Even though I consider myself quite the accomplished host, there are those (rare) moments when things don't quite go as planned which is when one must resort to a touch of razzle-dazzle....who knew my showbiz background as a tap dancer would prove so handy? From experience, I've learned that the right serving pieces can make the most lackluster of meals appear quite shiny and bright. If your guests are polite enough to warrent a return invite, they won't even notice the over-salted, mushy vegetables or beyond al dente pasta because they'll be dining with beautifully detailed forks on the finest intricately patterned china....razzle dazzle strikes again.
28 June 2010
Sometimes it is the most quiet thing that creates the most lovely sound. This is why I fell for this humble display of thread that I spotted at POD, a beautifully curated shop just outside Boston proper...according to the talented proprietor, Julie, this tin of thread is presented just as it was found. Enjoy more of Julie's eye here.
27 June 2010
26 June 2010
Now, just what you've been waiting for, part deux of the Wandering Eye Gay Primer: A completely random list of my favorite gay-ish books....also known as Ten (plus one) Books I've Kept on My Bookshelf Because I Could Read Them Over and Over and Over Again...
1. The Immoralist by Andre Gide
2. Giovanni's Room by James Baldwin
3. Music for Chameleons by Truman Capote
4. The Hours by Michael Cunningham
5. The Other Persuasion edited by Seymour Kleinberg
6. The Carnivorous Lamb by Agustin Gomez-Arcos
7. A Boy Named Phyllis by Frank Decaro
8. Our Lady of the Flowers by Jean Genet
9. Barrel Fever by David Sedaris
10. Hornito: My Lie Life by Mike Albo
11. Firebird by Mark Doty
And now a word from our sponsor: In revisiting these favorites, I realize that my good friend (and former college prof) John Garrett introduced me to both Gide and Genet....two authors whose books I had mad-intensive, mind altering love affairs with so I want to say a faraway THANK YOU to John Garrett!
25 June 2010
All the plants in the neighborhood are boasting rich verdant foliage like shiny green coats of leaf shaped sequins...they have completely transformed from their somber winter look of brittle bare branches and now they stand their shadowed ground primped and proud. All except this jumble of twigs...this non-conformist...the neighborhood rebel bramble without a cause.
24 June 2010
Once upon a time this lovely ornament graced a soaring ceiling that I like to imagine touched the clouds. Of course I discovered it much closer to earth, covered with soot and tossed on a folding table at the flea market in New York. Someday, I will return my architectural remnant to its rightful place, front and center on a dramatic sky-high ceiling...in my future home.
23 June 2010
22 June 2010
I have a serious problem. I am hooked on magazines. I'm not talking People or Star or National Enquirer. I'm a junkie for foreign magazines...those pricey, cello wrapped glossies that hold the promise of wonder and inspiration within their slick, shiny pages. It doesn't matter that I'm not fluent in Russian or Japanese or German because, as usual, it's all about the visuals for me and these magazines are chock full of the good stuff.
21 June 2010
I was a junior in high school when I discovered this book at my favorite bookstore in the mall. It took me weeks to build up the courage to buy it and once I had it in my sweaty pubescent palms I immediately concealed the cover art with a plain paper book cover which, in retrospect, was so obvious. I don't recall the details of the story but I do remember some very descriptive s-e-x scenes which resulted in several dog-eared pages. To my sheltered, hormone rattled teenage mind, this novel was my introduction to gay pornography minus the graphic images and bad soundtracks...instead, there were some titillatingly delicious well-chosen words and that was plenty fine for me.
20 June 2010
On this special day when we pay tribute to fathers everywhere I want to send a mega-large MERCI to all the dads, pops, papas, father figures and daddy-types out there who strive to make this world a better place for those they love...oh, and here's a tie and some aftershave as well.
Henry O. Studley Toolchest (1890's) via The Smithsonian Institute.
19 June 2010
If I were a girl, I would want to grow up to be someone's Auntie Mame. I would revel in the role as the colorful, anything-goes, party throwing auntie with the penchant for decorating on a theme. If I were a (cough) mature girl and I could be even a tiny bit like the amazing Rosalind Russell in Auntie Mame, I'd be one very happy dame.
18 June 2010
I am always amazed and impressed when creative expression results purely from necessity like the primitive decorative detail on a piece of hand-built furniture or the graphic composition of a vintage quilt comprised of random fabric scraps. This image is from an exhibition showcasing rugs made from repurposed remnants and rags because these are the materials available to the makers...all women in rural Morocco...the results are painterly, free-form compositions....simply beautiful.
More eye candy here.
Discovered via an ambitious project collapsing.
17 June 2010
16 June 2010
15 June 2010
For a few years now I've been collecting beat up, tarnished silver serving pieces....the darker and beat up-er the better. I'm attracted to the etched and raised details, the bits of shine still showing through and the shapely silhouettes. I like to imagine the history of each piece....lush well-appointed sitting rooms where they might have been used....a tufted settee, hushed voices, the sweet scent of black tea and a gloved hand holding a perfectly balanced tray.
14 June 2010
There are icons and then there are ICONS. Cher would go under that all cap heading. When I was an impressionable wee Wanderer, Cher made quite an impression. How could she not? Look at that perfectly smooth hair, those bedroom eyes with the purple eyeshadow, the metallic tipped nails and the backless Bob Mackie dress dripping with bugle beads. I remember watching Cher on TV and sitting so close to the screen that my Mom would reprimand me. I couldn't help myself. Cher was my version of a Fairy Godmother and I imagined that one day she would drive down our cul de sac in a sequin covered limousine to rescue me and together we would rollerskate, hand in hand, off into the sunset. Dyn-oh-mite!
13 June 2010
12 June 2010
Every summer I sacrifice a pair of pants (usually jeans) to the Goddess of the Cutoff....it is a quick ceremony with little blood shed...perhaps a stray thread or two. The cutoff short is my uniform of choice during the warmer months....mind you I snip at a respectable length for my Daisy Duke short short days are long past. With every sacrificial offering, there is left the remaining part of the pant....in my case, a rather long section of leg and since I have a hard time parting with anything (or anyone for that matter) I have been collecting all these leg parts for years. My wish is to pay homage to the loyal service of my old pants by stitching up a quilt...nothing fancy....no Windowpane or Log Cabin pattern for me. When I finally get around to it, my quilt will be a reflection of its maker....rather hodge podge...slightly askew....imperfect but (hopefully) in a charming way. In the meantime, I will covet this lovely specimen available here.
Via Urban Country.
11 June 2010
Whenever I need a dose of superficial but delicious beachside beefcake, I peruse my volume of photographs by the Brazilian photographer Alair de Oliveira Gomes...Rio de Janeiro, beautiful men and skimpy swimwear....all rendered in black and white...need I say more?
Available right here.
10 June 2010
Gloria Swanson & furry friend from Cecil B. DeMille's Male and Female (1919)
09 June 2010
1. La Ley Del Deseo (1987)
2. My Beautiful Laundrette (1985)
3. Auntie Mame (1958)
4. Beautiful Thing (1996)
5. Cabaret (1972)
6. Another Country (1984)
7. Maurice (1987)
8. Ma Vie En Rose (1997)
9. C.R.A.Z.Y (2005)
10. Brokeback Mountain (2005)
08 June 2010
Image via Casa Vogue.
07 June 2010
06 June 2010
05 June 2010
04 June 2010
Since I love to perpetuate a stereotype I have to admit that lately I've been craving a good ol' fashioned Hollywood musical and nothing satisfies that kind of craving more than a silver screen dose of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. I don't recall which Astaire and Rogers musical I saw first when I was a child...it was a hot summer afternoon and I was watching forbidden daytime television at my friend Heather's house. While I don't recall the title of that film, I do remember that I was completely transfixed by the luminous black and white images flickering on the television screen. I had never seen anything like it....the costumes, the music, the sets and the incredible dancing of Astaire and Rogers.....their fluid grace punctuated by the precise click, clack of tap shoes. I ran home that afternoon and, with dramatic open arms and a big gap-toothed smile, announced to my Mother's noticeable dismay that I wanted to be "a tap dancer!" as I clicked and clacked around the dining table, my sandals slapping the hard tile floor. My Mother, in a futile attempt to alter the inevitable, immediately signed me up for Little League Baseball.
03 June 2010
I have a soft spot for peonies. I love their flouncy petals in girly colors like pale pink and deep berry...the oversized scale of a peony bloom reminds me of a full-figured gal who lets it all hang out....someone in the mold of Mae West with the saucy attitude but minus the restrictive underpinnings...a Rubenesque figure displaying all her corpulent beauty with unselfconscious abandon.
02 June 2010
When I am wearing my designer cap (that would be the one with the sequin trim) there are moments when I have a hard time with restraint. Yes, though tis hard to imagine and you're shaking your head in disbelief, there are moments when even I have a hard time keeping my (design) urges under control...moments when I stomp my feet and say "I'm going to do whatever I want!" as I cross my arms like an obstinate child (in sequin trim cap). This would explain why I love this 1920's French fabric design chock full of unexpected colors, patterns, flowers, butterflies, bees, branches, squiggles, dots...