Archive for January, 2013|Monthly archive page

Always in the Kitchen

In Uncategorized on January 28, 2013 at 12:39 pm

This week I visited Sebastian Conran, the designer and expert in kitchen stuff..and oh yes one of that family of Conrans. Sebastian is a great raconteur and jovial host which makes it difficult to tear yourself away. His new range Universal Expert is available at John Lewis and there’s more to come.

People often ask me if I covet things in the houses I visit, or pick up ideas to use in the decoration of my own home and the answer is usually no. Our home is our style and there isn’t room for any more stuff, but at Conran’s place my eyes did settle on a couple of things….

A ‘tippy’ table with a bicycle seat style stand that adjusts and tilts so that you can use a laptop at the ultimately comfortable, and ergonomically correct angle but straighten and lower the table top if you want to put a cup of tea on it…

IMG-20130125-00259and the kitchen is filled with wonderful, well thought through gadgets – a ladle with a small lip to stop drips descending on to the tablecloth, a kettle that has a temperature gauge on the side so you can stop it before it boils, a fab toast rack that accommodates any size of slice and the ultimate kitchen knives – as Sebastian revealed, the tenth set he’s designed in his career – so one would expect them to be fine tuned by now.



Monumental Buildings

In Uncategorized on January 17, 2013 at 11:14 am

This week I saw two places I had longed to see, buildings I’ve known and read about but never managed to visit. First was the Secession House in Vienna with the restored Beethoven Frieze by Gustav Klimt. The building is small but beautiful and the frieze, amazing.

murky day and a side angle of the Secession House

murky day and a side angle of the Secession House

and secondly, on the way to shoot the home of artist Jason Brooks and Lucy Yeomans, I finally caught a glimpse of Erno Goldfinger’s Brutalist Trellick Tower, not as attractive as the Secession House but a landmark none the less.

The Trellick Tower

The Trellick Tower

The Right Start

In Uncategorized on January 10, 2013 at 11:30 am

Making the right start to 2013 wasn’t difficult, I had a deadline to finish all the captions for ‘Homes from Home’ so that concentrated my mind and made me sit down and type for a couple of hours each day until they were done. Such a sense of relief when it was finished, just a few more pages of odds and sods to tidy up and then the book can go off to be typeset.

A wise guide to 2013

A wise guide to 2013

The arrival of Hilly Janes’s book Latte or Cappuccino  – 125 decisions that will change your life ( published by Michael O’Mara Books) has also got me off on the right foot, with answers to questions such as… toast and Nutella or pain au chocolat?  the answer is toast and Nutella because there is more fibre which will sustain you for longer. Then there is white v red wine – the answer is red and crisps v nuts, better go for crisps – so now I feel I’m living  a healthier and wiser lifestyle without having to give up anything –  And of course it is all carefully researched and well argued because the book’s author Hilly was the editor of the Body and Soul health section of  The Times for many years.

And when it comes to cycling v walking she recommends walking, so I followed her wise advice and while walking through St James’s park came across my first snowdrop.

look very carefully, there's a little clump of snowdrops in the middle

look very carefully, there’s a little clump of snowdrops in the middle