30th Birthday Party

On Saturday, my husband Travis threw a wonderful party for me for my 30th birthday. We rented the Heaven Suite at the Blackstone Hotel, and holy cow is that place amazing!

Before the party got started, my friend Justin Edmonds shot a few portraits of me. Documentation of what 30 looks like.

I wore a Lela Rose dress rented from Rent the Runway, and added a sparkly belt from Anthropologie that I bought last fall.

Friends arrived, and we had dinner at the tapas restaurant downstairs, Mercat a la Planxa. Delicious! Then we moved to the suite for cake and drinks, and a few more joined us. My friend Cindy baked a pistachio cake frosted with chocolate ganache, and my husband bought a chocolate cake with raspberry filling from Sugar Fixe. You can never have too much tasty cake. I didn’t take many photos of the actual party. I was having too much fun and forgot my phone in my purse. That’s the sign of a good party, right? It really was a blast.

But I have to show you guys this suite. I took some photos after guests left and the next morning.

First, look at that view! We overlooked Lake Michigan and the Museum Campus. The flowers were a present to myself from Pistil and Vine, my new favorite florist. I gave Meg, the owner, a few inspiration photos and a picture of the suite, and let her loose. Isn’t the bouquet she crafted stunning?

There were skylights in the main living space and in the bedroom. The dining space was furnished with a red lacquer table and red silk-screened chairs.

The sitting area by the TV featured a red fabric wall, and there was plenty of space for lounging on a purple plush couch on the opposite side of the room.

The bed was giant and incredibly comfortable. And the powder room was like none other. That wallpaper!

It was an incredible birthday party, and I didn’t want to leave the Heaven Suite. (I’ll have to save up for another staycation at the Blackstone.) And thank you to all who came and made it a night I won’t forget!

Friday File

I’ve always wanted to take a floral class, and this Wednesday I finally did! Pistil and Vine, a super cute boutique florist in Bucktown hosted a topiary-building class. We made boxwood topiaries, and I love my creation. All of us taking the class ended up with completely different results thanks to a variety of decorating options and pruning preferences, but they all looked great. The credit goes to Megan at Pistil and Vine for such great instruction.

And now my fave links from the week:

Here’s another story of a rare piece owned by a person who didn’t know what it was worth fetching high sums of money. In this case, a 200 hundred-year-old Imperial Chinese robe fetched £15,000 at auction. The owner was going to donate it to a charity shop! When am I going to find my own treasure at a flea market or in the back of my closet so I can sell it at auction for $$$$?

This fascinating history about mannequins explains how they reflect societal conventions through various historical vignettes. My favorite story in this post tells about a 1899 wax figure named “Miss Modesty” whose arms and hands covered her face in shame because she modeled undergarments.

Do you know how to properly care for your shoes in the winter? Here’s a great guide to getting them through the cold temperatures, snow, and salt-covered sidewalks.

A new study finds that kids that are exposed to the arts “display greater tolerance, historical empathy, as well as better educational memory and critical thinking skills.” Huh, you don’t say?

Have a happy weekend!

photo by Travis Haughton