Prewar in NYC: The Dream & the Design

When I dream of our possible future in Brooklyn, my dreams have a very specific aesthetic. Our home is a classic prewar brownstone, chock full of original details. The ceilings are high and the floorboards are wide. Light streams in through huge and plentiful windows. (Every room has a southern exposure, of course.) And our decor is an eclectic mix of mid-century lines, vintage accents and bold textiles.

You know – kind of like this.

The living room of Mike D's eclectic Brooklyn townhouse as featured in the New York Times
(Mike D’s Cobble Hill townhome via The New York Times)

I’m no fool. I know the hefty price tag a prewar brownstone commands, and I’m well aware that we’re more likely to end up in a dark, dank basement apartment. But that doesn’t mean a girl can’t dream.

Prewar, generally speaking, refers to apartment buildings built before World War II. If we’re being specific, anything built before World War I is pre-prewar, and buildings from before the Spanish-American war in 1898 are pre-pre-prewar. But when you take an overarching look at the architecture of New York living spaces from the 1850s to the 1940s, most of them share a few key characteristics.

The ornate, hand-carved moldings …

Kerri Russell 1860s Brooklyn townhome via Elle Decor
(Kerri Russell’s 1860s Brooklyn townhome via Elle Decor)

Bedroom in Hilary Robertson Brooklyn townhome
(Hilary Robertson’s Fort Greene townhome via The New York Times)

The sky-high ceilings …

Brooklyn Heights townhouse from Rum magazine via Dintelo
(A Brooklyn Heights townhome from RUM magazine, via Dintelo)

Michelle James 1890s Brooklyn brownstone via Remodelista
(Michelle James’ 1890s Brooklyn brownstone via Remodelista)

Manhattan brownstone by Jan Eleni Interiors
(A Manhattan brownstone by Jan Eleni Interiors)

Lena Corwin and Josh Dreier Fort Greene Italianate brownstone via Remodelista
(Lena Corwin and Josh Dreier’s late-1800s Fort Greene brownstone via Remodelista)

The massive windows …

Cobble Hill townhouse by Blair Harris Interior Design
(A Cobble Hill townhouse by Blair Harris Interior Design)

Hilary Robertson Brooklyn townhome
(Hilary Robertson‘s Brooklyn townhome again)

Christina and Simon Anderson 1890s Park Slope Victorian via The New York Times
(Christina and Simon Anderson’s 1890s Park Slope Victorian via The New York Times)

A marble mantelpiece with an arched antique mirror over it is basically my dream.

Ali Cayne Greenwich Village townhouse via Domino
(Ali Cayne’s Greenwich Village townhouse via Domino)

Throw in a crystal chandelier, and I’m in heaven.

Ali Cayne Greenwich Village townhouse with chandelier via Domino
(Ali Cayne’s townhouse via Domino again)

19th-century Park Slope brownstone by Roman and Williams via 6sqft
(19th-century Park Slope townhouse by Roman and Williams / photo via 6sqft)

In the absence of a massive mirror, a single piece of large-scale art can work, too.

Francesa Connolly 1890s Brooklyn brownstone via Elle Decor
(Remodelista‘s Francesca Connolly’s 1890s Brooklyn brownstone via Elle Decor)

Elspeth Benoit and David Bevan 1870s Cobble Hill townhouse
(Elspeth Benoit and David Bevan’s 1870s Cobble Hill townhouse via The New York Times

And don’t forget those solid wood floors.

Mike D Cobble Hill townhouse via The New York TImes
(Mike D’s townhouse again)

Fine. I’ll settle for parquet.

Boerum Hill apartment via Airbnb
(Daniel Kanter‘s 1890 Boerum Hill apartment – you can stay in this one!)

Brooklyn Heights townhouse dining room from Rum magazine via Dintelo
(Brooklyn Heights townhouse via Dintelo again)

Photo overload, I know. I’m sorry. I just can’t get enough. If you can’t either, you should check out my prewar Pinterest board.

So, what do you think? I’m betting you wouldn’t kick one of these brownstones out of bed, either. Anyone want to lend me a few million dollars?

Listen: “By My Side” by Great Good Fine OK

Happy Wednesday! Just stopping by to suggest that you listen to this song immediately:

The whole EP (Body Diamond) is super fun and dancey but also somehow gives me an embarrassing lump in my throat. Kind of a rare and excellent combo, if you ask me.

I found the album after hearing “You’re the One for Me” on the Cougar Town Season 6 premiere (Tuesdays at 10:30/9:30c on TBS!*). A little known fact: Christa Miller, who plays Ellie on the show, is also the music supervisor, and she’s really good at it. The last song in the episode is almost always something new and stellar. Case in point: She used “Forever” by Haim back in Season 4, several months before they starting blowing up and about eight months before that um, interesting Saturday Night Live performance. And last night’s episode featured a brand new never-heard-before song by Ed Sheeran.

Another little known fact: In college, I majored in journalism and minored in music because I was fairly certain I was going to be a music critic. Obviously, that didn’t happen, but it’s still kind of weird that I never talk about music on my blog. I think I might start doing that occasionally, if y’all are interested.

Let me know if you like the song! OK, as you were.

*Though I currently work for TBS, all opinions on this blog have always been and will always be completely my own.

Glitter & Goat Cheese in 2014

IT’S OVER.

Well, folks, we survived 2014. I can’t say I’m sorry to see it go. There have certainly been some highlights and plenty of happy moments, but I think I’ve spent the majority of this year feeling a little uneasy. My resolution at the end of 2013 was to try and settle into my life – I’ve gone through a major change every single year since graduating college, and I figured it was about time to give it a rest – but I discovered an inability to do so. Brad and I can’t seem to settle into our life here in Atlanta because something just isn’t right, and that’s why I’m so happy that we’re planning to make this New York thing happen. I mean, who knows? Maybe that won’t be right either. But at least we’re trying.

Anyway, back to the highlights. I’d like to focus on the positive, and there was a lot of that. So, let’s look back at a few of my favorite blog posts from 2014.

The first big chunk of the year was completely consumed by the Home Depot Patio Style Challenge. Seriously, what an amazing experience. It was so much work, and at times we asked ourselves what the hell we’d gotten ourselves into, but every step of the process was incredibly rewarding. The finished product wasn’t too shabby, either.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Newly updated and colorful deck and pergola for The Home Depot Patio Style Challenge
See the full source list here and all the process posts here.

Once that was done, we mostly sat around under the completed pergola and avoided our power tools. We were exhausted. But I did dive into my blog reader and Pinterest boards with a renewed sense of purpose, in hopes of finding inspiration for making the rest of our home as pretty as our deck. To keep our decor strategy cohesive, I wrote up a list of design preferences that felt like us.

Recently blog - entryway with fuchsia accents
(Photo via Recently) See the full post here.

Over the summer, I put the theory into practice by making some much-needed updates to our downstairs. True to my word, I incorporated warm woods, pops of color, brass accents, patterned rugs and rustic elements.

Colorful living room with Lulu and Georgia Lalita rug - via Glitter and Goat Cheese
See more angles of our living room and dining room in the full post.

Even after buying a few new pieces, I couldn’t stop daydreaming about things like cognac leather sofas and Saarinen side tables, so when Chairish asked me to e-design a room around one of their accent chairs, I jumped at the chance.

Mid-century eccentric living room inspired by Danish teak armchair from Chairish
Find all the sources here.

Shortly after writing that post, we started thinking about moving, so I put all home updates on hold. Pausing all my projects was tough, but it gave me time to focus on other areas and actually do some reading. I was intrigued (and kind of troubled) by all the press around a woman’s right to alter her appearance, and I wrote about my own struggles with self image.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Hiding ptosis in selfies
Read the full post here.

My self-imposed DIY ban also gave me a lot of time to cook, so I shared a couple recipes, including one for my favorite kale salad.

Kale, chicken, bacon and Israeli couscous salad with lemon mustard vinaigrette (via Glitter and Goat Cheese)
Here’s the recipe! Oh, man, now I want to eat some.

Toward the end of the year, I got into creating curated lists, and my very favorite is a round-up of beautiful kitchens with mixed metals.

10 Kitchens that Prove Mixing Metals Is Totally OK (via Glitter and Goat Cheese)
Here’s the full post. Warning: envy-inducing pretty pictures ahead.

So, now it’s New Year’s Eve, and I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to a little trepidation at the year ahead. I’m hoping it’ll include a move up north, an influx of stable work for Brad, a new career for me and a renewed excitement for the path we’re on, but there’s a lot of potential for disappointment in those dreams. All we can do now is move forward with optimism and calculated care.

Tonight, we’ll celebrate the New Year with our best friends – for what could be the last time – and hope for the best.

What are your plans for New Year’s Eve? What about your hopes for 2015?

A Modern Classic: The Kartell Masters Chair

I have a Pinterest board called Furniture Design Classics where I collect photos of timeless furniture used in modern interiors. (You should go follow it, if you don’t already.)

One of my favorite pieces to pin is the Masters Chair, designed by Philippe Starck and Eugeni Quitllet for Kartell in 2010.

Kartell Masters Chair - via Glitter and Goat Cheese

Photo via DWR



The intersecting lines on the back echo the shape of three classics created by master designers who had come before Starck and Quitllet. (Hence the name.) From left to right: The Series 7 chair by Arne Jacobsen (1955), the Tulip Arm Chair by Eero Saarinen (1956) and the Molded Plastic Wire-Base Side Chair – also known as the Eiffel chair – by Charles and Ray Eames (1948).

Arne Jacobsen Series 7 Chair, Eero Saarinen Tulip Armchair and Charles Eames Eiffel Chair - via Glitter and Goat Cheese

Photos via Hive Modern, MoMA and DWR



Can you see the shapes?! I think the Masters Chair is particularly amazing because it’s so beautiful on its own but pays such clear homage to its three predecessors. And like so many modern chairs, it fits seamlessly into almost any interior.

I love to see that curvy, sexy back juxtaposed against a boxy, rectangular table:

Masters Chairs in Jodi and Brendan York's dining room via The Design Files. Photo by Sean Fennessy

Photo via The Design Files



But they’re also right at home on a stone patio with a round pedestal table:

Masters Chairs in Claudio Luti's home via Casa Vogue. Photo by

Photo via Casa Vogue


(Note the way the minty green of the chairs mimics the patina of aged metal. A clever color choice, here.)

And as you’d expect, they’re flawless with a tapered-leg mid-century shape, too.

Heals A/W 2012 collection with BAU pendant light, Zoffany Verdure wallpaper by Melissa White and Masters Chairs by Philippe Starck - via Glitter and Goat Cheese

Photo via Bodie and Fou



But let me tell you: for me, nothing beats this casually-placed gold Masters Chair in Lonny executive editor Irene Edwards’ living room.

Lonny executive editor Irene Edwards' living room with a gold Masters Chair - via Glitter and Goat Cheese

Photo via Lonny



The Kartell Metal collection was announced back in March, but this is the first time I’m seeing one of the metallic Masters Chairs in a room, and I am absolutely consumed with jealousy. They’re not available until early 2015, so Edwards is one lucky lady. (I wouldn’t mind getting my hands on her copper and leather Palermo Butterfly Chair, either.)

The chairs will come in gold, silver, gun-metal grey and copper, so let’s just go ahead and put the copper on my dream house wish list right now.

Kartell Metal Masters Chairs - via Glitter and Goat Cheese

Photo via Kartell



I’m not greedy. I just need one. I’ll put it at my desk, so I can pay bills and clip coupons while I sit in a metallic masterpiece. No big deal.

Which one would you pick? And where would you put it?

PS: I’ve been posting some of my old projects on Hometalk, with many more on the way. Come join me!

10 Pinterest Recipes That Are Actually Delicious (and Pretty Easy)

Things, they are a-busy in my neck of the woods. I’m almost done Christmas shopping, which is fantastic, but that means I have a TON of wrapping to do. I hate wrapping. So, I’m avoiding it by sharing my top 10 favorite Pinterest recipes!

Now, I’ve tried a fair amount, and let me tell you, not all of them are winners. Some day, maybe I’ll share a few of the ones that didn’t live up to expectations, but as a blogger myself, it feels a little mean-spirited to critique other people’s content. So instead, positivity! Yay!

A note: You’ll probably notice that these recipes all have a lot in common. I swear, I do make things other than kale, artichokes and chicken. But I guess I just like those best. So, here they are, in no particular order:

#1: Artichoke Chicken Skillet from Budget Bytes
Artichoke Chicken Skillet by Budget Bytes - found via Glitter and Goat Cheese
This recipe is really, really good and it’s cheap. The author claims that the whole dish only costs $9.84 to make(?!). That’s worth trying, right?

#2: Orecchiete with Kale, Bacon and Sun-Dried Tomatoes from MyRecipes.com
Orechiette with Kale, Bacon and Sun-Dried Tomatoes from Cooking Light - found via Glitter and Goat Cheese
This is actually kind of similar to my tooth-chipping kale salad, so it’s not a surprise that I like it. Orecchiette can be tricky to find, but you can use farfalle (bow ties) or conchiglie (shells) in a pinch. Here’s the recipe.

#3: Spinach & Artichoke Grilled Cheese from Too Many Cooks A Couple Cooks
Spinach and artichoke grilled cheese from A Couple Cooks - found via Glitter and Goat Cheese
This is just … there are no words. Wait, I came up with some: it’s basically spinach and artichoke dip on a sandwich, but WAY better. Make it. If you don’t love it, I owe you $5. (Warning: I’m not going to pay you.) Get the recipe here.

#4: Thai Coconut Soup from AllRecipes.com
Thai Coconut Soup from AllRecipes - found via Glitter and Goat Cheese
That image is very small and sad. But the soup is amazing, I promise. I appreciated that I was able to find all the ingredients at my regular grocery store. There are definitely more authentic recipes out there, but this one is easy, and it tastes pretty close to restaurant quality to me.

#5: Chicken Piccata from Red Shallot Kitchen
Chicken Piccata from Red Shallot Kitchen - found via Glitter and Goat Cheese
When I first tried a bite of this chicken piccata, it was so good, I almost wept. I’m not kidding. We served it over angel hair and now we’ll never be the same. Here’s the recipe.

#6: Fresh Spinach, Tomato and Garlic Tortellini Soup from Cooking Classy
Fresh Spinach Tomato and Garlic Tortellini Soup from Cooking Classy - found via Glitter and Goat Cheese
I made a giant pot of this a little while ago while Brad was out of town, and I ate the leftovers every day for over a week. I didn’t get sick of it. That should tell you something. Recipe here. Note: The recipe calls for three-cheese tortellini, which I did use, but I also threw in some sweet Italian sausage tortelloni, and it was a really good decision.

#7: Orecchiette with Rapini and Goat Cheese from Saveur
Orechiette with Rapini and Goat Cheese from Saveur - found via Glitter and Goat Cheese
Rapini (also known as broccoli rabe) is one of my husband’s favorite vegetables, and goat cheese is one of my favorite everythings, so this recipe was a winner for both of us.

#8: Kale and Brussels Sprout Salad from Bon Appetit
Kale and Brussels Sprout Salad from Bon Appetit - Found via Glitter and Goat Cheese
The first time I made this, I was concerned that it was going to be terrible because the dressing and kale were both so bitter. But then, I took one bite of the finished product with the parmesan and almonds mellowing everything out, and the angels sang. This is now one of my very favorite salads. I make a giant bowl, separate it into containers and eat it for days and days. (It never gets soggy because kale and brussels sprouts are badasses and dressing ain’t got nothin’ on them.) Here’s the recipe.

#9: The Chew’s Baked Artichoke Chicken from Stacey Snacks
The Chew Baked Artichoke Chicken from Stacey Snacks - found via Glitter and Goat Cheese
If you’ve got an hour to bake this, it’s a pretty simple weeknight dinner. I’ll admit, I buy the chicken that’s already been cut up – but even if you go for the whole one, you’re basically just chopping a few things and throwing them in a pan. My kind of recipe. Get it here.

#10: Campanelle with Burrata, Spinach, Lemon and Toasted Almonds from Bon Appetit
Campanelle with Burrata Spinach Lemon and Toasted Almonds from Bon Appetit - found via Glitter and Goat Cheese
When Brad and I made this, we couldn’t find campanelle, so we used fusilli. Then, like a day later, we spotted campanelle at Kroger. Oh, well. Anyway, have you ever had burrata? If you haven’t, go get some at Trader Joe’s or something. It will give you life. Here’s the recipe for the pasta dish.

So, there you have it: 10 recipes that you can go try yourself with full confidence that they’ve been vetted by yours truly (a mediocre cook who really, really loves food). If you make any of them, let me know what you think! (You better love them or I’m disowning you.)