Archive for the ‘Style’ Category


Thursday, January 17th, 2013


A few weeks back, Dave, the kids and I went down to DC to check out two exhibits our friends had designed. One of them was the food exhibit, featuring Julia Child’s kitchen.

I loved looking at everything Julia had in her kitchen—from the pegboard walls to the magnets she kept on the fridge. But there was one thing in particular I lingered over, her bookshelf. What did she think was important enough to keep on the shelves in the heart of her home? There were many books, but the one that caught my eye was sandwiched between Joy of Cooking and How to Clean EverythingBarlett’s Familiar Quotations.

Ah, a kindred spirit. Even more so than I previously thought.

I’ve come clean about my geeky love for quotes. How about you? Do you collect quotes? Do you have a favorite?

psst: I may be a tad obsessed with them.

Posted in Style | 6 Comments »

I’m Smitten

Saturday, October 20th, 2012

With this awesome collection Celina of Petit à Petit and Family created for the concept store Mini Bulles. It’s cute and yet edgy, isn’t it? Makes me wish my kids were a bit smaller. I could see my two rocking those hoodies.

ps. Do you remember Celina from her interview? It’s one of my favorites.

Posted in Style | 1 Comment »

Home | Hanging Family Photos

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

Dave taught you how to take better family pictures. Now, let’s chat about how to hang all those super awesome photos you’ve taken. Actually first, let’s talk about a little decorating we’ve been doing around chez Cooper.

Last year, we started a redecorating project to get the house reflecting more of who we are now at this moment in our lives. We painted over youthful colors. We sold pieces of furniture too big for our rooms to fund the purchases of new, smaller scale pieces. We de-cluttered and reclaimed. The change has been a breath of fresh air.

We still have a long way to go—there are still rooms to paint; our wood floors, which we were hoping to refinish 10 years ago, are still… well, as writer friend of mine recently said about her own floors, they have soul.

But the one thing that really made the rooms feel more “us” was finally hanging our family photos. A couple weekends ago, we finished the process. Want to see what we did?

Here are the three different ways we showcased family photos in our home: (more…)

Posted in home, Style | 5 Comments »

Scenes from Summer Vacation

Monday, July 30th, 2012

photos © Dave K Cooper

The family and I recently took a week-long vacation to North Carolina’s Outer Banks. Initially, I had hoped for a more adventurous vacation, but when I started looking at airfare, Dave and I agreed a trip to the beach made more sense. At the time, I was a bit sullen thinking it wasn’t going to be a very exciting trip. Goes to show how little I know.


Posted in Features, Style | 17 Comments »

London Calling! Gift Picks for Them and You

Thursday, July 26th, 2012

The country that brought us The Clash, Bangers and Mash, Pimm’s O’Clock and Love Actually now brings us the Olympic Games. I say this calls for a celebration, London style. Here are a few of my favorite London themed gifts for kids and adults. Enjoy. Cheers and Cheerio!

For the kids:
London in a Bag | Egg Cup | Anorak Magazine* | Bus | Poster | M. Sasek

For you:
Rob Ryan Silk Scarf | Bunting Stamp | Olympic Tea Towel | Vintage Travel Poster | The Clash Vinyl Record | Bottle of Pimm’s and recipe for Pimm’s Cup | Tea Pot

*Anorak Magazine is an international children’s magazine based in London AND if you look in the world travel section, you might happen to see a little old contribution from me.
The Anorak team has assembled an insanely fab group of contributors from all over the world and I’m representing the USA. Woo hoo!

Posted in Style | 3 Comments »

Don’t Say Cheese: A Photographer’s Guide to Better Family Photos

Thursday, July 12th, 2012

photos © Dave K Cooper

Regular readers know that my husband Dave is a photographer and filmmaker. He’s also one of the main photographers for Classic Play! Today he’s here to offer some practical, and oftentimes hilarious advice about taking better family photos. Enjoy!

I photograph people for a living. Usually, people who have very little interest in being in front of the camera. It’s a tough place to start from believe me. My job is 70% making my subject comfortable and 30% shooting the photograph. Surprised? Don’t be. I bet you hate having your photo taken as well. Why? If I had to guess, it’d be because the one thing you hate more than having your photo taken, is looking at photos of yourself.

Is this because you’re hideous? Because you have a history of breaking cameras with only a look? Have you been beaten about the head and brutalized by an angry DSLR?

No. You’ve been the innocent victim frozen in time in a bad photograph. Perhaps you’ve even been the aggressor taking photos of your beautiful children that make them look like a creature from Grimm’s fairly tales.

What you can do to protect yourself (when the subject of a photo):

1. Don’t say cheese or anything else that will make you clench your teeth and jaw. This technique is only to be used on stubborn children with a lack of experience in front of the camera. Professional models smile and hold their teeth roughly 1/4 inch apart as if in mid laugh. Try that. It works. (more…)

Posted in Features, Style | 8 Comments »

8 mm Vintage Camera App for iPhone

Wednesday, May 23rd, 2012

Have you heard about the iphone app called 8 mm Vintage Camera? It uses filters, similar to hipstamatic and instagram, and applies them to your video.

The app has 8 film filters: 1920s, 60s, 70s, Sakura, XPro, Noir, Pela, and Siena. You can also adjust frame lenses and jitter. There are a ton of options for you to play around with and experiment.

A couple weeks ago, on a whim, I took it out for a test spin. The kids were walking atop a low wall and I thought, man, that’s such a kid thing to do. So I broke out my phone and shot a series of them doing just that: walking on walls.

I imported the clips from 8 mm Vintage Camera into another app called ReelDirector. ReelDirector allows you to play around with transitions, text and cuts. Once you have your clips put together, touch render and you have a movie ready to go. You can upload it to youtube or save it in your phone.

I will say, it took a pretty long time, which, I freely admit could be operator error. But all in all, it was a lot of fun to play around with.

Want to see what we put together?

Posted in Style, Tech | 14 Comments »

Toy Storage Solutions

Wednesday, May 16th, 2012


The other week I showed you how we’re reclaiming the living room. However, I realize my style may not be your style. So I thought we’d explore a few different ‘looks.’ Today I asked my crazy creative friend Joya, who has wicked good taste and three active boys how she’s managed to curtail kid/toy/art projects/life-with-kids clutter. Here’s a peek at her finds for the home. xo Jen

I have three boys ages 18mos to 9 years, so we have a varied level of kid stuff throughout our living space. From baby toys and books, to nature collections, art supplies and sports gear.

We have lived in various sizes and styles of homes over the last few years and I have been on a continuous hunt for storage to make sure our living space continues to reflect our style. A few key rules we live by to make this easier: (more…)

Posted in home, Style | No Comments »