Peonies are one of my favorite flowers. They bloom big, come in stunning shades of pink, white and purple and look stunning in a bud vase alone or grouped en masse.
Here in Lausanne, the sun refuses to shine with any regularity, but summer’s showing signs of her arrival with peony blooms all over the city–in parks, gardens and at outdoor markets. I couldn’t resist buying a bunch today even though I lack a single vase at home. Luckily, my kitchen’s equipped with the basics, so I disected my bouquet and decorated my kitchen, my bedroom and my bathroom with the huge, wonderfully fragrant flowers.
I peeled the top foil off a pretty wine bottle, snipped the end of two stems on an angle and slid them inside the bottle. I cut a third stem really short and stuck it in a white teacup, but the scale was way off when I put the two vessels side by side on my kitchen table. To add a bit of height to this centerpiece, I put the mug on a makeshift pedestal–a wine glass turned upside down.
I chopped two stems and tucked them into a pretty cross-cut juice glass on my nightstand.
I sliced all but a very small portion of this final stem off, floated the oversize perennial in a dessert dish and placed it on a shelf in the loo.
What creative vessels have you arranged flowers in?
Posted by Wendy
Behind this pretty window treatment lurks dated vertical blinds and a hideous valance, but this client’s a renter and didn’t want to do anything that wouldn’t be really simple to take down/remove when she and her beau move. So we concealed what was there completely.
Because this installation is temporary, we wanted to keep costs low and materials light so I wouldn’t have to make too many holes in the ceiling. I constructed this pelmut box using foam-core poster board, 1/2 yard of Thom Filicia’s Burnet fabric in Shadow, hot glue and L-brackets. The complete how-to will follow in another post next week.
Michelle was so happy with the effect that she asked me to help her spruce up her mom’s rental house in Encinitas, California. The renovated kitchen lacks color, so we decided to put a pelmut box above the small window over the kitchen sink. We’re currently picking fabrics to complement the cabinets. The adjacent dining area will feature this print.
I’ve narrowed the sea of pool-blue choices to these four. Which one do you like best?
Clockwise from top right: Lewis & Sheron’s Beacomber in Teal, Calico Corner’s Zebra Skin Outdoor in Aquamarine, Nate Berkus’ El Toro in Aquamarine or Lewis & Sheron’s ODL Doodle in Caribbean Blue?
Posted by Wendy
I love food. When I travel, I base destinations around my stomach. So when we arrived in Lausanne, fondue topped my cuisine wish list.
Scott and I found the local favorite in our small town, a nondescript restaurant in an arcade that’s been cooking up a meal of melted cheese since 1951. Cafe Romand did not disappoint. We dipped our white bread in cheesy deliciousness and sipped our small glasses of red wine. Final cost? About $53–kind of pricey for a pot of melted cheese and some bread, no?
Luckily, I found a traditional Swiss fondue pot–steel exterior with an enameled finish on the inside–at the Geneva flea market, which only set me back $5. Unlike the purists at Cafe Romand, I served my cheesy dip with chorizo, sliced chicken, pears, a baguette and potatoes.
I researched several recipes before coming up with my own version of traditional Swiss fondue.
1.5 cups shredded gruyere cheese (Note: Don’t go overboard with the gruyere. Too much gives the fondue a gritty texture. Stick to 1.5 cups)
1.5 cups shredded emmenthaler cheese
.5 cups shredded Appenzeller cheese
2.5 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 garlic glove
1 cup dry white wine
One teaspoon fresh lemon juice
A pinch nutmeg
Fresh-ground pepper to taste
Posted by Wendy
1. Rub the garlic over the inside of the fondue pot. Heat the white wine over medium heat. Don’t let it boil. Just get it hot.
2. Mix all cheeses and flour in a bowl.
3. When wine is hot, add lemon juice.
4. Put a handful of the cheese and flour mixture in the wine. Stir until the cheese is completely melted. Repeat until you’ve used all the cheese mixture. Lower heat and constantly stir, allowing the cheesy mixture to bubble slightly.
5. Stir in the nutmeg and pepper and serve.
**We don’t have a burner so we put our pot on a wooden cutting board and started dunking.**