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Best Design for Holiday Storefronts: A Polar Bear on the Roof Santa Barbara

family: Georgia, ‘Times New Roman’, serif;”>


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Right next Door to our Office in Santa Barbara is Franco’s “Members Only” Barber Shop. Every Year Franco graces us with his award winning designs and exquisite execution of his Holiday Decorations.Best in show, ALWAYS. Naturally we would never think of competing with him, it would simply take away the impact of this marvelous tiny barber shop Charm. Plus, who could compete with this! Just thought we’d share this and put a smile on your faces. 😉


Franco & his Client
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Holiday Decorations: The Aluminum Christmas Tree and My eBay Remorse!

The story is this. Gregg and I live in a Modernist House in Montecito, Ca. We have decorated this home with all collectable modernist furnishings and art from galleries ranging from Paris, New York,  Los Angeles, San Francisco, Phoenix, Palm Springs,  and Santa Barbara. All of the furniture is collectable mid-century modern furniture. Sooo, I got a bug this year to get a vintage “Silver” christmas tree with rotating color wheel et all. Honestly, because I really don’t have the energy or vibe to decorate a 10′ tree this year, plus I’m a Mad Men freak which is spilling over into my design cravings. I go to check it out on ebay and sure enough some gal had just bought a vintage aluminum tree with a real authentic color wheel from 1960, it was in perfect condition. She stated in comments on ebay that she had purchased it earlier that day at an estate sale (garage sale) somewhere in Ohio. She was selling it on ebay because her husband was harassing her about it so she was willing to to “give it away” for $250.00, just to shut her husband up. She stated it was too late for her to list it with the BUY IT NOW option. I bit her bate and put in a bid just below $250. There was only 20 minutes left the auction, so I brought my laptop to the dinner table…..big mistake. Evidently the bidding was non-existent until I put a bid in, needless to say, while I ate a beautifully prepared, um, whatever it was, with my nose in the bidding war that ensued, I turned to Gregg, who had the made the beautiful prepared dinner, whatever it was, as asked him if I should go over $425…he said I should do is just go away. It sold for $423 and not to me. This was a total cart before the horse scenario for me, I was into buying this on instinct based on this gals story (which I totally believed) and my instinct that this color wheel was rare. Subsequently I have done a bunch more research and boy, were my instincts correct. I’m sure some hipster in Palm Springs is going to be very  happy with his Gleaming Pink, Blue and Green Tree!

His Final Decades in Hawaii: Jean Charlot 1897-1979

Although he was born and raised in France, Jean Charlot spent the final decades of his pr

olific career in Hawaii. In fact a 1966 retrospective exhibition of his art was held at the Honolulu Academy of Art. We have collected Charlot original prints and incorporated the collection into the decorating of our Home in Montecito.

Jean Charlot, ‘LOEA HULA’, Oil Painting of Iolani Luahine
Jean Charlot studied at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris before serving in the French Army during World War I.  His mother, with her French, Mexican and Jewish lineage, introduced him to Mexico in 1920, where he sketched for archeologists excavating Mayan ruins.  He became enthused with his Mexican heritage, as evident in a series of mural paintings in Mexico City assisting Diego Rivera and other members of the Syndicate of Painters and Sculptors.  Charlot is credited by Rivera for reviving and refining the fresco technique that he used.  After working from 1929 with lithography printer George Miller in New York, Charlot began a lifetime collaboration in 1933 with Lynton R. Kistler, master lithography printer in Los Angeles, reputedly making the first stone-drawn color lithographs in the United States.  Charlot devoted himself to themes of family and the working class, revealing the universality of human nature. Bio from,  Toby Moss Gallery, Los Angeles.
Jean Charlot, “The Spear Thrower” Original Silkscreen, 1974
During his career Jean Charlot received major awards from the Guggenheim Fellowship and Yale University. In 1966 a retrospective exhibition of his art was held at the Honolulu Academy of Arts and in 1968 a similar exhibition took place at the Museum of Modern Art, Mexico City. Today, major collections of Charlot’s prints are found at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, the Smithsonian Institution, the San Francisco Museum of Fine Arts and at the Art Institute of Chicago.
Jean Charlot, LAUHALA, KAPAKAHI STREAM, KAAHALA OAHU, Serigraph, 1978
Jean Charlot, ‘Hala Grove, Kahuwai, Hawaii’, serigraph Hawaii State Art Museum
For Additional information on Hawaiin Art.

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Crazy for Coconut ! Halekulani Coconut Cake with Chocolate Sauce

We are going to the Halekulani Hotel tonight to see  Kanoe Miller Hula Dance at House Without a Key. Then we are having the Hotel’s famous COCONUT CAKE WITH CHOCOLATE SAUCE!!!!  Tomorrow I’ll be climbing Koko Crater for a butt burner, but it will be worth it. I called the hotel and Chef gave us the recipe, included below.

I found this great article by the by the New York Times 36 Hours in Honolulu and this beautiful photo of Kanoe MIller by Cory Lum for the New York Times…

HALEKULANI COCONUT CAKE 
with Chocolate Sauce


8 Servings


INGREDIENTS AND METHOD FOR THE SPONGE CAKE:
3/4 cup Cake flour
1/3 cup Sugar
1 tsp Baking powder
1 pinch Salt
2 Tbsp Salad oil
1 each Egg, large, whole
2 Tbsp Water
4 each Egg whites
1/4 cup Sugar
1 pinch Cream of tartar


– Preheat oven to 350°. In a small bowl, sift together the cake flour, 1/3 cup sugar, salt and baking powder. Reserve.
– In a separate bowl, combine salad oil, whole egg and water. Add to sifted ingredients to form a batter, and mix until a smooth consistency is obtained.
– In a separate bowl, whip the egg whites and cream of tartar. Gradually add 1/4 cup sugar and continue to whip until a stiff meringue is formed.
– Fold meringue into the batter and mix thoroughly.
– Pour the batter into an ungreased 9″ spring form pan and bake for 20 to 30 minutes. Remove cake from pan, cool upside down on a cooling rack.


INGREDIENTS AND METHOD FOR THE PASTRY CREAM:
1 1/2 cups Milk
1 each Vanilla bean, split in half
1/3 cup Sugar
3 tbsp Flour
4 each Egg yolks
1 1/4 cups Coconut flakes


Method:
– Bring the milk and the split vanilla bean to a boil. Reserve and let cool.
– In a mixing bowl combine the sugar, flour and egg yolks, whip together.
– Remove the vanilla bean from the cooled milk and add 1/3 of the milk to the egg mixture, mix well.
– Pour the egg mixture into the pan of remaining milk. Over medium heat, continue stirring until mixture begins to bubble and thicken.
– Remove from heat, cover with aluminum foil and stir occasionally to prevent crusting. When completely cool, add coconut flakes.


INGREDIENTS AND METHOD FOR THE WHIPPED CREAM:
1 ½ cups Whipped cream
3 tbsp Sugar
1 ½ cups Coconut flakes


– In a mixing bowl, combine the whipped cream, sugar and 1/2 of the coconut flakes.


Half of this mixture is to be folded into the pastry cream and the remainder is to be used to frost the cake. The remaining half of the coconut flakes is to be used for coating the frosted cake.


INGREDIENTS AND METHOD FOR THE CHOCOLATE SAUCE:
1 cup Milk
3/4 lb Chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup Heavy cream
1 tbsp Butter
1/4 cup Sugar


– In a sauce pan, combine the milk and chocolate, bring to a boil. Add the cream, butter and sugar and again bring to a boil. Remove from heat and keep warm.

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TO ASSEMBLE & SERVE:
– Cut the cooled cake into 3 layers.
– Spread pastry cream atop the bottom two layers, assemble the cake.
– Frost with the whipped cream and sprinkle with coconut flakes to finish.
– Slice the cake into desired portions and serve with warm chocolate sauce.

A Kitchen Design that is Modern, Hip, Glam…Oh and Functional!

    We wanted to create a 21st Century look in this mid century modern house. A professional style kitchen that would be “eat in” intimate but also accommodate a staff for larger catered events as well.
The Floors are Italian Silver Travertine. This gray (silver) and brown marble has exactly the perfect warmth and depth of color to coordinate nicely with the quarter sawn oak cabinets and stainless steel appliances and countertops. We used Italian Statuary marble, white with heavy gray veins to contrast  and offset the other materials in the room. Note that the Statuary countertop on the island is one very large piece and it is book matched with the vertical end panels. 
The elliptical table is 1960’s Milo Baumann and the Oak Chairs are 1950’s Hans Wegner. 1950’s’ Italian blue gray Glassware.  

The Light Fixtures are from Boyd Lighting in San Francisco. The Professional Dual Fuel Double Oven Range is a 48″ Wolf Range with Six Burners and a Griddle.

The kitchen cabinets were built by Henrybuilt in Seattle. We worked closely with Henrybuilt to create a look that blended the modern with the authentic appeal of this mid century home.  We achieved a look for this kitchen that is both sophisticated, modern and technically advanced. We combined horizontal and vertical grained quarter sawn oak panels with stainless steel countertops and appliances. We used linear full length steel pulls that added just the right punctuation. We made custom oak doors with frosted glass panels that concealed the pantries. All built out of oak to be cohesive with the kitchen design. 

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The Ultimate Toy

As a pilot I was wowed by the Icon A5. This “light sport aircraft” is the ultimate toy for pilots who enjoy the water. Imagine launching this puppy from your yacht like a jet ski! Read more about this ingenious development in aviation in Wired Magazine.

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