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Art + Culture

A Little Lesson on Veuve Clicquot


fun facts about veuve clicquot champagne

Last weekend, I had the unique opportunity to attend the Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic just outside New York, on Liberty Island. This was its 7th year, and the Classic is a day filled with picnicking, amazing people watching, athletic men galloping around on horses, and of course, lots of Champagne. As we were walking to the match after disembarking from the ferry, I was telling my friends everything I knew about the house of Clicquot. To be honest, it wasn’t too much — I knew how to pronounce the label, where it was from, and that Veuve was the first Champagne house to ever be run by a woman (did you know that Veuve is not someone’s name, but in fact, is the word for “widow” in French?). I was inspired to come home and learn a little bit more about this iconic producer, and was astonished at the history this house has. It’s pretty incredible! A little trivia for the next time you’re enjoying a glass with someone.

If you’re interested in learning more about Veuve (and Madame) Clicquot, there’s a great book about it here. You can also check out Hallie, Julia, Grace and Carly’s recaps of the day too. They were great picnic buddies!

Images: Riddling Rack / Champagne coupe

Nude Art + Pillows

gretchen kelly art on greatly

Because the two are obvious pairings for a post, don’t you think? No, but really, I recently discovered two cool artists that I wanted to share with you today (and a little bit about how I discovered them too!).

The first is artist Gretchen Kelly. She’s an amazing watercolorist based out of Hudson, NY, who’s creates soft, haunting landscapes as well as really fun, energized nude sketches. It’s funny, when I was growing up, my grandmother had several nude paintings and drawings around her house, and I would giggle at them or not take them very seriously (typical). Now I really love them! Especially ones with lots of movement like Gretchen’s, where the subjects are in natural (or sometimes cheeky) poses. Don’t you love her little dashes of color in these nudes, too? They feel so modern, yet feminine!

ellie bradley pillows on greatly

The other discovery is designer Ellie Bradley, who is based in Sydney, Australia and makes cool art prints and pillows. I’m especially taken with her textiles — these pillows are simple, yet graphic, and would make such a statement on a seating piece or even as an accent on a bed. Which design do you like the best?

I discovered both of these gals through this new site called Great.ly. It’s a platform that allows artisans like Gretchen and Ellie to sell their stuff online, BUT the kicker (and the difference between Great.ly and Etsy) is that anyone can apply to be a “tastemaker” on the site and launch their own boutique, featuring the makers that they like and whose aesthetic they really dig (here’s a bit more about how the site works). The site officially launches today, and I put together my own boutique with a bunch of products — from makers all over the world — that really spoke to me! I love discovering small producers and supporting their businesses, and I know you guys do too. New products are being added to Great.ly regularly, but right now, I think it’s a good source for things like entertaining and serveware, art, and randomly enough, scarves and pouches. There are tons of affordable pieces too (I’m considering getting this pretty magnolia still life print — it’s only $35! Don’t you think it would look good in a big frame with a large, white mat?). Check out Great.ly and let me know what you think!


1. Original “One Minute Post XCIX.8,” $150 | 2. Original “One Minute Pose LXIII5,” $150 | 3. Original “Nude #1234,” $150 | 4. Original “Nude #447,” $200 | 5. Original “Nude #948,” $150 | 6. Block Cushion in Pink, $83 | 7. Eclipse Cushion Cover, $88 | 8. Abstract One Cushion, $88 | 9. Block Cushion in Blue, $83


Images via Ellie Bradley and Gretchen Kelly on Great.ly. A quick note: while this is not a sponsored post, note that Great.ly does have a revenue earning system in place for both makers and tastemakers on the site, so if you do end up making a purchase through Great.ly, either another tastemaker or I will earn retail markup on the products purchased. Hopefully that “finder’s fee” is worth it if you discover something unique that you really, truly love! Happy browsing.

PS – In totally unrelated news, The B Bar is hosting its first ever Twitter chat tonight! The topic is blog to biz; you can get details on the chat here, and read Meg’s and my own blog to biz story here and here. Hope to see you on Twitter later this evening!

5 Things I’m Watching and Reading

5 Things I'm Watching and Reading

Food Inc Tapped The Fault in Our Stars Stuff Parisians Like Parts Unknown

This is what you get over the course of several weeks when you have a sick husband, a short lull in projects, and a very hungover Sunday. I give you: a bunch of things we’ve recently watched on Netflix, the DVR, and beyond.

It had been a while since we blew through a bunch of documentaries in one sitting (remember our last binge sesh?), so this past weekend seemed like the perfect time (especially since we were rather incapacitated on Sunday, post-Cinco de Mayo Tres festivities, and the only feasible movements were picking up the phone to order takeout. Joe handled channel changing.). I’ve also been recording the new season of Parts Unknown (incredible television making, as always), and unsurprisingly, am a little giddy about this new series The Cut is doing (which led me to this book). Finally, I’m attending another book club meeting next week, and will be interested to hear everyone’s thoughts on The Fault in Our Stars. Have you read it? Thoughts? Any plans to see the movie this summer?

Images: Food Inc Movie (UK Site); Eat Me Daily; Us Magazine; Eiffel Tower by Jonas Tana with modifications made by me, licensed under Creative Commons; CNN