28 February 2010

I am in love with an inanimate plastic object

After it had been sitting the post office for over a week (with no notice left at my front door), last Thursday I finally tracked down the whereabouts of my 1970s Kartell magazine rack. The eBay auction had warned that it was not showroom quality, and they weren't wrong! The rack came to me full of dirt (yes, dirt), covered in cobwebs, and with more than a few white and black paint scuffs. I suspect it had been unearthed from under some weird relative's house.

This morning I set to work cleaning it up (after giving it a quick rinse on Thursday night), and it's scrubbed up remarkably well. For the age of it, the wear is extremely minimal, and now it looks all pristine and shiny! I did, regrettably, decide that removing the paint with nailpolish remover was a great idea - yes yes, I can hear people screaming around the world. What was I thinking? I have no idea. I was tired, ok? Anyway, I only did that on a very small patch before realising that it MELTS plastic. Eek. So that side is not facing out - no big deal.

For now, the rack sits underneath one of our side tables (as when I bought it I promised John it would not take up any extra room). I may try moving it to different places around the room and see what works best.

In other news, last night on eBay I secured (with John's blessing) a brand new, still in the box three-tier Kartell Componbilli cabinet. I'd been wanting to buy one from Space Furniture for some time, and then as luck had it one came up on eBay in Brisbane (usually they're in Melbourne or Sydney). I can't wait to pick it up later this week!
Image: eBay

21 February 2010

Lime and pistachio cake

Some time ago I added a 'cooking' label to my blog in the hope that it would inspire me to bake glorious treats like the ones featured here. Did it work? Well, not for a while. But then I set to work baking a couple of birthday cakes, including John's special request for his birthday today - lime and pistachio cake.

So, yesterday morning I decided to stay in my pyjamas and bake a lime and pistachio tea cake...

First, I got out my cute measuring cups and made myself a delicious cup of coffee.

Then, I got out my ingredients.

And I weighed them very accurately.

Note to readers: no matter how hard you try, you can not keep a clean kitchen if you are creaming butter and sugar. It flies into every crevice and appliance on or near your benchtop.

Juicy lime innards and flesh.

Ready to bake for approximately 60 minutes.

All dusted with icing sugar and sitting all pretty on the windowsill. Ahhhhhh!

And, finally, served on John's birthday today with sweetened sour cream and crushed pistachios. Yummy.

The verdict: well, the cake was a little dry, but I didn't frost it so that may have contributed. I also have a fan-forced over, which may have dried it out a bit. That said, for a cake made from scratch it was pretty damn tasty, and I would make it again.

Hooray for cookery!

17 February 2010

A sneak peek of our wedding invites

Many of you know that John and I are getting married in just over seven weeks (eek!), and I'm sure a few of you also received one of these for yourselves!

I would like to pay public thanks to a couple of people for their help with our wedding invites. Firstly, my lovely friend Fiona Lee of Studio Pounce designed the adorable John and Kylie graphic (complete with a short Kylie perched on a pile of books to kiss tall John!). This image appeared on our 'save the date' magnet, as well as the postcard-sized invite.

Secondly, my equally lovely friend Angelina Martinez loaned us her graphic design skills, working with Fiona's image to make our super-classy invites. We were then able to print and trim the invites ourselves, using 270gsm smooth white card from Paper Stop.

Thanks so much Fiona and Angelina!

13 February 2010

Happy Valentine's Day

Hydrangeas on the kitchen windowsill, taken from the neighbour's garden...

11 February 2010

Lighting fetish

Lately I’ve been thinking about lamps. A lot. Yes, I know this will really, really please John — yet another homewares obsession. But I haven’t bought any… yet.

I really want an Arco lamp (most likely replica, since I can’t possibly imagine being able to afford the real thing). I think we have the ideal spot for one, just to the right of the stereo cabinet (left of the dining room in the below pictures, where the black Ikea lamp currently is). My idea is to have the base in this corner, and the shade arched over to the couches for our reading pleasure. The beauty of these things is that the arch is so high (230 centimetres, to be exact), so super-tall John can walk under it with ease. Since he won’t let me have pendant lights for fear of him hitting his head on them, this is the perfect solution!


The original Arco lamp was designed in 1962 by Achille Castiglioni and Pier Giacomo Castiglioni. Here are some amazing pictures of it in some other homes.

 Images: tiimeless-design, eBay

09 February 2010

My very first retro Kartell piece

This baby is currently on its way from Melbourne — an original Kartell magazine rack. Designed by Italian architect and designer Giotto Stoppino, they were originally manufactured my Kartell in the 1970s. Of course, many unmarked knock-offs were also made during this time, including some produced in Australia (by Plastex and other companies).

These are not pictures of the exact item I have bought (as the eBay images aren’t of the best quality), but it is the same design and colour as this one I found in the US. And, yes, mine does have the official Kartell stamp underneath. Finally, no more current homewares magazines strewn on the side tables — they can now sit neatly in this instead!

Kartell currently produce a newer translucent version of the design, but I’m still in love with the original opaque version.
  Image: smow

In other exciting discoveries, did you know that there is an actual Kartell museum in Milan? I need to visit there NOW.

03 February 2010

And now a new feline friend!

This fellow came to me this week courtesy of the cool kids at Studio Pounce in Melbourne.

The lucky cat is one of several Studio Pounce works in our home, and he was originally hand-printed as a Christmas card using a mini Gocco screenprinter.
Image: Studio Pounce

Image: Studio Pounce

Stay tuned for a comprehensive run-down on our other Studio Pounce pieces in the coming weeks!

02 February 2010

My new equine friend

This little Scandinavian horsey from Kikki.K was gifted to me yesterday...

He's found his place on the side table that strangely ends up home to lots of treasured gifts from friends. His 'stable' is just to the left of my damask lamp, which was also a gift from the same friend.

Thanks Rebecca! xo