Is this going to be about snow monkeys?

Someone asked me this morning, “What is your blog going to be about today? Snow monkeys?” No snow monkeys this week, but it does sound like a topic I might need to explore at a later date.

My season pass to the State Fair is still waiting to be used. Not to worry, I will use it next week. I almost went last night when all the power outages and overall traffic nightmares caused by that the storm ruined many a Thursday evening plan. My normally super easy commute from the Design District to Exposition Park took more than 45 minutes. The commute was filled with lots of scary moments. Why are drivers so confused by how four-way stops actually work? It is not that difficult, people. If you can count to four, you should be able to figure it out. And stop signs mean you should apply the brakes and come to an actual stop. I swear, I saw at least three wrecks in a one-mile stretch.

In personal news, my new iPhone arrived. I know you were breathlessly awaiting this update. But for me, it is almost like celebrating my birthday all over again since this was a birthday gift that arrived a few months late. But upgrading does not come without a hiccup or two. It has forced me to address my digital hoarding issues. Yes, I am guilt of hoarding mass amounts of data—useless yet still adorable pictures of my animals, furniture, fabrics, holidays, and, of course, pictures of Max. All that downloading, updating, and syncing was not very fun what with the entire password remembering and waiting thing. It can make a person downright anxious. Mr. Jim needs no more anxiety.

 

It did help me think up a new phrase: “This could take an Apple minute.” An “Apple minute” is defined as a timeframe ranging anywhere from an actual minute to 28 hours. This is not to be confused with a “Mr. Jim minute,” which is usually defined as taking anywhere from 30 minutes to one hour.

In design news, the Dallas Design Center, which encompasses much more than just the actual center, has been sold. I think this could be the fourth or fifth owner since we moved to the area almost 15 years ago. Word on the street is they plan to redevelop the center in four or five years to multi-story residential. I have not confirmed this information because, let’s face facts, this is a blog series that mostly consists of stories about me. However, this information did come from a reliable source. What does that mean for the showrooms currently located in the center? Perhaps a new design area will emerge. The only constant in this business is change, which could also explain why my excited face and my not-excited face are the exact same expression.

In more design news, the Dwell with Dignity preview party is coming up next week. It’s your chance to get designer goods at amazing pricing. Everything is displayed in beautiful vignettes by some of the area’s top design talent, and the proceeds go to a great cause. I got to see a preview, and there are some really great items, and everyone involved has worked super hard. So go buy your tickets now here. I already have my eyes on a set of smoky mirrors, which I think might add some industrial chic to my master bedroom.

And finally, let’s wrap up this week with something new. How about these new fabrics from one of the world’s largest fabric editors, JAB? This image is giving me a whole lot of fall. And with this little cold front—I mean, cool front—we are also feeling fallish. I would be remiss if I did not point out that the drapery in this image might be giving me a little bit (okay, a whole lot) of that sweater that got Korina booted off Project Runway. But I do have to say it looks much better as drapery. Really, I think it was her horrible attitude that got her booted. If you want to move forward, here is some advice: Don’t *&^! with Nina. Anyway back to our fall look. This is from their Jazzy prints collection, which is just a small portion of the massive fall launch that includes some amazing textiles and wonderful sheers. I do love the bold use of the print on the sofa, and color just makes almost everything better. After all, isn’t it better to live a life out loud than never to have lived at all? I think so.

Happy Friday!

San Francisco – The recap

Often—no, let’s change that—every day on holiday, Max will ask, “What was your favorite thing about the day?” Recently, I had to reply, “Not dying.” This was after taking the advanced trail through the Muir Woods. But we will cover more on that topic later. Let’s get started with our vacation recap of San Francisco, or as I like to call it, “Please baby Jesus, don’t let this be like the last time I was here when Shortbread blew her makeup off.”

The weather was pretty amazing. It was warm and sunny every day. This has not been my typical experience with San Francisco weather. Usually, it is overcast, and I am layered up for the chill, so this weather made the majority of the items in my luggage unnecessary. But then again, this doesn’t differ much from any other trip. Over-packers Anonymous, anyone?

On our first day, we did some light shopping, touring, and French fry eating. I was starving but we didn’t want to spoil dinner, so we popped into Burger Bar for a beer and some fries. Trust me, best skinny fries ever. Then it was time to head back to the hotel and freshen up for dinner. While we were waiting for Uber, a gentleman staying at the hotel stopped me, and said, “Excuse me. Can I ask you a question?”

I am pretty sure there was an eye roll involved before I replied, “Sure, if you have to.”

He asked, “Are my pants too big? I noticed you look nice, and your pants are not a big in the leg as mine? I am really nervous. It’s my first date, and I want to make a good impression.”

He had on a coat and slacks and a clean white shirt. I asked him to turn around and then instructed him to open his coat. Then I had him close it. Then I looked at it again. I had him button it up and turn around again. I must say he followed instructions well, and he was pretty attractive in a “straight baseball player” kind of way. (Now that I think about it I should have given him Liz’s number.)

At the end of the exercise, I gave him some parting advice: “You look fine—very nice actually. Please don’t be nervous about your pants. Have fun and no more drinks until dinner. Nerves tend to make us drink too much, and you don’t want that to be the first impression if you want to see this girl again.”

Just between us: His pants were a little big, but I didn’t want to make him more nervous.

Then it was off for a drink at the Waterbar. Yes, it is located on the water, and it has a bar. It also provides great people watching. But if you want to check out as many places as possible in a rather short timeframe, you need to have a drink at one place, and then go to another spot for dinner. For us, that meant dinner at The Slanted Door. It was delicious and packed.

On the second day it was brunch with Ken’s lovely goddaughter at Brenda’s. (She really is lovely. Upon seeing her photo, a friend asked, “Your goddaughter is Blake Lively?”) Brenda’s is a super popular brunch spot with some of the best grits west of the Mississippi.

Then we pointed the Mini toward the Muir Woods. Here is one thing I can tell you about the Muir Woods: They are truly beautiful and awe inspiring. This could be why a million plus people make the trek each year. And it’s probably why we had to park about two miles away. I felt like I had already hiked by the time we reached the visitor’s center. If you aren’t in shape, say from months of trying to figure out what the hell is wrong with your leg, yet you decide to take a more difficult trail to take in the ocean view—well, may the force be with you.

I felt the force—the force of my heart wanting to pound through my chest—along with profuse sweating and shortness of breath. After hiking up the mountain for what seemed like 25 miles (but really was maybe two), I thought perhaps this could be my final resting place. I was paler than Nicole Kidman. All I could see were more and more tiny steps and grooves up an even steeper slope, and it all started to stretch farther in the distance like something out of that classic Hitchcock movie, Vertigo.

Wanting to reach the top, I considered employing the butt scooch. It’s something I learned from my acting teacher when she had too much whiskey and couldn’t walk up the stairs ,so she had to go via the butt-meets-step method. But it didn’t sound very pleasant and neither did death, so I started back down the trail. Although Max was disappointed that he didn’t get to reach the top, Max also began to feel the force. His was the force of nature. I’ll just leave it at that. I may go back next year to see if some poison ivy might be growing in a particular location.

On a happier note, I feel like we covered more of San Francisco this go than all my previous trips combined. We explored from the Tenderloin and the Gold Coast to Lombard, Union, Fillmore, and beyond. We also explored Sausalito and even made some time for some culture at the de Young Museum. The views from the Hamon Tower are spectacular.

Now back to our culinary exploration of the city. We did SPGR in the Fillmore area for fantastic pasta, although the corners of my ravioli were dryer than the heels of my feet three weeks after a pedicure. But everyone else loved their dishes. Other delicious meals included dinner with more relatives of no known blood relation at Park Tavern. It’s a great space, and I had the most amazing roasted chicken ever. It ranks right up there with the $100 Thomas Keller chicken at Todd and Ceron’s wedding (featured inVogue!) And we discovered some delicious new wines. Image that.

On Sunday Max said he had a surprise. The last time he surprised me was with a marriage proposal at Cartier on Fifth, where I had arrived with acute food poisoning. So when he said he had another surprise, I immediately reached for a bottle of Imodium. But thankfully, this was not one of life’s milestone moments but rather a relaxing day at the spa at Cavallo Point, a former army post now turned world-class resort.

This was the perfect way to end a holiday: Lunch by the meditation pool, an excellent massage, and a wine tasting on the veranda looking at the bay. It’s heaven! I did not want to leave and neither did my Orlebar Brown shorts, as they somehow found the only loose nail in the city and attached themselves to it. Like I have always said, Mr. Jim just can’t have nice things. We finished off the day with dinner at Boulevard, and what was yet another wonderful meal.

So that was my trip. Now you know where to eat, where to relax, and which trail not to take through the Muir Woods. You also know when it best to tell the truth or maybe just a little white lie. (Mr. Too Big Pants, I hope you had a good date!) Happy Friday!

It takes two

It seems like this week has been about a stories of twos. It started Tuesday, when I had two beers and two tacos for dinner to celebrate selling two dining tables. See how simple I can be? Wednesday, I had dinner with a friend. I haven’t seen her in two years, and we live about two miles from one another. That’s just not right. But she is the kind of friend that you can just pick up where you last left off. In other words, she is the best kind of friend.

The next day, I had two different clients that I had not seen in forever, but strangely enough, I had just recently thought about. Don’t you hate when that happens? It is kind of spooky. It’s also the reason why I try to never think about an ex.

Back to my clients. The first one—who is typically always happy—is going through a divorce after three decades of marriage. So while I was happy to see her, I was not happy to see her so unhappy. And then that same day, as I was busy calculating drapery hardware (while simultaneously wanting to stab myself because this would be the unglamorous part of design—all the measuring and calculating and recalculating), another client walked up to my desk. This person happened to be my very first client on my first day of work when I moved to Dallas not quite two decades ago. I have to tell you, my mouth dropped open as soon I as I saw her because I actually thought she had died. Needless to say, I was thrilled to see that she had not. But I did hug her three times, just to make sure.

And then last night we had dinner with the two Davids. We had not seen them in two years. And then I also started my wildly popular blog, Style Bastard, two years ago. When I say “popular,” I mean in the way that so many people are waiting in line to work with Lohan—not very.

Now let’s talk about design. The fall fabric collections are arriving at an alarming pace. Thousands upon thousands of new designs, textures, patterns, and colors are arriving daily. Do you have a particular design style you are looking for? Chances are we have a brand new fabric for that, plus some.

St. James’s – the new Royal Collection from Designers Guild

I think it’s only fitting that we tie in our stories of two with the launch of Royal Collection from Designers Guild. The new collection, called St James’s, takes its inspiration from St. James’s Palace where Tricia Guild and her design team were given exclusive access. The designs draw inspiration from many different aspects of the palace: interior decoration, architectural elements, and items from the archives. The Queen would have nothing less than this beautiful collection.

We just lost someone I consider to be the queen  of comedy, Joan Rivers, and I am suffering from whatever they call it (I’m too lazy to Google) when you’re sad that a celebrity you didn’t know in-person dies. But I will carry on, and I am kicking off the weekend with dinner and a show, Buyer & Cellar, at the Dallas City Performance Hall with two of my favorite people.

So as we end of story of two I leave you with some more wise words from our dearly departed Joan ”Never floss with a stranger.” Happy Friday!

Scorched Bridges

Want to know what else makes me happy other than the fact that today is Friday? As I was about to step into the shower this morning, Max informed me that I was going to have an even better Saturday. What constitutes a good Saturday? For me, it would be not having to track a shipment every day for a month for a package I’m never going to receive. That is a good Saturday. But I will be totally and completely happy with a facial, shopping for fall, and dining out with friends. And since he suggested the shopping part, I definitely think that means that he’s buying, don’t you?

I also want to put special emphasis on the dinner “out” part because this means no clean-up at home. Last weekend’s dinner party required no fewer than five loads of dishes that had to be cleaned and put away. This task would have been more pleasant had the dinner party taken place on a day the maid actually works. I now know why my mother was so fond of disposable dishes. (But I love all of my dinner guests dearly!) 

What else is happening? Well, it seems like every other Dallas showroom owner and fashion mogul is out of town and has either gotten married or had a birthday or both. I send best wishes to all of them. Okay, let’s be honest, most of them. It has been a long time coming for us folks, being able to get married and all. Too bad it still isn’t legal in the state that we call home.

Speaking of all these wedding and birthdays, I received an e-mail from my ex the other night. There have been several exes, but this one still stands out asthe ex. At first, I was afraid to open it because, well, it was a freaking e-mail from an ex and Pandora was just not into opening that box at that moment. I had just finished dinner and was still enjoying my margarita buzz. But then I read the subject line—“I am so proud of you”—so I decided it couldn’t be all that scary.

Turns out, he had just returned from a birthday party on the east coast where some Dallas folks were also in attendance—some of whom I know. He said he had told them all that I said “hello.” That was nice, especially since I had just seen and “liked” a picture one of them had Intagrammed from that particular party. He wanted to tell me what the response was to my “hello.”

I was breathless with anticipation before reading the next line.

He said what surprised him (and completely shocked me) was the collective response back. He said it was one of genuine fondness, even from the snarky ones. Since I was formerly Miss Bitter 1992, I have a hard time believing it, but I love hearing it just the same.

I started to think back to how I was connected to all those people. We can call it six degrees of Jimbo. One had given my first job in the design industry, which was in the sample department (equivalent to starting in the mailroom) almost 20 years ago. I would like to think I was hired because of my work ethic and a recommendation from a Houston designer, but honestly, I think he hired me because I had blonde surfer hair. Whatever works, right? I had a long and often tumultuous relationship with another party guest. One had rented an apartment to me at a great rate when I needed a place to live. One used to take me to the most glamorous parties as his “plus one” back in the day. Another person there and I used to travel together on summer adventures. Another one remains one of my top (and sweetest) clients to this day. Of course there was one—okay, two—that I do not get along with, and I am not sure why. But we keep it civil because we do have so many friends in common.

So here I was dreading opening up an e-mail from an ex, and after reading it, I ended up having an “aha” moment. For many years I thought I had clawed and chewed my way up the proverbial ladder all on my own, but really I had help in one form or another from all these seemingly random people who were all now celebrating life and love miles and miles away. Granted, they were all celebrating without me. But I am totally okay with that.

Fall in love with Osborne & Little's Cavatino wallcovering

Fall for Osborne & Little’s Cavatino wallcovering

I leave you with this parting shot courtesy of Osborne & Little. I think it is a great transition into fall. This room makes me feel good (just like that random e-mail), and I know for certain those fabrics feel even better. And just as the lines continuously intersect on the lovely Cavatino wall covering, so to do the people in your life—during the course of your entire life. So while it sometimes might be necessary to scorch a bridge or two along the way, make sure you leave it standing so you can cross it again at some point in the future.

Happy Friday.

Fall for Friday

From the overflow of September issues in my mailbox, I can tell fall is almost here. So forget that it will be 100 degrees today, tomorrow, and for the foreseeable future because it’s time to start thinking about all those heavy layers and warm fabrics like wools, cashmeres, and suedes. Are you sweating yet?

I’m not sure which look to go for this fall. Should it be ’60s mod, ’80s mod (not sure I want to revisit that era, although it was a lot of fun), or Dior-clad, hedge-fund mod? I am currently rocking the tri-compartmental osteoarthritis knee-mod look. I can’t begin to tell you how sexy the look is.

After flipping through a few issues that are almost as heavy as Big Ray, it looks like I also need to change up the hair. Just when I was getting used to high and tight on the sides, it’s time to grow it back out. At least that is one thing hair is good at: growing. I wish it would grow more in some places and less in others.

 

Did you read about the lady who eschewed shampoo for years and now says her hair maintains itself. Seriously? Maintains itself? Have you seen my hair when I wake up in the morning? Probably not. Let me describe it for you: It looks like Miley snuck in during the night and did a world tour on my head. But all this woman uses is some diluted baking soda and some apple cider vinegar to wash her hair when needed. I don’t know about you, but for some reason apple cider vinegar just reminds me of those awful smelling perms my mom would get back in the day. Of course, she had to drag me along with her to the Cut and Curl, me being the youngest child and all. And yes, they had electricity and moving vehicles back then. And how were all those trips with her to the “beauty parlor”? It’s called Steel Magnolias.

Since we all will be changing up our wardrobes soon, we will also need to do some changing up at home. I mean, you don’t want your new fall wardrobe to clash with your interiors, do you? I think not. You are the queen or king of your domain, and as such it should also look amazing. But don’t worry, changing up for the season doesn’t mean you have to break the bank, although on my end of the design spectrum, we do prefer if you do a little tapping of that wallet.

Start with some new pillows. Pick pillows in autumnal tones that will also match the flowers and other decorations for the season. Then start switching out some of your accessories. Get some new boxes, bowls, and even some new coffee table books. Whatever you like, just be sure to pull in the colors of the season and from those pillows. I also like to switch out lamps and/ or lamps shades. It is a nice way to bring in even more color, and people will think you have redone the entire room. And don’t forget about a throw or two. A throw is great way to add additional color and texture. And if you want to really switch things up, you could think about doing some slipcovers for sofas, lounge chairs, or even dining chairs. But please make sure they are fitted and not all slumpy in what used to be called “shabby chic.” There is nothing chic about an ill-fitting slipcover. Would you wear a designer dress that wasn’t tailored?

Sneak peek of AW 2014 collections from Designers Guild

Now here is a sneak peek, because by using the words “sneak peek,” I think I can technically get around those press embargoes until the actual launch on September 2. This image is from one of our all-time favorites, Designers Guild. I know I post a lot of their images. Want to know why? Because they do awesome photography. They also create beautiful products.

In our sneak peek, we see the beautiful new Indupala Silks collection. Gorgeous. You can fall in love with it now (see how I slipped “fall” back in?), but like I said, don’t ask for samples until September 2. Okay? Also, don’t tell London you saw this.

Happy Friday!

Olive you too

It’s the first of August. How did that happen? It seems like it was just April. Now it is August, and I have yet to step near or in a pool. I find this almost as strange as The Leftovers. I guess my absence from the pool will make the surgeon general and my mother happy. A couple of weeks ago when we were getting some spa treatments, the lady said to me, “Your skin is so pale. Not like most people here who want color—you know, kind of orange. In my country, pale skin is a status symbol, and people even bleach their skin to make it pale.”

I guess she didn’t know that at my age, you never want to be called “pale” because you’re afraid someone is going to check for a pulse. I prefer the term “fair.” It’s good to know that Styrofoam-white is a hot color somewhere.

 

Since it isn’t 100 degrees outside, I think that calls for a dance party. We should start it as soon as possible. I mean, does anyone really want to work today? I’ll have to sit this dance party out since my knee is still problematic. I now have to get out the car like I am approaching 100 with a severe calcium deficiency. You really never know how much you depend on something until it isn’t working properly. Of course, Max is very concerned—but I think not so much about my knee. He’s worried about what it looks like for him to be seen with someone limping along like the last season of Glee. Nothing screams “young and fresh” like a boot and a cane. But there is one advantage to being married to someone older. (Did I just type that?) You will always be younger. But if you’re married to LiLo, you will always look younger, no matter what.

Now on to design news: Just when you thought you had mastered Radiant Orchid, it is time to start thinking about color trends for 2015. That’s right. It is time to start pinning your new favorite colors. After some exhaustive research (aka: lunch spent at my desk eating a chicken sandwich that was drier that Ruth Bader Ginsburg while searching Google), I have come up with what you are going to be seeing in 2015. Olive, more of a grayish olive—like it has been sitting in your martini for a while—could be the new grey. Considering how much grey is out there now, that may be doubtful. But olive works well with other colors and also looks great with a shot of color. I love to toss in something turquoise with olive. Or even orange or both.

Shades of olive with a shot of tropical glamour from Christian Lacroix for Designers Guild

I remember when I first moved to Dallas and the color of the moment was sage or as I referred to it “dead frog green.” Everything and everybody wanted sage.

Also popular for 2015 will be what some call “Greek blue.” Pretty much any of the richer, deeper tones of blue will be popular, but they kind of always are. Add sheen to the finish, and you are right on track. Colors from the ’60s are also going to be a thing. That is good to know as we used 1960s colors as the basis for Style Bastard two years ago. And 60 would be about the number of subscribers I have after two years. You think having “Bastard” in the name has anything to do with it?

Anyway, along with olive, blue, and orange, expect colors to get slightly muddy. I’ve read that colors from the Renaissance will be popular. I always think of Giotto or Vecchio for color when I think of Renaissance but that is Italian Renaissance, and I think they are thinking more Vermeer.

So that’s what is going on this Friday. Enjoy this cooler weekend. I think we are going to spend a day in Fort Worth and check out some museums (more color inspiration!) and try a new restaurant or two. That will be stomach inspiration. Happy Friday!

It’s getting hot in here

The other night, while watching Master Chef, my eyes got all misty when Gordon Ramsey said, “Your donuts are perfection.” I am not sure what this says about my current mental state. Maybe it was just past my bedtime. I may have also been hungry. I did go in search of something sweet, but there was nothing to be found—even the hidden stash of chocolate was gone. So I did what any normal person would do. I ate some sweet chili potato chips—the entire large bag. Even worse, I ate them in the dark. My thinking: If no one actually sees you eat the chips, no one can prove you ate them. Of course, that strange orange/red color residue on my fingers and lips might have given it away. The next morning, when I was getting dressed, I discovered the pants I wanted to wear had shrunk. But the strange thing is that they had only gotten smaller in the waist. I am sure the two incidents have absolutely nothing to do with one another.

In pop culture news, rumor has it that Justin Bieber has signed on to be the new face, although I am not so sure “face” is the correct term here,  for Calvin Klein pull-ups–I mean, underwear. I am sure Max will be anxiously awaiting the release of that ad.

In design news, word on the street in Los Angeles is some major brands are leaving La Cienega and moving back into the PDC. This is definitely bucking a trend that started after the great recession when lines where moving to the street to try and capture a larger audience, and dare I say, without threat of life or limb-sell retail. I guess designer focused and driven sales are still the way of the world, for now.

And in Dallas news, it’s hot, so stop complaining. It doesn’t help. Know what does? Frozen margaritas or an Aperol Spritz. That or Millionaire-ing it to a cooler climate. I am pretty much here for the rest of summer. That is what happens when your partner’s busy season happens to be during the peak of heat. I did not fully understand this prior to committing to the relationship. But like they say, “If you can’t stand the heat, turn up the freaking AC.” The one thing I can’t get use to is getting in and out of that hot car. When the inside of your car reads 106 degrees, it’s really hard not to sweat continuously. But I try to think of this more like pore cleansing (which could be considered a spa treatment) instead of just sweating through my Trussardi. It’s all about attitude and how you choose to view the situation.

 

Dani leather in use on one really big boat. Image courtesy of Dani Leather

So with that, I am off to learn more about leather. I know, most of you think leather is leather. What more is there to learn about leather? Well, did you know that there are many different grades of leather? Leather for automobiles has different specifications and requirements than the leather used for aircraft or marine purposes. And the leather used for your handbags and shoes is different than the leather on your favorite chairs. There are also like a million different finishes, colors, and textures you can choose from. Is it pure aniline or is it a pull-up? Can I emboss it? Is it waxed or tipped? It is all starting to sound more and more like the menu at the hair salon, so I better go learn some more. But this I do know, our new leather line, Dani, is the tannery so you are going directly to the source that produces beautiful leather for some of the most exclusive luxury brands in the world. And working directly with the tannery means they know what they are doing. It also means lower prices for you, my dear designers. Here is an image of some of their marine-grade leather in use on someone’s fancy yacht. Is it just me or can you also totally see yourself on that banquette just about now?

So with that I am off. I hope you have a fantastic Friday.

Do I know you?

When I woke up this morning, I almost thought I was in another city. What a relief to have a cool breeze in mid-July! And speaking of a cool breeze,I was at dinner last night to catch up with my “cousin”—in town from San Francisco along with other assorted friends and family—and I felt like I was under the actual Polar Vortex because that AC must have been set on the Ice Age setting. Maybe they set it so low to keep the margaritas from melting? It didn’t work on mine. But whatever the reason, you have to eat fast before the cheese gets hard. There’s nothing worse than cold Tex-Mex.

It was fun catching up—even though I was freezing, and I had a hard time hearing. Is it me, or did that sentence just totally sound like something my grandma would say? I think more restaurants should think about acoustics when they are designing the spaces. A table of eight should be able to hear one another. To achieve this, you need soft surfaces to help absorb sound, but I guess when you add tequila to a situation, it’s just going to automatically get louder no matter the surface.

 

As long as we are talking about food, what about that dust up with John Tesar and food critic Leslie Brenner? I don’t know either personally, although I did meet Tesar at Spoon, and I have eaten at Knife. In fact, I think it was the first week it was open. We took our chances at the bar, and it was fun. We even met the people who were seated next to us. They were asking us what some of the menu options meant. They weren’t what my aunt used to call, “city people.” But I was happy to help explain where I could.

Anyway, I thought my meal was good. But if I say I did not enjoy my dessert, will I be banned from the restaurant? If one can be banned for not liking the dessert portion of a meal, then I will be banned from most restaurants worldwide. And that is not a good thing because we eat out a lot.

On the topic of meeting and knowing people, I am confused on the etiquette of how to greet people you have met (or think you have met) as opposed to greeting people you know and don’t know. My brain tells me you should just be pleasant in any of these situations and greet people the same. Let’s take the people who sat next to us at Knife. Did I want to be interrupted mid-bite to explain to someone I didn’t know what I was eating? Probably not, but I wasn’t going to be rude. They were nice people and just enjoying a night out in the big city. I didn’t want to pull a Lea Michelle and act all Streisand on them just because I was interrupted.

Anyway, I experienced a meet-and-greet conundrum at a recent cocktail party. I was talking to someone I know, and then a person who I had been introduced to came walking up with a big smile and open arms. I thought it rather strange to be greeted so enthusiastically by someone I had only met briefly several years ago, but this is Texas and people are friendly. I thought I better go in equally as enthusiastic.

But guess what? That greeting was for the person I was talking to—not me. Awkward!

But instead of rolling with it and being polite, the greeter’s smile quickly became a frown. Even worse, I sensed some definite disdain as they said, “Do I know you?” I began to feel like the new kid in junior high looking for a place to sit in the cafeteria. I replied, “Well, yes we have met before, plus we have been around at many of the same events.” And to put this in perspective for you, there were maybe 20 people at this cocktail party, so obviously we all know a lot of the same folks.

But instead of saying,” I am sorry I don’t remember your name. It is nice to meet you,” the person chose to spin around and walk off. I was just glad we had additional plans and I didn’t have to spend any more time there.

So what twisting road is Jimbo taking us down instead of talking about decorating? Well I guess what I am trying to say is best left to the words of the late Maya Angelou: “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

So next time you are in an awkward or unfamiliar social situation and you are not sure whether or not to rely on that manners book from 1862, here is a helpful hint: just try being nice. It won’t hurt. (Not for long anyway.) And remember, one day someone could and probably will be asking if they know you for whatever reason, and wouldn’t it be nice if the reply was, “I don’t know him very well, but I did meet him once at a party, and he was really nice.”

Happy Friday!

I hope you are having fun. Now, who are you?

It’s time to get real up in here and give you the lowdown on what has been going on since we last spoke. First, we had my birthday. Yay! Another year older and wiser, but hopefully, I’m still just as fun. I think the fun part might be doubtful but certainly hopeful. I kept it low key with dinner at Kitchen LTO with just Max since we had just finished hosting the annual 4th of July party. More on that in a minute.

I’m going to give my birthday dinner a solid “OK” because it didn’t exactly live up to all the hype. I suggested maybe they should go smoke some of the good stuff and then check the flavor of the risotto. Now dinner last night at another restaurant, Cane Rosso, was an “A-OK” experience, and not because of the food. It was good, but the guy who prepares the pizzas was something else. Max was there, so he can agree. Pretty stunning. So I am going to call this week’s post, “I may have left my heart in San Francisco, but my eyes are definitely on Italy.”

 

New bar stools from Dallas based manufacturer – R. Jones

In design news, I was pleased to announce that the new collection of barstools from R. Jones has arrived. The new collection was designed by Charlie Kane, who makes sure the barstools are equally as attractive from the front as they are in the back, which is how most of us view them anyway. The collection consists of seven designs, which are priced the same for either counter or bar height. I like when things are easy. We also installed some beyond beautiful wall covering from Arena Design. Seeing his designs in a large installation—we are talking 100 yards of hand-printed and colored shagreen goodness—you can really see the artistry behind Rusty’s work. I paired the cool greenness of the wall covering with some new George Smith pieces upholstered in a deep emerald green velvet and some deep purple chairs in a linen by Casamance. It turned out even better than expected, if I do say so myself.

In pop culture news, Jenny McCarthy says she wants her face to move when she is 60. Fascinating news, people, and it’s obviously a slow news week for celebrities behaving badly. Who am I kidding? They are always behaving badly. But 60 is probably a good age for her to think about since that should be about the time all the fillers and Botox she has now will wear off. I’m not being hateful, I promise. I think people should take care of their skin. In fact, I am going in for a silk peel and some refreshers from Dr. Ho this weekend because I did see my face move, and it was in a downward direction. This is not acceptable to me.

Now on to the recap of the annual and now infamous 4th of July party. What we thought was going to be a party of just a few, based on all the last minute cancellations for lake, beach, and trips overseas that caused Max to shake his foot at around 100 rpm, turned out to be a party of many. It was a “whose who” event, as in I was asking, “Who is that? And whose husband do you belong to?” I was just glad everyone was having fun, because that is what the party is about. It’s a chance to see friends you haven’t seen in a while, enjoy some great food (thanks Terry Lynn Crenshaw and crew), and have a drink or two. Oh yeah, and enjoyment of the fireworks is encouraged, but I have yet to get to see them.

There was no real drama, except for the girl passed out in the second-floor bathroom. I mistakenly thought she was the wife of another guest because all I could see from the third-floor landing was the back of a head in the doorway. I called for backup, which also included the husband. It was only after we turned her over that we discovered this was not his wife. Oops! I am going to file that one away with the time I asked a client, “When are you due? It must be a girl because you are carrying her so high.”  She was not pregnant, not amused, and I have never seen her again. Honest mistakes.

So that about wraps up want has been going on in Jimbo land. Don’t forget tonight is Ricardo Paniagua’s retrospective at the Latino Cultural Center. It is a great way to beat the heat and soak up some local culture from a locally based artist. We have several large pieces from Ricardo and love them. Plus, if you go, he will stop messaging me on Facebook. Again, I’m kidding. (I think.) Happy Friday!