Thursday, March 10, 2011

Weekend Reads: History of Delights

Let\'s Bring Back
Let's Bring Back by Lesley M.M.Blume

Since last week I've managed to read over 200 pages of Drood by Dan Simmons. I am loving it! It is a book that I never want to put down. Since the novel is set in the 19th century I find that I'm watching more than my share of Antique TV shows. In my lust for vintage and the curiosity over objects of the past, I have come across Lesley M.M.Blume, style editor at Huffington Post, who also has a similar passion.

Lesley showing off the goods! Grab a copy here!
BOOK SUMMARY: The Huffington Post's "Let's Bring Back..." columnist, Lesley M. M. Blume, invites you to consider whatever happened to cuckoo clocks? Or bed curtains? Why do we have so many "friends" but have done away with the much more useful word "acquaintance"? All of these things, plus hot toddies, riddles, proverbs, corsets, calling cards, and many more, are due for a revival. Throughout this whimsical, beautifully illustrated encyclopedia of nostalgia, Blume breathes new life into the elegant, mysterious, and delightful trappings of bygone eras, honoring the timeless tradition of artful living along the way. Inspired by her much loved column of the same name and featuring entries from famous icons of style and culture, Let's Bring Back leads readers to rediscover the things that entertained, awed, beautified, satiated, and fascinated in eras past.

Another old soul, Jessica Kerwin Jenkins, author of the Encyclopedia of the Exquiste: An anecdotal History of Elegant Delights, offers her version of luxury, whimsy, marvelous artifacts, and reveals in the beauty of things gone past.
Jessica Kerwin Jenkins & Encyclopedia of the Exquisite: Image Source KR Connect
BOOK SUMMARY: Jenkins book takes a cue from the exotic encyclopedias of the 16th century, which brimmed with mysterious artifacts, focusing on the elegant, the rare, the commonplace and the delightful. A compendium of luxury that merges whimsy and practicality, the book traipses through all the fine arts, showcasing every sphere of style: fashion, food, travel, home, garden and beauty.
Image via Jenkins Blog
In the spirit of renewing old sources of beauty, and using an anecdotal approach, each entry proffers an array of engaging stories. Among them: the explosive history of champagne; the art of lounging on a divan; the emergence of “frillies,” the first lacy, racy lingerie; the luxe legend of sweet-smelling saffron; the riot incited by the appearance of London’s first top hat; Julia Child’s tip for cooking the perfect omelet; the polarizing practice of wearing red lipstick during WWII; Louis XIV’s fondness for the luscious Bartlett pear; the Indian origin of badminton; Europe’s 17th century false beauty mark fad; the evolution of the Japanese kimono; the pilgrimage of Central Park’s Egyptian obelisk; and the thrill of dining alfresco.
Image via Jenkins Blog
Encyclopedia of the Exquisite is a lifestyle guide for the Francophile and the Anglomaniac, the gourmet and the style maven, the armchair traveler and the art-lover. It’s an homage to the esoteric world of glamour that doesn’t require much spending, but makes us feel rich.
Still in the mood for vintage and rustic? Country Living Aged to Perfection: Adding Rustic Charm to Your Modern Home, written by Leslie Linsley is a beautiful selection. 

Lesley Linsley began her career by selling original decoupage to Cartier, Tiffany, Henri Bendel, and Bergdorf Goodman NYC, Jackie Onassis and Oprah. Since then she has been selling her uniquely crafted items in her Nantucket and Boston stores, writing books on design, or publishing style ideas on HGTV, House Beautiful, and Country Living magazine. She is a powerhouse! In her book published last September, her original inspirations are connected into modern living spaces. Her book is an artful blend of tradition, history, and modern sensibility.
Aged to Perfection by Leslie Linsley {Image Source}

Weekend Blog Reads

My last image was sourced from She Moves the Furniture. It is written by the Lise, owner of RevivalSmith, a Philadelphia vintage boutique. Her blog is a fantastic resource for beautiful collaborations of modern aesthetic and vintage finds. There are pages of eye candy and style ideas for those on a budget.

Her recent post features the vibrant and eclectic styles of world travelers. Doesn't this room speak volumes about the person who lives here?
Image via She Moves the Furniture

Can't make it into her Philly Store? No worries, check out her online shop RevivalSmith at Etsy too!

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