Love to cook? Instead of writing down their words of wisdom and congratulations, have friends and family write down their favorite recipe and put it in a recipe box. To keep the cards organized, use labels to separate appetizers, main courses, beverages and desserts.
When updating a historic home in the Hancock Park area of Los Angeles, Sabine Klingler Kane designed the kitchen around her clients’ butcher-block island. “My client had the island long before we started the remodel,” she says. “It looks perfectly vintage, but it is actually a reproduction made from reclaimed wood. It is ideal for their young daughter as she does not need to be careful with her crayons and spilling food. It has drawers on both sides, and wine storage underneath as well as shelves for cook books. But the best thing is: Two compartments on top have been outfitted with electrical outlets to plug in tablets, laptops, phones and small appliances. It also has towel bars and a bottle opener attached to it — it is not only great looking, but also totally practical and functional.”
Terrariums take on a new twist in Garden Made: A Year of Seasonal Projects to Beautify Your Garden and Your Life, by Vancouver author Stephanie Rose. Rose, who blogs about gardening, cooking and crafting at Garden Therapy, adds layers of colored sand to her glass gardens. Although sand art has been around since the 70s, it feels fresh and trendy when used with your favorite houseplants.
This open kitchen is part of larger living room, anchored by a great stone fireplace. Looking around, one can learn so much about the family that lives here: they love to cook, find comfort in a roaring fire and enjoy curling up with a book in their tufted armchairs.