Sunday, November 30, 2008

New British Stamp designs

Di Overton maker of Ghost Furniture in Northumberland posted about these superbly designed new British stamps at Designers' Block UK. Fun, fun, fun.

The new first class stamps come out in January 2009. I, of course, love the Vita Sackville-West book cover. Admittedly, the ones they are replacing are really great too. . . . Oh well.

And the Mini!


Saturday, November 29, 2008

SoHo's Linda Derector -- Scene and be Seen

I first visited Linda Derector's Nolita shop on Mott St. (between Prince and Spring) couple of years ago.

My friend and I bought amazingly designed historic frames, but it was Linda who made the experience special. Why? Because this woman does not mince words. In a good way. I don't think she would say " honey that looks ridiculous on you", but that's sort of what she does. She is honest and would not let you walk out looking dopey. She has a huge sale here and I hate to tell her that I broke my vintage frames but wear them nonetheless. The sale is Dec. 2-7, noon - 8pm daily. To shop at Linda's store is an adventure!
These Vintage Vienna handmade Austrian spec once $395 will be considerably less during the sale.

Funk Royal Optics from Germany $450.


Friday, November 28, 2008

Domaine de Canton -- A Spirit to Lift Your Spirits

Thanksgiving 2008. We have a lot for which to be thankful. Yesterday, with lifted spirits we celebrated with loved ones and looked to the future with hope.

Speaking of spirits, I finally got my hands on something I've been reading about for some time but, because it's unavailable locally, I have yet to try. Enter house guest
extraordinaire from the big city with a bottle in tow. After a light sup and both tired we opened the bottle of Domaine de Canton, took tiny portions and loved it. It is French cognac-based liqueur infused with (and I quote) "baby Vietnamese ginger." I love ginger-anything. Assuming the cognac factor, I figured it was for after dinner. Nope. Domaine de Canton is so subtle it can be added to all sorts of drinks. It works really well in cocktails. On their extraordinarily annoying website you can learn many drink recipes, but be prepared to spend way too much time trying to track back. And it may also have recipe applications that I have yet imagined. I would recommend buying a case and giving it as a holiday gift.


Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Lori Warner -- Open Studio Nov. 28-30

I wrote about my friend, artist Lori Warner in September, but here is an update.

On November 28, 29 and 30, Lori is hosting an open studio. She will be working -- perhaps on her press -- and demonstrating her encaustic process. My question: will there be food? The original post can be found here. Directions to her studio can be found here. You can see some of Lori's recent work below.

Time Represented in Dream:

Three Men:

April 16:


Monday, November 17, 2008

SONG -- Not Your Everyday Calendar

Actually SONG is precisely an every day calendar. What was I thinking.

.I was having lunch in a very crowded RJ Julia Booksellers in Madison, CT yesterday when a woman sat down and pulled out her calendar. Its distinct shape reminded me that it was time to give Jan a nudge and get some images for my blog. My friends Jan & Peter have come out with their 16th (?) annual Calendar in a Can(nister). This year the theme is SONG. They are the talent behind Cummings & Good a graphic design firm. Each month of this limited edition calendar has art, often by Jan or Peter, that is thematically related to SONG. There are quotes -- on topic of course. A full sized image from the month of April can be seen here, but I'm not willing to anger the blogspot demons by trying to post it. The unusual format of the calendar takes a bit of getting used to (more on that later), but its distinct shape means it's really easy to find a place to hang it. Back to the format. The weekends are always a different color than the weekdays, so once you get accustomed to that little tidbit, you'll be much closer to knowing where to look. I pass this on, because it took me years to figure that out. It's available on the C&G website, at the aforementioned RJ Julia and at Landis Gifts and Stationery in Los Angeles. Note: The introduction to the calendar, is a charming poem by their son Justin, and quite the departure from past years.


Wednesday, November 12, 2008


It's morning in America.

This cover by Bob Staake is poignant. Love it. So thoughtful. When I think of what could have been. Yikes.


Monday, November 10, 2008

Log Bowls from Canada

I was poking around in the gallery at Made this weekend and found these beautiful log bowls from Loyal Loot design collective.

Made for local reclaimed logs, they are then aged before applying the paint. I like the tension between the known natural aspect of the wood against the glossy, well matched paint. And what colors! Designed by Doha Chebib, they can be found at Matter in NYC and Brooklyn and Rose & Radish, San Francisco and Kit Interiors, Calgary and Made, Toronto. They are not intented to come in contact with food. Prices range in price from $55 to $245.


Sunday, November 9, 2008

Ann Lightfoot Jewelry -- Just in Time

My friend Ann Lightfoot creates wonderful jewelry that seems more timely now than ever.

I've admired Ann's work for years. Her designs are simple yet elegant. There is sense of nature without being granola-ish. Having worked Thailand and having traveled extensively in Asia, many of her designs
employ Asian, South American and African beads and pendants. Her work has appeared in Lucky and Bon Appetite. I love these small blue beads. Wearing it I felt like someone in Mad Men. Ann'e website is under construction, but can be found here. Glee, a small chain of boutiques in CT and MA carry her designs in addition to the Florence Griswold Museum.

While I don't wear much jewelery, this necklace reminds me of something I saw on Michell Obama earlier this year. It's also reminiscent of another famous O -- Jackie O. So classic. So in the spirit of "change we can believe in", I'll be sporting my new Ann Lightfoot loot.


Thursday, November 6, 2008

Grill pan with a secret

Saw this in Gourmet recently and again today on

Not only is this
Fagor cast aluminum grill pan attractive to look at, but its even heat distribution ensures lower energy consumption and faster cooking. The pan also has a secret that makes it ideal for those of you with tiny kitchens. The handle is detachable for easier storage.


Something Fishy

Departures magazine has a feature in its Nov/Dec 2008 issue titled Necessary Luxuries. Mario Batali chooses bottarga along with Dom Perignon Rose 1988 and beef jerky. Not sure about the last one.

Bottarga is the salted roe of grey mullet or tuna from Sicily. You can find it here at Gourmet Sardinia in Houston. It is not meant to be cooked. Typically you grate it over salads, or pastas or over thinly sliced hot toasted bruschetta with olive oil. It can be added to risotto or fregola. As it is seafood, you don't add grated cheese. Thinly shaved slices could be added in a similar way. It seems expensive, but one chunk of it can last a very long time. Very. I use it with a couple of other strong flavors so there's a balance. At best, can be characterized by its strong and most surely acquired taste. Martha Stewart has a simple, quick recipe here.