Friday, November 16, 2012

Over the River and Through the Woods...

1.  Laurel Nest, Highlands, North Carolina.  Photo by Erica Dines
2.  Appalachian Mountains in Fall

Bubble & Squeak has been so unbelievably busy this fall that we’ve almost forgotten to stop and appreciate the leaves changing color.  Luckily, we’re getting our Autumnal fixes in other ways.  Our good friends Bill Cook and Michael Faust have invited us to tour their home, Laurel Nest, in the rolling Appalachian mountains of western North Carolina (which was just published in the always beautiful Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles magazine).  Bill is the founder of Vermilion Designs Interiors and Michael is an architect, both based a stones throw from Highlands in sweet and sultry Atlanta.  Intrigued by fairy tales and a taste for whimsy, their style is truly a mix of fantasy and reality.  Their storybook spirit comes across loud and clear with a mingling of Adirondack-inspired balconies, exposed beam rooflines, and a stacked log and stone fa├žade.  Inside, they’ve created a magical world of Swedish Black Forest ski chalet meets English country house meets Hansel and Gretel (no German children were harmed in the building of this house).  Bill, and his discerning eye for antique furniture and rare objects, and Michael, and his classically trained architectural sensibility have created a uniquely modern and comfortable home-away-from-home. Grab a seat by the fire and enjoy the fairy tale.
1.  Vermilion Designs Interiors, photo by Lou Freeman
3.  1970 Mercedes Benz 280 SE Cabriolet

Resting on the seat next to him is a thoughtfully packed basket containing an apple pie, still warm from the oven, which his mother insisted he take when he left. She can be overbearing, but a bad cook she is not. It will be the perfect treat to end the long drive home. With each twist and turn up the steep road, Hunter tightens his grip around the bony steering wheel of his vintage red ragtop Mercedes-Benz. He’s driven this way every weekend since building his dream cottage up in the mountains two years ago, but tonight something is different. Dusk came early this evening, he thought, as the headlamps catch flashes of golden foliage floating over the dark, damp pavement.  Although the route is familiar, there is an eerie unknown in the air. The wind picks up, and the grumble of thunder can be heard over the rumble of the engine. After a sharp turn, Hunter finds a downed tree branch lying motionless in the road forcing him to get out of the car to clear the way. Dragging the stray limb across the pavement, a howling gust of wind from the shadows knocks him to the ground with the force of a pouncing wolf. His breath is instantly knocked out of his chest, and his lungs begin a long fight to draw in the chilly night air. Regaining his composure, Hunter drags the limb across the road and gets back into his car. Arriving home after an eventful drive, he heads straight for the kitchen for the long awaited treat. “What a strange night”, he says aloud while cutting a giant slice of his mother’s apple pie. “And my, what big eyes you have, Hunter”, he laughs while taking his first bite. 
1.  Fenwick Carriage Pocket Lantern, The Urban Electric Company
2.  Vermilion Designs Interiors, photo by Lou Freeman
3.  Leather and Brass Dog Leash, Sterling and Burke Ltd.
1.  Vermilion Designs Interiors, photo by Erica Dines
2.  Black Forest Hall Tree, Paul Kleinwald Art and Antiques, Inc.
1. Vermilion Designs Interiors, photo by Erica Dines
2. French Art Deco Club Chair, Jean-Marc Fray
1.  Argentinian Wrought Iron Chandelier by Jose  Thenee, Architectural Artifacts
2.  Vermilion Designs Interiors, photo by Lou Freeman
1.  Vermilion Designs Interiors, photo by Lou Freeman
2.  Vintage Hermes Orylag Fur Blanket, 20th Century Interiors 
3.  Vintage Stag Horn and Brass Mirror, Hadassa Antiques 
1.  Woodland Dinnerware, Spode
2.  Vermilion Designs Interiors, photo by Erica Dines
1.  American Hooked Rug, The New England Collection 
2. Ripple Circular Table, Soane Britan
3.  Vermilion Designs Interiors, Photo by Lou Freeman

Sunday, August 12, 2012

And the Winner is....

Thank you to all who entered!

And, a special thank you to Vervain and Barry Dixon for their generous support.

Don't miss the next Bubble & Squeak giveaway coming soon!

Subscribe to Bubble & Squeak here 

Sunday, August 5, 2012


We're extremely excited to offer one of our lucky readers this phenomenal pair of Bubble & Squeak designed pillows featuring fabric and trim from the Barry Dixon collection for Vervain.  Vervain has graciously provided all of the fabric and trim to make this amazing giveaway possible.  We can't thank them enough! Please see the rules below to qualify for these gorgeous pillows, valued at $850.00!

Three simple rules for entry:
One:  You must SUBSCRIBE to Bubble & Squeak here: SUBSCRIBE
Two:  You must COMMENT on Barry's blog post here:  COMMENT   
Three:  You must SHARE this post on your wall on Facebook.

***Please note that you must subscribe to Bubble & Squeak the blog, not the Facebook page.  And, you are not subscribed to Bubble & Squeak unless you verify your account by clicking the "Activate Your Subscription" link emailed to you at the time of subscription.  If you don't activate, you are not eligible for the giveaway.  All current subscribers do not need to re-subscribe, but you must be verified, and are required to COMMENT on Barry's post and share this post on facebook. The winner will be chosen at random and announced on August 13th. If the chosen winner has not completed all three rules for entry, another name will be chosen at random until we find a winner.  Good Luck!
Each pillow is 20" wide x 20" high 
Fabric:  Ishtar in Grey and Lemon
Cording:  Bosal in Honeyopal
Tape:  Tympani in Walnut
A very special THANK YOU to Vervain for being so generous!  They have been such a pleasure to work with and we would not have been able to offer this giveaway without their support. You MUST visit Vervain's website and view the rest of Barry's amazing collection or, better yet, view it in person at your nearest design center. You will not be disappointed!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

A True Southern Gentleman

Barry Dixon  
Garden at Elway Hall, Traditional Home Magazine 

A gentleman, and a designer, and a farmer, and a social media junkie? Wait, what? Either this bottle of wine is getting to us or these unusually hot summer temperatures are playing tricks with our heads.  Few designers these days actually make us take notice, however, Barry Dixon makes us swoon.  Always the gentleman, Barry is as charming as his interiors are honest. He is a master of creating spaces with a sense of history and courage that indulge the senses on every level.  Bubble & Squeak had the pleasure of sitting down with Barry to discuss his dream cabin, Facebook, Downton Abbey, and his underwear. That's right, his underwear! 

Bubble & Squeak: So, you're very active on Facebook, more so than most designers. What makes you click "Like"?
Barry Dixon: Anything that inspires me, in any direction...emotionally, spiritually, or aesthetically, and almost any picture of a dog.

BS: When you get up from your computer, what's the first thing you reach for?
BD: Ellie, my wire-haired fox terrier. 

BS: Describe your fantasy cabin retreat in three words.
BD: Serene, layered...magical.

BS: You're unpacking your groceries at the cabin. What's in the bag?
BD: A sharp robust Gruyere cheese, sweet red grapes, free range eggs, tart cherry tomatoes, whole wheat bread, coffee.... and spicy ginger snaps!

BS: When traveling, what four must-haves are in your carry-on?
BD: Dark blue jeans by Ralph Lauren, Thom Brown Brogues, my iPhone, and sunglasses.

BS: What puts Barry at ease?
BD: A trip to the barn on my farm in Virginia.

BS: Speaking of your farm...your beautiful estate, Elway Hall in Virginia, is right out of Downtown Abbey. Which of these Downton characters do you identify with most and why? The Dowager Countess, John Bates, Lady Sybil Crawley, or Matthew Crawley?
BD: Matthew Crawley, definitely. I truly believe that we don't own these old homes, they own us. Rather, we act as stewards, guardians that "protect the realm" for our time, then pass it on, the better for our efforts.

BS: Well, Elway Hall has completely "owned" you!  Cascading drapery, tassels, and fringe, oh my! Many people think of cabins as rustic places, how do you see these two worlds colliding?
BD: Happliy. I love the juxtaposition of formal with rustic. The tension between opposites is far superior to a calculated mean.

BS: What are the first three songs on your cabin playlist?
BD: 1. Adele: Someone Like You 
    2. Michael Buble: The Way You Look Tonight
    3. Lulu:  To Sir With Love

BS: There are two kinds of people when it comes to firewood... those who chop their own and those who don't. Does Barry Dixon chop his own wood?
BD: No. But I'm a consummate stoker.

BS: Lastly, Barry, the design community is all a-buzz with one important question. Boxers or briefs?
BD: At the cabin...neither.
Interiors by Barry Dixon
1. Robertson Bench by Barry Dixon for Tomlinson/ Erwin-Lambeth
2. Duck Head Decanter in Smoke, Asprey, London
1. Poillerat Sconces, George N Antiques
2. Oatlands Side Chair by Barry Dixon for Tomlinson/Erwin-Lambeth 
1. Martini Table by Barry Dixon for Tomlinson/Erwin-Lambeth
1. Fresh eggs from Elway Hall, Traditional Home Magazine 
1. Ginger Snap Cookies 
1.  English Convex Mirror c.1840, R. Ege Antiques 
1. Royal Water, Creed Perfumes 
1. Luminor Panerai 1950

Thank you Barry!  You're an asscher-cut diamond amidst a field of rough-cut gems.

Please visit Barry's website to see more of his beautiful, jaw-dropping projects.  

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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Only The Canyon Will Tell

He was skeptical of the plan at first, but his family has lived in this canyon for hundreds of years so I knew that he was the right person for this job.  Ahiga is his name, Navajo for “He fights,” another good reason to have him by my side on this expedition.  A quiet man with an intense nature, he didn’t offer much conversation, but that’s not why I hired him.

The descent into the canyon was rocky.  It’s not for the faint of heart—riding on the back of a mule down a trail barely wide enough for the mule itself—but I was assured that this was the safest way.  We circled for hours around this canyon wall, and that canyon wall, each one looking exactly like the last.  By the time we reached the canyon floor, the temperature had dropped significantly and the mysteries of this stoic valley began to reveal themselves.  Modernist abstract paintings emerged from the colorful sedimentary stripes of the canyon walls.  An audience of saguaros stood at the rim silhouetted against an orange sun watching our every move.  The wind howled like a pack of coyotes.

We kept our pace for several more hours until I begged Ahida to stop so I could refill my canteen from a trickle of water weeping from the rock walls.  Looking to the sky I found the saguaros that had been guarding the rim of the canyon all day had begun to retreat into the crimson and violet sky.  Night was falling fast and I couldn't wait to crawl into bed.  "Just over that ridge and we'll be there," Ahida announced.  His echoed words disappeared into the canyon—a secret waiting to be discovered.  
1.  Sunrise over Fountain Hills, Arizona
2.  The Painted Desert, Arizona
1.  Coronado House near Tuscon, Arizona.  Architecture by Voorsanger
2.  Almidi Hurricane, Casamidy
2.  Papago Figural Basket, c. 1910, Four Wind Gallery
2.  Robinwood Chaise, Sutherland by Starck
1.  Kara Mann
1.  The Blanket Weaver-Navaho, 1904, by Edward Curtis
2.  Shipibo Beer Pot, Douglas Dawson Gallery
1.  Amangiri Resort, Canyon Point, Utah
2.  Aspen Firewood Bucket, Tuell + Reynolds
1.  Petroglyphs at Newspaper Rock State Historic Monument, Utah
2.  Sunset over Tuscon, Arizona

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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

The Odyssey

23 April 2003
San Juan Islands

"It's just around this cusp."

"You said that about the last two," I shouted into the wind.


"Never mind!"

"It's hidden amidst the rocks.  We won't see it until we're upon it," he said before we embarked on what seemed like an impossible expedition down the rocky shoreline.  Earlier this morning we sailed North from Whidbey Island in Puget Sound until we reached the Southern coast of the San Juan Islands.  As a child, it was here that he remembers witnessing several hundred migrating Orca with his parents, or so he thinks.  No one can agree on the exact location of the occurrence.  His mom claims it was North of the island, and his dad insists it was West.  And, each time the story is retold, the Orca pods double in size and the boat dwindles.  Thus, it has become a family fairytale of sorts that I have never entirely believed.  To add mystery to the legend, there was also mention of a small cabin nestled among the stoney shoreline that "makes Falling Water look amateur" (again with the exaggerations!).

Months had been spent planning the trip and it was this weekend that he was intent on making me a believer.  I first started feeling sorry for him when, after several hours of sailing, there were no Orca sightings.  Likewise, we scaled the coastal cliffs for the last half of the day without spotting a single manmade structure.  "Maybe it really is on the Northern coast," I said to ease the blow.  With the sun setting in front of us he said, "No. It's here somewhere.  I know it is."  

2. Rutland Crystal Column by Vaughn Designs 
1. Pewter Mounted Ceramic Jardiniere by Orivit c.1902
1. Gant
2. Intermezzo Blue Double Old Fashioned by Orrefors
1. Seedling Dinnerware by West Elm
2. Sea Urchin Napkins by Seaside Inspired
1. Carl Suede Brown Slippers by Frette
2. Shawn Henderson Interior Design

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Monday, February 27, 2012

The Homies!

The Homies:  Apartment Therapy's way of surveying the blogosphere each year for the best new home design & cooking blogs. It's not so much a competition, but to the winner of each category comes the real prize of lots of traffic as Apartment Therapy publishes the winners in big congratulatory posts across their network.  And, let's just say that the winners from the past two years have gone on to become quite successful!

So, if you have the tiniest minute to spare, we'd be grateful for your vote!  The link is below.  FYI:  It's a bit tricky to register, but we found it easier to sign in using our facebook accounts.  

Thank you for the support!!!  

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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Swan Lake

14 February 2004
Near Ely, MN

We slept in this morning. The drive last night took longer than expected with the detour and the snow. The heat was out in the old truck so both of us were more than happy to stay tucked into our warm cozy bed late this morning. We had the best afternoon walking through the woods and trying out that old sled you found this summer. I've lost count how many times you had us fly down that hill. Next time I'll have to let you steer considering I nearly drove us into the pond more than a few times! When the sun started setting we headed home through the trees. We shook off our boots and spent the rest of the evening relaxing by the fireplace. It was the perfect ending to a perfect day. Bringing us up here was exactly what we needed. I'd forgotten how much I love this place this time of year. I can't think of anyone else I'd rather share it with.

I Love You!

2. New England Saltbox
1. Chalet Gentianes  Verbier, Switzerland
1. Stamped Brown Boots by Diemme
2. Sperry Top-Sider Authentic Original 7-Eye Boot
1. Amanda Harlech
1. Chocolate and Walnut Fudge Bar by John Kelly Chocolates
2. Homemade Graham Crackers 

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Thursday, February 9, 2012

And the Winner is...

Thank you to all who entered!

And, a special thank you to Patrick Hamilton of AskPatrick.  We had a wonderful time visiting with you at the ski lodge.  We must do it again some time!  

Don't miss the next Bubble & Squeak giveaway coming soon.
It's another good one!

Subscribe to Bubble & Squeak here 

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

So Mod Giveaway! Extended!

Due to technical issues,
Bubble & Squeak and AskPatrick
are extending the giveaway
one more week to allow
everyone to register

The winner will be announced
Tuesday, February 7th

Reminder:  Two simple rules.

One:  You must SUBSCRIBE to Bubble & Squeak.
Two:  You must COMMENT on Ask Patrick's "Ski Lodge Mod" companion post.

The links above will take you to where you need to go.  Please note, you must subscribe to Bubble & Squeak the blog...not the facebook page.  All current subscribers to Bubble & Squeak need not subscribe again, but you still need to COMMENT on Ask Patrick.

Subscribe to Bubble & Squeak here