Castlefield Design District

The weekend was great! We went to Algonquin where we saw 3 moose, but were surprised to find the cabin we last stayed at unrecognizably changed, but then we realized that was all the way back in 2001! Instead, we stayed in Huntsville, then drove on to Collingwood on Sunday and finally home.

Yesterday, I had a spa day, so got to extend the relaxation. Also, I took some time to drop in Castlefield Design district, where there's a great salvage store called The Door Store. The whole district is out of the way for downtowners but worth the trip. Elte / Gingers has great stuff, as does Sharon O'Dowd

Algonquin Park

I'm finally getting out of town, probably driving to Algonquin Park and finding a cabin to sleep in the other side of the park. I need a break from the city, from my computer and from work. Hoping to see stars and moose!

Sharon Okun

Saw this at the Ingram Gallery and it reminded me so much of the Olympia Theatre in Dublin.


It's very nearly two years since I was home. And that was only a week with a wedding keeping me busy and in Dublin. So really, I haven't been home since 2003, when I left, which is shocking. I don't usually get homesick, but I have this growing sense that it would feel good to take a break from work and go back.

It hit me first when I read that Colm Toibin piece on Beckett. And again today when I started reading Toibin's short stories and saw a laundry list of familiar names: Fairview, Clontarf, Malahide to the north; Ranelagh, Rathmines, Rathgar to the south. Then again, maybe I should just get out of the city, it's nearly been as long since I did that.

Erwin Olaf

Contact Festival is on and I've already caught some stuff. The one I'm now dying to see is Erwin Olaf. This is just a wee sampling, but you really should check out the full portfolio. I usually dislike "manufactured photos", though that's a dangerous term to toss around. But, these are fantastic.

David Linley

I have a love for woodworking tools, especially the artisan kind that you can get from Lee Valley and the likes. I'd even like to have a little workshop where I could tinker around with bits of wood. So, I naturally like these lamps from David Linley. And, while you're at it, I strongly advocate a look at his bespoke pieces. Whether they're to your taste or not, they're intriguing.

D&E Lake

About 2 years ago I was down at D&E Lake, my favourite antiquarian bookseller / art dealer in Toronto. Don's shop is one of those beautiful irreverent stores, valuable books piled high, seemingly uncatalogued - each a treasure. And drawers and drawers full of works on paper.

If you go there looking for a specific book, he'll usually tell you he has it upstairs and send you looking. I've never found any of the books I went looking for upstairs. But I always found something. And 2 years ago that something was an etching and aquatint by Moses Reinblatt.

He wasn't an artist I knew of but I fell for the piece. I meant to save up and buy it, so for ages I didn't even go in to the store. But last weekend, on my way to the Distillery I went back looking for a book (Liberman's the Artist in his Studio). Of course, I didn't find the book and I was being coy about looking at anything else. Then Don told me my print was still here. The minute he said it, I wanted to see it. I was half-afraid I wouldn't see what I had liked so much. But I did. And on the spot, decided to finally buy it. It's impossible to have buyer's remorse about books or artwork you love.