Celebrating My Life of Living Well. Domestic and Otherwise.

Eat. Drink. Shop. Travel. Look. Learn.Experience.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Flame Tree at Amorsolo Open House

“Flame Tree at Amorsolo invites you to a fun Summer Soiree gathering of unique artwork, delectable goodies for the most discerning palette, handmade crafts and wearable art, the best products and styling tips to keep your tresses in tip-top shape during the hot days of summer, and much more!”

If you have time on 1 June, please do drop by from 8am-4pm. I’ll be there with my French inspired rolling market basket and plate of goodies to share! Coffee, Tea and other refreshments will also be served.

I hope to see you!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

To Market, To Market!

I'll let you in on a little secret. I am dazzled by all things French.

A few years back I became particularly obsessed with a French market basket.
A rolling "panier" for weekend sojourns to my local "marche".
Yes, my Francophilia can be very annoying!

For weeks I romanticized . Hundreds of images filled my head of me and my environment conscious style of marketing . Gathering my fruit , vegetables, flowers and other Farmer's market goodies with such European Flair !

So very, very Continental Chic. I had to have one!

I searched on line and while I found a few suppliers in both the United States and France, I could not find a realistic and cost efficient way to ship it to this part of the world. Here are some of the items I found:

From mothology,

And finally, from the French Basketeer. This rolling cart is without a doubt absolutely gorgeous and judging from the way it looks, extremely well made. I loved everything about the basket except the $360 price tag! I understand it is made in Burgundy from a 3rd generation basketry and caning family. The quality , authenticity and detail is sublime.

But unfortunately it was over what I would be willing to pay for my rolling Panier. Not to mention, if I had bought it and attempted to send it to Manila, the basket would have cost over $500! So again, a no go and the basket idea was shelved.

Fast forward to early 2010.
One afternoon as I was reading through my daily dose of blogs. I came across a giveaway at Cote de Texas. To my delight, they were running a giveaway of a French Basketeer rolling basket. I rationalized that if I won the basket, then I could justify the shipping cost. I entered the contest but alas, did not emerge as the lucky winner.

It was time to take matters into my own hands ! Afterall, the Philippines exports millions of dollars worth of baskets each year, there had to be a local manufacturer that could make me one.

Turns out I was right!

Last April I chance upon a large and very well established basket company at the Manila F.A.M.E exhibit. They work with many local and indigenous fibers and with different types of leather. Their young creative director fresh from spending a few years studying in London and coincidentally third generation basket maker in the Philippines, was very eager to take on my project. I sent a few reference photos and then gave her carte blanche to play with the design .

She added a few bells and whistles.
A recycled leather handle,

and a fully detachable denim liner, also trimmed with the same leather .

And here it is! Isn't it fantastic?

Drop me a note if you would like to order one. I am trying to make a minimum and need a few more interested parties. I am selling them for US$100 and they will be ready for pickup right here in Manila by August. They are not cheap but I believe they are a wonderful value.
Believe me, I have certainly done my homework and shopped around!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


To say I am busy would be an understatement. Thirteen days until we move and our house is no where near to being livable. My husband is stressed and he is never stressed . And while there are probably 100 other things I could be doing right now, I am determined on publishing this post.

When I need to calm down and unwind I read magazines. Not books, magazines. Lots of them. These days, with the million and one things going on, I feel as if I could spend the whole day browsing through my various shelter publications. One of my favorite things to stumble upon while skimming through the pages are tablescapes . The stillness of someone else's life in progress is something I find to be extremely relaxing, soothing even.

So please join me today in my quest for calm.

A composition created by a curatorial eye.

A space that is layered and complex,

that only reveals itself slowly over time.

Organized , comforting and decorative clutter,

reflective of the inhabitants consuming passions.

A beguiling mix of the modern and the familiar.

A room filled with vernacular furniture and objects that
were once carefully edited but now lay casually forgotten.

A space that projects soul , because you can't buy ambience.

You can only hope to create it over time.

A vignette with a sense of calmness and quiet elegance,

in every room,

every space,

both inside ,

and outdoors!