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ON SUNDAY

ISSUE 02 MARCH 2009

JEREMY

THOMPSON Exclusive

RECYCLE YOUR STYLE Spring into Fashion YESTERDAY’S FURNITURE In Today’s Homes

TRINITY FAVA "IT’S GOOD TO BE UNIQUE"

GOING INTO GAZA

The Story from inside the War-Torn Region


EXTRA AVANT (Bambu) by Veneta Cucine

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CONTENTS ISSUE 02 MARCH 09

41

81

15

74

89

STYLE O N

62

35 STYLE In-Depth 15 PHOTOS BEHIND THE HEADLINES Local photographers Rene Rossignaud and Nicholas Critien travelled to Gaza to take pictures. We have the exclusive story behind the destruction

57 THE EVOLUTION OF BEAUTY

41 JEREMY THOMPSON

Mum-of-four Christine Scerri is given a fresh new look for Spring

The media world giant speaks to STYLE ON SUNDAY about Nelson Mandela, Obamarama and interviewing a murderer

89 PIANO FORTE

Style asks three Maltese architects to choose their favourite Renzo Piano creation

62 MAKEOVER MAGIC

65 PAMPER YOURSELF

Hair by Nadia at Privé Hairdressing Make-up by Justine at Glow Photography by Brian Grech Art Direction by Stephen Azzopardi Styling by Lizzi Lowell Shot on location at LSD - Life Style Design

STYLE Fashion 22 FASHION INTERVIEW Style speaks to architect and model Trinity Fava to discover it’s all about being unique

67 SKIN DEEP

31 IN THE PINK

Our selection of the best beauty products on the market

38 HEAD TURNER

81 OLD MEETS NEW

Kenneth Tanti demostrates how to slot yesterday’s furniture into today’s homes

Nina Summers debates the hot potato that is censorship in Malta

STYLE Cuisine

86 WORKING IN STYLE

74 POSH PICNIC

Art conservator Sabine Azzopardi shows us the tricks of her trade

Trinity wears dress by Miss Selfridge, Gucci necklace in 18ct gold and diamonds, matching bracelet, ring and earrings from the Horsebit Marina collection - all available at Sterling Diamonds.

Make-up artist Diane Nikolic explains the art of relaxation

STYLE Home

71 SINKING THE CENSOR-SHIP

COVER LOOK

Style celebrates 180 years of the House of Guerlain

STYLE Living Malcolm J. Naudi quizzes Diane Izzo about her BMW 3 Series convertible

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STYLE Beauty

S U N DAY

Grab your picnic basket and head to the hills for some fantastic fare

Our pick of the must-have pink items this season

32 OUTDOOR LIVING

A breath of fresh air - top items for living outdoors

35 RECYCLE YOUR STYLE

Get stylish for Spring. Stylist Lizzi Lowell recycles your look

49 SHINE LIKE A STAR

Style looks at the various chic jewellery options for your Big Day

53 DESIGNER BABIES

Coryse Borg finds out what’s cute and stylish for your little tots


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Publishers

Editor’s Letter

Stylish living is all very cutting edge and ‘in the moment’, so when conjuring ideas for this edition of Style on Sunday our minds wandered to the most cutting edge topic of all: current affairs, and we became engrossed by it. Rene Rossignaud and Nicholas Critien are two local photographers who stretched the boundaries of their profession by heading to Gaza just days after the recent ceasefire took place. Their resulting pictures are stark windows onto the shattered lives of the people living on this ill-fated strip, while the stories they brought back hone in on what happens when the door to freedom closes behind you. Sticking with the theme, we were thrilled to speak to international media giant Jeremy Thompson, who has travelled the world for decades, covering many of the world’s most explosive moments for Sky News. His recollections are both humorous and mind-boggling. On an equally current note, we looked at the world-famous works of Renzo Piano

through the eyes of three of Malta’s bestknown architects. Our fashion interview this issue is with Trinity Fava who, from her name to her style, has built a life and career around being unique. Keeping with fashion, stylist Lizzi Lowell talks us through creating a wardrobe fit for Spring by purchasing key pieces and recycling wardrobe staples. Staying with our desire for stylish living we go behind the steering wheel of Diane Izzo’s BMW convertible, and explore the work space of art restorer Sabine Azzopardi. Meanwhile we look at the numerous, beautiful jewellery options for weddings – from engagement rings to what to wear on the big day. In synch with the season we head to the hills for a posh picnic and enjoy some yummy outdoor fare, while back inside we celebrate a mix of old-meets-new created by interior designer Kenneth Tanti. As always, we hope you enjoy it!

E-mail: info@contenthouse.com.mt www.contenthouse.com.mt

Editor Jo Caruana Production & DESIGN Brian Grech Stephen Azzopardi E-mail: info@designestablished.com www.designestablished.com

Art Direction Stephen Azzopardi Photography Brian Grech www.briangrech.com

Contributors Joseph J Abela Coryse Borg Nadia Busuttil Concita Demicoli Lizzi Lowell Justine Micallef Malcolm Naudi Diane Nikolic Nina Summers Kenneth Tanti Advertising Content House Ltd

STYLE COMPETITION

Win a gUCCI SIGNORIA Last issue we asked readers to send in their slogans for the chance to win a trilogy diamond ring courtesy of Sterling Jewellers. You responded in droves, but our favourite was Sarah Mercieca with her slogan: There are never enough I Love Yous.

This issue you are in with the chance to win a fabulous Gucci watch worth €995.

To enter, choose your favourite Sterling Jewellers brand and describe it in three words. Send them to win@styleonsunday.com or in writing to Style on Sunday, Content House Ltd, Mallia Buildings, 3, Level 2, Triq in-Negozju, Mriehel QRM3000. Competition closes 25 April 2009. One entry per person. Terms & Conditions apply.

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Content House Ltd Mallia Buildings, 3, Level 2, Triq in-Negozju, Mriehel QRM3000 Tel: 21 320712/3 Fax: 21 320714

We're looking forward to hearing about what you think of Style on Sunday. Please send your Letters to the Editor, comments and queries to editor@styleonsunday.com

Advertising ExecutiveS Maria Zammit Kyra Stagno Navarra Solange Sant Fournier Distribution Style on Sunday is distributed for free with The Sunday Times. Circulation of the publication is 40,000+ Printing Progress Press Ltd Style on Sunday is a quarterly high-end magazine which epitomises quality lifestyle and refined living. The themes and personalities featured are observed from the ‘Style’ perspective: elegant, inspiring, exquisite. Style on Sunday is meant to stir the desires of men and women, catering for their pleasures and needs.

www.styleonsunday.com All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in retrieval system or transmitted, in any form or by any means: mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without prior permission of Content House Ltd. While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of information contained in the publication, the publishers cannot be held responsible for any errors it may contain.


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STYLE In-DEPtH

As the rest of the world gaped at the recent tragedies unfolding in Gaza through TV sets, two local photographers needed to experience the suffering first hand. Now back safely, Style on Sunday speaks to Rene Rossignaud and Nicholas Critien about their time spent in the city behind bars.

TAKING PHOTOS BEHIND THE HEADLINES Black & White Photography by Rene Rossignaud Colour Photography by Nicholas Critien Words by Jo Caruana

It’s a scene that doesn’t give anything away. Rene wheels himself around on an office chair reeling off one humour-tinged story after another, while Nicholas sifts through scores of pictures on his monitor. There is banter, there are frequent jokes and there is ladchat; in fact the only thing to give away our frightening reason for meeting is the bullet-proof vest in the corner. They may be back, but the photos they took link to memories that will be hard to put aside.

Imagine walking into a rehab centre brandishing bags of cocaine or other drugs and handing them out to the patients – it’s unfathomable. So what about the boozy indulgences of the festive season for a recovering alcoholic? How on earth do they cope with the abundance of celebratory champers, wine and spirits around every Christmas corner? “I guess I was having a sandwich in the wrong place at the wrong “When I used to drink, Christmas was my favourite time of time when I met Rene,” jokes Nicholas, as the duo begin to recount the year,” laughs Lisa*, who’s now in her 40s and has been their harrowing journey. “Rene mentioned his plans to travel to Gaza sober for 20 years. “That said, when I was drinking, every and within 24 hours we were applying for international press passes and working out how to get past the Israeli border. It’s not a decision you can think long and hard about; you just go.” These two are likely lads, outwardly more suited to a night on the town than days locked

15


STYLE In-DEPtH

inside one of the world’s most dangerous regions. And for the first few minutes of our chat they guffaw through the process of securing their visas and tickets, but as talk turns to their touchdown on Israeli soil, things get muted. Rene: “We went straight to the Israel Defence Force (IDF) to collect our visas and were told that we were the first Maltese journalists to ever cross over into Gaza officially. We signed forms that made clear that the IDF was not

responsible should we be wounded or killed during our time in Gaza; our bodies would remain there if we were and essentially, at that moment, we signed our lives away. “That night we found a Holiday Inn close to the border and enjoyed a last meal in civilisation. We had set our clocks for 6am but were woken at 5am when the emergency alarm sounded and we could hear explosions in the distance as rockets were fired into southern Israel. We had been warned that

we had just five seconds to take cover at that point, so we hurled ourselves on the ground and waited. It was a harrowing wakeup call, both real and metaphorical, and it’s at that point that true fear and reality gripped us – when we eventually made it downstairs for breakfast we were too shaken to eat.” They travelled to the border crossing between Israel and Gaza. Rene: “On the Israeli border sits a huge, modern, glass-fronted building surrounded

“W e were told that our bodies would remain in Ga za if we died there. We were effectively signing our lives away.” Rene Rossignaud

[Left] Rene Rossignaud and Nicholas Critien spent time inside Gaza photographing the destruction.

17


STYLE In-DEPtH

“We BOTH had AK-47s pinned to our heads and the militants were all screaming at each other deciding what to do,who to kill first.” Nicholas Critien

by fresh grass and fountains, once through it you are faced with a steel door that is just big enough for a human to walk through. You immediately think ‘Welcome to Hell’, you hear the thud of the door behind you and realise that you are locked in – there is no getting out of Gaza if you are supposed to be in there. And for the next few days, we were meant to be in there. “There started a 2km walk through no man’s land, beyond the Israeli border but not quite at the Gaza one yet. It was the scene of a

18

massacre, a spot which prior to the 2000 war was a thriving industrial district; now it’s a sad, flattened mass. At the end of the strip we reached the Gaza passport office – here no one checked our documents or hounded us for information, instead they hugged us and offered us tea. Palestinians love the foreign press and believe in its power. We quickly made friends with a taxi driver who took us to a ‘safe’ hotel.” Nicholas: “The ‘safe’ hotel actually turned out to be quite an experience. We were welcomed by

the manager who assured as that we were ‘Very safe! No bombs!’, but once we got to our room on the 7th floor and looked out of the window, we realised that the building next door and part of the hotel had been flattened. That night we dragged our beds into the bathroom and tried to sleep there. But sleep wasn’t really an option as, every hour or so, a plane would whistle overhead followed by sharp explosions mere miles away. It’s at this point that we realised we had nowhere to run to.” Nicholas and Rene toured throughout Gaza


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STYLE In-DEPtH

during their stay, visiting each of the villages that had been attacked in recent months. Nicholas: “You see the same things you see on TV, but in the flesh, and realise the true horror. One of our saddest realisations was the damage Israel caused on their exit from Gaza once the ceasefire had been called. Instead of driving their trucks through the roads they stuck to the fields, destroying acres and acres of fertile land and crops as they went, taking entire livelihoods with them as a defiant goodbye. Walking into a town where 45 houses once stood and seeing only huts instead is heartbreaking, but these families stay there clinging to their memories and whichever remains survive. Contrary to defeat they see it as victory because they are still alive. It was impressive how even in these spots we were welcomed and invited in to sit with them. It was so touching.” Any aid for Gaza arrives though Egypt, and the border between the two is littered with over 990 illegal tunnels through which goods are channelled. Nicholas: “The frightening climax of our time

in Gaza came when we went to take photos of these tunnels; it’s an extremely dangerous region under constant watch. When our interpreter drove up to ask permission to proceed, he was turned away, but instead of telling our driver to back away he advised him to keep moving forward. Before we knew it our car was surrounded by Hamas militants ready to attack. The atmosphere was tense and electric, we had AK-47s pinned to our heads and the militants were all screaming at each other deciding what to do, who to kill first. It was like a scene from the movies, with ten men at the back blocking our car in, and ten at the front forcing us out. We were shouting in Maltese trying to be understood, and eventually our driver was able to speed away, but 20 minutes later we heard news that that entire area had been bombed by IDF fighter jets minutes after we left. It was an uncomfortable wake-up call to the fact we had cheated death twice in minutes – at the hands of both Hamas and Israel.” At the end of their time within Gaza’s walls, one of their biggest ordeals was still to

come: leaving. Rene: “Getting out is nothing like getting in – the officials at the border do their utmost to scare you away from ever coming back. We walked through 19 glass chambers and were watched intently through each. They took our belongings, stripped us, ridiculed us and left us feeling abused. They had no real reason to, but intimidation is one of their most effective tactics. “It’s this kind of harsh reality that runs through the entire region – politics that has wrecked lives. Gaza could be so beautiful. Despite its horrors and infectious fears, we’ll go back.”

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STYLE FASHION

photographED BY BRIAN GRECH SHOT ON LOCATION AT LSD - LIFE STYLE DESIGN ART DIRECTION BY STEPHEN AZZOPARDi STYLING BY LIZZI LOWELL HAIR BY NADIA AT PRIVÉ MAKE-UP BY JUSTINE at GLOW LIGHTING BY NEXOS

22

Black dress and beaded evening bag by Marks & Spencer, Calgaro necklace, matching bracelet, earrings and ring available at Sterling Jewellers.


STYLE FASHION

Making her way in the world while looking great doing it. Jo Caruana meets blue-eyed girl Trinity Fava, architect and interior designer.

“Architecture is still a maledominated industry and you need a strong character to find your way in it.” T

rinity Fava, 28, smiles back at me from across the boardroom table and her big blue eyes twinkle. Their size seems to defy her tiny frame and petite persona, but once she begins to talk it becomes clear what they are hiding – an incredible zest and zealousness for every aspect of her multifaceted life. “It’s hard to pinpoint the part of my life that defines me,” she smiles, “an architect, designer, performer, model, daughter or girlfriend. I think life is about piling up all of those different parts of you and creating something that keeps the spring in your step and your drive alive. “Architecture was a path I fell into, and which I love. I met my boyfriend Kurt while studying and those two aspects of my life slotted neatly together; we literally grew up together as people and as professionals. Now we have our own business and it suits us to a tee as we complement each other brilliantly. The way we divide our workload makes a lot of sense – his focus is the planning side of things whereas I am more at home with interiors.

23


STYLE FASHION

“Women today have umpteen opportunities thrown their way, but at the same time the pressures are equally hefty.� 24

This page: Shirt by Promod, dress and belt by Miss Selfridge, shoes by Marks & Spencer, necklace, bracelet and matching ring by Bliss, watch by Versace - all available at Sterling. Opposite: White knitted top, jeans and belt by Terranova, red shoes by Promod, white bag by Carpisa. Watch, chain in 18ct white gold with charm, bracelet and ring - all by Rosato, available at Sterling.


STYLE FASHION

“One day I would like to design my own clothing line, and uniqueness would certainly be a major brand factor.” “It’s a great partnership and we thrive on sharing both the personal and work parts of our lives. Of course, it’s important to find an adequate split between work and home. I think I am the more dominant of the two and really push for quality time. It’s hard because the work that we do surrounds us – we often drive by buildings and discuss them or find ourselves talking about fabric over dinner! But we have a lot going on outside of that too – I act, sing and model while Kurt sails. Keeping busy is an intrinsic part of both our characters and it also helps to keep our relationship young and fresh.” Trinity’s modelling career began later than most, in her early twenties, when friends suggested she should give it a go. “I never saw my own

potential but took to it and enjoyed it. I was offered the opportunity to work abroad with foreign photographers, which was an incredible experience. I’m not the sort of person who actively heads out and looks for modelling work, but at the same time I find it very enjoyable.” The paths of architecture and modelling seem hard to morph; does Trinity believe that good looks have helped or hindered her professional career? “In my opinion looks are both a blessing and a disadvantage. Architecture is still a male-dominated industry and you need a strong character to find your way in it. Occasionally, playing up to the fact that you are a woman helps, but most of the time you struggle to prove your worth when you are surrounded by contractors and large lorries! Now that I am older my confidence has improved and I.m not afraid to fight for my vision anymore. I’ve developed my own style and am keen to keep putting my unique stamp on everything that I do.” Uniqueness is important to Trinity, a trait that seems to have been with her since the day she was named. “The name Trinity was my father’s idea. He had a friend from Trinidad

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STYLE FASHION

and Tobago whose nickname was Triny, and it always stuck in his mind; he’s a fan of unusual names. I love the fact that my name is original and memorable. “My views on fashion and style are similar – I like to stand out. I would be contradicting myself if I said that image wasn’t important, and I’m a big believer in the power of first impressions. It is not just about throwing on something that’s ‘in’, but about creating something that works for you. Fashion should make you look and feel good – shopping is major therapy, and I think that’s something only another woman can understand! You have to have imagination, creativity and flair, and as with everything in life you have to be open to taking risks but at the same time you have to feel comfortable. When I look around I think Maltese people do still lack a certain sense of style that flows so easily in other parts of Europe, but we’re getting there. One day I would like to design my own clothing line, and uniqueness would certainly be a major brand factor.” Does Trinity consider herself part of the generation of women who want it all, now? “I think young women today do want it all – the great career, a busy social life, a marriage, kids and a home. I would like all of those things, but one step at a time. Women today have umpteen opportunities thrown their way, but at the same time the pressures are equally hefty. I was chatting to my mum about this recently, and we were discussing how priorities have changed since she was my age; by this point in her life she was already married and settled. I, on the other hand, want to do and experience everything, and I don’t want to compromise on any of it. Women are multitaskers and I firmly believe that where there is a will there’s a way. “You have to know what you want and focus on attaining it; my target has always been to achieve a lot of different things. Life’s too short to skip on experiences. Maybe the time will come when women will be happy to sit back and adopt a less hectic lifestyle, but in the meantime I am thrilled to be carving mine out exactly the way I planned it.”

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STYLE FASHION

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STYLE FASHION

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Dolce Gabbana sunglasses. Available from the Sliema and Valletta outlets. €242

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IVV spiral tumbler set of six €75. Ba lime green cushion I a range. €14

CAMILLERIPARISMODE

Pierre Frey lacquered fabric tray from the MING collection. Peugeot salt and pepper mills. Binoculars in brass and leather.

CARPISA

Beige haversack in soft eco-leather from the new Spring/Summer 09 collection. €35.90

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OPTIKA

Bulgari sunglasses from the new Spring/Summer 09 collections, offering the perfect expression of glamour and elegance. Available from the Sliema & St. Julian’s outlets.

OUTDOOR LIVING


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hair JOSEPH - PRIVE, make-up DIANE NIKOLIC model ERIKA ROSSIGNAUD

STYLE FASHION

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Has Spring taken the hop out of your wardrobe? Stylist Lizzi Lowell reworks classic trends using stalwart pieces, helping you recycle your style in an instant!

RECYCLE

q - Terranova Skir t, bag & belt Top - Diesel e Scarf - Calliop & Spencer Shoes - Marks

YOUR WARDROBE How do you put together a Spring wardrobe when the stores are still half full of sale stock, it’s pouring with rain and the last thing you want to be doing is bearing skin? Be smart! You don’t need an entire new wardrobe for a season that lasts about as long as an episode of Lipstick Jungle. This season’s biggest hit is called Cost Per Wear and it’s all about putting your money behind a piece of clothing that you will wear time and time again. Even fashion diehard Ashley Olsen

has been snapped by the paparazzi in the same leather pencil skirt on several occasions. Whether she’s dressed down in flats, sexed up in stilettos, or topped off in tights, she’s applied a signature styling touch to make her beloved item look unique every time. The message is clear this season: multiple manifestations of the same look are no longer taboo. They’re right on target. So this season start by buying less but buying well. There’s nothing shameful about wearing the same thing again… again… and, possibly, again.

35


q

STYLE FASHION

How to Recycle your Wardrobe Before you even set foot in a shop, go through your wardrobe and collect the staples. They’re your jeans, that black skirt and jacket, white shirt, black v-necked knit and all things that you’ve pulled out year after year for yonks. We divided the average young woman’s wardrobe into three categories: casual/fun, work/smart, evening/party. This Spring’s colour trends are designed with a focus on optimism and stability, calculated to soothe our senses in stressful economic times. Spring floral brights, fuchsias, warm blues, greens and deep yellows are tempered by neutral colours of rose, slate grey and muted lavenders. Blue and yellow-greens fill out the colour trend list. We decided to accentuate an existing wardrobe with some of these key colours to refreshen and revamp the staple items, and put together three distinctive outfits. We used a white shirt and black v-necked sweater, and teamed them with casual khaki shorts, cool fashion trainers and a print scarf to jazz up this relaxed weekend outfit. Every young woman must have a basic black skirt in her closet. If not, then go out and buy a good quality one now! We teamed ours with a fuchsia knitted roll-necked top (such a big colour this season), a yellow/green chiffon scarf, a thin belt on the waist (not the hip) and some cute Mary Janes – so simple yet so perfect. See page 55. Lastly, for the evening/party look start with dark blue denim straight or wide-legged jeans – we all have them. If you find a style that suits you – keep buying it. Team with a chocolate satin shirt with tuxedo details, a high heel, little clutch and you’re out the door.

Swe ater, shir

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Jeans - Diesel ks & Spencer Mar shirt Shoes &

Now take these three looks and mix and match the tops with the bottoms – the t&s ho r t H jeans with the pink sweater, a Scar s - Markt - Terra f&t s& n pink sweater with the khaki raine Spen ova rs - D cer shorts – from these items iese l you’ll be able to create up to 12 different outfits. Reduce, reuse, recycle – simple!


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STYLE LIVING

Cars are very much in Diane Izzo’s blood. She’s had plenty and never keeps them for more than a couple of years. Right now she’s thrilled with her BMW 3 Series convertible, as it’s the car she’s always longed for.

Text by Malcolm J. Naudi Photography by Brian Grech

HEAD

TURNER 38

Petite Diane Izzo sits opposite me at the glass-topped boardroom table in her new sleek office in St Venera. She plunges confidently into a subject that is clearly close to her heart: her BMW 3 Series convertible.


STYLE LIVING

Having previously owned a BMW, Diane opted for this current model because she likes the brand and because “BMWs are one of the best cars.” Her choice is both brand-led – as an importer of fashion brands, she is very product conscious – and because she likes the model itself. “I like this car,” she smiles, “the size, the shape and the fact that it’s a convertible. I also like the colour – white, which is in fashion. I love its interiors too, and know from experience that BMW builds good cars. The after-sales service is great too.” Diane confesses that she has a passion for cars, and mobile phones: “My dad’s a car dealer and has spent his entire life surrounded by cars. So changing cars every couple of years is in my blood – I’ve even been known to change cars every year or so. In fact I don’t think I’ve ever kept one for more than two years.” On her own admission, she explains that she likes to change things often – with the exception of her husband, she is prompt to add. “I love cars. When I leave the house in

the morning, my car makes me feel content. Plus I think it reflects my personality.” Since she keeps her cars for such a short period of time, she makes the most of them and the BMW 3 Series convertible is her everyday car. “I am not the sort of person to save cars for special occasions just because the model is expensive. Still, I look after them and don’t tend to pile on the mileage. She was attracted to the BMW because of its retractable hard top. “The roof is raised at the touch of a button; everyone is impressed with the mechanism. When I put the roof up, it is an attraction in itself.” Having owned other nonBMW convertibles, she claims that the refinement, precision and the fact that it is rattle-free were pluses that spurred further her choice of car. Diane’s most important consideration when looking for in a car is comfort. “The seats are vitally important for me. Even though this is a convertible, it is a four-seater, not a 2+2. I like driving with the roof down, especially during summer evenings.”

Among its many mod-cons and gadgets, Diane loves the fact that the car’s lights switch on automatically in tunnels, she is also impressed at the automatic rainsensing wipers and the seat memory function: “The memory seats are brilliant, and they are quite a new feature. When I get into the car after my husband has driven it, this car automatically finds my preferred driving position. It’s super! The seats even heat up automatically in winter.” She likes the car’s automatic transmission with its semi-manual gearbox and pedals behind the steering wheel, as well as the convenient stereo controls on the wheel. Although she has no intention of changing the car anytime soon because “this is the car that I have enjoyed using most and it is closest to my heart,” her roving eye has already settled on her next acquisition – a Range Rover. “After the convertible, I’ll be looking for something completely different!”

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ARKADIA GOZO. TEL 2210 3000

SAVOY ARCADES VALLETTA TEL 2123 8890


STYLE In-DEPTH

LIFE ON the FRONTLINE

Jeremy Thompson is one of Sky News’ most famous faces, and he’s been with the channel for the majority of its 20-year history. He spoke to Jo Caruana about his personal, frontline experiences of Nelson Mandela, Obamarama and interviewing a murderer. Jeremy Thompson is a force to be reckoned with, a veritable giant of the media world and, as it emerges through our lengthy chat, a genuinely nice guy. Most of us are accustomed to turning on our TV sets and watching as Jeremy regales us with the day’s top stories; from war frontlines to some of the most flabbergasting events of recent times, he has been there. He cherishes all of the memories, whether frightening, touching or earth-shattering, and he admits to feeling genuinely humbled by the people he’s met and the events that he’s witnessed.

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STYLE In-DEPTH

Q

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The world of news television isn’t an easy one to get into. How did you crack the industry? Having decided that I wanted to be a journalist, I began an apprenticeship at a tiny local paper as soon as I left school. I had never given news TV much thought as there wasn’t a lot of it around in my youth, but as I progressed through my career opportunities started to emerge and I was spotted to become a network correspondent. I was eventually head-hunted by Sky (which was very flattering) and have been here 15 years now. Sky pioneered the idea of heading to the frontline to cover the world’s biggest stories on the field. In 1999, during the liberation of Kosovo, we were the first to broadcast from within while our rivals were still wondering what was going on. We’ve been keeping that up ever since. How do you manage to fit a personal life around your job? As a foreign correspondent I have lived in Asia, South Africa and the United States. My wife has always come along with me and been hugely supportive. We’re both adventurous, and have enjoyed the adventure together. I don’t take her to wars though! Have you ever felt in danger? Yes, all too many times. South Africa, during the latter days of apartheid, was very violent and I got caught up in one or two incidents where the people around me were killed and I was lucky to escape. I also saw a lot of violence in Somalia, Sierra

Leone, Sudan and of course Rwanda. As an aside, for my wife’s birthday this year we are going on holiday to Rwanda to see the mountain gorillas as a treat. It will be wonderful to see the country now that the gloomier days are behind it, and I look forward to seeing how the people and gorillas have flourished. What’s the most exciting event you’ve ever covered? I’ve been lucky to be right in the thick of some of the most dramatic war and peace moments in history so it is hard to pin one down as the most exciting. I remember reporting on the first democratic election held in South Africa in 1994 and was present when Nelson Mandela was inaugurated as President. It was a moment we never thought would happen – a black president in South Africa. Recently I was reminded of this while covering the US general election, broadcasting live as the first black American president was inaugurated. I remember looking around and thinking: “My word, this really is history in the making.” You recently completed a documentary on Nelson Mandela. What was it like to spend time with him? I would say, without a shadow of doubt, that he is the single most impressive man I have ever met; he has made such a genuine difference to millions of people and changed the course of history. Throughout it all, he was always wonderfully humble, unfailingly courteous and always remembered us reporters


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MENʼS


STYLE In-DEPTH

by our first names. He believed in the positive power of the foreign media and the difference that it could make. What was it like to be part of Obamarama? I followed Obama right from the early days of the very first primaries, right through to the day he beat Hillary Clinton to be the democratic party leader and then to his victory as president of the United States. When the victory was announced I was in Times Square reporting on the reactions of the American people and it was a truly joyous and emotional experience. The day he made his acceptance speech it was exceedingly cold and there were two million people there watching. Washington had a warm glow to it that day and it was so different to normal political rallies; more like a pilgrimage. People had put their trust, hope and belief in his message and this was the result. It was a hugely uplifting experience. These days the news are filled with economical doom and gloom. Do you think the media is hyping the situation up to be worse than it really is? I think we are doing our level best to be straight and honest with our viewers, and to tell them what is really going on. Sadly most people don’t have faith in our politicians so it is up to us to give them the unvarnished version of what is going on. Of course the danger with 24/7 media is that it can worry people and can allow them to get carried away with just how bad things are. I think people are learning to get on with it, and to let the government handle the crisis, but many are being directly affected all over the world. This has been a huge reality check and I hope we are being responsible in our portrayal of it – informing them and not frightening the living daylights out of them! Has a story ever really touched you or have you had to develop a hard skin? Some stories still hit a nerve, and one of the most touching was that of the Soham murders in 2002, when two little girls went missing (and were later found murdered) in a sleepy English town. I went to cover the story and interviewed caretaker Ian Huntley on the street as he was said to be the last person who had seen them alive. The next day he was arrested as a suspect, and it then emerged that he was the one who killed them. It was very emotional and hard to watch the horror of the situation unfold. It was one of those stories that the whole nation got involved in. What do you know of Malta and have you been here? I have been to every corner of the globe but sadly have not yet made it to Malta! Shame on me, I will have to put that right. I have heard that it is very beautiful and have a friend who used to live in Gozo. I definitely want to come there soon – sadly the news and the world have got in the way so far!

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STYLE JEWELLERY

Shine Like a Star on Your Special Day With springtime upon us, love is in the air and many young lovers’ thoughts go towards settling down in wedded bliss. After all, as the old song goes, “love and marriage... go together like a horse and carriage”. So the inevitable ‘Big Day’ soon rolls around. No, not the actual Big Day, but the one when you head out to buy the rings. Romina Grech Fenech, from Sterling Jewellers, explains: “We understand how important it is for couples to find all the help they need when it comes to choosing engagement rings, wedding rings and even the jewellery to be worn on the Big Day. We take this very seriously, and are here to guide your choices until you find exactly what you are looking for whether that relates to your wedding list, choosing the perfect diamond for the engagement ring or matching your ideal wedding bands.” From top: Salvini rings in 18ct white gold - from €260, GUCCI rings starting from €395, Bulgari b.Zero1 rings in white, yellow or pink gold - from €600, Sterling Diamonds wedding rings in white and yellow gold with diamonds - from €186, Pasquale Bruni ‘Amore’ rings in white, yellow and pink gold - from €750. All available at Sterling Diamonds.

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STYLE JEWELLERY

Engagement Rings The first step towards any altar usually begins with an engagement ring and getting it right in a sea of styles and shapes to choose from isn’t easy. The giving of a ring to show betrothal certainly dates back. In classical times, a ring was placed on the fourth finger of the left hand as it was thought to contain the vena amoris or ‘vein of love’. Nowadays there are various options when it comes to buying engagement rings. The traditional way of course is for the man to present it to his fiancé-to-be when he proposes. If the man does decide to fly down the solo route, it’s likely that the best way to go about it is to take one of her rings along to the jeweller’s to make sure the fit is right. He may also decide to take her best friend along with him as she may have a better idea of what his girlfriend might like, for example whether she would prefer a solitaire to a trilogy or viceversa, and what would suit her best. Remember that a ring speaks volumes about a personality, as well as the fact that she will, after all, be wearing it for a long time. These days though, with more and more couples living together before marriage, it is also becoming common for the couple to choose the ring together. Moreover, this is a sure-fire way of making sure that the woman definitely gets the ring of her dreams!

Diamonds are traditionally the most popular stone for engagement rings, so it is important to be on the lookout for the four Cs — clarity, cut, colour and carat weight. Clarity is the degree to which a diamond is free of blemishes and inclusions. A good cut will influence the diamond’s colour and sparkle. Carats determine the weight of the diamond. The bigger and more flawless the diamond, the more expensive it is. Just remember, that buying an engagement or wedding ring is (hopefully!) a one-time deal, so it is worth splashing out for a little bit of extravagance. Engagement Ring Choices Most engagement rings are made from either white gold or platinum.

“If you would like something unique, we have loose certified stones in stock,” explains Romina. “Once you choose your favourite one, we will mount it in front of you and can even come up with a custom-made design.” Engagement Ring Trivia Engagement rings were traditionally required to be so pricey for three reasons: so that the bride to be – and her family – would know that a conscious effort to save had gone into the proposal; that by saving for a ring the husband was demonstrating his readiness to save for the future; and finally, that should the couple ever happen on hard times, the ring could be sold to help them get through.

Wedding Rings

Does she like simple styles or something that stands out? There is such a huge variety of styles to choose from, and her personality will definitely determine this factor. Bear practicality in mind whatever your choice; as they are worn daily, it is important that engagement rings be hardwearing. Would you prefer a one-stone ring, or a trilogy? One-diamond rings are a more traditional look, whereas trilogy rings have increased in popularity recently. The three stones represent the past, present and future.

Choosing a wedding ring might seem a more straightforward task than selecting an engagement ring, but it still involves many important and exciting decisions. Circular wedding bands represent unending love, and the ones you choose will hopefully be the ones you wear for the rest of your lives together. Because your rings will be worn for a long time, it is important that you opt for quality, so that they are both spectacular and durable against every day wear and tear. Most couples opt for simple, stylish bands that will remain chic forever.

TRILOGY

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ETERNITY

SOLITAIRE All available at Sterling.


STYLE JEWELLERY

SALVINI STERLING DIAMONDS

PASQUALE BRUNI

PASQUALE BRUNI

BULGARI

STERLING DIAMONDS SALVINI

STERLING DIAMONDS

Tips for choosing your Wedding Rings Browse through magazines and catalogues to get a better idea of what choices are out there and which styles you like best. Many wellloved jewellery brands offer wedding band collections. Pasquale Bruni has the chic Amore Collection while Bulgari make the unique BZero1 ring if you are looking for something truly stylish. Salvini, Calagaro and Gucci – some of the top jewellery brands in the world – also have special wedding band collections, each with their own distinctive style. Diamond wedding bands are also becoming popular. The Sterling Collection has a special selection of 18ct rings with embedded diamonds.

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shapes too, and a good jewellery shop will be able to talk you through the varying styles that will work best for you. Engrave your wedding rings for added sentimental value.

Wedding Day Jewellery Wedding Day wear is so often focused on the dress that the thought of bridal jewellery (other than the rings of course!) may seem unimportant. Naturally this isn’t the case, as every tiny detail of your overall look is significant. The jewellery you choose to wear will depend on the dress:

Select a style and metal colour that match or complement the bride’s engagement ring. Although there are no hard and fast rules, matching bride and groom wedding rings sets are beautiful and now also extremely popular. Alternatively, you could choose to design your own rings, ensuring the finished product is just what you were looking for.

Traditional – If your choices have been traditional thus far then go with that flow. A simple wedding dress leaves room for dazzling, eye-catching jewellery. Try diamond earrings with a matching tennis bracelet and a delicate pendant. To perfectly accessorise a strapless gown, try a loosely swept up-do to draw attention to your shoulders, along with some simple, elegant drop earrings that will catch the light beautifully.

Try on different ring widths to see which one works best on your hands. There are different

Contemporary – If your look is a little more modern, perhaps with a sleek dress as opposed

to a fuller one, traditional jewellery could create the perfect contrast between the two. Pearls, with their timeless elegance, are a perennial favourite of blushing brides and come in a huge variety of styles, shapes and colours. Against the Grain – Not everyone wants a white wedding, and if you are one of the increasing number of brides opting for a completely different wedding style, then make sure your jewellery follows suit. There is a huge selection of chunky, colourful and dare-to-bedifferent styles on the market that will help your look to stand out. “If you are looking for something completely original we can even have it made,” adds Romina. “Brides and grooms-to-be are welcomed to make an appointment with me personally so that I can explain all the options available and find a selection of jewellery that suits perfectly. They can email me directly.”

Romina Grech Fenech Email: fenech@sterling.com.mt


Outdoor Living Royal Botania’s outdoor collection of furniture is designed to offer a perfect blend of precision and functionality to compliment your outdoor lifestyle. www.royalbotania.com This collection can be viewed at: 54/56 st. catherine street, rabat, malta | tel: 20 102 030 you@camilleriparismode.com | www.camilleriparismode.com

... that little bit out of the ordinary RABAT

| SLIEMA

|

VALLETTA


STYLE FASHION

Designer labels for little ones and celebrity babies for them to live up to. Coryse Borg looks at what’s ‘très chic’ for your little tots.

HIC

FROM THE START The other day I was watching a reality show about the day-to-day life of fashion mogul Kimora Lee Simmons. This isn’t a programme I would normally choose to watch, but as a mother of a gorgeous, demanding two-month-old baby boy, I find that by mid-afternoon my brain is frazzled to the point that I actually enjoy kicking back to the tune of what, in my household, is normally termed ‘trash TV’. In fact, I have become so fond of the antics of Ms Simmons (exmodel, CEO of fashion lines Baby Phat and KSL, as well as selfprofessed promoter of ‘Fabulosity’) and her entourage, that marvelling at how the tremendously rich live, while cuddling up to my little lad, has become a daily habit. During one of these programmes, Kimora’s two daughters, Ming (7) and Aoki (5) got to help design their own fashion line – with the help of one of mum’s real designers of course – and came out with a collection of fun, mainly pink, couture clothing for young girls. And that got me thinking... print and online magazines are

increasingly full of photos featuring the children of celebrities dressed to the nines in designer gear, just like their mummies and daddies. Is it possible to have fashion-conscious tiny tots? Possibly the most well-known (and well-dressed) little girl out there is Suri Cruise, daughter of Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes. According to one report, Katie thinks nothing of spending thousands of dollars on a single designer outfit for her cute-as-a-button offspring. Another article states that Suri loves shopping with her mum and often chooses her own designer clothes. At the tender age of three, Suri is apparently already a budding fashionista who favours brands such as Burberry and has been seen out-and-about in Armani. Last year, she topped the Forbes.com list of ‘Hollywood’s 10 Hottest Tots’ and the clothes and shoes she wore, including a velvet dress from French children’s wear couture house Bonpoint, practically sold out as soon as magazines featuring photos of Suri wearing them hit the newsstands.

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STYLE FASHION

Premaman Maternity Wear

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And of course, with the designer-clad baby, comes the designer-clad nursery. Celebrities have access to some of the best home designers to create the loveliest nurseries around for them. Apparently, Petit Tresor is a favourite with celebrities such as superstar Madonna. And when she got pregnant with her daughters, actress Brooke Shields enlisted the services of design guru Wendy Bellissimo to create two absolutely beautiful rooms. Unfortunately not all of us have millions to spend on our children’s clothes and nursery. But it is possible to find couture clothing that won’t break the bank. A quick gander at Kimora Lee Simmon’s website, for example, shows that many items from her children’s clothing line are actually quite affordable. Closer to home, Malta’s fashionista tots are now catered for with a new concept store Pedigree Kids, having just opened at the Plaza Shopping Complex. It offers a wide choice of quality toys and games, together with a section of chic items from Premaman, an international franchise with over 300 shops worldwide that provides a one stop shop for the mother-to-be and children up to ten years of age. Premaman stylists are renowned for their exclusive collections of clothing and accessories, as seen in the top fashion magazines. These trends are then adapted for clothing as well as nursery and baby accessories. So it is now possible to get the celebrity look for less, here in Malta as despite looking like they just came straight off the baby catwalk, these items really are affordable. And it is not just us mere mortals who love shopping for a bargain. Not all clothes purchased by celebrities for their kiddies necessarily have to cost the earth. But for those for whom money is no object, the website of clothing store Glamajama (its motto is ‘From the Crib to the Catwalk’), for instance, features a host of testimonials from satisfied celebrities from Britney Spears and Kate Hudson to Halle Berry and Christian Slater. Demi Moore, Aston Kutcher and Paris Hilton also bought a load of t-shirts, for their dogs! Angelina and Brad’s kids on the other hand have been spotted wearing ultra-cool clothes from CribRockCouture which specialises in t-shirts emblazoned with nursery rhymes with a twist. Of course, some brands remain a little more out of reach. Items from the Armani Baby line are absolutely gorgeous but rather pricey for the average mum. Ditto the Baby Dior clothes and accessories (my personal favourite is the Baby Dior Polar Bear and I am seriously considering buying the Baby Dior dummy and bottle). However, the prices of many items are not too exorbitant and, for the mummy who likes her little cherub to be at the cutting edge of fashion – more ‘Baby Haute’ than ‘Baby Gap’ – it is literally a small price to pay.


PRIVÉ HAIRDRESSING

BEAUTIFUL HAIR BY JOSEPH & MARIELLE. T H E S T RA N D - SLI EM A. TEL: 2133 6962


STYLE BEAUTY

The House of Guerlain started in 1828 and has grown to become synonymous with the world of beauty, celebrating its 180th anniversary last year.

The Evolution of Beauty The House of Guerlain

Guerlain is synonymous with style and beauty, and having celebrated its 180th anniversary last year, today is more desirable than ever. Style on Sunday took a walk down memory lane.

Entering the Guerlain universe means crossing the threshold into an exceptional world where respect for tradition and a feel for innovation weave the most beautiful creations. Everything about the brand feels very special to look at and use, even the name itself drums up an aura of those wonderful bygone days when everything had a rose tint to it. The brand was kicked off by Pierre-Francois-Pascal Guerlain when he opened his first boutique on Rue de Rivoli in Paris in 1828. He was a qualified chemist and physician in England and had come to Paris to try his luck at making, among other things, soap.

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STYLE BEAUTY “He was daring, persistent and had a taste for quality,” explains Laurent Boillot, Guerlain’s president and CEO. “Years later he would say to his colleagues – ‘Make good products and never compromise on quality. As for the rest, stick to simple ideas and apply them scrupulously.’ These are principles that have remained with Guerlain through its history.” Combining his pharmaceutical expertise with nostalgia for his native Picardy, where his family worked as pewter pot makers, Pierre-FrancoisPascal began harnessing some wonderful fragrances in his laboratory. He lost no time in choosing his corporate name: Parfumeur Vinaigrier, and he started perfuming his Sapoceti soaps, made from spermaceti and fragrances with natural essential oils including rose, jasmine and gardenia. His success was almost instant and was very widespread. Through the continued patronage of members in high society, the House of Guerlain opened its first flagship store at 15, rue de la Paix, in 1840, and put its mark on the Parisian fashion scene once and for all. Perfumery was clearly in his blood, but PierreFrancois-Pascal did not let the skincare side of things slip either. His products were must-haves and claimed to have different benefits such as

Mr Guerlain was daring, persistent and possessed a unique taste for quality.

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Sylvaine de la Court is the ‘nose’ behind Guerlain. She creates all the iconic scents for the House, even bespoke ones for VIPs.


STYLE BEAUTY preserving elasticity, making skin softer or protecting it from the sun. The success of the House during this era came when, in 1853, the Eau de Cologne Impériale was created. This perfume earned Pierre-François the prestigious title of being His Majesty’s Official Perfumer in France, which lead him to create perfumes for Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom and Queen Isabella II of Spain, among other esteemed royalty. Since its founding, Guerlain has always preferred selective distribution, and so the Guerlain boutique was born. A Guerlain boutique, like a Guerlain fragrance, is different from all the others yet shares a striking family resemblance. Stepping into a Guerlain boutique is a sublime experience, appealing subtly to a woman’s sense of sight and smell. Here customers may request ‘fittings’ until they find the perfume perfect for them, or can have one made uniquely for them – a truly bespoke scent.

Make-up today is in the hands of Olivier Échaudemaison who continues to inject creativity by introducing new and innovative products or unexpected shades every year. Guerlain has stayed ahead of the trend, creating scents and beauty products that reflect the time – Vol de Nuit (1933) inspired by writer Saint-Expury, Teint Dore par le Soeil (1938), a sunless tanning product that was well ahead of its time, reflecting the preference for the summer glow on skin year round, and the first beauty salon on the Champs Élysées (1939) with furniture from Jean-Michel Franck and art from Giacometti was opened. At the end of World War II, American soldiers lined up to purchase Guerlain scents and Scarlet blusher to bring to their sweethearts. Throughout the decades, Guerlain has maintained its grasp on all things beautiful, building on its beauty markets, make-up, perfume and skin care. The brand is spurred on by world-renowned make-up artist Olivier Échaudemaison, the company’s now

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STYLE BEAUTY artistic director, who continues to inject creativity by introducing new and innovative products or unexpected shades every year. In fact, buyers of the KISSKISS Or & Diamants lipstick (set in a case hand-crafted by French goldsmiths, adorned with 199 diamonds and set in 110g of 18k yellow gold) can meet Mr Échaudemaison personally for the chance to discuss the perfect colour for their pout. And while Maltese ladies will be unable to get their hands on the luxurious lipstick locally, Guerlain’s

popular ‘jewel’ Rouge G will be available from April and is truly fantastic. The lipstick is lightweight, long-lasting and packed with colour. It includes ruby powder that will be radiant when it interacts with ultraviolet rays, as well as mother-of-pearl to smooth and even lip surfaces. Best of all, it comes in a shiny, wholly metal case that beautifully seals the deal. Its built-in mirror makes application a doddle and simply oozes style at the same time. It is one of Guerlain’s must-haves of the decade. Looking to the future it’s all bright of course, as Guerlain works towards another 180 years of success and glamour. “There is no need to point out how much our current work draws strength from our history,” adds Mr Boillot, “although this pride in our past is never enough to stifle creativity.” And it was certainly the original Mr Guerlain himself who set the tone by saying: “Glory is short-lived, only renown lasts.”

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Rouge G is a ‘jewel’ of a lipstick and will shortly be available locally. It is lightweight, packed with colour and long-lasting. Its silver packaging is divine with a built-in mirror.

At the end of World War II, American soldiers lined up to purchase Guerlain scents and Scarlet blusher to bring to their sweethearts.


OPEN ALL DAY: PALACE SQUARE - VALLETTA | THE STRAND - SLIEMA


STYLE MAKEOVER

Christine was treated to a complete transformation by Joseph at PRIVE Hairdressing, and John at the Franks Concept Store in Mosta. She also received a Lancaster gift set and a clothing voucher from Coconuda to complete her fantastic new look.

Products used: Lancaster 365 Cellular Elixir is an intelligent anti-ageing serum which prevents and treats ageing skin by protecting the cellular DNA of the cells. It is perfect for all skin types and should be used day and night all year round. Retinology Total Age Solution – High Efficiency Cream gives your skin a real boost. For the first time, active retinol, invented by Lancaster, is delivered intact to the cell core for 100 per cent efficiency. For all skin types to be used day and night. Lancaster Easy Manicure Paintbrush is so easy to apply as its packaging comes in the form of a lip-gloss so you can just paint and go. It comes in four colours; two pastels and two reds. Lancaster Infinite Sun Palette, Eyes, Lips & Cheeks, as the name suggests, is an all-inone make-up product which perfectly suits the lifestyle of a busy woman like Christine. It incorporates eye shadow, bronzer and lip-gloss.

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Deserve a treat or know someone who does? Send your makeover nominations to editor@styleonsunday.com Please include a recent photo of the nominee.


STYLE MAKEOVER

“I loved having the time to pamper myself! The hair colour Joseph chose is lovely as it gave me a lift without changing me too much. Plus, the mini-facial and make-up session with John were the icing on the cake! It was great fun when I showed my husband and children my new look and they loved it! My little one would like ‘yellow’ hair now too! It really was a day to remember.”

MAKEOVER IN STYLE

Mum-of-four Christine Scerri was nominated for this makeover by her husband Edward. He said: “My wife is mum to our four young children, including a set of five-yearold twins! She is completely dedicated to them and this makeover would be an excellent excuse for her to dedicate some time to herself for a change.”

Clothes by Coconuda, shoes by Shelly’s, belt & bag by Furla, accessories by So Divine. All at the Franks Concept Store - Cornerstone Shopping Complex - Mosta. Make-up by John Micallef using Lancaster, at Franks. Hair by Joseph J Abela at Privé Hairdressing.

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STYLE BEAUTY

Be Body Beautiful! Award-winning make-up artist Diane Nikolic guides on how to make an at-home pampering session feel like a day at the spa

When it comes to looking good, beauty therapist Diane Nikolic explains that it’s all about feeling good. She explains: “A few beauty rituals can make you look beautiful by making you feel amazing. In order to feel deliciously gorgeous, get grooming. Follow our step-by-step guide to ensure you feel spa-sorted after every bath.” The tricks of the ‘get gorgeous’ trade are fragrances, body lotions, candles and bath oils – the little things that you should indulge in to keep your skin young and beautiful. This is ‘your’ time so tell anyone in the house that you would like an hour to yourself. Light candles – there are some great, fragranced

HOME-MADE MASK RECIPE

ones on the market. Adding a few drops of aromatherapy oils to the bath will soften the skin and stimulate your senses, helping you to unwind. Adding bath salts will help you to unwind even further plus they are a great detox aid. While your bath is running, cleanse, tone and apply a face mask (see our home-made mask recipe below) to leave your skin deliciously soft. Once in the bath remember this is ‘you time’ – close your eyes, take deep breaths and relax. After washing your body with a non-drying soap, polish your skin with a homemade scrub made of rough sea-salt and almond oil, using a loofah, body brush or exfoliating glove. Use

circular motions and always rub towards the heart, removing dead skin as you go. If you suffer from sensitive skin use sugar instead of salt. After your bath indulge your skin with plenty of body lotion – massage it all over and use special anti-cellulite cream in the spots you need it most. Cellulite cream really does work if used every day. Remove your face mask and lather on some moisturiser based on your skin type. Give your hands some special attention; almond oil or warm olive oil will work wonders on cuticles. Spritz on some perfume, even if you’re staying in as this will guarantee to make you feel fresh and sexy. By this point you should be feeling fantastic!

It’s surprising how many kitchen-cupboard ingredients can make a real difference to your skin. Heat half a cup of water, add a tbsp of honey and half a cup of oatmeal, mix and allow to cool. Apply and lather it on. Oatmeal is fantastic for healing and deep cleansing. It will leave skin scrumptiously clean and ready for moisturising.

BEAUTY REVIEW

Get your skin set for Spring. We review 6 of the best beauty buys this season

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[1] Revlon Beyond Natural This weightless foundation is exceptional; it goes on white and self-adjusts to match your exact skin tone. I was pleased to discover that Beyond Natural provides just enough coverage to even out the skin tone and cover minor imperfections. It’s great! Just enough colour to make your skin look ‘finished’ but not at all overdone. [2] Stage Line Soft Bronzer The velvety texture of this light coverage bronzer is great. The oil-free subtly luminous loose powder blended seamlessly giving a natural sun-kissed glow with a light shimmer which lasted for hours. [3] Diorskin Nude – Natural Glow Fresh Powder Make-up This loose powder foundation adapted perfectly to my skin tone and gave a natural fresh glow when used alone and after applying a fluid foundation. This foundation is imperceptible, luminous and gave a silky and transparent finish. A definite must have!

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[4] Guerlain Super-Aqua Mask An easy-to-apply, silky, fresh mask with immediate results – super soft, optimally hydrated, invigorated and radiant skin. [5] Stage Line – Silk Veil Silk veil is a soft, fragrant-free gel. It provided a perfect base for my make-up as it minimised my open pores and made my skin feel tauter. My skin had a glow and yet my face stayed matt and oil-free all night. [6] New Roc Retin-ox Wrinkle Filler This product is great and has worked wonders for me! After just a few weeks, my skin looked and felt smoother, and had a more even tone. The fine lines on my forehead have been softened and are now less noticeable. This product is effective, yet not as harsh as prescription Retinol products. When it came to anti-ageing products, I was a total sceptic until I started using Roc products.

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MAKEUP FOR SPECIAL OCCASIONS MAKEUP LESSONS FACIALS BODY TREATMENTS WAXING TREATMENTS FOR MEN MANICURES PEDICURES

At Glow we guarantee a high standard of customer service and the most up-to-date, quality beauty treatments. Diane Nikolic is committed to provide you with a friendly comfortable environment to enjoy

GIFT VOUCHERS

Gift Vouchers are available on an extensive range of our treatments, services and beauty products.

your treatments by offering a unique pampering and relaxing experience, allowing you to unwind, escape and fully rejuvenate. We look forward to helping you with all your beauty and skincare needs.

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STYLE BEAUTY

ENVIRON

Environ’s C-Quence Eye G B u u T

ROC

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GILLETTE

The Original 3 blade Venus Razor Soft has protective cushions that gently smooth out your skin leaving it silky to the touch. Just one stroke gives you a close shave and silky smooth skin. The best way to maximise the efficiency of your shave is by giving your body the lightest of touches.

DIOR

Dior’s latest skin-perfecting foundation is a ground-breaking formula with state-of-the-art technology to recreate the illusion of naturally beautiful bare skin. Diorskin Nude Natural Glow Hydrating Make-up, SPF 10, blends 100 per cent mineral pigments and water to deliver flawless results giving you a natural glowing complexion and a head-turning radiant look that you can only achieve in your own nude skin. Diorskin Nude loose powder and liquid foundation will take your complexion to a whole new level. These products are available from all leading perfumeries and are distributed by X-Treme.

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REVLON

Revlon - naturally glamorous, never overdone. Revlon introduces its NEW breakthrough foundation, Beyond Natural Skin Matching Make-up. A lightweight foundation with exclusive ingredients that adjust to match your exact skin tone. Available at all Revlon counters.

SKIN DEEP

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STYLE BEAUTY

Capture Totale went beyond beauty to become an event – a product coveted by women the world over. Style on Sunday celebrates the newest products within this wonderful range. New Products Within The Skin Care Range

Ever More Beautiful

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In 2006 Dior created an event with its new line of skincare, Capture Totale, offering astounding performance on all signs of ageing. Dior’s expertise targeted longevity proteins for the first time and set out to make women “more beautiful than when they were 20”. Later, Capture Totale expanded to offer a global youth-restoring beauty routine, from skin care to make-up. With Sérum Foundation launched in 2008, Capture Totale offers women a High Definition make-up that combines the astounding Capture Totale anti-ageing ingredients with Pigments Cristaux Liquides HD™ technology, for a glowing complexion.  And now, in 2009, the Dior Innovation Centre has propelled the global anti-ageing effectiveness of Capture Totale skin care to new heights, perfecting formulas to powerfully correct all visible signs of ageing and reawaken light, deep within the skin. Since its inception in 1970, the Dior Innovation Centre has strived to amaze the world of anti-

ageing cosmetics and turn it upside down with major innovations. 2009 is marked by a new anti-ageing revolution. The Dior Innovation Centre has identified a single biological cause of skin ageing and loss of luminosity: protein oxidation. The new Capture Totale is enriched with an exclusive Dior compound: Aminolumine™. Curbing the protein oxidation process by restoring proteins to their original youthful state, it slows down the effects of time. Freed of its dull film, the skin glows with the radiance of youthful skin, diffusing visible, captivating new clarity. In addition to its effect on radiance, Aminolumine™ reinforces the activity of Centuline™ and Alpha-Longoza Complex™, essential compounds in Capture Totale skin care products, for anti-ageing effectiveness on all visible signs of ageing. Thanks to this new triumph over ageing, Capture Totale can now bestow on the face its most beautiful mark of youthfulness: radiance.

Multi Perfection Serum The ultra-flowing texture of this concentrate is rapidly absorbed by the skin, leaving it incredibly soft and velvety. Day after day, skin is transformed: it is smoother, firmer and ever more luminous. Multi Perfection Cream Immediately following application, the smooth, luxurious texture of this crème leaves a lasting sensation of comfort, with no surface oily film. Skin appears plumped up with its surface glowing. Multi Perfection Eye Treatment This flowing cream leaves skin feeling incredibly comfortable. Dark circles and puffiness are visibly toned down. The eyes light up and their contour is amazingly smooth, firm and even. Multi Perfection Radiance Enhancer A spectacular effect is immediately produced, restoring the skin’s youthful freshness and radiance. Day after day, the skin’s texture becomes smoother and more even. The complexion is luminous and more youthful. Multi Perfection Resurfacing Peel In just a few minutes, skin seems renewed and is gently regenerated: visibly smoother, with a fresher-looking and more luminous complexion. Multi perfection Day Protection UV Protect SPF 35/PA+++ Skin is intensively protected. It remains smooth, uniform and even, with a visible glow. It reveals new light and youthfulness. For the full range of Dior Capture Totale products, including night creams and specialised make-up, visit Dior stockists now.


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Hair: Lara Steer @ D Salon; Model: Ruth Steer; Photo: Rene Rossignaud; Make-up: Diandra Mattei. Shot on location at Mdina.

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STYLE IN-DEPTH

“I’ve never been anything before banned from .A rock’n’roll!” -nEd it felt very va Mendez

To See or Not To See? That is the question asked by Nina Summers, as she digs into the hot potato that is censorship in Malta.

Sinking the censor-ship With a gasp of horror, (not unlike the gasp they emitted when Janet Jackson’s wardrobe refused to behave), the US TV networks hammered down the gavel on their collective mediadesks and declared Eva Mendez’s nipple banned! The actress’ (Hitch, The Women, We Own The Night) new commercial for Calvin Klein’s Secret Obsession was deemed to be Too Hot for TV. This racy TV advert shows Mendez writhing around on a rumpled bed, caressing herself and whispering huskily, “Between love and madness lies obsession. Love… Madness. It’s my secret”. All well and good thus far, however at around the 13th second (as eagle-eyed bloggers handily pointed out), the more observant amongst us can glimpse a shot of her ‘lady lumps’, well just one of them actually. But even a single boob is apparently too daring for most people;

so the execs at Calvin Klein edited the ad to a more palatable, sedate version. For this, read that they just omitted the ‘offensive’ split second shot. Of course, all this did was make demand for CK’s Secret Obsession soar sky high. No publicity is bad publicity and this can hardly hurt Mendez’s career. When contacted for her reaction to the censoring of her commercial, she said “I was surprised it was banned, but it was actually kind of exciting because I’ve never been banned from anything before. And it felt very rock’n’roll!” On this little rock we call home, we didn’t roll with the original ad, we went for the ‘safe’ version. The advertising agency didn’t want to take the risk of offending anyone. However, would we have raised an eyebrow when we can watch daytime Italian TV

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and scantily clad women are always the order of the day? Is censorship a dirty word or a necessary evil? Do we need to be shielded from some of the horrors this world can throw at us, or should we be free to decide for ourselves? George Bernard Shaw (Irish Playwright) said that, “All censorships exist to prevent anyone from challenging current conceptions and existing institutions”. However, as long as there have been institutions, there have been power and control struggles. Censorship is effectively the control of ideas and information circulated within a society. With the current uproar over the banned play ‘Stitching’ here in Malta, censorship seems to be the word ‘du jour’. We have, however, been censored many times before. In the 1970s one of the more popular comedy shows on Maltese TV, at least for English speakers, was The Dave Allen Show. Where this show merely cocked eyebrows in the UK; here, all the jokes which featured religion were cut. However once the airways were opened up and Rai 2 was let through, we started receiving many more sexy images via our TV set. Anything from Crazy Horse to an exceedingly scantily-clad Cicciolina lounging in a champagne glass. Well, Cicciolina lounging in anything really. It was the fact that she wore very little clothing that titillated most of our male population. Once the floodgates opened and private Italian stations like Teleblea came into being, then we were bombarded with strip shows any time we wished, or didn’t wish, for them. We seemingly couldn’t turn on the TV without an avalanche of boobs descending onto our laps. At the same time, films like Monty Python’s Life of Brian were not allowed to be shown in our cinemas. When Martin Scorsese’s The Last Temptation of Christ was also banned, it became increasingly obvious that sex and violence didn’t seem to blip on our authorities’ radar, however anything that featured religion, evidently did!

An interesting exception to the above ‘rule’ is the film Raid on Entebbe – this told the story of a hijacked Israeli passenger plane and the Israeli Secret Service which managed to rescue everyone under the nose of Idi Amin and thus make a fool of him. Malta was then under a Labour administration and the film was banned. Local theatre did not escape the long arm of the censors either. Mario Philip Azzopardi’s 1970s play Sulari fuq Strada Stretta was not allowed to be shown in Malta and the author/director had to wait 30 years before he was allowed to stage his play here. This wasn’t an isolated instance. After the highly successful Reduced Shakespeare Company’s The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), they attempted to stage The Bible: The Complete Word of God (abridged) and no prizes for guessing how well that notion went down. On Catholic Malta this show was nixed, however in just-as-Catholic Ireland the Reduced Troupe was hauled to the Supreme Court to face allegations of blasphemy. The court justices were treated to a viewing of the show and ruled it “juvenile but not blasphemous”. This tickled the troupe so much that they put it on their advertising poster! Censorship is indeed a sticky issue. Where can the line be drawn? Where does the state (and locally also the church) stop being a guide and start being an oppressor? Of course, nobody is above the law and anything which contravenes our laws on blasphemy, obscenity and sedition should indeed be halted. However, disallowing Eva Mendez’s breast – which was artistically lit and in soft focus – is probably wading into nannying territory. The human body in its beautiful form should not cause scandal to anyone – especially when the more stark, lurid versions of the human body are free-to-view on the Internet. The busty, raunchy Mae West probably said it best, “I believe in censorship; I made a fortune out of it!”

[1] Monty Python’s “The Life of Brian” was not allowed to be shown at local cinemas. [2] Pia Zammit and Mikhail Basmadjian were to star in banned play “Stitching”. [3 & 4] Infamous Italian porn star Cicciolina.

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STYLE CUISINE

Grab your picnic basket and head to the hills! The best thing about Spring is that outdoorsy aura that has us all itching to sit in a field, grazing on yummy fare. But if you’re going to do it, do it right with delightful fairy cakes, delicious pasta salad and tantalizing home-made breadsticks.

Posh PICNIC

As the weather warms, life heads outdoors. Style on Sunday puts together the perfect picnic.

Food and Words by Concita Demicoli Ingredients from ARKADIA FOODSTORE, PORTOMASO & ARKADIA, GOZO Photography by BRIAN GRECH Styling by STEPHEN AZZOPARDI 74

Artificial turf from Qronfla - Balzan.


STYLE CUISINE

LEMON CUP-CAKES 100g self-raising flour 100g butter 100g sugar Zest of 1 lemon 2 eggs

Beat butter and sugar together until creamy. Next add the eggs and the flour. Stir in the lemon zest and bake at 160C for about 10 minutes. Once the cakes are ready allow them to cool completely. To decorate the cup-cakes, prepare the meringue. For the meringue, place 3 egg whites (be careful not to let any yolk contaminate the white) and 200g of castor sugar in an electric beater and whisk. Now beat in 1 tbsp of cornflour and whisk to a hard peak or until the meringue will hold its shape once lifted. Place the meringue on top of the cake and using a blow torch, heat briefly until it turns light brown in colour.

FAIRY CUP-CAKES For the cup-cakes: 100g self-raising flour 75g butter 100g sugar 1 tsp vanilla essence 2 tbsps milk

Place all the ingredients together in a food processor and blend until a smooth cake consistency is achieved. Bake the cakes at 160C for about 10 minutes. Once the cakes are ready, allow them to cool completely and set aside. For the topping: Butter Icing Beat 100g of butter with 200g of icing sugar. Keep on beating the icing until you achieve a soft creamy consistency. Add food colouring (being careful not to add too much) and decorate with white icing balls. Royal Icing Beat 2 large egg whites together with 2 tsps of strained lemon juice and with the beater still running, add 300g icing sugar. Keep on beating until the sugar is well combined and the mixture has a glossy finish. Now colour your icing pink (or your chosen colour, using food colouring) and decorate the cup-cake immediately. Royal icing will stiffen if not used immediately.

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STYLE CUISINE

HOME-MADE BREADSTICKS 200g plain flour 1 tbsp olive oil 5g instant yeast

Place the flour, yeast and olive oil in a bowl and stir. Drizzle in enough lukewarm water to form a dough. About ½ a cup should do the trick. Set the dough aside for around 30 minutes. Next, roll out the dough into sticks and bake at 180C for around 15 minutes. Dress your breadsticks with slices of parma ham, gammon ham, gorgonzola cheese and cheddar cheese. We also used sun-dried tomatoes and pitted green olives.

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C

It’s hot jazz nights and cool afternoon tea for Excelsior’s Jazz Weekend.

heck out a quartet called Roots, a jazz, latin and funk band featuring Effie Azzopardi on trumpet at Excelsior’s Chartroom Bar on Friday 20th March from 9pm to 12pm. On Saturday 21st March, listen to Jazz Quartet By Frank Bonnici playing at the Admiral’s Landing for Buffet Dinner.

Or there’s cool jazz for Afternoon Tea on Sunday 22nd March with the Roots quartet featuring local jazz singer, Francesca Galea. That’s from 3.30pm to 6.30pm at the Harbour View Lobby Bar. To reserve your table for Saturday night, kindly call the Admiral’s Landing Restaurant on 2125 0520 or just turn up and enjoy.

A Member of

www.excelsior.com.mt

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STYLE CUISINE

PASTA SALAD

300g pasta 1 yellow bell pepper 1 red bell pepper 1 medium carrot Small broccoli florets Begin by cooking the pasta. Once cooked, remove pasta from the heat and quickly cool down by adding cold water to the pot. Once drained, rinse again under cold water. Meanwhile sauté vegetables in olive oil until crisp. Now place the pasta into a bowl, mix with vegetables and drizzle some olive oil until you prepare the dressing.

Zesty Dressing Juice of 1 medium lemon 1 tbsp whole grain mustard 3 tbsps olive oil Mix the ingredients together in a bowl making sure that the mustard is broken down and combined with the oil. Mix the vegetables into the pasta and drizzle the dressing over it. Mediterranean Dressing 1 tbsp pesto 1 tbsp tomato concentrate (kunserva) 2 tbsp olive oil Ground pepper Mix the ingredients together in a bowl. Mix the pesto and tomato well so that there are no lumps. Mix the vegetables into the pasta and drizzle the dressing over it.

A Touch of Cream 1 tbsp oil 1 medium onion – thinly sliced 1 garlic clove – finely chopped 6 to 7 cherry tomatoes Some chillies – optional 250ml double cream A handful of chopped parsley

Heat the oil in a frying pan and over a medium heat, cook the onion and garlic until they have softened. Next add the cherry tomatoes without chopping or removing the skins. Stir gently so that they are mixed in with the garlic and the onions. Now add the chillies. Cook for about 3 minutes until the tomatoes start to soften slightly. Now stir in the cream and the parsley. Cook, stirring continuously until the cream warms up and is well incorporated with the other ingredients. Remove from the heat and pour the sauce gently over the pasta. Serve.

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STYLE HOME

The Accessory that Does It “Here an attractive set of bright fuchsia vases brings this look to life by creating a unique contrast. The vases command your attention, adding interest to the entire room.”

S

lotting Yesterday’s Furniture into Homes of Today

The question of how to blend contemporary design ideas with furniture from the past is one that crops up again and again. Here interior designer Kenneth Tanti explains how an old-meets-new mix adds style and panache to your home. Modern and traditional. Vintage and contemporary. These words may sound conflicting, but when it comes to decorating with style, the only rule is that there are no rules. Antique furniture is certainly popular, but mixing it with modern and contemporary design concepts often conjures ideas that seem hard to execute. “Many Maltese people have old or antique pieces handed down to them from generation to generation,” explains interior designer Kenneth Tanti.

Pictured above: 18th-century bow-fronted Maltese olive wood chest of drawers, inlaid in orange wood - Paul Tanti Antiques - Sliema; Fuchsia vases by Calligaris - Idea Casa – B’Kara; Wallpaper - Tanti Interiors - Sliema, White leather tub chair, chrome floor standing lamp, curtains - raw silk drops and sheers - all at Tanti Interiors - Sliema.

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STYLE HOME

The One-Piece Wonder “This entire look revolves around antique furniture but is significantly brightened by the white leather chair which lifts and transforms it completely. It’s these kinds of accents that make a setting complete.”

“These are valuable memorabilia. And while most of my clients want them to take pride of place, they sometimes find it difficult to strike a balance with their chosen style of decor and run the risk that, if not placed correctly, an antique piece can stick out like a sore thumb.” Done tastefully though, a subtle mix of old meets new can be incredibly effective. “There is the misconception that once a classical piece is introduced it will take over the entire theme for your home. This isn’t the case at all – in truth, adding one antique piece to the mix will really make it stand out, helping your more modern items to look refreshing and stylish.” Kenneth explains that while there is no precise formula to follow, it makes sense that the more contrasts you create, the more unique your look will be. “The looks created in these pictures show a blend of styles. I chose to work with traditional looks, adding contemporary touches to generate interest. Both styles blend in well and almost effortlessly, whether it’s the colours, the rigidity of the object or its style and shape that create distinction. Each piece stands out and can be appreciated to the hilt.”

Tips for Blending Old with New

“When it’s done right, combining contemporary furniture and accessories with antiques creates creative, unique and fascinating spaces.” Kenneth Tanti

As with everything, design a space based on what you truly love. Don’t feel obliged to give prominence to pieces you really don’t like, but at the same time don’t be put off an antique piece that you really do like simply because you think it won’t ‘go’. Remember that your home is not a museum.

Decide early on whether you are designing a traditional space with contemporary accents, or a more modern home with antique touches. This will help you to work out the basics.

Antique mahogany sewing table with storage compartment at the bottom for reels of threads, little drawers for storage of pins and needles, and other little sewing gadgets Paul Tanti Antiques - Sliema; white leather chair, Rochamp table lamp in cut glass and chrome, fabric by Nya Nordiska, old cases - all at Tanti Interiors - Sliema.

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STYLE HOME

Depending on the above, take cues from the looks you love and note the details you are attracted to. Is there a colour that you can pick up on from an antique piece and incorporate with your modern soft furnishings? Will chrome touches create a striking contrast against antique wood? If you are actively looking for antique furniture for your home, opt for items that feel unusual or unique, as this will help them to stand out. I love choosing statement pieces – such as a large and imposing antique dining table, and mixing

it with modern chairs. Another good blend is modern light fittings in a house full of antiques. The finished effect is quite impressive. •

Trial and error is your best plan of action. Don’t be afraid to mix and match until you are pleased with the result. It is true that not everything goes together, but you won’t know until you try. A well-edited room should look as though it has been lovingly created over time – not ordered straight out of a showroom and plonked.

The Look that Lasts “Here you can see how effortlessly this piece fits into the rest of the room, while creating a focal point at the same time. A striking contrast is created by the chrome candelabra and large white vases.”

“A well-edited room should look as though it has been lovingly created over time – not ordered straight out of a showroom and plonked.” Kenneth Tanti

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Early 18th century Maltese chestnut coffer - Paul Tanti Antiques - Sliema; ‘Bougies la Francaise’ candelabra & taper candles, ‘Dolce Villa’ white glass vases - Fino - Mriehel; other decorative items -stylist’s own.


Tower Street, Msida ( near a to z electronics) [T] 2149 1931 [E] flexline@onvol.net www.moodsfurniture.com


WORKING IN STYLE

SABINE AZZOPARDI ART CONSERVATOR

Sabine Azzopardi forms part of Art Restoration.

This heavily overpainted portrait is a work in progress. It came to me in a terrible condition and is now midway through weeks of work.

This project needed primary surface cleaning. The finishing touch was a new gilded frame. 86

This is entitled ‘The Circumcision’ and is one of my favourites. It has already undergone a lot of work, including strip-lining ad varnish removal. The next phase will include colour re-integration and varnishing.

I study paintings in detail before deciding what work has to be done. I use a magnifying glass or microscope to see the intricate details that may otherwise be missed. The ground layer might gives clues to a painting’s date.


I take photos throughout the process as part of the overall condition report which details what has gone on before, during and after treatment.

I mainly use chemicals to clean a painting, but have to be careful that they don’t cause an adverse reaction.

I prefer to mix varnishes myself depending on the finish that I want to achieve. Natural resin is glossy while acrylic resin is semi-matt.

I turn to international restoration magazines to keep up to date on the latest techniques and practices.

Best quality tools like these brushes are vital as they make working so much easier and give excellent results.

I love to use pigment for retouching, rather than ready mixed colours in tubes. Despite being time consuming this is my favourite treatment.

Japanese paper is an indispensable material which I use to protect the paint layer while dismantling a painting from its strainer or stretcher. 87


STYLE IN-DEPTH

From left: Beyeler Foundation Museum, Jean-Marie Tjibaou Cultural Center © Michel Denancè

PIANO

FORTE

World-famous Italian architect, Renzo Piano – the man behind some of the most avant-garde contemporary structures and landmarks, including the Centre Georges Pompidou, Berlin’s Potsdamer Platz and Osaka’s state-of-the-art Kansai International Airport – has been commissioned to design the entrance to Valletta. Here’s what three top-class Maltese architects think of him. RICHARD ENGLAND chooses the 1998 Jean-Marie

Tjibaou Cultural Centre in New Caledonia as his favourite Renzo Piano creation. Why? “Here, exotic-shaped, timber, cone structures rise from the pine tree forest, recalling ancient building forms, while still resonating as a uniquely contemporary architectural gesture; a project demonstrating Piano’s deep understanding of not only the physical context he is working in, but also his respect and evocation of the mnemonic layers of the site.” Reflecting on Renzo

“Perhaps the best description of Renzo Piano is: a star architect without the glitz. He’s one of the few top contemporary practitioners who constantly backs away from the chaos of current trends, styles and fashionable ‘isms’, and doesn’t indulge in the habit of copying himself to produce a Piano-brand architecture. “Labelling Piano an architect may not, in fact, be the most accurate

definition, for he himself has always stated that he was ‘destinato a fare il costruttore’ (destined to be a builder). His interest is in the making and construction process of his work, and stressing his artisan approach to architecture. He always emphasises ‘designing the whole to the part and the part to the whole’ and ‘integrating the technical with the manual.’ ‘For Piano, the completed building is a reflection of its construction and assemblage methodology. Therefore, it is not by chance that he terms his studio a workshop, or bottega artigianale.’ “While he utilises science to give a soul to technology, his buildings still always relate to the ambiance, environment and society they are located in. In his approach with clients, he accentuates the importance of dialogue, stating that listening and understanding are paramount, yet pointing out that this does not mean obeying. “Piano remains one of those rare contemporary architect-poets, capable of consistently producing masterpieces, such as the floating, linear Kansai Airport in Japan, the numerous, light-filled, Malevich-

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like, insubstantial museum projects, and the amazing Rousseau-like vegetal lushness of the highly sustainable California Academy of Science. “With Piano being re-commissioned to design the Valletta entrance precinct, I am confident that our capital city will have a contemporary project, which, while reflecting the zeitgeist of our time, will also pay homage to the architectural built forms of its original founders.”

surrounding thick vegetation, as well as an outdoor auditorium and residences for visiting artists, lecturers, scholars and students. “As a final touch, Piano, exposing the artist within, deliberately left an aesthetic, suggesting an ‘unfinished’ state, with the ‘great houses’ looking as though they were still under construction, a reminder that the Kanak culture is still in the process of becoming.”

RAY DEMICOLI chooses the 1998 Jean-Marie Tjibaou Cultural

Foundation, Basel, Switzerland as his favourite Renzo Piano creation. Why? “The Beyeler Foundation is probably the most tranquil art gallery, or museum, in the world. Serene and peaceful both inside and out, the building is exciting in itself, without in any way competing with the art it displays. “Sitting on the sofa provided and contemplating the Monet on the opposite wall, with an uninterrupted expanse of light oak floor between, the filtered light streaming in from the glazed wall onto the garden and reflecting pool, you have the wonderful sensation of enjoying a painting of that calibre in your sitting room, not trudging round an art gallery.”

Centre in New Caledonia as his favourite Renzo Piano creation. Why? “Named after the leader of the country’s independence movement, who was assassinated in 1989, it is a showcase of how Piano’s trademark humanist approach to architectural aesthetic, scale, function and mastery of technology, embracing light, air, transparency and natural forms meet, celebrate and form a resolutely modern idiom of the vernacular and its identity, in this case, the Kanak culture of New Caledonia. Reflecting on Renzo

“The cultural centre echoes local traditional construction and is composed of three ‘villages’, made up of ten ‘great houses’ of varying size and function – all linked by a long, gently curving, enclosed walkway, reminiscent of the ceremonial alley of the traditional Kanak village. “The identity of the Kanak is not only reinforced through the form of the actual construction, but also through its intimate relationship with the natural landscape. Horizontal iroko wood slats on the outer façade, facing the ocean side, not only modulate the light entering the building, but also disperse the winds that often reach speeds of up to 230km/h. “The centre also takes advantage of the natural beauty of the site, accommodating various exterior spaces, which further explore the relationship of the Kanak culture with nature and the landscape, housing traditional huts and ceremonial grounds, hidden in the

CONRAD THAKE chooses the 1997 Museum for the Beyeler

Reflecting on Renzo

“Piano is an absolute master of light and lightness. He has a fantastic understanding of construction and the scale of pieces. Piano doesn’t approach a building from the point of an idea; it grows out of the ground. He’s also one of the most elegant architects alive. His structures are sophisticated, elegant and, above all, very humanistic. “During the 20th century, Valletta has not witnessed the construction of even one single building of any significant architectural merit. Our capital city cannot stagnate in serendipity and nostalgia of the past. It deserves to have an iconic building worthy of its times, which is respectful of its past, but projects the city to the future. Piano has all the creative qualities and, above all, a deep-rooted sensitivity to intervene within a prime historic city as is Valletta.”

“Perhaps the best description of Renzo Piano is: a star architect without the glitz.” Richard England, Architect.

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From left: Beyeler Foundation Museum - photo by Christian Richters, Jean-Marie Tjibaou Cultural Center - photo by John Gollings, Potsdamer Platz photo by Enrico Cano ©RPBW


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Style on Sunday - Issue 02