Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Good Guest

I was the lucky lucky girl to receive this delicious little tart. My very generous friend Mariam came round for a tête-à-tête and I was so happy to see what she had tucked under her arm.

How unbelievable is the perfection of this lemon meringue pie. I love the name of the bakery written in gold on chocolate. That is inspiring presentation if ever I've seen it.

Our feasting continued with this little pretty. Classic chocolate eclair. Very good for general upliftment. In fact my Grandmother always used to eat chocolate logs for 'cheering up'
If you have not been to Cassis, you should go immediately. Try to limit yourself to one hit a week.

One of the many nice things about having friends to your house, is that they sometimes come with lovely things. I also received these amazing boxes of Turkish delight. I was more happy with the box itself than the actual contents. I love the colour and the pattern.

In fact the two together make for a very original and stunning colour combination.

I have recently received these beautiful soaps for my shop from Portugal.

I think they make for the most perfect something to take as a guest to a person's house.

Again, loving the colours and patterns.

They come in large with matching babies.

The Portuguese are so clever.

I actually do collect soaps. It is very rewarding to group them together in a big bowl or vase and have them next to your basin or bath. I also have tone hidden in cupboard under shirts etc. Nothing like putting on a clean T shirt smelling of scented soap.

Very attractive indeed.

* A note from Mr Manners:
As a guest, one should always take something
for your host. Try to make it personal and put
some effort into it. When obvious NEVER re gift, unless
of course you do not want a repeat invitation.
It is not ideal to take flowers to a dinner party as so many
people do - it puts your host under tremendous pressure as she
runs around looking for a vase and water etc. Rather leave their favorite chocolates or a special soap discretely on a table.
A beautiful ribbon is always in good taste.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

It's bed for me!

On cold days like these, there is nothing else to do but get into bed. As you all know I am a big fan of beds. I would live in mine if life permitted it. I am sitting here trying to think warm and sunny thoughts. My mind keeps drifting to the ice hotel. Getting into my bed is as inviting as this little cool number...............

Luckily, after a while the frost bite starts to subside and finally finally I can wiggle my toes again! That is why it is vital never never to get out of bed.

The one thing that I loved about our honeymoon on Kiwayu Island in Kenya was the many many day beds plonked at random intervals - perfect when one feels a sudden nap creeping up.

How I wish I was there now.

This was our bed at The Peponi hotel in Lamu. I love a super high bed.

Our bed at home - my dream permanent residence.

How magnificent is this bunk bed I found in an antique shop near the East End in London.

As for this crib!!

I quite fancy this leather sleigh bed. Perfect for a winter Ralph Lauren style hunting lodge.

I keep scrapbooks and folders of inspiration photos - these are some photos of beds I like.

A David Hicks bed

A bedroom designed by Emma Jane Pilkington. One of my decorator idols. She did Ivanka Trumps apartment when she was single.

I love the detailing in this room - the bamboo bed, the paisley fabric used on walls, curtains and bed canopy and of course the ultimate touch of leopard print.

Lovely and serene and feminine.

A Kelly Wearstler room - another idol of mine.

* A note from Mrs Mostess.
It is quite wonderful to entertain in your bedroom.
It has been known that certain grande dames in the past would serve cocktails in their vast bathrooms. So take advice from Elsie de Wolfe and the likes and break out of parochial norm and why not serve chilled campari and bitter orange in a deliciously toasty bedroom. It's a sure way to make your guests feel at ease.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

What's your game plan?

Well, I must say I am on a serious high after this weekend's world cup events. Never before have I experienced such an electric atmosphere. It was excitement beyond belief. Lets discuss the highlights:
Firstly, it is not often that you get to pretend that your house is an embassy.
Secondly,the whole family can participate, including the Beags. They loved it although quite shell shocked when Darling insisted they join in on the Long Street parade. The vuvzelas where enough to confuse them, let alone it was the first time that they have ever worn 'clothes'. The poor things were under the impression that, admittedly their slightly tightish soccer tops disabled them from walking. They spent the first five minutes with cat like arched backs standing statue still. It's amazing what one boerewors roll can do. they were wagging and dancing just like the rest of us with just one boerie!
Thirdly, it is not often you experience Cape Town on such a united front. It was momentous to say the least.
In order to be fair one must discuss the down sides:
Firstly, I got home with a migraine from the vuvuzelas - they are quite out of control. Fun of course, but seriously? Think of it as a Lear jet hovering overhead for the duration of the game.
Lastly, my only other complaint of the entire event is that they ran out of food at the match - tragedy! It did not help that the girl next to me was divulging in salt and vinegar chips. Torture. I always think of that song.......Ag, please daddy won't you take me to the drive in, popcorn, chewing gum and ice cream too (something like that, I hope it's not just me!) Somehow the Budweiser was not a well received substitute for me.

Dominico House - The Embassy

The Beags!

You can see it's all equal equal in our house. South Africa AND England.

Mr Chester
Miss Beatrice. I think green could be her colour.

Blowing in my ear - do you want to busrt a blood vessel!

Alle Bleu!

A little house outside Stellenbosch. How charming.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Get out the umbrellas!

I never really think about umbrellas. They are the poor little lonely essentials left in people's hallways. They are there because they have to be, not because we really welcome them. It doesn't make sense? We value our other practical items such as our wallets and handbags. It's all about the bag! So why not the umbrella? In fact an umbrella is a make or break key item to your 'look' the cherry on the top really. So after the rain in Cape Town I've decided...... bring on the umbrellas.

Here's Darling in Florence. I love a red umbrella.

Umbrellas can roll with the times as well. Just look at these lovely ones made from recycled bags. Very green of them.

As for these lovely ladies! I am surprised Paris Hilton hasn't discoverd yet another object with which to use her face.

Bling! Hate this photo, wish they could have shot it more amazingly. But imagine a little sparkle whilst heading out to the ballet. I secretly want this very badly. I found these little treats on (warning, you can go crazy on this site, and might not ever recover)

Now for the stylish......... how beautiful are these umbrellas. From the UK of course. Come on Cape Town get with the brolly side of things.

I think this one is my fav. You?

A bit Austin Powers for me, but maybe nice if winter makes you depressed.

Quite lovely. Could work with Chanel.

How is this one! Biodegradable. Quite sensational.
This umbrella is known as the 'best umbrella in the world' Go to Very smart indeed. Think Darling would appreciate this one.

Usher used it in his cover of Gene Kelly's singing in the rain. Of course he would, only the best for our Ush.

* A note from the crafty sisters.
Remember in today's finacial climate it is no longer acceptable to be reckless.
Your possensions should earn their keep, most of them now having to serve dual jobs. Take the umbrella for instance - well it is bone idol for the majority of the time. Well, that simply won't do.
Why don't you use it as a beautiful light for a fun soiree. It really can make for an intimate atmosphere and really does look very pretty.