Kengo Kuma's Glass/Wood House

I saw this picture by Scott Frances, a glass/wood house by the architect Kengo Kuma located in new Canaan, Connecticut and was blown away by the beauty, form and concept.  Thought I'd share it with you, I hope you enjoy the picture as much as I did.

Home of: Keri Russell

Birth name:  Keri Lynn Russell
AKA:  Keri Russell
Date of birth:  March 23, 1976
Place of birth:  Fountain Valley, California
Occupation:  Actress & Dancer
Most famously known for her acting

*Pictures by Elle Decor

Dining area

Master bedroom

Dressing room/ closet

Master bathroom

For Elle Decor's full article on Keri Russell please click here

New Items @ West Elm, Wood is big

When it comes to decorating my home I go with wood, that's my thing, wood.  I love wood.  West Elm has got a few new notable items made of wood, my favorite being the table pictured below, the Carved Wood Coffee Table, not so oddly it reminds me of my yoga classes... inner peace, oooohhhhhmmmm.

Carved Wood Coffee Table $299.00
Solid mango wood
32"d x 12"h

Next, the Salvaged Wood Shelf.  I think the black brackets really does a lot for the overall look of the wood shelf.  It's got a "this is a comfortable home" kind of vibe to it and I think the best part of the shelf is that I can picture it almost anywhere in the house, this is very important as you well know, multifunctional/versatile pieces goes along way towards getting your money's worth.

Salvaged Wood Shelf $79
36"l x 8"d x 1.5"h

I find it quite hard to find a nice standing clock of good size, I suppose this is why the Wood Mantle Clock caught my eye.  When I first moved into my Los Angeles apartment I hunted actively for an affordable mantle clock but to no avail, eventually my mother gifted me hers, a triangular clock with an orb foot base and round clock face from Ethan Allen.  The West Elm Wood Mantle Clocks, which I think are just adorable, a little too adorable to go on a mantle as suggested by their name but perfect for a kitchen counter clock or in the children's bedroom, perhaps even the work-room.

Wood Mantle Clocks $34.00
8.65"w x 1.75"d x 9.5"h

My New Mortar & Pestle Purchase

For a long time now I have been searching for the perfect mortar & pestle, the perfect mortar & pestle for me, I mean to say.  I've looked at quite a few and as of late has been one of those items I always look at when in a store that sells kitchen items.  The marble and rock mortar & pestle (which there seems to be an abundance of) always seems to have rock dust and teeny-weenie rock pieces and chips in the bowl, I find this not to my liking as I don't want to be eating 'rock' anything, and though I know it's unlikely I'll be finding anything rock-like in my food by using a rock-made mortar & pestle it is still "not for me".

This past weekend I decided to go for a walk and get some exercise... at the mall, I found myself in Crate & Barrel.  Looking at hand-mixers and coffee grinders can be great fun, Sur La Table, Costplus World Market and Crate & Barrel are my top three places I like to window-shop for kitchen items.  Window-shopping was all I was doing until I saw my mortar & pestle, it was the mortar & pestle I've been waiting for!  Made of entirely wood and unique in the look and feel I just stopped and stared it for quite awhile, and then I touched it, before I knew it I was pretending to bash an assortment of dried herbs and things.  I had to buy it and for only $24.00 and some change, that day I came home with my new Olivewood Mortar & Pestle from Crate & Barrel.  I bashed some peppercorn for dinner, I thought it was a pretty good excuse to use it.

Olivewood Mortar & Pestle $24.95 @ Crate & Barrel

Jiun Ho

California Street Residence dining area

If your a regular at Beautiful Abodes you probably already know that every now and then I like to do a post on interior decorators who's work has caught my eyes.  One search decorator has this week, his name is Jiun Ho and his theme is most often directed at an elegant yet simple and relaxed state of living with most often, a classical hint to his overall interior designs.

California Street Residence sun room and decor in living room

California Street Residence decor

Here, he accents with the yellow wall artwork, the color goes beautifully with the gray.

Hartford Street Residence a view in to the living room from the staircase

I am in awe of his use of contemporary furniture pieces in a room that really seems to call a country-like setting, perhaps it is the wood floors, white banisters and sloping ceiling that gives it this country feel.  Then I noticed his use of the glass wall divider between the stairway and the bedroom space which tied the country-like space and the contemporary furnishings together harmoniously. 

Hartford Street Residence bedroom

Hartford Street Residence staircase

Hartford Street Residence kitchen

Hartford Street Residence dining room

Asian inspired sliding door panels gives the room a unique accent.

Steiner Street Residence dining area and a view of the kitchen

Much of the time Asian inspirations pop-up giving the modern room a somewhat ethnic warmth to it.

Steiner Street Residence bedroom

Steiner Street Residence a view of the entryway

Steiner Street Resident dining area

I've found that he likes to accent with red as he does in the room below.

Steiner Street Resident living room

Home of: Hank Azaria

Birth name:  Henry Albert Azaria
AKA:  Hank Azaria
Year of birth:  1964
Place of birth:  Queens, NY
Occupation:  Actor, producer, director, writer
Most famously known for acting

*pictures from Architectural Digest

Outdoor living room

  A gravel path along the side of the house

Pool with area with poolside loggia

A closer look at the poolside loggia

The kitchen

Dining area

The TV room

In the TV room a wall is covered by pictures of Simpson characters voiced by Hank Azaria

The living room

A closer look at a bookcase located in the living room

Azaria's home office which includes a poker table

Azaria's son, Hal's play room

The guest bedroom

The master bedroom

Azaria's dressing room

The master bathroom

Le Creuset vs. World Market Dutch Oven

Cost Plus World Market 5-qt Green Round Dutch Oven $49.99

This weekend I had the impossible urge to make home-made applesauce which meant that I was on the hunt for a dutch oven, which, I've been wanting for awhile actually.  My first stop, Cost Plus World Market, a 5-qt Cost Plus World Market Dutch Oven was $50.  I then walked across to Sur La Table, to compare prices, I found my way to Sur La Table's Dutch Oven section which was jaw-dropping and I don't mean this in a good way, how can the Le Creuset 3.5-qt dutch oven be $130?!

What it ultimately came down to was Le Creuset was french made, finished by hand, physically it was more beautiful, it was dishwasher safe with a tight-fitting lid.  Cost Plus World Market's dutch oven was... well, it's just a dutch oven, had to be hand-washed (no biggie) with a fitted lid but not "tight-fitting" as Le Creuset's.  The difference in the price was $80 and this comparing a 5-qt to a 3.5-qt!

To me the choice was obvious, I went for Cost Plus World Market's dutch oven in green for $50.  I made applesauce in my new dutch oven right when I got home, my new buy performed perfectly and I made two jars of helluva yummy applesauce AND it was very easy to clean!  Point being, unless it's doing something extraordinary it really shouldn't have to cost that much more than your average ware.

Le Creuset Caribbean Wide Oval French Oven, 3.5-qt $129.95 @ Sur La Table

Home Of: Courteney Cox

Birth name:  Courteney Bass Cox
AKA:  Courteney Cox
Year of birth:  June 15, 1964
Place of birth:  Alabama
Occupation:  Actress
Most famously known for her role in Friends

Pictures from Elle Decor

Entry way

Living room


Kitchen sitting area

Outside dining area

Master bedroom

Master bedroom

Master bedroom sitting area

Master bathroom

Master bathroom

Powder room

Pool room

Screening house kitchen

Screening house kitchen outdoor seating bar area

Tennis house sitting area

Outdoor banquet

Sitting area on the deck

Backyard deck area


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