Sunday, January 29, 2012

A Little Collection of Books

"The Pocket Letter Writer", 1850

Antique Smalls have always held a fascination for me. Perhaps because of my diminutive height, I am most comfortable collecting children's chairs, tiny Chinese slippers, and little books. The books I collect, are not technically considered "miniature" - (which must measure no more than 3 in. high). Mine are in the 4 X 3 inch range, but still could fit in the palm of a hand or a pocket.

Frontispiece from "The Pocket Letter Writer", 1850

Among the small antique books in my collection are fabric-covered volumes in bright tartan plaid or flowery French chintz. But this being the period leading up to Valentine's day, I find myself drawn to tiny volumes of sentiments from the 19th century bound in festive red and gold.

"The Choice Gift", 1850

The covers of these books are adorned with blind and gilt stamped decorations of sweet putti, urns of flowers, and maidens with floral baskets and garlands.

"The Ladies Casket", 1847

Frontispiece from "The Ladies Casket ", 1847

A "casket" was a term for a Victorian lady's jewelry box. This book lists a gemstone, together with its sentiment and a poetical description, for each day in the week, and each month in the year.

"The Flower Vase", 1853

Frontispiece from "The Flower Vase", 1853

The above book contains a favorite theme of the period - origins and symbols of The Language of Flowers.

"Wild Flowers", 1846

To the Misses Hanson, Edgarton, Carter, Colman and all the anonymous women writers of these small and beautiful keepsakes, this post is affectionately dedicated.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

A Highland Fling

My Heart's always in the Highlands, and never more than on January 25th. For it's the birthday of Robert Burns!

On this day, lads and lassies don their tartans,

and gather the clans to honor the Scottish bard in song and verse.

So bring on the haggis, and join me on the dance floor for a Scottish reel or two.

Let's raise a cup to toast Robbie on the 253rd anniversary of his birth!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Have Leather Will Travel

Leather Couture is big again, thanks in part to Lisbeth Salander, the heroine of 'The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo". Today's motorhead fashionistas would be inspired by the leather fashions on the pages of this 1920s Viennese clothing catalog.

Riding into the sunset,

Saturday, January 7, 2012

San Francisco Je t'aime

Souvenirs from a recent San Francisco getaway.

A classic retro neon sign

Open this private door at the Kensington Park Hotel, and you enter the under water world of the Farallon restaurant.

Jellyfish lights float across the restaurant's ceiling.

Window-shopping near Union Square. Uber-luxe trunks at Goyard

Walking a tight-rope in heels at Louis Vuitton - Quite a feet!

Some Ooh La La! at Neiman Marcus

The many faces of Lady Gaga as portrayed by children at Barney's

Strolling in the ancient Muir Woods.

Walking the Golden Gate Bridge.

An unexpected collage at your feet

Feasting on German food at the Soup Kitchen

Catching a whiff of Spring at a corner flower stall.

This City is full of so many wonderful things.

I shall return,