Sunday, October 31, 2010

On the road... beginnings

Having recently returned from a road trip to Italy via Zurich, I thought I'd share some of our photos with you. For the next several Sundays, I'll present our impressions of the various areas that we visited.

After our visit to the chocolate factory near Brunner (first things first!), we found a hotel and ... with great excitement, went out to see the Alps. Guess what? Yep- fog. Until we came down out of the mountains, we were enveloped in it. Switzerland was still beautiful, though. 

The homes were truly different than Italy (or France or the Netherlands, etc.), as you can see.  

We did observe that most homes have a huge stash of firewood waiting to be used.


You can just see the outline of the mountains in the fog.

Early morning on the lake...

The water is so clear!

Seen in a little niche....

A stroll through the town revealed these charming frescoes.

Aahhh! Now we can see the Alps! On our way to Italia!

We've arrived in Lake Como, just over the border from Switzerland.

There was still a haze in the air. (Is this George's villa?) 

Here's the turista!
Funny, throughout the trip we noticed that the government buldings were usually the most impressive.

My favorites- the cypress trees.

Here's my honey...

We had lunch in Brescia the next day. I thought it was a charming town. Here we are in the piazza.

 Off to find lunch and check out the architecture.

See you in Venice next week!  
 You're in for a real treat.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Fall garden finale

We are on borrowed time here as far as the first frost goes. Before that happens, I thought I'd better take a stroll through the garden for the fall finale look, both at home and at the studio. 

Here's what I found:

The Pieter B rose keeps going

Along with the other late fall roses

And another rose

Beautiful hops at the studio

And the wonderful patina of the remaining hydrangeas

Don't you just love the luscious colors?

Here is the fall clematis (a very reliable bloomer that spreads slowly)

The osage oranges are beginning

Lauren Liess at Pure Home Style recently did a great post on the osage orange; see it here.

Last, but not least, here is one of my favorite colors of a dahlia nestled in the collection of very prolific, white dahlia blooms:

Thank you, Cindy, at My Romantic Home for Show and Tell Friday.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Op art at home?

The winning entry of The World of Interiors'  design your own room competition was, as the saying goes, way out there! Capturing movement in an optical illusion, the art also managed to conceal the kitchen galley's doors.

The winner, Parisian Xavier Fenouil, transformed the modest apartment into a work of art. As he said, "Like Alice falling into the White Rabbit's hole, the walls turn into ceiling, the ceiling expands down the walls..."

I bet not many of us would dare to be so bold!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Doors of Italy

We just returned from a driving trip through the northern half of Italy. We flew to Zurich, rented a car and started driving. No reservations or specific plans were made. It was a fun way to go for us; for those who require security and plans in order, hotel reservations or a tour would definitely be advised.  It can be a bit harried at times.

Before I go any further, I need to get this off my chest. Why do we in the US call the cities in the rest of the world by different names than what their actual names are? Some examples: Roma (aka Rome), Firenze (aka Florence), Venezia (aka Venice), Munchen (aka Munich), Wien (aka Vienna), etc., etc. I've never been able to figure that out!

I was particularly struck by the fabulous doors we saw (among other things) everywhere and thought I'd share them with you. Big and small, old and older. (Please excuse the photo quality of some of the pictures; I had to use my Ipod for a day.)

Here they are:


Last, but not least, here is a set of doors in Venezia. The doors in Venice deserve their own book!