Wednesday, February 23, 2011

This is Not an Ad for a Fragrance

Not many people get to say they spent their birthday in three different states... today I started off in Massachusetts, then had coffee and cake in New Hampshire and later had lunch in Maine!

Yep, today I turned 32 (gulp!) and me and the hubby took the day off to explore Portsmouth, NH (loved it!) and then sightseeing by car, followed by antique-hunting... fantastic!

Above is my birthday gift.. aren't I lucky? I've used the same perfumes since high school, like Aqua di Gio and Green Tea, and just got tired of them, I suppose. I searched and searched for my new favourite and finally found it: Balenciaga Paris. Warm. Feminine. Grown Up (gulp!). Great packaging (love the box, the little bag the bottle comes in... the colours...). I love it. Thanks, my love.

PS: I'll be AWOL for the rest of the week... we have an art show at work every six months and I'm desperately trying to finish the third of three drawings of a series... really? I had to do a series!? Pfffft. Anyway, if I'm feeling brave I'll share the pics with you soon..

Friday, February 18, 2011

Impressions from South Africa, 1965 to Now

Starting in March (running to August), Moma will be hosting the exhibit Impressions from South Africa, 1965 to Now. The exhibit features the printmaking work that arose from the unequal opportunities presented to artists during Apartheid, as well as the new school of artists who carry the torch and explore all the themes that arise from our complex history.

Nomathemba Tana. Amanzi Amthatha from Makana Remembered, by various artists. 2001. Linoleum cut from a portfolio of 20 prints, will be in the exhibit.

The same, but different, linocut by Paul Edmunds

These are works from artists whose work will be in the exhibit (but I'm not sure which pieces)...


Kudazani Chiurai

William Kentridge

Senzeni Marasela

There are others besides these, read about it here. I will definitely be making the trip down to see it.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Wedding Belle

I know the wedding on everyone's mind this year is of a certain adorable couple who live on an island, near Europe somewhere, but I'm a little more interested in one that's a less talked about.

It's the wedding of Prince Albert of Monaco to South African, and former Olympic swimmer, Charlene Wittstock.

It's time for a disclaimer. I am going to gush.

The wedding will be on July 1 and will last two days, including a formal dinner in the Oceanographic Museum. The 101-year old museum sits at the top of a cliff, and houses sea fauna, model ships and over 4000 species of fish... sounds like a small piece of heaven to me. I've read Charlene's dress will be by Giorgio Armani, but as the first crown-princess since Grace Kelly, I think Charlene brings as much grace and beauty to the role as her predecessor.

Although I could never dream of reaching the same heights, I'm a bit of a swimmer myself (both of us love backstroke!) and water baby, too, so seeing those swimming shoulders looking gorgeous is so inspirational. And not only is Charlene lovely, she also has a big heart: this weekend she was in SA to swim the Midmar Mile to raise funds for her Special Olympics Charity. Read a great article about her on Vanity Fair.

And Charlene, if you ever get tired of the highlife and all that glamour, send me an email and I'll remind you of what's its like to be a casual, laid-back South African girl. We'll be great friends ;)

Monday, February 14, 2011

A Reflection Back and Forth in Time

A few months ago I bid on ebay for the first time. I decided to because although my apartment has a lot of South African decor in it, there is a lot of American style and Americana that I love... and I've always wanted a Federal-style, convex mirror, y'know, one of those awesome ones with the eagle on top... but I wanted a tiny one, and they usually come in huge sizes... so I just waited, and waited, then this one came up.

Its only 12 inches/30 cm from top to bottom, and I got it for $15. Let me say that again. $15. It's authentic, and much, much better quality than anything I've seen at fleamarkets. Woohoo!

Now, as much as I love the traditional I do love me some modern goodies. So when I saw these bad boys on I Want That I was so excited... how fantastic are they?

They were created by the Sobeit guys (costume creators?), and for sale here. I think it would be so cool to have the one on one side of a hallway, and the other directly opposite.... Thanks Vicki for posting on them!

And Happy Valentines' day everyone! Got any plans? I'm off with 20 of my closest friends for dinner in Chinatown... an annual event, and always a good time.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Remodelista Visits South Africa

...and makes a stop at Babylonstoren, a resort set in the wine farms outside Cape Town. The restoration was steered by former Elle Decor (great mag!) editor, Karen Roos. The project so appeals to me because it blends the best of the past and the present... the gardens are inspired by the gardens of the Dutch East India Company gardens, including 300 varieties of edible plants... but combined with the most chic and comfortable of modern furnishings. Gosh, wandering around this place must be heaven.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

We Interrupt this Broadcast...

to bring you a bit more news from the snowy North East United States.

On the dogs' walk on Saturday morning I took along the camera... and was so glad I did. Most of the snow was still around, the icicles, too! Saturday night saw a bit of rain blow in, so most of the icicles melted or fell down, and the snow depressed a little.. but it was quite a scene on Saturday morning, even if we were almost skating around the block. As always, click on the images to see bigger.

I just want to point out that we are not the only ones flabbergasted by the huge amounts of snow. People who have lived here most of their lives have not seen so much snow... or men on roofs, getting snow off before it gets too heavy.

And yes, this is a Christmas tree.. taken out for rubbish day, and then snowed in.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Remodelista hearts South Africa

That's right! The past couple weeks has been a complete SA-fest over at one my favourite blogs, remodelista.... I think it all started when one of the bloggers bought Hot Afro (which you've read about here before, of course!)

Anyway, if you're interested to see what they've said...

Firstly, they showed the lovely fabric from Skinny Laminx

They visited Superette cafe in Woodstock, Cape Town

Then, remodelista was off to the studio of the Derrick ad agency (this looks like a kitchen I'd like at home, never mind at work!)

They also discovered the beauty of Earthcote paint

Remodelista also admired the beautiful work of Casamento. Some of their work is available at Anthropologie.

This pic will look familiar from my campaign-furniture post from last week... it was from the SA-fest!

Remodelista crossed the border
to our friends in Swaziland, and featured the beautiful work of the Coral Stephens Handweaving

What a whirlwind tour... and if you're interested in any of these, the links will take you to Remodelista's post, or to the feature in question's website. There was one more thing they talked about, but I'm saving it for the usual travelling southern Africa post on Friday...

Monday, February 7, 2011


Have you ever wondered how do they do that? when you see giant signage like billboards, murals or graffiti? If you have you will enjoy this.

Faith47 is a Cape Town based graffiti artist, who is inspired by political and existential questions, and travels the world to paint ... I just love her work (you can read more about what drives her here)

Thanks to Mark, for letting me know about this awesomeness... and he originally found this over at Wooster Collective, but I can't find the original post now, except for the page I've linked to. If you're interested in Ben Eine (Faith47 mentions him in the video) you can check out his two wine tanks here.

Friday, February 4, 2011

When Next You're in Paternoster*

You should pop in to Oep Ve Koep**. Opened by Kobus a year ago, its cooking!

These images (except the first) are from his blog, Sardines on Toast (I have the same bowl as in the fourth pic!). Which, although I am not a cook, I do enjoy reading. Its a window into seasonal, great cooking on the West coast of South Africa but also a window into Kobus's world.

And how could I not enjoy Kobus' blog? He has bassets!!

* Paternoster
: Pah-terr-nohs-terr. A small fishing village on the West coast of SA that kind of looks like the Greek isles.
** Oep Ve Koep: Afrikaans for "open for business"... but my Afrikaans is a bietjie swak, so if the more literal "open for shopping", or maybe some other translation, is better, please let me know!

You can read Sardines on Toast here, see a day in the life of Kobus at the fabulous I Want That - and its where I got some of my pics, and read more about Kobus here.