Posts from February 2016

Beach Life

February 12, 2016

You’d never catch a Bermudian anywhere near the ocean in the month of February. “We locals stay away until at least May,” said the bellboy at our hotel yesterday. Locals think tourists are bonkers. And they’re right. With no swimmers on him, Jason stripped down to his underpants and charged into the crashing waves on Warwick Beach today. He doesn’t miss a beat, my husband. Hello from Bermuda!



Fired Up

February 10, 2016

Now that I’m doing a pottery class, I have greater appreciation for the bowls and cups and plates around me. Even simple, crude looking cups are no cinch to make. It’s just as challenging to make something that’s deliberately crude and imperfect as it is to create a perfect form with smooth, even lines. But that’s the kind of ceramic work I like; rough rims, scuffed surfaces, liberal glazes and shapes that aren’t quite perfect.



California Dreaming

February 10, 2016

Every time I see a photo of designer Christina Karras’ 1920s Spanish-style bungalow, I want to dive into my screen and land under a tasseled blanket on the terrace of her Santa Monica retreat. The whole house is bursting with boho charm and Hollywood romance. I love the salmon pink of her bathroom, and that rattan dining set is pure Palm Beach retro. I don’t want to live here, but I’d be a very happy house guest.




February 8, 2016

Have you ever ridden an ostrich? Ostriches can reach speeds of over 43- mph and their long legs can cover up to 16-feet in a single stride. I adore this picture of Wenda Rogerson –– Norman Parkinson’s wife of thirty-years –– but I love the story that’s attached to it even more. It was taken by Parkinson on a shoot in Africa just before the ostrich bolted with the actress/model on its back.  As the ostrich charged past him, he bellowed out, “more profile Wenda, darling! More profile.”



The Boy and the World

February 6, 2016

We watched an animated (wordless) film today with the children –– The Boy and the World –– that was a visual feast with echoes of Klee, Miro and Braque. It tells the story of a little boy whose father leaves the family’s rural home to find work in the city. Determined to bring his family back together,  Cuca embarks on a journey in search of his father. The music –– pan flutes, samba and Brazilian hip hop  –– is as rich and beautiful as the visuals. It was a toss up between this and Kung Fu Panda, and I’m glad we chose the film we did. I’ve promised Po for another day.




Scarf face

February 4, 2016

I discovered Karen Mabon through the National Portrait Gallery’s instagram page –– the gallery carries Mabon’s silk scarves in its shop. The Scottish illustrator’s fanciful world of pink poodles, flying trapeze artists, penguins, dalmations and bonbons is a sheer delight. Look out for me this Spring –– I’ll be the lady with fried eggs on my head.



Cap On

February 4, 2016

I bought two new swimming caps today –– one’s a pink turban and the other is a 50s inspired coral cap with a neck strap. Between these and my frilly caps in turquoise, yellow and every-colour-of-the-rainbow, I’ve got quite the collection. Occasionally, I’ll catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror as I move swiftly from changing room to pool, and I’ll chuckle at how very weird and wonderful I look. Iole’s goggles, the blue ones with rhinestones, add that extra splash of weird. I’d retired the whole lot for a while, but it’s winter now, and I hate to get my hair wet. Plus, one needs a sense of humour to survive the grey.

Women modeling bathing caps with faces on them.

Women modeling bathing caps with faces on them.


February 2, 2016

I read a piece in the New York Times yesterday about how to raise a creative child. There were no major revelations, but it was a gentle reminder to ease up on rules, encourage hobbies that the child has genuine curiosity in and seek out coaches and teachers who make learning (from ping pong to pythagoras) fun. ‘”“The theory of relativity occurred to me by intuition, and music is the driving force behind this intuition,” Albert Einstein reflected. His mother enrolled him in violin lessons starting at age 5, but he wasn’t intrigued. His love of music only blossomed as a teenager, after he stopped taking lessons and stumbled upon Mozart’s sonatas. “Love is a better teacher than a sense of duty,” he said.




February 1, 2016

In my view, there’s no light in this world as sublime as Cycladic light. It washes the stark white of the sugar cube houses and splinters into tiny flecks that dance on the surface of the bright blue sea. Around midday, the light is so fierce that you don’t dare look at the sun. And by evening it’s mellowed to a honey-toned hue, that’s nothing short of majestic. I love this photograph of Jean Shrimpton and Jeanloup Sieff at the Church of Paraportiani in Mykonos shot by Richard Avedon for Vogue in ’67. And this one by Henri Cartier-Bresson taken on the island of Sifnos in the 1950s is pure magic.


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