something that could be used as a weapon. Anything can be used for a weapon, a pen, a phone charger, anything. But damn this modern minimal apartment, there wasn't anything in the room at all! I would have to go upstairs if I wanted something sharp, but if I went upstairs, the guy stalking the outside of the door, would hear me move and attack. It was now 6am and I was about ready to call the coast guard. I couldn't stop asking myself why I picked out a ground floor apartment, why didn't I go with the 6th floor walk up in Saint Germain. I would be safe there and have great legs! As I sat there writing my will in the notes app on my Iphone, I noticed the sun was coming up, which meant I survived the night. I was fully aware that nobody gets murdered in the daylight! I successfully mentally warded off the Parisian Ripper. Could I call myself a hero?


The next night, exhausted from being a full time watch dog, I had another breakdown once in bed. But this one was because I wanted to stay in this apartment forever because I loved it so much, because I loved Paris so much and ten days was not enough. I took a good hard look at myself in the mirror and realized I might be crazy.
Now that I'm living in a place where regular people own chainsaws and axes for chores other than disposing of bodies, my anxiety of getting murdered has slightly shifted back to my anxiety of a freak accident. The other day, Ty was using a table saw to cut shelves for our bedroom, it was just a recipe for disaster. Have you ever seen a table saw? I had been furiously avoiding them for the past 23 years, so to see one in person was terrifying. These things should be outlawed. I stood about 15 feet away from Ty cutting the slices of wood and would yell "BE CAREFUL" every few seconds, just in case he forgot. I could visually picture a small bit of saw dust floating up into the air, falling onto the electrical outlet, creating a spark, sending a current all the way to the  table saw, jamming the on/off button and creating a burst of energy within the saw. This vision resulting in Ty loosing half his face, oh ya the spark would cause him to take a step back, get caught on the extension cord, putting his head right in the path of the now possessed saw blade. The vision went on as far as for me to Google if this would require an ambulance ride or if I could drive him straight to be the emergency room. Ty had to ask me to wait inside until he was finished.
Here's a photo of Ty using the table saw and me standing at a safe distance while covering my ears and shouting.


There's no point of any of this information, no ah ha moment where I really do learn to live every day like my last. I guess the point is to BE CAREFUL and stay on high alert for strange men lingering. And table saws. And chainsaws. And fuck it, stay away from butter knives too.
So, while we're all still unmurdered (is that a word?), here are some good things about life. Antiques! It's been a few weeks longer than normal since the last sale. Whoopsie. But, good news, the next sale is Monday June 10th! And it's a good one, maybe one of the best? Yes it's the best one!
Here's the sneak peak into a few of my favorite pieces this week. If you would like to purchase anything before the sale opens, just send me an email at havesomedecorum@gmail.com or head over to havedecorum.com where these six items available! Monday at 6am PST, more will be added so get ready!


The first featured item is a hand carved wood saint statue. He is missing a hand and an arm (probably from a table saw accident) but other than that, his features are still very well preserved. You can even see the red paint on the interior of his cloak. I'm not sure where or when he is from, but due to the wood texture, I would guess at least the 1800's.

Another favorite item of mine is this set of six French poetry books with leather binding from the late 1800's. The set includes the works of Victor Hugo, Leconte de Lisle, Sully Prudhomme, Francois Coppee and Jules Lemaitre. These are the perfect books to stack in your library. My grandmother filled her shelves with these old leather bound books, don't think she ever read them though, they're mainly decorative, but can be read if you can read! These books are smaller than today's novel size, which I find makes them delicate while also thick and sturdy, kinda like the actual poetry inside.


There's also four oil paintings this sale! Three landscapes and one figure. My favorite of the bunch are the a double-sided landscape and a figure painting. The double-sided piece is such a special one. I honestly didn't even notice it was double sided for the longest time. I thought I had lost the landscape one, only to realize it was just on the other side of the clouds. This would be a perfect painting to just rest up against a wall, flipping it every now and then.  I might actually have to buy this one myself. My other favorite that I might purchase before the sale even begins is the oval figure painting. The painting itself is very small, making it an excellent addition to my collection of small frames on my bedside table. The painting reminds me of a Rembrandt, it's dark yet detailed. The best part is the back of the painting though, there's remnants of red wax seals, it's amazing! I didn't frame this piece since the back is one of my favorite aspects of it, but it certainly would look great in a delicate oval frame.

Next up... A beautiful 19th century Italian alter candlestick. I have a thing for this candlesticks. I think they look beautiful anywhere really. My mom used to have a small collection of them next to our fireplace. She would light the candles instead of the fireplace since we lived in Southern California. Then, they traveled with us to NYC where she would light them instead of the fire again. Until one night, my mom and Jenny decided to make a nice cozy fire. About 15 minutes later, we heard a horde of people running down the stairs. We looked out our front door to find the entire building evacuating clutching their babies and desktop computers. Apparently, we weren't supposed to ever light the fireplace, because it wasn't a real one. Smoke from our apartment had been sent through the vents and filled all the apartments above us. Everyone thought the building was on fire. Oops. After that, she only ever lit candles. Anyways, this beautiful alter candlestick is made of wood and still has it's original gold gilt. It also has an engraving of "IHS" which is Latin for "Ieus Hominum Salvator" or Jesus, the savior of all men.


Saving the best for last.... a limestone head of Christ from the 18th century. I mean just wow. The woman I bought it from is a collector of religious artifacts and was selling her entire collection. Some of her pieces had been on display at museums even. She had all these wonderful perfectly preserved crucifixes and santos, but something about this stone head made me fall in love. I have a thing for fragments I think, I like the age to show, I like antiques to not be pristine. This head fits all that criteria. I was going to have it mounted to a stand, but then I learned all about the different types of mounts from wood to steel, big or small, and decided to let it be. It can be drilled and mounted to a wall or a base if you choose, but I thought I would leave that decision up to you. I found it looks great leaning against a stack of old books, since it's heavy enough to hold them up.

Anyways....shop on! There will be a few more items released on Monday along with these favorites of mine at HAVEDECORUM.COM
This will be the only sale for June, and we'll be back to our regularly programmed every other Monday sale in July. I'm going to visit my aunt Heather in Charleston this month so I will be busy eating pimento cheese and taking jailhouse ghost tours. Stay tuned!

Magazines As A Sport

The most embarrassing thing I ever did in 2009, and it was over a helmet. I was home schooled in 2009, after a brief 3 week stint at a New York Public School. My education up to that year was composed of a Montecito version of a public school, Marymount and a private middle school that let us have class on the lawn if it was sunny out. We were testing out living in New York during my first year of high school. I had the bright idea of attending a real school so I could meet friends. I should have known that I was being wildly optimistic. Since it was October, it was a long shot to get into public school, and because my mom is my mom, I wasn't allowed to attend any public school, I had to attend the Eleanor Roosevelt High School. This school is one of the best public schools in Manhattan so it was a bit of a stretch to get me in. I didn't have stellar grades and the only sport I did was the Thursday Sex and the City marathon. But, I got in. I think they were bribed and/or threatened.
I was 2 weeks in and actually had some friends, I think it was a particularly quick welcoming because Diandra's driver Ben was dropping me off in a Ferrari every day. Hey, I would be friends with me too.
But, by week 3, I wanted out. I had gotten accustomed to being able to "work from home" with my homeschooling and had trouble adjusting to the 6am wake up call. And by week 4, I had dropped out of the Eleanor Roosevelt High School, with honors. Since I was now homeschooling again, I had a lot more time to go out for lunch and to travel during the weekdays. I started visiting my aunts up in Orcas Island. The only issue is that you have to take a tiny water plane from Seattle to get there.


Orcas Island is my favorite place in the world. It's a small island off of Seattle and I had been visiting my entire life. My aunt Bobbie Anne and Uncle Bill lived up there in the most magical house. My aunt Julie lived up there too on her farm. She had a 1000 pound pig that couldn't walk but could eat a watermelon in one bite, skin and all. When the pig, her name was Basil, died, the roof of the barn was taken off and she had to be "airlifted" out. I loved her.
One trip, I was up there with all my cool older cousins. They were allowed to get highlights and had names like Amber and Karissa. I was in a brief period of hating my name, so I was dreaming that I would be adopted and allowed to change my name to Lexi. A cool girl name.
One day they invited me to go on a bike ride with them and I immediately started getting "glammed" up for this bike ride. I had a look for this occasion, black eyeliner only on the bottom, no mascara, blush. But, I called it "rouge" because I read that somewhere in an old Glamour I had found on an airplane. It must have been the April 1980 issue.
I called my mom to tell her the exciting news that I was going on a bike ride and that it was essentially my initiation to hanging out with the age bracket above my own.
"OK, but you have to wear a helmet."
What. The. Fuck. Cool girls don't wear helmets.
"Oh, no it's fine, no one wears helmet up there." I said calmly, sure that my argument was strong.
"Well, that just means you'll be the first one."
My mom and I went back and forth until I received the ultimatum, no helmut, no bike ride. I lost it. I lost the tiny bit of cool that my Jessica Simpson for Kohl's jeans were bringing me. I locked myself on the patio and refused to come out until the tyrant that is my mother, came to her senses and realized that looking cool was more than a head injury.
I was out there crying for a solid hour. My cousins came over and tried to console me by saying they would also wear helmets.
"It's not the same!!" I screamed with my face pressed against the glass that was divided us. I was a prisoner refusing to accept the plea deal. I was innocent, why couldn't anyone see that! I started to confuse myself even, why didn't I just wear a helmut, but I was in too deep. My cousins eventually left for the ride, without helmets, might I add, and the sun began to set. It was getting dark out on the patio and I was getting hungry. I had been out there for 3 hours and all the crying was working up my appetite. I really needed some sustenance if I was going to ride this meltdown into the morning.
So, I gathered myself, wiped the tears off my face and stood up. Immediately, I hit my head on the door handle. If only I had worn a helmet.
After my meltdown, my cousins realized that I might be in high school like them, but I was embarrassing myself like a toddler in Church.
I stayed in a lot the rest of the trip, too embarrassed to show my face, and the bruise that was forming on my forehead from the door handle. I began reading a lot of magazines that I found around the house. I dove into the quizzes from Cosmopolitan, repeating phrases like "that's such a Gemini thing to say," and wearing belts to accentuate my waist. After I read through all those, I moved onto my mom's collection of Elle Decor and Architectural Digest.
After my 6 month love affair with the back logs, I decided I wanted to be a magazine editor. I didn't know what that job entailed but I figured it involved a free copy ever month. This dream curtailed off, but my love of magazines didn't.  The best part of a flight, is sitting down, sticking a "please wake me for food" sticker on your forehead and reading 5 to 15 magazines.
Last week, Ty got a job at the Walla Walla Foundry where my dad works. He's the president so he is allotted one nepotism hire per calendar year. Ty got the job on a Tuesday, I quit my job on Wednesday. We decided to drive up because we don't travel light. We're planning on being here until November, so bringing out TV and collection of Dyptique candles was in order. And I can't check my candles. So, we got in the car and made the 15 hour drive up to Walla Walla. 15 hours means a lot of magazines. But, since one of us would be driving at all times, it wasn't exactly convenient to make Ty look over at the photos every time I had a comment on something. I also learned that even though it wasn't a book, reading a magazine in the car would make me car sick. I keep my car in pretty mint condition, so vomiting up Arby's on the tan leather wasn't going to be in the cards.
I waited until we arrived to flip through the pages. A magazine is no fun if you don't have anyone to dissect it with though. I called my grandma to go through the June issues of Elle Decor with me. And we had some thoughts...


First of all, I lost my loyalty to Architectural Digest when they featured Kylie Jenner's mansion. Let's not even talk about it. They should have featured Kim's house, but I guess she was out of budget.
The June issue of Elle Decor features Lisa Perry's 1960's style French Rivera home. It is wonderful. It's more so the furniture house that I am obsessed with, the actual structure of the house is the most important part. She has floor to ceiling windows, actually it's mainly all windows. The article talks about Lisa Perry, who is a fashion designer now turned interior designer, and that she moved out of the USA when Trump won. I like her. Her newest venture is basically my dream job. "I'm renovating and branding a house, and choosing all the furniture and art. If you like my style, you just move in and hang your clothes up." I already applied to be her assistant so everyone else back off.



This issue also has a small article on de Gournay wallpaper and the two daughters of the founder, Rachel and Hannah. Wallpaper has always been a part of my homes growing up. I remember the most vividly, a bathroom we had in Santa Barbara. My mom had covered the walls in an orange floral print, super bright and busy. It worked so well in this small space that I've always dreamed of not caring about my security deposit and just wallpaper the damn bathroom already. The company creates all different styles of wallpaper, from Chinoiserie to geometric, and it's all perfect. I love that they even put the wallpaper on the ceiling. My grandma mentioned that the ceiling is the "fifth wall." Don't just stop when you hit the ceiling. My grandma certainly did not. At her house in Montecito, she hand stenciled the entire ceiling of the dining room herself. What has your grandma done lately?




Another large feature of this issue is a house in Los Angeles designed by Kathryn Ireland. It's not like her usual stuff either. This home is very minimal and Spanish. It looks like a Nancy Meyer's set. She actually cites her inspiration to visiting Axel Vervoordt's chateau in Belgium. Vervoodt is Kanye West's guy, making my theory that Kanye has excellent taste a confirmed fact. This home keeps things tranquil and calm, very Californian cool. The walls are white and soft, with large dark metal accents throughout. I especially love the blue room. It's different from the rest of the house but it doesn't look like it was the only room left untouched to classify this as a remodel and not a rebuild. It blends.



Also, I think it's worth mentioning that the editor in chief of Elle Decor, Whitney Robinson, has a show on Bravo. He even plugged it in his letter from the Editor. He needs to stop. Bravo is a sacred place for wine throwing and Kim Zolciak lips, not style and grace. Another thing that Elle Decor, and every other shelter magazine out there, keeps doing is mentioning celebrities as examples of good taste. Becoming a celebrity does not mean you inherently have good style. If going by this logic, is Snooki the next Veranda cover star? This goes back to Architectural Digest's love for the Kardashian's. I've never once watched the show and been like, "wow Khloe designed an excellent 'champagne room.'"
But, my overall impression of Elle Decor this month was an 8/10. It lost two points because after I saw the Spanish house I began to get bored. That might be my problem though. But, the very last page was a photo of a chandelier that I could have looked at for hours. It was created by the designer Julie Neill from a steel-frame and then dipped in plaster, to create the illusion that candle wax was dripping off from the last party at Versailles. Unfortunately, it's not for sale.


If you're like me and don't have a job to go to everyday anymore, I highly recommend buying this issue and spend 3 hours marking it up with post-its like I did. Really get into each issue. Highlight and write "wtf" next to a $6,000 plain metal planter, write a letter complaining about the chandelier not being for sale, pretend to gag every time you read the phrase "designer to the stars." Take up magazine reading as if it were a sport, it may help you get an unpaid internship or something.

The Italian Itch




The first and only time I went to Italy was with my high school. No, not my home school high school, although if that was offered as a field trip, I'm sure my mom would force me to go. With all the other home schooled nerds. When I went to the Dominican Academy in Manhattan, they offered a 2 week trip to Italy as an extra curricular. I had only been at that school for a week, and my mom already got wind and signed me up. I was dreading the trip because I was worried that I wouldn't have friends by the time April came around. For others, six months is plenty of time to create friendships, but for me, it was going to take some black ops training to get me to say 'hi' to a stranger. 
So the trip came and went. I went to Venice, Florence, Rome and Sienna. It was beautiful, but it didn't feel like Italy. I'm exactly the type to complain about a European vacation, Because I'm awful. But, this trip just felt like any other field trip to a museum. We had a "coach bus," which meant rolling into quaint little Italian towns with giant signs on our foreheads that read "STEAL FROM ME I'M STUPID." When I pictured this trip, I imagined I would be traveling only via Riva Aquarama and I would have a silk kerchief tied around my neck the entire time. My vision was a mixture of an Olsen twin movie and La Dolce Vita, but I ended up as the third child of the Griswold family. 
We never stayed in hotels in Italy, never even adorable home stays. Instead, we were in hostels 45 minutes deep in the 'burbs, ate pre-packaged sandwiches made by the supervising nuns (Dominican Academy was a Catholic school) and were rushed from monument to monument holding hands with a sweaty 'sister'. 
It was a group of 30 or so girls together all day and all night. There was a fight about a hair brush that lasted 6 days. The nuns shielded our eyes from the statue of David's junk and were reluctant to let us speak to any male waiters. But, we were allowed as much gelato as we wanted, and for that I am thankful.
The first night in Rome, we were treated to an actual restaurant that had actual Italian food. The 30 of us girls all gaggled outside looking at the menu and picked out what we wanted.
"I'm going to get the gnochi!"
"Oh that veal sounds amazing."
"They have vodka penne!"
"Does anyone want to split the tiramisu for dessert?"
We were ushered into the restaurant and seated at a long rectangular table. The view was incredible and overlooked a side of the lit up Colosseum. Every time a Vespa sped by the restaurant's glass front, all of us would turn to see if the driver was a cute Italian boy, it always was. We were all so distracted by the scene outside the restaurant that no seemed to notice that we didn't get menus. Instead, 10 minutes into the dinner, a plate of lasagna was placed in front of each of us. It was fucking prix fixe. From this moment on, I learned to never go on a school trip out of state, cause you probably won't get what you ordered. 
I would like to have a do over of this trip. I promise I'll be more gracious this time around. I would like to see Venice before it sinks, and I would like to see it without a nun telling me my skirt is too short. Italian's don't care if they can see your thigh and God probably doesn't either. 
Since I will not be in Italy this upcoming summer, I might as well bring it home. To me, the warm weather makes me want to dress like Sofia Loren, eat pounds of pasta, change my last name to Bellucci and read a book outside my villa. 







I was looking at Air BNB's in Italy, planning my fake vacation, when I came across the single greatest find that I ever have discovered. Are you ready? Are you ready to buy a home in Italy for $1?????
Yes! Yes! Yes!
Ok, so here's the deal. The Italian government had to create a way to lure people into towns that were slowly falling apart, with more and more homes becoming abandoned. Their solution was to sell them for nothing, well not nothing, $1. The catch is that you have to agree to remodel the place within 3 years of purchase. That doesn't really sound like a catch to me, that sounds like a dream. 
There are two towns that offer this deal right now, Zungoli and Mussomeli. Zungoli is inland near Naples while Mussomei is inland on the island of Sicily. It's going to be hard to choose just one, but I think I would go for Zungoli, it's near the Amalfi Coast and the place I want to be laid to rest, Pompeii. Please scatter my ashes among the ruins of Pompeii and then you can have a party at my house in Zungoli. The catering will be done by both El Pollo Loco and my grandma.
CLICK HERE for more information if you're actually going to do this. Please actually do this and then please invite me over. 





These homes are in rough shape, but that's what I like about them. The stone is crumbling to perfection and the colors are so natural and warm. If we had stayed at any one of these places during my Italian trip, I probably wouldn't be complaining so much. 
Just imagine what you could do with these houses. It's basically the plot of Under The Tuscan Sun come to life. 
That was one of my mom's favorite movies actually, that and Le Divorce. I tried to watch Le Divorce the other day and I could not get through it. I think it's cause I just really want to be in Italy right now. But since I can't go to Italy for at least a few more months, I'm just going to pretend. I'm going to pretend by drinking red wine, cooking pasta, wearing red lipstick, making aperol spritz and re learning how to ride a bike. That's just how I picture every chic Italian woman basically. 
I wanted to share my recipe for the best vodka pasta you'll ever have. I guess I can't really call it my recipe because I stole it from the restaurant Jon and Vinny's in LA. Jon and Vinny's is a casual but cool Italian restaurant on Fairfax. It's tiny, long and narrow, so it always feels lively, with voices bouncing off the walls and a wine shop in the back. The only draw back is that it's one of those places you need to always have a reservation to. Ugh LA, come on already. So, since I can never tell what I want for dinner until 5 minutes before, I learned how to make their signature dish, vodka sauce fusilli pasta, at home. I can have it for breakfast now if I want. 


This is what you gotta do...
Chop up half a shallot, like 2 gloves of garlic and brown it in a pan with a 1/4 cup of olive oil. Then add in 1/2 cup of tomato paste and stir everything around for 5 minutes. Once it's all mixed together, add in 2 tablespoons of vodka, stir, then add in 1 cup of heavy cream. I cannot stress how important the heavy cream is. I thought I could use half and half, you cannot. It has to be heavy cream. But, I might be the only one who thought heavy cream and half and half were the same thing. Once this is all mixed in, add in salt to taste and then a teaspoon of red pepper flakes. Oh yeah, you were supposed to be cooking fusilli noodles at the same time. So then when the sauce is done, you can take 1/2 a cup of the pasta water and mix it in the sauce. Slowly stir the fusilli noodles into the sauce and then add a tablespoon of butter and some chopped basil. Then do a little Italian finger kiss and you're done! Serve with grated Parmesan on top for the best results. 
When I first mastered this recipe, I think I ate it for 5 meals in a row. And I'll probably make it tonight because just look at it.


As for the sale... this next sale will be the last sale until July. The site is going to be getting a little face lift and I'm going on vacation. So, no new items will be added until them. Technically the sale starts Monday the 19th, but I wanted to give everyone here the first chance to shop, because you guys are my favorite. So, from now until Sunday, the shop will be open just for you! 


But, like always, here's a little background on some of my favorite pieces this time around.
These two trays will help you if you too were hoping to spend the summer in Florence. I have one large wood serving tray and then one small rectangular tray. I think the small one would look lovely in a bathroom or on a vanity for your best makeup and perfumes. Lately, I've been really into my "getting ready zone." I'm a bit of snob about it though, I keep my drug store products under the sink and I only bought that Chanel lotion because it would look great displayed on my vanity. There's a great series on the website Into The Gloss called Top Shelf, where they take a deep dive into people's medicine cabinets. Not just any old people though, celebrities and makeup artists usually, no one who uses Head & Shoulders. You can read through them HERE but be careful because it may make you redo your entire morning and night routine. But, if you do, these trays would make an awfully good place to put everything.





Ok so, these two oil paintings might just be my favorite paintings with one exception that's hanging in my home. During my mom's first trip to the Marche Aux Puces, she saw a painting in a shop and had to have it. She inquired and was met with a ridiculous price, so she left devastated. Every trip though, she kept going back to this painting, hoping the price would be lowered but it never was. 4 years later, she had saved up enough (or used someone else's credit card) and bought that painting. I have it hanging in the hallway outside my bedroom now. It's absolutely stunning, dark colors and just a hint of light on the artists face, but I'm 100% percent sure it is haunted. There's a strange marking on the back that looks quite demonic, and the guy in the painting has eyes that follow you. But, even if that painting is the death of me, I will always love it. Now these two paintings haven't caused me to think they're haunted...yet. One is a large floral painting with lots of texture that stands up off the board. The other is a medium sized painting of a sugar pot on a table, a really beautiful and delicate still life. And this one is framed! It's a lovely dark wood frame with a gold gilt border.







Last sale, I had a large tortoise shell for sale and it was sold before the sale even begun. That's because a true antique tortoise shell is awfully hard to come by, almost impossible even. But, because I have someone looking out for me (Anna Nicole Smith) I have two more for sale. One is so special, it's blonde, like me (and Anna Nicole Smith). I'm not sure if the proper term is Albino or blonde, but I like blonde. This one isn't as large as the other one, but it's in perfect condition and has a friend. I have one more tortoise shell that would look perfect stacked next to the blonde friend, like Tina Fey and Amy Poheler. That's what I named these two. 






Ok, before you get to shopping, I have one more special find... A 19th century wood statue of Saint Anthony. He is painted green with some detail still left on his face. His hand is missing and the wood has worn over time, which is why I love it so much. He would fit perfectly into a bookshelf. Saint Anthony was known for his love and devotion to the poor and sick, making him quickly canonized in the church. He also was the patron saint of lost things, which is perfect, because this statue was clearly lost over time only to be found hopefully by you!


Now, shop on! Please email me at havesomedecorum@gmail.com if you have any questions at all! The shop will remain open until May 31st, so tick tock!

If You Can't Make Art, Study It

I took a painting class in 5th grade. It was the only after school activity I enjoyed other than a cooking class. I went to a very progressive elementary school, where we could learn how to cook lasagna instead of how to hit a home run, if we wanted to. I dabbled in sports for approximately 1 month, but quickly realized I was more of an indoor girl. I don't like sports, I'm much too passive. The idea of winning stresses me out if it's based solely on how fit I am. Then, there's the whole aspect of a team. If there were an "I" in team, I might be able to get on board, but my bossy 10 year old butt, was not down with compromising. So, I took a painting class. We would work on one painting a week, a little slow for my liking, but I was going to give it a chance.
Before this class, I had already decided that I was an amazing artist and didn't really need any guidance, but it was either this or another season of baseball. Not sure where I got the confidence from, but I would like it back please. The first week of this painting class, the topic was still lifes. We each were handed a large wooden bowl and then told to pick out the fruits we would like to use. I grabbed peaches, lemons and limes. I didn't and still don't like apples, so why would I paint them if they didn't taste good. I then carefully arranged my bowl and had a few pieces of fruit spilling out onto the table. I bunched up the table cloth around my fruit and took a step back. "A fucking masterpiece" is what I wished to say, but instead took my seat and began painting. I had been to Paris twice by this point, so I knew how to arrange a table. I also was raised by mom and grandma.
Before I knew it, the hour was up, and I realized that I was wrong, a week was not enough time to complete my painting. I had 1 more class that week and I had figured that the entire next hour would be spent perfecting the lemon's shading. I asked to take the painting home to work on it on my own time. A few months ago, for Christmas, I received an entire studio's worth of painting supplies because I had mentioned the painting class, hadn't even signed up yet. The following year I took a hip hop class and received a boom box for my birthday. 
For about a month, I worked on this still life painting. I learned that the more layers of paint were added, the more interesting the piece became. I created a background wall that was 8 layers of paint, it looked like my still life was in an abandoned chateau, the paint peeling off and all. The fruit had a shine to it, as if it were freshly washed, while still maintaining the grain. The pinks of the peaches bounced off the deep and distressed wood bowl. I really thought I had found my calling. I thought about getting an apprentice. 
Then I took a step back and realized that I didn't have any depth perception and you couldn't really tell what was going on. After that, I began to study art instead of trying to make it. Once I realize I'm not very good at something, I move on. It's both a good and bad trait of mine.
When I took up home schooling in high school (like I had a choice) I took a lot of art history classes. These classes only fueled my life long passion for art history and I then majored in it in college. After learning a little bit of everything from every decade, I always went back to the still life painting. I found that no mater what era art was in, there was always a version of a still life.
The first depictions of still life paintings went back to ancient Egypt. I love Egyptian art mainly because I think it is spooky. I might have seen The Mummy a few too many times also. The still life's from ancient Egypt give us the most detailed look of what everyday life was like for the Egyptians. And, it was largely the same as a table today. Lots of fish, fruits and pottery. 


Still lifes have also been found in Ancient Rome and Pompeii in fresco and mosaic form. The middle ages took on a different approach to the still life and began incorporating more religious and symbolic aspects to their creations. These still lifes were largely found in manuscripts rather than in large format compositions. The Renaissance is where decadent floral arrangements were created for these scenes and also where my love for still lifes emerged. I love how over the top the flowers are, how bright and vivid all the petals are. 



The still lifes during this time and onward, became almost a display and game of one upping each other with wealth. The flowers in one vase are from all different regions of the world, making the flowers in the painting sometimes more expensive than the actual painting. Later, artists began to incorporate material luxury objects into the paintings, such as lobsters and pocket watches. This is my favorite time of the still life. I love how over the top and excessive everything is, so much to look at. 



This is also where the depiction of a skull in the still life became common. This style was called Vanitas. This style of still life directly represented the inevitability and certainty of death. They often contain contrasting symbols of both wealth and mortality. It's morbid, but it makes for a lovely painting. 



Then, Cezanne came into the picture and changed everything. Well, that's what I think. His still life's made way for a more abstract version of the traditional still life, while still paying homage to the Vanitas of the past, throwing in a skull every now and then. 



What followed him, is a bit of a mess. I've never been one to enjoy a Braque still life, but I guess he's worth mentioning. Sometimes I zoom past modern art because it bores me, there's not as much to look at. I would love to hang a Cy Tombley in my house, but I don't have much to say about it other than "Wow." My main problem with modern art is the fact that nothing seems to be happening in them. Where are all the dinner parties? I wanna see people dancing and flaunting their wealth and a little magic. Maybe a stabbing after a brutal betrayal even.
But, I do love David La Chapelle's still life collection. He makes everything so over the top and extravagant, that's why Donatella loves him and I love her. Around 2011 La Chapelle did a series of still life photographs, and they are everything. 



His florals are larger than life, but in true La Chapelle fashion, there's an element of pop culture scattered throughout the background. He even pays his on tribute to the Vanitas of the past, but instead of skull, a maniquin head. His pieces are sort of like a "where's Waldo", every time you look deeper, you find another detail that makes you laugh a little bit. His combination of all that was great in the past with all that is wrong in the future, like redi whip and tabloids, creates a stunning and fresh take on modern still lifes. 
After studying all these different approaches to the same general daily life scene, I decided to have my own take on it. I thought about how interesting it would look to use a still life set to stage antiques. Some of the antiques very well might have actually been used for staging a still life before. In fact, if you look at the background of some of these paintings, you can actually see similar items that are in this months sale, both a marbled dish and a drinking horn. 
Usually, my eye goes to the flowers, because they're bright and pretty. I'm like a moth and attracted to the flame. But, here, I'm trying to get your eye to go right to the antiques. The way they compliment their surroundings, but also steal the show.




This sale I was very inspired by my mom's store Circa. This store was way before the Have Some Decorum days and it was much less down to earth. The 1st floor of the store was dedicated to everything French. The walls were painted black lacquer with gold trim, the simple column was turned into one of the Corinthian order and everything was delicate and aged to perfection. 

Upstairs was more of a Mediterranean and warm vibe. The walls were distressed with colors of orange, beige and red, as if when you walked up stairs, you were transported into an Italian villa. Here is where you would find cashmere throws, deep textured wood pieces and colorful paisleys.

So now whenever I'm looking for the next sale, I'm subconsciously categorizing my items into those two categories.  Sometimes I try to stray, but I always go back to these two styles. I think this next sale is a perfect mix of both floors. There are rustic wood pieces, gold gilt mirrors and a little bit in between.
So, here's the sneak peak for the sale, which by the way, starts tomorrow at 6am PST!


I'm gonna start off the sale with my favorite piece possibly ever, ever. An antique HUGE glazed tortoise shell. This shell dates back to the late 1800's. My mom used to hang her tortoise shell right over our entry way table, just high enough so I couldn't touch. It was precious and there was no need for me to pet it. Here's a few photos of just how much a tortoise shell can draw your eye in.



Now for something gold. I have an obsession with hands, beautiful delicate hands. I have never been able to draw one, but that hasn't stopped me from obsessing over them. I found this gorgeous photo holder stand, with hands!! Growing up, we always had photos and postcards displayed everywhere around the house. I think this would just look amazing on a table, front and center, to display your travels proudly.



This next item is one of those that my mom would have bought for her store Circa, loved it too much and ultimately ended up keeping. I know this because well, she actually did this.


She bought this little wood head statue to sell at her store. It was in the front window for about an hour, someone came in and wanted to buy it, but my mom couldn't part with it. She told them it was already sold (she just didn't say it was sold to herself.) That little wood head now lays on its side in my living room. No, it's not for sale, but this one is...



This wood statue of Christ's head is still so well preserved, given that it is from the 17th century from a French chapel. Typically, the statues in churches were not entirely wood. Rather, just the head and the hands were made of wood and then the rest of the body was sort of faked. Since these statues were dressed, the artist just didn't put anything underneath the clothing. Tricky tricky. The remaining head has been mounted onto a modern black wooden base to not take any attention away from the detail of the statue. Honestly, I wish I could place this statue next to my other one, but, it's time to share.
Alright, the last object that I'll ramble on about today is a set of six black and gold plates. These would have been sold on the downstairs floor of Circa so fast, so so so fast. And a set probably would have been bought for our house as well. These plates are from the company Sascha Brastoff. They remind me so much of the dishes my mom used to love from HERE but are about a 10th of the price. I can probably stop gushing about these dishes because they speak for themselves, except one more thing. I have a small pink, white and gold dish from this company and for some reason I only have one, but it still gets people talking when I casually bring it out with something sweet on it.



Ok, soooo, you know the drill. If there is anything you would like to call first dibs on before the sale goes live, email me because I play favorites. havesomedecorum@gmail.com