Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Porcelain, Books, Hotels, and Science Fiction!

We just returned from a terrific mini-holiday in New York, visiting with friends here for the summer from Florida. Yesterday we saw the lovely new exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Royal Porcelain from the Twinight Collection. It's a small exhibit, but just breathtaking. The porcelain factories of Berlin, Sévres, and Vienna achieved an extraordinary level of both artistic and technical skill in the first half of the nineteenth century, and the quality of painted decoration practiced at these three factories at that time has never been surpassed. This exhibition brings together approximately seventy-five superb examples from these three European porcelain factories and illustrates the exchange of ideas and styles between the factories that resulted in some of the most remarkable porcelain ever produced.

This gorgeous 1818 cup and saucer from the Imperial Porcelain Manufactory in Vienna is decorated with finely detailed paintings of birds - in a gilded birdcage! Just enchanting, it was one of my favorites in the collection.
I also found two books in the Met gift shop that I'm sure a few of you would enjoy. "Versailles" by Jean-Marie Perouse De Montclos, which is just stuffed with photos of the spectacular palace, and lot of information. Frankly, I was recently gifted with a copy of the wonderful book, "Versailles: A Biography of a Palace" by Tony Spawforth and I prefer that text. But the myriad photos in this one are brilliant. Hours of perusing details of the most beautiful building I've ever been in. (Well, the Paris Opera House is pretty fab, too - but, after all, Versailles is Versailles!)
... and, for anybody interested in mid 19th century fashion, "Dangerous Liasons." During the reigns of Louis XV and XVI, fashion and furniture in France were not designed simply to be beautiful—they were also intended to arouse, attract, and seduce. This alluring book considers the interplay of French clothing and interior design in the eighteenth century and features full-color photographs from the Met exhibition. Knock out book!

When we got home, le roi de la maison, Dusty, had a little surprise for us. In my entire life, I have had one (count it - ONE) set of Pratisi sheets. And, to be honest, I'll probably never have another. Now, even though I love these sheets, I do not love ironing them. Face it - I don't want to iron any king-size's like ironing a lawn cover. So, when they come out of the dryer, I promptly lay them out so that they will cool without wrinkles. Which is exactly what I did before we left. It seems that the entire time we were gone, le roi de la maison had rooted, and shuffled, and nested in them and spent his hours laying in luxury. It's a good thing I love him. I want this exterior sign! Don't ask me what I would do with it - I have no idea. But I think anybody and everybody deserves an eight foot tall martini glass, decorated with dozens of light bulbs! How could you pass by a cocktail lounge with this sign and not stop in for a nip?

Speaking of fabulous objects from the past....aren't these art deco wall sconces awesome?! Now, I do know what I would do with these. I'd have them put beside the windows in the living room - and then totally redesign the whole place in art deco to go with them!
And, I'm pretty sure this seven foot tall Eiffel Tower sculpture would have to find its way into the design. I think this is the best of all the Eiffel Tower tributes/merchandising I've seen ... so intricate and finely wrought. I want!And while on the subject of beautiful things and traveling - we were talking about traveling and seeing beautiful things, right? - I found this at Perfect Bound and thought it was both a practical and attractive solution to luggage storage. Now - for those of you who have spacious suburban or country homes, this will perhaps seem silly. But, for those of us who live in the city and don't have words like 'basement,' 'attic,' 'spare room,' etc. in our vocabularies, finding clever and pleasing storage solutions are always appreciated. Now, you suburban/country folks can make fun of us for settling for such small spaces to live in - but, don't forget - we city folk are also always able to get those gorgeous white tulips within a two block walk of anywhere!
One last lovely image before I close. A piece of my work was recently acquired to be used in the decoration of the new ballroom at The Banker's Suite in Astoria Oregon. Here is a photo of the bed - I could definitely relax here for a night or two! Isn't it peaceful and lovely? I particularly enchanted with that embellished dress form!
For more photos of this gorgeous spot, click here ... and be sure to click on "gallery."

Well, I really have to get Dusty walked and dinner over with so I can totally veg out for the third night of "Torchwood: Children of Earth." Are you watching this fun mini-series on BBCAmerica? It's so terrific! The NYTimes called it "perfect popcorn tv watching" and I completely agree. It's silly as all get out - and still suspenseful.

Oh. Remember those pieces I was going to finish last weekend. Well. It's Wednesday - and I haven't touched them. Summer fun keeps getting in the way of studio fun!

Okay, I'm off. I hope everybody is having a wonderful week - and that you've spent some time making something beautiful!


Anonymous said...

The china, those books, and your sheet loving pup are all simply marvelous! I am so excited to see your lovely creation being put to grand use :) Fab!
I really enjoyed this post :)

Kaerie Faerie said...

So much eye candy, the books on all that French wonderfulness, like to get my hands on a copy,
love the dress form, I collect forms, LOL so much good stuff to look at!! Thanks for sharing

Paul said...

LOVE the cup and saucer! Just beautiful! And how happy Dusty looks in your sheets - what a smart boy! And speaking of Oregon, I'll be moving there near the end of August - more info to come!

peggy gatto said...

Sounds like you had a great time in the big apple!
When I get rich I am going to have 2 things!
1. A driver on call!
2. 700 count laundered,pressed and lightly starched sheets on my bed once a week(made up by not me)!
Sleep well and welcome home!

The Joy of Nesting said...

Awwww but they are so cute, how can you stay mad??? :)

Congratulations on having a piece of art work used as public decoration.

Shucks I think I've been stacking "ootcases" for years. In the olden days I use to have all my back issues of Victoria Magazine stored in a set I used as end tables :)

Have a good week and come by when you have time.

Pattie ;)
Mazatlan Mx.

Stephanie Suzanne Designs said...

Hello Tristan,

Well..I feel like I've been with you on your mini getaway! What marvelous books and the art exhibit...oh my!

I call myself a hybrid..LOL I'm a city girl/rural girl...spent 46 years traveling this country for one reason or another and love, love, love big cities!!! The energy is so exciting and I like excitement..and the shopping!!

It's a total plus to bring a city mind to the mountains..hahaha It's marvelous up here. :0) And I have more living space then I thought I'd ever see.

So I won't laugh at you for the suitcase storage solution...I have done that many times! And actually I've been starting a new collection of old suitcases to do something with them.

I saw a picture of many smaller cases turned this way and that and they had attached a lamp fixture to the top of them...totally cool floor lamp!!

Don't be too hard on Dusty...he knew you were off having too much fun with him. :0) My Miss Morgan would do the same thing!

See ya later,

a fanciful twist said...

Mister Fab-uloso, where do I even begin?

First of all, super duper congrats on your piece!!! WOWSA! Hence, fabuloso ;)

As for your pooch on your oober fancy sheets, I want to howl with laughter and freak out all at once :) But I really cracked up with the lawn cover ironing bit ;)

I love suitcase decorating, plus it is in fact GREAT storage for chic luggage.

So glad you had a wonderful little getaway! That's my kind of getaway, how lovely!!

mo.stoneskin said...

"or anybody interested in mid 19th century fashion"

Not since I walked down Blockbusters in a frilly French outfit...

Hope you gave that dog a good talking to.

Sugar and Spice Art Confections said...

I covet and desire those books! I hope you had fun. And it sounds like Dusty has exquisite taste! Give him and extra treat for recognizing La Creme when he sees it!

paperbatty said...

Your dog is adorable! One of mine unmakes the bed during the day so he can snuggle up the way he likes it.

In Kentucky, there is a town named Versailles, and it is pronounced: Ver-sales!

As always, Tristan, you've collected an amazing group of things I love.

Frieda Oxenham said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Dearest Tristan,
I thank you for your visit! I thoroughly enjoyed your visit to NYC! Those photos are stunning. WOW, I thought that you were going to tell us that Dusty boy ATE AND DESTROYED your sheets! Whew...good boy. Keep on having an awesome summer! Even though I am working on my thesis,I am taking time to make altered art projects; thanks to the altered art book you gifted to me, I am enjoying paper works!!! Bisous, Anita

Frieda Oxenham said...

What a veritable wealth of beautiful images. By chance a drama-docu about the Sun King and Versailles was shown on TV here in the U.K. which took my breath away and now I feel an urgent need to get that book forthwith!! And doesn't Dusty look gorgeous among the sheets. Just be pleased he's not a greyhound. Troi jumps onto our bed regularly (sometimes with us actually in it) and total chaos ensues!!!

Anonymous said...

Oh wow! This is a wonderful experience. Those birdcage cup and saucer is just beautiful. And not only to read but see some wonderful works - - lucky you.

The space saver decorating style with those suitcases stacked together is not something to laugh about. Then again, one should have those kind of suitcases for display LOL

Congratulations Tristan!


(Your puppy is so cute. I don't think anybody could get mat at him :-) )

Anonymous said...

Hi Tristan!!
Thanks so much for taking me on your trip.... I love museums! The porcelain is exquisite!!
About the "country home room"??? I would trade in a heart-beat to have the "tulips a few block away". I get weary of having to plan an excursion to get to a city to shop or see a play.
In another life time I would have opted to live in NYC......
Ah-h-h-h Dare-to-Dream!!

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Well of COURSE le petit roi would go for the finest snuggling accomodations in the whole place.... would you really expect less???? (and that face is soooooo happy, and also a bit SMUG, I think! a little laugh? like, "Leave me here again and see what happens?")
Good hearing from you!!!


Anonymous said...

Its true Tristan we miss you when you are away-but oh how you reward us when you return! So many wonderful images, I would just sound like a babbling fool if I tried to recount ; but I will say (1) Rusty is obviously a pup of refined tastet (2) {{just a general swoon here over all the books and Versailles in general}}
(3) The sconces are good pieces but for some reason they remind me of an Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand and (4) (best for last) CONGRATS on your piece being acquired by the Banker's Suite! Obviously, like rusty, they know a good thing when they see it.
xoxoxoxoxoxo Rhonda Roo

Anonymous said...

PS I mean DUSTY with a D. So sorry i renamed your dog. It's 7am, do you know where your java cup and saucer might be? Better yet, where is mine???

Sea Witch said...

Dusty...he is so sweet! I would roll in those sheets myself if you were out traveling instead of paying attention to the ones you love. Go Dusty, go. Sea Witch

Birds of a Feather said...

Hello Tristan ~

so glad you are enjoying the summer! Thanks for sharing the beutiful images ~ love that guilded birdcage tea cup! Congrats too, how fun to have your piece reside in such a beautiful hotel!

You were missed at the Mermaid tea & create ~ hopefully I'll get pics up today.

xo heidi

Leslie said...

But he missed you!!!!

Great eye candy as always, Tristan. I love New York for that reason only.

Did you see what Anne did for me? I am verklempt...

Gabriela said...

Hey Tristan,

I am glad you are back. It's good to hear that you had a great trip.

You really cracked me up with the photo and story of your darling dog's adventures.
Is he also an actor? :o) Hilarious!

And loved all the rest...

~ Gabriela ~

Anonymous said...

Hi Tristan,
I love the picture of the Pom on the sheets, theye are fab! I have a Pom as well, Oliver Twix, Ollie for short. he has a puppy cut right now and looks like a husky puppy. By the way, the circus topper I am working on is for Trish Bright who owns the Bankers Building and the topper is going in her gift shop. I am also making other custom pieces for the ballroom and Suite. She has me extremely busy:) I am doing a post on the suite next week - great minds think alike. Thanks for sharing your amazing sense of style with us, I just love your blog!

Beverly said...

Fabulous post, Tristan. You have filled me with tales of your trip and lots of inspiration.

You never know, but Dusty might be saying it is a good thing he loves you. After all, you are the one that went off having fun. The poor guys had to make the best of it.

I would have been dying over the Royal Porcelain collection. The pieces are exquisite.

And, that Banker's Suite. Wow!!! Can you show us a picture of your piece that went there?

Kathy said...

Glad I came across your blog. Great dog!

Anonymous said...

Ahhh..just goes to show Dusty has good taste, like his master!
a super shot, Tristan..i love it!
Nice that you had a little getaway...and that you're sharing with us..all the beautiful things we dream of.. congrats on your Hotel piece!..wish we could see it.. nice to have you back!

Nancy Malay said...

What a great trip to NY, Tristan!

I loved all the photos, but the one of your little Dusty is the best...not only is he cute, but smart, too!

Unknown said...

I love going to the Metropolitan Museum, when I lived in Manhattan I used to go there weekly. That show looks wonderful. I love all the details in design that you have posted, but my favorite is Dusty. He is so cute, how could you blame him comfy on those sheets. It just shows how secure he is that you adore him.


Anonymous said...

OO la..laa I was checking out your quilts yesterday ...too bad the one of backsides ahem is not in queen sz wrap myself in it!
My x-hubby was gorgeous from behind...too bad he liked them too,more than me thats why he is an x ! Good for you! Can you imagine going to a NE church quilt sale!! Haaa.hhaa! where do you find time!!??

Carolee said...

As always, your photos are enchanting - But Dusty steals the show - what a cutie!!

~ Carolee

Sue said...

What a fabulously fun blog! I had to become a follower. I discovered you from the link Karen put in on her "Where we Create" blog party. Are you going to show your studio??

Ingrid Mida said...

When you write these long posts, I'm not even sure where to begin my comment! LOL!
I love the Met, hope the show will still be there when I go. The bookstore always has so many treasures that I have to force myself not to buy too many heavy books to drag home in my suitcase.
Lucky Dusty! I can only dream of lolling about in Pratesi sheets.
Have a great weekend.

Karen Valentine said...

I came by to see you Where Bloggers Create party post. Sorry I missed you!!

My Desert Cottage

Dosha said...

Oh, my goodness! I wonder if you and I crossed paths in the Met? I've also just returned from a fabulous New York mini-break, and will be blogging about it soon. Did you visit The Cloisters by chance? (a part of the Met that isn't directly attached) STUNNING!!!

Warm Wishes,


Susan (Between Naps On The said...

So enjoyed visiting your blog this evening! Your sweet furry face is worth all the trouble...what a cutie! :-)

Stephanie Suzanne Designs said...

Hello Tristan,

I know you must be running behind from your mini getaway! I saw your blog listed for the party of Where Bloggers Create and came by for a look see...:0)

I've got my "studio in progress" post up...would love for you to come by for a visit. :0)

Have a grand day,

Deborah said...

So many fun things in one post. Congrats on the sale of your piece. I would love to see it so if you could post a picture. I am going to amazon to look up those books you mentioned. I have some post cards of Versailles -- simply stunning. I must remember to visit that exhibit at the MOMA if I ever do get to NY.

Pattee said...

Hi Tristan~I see that you follow this blog but I'm going to shut it down...
My real and truly blog is:

So if you're inclined stop by there... I'll still follow you!

Lauralee P said...

Hello there. I just came across your blog. I think it is very interesting and creative and like it very much. Feel free to come check out my little artsy blog if you'd like.

Glennis said...

Ooh, lovely things! such a richness you bring back even from a short visit!

I love the bird in a cage porcelain, that's fabulous.

I will eventually post my Tour Eiffel photos, it just takes a while to get through everything!

Lucky Dusty!

BellaRosa said...

Okay I must confess, I found your blog by accident when I was leaving a comment on one of the blogs from the Where Bloggers Create Party, but I am so glad that I did! You have such a wonderful blog and your creations are beautiful. I meant to just take a quick look and continue looking at the other blogs on the party list and well, as I click on page after page of your blog I was hooked, I oohed and ahhh'd in all the right places and laughed and loved that you love old movies, was great seeing some that I remember seeing long ago. Will visit again :) Rose

Paula said...

Hey Tristan ... thanks for the beautiful tour with you (well virtually I mean). Your commentary on porcelain, books, hotels and science fiction is quite enthralling ... is was like I was there!

Judy said...

Great blog today!

Now, you have piqued my curiosity!! Do you have a picture of the piece that was acquired by the Astoria?? I would love to see it!

As for that bedroom -- would love to flop in that bed and read for hours! Yummy! That's after I investigated that dress form!! Like you, I would love to see that up close!

Chris said...

I love those wall sconces. Hope you are having a great summer. Missing your posts!!

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