Category: Presents

Laundry Life x

 

The weather has changed. A strong wind is blowing in from the north, dropping the temperature by ten degrees plus.  As I look out of my study window there’s still enough blue to patch a Dutchman’s trousers, but the heavy grey clouds look like they could gather and coalesce at any moment.  Now half is dark, fast moving cloud, the rest blue.  The clouds are being chased away.  But there’s more behind.  Would you put your washing out today?

 

 

There’s something inescapably romantic about clothes on a washing line

like the playing cards of a family laid out for all to see.

 

 

Fresh air whipping the wet into submission.

 

 

The downside can be rust marks from wooden pegs, lack of flexibility from solid wooden pegs, and brittle plastic pegs that age and snap.  Hence the joy of these babies by Pincinox: Stainless steel, designed for life, packaged with care and vintage love.

 

(All pics Pinterest and Pincinox)

 

Made in France, but buy now and the shipping to the UK is free.

 

 

Laters, Kate x

Smile x

 

In the summer, in Greece, I hunt down the old fashioned souvenir shops that still sell the shell based surfer chokers of old for a few euros, then layer them up. A look akin to a mash up between a Masai warrior (is that cultural appropriation – or cultural celebration?) and a sun bleached beach bum. The jewellery of Roxanne Assoulin gives me the same joyful feeling – and for those still on the present hunt, the price point is a Christmas treat (£70 – £350) but not in the mortgage your left kidney and sell your soul to the devil bracket.


(All pics Roxanne Assoulin and Pinterest)

 

It also helps that her ‘story’ page makes me laugh. You can either read it as I don’t care, or you can see it as a pithy comment on the modern disease to manufacture and self promote.

 

For me it’s the later.

Laters, Kate x

Tasty Pampers x

Even I think I’m a conundrum – I love seeing boundaries pushed, to the extent I hate boundaries. But if something works, I’m loyal – it takes a great deal to convince me the grass is greener on the other side.  Hence this post – the pampers that make the cut every time, because not only do they smell like heaven, they also work. Stuck for a Crimbo present? Look no further than Le Labo’s Jasmine 17 shower gel...even Bella has discovered it..I was hoping the plain packaging would put her off…it is pure joy in a bottle and I covet every drop.

 

 

This baby – OI all in one milk –  works on fly away hair..and anything else. Rub into arms and legs just because it’s gorgeous – the type of scent that turns heads when you walk into a room.

 

 

An every day must –  Ren Moroccan Rose body oil – for use on face – buy the body oil, ignore the body bit – 100ml versus 30.  Bargain.  (The only difference is in your mind, put there so you don’t do it.  A wall that needs to come down)

 

 

This little wonder  – Herbivore Orchid – packs a punch – small and powerful – as an extra layer and to extend the bottle, I mix 3 drops in my palm with my Ren rose oil for a mood boosting face cocktail. I’ve used face oils for years and won’t use anything else.

 

 

And finally, an old favourite – Elemis Frangipani monoi body oil – because now it smells of holidays, sunshine and smiles. Perfect for the summer. Perfect for the winter.

 

Laters, Kate x

 

 

 

 

Mind the gap x

A fan of the quirky and like a genuine re-cycle? For present inspiration, look no further than the London Transport Museum shop. and their vintage shop.

There’s a whole section dedicated to first edition posters at unframed, present friendly prices.

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As well as refurbished luggage racks, large and small.  And for the real aficionados…push plates…

And even a jubilee line telephone….

(All pics London Transport Museum)

 

 

Choices, Choices.

Laters, Kate x

Madness with love x

A fusion made in heaven: Tall candlesticks – already an object of desire because of their perfect balance of functionality with beauty – now upgraded to lust level with whimsy, madness and imagination.  Apparently these lovelies were originally from Anthropologie, and – apologies – are both unavailable and required deep pockets (I saw them priced at $395 each). But their joy is the love they continue to radiate in inspiration, because when should price stop anyone?

I particularly love this pic, and can only doff my hat to the skillful drilling it must’ve entailed. Muchus Kudos.

Quite a few examples have used glass: I have no idea what kind of glue they used, or how long the bonds would last, but how appealing for a Christmas table…

(All pics Pinterest)

 

And then there’s this little beauty, a hybrid of many things, including a brutal yet fanciful version of Japanese Kinsugi, the art of finding strength in the broken.

 

Come to Mama.

Laters, Kate x

Layers of ethos x

Why do I love Toast so much? Let me count the ways…authentic, wholesome yet elusively stylish and contemporary, it’s a brand that manages to mix the products it sells with the ethos it promotes.  For example, these handblown glass baubles at £35 for 5 will be on my wish list this Christmas, not for decorating the tree, but to add to chandeliers all year round – the present element is a Brucie bonus.

(All pics Toast and Pinterest)

If you’re a maker then this bit of information I found on their website could be of real interest to you:

The TOAST New Makers programme will support and mentor five emerging makers. We will offer production, design, business and marketing advice, as well as a digital and physical platform to sell their pieces with full profits being returned to them.

The programme is open to makers of all disciplines. We are seeking makers who use sustainable materials, demonstrate skilled craftsmanship, share an appreciation of texture and colour and have an understanding of thoughtful, functional design.

If you are an emerging maker and would like to apply, please submit your application before 12pm, Wednesday 18th December 2019. The shortlist will be selected by an internal TOAST panel. Please note that this programme is open to all new makers, wherever you may be in the world.

 

It’s almost the perfect Christmas gift…

Laters, Kate x

Burn baby burn!

Saw this on a Pinterest board and loved it: Well crafted, obvious quality with a quirky sense of humour.  Shame the price point was in the couple of hundreds.  But it did remind me, there is an alternative to burning candles and that the plus point with incense is the choice of burners.

 

(I did have a quick google dive to see if I could find a similar cat.  This one from Etsy was a tenth of the price.  But I suspect you know that already…)

 

And then there’s this type, with backflow incense, which turns the whole thing into a living, moving sculpture.  (From what I have read though, you have to be careful about the quality of the incense, otherwise you get mucho smoke, bad smell and residue.  Another alternative is to make your own backflow cones – you tube has some videos…)

(All pics Pinterest)

Too much?  The tacky side of tacky?? I just can’t decide!…

Laters, Kate x

Merry Mad-mas..

 

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(Knit your own golden retriever)

I was reminded of this post today (along with the feeling that the madness seems to strike earlier each yea)…..it sums up such a interesting feeling that I believe it deserves another viewing, along with the proviso that whilst the spirit is there, the links probably aren’t…

 

When looking for presents, I start every Christmas with a simple shopping list of good intentions..

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..But somewhere along the line something happens.

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I can’t decide whether it’s because I’ve been beaten down and seduced into embracing the madness of the season..or it’s a bizarre reaction to the obscene commercialism that’s always lurking round the corner..
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But it always reaches a point when suddenly giving a gift of earwax seems the most natural thing in the world..

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(Plush Roadkill)

And why shouldn’t a stuffed toy include the inner bits as well?

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Mouse taxidermy? It could be the new baking…

crapwrap

 

As The final finishing touch, Firebox – the source of all this wonder (and recommended to me by the wonderfully talented Beth, through her Blog The linen Cat Blog ) add their own distinct wrapping service.  Pure genius.

 

Now if I could have an unlimited supply of ‘crap wrap’ stickers, I think I would be happy for life…grunge wrapping is the new black…

 

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

Front Garden..

Heading to the DIY shop today for wire brushes, sand paper, fillers and primers whilst imagining the perfect front garden:  I have this quiet obsession developing for a statue of a dog to stand sentinel by the door – I’ve already caught myself searching on Ebay so I know it’s serious. It can’t be an expensive one as I’ll never persuade The Husband (hmmmmmmm – mind at work – present for Father’s Day?!, ‘Here Husband, have the concrete dog you’ve always wanted but never knew you did..you love it, don’t you?!’) Besides the chances are it’ll get nicked, but there’s a persuasive voice in my head saying ‘get a faux concrete one and paint it with yoghurt, the resulting green algae will soften, age and add character’…will it be enough to blur the line between kitsch and statement? It’s a risk..

But I can see him there already, proud, endearing, ever present…with a party hat on for birthdays, skeleton mask for halloween and baubles for Christmas: Fun, joy and no poos to clear up.  Win win.

The search for the perfect Fido has meant other garden art has also popped up, some of it sublime.

(All pics Pinterest)

 

Think I’ll need a bigger garden..

Laters, Kate x