Friday, June 29, 2007

"Make tea not war" - Monty Python

I made a damn fine batch of scones today, and I just had to share the recipe!! While I do hope the sun comes out for this weekend, I must admit that sitting at home eating scones and drinking tea whilst reading a good novel (Vanity Fair for me at the moment) sounds like a pretty good idea.
To further motivate you... tea cups!!

I love the bright colors and mod feel of these handmade little mugs. They are available on Etsy, and come in a variety of colors.

I also can't get enough of the tea cups at Anthropologie...

And it really doesn't get any cuter than these little cups and tea pots available online at Little Flower Designs.

Remember to get a second cup to share with a friend!

A Serendipitous Find

"Serendipity is putting a quarter in the gumball machine and having three pieces come rattling out instead of one—all red." - Peter H. Rynolds

I have watched the movie Serendipity about 100 times, and I love the scene where Kate Beckinsale's character runs through the streets of Manhattan with her weekend bag slung over her shoulder, searching frantically for her lover man (I mean who wouldn't run?! It's John Cusack!). I've always been especially struck by the versatile simplicity of her tote. And this lovely bag by Kale reminds me of a great paired-down version of the bag from the movie. You may have noticed their product in recent issues of Elle and Lucky, and the bags are avaliable at

Have a Happy weekend!!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

When Luxury Becomes Necessity

I admit it; I’m a sucker for great packaging. I’ll buy (or at least think of buying!) the worlds most useless things because the container beckons me. For example, the Paul&Joe lipstick I bought at Anthropologie, which is like every other red lipstick I own except for the fact that the tube came in such a delicious floral print, or that extra tin of chocolate covered Altoids

that I’ll never use, but that matches my purse. This happens so often, in fact, that I have begun to distrust cute packaging altogether and have fallen back on the starkly practical.

However, in skimming through the pages of my boyfriends GQ magazine on a recent flight, I happened upon a company whose packaging lured me in to such an extent that I was forced to make a purchase. The gold- embossed crests, and thick cream colored boxes all give off the aura of an old-world apothecary that cooks up cures in the ally of some Italian village that one on can remember the name of . And it’s no ruse, for that is in fact exactly what the Dominican friars of Santa Maria Novella (and later the family of Cesare Augusto Stefani) have been doing since 1612. Their product line includes everything from Almond foot cream (said to aid in circulation) to olive oil (which I imagine tastes something like heaven in a bottle).

My purchase was a simple one. A tin of lozenges from the herbalist’s shop said to calm motion sickness. The box my humble purchase arrived in would have been sufficient for a basketball, so carefully was it wrapped. And the whole package carried with it a subtle smell of lilies which had diffused pleasantly throughout my apartment by the time I dug through the packing paper to find my lozenges. It was such a great experience that I suddenly find myself in great need of soaps and perfumes, and am very excited to make my next purchase.

By the way, the lozenges are fantastic. No lie.

You can purchase any of Santa Maria Novellas products online at

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Are we on?

Check, check... hey soundman, could we get a little more awesome on this blog?