Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Early birthday present from T2

T2 is one of the only 'high street' shops that I totally love. (The other is Kikki-K, but that's a whole other blog post...)  The concept is spot on. They adore tea, and everything to do with it. I also think their range of teas and accoutrement is fabulous.

They treat teapots, cups and saucers like fashion shops - they change them all the time, and are always linked by a theme. It seemed to be all about decadence when we were in there today, and my local store had a whole wall of vintage teacups too.

My lovely MIL treated me to an early birthday present, T2 loose leaf Earl Grey, a black square tin (I already have a collection of these and love them!), a honey spoon and 2 tea scoops. At T2 they also let you have free samples - we both chose Creme brulee. So delicious, and perfect as a black tea.

Thank you for my bday present xx

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Do you thermomix?

I'm a gadget queen. Ok, I am, but only in the kitchen. I love having every little bit and piece that I need for making the perfect pasta, madeleines, cupcakes, stews, stocks... the list goes on.

When I started watching youtube videos about the Kitchenaid and saw how beautiful it was, I just had to have one. So impatient too, I could only wait so long after I had ummed and arrggged about the perfect colour. Majestic Yellow. Which of course was being discontinued and gave me even more reason to buy once I found one. Think I got the last one in the country in David Jones in Bondi Junction. I just had to drive across and have a look, and then it was love at first sight.  I continue to adore it, but have to admit that it is hard to justify, on health grounds(!), making cupcakes every week. Still, it gets some use.

More recently I've heard lots of chat about the Thermomix. They do everything.  Chop, beat, mix, whip, grind, knead, mince, grate, juice, blend, heat, stir, steam and weigh! I was told upfront how expensive they are which just made me shrug. I can't imagine my husband would be very understanding about that, even though I think the multi-use factor probably does justify the cost. 

Then last weekend I went to the Good Food & Wine festival and popped to their stall.  The demonstration was fabulous, and so was the sample (some sort of gluten free chocolate almond dessert with orange custard). I'm so almost sold. I would love to host a demo at my place, but I realise that I probably couldn't say no after that...

$1939.... big ouch!

Do you own a Thermomix?

Monday, July 2, 2012

my kitchen

My beloved kitchen!

I can hardly begin to tell you quite how wonderful it is to design your own space. Making sure there is space for everything. Choosing the width of your drawers, the finishes, the fittings, the appliances. My heart flutters a little when I get home and see my dream kitchen is still there, waiting for me.

I spent a long time looking at kitchens before deciding what I wanted. It's such a big decision, and not something that I wanted to have an ounce of regret for. Every since we bought our place, almost three years ago now, I've been flicking through Real Living and Australian House & Garden magazine for ideas.   Anything mentioning kitchen special on the front cover, I was totally there.  Then there were the posts about other kitchen makeovers - I love Retro Mummy's kitchen so much, but the Hampton's style did not feel the right style of kitchen for our 1960s house.

We ended up deciding on very simple polyurethane handle-less cupboards and drawers in white. I love white white white, and wanted to use other colours as accents. It's a really modern feeling kitchen, but I knew that if we ever decided to sell that the place wouldn't offend either.  It's got oodles of drawers for easy access. They really have changed the way I cook and prepare.  I spend so much less time looking for things, and reaching into dark spaces that I can't see into!

Another pre-requisite was the biggest possible kitchen island. And I got it. It's a dream size, and we spend so much time sitting and eating around it. I no longer have to cook away in a tiny little 3m x 3m kitchen space with no company, everything is open. I think the island itself is 1.6m x 1.8m!  I can see my little girl drawing, doing play dough and reading, because she can sit and do that on the other side of the island to me.

And then to space. Our kitchen designer told us that he would easily be able to trump the space of our last kitchen. I'm so happy with it. We have hidden storage under our island, a huge pantry with pull out drawers to chest height, wine racks, open shelving and even a cupboard for my ever-growing cook book collection.  I don't have to stack items upon items upon items to get them in the cupboard. Love it!

The finishing touch was the splash back. If we had designed this a few years ago I'm sure I would have chosen a glass splash back. But I've seen so many over the last little while and really wanted to go with tiles. I love the subway tile look too, but I got a lot of opposition to that. So, inspired by Martha Stewart we chose dark blue penny tiles. I was so nervous that I would hate them, as they are such an important feature of the kitchen. But I adore them, they totally make the space, and bring the contrast to the white that it so needed.

Have you ever designed a kitchen? And what do you love or hate about your current space?