In a Nutshell

I went to New York to see people.  Not big masses of people, though I saw that, too, but a few individuals with whom I have become friends over the last year and some change.

Up until now if I said to Mr. Blandings, “I got an email from my friend….” he would say something along the lines of, “Honey, he’s not your friend; you’ve never even met him.”

Which is exactly the stance I would take if one of my children ever claims an on-line friend, but this is different.  We are friends.  We have a lot in common.  I know things about them and I don’t really think they’re lying when they tell me about recovering a chair.  

But when I received Joe Nye’s invitation to attend a book signing with Carolyne Roehm it seemed the perfect excuse to go.  To meet.  To shake hands and hear the voices of some of the many friends I’ve been lucky enough to know only on a screen.

So, I hopped a plane (or two) and ended up in the city.  It is magic, isn’t it?  I had a tiny bit of time to walk around the Village with my big city friend (and have a free cup of coffee on Starbucks to celebrate our vote) before we were off to an election party.

The next day, a bit weary, up and out and then about to see a couple of the shops that I had pined for on-line.

Nothing new, nothing you haven’t seen.  John Darian and Flair and I adored them both.  Of course, at Flair I met a charming young gentleman from Pittsburg, Kansas.  His sister lives in Kansas City not very far from me.  Naturally.

Another friend works at a gallery and she wanted us to stop in.  I had been hoping to get to the Cooper Hewitt to see the collection of watercolor interior paintings, but it had been nearly two years since we had seen each other and people are more important than pictures.  

In an unexpected twist of fate, after admiring the pieces on display she said, “Come back, I want to show you something.”  Into a private viewing room, planted in the cushy chair, she took the cover off a very large, stunning piece of art.  As I gazed wide-eyed I caught the signature.  Lee Krasner.  Geez.
Close enough to walk, after being briefed on the directions six or seven times, I headed a few blocks up to Joe Nye’s showroom.  

Gorgeous, everything, each piece so special and distinct.

To say nothing of the flowers, the food and the energy which were all top notch.  Joe, who had up until that moment been an email friend, in Mr. B’s book an un-real friend, became a true friend in every sense.

Warm and gracious he squired me around and introduced me to the most lovely people.

Not the least of whom were Jaithan Kochar and Eddie Ross.  A special treat was meeting Lisa Newsom, the editor of Veranda; I can only describe her as completely Southern, which is a great compliment in my book.  Carolyne Roehm was as beautifully mannered as she was turned out, gorgeous in her sleeveless sweater dress and (I think) Faraone Mennella earrings.  She’s from St. Louis, you know.  Speaking of Missouri (again) it was a treat to see hometown friends Pam Fleicher and Ken Weiner of Creative Candles.

I could have stayed until the very end, but had to dash to meet Hollister and Porter Hovey for cocktails.  As if I didn’t adore him enough already, Eddie managed to hail me a cab in the pouring rain at 6 o’clock in Manhattan.  My prince.

Hollister and Porter are as engaging and delightful as you would expect them to be.  We sat and talked and laughed and traded Kansas City stories.

The trip was a joy.  I felt like presents and surprises awaited every turn and not one of them was an item with a price tag.  OK, except for the Krasner.

“You have to come back more often.” “Oh, we want you to see this!” “Have you been here? But you must!”  A merry chorus espousing all the things they love about the city.

I will, I will.  I will go back.  I always swear to go back more often.  And, my dear friends, you need to come here, too.  You must!

Images, top, my own, Times Square, if I’d had a hat I might have tossed it MTM style, the next three, John Derian, three following, Flair and the remaining, Joe Nye’s showroom.
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31 thoughts on “In a Nutshell

  1. I love the flair!

    How was the election party? Seattle was a bustling place election night – there were even fireworks in my quiet little part of town! Trumpets and drums and the like, and thousands of people were on the street downtown.

    So jealous of your time with Hollister and Porter. Three of my favorite bloggers, all in one place.

    Welcome home.

  2. It is great to meet internet friends!

    Lucky you, to get to meet not only your new “friends” but also Carolyn Roehm! Since she’s from Missouri, I think of her as a “home state” girl!


  3. Lecia – the party was great, great fun and yes, it was wonderful to go to sleep listening to the party going on in the streets of the city. The Hovey girls do not disappoint – you would have been delighted.

  4. Welcome back! We missed you.

    So glad you had such a full experience. It’s kind of surreal to see you with Eddie and Jaithan. Of course you look lovely and chic. The world is going to fall in love with Mrs. B.

    Wonderful things you chose to share with us too.

  5. You’re the princess! Princess Blandings! It was SO great hanging out with you too, Friend! Can’t wait to do it again.
    -Jaithan (

  6. i am so happy for you that you went to the city.

    nyc is magic,
    and magical things happen there.

    i miss it terribly.
    i lived one e 58th st for 10 years…….they were certainly the most exciting years of my life.

    best regards !!

  7. I felt like I was reading a page out of a fairytale princess book, Patricia! I just love hearing about your fabulous trip! I must , must go to NY soon!!! It is definately on my list!

    I am happy for you , but, JEALOUS, nonetheless! Ha!

  8. I need to go to Flair. Sigh. I blogged about that lamp and used your photo w/ link. I think you’ll scream with laughter when you see the post. Let’s just say…very small world…

  9. It sounds like you had a great time. I’m completely jealous of everyone that got to meet with in person. I also consider all my blogging friends actual friends, which my husband also thinks is funny.

    Next time you are in NY we must meet up. I’m not cool enough to live in the city, but I’m in the suburbs and only 40 mins away.

  10. Such an exciting trip. My husband makes fun of my online friends as well. We call them my imaginary friends that actually talk back.

    Welcome Home.

  11. I love all these images. Thanks for sharing your trip. I live in NY and must not look at things closely enough. I walk way too fast.

  12. Courtney – Atlanta next!

    Porter – even better if it’s both.

    Meg, yes, I loved both. And thanks.

    Jaithan, my boys sometimes call me the queen, but it’s not a compliment. I think I like princess better.

    Karena – I do think I will remember this one forever.

    Jennifer – I feel the same way, but we’re going to remedy that soon, I hope.

    Renee – it’s a great place to visit! Live? I’m not so sure.

    mimilee – do go, I know it seems like so much trouble and so much expense, but it is oh-so-wonderful.

    reno therapy – I adored the post and wish I was so clever with my images.

    hi-heeled foot – I would love it!

    Jessica – they don’t really understand, do they?

    kwana – darling, as far as I can tell, you have to or you get run over. There’s so much to see, you can’t possibly take it all in.

  13. What a delightful trip, and well-documented, too. I just had to note that my husband – also a born-and-bred Kansas Citian – always says the same thing to me about “the e-mail friends.” Ha!

  14. Glad you had a wonderful trip. It looks like fun!

    Your marriage post below made me tear up. It was beautifully expressed and totally true.

  15. I came over here from Renovation Therapy to meet my dish’s mate. 😉 LOVE that lamp. Your whole visit looks great. Need to get me to Flair. Mmmmmm.

    p.s. Your On Marriage post rocked.

    – Laura @ the shorehouse.

  16. Such a great trip! And to be invited in the first place, what a thrill. It sounds like you had a wonderful time.

    And “On Marriage” I had such a great read. I am right there with you. I thought to myself after every line….yes, yes, yes, that’s it. Thanks.

  17. I wanted to make a comment on your “on Marriage” post. I just loved it! You are so lucky to have the gift of writing and Interior Design! I just have the design gene. sigh. Love reading your blog!

  18. Is that John Derian of Kaas Glassworks? I love both and have visited Kaas in NYC. Great post, thanks for sharing.

  19. Brilliant! Your trip and commentary deserves an illustrated treatment. “Mrs. B Comes to the City.”

    What fun it was to live vicariously through you, once again.

  20. I’ve come to this post rather late, but if you can remember, can you tell me more about the plates in pic 3 (Fornasetti?) and the stools in pic 13 (green geometric). They’re much coveted by moi. Thanks.

  21. Columnist – the plates are John Darien and can be purchased on-line. The stools are through Joe Nye’s showroom. You can contact him though

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