What I’m Reading
I used to only be able to read one book at a time, feeling that alternating between two or more would mean a less immersive experience. But nowadays I am always juggling between at least three-four books and audiobooks at the same time, mixing formats, genres, periods and more for convenience and to match my mood.
This week I am going back and forth between Dickens’ Old Curiosity Shop, for my classics fix, fascinating and making me realise I haven’t read enough Dickens and I need to go on a ‘binge’; Commissioning Contemporary Art, which was a rare and very timely find at the local car boot (fair/brocante) last weekend, quenching my ever-increasing thirst to know more about art and artists, curating and collecting, and The Dutch House, exquisitely read by Tom Hanks, which is proven hard to pause, while equally making me hope it will not end so soon.
There are a few other books on my nightstand which I haven’t touched in over a week, like H.E. Bates’ The Happy Countryman and some Shakespeare, but their time will come.
Dita von Teese’s House Tour
I can’t remember how I stumbled upon this tour of Dita von Tease’s home on Architectural Digest, but I love it because her complex persona, her passion for burlesque and all things vintage, as well as the quirky and a bit spooky, are all represented throughout her house, which feels like a personal museum. The type of house I would love to own one day, unmistakably my own, rather than just another random pretty space who could belong to anybody. The story behind the lipstick hanging by a gold chain in her living room is probably my absolute favorite find in this short (12mins) video, packed full of inspiration.
Kintsuge, the Art of Repair
Kintsugi (kin – golden & tsugi – joinery) is the Japanese technique of mending broken china and porcelain items using gold. But it doesn’t stop here, because there is a deeper meaning attached to this ancient technique which says that broken things can be even more beautiful and more precious than before, because of the damage they suffered, through the art of repair. Not only is this such a wise way to look at life in general, but it creates exquisite objects that tell a bigger story.
Inspired and in need to repair or throw away a small tea saucer I broke recently, I ordered a Kintsugi kit and had my first try at mending with glue infused with golden powder. As I expected, I enjoyed the DIY hands-on process and the result, although certainly far from perfect, was aesthetically pleasing. I am certainly encouraged to experiment again with the technique when the opportunity arises.
The Quirky Bag
Without going into the history of the bag now, at some other time, perhaps, this exquisite find is all about the enchanting follie of the quirky-crazy-creative, often impractical bags. Always fun and enchanting, in the shape of everyday objects, buildings, animals and more, heavily embellished or hyper-realistic, but without failure a statement! From high street to high end, from Haute Couture Maison to Etsy artisans, here is a quick glimpse at this niche, featuring names like Moschino, Kate Spade, Lulu Guinness and more.
I love an all-black outfit and I just think a bag like this would be the best accessory to add that bold touch of forget-me-not.
In this week’s lesson in frivolity, after preaching for splurging on fresh flowers and not delaying indulging in one’s finest objects and products in my first two letters, I wanted to offer you, in case you were not familiar with it, the expression-concept champagne problems, explained by the Urban Dictionary here. My own interpretation would be ‘good problems to have’, for example having to decide where to go on holiday next, what to order at a favourite restaurant, what gift to offer to a friend and so on.
I simply love the idea and often find myself thinking with a smile this is a champagne problem, which is just another (more fancy) name for counting one’s blessings and reasons to be excited and happy. One can’t do too much of that, I’m sure.
An Underwater Museum in Greece
Museums hold a deep attraction and fascination for me, for being places where knowledge, form art and culture to science and everything in between, is glorified and displayed, as it rightly should be, as humanity’s most valuable possession and resource.
The concepts of museum and exhibition have seen major transformations in recent times and I’ve seen and read about many innovations that have nourished my passion, but the idea of an underwater museum, although not new, had never crossed my mind and I am happy someone with an amazing vision has brought it to life and made it available to the broad public. Make sure to check this novel attraction off your list on your next trip to Greece!
This is one of those absolutely fantastic moments that always make me think how lucky that there was a camera capturing it! A harpist recording herself playing at the edge of a forest, non knowing that a deer is quietly and from a distance enjoying her music. I knew I had to share it the moment I went to check the other videos on the channel and discovered that one of the only five uploaded so far (including the deer ‘blooper’), was the harp cover of my husband’s and my wedding song – Lana del Ray – Video Games. Such an exquisite and personal delight!
If this letter has offered you a moment of inspiration, kindly forward it to others who might enjoy it too. And if you have been forwarded it, write back to let me know if you would like to receive the following ones.