1. My kids’ wit and creativity—they make me laugh—especially when it comes to their Halloween costumes and birthday cakes. We have a family tradition that the number of cake layers has to match their years and the kids pick the theme.
2. My husband and I travel for work and the kids always seem to have something going on so when we can all gather for weekday family dinners—they’re very special events.
4. I have a long commute so Satellite Radio is priceless.
5. Life is complicated so a simplified wardrobe helps save time—black, grey, khaki—easy breezy.
6. I try to eat fresh, pure foods and to be mindful of the personal products I use—so I research EWG’s Skin Deep cosmetics database for the the most detailed, unbiased information available.
7. It doesn’t have to be expensive or special, I’m not that discerning when it comes to chocolate.
8. Whenever we travel, we check out the local museums—art, history, aquariums…doesn’t matter.
9. A big honkin’ Nikon camera—I’m a very visual person so there’s always something to shoot.
10. The sculptures of Magdelana Abakanowicz. Especially her fiber art and figuratives of the human spirit—how she expresses it through the human body in such a powerful way. The materials she uses seems to make them even more meaningful.
Thanks to sara, senior visual merchant, for this submission.
Join us in select CB2 stores to celebrate the arrival of Home by Novogratz—the latest book from Robert and Cortney Novogratz.
Meet Robert and Cortney, get unique design ideas and inspiration for your space, and see the complete Novogratz Collection.
Most events are 6-8pm—Queen West Toronto is 5-7pm—and attendance is limited so RSVP as soon as possible!
As delicate as it appears in translucency, whiteness and fineness, porcelain is a relatively strong material made durable by heating clay with kaolinite to temperatures over 2000°F.
In general, porcelain has a high resistance to strong chemicals—such as mustard—and temperature changes—which is why it can often go from a refrigerator to an oven.
‘Porcelain’ is derived from old Italian ‘porcellana’ because of its resemblance to the translucent cowrie shell. ‘Porcelain’ has long been referred to as ‘china’ interchangeably since it originated in China—around 200AD.
Centuries after the Han Dynasty, the manufacture of porcelain increased dramatically and kilns could fire hundreds of pieces at a time. Sometime in the 9th Century, cobalt was traded between the Middle East and China allowing for the creation of now familiar blue-and-white wares.
By 1368–1644, the time of the Ming Dynasty, China largely controlled the trade of porcelain and it was during this Dynasty that blue-and- white wares were exported heavily to Europe. Since cobalt had a value greater than gold, the elaborately decorated pieces became the coveted standard for years.
Trade between the Far East and Portugal began in the early 16th century, followed by the Dutch later in that century—and even though the imported pieces were held in high esteem, it wasn’t long before local manufacturers worked to replicate or replace them.
It was the Portuguese who discovered that the kaolin clay was a key ingredient—but the Chinese had hundreds of years of experience so it wasn’t until the early 1700s that Europeans discovered other manufacturing, ‘trade’ secrets.
Once the Methuen Treaty established trading relations between England and Portugal, manufacture of porcelain soon followed and flourished. But at the same time, Hungary, Austria, Germany, and France all established strong porcelain manufacturing capabilities. For a time, plain white pieces were imported from China and decorated in Europe—however many established manufacturing areas and companies are still revered today such as Wedgwood, Arzberg and Limoges.
Bone china refers to porcelain that is made with bone ash in the clay mixture which creates a very translucent porcelain—most apparent when it’s held up to a light source—while breakthroughs in new chemicals and processes create a finish that is comparably luxurious.
New approaches to shapes also breathe life into white porcelain—such as the pieced parts of
mend dinnerware. And while formal dinnerware was traditionally ordered in placesettings for 12, today pieces of antique/vintage patterns are eclectically mixed with modern to create unique looks.
1. Clean and dry the apples with a towel. If store-bought, rub to remove as much of the wax as possible—if purchased from a farmer’s market or orchard, then chances are they weren’t treated with the food grade wax that makes them shine.
2. Remove any stems or leaves and insert a stick into the top of each apple. To facilitate easier stick entry, carefully sharpen the end of the twig or use a candy stick to create a guide hole. Set apples aside once stuck.
3. In a saucepan over medium heat, heat sugar, corn syrup, and water—stir until sugar has dissolved. Boil until the mixture reaches 300°F on a candy thermometer, then remove from heat and stir in flavored oil. For a multi-color effect, pour half the mixture into another saucepan—add the red food coloring to one half and black to the other.
4. Dip one apple completely in the syrup and swirl it so that it becomes coated with the melted sugar candy. Hold the apple above the saucepan as the excess drips off.
5. With the stick facing up, place each dipped apple onto a baking sheet that was greased or is lined with a silpat.
—if the syrup thickens or cools too much, simply reheat briefly before proceeding.
—let the apples cool completely before serving.