Monday, March 31st, 2014

Mooning Over Miami II: The Fonts


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You read that right, by “The Fonts,” I am not coming up with some Kardashian-esque shortening for The Fontainebleau Hotel. Nope, I’m talking fonts. So I promised you some more fun snapshots from Miami. Clearly I’m not much of a photographer, but between the light, the architecture and, ahem, Instagram filters, it’s kind of hard to take an ugly shot there. Though it seems it is hard to take a shot from across the street without capturing a Ryder truck or road construction barrels and tractors.

One of my favorite things about Miami is the fun take on art deco architecture. One place you can see this unique playfulness is in a lot of the fonts you see around town. In South Beach, the hotel signs were some of my favorites.

Across the street at The Catalina, a playful cursive announces its presence:

By the way, this is an excellent spot to enjoy an al fresco breakfast, especially when you’ve overslept and your own hotel is no longer serving breakfast. If there’s a wait, this colorful, comfy and covered outdoor waiting room is a great spot to pass the time:

At The Nassau, the architecture has some fun throwing in some circles in the shape of a bullseye, porthole windows and if you look closely at the fence, you’ll see some more.

Oh I wish I had a better education in fonts. If anyone knows what any of these are called, will you please chime in and let us know in the comments section?

I love the more serious and crisp and bold all-caps I saw around town too:

And the smaller italicized “The” before “RICHMOND” here just slays me:

Another contrasting “The” over at the Regent at The Gale. Doesn’t a fun “The” just make things seem more important?

The font at THE PRESIDENT is elongated and casts some eye-catching shadows on the white facade. Check out how it’s centered underneath the box around the windows:

Seriously font folks, please share your expertise if you have it! Thanks!


Friday, March 21st, 2014

Mooning Over Miami


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If you are one of the few who follow us on Instagram, you may have noticed a few Miami pictures showing up in our feed this month. Before, all I ever knew of this city was terrible experiences at the airport en route to places further south, Crockett and Tubbs, and, of course, this:

I’m so glad I got past the pushed-up suit sleeves, Real Housewives from hell and David Caruso stereotypes. What a gorgeous city Miami is. We stayed in South Beach at this small-ish swanky joint, The Gale, and were surrounded by fun vintage photos in our room and crisp, shall we say “space-saving” design.

I just love the lettering and the art decor curves and details on this building, from the sign to those bars across the doors to the the terrazzo underfoot:

That marble on the walls is not marble though, it’s some sort of brilliant faux painting:

Inside, the place is full of fun vintage photos from the era:

Up on the roof, there was a fabulous view of The Delano, one of the many art deco icons in South Beach:

Check out the way the facade folds, with the angled windows. The view the other way looked like this:

This level had this fabulous green wall. Yup, it was fake, but it looked great:

Even the graffiti in South Beach has it’s own unique flavor:

And the James Hotel provided plenty of playful parrot and dolphin fun on its facade:

I’ll share a few more photos with you in a post next week when I get them organized; there’s more great art deco to share.


Friday, August 12th, 2011

Flickr Faves on Fridays: Style in South Beach


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Today’s Flickr fave comes to us compliments of member eclectica miami. Love the Dansk pot, love the retro chair/stepladder, love the combo of yellowish lime and turquoise. After noticing it in our Fresh New Spaces Group, I was drawn to the rest of her photos, which are so much fun to look through. Here’s a little peak to tempt you to check them out for yourself:

To see the rest of her photos, click here.


Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

Guerrilla Knitting in The Old Fourth War


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I met a friend for lunch today in Atlanta’s Old Fourth Ward, and as I was cutting through a parking lot I noticed a bit of guerrilla knitting over on Edgewood Avenue. I had just been reading about this phenomenon a few days ago (can’t remember where) but I do remember a blogging about a clever tree or two a few years ago, before I knew about the “guerilla.” It was fun to see this street tree (I think it’s a Japanese Zelkova) wearing a red legwarmer right in my own city:

Inspired by the beautiful sunshine and the vibrancy of the neighborhood, I took a few more camera phone shots of the cutest darn store in the world, Lottafrutta and thought I’d share:

They even have lime green construction cones!

The fun of the fruit continues to the side door:

In fact, there’s even a bit of fun out by the trash:

There’s also a rare (in Atlanta) Art Deco building across the street from Lottafrutta, complete with tropical palm trees – now that’s location:

There’s a growing Flickr pool full of guerrilla knitting, check it out here. By the way, they spell it with one “r.” I could never figure out why I could not remember how to spell this word, but it looks like it can be spelled both ways (?). My spellcheck seems to prefer “rr”:

P.S. A shameless request for advice: As you may have guessed from my cruddy camera phone pictures, my digital camera bit the dust. Does anyone have any advice on one they love that’s pretty easy for a non-photographer?


Monday, September 27th, 2010

Inspiration Monday: Cincinnati Architecture


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After the election awhile back, I got really sick of hearing the term “flyover states,” so started organizing some of my favorite bloggers from the middle of the U.S. to help me dispel the myth that everything exciting happens on our two coasts. However, then we decided to have an Organization-themed guest blog week and I lost track of my flyover states plans. Thankfully I was reminded of it last week. We’re going to have a series of guest posts from bloggers from all over the country. Having grown up in Cincinnati myself, I’m excited to introduce Maya Drozdz of VisuaLingual, who is going to show us some of her favorite architectural treasures from The Queen City. Take it away Maya!

Four years ago, when I first learned that I would be moving to Cincinnati, I knew almost nothing about the city — I had seen WKRP in Cincinnati, I liked the work of Charley Harper, and I knew that the Afghan Whigs, a band I’d liked in high school, were from Cincinnati. Further research revealed that it’s home to Macy’s and Procter & Gamble, Larry Flynt got his start here, Jerry Springer was once Cincinnati’s mayor, and that there was an anti-obscenity kerfuffle involving an exhibit of Robert Mapplethorpe’s photographs at the Contemporary Arts Center. So, keeping my expectations firmly in check, I moved to this fair city, and discovered that it’s full of interesting and innovative architecture, art and design spanning the 19th through the 21st centuries.

The Cincinnati City Hall was built in 1887 in the Richardson Romanesque style. It was designed by Samuel Hannaford, a prominent local architect. Its castle-like form would be at home on an Ivy League campus or on the set of a Harry Potter movie.

Music Hall, located just north of downtown in Over-the-Rhine, is another Hannaford design. Completed in 1878, it is home to the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Cincinnati Opera, May Festival Chorus, and the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra. The $10 symphony tickets may well be the best deal in town.

Memorial Hall, just down the street from Music Hall, was built in 1908 and houses the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra and the annual MusicNow festival. Its interior is more posh than you might expect from the Greek Revival facade.

The Dixie Terminal Building was designed by Garber & Woodward and completed in 1921. It served as the streetcar terminal and stock exchange, and is now an office building. You may remember its arcade from the film Rain Man. The entry is decorated with tile made by the Rookwood Pottery Company.

Rookwood was founded in 1880 by Maria Longworth Nichols and quickly gained a reputation for beautiful craftsmanship and technical innovation. Its architectural pottery division started in 1902, and examples can be found in public spaces in Cincinnati and beyond, as well as fireplaces in many older homes in the Cincinnati area.

For 80 years, Carew Tower was the tallest building in Cincinnati. Construction started in 1929, right before the start of the Great Depression. It’s an Art Deco masterpiece but, as you look up the facade, you can see where the ornamentation stops and the plain brick begins. This was done as a cost-cutting measure.

The building now houses the Netherland Hilton as well as offices. The interior arcade features Rookwood tile, of course. Orchids at Palm Court, Hilton’s restaurant, offers great food in an incredible space.

Even more Rookwood tile, on the facade of the old Gidding-Jenny department store, currently TJ Maxx.

The John A. Roebling Suspension Bridge spans the Ohio River and connects downtown Cincinnati with Covington, Kentucky. If it looks a bit like the Brooklyn Bridge in miniature, that’s because Roebling designed both using many of the same structural principles.

Findlay Market in Over-the-Rhine, opened in 1855 and is Ohio’s oldest surviving municipal market house. It’s located among the largest collection of Italianate buildings in the US. We live just a few blocks away and do a lot of our grocery-shopping here. I really think that our diet has improved as a result!

The Contemporary Arts Center, located downtown, was the first US project by avant garde architect Zaha Hadid. Completed in 2003, it is locally loved or hated, depending on who you talk to.

Across the street from the CAC is a block-long parking garage whose facade is an artwork by Polish Op Artist Julian Stanczak. What would have been an eyesore is instead an animated, colorful installation.

A little-known piece of public art is a mosaic mural by the late Charley Harper, located in the John Weld Peck Federal Building. You just go through security, head toward the elevators, and there it is!

My last bit of Cincinnati inspiration is this Googie pavilion located in Bellevue Hill Park. The pavilion was designed by R. Carl Freund and built in 1955 as a site for outdoor dancing. Cincinnati has an amazing, extensive network of parks, but this little park is my favorite. It offers a great vantage point for viewing fireworks displays over downtown.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this little romp through some of my favorite Cincinnati finds. If you keep an open mind, it’s a great little city to visit!