just dessert

June 7, 2018

The dessert trolley was my favourite part of the meal –– more so than the Shirley Temples, and the french fries that arrived under a silver dome. Dinners out with my grandparents were always grand. Very often, I went with a crème caramel or something rich and chocolatey. I loved éclairs, too. You so rarely see the trolley anymore. Or maybe it’s the restaurants I frequent.

Cinzano hour

June 5, 2018

This is my kind of cocktail hour. Rich jewel tones, wild, whimsical flowers and bottles of Italian vermouth. Give me a room full of people to watch, and I could sit at this bar for hours. If anyone knows where it is, tell me, and I’ll meet you there.

British made

June 4, 2018

Just look at the marvelous kitchen of British garden designer, Butter Wakefield, a total departure from the ultra modern one I posted Friday. I love the back wall of vintage plates, botanical drawings and bud vases. What a lovely place to nosh on ham and cheese croissants and country breads slathered in jam.  Have a walk around the whole house –– so charming, so colourful, so English.

j’adore decor

June 1, 2018

I really like the work of Aussie interior design duo, Juliette Arent and Sarah Jane Pyke. Their spaces are warm, eclectic and colour rich. Look at The Alex Hotel in Perth –– it’s one quirky, colourful detail after another. All the brass, warm wood and bright white at Curational House is stunning. And I’m in love with the kitchen over at Treetop House.

wisteria lane

May 31, 2018

Lilacs yesterday, wisteria today. My neighbour’s wisteria is tumbling into my garden, the way it does every year around this time, and I’m reminded how much I love this flower. It reminds me of London, Chelsea in particular, where wisteria is in abundance at this time of year. This house, in neighbouring Kensington, is made regal by the climbing wisteria. It almost looks like trompe-l’œil.

lilacs

May 30, 2018

Toronto only smells good when the lilacs come up, and their scent follows us around like a sweet little sister. The purple lilacs are in abundance, and occasionally I see some white ones. The lilacs I really adore, look like cotton candy, and are a rare sighting, indeed. I know we’re not supposed to pick flowers from trees, but I wouldn’t be able to resist a little bunch of pinks.

connect

May 29, 2018

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the connections we see –– between a poppy, lets’ say, and the pleats of an Issey Miyake fabric –– and how satisfying that can be. The world feels smaller and more connected when the okra on your dinner plate reminds you of the Cypress trees you saw in Italy last spring. I think some people, creative types, make these kinds of connections all the time. And then channel them into their work. What comes out on the other side, is an amalgam of everything they see. It’s like a life size game of connect the dots.

yard sale

May 29, 2018

Our street participated in a yard sale on the weekend, and much of the neighbourhood was out for it. We rustled together three tables of bric-a-brac in about twenty minutes; I dread to think how much more we could have piled on had we dug a little deeper. It’s strange to look upon things, once so loved and enjoyed, strew on the curb like junk. A wooden bowl in the shape of pineapple, a Rosenthal creamer, ramekins, toys, a bentwood chair and ten plates I spent my childhood eating off. We sold a gilded table that belonged to Jason’s grandmother to a neighbour who probably loved it as much as she did. He even bought the matching plant stand. That was a nice sale. My bodum teapot, that I’ve steeped tea in so many times, went to a local restaurateur, and a bag of my favourite wooden toys went to a new Mum and her 6-month old baby, Charlie. No one wanted my Mum’s Solimene plates, which on second thought, was a very lucky thing. One man’s trash really is another man’s treasure.

Swedish made

May 25, 2018

Here’s to checkerboard floors, gingham curtains and fresh basil in handmade pots. I love this little Swedish kitchen, so charming and bright. The wallpaper, with its palm trees and sailboats is pure holiday.

in the bag

May 25, 2018

We’ve seen it a million times, in glossy magazines and on Pinterest, the inside of a woman’s handbag. There’s a Vuitton change purse, a Mason Pearson hairbrush and L’Occitane handcream. There’s an iPhone, lipstick (Mac Velvet Teddy) and two pairs of sunglasses (classic and courageous). Mine is nowhere near as glamorous, and I’d hazard yours isn’t either. What’s inside the handbags of women who schlep theirs around like it’s a second home? Inside my bag, a navy blue Fjallraven Kanken that used to belong to my son, is the following: $15 loose cash; one ultra fine panty liner; 5 TTC transfers and 3 taxi receipts; one pair of thick socks; a scrunched up rain bonnet; a leather roll up case of pottery tools; My daughter’s sunglasses; my other daughter’s colouring pages; a ticket to RBG; a business card from a wealth management firm; a grocery list; napkins; keys; three cornflakes. This from Vice is pretty cool. And so is this book from research sociologist, Jean-Claude Kaufmann. Take a look at both. And then inside your bag.

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