Monochromatic Moments in Time

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Katharine Morling is a UK ceramicist, and a rather fabulous one at that!  The images above are of her exquisite sculptures of familiar objects from times now past. Formed from milky white porcelain, the monochromatic hand drawn detail is fired without glaze to accentuate the 'drawn' quality and detail of the work.

The artist herself says of her craft ...  "I see my work as 3 dimensional drawings. Each piece, on the surface, an inanimate object, has been given layers of emotion and embedded with stories, which are open for interpretation in the viewer’s mind. When put together, the pieces combine to make a tableau staging the still lives of everyday objects. The life size pieces and the unexpectedness of the scale create a slightly surreal experience."  



Scented Scenes


The smell of Spring is wafting through Harrods. White peonies adorn the entrances to striking window displays that celebrate the scents of Prada to Escada. As a rather fitting brand association for this visual feast of all things perfumed and floral, Harrods will unveil their inaugural  ‘Fragrance Garden’ at the Chelsea Flower Show which opens 19 May 2015.

Images via  #PopUpFlowers  


Harrods VM London

Ceramics in Season

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Ooh I wish I was in London this week for the inaugural London Craft Week.  A brand new, week-long, festival of activities and exhibitions to celebrate all sorts of craftsmanship across the capital. Galleries and artisan workshops in central locations such as Bloomsbury and Mayfair, which have been hubs of industry and craftsmanship for many centuries, are hosting events to showcase both ancient skills and exciting new talent.

I am in awe of the beautiful work by Israeli artist, Zemer Peled.  These stunning blooms are formed from ceramic shards. Her work is showing at the Saatchi Gallery for COLLECT 2015 (The International Art Fair for Contemporary Objects). If you live in London, get your skates on as it closes 11 May.

Images via


Craft Other London

Cheaney’s Craft is Well Composed


London’s Jermyn Street is known for many things, but most of all for being home to some of the finest tailors, shirtmakers and leather goods suppliers since the 17th century.

Cheaney’s shoes are a rare thing; wholly made in England from start to finish. It’s a traditional manufacturing industry of which there are very few left, and many of its team of 140 craftspeople have long held family connections with the business. But while so many heritage brands play on the old-world feel of craftsmanship and dusty Dickensian workshops, Cheaney enlisted contemporary design consultants Checkland & Kindleysides to take a more honest approach in their concept for the store.

The interior doesn’t romanticise the shoemaking process with fake nostalgia, instead it mimics the real-life factory of today. From the corian pegboard to the 1:100 scale model of the factory, the entire store is an exploded and layered display of how Cheaney & Sons make their shoes in a true-to-life, polished up, modern and contemporary setting. The design of the new store feels fresh and energising. It tells a fascinating story of how the shoes are made without being patronising. The intelligent (never gimmicky) use of materials and a lightness of touch in the design speaks to a more youthful, maverick clientele without alienating Cheaney’s traditional and longstanding customers.

When Cheaney approached the designers, they talked proudly about the company’s history. “But more than this, it was evident that the shoes and boots they make have a broad appeal across all age groups and tastes, appealing to people who love quality and craft but also individual expression and enduring style,” says Checkland Kindleysides co-founder Jeff Kindleysides.

“We felt we needed to create a store that departed from the perception of handmade English shoes being trapped in a place that was heritage, tradition and bygone, expressed in shops of dark wood and brown leather. We thought that for Cheaney to stand out in Jermyn Street our design should be light and be centred on the message of 'Made in England'. This for us is where the premium lies. This is why we built a store that says 'we still make our shoes in our factory in Northamptonshire'.”

The store is divided into two distinct areas. The front half – with its white painted brickwork, panelled ceiling and metal framed screens with reeded glass – echoes the factory itself. The rear is designed to feel like the boardroom area, with portraits of the founders Joseph Cheaney and his son Arthur removed from their gilded frames and hung in Perspex boxes, for a touch of Tate Modern cool.

This is where customers are served and fitted with their shoes, and the back wall provides additional displays of shoes and tools, leather sample finishes and details. Next to this, Joseph Cheaney’s most premium range of shoes is presented in a glazed cabinet behind locked sliding walnut-framed doors.

Describing the wall of old wooden shoe lasts right at the back of the store, Kindleysides says they wanted to celebrate this iconic symbol of the shoe maker's trade. “It immediately strips the story back to the starting point. From the outset we wanted to feature the lasts, each pair is an original from Cheaney's archive and each has a story to tell. They're all date stamped and they say a lot about the company's lineage as do the portraits of the company's founders.”

They say that to really know someone you have to walk a mile in their shoes. Checkland Kindelysides have done that for us with Joseph Cheaney & Sons, but their efforts are so successful they’ve created a store that makes you want to do the journey for yourself.

Words and pictures via The Telegraph, UK.  Author, Henrietta Thompson.

Article reference:

Cheaney & Sons, 21b Jermyn Street, London, SW1Y 6HP

Best Foot Forward for this First Flagship


The iconic British gumboot brand, Hunter, has unveiled an impressive new flagship store on London's Regent Street. I really want to jump on a plane and buy a new pair of Wellingtons after perusing these pictures and that red rubber shoulder bag is definitely going on my London Lust List!

Designed by Checkland & Kindleyside, they described the store as 'a journey designed to capture the senses and a spirit of adventure, it’s a playful and very Hunter take on the outdoors. It’s surreal, graphic and at times dreamlike, it’s a fantasy take on reality executed in a uniquely Hunter way. The innovative design takes iconic references from the British countryside and reappropriates them for the urban setting. The store creates a new take on rural architecture and the outdoors, redefined in the spirit of Hunter. Spanning three floors, the store provides the opportunity to create three distinct experiences for visitors; each one reflecting Hunter's pioneering spirit as a brand that 'takes the path that others dare not take'.  

From Hunter's Creative Director ..."The Regent Street flagship is the first opportunity for the Hunter customer to enter the home of this iconic British brand. This ambitious new store concept starts to clearly deliver a retail experience that represents the brand’s exciting new vision and future. It was important to establish our first retail presence on London’s Regent Street, one of the most iconic shopping streets in the world, staying true to our heritage as a British brand."  

Photos and words via  #hunterregentstreet

Hunter Fashion London

British Botanicals

pod_chelsea 2013_retail Australia took Gold at this year's Chelsea Flower Show. I love the way London retailers jump on board, from a VM perspective, when this Botanical 'Best in Show' comes to town. pics via CFS.

VM London

Pomp my Handbag

Love the look of Anya Hindmarsh SS13 launch at Kings Rd store. via Anya H's FB page.

VM Fashion London

‘Wouldn’t it be love-er-ly’ if it was here and not there!

Chanel beauty stores appear to be making in roads into Australian suburbs. Opening this Thursday at Westfield Carindale (Brisbane), at the new look Highpoint (Melbourne) next week,  and already well established at the likes of Chadstone and Westfield Bondi Junction, if you can't afford the fashion you can certainly pop a lippy and nail polish in your purse without breaking the bank.  In July 2012, CHANEL launched a unique pop-up beauty boutique in the heart of London’s Covent Garden. In 2013, now a permanent resident, CHANEL celebrates their new perfumery through the scent of flowers (seemingly the perfect location if you recall Audrey Hepburn as the flower seller, Eliza Doolittle, in My Fair Lady).

The Brits celebrate Mothers Day in March (down here in Oz we do it in May). If you happen to be in London next weekend, from Friday 8th March to Sunday 10th March, the CHANEL flower stall will be selling bouquets of blooms used in the House’s most celebrated fragrances. A hand written message by a calligrapher on a Camellia embossed card, with a choice of quotes from Mademoiselle Chanel, as part of the deal. Very nice indeed.   via

Chanel VM London

Liberty Takes Bronze

Shiny bronze cardboard cut into strips and stapled together ... simple but very effective VM when done on a grand scale. Liberty's Christmas is definitely a winner on the 'low production cost' podium in London's Olympic year.

Christmas VM Other London

Seasonally Social on Oxford Street

Turning on London's Christmas Lights makes international news. This year Robbie Williams did the honours (as our Kylie has done in the past). I don't recall seeing a sponsored campaign before, but this year its all about Marmite (you know, the black stuff like Vegemite that you put on your toast ... and as a general rule you either love it or hate it). Given it is dark by about 3.30pm in the afternoon, lights make sense in this part of the world. The timing sequence goes something like this ... reindeers headbutting then smashing a jar of Marmite gold, elves fighting over Marmite toast and fairies fluttering their wings to deliver hot toast (ha ha, it was minus 2 degrees when I snapped these pics!).

In a challenging retail climate, and with every budget under pressure, I am not surprised to see this event is now a high profile brand opportunity ... the interesting thing is that everybody can be involved in a very public way. You can get festive on Facebook or pop into the Marmite booth near Bond St tube to see your smiling dial shining down over Oxford Street (love it) or all manner of distasteful expressions (hate it). Personally I'm a Vegemite girl.

If the campaign doesn't impress you, then just take a look at the number of people out and about - it was shoulder to shoulder and survival of the fittest this weekend, which makes Christmas shopping in Australia seem very relaxed indeed.