Today on Weekend Meanderings a fun house tour, comfort food favorites, a fall cocktail and fashion at Versailles.
Happy weekend, friends!
It’s Saturday and I’m joining Kim and Elizabeth for Weekend Meanderings.
Our weekly roundup of inspiration and goings on.
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I bought a few small pumpkins and gourds for our patio table centerpiece.
I’m going back for the big guys this week to decorate the front porch.
Our raised bed dahlia’s are blooming!
Platinum Blonde on the left and Cafe Au Lait on the right.
QUIET LUXURY AS A LIFESTYLE
On the blog this week I joined Kim to hash out the quiet luxury trend. Do we call it a trend? I say it’s a lifestyle … to which I aspire.
I really enjoyed Kim’s take on how to get the quiet luxury look. And she offers up some great ideas on pieces to consider for fall. She knows her stuff when it comes to fashion and I follow her advice.
This fun little quiz on The Real Real will help you determine your luxury aesthetic. I fell firmly between B & C.
FASHION AT VERSAILLES STATE DINNER
I love a good state dinner. And the red carpet at the recent State Banquet at Versaille did not disappoint. French President Emmanuel Macron and his wife Brigette hosted King Charles and Queen Consort Camilla on a several months delayed state visit. But can we talk about the guest list? Mick Jagger and Hugh Grant were big surprises to me. And Hugh … seated next to Mrs. Macron! It’s good to be First Lady.
Hugh’s pant legs look a little odd in this photo. Are they too long or is it the wind? The guest who arrived before Hugh and his wife looked like she might be blown away. Anyway, Hugh’s wife, Anna Elisabet Eberstein, is tres chic. I don’t know who made her dress, but I read that its velvet. And dramatically accessorized with a multi-strand pearls … ‘statement piece’ is too mild a term. Let’s take a closer look at the back. Swoon. Her scrappy sandals are fabulous too …I mean, her entire look. Beautifully done.
And Sir Mick Jagger, accompanied by his American ballerina girlfriend Melanie Hamrick. She recently published a steamy novel, First Position, which I mentioned a few months ago. Melanie’s wearing Jenny Packham, who’s responsible for some of the Princess of Wales most memorable red carpet looks. Get the smelling salts, I’m fainting from joy over her dazzling look. Way to represent, Ms. Hamrick.
And then we come to Didier Drogba and Gabrielle Lemaire. Didier is apparently a former footballer (soccer player), but who cares. He should be the next James Bond, or King of England, or whatever he wants. (His pants legs are doing something weird too, must be the wind.) As for Mr. Drogba’s date, Gabrielle, no idea who she is either, but she’s absolutely stunning. Her dress, her gold bag and the embellished straps on her sandals … magnifique.
Last but not least, the guests of honor. In a nod to her host country, Camilla wore midnight-blue Dior couture. Her best look ever in my opinion. Mrs. Macron looked lovely too in similar shade of midnight blue. All the guys looked distinguished in their traditional black tuxes … they have it so easy.
Can you imagine attending a banquet at the Palace of Versailles in the Hall of Mirrors?! I read that the table was 60+ feet long to accommodate the 150 distinguished guests. Look at the flowers and candelabra. Oh my, and the crystal chandeliers and sconces.
Mrs. Macron hanging on Hugh’s every word. Who can blame her.
The place settings … so elegant. They dined on lobster, crab cakes and Bresse chicken. French and English cheeses were served along with amazing vintage wines and champagne. Ooh la la.
MY FRIENDS NEW PNW ISLAND HOME
Karen on Bainbridge Island, as she’s known on Instagram, recently moved into a new home … also on Bainbridge Island. I was thrilled when she agreed to share a few glimpses into her new island paradise and answer some questions. I got to know Karen during the two years we lived in our Fidalgo Island house. Coming from California I was happy to connect with others living in the area via Instagram and although we’ve never met in person I feel like we’ve known each other for eons. This is Karen and husband Bill’s third home on Bainbridge Island … let’s find out more.
First of all, how did you come to live on Bainbridge Island? You’re originally from California, right?
We found Bainbridge Island in the mid 1990’s. We were making regular trips to the Puget Sound since we had decided to retire here from Northern California. Bill is a native of Washington and I found the whole area beautiful. We found the island by accident when we were diverted here to catch the ferry to the Seattle side when our original ferry in Port Townsend was not sailing due to bad weather conditions. We were instantly smitten with the island. It’s a relaxed place with shoreline and beaches, forests, walking trails, farms, neighborhoods and an interesting history in lumber and ship building. Plus, easy access to Seattle. We have wonderful restaurants like Restaurant Marche and the Harbor Public House pub and lovely small shops like Plum and Furnish Bainbridge and the best bakery anywhere called Coquette.
People often ask if we have to leave the island for goods and services and the answer is no. The only things you really can’t buy here are large appliances like refrigerators and TV’s… and there is shopping for that sort of thing a 45-minute drive away.
Why did you decide to move from your previous home?
We decided on another move because we are certifiably nuts?! Our original home was a custom build on 4 acres and quite large. We downsized to a charming neighborhood. But after a few years we were hankering to get back to our original Bainbridge Island neighborhood which was more rural with more space between us and the neighbors.
Our criteria for what we really hope is our last house was a quiet neighborhood, single story home, little or no remodeling required, a garage, a Dutch door, nice outdoor space for enjoying our short summers and a manageable sized garden. Our new home is two stories over a finished above ground basement (as in 3 stories), no garage, a huge amount of lawn. Oh, and we went over budget too! We did manage to buy a place in a great neighborhood that needs no remodeling, and it has two decks and two Dutch doors.
Tell us about your new house!
The house is a true farmhouse built in 1905 with a down to the studs remodel in 2017. It has the original fir floors and the original siding was re-milled and is now on the ceiling of several rooms. It has such charm and character. We knew it was “the one” the minute we stepped through the front door. All our friends say the house is just so “us”.
After making offers on three homes over two years and getting beat out by buyers with no home sale required, our realtor suggested we needed to sell first before trying to buy something. We put the house on the market mid-September 2022. It sold in two days and a week later the buyers backed out. We put it back on the market and sold it a second time, also in a couple of days. The buyers let us stay until November 30th.
We put all our household goods in storage and dear and generous friends let us move into their 2-bedroom beach cottage, with a dining space, living room, nice kitchen, a deck, and a fabulous view of the Seattle skyline. We thought we’d get lucky and stay for a few months at the most. We ended up finding a house in early May but to clinch the deal we offered the sellers free rent for two months until their kids were out of school for the summer. So, we freeloaded for a total of 7 months, moving into our new house on June 27. I am happy to say we are still really good friends with our “landlords”!
How was the move and are you fully unpacked and settled?
Moving was no fun. I wish I had a dollar for every time I told Bill we were too old for this nonsense. When you see your possessions after more than half a year, you have forgotten how much stuff you have! And this was after purging a ton before we put our former home on the market. We worked from morning to night for two weeks. Furniture was arranged almost immediately since we had time to work with the floor plan and make those decisions before moving in day.
By the start of week three I would say 95% of the boxes were unpacked, contents put away in their permanent location and boxes and wrappings recycled. We are chaos averse and true homebodies and for our sanity we needed to get unpacked and settled as soon as possible.
The house is really perfect for us. We use every room, every space….everything just flows. Most of our stuff fit perfectly and we only got rid of a desk and a dresser we really didn’t need. We have windows everywhere and it’s like living in a tree house. The kitchen is really three connected spaces….kitchen, butlers pantry and eat in area that we call the cafe. It has only one upper cabinet in the whole kitchen space which I love…. I’m a drawer person. It’s so easy to find everything.
Bainbridge island is truly our home and we are enjoying our house so much. Just the other day Bill said it already feels like it’s always been ours. I am just about ready to start removing summer decor and bring in some fall touches for the season. We are chronic improvers….we can never leave well enough alone. We’ve already tiled the guest bath back splash, replaced some light fixtures and some shutters were removed and blinds and drapes installed. The basement is now Bills workshop and office complete with an upholstered swivel chair for reading. Over the winter we will work on plans for removing much of the lawn to make way for some new pathways, meadow grasses and planting areas.
No home is every truly “done” and we will happily continue to make it even better in the coming months and years. We feel so lucky to have found this wonderful home.
A few more pretty details …
Well, that was fun. Thanks for sharing Karen, and congratulations on your absolutely charming new home!
FALL COMFORT FOOD
Apparently we have warm weather on the horizon but that won’t stop me from making our fall favorite comfort foods. Last week Jim requested meatloaf. We have a running disagreement in our house about how meatloaf should be made. Jim wants it like his mom made it … with ketchup (in the loaf and baked on top). I abhor ketchup. The only thing worse is mayonnaise. Anyway, I make meatloaf with BBQ sauce (the loaf and on top). Jim protested, and then said it was the best meatloaf he ever had. I probably should be insulted because I took a shortcut this time and bought a premade meatloaf mix at our local grocery store, Diablo Foods. The only thing I added was diced onion, mini-diced carrots (sautéed in olive oil and seasoned with salt and pepper), parsley from our garden, and BBQ sauce … about 1/4 cup in the meat mixture and more on top during the last 15 minutes of baking. I use a standard loaf pan and it takes about 45 minutes at 350.
Meatloaf cannot be served without potatoes, preferably mashed. Using russet potatoes. I also like carrots as a second side. I’m sure you have your own recipe but I’m going to tell you how I do it. Diagonally slice the carrots (one per person) about 1/4″ thick Place carrots in sautée pan and add enough water up to reach near the top of, but not quite covering, the carrots. Add a dollop of salted butter on top, maybe 1/2 to 1 tbsp and season with salt and pepper. Turn heat to medium-high until water is bubbling. Reduce heat to low and add a sprinkling of slivered or sliced almonds and drizzle with honey. Keep cooking until water is mostly absorbed and carrots are slightly tender but not mushy. Add chopped parsley … and enjoy!
APPLE CIDER APEROL SPRITZ
While we’re on the fall food train, my Apple Cider Aperol Spritz recipe was a hit last year. Tis the season … so let’s revisit. It’s a great batch drink for fall gatherings.
Odds & Socks ~
Fall book pre-orders are coming in hot. Allison Bornstein’s Wear It Well is getting tons of great press. And I already mentioned The Home Edit: Stay Organized, my new guide for maintaining my newly weeded out and organized closet.
Last Saturday Kim recommended Caitlin Fleming and Julie Goebel’s Sense of Place and I ordered it same day … like magic it appeared on Sunday. Ralph Lauren: A Way of Living is the most magnificent coffee table book. And J.Crew’s limited-edition 40th anniversary tome is another coffee table masterpiece. Looks like I’ve blown my entire discretionary budget on books … but is there a more worthwhile investment? No. Obviously.
Speaking of books, do you watch Ranch to Table on the Magnolia Network? I just added Elizbeth Poett’s new cookbook to my pre-order list.
Elizabeth shared lots of warm and cozy fall and winter throw blankets. As a self-proclaimed throw connoisseur, I want them all.
Current Favorites ~
And that’s what I have for you this week.
From Versailles, to the PNW to my meatloaf.
I’ve really run the gamut.
Let’s see what’s inspiring Kim and Elizabeth …
If you missed my last post, you can catch up here.
You’ll find all my weekend roundup posts collected here.
Any thoughts you’d like to share?
I’d love to hear them and you can drop them in the comments below.
Cheers from Snowberry!