Monday, June 30, 2014

London: Art

Over the next few days I am going to post a lot of pictures from our recent London trip. London is a big city. There are definitely a lot more to see and do than other European cities like Barcelona and Rome. The city is clean, picturesque, artsy, and vibrant. 

Believe it or not, my favourite London landmark is this giant blue cockerel called Hahn/Cock on the fourth plinth in Trafalgar Square, designed by the German artist Katharina Fritsch. You can read more about the Hahn/Cock here. Gleefully feminist, Katharina's comment on creating Hahn/Cock is "a feminist sculpture, since it is I who am doing something active here – I, a woman, am depicting something male. Historically it has always been the other way around."

Hahn/Cock is made of fiberglass. 

Saturday antique market at Portobello Road is a must visit. I wanted to take all these 19th-century paintings back home with me. 

I was fixated on this one from 1887 depicting a misty landscape technique so it had to come home with me. 



The famous Rotunda blown glass chandelier by Dale Chihuly under the dome of the Victoria and Albert Museum's main entrance. 

Tate Modern is one of my favourite art galleries in London. This is the Spatial Concept 'Waiting' by Lucio Fontana. It is merely a canvas with a slit, right? Read this book "Why Your Five Year Old Could Not Have Done That: Modern Art Explained" in case you are curious. 

Richard Serra is one of my favourite artists so I had to take a picture of his "Trip Hammer". His work inspired the black and white art in my foyer. 

Claude Monet! 

Shakespeare's Globe, Bankside, Southwark.

Great Court at the British Museum is another masterpiece by Foster + Partners. I couldn't take enough pictures of the glass ceiling. 


The Hoa Hakananai'a Basalt Statue at the British Museum. 

Mosaic floor in the Portico entrance inside the National Gallery. 


Thursday, June 26, 2014

From London With Love

We are vacationing in London and hence the radio silence on the blog. Just want to quickly drop by to say Hi and share some pictures. 

We had afternoon tea at the Diamond Jubilee Tea Salon at Fortnum and Mason Piccadilly, and I have to say F&M lives up to its fame. We arrived a bit early so we shopped downstairs in the store. More to follow on that but the decor in the store totally kicks ass. I became so obsessed with their heritage tea towels that I picked up one of each design. What's wrong with that right? When you couldn't decide which ones to buy, just bought them all! This is me holding the new Half Crown Heritage Tea Towel

After shopping we proceeded to the afternoon tea. I loved everything about it from the signature Tiffany blue china to silverware to lemon curd preserve to clotted cream. Their apricot & amaretti scones were the best I've ever had! 


You absolutely have to try the Lemon Curd preserve!


More desserts and fancies! The rose cream eclair was amazing! 

So bye for now. I will be back to post more pictures about our trip later. 


Monday, June 16, 2014

Love it or list it?

If you've been following my blog for a while, you probably would've figured out by now that I don't see our current house as our forever home. Don't get me wrong, our current house is amazing from the location to the size to the interiors, and especially the interiors where I worked my a** off. There is definitely no *need* to move, but I want to, eventually. The thought of having to start over is daunting - I could see myself redesigning everything no matter what. After all, decor, style and taste is a one-way street, they can only go up from here. My dream house needs to be in a more established neighbourhood but I am not after old fixer-uppers. I however don't mind older houses with very good bones and only require cosmetic makeovers. 

Anthony was convinced that the type of house I have in mind doesn't exist, and that we are going to need to hire an architect to design and build a house for us from scratch. I don't disagree. But from time to time you will still find me on realtor.ca browsing those properties that fit most of my wish list. 

This past weekend I came across this 6 bed 5 bath home in my desired neighbourhood, on a whopping 80x160 lot back onto ravine. The price tag is well within our budget. 

The house was likely built in early 80s. I am not a big fan of the yellowish brown brick exterior - how do I change the colour? Paint over? Stucco over? 

The ground floor has a living room, dining room, kitchen, family room and a library, not short of space this house is.  


This must be the dining room? 

Hey the 80s called, they want their kitchen back! I do see a lot of potential though: I could cover up the entrance next to the fridge, make it a C-shaped kitchen, and add a massive island, similar to the layout of my current kitchen

I would remove the side door and windows, and add a double french door open to the patio. 

The second floor has 5 bedrooms, and I am guessing this must be the master. I love the new hardwood flooring throughout the second floor. 

Grrr...yellow paint in master bathroom? But it comes with a bidet! Fancy! 

Basement is finished and there's again a ton of room. It has 9' ceiling height so it doesn't feel like a basement at all. But what's with the vinyl flooring? I guess the previous owner must have blown their reno budget on the fancy archway. 

I could probably fit two swimming pools into that huge yard. And I love that it's back onto a ravine so I would have full privacy! Now I come to think of this, perhaps the lack of privacy is the biggest turnoff for me with our current house? 

This house has a lot of pluses, but it also needs a lot of work. The question remains, love it or list it? 


Thursday, June 12, 2014

Yam Pie and New Kitchen Jars

Yam is a superfood which I just so happen to be crazy about. It must be genetic because when my mom was pregnant with me, yam was the only thing she craved for! This past weekend mom and I came up with this super easy "yam pie" recipe. All in all, it only took about 45 minutes to make, simple and delicious! 

Homemade yam pie on Indigo's Virginia Woolf Food-for-Thought platter



This past weekend I also picked up three of the same cookie jars from HomeSense. I like how simple and clean they look. White is the best colour for kitchen, IMO! 



In case you are wondering what I keep in them - no, there is no cookie yet. I use them to hold the Tassimo T-discs! I can't stand the ugly t-disc carousel on my kitchen counter, and these cookie jars are just perfect for keeping them out of sight. A big bonus is that they seal in all the aroma! 


Friday, June 6, 2014

Elte Outlet Closing Sale

Did you guys go? Elte Outlet in Woodbridge is closing, and everything is on sale for up to 90% off! The sale only started today (Friday June 6) so there are still tons of stuff on the floor. I scored this Basalt Dragon Handled Urn made by Chelsea House at 60% off! Regular price was $375. 



I am beginning to like this black, white and gold regency setting in my vestibule.  

The mirror is a tad too small for the campaign chest, but I really like the shape. Perhaps I should hang it horizontally? Or go for a custom-made again? 

I wish I had more time to look through piles and piles of gorgeous rugs there. Maybe I will go back tomorrow. It's been a long week on the road, so now I am going to pour myself a glass of Moscato d'Asti and chillax in my jardin de fleurs. Let me know if you end up going and do share your good finds. :)

Korean Dwarf Lilac is blooming like crazy now - it gives the most captivating fragrance. 

Allium Globemaster is a bit lacking this year probably because the Tulip Angelique had sucked up a lot of nutrient from the soil in the same flower bed. 

The flowers are nonetheless impressive. 



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