coffee & clay

November 23, 2017

I came across the work of Eny Lee Parker today, a 28-year-old designer and ceramist who is creating coffee tables out of glass and terracotta vases. To make the clay vase legs, Parker applies a clear glaze, sandblasts away the high gloss and then adds a coat of beeswax to richen the finished tone. “I wanted to use the potter’s wheel to create furniture, which was very ambitious, especially for the size of things that you have to throw,” she told the New York Times.

a loo of one’s own

November 22, 2017

I write about guest loos here often, mostly because it’s a small dream of mine to have one. I love the idea of a clean and classic decor, punctuated by an unexpectedly playful powder room. This one here is rich and sophisticated, and just the sort of safe haven I need when my house is brimming with children. Give me a glass of wine, and I’ll stay here all evening. Better yet, hand me the bottle.


November 16, 2017

I know it’s just a vase a flowers, but what a difference it makes to the room. Flowers breath life and colour into a space –– and as we move into winter, I urge you all to buy them in abundance. I stuck little pink flowers in Acqua Panna bottles today, and my friend Jessica brought me an orchid, and my home instantly felt happier. Skip the gerbera daisies and tulips, and go for a single, full bodied hydrangea.

Room service

November 11, 2017

Frette sheets, a fireplace and enough room to dance the tango –– yes, this is my kind of hotel room. Well, I’m assuming this is a hotel room. Where else do you see tea for two and fresh Delphiniums sitting at a writer’s desk? I’m guessing we’re in India, Jaipur maybe. If anyone finds out, let me know. I’ll buy us the airline tickets.


November 9, 2017

I haven’t had a bath in years. I do wash, just not in tubs. But if I were the bathing type, I’d be in this claw footed lovely as fast as you can say soap. This Japanese soaking tub looks quite heavenly, and I love the starkness of this one. I’d be rather happy splashing away in this gorgeous tub, too. All this tub talk is making want to have a bath. Be a doll, and pass the bubbles, won’t you.

artist in residence

November 5, 2017

I love this little house in Western Australia, it’s so full of colour and quirks. It’s owned by an artsy couple, Ian and Ros de Souza and is regularly open to the public for garden days and art walks. Most unusual, is their embrace of indoor/outdoor living ––  the kitchen is virtually outside, and their shower is outside. Ros’ office is inside a reclaimed vintage train carriage, while Ian’s steel/glass studio is covered in paintings. Even the ceiling. The house is small, but that doesn’t stop them from squeezing 22 guests around one of Ian’s handmade tables on rails.

knock on wood

October 17, 2017

I don’t think that there’s a magic way to mix wood tones in a room. Just think how beautifully cedars, cypresses, spruces and redwoods look in a forest. I think the more open you are to variety in texture and tone, the more playful and natural your space will feel. Architectural Digest gives some helpful tips, and here’s an example of a room where half a dozen different woods came together so well.

conversation piece

October 11, 2017

Can we all agree that these wicker chairs are dreamy. I’m not sure how much time you’d want to spend in one, (they don’t look too tusch friendly) but you’d sure look good flopped inside its petals. I like the mismatch of those rather 80s looking arm chairs in the background, because two quite different conversations can indeed take place in the same room.

you’re so vain

September 21, 2017

Somewhere among our family photographs is a black and white picture of my grandmother sitting at her vanity looking into a triptych mirror. It’s such a striking image. I remember seeing it for the first time as a child, and to this day, I think it’s why I have a thing for vanities. Of course, not all dressing tables are created equal, and hers, I’m sure, was a beautiful one. If I were buying one today, I’d be tempted by the nostalgia and romance of something from the 50s. But then again, this one by French artist Gérard Rigot is right up my crazy, colourful alley.

loo fantasies

September 11, 2017

When I get the guest loo I’ve long dreamed of, I want it to feel like stepping into an English country garden with walls of wild flowers, fruits and vegetables and bright green tiles a foot. This wallpaper at Bakeri in Greenpoint is simply perfect. I don’t expect my guests will want to leave once their pennies have been spent. Good reading will always be on site, I assure you.

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