Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Greek Easter

Easter for the Greeks is a big deal, I would say it's our biggest religious holiday and for sure my Husband's favorite. According to Sandy, "Easter is MINE!" I don't know many men who geek out at the thought of cooking for 200 guests--to me it just seems exhausting. Sandy loves creating his menu which changes a bit from year to year but always includes the basics...Whole Roast Lamb, Kondosouvli (a pork situation--which we made two of this year and everyone said mine was better then Sandy's. I am very proud!), Lamb Chops, Souvlaki (pork, chicken, beef, or all of the above) and then sometimes shrimp or lobster, this year we had octopus as well. He also makes an huge amount of appetizers, typically involving dips (olive spread, melitzano salata--an eggplant dip, and htipiti--a spicy pepper and feta dip) along with 45 different kinds of sausage. Aside from that, my mother in law tackles her traditional fare, pita (spanakopita, tiropita, blah, blah) dolmathes, peas with artichokes, margiritsa (soup), and insane amounts of salad. I am in charge of the bar. It's funny, a friend of mine told me that Facebook was littered with Greek People taking pictures with their lambs on the spit-it's the Greek version of taking your picture with Santa. So true. Here is a glimpse of the Papadopoulos Easter Extravaganza...

That's my backyard (affectionately known as the jungle)

The Papadopoulos Brothers working the grill.

Sandy & Chris pose with the Kondosouvli (mine is the one in the foreground)

Little Arnakia (lambs)

Sandy passing around the shaved kondosouvli (little Yianni was all into it-we teach them young.)

There was an Easter egg hunt (it was anticlimactic and over in 5 minutes--next year I need more eggs) which I forced my niece into running for me.

This was before I told her she was in charge of the Easter egg hunt.

Sometimes I wish we just went out to brunch like normal people, but this is a lot more fun.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

5 Things I Heart - Hillary Linthicum Edition

My lovely friend Hillary is a rock star, if the Atlanta Design Family had a "scholarship program" she would be Miss Congeniality. She's cool, smart, and rocks the house working with the ever fabulous Bill Peace at Peace Design. She is also the co-founder of Design Collective, a grassroots (Hillary & Capella's roots) effort to connect all of Atlanta's creative types in the design community and promote and support one another. I have gotten to know Hillary over the past year and I just adore her, so naturally I knew I would love her 5 things, I know you will too!

1st Dibs
Michael Bruno is simply a genius! We are now connected to the best of everything, all over the world. Whenever I need a little inspiration, this is my first stop…I just love to browse all categories; fashion, design, jewelry, etc. It is amazing how a vintage Dior dress can send your mind down the path of creating a room for the woman who wears that dress…I love designing in that stream of consciousness sort of way.


We are so fortunate to have a gallery like Lumiere here in Atlanta. Bob and Tony have created such a wonderful environment for the medium (photography.) Visiting one of their exhibits or artists talks leaves you feeling educated and inspired

Gramercy Home

I truly do not know how I did bedding for clients or bought the perfect gift for a friend before this shop opened! I LOVE everything about what they are doing. Added bonus – Jennie, Cam and their staff are the best in the business when it comes to customer service.

Lamp Bergere
I received mine as a gift years ago and I just adore it! They are better than any candle out there and they help purify the air while making the room smell amazing.
(in Atlanta, you can find them at the fabulous Paris on Ponce)

Outer Banks, NC
The Outer Banks was our family vacation spot for 15 years and when I returned recently I wondered if all those fond memories were just because I was a kid on vacation. Nope. Everything I remember loving about it was still there (albeit with a few more restaurants but that happens!). Definitely my happy place.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Quintessential London

For my last post on my London visit, I want to discuss the most illuminating experience I had on my trip--Dinner at The Athenaeum Club.

The Athenaeum Club is an exclusive members only club (which was originally only open to men) where members can "enjoy the life of the mind" -- it is a beautiful building filled with more incredible books then I could have ever imagined, over 80,000 books to be precise. The majority of the members, including our host "are professionals concerned with science, engineering or medicine, but the clergy, lawyers, writers, artists, civil servants and academics of all disciplines are also heavily represented on the roll, with a small number from business and politics." It is my assumption that the club is open daily where members can go to have a drink, read, research, work, relax, or mingle with other members over dinner or brandy. The club also hosts special events for it's members including concerts, guest speakers, wine tastings, and discussions where members can gather and "stimulate friendship and satisfy the urge to good fellowship."

We started with drinks in a private library, where my sense of propriety over ruled my mischievous inklings. This room was just the beginning but overwhelmingly perfect and exactly what a proper library should look like, at least to me. Every wall, around every window, and even the door, was covered, floor to ceiling with books. Amazing books. Books that when you pulled one off the shelf and blew across the top, a real cloud of dust would puff off. Surreal. My sister-in-law who knows me well asked if I could take photos, seemingly embarrassed that she asked on my behalf, I was actually thrilled that she did and ever more excited when they said yes!

This was the secret library where we had drinks. I wanted to sit at that perfect little writing desk so badly---and carve my initials in it. But I didn't.

A few glasses of champagne later and we were off, down the beautiful staircase, passed incredibly beautiful portraits of seemingly important people. Dinner was another experience as I tried to recall every proper table manner I possessed. We were the only women in the dining room, there were 7 of us along with our host, clearly he was outnumbered and even though we all "tried" to be well mannered, I am sure we were a bit loud for some of the member's liking. While I stopped taking pictures passed the library, just because it didn't seem right, I was lucky to find that their website has some really lovely photos!

The Great Staircase

Dining Room

Finally after dinner and before heading home we went for a quick drink in the Drawing Room.

I didn't want to leave, I knew there was much more of that building I wanted to see and probably wasn't allowed. But what was I going to do, ask for a private architectural tour from the only member I knew and only met a few hours prior? I had to just use my imagination---until I found more photos online. It seems the areas I didn't see, are just as I had imagined them. Incredibly beautiful.

Thursday, April 7, 2011


I have heard about the fabulous world that lies within Liberty of London. The fabrics, the wallcoverings, the china, the pillows, the accessories, the rugs, blah blah blah. But when I saw it for myself it was an entirely different and amazing experience. Design porn for me and Yummies like you--I was so overloaded by the loveliness of it all that I had to take several deep breaths on each floor to keep myself pulled together.

The breathtaking Tudor revival building was opened in the 1920's while Liberty of London was already well known for their fabrics (both used for furnishings and fashion) the store became the quintessential emporium for current home furnishings and accessories. According to Arthur Liberty, he wanted the patron to fee as if they were in their own home while shopping. I wish that was my home!

I came across the building by accident but recognized it immediately, I was so excited!

4th Floor Fabrics!


Wall of Pillow Happiness



These guys were tucked behind the stairs, just hanging out.

Had to resist buying this entire table.

and this one...

Sad this is blurry, but they had such lovely rugs and those poufs piled up in the back were awesome. I could have taken one home for 400 pounds.

The display of black chiffon globes willed with fabric flowers cascading from the ceiling was just beautiful. I wanted to be inside one and just people watch.

Monday, April 4, 2011

MWDA says Thank You!

Mark Williams Design Associates is honored to have been selected as Jezebel Magazine's "Best Interior Designer" for 2011. We are so thrilled to be included in this years issue along with many of our favorite vendors and colleagues. Jezebel's Best of Atlanta issue is on stands now and we are on page 76 or you can see it online here.

We are also excited to have been included in a short article on how to make an impact when designing in small spaces, featuring one of our projects in the same issue. Flip to page 118 or click here!

Thank you so much to Jezebel Magazine and those who nominated us!

Friday, April 1, 2011

I stop for pretty buildings

London was incredible. So much fun, such an amazing place, I am determined to go back again and again. I love getting lost in that city, with every turn you take, one ends up on a little alley with a great pub or fabulous boutiques or in a lovely park. Their city planners were brilliant.

The best part for me was to observe the integration of modern architecture with historical classics. Yes, the two can live harmoniously in one city and look perfectly paired. The incredible detail of the historic buildings blows my mind (especially when I think about drawing that out) and contrasted against some more internationally modern architecture just makes me smile. It's not a revolutionary idea and I know I am not the first to notice this concept, but it really is one of the things I loved the most.

Here are some examples of what I loved in London. There were really too many fabulous buildings for me to attempt to document where any of these are but I do remember a few.

Hotel Russel (around the corner from the British Museum.)

Interesting building (near SOAS campus)

I just loved the shape of the windows.

Liberty of London = Fabulous = it's own post at a later date.

The British Museum

The view looking towards Central London while crossing The Millennium Bridge.

Royal Courts of Justice-breathtaking building, don't mind me in the photo.

Loved these buildings along Greek Street, they each have their own personality.

These condos were right around the corner from my hotel, they were a series of buildings and all different colors (there was a green one too but he didn't fit in the photo.)

What building isn't made better by a giant, glittering stiletto? Priscella aside, the Palace Theater is really beautiful.