Philip Treacy is an Irish milliner who has spurred the ever-growing national obsession with hats of the British Royals. His creations often include extravagant elements, like fake butterflies, flowers, feathers, and more.

If you’ve watched the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton on TV, you might have noticed some of the guests, like Princess Eugenie and Beatrice, as well as celebrities like Victoria Beckham wearing his hats. In total, 36 guests at the wedding wore Treacy’s hats!

Sometimes, his hats are classic and elegant, like the guests at the wedding above.

From left to right; Victoria Beckham, Princess Beatrice, Tara Palmer-Tomkinson

I personally thought Victoria Beckham’s hat by Philip Treacy was the best at the wedding, because it was relatively neat and went along with her outfit…

Sometimes, the hats are a bit over the top and tacky, like the one worn by Princess Beatrice. There has been a lot of debate and criticism over Princess Beatrice’s hat, since worn at the wedding. So, what do you think of her hat?

Other guests at the Royal Wedding added Philip Treacy’s hat, like the woman above who tops her head-to-toe blue look with a fancy hat.

Lady Gaga poses with Philip Treacy, left

Lady Gaga is a huge fan of Treacy’s hats. She reportedly applied for internship with the milliner! She has worn his hats in numerous events, in red carpet appearances, concerts, and etc.

Lady Gaga in her Scorpion Hat

Lady Gaga in Philip Treacy's Telephone Hat

Lady Gaga at the Grammys 2010

Sarah Jessica Parker At a Premiere

I think it’s even hard to categorize his creations as “hats”. They completely break our conception of hats, since by definition, hats are “a shaped covering for the head worn for warmth, as a fashion item, or as part of a uniform.” It’s better to categorize them as a piece of “art” or “creation”. Take a look at some of his other masterpieces!

The Glove Hat

Attack of the Butterflies!

This looks like something from Star Wars!

You’ve got to listen to this AMAZING song!

The more you see, the less you know
The less you find out as you go
I knew much more then than I do now

Neon heart day-glow eyes
A city lit by fireflies
They’re advertising in the skies
For people like us

And I miss you when you’re not around
I’m getting ready to leave the ground

Oh you look so beautiful tonight
In the city of blinding lights

Don’t look before you laugh
Look ugly in a photograph
Flash bulbs purple irises
The camera can’t see

I’ve seen you walk unafraid
I’ve seen you in the clothes you made
Can you see the beauty inside of me?
What happened to the beauty I had inside of me?

(cut)

And I miss you when you’re not around
I’m getting ready to leave the ground

Oh you look so beautiful tonight
In the city of blinding lights

Time…time…time…time…time
Won’t leave me as I am
But time won’t take the boy out of this man

Oh you look so beautiful tonight
Oh you look so beautiful tonight
Oh you look so beautiful tonight
In the city of blinding lights

The more you know the less you feel
Some pray for others steal
Blessings are not just for the ones who kneel… luckily

What a beautiful song!

This is yet my favorite song from the band U2. I love the arrangement of the music, the instrumentation (the guitar), and most of all, the touching lyrics. Don’t the lyrics totally give a vivid illustration of the City of Blinding Lights?

This is the imagery that I have when I listen to this song… What’s yours? You can comment on the comment section 🙂

If you watched the film Devil Wears Prada, you may be able to recall this song from the scene when Andy Sachs (Anne Hathaway) is dazzled by the night line of Paris that she experienced out the car window. I thought this song was perfectly fit for the wonderful scene, and Paris was indeed a City of Blinding Lights!

Yay! It’s Earth Day this friday! In our school this week, we are promoting a “No-Impact Week”, which means we do not consume or produce waste at all throughout the week. While the “No-Impact” movement is a more extreme form of conserving the environment, you can still take part in trying to conserve the environment by reusing materials, like boxes! I always reuse pretty boxes, storing all kinds of materials ranging from hair accessories to paper clips.

Reusing boxes is a great way to organize and store your “stuff” that are dangling all over your room. Here are some tips on how to reuse boxes!

1. Macaron boxes

Rectangular boxes are a great way to store clips or small toys. I use the black box to store some of my Bearbrick toys, and it fits exactly 7 perfectly! Another way of using these boxes is storing paperclips and other small stationary that are dangling all over your desk. This could help keep your desk organized!

2. For special purposes…I use this clear box that was originally for storing cards and envelopes to store a sugar-crafted ribbon that I kept from my birthday cake. As sugar crafted goods last almost forever, I wanted to keep this in a box where it would not be covered in dust. Then I found this perfect box which could not only display the ribbon, but also keep the ribbon from getting dirty!

A small scarf box could make perfect storage for small lip glosses, Chapstick lip balm, Lip Smackers, and more!

3. Chocolate Boxes

Rectangular chocolate boxes could be used in various ways, such as storing post-it notes or different kinds of wires (earphones, usb ports, etc.)

4. For storing Hair accessories…

This round box originally for a bag strap makes perfect storage for storing headbands!

For storing solid hairbands, a relatively large shoebox could fit them perfectly. You can easily find your favorite hairbands by storing them in a box and keeping them on your side table!

This song, called “Magic” by a Korean girl group named “Secret” seriously bugs me. I personally find this song extremely annoying because of the overly repetitive word “Magic”, pronounced like “MAZIK”!!! They should have named this song “Mazik”, if they couldn’t pronounce it right.

I’m not even sure if it is supposed to be “Mazik”, but whatever the truth is, it’s very annoying. So if you grew up or have some sort of an english background, you’ll probably understand why. Listen to this:

To be honest, this song is pretty good except for the pronunciation of “Magic”… And most of them are good singers, overall.

I also thought some parts of the song were hilarious. For example, the part after “Mazik, mazik mazik, mazik mazik mazik” which is “Uh ma Uh ma Uh ma” sounds totally like “엄마, 엄마 엄마!” which means “mom” in Korean. So it would be like “Magic Magic ….” and they are calling for their moms.

Also, at 0:44 where the girls say “Oh 쉿”, which means “shhh” in Korean, sounds more like “Oh S***”… haha 😛

So this was totally my own, personal opinion at the song! (No offense intended to Secret)

Here are some of the comments I found on Youtube of the song…

Now, tell me what you think!

Note: This is a review of a hotel that I’ve stayed in summer 2010 and 2008. All of the pictures below are taken in summer 2010.

The island of Oahu among the Hawaiian Islands is one of my family’s favorite vacation destinations. Beginning with my parents’ honeymoon in 1993, we’ve visited Hawaii a total of 7 times! Among the numerous hotels that we’ve stayed in, including the Kahala Mandarin Oriental,  Moana Surfrider, and the Hilton Hawaiian Village, the Halekulani was an experience like no other.

The Moana Surfrider Google Street View

The Halekulani

Halekulani, meaning “House Benefiting Heaven” in Hawaiian,  is an award-winning hotel located in the heart of Waikiki. Halekulani has been hosting visitors to Waikiki for nearly 100 years.

my brother looking out the window...

 

When we arrived in the room, they had some special welcome treats, including the exclusively made Hawaiian chocolates, fruits, and a welcome note.


The view from our room was gorgeous! From our balcony, we were able to see the beautiful beaches of Waikiki and the courtyard.

The courtyard

The courtyard

 

Lobby Area

Restaurants around the courtyard

Halekulani offers the best pool in Oahu. The bottom of the swimming pool is covered in 1.2 million South African mosaic glass tiles, forming a shape of an orchid.

The Orchids, a restaurant overlooking the beach of Waikiki, offers buffet brunches on Sundays…

Brunch: egg benedict, Hawaiian popovers, etc.

Dessert buffet from the Orchids

The restaurant offers some gorgeous views of the beach!

boutiques around the hotel

boutiques around the hotel...

OVERALL RATINGS (out of 5 stars)

Service- ★★★★★

What distinguishes Halekulani from other hotels in Oahu is definitely their service. From the moment we entered the hotel, we were treated like royalty. Guided by the two staff members, the bellhop and the manager, we had an in-room checkin, without any waiting! As shown above, we were not only treated with the food on the day of arrival. Halekulani provided small gifts on our bed including Hawaiian shells, treats, etc. every time they made our bed!!! One of the most memorable part of their service was that they paid attention to every little detail in our comfort- for instance, when we laid some wet swim suits out on the sun bed in the balcony, they neatly folded them and laid them on our chair inside! Also, when I had my sunglasses by a small table out in the poolside, they even wiped my sunglasses!

Food-★★★

Since I did not dine at the La Mer, I don’t have much to say about the hotel’s food. The room service and the brunch at La Mer was good. But my favorite was definitely the poolside smoothies!

Ambience-★★★★★

I really love the atmosphere of this hotel! As this is a very historic hotel, it kept the old and added a few new qualities, like the interior. I love the Hawaiian touch to everything! This is one of the quietest hotels in Waikiki, as they are not many children around. I didn’t really like the fact that this hotel has “evening attire” regulations allowing no shorts and rubber flip flops. Come on, this is Hawaii!!!

Designer Philip Starck have marked a new beginning for the furniture industry when he designed one of his most revolutionary furniture design, the Louis Ghost Chair, a chair with a classical silhouette of transparent acryl. He has proven how classical elements of furniture combined with the modern can still be fresh and chic.

Another type of furniture that is bringing revolution to the industry recently are baroque chairs upholstered with modern fabric often times having interesting patterns, or even photography.

Proust Geometrica- Side View

The first armchair above is called the “Proust Geometrica” designed by an Italian designer Alessandro Mendini in 1978, and later manufactured by Cappellini. Proust Geometrica immediately became the icon of twentieth century design. It was not only upholstered in multi-color fabrics, but the wooden frame was also painted to perfection with the matching colors.

Proust

Here is a different version of Proust with the light blue, grey, red multicolor fabric. Which one do you prefer? The first or the second? I personally like the first one…

Photographed/Illustrated Baroque Chairs

The French brand, Teo Jasmin is renowned for its printed baroque sofas and armchairs. Some of the prints include: the union jack pattern, Eiffel Tower, Bridget Bardot, NYC, and Superman cartoon.

Union Jack

Eiffel Tower

Eiffel Tower

Superwoman

Bridget Bardot

Bridget Bardot Arm Chair

These chairs could add some chic, modern touches to your room!

 

 

There’s more to draw out from the TV show Gossip Girl, other than their over-the-top fashion. One of the many things I’ve noticed about my favorite TV show is that they have a beautiful, elegant set full of one of my favorite exquisite furnitures. Here are several things that I’ve noticed over the past 4 seasons of Gossip Girl‘s set interior.

First, here is Serena’s Penthouse in Manhattan.

As you’ve probably noticed in this picture, Serena’s house is basically based on a modern, yet chic style. Her house sort of reminds me of the themes and designs from the designer Jonathan Adler. In the living room, chairs and coaches have some tribal touches, like the lounge chair and ottoman you see below.

The Eames Lounge Chair upholstered with Missoni fabric!

As you see in the picture above, I was surprised to find out how the  CW invests on a lot of high-end furnitures in the set. Seen on the picture above, the chair in which Dan is sitting on is the Eames Lounge Chair and Ottoman, designed by Charles and Ray Eames, and manufactured by Vitra. Does that print on the chair look familiar? It’s a Missoni print!!! Seriously, this is when best meets best! A chair designed by my favorite designer AND upholstered in the most beautiful pattern!!!

Some of the things that I’ve personally noticed from Serena’s penthouse was the wall lamp from my favorite lighting brand, Artemide, kitchen from my favorite kitchen brand, Varenna Poliform, lamp from Kartell, and the renowned Cherner Chairs in her dining room.

Poliform Kitchen in Serena's NYC Penthouse

The "Bourgie Lamp" from Kartell in Serena's bedroom

Cherner Chairs in Serena's dining room

Now, moving on to Blair’s Penthouse!

As you see above, the overall ambience of Blair’s penthouse is quite different from that of Serena’s. While Serena’s penhouse had more of a modern look, Blair’s penthouse is all about the classy, elegant Parisienne style! The two contrasting interiors of the houses also matches the personality of Blair, who is more conservative and all about classics, while Serena has a modern taste and a free, and out-going personality!

Blair's living room during her sleepover, with the Egg Chair located on the far back

In the above picture, I was overwhelmed to see my FAVORITE CHAIR, the Egg Chair by Arne Jacobsen Fritz Hansen. The Egg Chair can be upholstered in different fabrics, such as the leather one in Blair’s house or wool.

Cushioned Louis Ghost Chairs!!

What I love about Blair’s house are these gorgeous Louis Ghost Chairs designed by Philip Starck and manufactured by Kartell. Looks different from the ordinary Louis Ghost chairs you’ve seen? Yes, they are specially cushioned just for the set. I think the cushion adds a touch of elegance and the antiqueness to this more modern chair!

Refer to my previous post about Louis Ghost Chairs for more info!:

https://nicolek13.wordpress.com/2010/12/12/the-most-durable-chair-in-the-world-emeco/

As the characters of Gossip Girl are quite aware of the high-fashion, I found that the set also had some influences from some of the widely renowned European fashion houses.

Blair's Room

Lanvin shopping bag

First of all, I thought Blair’s beautiful French-chic room was inspired by the colors of the fashion brand Lanvin. Doesn’t the wall papers sort of remind you of their boxes and shopping bags? I just adore the decor of her room, including the Audrey Hepburn picture hanging on her wall, silk bedding, the molding, and the fairy-tale chiffon curtains!!! Once again, her room totally reflects her style and personality!

Serena's new room at Blair's house

Another example of a high-fashion brand inspired interior design in Gossip Girl can be found in Serena’s new room this season that is adjacent to Blair’s room. The butterfly swirl on her wall is very similar to the artist Andrea Mastrovito‘s installation in the Dior Homme Store in Paris, shown below.

Installation at the Dior Homme Store in Paris, by Andrea Mastrovito

Thanks for reading this long post everyone! It was enjoyable combining two of my favorite interests, interior design and tv show, Gossip Girl. As these are information that I’ve noticed from watching all 4 seasons of Gossip Girl and having a major interest in interior design, I assure you that 100% of these ideas on this post come from my brain, not from the internet. So please, do not use these precious ideas from my blog without permission. But, of course, you are totally welcomed to post my link on any other websites! : )

– Nicole-

Ok, we all know that Natalie Portman, a Harvard graduate, is supposedly intelligent and many intelligent people read books. But come on, did she really have to carry that book, Lolita by Vladmir Nabakov to a premier of the movie Black Swan?

Hahaha. Well, this is not an ordinary book, but actually a clutch bag from a French brand called Olympia Le-Tan. Olympia Le Tan is an innovative French brand that exclusively designs clutches inspired by book covers. These beautifully handmade clutches can be a very unique fashion statement when matched together with an elegant dress.

 

Among with the novel “Lolita”, Olympia Le-Tan makes clutches and bags with some other famous covers of books such as the “Catcher in the Rye”, “For Whom the Bell Tolls”, “Moby Dick”, “The Pearl”, and many more. Unlike their quite inexpensive appearance, these purses are hand-stitched from France and comes in a limited edition of 16 per piece. So far, the brand had released only 21 types, so they have 336 bags total on sale. Due to their rarity and hand-craftsmanship, a single clutch costs over $1330!

On the left, you can see a book full of gorgeous Olympia Le-Tan clutches! The brand releases clutches with usually their 1st edition book cover, which attributes to the classiness of the clutch. If you are a book lover, this bag is definitely for you!

Available for sale at

Seoul – “10 Corso Como Seoul”

NYC-“Opening Ceremony”

Paris-“Colette”

Hello there blog surfers!

 

I have finally, finally settled on the theme, topic, and the name of this blog. As I’ve mentioned on the previous post, I have long been wondering what path I should take for my blog. When the blog was previously been called “The Post-Anything-I-Want Blog”, it did not have a theme or a central topic to expand on. However, I have finally decided on the topic. “Joie de Vivre”, or in other words, the “joy of life”, will be a culture, lifestyle blog that will primarily focus on home decor, fashion, and more. Stay tuned for more!

Emeco Navy Chairs means much more than a chair, for it is an icon of American furniture design. Manufacturer Emeco shares an interesting history in the formation of its chair, the Emeco Navy Chair. It was initially commissioned in the 1940s by the U.S. Navy for use in warships during World War II, since it was able to withstand torpedo blasts. The chair was designed by the founder of Emeco, Witton C .”Bud” Dinges and was made with aluminum, which became the key to the chair’s strength and lightness. The chair was so durable that it exceeded the specifications of the Navy and was designed to last 150 years. Therefore, Emeco Navy Chair became the strongest, most durable chair in the world.

Watch how strong it is:

Wow, that was just fascinating!

If you had to do this with just another chair made of wood, metal, or plastic, it would have already crumbled into pieces by the time you drop them on 2nd floor, not the 6th.

Perhaps not the “signature” chair, but one of the notable chairs from Emeco could be the Kong Chair. The Kong was specially designed and collaborated by the French designer, Philip Starck, for a restaurant based on Paris, The Kong. The chair was once not sold in public. After the restaurant “Kong” had gained wide popularity,many were attracted the the firm and a simple design of the Kong Chair. As it drew more and more attention, it was finally released to the public. Since both of them are designed by Philip Starck, the Kong Chair and theLouis Ghost and Victoria Ghost Chair (made in plastic) for Kartell resemble each other’s design. They are both inspired by the home of the French Kings (the Louis), the Versailles, and now an icon of when modern meets the luxury of the classic.