Thursday, March 13, 2014

Housekeeping details

Of late I'm often amazed that I'm a grown up with my own home. Yesterday I was WhatsApp-ing with my closest pals from college and the son of one of them one just got elected to be head boy of his school. We were all congratulating her and I'm was like weren't we just in school ourselves?! Seems hardly possible that one of us has a child old enough to be a head boy. I totally get what my mom means now when she says she feels 21.

Anyway I've been having many such moments lately. Of looking around my house and being surprised at myself for having a house and wanting it to look a certain way. It all came to a head recently when the dining table that we chose over a year ago went bad for the second time. It's an old Indian wood and brass door balanced on some legs and with glass floating over the top. We both loved this door the second we saw it and this 10 seater has been the pride and joy of our home for a year. It was made by a store called Originals, where a lot of our furniture is from and a store I buy something from EVERYTIME I visit! So when it started to develop mould patches last year we called them and they took it away to have a look. Turned out it hadn't been sealed properly. Anyway, months later it had been dried out and sealed properly and was back looking as amazing as when it first arrived.

Without the glass that floats on top

Forward to three months ago and the mouldy patches were back. The store agreed that the mould was inside the old door and seemed intent on escaping. It's a health hazard and they have kindly agreed to take back this bespoke table and refund us. The table went this week and is unlikely to be able to be 'fixed' enough for use again. Instead of a refund though we have chosen to borrow a table from them while we wait for their containers to arrive and choose a new door. V loves the idea enough to wait for this exact style of table - we've been back a few times to look at shipments and haven't found anything that even comes close. I suspect it's going to be a long wait. 

In the meanwhile I was attempting to sort through cupboards which I don't open for months. I found a beautiful oversized glass bowl (similar to a large fish bowl but slightly shaped rather than completely round) which was a wedding present from a good friend of V's. She bought it in Germany and carried it to London in early 2002, shortly after our wedding. It's been used a handful of times to hold bundles of tulips but has mostly languished in the cupboard. Its quite large and ungainly on its own and you need an awful lot of flowers to make it look halfway decent. It's moved home three times and continents once. 

On a whim I decided to look up companies that make terrariums (which all this time I have been mistakenly calling terraniums) and found one right here in Singapore. Found this guy called Daniel who runs a small store and online portal called 'Love in a bottle'. Called and explained I had a vase and would he please turn it into a piece of live art? He said 'Yes' and I took him the bowl three weeks ago. His little shop in Joo Chiat road had lots of lovely little pieces. I bought a seashell shaped terrarium for my sis-in-law as part of her birthday present and dropped off my vase. We exchanged a few design ideas by email and finally yesterday the terrarium has arrived. I LOVE IT! 

Sitting pretty on my coffee table

I have been gazing at it the whole afternoon. Kid has taken over the careful job of spraying it with water every three days. I shall have to watch for over-enthusiasm but it's a great little project for him. I'm so so pleased with it. I wish we had done it before. 

It turns out that I'm such a middle aged Aunty, loving my house with all my might, so exactly the opposite of what I imagined a grown up life would be . 


  1. Anonymous6:12 PM


    That table is absolutely beautiful and so is your terrarium. Please post more pics of stuff from that store, if you can please..

  2. Lovely looking table. Too bad you had to give it up.

  3. Homes have a way of growing on you, and sometimes taking over your life!
    The door is lovely- I hope you get a good replacement for it. And the terrarium is lovely too.