FOURTH FLOOR WALK UP

Brooklyn based lifestyle blog by Lauren L Caron

inspiration

SPACES | Feeling Nostalgic

CREATE, LIFE, SPACESLauren Caron1 Comment
FFWU_WillPerkins

I recently purchased a new computer and have been slightly lazy about moving all of my photos over to the new. So today as I started the process, I stumbled onto a few albums that made me feel really nostalgic. One in particular was from trip we took to visit a dear family friend who was an amazingly talented artist. These pictures were taken as Will casually showed us around his beautiful home on the Northshore of Massachusetts. Although you would never know, this property is new only built about 15 years ago, the house was constructed from original parts and pieces of dismantles homes that Will had purchased. 

Will was a student of Pratt in the 70s, where he learned the art of restoration. He made his living bringing old houses back to their authentic selves and transformed new to feel old. He painted numerous murals though out the Northeast, some of which can be seen in Old Sturbridge Village. Side note: he also painted the floors of my parent's entry hall - a faux tiled marble. Aside from painting, he created sculptures, that were life like fantastical creatures, as well as people that he would place in his home, the gardens or even on the front lawn. The Victorian lady was made of miscellaneous cloths and textiles he had gathered, she was weatherized to live outside - to walk aimlessly throughout the property, set wherever to fit Will's whim. 

He was the one to push me and inspire me to move to New York and pursue my passions. Making me forever grateful of our relationship. It's people like Will that make our lives so special and memorable. They're eccentric, imaginative and wonderful. Treasure them. 

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The Victorian lady's face was cast from the above bust. 

The Victorian lady's face was cast from the above bust. 

Will taking us through the gardens...and his home. His art studio was a beautiful mess.

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My mother and Will bought the same wallpaper - my Mom's is in her bedroom. 

My mother and Will bought the same wallpaper - my Mom's is in her bedroom. 

These pictures are from rooms throughout his home... not styled, just as it was.

 

All photographs were taken by Lauren L Caron © 2015

Trends: Post Labor Day Whites & Already Missing Summer

TREND, SPACESLauren Caron1 Comment

It's unbelievable the difference a week makes. Last weekend it was close to 90ºF in New York and just this weekend it was only hovering around the upper 60's and low 70's. The cold spike is already causing me to look back at our summer that was much too short. At least I have hours of NYFW slideshows to scan through, that feature trends which are already giving me hope for the seasons ahead. One apparent trend is the complete looks outfitted in layers of whites and off-whites, seen across the board, from high-end luxury labels to the contemporary designers. In my opinion, the best variations came from The Row where they experimented with wrapping textiles across the torso, and Lela Rose, who utilized luxe metallic patterned textiles, shaped into the ultra feminine, classic silhouettes - like fit and flair and A- lines. The Row / Image from Style.com / Photo courtesy of The Row

The Row /Image from Style.com / Photo courtesy of The Row

The Row /Image from Style.com / Photo courtesy of The Row

The Row / Image from Style.com / Photo courtesy of The Row

Steven Alan / Image from Style.com / Photo Courtesy of Steven Allen

Ralph Rucci / Image from Style.com / Photo: Livio Valerio / Indigitalimages.com

3.1 Phillip Lim / Image from Style.com / Photo: Fabio Ionà / Indigitalimages.com

Lela Rose / Image from Style.com / Photo: Livio Valerio / Indigitalimages.com

Lela Rose / Image from Style.com / Photo: Livio Valerio / Indigitalimages.com

Lela Rose / Image from Style.com / Photo: Livio Valerio / Indigitalimages.com

 

Lela Rose / Image from Style.com / Photo: Livio Valerio / Indigitalimages.com

Zac Posen / Photo from Style.com / Photo: Fabio Ionà / Indigitalimages.com

Zac Posen / Photo from Style.com / Photo: Fabio Ionà / Indigitalimages.com

Zac Posen / Photo from Style.com / Photo: Fabio Ionà / Indigitalimages.com

Zac Posen / Photo from Style.com / Photo: Fabio Ionà / Indigitalimages.com

Victoria Beckham / Image from Style.com / Photo: Gianni Pucci / Indigitalimages.com

Erin Featherston / Image from Style.com / Photo: Kim Weston Arnold / Indigitalimages.com

Of course I find myself relating these fashion looks back to my favorite genre of interiors. Where else have I seen a similar trend even on a much smaller scale, but in the Vogue Living Australia May/June issue that features the Danish family home of CEO and president of Fritz Hansen, Jacob Holm and his wife Fabara Bendix Becker. The palette is light, pale and cool with the blush tones of the swan chair standing out.

Raul Candales

Photo from Vogue Living Australia | PhotographerL Raul Candales | Stylist: Susan Ocana

Here's to hoping this upcoming winter isn't too long or brutal this year. If it is I will surely need an extra beach vacation.

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Fashion: Rosemary Baby's Inspires Altuzarra's 2015 Spring RTW Collection

Lauren Caron1 Comment

Altuzarra-Target-Look-Book-Cover With Alturzarra being the next designer to partner with Target, (the collection hit stores on September 14th) I had to scope out their runway show for the 2014 New York Fashion week. With the first set of looks all in Gingham, I first remembered Prada's collection from last year, then quite swiftly, Altuzarra's personality came out to show the sexy play of purity and seduction. Slits are high, necklines low, exposing just the right amount of skin. What I find interesting however, is where he drew his inspiration from. The designer explained that he was looking to Rosemary's Baby and Barry Lyndon for inspiration. "Both movies are so beautiful, but it's an ill-fated, sinister beauty. Which I liked." With that insight, I can see through patterns, textiles and colors moments from both of these films.

This summer I decided to re-watch Rosemary's Baby to pull inspiration for interiors. Aside from being so well known for the story and Mia Farrow's haircut, it is still relevant today in many ways. First, her hair, secondly, her wardrobe (clearly set in the sixties, but some pieces could easily be worn on today's streets), and lastly, the interiors - the remodeling she does in that apartment is just gorgeous and classic.  How kindred did I feel to discover that he too was looking to this film for inspiration, even if it was for completely different genre of creative expression.

For Rosemary's Baby, it's undoubtably the gingham looks and perhaps the skirt suits that inspiration is drawn from. Also, there is a tangerine and white patterned dress in the collection that is reminiscent of a white and yellow dress that Rosemary wears in the film.

Rosemary's Baby Inspired Looks

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Looking at Barry Lyndon, I see more of the soft silky textiles and tonal prints that look to have been inspired by the fashions in the film.

Barry Lyndon Inspired Looks

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Aside from the obvious pieces that drew inspiration from these films, my favorite pieces were from the black and white striped set of outfits. How fresh is it to have vertical stripes and how cool is it to mix and match the large with small scale.

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Look12_Altuzarra

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Once again I am impressed by the way creative geniuses are able to pull inspiration from almost anywhere. The best are those that can do so abstractly, making sure not to copy.  Looking back on NYFW, did you come across any favorite or spectacular collections? I'd love to hear your feedback.

My Best

 

 

 

Finding inspiration within the folds: Fashion

Lauren CaronComment

I'm not a fashion designer or a seamstress. Pillows are my specialty and that's about it. I do enjoy scanning Pinterest and looking at images of pattern making and transformative fashion. I find something extremely inspiring in looking at the way designers can manipulate textiles and transform silhouettes through folds and layers of material.  Here's a taste of a recent Pinterest board  that I've been building. Enjoy. Fabric Manipulation | Via Charlotte Janssen

FabricManipulation_2CharlotteJanssen

Elizabeth Holt | SewElizabeth.com

Pinterest.com | Source Unknown

Pinterest.com | Source Unknown

Zac Posen Resort 2015

Henrik Vibskov Menswear Spring Summer 2015 Paris | NOWFASHION.com

Innovative textiles design for fashion - dress with intricate horsehair woven design; fabric manipulation // Marianne Kemp

Stephanie Baechler

pleatform.com_RoxanaZamani

balance.net_JennyHSU

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Be Inspired: Life Outside The Box

SPACESLauren CaronComment

Abby_Nydam_8 As you may have read, I recently took a vacation trip to Mexico with my husband for our one year anniversary. Not our original choice, but one that was made in part due to my friend who had so well sold me on the idea that Mexico was a wonderful place. Last summer, she had visited and stayed in both Holobox and Mérida. In Mérida, she stayed in a renovated Hacienda hotel. The Hotel Julamis is owned by New Jersey ex-pats who had made the decision to leave their corporate lives in America for a much simpler life in Mexico. Their life change dubbed as "living out of the box".

Over drinks after an insane day at work, we chatted about her experience and our common interests of wanting to more from life. That conversation is when she broke the news to me that she would be making a life change.

I first met Abby when she working as a Client Services Director for a boutique marketing agency in NYC. I was one of her clients. She had been living and working in New York since the age of twenty one and after nine years she decided to get rid of her apartment, all of the things in it and her job to travel around the world. She came to this decision after a particularly successful client meeting, when she realized that she was no longer inspired by the life she was living “in the box”.

In the Fall of 2013, she packed up, withdrew her savings and bought a one-way ticket to Europe.   The goal: to see the world and how others live, to experience cultures in a meaningful way that her two-week vacations never fully allowed for and to find inspiration in these experience – an inspiration that had been lost after years of 60-hour work weeks, consumerism and the struggle to get further and further ahead in NYC.

Since November, Abby has traveled to sixteen countries around the world and has lived in two, using them as a “home base”. She is currently living in Hanoi, Vietnam where she is eating pho and working on her first novel.

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Her advice on leaving it all behind, traveling, living and working abroad:

  1. Just do it. Set a date, pick a place to start and buy a ticket.   No excuses.   I have seen grandparents, young families, and single people living an ex-pat life. They make it work and are better for it. It’s not as hard as you think it will be.
  2. Forget any expectations you may have. It won’t always match up to your romanticized version. But, oftentimes, it will exceed it.
  3. Prepare yourself for the reality that much of world lives with very little. So you’ll have to excuse them if they can’t offer you a Grey Goose martini. Order the homemade wine or vodka instead.
  4. Stay with families as often as possible. This is how you really will understand a culture. Not in a hotel.
  5. Listen and ask questions. Learn as much as you can from fellow travelers , ex-pats and the locals. Talk to everyone.
  6. Strive for a level of kindness, compassion and humility that almost seems impossible. It will create an openness and trust that people will recognize. And in turn, they will treat you with the same.
  7. Remember we are all the same and want the same things. Rid yourself of any superior Western attitude.
  8. Learn to sleep comfortably uncomfortably.
  9. Have a supply of Cipro so you can eat on the streets.
  10. Learn how to count to 10 and how to say “please”, “thank you” and “hello and goodbye” in each countries language. Write it on your palm until you remember.
  11. Find happiness in small things that you would have just EXPECTED before: a jar of peanut butter, a can of really cold Diet Coke, a great dry cleaner, crosswalks, flush toilets.
  12. Meet people wherever you are through Facebook groups, Meet Ups, embassies, etc. Create a network and stay in touch.
  13. Don’t be afraid to be lonely. It will happen and then it will be over.
  14. Be patient. Not everyone needs to know how to speak English or know how do it y(our) way.
  15. Develop your hand gestures. Sometimes it’s the only way to communicate.
  16. Bring ¼ of the stuff you think you need.
  17. Don’t bring the baggage of your old life with you. Leave the toxic friendships and ex-lovers behind. Start fresh.
  18. Earplugs. Earplugs.   Earplugs.
  19. Don’t let anyone tell you your choice to leave is foolish. They are jealous. And they are boring.
  20. Be brave.

Abby_Nydam_12_ Nem Nướng Nhà Thờ.

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Abby_Nydam_17_ วัดเชตุพนวิมลมังคลารามราชวรมหาวิหาร - วัดโพธิ์, Wat Phoe

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Abby_Nydam_16_Hanoi, Vietnam

Abby_Nydam_15_Mdina, Malta

Abby_Nydam_14_Hangkor Wat

Abby_Nydam_13_HaLong

Abby_Nydam_12_Cat Ba

Hanoi Photo by: Abby Nydam

All photos were pulled from Abby's instagram account. You can follow Abby's adventures through instagram, @abbynydam.

Thank you for reading, I hope you are as inspired as I am.

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