I love the holidays. So when signs they have started to arrive, I'm usually pretty jazzed about it all. And I wouldn't say that I am one of those who has a STRONG opinion on the Christmas commercials on TV before Halloween and stores opening their doors for Black Friday days before Black Friday actually begins...but I do think it's pretty silly. Let's all just slow our rolls a bit and not worry about being first out of the gate.
Anyway...Halloween is over. Thanksgiving is over. We have just stepped into December. And so I felt like I would be well within my bounds to share some of my favorite holiday decor inspiration without it seeming out of place.
This year will not just be different but VERY different for my family and I, and though I plan on telling you all about it soon, it's just a note that I won't be around my normal surroundings for it. I have a lovely little apartment now with room and the right kind of energy for a tree, but this year, there will be no seasonal decor going up for us. We will be on an adventure. Together.
But that doesn't mean I am not excited at the ideas swirling around and taking notes for a time when I will be home and want to really go balls out. (Sorry, Santa.)
(All images c/o Pinterest. Click on image to go direct to link.)
For the last 40 years, and my entire 31, my family has called 350 Northrup Street 'home'. And as many of us settle into our holiday traditions and gather together to celebrate, the Neary family is saying goodbye to our beloved home and figuring out transitioning into new traditions and settings.
Houses come and go. Childhood homes get sold and people move on. But if you have ever had the pleasure of visiting 350 Northrup, or know me in any kind of respect, you will know that this house is so much more than just that. I'll take the memories with me and know that they are most important, but it's the four walls I'll miss. It's the relationship I have with those four walls. It's what those four walls taught me through the years. There is a certain warmth and beauty to 350 Northrup that certainly was mostly to do with those of us occupying it but also that the structure brought to the mix.
This house has been one of my best friends. A door that has, quite literally, always been open. A safety net (and a pretty stunning one at that) when I needed a place to fall. An exploration in imperfect details being the most beautiful of them all. Every uneven floor board, every scary sound, every lesson in history and the influence of a warm home. In times of distress or feeling completely overwhelmed, I could go out into the backyard and just sit and breathe in the magnitude of the best view in the world (in my humble opinion). And in my happiest times, tequila shots at the living room bar with my family, a fire raging in the fireplace, laughing like my life depended on it.
I'm looking forward to creating my own home. And I'm looking forward to the adventures my family and I have ahead of us. But as I walk out of the door of 350 Northrup one last time, this home has been a part of my character and I'm still trying to figure out what that means when that home is no longer a part of my life. It may sound silly. It may sound over the top. But for those of you who have been there and fallen in love too, this is a tough goodbye.
So cheers to you, 350 Northrup. I'm gonna miss you.
You may or may not know that vinyl records play an increasingly important role in my life. Even while I'm writing this with a dude in a rocking chair with a whisky to my right and Mott the Hoople spins on the record player behind me. And there is a tequila-based beverage in front of me. That's worth mentioning. Anyway, you get the picture.
While I may be a firm believer that flea markets and tag sales are the best places to help curate a proper record collection, I came across 'Vinyl Me, Please' and I'm full on obsessed with even just the notion of it. This monthly subscription takes on both a vintage music and badass cocktail education, which I think we can all agree is basically the coolest.
Each month, you will get a record in the mail. But not just whatever is hot right now. Ew, I just said 'whatever is hot right now' and I'm sorry. It's what the people behind this genius idea feel is an 'essential record'...one that every collection should have and every listener should be familiar with. They don't stop there though. No no. Along with it, you'll get a recipe for a cocktail that will perfectly accompany the record while you listen to it, as well as an album-inspired piece of art.
I don't have a ton to say about this collaboration. Other than I appreciate its subject matter and its ability to be light-hearted. I also am now really obsessed with the term 'boob pocket'.
Ladies and gents, The Man Repeller for Etre Cecile.
Shop the entire collection here.
(Images c/o Man Repeller)
I initially started to watch this video because I was like 'oh cool, a neon skull...let's see where this goes'. But this video ended up making me feel all the feelings and not just about a cool sign that was being produced. The artist, Mike Heist, is something incredible. Obviously in the sense of creating this kind of thing, but his story...I dunno, that's what really struck me. He doesn't ever talk about his passion for the craft. Nor does he really talk much about the business itself. It's really about how this is just what he does. It's why he does it. It's ignoring the impact he may have made in his city and in the art world because...that's just not him. It's something personal and painful and beautiful all at once.
That being said. I still want that neon skull.
I'm not even sure what to say about this one. It's awesome. Awesome celebrating awesome. This is the kind of thing you come across and first think 'why didn't I come up with this genius idea', which is swiftly followed by 'who can I give this to but secretly who can I find to get me one'.
I love artist Jessica Hische by default because she uses the term 'Saved By The Bell-esque'. But then you add in rainbows and silver foil and basically everything she was clever enough to put on these Certificates of Awesomeness, and it's game over. She's my best friend. At some point, maybe she'll know that too.
So go. Get one. Gift it. Let someone know that they are the tits.
(Images c/o Jessica Hische)
I don't have tons to say about Emma Roberts. Not for any reason other than I don't know much about her and haven't seen much that she's been in. Must be super cool to be related to Julia Roberts...she seems like a nice lady. I'm really into American Horror Story, as it speaks to my super weirdo side. And Emma appears to be quite a fashionable girl. The end.
So when I saw that she was partnering up with Bauble Bar as a 'guest bartender', I wasn't sure how interested I would be. Turns out, SUPER INTERESTED. Her curation was pretty spot on and I'm currently trying to manage my feelings on how I get my paws on most, if not all, of the collection.
With some punky elements, a delicate touch and a celebration modern embellishments, if this is the story that Emma Roberts tells, I'm happy to listen.
Here are some of my favorite pieces from the curation:
See the entire collection at BaubleBar.
(Images c/o BaubleBar)
Some days you just gotta be like 'heck yeah, baby shark'.
John Malkovich is a legend. We all know that. But, to me at least, he's always been a bit of a quiet one. He sneaks in and out of visibility, making a massive impact as he does, but then fading out of sight until he crashes back in for a moment. And he's done just that with a new photo exhibit by Sandro Miller, featuring this loose cannon of a silver screen star.
In an exhibition that runs from the 7th of November through the end of January at the Catherine Edelman Gallery in Chicago, Miller and Malkovich (bad ass name combo) recreated some of the most famous portraits ever shot. There's an element of extreme silliness but balanced by touches of affection and respect for some of the serious subject matters captured in the original images.
It's genius. It's bizarre. And of course it's in Chicago because everything awesome happens there.
And just because it's my personal favorite...Malkovich as John Freakin' Paul Gaultier.