Sweet Tooth

…after a long day of teaching little fingers how to move correctly, running important errands that could no longer be put off and as always, the sound of piano constantly in my ears, these deliciously looking doughnuts, captured by Chris Court, are a nice distraction as I seek a slight change of pace, even if it is only for a short while.

ASpectacularLife_DonnaHayJamDoughnutsJam Doughnuts

ASpectacularLife_DonnaHayItalianDoughnutsItalian Doughnuts

ASpectacularLife_DonnaHayChocolateGlazedDoughnutsChocolate Glazed Doughnuts

ASpectacularLife_DonnaHayCustardDonutsLittle Custard Doughnuts

And after a well needed slumber, it is back to work tomorrow as musicians, young and old, grace my humble studio with their books, pencils and manuscript in hand.

-The Fine Duchess

All images with the permission of Chris Court, featured in Donna Hay (issue 56, 2011)




A family tradition is passed on as a pair of swans show the young cygnets to ring the bell for food at the 13th-Century Bishops Palace in Wells, Somerset. How clever is that? To read more of this sweet story, click here.

Hope you’re having a good start to the week.

-The Fine Duchess

Happy Weekend


…though the storms in Perth have settled into a light slumber for the time being, it still remains rather nippy outside. So perhaps my plan for what remains of the weekend will be to stay indoors, rugged up with a book in hand as the soft vocals of Katie Costello gently glides in the air above. And as usual, below are some lovely link for you to look through if you so desire. Happy weekend everyone.

Music: a side of Adele that is rarely seen – her cheeky sense of humour between songs. Concert venue: The Royal Albert Hall
Design: loving the details of Melbourne’s The Town Mouse. Their business cards glow in the dark!
Fashion: carousels + valentino = perfection
Paper: modern DIY Save The Date
Drink Up: dark berry, rosemary and juniper fizz 

-The Fine Duchess

PS. Perth readers, did anyone go to see James Blake at The Astor Theatre on the weekend? What did you think? I loved it! And to those who aren’t in Perth, do you like James Blake’s style/music? Something rather different, isn’t it?

Image: The Library Bar at the NoMad Hotel via MODCo Creative



1 Globe Pendant sold by West Elm | 2 Swarm Lamp by Jangir Maddedi Design
3 Glass Jar Pendants sold by West Elm | 4 Copper Light C2 Fat by Workshopped

The Duke and I have been a big fan of the exposed filament for quite some time, first laying eyes on them at all time favourite restaurant, Cantina 663. Whilst browsing for some online, I thought I might show you a few that I have my eye on.

It has been so very busy with preparation for winter concerts, eisteddfods, new piano students and timetables. As a result,  you may have noticed that posting has been slow this week (and last week too). But week one of term three is over, and of course, with that comes the long awaited (at least for me) weekend, though this one might have to be more quiet with the storms that seem to be brewing in the heavens above. No adventures this week, which reminds me that I have yet to post photos from a visit to the museum a few weekends ago.

And on a side note, may I quietly (and proudly) announce that this is my 100th post! I must say that I am rather surprised that I have stuck it out for so long. But of course, I only have you to thank. Without the constant support of all you fellow readers, I would merely be writing and talking to myself. And so, a huge thank you!

-The Fine Duchess

Ice Cream


“It’s never too cold for ice cream” said a clever young girl and I may have to agree with her. Yesterday was National Ice Cream Day in the U.S but that shouldn’t stop us in the small town of Perth from celebrating with them. So if you have an ice cream machine at home, I strongly urge you to try out one of these recipes in celebration of National Ice Cream Day.



Hope you are all well, especially those in Perth who are experiencing rather chilly weather.


Images: 1 Strawberry Swirl Buttermilk Ice Cream | 2 Fresh BlackBerry Ice Cream | 3 Honey Ice Cream

The Bling Ring


New film by Sofia Coppola, The Bling Ring, is based on the true story of a gang of young people who stole more than $3 million in clothing from the likes of Paris Hilton, Megan Fox, Orlando Bloom, Miranda Kerr, Lindsay Lohan and many more. If you’re curious to read about the real event that took place, make sure to look into the Vanity Fair article, The Suspects Wore Louboutins.

The release date for The Bling Ring in Australia will be on 8 August. Will you watch it in the cinemas? Does this film tickle your fancy?

-The Fine Duchess

In the Office: Letter Openers


Clockwise, beginning from the top left hand corner: 1. Brass Squirrel by Jonathan Adler 2. Ruled Letter Opener by Izola 3. Zeus! by Greece Is For Lovers 4. Birdie by Een Nieuw Avontuur

Just the other day, I received a large amount of mail, so much that prying them open with my bare hands was not exactly the best option. So as I opened my kitchen drawer in search of a small knife, it occurred to me that perhaps it is time to purchase a letter opener. Sure, you may say that a knife will do the job just fine, but a pretty (or comical) letter opener is a much more inviting option.

Which one would you like?

-The Fine Duchess

Links you may have missed:

First Monday, Then Tuesday


It seems as if Monday has flown by with me barely realising its presence, and after a short slumber, Tuesday will greet me from behind rain clouds and drops of dew rolling off leaves. But before we let Monday run through our fingertips into the dark shadows of the night, I will leave you with a few links from the weekend:

In the office: Desk Clocks | a roundup by Oh So Beautiful Paper

Gold: A necklace that when spun reveal the words “I love you

Wear: This beautiful dress by no other than the amazing Elie Saab

Hope you have had a splendid day.


(The source of this image is unknown. If you know of it, please let me know and I’d be more than happy to include it)

Mary Street Bakery


On a blustery morning, my sniffly sister S and I took a small trip down to the newly opened Mary Street Bakery for a cosy breakfast. I made note to park on the beautiful Mary Street, where the trees grow so elegant and tall, they seem to bow and curtsy as if at the completion of a gigue or minuet.


When inside the bakery, we were warmly greeted by familiar faces (many from Cantina 663 and Ace Pizza) and quickly shown to a table. As usual, the staff were prompt in taking our coffee orders, then leaving us to casually browse through their breakfast and lunch menu. Not feeling up to a large meal, S chose the cauliflower soup whilst I opted for the soft boiled eggs with soldiers.



The coffee, with beans from local Pound Coffee Roastery, was good – smooth but strong, and hot enough to drink but not burn your tongue. My boiled eggs were done just right, with the tomato chutney complementing the meal well; S also mentioned that the cauliflower soup was tasty, however there were a few too many walnuts in it and she’s not the world’s biggest fan of nuts. Overall the meal was very well received.


However (yes, here comes the one unfortunate negative), there was an aspect of the service that was a bit lack lustre. The cauliflower came out with no spoon, but the kind young man who brought us our meals said not to worry, as he would quickly dash over and get us one. A few minutes went by but no spoon arrived. Despite not wanting to impose, I flagged down a passing waiter and again, asked for a spoon. And then the same thing occurred – we were promised a spoon, but the spoon made no appearance. Over five minutes had passed and we couldn’t help wondering why it was taking such a  long time to grab some cutlery for an eager customer. The dashing gentleman sitting at the table beside us saw our slight dilemma and couldn’t help but note to us that it was pretty bad service and offered to hop up and get one for us. By now, the soup was sure to have cooled down quite a fair bit; despite S’s protests that she didn’t mind waiting and that they were probably still getting around to us, I hopped up and asked for one at the counter, where I happened to see there was quite the stash. Goodness! A bit too much drama, and all before noon too.

Would I visit the bakery again? Of course. The food and coffee is great (which is to be expected since the people behind it are also behind Cantina, Ace Pizza and El Publico). I’m just assuming that the strange incident which occurred on our visit is a one off.

What’s the oddest (or worst) customer service you’ve ever received? Did you give the establishment a second chance?


PS. what other bakeries would you recommend in Perth? Have you been to Cantina 663, Ace Pizza and/or El Publico? Did you like it?

Mary Street Bakery on Urbanspoon