Looking Forward


I often hear the saying ‘’never look back”, and I am definitely one who believes in forward momentum and learning from, but not dwelling on or in the past, however as you will see from my newsletters they are generally a recap of what I’ve seen and where I’ve been with a cheeky glimpse into what we have on the tables for the month ahead.

For me it’s always lovely to look at what we have done, what I have learned, and I hope these         newsletters offer you insight into what we love to do.


November offered me the opportunity to visit Rome with the Design Leadership Network, their annual summit takes place every November and it was so lovely to be back after a three-year hiatus. I was fortunate to take a few days personal vacation before and after the three-day summit to extend my trip. 

Having my travel plans curtailed for the last few years it was such a treat to be on European soil. To be immersed in the culture and all things design, and to reconnect with my industry friends both old and new in person.

Nothing is sweeter than time away, time to putter, to get lost without any real plan for the day. I often find that those days can result in the most fabulous finds and connections. Being on vacation also means that standing in a queue can be an opportunity to strike up a conversation with a stranger and that can result in the most delicious afternoon treat, as you will see later in the post.  

This Trastavere living room above belongs to Marella Caracciolo Chia. I had the utmost pleasure of visiting her apartment complete with lemon trees on the terrace with a small group of DLN members. 
As a writer and journalist – she has written for every shelter magazine you can name as well as authoring her own books. Her home fed my design soul on several levels. It was simplistic, curated and very inviting. Every space was put to good use, nothing was for show. The mix of furnishings were divine, that gorgeous blend of vintage, craft and custom. It was a treat for my eyes. 

For me, no trip to Rome is complete without a visit to the Pantheon. I have to admit to braving the queues and going here twice. Even among the throng of people (Rome was very busy) there is such peace to be found, but then that is what brilliant architecture and design can conjure. Even when surrounded by hundreds of people there can be stillness.

A serendipitous meeting (in a queue) led us to afternoon tea at Hotel Vilon.  This beautiful boutique hotel located on a very discreet street in the heart of Rome was simply stunning. Never have I made a pot of tea last so long, in fact, I had two pots on their gorgeous secluded terrace!! 
I will write a separate travel newsletter on Rome with all my findings and will post to the journal page on the website.  
Suffice to say I had a wonderful time and I can’t wait to go back to this city of light. 

Our Studio In Print

The thrill of seeing something you have created in print never gets old.  It’s especially meaningful when its your own home from home. 
In this month’s issue of House & Home (December) my studio is featured. The layout and the writing captures beautifully the feeling of the space and the photo above, makes me think back and giggle. 
When Virginia came to shoot, I thought it was just scouting shots, but she was shooting the final shots. We were in the thick of Covid and were all masked and neither me nor Reba had seen a hairdresser or groomer in months. I took of my mask for this shot and Virginia said, you’ll be fine once you get your lipstick on! Lipstick – I had not worn for at least a year and for sure had nothing in my handbag other than a lip balm. I’m just happy that my clothes and Reba’s olive cable knit sweater coordinated, but then being me, they generally do! 

Black Friday Sale

Our Studio Shop is having a Black Friday sale which as subscribers you my lovely readers get a full 24 hours priority shopping access too! 
Enter the discount code HAPPYDAYS20 to receive a 20% off your purchase at checkout. This sale applies to all items in the shop – cushions, blankets and tea towels! All items are small batch and have very limited quantities. RUN!!

A Couple Of Things Laundry

Laundry can seem like such an endless, thankless chore. Having a lovely space to take care of this task is certainly helpful but so are the tools we use! 
I was recently introduced to detergent sheets – I have to say I am a convert. No more lugging single use large plastic bottles, now my detergent comes in a recyclable paper envelope that takes up zero space in my compact laundry room. If you live in a condominium and have stacked appliances with little to no storage room, these will be a game changer. 
I am really liking Good Juju’s unscented sheets from The Detox Market.
I have a love hate relationship with Canadian Tire. It’s possibly the ugliest store in Canada, nothing is presented for aesthetic pleasure, items are stacked high and the lighting is harsh, but you can generally find everything, including a kitchen sink here. 
I prefer to steam my clothes than iron wherever possible and like to take a streamer with me when I travel. I’d take a pair less shoes in order to find space in my case, especially when travelling in Europe where irons are not a given item in the room. Finding a dual voltage one was a tricky find but lo and behold Canadian Tire had one and I have to say it’s fabulous for home and for travel. 

This steamer is from T-Fal and I love it, its not drippy and the tank holds enough water to get the job done. 
Whilst perusing the aisles I came across dryer balls – I know I am slow to the party, but if you haven’t tried them don’t hesitate. They ensure your laundry is dried quickly and efficiently. I got the rubber ones with the nodules and they ensure towels are dried and fluffy in about 60% of the regular dryer time. 

Well that is the content of my busy head for this month. For those celebrating American Thanksgiving I wish you a wonderful weekend with your families and loved ones. 

Wishing everyone a wonderful December!

Thank you for your continued support and reading. 

Happy Black Friday shopping.



Giving credit & thanks and some more musings while I am at it!

Lady in Green,  GGI Pinterest Board Fashion, Garlic & Herb Dripping oil, foodiewithfamily.com Mokum La Palma* James Dunlop Textiles,  Chez Dede exterior photo, Gillian Gillies Interiors Trastavere Living Room, Pantheon, Hotel Vilon, photos Gillian Gillies Interiors Gillian and a very hairy Reba, Studio photography Virginia MacdonaldStudio Shop Linens, photography Virginia Macdonald  Folded Linens, GGI Pinterest Board Laundry Rooms  T-fal Steamer, Canadian Tire

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