Sunday, August 30, 2009

Magical Sunday~ Staying Cool in Style and Take A Stroll Through Whim Designs Enchanting Garden

Emma Watson from Harry Potter looking all grown up in a Vintage Ozzie Clark Dress and Parasol .

This vintage dress & parasol make my vintage loving heart skip a beat. What a find... So refreshing...

Fab Finds Gal will be enjoying a tour of Whim Designs of
San Juan Capistrano, California today. This will be my second tour of Eric Guenther and Daviell Maldonado's private home and garden tour. Due to our heat wave, I will surely have a parasol in hand. Viewing their property takes one to another time and place. They have two original properties on a double lot only steps to the beach. It is one of the most enchanting and magical homes I have had the pleasure to view. The proprietors, Eric and Daviell, are the most authentically kind, classy and thoughtful men. They both have impeccable taste in jewellery & home design and can they throw quite a fab soiree too!
Stroll through the gardens with me...
Did you enjoy it as much as I do? Does it feel Parisian to you?

May your Sunday be magical, inspiring and feed your soul.
Thanks for stopping by friend....

1.Phillip Newton photography via Wabi & Sabi
2. Photobucket
3&4 Tim Walker photography
5&6 Photobucket

Friday, August 28, 2009

How Does A Store Become Successful? An Insightful Interview with Lori Chandler, the Mastermind Behind the Magnificent Parisian Vignettes Antiques

What three words describe your shop?
Faded, French Grandeur. Even though: "French decor, faded grandeur & all that is time-worn is our world" is really how I like to sum it up, but that went over the word allotment! Oh Dear!

What sets you apart from other antique stores and malls?
What sets us apart from other stores is that, very early on, I figured out that there is a niche for what I love & collect-glamorous, French-inspired home decor & settings & so I made that our brand. From the moment you step inside the shop you begin an experience... Light, airy & oh so chic with soft French music playing and beautifully edited vignettes of muted, time worn elegance; this carefully orchestrated setting is not only the soul of our business, but this is what sets up apart. We don't just provide French-inspired vintage home & garden decor, but ultimately we provide a magical experience that people want to take home with them. This is our edge. I haven't strayed from that concept, just expanded on it & then, of huge importance, is the fact that, over the years I have managed to surround myself with the best of the best dealer/designers in the trade. The 20 dealer/designers under my roof are all at the top of their game; each one is extremely business savvy & experienced in the antique world, has some form of a designer background & all share my passion & love for this business. Together we focus on tracking down the most one-of-a-kind, show-stopping finds & then merchandising these grand pieces of the past, into irresistible, must-have displays. We never lost sight of the fact that our clients come to us for inspiration, to see what's in vogue & to buy pieces they won't find anywhere else, that will truly give their homes that au courant edge.
Then, there are several other factors:
  • We are located in the San Diego's largest antique destination, the Ocean Beach Antique District where people can come & spend the whole day shopping, just one block from the ocean.

  • I work on keeping our name & image out there with every tool possible; advertising, a website, blogging, networking, charitable donations & fundraisers, staging special events & parties, a line of brand name t-shirts, promotion, promotion, promotion & as much goodwill I can spread around as humanly possible.
    • French decor, faded grandeur & all that is time worn is our world & what the shop is built around, accomplished by the most talented dealers in the business... It's a powerful combination!

      My friends magnificent booth, Tony and Lucy Torres of Paris Flea Market,
      that have had their fabulous home in San Clemente featured in Romantic Homes and Country Homes Magazines

    After 14 years in the biz, what gets you out of bed and excited to move huge pieces of furniture around? OK, I'm being a little devil. Seriously, what inspires you?

    The fact that my life-long love of all things time-worn, French-inspired & glamorous metamorphosed from a hobby into a thriving business is wildly fulfilling, extremely gratifying & perfectly feeds my vast creative needs. To this day my heart literally skips a beat when I behold a fabulous vintage find, discover a magnifique new paint color, stumble onto a worn, leather-bound French book or have one of my be-jeweled or be-shelled projects turn out better than I had hoped for. Since I always take projects as far as they can go & give 2000 percent to whatever I'm working on, having a shop was inevitable for me.

    This business is a living, breathing, demanding & fascinating challenge that I thrive on & it has presented me the monumental opportunity & awesome responsibility of preserving grand & irreplaceable pieces of the past.

    What do you hope customers experience or take away from visiting your shop?

    A huge reward of all this hard work is that our customers "get it", love & respect all that we do & from that devotion, a huge & loyal following has been developed. They may come in for the first time looking for a particular item or just to browse, but they always, always leave inspired & uplifted by the settings & imagination that surrounds them at every turn & in every nook & cranny. Once again, it's that experience we provide. We have attracted a steady & loyal clientele & have evolved into a unique resource for interior designers, the antique trade & all ages. We are able to provide that almost indefinable, understated, old word elegance that people are searching for. We showcase the furnishings & accessories that give a room its' vintage soul & that's never been more coveted or more needed than in this day & age & that is why clients tell us every day, that we are their favorite shop in San Diego.

    Is there anything you would like to add?

    Finally I couldn't end this without giving my full credit to my Mother- for me going down this road of all things French. If you've read the tribute to her on the Vignettes' website then you know how she launched me on my path. She was so far ahead of her time was convinced that sending me to study in Paris, France, long, long ago, would be the influence & inspiration to set my course for life. Merci beaucoup mon mere, for from that priceless experience... Vignettes was born!

    This shop is seriously an inspiring and a mind blowing experience. This happens to be the shop that Lynn from Paris Hotel Boutique did a post on recently with gorgeous photos and pictures of the gang. Merci Madame to Lori, for being such a good sport and sharing with us the behind the scenes philosophy that created this magical, unique and incredibly beautiful store. While many other antique malls are closing, this gal has made a niche' for herself, stuck to her original strong business plan and markets her little tail off. Lori has a fab blog where she keeps us updated regarding upcoming events and showcases her dealers & their wares. So, even a busy gal like me can get some daily design inspiration by visiting her blog. And, boy can this lady throw a shoire'e!

    Don't walk, but run to this special Baroque Gypsy Couture Trunk Show Soiree. I truly hope to see you there. I'll be the short blonde with a bag of new clothes drooling over this creative shell chair vignette with a bonbon and French champagne in hand. And, with a camera, of course. Cheers!

    4828 Newport Avenue
    San Diego, CA 92107

    Photos from the Vignettes & Paris Flea Market blog and website .

    P.S. If you were curious, I am not getting paid for this or any of my coverage. The Fabulous Finds Gal enjoys writing about beautiful things, creative people and anything inspiring. And, I'm working on my karma points! But, I'll take donations. Just kidding.

    Weekend Read~ Playing Dress UP~ Top 20 Fashion Posts of The Week

    Playing Dress Up

    Edited by Jordana

    This week’s round-up speaks about the art of ”getting dressed.” We have inspiration posts from Cake not Coke and Style on the Street, style how-to’s from Denim Debutante (she was also quoted in the WSJ this week, here!) and The Coveted, and a variety of interviews. One of my favorites was Prom Mafia’s DIY for converting your boyfriend’s tee into a tunic – love it!

    For those plannig to attend fashion week, make sure you RSVP for the IFB Dress Up Soiree and panel discussion on evolving influence! Special thanks to Moxsie and Microsoft Windows phones for their support!

    Links à la Mode : August 27th

    • 39th and Broadway: Are You a Fashion Sellout?

    • Brick My Lane: Interview with Fee Doran, aka Mrs Jones – the woman behind Oxfam DIY and that famous white catsuit.

    • Cake not Coke: Vanity Fair Setpember ‘09 Toujours Couture - A Stitch in Time.

    • Chicago Style: Interview with Monica Dimperio, of the Chicago street style blog The MidWasteland

    • Clutch 22: Exclusive scoop on Seattle indie greentrepreneurs – Sara Seumae of SPUN Clothing collaborates with Tara Smith of Revival Ink (plus a contest)

    • Denim Debutante: The reasons you should love Rich & Skinny denim, along with tips for the three best cuts and how to wear them

    • Dramatis Personae: Unveiling the feminine fashion stylings of independent designer Claire la Faye…

    • Dream Sequins: Shoptalk with Cherie of online vintage marketplace Shrimpton Couture, which collaborates with emerging designers

    • Fashion Pulse: Check out the new trend in leggings, by way of geometric prints and loads of grey!

    • Independent Fashion Bloggers : Dress UP for NYFW

    • Prom Mafia: Raid your boyfriend’s closet: How to turn his t-shirts into cute girly tunics

    • Retro Chick: What happens at a Burlesque Lesson?

    • Saved for Best: Girls on Film – A celebration and run down of the best-dressed films

    • Shop Fair: Top 5 obstacles fair trade and “green” fashion labels have to overcome to be more successful

    • Style on the Street: Three photoshoots inspiring trends for the next season

    • Style Symmetry: The Symmetry Seven with Rhiannon of Liebemarlene Vintage

    • Sweet Fuzz: Rustic Elegance - independent fashion designer Dace’s beautiful Fall line

    • The Coveted: Charlotte Russe Review – Mixing in Fast Fashion

    • The Demoiselles: Shopping for your body type is hard enough without a recession; shopping on the cheap is even harder

    Thursday, August 27, 2009

    Chanel Goes Edwardian~ Paris Fall Runway 2009/2010

    In response to a fellow bloggers request for "What to wear for Fall?". Here you are, darling... You can never go wrong with classic Chanel black and white. It is timeless elegance for any age. And, when you just need a punch of color, mix it up with a soft pink or jade green. Lots of other designers have gone with the basic black, white and red combination for Fall. "Red is the new black" and all. But, I think the pink & jade combination is so fresh. The new jade green jewellery is a KILLER, must have. Just an FYI, the white cuffs are removable so you can throw those on after wearing the basic black suit during the day to spice it up for evening.
    Genius. Karl, you have done it again.
    What do you think? Does this inspire you?
    Photos and video found @ coutorture

    Wednesday, August 26, 2009

    Finding Inspiration Behind the Scenes at Chase Cohl's SoHo Loft~ the Designer of Littledoe Neohippie Headbands

    Littledoe is a line of feathery, flowery, neohippie headpieces by Los Angeles designer Chase Cohl. I find her Soho apartment bold, brass and with a sense of humour. I love when a designer of such amazing goods transfers her talent into her home decor. I adore the red lips over her bed. Who wouldn't want to give a special someone a big smooch when looking at that?
    Each Littledoe headpiece is hand crafted from the highest quality antique materials and is one of a kind. Maximillia has collaborated with Littledoe to produce an exclusive range of headpieces. The headpieces feature velvet bands and are accented by vintage silk flowers. The photography on her website is fabulous and her creations are out of this world.
    Are you feeling the hippie vibe of her home and headbands?
    Don't forget to enter into the hip Urban Spark Jewellery GIVEAWAY!
    Apartment found at Your Street
    Headbands found at The Girl With A Feather Blog

    Monday, August 24, 2009

    Lily Cole Is Ready For Her Close-Up and "Womans Love" Poem

    Woman's Love
    Man knows not love-such love as woman feels.
    In him it is vast devouring flame~
    Resistless fed-in its own strength consumed.
    In woman's heart it enters step by step,
    Concealed, disowned, until its gentler ray
    Breathes forth a light, illuminating her world.
    Man loves not for repose; he wooes the flower
    To wear it as the victor's trophied crown;
    Whilst woman, when she glories in her love,
    More like the dove, in noiseless constancy,
    Watches the nest of her affection till
    'Tis shed upon the tomb of him she loves.
    Don't forget to enter in the Urban Spark Jewellery Giveaway!

    Photo credit: New York Times

    Sunday, August 23, 2009

    Let's Just Say in Bed on This Magical Sunday...

    Which bed would you like to stay in all day today?
    May this Sunday fill your need for peace, love and happiness...

    I want to give it to you, darling!
    And, please send a picture that reflects your personal "Magical Sunday" to be posted in the future. I know there are lots of fun and creative guys and gals in the Fab Finds Followers "house".

    Photo credits: 1. lobsterandswan 2.fffound 3 Trouvais &4 lobsterandswan

    Friday, August 21, 2009

    Urban Spark Jewellery Line and GIVEAWAY~ "Real Accessories for Real Women"

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Set up in 2008, Accessory company Urban Spark has flourished from a business in Jewellery to a haven where real women embrace their natural beauty through beautiful accessories. I had a chance to interview Nikki Bruce regarding their unique mission statement and quality jewelry.

    Their mission is to provide "real accessories for real women". "We are made up of three people in total, myself & Nikki Strange design and manage everything creative, Steve Byles overlooks and guides us with his business experience.

    We have not been launched on the web for long but have been building a community and using social networks to sell our products and advertise what we believe in. Everything we sell we believe should be like a present, it should be more of a gift from Urban Spark to you. You buy a product from us you are funding us to create new products and building your Urban Spark community. We encourage our customers to send us photos of how they wear our products as well as to show off their unique style.

    When we hired our models we wanted to use real girls, Hardip and Maddie, students From Portsmouth University and Rachel from Wiltshire found through a friend of a friend connection. When they came to the photo shoot we wanted them to do their hair as if they were going on a night out and not really change their normal style at all. Hardip had tattoos all up her back stomach and legs, we loved this because it’s her style. We kept them in black to highlight the jewellery but hopefully the next shoot we can let them be a bit more adventurous with what they wear (we didn’t want to falsely advertise other peoples products also).

    The Video we wanted to be a bit of fun, showing people our attitude on life, its remembering that feeling of excitement. When we visited the play area Nikki and I wanted to just jump right in, this idea of just letting loose and having fun almost not caring what you look like is what we aspire to. The reason for the girls to strip off was simply because their clothes where restricting them from running faster. The final naked scene was the risky one for us, we wanted to shock our audience a little and mimic that feeling of feeling being comfortable with yourself and free as well as making our audience laugh. Time will tell if we achieved this but hopefully our love for life nature will come across.

    The first collection inspired by the ocean (the old Portsmouth coast) which is called “Jules” we named this after a picture book that inspired us of the classic Jules Vern tale Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea (a tad cliché of us but we loved it). The second collection hoping to come after Christmas ready for summer is “Rosa” designed fully by myself is inspired by gardens. Nikki Strange currently is developing a new collection about exploration which will follow shortly after. Other products are a range of scarf’s and possible bags which will be in before Christmas.

    The Design of the website was so important to us as we wanted it to be something a customer could enjoy, shopping should be a exciting experience. The Urban Spark website is our shop floor so we designed it in that very way, everything on the first page has meaning to us, the dinosaur, guinea pig, phone, beautiful staircase and story book all apart our story/journey. We wanted it to be genuine, even to the colour purple, the colour of Portsmouth University, where Nikki and I studied and loved.

    Our plans over the next few months is to really focus on getting our Urban Spark community running, to learn and find out what our customers want from us, giving them more control. With each collection we organize small parties to let our customers decide which designs go through to samples. Hopefully once we are a bit more established we can do this on a larger scale and really become a company that makes designs for their community of customers specifically." They have just been included this week into the hip Catwalk Genius website. You can also find their daily musings on their fun blog here.

    These young and talented gals are set to take the world by storm. One Real Woman At A Time...

    In the spirit of giving, Urban Spark would like to give a Fabulous Finds Gal "follower" one of their amazing quality pieces. All you have to do is leave me a comment on this post. Please become a follower or confirm that you already are in the comment. Let me know which item you like from this post or visit the website to view the line in it's entirety. A special someone, that resides within the U.S.A., will be chosen on Saturday, September 4th.

    Weekend Read~ Beauty, Style and the Blogosphere Links A' La Mode

    links a la mode

    Beauty, Style, & the Blogosphere

    Edited by Ashe Mischief
    Beauty and Style come in many forms, and this weeks Links á la Mode choices showcase the many discussions entering the world of fashion blogging at the moment: excessive judgments, the value of personalities, and cultivating your inner beauty as well as your outer beauty. Bonne-Vie challenges the values of the show “More to Love” and Fivve Blog shares model sensation Lara Stone. Newcomer Jaka’s Tea Party calls to action with the Wholestyle Manifesto and Betsey J asks “Are we too judgmental as fashion bloggers?”

    Not to overshadow this weeks Links á la Mode with too heavy of discussions, we’ve also go a great roundup of make-up tutorials & inspiration, along with great DIY projects & giveaways in the forums!

    Links à la Mode : August 20th

    • Ask ThinkThru: – What Can You Wear From the Office To an Event?

    • Betsey J: – Have we become too judgemental when it comes to fashion & style?

    • Bonne Vie: – Fox is doin’ it wrong with new reality show “More to Love”

    • BRICK MY LANE: – 3-in-1 DIYs: Ripping, slashing andd patching everything, rock’n'roll style

    • Broke & Beautiful – International Indie Designers can be found with Novica, plus an opportunity to REALLY make a difference by shopping.

    • Confessions of a Fashion Editor – Fed up of emails from big fashion brands demanding interviews, I decided to speak to a young, bright and new designer instead.

    • Denim Debutante: – How to Clean & Care for Your Premium Denim

    • fivve blog: – If you have a fashion mag addiction, then you probably have seen who W Magazine is calling the “fashion it-girl” Lara Stone.

    • Independent Fashion Bloggers: What's so great about Gravatars?

    • Jaka's Tea Party – A mission statement for a new movement that believes style isn’t about the clothes you wear, it’s about being a whole person.

    • Little Miss Makeup: – Pretty makeup is an evergreen fashion trend. Get the low-down on how to get the look!

    • Meilily: – Highlights the debut collection of Project Runway phenom Christian Siriano for VS Makeup.

    • pie wacket: – yesterday I worked with Kiehl’s to create a wonderful late summer giveaway and shot an original beauty story to demo the products.

    • Rags to Reverie: – 2 days ago Space 15 Twenty’s Pangaea Pop-Up makes deka ray’s architectural jewelry available for the masses

    • Retro Chick: – Why we buy – One woman’s journey in fashion and the decisions we make every day.

    • sweet archivia: – Anthropologie’s Secret Code – In-House Brand Guide

    • THE COVETED – The Coveted: Make that a double: Take Off Your Clothes Double T-Shirt Dress

    • The Demoiselles – Jennifer Nicole uncovers the secrets behind the new PETA ad, which degrades women based on weight.

    • The Fashion Planner: – The Fashion Planner’s Guide to Chicago offers great places to eat, shop, and more.

    • The Midnight Feast: – Did I really just put on black lipstick? How to tackle this trend: a guide for those who would prefer to leave the gothic look in the 90s.

    • Unfunded – Unfunded: White Rabbit Inspired Baubles

    • Wit & Whimsy: – First Look: Michael Kors Goes Hollywood Glam with the launch of

    Thursday, August 20, 2009

    Fringe Benefits At Any Age

    The fringe benefit of being a woman of any age in a free country is the ability to choose what to wear. I think this Fall's fringe trend just may appeal to all age groups of women. Take a look for yourself.

    Design by dsquared2 Fall Runway found @ Crave

    Fashion by dsquared2 Fall Runway found @ Crave

    Lara Stone in Scrumptious Chanel found @ Janetteria

    Found @ Fifthly Gorgeous Fashion

    Tit Tees Dress

    Fabulous Finds & Co. Leather Jacket

    Fabulous Finds & Co. Teal Leather Bag

    Shoes found @ Crave

    Fringe cuff by Fiona Paxton found @ Crave

    What do you think?
    Is there anything here you could wear?