My business partner and dear friend Abbie and I  are showing our abanja collection at  the New York International Gift Fair again this year. 

I'll fly to NYC tomorrow to spend a little over a week there; we have a lot of details to attend to before the show starts on Saturday: there will be last minute booth design decisions, we'll go over the check list to make extra sure that everything is ready to be taken to Pier 94 to our allotted 100 sq. ft "shop".

We have also added to the line of course; there will be a little more "neutral", a new line of brights and a more "Hamptons" style mini collection- straight from Morocco...
This is a shot of our Stripe line in progress taken right in the weaver's space on the pillar holding up his loom! The pieces are not finished but we wanted to see the overall effect of the group. Notice the Berber hat on top? We like this spontaneous mood.

We shot some of our pieces in Tangier, in 2 wonderful spaces; one is a very softly colors private home (the shot above was taken on a magnificent Syrian chair. Merci Clotilde!)

The other is positively our very favorite hotel in Tangier, the very comfortable and welcoming La Tangerina where my sister and I stayed during our numerous trips there to supervise the renovation of her house. (the shot above was taken on the upper terrace of the hotel that has a fabulous view of the bay and Cap Malabata. Merci Farida!)

These are the times when you think "Yes, some fun had to come with the challenges."

au revoir.



There is a trend booth as you enter the the Ethnic Chic hall at the show and this year the "créatifs" outdid themselves:
Bread. Yes BREAD.
Wall treatments were varied, quirky, and how shall I put it? well basically French... as in a wall of baguettes?

I also noticed a trend in booth design that I thought very new: screening. A  number of them were enclosed by fine netting-like material. The result was a soft veil which delineated the space without totally enclosing it visually. 
This was a vignette in one of the trend areas and to convey fog and snow and cold, the designer had covered the front in a very fine voile, giving the effect of a frosty morning. 

Some booths were just spectacular, as in spectacle: this one was super tall, almost empty but for a few pieces of "organically shaped" molded poufs and a HUGE lion's head surrounded by a dramatic circle of light bulbs. I have seen, in a number of restaurants and shops and in fact in a booth at the show, a light fixture like this (but somewhat smaller...) and I admit I love the effect. So, let's see where to put one? on the mantle might be perfect.

There was a lot of linen in warm spicy shades and, in this instance, some very elegant acid dip dyed effects.

In the Czech Design area I spotted these pendants. So light and delicate! they seemed hand shaped and most probably were.

But I admit that my favorite "design" was that of Japanese pastries. (Trust the Japanese to "design" their food to perfection!) This lucite box -complete with a small glass of water so as to humidify its content- displayed 6 exact "golf balls" of something resembling marzipan -confectioned, it explained- from soy powder and sugar and other typically Japanese ingredients you and I don't necessarily rush to when baking...; the balls were precisely striated like japanese garden gravel, and what I assume was a presentation tray, was scored in the same way. Mind-blowing attention to detail, wouldn't you say?
There is my report from M&O.
My choice of subject for today?
"Yes, I can still be stunned, surprised and, yes, charmed after all these years..."

au revoir.




When Paris based mother/daughter team Chantal and Oceane Lubrina decided to throw their heart and soul into hand knotted jewelry design 2 years ago, the result was spectacular...a very gentle kind of spectacular. Just like them. 
The duo hand crafts exquisite pieces with fine cord, semi precious stones and finely carved mother of pearl. They weave jewel tone cord into knots and netting, trapping beads and flowers made from all kinds of stones. They mix rows of soft pyrite and aventurine or dark pyrite and aragonite with intricate knots and curlicues. They add crystal to pearls and onyx, to shape delicate earrings and graphic bracelets. 
A visit to the Oceane Lubrina shop on Etsy is well worth the 2 clicks. 
They will happily create pieces in custom colors if asked and will ship anywhere in the world.

Who could possibly resist?

au revoir.



My sister Joelle and I have been going to Tangier in Morocco very regularly since 2007, the fateful year she bought and renovated a delightful Kasbah house there. I have delighted you with posts about Tangier just as regularly since and, have no fear, I'll continue to do so with clockwork timing!

However, if you really wish to discover this lovely, friendly, most always sunny -yes, sometimes very wet- dot on the map of North Africa, I strongly suggest you pay a visit to my sister's new blog, A PASSAGE TO TANGIER. Joelle loves writing, she adores Tangier, and she always has a very eclectic point of view. Great combination, you'll see.
She will lead you along the alleys, avenues and ubiquitous stairways of this intriguing town to its busy markets, historical sites, breathtaking views and surprising gems. She will open doors, seek out beaches and restaurants, tell the tales she has heard and display fabulous finds of all kinds for our pleasure. "Plaisir des yeux"- "pleasure of your eyes" as the merchants announce to entice you to enter their shops.

au revoir.



Abanja en scope et en couleur...presque

We are very proud to be on the cover of the Viva Terra catalog.
For at least 3 reasons.

First: we are on the cover! That in itself is fabulous because it is, after all, our first collection shown during our first trade show.
Also, the shot is perfection. We love the styling, the soft, somewhat Moroccan ambiance, the way the orange and silver embroidery and the cute silver tassels wake up the khaki linen.

Second: the exposure for our linen pillow is great! We are not exactly on the cover of Cote Sud or Elle Decor.
No, not exactly.
But, you know what they say: baby steps...

Third: The Viva Terra Catalog 's philosophy espouses ours entirely:

"Our name VivaTerra or living earth is inspired by our dedication to living in harmony with nature - for a healthier life now and for future generations. All of our products reflect a commitment to:
ecology and elegance: The finest goods that uniquely fuse exceptional quality and design with eco sensitivities.
organic, sustainable sources: The purest ingredients and sustainable resources possible - selected to be the best available.
earth and people friendly: Partners and suppliers who share our values and work to make a positive difference in the world.
handcrafted by artisans: Distinctive goods of uncommon value, handcrafted by passionate designers and artisans.
celebrate life: Celebrate life and human spirit by honoring traditions from cultures around the world."
- viva terra

However, the point is to be shown INSIDE the catalog not just on the cover: may I introduce you to our second pillow. Also linen with hand embroidery, this one sports a large cord circle and a just one fluffy orange cotton tassel.

Neat, hein?
You know what to do next...

Oh, and not to blow our own horn or anything, we will be featured in House Beautiful next month with our playful water reed placemats. 

au revoir.