Urban Flow – Amsterdam to Seattle

It’s Sunday night, officially almost Monday morning, out here on the West coast and I’m moving along in my urban flow. Most people have turned in. The city is quiet and the rain has set in.  The streets are mirrors to the city lights that now shimmer and paint the streets outside. I’m sitting at a local pub trying to get inspired by the energy of the music and “lives happening” around me, plugged into wifi and trying to find some words and images to share on my Monday blog. Nothing is coming to me. NOTHING…

I stop for a minute and take in the scene around me.  A dark downtown Seattle looms outside the windows. Area businesses are mostly closed. The ever-present construction work is on a brief hiatus until tomorrow morning when the construction sites become like bee hives again. Right now, the only remnants in view are the orange traffic cones lining the streets and sidewalks. They are the new icon of the changes happening in this city. They have become the omnipresent accessory that adorns the city like jewels.

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Minted.com + PB Kids & Teen Challenge Submissions

I talked about my love of textiles in the Textiles, Tulips post a few weeks ago. If you know me beyond that post you know that I LOVE design and interiors and have since childhood. My poor mother and my incessant requests to go to the local “home store” of choice on any given week (or was it day, mom?) to buy a new pillow, bed ruffle, or room decor color-change-accessory of the moment. I haven’t changed much and still get inspired by home accessories and could buy something new daily if I didn’t moderate myself.

So the opportunity to have MY art in a major home decor store? WHOA! WOW! YES, PLEASE!! A home decor store where, by the way, I love to go on days that I’m feeling a little flat and need some design or color energy infusion, none the less…Pottery Barn!!

I’m completely excited about the Minted.com + Pottery Barn Kids Pottery Barn Teen challenge and a chance to get some of my fun and colorful art sold in stores and inspiring young people to dream, color, and GET creative. Here’s how you can help me:

 

Vote for melissaAnne COLORS art in the Minted.com + Pottery Barn Kids & PB Teen Challenge to discover new wall art for kids and teens!

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Dreams, Boats, and Jonathan Adler…

Maybe a strange combination….maybe not….A few of my favorite colorful inspirations for the week.

I discovered the colorfully talented Jessica Swift on Facebook this week.  I love her story and her big, colorful dreams!!  Check it out below and send her a little color love (in the form of green) if you can!  I’d like to wear these boots one day.  She’s a color diva after my own heart with secret messages hidden in the boots.  I had a similar, yet very different, idea for my pillow line.  THAT you’ll have to wait for…

I saw this awesomely whimsical, right up my alley harbor decor idea on Apartment Therapy this week.  LOVE IT!  The big question for me….does the inside show…or the BOTTOM?  I have the perfect boat in mind for my ceiling.  I can find it on Martha’s Vineyard!

 

Apartment Therapy

 

 

A favorite boat on Martha's Vineyard!

 

 

 

Jonathan Adler has a new limited edition furniture collection.  I’ll take these two for my next home office.  Punctuate with some orange accents (like an orange Moroccan pouf…also available from Jonathan Adler) and my creative life will be completely fulfilled!

 

 

 

And finally, this is definitely my favorite color of the week. This wall paint has my name written ALL over it! HEAVENLY!

 

House To Home

 

 

Interestingly enough, they would all go nicely in a house together.  THAT was a coincidence.

I hope you are having a colorful week and are finding your color inspiration in the world around you!

 

Color and Design Martha’s Vineyard Style

I LOVE Martha’s Vineyard.

We’re talking serious love here.  Sweep me off my feet, love for the ages, romance, Winter/Spring/Summer/Fall unconditional kinda love.  Think Serendipity meets Love Actually meets Sliding Doors meets…OK, you get the picture.

I’m gushing.  Too much?  Maybe, but remember, I’m in love.

I got lucky enough to spend a few days on the Vineyard this week and I did what I always do when I’m there.

I de-stress.

I immediately connect with my soul (and I do mean immediate…like stepping on the ferry I can’t stop smiling connection).

I walked on the beach (albeit this time I was in a coat, hat, and gloves…unconditional love).

I crawled around dirty, dusty ugly beautiful boat yards searching for extravagantly elegant bottoms on which art communicates with my eye.  The only thing I love more than MV is a good boatyard.  A good boatyard on MV = sweep me off my feet LOVE.

When I’m completely exhausted and dirt stained from the yards I usually stop by and visit my favorite shops and galleries in Vineyard Haven. They never seem to mind my dirty appearance.  Love, I tell you!

Unfortunately, on this recent visit I was only able to do “drive by” window shopping because the island is basically closed for the month (more unconditional love).  But, one of my favorite places was open for business and I indulged. Here’s a  look inside a wonderful color and design store on the island and some of my favorite finds for the home.


Midnight Farm, Vineyard Haven

Beautiful Vintage Fabric Throws with exquisite detail!

LOVE these lampshades.  So natural and chic.  And the turquoise leather chair and glass lamp base…dreamy!

OK…the pics a little crooked…I was so excited!  I’d just come from the boat yard.  This worn wood, layers of paint, rustic charm cabinet was more eye candy! Romance. Can I get that on the ferry?

If you rub this lamp your genie comes out and she grants you a wish.”I wish…”  Oops…can’t tell you.  It won’t come true.  Let’s just say I won’t need to get that cabinet above on the ferry. LOVE

Keepsake boxes made from recycled keyboards.  Type up my receipt please!

A colorful basket of recycled yarn turned into decorative accessories.  The perfect finish to my colorful shopping trip!


Thanks for shopping with me!  If you’re on Martha’s Vineyard stop into Midnight Farm and have fun with home accessories, fashion, jewelry, and more!

Can’t wait for your next visit?  I understand.  I REALLY understand.  They’ve got you covered, visit Midnight Farm online!

An Evening With Elizabeth Gilbert

Did you know that Elizabeth Gilbert’s video on TED is the most watched?

I learned that last Thursday when I went to see her speak at an Academi of Life event in NYC.  This little factoid was thrown out during her introduction and I felt myself shrink down in my seat when I heard it.

OH NO!  What if they find out it’s ME?  Elizabeth Gilbert’s TED video stalker?  Relentlessly watching and pulling inspiration and laughter from her presentation.  Feeling a connection to her ideas on creativity.  Pulling from her the strength to move on when I feel on the verge of potential defeat.  Making peace with my muse, genius, inner artist…

It’s ME!  I’ll admit it!  I’m a stalker.

So when I took my stalking admiration for her “offline” and went to hear her speak last week I was not disappointed. She had that same humor (I think I shed a few tears), the genuine spirit of the girl next door you want to go have dinner and a glass of wine with (no worries, not in a stalker kind of way…just a “wow, she’s a cool chic” kinda way), and the insight that touched my heart once again (OK…I definitely shed a few tears).

She looked fabulous!  Dressed in a fashionable “greige” (you know…grey and beige…we’re into color here) color palette with her adorable little pigtail hairstyle.  A combination of classy and unique!

Here are some of my favorite moments, stories, and quotes from the evening.

“I was born comfortable on the page.  It’s where I grew up.”

Elizabeth has always been a writer.  She says it’s who she is and the only thing she’s ever been able to do well.

“My love of writing was unconditional.  I expected nothing of it.”

In the beginning she wrote just to write.  No expectations for fame or grandeur.  No desire for it to pay the bills.  She just followed her soul’s calling and did what she loved.  She wrote.

Struggling to write her follow up book to Eat, Pray, Love

Elizabeth discussed the struggle between the vision and the dream and the occasional disconnect.  When the vision of what you want to make gets made…but doesn’t look like the vision you had in your head.  She calls it the “non-identical twin of your dream”.    I love this idea because it happens often when we are creating.  The song, the painting, the final photo isn’t what we saw in our minds eye when we were creating it.  Sometimes it’s better…sometimes it’s not.

She talked about writing her first manuscript of Committed and it being bad, the non-identical twin.  How the block came, “writing and I left each other” and her foray into gardening.  Then one day while gardening it came back.  The words, the sentence, the story.  In her words, “Falling from the tree above, like a floating leaf.  I got a sentence.  That was the rewrite of the book.”  She rushed inside and “took a story for a walk across the page.”

A great lesson when the vision doesn’t come.  Wait, be patient, engage your mind in other activities…until it comes.  It will come.

It was a wonderful evening of inspiration and humor.

“I was born comfortable on the page.  It’s where I grew up.”

She may think writing is the only thing she does well, but this stalker admirer believes she has a beautiful gift for words, both written and spoken and the ability to bring humor and inspiration into the world.  I think Elizabeth has an amazing genius.

There’s MORE!

She also has a store in NJ called Two Buttons Imports.  I haven’t been but I checked it out online.  Antiques.  Treasures from Southeast Asia.  COLOR!!

You want to be a stalker now too don’t you?  Come on.  Admit it…

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