It might be stormy and rainy, but I’m feeling very fortunate that I still get to feel safe. There are some pretty heart-breaking, terrifying things going on in the world right now, it’s hard not to get overwhelmed.
I had a very different post planned for today – one that involved pics of cocktails, and exclamations about how glad I was that it was Friday after a hard week. Of course, I have no idea what hard really is; my friends, family and home are safe, and I’ll go into the weekend feeling very grateful for that.
I hope you have a restful, happy weekend.
The fourth issue of beautiful bridal tome Bash has just come out, and features one of the cutest things I’ve ever worked on – a bridal accessories story that was all about playing dress up. Four-year-old Kasia was our model for the day, and I loved how much she loved it. Completely immersed in her own world, she was very happy to let me snap away while she played (and man, did she get to play with some serious bling). Lots more pics in the mag, out now, but I really wanted to share a little sneak peek!
Styling: Ruth Anna Cross / Photgraphy: Nathalie Marquez Courtney
I love this post from Jason Grant and never has it been more true than right now. I’m really learning how important – and exciting – it is to get out of your comfort zone and collaborate in ways that enable you to learn and grow, scary as that can be.
One of the highlights of the summer so far: A BBQ at Lesley’s allotment, featuring steak and nectarine skewers (yes, really!) and delicious, freshly picked strawberries for dessert.
Last Friday, my first issue as editor of Image Interiors & Living hit the newstands. It’s an exciting and nerve-wracking experience, not least of all because you’re usually elbow-deep in planning for the next issue when the first one drops!
Still, I’m immensely proud of it, and of our team, including the incredible bunch of creatives that contributed – from the gorgeous photography of Mark, Doreen, Rincy and Julie to the stunning styling work of Jen, Ajda, and Ciara, to illustrations from Belinda, hand-lettering from Jette, and last, but definitely not least, great features from Tanya, Aideen, Lizzie, Lilly and Amanda. That’s a lot of talent! You can check out some highlights from the issue here.
It’s a huge privilege to have a job that enables me to be creative, to work on beautiful things with talented people, and I’m filled with gratitude this week, especially as I scroll through the lovely comments on Twitter, Instagam and Facebook.
As I type, Ben and I are sitting in Dublin airport, about to hop aboard a plane to London, where we’ll shoot and dance our asses off at a fun Fourth of July wedding, before spending the weekend exploring the city with friends (and eating all the things at Street Feast). Hope you have a fun weekend too!
On the cover: Photography by Doreen Kilfeather | Styling by Jennifer Stafford | Ceramic planters by Ail + El | Shot on location at Makers & Brothers
Above: Some of Maser‘s fine work at North Wall Quay.
Below: I spotted this around Grand Canal Dock and gave a squee of delight.
Both taken with my new toy, the Fuji X100s.
Six months ago, I didn’t know Ajda, food stylist extraordinaire and a funny, genuine, tells-it-like-it-is kinda gal, who is also a total sweetheart. She’s off to pastures new, and I can’t wait to see what she does next.
Ajda is a wonderful example of how brilliant blogging has been as a way of meeting likeminded souls, something I was reminded of as I sat at that table up there in Forest Avenue on Sunday (styled with eucalyptus and figs by Rincy and Ciara) and toasted to new adventures.
P.S: A dairy-free ice cream recipe that Ajda created and I shot.
Not every pic makes it to Instagram – usually because I forget. Here are some things that have made me smile this month.
First row: Selfies with Isabel, tapas and dancing (here) with BFFs, cheesy photo booth messing with these two talented gals.
Second row: Working on features that mean I get to explore tasty new places, trips to the Fallon & Byrne cheese counter (try the Napoleon. You won’t regret it), a good snoop around the Etsy Dublin offices.
Third row: Watermelons! Is there anything nicer in muggy weather? Sharing a starter with B on a mid-week date night in one of our locals, and some fresh orange juice (and fresh nails) to accompany a group brunch in my old ‘hood.
“The last of human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances—to choose one’s own way…. It is this spiritual freedom—which cannot be taken away—that makes life meaningful and purposeful.”
I’m reading Frank Kofman’s Conscious Business, as recommended by Sheryl Sandberg in Lean In. It includes such gems as the one above. Personal responsibility (or, as he says it in the book, response-ability) is a huge part of his teachings so far. There is something very comforting in knowing that, regardless of what happens, you can always choose how you respond to a challenge, and you can always respond with integrity, in a self-empowering way that honours your core values. As he says: “Response-ability is knowing that no matter how bad things appear, there is always a possibility to express your truth.”
It’s a fascinating, thought-provoking read and I couldn’t recommend it more. I’ll leave you with this last gem: “The only lasting safety that I have found is a total commitment to essential values such as respect, honesty, freedom, and love.”
As yesterday’s post showed, Isabel’s party was definitely not short on cake. The baby fiesta featured lots of sweet treats and DIY touches, thanks to the talents of craft queen Nikki and brilliant caterer Katy.
Nikki created all the giant hundreds and thousands on the wall, as well as the polka dot cups, number one signs, animal party hats (how cute are those?) and party bunting. Katy, meanwhile, rocked up with gorgeously decorated cake pops, chocolate cupcakes, sweet pastel meringue kisses and one seriously tasty cake. My mum added to the sugar-fest with chocolate-dipped biscuits, mini cupcakes, and dipped marshmallows and pretzels while Ben’s mum Lesley brought her legendary raspberry meringue roulade and a giant creme brûlée. Yes, that is a lot of sugar. Combine it with the elderflower cordial and Prosecco we were sipping (well, the grown ups anyway) and I’d say we were responsible for more than a few sore heads the next day. But hopefully it was worth it!
Thank you to everyone who came, ate and hung out, and especially to my mum, Lesley, Ben, Nikki and Katy. And, of course, to Isabel for being such a total delight on the day.