Posts Tagged ‘garden’

Perk Up Your Summer!

Summer calls for parties. Any occasion will do. It doesn’t have to be big, it doesn’t have to involve lots of cooking and it doesn’t have to be expensive. For this one we just got a couple boxes of Perk!er treats -  Rocky Road bites with lots of chocolate, biscuits and marshmallows, ideal for sharing. They are gluten free but everybody absolutely loves them. You can, if you really want to indulge, use them for a chocolate fondue… Go crazy. Get out all those accessories stocked for nice occasions (and in the end, barely used). Go bright pink, then add turquoise and neon green. It’s July, it’s allowed, it works. Put fruit with the cakes and sprinkle with a rain of tiny flowers. Tea should be served iced (and possibly with sunglasses). Sometimes, just a little imagination is enough to make you feel on holiday in the garden…

Gluten and wheat free but full of happiness! #summerperk
Perk!er, gloriously gluten free
Tesco, Sainsbury’s & Asda

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Dalston Eastern Curve Garden

Created on an old railway line, the Dalston Eastern Curve Garden is a real peace haven. It’s surprisingly huge too. Half planted, half wild. A Stik mural. Calling to be explored. There is even an allotment on the side, complete with a shed AND a disco ball. Here and there are kids’ works of art. And toys – this is a family friendly place. You’ll find a café and they do bread and pizza in their clay oven each Sunday afternoon. So brilliant you’ll consider moving to this neighbourhood!

Dalston Eastern Curve Garden
Next to the Hackney Peace Carnival Mural
13 Dalston Lane
London E8 3DF

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The Edible Garden Show

Love gardening? Have an allotment? Then go to the Edible Garden show. First because it takes place in Alexandra Palace, such an extraordinary place, reminiscent of Kew Gardens’ Victorian glass structures, only bigger. Set on a hill, you’ll have London at your feet. But it’s also a great occasion to find deco inspiration, seed collections, solutions for small gardens, fabulous greenhouses, some foldable. And professionals to answer all your questions, from tools to bees via hens, slugs and climbing plants.

We particularly loved… The Maldon Salt cooking theatre, focusing on fresh herbs and seasonal crops you would have in your garden. Rachel Green was presenting this afternoon courgette pikelets, a lamb burger, a raspberry-chilli jam – all recipes will be on their site on Monday, check them out! But also… the seed balls by Meadow in my garden, wrapped in chilli (to deter insects) and clay. Just throw on the ground and wait for the blooms! They also do confettis and cards hiding wild flower seeds. The stylish planters by Veg Trug also caught our eyes, good enough to put inside. We also brought back some beetroot chutney by The Carved Angel (it made us hanker for a Ploughman’s, there was no other choice). And green accessories by Retro Heart and Home. Well worth having a look - Laura’s organics willow planters (they do hedgehog houses!) and Backdoorshoes, funky yet super-comfy garden shoes.

And so much more! Kids friendly (and the children can cuddle 4 day old chicks. Awwww).

The Edible Garden Show
Alexandra Palace

Alexandra Palace Way
London
N22 7AY

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Turin – Villa della Regina

The heart of Turin might be flat but cross the river Pô and you’ll find a more hilly landscape. A pleasant walk up the slope will take you to one of the many palazzi of the region (we loved Palazzo Madama if you had to choose only one), the Villa della Regina. Originally a royal vineyard, in the 17th century Cardinal Maurice decided it would be ideal for a summer residence too, a lovely way to escape the heat of the centre. And so the Savoy family lived there, duchesses, princesses, even Queens until the 19th century. The palace was recently renovated and has reopened to the public. Such an appeasing silence in the gardens with splendid views on Turin. The rooms inside are lusciously decorated, rich painting, gorgeous optical illusions that really get you wondering, chinoiseries… Before you leave, do have a look at the vineyard coming back to life. It now produces a cheerful Freisa di chieri that will make you want to dance!

Villa della Regina
Strada S. Margherita, 79
Turin

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Turin – Palazzo Madama

Such a fascinating building right in the very heart of Turin. Two completely different façades: On one side an austere, defensive castle, its original vocation. On the other a palace, splendid, impressive, complex architecture from the very moment you step in. It’s only in the 17th century that the building will earn its actual name. Under the Savoy family (or shall I say empire?), Christine of France and Maria Giovanna Battista dedicate it to arts. Today, it shelters the Antiques Museum and traces the history and rich culture of the city.

Such an interesting walk through time, each floor its atmosphere. The basement still shows the Roman foundations as well as intricate medieval stone friezes, a room filled with china (more like a treasure chest of magical finds, including more than a hundred veilleuse, showing Turin’s love for coffee). From there, you can wander to the moats, turned into the most adorable garden. makes you feel, like the princesses back in the day, to sit there all afternoon with a book…

Ground floor –  have a look at Middle Ages art. Rounder lines, draped robes, gazes that almost trace a story from a painting to another. First floor… Well I wish I could tell you about the collections but the truth is the baroque ceilings are so luxurious you walk from one room to another looking up, completely oblivious to the rest. So many illusions, decadent paintings, sculpture, gold, superposition! The second floor, pause on decorative arts with a special mention for the refined lace.

Bonus, go to the top of the tower to enjoy the skyline.

Palazzo Madama
Piazza Castello
10122 Torino

Pssst – get a Torino+Piemonte card to get free access to 160 sites, including Palazzo Madama and the Egyptian Museum.

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A week-end in London: July 05-08, 2012

Music Maestro! Liverpool street station gets all musical Thursday evening, the pianos are back on the streets and Friday evening at the V&A, jazz gets a lovely nigerian twist. Lovely free events to get your groove back… Scroll down to find more London week-ends ideas.
That’s art baby:

* Get a dose of Warhol at the Dulwich Picture Gallery.

* The old BBC offices in Marylebone become a secret garden and a pop-up theatre for the summer. Why not give it a try?

* For a little magic, go and see this art installation made entirely of kites.

* His names is Bond. James has his show at the Barbican.

Yummy time ahead:

* A new street food van, Speck Mobile, offers Austrian treats on the go.

* Fancy foraging but do not know where to start? Try this very clever bike tour.

Out of the ordinary:

* On Thursday evening, The Shard will illuminate the London sky with a laser web.

* The Old Vic Tunnels blooms into a fascinating underground garden.

* Match your nail varnish to your favourite London streets.

* Fan of the Future and Secret cinema? Well, welcome the new addition to their family, secret screenings in secret locations.

* Make a detour to enjoy the  Streatham Festival. Music, drama, theatre, fire themed dancing, comedy, creative workshops and even Ninja Knitters!

* H&M opens a sport pop-up shop at St Martin’s Courtyard. Time to get that credit card smoking.

* It is quite a party this week-end at Kensington Palace with lots of music and dances.

* Gentlemen too have their olympiad. Includes tweed, moustaches and hats.

Follow us on Facebook or Twitter for more ideas day after day…

A week-end in London: June 21-24, 2012

Behind stern buildings can often be found luxurious, soothing, green havens. At the Chiltern Street Studios, the tiny courtyard offers a transition between two worlds, details of another era, keys opening invisible doors, ivy like necklaces around vintage glass bottles. A welcoming chair, a bird singing cheerfully. Funny how a few square meters can be such an escape from the wild wide world outside. Do you have a secret garden in London too?

That’s art baby:
* After the elephants, the eggs… 75 phone booths have been redecorated and scattered around town. Happy hnting, until July 18!
* It is spring on the new facade of the Whitechapel Gallery – worth seeing.
* Yoko Ono opens her show at the Serpentine.

Take the little ones along:
* An architecture festival dedicated to kids? What a fabulous ideas. Look at the program for great workshops.
* Are you hunting the BT Artbox phonebooths around town? Now this one, with a knitted monster should really wow them.
* Cupcakes bloom in sweet bouquets at Mulberry Teacup – deliciously beautiful!

Music, Maestro!
* Musicals fan? Come sing and dance on Trafalgar Square this week-end.
* Exhibition Road has a fabulous musical day planned on Saturday -  check it out!
* Spitafields too celebrates music, with a street party on Saturday.
* Walk through Camden in the most musical way.

Out of the ordinary:
* On Thursday, watch Royal Ascot on the big screens at Canary Wharf.
* Kensington Palace will be open late next Friday for the most enchanting evening.
* Watch the sumos race.
* Fancy walking on the roofs of the O2?
* The Old Vic Tunnels turn into a holiday camp for adults this week-end – give it a try!

Wild garden, Quai Branly museum, Paris

Seeing exhibitions at the Quai Branly museum  has a price but did you know you can access the wild garden free?  On a sunny day, it it so enjoyable to rest there, oberve the birds and butterflies dancing from one branch to another, sit under the roses, see the metallic lace of the Eiffel Tower in the distance… Pause. Breathe in. Smile.

Quai Branly museum
37, quai Branly
75007 Paris

A week-end in London: Jan 06-08, 2012

Another page turned. Good resolutions taken in the warm cocoon of the festivities. Good resolutions shaken hard by the first day back to work, sometimes even lost on the way there, we’ll pick them up again on the way back home. Sigh, cross out 2011 and write carefully, 2012 each time we write a new date. Such a feeling that everything would be brand new and be slightly surprised that nothing has changed, still lost in the magic of December.

Well, sometimes, the best resolution is to get lots of sparkles of your own, those that will make your eyes and your nails glitter, hypnotise the gaze. What a better way to shine through the day, even when wind and rain threaten to take your umbrella away?

Cheers!
* Drink to the spirit of our beloved Dickens.

Smile:
* Nothing stops a taxi driver. Not even the cold.
* Do you quidditch?
* Art beats the winter blues in the Tube.
* Chips with that?

Yummy time ahead:
* Hélène Darroze will be offering her delicious Galette des Rois, the traditional French cake eaten to celebrate Epiphany, as part of the Connaught‘s afternoon tea. It will also be for sale at the hotel for people to take back home. Give them a call!
* Have a bite at the it/eat address of the moment, the Delaunay.
* Deal. Remember The Rosendale and The Avalon -  delicious (and kids-friendly) gastropubs. You can eat there for half the usual price till the end of the month!

Out of the ordinary:
* Have a closer look at the Olympic Games area.
* Fall in love with short films.
* Disco, karaoke, bowling and garden gnomes. We’re not joking.
* Dream in a London garden.

A week-end in London: Nov 11-13, 2011

Well if it is going to get all chilly and wet, I might as well go winter cocktails hunting. You’ll find a few celebration ideas here. Mulled ciders, toddies, buttered rums, here I come!



That’s art, baby:
* Go and see Leo. Not the one from Titanic, the other one.
* Hogarth’s house (the famous painter) is opening again to the public. Even better, entrance is free.
* Discover little secrets of your daily household objects…
* You will be in awe of this photo exhibition at the Royal Festival Hall.
* Do you have a lucky charm? There is a whole collection here.

The music touch:
* Dance, sing, play along the Thames with the Merger festival.
* Jazz it up!

A little fresh air:
* Street lights are pretty much the same from one year to another these days. Yet Carnaby street‘s always are particularly colourful. They’re switched on Nov 10. Oh, and Covent Garden has digitalised the Nativity scene. Not to be missed!
* Keep fighting and garden.

Kids-friendly:
* See (real) reindeers at Covent Garden.

Yummy time:
* Falling for cupcakes? Meet Lola’s founders Thursday at Selfridge’s.
* The Make Lounge offers lovely workshops – this week-end it is all about chutneys and jams.
* To decorate your cakes as if they were works of art, have a look here.
* Oh, a new supperclub, Spanish style

Out of the ordinary:
* Fancy being  foxy? I mean, really?
* Express yourself and get a free haircut.
* Less known but still worth a detour: the mayor’s parade.

Psst, try your luck, we have two competitions on the blog at the moment:
*5 Time Out Eating and drinking guides for foodies.
* You live in the UK? Great – you might win £400 worth of flights to Europe.

London

This Week End in London

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