• Food,  Table Styling

    Harvest Tales

    October in Poland had been really good to me for the past few years. Sun on the face that feels warm, but never overbearing, evenings still warm enough, at least occasionally, to have a bonfire and grill goat cheese and yes, foraged mushrooms. This year was a year of walnuts. We would start every day by rushing into the garden to play a game who can fill the basket first. Never mind we needed gloves to fend off the morning frost, on some mornings…And then, there was a constant shuffle of our bounty for the last of the sun rays to dry.  The days were shorter, for sure, but there lies the magic of the moody light…

     The soul of the Carpathian Mountains casts a spell on you, oh so quickly…The nature is at arms’ reach. Every year, and this year was no different, I style a scene at my parents, which is also my childhood home, that feels like a pure joy to create. This year the theme was set,  by accident as always, by the tablecloth I intuitively picked up at H&heading to a bus station in Krakow. I always loved mustard yellow, and this linen tablecloth is a perfection! An apple cake from Our Food Stories recipe was a delight to make,  even though it caused initially some raised eyebrows with my parents! They loved it though, and nothing screams more like family bonding than baking in my childhood kitchen.  I raised the bar though, I insisted on picking my apples on an abandoned, semi wild orchard, and they never tasted better! I also discovered miniature, but very sweet tasting pears. Narnia comes to life…

  • Carpathian harvest fairytale | totallybydesign.com
    Travel

    Carpathian harvest fairytale

    Fairytales happens when you believe in them. In the power of ordinary, imperfect, wabi-sabi that is….The power of little, but emotionally charged things, the power of imagination, the power of child-like (not childish!) enthusiasm. I headed to my hometown in Southern Poland recently knowing that some lovely objects are waiting there for me, thoughtfully gathered by my Father just for my photo storytelling. An old kitchen hutch, a table with peeling paint, but gorgeously preserved top by years of oil cloth cover up, a bench. They all come from an old log cabin home nestled on my parents property waiting to be re-invented, re-imagined and hopefully relocated, although this might prove too ambitious…

    But in the spirit of living in the moment, I gathered and styled a little scene in my parents’ shed with fruits and flowers from the garden. There is something immensely satisfying about stepping out the door into the morning autumn fog and gathering the branches and flowers by the armful, fruits by the basket, and forgetting about the crispness in the air and working with bare hands to style, nest, experience. Then, there is always my Mom’s cake and tea to melt into…

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