Posts from June 2017

Oh, Canada!

June 30, 2017

I moved to Canada over 15 years ago, and I am very grateful to all the wierd, warm and wonderful people who have coloured my world. This weekend, we celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday with beaver tails, beer and burgers. It will be quintessentially Canadian,  or as close to it as a Greek and an Italian can pull off.



June 29, 2017

There are so many heartwarming moments in the Errol Morris documentary on American photographer, Elsa Dorfman, but I’ll choose just one. When 80-year old Dorfman, known for her large scale polaroid portraits, is asked about the family portraits in her archives, she laughs them off as her “B-sides.” The ones where a kid squints, where Mom blinks or where the portrait discolours in the chemical process — the ones the family did not want — have a humour, a charm and magic of their own. “It’s the perfect title,” Dorfman says, “Even to this minute, I’m really a B-side person.”



Modern Barn

June 28, 2017

We like Prince Edward County, so much so that we once thought about building a modern barn on a stretch of land overlooking the lake. Like The Fogo Inn, that was inspired by traditional Newfoundland outport architecture, I like the idea of creating something modern that pays homage to its roots. The county is filled with hundreds of barns set on rolling hills. Many of them are in disrepair, but what a beautiful sight they are. A modern barn would look spectacular, in my view,  and would fit naturally into the landscape.



June 27, 2017

I had my last pottery class today, and four seasons in, I think I have found my rhythm. Plates are relaxing and easy to make, and the flat surface allows me to experiment with different painting and decorating styles. I have a full mix and match dinner set in the kiln! Jeppe Hein‘s plates will be top of mind when I start again in September, and I love the high wattage wares from Martinich & Carran. Both have a painterly quality that haven’t yet played with. It’s fun to have projects to look forward to.



June 26, 2017

As a child, I used to love to collage. In my teens, collaging turned into scrap-booking. I kept everything from old movie stubs and match books to postcards, candy wrappers and magazine clippings and glued, stapled, taped them all into albums. I came across Malin Gabriella Nordin’s collages today and they inspired me to get back to glue and paper. Her recent work is colourful and highly textured, and her earlier collages have a surrealist quality to them. I like all of it, and her paintings, too. Here she is in her studio –– what a beautiful, vibrant mess.



June 23, 2017

Dinner is usually our heftiest meal of the day, but summertime calls for lighter options like salads, meze and fish on the barbecue. Tartines are a wonderful idea, too, with seasonal toppings like fresh asparagus and goat’s cheese or feta, basil and plump little tomatoes. This recipe for smoked salmon and capers is dead simple. I’d like to try it on Prairie Boy‘s sunflower spelt or sprouted red quinoa bread.


Black is the new black

June 22, 2017

I love colour, all colours, but even I’m intrigued by black ice cream in a black cone. The queue outside Ihalo Krunch on Queen Street is epic with people flocking in to sample charcoal infused soft serve. At home, you can try black sesame infused ice cream, for a similarly dramatic colour. Goth ice cream, I like it. But for summertime, I’d sooner see sorbet colours in honey-hued cones waltzing through Trinny Bells.

Bridal sheets

June 22, 2017

I’ve talked before here about monogrammed linen, and how much I adore it. My Mum has sheets from Madeira, white ones with butter yellow embroidery, that were a gift from her mother when she got married. It pays to spend money on good sheets, the kind that last. These days, my Mum is the linen fairy, the one who takes newlywed couples shopping for new sheets. They choose what thread colour they want, and what font they like, and six weeks later beautiful linens are sent to their home. What a wonderful wedding gift.


June 20, 2017

Rooms like this one, with its inky blue walls, mismatched furnishings and lampshades that look like heat lamps in a 50s salon, are just the kind of spaces I like to be in. They are comfortable and warm, and filled with conversation pieces. Velvet sofas are a dream of mine, and aqua marine is one of my favourite colours. Just think about the late night absinthe parties that could take place right here.


stitch in time

June 19, 2017

I’m fascinated by collections, and the people who collect them. At the textile Museum this week, I came across a collection of Victorian needlework amassed by a woman named Jane Webster from the mid to late-20th century. She lived in the Caribou Harbour area of Pictou, Nova Scotia. Webster had collected 130 pieces of needlework, each one stitched with a different motto: ‘God is Love,’ ‘Kind Words Never Die,’ ‘Remember the Creator.’ It was actually the photographs of Jane Webster and her family that I enjoyed most; Her standing on the porch with a big frying pan in her left hand, oven mitts on both, the children piled into the sun-room for summertime naps. The life and the love in the pictures seemed to mirror the mottos on her walls. “What is a home without a mother?” “Welcome all” “Token of Love” “Give us this day our daily bread.” It was a glimpse into another time, another place.



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