Saturday, September 19

Catherine's Kitchen (and Birdcages)

I forgot to post some photos of Catherine's kitchen. Catherine Chung is the jewelry designer I wrote about a few weeks ago in multiple posts. Her kitchen features an eclectic mix of stuff, and there's not a nesting bowl in sight...

Birdcages, books, and sunglasses. Wonderful carved detail around the cabinet pulls.

The gold teapot is in the same tone as much of her jewelry. Shells and found objects adorn the birdcage on the back burner. I would kill for a crumbling brick wall in my apartment.

Live-looking fake birdie. An earring.

The table, artwork, some starfish, a handbag...

This guy is so cool: It's a vintage windup toy from (I think) Scandinavia. He bounces up and down on the spring, and his arms flap. The motor makes a surprisingly loud buzzing noise. If you frame it right in the window, it looks like he's flying over downtown Manhattan.

Monday, September 14

Toothbrush Holder and Obsolescence

Wow, I really haven't posted very much this month. Sorry! I've been sick and have fallen behind on work and school. While I get myself back on track, I thought I'd post this picture I took of my toothbrush and the holder in my bathroom. You know how toothbrushes with gigantic handles have rendered these old-fashioned holders useless? My friend Anna Jane Grossman, a journalist and author, has a new book out on obsolescence, so I sent her this photo for her entertaining blog. Check it out, and submit your own photos of obsolete stuff.

I love this toothbrush, though! Isn't it cool? It's by the Swiss company Swissco, and it only cost $3.99. It matches the tiles on the floor. Unfortunately, it's become pure decoration in this holder: The natural bristles taste like hair and fall out, and--what I didn't tell Anna Jane--it got stuck in the holder and I have to tap the bottom with a hammer to get the damn thing out. It's easier to let it stay permanently stuck in the permanently affixed holder. If Anna Jane follows up this book with the idea of permanence, I have a submission!

P.S. Isn't rubber ducky adorable? It glows in the dark.

Thursday, September 10

Preview: The Artist Known as Attaway

Meet Attaway. He's an artist and musician in Venice, Cali, and this is his studio, where he also once lived. (Still, there's beer in the fridge and some laundry in one of the rooms. Feels pretty homey to me.) He makes sculptures, ceramics, and all sorts of things, most of them colorful. When I visited him in February he was working on fish for the local taco truck. The taco truck is going to be plastered with his small fish, mosaic-style, and they'll appear to be swimming in a deep blue ocean. I drove around until I found it, and I have pictures, but I'll post that whole story later...

Below is Attaway's little son Betta, whose he's even more adorable in person. He's curled up on the couch with a video game in the main room of the studio, where Dad's artwork covers the ceilings and walls and is spread around the floor in various stages of completion.

Big orange cords lie in piles. Everything is a shade of clay. I forgot what project that big rosette is for, but those are the fish for the truck...

I have so many photos of this place, and ridiculously cute pictures of Betta, but I need to go through them and send to Attaway for approval. Stay tuned! And for those of you in Venice, you probably know the truck, and it's probably covered in fish by now. Do you know?
Can you send me a pic?

Monday, September 7

Kim Surowicz, Point Pleasant Beach

Last weekend I took the train to Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey, to visit my friend Kim Surowicz. Her family has owned this house for years. And her parents have had that sofa above for longer than they've been married!

Kim and I met almost ten years ago when everyone we knew--except for me--was working as some kind of assistant at Universal Studios. Since then, Kim has worked on tons of movies you've probably seen: The Interpreter. The Rundown. The Departed. (I got to go with her to that wrap party at Barolo in Soho. The most interesting person in attendance was not the dapper DiCaprio, but Marty Scorsese's tough-talkin' Teamsters driver. I was sworn to secrecy in the corner by the meatballs.) Oh, Kim was also an associate producer on Dito Montiel's Fighting. Last but not least, she produced the heck out of my move from Los Angeles to New York, providing me with a central Manhattan shipping destination and accommodations hookups while I was in town interviewing. If you don't have a producer-friend, I highly suggest you get one.

So anyway, here are just a few pictures of my visit. The place is really cute. It's got three bedrooms, it's a block from Jenkinson's Boardwalk, it's down the street from Broadway Bar & Grill, and it's next to the amazing Muellers Bakery. The place is famous for crumb cake but had me at bear claws. And it's for rent every summer! You can rent it or one like it from Kim, who's becoming the area's star rental realtor on her off-movie days. Of course! Because producers do everything better than the rest of us.

I was sitting on the floor of the living room when I looked up and saw this lamp, below, that hangs above the dining table. That cord against the ceiling reminded me of a lamp my grandparents had in their beachy house on Lake Michigan. I love it.

This is the coffee table. It's made from all sorts of reclaimed wood, and those washed-out colors seem perfect for a beach house. Those are the remote controls. I don't own a TV and don't know how to interpret these sticks, so when Kim went to bed early one night I pushed all the buttons possible trying to find Saturday Night Live after we watched a movie on one of those fancy TiVo/DVR situations...

Kim hates the bathroom wallpaper, so I only took this corner shot. But it's awesome! Or it's so bad it's good, I don't know. It's sea green and kinda mirrored. There's a pattern of plants. That's the living room in the background. Shades closed, rainy day.

...Guest room, Kim's room, beachy decor...

Bakery in the background, bear claw in the foreground.
The way it should be.

The beach...

Kim's keys. If Kim had a symbol, which I guess she does, it would be a flip-flop.