Lately, I have been on a mission to find love. Local love, that is. I've said it before, I haven't always been thrilled to live in the Arizona desert. As a girl, I fancied a life in the English countryside, with green fields and lots of rainy days. The reality is that Arizona is home, and the more I open my eyes to the beauty around me, the more love I have for the Grand Canyon State. So, I present to you my quest to find love in Arizona. What better place to start the journey then in Old Town Scottsdale, where one of Robert Indiana's famous LOVE structures is on permanent display. This twelve foot high sculpture is made of red and blue aluminum and weighs 3,800 pounds. Visit LOVE and you are just as likely to find kids climbing the letters as you are to find couples posing for informal or even their engagement photos. As I hunted down the iconic sign, I found a few more things to love in Scottsdale. First, I love this copper cactus statue juxtaposed against the similarly colored blue and purple paddle cactus. Then I stumbled across these beautiful blooming globe artichokes. I love that both of these photos are in shades of green and blue with a pop of purple.
My search for love moved from Scottsdale to the Melrose District in Phoenix. While exploring the area with my sister, we found ourselves in Cleo and Clementine, a dressmaker's studio and boutique. The studio space is gorgeous, from the industrial fittings of the building, to the curated displays and LOVE marquee sign. And did I mention the handmade dresses?? Jenna and I were awed by the simple yet elegant designs of the dresses, each made from the most exquisite materials. I fell in love with the gold sequin and tulle dress below, while Jenna had her eye on a black leather and tulle design. If I ever have a need for a fancy dress, I know where I'll be going!
My last stop on my search for love found me very near home in downtown Chandler, where the newest location of Original Chopshop Co. just opened. I am so excited to have a restaurant so close to home that serves healthy meals and fresh pressed juice in a unique and stylish setting. The restaurant is located in one of Chandler's old bank buildings, and some of the original fittings have been incorporated into the design. I love the hexagon tiled original floor, which serves as a backdrop to the wood paneled bar and counter tops. And how about the typography of this mural? All you need is LOVE, with a pitaya bowl and fresh squeezed blood orange lemonade, or course!
The more I look, the more I find to love about Arizona. And this love affair is just beginning, so come back soon!