Posts filed under "art"

Sundry Mumsy | A Sketchy Situation

A year ago,

almost to the day,

I commissioned a piece of art

to be made

for our house

before it was shot for

Apartment Therapy.

I paid (too much) for an illustrator

to draw our almost family

to hang in the girls' nursery.

The picture was of Tyler & me

in our standard kissing pose...

but each holding a little baby

in a tiny yellow blanket

and a little gold headbands

in our arms.

I was really excited for it to arrive

and when I opened it...

I was just really confused.

It looked nothing like us.

Tyler had big baggy jeans and huge shoulders.

I'm wearing big, clunky boots that I would never wear.

The best part of it was the cute little pair of babies...

Today that picture

of the unfamiliar couple

holding a pair of twin girls


half-hidden on a bookshelf.

It bums me out pretty much every time I see it.

So when Hannah surprised me with this gift,

my heart swelled big time.

A year later

and I finally have a family illustration

that will make me smile

to have hanging in our home.

I love it.

*    *   *

Thank you, Hannah!

hannah carpenter of sundry mumsy

You can enter to win

a custom illustration

and a lineup of other cool gear

in the


 she's hosting.

Check out more of Hannah's crazy creative work

on her cool blog,

Sundry Mumsy.

Posted on February 14, 2014 and filed under "art", "blog world", babies kennedy, family, marriage.

Monday Moods: I feel... blurry.

As I mentioned on Saturday,

we went to Normandy this weekend.

The first stop on our trip was Claude Monet's house in Giverny.

We were rushed to catch the next train,

so we only had one hour there.

It really should be at least three...

but it was sunny, our guide was amazing

& it lived up to all I had thought it would be,

As we rushed around the estate

from the famous water garden...

{where I could happily spend hours 

sitting by the water garden

being bored & picking petals off the tiny flowers}

On through through the main garden

in front of his colorful house,

I was absolutely giddy.

When I was four or five, 

I became a bit obsessed with Monet's Water Lilies.

In my delusional mind, it felt like they were made especially for my enjoyment.

My parents bought me a replica (obviously) 

and hung it on the wall across from my bath tub.

This silent presence during my bath time

ultimately resulted in countless attempts 

of me 

trying to float like one of  Monet's lilies

on top of the water of my bath tub.

I never could stay a float for more than a few seconds

and it always left me wishing that I had stem 

that could, to my young self, given me the support needed

 to allow me to rest above the water.

As we sat on the train 

that chugged us deeper towards the French coast,

I couldn't help but find our moment in Giverny 

to be anything short of a beautiful, albeit blurry, place.

Just like Monet painted it.


If you want to visit Monet's house in Giverny...

Take a train from Paris St. Lazare to Vernon, it's approximately 50 minutes.

Take the bus outside the station. It will drive you to Monet's house for €4 round trip, per person.

If you would like to prebook a guide, I recommend Ariane. She is lovely.

The gardens close during winter on November 1, but reopen April 1


Give yourself 2.5 hours to walk the property.

Posted on April 9, 2012 and filed under "France", "French Day Trips", "Normandy", "art", normandy.

Monday Moods: I feel... childish.

Drinking a "racer" from a bottle & straw 
at brunch at The Riding House Cafe...

Desperately wanting to be a ballerina
after seeing the (incredible!) Degas exhibit...

Seriously asking my husband for permission
to buy the coloring book as a souvenir...

Opting to ride on the top of a double decker-bus,
even when the lower level was empty...

Going crazy over the sparkling windows & lights
debuting their Christmas wares....

It's days like yesterday that make me ask:

How can I have kid (someday)
when I still (so often) feel like one myself?

After walking by Christian Louboutin off Knightsbridge,
it seemed they were leaning towards the juvenile, too...

*all images original to Aspiring Kennedy

Posted on November 14, 2011 and filed under "art", "monday moods".

Why I Love: Natalie Erwin

Beyond my duties as an Aspiring Kennedy,
I'm also an aspiring art collector.

I scheme of ways to get beautiful art into my home...
with little luck, to this point.

As a girl, 
a print of one of Monet's Water Lilies
 hung above my bathtub.

I would lay there and stare at it...
becoming involved with the scene 
and feeling at home the blurry dream..

While I still love Monet,
my tastes have slightly expanded...

Different styles...
different texture...
different techniques...

These days, I can be lured into a multitude of pieces.

I first met Natalie Erwin through work,
in fact- by hosting an art show for her
when I lived in Dallas.

And though we were busy selling her work
through the project,
it was me who ended up SOLD on her work.

Natalie burns her art into
trademark, birch panels.

Though it's hard to see in pictures,
each piece has amazing texture and depth 
from the wood-burned designs.

Natalie then uses stains and milk paints to color the pieces
and bring life to the image.

{Learn more about her technique here.}

the best wedding guest book ever!

The result is a glossy delight
that blends well into both modern & traditional settings.

While I have been smitten with her vintage scarf series
and her ranch series,
Natalie may be best known for her custom dog portraits.

Because honestly, 
how precious are those little faces?

I'm a sucker for them...

Someday, when our big check rolls in
and I finally get an allowance for art...
you better believe I'll be staring up from my tub
at one of Natalie's pieces.

Posted on September 3, 2011 and filed under "art", "why i love".

Monday Moods: I feel... louvrely.

I'm coming home from a weekend in Paris
where the hub has been playing basketball
in the European MBA Olympics.

{Is that hilarious? Yeah, I agree.}

So while he was busy sweating it out
against Cambridge, INSEAD, & London School of Economics...

I got cozy with
Caravaggio, Velazaquez, & Delacroix.

But the most inspiring point of my day?

Walking out of the Louvre
 to a scoop of pistachio from an ice cream cart
and a sunny nap in the Tuileries.

*images original to Aspiring Kennedy
Posted on May 16, 2011 and filed under "France", "art", "monday moods".


Last May, 

Working a trade show 
is always a mixture of 
glamourous inspiration & schleppy grunge work...

You spend your day meeting buyers from Berdorfs and editors of Elle...
while standing in heels for 9 hours, running around like an idiot, 
and shoving fried chicken tenders down you mouth from a snack bar.

One thing that definitely adds to the fun
is the friends you make inside the Javits Center.

It's kind of like going to camp.

You get stuck in a cramped space together for a week, 
until you inevitably become friends
by laughing at the same stuff
 and bonding over the disgusting bathroom situation.

And last year, Beth & I became friends 
with a girl named Meghan.

Located directly across from the chair massages
{which we visited daily}
was Meghan's booth.

There she sat... all alone.

A cute, little, blonde,
at her very first show
selling fresh & simple patterns
from her line, Patternseed.

Obviously, we loved her.

And then,
West Elm started loving her, too.

Now her design
{my favorite from the show!}
is featured on this great pillow...

and it's so cute and affordable!

So go on..

Buy one for your house,
buy another for your friend,
and support sweet girls like Meghan.

Girls who dream big,
take expensive risks,
and always offer good candy at their booth!

{PS This is my second friend from NY trade shows that has designed a West Elm product!}

Posted on March 24, 2011 and filed under "art", "interiors", "shopping", "wishlist".

Francais... et le coq.

And I'm off to Southern France!

{My job is awesome, by the way.}

I've been muttering French all week in preparation for France,
and now it's time to see what I actually remember from college.

I have a feeling I'm going to be pretty disappointed with my retention...
but oh well.

C'est la vie, non?

{Ha! I got that one...}

As I had all things French on the brain last night, 
I attempted my very first
Coq Au Vin...

and it was tres bien-
non, c'etait... magnifique!

{and really, really easy.}

I adapted the recipe from this one...
but I was out of change at the market, so had to skip the carrots.

Bon Appetit!

Posted on February 1, 2011 and filed under "France", "Jet Setting", "Southern France", "art", "delicious dish".


I love my friend, Korena.

In fact, I may be so bold to say:
she might be the cutest person I know.

It came as no surprise
that this invitation she made 
charmed the pants off me.

{Um.... seriously... where are my pants?}

I love living here in Oxford,
but I do hate to miss out on the parties back home.

Because who wouldn't want to go to that?

Posted on January 29, 2011 and filed under "art", "parties".

Aspiring Kennedy's Rorschach Test

What do you see in the picture below?

A beautiful piece of wood?

A piece of modern art?

The face of an old lover?

Because I see....


These are soft, delicious, amazing cheesecake brownies that I made this week.

These bad boys are so rich, 
your trophy-wife self is gonna want to marry them.

Want some?

Here's the recipe!

Posted on January 26, 2011 and filed under "art", "delicious dish", "dessert".

Back at You.

Yesterday was one of those days
when blogging is so rewarding.

I got so many kind words of encouragement
for my niece,
and I have to tell you:

bloggers are awesome.

I first got a glimpse of your kindness during Well: Done,
and yesterday, I was reminded of
how lucky I am to be a part of this community.


The surgery went better than we could have hoped,
and the little lady seems to be recovering well.

a pre-op photo op

I saw this today, 
and it made me think of all of you.


This little blog land we are in
really is chocked full of 
the most creative, courteous, and supportive people.

I'm so glad to have you be a part of my every day life!

Posted on January 15, 2011 and filed under "art", "blog world", "stonehaven".

I'm a Dallas Girl At Heart.

When I first started blogging, 
I somehow stumbled across Dilly Dallas...
written by wonder girl, Dallas Shaw.

It was one of the first two or three blogs I followed.

I was instantly hooked,
and would return day after day to see what cool things she was up to...

... whether it was blogging about something fabulous,
drawing up a new piece for a fashion line,
or just being cute!

{Isn't she a doll?}

Employed by forces such as 

DKNY, American Eagle, Daily Candy etc-
Dallas draws

 up runway aspirations for designers 


 everyday fashion from the street.

For a while now,
my eye has been set on her drawing
a pair of commissioned pieces of Tyler & I.

Oh my goodness. 

In black & white.
 Hanging together in a hallway.

I'm saving up my pennies for the splurge, 
but in the meantime may have to start with one of her pieces on Etsy.

And at the least, I'll continue my daily dose of style from her blog!

Don't you love her work? It's so feminine and fun...

What artist do you dream of hanging in your home?

*photos by Peter Van Beever
Posted on December 15, 2010 and filed under "art", "blog world", "style watch".

A Day On The Town

Today was a busy-but-fun day for me... I'm taking you with me on my Thursday- I hope you're up for it!

Thursday mornings are market days in Oxford. I hustled out to meet some friends there- and woah, it was heaven. It had everything from doughnuts to decanters....and smoked bacon to silver serving spoons.

From one of the antique stalls, I bought this marble, table-lighter. {I'm not a smoker, but what the heck. It's cool.}

Then I headed down to London to take my maiden voyage through the Victoria & Albert Museum.

There is a gorgeous exhibit on the Ballet Russe currently being held that focuses on composer, Daihgilev & the golden age of Russian Ballet.

We walked and gawked at the amazing pieces for two hours, until at last we headed to the courtyard in search of some coffee and sunshine.

Eventually, the sun sat down over the "Smoke..." and left us with this backdrop in the courtyard.

As my friend Helena has mentioned- the gift store at the V&A is fabulous! I definitely didn't leave empty-handed.

Posted on November 4, 2010 and filed under "England", "London", "architecture", "art", "oxford", oxford.

My first love, Italy...

I saw this gorgeous series,
and it left me
slightly broken hearted.

Broken hearted for the piece of me
that I'm afraid
I might have grown past.

The bright portion of myself
that laughed her way through adventure,
hopefully anticipated the day ahead,
and jumped boldly into newness.

I'm ready to get back to my old self.
My better self.
My self that I found in Italy.

With so much change on the horizon,
I can't help but anticipate
the newness of the days ahead!

*photos courtesy of Reverie Daydream. A perfect blog & store that I am so happy to have found.

Posted on June 10, 2010 and filed under "Italy", "Jet Setting", "art", "photography".

I Have Never Met

As I type,
I'm sitting and staring
at the Met Opera.

It seems only fitting that
I take this opportunity
to tell you :

I love the Opera.

I love Puccini.
(and that he is from perfect Lucca.)

... and I love that I am going
to my maiden performance
at the Met Opera
tomorrow night!

Do any of you love the Opera?

I would love to hear about your favorite show,
opera house, or memory...

I think after tomorrow-
my list of "opera favorites" will have expanded.

*Images courtesy of &

Posted on May 12, 2010 and filed under "art", "events", "new york".