IUma – A wonder for all the senses

In Swahili, Uma means fork.

To me *Uma means gastronomic jewel.

Located in Barcelona, Chef Iker Erauzkin & food writer/journalist Anna Yébenes have opened the doors into their imaginative world of gourmet cuisine. Memorable glimpses of Iker’s cooking workshop balanced with a showstopping “pure genius” culinary performance has equated to an unforgettable experience, particularly for the tastebuds.

Uma is indeed a sparkling jewel. An open mind and heart will lead you on a glorious dining adventure, into another sphere … all may not appear as it seems …

Oh such beauty for the senses awaits … !

*Normally l wax lyrical in my postings about creativity which captures my looking glass imagination, but for this particular posting it makes perfect sense not to say too much – smile.

Fresh visual air for the creative eye

Founded by wife and husband team, Anna & Nathan Bond, Rifle Paper.Co knows no visionary bounds. Starting out as a small stationary business in 2009 their design journey has rapidly, yet intuitively developed into a global “lifestyle brand” with products galore.

Anna has taken her creative talents to heights of visual impact that packs a stylish punch. l’m impressed how original illustrative pieces have been translated and adapted for different mediums, from gift-wrapping to phone-cases, proving a pattern can travel a visual path with distance.

Two collections which have been picked up on the Looking Glass radar are the recent collaborations with French illustrator, author, and photographer Garance Doré and Lauren Conrad of Paper Crown. Featured above, both give a compelling nod to glamour from a different perspective, a pure reflection of their own unique style.

“We strongly believe life’s personal stories and moments are best told through the gift of a handwritten card or note”. With this ethos, it’s no wonder Rifle Paper.Co are growing their stationary roots and branching out to wallpaper and other homeware products…be sure to check out the carefully crafted gift guide and the enchanting Puffin In Bloom’ book collection.

A welcomed breath of (visual) fresh air for the creative eye.

Thanks to “belle”

It was at the beginning of the year that glassybaby was brought to my attention in the colourful shape of ‘belle’ via the Pearl Jam newsletter (l’m a long-term follower of this gifted band, hence inclusion of “given to fly” ). Upon reading the articles, l subsequently clicked on the related glassybaby link. Lo & behold the glassybaby world came alive.

Founded by Lee Rhodes in 1998, glassybaby’s journey is an inspiring story of courage and hope, in which Lee faced a battle with a rare form of lung cancer. In search of serenity, Lee felt inspired to fill each glassybaby with a tealight, in which she found a shining glow of healing and hope.

l feel greatly touched by the creative manner in which glassybaby spreads the “power of giving” ethos by donating a percentage of glassybaby sales to various charities. A beautiful concept which enables givers to fundamentally change the lives of others.  l also find the creation of names and stories for each glassybaby makes way for an abundance of fun and many glassybaby discoveries.

Following on from my own discovery, it felt only natural to make a ‘Looking Glass Collection’. All six glasses speak to me from a personal perspective. l find a beautiful narrative thread running throughout my carefully chosen pieces. Generating my own sense of serenity, light & hope.

l’m also feeling rather curious as to which unique glassybaby you’re drawn too…

Midnight magic

Upon recently discovering these exceptional lightboxes, l was immediately struck by their fairytale charm – radiating a glow that is original in concept and structure. Created by Deidra, owner of The Rekindled Page, these night lights celebrate all that is beautiful, within the repurposed, upcycled ethos, which is the creative basis of this inspiring platform of work.

Merging imagery and text from vintage dictionary prints, in-conjunction with exploration of re-purposing, the traditional lightbox has been perfectly transformed into a visually vibrant night light object with a twist, allowing the imagination to take flight, upon the silent arrival of the midnight hour…

Magical starry nights surely await…

A porcelain take on the postcard

With summer slowly coming to an end, l have been fondly looking through the many postcards that friends, and family have kindly wrote to me over the past few months. There’s something rather endearing about receiving a postcard through the mailbox, reading about people’s adventures, admiring the stamp design, and smiling at the squeezing of text into a designated space. Such mail can also makes a refreshing change from regular post too.

This witty take on the postcard by the contemporary home and life accessories company Bailey Doesn’t Bark (TM) is most certainly an innovative portrayal of the classic postcard format.

You simply write (or draw) your message onto the mug, leave to dry, and pop into the oven to bake, and there you have it – a permanent postmugTM set in porcelain.

Writing a postcard has been given a freshly interactive twist!

Playful pencils

The classic pencil form has certainly been given a new lease of life by Margaret Haas, founder of Paper Pastries. The concept of implementing pieces of random knowledge, and phrases onto a set of pencils adds a complimentry, and playful dimension to the functional aspect of the pencil.

Paper Pastries is a haven for people who enjoy tactile, playful stationery, from rubber stamp sets to unique Moleskin notebooks. One can’t help but get a warm feeling of printing nostalgia with a contemporary twist, when browsing this online store. Each piece of stationery is hand-stamped, adding to the authentic spirit of bygone days, and the pencil sets come in a fine muslin bag.

On a personal Looking Glass note, the shape of the classic pencil takes me back to memories filled with anticipation of starting a new school term. And l have found to my amusement, that the feeling derived from working with a freshly sharpened pencil has happily stayed with me, in the form of a ritual – before embarking on a new project, l sharpen a pencil in preparation for fresh creativity.

These pencils from Paper Pastries are perfect to carry on this much-treasured tradition.

Coffee & Cake Stencils

Coffee & cake stencils_02
Photograph: Marino Thorlacius

Autumn has offically arrived, and with its rich tapestry of mellow colours, glowing in the crisp morning air, my thoughts rapidly turn to freshly-made coffee and chocolate cake. Megan Herbert’s stencils place the icing on the cake (and coffee) in an amusing and artful way. With a gentle dusting of cocoa powder or sugar, a knitting pattern magically appears…surely divine inspiration for the approaching winter months!

Intimate conversation over coffee and cake is the traditional Icelandic way of staying updated and strengthening bonds. A heart-warming tradition which l believe can be beautifully woven into the fabric of life.