Mini break

I am off here and here and here. Back in about week. Off to clear my head, spend some quality time with DH, drink wine, read books, take walks etc. Sorely needed. Happy Weekend all!

Cutest Cupcake Contest

Marcia at preciousstyle is running a cutest cupcake contest. So if you're a cupcake fan head on over double quick. She's even featured some of my creations. And she's offering great prizes... Domino, shouldn't need another invitation : )


ZOO ZOOM is billed as 'the orignal online glossy'. I'm just a complete magazine addict, whatever shape or form..

I think perhaps this campaign produced the opposite of the desired result : )
Sorry, don't know the source this one landed in my inbox this morning.

"To the Potato Factory" by Michael Sowa

A while ago my sister gave DH and I a repro of a painting "Kartoffellagerhaus" by Michael Sowa. I love the quirky nature of this image but only recently really did any research about the artist. He is known for his 'whimsical paintings often featuring animals'. I recognise his paintings below as those featured in the film Amelie. See more of his work here.Doesn't the "Fowl with Pearls" look fantastically regal?

Neiman Marcus Pop-up book

See this 100 year history of the company come to life here. Pretty.

Regrettable food

I love looking at old advertising. The messages are so simple, none of this lets-couch-the-hard-sell-in-cool-concept. And the photography, styling and illustrations were fantastic. Or fantastically bad. Especially when it came to food. The unappetising creations above are courtesy of Weight Watchers recipe cards circa 1974.

I then discoverd that there is a flickr group THAT RECREATES THESE RECIPES and photographs their, why?

For more regrettable food you must visit this gallery. The wonders of what to do with Jello (make salad), cooking with 7-UP and Dr Pepper and the glory that is MEAT.

I've found a couple of images I think should be block mounted and put up in our kitchen. If only to inspire better results!

Listography (Your life in lists)

In the hope of being more organised, I make lists constantly. The boring ones: things to do/buy, people to call/email and the more exiting lists: wishlists, lists of things to achieve, (um, learn to program html) lists of places to travel etc. At the beginning of each new year I copy into my new Moleskin diary those lists I still need check off. Aaah, what small thing but what a wonderful feeling to check scratch things off lists.

I haven't bought this book or registered on listography yet, but I am tempted...

Test yourself

I've just tested myself on The Rather Difficult Font Game. I found it fun, but then I've already admitted my typenerd status before on this blog. I only got 25 out of 34 though so my status is not confirmed. Lovers of typography find more to indulge your passion here.

Atelier Kanawa

I used to visit the blog 'something old something new' quite often while we were planning our wedding. I found it such a lovely inspirational source for all things 'wedding' nevermind a visual feast during downtime at work. I recently popped over for another look - and I'm so glad I did. I don't think that the beauties above should be/are strictly wedding attire. Find them on etsy by Atelier Kanawa.

"These beautiful little blooms are the product of an ancient Japanese tradition known as Tsumami Kanzashi (the art of pinching luxurious silks into flower-shaped hair ornaments). Atelier Kanawa makes both traditional & modern Tsumami Kanzashi and was professionally trained by one of the only 15 acknowledged Tsumami Kanzashi artisans in Japan." Via Kenzie Kate.

The Champagne cocktail

Champagne cocktail, originally uploaded by black_kat1.

Champagne, my tipple of choice...
Unfortunately I am not sure of the source of the above but it landed in my inbox and I thought it was worth sharing. The beautiful Kiki Prin seems to have lived and interesting life...she apparantly had a wonderfully positive attitude famously saying "all I need is an onion, a bit of bread, and a bottle of red [wine]; and I will always find somebody to offer me that."

My favourite cocktails include the (trusty) Cosmopolitan and White Russians. We served both at our wedding last year (the White Russians alongside dessert). We also spent some time in Franschoek after we were married - A great place to go for a champagne tasting if you are in that vicinity is Haute Cabriere. They do a fantastic cellar tour including a demonstration of the dramatic art of 'sabrage'. The restaurant is great as well, including a beautifully matched wine to food menu.

Subversive cross stitch

Make Tea Not War, originally uploaded by mooosh.

Found this group on flickr. Not mad about all the statements needlepointed - bit too hardcore for me, but I like this one!

Seven Sins by Trixie

I came across the the work of trixiedelicious on flickr. "Trixie loves to create art for people with a sense of humour." It definitely appeals to mine.

You can buy her work on esty. I'm already a fan of putting plates on the wall and love the combination of type styles she has used in the larger grouping. Hmm... there might be a purchase in the offing...

Cupcake t-shirt

I could manage this breakfast, though I would have to add coffee too :) T-shirt by nataliedee.

What started YOU blogging?

This is my 118th post. Not significant in any way other than that it got me thinking about what got me started blogging in the first place.

A couple of years ago I read the above book 'Julie & Julia' the story of Julie Powell and her challenge to herself to cook her way through Julia Child's book: 'Mastering the Art of French Cooking' in the space of 1 year. That's cooking her way through EVERY recipe... including delving into some really interesting (sometimes completely gross) cooking techniques and preparing a number of recipes containing offal and more than your monthly (nevermind daily) recommended requirement of cream/fat in one dish.

Julie's book originated from her humorous blog which generated a huge following as she made her way through this project - her Year of Cooking Dangerously. It seems to have been so successful that they are making it into a movie.

This book was the first time I had encountered a book-from-blog publication (I'd heard of others but this was the first I read) and as soon as I finished it I immediately looked the author up and discovered this blogging phenomenon. Starting first by commenting on other peoples blogs I then created my own space which I've tried to maintain (on and off) for almost 2 years.

I thought it was a great way to communicate indirectly with friends and family spread all over the world, and then got completely sucked-in to the inspiration that is shared so freely in this medium. My list of 'favourites' grew until I had to discipline myself to a few choice daily reads in order to get any work done at all...

What started YOU blogging? I'm certain you have a more noble/interesting/inspiring reason for doing what you do. Please share, I'd love to hear.

"The Quote"

"The Quote" for the the garden is in. Gulp. Perhaps I'm just niave about what things cost... I'm certainly not trying to deny any hardworking gardener their honest days pay. But I'm not sure I can justify or understand 10 x 50kg bags of cement. I mean, where will they put all that cement? It is hardly a 5x3 square metre space to work in. And "The Quote" didn't even include the plants...

I am sure the result of that money will be beautiful. I'm just not so sure it will be more beautiful than a quote for half the price.

I've realised I'm not so good with overbearing suppliers or people who bandy about latin names while waving their hands emphatically. Part of me is suspicious, part taken-in and part just completely in awe of the salesmanship.

Apparantly having the word "landscaped" in the estate agent ad for your home increases the offer on said home by 7%. Irrelevant as we are not planning to sell anytime soon (although DH is concerned that we need to as the street we live in seems to be morphing into a campus type scenario). Regardless, it makes a nice selling point for a lanscaper I guess. I'm just not so sure that by the time we do sell all those plants will still be alive. DH is pretty good, but I'm afraid I'm liable to go on holiday or ignore large infestations of aphid type creatures with no concern for the (horrible) consequences.

I see a need for "The Comparitive Quote" or perhaps even for exploration of something like 'garden in a box'. Isn't it funny how "The Quote" and the "The Bonus" or "The Salary" are never quite proportionate. (sigh)

Jan Verboom

I worked with Jan yesterday. We headed to Joburg to shoot some SA music celebs... and I'm pleased with the results of our (long) days work. Above are some of his beautiful non-advertising shots. I don't usually post work but I might share the results of this bizarre shoot once the images are retouched. Happy weekend all!

April fool.

Apparantly today every 'featured video' on youtube links to Rick Astleys' 'Never gonna give you up'. I just happen to think that's HILARIOUS.

For the top 100 April fools hoaxes see the museum of hoaxes. There have been a few local ones this year, usually pretty weak 'groan' type jokes.

Hope you weren't fooled today : )

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