It seems like new books are arriving almost daily at the shops. Cookbooks especially catch my eye at this time of year when chilly nights and candlelit tables become the norm. The much anticipated above book, as I shy away from just calling this a cookbook, made me do a little happy dance as Heather unpacked them yesterday. ‘A Boat, A Whale & A Walrus’ is written by local chef Renee Erickson, along with writer Jess Thomson. We have long been a fan of Renee, both her eateries and of her Boat Street Pickles which we sell at the Home store. She has been a Watson Kennedy customer over the years, as has Jim Henkens, who so beautifully shot the images for the book. I love when our creative customers hit a home run. And they did! This is of course first and foremost a cookbook, but it also filled with stories of what makes up the life of owning a restaurant–staff, vendors, menus, recipes. It feels quite personal. Like you are sitting down with Renee having a glass of rosé and chatting about her life. I love that about this book. An homage to her restaurants, it is jam packed with winning recipe after recipe. As well as full menus so you could plan a dinner party from start to finish within a chapter. A lovely gift, but also a keeper.
Happy Saturday all!
From my favorite chair. Just about to head out and hit a few tennis balls.
Our kids section just grows and grows each year. Just in are these beyond adorable handmade donut & frog rattles. Each lovingly made by women in a village in Bangladesh. The story of the company is inspirational–I was quite taken with it, aside from how cute the toys are. The mission of the company is to create fairly paid, good quality, flexible and local employment for rural women who are often disadvantaged. These are all made with tremendous love & care. Such a sweet gift made with such wonderful purpose.
Never underestimate the power of a well wrapped gift. A lovely customer posted this photo of a gift she purchased at Watson Kennedy for her husband recently. I know what is inside the box and it is pretty darn fabulous, but the wrapping she chose and wrapped so beautifully, is equally fab. She took such great care in choosing the paper and the ribbon. The same care she took in choosing the stellar gift. In this case, the paper color plays off of what is inside, as well as the fact that it is French. Lovely wrapping bumps up the specialness of the whole package and becomes part of the gift.
They have arrived! It is always an exciting day when the delivery man shows up with box after box of our Watson Kennedy calendar towels for the year ahead. Yesterday was that day. These are one well-travelled towel. Made for us in France by the venerable Le Jacquard Francais, a LJF towel is made with serious beauty & durability in mind. That is one great combination. Mister Sive & I had the great pleasure years back of being invited to the factory in France to watch the production of these sumptuous/work horse linens. To this day I am still in awe of the experience and just how incredibly well-made they are. Factor in the myriad of colors that are woven into the designs, they really are like functional works of art. The calendar towels are always a big hit. I order more and more each year, and we sell out quicker and quicker. They make the ideal gift. Call one of the shops if you would like one or many, as they go fast. You know we are always happy to wrap them for you too.
A lovely first September Thursday to you in your part of the world.
These are such busy, full, fun days, these ‘show’ days, I am oh so happy I had a few days before to rest up and re-energize at Hawthorne. I have spoken a bit before about this, but walking a show is full-on visual stimulation, so coming at it with fresh eyes is crucial. I am finding such great stuff! At shows, I am always looking for “new, new, new” to keep WK nice and fresh with new varieties of things coming through the door. I clicked away only a few images these last 2 days, as I have been in the zone, but do know, lots, and I mean lots, of new is coming our way.
I am also very excited to report that I will be signing copies of Style & Simplicity today at the show from 2 to 4 at my publishers booth. If you are at the show, please stop by the Sterling booth on the ground floor of Javitz. It is always lovely to see familiar faces at a show.
Happy start of the week to you all!
From The Marlton,
A freshly polished assortment of new, well actually vintage, but you know where I am going with this, hotel silver arrived the other day. Always a bit like Christmas when we open these boxes. Each piece such a treat to unwrap. First ever for us candlesticks and bud vases. Small bowls galore and little handled pitchers. All just so darn good and so darn pretty/handsome. Very, and I mean very, hard for me not to take most of it home. Our section just keeps growing. Please shoot me an e-mail or ring the shop if something catches your eye.
We started carrying this book awhile back and recently a customer told me how much she enjoyed it. It has become my Summer read out on the island. It is one of those books I want to savor, so I only read a chapter at a time. Some of you might be familiar with Heather Ross, her other books, and her artwork (which makes up the cover), but I was not. I am happy to report, I now am. What a fun and funny visual writer. Amy Sedaris wrote one of the quotes for the back of the book. I adore Amy Sedaris, so her initial thumbs up along with that of the lovely customer was all I needed to give the book a try. Ross lived quite a childhood with the story of her colorful life the focus. Family, love, dysfunction, survival and DIY as the subtitle points out are the main themes. What a sweet, and as I said earlier, funny book.
I found these incredibly cool very basic French wooden spoons awhile back and I keep forgetting to write about them. Today is the day. This is the type of utilitarian item that is done beautifully well you will reach for time and again. Coming in 6 graduated sizes, I can see them filling up a canister on the kitchen counter quite nicely. When we bump up the quality quotient in things we use daily, I think it enhances the experience. These spoons fall into that category. They just feel good in the hand. Also a perfect host/hostess or wedding gift. Simple yet oh so stylish. I think a set of these might find their way into our suitcase when we head to Hawthorne on Sunday.
I arrived home last night at 1:30 wobbly & slightly tattered after a bit of a turbulent flight that was delayed but oh so happy to have my head hit the pillow the moment I arrived home. Ahhhh, home. Always fun to have an adventure but always so lovely to be back. It was still 100 degrees when we took off from Las Vegas at 11 o’clock last night. It was a very productive 2 days and I found oodles for Watson Kennedy. I needed a head start for the upcoming New York show, as I have a bunch of book stuff happening at the same time, so this show helped me get a leg up on buying there. I stayed at the Bellagio hotel which was such a visual treat. The above Chihuly installation right as you walk into the lobby and look up is pretty over the top spectacular. Nothing is subtle or done on a small scale in LV. Nothing. It is all quite different from my normal mind-set, so I just soak it all in and look for the small details. Plus the people watching is out of this world.
The World Market Center is where the show/market took place. Filled with furniture, decorative accessories and gifts, it is a treasure trove for buying. But like I have mentioned before when I go to a show, you are looking for that needle in a haystack. The amount of stuff I visually take in to find that one gem can leave your head spinning. Focus is key.
And then the magic starts to happen.
Things start to come together like pieces of a puzzle.
I only buy something if it stirs an emotion. I just feel it when it is right. If I have to think about it for too long, I pass and move on. But when it is right, it is such a great feeling.
More and more vendors are bringing in and selling vintage wares. It gives my heart & soul the break it needs when sorting through everything else. Of course, that is what I end up taking photos of. But I was so happy I took the time/remembered to take photos for this post. I love having you all along with me–I hope some of these images gives you an idea of what it all is like.
From my beloved Seattle,
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.