Category Archives: Lifestyle

Calliope

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10 Questions with Calliope store co-owner and creator Caroline Ventura

What’s in the name Calliope?

CV: She was a Greek muse of eloquence and poetry. Supposedly she was the muse Homer looked to when he wrote The Iliad. It’s also a weird ass looking pipe organ on wheels, so that’s fun.

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What was the concept behind the space?

CV: We have a multi-use building in which both our studios (Michael’s design practice Sub Rosa, and Caroline’s gold smithing project BRVTVS) reside, as well as a gallery space next to Calliope, and also our home. We wanted to create a welcoming space where people could come and shop without the “seriousness” of other stores. We sell home goods, it shouldn’t be some stuffy place that you’re afraid to walk into and are scared to touch things.

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Southern Hospitality

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For the past week I have been down spending time in a digital detox in one of my greatest loves, Savannah, Georgia. I love how sweet and floral the air is here, her quiet shores, the romance of the spanish moss that filters the golden light all framing hauntingly beautiful southern architecture. It’s sticky and sweet like the memory of a perfect kiss.

If there is one thing Savannahians do well it is southern hospitality and what is more welcoming to a guest arriving than a cocktail exploding in local flavor?! Traditionally, the pineapple is a symbol of warmth, welcome, friendship and hospitality. You’ll find these all over Savannah on door knockers to lanterns, restaurant menus, to stationary. Inspired by the beauty of traditional symbolism I thought these tumblers by The Pineapple Co would be the perfect vessel for a Savannah themed welcome drink.

Going off of local ingredients native to Georgia and some good ol’ fashioned Savannah made bourbon I put together a light and fruity cocktail I’m calling Southern Hospitality... because nothing is more charming than a nice boozy welcome in a pretty glass.

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Southern Hospitality 

Per cocktail:

  • 10 blueberries
  • A quarter of a peach (diced)
  • 1 teaspoon turbinado sugar
  • Fresh lemon juice from a whole lemon

Muddle together and strain.

Add:

  • 1 oz pineapple juice
  • 2 oz bourbon  
  • 5 dashes lemon bitters

Pour over rocks and garnish with a slice of peach, a blueberry on a pineapple frond and a sprig of mint. 

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“SAVANNAH IS A PECULIAR PLACE… RULE #1: ALWAYS STICK AROUND FOR ONE MORE DRINK. THAT’S WHEN THINGS HAPPEN. THAT’S WHEN YOU FIND OUT EVERYTHING YOU WANT KNOW.”

Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil

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Sound of Luxury

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Sound has the power to take you through time, back to places or moments you want to last forever. Like an intoxicating spell, it provides the power to dream in the future, feel in the present, and dance into your past in a way no other sense can. And if you can harness that power of sound, of music, why not have it wrapped elegantly around you? A journey can truly begin not only with where the vehicle physically takes you, but where your heart and soul want to go, too…

I recently spent a weekend in L.A. with the Lincoln Motor Company experiencing their “Sound of Luxury” pod, which celebrated their new 2016 MKX model by making use of the power of Revel speakers in a 360-degree sound experience that took you out of our world and into another. As one guest put it, “It was like being inside a piano.”

We had the opportunity to interview Kevin Voecks, the sound engineer for this groundbreaking experience within each and every Lincoln MKX equipped with Revel; Paola Prestini, who composed the original score for this special weekend event; and a few of the special guests invited along on this ride where sound touches on that universal thread of human emotion that we all share…

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Above, stepping into the new Lincoln MKX with available Revel Ultima Audio System shown to begin the experience. 

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Speaking with Kevin Voecks Revel sound engineer, on the importance of designing a system customized to the environment:

“The better the music sounds, the more it affects you, the more the emotional component is conveyed.” – Kevin Voecks

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Old School Photography

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Each year, these prints are my little labor of love. This year’s holiday card began almost one year ago, at the beginning of 2015. While shooting a project for Tiffany & Co., we had the opportunity to rent a private helicopter to get aerial shots of Manhattan. I learned two things from that early winter morning ride: 1. I am deathly afraid of helicopters and 2. I wanted this year’s holiday card to be a print of my great love, New York City. Looking down on her from this birds eye view gave me a new visual sense of the layers of history in this city from which we build our own futures. I understood her in a new way and that’s what I wanted to capture.

Considering there is not enough Xanax in the world to get me in a helicopter again, I had to find a new strategy for shooting at this high but intimate angle. Though I love the views from the obvious choices—Empire State Building and Top of the Rock—they didn’t give me the towering sense I was seeking. From the tops of those iconic buildings, the city is dwarfed and dense, slightly out of reach. As luck would have it, our friends from The New Potato were hosting a party with Riviera Events on the 68th floor of the newly completed Four World Trade Center. It’s one of those moments in life where everything falls into place, as if designed by destiny. Here we are in the Financial District, where we work, standing in a building that is part of the present, looking down on the past. It was just what I wanted.

It was an incredibly difficult shot to take. Using a Linhof 4×5 film field camera, the cityscape was not bright enough to register on the ground glass where you do your framing and focus check. Only a few faint street lights were visible for me to use as a rough guide but for the most part I was shooting blind. This also applies to metering: I had no way of knowing if I would be right on the money or not, so I just applied what I knew about the sensitivity of film to light and my experience with it the past 19 years. The image that ultimately made the final print was a 5 minute exposure on Ilford Delta 400ISO film.

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After the image was captured, we packed up and headed to my favorite darkroom in Boston for printing (which made for a great 24 hour Snapchat story!)

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