Monday, October 31, 2011

Amber Alexander's darling menagerie of animals

Amber Alexander has a delicate way of letting watercolor be watercolor. It spreads, it flows, it swirls into beautiful washes. My favorite pieces are her whimsical animals, which benefit immensely from her undone style. If they were too done, they'd be cloying. But with her carefree touch, they're perfectly charming. 
"Just Desserts." This feline looks sort of caught in the act, no? I could see my Flynn eating a piece of devil's food cake, too. She loves to lick the juice off of strawberries. 
 "Pearl." I want a mouse like Pearl, to help me keep my jewelry straight and whisper all of the court secrets in my ears. And I really, really want a pouf like this lovely lady's. 
"Book Club." Something tells me she's a fan of Edith Wharton and Jane Austin and maybe even Tom Wolfe. She strikes me as a literary adventurer. 
"Squirrel." Now, Twiggy the Water Skiing Squirrel is a great favorite of mine. But I'm feeling a fondness for this darling. 
"Showgirl." A flapper bird. How could you resist? 
All paintings available at
Thursday, October 6, 2011

Top This Cake!

Cakes, I would argue, are made more decadent when topped by a beautiful confection of something other than sugar. 
This 1950s cake topper is from the fabulous Aunt Enid's Attic at GasLamp Antique Mall in Nashville. The owner of Aunt Enid's, Carol, sells amazing 20th-century items. I love this bride's crown of pearls and delicately painted eyelashes. 

I know it has been a few years since these birds from Ann Wood first became popular, but they hold a special place in my heart: I ordered the pair seen here to top my own wedding cake (the pink rosette matched the flower girls' sashes). At
I absolutely adore the clothespin toppers made by Sarah Neuburger, owner of The Small Object. Like Ann Wood, she has had a gazillion imitators. But hers are still the best. 

Nonnie Waller's Traditional Southern has been a favorite of gourmands for almost two decades now. And why not? What woman wouldn't love a pound cake, topped by a nosegay, packaged in a gorgeous hatbox? I have received a couple in my life, and wouldn't mind receiving a few more. At