Vintage Vogue Entertaining

When I moved overseas I had to pack up a three bedroom house and divide the boxes and furniture between my sister, my parents and my grandparents homes. Most went to my parents, who had built two storey shelving in their garage. Some things, that I didn’t want eaten by rats, (my parents live in the country and yes they ate whole tupperware lids), I kept at my sisters. This included my Vogue Entertaining and Gourmet Traveller collection.

It was great to see them again after so long but I have barely looked at them since and the time has come where the need for space overrides the need to hoard.

I thought I might share the covers with you. I have only photographed the Vogue issues as they seem streams ahead in terms of styling and design. These issues range from 1994 – early 2002. There will be more to follow.IMG_0926IMG_0910IMG_0921IMG_0908IMG_0920IMG_0917IMG_0916IMG_0915IMG_0907IMG_0913IMG_0911IMG_0906IMG_0905

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addVintage

When you find yourself in a new city it takes time to find those shops that you can repeatedly rely on. You know what I mean, a place that won’t sell you something, for an elevated price, that is going to fall apart as soon as the delivery guy squeezes it through your front door.

When I was looking for a vintage dining table, and possibly some other bits and pieces to furnish my new flat, my cousin told me to head toward the Inner West. I didn’t want to head there unprepared or miss anything, so I did a bit of research and found addVintage.

Originating from a large store in Queensland this little Sydney outpost has got me raving to my friends. It’s a family owned and run business with a very serious focus on customer satisfaction. They specialise in sourcing Parker, Chiswell and other mid-century furniture, then restoring it to its former glory. Mid-century furniture can be easily adapted and mixed with modern furniture to suit the majority of Australian homes. 

I found a little slimline Parker table that they were yet to restore and I insisted on having it. They did warn me there was some water damage to the table and in fact when they began restoring it, found it to be much worse than expected. They bent over backward to search the country for another table. In the meantime they sent over my beautifully reupholstered Parker dining chairs, in the colour of my choice from Warwick fabrics, and a dining table. I was happy to wait for the right table but they were more than apologetic for my wait and kept me updated with weekly emails on their progress.

Since then I have visited a few times gathering glasses (another bad obsession of mine), an orange butter dish, depression green jugs and lolly jars, a 1956 FRS Clemente print of The Red Skirt, and my new pride and joy, a large Spanish bullfighting print.

I can’t recommend a visit highly enough. If you don’t see what you are looking for, speak to Christina, the owner, she will let you know if she can source it or not. Their prices are reasonable and they are open to negotiation, but it’s mostly unnecessary. I don’t think you will find more honestly priced vintage goods anywhere else in Sydney.

So my beautiful slimline round, extendable Parker table arrives next week. I already have my eye out for a small buffet table. I’m sure it won’t be long and more furniture from addVintage will be finding a home at my place. I just wish I had a bigger flat!

addVintage

117 Parramatta Road,

Annandale,

NSW

Contact No: 02 9560 8883

Opening Hours: Monday- Friday 11am-530pm

                                Thursday 11am-7pm

                                 Saturday 10am-6pm

                                 Sunday 11am-4pm

Owner: Christina Jaucian-Alaalatoa

Lilianfels, Darley’s Restaurant and Earth Hour

Escape and luxury relaxation, that’s what I was after. I needed a quite, beautiful getaway, not too far from Sydney.
That’s just what I found at Lilianfels nestled in the Blue Mountains. The boutique resort sits close to the edge of the Three Sisters Lookout in Katoomba. Katoomba and it’s surrounding villages are home to a few vintage curiosity shops which will keep me busy over the weekend.
Lilianfels has been around for a long time. It was built by Mr Frederick Darley the sixth Chief Governer of New South Wales in 1889 as a summer retreat for his family. When his daughter Lilian was 22 she died of tuberculosis and it is her Mr Darley named the original residence after. That building went on to host many international and royal visitors to Australia and is now home to Darley’s Restaurant while the later addition of the main resort is called Lilianfels.

I had tried to book a table at Darley’s on the day I arrived in Katoomba, yes I left it kind of late. It’s a popular restaurant and of course it was fully booked, but on checking into Lilianfels the front of house kindly arranged for me to have a table after 830pm. Now that’s the kind of service I like. They did warn me that they were participating in Earth Hour from 830-930pm and that my way to the restaurant would be lit by candles. If I wanted to eat to Darley’s I really had no other choice as they are only open for dinner and not on a Sunday (the only other night I was staying).

The staff at Darley’s are perfectly attentive, friendly and know their menu. They dressed a table on the enclosed verandah for me rather than sit me inside next to couples enjoying an intimate dinner. The tables had been set with large candles and I was brought another so I could easily read the menu.

I really didn’t know what to choose. The tasting menu is always great to sample what a restaurant can do but after a late lunch I opted for the three courses. The amuse bouche was a simple crispy shredded duck, beetroot cubes, cauliflower puree and boudin blanc. My entree (above) was a home cured Tasmanian salmon, with heirloom tomatoes, tomato sorbet, crab salad, tomato jelly and wasabi creme fraiche. I’m not a big fan of the whole savoury sorbet thing but it seemed to work well in this dish, providing a cooling relief for the punchy wasabi. On my waiters suggestion the dish was perfectly matched with a glass of 2008 Eagle Vale Semillon Sauvignon Blanc ($16).

As you can see taking photos by candlelight did play havoc with the point and shoot. Red Gate partridge confit, celeriac puree, en crepinette, and a blackberry jus was a strong autumn main. Darley’s certainly don’t skimp on the wine and I was wading my way through a large glass of  2009 Hewitson “Baby Bush” Mourvedre ($15).

A pre dessert amuse bouche of organic raspberry jelly, chocolate squares, hazelnut cream and toffee shards was completely delicious.

I decided to ignore the popular rhubarb/pannacotta dessert  for the passionfruit souffle and sour apple granita for dessert. The souffle was fluffy and softly scented with passionfruit. I liked the sour apple granita and the flavours worked well together but I wasn’t keen on jumping between the hot souffle and icy cold granita.

Staying at Lilianfels is like escaping to a place of soft down lined beds, white fluffy robes, foggy mornings and elegant dinners. Lilianfels also hosts afternoon tea in the beautiful lounge area of the main resort. I’m definitely planning my winter escape there, to sit by their fireplace sipping tea and eating cake. Oh and not to mention the vintage shopping fix I will require by then too.

(Dinner was $125 for three course, not including drinks.)

Quintessential DuckeggBLUE

You have to get to this shop. Trust me when I say this. GO.

Quintessential duckeggBLUE owner, Leanne Carter-Taylor, travels to the UK, Europe and the USA repeatedly during the year to source interesting pieces for her shop. She does little to bring them up to their best, maybe a little polish but that is it. No new knobs on old draws, no painting bright colours on sideboard doors (which I detest), just carefully chosen pieces as they are.

This lady definitely has an eye for beautiful, as she calls them, found industrial and antique objects. She really makes an effort to find something different. You step into her shop and your eyes are flooded with beauty, the French oak dining table made from reclaimed carriage wood, the 1920’s French art deco worn leather chairs, the pharmacist cabinet and the steel dentists draws. I want them all!

I don’t think I really need to say much, the pictures speak for themselves.

A few shops along there is also duckeggBLUE the fashion shop. The shops are an extension of the other with the shop fittings for duckeggBLUE coming from quintessential. Beautiful well sourced clothes from Paris, Copenhagen, LA and New York. You will find a mix of comfortable classics and quality everyday wear. Soft jersey t-shirts from Paris and edgy of-the-moment J Brand Houlihans from America.

If you live near Balmain, I’m sure you know the shop well. If you don’t, you had better get in your car and start driving.

497/489 Darling Street, Balmain, NSW. 2041

All photos are under copyright, used here with permission and sent to me by Leanne Carter-Taylor, owner of both duckeggBLUE and quintessential duckeggBLUE



Lucca Antique Market

Lucca antique market is one of those places you should go out of your way to go to. Many of us have been to Pisa to do the tourist trail, the leaning tower etc etc, and then as a stop off point to fly into/out of Italy on your way to a great holiday. I hope you all realised that Lucca was not far away.

So very very close you should stay with in it’s walled city to escape the tourist buses rolling into Pisa. Not to say that Lucca has not escaped the tourists but it is certainly less crowded than Pisa. Every third weekend in the month Lucca holds an antique market. If you love a good antique market this is the place for you.

It wasn’t hard to find after we had parked within the walls we just followed the general flow of people and stumbled upon the markets in no time at all.

It can be difficult to find a bargain at big antique markets in Italy and France now if you don’t do your research and know your stuff. There are still some good finds here depending what you are looking for and what is in demand. You still need to take a big wallet and a big bus to take it all home in though. If you were looking for pieces to renovate or restyle your home, you may find some beautiful feature items here.

I didn’t find much in the way of good antique or vintage jewellery but there is alot of furniture, crockery, gilded picture frames and finishing items. There are a couple of stalls selling African made goods, masks and tribal figure but most of the stalls are vintage or antique European goods. Of course you can still haggle here too, as is the market rule.

The market winds it way around the streets and piazzas of the walled city. Luckily there are cafes and restaurants along the way to stop for a gelato, or two. Shopping is hot and hungry work and as we found our way to the end of the market, close to the cathedral, we found a cool beer and pizza calling us.

I hope to find myself back at Lucca antique market one day but this time with a small van to bring home my haul.