Haute History: Tartans and Plaids

history of tartan and plaid

It’s been a while since I did an Haute History column, so today, I thought I’d chat with you about the history of tartan and plaid. It’s always been a winter staple, but with the advent of the blanket scarf, it seems especially popular these days!

First things first — what’s the difference? Well, as interior designer Scot Meacham Wood told House Beautiful, all tartans are plaids but not all plaids are tartans. He explains the difference from a pattern standpoint:

“All plaids and tartans are comprised of stripes (in varying sizes and colors) that meet at a 90-degree angle. We start heading into ‘tartan’ territory by looking at the geometry on the pattern. With most every tartan, the pattern on the stripes running vertically is exactly duplicated on the horizontal axis too. Basically, this matching pattern in both directions will create a grid. The warp and weft threads are then woven in a two-over-two “twill” pattern. When looking at a simple plaid, you’ll notice that the stripes — either in color, size, or pattern — are not the same in both directions.”

So that’s the difference design wise, but what about the history of each? Read the full post +

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Images: Scarf, Asos; Blazer, J. Crew

"All we wanna know is where the stars came from, but do we ever stop to watch them shine?" - Jon Bellion

The Best of Cyber Monday (With Lots of Ways to Shop Small!)

best black friday deals

Hope everyone had a fabulous Thanksgiving yesterday! We’re vegging out at home today, watching movies, putting up Christmas decorations, and getting ready for our Thanksmas party tonight (Thanksmas: a name Joe and I made up years ago for the party we host the Friday after Thanksgiving for any friends in town, complete with spiked cider, board games, and lots of leftovers). I’m also trying to get a little shopping in, because I must admit, this weekend is undoubtedly the best shopping weekend of the whole year! I thought I’d share a few noteworthy sales and retailers I’m checking out today, including mostly smaller businesses. These small shops are all places I love and turn to over and over again for products I use or have in my home (or completely covet)! Be sure to check back, as I’ll update these with additional Cyber Monday deals in a few days.

I hope you enjoy browsing my picks and find some cool new shops to support!

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SHOP MY FAVORITES:

EVERLANE
The Deal: Instead of a discount, Everlane is putting its proceeds towards a fundraising goal of $110,650. That money will go towards their annual Black Friday Fund, which this year, aims to fund a wellness/healthcare program for employees at their Los Angeles Factory!

The Code: none needed!   SHOP >>

My Picks: I was lucky enough to stop by Everlane’s SF studio a couple weeks ago, and am OBSESSED with their new double knit sweaters. They’re so luxe and gorgeous! You also can’t go wrong with Everlane silk.

HIGH STREET MARKET
The Deal: Get a free gift with any $30 purchase

The Code: none needed.   SHOP >>

My Picks: Lord, where do I even start? I own these gold and agate coasters ($55) and constantly get complimented on them. I’m totally eyeing this “crystal ball” ($39) as a fun gift for someone. And High Street Market always has a great selection of blue & white chinoiserie inspired goodies.

LO & SONS
The Deal: up to 40% off and extended return policy window

The Code: none needed.   SHOP >>

My Picks: Have you seen their new Seville line? I remember Derek (one of the founders) telling me about this a while back and it’s awesome to see it come to fruition: a bag whose exterior you can switch out, inclusive of a special “shell” used only for traveling! And it’s currently 30% off. Other picks: you can’t beat a classic O.G. bag for travel, and the Pearl is a great, small crossbody bag essential.

HUDSON + BLEECKER
The Deal: 30% off site wide

The Code: use code THANKS   SHOP >>

My Picks: After launching the H+B site and becoming familiar with their product lines, I am a big fan of their toiletry bags, cosmetic cases, and new beauty bags. They really accommodate all your travel toiletries and makeup perfectly! The new gold embossed python line ($42-$88) is perfect for the metallic lover in your life.

DESIGN DARLING
The Deal: 20% off site wide

The Code: use code THANKFUL   SHOP >>

My Picks: This edgy yet classic gold gingham vase ($72, with code) and these hilarious/adorable Fiesta/Siesta stitched cocktail napkins ($28.80, with code). Pretty sure Joe and I need the latter ones for our weekly taco nights.

BON APPÉTIT BOX
The Deal: Discounts of up to 30% off all boxes

The Code: None needed.   SHOP >>

My Picks: I’m obsessed with the Provence Apértif box ($60 on sale). Trust me when I say, the artichoke pesto is life-changing. Bon Appetit Box is a great resource to keep in mind for hostess gifts and the French food lover in your life (or really, any food lover period!). I’ve become friends with one of the founders, Zoe, and the company’s story is just amazing!

M. GEMI
The Deal: $50 off every pair of shoes you buy!

The Code: none needed.    SHOP >>

My Picks: I can’t think of anything BETTER than if someone gifted me a year of shoes from M. Gemi. Like, I’m giddy even thinking about it. For a more reasonable gift, consider gifting your favorite gal with a pair of custom Felize loafers — you can let her pick out her favorite color, thread, and tred! And also, the popular Brezza lace up flats are back too (get on it!).

ARIANNA BELLE
The Deal: $15 off your purchase of $100 or more; $50 off purchases of $250 or more; $125 off purchases of $500 or more

The Code: Use codes 15HOLIDAY, 50 HOLIDAY, OR 125HOLIDAY, depending on order total. SHOP >>

My Picks: Arianna makes the best custom pillows! I love the bold geometry of the Melinda Black ($138 before discount) and Zig Zag Navy ($144) designs; the Les Touches in black ($122) has been in a chair in our bedroom for years and it’s even Joe approved!

HERBIVORE BOTANICALS
The Deal: Take 25% off your purchase and get a free rosewater spray

The Code: use code CYBERMON25 SHOP >>

My Picks: I already waxed poetic about the Coco Rose body scrub here, and let me tell you, this is the perfect opportunity to grab a few jars for stocking stuffers (it’s okay if YOUR stocking is included in that too). I also recently bought the Rose lip butter and it’s wonderful. You’d never think a rose-scented lip balm would be so delectable, but let me tell you, it is.

TATA HARPER
The Deal: Starting Monday, 11/30, through 12/8, 15% off your purchase

The Code: use code FF2015    SHOP >>

My Picks: There’s a reason why the Resurfacing Mask is a best seller and beloved by the press — it’s really as good as everyone says! This would make a wonderful, luxe stocking stuffer, or could be a lovely component of a “beauty basket” you put together for a special someone.

CRANE & CANOPY
The Deal: Take 20% off your entire order.

The Code: use code THANKS20   SHOP >>

My Picks: You can’t go wrong with anything from the Linden collection — the border design is a classic!

COMMODITY GOODS
The Deal: 20% off your purchase, plus a free 10mL travel spray with your purchase of a full size perfume.

The Code: none needed   SHOP >>

My Picks: Commodity’s packaging and unique scents make it perfect for the design lover and beauty junkie in your life. Gift someone the Try at Home package. They get all 10 of Commodity’s scents in mini’s, then based on the package you choose, they can pick a few favorites, or one large bottle.

RECLAMATION ETCHWORKS
The Deal: On Saturday, get free personalization on bottles; on Monday, get 50% off extension packs

The Code: Saturday’s code: SMALLBIZ; Monday’s Code: MAKERMO    SHOP >>

My Picks: I gifted Joe a set of Reclamation’s Variance bottles a few years ago for our home bar, and we still love them (see how they look here). The mission of this company is awesome: they recycle liquor bottles and laser etch them with beautiful designs to give your bar an extra special touch. These babies are a perfect gift for the cocktail lover, or anyone who loves a handmade, upcycled concept!

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A few great sales from my fave “big” retailers:

 

ANTHRO
The Deal: 25% off everything

The Code: use code SHOPTOIT    SHOP >>

Why Shop It: Anthropologie continues to be one of my favorite sources for beautiful items for the home. Sure, you can find pretty clothes there too, but for me, the highlight is always their selection of serveware, glassware, and decor pieces. Guaranteed you will find a great gift idea, hostess gift, or something to make your home sparkle for the holidays!

My Picks: This beautiful decanter (it’ll look great on a bar, or a buffet!) , or this classic tea set for the tea lover in your life!

SUR LA TABLE
The Deal: Take an extra 20% off clearance items, and lots of other items on sale (free shipping for orders $59 and over)

The Code: For clearance items: SAVEBIG; for free shipping: SHIPFREE; other items automatically discounted    SHOP >>

Why Shop It: I will always have a special place in my heart for SLT, because I worked there during and after culinary school!

My Picks: If you cook or know someone who does, these types of sales are when you should take advantage of discounts on high quality knives and cookware, like this Wustoff set, and beautiful Staub pieces (I actually prefer Staub to Le Creuset!).

 

SHOPBOP
The Deal: Take 15% off orders of $250 or more, 20% off orders of $500 or more, and 25% off orders of $1000 or more

The Code: use code GOBIG15  SHOP >>

Why Shop It: This is arguably one of Shopbop’s best sales, especially if you purchase items on behalf of friends and family members (because you can pool your purchases and get a better discount!). It’s also rare among their tiered promotions that they’ll include sale items, which this one does!

My Picks: I typically wait until this sale rolls around to get discounts on investment/use-it-for-several-years type accessories like boots and booties, and to stock up on J Brand jeans (which for me are a staple).

CLUB MONACO
The Deal: 25% off $150+, 30% off $250+; 35% off $400+

The Code: use code THANKFUL    SHOP >>

Why Shop It: I honestly wish most of my wardrobe could be from Club Monaco. The aesthetic is just totally my vibe — but sadly, the prices are often expensive and it’s rare that things go on mega sale. So when CM offers a sale, you bite.

My Picks: I have been eyeing this little jacket for no less than 3 months, so it might be time to finally pull the trigger.

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Happy Shopping, Everyone!

 

 

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Image: via J.Crew, “Ireland” photoshoot, December 2015 Style Guide

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6 Cool Finds from My Visit to West Coast Craft

finds from the west coast craft show

This past weekend, Joe and I swung by West Coast Craft at Fort Mason. I had never been to West Coast Craft, though a few years ago I went to a similar event with Renegade Craft. With that as my only frame of reference, I gotta tell you, WCC was crazy! The pavilion was absolutely PACKED with people (and vendors!). It was a little overwhelming trying to spend time at particular booths given the crowds, but I did come across a few new-to-me makers and artists who are producing some pretty incredible products. I love sharing smaller, up and coming shops with you, especially this time of year when unique gift giving is understandably on everyone’s mind. Here were a few of my favorites shops and items:

Elizabeth W //

This company’s Vetiver line smelled wonderful. If you’re into the earthy, woodsy scent of vetiver, you will totally dig the collection of candles, perfumes, and bath products. Elizabeth W has a shop locally in SF, and you can also order online. I also tried a few of her hand creams and really liked them, but realized once I got home that I had forgotten to check the ingredient list, so I’m not totally sure where they fall on the natural scale. I will say though — they did soften my hands immensely (the cucumber and tuberose scents were lovely).

Tempest + Bentley //

Unfortunately, the price range on these hand-crafted sweaters are a bit astronomical, but man, were these babies insanely beautiful in person. Imagine, the thickest, most plush wool ever, that somehow manages to still be really soft and inviting. Mix in super cool, of-the-moment knitting patterns, and you have a line of sweaters that even Gywneth has taken to wearing. My favorites were this fringed sweater, and this chevron knit. Here’s wishing I could splurge on one of these beauties…and in the meantime, I shall continue to ogle.  Read the full post +