The Domino Falls

Sad. Sad day. Conde Nast, publisher of mega-mags like Vogue and Architectural Digest, announced today that the rumors are true and Domino Magazine will be closing. Too bad! I've been a subscriber for the past 3 years and have constantly been inspired by their young, fresh and urban designs. I believe the editors are responsible for making ikat, batik and sari patchwork mainstream in American homes. Not to mention all the top-notch inspiration for small-space dwellers. More info here.

And for all my fellow glossy magazine comrades wondering where the ax will fall next....gule your bum to your chair!

Safari Dreams

Remember when Banana Republic was safari themed? I used to love wandering around that store like I was at a luxury wildlife reserve. How fantastic are these images from Ralph Lauren Home? Who wouldn't fantasize about a remote lodge in South Africa. Alas! My 700sq.ft. condo in NYC will have to suffice....

Escaping Bollywood Bling

Love, love everything by Sabyasachi. Somehow he avoids traditional Bollywood bling in favor of earthy-colored fabrics and simple embellishments. Still he communicates the splendid Indian style my inner-princess covets. Remember when Domino Magazine published the series, “Can This Outfit Be Turned Into a Room”? Ok, confession time...I’m inspired to update my living room with this Sabyasachi treatment.

DIY: Elevate Your Ethnic Tapestry to Grown-Up Wall Art

Any city in India will offer tourists a vast assortment of Rajahstani/Gujarati patchwork textiles. The most beautiful are made from recycled sari fabric although hawkers will have you believing they are handmade from antique bridal gowns in remote villages rather than machine-made in the city. It’s quite a crap-shoot, but with a little time you can easily decipher quality pieces (I wish I could say the same for pashmina’s!). After years as a queen sized bed spread and hung on the wall by clips on a curtain rod, I thought it was time to graduate this tapestry to the next level in wall art.


  • Screwdriver
  • Staple Gun
  • Galvanized picture hanging wire (use appropriate thickness and length for final frame size)
  • 2- Screw eyes (choose appropriate size based on final frame size)
  • Picture hanger with nails (I used 2-20lb hangers)
  • 4- 1” wood slats cut to size (see below)
  • 4-pack of 1-1/2” corner braces with screws
  • 1-yard quilt batting
  • Tapestry (or other upholstery weight fabric will work fine)

1. Find Your Blank Space.

2. Measure Twice. Cut Once.

a. First, take the actual measurement of the tapestry

b. Second, figure out how large you want your frame, based on the actual tapestry measurement. For my particular piece, I decreased the entire tapestry perimeter measurement by 4” to ensure a proper fit around the wood slats.

c. VERY IMPORTANT: I did not use a mitre saw for this project. So remember that of your four pieces of the wood frame, the two shorter slats will actually rest inside the frame. See photo.
2. Construct The Frame.
a. Lay all four slats on floor in desired place for frame.

b. Take corner brace and use as guide to mark where you need to drill pilot holes.

c. Drill pilot holes over the pencil marks with small drill bit. I used a small 1/16 drill bit. This action helps keep wood from splitting when you screw in the braces.

d. Screw corner braces into place.

3. Get Batty.
a. Wrap quilt batting around wood slats and staple.
4. Stretch It Out.
a. Lay tapestry under the frame and decide where you want the center of tapestry to reside.

b. Begin by wrapping fabric on one side of your frame around slat (which should be covered in batting) and staple into place.

c. Go to the opposite side of where you just stapled and begin again. For this side, make sure you pull the fabric as tight as you can.

d. Complete the remaining sides.

5. Finish It Up.

a. About 1/3 of the way down the backside of the frame, mark with a pencil where you want your picture frame wire to be hung.

b. Measure and mark both sides.

c. Drill pilot holes over the pencil marks.

d. Install the screw eyes on both sides.

e. Stretch the galvanized picture hanging wire taut and loop between both screw eyes.

f. On your wall, you may want to use a few picture hangers, depending on the size of the frame.

6. Voila. Enjoy.

Antique Tapestry Travel Bags

My sister in law took the Chinatown Express from Washington, DC to visit us a few weeks ago. We did a quick tour of the Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island before buying way too many cupcakes at Magnolia.

I’m so inspired by these families who gave up everything familiar to venture into a new life basically just on hearsay. No televisions, web or coffee-table books on Manhattan architecture. Just the blind resolution to create a better life. Can you imagine all the languages, colors and luggage you’d see on any given day in Ellis Island’s glory days?

Check out the amazing vintage tapestries from the Baggage Room exhibit (above).

I love the faded, warm colors and the prudent incorporation of fabric remnants to create these travel bags. Carrying family valuables, clothing, and doubling as a cushion while waiting in lines…this was the ultimate in thrift-centered ingenuity. I’d love to see this recreated as modern floor pillows. Maybe as simple as two Ikea Persisk rugs stitched together?