Monthly Archives: August 2012


Sitting on an early train to Glasgow (so early the commuters haven’t even woken yet) to catch a lunchtime ferry to Mull. All so I can see the lovely Em before she goes off to sea again in the morn.

Thankfully I have armed myself with a stack of design mags, coffee and a salt beef bagel from Bagel Factory. Oh the joy I felt when I realised it was open at the ungodly hour of 6:50 am!

So now, safely aboard the 7:15 am train to Queen Street I am flipping through a copy of O, the Oprah magazine. Just like I’m addicted to design and interiors mags, I’m addicted to Ms Oprah’s O. Which is odd, because I don’t believe I’ve ever watched an episode of her show.

Now I will unashamedly steal an idea directly from those glossy pages. This month is the makeover issue, and what I love is this is an all encompassing lifestyle makeover we’re talking here. Not just an outfit change and a new fringe! So without further ado, let’s talk the power of transformation!

My all time favourite makeover is…a definite tie between the lovely Mr Cat and Miss Kat, who have over the past few years become the people I think they were meant up be.

Mr Cat has seen some pretty harrowing things in his life, including some serious health issues. The guy is a fricking inspiration, he could live off disability benefits the rest of his life (and I know many would…and do) but he chose to better his life by going back to work. And when I say he chose, I truly mean this was a choice for him. And though he’s come to another high stress time in his life, with a sprog on the way, I do honestly believe that he will make of it exactly what is needed. He’s going to be a phenomenal dad, and his kid will have some aunties and uncles who are going to adore it to pieces.

Miss Kat is another great friend I’ve had for years, who I’ve known through various stages in her life. I don’t think she’ll mind me saying when I first met her she was into her partying big time, the girl loves to have a good time and she’s always a fabulous partner in crime!

Over the past couple of years Miss Kat has come through a lot, saying goodbye to a close friend and a sibling in the space of a year, and finding out she was going to be a mum. When all this was happening we were all so worried for her and her wee one, but she’s come through it the other side with a beautiful baby girl, whose first birthday I am so happy to be a part of this weekend!

So to Mr Cat and Miss Kat, you are a pair of fabulous people and I’m so glad to have been here to see you become the amazing folk you have become today! So much love! X

I’d love to transform…my house from its current cluttered, dishevelled state to the vision I have for the space.

Over the years my tastes have changed in interiors, from a Scandinavian aesthetic I’d envisaged for my first house (laughable as it was a student flat filled with far too much stuff – I must be a borderline hoarder) to the french country house look I’d dreamt of when I first moved to the Southside…the Canadian hunting lodge I wanted complete with moose antler embellished furniture, which segued ‘seamlessly’ into a textbook Parisian apartment. Which began to look more and more like a funky industrial loft in Toronto’s Distillery District.

I’ve never been one to let current trends in interiors dictate my tastes, but somehow I’ve nearly always found myself enamoured of a certain style or aesthetic months before it because splashed over every home and design mag (as well as in every trendy bar, boutique hotel and post modernist restaurant).

My current love is for an industrial aesthetic, stripped back and reusing or materials originally intended for another purpose. This is Eco design folks, repurposing the products of industry to create something beautiful.

Case in point the stunning ‘Dear Ingo’ light by Moooi.


I was first introduced to this light by a good friend who is as besotted with lighting as I am. Created from 16 anglepoise-inspired lights as spiders legs extending at any number of angles and combinations, forming a jaw-droppingly stunning post modern industrial style chandelier from what was essentially task lighting inspired by vehicle design concepts.

The designer of the original anglepoise was not a lighting designer, but a designer of cars. I’ve mentioned beforehere how much I admire an architect’s use of form, structure and engineering in other fields of design. This is another case of inter-disciplinary design and the application of knowledge between what may be considered to be vastly differing fields.

I fell in love at first sight with my beloved spider light, as I call the Dear Ingo. I was actually rendered speechless, which is rare. I’ve been a fan of Moooi designs for years, since I first saw their Rabbit light. It isn’t a new design, but not a ubiquitous one like the Arco or the Tolomeo. Seems industrial design applied to furniture and lighting is coming into its own just now, just on schedule…

But I’d never change…my family, my friends and my animaux (especially my pampered pooch). I’ve known a lot of my friends since my university days, and some come back into my life after years apart and it feels as if only weeks have passed.

The one thing that makes everything better is…my beautiful pooch, Rhod Dhog. We’ve been through tough times together and I would do anything for the wee guy.


Nature’s most magical transformation is…autumn! My favourite time of year growing up was mid September, when Indian summer rolled through Toronto, the air was still warm but with a bit of bite and crispness, and the leaves turned from lush green to beautiful reds, oranges and gold…

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Arty nonsense on Lothian Road

I was cycling by and noticed this lady painting the Sapphire Room facade.


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