Snapshot: Iceland

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Iceland never disappoints!  I was there last month for work for 3 days (!!!).  Not enough time for a hot springs soak, BUT I had LOTS of time on the road to take in the expansive emptiness- sculptural mountains, mossy, endless horizons, and clear, icy water.

East coasters! Remember, it’s only a 5 hour flight from New York. A relatively short trip to experience something so OTHER, something that feels so very FAR away.

xoxo

 

 

 


 

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Snapshot: Venezia, Italia

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Gondoliers gondolier-ing at Venetian rush hour

Oh Venice, you are a rare gem!  The strange green color of the lagoon, the fact that all cars and bicycles are replaced by boats and pedestrians, the delicious daily cicchetti and lo spritz.  If you can get away from all the tourists (even though you are one), Venice will take your breath away.  I was in Italy last month for work and spent four fast and furious days in Venezia, a floating and often flooded city.  About fifteen years ago, I was an intern at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, so this trip was a real moment of nostalgia for me.  There is nothing like roaming around, endlessly walking the maze of the city.  Every crumbling corner is beautiful to look at and basically nothing has changed since I lived there over a decade ago.

This quick trip’s highlights were a night time walk to my favorite street, Fondamenta Misericordia (my old neighborhood), where you can find all the locals and young college students hanging out by the canal, eating and drinking, and listening to live jazz.

I also really enjoyed going to the Roberta di Camerino showroom, once the brand’s factory, housed behind a gorgeous wooden door on a hidden street. Roberta (whose real name was Giuliana) was a fashion designer ahead of her time, who’s signature was trompe l’oeil velvet handbags.  Her vintage pieces are now collector’s items, but the house has been revived and new collections are being produced.

My favorite meals were at Osteria alla Vedova and another spot where all the gondoliers used to eat (can’t find it online- Venice is full of secrets, ask a local) where I ate all the city’s specialties like fluffy risotti and squid ink pasta. It was delicious AND turned my lips purple. I think the best way to do Venice is just get lost and explore, and bring extra socks, because it floods often, especially on the full moon! So magical.

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The facade of the 19th century Salviati Palazzo advertising glassworks

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The Vision Quest Duffle making it’s Venetian debut on my friend Anna (I swear it’s the best travel bag), and working HARD with the girls after literally walking ALL day… And yes, I wear a fanny pack when I’m working.

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Full moon flooding, acqua alta, in Piazza San Marco

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A neon piece at the Peggy Guggenheim by Mario Merz that says,”Se la forma scompare, la sua radice é eterna”: “If the form vanishes, it’s root is eternal”

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Corfu, Greece

Here are some snapshots from a work trip to Corfu a couple weeks ago.  The island was rocky and textural, but really lush and humid.  The food, as is typical in Greece, is to die for.  If you don’t eat bread and cheese you will tortured every time you sit down to a meal by fluffy, fried confections, and salty white frommage.  It was pretty decadent, but balanced out by simple, fresh grilled fish and local olive oil.  I could eat like this every day- no complaints.

A rainy trip out to paradise beach, and the final destination– rocky, white cliffs sheltering a desolate cove inaccessible except by small boat.

The perfect lunch spot in an old olive oil factory, turned rustic country home.

Olive wood is a local export, as well as olive oil of course.  How many salad tongs and olive wood spatulas does a girl need? Our kitchen in newly stocked with all sorts of spoons, cooking tools, and cutting boards.  They are pretty enough to hang on the wall, but I’m going to use them. Limes also grow in the wild.

Strange, antiquated sticker graffiti.  I saw this in a small side street and was fascinated by it- so elegant!

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Snapshot: Texas Hill Country

 

A snapshot from this past weekend on a quick trip to my home state.  I went on a hike with my mom and sister (families that hike together…) at Enchanted Rock near Fredericksburg, Texas.  This is a pic of one of the rock formations next to the famous granite dome.  It was a lush afternoon after a big rain– great news for a part of the state in a long drought.  This is what wikipedia says about this special place: “The Tonkawa, who inhabited the area in the 16th century, believed that ghost fires flickered at the top of the dome. In particular they heard unexplained creaking and groaning, which geologists attribute to the rock’s night-time contraction after being heated by the sun during the day. The name “Enchanted Rock” derives from Spanish and Anglo-Texan interpretations of such legends and related folklore; the name “Crying Rock” has also been given to the formation.”

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Snapshot: Santorini and Mykonos

 

Hi there, it’s been a while! I’ve been busy working, traveling, and developing new products and fun collaborations for the shop! Stay tuned on those…

Last month I was, however, in Greece for a work trip and got a couple snaps I thought I’d share.  The top is a crazy, red rock sunset in Santorini.  The second is a Wax + Cruz Cap appearance on the dock at the beautiful and stylish San Giorgio Hotel in Mykonos.  That hat is collab with my talented shibori artist  friend at Jilsu.  And the last was a lovely sunset on my last night in Mykonos…  I was in both places a short period of time, but I’d love to get back to Mykonos in particular to explore…

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we’re in business!

 

I’ve had my head down the last couple months working hard to produce my first product here at Wax + Cruz! I was so excited this week to get the first big shipment and stock our fledgling web shop with the Wax + Cruz Caps!  My idea was to produce something unisex that travels well and could showcase some of the beautiful textiles that I have been collecting over the last year. And here they are!!!  Sweet satisfaction.

Please have a look at our shop at the link above or go directly to www.shopwaxandcruz.com.

AND- to our surprise, our hats got a shout out on mega fashion blogger Garance Dore‘s site last month just as a few samples hit the streets of New York. I love her sensibility and am obviously super honored! Thanks Garance!

We already have some more projects in the works so stay tuned!

xoxo

 

 

 

 

 

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South Orange County, Southern California

Epic day at Swami’s in Encinitas, CA

I had the pleasure of spending a low key New Year’s with family and friends in San Clemente, California this year.  We didn’t do much besides visit with loved ones, surf, and hit up Pedro’s Tacos post-beach, but it was the perfect end to a hectic 2012.  San Clemente is a sleepy beach town, but it is home to some great waves and even better surfers.  If you’re passing through South Orange County for a day at the beach or a surf at San Onofre, remember that you don’t need much. Keepin’ it classy, comfy, and simple is the name of the game.

what to pack

1. Indigo scarves for cool mornings  2. Shades! like these by Karen Walker  3. A Wax + Cruz Cap of course!!  4. The perfect cozy sweater for cold nights  5. Your fav jeans that go with absolutely anything  6. Suede boots for a night out at South of Nick’s  7. This excellent everyday Dream Collective Necklace  8. A great tee or sweatshirt that reads like a little more than a “tee or sweatshirt”.  9.  Local San Clemente brand and all around vacay for your feet, Rainbow Sandals  10. Oversize beach towel by Pendleton because the Pacific is cold y’all  11. Your wetsuit of choice because, again, the Pacific is cold y’all.

Swami’s in Encinitas and an evening surf check at San Onofre (photo by Trevor Smith)

Trev loading the boards (wearing a Wax Cap of course) and a perfect sunset at San Onofre

xoxo

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Wax + Cruz Caps are here!

I am super excited to announce our first travel accessory here at Wax + Cruz! Collecting amazing textiles from all over the world is one of my true loves and I have been wondering what I could make with my growing stacks of wovens– I decided on something distinctly and culturally American, unisex, but with a twist.  These caps are made from a variety of materials, mainly hand-loomed Guatemalan ikats, suede, and bit of tweed thrown in.  They are all limited run fabrics, often vintage, and I have to say, I think they are pretty special!  AND they are made here in the United States.  Look for our web shop in the new year and feel free to contact me with any questions–

Below Trev and I are wearing some of the first samples… more soon! xoxo

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Snapshot: Morocco, Marrakech and Essaouria

Above are mainly images from my time in Marrakech. The top interior is the lovely Riad El Fenn. There are also some pics from my carpet buying excursion.

Above is the desert outside of Marrakech.  There is absolutely nothing out there- it feels like the dustiest, driest, red moonscape.  We worked out of a beautiful tent draped in black wool.  It is amazing what a difference a bit of shade makes.  I think that Coca-Cola saved my life.

These are images from Essaouria, a blue city, and the beaches close by…. Our local producer taught me how to wear a traditional Berber head wrap- perfect for keeping the sand and heat out during long treks in the desert.

Some more texture from the market place in Marrakech.  The souk is full of spices and pigments used for dyeing (like the wool hanging), cosmetics, medicinal purposes, and flavoring food.  The gentleman on the bike is selling mint — don’t let the empty street fool you- that was at 6am.  Three hours later the streets are completely packed with vendors, motorbikes, and tourists…

Vinyl from a restaurant I ate at in Essaouria:  Along with traditional Gnawa and African blues, they listen to Kate Bush in Morocco too! Ha!

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Moroccan Rugs for YOU!

On a recent trip to Marrakech and Essaouria, I met with a rug dealer and picked up some carpets to bring home for family and friends.  I also picked out a few to sell here at Wax + Cruz.  We have some new projects and handmade goods in the works (to be unveiled shortly!!), and this is our first venture bringing art and objects from our travels to our readers!  Really excited about this!

Moroccan rugs are fascinating and so beautiful– each comes from a  different tribe and is woven by hand.  They all have their own personalities and I handpicked these because I found them really unusual with amazing color palettes. They are all vintage (except the pillowcases), handwoven, and are truly like paintings (especially the Boucherouites)- each knot is a conscious brush stroke from the mind of the woman that who made it.

The Handiras are traditional wedding blankets made by the family of the bride (and worn over her shoulders like a cape after her wedding ceremony).

They are so bold and lovely, I could hardly decide what to bring home.  I have a few left for sale below!  They have already added so much to our living space and I hope these find a home where they will be loved– I have to admit, they are difficult to part with!

Feel free to email me at lauren_a_wood@live.com with any questions and we can work out payment and shipping (shipping cost will be added, I am happy to ship anywhere in the US.)

 

SOLD! –“blonde arrow”,  azilal style:  36″ x  92″

 

“Blonde Arrow” is from the Azilal tribe. She is woven from wool and has chocolate, hot pink, and turquoise accents.

 

“the bride”, handira style, 44″ x 72″, $525.00

 

This one is such a beauty.  Would be gorgeous on a bed or wall.  Add instant earthy glam to your home by throwing this over a daybed with the handira pillowcases.

 

Above is some inspiration for your home, handira-style, from one of the hotels I stayed in Marrakech.

 

 

sold! — “big sparkle”, handira style, 47″ x 68″

 

Twenty square feet of pure happiness…

 

handira pillowcases 23″ x 33″, $125.00 each

 

I have 3 of these and they would fit a king size pillow.   They have a zipper closure.

 

sold!– “the punk”, boucherouite style, 52″ x 46″

 

“The Punk” is truly a rebel carpet!  If you look close, every fiber fascinates.  There are polkadots and ombres, stripes, and herringbone all mixed up into this powerful presence.  I love this rug.  It belongs on a wall!!

 

 

sold! —“the magic eye”, boucherouite style, 34″ x 64″

 

Another favorite, this Boucherouite is more subdued.  The diamond motif radiates out from bold interior colors to soft pinks and buttermilk tones.  This is an understated, warm, elegant lady.

 

sold! — “desert cross”, zemmour style,  66″ x 130″

 

Sorry guys! This beauty is currently making our bedroom a more cohesive and cozy place.

 

 

Trev and I just installed “Big Sparkle” and “Desert Cross” in our bedroom.  They are changing our life! At different times of day, the light reflects off the sequins in different colors and it’s pretty magical.

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