Martha Stewart Living

20140729-074347.jpg Every once in awhile a magazine cover will just stop me in my tracks. This current issue of Martha Stewart Living did just that. What a beautifully visual tableau, right down to the bits of basil strewn about. The issue is pretty stellar, as well. It has been part of my reading this week-end. The home of designers Roman and Williams in Montauk was a special treat. Each issue is always filled with so many recipes and ideas on every page I find myself making notes and pulling out pages for reminders. I find design/food magazines to be such an inspiration. Some might say print is dead, but I could not disagree more. I still always feel that bit of glee when I reach into the mailbox and pull out the newest issue of the slew of magazines we receive each month.

A happy Tuesday to you in your neck of the woods.
From WestWard,



Ted’s Tip No. 7

20140728-074441.jpg Summer brings such divine tomatoes. For the easiest dinner, roast small tomatoes in a 400 degree oven in a baking dish with lots of extra virgin olive oil, salt & pepper until the tomatoes have begun to pop and release their sweet juices. Toss with your favorite type of just cooked pasta and mix in a bunch of fresh torn up basil leaves. If so inclined, add a dusting of fresh Parmesan. Fini.



A Table in Red

20140727-075311.jpg Last Sunday was a bit overcast and a tad chilly, so the color red seemed to be calling me when I set the table. The linen tablecloth had been folded up, so I liken it to a linen suit in how wrinkled it looked. Fitting for the season. With an iron nowhere to be found, wrinkly it would be. I think that is where age mellows you. 15 years ago it would have unsettled me a bit. Now I embrace the wrinkles. Insert big smile.



20140727-075850.jpg You know I always like to try and add something vintage or a bit of ephemera to the table. It just adds visual interest. I like the thought of someone thinking/asking, “Why in the heck is there a pool ball on the table?” which gets the conversation rolling. The red dahlias dancing about the table in much the same way the white dahlias did the Sunday before. The red adding such warmth on a cool day. All set for friends and laughter and an outdoor supper.




{BOOK SIGNING} Ravenna Gardens

20140726-045205.jpg I will be signing books today at Ravenna Gardens in University Village from 2 to 4. It is supposed to be a gloriously sunny Summer day today, so if you are out & about and in the area, please stop in. One of the very fun things about these signings is it has re-connected me to folks I have know for years but have lost contact with. Gillian Matthews, the owner of Ravenna Gardens, was a customer of mine ages ago when I had my wholesale showroom, and she was the owner of Made in Washington. It is a delight to see all these familiar faces from over the years. Hope to see you there!

Happy Saturday all.
From Seattle,



Spaghetti Carbonara

20140725-042111.jpg I almost always know or at least have an idea of what I am going to write about/post in the morning before my head hits the pillow the night before. But not always. Last night was such a night that I was just wrapping my head around ideas and TPS said “I made that Spaghetti Carbonara and wrote about it for you, why not use that?” Which he did in January, which was so delicious and so lovely that he wrote out the recipe to be used on the blog and shared with you all. Which I stored away and promptly forgot about. Easily as tasty in July. Today’s post, courtesy of Mister Sive.

Spaghetti Carbonara is a core comfort food in the Watson Sive household. I think this may have been one of the dishes that “sealed the deal” with my husband. Simple, tasty, and hearty, it has a terrific combination of smoky bacon (need we say more?), the sweetness of peas, and the warmth of pasta and eggs.

1 pound bacon
1 pound spaghetti
4 eggs
1 regular sized package frozen peas
1/2 cup loosely grated Parmesan
lots of fresh pepper
salt to taste

Dice the bacon small and cook in a skillet over medium heat. Drain off the fat as you go along, and try to time the cooking so the bacon is still warm for assembly.

Break the eggs into a large pasta or mixing bowl and loosely mix with a fork.

Empty the frozen peas into a colander.

Cook the pasta to just a tad over al dente. Ideally, in a two stage pasta pot with an integral strainer, so you can drain the pasta and save the hot pasta water. Dip the frozen peas into the pasta water to flash cook (this is all they’ll need; if cooked longer, they become too soft.)

Immediately toss the hot pasta in the eggs, cooking them, and quickly add the other ingredients. Let sit for a minute for the eggs to complete cook and the flavors to merge.

Serve in pasta bowls, top with a touch more pepper, grab a glass of hearty red, and all will be well in the world.




20140724-064825.jpg The other week I snapped away a few images of “things” that caught my eye at the Market shop. Stuff, ephemera, objects, things, bits & bobs–whatever words you like best. Obviously, and I smile as I type this, you know I like all of those words, and what they are quite a bit. Just a few bowls, jars, boxes and platters of things pleasing to the eye.









A Rosé Tasting

20140723-051100.jpg This sunny (or cloudy like the above) time of year is a perfect time to have a rosé tasting. By no means does this need to be formal or fancy. There are just so many good rosé wines out there, that it is fun to try a variety with guests at your next dinner or party. Just pick up several different bottles and have them out when guests arrive. It is a pleasurable way to spark conversation, and it is a stellar way to choose a new crowd favorite. We did this last Sunday out on the island and it was a festive way to get the afternoon rolling before dinner was served. This is also a great time to use bottles that were given as gifts. A lovely remembrance of a gift from a friend shared with other friends. The love multiples. For the above wines, the Bandol was the crowd favorite, with the AIX coming in a close second. But all were hugely enjoyed measured by the stories and laughs had along the way.



Antica Farmacista at WK

20140722-064744.jpg We are so pleased to have the beautifully sensuous & sumptuous line, Antica Farmacista, now gracing the shelves at Watson Kennedy. Very Italian influenced, the company is actually based right here in Seattle. Which I love. Not only here in Seattle, but about a block from the Market shop. Which I love even more. Antica Farmacista was established in 2003, and was the first company to introduce the home ambiance reed diffuser in the United States. They have expanded the line tremendously since then. Think liquid hand soap, lotions, and candles. All of which are now stocked on our shelves. It really is such a pretty, pretty line. With outstanding scents. Plus, you know I love great packaging. Antica has that in spades. All ready to be wrapped up and given as a gift.






Ted’s Tip No. 6

20140721-083611.jpg Turn soon to be stale bread into delectable croutons. Turn oven to 350 degrees to pre-heat while you cut up the bread into bite sized pieces. Scatter them onto a baking sheet, sprinkle with extra virgin olive oil, salt & pepper. A winning trio in so much of my cooking. Put tray in the oven being sure to keep an eye on it and move around the bread often to make sure things cook evenly. Pull out when nice and golden. Then liberally dust with freshly grated Parmesan cheese. You now have tasty, tasty croutons for salads or for snacking. These also make fab hostess gifts if you fill up a cello bag with them and close off with an earthy colored ribbon.




20140720-083217.jpg Ahhhh, Summer. Or Summmaaa as I have started to call it. Bountiful. Colorful. Insert whatever summery word suits you. The Market yesterday was a riot of color. The yellows really catching my eye the most.

20140720-083528.jpg So saturated. I am a big yellow fan, but Summer is when it pops the most with all the great light.

20140720-083702.jpg Bountiful indeed. Just buckets & buckets of color.

20140720-083805.jpg I had this image on my Instagram feed yesterday, saying I could photograph tomatoes every day in this season. They are just such perfectly perfect things to capture. And eat!

20140720-084013.jpg And my oh my, the dahlias. Each week I am seeing more and more. The variety is what I find most captivating about them. So many different shapes, sizes and colors. Just happiness packed into a flower.

I have written about this a bit before, but I would like to say a few words again. I have always wanted to have my daily blog post be a bright spot in your day. Keeping it upbeat and positive is incredibly important to me. This is how I try and live my life each day. There can be so much darkness in the world. The horrific event that happened the other day has me teary just typing this. My heart just aches for the families who lost loved ones on that flight. I sometimes feel funny posting such light things after such a tragedy. Please know these events affect me greatly, but I feel we must not let that darkness overshadow or overcome all the good there is in the world. Not by sticking our head in the sand, but rather by staying positive and not letting events like these overcome us.

So I will focus on the beauty of the day. There is so much of it around us.
With much love,