DETROIT

November 9, 2019

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We know, we promised 2019 would be a pointed return to better blogging. If you’re here as a loyal reader, fingers crossed you’ve already forgiven us. Ended up here on a whim? We’re so glad you found us. With a trip to Michigan already on the books, we declared it perfect timing to tack on a few days in the Motor City and faithfully return to our Gilded Getaway roots. Having been to the city in recent years for a special project, one might say we were pre-exposed; we had a heightened sense of what to anticipate and where to explore. It’s true what the papers say, Detroit is a city in transition, i.e. ‘under construction’ – the sights and sounds of revitalization and a return to glory on the horizon, but very much a work-in-progress. Thanks in part to an alliance of local developers and larger corporations, downtown has successfully seen the restoration of landmark buildings, complemented by cutting-edge cuisine, American-made manufacturing and good ‘ole red, white & blue homegrown spirit.

While a stay at the new Shinola Hotel was truly the catalyst of our travel journey, the guide is chock full of good eats mixed with a splash of inspiration. Recently named Best New Large Hotel by Surface Magazine, the 1400 Woodward hotel designed by Gachot Studios is simply stunning, worthy of every accolade already received and all the future news that’s fit to print. The site is storied with Motor City history, an amalgamation of five historic buildings and a tucked away alley paying homage to one of the city’s first black landowners. For those looking to stay local, the Detroit-based Shinola team provided everything at arm’s length for the discerning traveler – craft cocktails at the Evening Bar to a strong cup of brew for the morning after. Namaste your preferred mode of R&R? Check out Citizen Yoga right around the corner for early sunrise salutations.

We were pleasantly surprised to find Detroit’s dining scene equally fulfilling. When inquiring with the locals in our pre-departure planning, out rolled a list a mile-long, from Bon Appetit award-winners to James Beard nominees. Headed to Marrow? The namesake dish is such for a reason. Sweets + treats more your thing? The almond croissant at Ochre might as well be Parisian. From pasta to patty melt, we most certainly did not leave hungry. Same could be said of creative inspiration. Also on Woodward (did we mention it’s one of America’s most iconic streets, not to mention the first to be paved in 1909, aptly fitting for the Motor City) is the Detroit Institute of Arts. For those who gravitate towards a traditional art setting, the DIA definitely won’t disappoint. For us, the creative scene-stealer is actually located in the picturesque Detroit suburb of Bloomfield Hills. Cranbrook Art Musuem, a National Historic Landmark, is home not only to a collection of 6,000+ works, but also a Frank Lloyd Wright home and Saarinen House. Going to be in the area before December 1st? Be sure to book a tour of the Studio Loja Saarinen collection of textiles on exhibit within the house she inhabited with her husband.

From past to present, mass production to craft purveyors, we’re excited to see what lies on the proverbial road ahead for the Motor City.

 

With a fresh blanket of snow covering New England, there couldn’t be a better time to dream about everyone’s favorite warm weather treat, ice cream. Or, from the perspective of Victoria Young, as told to Edible Rhody, “Only in New England could you sell ice cream in the winter.” One might say Young, part of a rapidly growing movement of culinary purveyors taking the Rhode Island capital by storm, knows her way around a commercial kitchen. With a heavy-hitting resume, including time spent in the company of some of the world’s most renowned chefs (Redzepi, Boulud, need we say more?), Young has her sight set on elevating the profile of the creamy indulgence, one unique flavor at a time.

Scooping since Summer 2018, Fountain & Co., (Providence’s first craft ice cream maker), fully embraces the bounty of the Ocean State. A Johnson & Wales pastry alum, Young is drawn to the local RI community of growers and makers, using only the freshest ingredients in designing her flavors. And because ice cream is always more fun when there’s a party, Young has partnered with fellow Providence purveyors for a hitlist of brand collaborations (‘mashups’ for those of a more youthful generation). Need a little pep in your summer step? Cue Bourbon Butterscotch Coffee Stout, a flavor intense with Nitro Cart’s amazing brew. Ice cream sandwiches more your thing? Insert a PVDonut hugging your creamy scoop. Sundaes? Young’s got those too. Burgundian Liège Waffles are the perfect host for any combo of ice cream and toppings.

Craving a scoop to call your own? Young is currently popping up all over Providence, most frequently filling cups and cones out of a small window in partnership with Stock Culinary Goods. If the winter weather has you down, Young’s Pint of the Month is a no-brainer. Limited edition flavors in pint-sized containers, for all you late-night sneaky spooners.

Images courtesy of Fountain & Co. 

WARP & WEFT | ALEXANDRA KOHL

February 22, 2019

It was a few years ago at Field & Supply that we first came across the work of New York-based Fiber Artist Alexandra Kohl. Kohl, an avid equestrian, combines the beauty of cotton with horsehair via a delicate dance of warp and weft. The result – hand-woven textiles which not only unite the natural qualities of plant and animal, but also emanate an intricacy that discreetly draws the viewer in for closer admiration. For anyone unfamiliar with the age-old craft of hand-weaving, it is a process equally laborious and tranquil; each individual yarn manipulated by the weaver in a deliberate act as intricate as those of an experienced surgeon. Kohl’s masterful hand and eye for color marry flawlessly to preserve the longstanding tradition of hand-weaving.

In her most recent body of work, a joint venture with furniture designer J.M. Szymanski, bespoke furnishings juxtapose Kohl’s soft substrates against the stature of cast iron. Named an emerging talent by Architectural Digest in 2017, Kohl’s admiration for minimalism and organic architecture lends inspiration and is distinctly embodied in her textiles. What makes Kohl’s work even more desirable? A unique versatility to complement a wide range of aesthetic preferences, modern to traditional.

Images courtesy of Alexandra Kohl.

COASTAL ATTIRE

February 1, 2019

When we first laid eyes on this 2018 spread from Harper’s Bazaar, it was an unquestionable bookmark. Photographed by Paul Bellaart and featuring Dutch beauty Bette Franke, the oceanic backdrop calls for nothing more than timeless, coastal attire. At a time when it feels the entire nation is purging closets in anxious pursuit of anything and everything ‘sparking joy’, we remain steadfast in our belief that successful style is best embodied in a few simple basics. It’s true what they say, we’ve never met a stripe we didn’t like, and call us old-fashioned, but we’ve been collecting vintage fisherman knits for years. Layered with the refinement of classic tailoring, the simplicity of an elongated silhouette and a healthy glow that radiates from the inside out, it’s a win-win no matter if you’re dressing for the seaside or countryside. If you’re one of the cult-Kondo followers looking to make some drastic revisions within your own wardrobe, check out a few of our favorite of-the-moment options.

Breton Stripes

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Classic Tailoring

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Elongated Silhouettes

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Fisherman Knits

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Sunkissed Glow

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Harper’s Bazaar España, October 2018 | Images by Paul Bellaart.

2019 | STARTING FRESH

January 25, 2019

 

It’s been awhile since you’ve found us Around the Pound, but we’re back. And starting fresh. If you’re still checking in, craving something new and inspiring, we appreciate you staying the course. If you left for a bit (we don’t blame you) and found your way back, we’re delighted about that too. Occasionally life gets busy, (and complicated), and while one might think hitting the pause button on ‘tasks’ like posting creates mental space to deal with the ‘chaos’, it’s soon realized the very things that once seemed frivolous are actually what keep us inspired and grounded.

A recent trip across the Atlantic found us standing on the shore of Le Bois de Cise, staring into a muted grey skyline spanning from France across the English Channel. Complete with a coastal trifecta of whipping wind, stinging seaspray, and crashing waves, one might go so far as deem the conditions horrid. And yet, it was remarkably calming. Cathartic, actually. There’s a quote we posted, ‘The cure for anything is salt water: sweat, tears or the sea‘. Sometimes it takes crossing an ocean to find the source, not just for one, but all three. A desolate beach, accompanied by a few boisterous gulls and a backdrop of Jurassic proportions, triggered a deeply emotional reminder that we so easily and often forget – Mother Nature’s grandeur puts everything else in perspective.

Photo by The Gilded Lobster.

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