September 10, 2012

On the Road: The Adirondacks

Here I am. I’m back in England for good now and will be finally resuming my daily posting schedule. This summer was pretty much a write-off in terms of getting enough time to myself to do anything creative. I’m not complaining though. I think I really needed the break. I’ve been with my kids 24/7, setting up our life here in England, traveling a lot and having loads of friends to stay. It’s been great, but I am ready to get down to the daily life I imagined for myself here – spending most of the day in my garden shed / office writing and being creative while the kids are at school, with maybe a break in the day to go for a ride on my Polo, my favorite horse. There’s also the small matter of my next book. I know exactly what I want to write about, but am still contemplating how to organize it all. Those answers usually come when I spend enough time working on it that the subject earns a place in my everyday consciousness, and then it all falls into place in my mind when I’m driving in the car or going for a walk.

In the next few weeks I want to show you some new style icon pictures I am excited about and also share with you a bit more about life on the farm here in England, but first I want to wrap up the end of the summer. I spent two heavenly weeks in August at my parents’ house in the Adirondacks. I’ve been going there since I was 5, and it is my favorite place to spend time with my family. Every day is a full day and everyone falls in bed exhausted and throughly satisfied at the end of it. We hike big mountains (we call them 46er’s, referring to the 46 peaks over 4000′ in the Adirondack park), swim, fish, canoe, rock climb, and also play tennis, golf, and lawn bowling. The whole thing is very Bruce Weber, and in fact he has a house nearby, although I’ve never been. I did sit next to him at a dinner once, and we spent the whole evening talking about our mutual love of the Adirondacks. It’s a place that gets in your heart and never leaves.

And because this is primarily a style blog, let’s first talk about what I wear in the Adirondacks. It’s pretty much the same thing everyday actually: a pair of shorts that are on the short side without being obscene, an all weather hat that absorbs sweat and keeps the sun out of my face, hiking boots or Keen’s shoes (you all probably don’t even know what these are – they are waterproof sandals that are nearly as ugly as Crocs – kind of like an updated Teva shoe). And then because I always have to throw in a little bit of color/patter/print, I wear a different Proenza Schouler t-shirt every day. I’ve always spent a fortune on these only to discover that everyone else always had the same one. But I’ve never been able to stop myself from being seduced again and again by the new patterns Jack and Lazaro come up with. They are simply irresistible, and outside of the fashion world has proven to be the perfect place to wear them without feeling like a clone.

And now onto the photos. Enjoy!

Giant Mountain, the focus of our view. I climbed it once when I was 15, and again two years ago with my daughter. 

Wearing one of my favorite Proenza t-shirts on the lake.

My parents’ house. You can see many more pictures that Claiborne Swanson took of it on
My mom is an amazing collector of things that add great character to a house. This “royal” deer is one of my favorites. 
Some of the badges my son has collected rewarding him for the mountains he has climbed.
We sometimes lounge around in front of the fire (yes it’s cold enough for a morning fire in August) before getting going in the day.

My grandmother was an obsessive needlepointer. She designed this one herself, and it now covers a chair in the living room. 
Some cool stickers on a car spotted in town.
Our default daily activity is to just head down to the lake for a picnic and a swim.

A hand painted map of the river.
The beautiful Ausable River.
Mom, in an early 90’s JCrew flannel. It belonged to my high school boyfriend and then got passed around over the years. The basement closet in our house is like an archive of American outdoors style from the past 30 years – LL Bean anoraks, J Crew barn jackets, dozens of Patagonias, CB skiing parkas, and high school Varsity jackets.

A moose siting documented at the lake.
A close up of Mom’s cocktail party accessories.

Heading off on a hike up Sawteeth. We opted for the longer scenic route. It took us 4 hours to get to the top, and our group ranged from 8 to 76 in age.

Catching my breath at an overlook.

We made it to the top! The view always gives you a tremendous sense of acomplishment.

Well hello there.

The view from the summit of Phelps mountain.

Taking a nap on the summit.
Handmade guide boats in the boat house.

A day on the lakes.

The boathouse at the end of the lake.

Into the woods.

The natural water slide at our favorite picnic spot.

There is a lot of peer pressure to swim at river picnics regardless of the very, very cold temperature of the water. I’m proud to say son is usually the first one in.
A little Palm Beach style in the Adirondacks.

Heading off to camp at a lean-to on the lake for a night.

The parking lot.
Our home for the night.
Rise and shine.

Heading home.



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7 years 8 months ago

I am so excited you are writing another book! I absolutely loved every bit of I Love Your Style and refer back to it all the time. Do you need any assistance researching for the new project? I've done research before for a retail business book. I love what you do! (Totally understand that reaching out via a blog comment is totally whacky, but couldn't find any other way to contact you!)


7 years 8 months ago

Wonderful – you are so lucky to have such a fabulous family vacation spot! I've always been more attracted to mountains and lakes rather than beach!

7 years 8 months ago

Lovely pictures! I'm sure you had a great time!

Looking forward to your new posts!!

mlle p
mlle p
7 years 8 months ago

That fireplace photo looks so appealing, and I love your mother's stacked rings – very cool! I must admit to also having a pair of Keen's for tromping about – ugly, but useful.
Can't wait to see what the next book will be!

7 years 8 months ago

What a wonderful tradition. Your children are lucky to have such memories. Ha! PS can even be represented in the Adirondacks! Thank you so much for sharing…