Tom Dixon at the Dock

Tom Dixon at the Dock

IMG_0579 Tom Dixon

So I made it through the London Design Festival, a super hectic but fun week for everyone in the design industry. There are always so many great free events going on and so many inspirational shows and new exhibitions being launched at my favourite museums. Fun, fun, fun!

One of my favourite events was an early morning talk about “Manufacturing in Britain” at Tom Dixon’s beautiful showroom at The Dock. Hosted by Tom Dixon, the conversation was chaired by Vicky Richardson, director of architecture, design and fashion at the British Council, and the panel was made up of designer Tom Dixon, design director at Aston Martin Marek Reichman and professor of forecasting and innovation at De Montfort University James Woodhuysen.

A lively debate, copious amounts of morning coffee and delicious biscotti surrounding by Dixon’s covetable products in a stunning dockside location was undoubtedly the highlight of my week [possibly made better because it was followed by a lacklustre 100% Design].

Check out some of the handmade goodies currently in the showroom – beautifully crafted hunks of wooden furniture, hammered copper lights and dark terracotta vessels.

Tom Dixon at the Dock

IMG_0583 Tom Dixon at the Dock

A Discovery of Witches

After a hectic summer of traveling and sightseeing and writing, without any space in my head for reading – I find myself tucking myself away for the beginning of winter with A Discovery of Witches, a fictional debut by Deborah Harkness – a historian who’s other books include non-fiction publications on Elizabethan London and very aptly – the celebrated alchemist John Dee.

An epic tale beginning in the dark old libraries of Oxford, A Discovery of Witches centers on historian Diana Bishop, a witch with a rich lineage. Diana busies herself away with her studies in an effort to ignore her magical powers that have only caused her trouble in her youth. However, the discovery of a mysterious book accidentally magicked up by Diana from the stacks of the Bodleian library, unleashes a world of witches vampires and demons who believe that the manuscript contains important clues about their past and future.

Chief amongst the creatures who gather around Diana is vampire Matthew Clairmont, a geneticist with a passion for Darwin. Together, Diana and Matthew embark on a journey to understand the manuscript’s secrets. But the relationship that develops between the ages-old vampire and the witch threatens to unravel the fragile peace that has long existed between creatures and humans.

A sometimes faltering but mostly gripping tale [stick with it you will be rewarded], A Discovery of Witches takes the reader from the cobbled old streets of Cambridge, to gothic chateaus in France and magical New England towns. A lengthy tome, the novel acquaints us well with a colourful cast of characters  – charming families of witches and complex vampire clans, whom I find myself missing when I close my book for the night.

A Discovery of Witches is published by Headline – big thanks to them for sending me copy to review!

Potomak3

Potomak4

Saw these lusciously painted ceramics by Italian Studio Potomak at Maison et Objet last weekend. It was one of those time’s when you gape like an idiot at the exhibitor and the display because there are no words to describe how beautiful the work is – and frankly it feels completely inappropriate to start trying to explain because you might just embarrass yourself by accidentally expressing how passionately you feel… so you just walk away in a daze – you know?

Delicate pastel washes and on trend soft metallic colour dominated the collection.

Potomak2

Potomak1

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Boston-Pancakes

Back from our road trip, we ate piles of pancakes with bacon and maple syrup for breakfast in Boston, walked by the Charles River and browsed the Harvard Bookstore. We played on the hot sands of the Cape, ate generously sized lobster rolls, were chased by hurricanes and holed up in NY dive bars and hot spots with snacks!

Boston

Provincetown

Lobster Roll

Marblehead

Ace Hotel

The best and worst part of the trip peculiarly was the thrill of the impending hurricane which scheduled itself in the very midst of our trip. With the hurricane on our tail we drove away from Boston – the sunny skies turned stormy and an earthy smell filled the air. We spent a tropically humid night in the spookily named harbour town, Woods Hole by Martha’s Vinyeard as it drew closer.

storm

Woods Hole

Not wanting to ruin our trip, we charged on to the very tip of the Cape to Provincetown, where waters surrounded us on three sides. Luckily as predicted only the edges of the hurricane touched us in the charming seaside town, but it was close enough for us to feel the majesty and power of nature on the Cape. The people of Provincetown turned out to be the most friendliest, happiest, helpful community. The main street was full of positive revelry as we watched the grey waves crash to the shore with the community, whilst locals sat out on their porches drinking and shouting out greetings. That night we spent a pretty hairy night  at the very top of a blowy inn overlooking the sea, we lost power for six hours and mighty winds whipped us around.

Storm

The next morning we woke and the storm had passed. All was calm and bright and we headed to the beach. Life is quick and strange : )

Provincetown

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