Sunday, August 30, 2015

End of the summer choices by Occitaine en Provence

Source: Occitaine website
Officially, the summer it is about to end and it seems that I already feel a bit nostalgic about the things I wanted to do and haven't during the sunny day. But with the high holidays only a couple of days away and many things that I want to share from the past silent blogging days, plus some other events I am very excited to share here, I hope to not have too much time for being overwhelmed by unhappy thoughts. 
Holidays are the best time to make presents, including for yourself, isn't it? 
The last week, I had some extra time and visited the closest Occitaine en Provence shop and could hardly leave. I am usually very much in love with their hand creams and instantly felt in love with their Arlesienne hand cream, with instant results on my delicate hands. Another plus is that it does not have a hard smell either. Talking about Arlesienne, a word that sends to the idea of a strong, independent and yet coquetisch woman from the South of France, all the products from the collection do have saffron - besides rose - as part of the ingredients, a very interesting combination in perfumes that tends to give a note of distinguished elegance to the products. The variations of perfumes are exquisite, very delicate and with a unique flowerly touch. 
Another products to follow, buy and test soon are the unisexl Spa in your home, that although may have some very strong smell that reminds me not very pleasantly about the Tiger Balm from my childhood do produce strong detox effects and may be even more efficient than the strong green tea I am constantly using part of my daily routine. 
In all cases, the prices are, as usual, a bit above the average but fully worth it.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Colouring books for adults. Why not?

I must confess, again, that I am not a creative person. Better said, I am not the artistic kind of personality, ready to make an outstading work of art out of nothing. I prefer to concentrate all my creativity and energies for my various writing projects. However, once in a while, I need to go out of my simple world and encourage myself to go beyond my limits. I do have a lot of crafts projects ongoing, I am into jewellery making and decorations as well as illustrations.
Nothing compares, though, with my first and big love for colouring books. As a kid, I enjoyed the quiet moments when with my box of pencils and the black shapes in the front of my, I was trying to find out the best combinations for filling up the design and giving life to the page. Many of my colouring books were inspired by various historical and cultural events, my favourite having to do with some old style fashion design.
I do not remember exactly when I gave up this rewarding hobby, but very often I kept fresh in mind the full feeling of freedom experienced during those moments. And also the pleasure of hours later starting, I was admiring how my page was changing. It taught me patience and the sense of colour as well as the capacity to retire for a good time and put my thoughts in order. All these habits helped me later in life when I had to do with various challenging professional and personal situations.
Especially in the last year, I started to hear more and more often about adults having as hobby colouring books. Due to my strict education, according to which, you do certain things as a kid and never after as an adult, I regarded those story skeptical but without too much criticism though. After all, everyone is free to do what she/he considers the right thing to do with her/his time. However, in the last year, the frequency of news - even the New Yorker considered it as a topic worth to dedicate a couple of good thousand of words -, plus a certain decision I took to try at least once the week to do something creative for my soul, determined me to just go to the next Idee shop and buy one of those colouring books for adults. I also purchased some nice colouring pencils and without thinking twice, I started to silently colour the white surfaces, just the way I used to do any years back. The difference is that now, my life got more complicated and I have to think about much more things than years ago. I also noticed how I can organise my writing life better, being able to almost write full posts in my mind and instantly put online after my colouring task is done!
The plan is to have a book done every two months. I already dream about my nexgt book, also from Idee, totally dedicated to travel. The older I get the more free I feel to be exactly what I want to be and to do exactly what I want to do. Good things, I mean. Some of them will be for sure announced soon on this blog...

A visit at the third shop of Zara Home Berlin

Zara Home opened recently its third shop in Berlin, on Ku'damm 203-205, corner with Knesebeckstrasse, after the closing of the eccentric fur shop Pelz L√∂sche. It covers an area of around 600 sqm, and is deserved by a relatively customer friendly personnel. What I don't necessarily appreciate in many shops is that moment when the vendors are setting up their products during the high-hours of the day, either bothering the clients with their movements or because too busy to answer different questions. 
The shop is separated into different sections: kitchen decorations, kitcheware, bathroom, bedroom, children. The prices are moderate to high, but don't desperate, it is the season of sales and for sure you might find something affordable soon. Besides the shop on Ku'damm, Zara Home has another affiliates in the Mall of Berlin and the Boulevard Berlin, in Steglitz.
As I am very much into natural colours and inspiration, I fell in love with the various table covers and napkins with pastel butterflies and flowers. 
There are also a lot of models of candels that can decorate and provide intimate natural light to any space. They vary in size and shapes, including as a huge elephant. Many mirrors seems to have a clear Oriental, especially Indian, inspiration. Out of many models, I am in favour of the silver framing, elegant and special.
As usual, pillows are a difficult choice to make and being creative involves also mixing various materials, such feathers added to soft cashmere. De gustibus...
When not too into eclecticism, the simple, spartan brownish colours can be a good choice for any season, residence, budget and tastes.
The predominant pastels are kept further on also in the case of bathroom products, which looks like an inspired choice because is an invitation to silence and quietness. 
Some products can be a real hit and become a shopping obsession, as in the case of this goose shaped vase with silver endings that reminds me of noble times and rich tables. 
For the children room, the predominant note is seriosity, offering the usual items you want to find in a child's room, but without too much room for creativity or even naivity.
 After all, why not keep being classical...?
The space for creativity is left, it seems, for the decorations of plates, with an unique funny collection of fashionista cats. Even someone seriously allergic to cats can appreciate it!
 The rest of glassware is not spectacular, either with simple classical shapes and discrete decorations,
...or with some strong colours that are not necessarily the style and colour that I may enjoy to look at during a lunch.
Some living room and lobby vases and decorations also did not pass my special good taste test. Too much non-authentic glittering may end up into kitch.
Hopefully, there were enough flowers and predominantly white imprints that are making a great difference in terms of taste, bringing a slice of countryside in your home and at your table. Very important to have them especially during the long winter. 
For the end, this perfumed box, with various good looking products caught my attention for their stylish presentation and the promise of wellness.