Nido

Since we're having a winter relapse, no better day to share some knitwear from a new-to-me designer Nido.

Sunday best: Nothing special

There are no epic schemes right now, no lofty missions. Yesterday, I bought some new plants — a jasmine and some succulents. My sago palm is not doing so great so I troubled over that a little, moving him to a different spot, running my hands over his fronds trying to exert some healing powers. Not everything bursts forth in blossom and colour when spring arrives and I guess many of us need some gentle coaxing.


I'm enjoying the simplicity of going outside right now. Throwing on some clothes, some shoes, walking out the door. Not bracing for the cold, not scared of the sidewalk. I've been walking up and down the hill at rates to rival the Grand Old Duke of York.

Today will be more of the same; just walking, grocery shopping, reading. Nothing special. The perfect Sunday.

Products: Rag & Bone jeans from Net-a-Porter | Xana Henley Top by Etoile Isabel Marant from Steven Alan | The Lip Slip from Sara Happ | Sel Marin from James Heeley | ERES Lumière Lydia bra from Net-a-Porter | Crescent Moon Earrings from Satomi Kawakita | Bloch London flat from Gravity Pope | Resurrection Aromatique Hand Balm from Aesop

Friday!

A week of unexpected things, progress of sorts, I suppose.

My mind was cast home for many little reasons, but this post is about one of my favourite places at home that I've always kept a little to myself (unintentionally, I guess I never thought to share it when I had visitors). And it's nice to have a place that you keep to yourself so that when people come and go, as people do, and it changes the places you saw together, there are some things still selfishly unaltered.


I've been looking forward to the weekend since Wednesday, feeling Friday ought to be closer all the time and now it's here at last and there's a dinner at my favourite local with a lovely friend tonight. More links:
- Sleep as resistance
- We are all very anxious
- Car of my dreams
- I love this bracelet

Still inspired by Doreen's, I'll shop for plants on the weekend instead of buying flowers. I'll sleep and watch Hannibal, the only TV show worth watching if you ask me. I'll pick through some pages of my book. I'll keep my eyes wide open.


Happy weekend!

Doreen's

Of late, I've felt pretty immune to decor spreads. I mean, I can admire them, but it's rare that one spurs me into action or inspires in more than the most abstract way. Rather, I've been hunkering down in my own space and letting it whisper to me, guiding my next move. This feels like a less harried way of finding inspiration and of evolving decor.


All this temperance was suspended dramatically when I saw the pictures Doreen shared of her home on the weekend. I suspect Doreen's home is precisely the vintage and design of Dublin home that I love the best. And what inspires me in these images isn't so much this paint colour or that sofa style (though, wow) as the sense of home and family and the life lived in this space that comes through these images.


When I was little Mum and Dad took to me to visit Eric Barrington's house. He was an elderly gentleman we knew and his house was so full of treasures he'd conduct little tours of it. Every item had a story and Eric was just the sort of grandfatherly man to tell those stories to children in ways that made each thing an adventure come to life. I guess I always think homes should have objects like this. Beautiful, yes. But with a reason for being there that goes beyond their beauty.


And this too is the sense I get from Doreen's pictures. That if I stepped into this room and picked something up, a story would be told. And it makes me realize that the things I love in my own home have their own stories too.


On the way home tonight, I picked out some new plants. I definitely have to credit Doreen with that too. Beautiful light hitting greenery never fails to lift the spirits!


All images by Doreen Kilfeather and used here with her permission.

A poem for Wednesday

I just walked home. Midway, I sat on a bench to Instagram something and a dog came over to say hello. His name was Bob and he's just moved here from England. I wondered how differently the world smells to him here. Even I can smell the difference between Dublin and Toronto; there's a wet-stone mustiness to Dublin. All drenched moss and heather, salty rope, peat and grass. Bob probably thinks he's hit the squirrel bonanza here. Wait until he meets his first skunk.

It's still easy for me to feel outside of all this too. I sat in a meeting this morning and everybody talked about curling. Several minutes of curling talk. And I just sat there and thought, I really live in Canada now. It never goes away -- the little things that trigger feelings of novelty and giddiness. Bob and I aren't that different, I guess. This is another one by Mary Oliver.

The Dog Has Run Off Again
and I should start shouting his name
and clapping my hands,
but it has been raining all night
and the narrow creek has risen
is a tawny turbulence is rushing along
over the mossy stones
is surging forward
with a sweet loopy music
and therefore I don’t want to entangle it
with my own voice
calling summoning
my little dog to hurry back
look the sunlight and the shadows are chasing each other
listen how the wind swirls and leaps and dives up and down
who am I to summon his hard and happy body
his four white feet that love to wheel and pedal
through the dark leaves
to come back to walk by my side, obedient.

Beautiful ennui

This time last year, I was staring down a huge project and juggling a substantial freelance workload. I was in that pocket at the start of something where it felt like we could do everything right. I knew it was all going to get overwhelming, but I was even excited for that. The stretch of it. But, as I typically do during projects, I burnt myself out, losing all balance. And then I strained for the finish line and fantasized about all the things I’d do once we launched.

This all wrapped up before Christmas, but winter was so long, so hard and cold and bitter, that I didn’t really feel that relief of having finished something. Sure, there were moments. When I got out of town. Or a day here or there where I kicked back. But if I’m honest, I didn’t really feel it in my bones. And I certainly didn’t feel my days open up wide again, full of potential, or start doing all the things I thought I’d do when all this let up.


It’s April already and I’m still carrying around the extra weight (literal and figurative) I attribute to that project. And feeling a strange mix of daily feelings; boredom, desire to find something new to do, and a languorous apathy that makes me give in to easy, lazy things. Ennui is not something I’ve experienced much in my life. I tend to push myself out the door even when I don’t want to go out. I tend to give myself long to do lists.

I guess I’ve been tired enough to let myself just sit with this ennui. And I think there’s value in it.

Because I believe some things need breathing room and that sometimes we’re scared of silence, of gaps in things. And I think we lean too heavily on things to inspire us rather than letting that happen naturally, organically. And sometimes we poke and prod things so we’ve something to tinker with, instead of stepping back and deciding what really needs to be fixed, what really can be improved.


Plus, I know something will come: There’ll be a day when an idea, when words, when some new thing jumps out at me. There’ll be something that wakes me from this slumber. And when it does, it will be more real than anything I could force myself into right now. And I’ll have the energy then for it too.

In the meantime, I’m walking a lot, wandering streets, taking long ways home. I’m scribbling words… not even sentences, barely phrases. I’m keeping a tidy house and enjoying banal routines. I’m finding a certain freedom from expectation in this ennui, a certain open concept ease. And I'm discovering there’s something beautiful in that too.

Images: Eye Platter Michele Quan from The Future Perfect | Francie Hester Vessel #11, 2014 from 1st Dibs