Category: Creative

 

Going shopping, flicking through fashion magazines even scrolling through websites I rarely find myself.  There’s what I’m meant to aspire to, what I’m supposed to want, carefully curated projections of what I’m supposed to think.  But there’s a big distance between me and what’s there.  It’s like in the great desire to make money and consume, we’ve allowed ourselves to be swallowed up, and we’ve forgotten what it means to really be. And there’s a cost: somewhere there’s a dark hole of insecurity that’s been left to grow and spread so much of the sadness I see, because if we’re always meant to be striving for something that isn’t us, where’s the love for who we really are? Maybe that’s why I love this article so much, written in Toast magazine.  They’ve found normal women like Susan Hay above, living extraordinary lives who’s  style  is  inherent  to them  as  human  beings.

 

(Beautiful pictures by Elena Heatherwick, see Toast and Pinterest)

 

This is about women who have stood the test of time, with their wardrobes that have done the same: True inspiration.

 

Laters, Kate x

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Inspiration x

 

This morning I have two fruity magpies in the garden which proves that the days are pushing towards spring and that there has been enough time to retrospect the New Year.  I’m not a great believer in resolutions, but I ‘ve found that organically something takes root each year, even if it’s unintentional.  This years adaption has emerged like a fresh breeze, a feeling of wonder, a walk in the park:  One day a week, usually a Wednesday, I take something that has intrigued or justified further exploration and follow it back to it’s roots, taking in the offshoots along the way.  This week didn’t start with a person or a thought, but a podcast.  There are so many out there, the only stipulation was it had to last ten minutes – the time it takes to tidy a kitchen. I found ‘The Psychology behind with Dr Linda Papadopoulas’ I listened, enjoyed and went back for more. That’s when I found her interview with Jordan Stephens from the Rizzle Kicks,(also to be found on Spotify) the cheeky scamps of British hiphop remembered with joy and mental connections of summer fun and lazy days. This was overlaid with the memory of a talk Jordan gave about toxic masculinity, a subject normally avoided by your average rapper. It paved the way for an inspirational interview that leaves you rewinding it in your head for a long time afterwards.

The next step back along the chain was the original Ted talk: Everyone loves an underdog, given by Jordan that inspired Linda to interview him. It’s the anti-hot house talk that many parents need to hear, how expectation can be a killer of growth. In it he mentions an ex-girlfriend, Cecilia Knapp who’s a writer, and you’re in the moment thinking what is this bed of creativity that bled, fed and made these attitudes? So you follow the story because Cecilia Knapp has made a Ted Talk too.

And I can only hope that by now you are as blown away as I was by her talent, performance skill and art, revelling in her silky words, caught in the rhythm of her mesmeric story telling.

The final step was to her website, to find she regularly gives performances – and that’s where this story will end – a trip to a poetry reading given by Cecilia Knapp, because I’ve never been to one before.  But I couldn’t be more excited: There are times when the internet becomes a weapon of war, anger and destruction, but like most things, it has a flip side, a slip side where, with the slightest of pushes, a wondrous world of imagination awaits.

Laters, Kate x

Project x

We spent last week in the far north of Finland, 120 miles within the arctic circle: A fab and magical holiday – proper photos to follow – but it blew my mind to be miles away from anywhere, in a winter wonderland deep with thick, pure white snow,  and  somebody  still  had  the  guts,  gall,  initiative  to guerrilla  yarn  bomb…that’s not a tree with a strange disease in the picture.

I’m loving the way this Street Art is developing, mutating different yarn crafts, particularly the use of embroidery.

But not only is it a new take on embroidery, it’s the re-imagining of the holding structure: Anything with a grid is fair game.

(All pics Pinterest)

 

It’s a new way of looking at our black and white world…and seeing potential.

Laters, Kate x

The Oscars 2019

There were the good dresses – Emma Stone in Versace

Lady  Gaga  in  Alexander  McQueen.

And an  ‘Oh  no!’  for  the  lovely  Olivia  Coleman,  perfect  from  the  neck  up.

But  most  of  al, this year marked  a cheer  for  the  men  that  were  prepared  to break  boundaries,  like  Spike  Lee.

And  Stephan James in Etro.

The  blushing  pink  of  the  masculine  Jason  Momosa.

Pharrell  Williams  showing  men  have  legs  too.


Mark Ronson putting on a Mark Ronson twist.

And Chadwick Boseman looking fabulous. Because here’s  the  irony:  This ceremony  celebrating  the  peak  of  visual  creativity  is  actually  all  about  conforming.  Apart  from  the few  braves  souls  who  don’t.

Of  which  the  prize  goes  to the  stylish,  the  bravura,  the  impeccable,  Billy Porter  in  Christian  Siriano. Not a breath of kitsch, no sign of a send up, just a sonic statement in understated class.

The  shirt.  I want.

Billy Porter says when he debuted his dress-wearing persona at the Golden Globe parties, he was astounded by the amount of attention it caused with crowds ‘parting like the red sea’.  He says ‘It’s infuriating that a man in a dress still garners this much attention. Women wear pants every day and nobody  bats  an  eye.  But  you  put  a man  in  a dress  and  it’s  like  the  sky  is  falling.’ Porter  asks  ‘Are  you  saying  that  women  in  pants  equals  masculinity  and  that’s  good?  But  a man  in  a dress  equals  feminine  and  that’s  bad?  Well,  I’m  done  with  that.

(All pics Hollywood Reporter and Pinterest)

And so am I.

Laters, Kate x

Winding up x

It’s half term next week which means we’re leaving the darkness of winter and transitioning properly into spring.  We’re going away – everything is booked except where we are actually going – we’ve never left it this last minute before.  It feels decadent.  If we weren’t disappearing I’d be tempted to make one of these lights – such a simple, clever idea.  You take the metal skeleton of one or as many lampshades as you like and wrap them with embroidery yarn…genius..

 

If you prefer to buy your lampshade ready made (and they don’t come cheap) check out Wera Jane and, for inspiration, Ana Kras.

 

I didn’t know you could get embroidery thread in neon pink…

Laters, Kate x

Shadows too x

Seeing the beauty of Kumi Yamashita’s art made me wonder whether there were any practical applications of shadows for every day. I came across these pictures – but have yet to find a seller or manufacturer, though I suspect a blacksmith could be commissioned to make one…and how cool would it be to have a door number lit at night with a solar powered light? one plus the other could equal pure genius..

And then there are the bigger projects…transposable into garden art?

(All pics Pinterest)

As ever, the only limitations are the imagination..

Laters, Kate x

Design Hero 1

Those true, authentic, all singing, all dancing design heroes – the things that not only work well, look good, but also punch high above their weight in terms of financial outlay and usability.  And for us, this £12 Nisse Ikea chair has to be up there at the top…we bought 6 of them for the garden four years ago, more as a stop-gap than anything else, but they’ve proved their weight in gold: They spend their lives outside, except when we have dinner parties or Christmas or birthday, then they get wiped down and in they come, still looking as good as the day we bought them. They’re light, flexible, sturdy and generally a brucie bargain – it helps that their light is shining more brightly at the moment as our ‘proper’ dining room chairs have gone to be re-woven, re-caned, re-woke…

(This is a pic of one of the less trashed seats…one was so bad it could be used as a commode.  That’s baaaaaad.)

But you’d never know these were the ugly sister.

(All pics Ikea)

 

Tres chic and tres cheap.

Laters, Kate x

Swing by x

A main focus of the garden planning is creating an area that people want to be pulled to, that’s different from any other part of the house.  I have always been a great admirer of the American porch – cool, shaded, sociable, restful, a place to sit and while away time without over missing the seconds ticking by.  A place you want to go with a good book and a long cold drink to hide away.  So on the list of musts, after pergola comes  swing chair..

(All pics Pinterest)

Bring on summer!

Laters, Kate x

Random x

Why have something full sized when you can have it in miniature?? Random but true – these edible delights were spotted on Pinterest…but the mind blowing bit is they are all made out of the humble pipe cleaner!

Feel like making one yourself and the web is full of brilliant tutorials like this one.

It’s like balloon art without the effort

(All pics Pinterest)

 

I want!

Laters, Kate x