All posts by Patrick W

The top element of Christmas for me personally is scouring for presents to fill a stocking–somewhat elaborate goods that I mightn’t purchase but that are destined to continue. Here are 10 that we’d happily give (and receive). 

Above: Driving the present interest -based  amp Otter &; the Charasu Bar Soap; $8 in three scents: conifer, citrus and cedar has been created by Wax.

Preceding: The Ito Bindery Memo Block (L) and Modest Pad (R) are made with a 75-year old Japanese book binding business; $28 and $14, respectively, from Canoe. (Their bigger pads are excessively large to get a stocking but equally present-worthy.)

Above: The Super Choc-O-Food bar is a cooperation between Valerie Confections and LA design company, Commune. The oversize chocolate bar is full of fruits and nuts and packs a punch with its three brilliantly coloured hand stamped label packaging: $20 from Valerie Confections.

Previously: The new pencil du jour–the Blackwing Palomino Pencil with replaceable eraser. In a carton of 12; $21.95 from OK Shop.

Above: Tenugui, the multipurpose Japanese cotton cloth may be used in many ways– even wrapping paper, towel, scarf, and as a napkin; $14 from Tortoise shop.

Preceding: Bring the outside in. Obtainable in three scents: douglas fir, sweetgrass and sage.

Above: A brass Oversize Key Ring large enough $18 from Schoolhouse Electric.

Previously: The recently established brand ILA’s wood-fired Vermont  nbsp & Maple Syrup;is worthwhile for the stylish black glass packaging alone, but better it tastes nearly as good as it seems; $28 from ILA.

Above: bottles of wine upward opened in the Brush Factory through the holidays with one of these maple Wooden Bottle Rock stoppers; $22 each.

Previously: This essential nbsp & Computer Keyboard Brush;comes with a softer one as well as a supple bristle to get into each of the corners of a computer keyboard; $16 from Brookfarm General Store. 
Eventually, growing up in the UK our family tradition proved to be a tangerine in the underside of the stocking (it was the least appealing present). In recent years I’ve updated the custom that is citrus replacing it with cans of June Taylor’s Candied Citrus Peel. 
If you’re trying to find a few gift-giving inspiration, take a look at our 2015 Present Guides, and for the inclined, see Gardenista’s 2015 Stocking Stuffers. 
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While blending in with all the streetscape this modern entrance and lot encourage visitors right into a current farmhouse in the San Francisco Bay Area. The architects at Arcanum Architecture worked against the homeowners to make an entrance that links using the road and the road rather than overpowers it. As well as the landscape…

Without careful consideration, pets, like children, can have a kit of things that are nasty. But it will not have to be this way. Help convince your cat buddies that are wild with among these six present picks. 

Above: This Cat Tea Towel Package from Fancy Huli attributes black and white interpretations of a Siamese cat, Persian cat, and black cat in eco friendly ink. The 100 percent cotton towels are manufactured in america and ship free inside the contiguous United States; $50 to get a pair of three. 

Above: These jingle-bell Cat Toy Balls are made from marbled, hand-felted alpaca wool sourced from a farm local to the designer in Ontario, Canada; $3.85 each from House of Cat on Etsy. 

Previously: A blowout present for a much-loved cat and owner: the Cat Basket from Zangra, made of a ring-shaped ash wood frame, stainless steel feet, and an ivory faux-fur cushion; €169 (about 0).   

Above: The “it” cat publication of the second, if there’s this kind of matter, is All Black Cats Will Not Be Like by Amy Goldwasser and Peter Arkle. (Browse a preview in the New Yorker.) A copy in the limited edition run of 1,000 is $43 (including US transportation). 

Above: Black Velvet in Estonia makes a Design Cat Toy of fallen branches, leather, wooden beads, and feathers for an all-natural variation of a classic cat toy; $10.85 on Etsy.

Previously: To make Tux & Tabby’s Bonito Flakes, the fish is steamed, air dried, aged, afterward shaved into paper thin flakes to get a high-protein kitten treat; £4 (about ) for seven grams (about a quarter oz).
Browse more 2015 present guides: 

The 10 Greatest Cookbooks for Holiday Presents, 2015 Edition
Present Guide 2015: Vacation Gratitude for Teachers

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Your Checklist for Quick Houseguest Prep (8 pictures)

Have just somewhat time before your guests are due to arrive? Assess these seven must-dos off your list and also you will rest assured something hasn’t been forgotten by you in the insane rush to get prepared. And should you find yourself having a little extra time, decide from a bonus checklist of fine extras to enhance the guest…

Photographer Julia Spiess of the site Dinners is German and a Northern California Brit–isn’t entirely vested in the full custom of Thanksgiving. We bring side dishes that are great and make good guests, but of cooking a turkey, the concept simply looks erroneous (to me, that is only a Christmas day event). Trying to find inspiration for a more laid back strategy to the day, we turned to Brit expat Maxine Gilbert, owner along with her surfer/chef husband, John Gilbert, of the Parkside Cafe at Stinson Beach, half an hour north of SF (and reached via a somewhat passing-defying, winding panoramic road). A stone’s throw sits from the shore and features a bakery, cafe, and snack bar, which John and Maxine happen to be running for the previous 18 years. The couple have the ability to stage their very own party, although the eatery is open on Thanksgiving. It is about great food, buddies, and family –only slightly more accidental than most.
Therefore, if you are trying to find a change of pace, here are suggestions to get a nontraditional party, courtesy of John and Maxine.
Photography for Dinners by Julia Spiess.

Above: An Italian wood-burning stove anchors the dining room in the Parkside Cafe. A few contractors installed it from Bolinas that was nearby. To get a clean cement finish, Maxine elected in lieu of conventional tiles.
1. Entice the perceptions. John notes the cafe, using its wood-burning stove, becomes all about “hearing, seeing, and smelling what is happening in the fireplace.” Even with no woodstove, some type of fire adds feeling to your room.

2. Keep the backdrop simple. Maxine describes, “Everything is either black or white, even the pots are black. Maxine needed no artwork or colour, only the food and bread to function as art.” The table is made of a slab of sycamore and placed in the centre of the area. The wood was sourced by the couple in West Marin from Arborica, ; Maxine enjoys the dark stripes that run through it.

Above: Maxine takes a tray, and appetlizers–Dungeness crab on flatbread and shallot vinaigrette.
3. Work with whatever can be acquired. The couple are blessed to get wonderful pickings within their place: “We get fish from several men in Bolinas before they head to town to offer their grab. The greens are from Gospel Flat or Star Route, and wine is served by us from Bolinas-based Sean Thackery. 

4. Consider two napkins. Layered napkins supply great comparison available, and in case you’re eating multiple classes, it is a pleasant luxury to possess more than one. The Gilberts’ napkins are revealed here with Provencal Flatware by David Mellor. 

Above: Maxine and John set their table from low-cost Duralex tumblers, a longstanding bistro favorite and Heath’s Coupe line.
5. Use black dinnerware. Food demonstrates extremely nicely on dark plates.
6. Pour water and wine . The Gilberts stick from France with classic Duralex bistroware. As well as being virtually unbreakable and good-priced, these glasses are as unobtrusive on the table as conventional stemware (and their size keeps amounts wise). For sources, see Object Lessons: Iconic Cafeware.

Above: Levain fresh in the Parkside bakery.
7. Serve bread on a tea towel. John describes. “Linen will work for wrapping bread and keeping it warm and absorbing the heat moisture. Plus, it holds all of the crumbs and seems so fine.”

Above: Food is set out on the counter.
8. Serve food buffet style. it is communal, celebratory, and genetic.
9. Clink a glass between classes. Taking a pause to toast and chew the fat in regards to the food creates an awareness of occasion.

Above: one and Chestnuts foraged organizations.
10. Roast chestnuts. The feeling is added to by the crackle. An old recipe that calls for the chestnuts to be scored with an X near the very best is used by John. They are then boiled by him in salted water until there is foam on the top. John adds oil, salt, and pepper lets the chestnuts cool down, and after that places them on the fire by means of a roaster with side air ports. 

Above: In the oven, a pot sits ready to be served. The squash is in Bolinas, from Gospel Flat Farm.

Above L: Levain Grueyere toast was: seeded by the accompaniment to the soup. Above R: Another basic of the Gilberts’ dinners: olives warmed in the oven, served with unsalted butter sprinkled with a bit of Maldon salt. Maxine grants, “I know it is not local, but nonetheless, it actually is the greatest salt.”

Previously: Maxine enlisted nbsp;Louesa Roebuck & Stinson local . Everything was foraged up the shore in West Marin; as Louesa describes, “The persimmon were the most marvelous thing occurring now plus they supplied the bone structure. I combined autumnal hydrangea with light, fine lavender hydrangea, subsequently added some clematis gone to seed that introduced a theatrical, downy, sexy note.”
For more tips about vacation amusing, see these posts: 

A Pastoral Vacation Table from Australia
A Springtime Salmon and Vodka Soiree, Chez Cecile
Creatives a Seasonal Party, Contained
Amusing Hints. (N.B. Karen has just published her first cookbook.) 

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Now we are emphasizing the last group of artisans and wonderful makers that will be participating this weekend in our first New England Market. Make sure you test both grids out underneath.
In the event you’re in the Boston region, please join us this Saturday and Sunday, November 14th and 15th. Our marketplace cosponsor is Lekker House, along with the site is their eminent showroom in the South End of Boston (considerable discounted parking in a lot nearby at 560 Harrison Ave.). Book signings, live music, gourmet food trucks, and samples of locally brewed and distilled beverages will supplement the marketplace experience (entry is free).
Moreover , the first 250 attendees each day will get a complimentary canvas tote bag using the Remodelista Market symbol. More details available on the market here.

Above: A variety of offerings from eight sellers at Remodelista’s New England Market (clockwise from top left).
8KNOTS – Great Turkish pestemals having a nautical spin, made from Aegean cotton and pure linens.
BLACK POINT MERCANTILE – Hand-painted canvas bags and flooring garments produced in Portland, Maine.
GOODLINENS – Environmentally friendly unbleached linen towels, made in Lithuania and designed in Massachusetts.
BOSTON GENERAL STORE – Goods for home made as well as the kitchen the old fashioned manner.
EHCHOCOLATIER – Devine chocolates and Best of Boston Winners for last two years.
THE next BIT – Lavish, chunky knitwear, handcrafted with a community.
GREY GREEN GOODS – First fabrics for the house inspired by the planet.
NUTHATCH – Classic, tasteful style, garments fashioned in Maine and made of the best natural fibers.

Above: Clockwise
TRUE SUPPLY CO. – “Designs for Life,” straightforward, practical amazing goods for the house and body.
PILGRIM WATERS – Graphical scarves, tea towels, and wooden trays featuring Susy Pilgrim Waters’ award winning layouts.
BOB’s YOUR UNCLE – Modern Americana goods and gifts for the house.
LURU HOUSE – Contemporary screen printed fabrics and classic, featuring uncommon Nankeen-dyed indigos as well as other ornamental motifs in the Chinese Middle Kingdom.
SHANNON REED – Hot designer chef coats and aprons, napkins, and towels.
NINE FIVE LTD – Clothing and individual hats made for world citizens; 20 percent of each purchase goes to charity.
THE MAINE BLANKET – Made of 100 percent wool natural blankets from grass fed sheep, and throws woven on antique looms.
MORGAN AND MILO – Lively, shoes and practical clothing for the child away from home that is fashionable.
See samples here and here.
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Of shouldering a basket the custom goes back to early times that are Native American, and these days packs are woven in several wilderness pockets and beyond. We found several Adirondack basket weavers who create the packs the conventional scrupulous manner, out of local black ash and determined to do some investigating, hand shaved into splints, and cut thumped. They are available in a variety of sizes and shapes, all strengthened on the foundation with ash runners, and were traditionally made by wilderness guides and hikers themselves for toting everything from fishing rods and picnic equipment to only-picked blueberries–DIY pack-weaving courses are often offered at workshops in the Adirondacks. 
Five to Purchase from Local Craftspeople

Above: Jonathan Kline of Black Ash Baskets in Trumansburg, ny, whose layouts we highlighted in Baskets as High Art, has a cult following and makes pack baskets to purchase in a variety of sizes, with or without straps. Of his pack layouts, he says: “Rims, manage, and skids are constructed with shagbark hickory which is divide, carved, and turned to fit each individual basket. The basket is woven of black ash splint that was hefty. Like all my baskets, these strips will be the yearly growing layers that split in the tree and I thump. I shave each strip into a smooth finish which is subsequently beveled on the edges to create a tight weave.”

Above: Adirondacks master craftsman Jamin Uticone apprenticed for six years under Jonathan Kline, and makes an assortment of delicately crafted baskets detailed with bridle leather, for example, Medium and Urban Pack revealed above. Interesting fact: Uticone’s Urban Pack Basket is in the Smithsonian. See his work Swamp Road Baskets; costs on request.

Above: The End of Summer Knapsack Basket , is handwoven to purchase by Minnesota basket maker Claire Swanson.

Above L: Maine basket maker Fran Doonan is a “self-educated black ash basket maker,” as she says. She instructs the art and makes limited edition, baskets that are artfully formed. Above R: Stephen Zeh uses English bridle leather, Maine brown ash, shearling shoulder pads, and copper and brass fittings in his pack baskets that are luxe. 

Above: The Birch Store in Keene Valley, ny, offers handcrafted back packs in three sizes from Sandy Muller and Bud Ziolkowski of Clear Creek Weavers . The couple also instructs workshops on basket making and the Adirondack Mountain Club for advice.  see;

Above: Classic Adirondack pack baskets are offered from several sources, including pastoral antiques specialist Ralph Kylloe of the Adirondacks, as well as on eBay and Etsy–search Adirondack pack baskets, pack baskets, trapper baskets, and basket back packs.
Read our Object Lesson on the company.
Visit Baskets & Bins for more of our favourite storage options. 
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