Posts from October 2015

Turning A Leaf

October 16, 2015

Flowers are grand, but never dismiss the impact of beautiful leaves. The look is more architectural than decorative, and with large, textured leaves like elephant ears, let’s say, the effect can be quite striking. Skip the sunflowers and choose thick, rubbery hosta leaves instead.



October 15, 2015

The thing about wearing a hat, is that you need to act like you’re not wearing one. An extravaganza such as this may get in the way of being able to do that . Someone like Carmen Miranda could have pulled it off, but the rest of us should stick to chapeaus that are a tad more wearable. That’s not to say that you cannot be imaginative, whimsical –– witty even –– in your choices. What matters, is regardless of size, colour and level of absurdity, that you are wearing the hat, rather than it’s wearing you.



October 14, 2015

“Some people need sequins,” said Edith Head. “Others don’t.” I used to need sequins like a ladybird needs her spots. These days, I wear them less, but when a collection this beautiful comes along, it makes me want to snap up every last piece. Delpozo is a dream –– a dream in which I’m wearing tulle and silk and pink sequins the size of loonies to take my children to school on a chilly Wednesday in October.



Hotel California

October 13, 2015

Years ago, Jason and I stayed in a tiny, dingy motel in Tijuana on our way back to L.A. from Baja California. Even though the place was so dodgy, there was something romantic about the whole experience. It was California! It was Summertime! We were barely 25! We sat in the room (too scared of getting mugged by a couple of bandidos to go out) and watched Bird Cage for the first time, and laughed harder than I’ve ever laughed in a film. By evening of the next day, we had checked into a quaint country inn in San Bernardino where we found clean running water and apple pie à la mode. Looking back, most of our trips have been a mix of simple guesthouses and huts on beaches combined with beautiful hotels with Frette robes and five star service. Being able to experience both ends of the spectrum is a privileged way to travel. Our tiny room at a backpackers hostel in San Francisco was as good a place to stay as the Fairmont on Nob Hill . It’s all about variety –– and attitude.





October 12, 2015

Don’t you just love the word Croquembouche? Something as decadent as a tower of puff pastry balls filled with cream and covered in caramel deserves a name like croquembouche. In France, it’s typically served at weddings –– but I say, let’s eat cream puffs, for breakfast, lunch and dinner!



October 9, 2015

Chrysanthemum is one of my favourite picture stories. Sadly, I am less keen on the flower. I find all the mums sitting on trolleys in nurseries and corner shops, well, a bit mumsy looking. Of course, any flower in white is heaps better, and If this landed on my doorstep, I’d pop it in a mason jar and bring it to our thanksgiving table.





October 9, 2015

I’ve always loved the idea of a day bed –– a place to flop into with a mint julep and a trashy novel in hand. I think it’s only right to wear a silk kimono, chandelier earrings and a velvet turban when reclining on said daybed. And it really must be upholstered in something divine, like a schiaparelli pink velvet or a peacock blue satin brocade.  Are you with me?




October 7, 2015

Last night, with both the little ones in bed, Iole and I sat  in the dimmed light of her room talking about things. “Can I tell you something really, really important?” I said to her, as she sat in her bed peeling away the polish from her big toe. “When you think something nice about somebody, tell them.” In her rules to live by, Katie Couric says, “Don’t hoard compliments. Recognize someone’s talents and let them know. And if someone else says something nice about them, pass it on. It will make their day.” It bothers me when people are frugal with compliments, especially as a person’s day could so easily be lifted by a few kind words from a friend or stranger. “I love the red of your hair,” “those dance moves are the bomb,” “your kids are lucky to have a mum like you.” Years ago, at the cafe at Holt Renfrew I stopped a lady to compliment her on her coat.  It was dove grey and long, with big, beautiful mink cuffs. “You are so elegant,” I said.  She was clearly taken a back by the compliment. “No one has ever said that about me before. You just made my day.”




Paint by Numbers

October 6, 2015

“One of the things I love most about Chanel is Karl’s light hand with mad colour,” wrote Harper’s Bazaar executive editor, Laura Brown on Instagram this morning. We know exactly what you mean, Laura. This fabric looks like it’s covered in watercoulour paint, applied liberally and lightly with a sable mink brush. I’d wear all of this in a heartbeat, or hang it on a wall to gaze at all day long.



Rock, paper, scissors

October 5, 2015

Unrippable paper goods are all the rage. Think bread baskets, laundry hampers, totes and wallets made from washable, durable paper. In San Gimignano we stumbled into Uashmama, a beautiful shop that carries the bags in every shape, size and colour. They’re made from a natural fibre that feels almost leathery, washes like fabric and flattens like a paper plane. My friend Bianca, over at Bibelot & Token, carries the line, even the teenie tiny ones, that are perfect for rock salt or pistachio nuts. The extra large ones are great for plants –– heaps of chilies and heather would look charming for Fall.





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