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Tuesday
Jul292014

Teil Duncan

Perusing Instagram this weekend, I came upon some really incredible artwork that had me tapping twice for 'like' over and over. The artist is Teil Duncan, a native of Columbus, Georgia, now living and working fulltime in Charleston, South Carolina. 

I've been thinking about the beach a lot lately. I used to live a couple blocks away from the ocean, in Hermosa Beach, California. You could go to sleep to the waves and oh, how I miss that- good thing is I'll be returning next week for a vacation. So Teil's work is timely and provocative. These images have so many layers and textures, you get a bit lost in them. They're feel both nostalgic and current...

Teil, "I am forever learning and trying new techniques, mediums and subjects. Inspired by light, movement, surprising color combinations, social interaction, and patterns, I try to collaborate these elements and form abstracted, pixilated compositions." 

Working primarily in oils and acrylics, Teil continues to experiment with new mediums and ideas. Besides her beach works, she also paints figures, animals and cityscapes. Peruse her site to learn more. Or better yet, follow her Instagram account so you can tap twice for 'like' too. It's a good way to show you care...

 

Photos: teilduncan.com    Content: Sweet Peach


Monday
Jul282014

Strong Boalt


If you're a man who is active, trim, athletic, you're probably quite happy with the slimming and shortnening of men's swimwear lately. Baggy and long are on the outs as more tailored cuts make their way into the mainstream...

 

Strong Boalt, a men's swimwear line was created in 2009 by fashion designer Amanda Boalt of Palm Beach, Florida. Amanda is the granddaughter of Lilly Pulitzer, an American socialite and fashion designer who became famous for her Florida inspired fashion whose pieces are light and cozy, vibrant and playful. 

Besides Ralph Lauren, where she previously worked, Amanda has been greatly inspired by her grandmother's fashion acumen and insights. Amanda, "While the style of Strong Boalt is more attuned to our time, I will continually hear her voice stressing fun over everything else." 

Amanda offers over two dozen classic swim trunks and board shorts in her shop- some plain colored, but mostly cool, inventine patterns like cabana stripes, elepahants, pineapples, fish or parrots. As she spends a lot of time at the beach or in the water, she is never at a loss for inspiration. 

I love the summer more than any other season so anything beachy, stylish -and this manly, has my attention. See the entirety of Amanda's summer swimwear collection, here. 

 

Photos: Strong Boalt      Content: Sweet Peach


Friday
Jul252014

Dogfish Inn

I love a good find so I was quite happy when I stumbled upon the website for the Dogfish Inn, a brand new brewery-themed boutique hotel. Situated in Lewes, Delaware, this design savvy Inn is an extension of the Dogfish Head Microbrewery and Brewpub. 

Founder of Dogfish Head craft brewed ales, Sam Calagione knew there was an opportunity to offer accommodations to all the travelers who passed through his popular microbrewery each year. When an old motel was up for sale last year in downtown Lewes, Sam renovated the property and gave it a new name. Situated on a pretty spot along coastal Delaware, the Dogfish Inn caters to those who like to get out and explore, without the need of a car. Here you can bike, hike, kayak or paddleboard...and drink craft beer. 

The modern furnishings are the best part of this hotel. Designed by Studio Tack of Brooklyn, this Inn has 16 dog friendly guest rooms that are minimal with just the right mix of added color and texture. The bleached wood panels and flooring, plus the down feather pillows and comforter create a welcoming, cozy room. Plus, if you look closely, you'll discover fun beer-centric amenities and artwork. 

As stated on their site, "Each room includes a wool Dogfish blanket created in collaboration with the iconic apparel maker Woolrich. You'll also find a Tivoli radio and screenprints of beer labels from our music collaborations." Rooms are around $250 on weekdays, $280 on weekends. 

Steve Rogers is a local artist of Lewes and he has painted the historic Lightship Overfalls somewhere in each room- it's up to you to find it. The Lightship Overfalls is one of only 17 lightships remaining and is an historic landmark docked just a few hundred feet from the Inn. All of the artwork in each of the rooms is framed with salvaged wood from local farms, provided by Matt Myers, a local organic farmer. 

You'll also find retro-American made beach chairs and Apolis tote bags for any day trips to the local beaches- (the totes are custom designed to carry Dogfish Head's six packs back to your room). Plus they have a treasure map highlighting nearby favorites- which reminds me of the map and guide I produced for the city of Atlanta. 

When you spend a night at the Inn, you'll definitely want to head to their Brewpub, just a six mile bike ride down the bike path (borrow one of their bikes from the lobby). It's a bit of a beer lover's paradise mixed with a design lover's paradise. Oh, how I love a good find. Happy weekend everyone...

 

Photos: Dogfish Inn site; selectism.com     Content: Sweet Peach

 

Thursday
Jul242014

Basil + Bergamot

The last time I visited HollyBeth Anderson in her studio workshop, she had just finished concocting a new product for her ever expanding USDA Organic skincare line, HollyBeth Organics. Her latest endeavor combines basil and bergamot essential oils with camellia and sunflower base oils to create a luxurious hand wash and body lotion. I'm blogging about it because I just can't get enough of it. I'm addicted. 

Bergamot isn't widely known in the U.S. but it's a fragrant fruit about the size of an orange. The fruit can be found growing in France, Italy and Turkey and many use it for its essential oil or to make marmalade. It's antibacterial, antiseptic and anti-inflammatory, making it a popular skincare choice. Bergamot also helps to open the heart chakra and uplift the mind. 

Basil is antiseptic, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory. It's also soothing to the skin and full of antioxidants to replenish and protect. As the bergamot uplifts the spirit, basil helps bring spiritual clarity, which makes it a really good way to start your day.

I just can't say enough good things about it. HollyBeth Organics is the only USDA Certified Organic skincare company in Georgia and there truly is an incredible benefit in using only organic oils on your face and body. Once you start, you can't go back. 

I love this pic of HollyBeth in her lovely backyard garden. She lives and breathes an organic, healthy and beautiful lifestyle. Always an inspiration... Find her Basil Bergamot goodness, here. And explore HollyBeth's online shop to find lots of skincare options that will make you an addict. But in the best way possible. 

 

Photos: HollyBeth Organics; Sweet Peach; elixirnews.com; Indiamart. Final two shots,  buffydekmar.com   Content: Sweet Peach

 

Tuesday
Jul222014

Stitch Design Co. 

When people ask me about quality, creative web and print designers of the South, I tend to first think of Stitch Design Co., based in Charleston, South Carolina. They just got it going on...

The design work they created for Cannon Green, a restaurant and event venue in the Cannonborough-Elliotborough neighborhood of Charleston, is one of my favorites. Their challenge was to communicate a modern, urban concept that still emobodies the classic elegance of the South. 

As shared on their site, "The hand illustrated watercolor coupled with the classic shape and composition of the logo embodies the concept and achieves the balance of something new and different while still being rooted in southern tradition." 

And then there's the work they did for Charlotte Elizabeth- a wedding, portrait and lifestyle photographer, also based in Charleston. 

Stitch Design Co. brings to life a brand that feels homespun yet original and of high quality- you just get this feeling that Charlotte is someone with really good taste with a great eye for detail.  

As they shared, "To capture Charlotte's whimsy, we hand-drew her logo and established a set of icons to represent the different types of people she photographs. Using punches of color and illustration, the final product is reflective of Charlotte's love for life and photography." 

Charlotte's website ties together all the design elements. The textures are so good, so real, it's like you know exactly what this website would feel like if you could hold it in your hand. It communicates a feeling instantly- a job well done. 

Stitch Design Co., founded by Amy Pastre and Courtney Rowson, is a true boutique branding agency. Much time and thought is spent with each client to communicate the brand and vision. I particularly love the work they recently did for Produce Candles- it's just spot on. The phrase, 'Presentation is Everything,' epitomizes this agency as making the right impression is so important (and so much more challenging) in today's crowded marketplace. You have to stand out and good thing for them, they do. 

This agency really is a boutique. You can find the Stitch Design Co. studio in a 1940's storefront that was once a shoe repair store. I hope someday I have a need to work with them. Like I said, they just got it going on...

 

 

Monday
Jul212014

Page Stationery 

I'm not the biggest fan of working in an office 24/7, which I've been doing as of late. So, when my friend Bob asked me to take him man shopping around Atlanta on Saturday, I was eager to get in a car and drive...go explore the city a bit and be anywhere but in an office. On our way to Tweeds, we checked out The Merchant, a well curated home goods shop on the West Side of town. There's a lot to love about this new shop, including some manly stationery that caught my eye...

Page Stationery is based in Richmond, Virginia. They offer a mix of invitations, gift cards, boxed notes, letterpress and such, but I'm privy to their custom men's line.

This line perfectly encapsulates the many facets of a southern gentleman. They have almost two dozen options of modern, sophisticated note cards that are a mix of charming, preppy, refined and bold. I really think every guy needs his own custom set of note cards, don't you? 

Recently, The Art of Manliness (a fantastic manly blog you need to bookmark), collaborated with Page Stationery to create a line of letterpress correspondence cards. These cards are classic and timeless with just enough space for a quick, heartfelt note. And we all know, a hand written note goes a long way in this day and age. Because of its rarity, it's impactful, remembered. 

I like how this line speaks to the southern gentleman, both visually and symbolically. Check out the Page Stationery shop to see all their beautifully designed offerings for not just men- but kids and women too, here. 

 

Photos: Page Stationery      Content: Sweet Peach


Friday
Jul182014

Pearson Farm Peaches! 

I've had the Sweet Peach blog for over 3 years now and it seems that I'm a bit overdue to write a post just about peaches. Since I live in Georgia, I recently headed down to the popular Pearson Farm in Fort Valley to learn more about how they've created some of the most popular peaches in the country.  

I had no idea what to expect and was pleasantly surprised to find their headquarters so inviting and full of energy. The Pearson Farm facilities are open to the public and you can observe their entire process, beginning with the arrival of peaches freshly picked, to them being washed, sorted and packed.  

Pearson Farms began over 100 years ago when Moses Winlock Pearson and his wife, Cornelia, moved to central Georgia and planted their first peach trees. Their son John eventually began to farm on his own and he planted even more peach trees. Years passed and John's youngest son, Lawton, took over the business and after a marriage to Laurie Lanier, they had three children- two girls and a boy. Now we're slowly getting caught up in the timeline...

In 1973, Al Pearson began operating the business in a partnership effort with his sisters. They continued to create a thriving peach business for 35 years until 2008...

...when Al and his son, Lawton (now 5th generation of Pearson Farms) took over the business together. 

Although I'm a lover of peaches, I had no idea how many kinds there were. At Pearson Farms they produce about 30 different varieties of peaches that are ready for picking between May and August. I was surprised to learn that each peach variety lasts only 10-12 days. July is peak season so they're in full production mode now.

My friends Monica and Chris joined me on the trip down to Fort Valley. As I snapped some photos, Monica, a fellow TV producer, immediately jumped in to take notes. Gotta love that girl...she looks like the perfect southern reporter too, doesn't she? So the first thing Al did was give us a taste test of the ripe peaches on his farm that week (which was early July). These included the White Lady, which is actually my favorite as the white peaches have less acid and more sugar. We also tasted the Elberta, a very popular freestone peach ideal for eating, canning and freezing with a sweet honey taste. 

After the tour of the facility I was hoping Al would take us on a short car ride to see the peach orchards. The most gracious of hosts, Al made the offer himself without us even having to ask. In the sweltering Georgia heat, Al showed us around his family farm while sharing his incredible life stories as a peach farmer. Life on a farm is multi faceted and complex and Al has lived and breathed it his entire life (starting at age six, making 10 cents an hour). There was so much we learned, so much more we wanted to know...but I think we'd have to live our entire lives on a peach farm to begin to grasp its nuances and rhythms. 

And to be a peach farmer, you gotta have tough skin. Weather is a topic of discussion all day, every day as it's the determining factor of each year's crop. Al and the over 200 workers on the farm, do their tireless work but it's up to Mother Nature to decide each year's fate. Will it rain? And if so, how much? What about frost? Hail? Drought? Al wouldn't give away any trade secrets on farming the perfect peach but I did learn he doesn't like rain all that much. If it must rain, he hopes it happens after sun up. Al, "I don't like my peaches to go to bed wet." 

At Pearson Farm, there are 1500 acres that are home to 250,000-300,000 trees. Peach trees can supply fresh peaches for up to 12 years while pecan trees (also on the farm and another important industry for the family) have been growing on the land for over 100 years and are still producing to this day. 

So how do you pick the perfect peach? According to Al, the best way is to smell it. It simply needs to smell like a peach. He advises not to put them in the fridge too long (if at all), as they will soon smell like your fridge. You want a yellow background rather than lime green. Also, look for the blush or red coloring on top of the yellow coloring. The best peach is also one that is just getting soft. On the day of our arrival, these July Prince peaches were ready for picking...

A big, heartfelt thank you to Al Pearson for his time and generosity. After our trip to the orchard, we kicked back on the rocking chairs and had a big helping of Pearson Farm peach cobbler with ice cream. Such a fun trip- and if you wanna do it, act fast as peach season ends mid August. If you can't visit Al and the team in person, or pick up a Pearson peach at a local Farmer's Market, head to their website where you can get 'em shipped to your front door. No matter which method you choose, let's just hope your next peach is a sweet peach. 

 

Photos: Sweet Peach; thebruncher.com; Pearson family     Content: Sweet Peach    


Thursday
Jul172014

Rangemark Textiles

I've given my friend Nan Myers the title, Sweet Peach Scout whether she likes it or not. She owns the incredible shop, Firefly, in Thomasville, Georgia and is the creative hand behind some beautiful events and weddings. So when she went to AmericasMart last weekend, I wanted the scoop on her new favorite artisans. 

The first name to arise was Kathryn Allison of Rangemark Textiles in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Using a screen printer, Kathryn hand prints the loveliest textiles for the home, all on 100% organic linen. 

Kathryn has always had a love of drawing and is enamored by the screen printing process. As she shared, "Even though the process is meticulous and time consuming, the magic comes to life when I lift the screen off the fabric and see my design transferred onto it." 

I believe one can never have enough cloth napkins. Kathryn offers five pretty patterns in her shop- Peonies, Arrows, Tear Drop, Feather and Frond.   

And if tea towels and cloth napkins weren't enough, Kathryn also prints table runners, pillows, headbands and keychains. See all her offerings, here. And a big thank you to my Sweet Peach Scout, Nan Myers. I can't wait for your next pick...

 

Photos: Rangemark Textiles site      Content: Sweet Peach


Wednesday
Jul162014

Ocean Rock Design 

If I had a lot of money, I wouldn't be the girl buying all the shoes, I'd be the girl buying all the bags...

Yesterday, I happened upon this incredible shop, Ocean Rock Design, based out of Bradenton, Florida and was trying not to drool at all the great bag options. I love anything worn and weathered, made with a quality aesthetic. 

Veronique Lindell designs just a handful of bags at a time, all handmade with unique recycled fabrics, like vintage American workmen and military materials. The only thing new on each bag is the leather. This Crow's Nest Tote is made from a World War 2 duffle bag. Two large inner pockets, which can fit an iPad, phone or wallet are created from a vintage carpenter apron and then pieces of the duffle bag with a Veterans of Foreign Wars patch for that special added touch. 

Each bag is roomy and worn in, with a story to tell. Veronique, who once worked in NYC as a Fashion Designer for Ralph Lauren and The Gap, is now back in Florida, close to her mom, who serves as the master sewer. She loves to be back down South, scouring local estate sales for good materials and original finds.   

The Camp Tote, left, is made with a 1940's duffle bag and fully lined with a vintage printed cotton Kimono from the 1920's, while the front of the bag has two vintage Boy Scout Badges. Ah, to collect all these bags would be too fun. Check out all the current offerings at Ocean Rock Design, here. 

 

Photos: Ocean Park Design       Content: Sweet Peach

 

Tuesday
Jul152014

The Emeco Chair

In 1944, Witton C. Dinges, collaborated with Alcoa experts to design the first Emeco Navy Chair, for use on submarines as 'war ship ready' furniture. This eye-pleasing, durable and lightweight chair caught the attention of many famous architects and designers over the years, including Frank Gehry and Norman Foster. Over 70 years later, this iconic chair is still being made with the same 77 step design process.

My favorite reincarnation of the original, however, is the collaboration between Emeco and Atlanta based company, Coca-Cola, which sought to alleviate the burden of excess consumer waste. 

As the Emeco Navy chairs are made with 80% recycled aluminum, this particular version is made with recycled Coca Cola bottles. This chair debuted in Milan in 2010 and received rave reviews. It's cheaper than its original counterpart (find here for $260) and is named The Emeco 111 as each chair is made from 111 recycled Coca Cola bottles. 

An impressive 20,000 recycled bottles are sent to New United Resource Recovery Corporation in Spartanburg, South Carolina each weekday to be sorted, ground, wet and dry washed, then sorted by color. After much processing and rendering, 13 pounds of plastic pellets are melted down and injected into each chair mold. Next, the chairs are hollowed out via gas injection, then tempered and cooled. 

The chairs then head to Bemis Manufacturing in Lenoir, North Carolina and BASF in Chattanooga, Tennessee for all the final tweaking and coloring. As stated on dwell.com, "This final laying on of hands, labor intensive though it may be, is the hallmark of Emeco's Navy Chair legacy." 

Each 111 Navy Chair is just like the aluminum original, even including the faux weld points on the backside. I love that this beauty is made in the South with a sincere care for integrity and quality. Find your very own Emeco 111 Navy Chair, which I dare say will never go out of style, here. 

And for those seeking options, the 111 also comes in five colors, including Green Grass and Persimmon Orange. Dreamy...

 

Photos: Emeco; dwell.com; mocoloco.com; e-side.co.uk; moleculeblog.blogspot.com       Content: Sweet Peach