Category: Art

Pot Pickers x

When I was little this was the sort of pottery you’d expect to see in charity shops, the sign of a design aesthetic rejected. How times have changed, the tide, turned.  What was generic is now confident, what was old fashioned is nostalgic and what seemed ugly is now defiant and most importantly, appealing.

There’s a company that’s drawing from this feeling and adding their own signature: Kat Huffer and Roger Less, work partners and life partners based in Northeast Los Angeles make up Kat and Roger.  Their aim is to combine classic shapes and graphic surface patterns with earthy natural clay textures.

These are mugs you want fill with hot tea and hold between two hands on a freezing winters day.

(All pics Kat and Roger and Pinterest, their work can be found in the UK at Alpha Shadows)

These are heart singers and obsession inducers.

Laters, Kate x

Splashing Back x

Oh the unbridled joy of the hunt: I have found a company in Oxfordshire – The Douglas Watson Studio –  that specialises in English handmade and hand painted ceramic tiles.  And what beauties they produce..

 

The price point is high, but certainly cheaper than originals: Roughly £15 – £25 per tile on a sliding algorithm of less colour, less cost.

 

(Pics from The Douglas Watson Studio and Pinterest)

Tiles in situ: Such a small area to cover really………………

Laters, Kate x

Minimoderns x

The driving force of Minimoderns is pattern with a story: The founders, Keith Stephenson and Mark Hampshire view what they produce as applied pattern across a range of products, including some incredible wallpapers.  It adds a pleasant change, a certain flavour. A different slant.

Their design influences range from mid-century British textiles to vintage toys, literature and even childhood memories.

(Love this for a boys room)

It’s the detail..

Wallpaper, trombone and badger are three words I never expected to use in a sentence.

 

If you want retro nostalgia with design integrity and are not afraid of making a statement, look no further.

 

Laters, Kate x

‘Fatso’ Bentley

And I’m not talking about myself or diet plans for 2019…Gladys ‘Fatso’ Bentley was the gender nonconforming lesbian superstar of the Harlem renaissance born 100 years ahead of her time we have never heard of.  She was outrageous – even at at a time when Harlem was legendary for its nightlife.  She’s also credited with wearing the first tuxedo in public – so you can add style icon to the list of her attributes.  Her later life was not without drama – she took on the persona of a straight life due to the McCarthy era witch hunt against gays in the 1950s, a visual example of how scary that time must’ve been.

 

Because one of the joys of the Christmas period, to hibernate against the cold and the dark, reading, looking, thinking, researching and just plain vegging: we need to do more of this, discover more things, be proactive rather than passive.

 

 

Another guilty pleasure was watching back to back episodes of Project Runway on Netflix: How much do I love the  ‘ skip intro’ button? Only a smidgeon less than the ‘skip recap’.  Being submerged in couture gown making, talent and taste making it was therefore a bit of a shock to see Heidi Klum’s dress for the Golden globes.  What happened?? It’s a cross between Gwyneth Paltrow’s 2002 Oscar dress and a primary school project..

 

And then there was Timothee Chalamet – robbed last year for an Oscar for ‘Call me by your name’ (fab, fab film) he at least stepped out of the male uniform and I for one loved it.  Looking back, ‘Call me by your name’ written by Andre Aciman was also one of my favourite books of the year – rare that both genres are knockout.  The other stand out book was ‘Educated’ by Tara Westover – powerful, poignant and unforgettable: This year has a lot to live up too..

 

Wishing all a very happy 2019!

Laters, Kate x

Do fashions for wreaths change each year? Possibly is probably the answer – because despite the dogs being blinged to their eyeballs (including the recent addition of festive dark glasses, a cunning buy from a party shop) the pull for me for wreaths has become pared back natural.  Sadly our wreath of many years doesn’t quite hit the spot is on the door – it’s  simple version of fir cones except they’re covered in glitter, and every time someone brushes past, a fir cone falls to the ground..I think a bit of tender loving DIY is needed or it’ll become it’s own epitaph..

The perfect excuse for a little bit of Christmas craft. And breathe.

Laters, Kate x

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Magpie x

There’s a new style of earring on the block: A marbled resin reminiscent of murano glass with hints of a bygone era. Some of the best examples can be seen in the work of Ejing Zhang, a Chinese jewellery now living in London who looks to her love of traditional calligraphy and ink painting for her inspiration. Combine the ever changing powers of resin with gold and a touch of whimsy and you have a magical combination.

 

(All pics Ejing Zhang and Pinterest)

 

Her pieces come under the title ‘fashion jewellery’ which means not stupid silly prices – think £150 and up. But if you want to try without breaking the bank, Primark have some surprisingly good pieces – but there’s definitely no gold…

 

Laters, Kate x

Jingle bells x

Why not indeed, I said to myself as I picked up the multicoloured fairy lights for Christmas this year – maybe it’s nostalgia, maybe it’s a reaction to perfectionist white, maybe it’s a need to break out and shout there’s always another way –  but, after decades of coveting the paired back scandi look, it’s colour all the way in this house this festive season.

Mine are going outside, around the necks of our two stone dogs, Alfie and Bear – pictures will follow. Promise.

Laters, Kate x

Paper Moon x

Christmas is coming and this is the antidote to everything glittery, commercialised and over fed: White paper art – originally designed for weddings, but the perfect inspiration for drama without fuss.


(All pics Pinterest)

 

Simple, cheap and without damage to the planet. What’s not to love?

Laters, Kate x

Dear Santa..

The great thing about the triumphant march of technology is that it reminds you of the simple pleasures you once took for granted like writing, pens and ink.

Because now a great script stands out instantly.

Even more so if the ink is coloured. I went through years at secondary school writing in either green or purple ink but now that doesn’t only seem a life time ago, it is a lifetime ago. But a fountain pen with green ink is top of my Christmas list this year. A new trend? Probably.

(All pics Pinterest)

 

My ink of choice would be Akkerman, a Dutch company who’ve been making inks for over a hundred years.  Their unique bottle originating from the 1930’s  is poetry in motion – tilt the closed ink bottle and the neck fills itself up with ink.  Placed the bottle on a flat surface again and the marble falls back in the neck to trap the ink creating a perfect reservoir – even when the pot is almost empty.

 

Pure magic.

Laters, Kate x

Potty..

Is it a surprise that things are going green? That the tentacles of change are even reaching inside? Plants, once the scurge of the minimalist-matchy-matchy with too much resonance to hippies and patchouli are becoming the statement pieces of choice:  Not only are they living pieces of art but they help the living too, cleaning the air and quite frankly, bringing joy.

With the advance of plants comes the prospect of their pots and there are some quirky gems out there…All three pics above come from Westelm ..these Llamas are shouting out for a large, multi shouldered cactus..

These three delights come from Anthropologie.  Their size put them in the perfect Christmas present range.  Am I too early??…but when they’re gone, they’re gone.

Or there’s the independent handmade option – definitely worth unearthing – these beauties come from Atelier Stella ceramics based in Brighton.

 

(All pics Pinterest)

 

Who’s so good, she probably deserves a post all of her own…

Laters, Kate x