Man & Nature

January 12, 2018

I’ve seen the Steven Heinemann exhibition at The Gardner Museum twice, because once is not enough. I’ve also watched the accompanying film about six times. In it, Heinemann speaks beautifully about clay and his personal process. “This behaviour of the material, which does not seek your permission, already suggests to me a dance of nature and culture, mind and nature.” His larger pieces, formidable and quiet, have plenty of room to breath in the gallery. His smaller vessels, exquisitely smooth on the outside, rough and volcanic on the inside, are displayed together, almost as one piece of work. One bowl, charcoal black and warped to perfection, stood out among the rest. Tireless, disciplined and deeply talented, I was inspired by how Hienemann stretches the boundaries of his medium. But ultimately, clay has a mind of its own, and what happens to its form, the glazes, when touched by heat is always a surprise. As the saying goes, it’s the kiln that has the last laugh.

Hotel tonight

January 11, 2018

One of the perks of staying at a hotel, (or an airbnb, for that matter) is experimenting with an aesthetic that is totally different to your own. I don’t want to live in a minimalist space, but I love the idea of a weekend in oneThe Hotel De Witte Lelie in central Anwerp caught my eye, but the wild mix of print, texture and colour is all too much to live with, even by my standards. A day or two, in the stunning presidential suite, I could happily sink into though. Now, how to steal the pink velvet sofa and crystal chandelier?


January 10, 2018

My daughter has a friend who just came home from a family holiday in the Galapagos. It prompted a conversation about places in the world we would most like to travel to. We both agreed that secluded Hawaii is high on the list, followed closely by the land of trulli. I’ve been dreaming about Peru, Chile and Venezuela ever since my best friend gap year-ed there in the late 90s. Iole likes the sound of California ever since her best friend told her it’s where Ellen lives. And we both love the idea of returning to Folegandros, where I got married and where Iole was christened. I admire families who travel to far flung locales, and I understand the ones who choose an all-in resort in Florida. Travelling with children is challenging, mostly because we have to adjust our expectations to fit their needs. But when you’re able to do that, and surrender to the experience, it can be quite amazing. Jason and I have moved around a lot with our three small children. Our most successful holidays –– six days in Tuscany, four days on the Gulf Coast and ten days road tripping through Eastern Canada –– were the ones when we were present, realistic and full of voglia, as the Italians say. You can pack everything and the kitchen sink, but if you haven’t got that, you may as well stay home.

be my guest

January 10, 2018

This is a lovely little guest bedroom. I like the bedding, and I like the flowers and oversized books on the side-table. This is just the sort of guest bedroom I’d love to have if our house was a little bit bigger. Much grander, and worth perusing, are these magnificent guest rooms over at Elle Decor. Pick a favourite (mine is the lovely twin under the eaves at designer, Michael Maher home).

Scone, baby

January 9, 2018

Is there really a lovelier mid-afternoon snack than a warm scone smothered in salty butter or clotted cream and Bonne Maman apricot jam? Of course, cheese and a cracker or a tangerine would do, but why not make tea time an event? With a cup of Earl Grey and a 20-minute podcastNow is it scone or scone? Well, that depends where you’re from.

the women wore black

January 9, 2018

It was a moment of fashion activism, but it wasn’t just about wearing black. The ones who got it right were the women who resisted plumage, cutouts and plunging décolleté. Frances McDormand in a don’t give a damn black crepe smock, Christina Hendricks in that fabulous trouser skirt hybrid, Greta Gerwig in simple, asymmetric black velvet and Zoe Kravitz in a perfectly understated column. “The fevered political rhetoric surrounding the Time’s Up injunction to wear black seemed to imply it would mean something more than solidarity of color alone,” writes Rhonda Garelick over at The Cut. “It seemed to imply a solidarity of refusal: an organized refusal by actresses — our birds of paradise — to wear their customary bright plumage. For glamorous film and television actresses to dress in black might have meant a voluntary tamping down of their star wattage in deference to the grave issues at hand. But that is not what happened. Rather than serving as a humbling or even a unifying agent, all that black fabric had simply been configured into the usual array of splashy, sexy, lavish, outrageous (and outrageously expensive) “statement” dresses — each one distinct, and clearly chosen not with collectivity in mind, not to “fly in formation,” as Holly Hunter suggested, but with the goal of showcasing the individual wearer and her assets.” Read the whole article here.

handmade tale

January 9, 2018

These vases by Cécile Deladier are so beautiful. Each one is created with a specific flower in mind –– hyacinth, narcissus, honeysuckle and hellebores. At home in Paris, Deladier works with her architect husband, Nicolas Soulier on jardin miroirs, a collection of glass-iron sculptures designed to collect water. Take a look at her work, here.

paper chase

January 6, 2018

I don’t know that I would wear these earrings, but I am intrigued by the creative process behind them. Each pair, super light and one of a kind, is made from layers and layers of paper, handpainted with gold, silver or copper and finished with several coats of waterproof varnish. The colours are rich and the shapes decadent, (there is a Renaissance feel to them) and at 18 Euro, they’re an affordable alternative to chandeliers.

sock shop

January 5, 2018

The only socks on my feet these days are Chups, but when the cold lifts, I’ll be wearing Lirika Matoshi’s beautiful stockings. Imagine ladybugs, flowers and starry nights beaded onto fishnets with exquisite precision. They’re expensive, but the work is so intricate. take a look at Matoshi’s Instagram feed –– it’s such a delight.

guess who’s coming to dinner

January 3, 2018

I hear that staying in is the new going out, and with temperatures as frío as ours, I have no problem with that. But I do love to be around people. It’s one of the reasons that I am challenged by winter ––  opportunities to connect with people, even curbside, are often crushed by cold. Enter the dinner party. We rarely host, and nor do our friends. But I think it’s high time we brought back the dinner party. We need not serve soufflés or beef wellingtons. Dinner can be a bowl of pasta or a curried soup, just something warm and cozy that’s easy to make. It’s such a luxury, for me anyway, to be cooked for, and to break bread with friends in the their own homes. Likewise, I love to entertain, and although I’m not a super cook, I can rustle up a decent risotto. Besides, as a smart New York Times writer once said, “to me it has always been clear that a dinner party is about what is said, not what is eaten.” When in doubt, serve cheese, and lots of it.


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