Friday, October 31, 2008

{ my place or yours...}

lanterns in my neighborhood by mrs. french.

Hello friends and welcome back to My Place or Yours! Today, I am thrilled to share with you one of my favorite U.S. cities--Portland, Oregon--and even better, we will explore it through the eyes {and lens} of the lovely Mrs. French. You heard right...the Mrs. French!!! I seem to spot my talented and charming blogging friend everywhere these days and was so honored when Traci graciously agreed to give us a tour of her adored city...I can't think of a more blissful way to spend a Friday afternoon.

Take it away Traci...

The gorgeous Mr and Mrs. French

Tell us what brought you to Portland
We moved to Portland almost 4 years ago. We basically decided to move on a wim. Kyle (Mr. French) wanted to live closer to the mountains and I still needed a city. I was bound and determined to stay in Saint Paul, I thought of this little trip as a nice little vacation. ..then we made the day trip to the Oregon coast. I had never experienced that type of coast before, mountains meeting the ocean, suddenly anything seemed possible. At that moment I decided I could do it. We decided to move. It was hard at first, we found out we were pregnant as we were unloading the moving truck...after nearly 4 years I now consider Portland my home. I always say that I moved to Portland and found myself...dramatic? yes....but oh so true. There's no going back and I like that!

Three words that best describe Portland
creative, concerned, eclectic

a bike in my neighborhood... by mrs. french.

Your favorite time of day and why
Oh my this is an easy one...whatever time of day the sun comes out...In Portland you never know what time of day that will be (if at all). However, when it does show its rays Portland glows. Portland has always struck me as such a colorful place and the sun seems to make it so much more vibrant.

DSC_0702 by mrs. french.

Currently on your radar
I am in the process of trying to put together a little show for a small gallery in Portland. It is oh so intimidating and exciting at the same time...
I am also in talks with an amazing clothing/interior establishment to use one of my photos for a limited addition artist excited about this!!!

What is your most cherished spot in your home? And why? 
a little corner by my fireplace...It has perfect lighting in the morning. Everything I set here looks beautiful to me. 

I am constantly changing out arrangements of thrifted items and snapping photos of them.

pink clock by mrs. french.

from my corner by mrs. french.

Favorite discovery
that I can actually take an ok photograph...I stumbled upon this by accident and haven't been able to stop since. My camera has become an appendage.

one leaf. by mrs. french.
Where do you go to escape? 
I take walks through my neighborhood, completely alone, with my camera.

Who is your favorite local artist? And why? 
Hadley Hutton...her work strikes something deep within me...I often think of her pieces when I tinker with my photos...she is such a huge inspiration...I would love to meet her one day!

What is/are your favorite local shop(s)? 
This is an easy one...Noun: a person's place for things. I can't stop posting about this place. It has been and currently is a spot look to for ideas for my own home...Stephanie is a little pixie genius...

noun front window...2 by mrs. french.

noun 8 by mrs. french.

Best kept local secret 
this is a tough one..I am pretty sure it is not a secret to many people..but for me it would have to be Pix Patisserie...

pix by mrs. french.

yummy, yummy pastries and drinks...all while in a dreamy Amelie-like setting.

pix by mrs. french.

An ideal spot to linger over lunch
Right now that would have to be Petite Provence or St. Honore...oh goodness, everyplace I mention features the most lovely french pastries...this really says so much about me.

DSC_0645 by mrs. french.

st. honore canelets by mrs. french.

When visiting Portland, don't miss... 
anything outdoor related. Portland's parks and outdoor spaces, to me, are unparalleled.

If you had an opportunity to live anywhere else in the world, where would we find you? 
This is a tough one...As far as cities go I think I would choose London. However Lermoos, a small village in Austria, may beat out any big city for me. 

lermoos by mrs. french.

I visited this magical place a few years back and cannot get it off my mind. As far as the US goes, I think Portland is it for me.

made in Oregon... by mrs. french.

What's your motto? good times and bad, just take time to breathe and be in the moment.

Oh, thank you Mrs. French for stopping by and sharing your colorful, beautiful corner of the world with us!!!

Is it possible that you haven't yet discovered this true gem in the blogging community? Highly unlikely! 
Just in case...{I highly recommend Traci's I heart Mondays}:
Traci's fabulous shop blissful images
Not to miss...Traci's flickr 

Thursday, October 30, 2008

{ bad blogger... }

bad, bad blogger!!! 

in the doghouse by Doxieone.
in the doghouse by flickr fave, doxieone

My apologies for not joining you all today. I started a project I've been putting off for a long time and once I started it, I had to finish it...I promise to reveal the details next week.

In the meantime, I wanted to give you a tiny sneak peek of tomorrow's {Friday} My Place or YoursI hope you'll join me--it's one you won't want to miss!

my favorite corner by mrs. french.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

{ picture perfect: whitebox weddings }


I can't help but feel happy...perhaps even a bit giddy, upon visting whitebox weddings
photography. Their fresh and fun style extends beyond weddings and has provided me with much inspiration for our annual family holiday card {yes, it's already that time again}.



For a guaranteed pick-me-up, check out:
the whitebox weddings s
ite {admit, too, were shaking it to "Love Train"}
the {very} addictive whitebox photo

{all images via whitebox weddings }

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

{ tempting me tuesday: needle felted critters }

I'm slowly emerging from the migraine fog that was yesterday. Headaches {bad ones} are a new thing for me and I have this to say: YUCK!

Anyway, onward and upward to something a little more these irresistible needle felted critters by Lauren Alane

Dad and the Pumpkin Patch - Needle Felted Owl and Pumpkins

Three prints for Mona
How utterly charming! From what I can tell, these little ones fly out of the shop almost immediately upon landing in it, so make sure to add yourself to Lauren's mailing list to receive alerts and news about shop updates. 

Lauren also takes custom cake topper requests.  *sigh*

Quick links:
flickr {you can order prints of any of Lauren's flickr pics}

Friday, October 24, 2008

{ my place or yours... }

I know many of you are familiar with today's guest on My Place or Yours, the ever-so-lovely Julia {aka Jewells} of red otter. I *met* Julia way back when I first started blogging and she's been inspiring me ever since through her gorgeous and beautifully written posts. Any of you who follow Julia's blog, or have received a comment on your own blog from Julia, know that she writes from the heart. I appreciate her daily insight and often find myself thinking back to her posts throughout the day. In her spare time, Julia's a full-time graphic designer who somehow also finds the time to make the loveliest handmade journals and candy dots {love that name!}, which are available in her shop

Hepburn's Notebook

So, please join me for the day in Madison, Wisconsin where Julia will treat us to an insider's tour of her lovely midwest city.

Use three words to describe Madison.
Eclectic, Exciting, Enriching

Your favorite time of day
I love the soft purple of a sunrise, before the oranges and pinks hit the clouds. There’s so much potential in each morning!

Madison Sunrise by wolfg.
madison skyline--image via flickr fave, wolfg

Currently on your radar
Wine tastings at a local wine bar, Barriques. They have tastings of the most exquisite wines. I’m hoping to explore their selection of Cabernet Sauvignons.

What is your most cherished spot in your home? And why? 
My husband and I get up early in the morning and make tea for each other. We sit on our comfy couch out in the living room and watch the sunrise over the treetops. I think that’s my favorite spot right now.

a few of the many lovely images found on Julia's always inspiring blog

Favorite discovery
There’s a cozy little shop, called Anthology, on State Street filled to the brim with local treasures


Political buttons available via Anthology

Various artists sell their work in the store along with an assortment of fine papers, jewelry and crafts! It’s a delight!

Where do you go to escape? 
I climb the hills of the Shorewood Hills. It is an older neighborhood full of beautiful homes and estate-like yards. It’s a very peaceful spot with century old trees and quiet winding roads. I love watching the seasons change up there.

sunset_200608050085 by Jess_Anderson.
image via Jess Anderson on flickr

Who is/are your favorite local artist(s)? And why? 
Sachi Komai is an artist from the Anthology shop! She has these incredibly detailed graphite prints on tiny gift tags. I love the sweetness of each simple object. They make you lean in to inspect, taking a moment out of your pan and scan! 


What is/are your favorite local shop(s)? 



Best kept local secret: 

Where to linger over lunch: 
The Blue Spoon in Middleton. I get a half roast beef sandwich with their homemade potato salad and apple baked beans. Total comfort food!

When visiting Madison, don't miss: 
The Farmer’s Market on the square! 

It’s an incredible site—so many delicious breads, seasonal fruits and veggies. The farmer’s market actually surrounds the capitol building—remarkable!

If you had an opportunity to live anywhere else in the world, where would we find you? 
In York, England, probably sitting down for a high tea in Betty’s Tea shop
{S's note: I can't imagine you going anywhere without your tea Julia :) }

What's your motto? 
Tomorrow is fresh with no mistakes in it!

Thank you, again for letting me have this opportunity to share Madison with you :)

Thank you, Julia! If you haven't yet, take a moment to acquaint yourself with the amazing Julia's through her blog and shop. {Be sure to catch my favorite of Julia's features, Friday Favorites.

I'm so glad it's Friday....have a fab weekend everyone!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

{ perfect pumpkins: a cheat sheet }

carved pumpkins on a rack spelling out trick or treat
gorgeous pumpkin display via Country Living magazine
{not likely to be seen at our house : )}

This weekend we are going to our good friends' 23rd annual pumpkin carving contest and celebration. It's always a blast, even if (ahem) we've never won or placed in the 15+ years we've been attending. Truth be told, my hubby and I both lack any talent in the pumpkin carving department. Our attempts are usually quite disastrous--which is why I was so thrilled to stumble upon these minimal/no-carve pumpkin designs and displays.

martha stewart via kimberlymichelle

three spotted pumpkins
Polka dot pumpkins via Better Homes and Gardens

The white and green gourds are so elegant (via Country Living)

Black lace pattern on pumpkin
Stenciled designs via Better Homes & Gardens

bench with pumpkins
patchwork and paint pumpkins via Better Homes and Gardens

How about you? Are you masterful at the fine art of pumpkin carving? If so, perhaps you have a secret technique you can share with us.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

{ sweet dreams... }

il_430xN.34384830 by you.
Jacqleen Bleu

Pink trains and cotton candy trees; fairy tale carriages and magical vintage carousels...oh how I wish to live and play in the dreamy never, neverland Jacqleen Bleu has created through her stunning photography and reimagined vintage jewelry designs.

Quick Links:
Jacqleen Bleu photography
Jacqleen Bleu jewelry

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