Category Art and design

Fifty Shards: Confirming England’s fascination with the weather

Day Thirty-three and Thirty-four: See peoples? This is what you call weather. And the proof of it is in the photo. A morning of crystal clarity then a torrent of wind and rain. Temperature: And yesterday, proof it is autumn with an unpleasant wind chill factor thrown in for good measure. Get those scarves out! Greyscale: Charmingly silver then non-existent, the Shard become Tardis-like […]

My museum is better than your museum (plus two shards)

You may have heard of Dennis Severs’ House on Folgate Street in Spitalfields. It’s the small museum that makes a virtue of its crumbly interior, where rooms have been unrenovated and returned to their eighteenth century mood and your tour is provided by candlelight and the insidious smells of the past. It is a fascinating […]

Why does Georgian architecture look even better in the autumn? – plus a Shard

Like daffodils in spring and ice-cold chocolate milkshakes in summer, there’s nothing like a bit of Georgian architecture in the autumn. Light just hits those white-rimmed windows and sets them off, don’t you think? The quieter parts of Holborn are rife with the earlier and far stricter period, that of the 1720s. And just to prove that […]

A London shop devoted to umbrellas and sticks

Umbrellas. Now there’s a commercial opportunity. Unsurprisingly, London has a very well established shop devoted to this much maligned accessory. James Smith and Sons has been around for some time. 1830 to be exact. They sell umbrellas and that other curiosity, the stick. We’re talking walking sticks here. Once, they were all the rage. Now […]

A stroll in Regent’s Park (or ‘the Regent’s Park’, as it’s more formally known)

Nothing like a flower arrangement to get this fella in. And Regent’s Park, one of the Royal parks of London, does arrangements rather well. Like a suit you put on once a year, a walk down one of its main arteries provides a formal floral kick that leaves you feeling just that little bit wealthier… […]

Fifty shards: a shard from any angle

Day Twenty-six and Twenty-seven: Two days. Two different shards. And just because I can, a shard taken from a new angle up Hampstead way. Outta control! Temperature: Groggy Greyscale: Three shards of grey. In E L James’s words: Variety is the spice of life. The more variety, the more the spiciness. In fact, fifty spices (I feel a brand extension […]

Jemma Wayne’s After Before is a missive on forgiveness

Pop songs and celebrities have cheapened the way we forgive. Like love, forgiveness is easily made, almost without care it seems. “I forgave my ex.” “Forgive and forget.” “The power of forgiveness.” Everyone’s doing it – but do we really understand what it means? And do we ever ask ourselves why we should? After Before may […]