One of the things I like about HipShops is that you can browse all sorts of stores online without being tempted to click “add to cart.” The site features the interiors of shops all over the place (London, Paris, New York, Hong Kong, Sydney, etc.), so you could look at it as saving you a lot of money on travel, too! There are clothing stores, perfumeries, home decor stores, food shops, and more.

If you are planning to travel to any of the cities featured on the site, though, you can create a handy “to-visit” list of your favorite places. Below are a few that caught my eye. On the individual HipShop pages (linked in the credit line at the bottom), you can find info, more photos and links to the featured shops.






All photos from HipShops. From top to bottom: Thomas Sires, New York; Cire Trudon, Paris; Hay House, Copenhagen; Baker D. Chirico, Melbourne; Luna & Curious, London

Coffee and Tiles

Say what you will (or won’t) about “hip” coffee shops, they seem to be popping up across the country these days.  When I was in LA, my friend took me to Intelligentsia‘s Silver Lake location. Other than feeling overwhelmed by how uncool I felt in comparison to everyone else in there, I really liked the space, with the outdoor seating area and the beautiful blue tiling. I felt awkward taking photos inside, and I didn’t want to give away my true tourist identity. I did, however, manage one of the courtyard, where we sat eating a delicious cheddar corn muffin (me) and an excellent almond croissant (my friend). Seriously, it was so good that I went back a couple days later to get one for myself.

How cute is this illustration of the tiles (seen in the bottom photo) by Casey at K.I.D. Collective?

The Silver Lake location of Intelligentsia (which is based in Chicago) was designed by Barbara Bestor, and you can see more photos here.

Top photo by Taking of Toast, illustration by K.I.D. Collective, bottom photo by Best LA Neighborhoods


Los Angeles was good to me. While I didn’t manage to make it to the ocean this time, I still thoroughly enjoyed my trip. I ate excellent food (and lots of it!), including delicious avocados and tacos; saw beautiful flowers everywhere I looked; made it to one of my favorite places; spent quality time with my gracious hosts; and, did I mention the food? I also took pictures, more of which will hopefully come soon.

Photo by Taking of Toast

All the Buildings in New York

Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream in Greenpoint, Brooklyn

While doing some Google Maps-related research for work a few weeks ago, I came across the site All the Buildings in New York, a project by Brooklyn-based Australian illustrator James Gulliver Hancock. For the project, Hancock has set out to draw all of New York’s buildings. A pretty impressive, not to mention admirable, feat! In addition to the staple landmarks, there are apartment buildings, offices, townhouses, and more (I recognize a couple from my neighborhood). How cool are the ones on wood? There’s even a map provided so you can see what buildings he’s already drawn.

75.5 Bedford Street

201 East 28th Street

If you like what you see, you can buy prints from his shop here. I think an original commission of a building would make such a thoughtful and nice gift.

All drawings by James Gulliver Hancock for All the Buildings in New York


I think I always have wanderlust. It’s always there, underneath the surface, that desire to get away and explore, to find new places and feel comfort in the familiar ones. Sometimes, that desire is extra strong, like it was when I saw this post on Roost. It has the familiar favorites (Portcullis House and the Houses of Parliament); the new territory (Tuscany); and the in-between (Highclere Castle, which I know from Downton Abbey, but have yet to see in person). I could go on and on (and on) about the photos on Roost, but instead I’ll just say: Go explore, and see for yourself!

“La Terre” poster by Double Merrick from Keep Calm Gallery