Friday Favorites 04.13.18

Greetings from High Point, North Carolina! I’m here at the furniture market, sourcing new finds for our design projects for the next few days. Be sure to follow along on Instagram to see all of my favorite finds! Which reminds me of a little piece of housekeeping– several months ago, I changed my Instagram handle from @ladolcevitablog to @palomacontrerasdesign, so please be sure to follow me there as people keep following the old account everyday. Anyhow, I will keep this short and sweet because it’s Friday and I have a huge market to go shop! Have a wonderful weekend!

Design: There are several new collections debuting at High Point this weekend. One that I am highly looking forward to seeing is the brand new collection by the incredibly talented David Kleinberg for Henredon. I have admired his work for many years and am really looking forward to see what he’s created.

Style: Have you seen the beautiful photos by Annie Leibovitz of the inspiring Amal Clooney in the latest issue of Vogue? I especially love this gorgeous image of her in a chic, polka dot gown by Johanna Ortiz. Amal has it all– beauty, brains, compassion, precious twins, and George Clooney!

Read: My friend, Phoebe Howard has a wonderful collection here at High Point and she also has a brand new book out called Coastal Blues. It is filled with the tailored and inviting sensibility that has become her signature. You can order your copy here.

Watch: A couple of weeks ago while driving to Round Top, Fabian and I heard a DJ on Sirius XM mention an HBO documentary called The Defiant Ones in reference to the song, “Stop Dragging my Heart Around” by Tom Petty and Stevie Nicks. Intrigued, we found the documentary OnDemand and binge-watched all four episodes last weekend. Fabian and I love all kinds of music and were blown away by the people the main subject of the documentary, producer Jimmy Iovine has worked with over the course of his career– everyone from Bruce Springsteen and Patti Smith to Petty and Nicks, U2, Trent Reznor, and Dr. Dre. I always love watching or listening to people who have an innate gift for what they do and incomparable drive to be the best in their field. You can watch the trailer here

Shop: Tomorrow is the last day to save 20% off of everything at Shopbop and 25% off purchases $500 and over! You can find all of my top picks in this post. A few of my favorites include this classic striped tee, this super chic bag, and this super flattering dress

Shopbop’s Big Spring Sale

Shopbop is having a major sale starting today, April 10th through Saturday, April 14th. Both sale and new, regularly priced merchandise is included, so it’s a great opportunity to score some amazing finds at an amazing deal! I’ve rounded up some of my must-haves, including both sale and new merchandise below. With Legends of La Cienega, multiple work trips, vacations to San Miguel de Allende and Paris, and a full book tour coming up, I’ve been giving a lot of thought to what to wear to so many events. I’m trying not to stress because I know I can shop my closet for a lot of things, but I’ll still need to get some new dresses and pretty tops for these events, so I’ll likely stock up while I can get this great discount. Happy Shopping!

20% Off Everything Under $500

25% Off Everything $500 or More

with Code: EVENT18

Book Review: Luis Bustamante New Perspectives

Luis Bustamante is among my favorite European interior designers. I have admired his work for years. His first book, Luis Bustamante: Interiors is among my favorites as it showcases his work which is classic, polished, and endlessly inspiring. His new book, Luis Bustamante: New Perspectives  was recently released and is just a good. It is filled with ultra-chic interiors spanning from Madrid to Mexico City and California. Bustamante started his career in the 1980s as a sculptor and painter after studying fine arts at the Universidad Compultense de Madrid. He went on to exhibit in Madrid’s political capitol of Madrid and its artistic capitol of Barcelona. Bustamante eventually moved to Barcelona and finding himself intrigued by interior design, he opted for a career change. Eventually, he moved to Mexico where he lived for five years, cementing his reputation as a formidable international designer.In the year 2000, Bustamante found his way back to his hometown of Madrid and established the design studio which serves as the headquarters for his business.

Bustamante has completed both residential and commercial projects throughout the world. Think high-profile destinations such as New York, London, Miami, Spain, and Mexico. Bustamante’s work reflects his classical sensibilities. His spaces orbit around a perfect sense of symmetry and are imbued by Roman and Greek motifs—think striking sculptures, marble columns and plenty of Greek key. While Bustamante’s work is decidedly more formal and classical than what I typically gravitate towards, it is undoubtedly elegant and timeless. It is at once bold, yet restrained. That may sound like an oxymoron, but I think you’ll understand exactly what I mean upon seeing his work.  Every space is just so fine. You can tell he uses the finest materials and every detail is attended to with the most precise perfection. Be sure to add this new book to your bookshelf!


{Photography by Ricardo Labougle Courtesy of Luis Bustamante}

A Note on Style: Travel-Ready Pieces for Spring and Summer

Hello, LDV readers! This is Karima from A Note on Style and I am back with another column. I have a few trips on the horizon so naturally I’ve got my mind on what I’ll want to pack. I love being super efficient and try to pack as light as possible. I find that if an item has multiple uses, is comfortable and can be layered, it will find a spot in my suitcase. I’m starting to put together the pieces now that will take me through weekends away and serve as an anchor for longer trips come summer.

Accessories are always key to my outfit planning, so I choose them carefully. If they have the versatility to go from beach to town, they usually make the cut. Currently, I’m looking for subtle tweaks on the staples I always need…sunglasses, hat, sandals and a bag. When selecting sunglasses, I look for frames that fold fairly flat so they don’t add extra bulk to my bag. A cat eye looks cool to me right now, especially these with a neutral tortoise rim. I’m also interested in updating my natural colored straw hat this season and think black looks pretty sharp. I’m all about brown sandals and accessories this season and love how they pair with black and white. As far as totes, I think I’ve found the perfect straw bag. It looks equally good on the beach as it does in a restaurant. This one’s a keeper.


Focusing on a color story makes packing a breeze. It forces me to eliminate items that I may love but don’t serve a purpose on a trip. I consistently start with black and white as an anchor, then add a pop of color. It’s a formula that’s easy to streamline and has served me well over the years. A pair of no-fuss white jeans and tailored black shorts act as the base for endless easy looks. I’ll toss in a few black and white tops that can be rolled and don’t rely on an iron to look good. A knit tank in a bright color adds texture and a hefty dose of chic. Keeping jewelry to the bare minimum, I’ll opt for something that’s elegant, simple but interesting like this mismatched pair from Melissa Joy Manning.


On top of those essentials, I’ll add a swimsuit and cover-up. If the cover-up can double as a top over white jeans, that’s a huge bonus. I always like to have a dress on hand and choose one that can go from day to night and is travel friendly, meaning it’s printed and can be rolled into a small space in the suitcase. I’ll pack another flat sandal that dresses things up a notch, but is still casual enough to wear with shorts or jeans. I love this understated style from Jimmy Choo which also comes in white. A lightweight pouch that can be used as a catch-all in a big tote but still attractive enough to function as a clutch is another essential.

All of these pieces are lightweight, take up minimal space and fit nicely into my streamlined packing formula. The only other items I’d add are a tee-shirt, tank and a wrap, in case it’s chilly. The best part about pre-planning and having a strategy on what to pack, is once I’m at my destination, I don’t have to waste time conjuring up outfits. With an edited selection of fantastic pieces that I know work numerous ways, every look is a winner.

Shop all items pictured below:

Friday Favorites: 04.06.18

Happy Friday! I hope you’ve all had a great week. Ours included three trips to the vet for Tate, but luckily it wasn’t anything serious and he is totally fine. We’ve also been busy working on some client presentations and I am gearing up for the Design in Bloom event in Houston and my trip to High Point Market to source new things for clients next week. Since it has been a somewhat stressful week, I’m grateful to have finally gotten back into a pilates routine and found a studio I really like. It took longer to get back into the groove than I would have liked after I fell down the stairs at my house in January. I still have pain from time to time, but am feeling so much better and for that, I am thankful. Here’s what’s been on my radar this week!

Design: A lot of people are talking about the resurgence of traditional design elements in the mainstream. Granted, traditional design is classic for a reason and has never gone out of style to those of us in the know, but for the past several years, the masses have been drawn to a more modern design aesthetic built around a minimal color palette. It seems that the tides are turning and people are embracing things like antiques, chintz, chinoiserie, toile, and what has been referred to as a “granny chic” aesthetic. I’m not a fan of the term and apparently, neither is Christina Dandar of The Potted Boxwood who penned a post this week titled “In Defense of Grandma” which tackles this subject with panache. What are your thoughts on this? I can think of a great descriptor for this style– timeless.

Style: The brilliant British artist and designer, Luke Edward Hall has collaborated with Stubbs and Wooton, makers of the most stylish smoking slippers for a couple of years. His latest collection for the footwear brand is currently available on Moda Operandi and it is super chic. I currently have my eye on this indigo pair embroidered with a couple of Greco busts as well as this jade pair featuring a couple of Greek columns. 

Read: I recently received a fabulous new book, Home: The Foundations of Enduring Spaces that should be required reading for anyone aspiring to be a designer or for any design enthusiast. “Home: The Foundations of Enduring Spaces is the definitive publication from one of the country’s leading colleges of interior design. The lavishly illustrated and highly detailed interior design encyclopedia provides a comprehensive education on home design and decor, from color theory principles to space-specific considerations. Built on the foundation of the College’s curriculum, Home: The Foundations of Enduring Spaces offers an unparalleled mastery of the key elements of lasting design. ‘I wanted to create an interior design resource for people of every level of knowledge as they create beautiful and functional interiors, and introduce them to design thinking and the design process,’ said Dr. Ellen Fisher. Dr. Ellen Fisher, author of the book, is Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the College at NYSID. She is a New York State Certified Interior Designer who maintains an active residential and commercial design practice in the New York metropolitan area.” The book explains the foundations of design and also outlines the design process and best practices for designers. 

Watch: My guilty pleasure is mindless reality television– precisely for that reason. It gives me a little while where I don’t have to think or stress about a to-do list and is so very different from my own life. This week saw the return of two of my favorite diversions– The Real Housewives of New York, which is my favorite in the franchise and rarely disappoints. A more recent favorite, Southern Charm has also returned and it looks like it will deliver another drama-filled season with moments so absurd, you couldn’t make them up.

Cook: Although my mom is a wonderful cook and I learned to love good food because of her, she didn’t teach me how to cook. I wasn’t very hands-on in the kitchen when I was growing up and even when I was curious about learning how to make something, it didn’t translate because my mom doesn’t cook from recipes or measure things out exactly. I like to think that Ina Garten and Giada de Laurentiis taught me how to cook. When Fabian and I first got married, I’d come home from my teaching job and watch episodes of Barefoot Contessa and Everyday Italian, where I learned about various cooking techniques and found recipes that I continue to make today. Ina Garten is the ultimate in my book. I just adore her. I haven’t kept up with Giada as faithfully, but I’ve already ordered her newest cookbook, Giada’s Italy: My Recipes for La Dolce Vita. How could I not with that title?! The book is filled with delicious recipes and beautiful photos of Giada’s journey through Italy with her darling daughter, Jade and their family. 

Travel: Last year, I started following Stacie Flinner on Instagram after coming across her beautiful Instagram account. She and her husband just wrapped up a year-long trip around the globe in which they visited 70 countries. Can you imagine? It was the trip of a lifetime, I’m sure. Check out her Instagram and I can guarantee you will have an instant case of wanderlust.

Shop: I love just about anything with a faux bamboo motif. While it works at any time of the year, it feels especially appropriate for spring and summer. I’m currently loving these gilded bamboo brackets, this versatile pair of bamboo hoop earrings, and these bamboo gallery frames which feel a bit more modern in white. 

P.S. Be sure to head over to my stories on Instagram today where I am doing another “Friday Five Q & A” in which I answer questions from my readers and followers! Have a wonderful weekend!