unexpected guests: skinny laminx.
by victoria comment

9/23/09

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okay, we’re taking a big old journey today, all the way to cape town, south africa! we’re visiting one of my favorite textile artists and bloggers, heather moore, aka skinny laminx. you’ve probably seen her gorgeous hand screened teatowels and pillows (as well as many other fabulous home wares) and all around the web, and read her blog, skinny laminx or checked out her wonderful column on south africa’s elle decor. Heather has guest posted here on sfgirlbybay as well. so, well, it’s quite clear this girl gets around — because we all can’t get enough of her! and today, we get to see what home life for heather and her artist husband Paul Edmunds in cape town is like (which i personally am pretty excited about, as heather and i have even chatted about a little holiday house swap!). let’s take a nice leisurely, lingering visit, shall we?

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What neighborhood do you live in?
My neighborhood is called Gardens, and it’s called that because it’s just a short stroll away from Cape Town’s city centre, through the oak shaded historical Company’s Gardens. We’re very fortunate to live in an area that’s very easy to get around by foot, that has an amazing view of Table Mountain, and is within walking distance of Table Mountain national park. There can’t be many cities in the world where you can live in the centre and then take a 20 minute walk to a pristine mountain environment, with sea views to boot!

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What is your idea of a perfect day in Cape Town?
This is such a difficult question to answer, because, while I don’t mean to be smug, Cape Town really is the perfect city, so you’d need days and days to do everything there is to do! For me though, I’d love to wake up and do a yoga class, then meet my husband Paul at Lola’s on Long Street for a big eggy brunch and lots of coffee. A perfect day should include a nap at some point, but I’m not sure where I’ll squeeze that in, because I’d like to go walking on Noordhoek beach while horses gallop by, have an icy swim at Camps Bay and do some drowsy beautiful-people-watching, I’d need to get to Milnerton Market, my favourite spot for vintage bargain hunting, or maybe I’d have better luck scouring the bric-a-brac on Kalk Bay’s main road. The evening would have to be outdoors, as the weather would be balmy and windless. So maybe we’d break the rules (unlikely – I’m a line-toer of note) and make a big bonfire on Clifton Beach, watching the sun go down behind the yachts while sipping a glass of bubbly. Wow, I got a bit carried away there. Life’s generally not quite so glam, but it’s a perfectly achievable day in this beautiful city of ours.

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What don’t you leave home without?
My To Do list, I’m afraid. It’s a very, very strict taskmaster, and without it, I’m lost.
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What are some of your favorite local shops?
For fashion, I love Marion & Lindie, , and also often buy lovely clothes from my friend Alexandra Hojer. For coffee, I adore the little hole-in-the-wall Jardine Bakery, part of the award-winning Jardine restaurant. We live just off a road that estate agents love to call “vibey Kloof Street”, and it is vibey – full of amazing homeware shops, like LIM, O.live and Heartworks, as well as some fab restaurants, coffee shops and bars. The only place where Kloof Street isn’t “vibey” is the part where all the estate agents have opened offices. Bleh.

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What’s on your wish list?
I really could do with a Jielde lamp or two, if my pocket could stand it! I recently found a downmarket version at Woolworths that’s keeping me happy in the meantime.

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What’s your favorite bargain find or product?
For a long time, I would have said my dream bargain find would be an Ercol daybed, and I’d always have my eyes out on stalks for that treasure, but since my dream came true and we got one (a very lucky find), I’m a lot less ambitious. I’m always on the lookout for beautiful vintage fabric to hoard, and Scandinavian ceramics to add to my collection. My absolute pinnacle find in that department would be anything from Stig Lindberg’s Bersa range.

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What is your biggest interior design nightmare?
Oversized, over-upholstered black leather sofas, “soothing” typography on bathroom walls, wall-to-wall carpets hiding wooden floors, tiles from front to back – anything generic, aspirational or bought as a “look” just leaves me cold.

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Who is your favorite artists? And why?
Well, there’s only one thing to answer here: My favourite artist is Paul Edmunds (see image  just below). That’s not just because he’s my husband, but because his work is the kind that grows and resonates the more you look at it. He makes his things very slowly and very carefully, and this devotion to process and detail makes his already beautiful sculpture even more lovely.

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Where do you find inspiration?
It’s a horribly stereotypical Cape Town answer, but I often do find inspiration on the mountain. It clears your head, allows you to see, and is covered in finely-detailed and incredibly varied flora. So every walk on the mountain results in discovery and refreshment. Not too long ago I made some drawings of plants from the mountain to use on ceramics, and I’ve used them in my papercuts too.

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Do you collect anything?
Not with any vigour, although I have a pretty large stash of vintage fabric, and a wide range of vintage ceramics.

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What’s your favorite feature in your home?
Our kitchen, which we renovated two years ago, has a little wooden “roof” over the counter, which helps make our open-plan layout more intimate, and whenever we have guests, everyone ends up gathered under the roof, chatting.

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Who would you like to sit down to drinks with?
I’m really looking forward to meeting Neville Trickett one day. I’ve only met him on the Internet, where he’s been doing a weekly post at ELLE DECORATION, but I’ve been to his Saint Verde stores and am quite fascinated with his appetite for collection and ability to see visual links between the most disparate of things.

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Do you have a guilty pleasure?
I steal paint samples, just cos I can’t resist them. Sorry, Plascon.

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What is your most treasured belonging?
Probably the artworks that we’ve bought over the years. We don’t have much, as we’re slow to buy, but love the few pieces we have by Greg Streak, Medina Morphet, Gabby Raaff, Kevin Brand and, of course, we’ve a couple by Paul Edmunds too. We’ve got a pair of divine kitties who, while not strictly a “belonging”, are most treasured indeed!

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What’s souvenir did you bring back from your last trip?

My last trip was to the northern part of South Africa, where we spent a lot of time at an amazing garden called Kings Walden, which was closed to the public but open to us. It really is a very special place, and is currently under renovation. I was terribly tempted to take away a little piece of Kings Walden before it was totally renovated and changed, but felt too much like I was treading on history and stories that didn’t belong to me, so I kept my itchy fingers on my camera trigger instead.  Prior to that, we were in Thailand, and brought back just a few things, including a beautifully-decorated brick that we found holding down a tarpaulen.

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What’s your greatest indulgence?
Lots of tea… and bubbly whenever I get the chance.

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What is your idea of living hell?
Commuting in a car every day. Hours in and hours out – I swear I’d age visibly by the day. I thank my lucky stars that I can get around by foot and by bicycle so much – cars bring out the worst in us, and in me most of all!
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What are some of your favorites websites/blogs to visit?

There really are so many, and I’ve met such amazing friends and colleagues through blogs (yourself included!). Most recently, I’ve discovered a couple of new ones, like the Saint Verde Digest, At Swim Two Birds, Manna from Brooklyn, and yesterday I discovered The Golden Smith, by Australian jeweller, David Neale.

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22 responses to “unexpected guests: skinny laminx.”

  1. Treat, treat, double treat! I love Skinny Laminx and this visit to her happy, light filled home made my day. Thanks for bringing this to cloudy New England! (Oh, and I steal paint samples, too. Who doesn’t?)

  2. wonderful inspiration! thanks for sharing!

    would you please describe the needlepoint project (the design itself, whether it’s a pillow cover or something else …)? it is lovely, like everything else! thank you.

  3. What a beautiful home! I’m jealous of all the lovely furniture and decor. The cats are cute. And the idea of her perfect day sounds indeed perfect :)
    Thanks so much for sharing.

  4. Oooh, those cushions, those chairs, the floors! Everything is so beautiful – thanks so much this Victoria & Heather!

    And I do agree with the car bit. I would love it if I could just stroll out for everything. Traffic jams are the worst.

    p/s- Paul’s work is fantastic – thanks for the intro!

  5. i know i posted like a bazillion pics, but i couldn’t stop myself! i loved them all and got so inspired by them all. this was fun! i loved doing this post.
    thanks heather!

  6. Thanks so much for the amazing post, Victoria! I think just about every nook and cranny of our home has been shown! And thanks for all the lovely comments, everyone. Delighted to have you all snooping around :)

    Cathy, the needlepoint is something I love to do in my spare time. The cushion cover I was working on in this pic never got finished, as I changed my mind and started another. As soon as the new one’s finished, I’ll be posting pics on my blog for sure!

    xx

  7. heather’s home really is just breathtakingly beautiful.
    as i read her answers and perused the images, what really struck me was how much i just wanted to step into the pictures and rest a while.
    i can totally see why her kitties look so happy and relaxed, they truly are living in a most wonderful space surrounded by vintage treasures and stunning items made by the fair hands of heather and her man.

    thanks for sharing heather and victoria…
    Tif :)

  8. i’m so excited you all liked seeing heather’s place. me too!

    and hey tif! hopefully heather & i will do a holiday house swap. i love doing those! PDX for SFO?

    almost the weekend my friends!! :)

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