The Swell Life Kitchen

the swell life kitchen

Yep, getting settled in! And I’ve had a lot of people asking me, “What does your place look like?” or saying, “Send me some pics of your place!!”, so I thought I would do it in installments. I would love to show you all at once, but I’m not that good at cleaning. A little tidbit about me that you may not have known…I am very good at propping and photo styling. So if you see a beautiful picture on my blog, chances are there is something sitting right next to it that I cropped or moved out of the way to get the shot. For me, it’s all about making something look good, even if it’s not great. Oh, well, my secret is out…Anyway, here’s a little peek into my kitchen. I have had the cherry theme for 4 years and I was thinking I needed a change, but I have sooooo much stuff to decorate with and it’s still super cute and fun, so I am keeping it for a while longer. I would say my style is cute and kitschy and colorful. It’s unfortunate that I can’t paint, but I don’t think I would want to do that anyway…ugh, I had an unfortunate experience painting back a room on the day I was supposed to move out. I had to be out by 8 and I was there till 4 in the morning painstakingly painting my bedroom back eggshell! Yikes. Never again until I move into my own place I say!

If you hadn’t already noticed, I have a hard time just sticking to the story (yes, I’m one of those that says they have to go on the phone, but ends up talking 30 minutes more).

So onto the good stuff!

with a cherry on top
My impromptu charger for my counter made from a cake stand!

made by my mom
A detail of a flour sack towel my mom digitally embroidered for me.

counter corner
Here’s one corner of my kitchen.

make your own damn dinner
And a detail of my favorite Anne Taintor postcard along with a mini cherry plate filled with faux cherries I purchased from an artist at the Woodland Art Fair in Lexington a few years back.

cookbooks
And here’s my pretty cookbooks. Too bad I rarely use them.

alexa's kitchen
Here’s a closeup of some embroidered prints my mom made me. She painted the frames to match just for my cherry-themed kitchen.

magnets, postcards, and memories
And here’s a look into my fridge d├ęcor. I love Elvis, but many of these were actually gifted to me. I don’t make a point of collecting them or anything, but I still like them.

And here’s some of my favorite kitchen things….

colorful tin bowls
Colorful tin bowls. I love colored metal! I’m just not sure I would want to drink from the colored tin cups!

now all I need is the hotdogs
Plastic baskets and ketchup and mustard squeezers.

hobnail reproduction glasses
My new & colorful hobnail reproduction glasses from Pier 1. A Christmas gift from a friend.

andy warhol servingware
And my Andy Warhol Campbell soup dinnerware and glassware that I just love.

Hope you enjoyed the little tour. I plan on sharing some more photos of my place in the next couple of weeks.

Until next time Swellions!!!

Alexa

A visual & vintage cookbook smorgasboard

pancake mix

I’ve been meaning to post about this for a while, but recently while on a trip home I got out my mom’s old cookbooks that she used back in the early 60’s…and boy was I in for a treat.

If there was one thing I wish I could do art-wise, it would be to know how to illustrate in the 1950’sesque style. I love the kitschy linework and adornment along with the colors they infused into their work…just love it. I’m sure there are plenty of artists out there still doing this style (I met one named Suzie Millions at the CHA show last year who replicated this look to a T and had them featured in her book Retro Crafts.) But there’s definitely something to be said for the unadulterated whimsy and fanciful shapes and designs and linework. I guess it goes back to it be a simpler time…when it was much easier to hire an illustrator to do a cover than to have it photographed. I would def. love to meet one of these illustrators today and hear about their craft. It just amazes me.

Well, I’m going to post a whole slew of photos below of covers, quirky foods, and those beautiful illustrations. I guess back then, the domestic housewife had a lot of time on her hands and could utilize it by ‘whipping up’ a 5 layer cake or several batches of homeade cookie bars. I know very few people today who even attempt a daunting task like that even once a year (actually my sister Angela does around Christmastime-must applaud her for that effort). It seems like Thanksgiving and Christmas are the only real times we actually cook. It’s kind of sad that we don’t “play” as much in the kitchen cause our lives are so overwhelmed by work, kids, and social obligations. I do notice a lot of people have been doing more simple baking like cupcakes which are relatively easy and pretty and are rather quick craft of sorts. I guess it’s all about finding the time to create something – even if it is a 30 minute meal. hope you dig these illustrations and retro foods as much as I did!

sorbet fantasy

cookiesandcandies

coconut layer cake

wagon cake

table talk

practically cookless cookbook

frozen assets

do ahead party book

Until tomorrow Swellions!

Alexa