Monday, June 30, 2008
Saturday, June 28, 2008
That apart, the hotel is conveniently located to the Metro, but unfortunately perhaps too conveniently; when the trains that run underneath the building are moving, and if you're located on a lower floor, (there are only about 9 stories), you do feel the vibration. Still, I suppose that's one way of being sure that the "earth moved" in this, one of the most romantic cities in the world.
Friday, June 27, 2008
The potential importance of the picture was assessed by an on-the-ball employee at the charity, who thought it was worth more than a possible sale tag of USD2. Perhaps that employee should consider another, more lucrative line of work.
But improving fundraising is also very gratifying too.
Thursday, June 26, 2008
The King of Thailand who is beloved by all Thais, was born on a Monday, and out of love and respect for him many Thais wear yellow on a Monday, a habit that took on huge momentum in 2006 when King Bhumipol's 60th Anniversary of Accession to the throne made him the world's longest reigning monarch.
The momentum was given a further fillip last year, when the King celebrated his 80th birthday. The figure in the picture is making the traditional Thai form of respectful greeting, with the hands pressed together, the wai.
The exhibition "Fidelity not Fealty" runs from 3 July until 28 August 2008, at H Gallery and explores themes of loyalty and questioning of processes that make people subservient in life and art-mediums. Sutee's work draws on themes of happiness related to uniformity in society. Picture: Sutee Kunavichayanont, "Monday," 2008, ink jet print, 50 x 70 cm.
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
Folding screens, like many other things were invented in China too (probably in the fourth century BC), and these are three good examples of those that are made by one of my favourite manufacturers here in Thailand.
Their usage is versatile - for decoration, as a panel against the wall; to divide an area, and to provide privacy between one area and its neighbour. They can also be used to draw attention to them upon initial visual contact, rather than the areas around them, (perhaps an attribute many of us would wish for ourselves).
As well as their versatility, the design possibilities are also limitless, and they cross cultural barriers too.
Altogether a "must have" in an interior designer's box of tricks.
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Light diffusion in this way, (which is also achieved by using card shades), is a good alternative to the more obvious control that one can attain through dimmers. I do recall a recent interview with that doyenne of interior design, Sir Terrence Conran, who expressed joy at the invention of the dimmer, and wonder at how we ever lived without them; well something like that anyway.
The other obvious alternative is of course using lower wattage in the bulbs; I have dimmers for overhead halogens, which at the appropriate shade of dimness, (and I don't mean stupidity), allow for a very effective light source to pick up the shiny bits in the sitting room, such as the silver. For the other lighting - table lamps, I use a low wattage of only 25 watts - with the up lighters I use directional halogen bulbs with 50 watts). Apart from the mood lighting this allows, it is also Eco-friendly. (What, what? as George the Third was alleged to say with alacrity.)
So Brownie points all round then.
Monday, June 23, 2008
These are two variations of salts I use for the dinner table. The top pair are made by William Yeoward, and the bottom quartet are George III silver. With the latter, two can double as mustard pots. Obviously the glass pieces don't require liners, and with the silver ones you have to remember to remove the salt after usage. You can imagine which ones get used more.
As much as anything these are decorative, as I hope my tasting skills don't require guests to add salt to the food that I serve. I even know some fanatical cooks who refuse to put salt and pepper out, in the belief that they have administered the correct level. But there is no accounting for taste; and you can take that anyway you want.
Did you know that salt is the only rock eaten by humans? Before the availability of artificial refrigeration, salt was used to preserve food, especially meat. Not surprisingly it is believed that the Chinese were the first to harvest salt as far back as 6000 BC, in Shanxi Province.
Now, with this information, I know your Monday is complete.
Saturday, June 21, 2008
Friday, June 20, 2008
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Currently we have two wing chairs and footstools in which to sit to watch the TV, but I'm contemplating something even more laid back as a replacement and am veering towards one of these two beauties, the top from Donghia, and the bottom from Meridiani, both of whom have outlets here.
As you can see, I favour the idea of totally lounging about in true couch potato style, when it comes to watching the idiot's lantern, which is why it's never located in the more formal sitting room. Another reason is that I find it quite intrusive if that infernal machine is on when guests are visiting. (I'm becoming a fully paid up member of the grumpy old men club.)
I have to add very rapidly that I would never ever contemplate a La-Z-Boy, ("Comfort. It's what we do"), although I'm sure their popularity is indeed predicated on their comfort. But as we all know, aesthetics are paramount. Oh, and then one's reputation!
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
I never thought I was a fan of Art Deco, but I find myself being drawn to artifacts from that period, especially the bronzes depicting animals, and panthers particularly. These are some of the pieces from the Frenchcab Gallery, and I could happily find space for at least one. They are fairly large, the bottom one with its plinth is 17 inches long, but entirely suitable atop a chimneypiece, (we don't have many here), or a console table.
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
Monday, June 16, 2008
Saturday, June 14, 2008
Friday, June 13, 2008
Thursday, June 12, 2008
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
With this frame, of another picture bought at auction, I was keen to re-use that in which it had been originally framed. There was some damage to the wood, with chipping, and some water marking and scratches, and unfortunately it was not possible to patch it, so the frame maker re-gilded the entire frame. As the resources to do this are apparently limited here, there is a colour variation from the original, but I am actually quite pleased with the result. Luckily too a subsequent estimate has provided the incentive I need to buy these as investments. But more importantly, I like them in their own right and the valuation is just an added bonus.
Monday, June 9, 2008
Continuing yesterday's theme on presentation, the new frame for this picture bought at auction dramatically alters the importance of the picture. Actually, this is entirely appropriate, as it turns out to have been a real bargain, and worth considerably more than was paid for it. This factor is probably enhanced by the subject matter, about which I have written recently, (vide E is for everything); E is King Edward VIII, the figure to the right of the priest in his white shift, handing out the Royal Maundy to a member of the public; rare because it was the only Royal Maundy service at which he officiated, in his brief 11 month reign during 1936, the year in which Britain had three kings, (but no birth of Christ!)
Sunday, June 8, 2008
Saturday, June 7, 2008
As the pattern of our lives change, kitchens have become social gathering areas as great as the so-called "living rooms" of old. To reflect this we altered the layout and removed walls to eliminate the maid's room and the laundry room to create a spacious, user-friendly and pretty room, which seems to be the first port of call for visitors to our apartment. With close proximity to essentials like drink, ice and snacks, sometimes this remains the main gathering area throughout the evening. Previous posts have shown orchids in large glazed pots to add to the prettifying process. Pictures help too, (the two shown in the first photo are posters of works by the Scottish Colourist F C B Cadell, of his flat in New Town Edinburgh; the remaining two, by the drinks tray are rare "Spy" cartoons, of Edward VII and George V ). It is also used most days as a functioning kitchen where cooking actually takes place too!
Friday, June 6, 2008
As in, for the man who has everything. These are two items from the estate of the late Duke of Windsor, (the former King Edward VIII), which will be auctioned at Bonhams later on this month. Whilst their intrinsic value is not high, their association with the Windsors is guaranteed to produce high figures, as occurred in the major sale of the bulk of the estate after the death of the duchess in 1986.
Thursday, June 5, 2008
This magnificent Adam designed and classically Georgian house in the Palladian style has been saved with its entire contents by a trust established by Prince Charles, (The Duke of Rothesay, which is the title he uses when in Scotland). It is like an C18th time capsule, full of the best furniture of the period, including that of Thomas Chippendale. The contents have remained almost unchanged for 250 years, and most if not all of it was especially commissioned for the house by the Earl of Dumfries in the 1750s. As an example of the furniture, a breakfront Chippendale bookcase, which cost GBP47 in 1759, was expected to fetch GBP2-4 million at auction. Depicted here is one of eight George II four poster beds, and the restoration of the Adam ceilings. The house and its contents are considered a world class product of the Scottish Enlightenment, and will be opened to the public on 7 June.