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Wednesday, August 13th, 2008

Eat, Shop, Kayak, Explore, Stay in Port Clyde Maine


Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky

I try to keep Mid-Coast Maine somewhat of a secret, but I’m going to spill a bit here. Since The New York Times and most recently, Coastal Living have been blabbing to the world about it, I figure the cat’s outtah the bag. I wanted to tell you about one of my favorite shops, Stonefish, and I can’t tell you about it without telling you more about the charming town of Port Clyde Maine. Port Clyde is where you can catch the Laura B. to Monhegan Island (highly recommended). You can also catch a yummy meal in the cutest shack of a restaurant on a pier ever, The Dipnet.

First, Stonefish: It is full of amazing antique finds, super-soft organic clothing, clever Tyvek clothing, hilarious New Yorker cartoon cards, aviary prints, original artwork, and perfect little housewarming giftees. The shop has four rooms, all of which are merchandised to perfection. The only problem is that the place makes you want to grab a UHaul and fill it up with stuff so that you can get it home. When you live 1500 miles away, this is a problem.

Here are a few places where you can stay when in Port Clyde. The Seaside Inn…

Or The Ocean House? This picture does not do its charm justice:

Personally, I think sea kayaking in Maine is HARD, and the lobstermen call kayakers “speed bumps,” but if you want to brave it, the scenery is sublime. In Port Clyde, they’ll hook you up here.

On your way home, you’ll be sad to leave, so a few miles down the road, stop at Granite Gardens. It’s mostly a landscaping business, but they have unbelievable coffee drinks and a cute antique store on the premises as well.

Then hit Moody’s Diner for breakfast about 40 minutes down Route 1 for breakfast. If you stop in Wiscasset, make sure you hit Rock Paper Scissors. Have fun stopping at all the antique shops along Route 1 between Thomaston and L.L. Bean’s – there are great finds to be had at most of them.


Friday, May 9th, 2008

The Akola Project


Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky
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Yesterday I was perusing one of my favorite neighborhood shops, urban cottage, and I came across some beautiful beads. It turns out they were part of the Akola project. The Akola project is part of the Ugandan American Partnership Organization. The Akola project has employed over 90 widows to make necklaces that are sold in Atlanta Georgia and Greenville South Carolina, for the purpose of stimulating economic development and providing relief to widows in rural villages. The beads are absolutely stunning, by the way. To learn more go to; to purchase visit

photo from


Thursday, February 28th, 2008

A Bit More Design Blog News


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Yesterday I forgot to mention that Vanessa De Vargas of Turquoise in L.A. is now offering E-decorating services to her repertoire. This meansanyone from anywhere can simply email Vanessa pictures of their decorating dilemmas and receive her help over the web. These consultations include “furniture placement, wall and furniture color ideas, where to buy and what products and artists to purchase from.” For more information, please go to the Turquoise website to contact Vanessa. Did I fail to mention awhile back that Vanessa is now blogging for decor8? Be sure to check her out there as well!

photo from


Wednesday, January 16th, 2008

Design Shopping – Brick and Mortar Stores


Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky

1stdibs-horse-lamppreview.jpgI rarely venture over to Buckhead. The traffic sucks. Usually Jeffrey (formerly Bob Ellis, by FAR the best shoe and accessory boutique in the country) and the Neiman Marcus Last Call sale (starts today! 65% off) are the only reason I will sit in the horrible traffic of Piedmont, Lenox, and or Peachtree. However, a quest for a nickel lamp from Circa Lighting (that store rocks!) sent me sailing right past Pieces, the store I’ve been hearing so much about for years. The first time was in Cottage Living (green bungalow bedroom below). It was everything I thought it would be and more.

boren_bedroom_v.jpgThe owner, Lee Kleinhelter, has exquisite taste – everything in the store was perfection, from Hollywood Regency light fixtures to vintage bamboo sofas painted bright yellow, from fabulous custom driftwood mirrors to Hable Construction fabrics showcased in the best way possible. Do you pay for Lee’s amazing eye? Big time! But if you are not a thrifter or a do-it-yourselfer-fixer-of-furniture-upper, Lee has it all figured out for you. I saw dashes of Kelly Wearstler, Jonathan Adler, Dorothy Draper, Billy Baldwin and David Hicks all rolled into Lee’s unique style. There are also great affordable gifts, including preppy dog collars, Adler and Hable Construction accessories and a nicely edited selection of design books. If you are ever in Atlanta, Pieces is worth braving the Buckhead traffic. Plus it’s in very close proximity to Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams, ShopSCAD, DWR, Circa Lighting, and a slew of other great design shopping.

Most recent glossy spotting of Lee’s work, as seen in Cottage Living Nov. 2007:


horse lamp available at (click on photo for purchasing information)

second photo by Timothy Street-Porter for Cottage Living

third photo by Robbie Caponetto for Cottage Living


Thursday, January 10th, 2008

Patience is a Decorating Virtue


Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky


When you need an item for your house, do you search and search non-stop until you find it?  Or do you simply keep an eye open, knowing that the right thing will cross your path eventually but you can’t push it?  I’m in the latter group.  Two days ago, I splurged on some tulips at the grocery.  The only vase they really fit in was this old metal coffeepot with a wooden handle.  A few hours later, my new dining room chairs arrived.  They are even better in person, and I love the way they look with the wood table my great great grandfather made.  It was like the coffee pot and the tulips knew they were coming and urged me to put them on top before they arrived.


oops, obviously I got too excited about taking the picture and missed a tag – tacky!

I have to give major props to decorators who can throw a room together in a short time frame.  I have to be patient – my dining room has been without proper chairs for almost two years, but it was worth the wait!  Now if I could just find the perfect light fixture (over the tulips, wires have been hanging from the ceiling for 2 years)…do you guys have any suggestions?  I don’t want a drum shade or a chandelier.  Perhaps a lantern, or ideally, one of those amazing fixtures from South of Market, you know, where they turn a French trash can or basket into some awesome and unique light fixture and charge $2,000 for it?  I need the cheap version of that!


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