Loving

Lady of Castor & Pollux No. 35 – Charlotte Linton

Thursday, October 18th, 2012

Favorite recipe?

At the moment its Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s Sourdough loaf which I am gradually honing to perfection. I love the challenge of making bread – it really is a craft in itself.

 Last great book you read?

Great Expectations – Dickens had such a good sense of humor. I’m now reading ‘A Tale of Two Cities’ also Dickens. My favorite paragraph so far describes a hat as “a most wonderful bonnet, like a Grenadier wooden measure…or a great stilton cheese.”

 Summer drink of choice?

I love mojitos but you are more likely to find Brooklyn Pennant Ale in my fridge.

 Your Animals-names and breeds?

Norman, our Russian Blue rescue cat. He is pretty crazy, switching between sweet and docile and completely wired. He impresses me daily with his incredible acrobatics and athletic running, and he is very, very handsome.

Do you exercise? What do you do, if so?

My recurring dream for about ten years was running through open countryside and feeling an incredible sense of freedom. I took up running for real about a year ago and now I am completely addicted.

 Salty or sweet?

Sweet, I could live off fruit and I love good cake.

 Who inspires you and why?

The women of my family who are incredibly strong. They have always found their way through tragedy and rift whilst holding the rest of the family together.

Pool or ocean?

Pond? I love swimming in the ladies pond on Hamstead Heath, London where you can swim amongst the weed and ducks. The water comes from a natural spring so it is clean, and very refreshing. You can then sunbathe on a grassy hill and picnic and gossip – its very bohemian but the lack of men can sometimes be a little unsettling!

 Favorite city?

Tokyo – Always looking for ways to get back there.

 Last great vacation?

The Isles of Scilly, which is a mini paradise in the UK. We took a swim in the turquoise sea out to a sand bar – it was the most exhilarating experience. The sand is white and the water is crystal clear but it is deceivingly icy cold!

 Favorite tv show?

At the moment I am obsessed with Misfits, a Channel 4 show. It’s about a group of teenagers doing community service who get super powers during a freak storm. It is hilarious and well written.

 Weirdest job you’ve ever had?

I did a bit of ‘real’ modeling for a while and some of the things they make you do at castings are pretty odd and the jobs are always quite random. I once did a shoot for the RHS – Royal Horticultural Society in the UK. All my parents’ friends took great pleasure in pulling my picture out of magazines or spotting me at the garden centre.

Favorite restaurant?

Ottolenghi in London, if only for their brownies.

Favorite object in your home?

I am very proud of our fireplace full of the ceramics my boyfriend and I made at pottery classes. We have just invested in a Potters Wheel so hopefully the collection will continue to grow.

Favorite piece of clothing?

My ‘Maki’ Lemur scarf doesn’t really leave my neck in the cooler months and goes with everything.

Favorite blog or website?

The Guardian Newspaper online

Something you’re scared of?

House spiders – although I insist they must be freed humanely!

Favorite record?

David Bowie – Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps)

Favorite popsong?

Any upbeat Brittany Spears – before the meltdown.

Your Ideal day?

A day on a near deserted beach – watching surfers, going for a wander, collecting shells, having a non-fussy picnic and a nap in the sun.

Favorite gift you’ve ever received?

I’m very fond of the drawings my nieces send me regularly; they are both obsessed with clothes so they usually feature some ‘off the wall’ fashion designs.

 Favorite flower?

Geraniums – for their luminescence and reminding me of Europe in the summer.

Favorite scent (perfume)?

Au Naturel

Astrological sign?

 Capricorn, I am a New Years day baby.

What do you do for a living?

 I’m a print designer, clothing designer, writer and illustrator. Each day I can’t quite believe how lucky I am when I am sitting at my desk drawing for example … Puffins!

Where do you live?

I’m a bit Nomadic at the moment, I live between New York, London, Essex and I’m off to Scotland for a few months at the end of May.

Your lucky number?

8

What piece of art would you buy if you had absolutely no budget?

One of Picassos decorated earthenware plates from the 1940’s.

What is your favorite thing about yourself?

I always stand as a very proud red head.

LADY OF CASTOR AND POLLUX NO. 35: Rebecca Gates

Wednesday, August 1st, 2012

 

Favorite recipe?
A simple wilted kale salad taught to me by a friend.  Nigel Slater’s The Kitchen Diaries is an often referenced cookbook. I love its simplicity and anecdotal approach to easy-to-prepare, seasonal, wholesome food.

Last great book you read?
Bird lovers, Backyard
by Thalia Field

Summer drink of choice?
Sharp, effervescent mineral water over ice, cucumber agua fresca, cold brewed coffee. I’m also incredibly partial to a very cold, peppery and tart margarita.

Your Animals-names and breeds?
Regrettably none at the moment. I plan to enjoy the fine company of a Newfoundland or a Bernese Mountain Dog one day.

Do you exercise? What do you do, if so?
I love to swim. I will jump in (almost) anything but prefer 50 meter outdoor lap pools. You’ll also find me on a bicycle more often than not. Hiking is a joy I don’t get to often enough.

Salty or sweet?
Salty, preferably with a dark slab of chocolate attached.

Who inspires you and why?
Anyone who does considered and excellent work. Inspiration is everywhere: friends, trees, scents, driving, walks in strange towns…  Barbara Jordan, Charlotte Perriand, Grace Paley, Natalie Chanin – Citizens working towards positive social change.

Pool or ocean?
A clear mountain lake.

Favorite city?
Impossible to decide. Incapable of dating (even casually) more than one person at a time, with places, I philander – wildly having affairs with various towns, rural intersections, and major metropolises.

Last great vacation?
Weekend at the Oregon coast with friends. We christened the huge sectional “the nap raft”™, slothful!

Favorite TV show?
PBS “Mystery!”. I must say, I prefer radio.

Weirdest job you’ve ever had?
Coordinating the installation of very high value art in the middle of Regents Park or in tandem with the tough South Miami Beach union forklift drivers. Being on tour playing music is a bit strange, I suppose.

Favorite restaurant?
NYC: The bar at Gene’s on 11th Street between 5th and 6th Avenues.
Of note: Justine’s Brasserie and Elizabeth Street Cafe in Austin.  Sitka & Spruce in Seattle.

Favorite object in your home?
A pencil drawing by my grandmother.
Close second: 1971 Guild Starfire IV

Favorite piece of clothing?
I have a pair of leather and suede boots so shredded they barely stay on my feet, a Paul Smith suit I scored during a Doug Aitken video shoot, and I must mention the old standbys: Levis 517s and off-brand Swiss bras. Evidently my rack is “alpine”.

Favorite blog or website?
ProPublica
, Cycling Inquisition, Twitter, SAIPUA, sound design websites, awesometapes.com. I’ve been a little kidnapped in album production and promo work to check in with blogs much lately. I can lose days in design archives. A quick overview of The Daily Mail gossip page before I turn off the computer each day is tremendously satisfying.

Something you’re scared of?
Boredom. It’s never good.

Favorite record?
The Impressions’ “The Young Mods Forgotten Story”.
Of note: Duke Ellington’s “Such Sweet Thunder”, Dusty Springfield’s “Dusty in Memphis”,  Pretenders’ “Pretenders”.

Favorite pop song?
Killing me! Only one?  “She Said, She Said” by The Beatles.

Your ideal day?
Yesterday I woke up in Ohio on tour with my band. We were staying with friends in their beautiful home – white light, bright wainscoting, a wild herb garden, open shower with pebble floor, design books on cubbied shelves. We all sat at a large table with their two year old daughter, eating frittata and draining pot after pot of fresh coffee. I took a brief nap during the drive to Chicago, then lay on the back bench seat listening to discussions of the Bee Gees, pop songwriting, and much laughter. We arrived at the venue to a home-cooked/grilled BBQ spread, saw old and new friends, drank red wine and played a great show.  Touring and the music business can be extremely challenging. Yesterday it was not. The only possible improvement? A hike in the Alps to a swim and a bicycle race. And a bit of steamed broccolini.

Favorite gift you’ve ever received?
Guitar from my father.

Favorite flower?
Peony.

Favorite scent (perfume)?
Personal proprietary scent.  Shhhhhh.

Astrological sign?
Aries.  I’ve been told my rising sign is a very strong Capricorn but I’ve a whole lot of Mars in my chart.  “Half and half.”

What do you do for a living?
I am a musician. I think about space, arts consulting, curating, and cultural activism are passions that also pay the bills.

Where do you live?
Portland, Oregon.

Your lucky number?
210

What piece of art would you buy if you had absolutely no budget?
Ohhh another hard one!  Ruth Asawa sculpture with either “Saturn Devouring His Son” by Goya or Robert Frank’s “34th Street, New York, 1951” as close seconds.

What is your favorite thing about yourself?
I enjoy my inquisitiveness, love of listening and good conversations. I’ve been told I am kind, which is a high compliment.  I also like the freckle on my lip.

LADY OF CASTOR & POLLUX NO. 34:
Coco Videla

Tuesday, June 12th, 2012

I think this picture says it all: this girl likes to have fun, she always has time for a laugh (and a friend) and is the bomb. She’s also Latin (by way of Venezuela) to her core – something I love in a lady (might be why little Beba is so dear to me). If you’re lucky you might meet her when you pop in: she’ll be the one with five tiny puppies trailing behind her. I told you she’s awesome.

Photo by John von Pamer

Favorite recipe?
I’m terrible with recipes (and instructions, and rules in general), but I do make a mean omelet with basically whatever’s in season.

Last great book you read?
50 Shades…

Summer drink of choice?
Oban is a favorite all year-round, but on a warm summer day nothing beats a Billecart-Salmon Rosé (perhaps while reading 50 Shades).

Your Animals-names and breeds?
My dog Kika got knocked up by a Venezuelan hottie on New Year’s Eve, and now I’ve got 5 little rascals running around my house: Pepe, Manolo, Lola, Jagger and Benicio. Puppies anyone?

Do you exercise? What do you do, if so?
I wander for hours- that counts, right? And I love dancing (alone, on the dance floor, in the gym, on the streets….anything goes).

Salty or sweet?
I ask myself this question every day.

Who inspires you and why?
Everything I needed to know about being a woman I learned from my grandmother’s red lipstick and the click of my mother’s heels.  One inspired me to embrace my femininity and rejoice in all things beautiful, and the other taught me that as long as I had brains in my head and feet in those heels I could get to wherever I wanted to go.

Pool or ocean?
A bubble bath, preferably overlooking the ocean.

Favorite city?
New York is my soul mate. Paris, my lover.

Last great vacation?
No matter where in the world I go, a great trip for me involves a road-trip, getting lost, meeting fabulous strangers, connecting with old friends, laughing lots and dancing plenty. Brownie points if I get to sing to Chavela Vargas (or any song, really) off the top of my lungs.

Favorite tv show?
Right now I’m loving “Girls” on HBO

Weirdest job you’ve ever had?
When I was an interpreter, many, many moons ago, every job was an adventure. Once I spent 3 days with a Spanish biologist dissecting sturgeons and learning the correct method of extracting caviar. Another time a radio station hired me to interview Mike Piazza and Rey Ordóñez in the old Shea Stadium…what I didn’t realize is that the interview would take place inside the men’s locker room, while the players were getting changed. Priceless.

Favorite restaurant?
L’Artusi on W10th. Crazy good.

Favorite object in your home?
My bright-pink chaise longue next to my old Simon Says.

Favorite piece of clothing?
A beautiful Mary Katrantzou dress. Just looking at it makes me happy.

Favorite blog or website?
Instagram.

Something you’re scared of?
Monsters under the bed.

Favorite record?
@50songsofgrey by Kerrilynn & John.  So sexy.

Favorite popsong?
Billy Idol’s Dancing with myself. Talk about dancing like no one’s watching!

Your Ideal day?
I think it was Charlie Chaplin that said, “A day without laughter is a day wasted.” He was onto something.

Favorite gift you’ve ever received?
I might be getting it this week. I hear every woman should have one.

Favorite flower?
The Flower of My Secret (a film by Pedro Almodovar).

Favorite scent (perfume)
My only scent, Jasmin 17

Astrological sign?
Sagittarius

What do you do for a living?
I work in advertising with a bunch of mad men.

Where do you live?
West Village

Your lucky number?
I’m always doodling the number 8 so it must be lucky? Or extremely hypnotic.

What piece of art would you buy if you had ab
There’s a fantastic photograph of Rossy de Palma wearing a Louboutin stiletto on her head as a fascinator. That would be fun to look at every day.
Also, anything by Yoshitomo Nara.

What do you like most about yourself?
I laugh often and much…

 

 

LADY OF CASTOR & POLLUX NO. 36:
Sunny Ozell

Tuesday, March 6th, 2012

Photo by John von Pamer

We met Sunny many years ago at our local, Franny’s. She always delighted us with fantastic stories, amazing wit and charming presence. I’ve only grown to love her more over time; she unfolds her bewitching personality slowly but surely, always making you want to hear more from her. Lucky for you, she shares here what delights her, what scares her and what she’s looking forward to. Meet Sunny Ozell!

Favorite recipe?
I am eagerly awaiting the arrival of fava beans…I love eating them, and I love the meditative aspect of just how much work they require.  You buy a pound and you yield a cup shelled, at best. I love them cold, slightly mashed with some crumbled pecorino, or warm, sautéed with some good mushrooms.

Last great book you read?
Barbara Kingsolver’s Lacuna.

Winter drink of choice?
A proper Negroni, with proper ice cubes. I also drink Genmaicha tea, pretty much on the hour.

Your Animals-names and breeds?
Family animals back home—Jerry, a 15 pound, 16 year old tuxedo-wearin’ manx cat.  He’s fallen in love with my nephew Will…Jerry lets him pull his ears and his fur. Buck, my Pop’s achingly beautiful buckskin quarterhorse. Suzie, my Mama’s sweet paint quarterhorse. Taz, sort of my brother’s horse, a grey pasofino. And Shadow, also a pasofino, who I’d like to think of as “my horse”. Though I’m a total novice horse-person, I had a pretty hair-raising ride on Shadow last summer—he wound up walking through a yellow jacket’s nest, getting eaten alive, and I managed to get us both through it. He was bucking like crazy, and I had that moment of “this is the part where I fall off the back of my horse” but then I looked down to see just how far away the ground was, and through what seemed like sheer force of will, I got us both through it intact.

Do you exercise? What do you do, if so?
I walk everywhere, and do yoga every so often, which always makes me feel like a magic giant. Warrior Two is my favorite—I can solve all the world’s problems in that pose.

Salty or sweet?
Both, preferably in concert with butter.

Who inspires you and why?
Currently, my sister-in-law Shannon. She just finished up a three-year medical residency, and is now a physician as well as a new wife and new mother. She worked huge, on her feet, literally up to the last minute…she stopped work on a Friday and delivered my perfect nephew the following Wednesday. She is handling all these giant changes with an amazing amount of grace, patience, and joy, all while being an extraordinary mother and partner. She rules.

Pool or ocean?
Neither. Lake Tahoe, on the east shore.

Favorite city?
New York, always and forever.

Last great vacation?
London, where I walked to Borough Market three days in a row. Walking along the Thames feels like a great privilege…it’s just such an old city, and you know people have been coming and going along that river for centuries.

Favorite tv show?
Nuts for Boardwalk Empire. But I still think Six Feet Under was the best thing that’s ever been on television.

Weirdest job you’ve ever had?
Cocktailing during happy hour at a lounge off of Wall Street when I first moved to the city.  Those guys couldn’t be any weirder, darker, or more misogynistic.  They ALL had secret mistresses, they ALL were alcoholics…and these are the people running our financial world.  Yeesh.

Favorite restaurant
Undeniable bias aside, Franny’s (I worked there for over four years). The food is simply flawless.  But I also love Mimi’s in Ditmas and Spicy Tasty in Flushing…and Prune. Always Prune. And St John in London.

Favorite object in your home?
Oof…tough. I’m a bit of an “emotional decorator”…nearly everything in my apartment resonates for me in some way. I have a Kupka print hanging on my wall that makes me happy every time I see it.  I was given a truly stellar, perfectly patinaed cast iron art nouveau table that looks as though it could walk away on its curvy, hundred year-old legs. And I love my posh little mid-century bar that has all its original glassware.

Favorite piece of clothing?
Vintage:  my Grandma’s forties, fringed deer-skin coat (the hide from an animal she hunted and skinned herself…a very different era). Current:  an even tie between my nasty, gorgeous, tight Gucci black leather pants from last spring (I am not to be fucked with when I’m wearing them) and a very lady-like Dries Van Noten dress with the most subtle print.

Favorite blog or website?
I’m addicted to Wikipedia. I binge. I look up “farro” and an hour later I’m reading about Neolithic temples on the border of Turkey.

Something you’re scared of?
Skin cancer. Having to drink vulgar California Chardonay in order to be polite. Indian Point blowing up or a category three hurricane or tsunami hitting New York. Bed bugs, obviously…a fear that borders on being debilitating. Oh…and the Super Volcano beneath Yellowstone that is curled up like a sleeping Goliath, ready to blow, that would do us all in like dinosaurs.  AND…religious fundamentalism.

Favorite record?
Of all time? A tie between D’Angelo’s “Voodoo” and Paul Simon’s “Rhythm Of the Saints“. Currently? Gillian Welch’s new one…”The Harrow and The Harvest“.

Favorite popsong?
I think Aimee Mann writes absolutely perfect, grown-up pop music. But I’ll purr to anything at all by Hall and Oates…or Journey. I do a mean, spot-on Steve Perry impression.

Your Ideal day?
Finding treasure at a flea market, drinking excellent rose, sweating through my clothes to Forro in the Dark, sleeping with the windows open.

Favorite gift you’ve ever received?
A Georgian agate necklace…though the Gucci rainboots I got for Christmas last year are a close second.

Favorite flower?
Ragged garden roses.

Favorite scent (perfume)
Santa Maria Novella Tuberose.

Astrological sign?
I’m a double fire snake…which holds more meaning for me then being a Capricorn.

What do you do for a living?
A whole host of things…I sing occasionally for my supper. I’ve gotten to do some commercial recording work recently—really gratifying. I also work for Melissa Clark of the New York Times, and it’s pretty much a dream come true. My official title is “recipe consultant” which I quite like.

Where do you live?
On the southern end of Park Slope, a block from the park.

Your lucky number?
Seven.

What piece of art would you buy if you had absolutely no budget?
Anything of Kandinsky’s or Delauney’s…love the whole Blue Rider group. But really, no, NO budget?  Holbein’s portrait of Thomas Moore that’s hanging in the Frick. Though it so belongs there I’d hate to remove it. And my life would be completely different if I could wake up every morning and see one of Turner’s late abstract works…big sublime waves and washes of light and color that he painted as he was going blind.

What do you like most about yourself?
I’m a social chameleon—I can adapt to any environment. It’s very rare for a social situation to make me nervous, and I’m very grateful for that. I can hold a genuinely interesting conversation with just about anybody. I also have superhero hearing…it’s both a blessing and a curse, because sometimes I hear things I don’t want to. And I like the way my hands are starting to look as they age.

 

 

 

Lady of Castor & Pollux: No.35
Alexis Rothenberg

Tuesday, January 17th, 2012

Alexis is an amazing friend with an outstanding sense of humor, sick style and an all around general awesomeness that draws you in like a magnet. I’ve known her for years–you might too–she was an integral part of Castor & Pollux years ago, and she continues to amaze and inspire me. She just started Worthwhisland, a limited edition art website, with her husband, Jason and when she’s not deciding what is fantastic in the art world she keeps herself busy baking like an angel, cooking like a madwoman, caring for her little Eewok, Oliver and being a fantastic friend.

Photo by John von Pamer

Favorite recipe?
Sausages and grapes — adapted from Molly Steven’s All About Braising and the blog, Orangette.

Last great book you read?
The Magic Mountain, Thomas Mann.

Winter drink of choice?
I like a Kentucky Nightcap from Ft. Defiance.

Animals-names and breeds?
Oliver. Half poodle, half ewok.

Do you exercise? What do you do, if so?
I want to be a calm yogi, but I’m a runner and a spaz. I need loud music, and the chance to get my ya-ya’s out.

Salty or sweet?
I like my sweets with a good dose of salt.

Who inspires you and why?
Woody Allen, Sophie Calle and Julia Child, because they are storytellers.

Pool or ocean?
Ocean.

Favorite city?
New York, because it is familiar; and Los Angeles because it is still vague.

Last great vacation?
Most recently, a wedding in Brunswick, Maine while we waited for Hurricane Irene.
But the greatest trip I ever took was my honeymoon in Japan.

Favorite tv show?
Downton Abbey.

Weirdest job you’ve ever had?
Fashion PR, because they called me “the vegetarian”. I eat meat, but apparently I seemed quite bohemian with a Brooklyn address.

Favorite restaurant?
Walter Foods, Fort Defiance, and Prime Meats are my choices for consistently excellent food, plus a kind and generous atmosphere. Also, Marea for fine dining, and Yakitori and/or Soba Totto for meals I never want to end.

Favorite object in your home?
A picture of my mother on her wedding day; An eggplant colored Staub cocotte from Kerrilynn; and my man, although he is not an object, he is certainly the reason to come home.

Favorite piece of clothing?
A Green Rodebjer jacket from Castor & Pollux in it’s first season in Manhattan. I wore it to shreds, and still won’t put it away. Also, all my Stella McCartney jackets make me feel like a composed and significantly taller version of myself and that feeling is worth more money than I paid for them.

Favorite blog or website?
Persephone’s sense of humor is so dead on in her blog. She is an explorer, and unafraid of adventures I would never dare to take.
Also Saipua , where Sarah Ryhanen’s honesty & flowers get me out of bed on crap days.

Something you’re scared of?
Losing my memory(ies).

Favorite record?
Bruce Springsteen, Nebraska.

Favorite popsong?
This is the Day, The The.

Your Ideal day?
A day spent at home with my husband and dog, preparing a feast for friends. Or driving the California coast near Big Sur.

Favorite gift you’ve ever received?
A trip to Joshua Tree, when life felt out of control.

Favorite flower?
Dahlias.

Favorite scent (perfume)?
Late nineties NYC subway rides ruined my ability to wear perfume (I’m looking at you, Marc Jacobs).
But when I do it’s Byredo Palermo – I can’t say no to musk or rose, so it’s a happy time for me when they join so beautifully.

Astrological sign?
Aquarius with Pisces rising.

What do you do for a living?
Co-Founder of Worthwhisland.

Where do you live?
Brooklyn: I look out at shipping containers, cruise ships, water & the battery tunnel.

Your lucky number?
321.

What piece of art would you buy if you had no budget?
I’d commission a Yayoi Kusama infinity room. Realistically, more Sadie Laska paintings.

LADY OF CASTOR & POLLUX NO. 34:
Helena Christensen

Monday, November 28th, 2011

Anniversaries are celebrated by exchanging gifts made from a material that represents the years counted. First year is paper, second year is cotton, third year is linen. You get the idea.

I imagined that the ten year anniversary, which we are celebrating here at Castor & Pollux, would have something great to offer up. Not the case. Ten year anniversaries are commemorated with tin. Yes, tin. Maybe the car association of America sponsored this one, I’m not sure, but I wasn’t exactly excited about this “gift.”

So we decided to celebrate with something more glamorous and beautiful than tin, something fantastic to represent the last ten years here at Castor & Pollux. And what’s more fantastic than a super-model? Enter Helena Christensen.

Helena embraces the Castor & Pollux aesthetic perfectly. She indulges in life and lives it beautifully–from clothing to animals, food to music, fragrance to travel. She’s smart, gorgeous and kind and her style is evident in all that she touches. In short, she’s exactly our kind of Lady (and quite an upgrade from tin). Thanks, Helena for being a part of our anniversary. Cheers!

Photo by John von Pamer

Favorite recipe?
A good, hearty Tuscan pasta with lots of parmesan cheese on top and a lovely bottle of wine.

Last great book you read?
The Genius and the Goddess by Aldous Huxley. It is such an incredible book. I read it in a day and felt like a changed person afterwards.

Winter drink of choice?
Gloegg. It’s warm, cozy and gives you a pretty nice buzz.

Your Animals-names and breeds?
We have a bearded dragon lizard named Luna and a really old, grey baby hamster named Oliver.

Do you exercise? What do you do, if so?
I box, do some ballet and play tennis by the Hudson river.

Salty or sweet?
Salty.

Who inspires you and why?
So much inspires me. Movies, music and books more than individual people, though. Nature inspires me enormously too.

Pool or ocean?
Ocean and lakes. I love swimming in dark, cold lakes hidden away in forests. But the ocean, forget it, if I could I would live in there.

Favorite city?
New York and Copenhagen. I live in one and am from the other, how lucky is that?

Last great vacation?
Harbour Island with my son catching lizards.

Favorite tv show?
Spongebob, i-carly and Family Guy.

Weirdest job you’ve ever had?
How about my entire career?

Favorite restaurant?
My Mom’s kitchen. She is from Peru and is an awesome cook -  my family is obsessed with food!

Favorite object in your home?
My home is stuffed to the brim with a myriad of objects. There are literally no free surfaces left and I love every single one of them.

Favorite piece of clothing?
A little rainbow colored Sybilla dress.

Favorite blog or website?
None. I never go on any. But I do have a secret little blog with my girlfriend called Frankie Star. I guess it’s not so secret anymore.

Something you’re scared of?
My mind, sometimes… and cockroaches.

Favorite record?
Oh man, that is impossible to answer. Just impossible. But I do love jazz, classic music and the 80’s. Dépêche Mode rules and always will.
At the moment I have TV on the Radio’s ‘Forgotten’ and Panda Bear’s ‘Slowmotion’ playing quite a bit on my ipod.

Favorite popsong?
Is Toxic with Britney spears a popsong? Sweet Dreams with Beyonce? Both songs are such guilty pleasures.

Your Ideal day?
On the beach side in the north of Denmark. In a bikini all day with my son, a great book and lots of food and wine.

Favorite gift you’ve ever received?
An antique rose gold ring with lapis, diamonds and a flower insert.

Favorite flower?
Leper lily and peonies.

Favorite scent (perfume)
Rose 31 by Le Labo or most scents by Serge Lutens. I adore perfume bottles in and of themselves.

Astrological sign?
Capricorn. Born on Christmas day.

What do you do for a living?
Photography and modeling.

Where do you live?
New York.

Your lucky number?
19. But it isn’t a lucky number, it’s just the most beautiful number I know.

What piece of art would you buy if you had absolutely no budget?
An Egon Schiele painting or any piece by Picasso. Both truly magical artists that continue to amaze me with their otherworldly talents.

LADIES OF CASTOR & POLLUX: LADY NO. 33
Becky Elliott

Wednesday, September 7th, 2011

If I really go into detail right now about how much we love Becky Elliott here at Castor & Pollux, you might tune me out – I literally cannot say enough positive things about this spunky and hilarious beauty, who is also the mastermind behind the beautiful window displays that invigorate the store on a weekly basis. Becky first came to us (as many awesome things do) through our dear friends at Meredith Wendell. Most of you probably know the story of the colorful, prismatic sheet glass that adorns the buckles and hardware of many a Meredith Wendell creation: it’s made in a town called Kokomo, Indiana, in a factory founded in 1888, that famously supplied the master craftsman Louis Comfort Tiffany with glass for his iconic lamps. Becky’s family has been running the show at the Kokomo Opalescent Glass Factory since 1891, and when Meredith Wendell joined the long line of artisans and designers to utilize the lovingly made glass, Becky saw an opportunity to dive headfirst into the fashion world, securing an internship with Meredith Wendell upon finishing a visual merchandising degree at FIT. Then Becky came to us, offering to truck all over New York City, running back and forth between the West Village and the jewelry district (interspersed with the occasional pit stops at One Lucky Duck), and making the windows displays come alive with plants, paper airplanes, and even empty Doritos bags  (our Rockaway inspired window).She recently gave up her day-to-day duties to become an assistant buyer at Kate Spade, but she still comes in on Saturdays to engage the Castor & Pollux audience with her kooky and delightful knack for visual storytelling. She had some typically witty and extraordinarily eloquent answers to our 28 questions.

Photo by John von Pamer

Favorite Recipe?
My mother’s gingerbread cake. It tastes like Christmas.

Last great book you read?

Cleopatra: A Life, by Stacy Schiff. She was one spunky lady.

Summer drink of choice?

Gin and tonic.

Your animals: names and breeds?
No pets of my own, but I grew up with Labradors: Chaucer and Dickens. We name all of our pets after authors in the Elliott family. My parents currently have two Shih Tzu-Poodle mixes named Ernie (after Ernest Hemingway) and Riley (after the poet James Whitcomb Riley) .

Do you exercise? What do you do, if so?
I’m currently training for the Chicago marathon, which is in October! I also like Pilates.

Salty or sweet?
Both. At the same time. Ideally, chocolate covered pretzels.

Who inspires you and why?
I’ve had the tremendous privilege of knowing all four of my grandparents quite well. They are voracious readers, curious about the world, hopeful as to its possibilities, and as fierce in their convictions as they are in their love for family and loyalty to friends. I admire them very much.

Pool or ocean?
I’m partial to lakes.

Favorite city?
London or New York.

Last great vacation?
I spent Memorial Day weekend at my family’s summer home in northern Indiana. Lot’s of walking, biking, and sailing with delicious meals prepared on the grill. Perfection.

Favorite TV show?
Modern Family.

Weirdest job you’ve ever had?
I was a counselor at a military camp for three summers during college. It sounds much stranger than it actually was.

Favorite restaurant?
My mother’s kitchen.

Favorite object in your home?
I have a painting that belonged to my great grandparents. They loved to travel and purchased it during a trip to Paris. It hung in my room when I was a little girl and I brought it with me when I moved to New York. I decorated my entire apartment around it.

Favorite piece of clothing?
I have a now very worn pair of toffee-colored Ferragamo boots. They are my traveling companion of choice and have been inadvisably included on several trips in which a suede wedge boot was not in any way practical – such as a hiking tour of the Scottish Highlands. I can’t help it. I love them.

Favorite blog or website?
I read the New York Times style section religiously. Mainly because I have a minor obsession with Bill Cunningham. He sits at the head of the table in my favorite fantasy dinner party scenario. Diane Sawyer, Mark Twain, Theodore Roosevelt, Katherine Hepburn, Jacqueline Kennedy, and Sidney Poitier are also in attendance.

Something you’re scared of?
Mice. And anything that scurries.

Favorite record?
Much too hard to choose.

Favorite pop song?
Any and all Miley Cyrus songs.

Your ideal day?
It would definitely involve a pretzel croissant from City Bakery and people-watching with my sister. Our favorite activity.

Favorite gift you’ve ever received?
Gone With the Wind is one of my very favorite books, and when I graduated from college my grandmother gave me the copy that she had as a little girl.

Favorite flower?
Hydrangeas, particularly the blue ones.

Favorite scent?
Clean laundry.

Astrological sign?
Pisces.

What do you do for a living?
I’m an assistant buyer at Kate Spade!

Where do you live?
Gramercy.

Your lucky number?
17

What piece of art would you buy if you had absolutely no budget?
I think I might just take up residence in the Sistine Chapel.

LADIES OF CASTOR & POLLUX: LADY NO. 32
Kate Jones

Tuesday, August 16th, 2011

Most of us know Kate Jones as the 29-year-old designer of the subtle, impeccably detailed jewelry line Ursa Major, whose fall collection just landed at Castor & Pollux. We wanted to talk to Kate about the origins of her work. Does her story begin with her mother, a former hippie who attended Woodstock and worked as a curator at the California Academy of Sciences? Or does it begin with her “chronically adventurous” father, an Army physician and violinist who requested an assignment at San Francisco’s historic Presidio base in order to be closer to the city’s opera house? He is the source of her strong will, she says, a doctor whose passions (and itinerant profession) took him to Germany, San Francisco, Memphis, and then, when Kate was a little girl, all around the Caribbean on a boat called Ursa Major—the vessel for which her two-year-old line is named. She credits her mother—the “creative one” in the family—for informing her aesthetic sensibility. Kate refers to the sketchbooks that her mother kept in her twenties as eerily similar to drawings that Kate made at the same age—the oddest part being, Kate says, is that she “developed a similar style without ever having seen [her mother’s] work.” An art historian and museum curator, her mother amassed a collection of decorative objects as the family circumvented the globe: “Bedouin baskets and blankets in Saudi Arabia, jewels, and a lot of stuff from the Southwest”—the latter being a particularly strong influence on her Fall 2011 collection. (Now a jewelry designer herself, Kathleen Jones’ most recent work references the same Guatemalan milagros that inspired her daughter’s “Philippe” necklace – one of our favorite pieces from the Ursa Major collection.)

Kate strives to be the kind of designer that is known for her ability to create great and unexpected pieces season after season (“I want each collection to be distinct”), who appreciates “jewelry as an object, not a component of an outfit.” For the next collection, she is playing with archetypes of decay—“the sandstone lions in front of the library,” for example, slowly succumbing to the elements over hundreds or thousands of years. “I like the idea of eroding things turning into metal, which doesn’t erode.” We’re extremely pleased to present Kate’s answers to our 28 questions for the Ladies of Castor & Pollux!

Photo by John von Pamer

Last great book you read?
Kiss Me Like A Stranger. Gene Wilder’s autobiography.

Summer drink of choice?
Dark and Stormy, preferably with a little piece of crystalized ginger…

Your animals: names and breeds?
Anna was the family yellow lab, named after my childhood best friend.  Sadly, she passed away a few years ago at the age of 14.  And no pets since then. Unfortunately, boats and city apartments aren’t very conducive to the types of dogs I’m partial to: Labs and Rhodesian Ridgebacks.

Do you exercise? What do you do, if so?
I run, always been my exercise of choice.  Running on the west side by the water brightens any day of mine.

Salty or sweet?
Sweets with the perfect amount of salt in them.

Who inspires you and why?
My parents. Their thirst for life and experience.  In terms of design, undoubtedly Ted Muehling, who considers every detail of every piece: the clasp, the hinge, the wire, every angle – their totally sophisticated but simple beauty – and he carries that through to any other medium he has his hands on.  It’s great to see.

Pool or ocean?
Ocean, duh.

Favorite city?
Melbourne, New York, San Francisco. Impossible to pick one.

Last great vacation?
A two week road trip last fall in an old Mercedes camper van through Italy, France, and ending in Belgium with my good, good friend and fellow designer, Henry Wilson.

Favorite TV show?
Yo Gabba Gabba.  That or Masterpiece Theater.

Weirdest job you’ve ever had?
When I was living in Australia, I worked as a promo girl for Club Car golf carts at a golf exposition.  The boss was named Rod Dick.

Favorite restaurant?
Cicciolina in St Kilda, Melbourne.  They have/had  this amazing chocolate souffle served with fairy floss that must have been made with raw sugar… So amazing.  Give me a guy who can make that and I might be sold.

Favorite object in your home?
A watercolor painting of our old sailboat, Ursa Major.

Favorite piece of clothing?
A brilliant blue satin finished cotton blazer from Martin Margiela.

Favorite blog or website?
Ready For The House by artist Ricky Swallow, or MONDOBLOGO. Full of good design.

Something you’re scared of?
Fortunately not much aside from global warming and the rising price of gold. Besides, there are certain things one doesn’t admit. (I almost did but just can’t quite.)

Favorite record?
Paul Simon’s Graceland.

Favorite pop song?
“Right Down The Line,” Gerry Raffert
y.

Your ideal day?
On the water, on a boat, with someone I love.

Favorite gift you’ve ever received?
A coffee table made by previously mentioned friend Henry that he made when we were in college together.  He’ll laugh at this because he hates that table.

Favorite flower?
Lilacs.

Favorite scent (perfume)?
Mechant Loup by L’Artisan Parfumeur.

Astrological sign?
Sag!

What do you do for a living?
Jeweler/designer.

Where do you live?
Nolita.

Your lucky number?
It’s supposedly 5, but I don’t pay much attention.

What piece of art would you buy if you had absolutely no budget?
Probably a Calder mobile or a De Kooning. Or a Jamie Wyeth painting.

LADIES OF CASTOR & POLLUX: LADY NO. 31
Karyn Starr

Wednesday, June 1st, 2011

“I will never complain about this heat in a million years!” exclaimed our dear friend Karyn Starr when she picked up the phone on this sweltering June day. “I’m like, bring it on. I feel a sense of freedom.” As one-half of the aesthetic consultation firm White-Starr, Karyn has worked hard to achieve that freedom. Seven years ago, at 25, she was busily logging six-day, eighty-hour weeks at a glitzy women’s apparel company, and watching her colleagues neglect their personal lives while spending endless hours at the office.   She was aghast. “I was like, ‘This is crazy. This is not the life I want.’” At her father’s encouragement, she left her job, pursued yoga with abandon, and thought hard about the direction her life was going to take. It was a painful time. “I sat on my kitchen floor bawling my eyes out, like, ‘Who am I? What am I doing?’”

During a short stint as a freelance stylist, the seed for her business was planted. As she styled subjects for editorials, her colleagues noticed her “spot-on” ability to read personal styles and assemble looks, and would ask if she’d ever done personal styling. “A lightbulb went off,” says Karyn, as she realized that “[styling] is important work. I never knew it was okay to make a career out of getting dressed.” Shortly after, she met Andrea Longacre-White, her business partner, who had a background in photography and design and shared Karyn’s love of fashion. The connection was instantaneous. “She’s a a Virgo; I’m a Capricorn. [Andrea] is my experience of love at first sight – we loved the way each other looked.” White-Starr, their aesthetic consultation firm, will celebrate its five-year anniversary in September.

Their diverse clientele is united by their love of fashion but a lack of downtime to wade through the ever-growing bog of resources on the subject. They are, says Karyn, “successful people who know to delegate. They have to get up, get dressed and look their best every day, and they just don’t have time. They had all the time in their world when they were in their 20s,” but later in life, devoted to families and careers, “it’s not the priority.” The strength of White-Starr lies in the partners’ desire to spread the good news, so to speak, about clothing and products that are going to enhance their clients’ lives. “Everything we love, we just want to share it,” Karyn says.

Check out Karyn’s blog and read her questionnaire below for more information about what makes the 31st Lady of Castor & Pollux tick.


Photo by John von Pamer

Favorite recipe?
Roasted chicken and roasted root vegetables with lots of sea salt, black pepper, fresh rosemary and butter.

Last great book you read?
Rules of Civility by Amor Towles.

Summer drink of choice?
A gin or tequila gimlet from Diner in Brooklyn at sunset.

Your animals: names and breeds?
None at the moment. But I think of my horses William and Flynn that I had when I was young every single day. William was a Welsh Section B chestnut roan pony and Flynn was a Thoroughbred cob. I dream of having a horse again someday.

Do you exercise? What do you do, if so?
Yes. I love to exercise. I practice yoga and Pilates; I ski, ride my bike, swim, walk and carry my little boy all over the place. I have also tried every hard exercise class in New York City, except Tracy Anderson. (Anyone have a less expensive way to get in the door?)

Salty or sweet?
I like them best together.

Who inspires you and why?
My dear friend Gaines Peyton. She owns Sears-Peyton Gallery in Chelsea. Gaines works as hard as she plays and plays as hard as she works. She shows me all of the time that we are the only ones in charge of our own happiness. She is a wonderful mother, wife, artist and a total bad-ass.

Pool or ocean?
Ocean.

Favorite city?
New York and London have always tied in my heart, but I think New York just won.

Last great vacation?
Miami for three days with one of my dearest friends. Yoga, sunshine, cocktails, sleep.

Favorite TV show?
Friday Night Lights.

Weirdest job you’ve ever had?
Working at Out of the Fog, a coffee shop in Eugene, Oregon. Eugene is really weird.

Favorite restaurant?
Marlow and Sons, Diner and Roebling Tea Room (I can’t pick one; they’re all in Brooklyn) and Souen for lunch by myself.

Favorite object in your home?
A bright tartan blanket that belonged to my grandpa Starr.

Favorite piece of clothing?
Really? You’re making me choose!? AGH! Today, it’s my Givenchy leather pants. They are black and tight in all the right places: calf, at the ankle (with a zip up the back), but not too tight in the seat. If it was the middle of summer: my white Karen Walker button-down sack-like dress; it’s very thin and the shape is exquisite.

Favorite blog or website?
The Tumblr site of my dear old friend Jaime Johnson. The most beautiful thing on the internet.

Something you’re scared of?
A day alive without my family.

Favorite record?
Hmmmmm.

Favorite pop song?
Empire State of Mind,” Jay-Z and Alicia Keys.

Your ideal day?
A tie between all day at the beach with my dearests, buying food from the farm stand with sand still on our feet, followed by cooking a big feast, or a day skiing with my husband and my brother.

Favorite gift you’ve ever received?
My baby boy Louis (pronounced Louie)!

Favorite flower?
Lilac.

Favorite scent (perfume)?
Le Labo Rose 31.

Astrological sign?
Capricorn. Earth.

What do you do for a living?
I love my job; I am a personal stylist.

Where do you live?
Clinton Hill, Brooklyn.

Your lucky number?
3.

What piece of art would you buy if you had absolutely no budget?
An Alexander Calder mobile. There was one at my high school and I think of it often.

LADIES OF CASTOR & POLLUX: LADY NO. 30
Nina Freudenberger

Friday, May 20th, 2011

Here is how the conversation went between Kerrilynn and I yesterday:

EMILY

Which Lady are we going to post tomorrow?

KERRILYNN
(munching on kale chips)

My friend Nina Freudenberger.

EMILY

Have I met Nina?

KERRILYNN

Maybe? She’s really awesome; she owns Haus Interior -

EMILY
(interrupting, as usual)

Haus Interior?! On Elizabeth Street? Oh my God! I walk past it every day. I. Love. Her. Store!!!

KERRILYNN

It’s amazing, right?

EMILY
(jumping up and down, startling OTTO and causing BEBA to flee in terror)

Um, I definitely went in there the other day and like, accosted the store manager. She was showing me this really gorgeous platter – it was a piece of striped linen dipped into resin and then molded.  You could still see all the little fibers in the fabric. So nautical. I was obsessed.

KERRILYNN
(attempting to calm BEBA)

Well, you should go to her website to see some of the phenomenal interior design work she’s done! You’ll freak out.

(OTTO wanders out the front door. KERRILYNN and EMILY, rapt in conversation, are oblivious to his escape.)

(Author’s note: Some poetic license may have been taken in the re-telling of this tale, but, suffice it to say, we are very excited to knight interior design impresario Nina Freudenberger as the 30th Lady of Castor & Pollux. Cue the trumpets!)


Photo by John von Pamer

Favorite recipe?
Anything that involves a slow-cooker; I’m totally into mine.

Last great book you read?
I’m currently reading Pillars of the Earth – I feel like I’m a little late on this but I can’t put it down!

Summer drink of choice?
Rum punch.

Your animals: names and breeds?
Sophie – a long-haired miniature Dachshund.

Do you exercise? What do you do, if so?
Vinyasa yoga – 3-4 times a week.

Salty or sweet?
Definitely salty.

Who inspires you and why?
Kelly Wearstler – I love her personal style and the incredible interiors she creates.

Pool or ocean?
Pool, heated to about 85 degrees. I have a fear of cold water!

Favorite city?
Munich, Germany. It is my hometown and love it more every time I go.

Last great vacation?
Tulum – so incredibly relaxing.

Favorite TV show?
I just got hooked on the new AMC show The Killing; it’s definitely my new favorite!

Favorite restaurant?
I just went to What Happens When – the new pop-up in the city; it is brilliant. I
went to Movement No. 3, based on Impressionism.

Favorite object in your home?
This old sketch of a German Shepherd mounted with an aging purple velvet mat.

Favorite piece of clothing?
I have a Philip Lim black-and-white checkered blouse with a massive bow from two years ago that I still love wearing.

Favorite blog or website?
I love Stylelikeu, and of course Lonny magazine, Haw-lin, and JJJJound.

Something you’re scared of?
Big waves and cold water.

Favorite record?
Madonna – The Immaculate Collection.

Favorite pop song?
Teach Me How to Dougie” by Cali Swag District.

Your ideal day?
A day full of reading and yoga.

Favorite gift you’ve ever received?
For my 30th birthday I received a trip to Japan from my parents. I haven’t used it yet, but I am beyond excited to go!

Favorite flower?
Lily of the Valley.

Favorite scent (perfume)?
Anything with the hint of cinnamon.

Astrological sign?
Aquarius.

What do you do for a living?
Interior designer and shop owner.

Where do you live?
Upper East Side, NYC.

Your lucky number?
22, always.

What piece of art would you buy if you had absolutely no budget?
A Candida Hofer or any one of Gerhard Richter’s Photo Paintings, I’m obsessed.

ARCHIVE: Ladies of Castor & Pollux