Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

A Fine Blend of Two Cultures Two Cultures

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

A Fine Blend of Two Cultures Two Cultures

Article excerpt

Byline: KATIE CAMPBELL

Shop news

Great shakes: Forget healthy smoothies, whip out the vanilla ice cream and Tizer in the middle of the night and make an American Fifties-style cream soda. This great retro blender (left) from Waring, in its evocative peppermint livery, comes complete with the all-important toggle switch. It's also good for cocktails and, if you insist, for soups, sauces and other nourishing uses. It costs [pound]149; call 020 8232 1800 for stockists.

Ralph Lauren Home: No tribute to Independence Day would be complete without a nod to Ralph. His latest collection (right) is based on the ultimate childhood fantasies: think cowboys riding the range, jocks playing the field, horsey motifs a la National Velvet and Saratoga voiles. Plus houndstooth stripes and checks, of course. Available from Harrods Living, Knightsbridge, SW7 (020 7730 1234).

Amish inspiration: Jenni Bolton is a textile designer who draws her inspiration from the quilts that Amish women in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, made between 1870 and 1950. They are characterised by geometric boldness, simplicity, strong lines and colour. She has produced pyjamas for celebrities such as Sharon Stone, Liz Hurley and Nicole Kidman. Now she's using her designs to make hot-water bottle covers ([pound]35) from cashmere and silk. For stockists, call 020 8964 8500.

You've got mail: If you've long admired those simple metal boxes for post that you stick at the end of your drive or pathway, get one of these from The Cotswold Company. The US Mail Box costs [pound]37.95 and is available in galvanised silver, blue or green. Call 0870 6003436 or visit www.CotswoldCo.com.

Green-fingered: Green is the theme in RK Alliston's new mail-order summer brochure. Green string in a tin ([pound]8.50), a pretty beechwood paper potter ([pound]17) that makes biodegradable seedling pots out of newspaper, an old-fashioned ceramic watering pot controlled by thumb pressure ([pound]16.50) and clear-glass bauble lights containing tea lights that you suspend on trees ([pound]20 for four) make perfect presents. Orderline: 020 7751 0077 or www.rkalliston.com.

Diary dates

Textile traditions: The American Museum in Britain, currently hosting an exhibition of historic and modern American quilts, blankets, clothes and other American folk-art artefacts, is organising a linen-and-lunch event on 3 September, when people can browse and buy from a selection of new and old linens. The textile exhibition is on until 4 November. For more details, contact The American Museum in Britain, Claverton Manor, Claverton, Bath, BA2 7B (01225 460503).

Burning desire: Bright contemporary ceramics are featured at Oxo Tower this month under the exhibition title Burning. Barbara Andrew makes exquisite, delicate pieces inspired by trips to the deserted seashore, while Diana Cox gets hers from handbags. …

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