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Clever space-expanding ideas for compact homes

AUGUST 2019 R41,50 (Incl. VAT) Other countries R36,09 (Excl. Tax)



BEFORE + AFTER Brilliant new looks for small bathrooms




82 74 46




AUGUST 2019 decorating 8








tips on making the most of a

splash of colour to lift a

compact home

Flower Show highlights


happening on the decor scene?



monochrome scheme



contemporary house that blends




home Oriental style


with its surroundings





Two small bathrooms get

updated to suit a young family

expanding ideas abound in

smart new looks


THE HIGH LIFE New finishes made this apartment feel



GOOD TO GLOW Expert advice on bathroom lighting



MAKEOVER: OPEN AND SHUT CASE From a cramped kitchen


to a spacious entertaining area



Clean lines and storage

Cover photograph: Cool, Calm & Colourful, pg 20 Photograph: Sally Chance


GREEN FEAST Nutrient-rich fertiliser plants

space visually upsize this


studio apartment


LIVING IT UP Clever buys for

DIGGING UP THE DIRT Six easy steps to preparing beds



GARDEN NOTES Garden news and debuts



INSIDE STORY New-look indoor plants

IDEA Style your bedside table

modern, inner-city pad

EXOTIC BEAUTIES Caring for cymbidiums

more spacious

Town flat transformed into a




this Ballito duplex



BEYOND BORDERS A waterwise, low-maintenance garden


Inspiring bedroom trends

NOW AND THEN A classical Jo’burg garden


this glam decorating tool




SOME LIKE IT HOT How to grow chillies

AND HOME Make your outdoor

ON THE COVER small homes living area more inviting | AUGUST 2019


READERS’ QUERIES 087 158 0279 or e-mail EDITOR Mary Jane Harris ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICER Mandy Buchholz 087 158 0279 KZN CONTRIBUTING EDITOR, DECOR Candice Botha CAPE CONTRIBUTING EDITOR, GARDENING Marianne Alexander FEATURES EDITOR Lauren Delargy CHIEF SUB-EDITOR, GARDENING Diane Peacock PRODUCTION MANAGER / COPY EDITOR Richard Goller DIGITAL EDITOR Khanyi Mlaba EDITORIAL CONTRIBUTORS Juliette Arrighi de Casanova, Natalie Boruvka, Judy Bryant, Josie Eveleigh, Jane Griffiths, Lizette Jonker, Connall Oosterbroek, Tess Paterson, Alice Spenser-Higgs, Jo Trappitt, Diana Wemyss, Shirley Williams, Lyn Woodward, Lynne Yates MARKETING AND PROMOTIONS Roline Haine 087 158 0309 ADVERTISING JOHANNESBURG 368 Jan Smuts Ave, Craighall 2196, 010 492 8356 CAPE TOWN 36 Old Mill Rd, Ndabeni, Maitland 7405, 021 001 2401 DURBAN 115 Escom Road, New Germany, Pinetown, 3610, 031 716 4444 SUBSCRIPTIONS 087 405 2003, +27 21 045 1809 (international), Subscribe online at or e-mail BACK ISSUES 087 405 2003 or 021 045 1809 CLASSIFIEDS Charmaine Pillai 087 087 8898 Shantal Pillay 087 087 8902 DISTRIBUTION RNA Distributors 12 Nobel Street, Industria 2093, 011 248 3500, PRINTING by CTP Gravure, 19-21 Joyner Rd, Prospecton, and published by the proprietors, Caxton/RP Magazines (Reg No. 68/12588/06)

98 68

86 promotions & offers 57



food & travel



two-night stay for four at

35% off with Click & Collect


102 WRITE NOW Keep in

and Sue Lund’s passion for Inverdoorn Private Game touch with us Reserve worth R50 000

collecting antiques 114 COLLECTING WITH…


LIFE IN COLOUR Lillian Gray on her portraits


wine and entertaining

107 BON APPETIT What’s new in the world of food


and wine

shopping guide and

108 BOWLED OVER Spicy one-bowl dishes for

short courses Michael Mole’s antique map collection


120 LAST WORD ON STYLE Lisa Storer

midweek entertaining

110 MARVELLOUS MILANO A fascinating contrast of

shares some of her How much are your old and new favourite things collectables worth?


AUGUST 2019 |

GENERAL MANAGER Anton Botes FINANCIAL MANAGER Rohan French NATIONAL HEAD OF SALES Ronell Buitenbos HEAD OF RETAIL MARKETING AND INNOVATION Dejane Poil MARKETING MANAGER Reinhard Lotz PRODUCTION MANAGER Sada Reddhi DIGITAL MEDIA STRATEGIST Aqsa Qureshi EDITORIAL HEAD OFFICE Caxton House 368 Jan Smuts Avenue, Craighall Park 2196. Box 1558, Saxonwold, 2132. Tel 087 158 0279 © All material published is copyrighted and may not be reproduced. Unsolicited manuscripts cannot be accepted. Please note: Variations in actual paint colours may occur. Due to the effect of light, colours are reflected as accurately as the print process allows. While due care is taken to ensure accuracy, SA Garden and Home is not liable for any errors in product listings or availability, pricing or any other information that was checked and has changed since the time of going to print.

LuxaflexÂŽ Classic Shutters Combining elegance with durability in every room with beautiful styles made to measure for your home.

The Art of Window Styling

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AUGUST 2019 |

If you’d like to try growing cymbidiums, turn to page 82 and you’ll discover it’s much easier than you thought.

ders in a small n o w s rk o w r ro ir M ways to use it home. Find more on page 42. I love the bold scheme in designer Amy Mitchell’s guest bedroom. See the rest of her home on page 20.

You can have lots of fun updating a small bathroom. Have a look at the makeovers on page 50.

The RHS Chelsea Flower Show never fails to delight. We bring you this year’s highlights on page 64.


ome time ago, decorator Peta-Anne Stroud and I were asked to decorate a townhouse as part of a promotion for a leading furniture company. We spent hours planning the furniture layout to make the most of the compact proportions and to ensure that the colours flowed naturally from one area to the next. However, when it came to the installation, there was one factor we hadn’t taken into account. There was no way the large statement-making sofa would fit through the door. The delivery guys tried every different angle, but no luck. As the townhouse was due to be photographed in the next few hours, we had to make a plan. In the end, they had to take out the back door, security gate and all, and then slide the sofa over the breakfast bar in the kitchen into the living room. To this day I have no idea whether they managed to get it out again. So I was amused to discover that designer Marco Simal had the same problem when furnishing his Cape Town apartment, which you can read about on page 28. I’ve since learned a lot about decorating small spaces from decorators and designers we’ve featured in Garden and Home. Jo’burg designer Deborah Garth, a master of small space design, taught me that a modular corner sofa provides much more sitting space than a conventional sofa and two chairs, while taking up less space. She also taught me the value of handleless cabinets in a tiny kitchen. If you’ve ever been snagged by a handle while carrying a pot of hot water, you’ll know what I mean. A Durban designer who now works in Europe told me to keep the height of the furniture low so that it doesn’t obscure sightlines across a room. And instead of lots of little pictures, always use large pieces of art to catch the eye. The floor-toceiling abstract in his living room proved his point. He says the same goes for lamps and other accessories – go fewer but bigger. Good lighting is also important in small spaces. “Being able to dim the lights in some areas means you can change the atmosphere and make your home more interesting.” I’m sure you’ll learn even more from the cleverly designed apartments in this issue. Turn to page 20 and feast your eyes.

DISPLAY BENEFITS I was so pleased to read in the July issue that making a beautiful home is not about what you have, it’s how you arrange it. Not all of us have unlimited budgets to buy the latest accessories, but we all have things we love and have collected over the years. I was so inspired by the feature on page 48 that I immediately started going through my cupboards, bringing out all the lovely china I inherited from my grandmother. I had put it away for safekeeping but realised that by doing this, I never get the benefit of it. It now looks gorgeous set out on the sideboard. I’ll be following your advice from now on and not hiding things away, but making them part of my life. Jo Ann Hellens


LIGHT VS DARK I’ve been reading your magazine for years as I love the ideas, especially those for small spaces as I live in an apartment. However, there’s something that’s confusing me. I’ve noticed that some decorators say you should use light colours in a small space, while others recommend dark shades. Which is correct? Jan le Roux Jan, we hope you are reading this issue, because it’s aimed at people like you. The truth is both approaches work. Have a look at the apartments featured and you’ ll see that light walls are space expanding in the Cape Town bathroom on page 52, while moody shades appear to recede in the Stellenbosch home on page 38. But then you could also go with loads of colour as Amy Mitchell did in her Ballito duplex on page 20. It all depends on your taste and style.


AUGUST 2019 |

Write in and win Jo Ann Hellens has won a voucher worth R2 000 to be redeemed at Linen Drawer’s online store. Whether for the bedroom, bathroom or table, Linen Drawer specialises in all things linen, with free delivery anywhere in South Africa. You spend more time in your bedroom in winter and Linen Drawer’s top-quality range of bedding and bed linens, including winter sheeting, duvets, pillows, blankets, throws, mattress protectors and bed wraps, will make it comfortable and inviting. For more information, call 021 872 0108 or visit

We asked you to send us pictures of your bookshelves. We love how Ronelle Muir styles hers.

TRUE ROMANCE Thank you for featuring the romantic thatched home in your July issue. My style is definitely not modern and minimalist homes with grey furniture just don’t appeal to me. So it was lovely to page through this feature and to see a real home with a traditional style that looks fresh and appealing and is filled with colour. And then to read that it belongs to a young family! I no longer feel that my style is fuddy-duddy and old fashioned. Barbara Louw

HOW TO GET HOLD OF US: PO Box 1558, Saxonwold, 2132 SA Garden and Home magazine @SAGardenandHome sagardenandhome sagardenandhome

MISSED AN ISSUE? If you’ve missed an issue of GH, contact MAGSatHOME on 087 405 2003 or 021 045 1809 to get a back copy.


Write NOW



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Home FRONT Our pick of this month’s highlights, from things to do and buy, to the latest decor news and the best places to visit


Freshly squeezed We love the bold design and cheerful colours of this Smeg citrus press designed in collaboration with Dolce & Gabbana, R7 999, from @home. With an anti-drip spout and compact shape, it’s winter’s answer to fresh, healthy juice.


AUGUST 2019 |

WELL EMBROIDERED St Leger & Viney’s new Melsetter collection from Morris & Co showcases the talents of May Morris, William’s youngest daughter. As one of the most influential figures in English embroidery, the designs echo her flawless techniques and distinctive style. Fourteen prints and embroideries make up a beautiful, highly usable range.

AMAZING ANANAS KZN design duo Ryan and Wendy-Lee Douglas of Douglas and Douglas have taken inspiration from an unlikely source for their new collection: The pineapple. Their Ananas Collection is also a unique take on the current rattan trend and the iconic designs of Michael Thonet.


Haldane Martin’s new Cha-Cha collection features occasional tables with a base of closely spaced rods. Topped by an Über-simple circular top, the effect is light and plinth-like – perfect as a display or centrepiece. Available in various sizes and monochromatic colours, these gems are also suitable for outdoor spaces.

MODERN HERITAGE FINE FOLIAGE Our love of botanicals continues and the new Kurrajong fabric collection from Hertex is just the ticket. Bold foliage motifs are digitally printed onto 100% cotton ground, with seven colourways to choose from.

Formerly a congregational church, the Labotessa hotel opens in Cape Town in August. Originally built in the early 1700s, the intimate, seven-roomed property is testament to SA’s rich history and heritage. Expect relaxed grandeur, Diptyque toiletries and the newest outpost of Starlings Café on the ground floor.

Waste not, want not Now in South Africa, Van de Sant’s sustainable furniture proves that recycled products can be both comfortable and elegant. Made from recycled ocean and land plastic, each piece contains approximately 25kg of plastic waste. The manufacturing process helps to reduce deforestation and water use, while providing local jobs. See the range at


Minimal magic Look out for the clean lines and minimalist aesthetic of the new Radius range from Minima, which expresses the designers’ love of geometry. The gentle curves not only look good, they are perfect for comfortable seating.

Arranged on two floors, the spacious new Woodstock, Cape Town, showroom of Leon at CCXIX is a real stunner. Curated by Pim Verdoorn and Ilaria Guidi, the room sets include new furniture designs, the latest fabrics and wallpapers, plus Seletti lighting. In-house Caffé Leon offers coffee, Belgian waffles, Dutch poffertjes and more. 66 Newmarket Street, Woodstock. | AUGUST 2019


Light bulb moment These new decorative LED filament bulbs from K. Light Import are perfect for pendant fittings where the bulb is exposed. Available in ‘Pear’ or ‘Wonky’ shapes, they come in two sizes – 26,5cm and 17,6cm high. Best of all, they’re dimmable.

A NEW DAY Fans of Generation, the luxury lifestyle company in Hyde Park, Jo’burg, will be delighted to know that Julia Day has launched her eponymous new brand. Julia Day Interior Architecture & Design offers a holistic design service, from concept right through to installation and styling. While Generation continues to supply a broad range of services and products, clients can now approach Julia in her own right.


Inspiration STATION

Designer’s FAVOURITE “A trip to Amatuli is an absolute treat for me,” says Sumari Krige of La Grange Interiors. “There is always an abundance of treasures with a rich history or story, collected from the wilder parts of the world. I never fail to find something special to complement my style when sourcing collectables for my clients.”;


AUGUST 2019 |

Give your sofa a new winter look with the unusual hues in the African-inspired Colour Tribe collection of cushion panels from Cottonberry. Instead of buying fabric by the metre, home decorators will be able to buy ready-cut cushion panels.

Durban interior design studio Designs by Day have opened a gorgeous new store in Kloof. Showcasing products with their signature contemporary feel, it’s a must-visit for a dose of inspiration or retail therapy. Shop 31, Delcairn Centre, 12 Village Rd, Kloof.

WHAT’S ON 29 AUGUST – 1 SEPTEMBER Cape Town Homemaker’s Expo Taking place at the CTICC with the theme ‘raw comfort,’ this expo has the latest in home, decor and lifestyle trends, plus top brands and local craftsmanship. Highlights include Interior Spaces featuring beautiful room settings, d’Vine Life for delicious eats and OUTside for the best outdoor living ideas.


a family home


hen this young couple decided to move closer to their workplace to spend more quality time with their children, they came across a stand in Eagle Canyon, Jo’burg, with stunning views over the golf course. Georg van Gass of GASS Architecture Studios, an architectural design studio that focuses on urban regeneration, was brought on board. Their brief to him was simple – design a house where the children can play and the family can spend time together. “They wanted a home that


AUGUST 2019 |

AT A GLANCE THE ARCHITECT: Georg van Gass of GASS Architecture Studios. THE CLIENT: A young family of four. THE BRIEF: An understated family home that optimises the beautiful surrounds and views. THE HOUSE: A double storey with sections of dark Onyx facebrick. The ground floor consists of an open-plan entertaining area with a living room, dining area, kitchen, study, wine cellar and service room. A pyjama lounge/gym and guest suite open out onto a courtyard. The upper level has four en suite bedrooms.

was contemporary without being trendy. The beauty of the site also needed to be considered, as this had to be a house that blends with the surroundings and doesn’t draw attention to itself,” Georg explains. The result is a two-storey house arranged around a central courtyard with the main living areas on the lower level and the more private spaces above. The lower level was built with facebrick walls

and massive sliding windows, creating a dark solid base upon which the upper level appears to float. According to Georg, the idea was to “let the lower ground floor of the house disappear” and reduce the scale of the home in comparison to the surrounding houses. Corobrik’s Onyx facebrick was chosen as it’s timeless and “talks to both the use and the tactile character of the


The use of Onyx facebrick allowed this unique family home in Gauteng to blend with its stunning surrounds

Ground floor

First floor en gard r e low

master bedroom bedroom bedroom


dining area living kitchen area


guest room


covered patio

house,” explains Georg. To address one of the greater challenges of the project – the considerable slope of the site – the ground floor was built up to accommodate the double-storey house. From the street it appears to be a single storey, but once inside, there’s a central staircase connecting the upper and lower floors. You can either go down to the public areas or through to the private areas, which include four en suite bedrooms connected by a gallery. On the lower level an open-plan entertaining area with living, dining and kitchen areas opens onto a patio. Under

garage garage


pyjama lounge/ gym

guest suite

GET THIS PLAN ONLINE Visit and click on Architect’s Plans to download the plan.

the staircase is a study flanked by a wine cellar and service room. This area leads to the pyjama lounge/gym and courtyard. “The finishes are simple and honest. We used engineered timber floors in most of the living rooms, carpets in the bedrooms and tiles in the bathrooms. The ground floor walls are built with Onyx facebrick, while those on the upper floor are plastered and painted,” says Georg.

SOURCES Corobrik GASS Architecture Studios | AUGUST 2019


IN COLOUR Lillian Gray’s portraits are influenced by abstract art and traditional techniques How did your art career develop? I’ve been drawing since I was five years old. When it was time to decide what to study at varsity, my business-savvy father wanted me to pursue a business degree (my brother and I had been awarded the Absa Young Entrepreneur award when I was 13). As I wanted to be a professional artist, I studied both, and now have a fine arts degree, an honours degree in business and a diploma in film-making. Have you always been a professional artist? No, I was a commercial artist for a decade. While it paid the bills, I wasn’t able to truly express myself.


AUGUST 2019 |

Then, as I wanted to make a living and spend time with my children, I started teaching art, art history in particular, to subsidise my income. I love delving into the background of a particular piece, exploring the zeitgeist in which it was created. That’s why I teach my students to find out the story behind an artwork. What are you trying to express in your work? When I paint a face in blue, green or purple, the work transcends race. It’s no longer a white person or a black person, it’s a human being. In many cases it also transcends gender. Many clients view my artwork and refer to the subject as male when the next

person experiences it as female. Themes in my work are hope, empowerment, conquering fear and overcoming trials and tribulations. Tell us about your abstract style. The brush strokes and textures add another layer of meaning to my work. They seem unfinished, because I believe people are unfinished; a work in progress. The edges are blurred and some lines are broken, because we are all a bit broken on the inside. Why does your new work have a heavy graffiti influence? My latest portraits feature spray paint and bright neon colours, blended with traditional oils and techniques. There is a current debate in the art world about whether or not graffiti and street art should be sold in galleries, as part of its appeal is that it’s freely available for the public to enjoy. My paintings blend the two styles as a commentary on this debate. SOURCE Lillian Gray











Sunshine Brighten up a monochrome scheme with a splash of yellow




1. Relaxed Arvie patio cushion, R299, Coricraft. 2. Croco design Halsted scatter cushion, from R750, Esque. 3. Flos sphere head string light, POR, Créma. 4. Gatto zebra chair, R12 990, SHF. 5. 16-piece Kimono cutlery set, R1 400, HAUS. 6. Spike lamp, R3 500, Dokter and Misses. 7. Bud vase, R59,99, Mr Price Home. 8. Hand-tufted Scala rug, from R21 300, Esque. 9. Black cabinet with patterned doors, R16 290, LIM. 10. Edinburgh clock, R499,99, Mr Price Home. SOURCES Coricraft Créma Dokter and Misses Esque HAUS LIM Mr Price Home SHF


AUGUST 2019 |






Embrace the tranquillity and harmony of Oriental style with a few well-chosen pieces arranged against a neutral backdrop



Paper lanterns provide subtle decoration and a soft glow. Mesh lantern, R480, Norick Interiors.

Norma Cui, owner of Norick Interiors in Jo’burg, has these tips for giving rooms a calm, balanced Oriental look Today’s clean lines and minimal interiors lend themselves to Asian style. While you can decorate completely in this manner, sometimes all it takes is one or two accent pieces. This gives an interesting East meets West look. Bring in metallic finishes such as brass and gold to enhance the Eastern feel, but keep it subtle to prevent it becoming garish. Materials to consider are black lacquer, bamboo – in furniture and accessories such as baskets – and, of course, traditional paper lanterns.

Chests and trunks such as The Hui ottoman trunk, R2 990, from SHF, can be used as side or coffee tables and to store magazines.

For a modern twist on a traditional Chinese cabinet, introduce a contemporary version such as this cabinet with oak doors on a black frame, R14 990, from LIM.

Include a traditional Chinese basket like this one, R680, from Norick Interiors. Add warmth with rich golds. Zaya gold-flamed metal vase, from R420, La Grange Interiors, patina vase, R1 190, Cécile & Boyd.

Bring a black and white scheme to life with a splash of ochre paint like Duram’s Gabriel’s Horn.

In Chinese culture, the circle stands for perfection and unity. Scatter cushion, R295, KNUS.

If you can’t find furniture with a black lacquered finish, try items with a polished look like this Edward coffee table, R10 999, from JVB Furniture Collection.

SOURCES Cécile & Boyd Duram JVB Furniture Collection KNUS La Grange Interiors LIM Norick Interiors SHF | AUGUST 2019



Cool, calm COLOURFUL


WHO LIVES HERE Interior designer Amy Mitchell of Studio Mitchell, her husband Greg, an entrepreneur, and their dachshunds, Onyx and Amber.

THE HOUSE A duplex in Ballito, KZN, with an open-plan kitchen, dining and living area opening onto a veranda and garden. Upstairs are three bedrooms and two bathrooms.


Brilliant colour meets clever design in a Ballito duplex thanks to the interior designer owner


aking the most of the available space was interior designer Amy Mitchell’s primary focus when she and her husband Greg moved into this duplex in Ballito, north of Durban. “It had a practical layout and we loved the garden and the views, but I felt that we could do a lot more with it,” she explains. “Duplexes are finished with standard products chosen by the developers. So find out if you can choose these beforehand. A very simple way to make a small space appear larger is to use one type of flooring throughout, creating a seamless flow,” she says. Another is to look at unused corners to add extra storage space. Amy took advantage of the awkward area under the stairs and used it to build in cupboards. Painted the same colour as the walls, they’re 

Amy installed a glass and metal screen between the kitchen and living room to protect the furnishings from the steam and heat from the hob and oven. A pair of Kurt Pio abstract paintings draw the eye in the living room and a tribal rug from Hertex defines the sitting area. A mesh blind, from Blinds, All of Them, provides privacy while letting in light. Dachshunds Onyx and Amber relax on the sofa. A pair of pendant lights from Studio Mitchell highlight the dining table, a second-hand purchase. The chairs are from @home. THIS SPREAD, FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:

hardly noticeable. “Having a place to put clutter really helps to establish a light, airy atmosphere,” she says. “While you may think that a large U-shaped sofa would be too large for a small duplex, it provides more seating space than a conventional sofa and chairs,” says Amy. However, as she was concerned about the proximity of the sofa to the oven and hob, she designed an easily cleaned metal and glass screen to partially divide the two areas. “Funnily, it’s made the two areas seem larger and given me more room to work with in the living area,” she explains. As you enter through the dining area, Amy kept the furnishings here to a minimum to keep an open traffic flow. “The dining table was a lucky second-hand-shop buy that my father helped me to restore.” The stackable chairs can also be brought into the living room for extra seating. Once the basics were in place, Amy could start adding Black and white wallpaper from Graphic Gurus contrasts with yellow accessories in one of the guest bedrooms. Instead of tables, Amy chose chests of drawers from Trestle South Africa to add extra storage space. The starting point for the second guest bedroom scheme was an orange springbok hide, which Amy turned into a cushion. The rug is from Hertex and the fabric on the chair from Skinny laMinx. The artwork is by Victoria Verbaan. THIS PAGE, FROM TOP TO BOTTOM:

This property is available to let on Airbnb.

splashes of her favourite colours. “I chose emerald green in the living room. It’s both calming and eye catching and is a link to the garden. I also introduced black as it adds definition.” Amy admits that she had a great deal of fun decorating the bedrooms. In the main bedroom palm fronds and a blue and green scheme establish a soothing atmosphere. However, in the guest bedrooms, she let her creativity run riot and made up for the lack of space with an abundance of pattern and colour. In one, black and white wallpaper and a geometric rug offset brilliant yellow scatters and a quilt. An orange hide was the inspiration for the other, in which she combined a deep aqua wall and rug and patterned fabrics. Cole and Son’s Palm Leaves wallpaper, from St Leger & Viney, provides a soothing backdrop to the blue patchwork headboard in the main bedroom. The tropical wallpaper, Giungla 05 from Home Fabrics, in the guest loo, is a reference to the coastal setting. THIS PAGE, FROM TOP TO BOTTOM:

SOURCES @home Blinds, All of Them Graphic Gurus Hertex Home Fabrics Kurt Pio Skinny laMinx St Leger & Viney Studio Mitchell Trestle South Africa Victoria Verbaan | AUGUST 2019




To emphasise the height of the windows, the sheer and blockout curtains, made and installed by Daniels Interiors, were hung from just below the ceiling.


By removing unnecessary features and updating finishes, Deborah Ann Coppin not only breathed new life into a tired apartment, she made it feel more spacious

WHO LIVES HERE Interior designer Deborah Ann Coppin of Insight Design and her cat, Alfie.

THE APARTMENT A 55m2 penthouse apartment in Claremont, Cape Town, with an open-plan kitchen and living area and bathroom on the lower level, and a sleeping area on the upper floor. There’s also a 6m2 balcony accessed from the living room.


his apartment was beige from top to bottom and rather dull, but I was struck by the potential of its double volume and the huge windows which flood it with light,” recalls interior designer Deborah Ann Coppin. The stunning views over Claremont, with Table Mountain in the background, were also an attraction. Her first objectives were to maximise the available floor space and create interest with new finishes. To gain more space, she demolished the narrow upstairs bathroom, which with the

existing built-in cupboards took up a third of the loft level. “There was no reason to keep it as there’s a bathroom of a similar size on the lower level,” she explains. With it gone, she was able to fit in a king-size bed and two large Indonesian cabinets, which with a stroke of luck, fitted perfectly beneath the ceiling on either side of what was the bathroom window. “It doesn’t seem logical, but bigger furniture actually makes a small room look larger and, in this case, the cabinets made the low ceiling less obvious,” says Deborah Ann. 

As her budget didn’t stretch to a new kitchen, Deborah Ann revamped the existing one by cladding some cabinets with a vinyl wallpaper. To give the room a more open look, she removed certain doors to reveal the shelves. The vinyl flooring is from KBAC Flooring. Deborah Ann Coppin. THIS PAGE, FROM TOP TO BOTTOM: | AUGUST 2019


Deborah Ann replaced the beige floor tiles with grey wood-look vinyl in the living areas to contrast with the predominantly white furnishings, and painted the walls a soft grey. Upstairs she chose a lighter flooring to offset the accent wall painted in an architectural grey, a colour that’s dramatic as well as peaceful and creates the illusion of depth. To make the downstairs bathroom more spacious, she replaced the bath with a large shower. “Shower doors are a pet hate of mine, so instead I had a simple glass panel installed, extending from f loor to soffit – a tidy, seamless solution.” Also freeing up space is a wall-mounted toilet with a concealed cistern. For the same reason, she placed another large cabinet in the entrance area. It fits neatly below the ceiling offering extra storage space, which is always welcome in small apartments. The other problem she had to solve was the treatment of the extra-high windows. “They were each fitted with a roller blind to screen the sun and a Venetian blind for privacy,” she recalls. “This not only made the windows


AUGUST 2019 |

appear small, they looked old fashioned and fussy. As the blinds were controlled separately, you can imagine the mess of cords.” Her solution was to fit them with a sheer and a blockout curtain on a double wave track system. “They’re a far more practical solution, accentuating the height of the double volume and the neutral shades don’t encroach on the living area.” To give the decor more definition,

Using a large cabinet from Biggie Best and a glasstopped desk, Deborah Ann designed the space under the stairs to function as a home office. All the walls were painted in Plascon’s Mandarin Tusk. When space is limited, Deborah Ann believes that you should make a statement with fewer, but bolder items such as this standing lamp from Mr Price Home. THIS PAGE, FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:

“The exterior views and abundant light make this apartment such a comfortable space to live in, despite its small size,” says Deborah Ann. “It’s also great to entertain in because the volume makes it feel less cramped.” THIS PAGE, CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE:

To give the bedroom depth, the wall behind the bed was painted with Plascon’s Silk Aluminium. The chest of drawers is from Biggie Best. A bedside table from Deborah Ann’s company, Insight Design, forms the base for an arrangement of collectables. The bedside lamp and quilt are from @home. The shower in the bathroom features woodlook and marble wall tiles from Kinshella Natural Stone Projects and mosaic floor tiles from Douglas Jones. SOURCES @home Biggie Best Daniels Interiors 021 447 5011 Douglas Jones Insight Design KBAC Flooring Kinshella Natural Stone Projects Mr Price Home Plascon | AUGUST 2019



WHO LIVES HERE International traveller and designer Marco Simal.

THE APARTMENT A single room with open-plan living, kitchen and dining areas, a glass-walled bedroom and balcony.

Point of


ost people would never have considered this tiny 10th-floor apartment in an unprepossessing building in Cape Town’s city centre, but not Marco Simal. Having just returned to South Africa after completing his

masters in industrial design in Milan, the entrepreneur behind brands such as MotherCityHardware, Tiny Empire and Good Leaf immediately saw its potential. “When you entered the apartment, all you saw was a wall,” explains Marco.

“But, once you were in the living room, you could see the amazing view up Wale Street to Signal Hill.” As the Iziko Museum and the historic slave quarters are next door, Marco knew that nothing would be built in front to block the view. The apartment

As Marco’s main aim was to make the most of the city view up Wale Street to Signal Hill, he kept the space in front of the sliding doors to the balcony relatively free of furniture. In the living room, shelving from James Mudge, an easy chair from Chair Crazy, a coffee table from Xandre Kriel and an artwork by John Murray complement the contemporary space. The balcony, a north-facing sun trap, is furnished with a deck chair from Lona and a wall-hung plant holder. Designer Marco Simal. THIS SPREAD, CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE LEFT:


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By turning a 1970’s apartment into a single space, the owner transformed it into a stylish, modern innercity pad that makes the most of the views

also had a very intimate connection with the city, from the sounds of the street to the crickets chirruping in the Company Gardens. “My intention was to let the apartment out when I’m not there,” he says. “So from the start, I wanted to give it a pared-down, masculine hotelroom look.” As you entered there was a kitchen on the right and a bathroom on the left, with the living area directly in front. To open up the view, Marco broke down all the walls and turned the 

The kitchen is at the far end of the apartment. The dining table is from Gregor Jenkin and the chairs from Pedrali. To ensure that the bedroom also benefits from the view, Marco surrounded it with steel-framed glass walls. A bench in the entrance hall provides a useful surface for bags and keys. THIS PAGE, CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE:

apartment into one single space. As a result, it has an almost square shape and not the usual rectangular, tunnel-like layout of many apartments. He gutted the kitchen and moved it to the front of the apartment. The sink was tucked behind the bathroom wall and Marco placed a freestanding kitchen cooker unit from his MotherCityHardware range against the adjacent wall. “A lot can be done in small spaces,” he says, “but you need to find clever places to hide things like the dishwasher, the plumbing and the fuse box.” To ensure that the bedroom, which replaced the original kitchen, has a view, Marco enclosed it with steel-framed glass walls. Curtains can be drawn at night to

darken and screen the room. The sliding doors onto the balcony shut out the noise of traffic – and those crickets. “After several years in Italy, it was wonderful to have my own space and to be able to accumulate stuff, although I don’t like clutter,” says Marco. He furnished the apartment with a stylish collection of local and international pieces including a Gregor Jenkin steel dining table, Japanese-designed dining chairs from Pedrali, James Mudge shelving and a sofa from Ikea. “I looked at all sorts of sofas,” he recalls, “but none of them would fit into the lift, so eventually I chose this one, because it’s modular and can be split into separate units.”

The kitchen sink was placed in an alcove that steals space from the bathroom. The marble splashback is from WOMAG. The bed is dressed with linen from Country Road at Woolworths. The art work is by Nico Krijno and the bedside table is from MotherCityHardware. The hand basin from Still Bathrooms adds a sculptural element to the bathroom and takes up little space. THIS PAGE, CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT:

SOURCES Chair Crazy Gregor Jenkin James Mudge Lona MotherCityHardware Nico Krijno Pedrali Still Bathrooms WOMAG Woolworths Xandre Kriel 072 210 5763 | AUGUST 2019



Modern By using clean lines and incorporating plenty of storage space, interior designer Jacob Crafford-Burger visually upsized this Cape Town studio apartment

WHO LIVES HERE A couple, Paula and Mike of Knysna, who spend holidays here and let out the apartment through Afribode.


A tiny 35m studio on the first floor of a seafront block with open-plan sitting, dining, kitchen and bedroom areas and a separate bathroom.


AUGUST 2019 |


hen Paula and Mike bought this sea-facing apartment in Mouille Point, Cape Town, their aim was to use it for holidays and let it out when they’re not in residence. However, the decor was tired and in addition to updating the finishes, they

wanted to give the compact space a practical, functional layout and, as a result, make it appear larger. Jacob Crafford-Burger of Kojabu Concepts took on the project. “I’ve handled quite a few renovations for Paula and Mike, so I’m familiar with their style. I’m also aware that small spaces




The original balcony was incorporated into the apartment and is now a sitting area. A large mirror above the sofa reflects light and the sea views. The leather sofa is from Klooftique. Stylish tables from Pedersen + Lennard can be moved around when necessary. As there wasn’t much space for bedside tables Jacob used small metal cabinets from MotherCityHardware and mounted reading lights from Pedersen + Lennard on the wall. By dressing the bed in greys, it recedes and doesn’t dominate the apartment. The throw is from Hertex and the swivel chair from Weylandts. THIS SPREAD, CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT:


need careful planning to make the most of every square inch,” he says. To straighten out the angles and eliminate the awkward corners, his first task was to strip the apartment right down to the shell. He straightened a wall between the kitchen and bathroom to increase space in both areas. The original

balcony was incorporated into the flat and, for continuity, all the walls were painted white and the flooring throughout replaced with engineered wood. As he had to fit living, sleeping and cooking areas into the renovated space, he placed the sitting area in what was the balcony, next to the window with

the sea view. The floor was raised slightly to subtly distinguish it from the sleeping section. The space at the far end had a long wall suitable for built-in cupboards, so this became the kitchen. Charcoal floor-to-ceiling cabinets house the washing machine and vacuum cleaner, and include cupboard space for clothes. | AUGUST 2019



In the kitchen, floor-to-ceiling cabinets house the washing machine and other necessary paraphernalia and have space for clothing. To offset them, Jacob installed open shelves for the kitchenware. The table from Pedersen + Lennard is teamed with chairs from Chair Crazy. The wood flooring is by Oggie Flooring. In the bathroom, a narrow wall-mounted basin takes up little space, while the frameless shower screen visually disappears. The mirror is by Wessel Snyman Creative and the tiles are from Stiles.



To bring in light and reflect the sea view, Jacob mounted a large mirror on the wall next to the window. In the bathroom, he had a second window installed, which also brightens up the entrance when the door is open. To update the bathroom, the walls were clad with white subway tiles. A frameless shower screen virtually disappears, giving the impression of a large open wet room. “It makes the room feel double the size,” he explains. When it came to the furnishings, Paula and Jacob’s plan was to place the furniture symmetrically to keep the spaces open. “In small apartments, it’s better to use a few big pieces than a lot of little ones,” says Jacob. He chose a leather sofa with legs, which, as you can see underneath it, doesn’t look bulky and combined this with swivel chairs and side tables with pared-down shapes. Leafy plants soften the industrial look. “The secret to furnishing a small apartment is to concentrate on essentials and eliminate clutter,” Jacob says.


sitting area dining area


sleeping area kitchen

SOURCES Afribode Chair Crazy Hertex Klooftique Kojabu Concepts MotherCityHardware Oggie Flooring Pedersen + Lennard Stiles Wessel Snyman Creative 021 448 2002 Weylandts


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Metal clothes rack, R3 299, @home.

IT UP Lizzy sofa bed, R15 499, KARE.

Stackable Africa side chair by Vondom, R2 000, Cane Time.

Easy bench, R7 095, KNUS.

West Coast coffee bar, 120 x 75cm, R22 049, KARE.


AUGUST 2019 |


Wise buys for space-strapped rooms

Basebox swivel coffee table, R6 299, @home.

Birch suspender shelves, from R2 799, Esque.

Franklin cabinet, R7 995, Block & Chisel.

Green Chloe bench, R4Â 499, @home.

Douglas and Douglas marble-top bench with planter, R7 000 (incl. delivery), Design Store.

Nzinga ottoman and Ovambo side table combo, R8 060, KNUS.

SOURCES @home Block & Chisel Cane Time Design Store Esque KARE KNUS | AUGUST 2019





An L-shaped sofa like this one from Loft i Love is an effective way of maximising sitting space in a living room. The back of the sofa also separates the sitting area from the dining room and kitchen.


Designer Louise Ellis’s Stellenbosch home is a master class in making the most of small spaces. She explains how she went about it


By making the curtains 10cm longer, they puddle on the floor, adding volume and the darker border doesn’t show marks. Louise added interest and depth to the coffee bar (which can be hidden by pocket doors) with 3D tiles. The woven planter is from Mia Mélange. To keep the open-plan kitchen clutter free, all the kitchenware and appliances are hidden in sleek handleless cabinets and the island was fitted with large storage drawers. The slipcovered chairs are by Loft i Love. To create a focal point that was also practical, Louise had a solid oak cabinet custom made to fit the proportions of this wall. “It holds all the items I need when I entertain,” she says.


lanning is very important when furnishing a small home,” says designer Louise Ellis of Loft i Love. Before she and her husband Charl and sons, Luke (3) and Louis (1), moved into this 270m 2 Stellenbosch house, she spent a lot of time with the floor plans making sure that the furniture, both shop bought and custom made for the house, was placed to create an easy flow. “Then I put together a scheme of contrasting neutrals to visually expand the available space.”

ESTABLISH ZONES Open-plan layouts make small homes feel more spacious. “However, in the absence of walls, establish clearly defined zones that still read as one space,” says Louise. “Do this by carefully positioning rugs and furniture or with a different floor finish.” For practical reasons, Louise wanted a close connection between the kitchen and dining area, so she positioned them side by side. “The island and dining table anchor their respective areas, while the back of the sofa separates the living area.” 


Painted in Earthcote’s Worn Leather, the wall behind the bed appears to recede. Suspended bedside lights like these from Chikadee save space and create the illusion of height. The scatter cushions are from Evolution Product. As there was no space for a freestanding bath in the en suite bathroom, Louise incorporated it into the bedroom. The tiled floor demarcates the bathing area. Louise used an open shelf unit from @home to subtly separate the bedroom and bathroom and introduced lots of foliage plants.

FLOORS AND WALLS As a seamless floor ‘stretches’ a room, Louise advises using large-format tiles with matching grout. “We carried this through to the bathrooms. You can get a similar effect with a screed floor,” she says. Hanging curtains from just below ceiling height, as Louise did here, is another effective way


AUGUST 2019 |

to improve the proportions. “Long vertical lines draw the eye up, giving the illusion of height.” As she wanted the curtains to puddle on the floor, Louise had them made 10cm longer and added a wide border at the bottom. “The darker border adds volume and doesn’t show marks or dirt as the lighter section would.”

GET MORE ONLINE Discover clever space-stretching ideas at

HARMONISE HUES The colour scheme played a large role in establishing continuity. “Dark colours recede,” says Louise, who painted certain walls such as those in the living room and bedroom a deep charcoal. She used similar shades for the kitchen island and some of the furnishings to visually minimise their size. As a contrast, Louise chose white, beige and oatmeal for floors and some walls. “Using the same scheme throughout gives a very unifying effect,” she says. On a practical note, it also means that furnishings can be used in any room.

INTEGRATE AND CONSOLIDATE “There wasn’t enough space in the en suite bathroom for a double shower and a bath, so we incorporated the bath into our bedroom,” explains Louise. “I chose one with a black finish to fit in with the colour scheme.” She used a shelving unit

with potted plants that doesn’t block the light to subtly divide the two spaces.

CONSIDER SCALE It’s important when choosing furniture to ensure it’s in proportion to the space. To get this right, Louise had certain pieces custom made. An example of this is the kitchen island, which was made exactly the same size as the dining table to balance it. “Even though they’re both large, they don’t cramp the area and the island acts as a server,” says Louise. Another example is a large oak storage cabinet that was made to fit a bare wall and also acts as a focal point. “Go big if you want to give the illusion of space,” says Louise, who added impact to the guest bedroom with an oversized, upholstered headboard. “Where possible use reflective surfaces such as mirror, glass and Perspex to bring in light and interesting reflections.” The mirror is from Arkivio. THIS PAGE, FROM TOP TO BOTTOM:

SOURCES @home Arkivio Chikadee Earthcote Evolution Product Loft i Love Mia Mélange | AUGUST 2019



“I like using Perspex trays with mirrored bases on coffee or console tables. They keep accessories confined and double the effect of votive candles at night.” – Yvonne O’Brien,

Mirror, MIRROR...

The Private House Company


As this wall didn’t have a window, Andrea Lindsay-Bowman of Bowman Interiors gave it an interesting ‘outlook’ with two matching bevelled mirrors.


Decorators and designers share fabulous ways to use the most glamorous and versatile decorating material of them all 42

AUGUST 2019 |


A round mirror above a dressing table always looks elegant, but if you scale it up as Sharon Nicolaci of Spegash Interiors did in this Jo’burg home, it looks spectacular.





Designer Tanya Beyers of Profurn Contracts loves to repeat elements such as the decorative mirrors on the wall of this dining room. “On their own, they would look lost, but in multiples, they give the wow factor,” she says.


“In a kitchen, use antique mirror as a splashback to open up the space and reflect natural light.” – Nicky Goldstone, Designs by Day


To enhance the contemporary look of this KZN kitchen and bring in more light, Lisa Walters Interiors clad the countertop and splashback with tinted mirror. The effect is more subtle than normal mirror, which can be distracting on a dining surface.


While there’s no doubt that mirror gives the illusion of more space, a whole wall can be jarring. For this dressing room, decorator Nicolette Jonas chose panels of antiqued mirror, which creates softer, more muted reflections while still maintaining the glamour. 

5 | AUGUST 2019


“We’re seeing mirrors being used in courtyard gardens to create depth and intrigue in small spaces.” – Bruce Fyfe, Fyfe Boyce Design




If glamour is what you’re after, then mirrored furniture is the answer. Decorator Celeste Bushnell combined this mirrored vanity with an ornate Venetian mirror and complemented both with a marble floor.


AUGUST 2019 |


When she repurposed this handsome armoire as a sophisticated cocktail cabinet, Tanja Beyers of Profurn Contracts gave it a mirror backing, which also helps to lighten the interior.



Don’t ignore the potential of mirror in a small kitchen. Used as a splashback, especially behind a stove, the reflections and extra light can make a confined space appear much larger as in decorator Yvette Wheatley’s kitchen.

“We’re fans of hanging mirrors on mirrored walls. The effect of reflection on reflection works really well as it’s unexpected and interesting.” – Kelsey Boyce, Fyfe Boyce Design


“Stack mirrors one in front of the other on a shelf or mantelpiece as an alternative to a display of artwork.” – Kirsten Wuth, The Design Group


To make the built-in cupboards in her Jo’burg home more decorative, decorator Yvette Wheatley designed this mirrored façade. The mirror still works for checking reflections and the panelled frame adds another dimension.


While a mirror is a powder room essential, decorator Celeste Bushnell took it one step further by covering the whole wall above the vanity with 16 individual mirrors. Painted wooden strips in a grid fragment the reflection, which looks more interesting than a flat surface.


SOURCES Bowman Interiors Celeste Bushnell Interiors Designs by Day Fyfe Boyce Design Lisa Walters Interiors Nicolette Jonas Profurn Contracts Spegash Interiors The Design Group The Private House Company Yvette Wheatley Interiors | AUGUST 2019


Destination DREAMLAND The bedroom is one place where you can shed your decor inhibitions and have some fun. Here’s our pick of the latest looks guaranteed to send you off to the land of Nod in style



3 4

Vamp it up with the glossy metallics, plush textures and sophisticated detailing of Euro-chic boutique hotels




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1. Glass ball table lamp set, R1 099, @home. 2. Brass table, R2 900, Cécile & Boyd. 3. Velvet flower bomb cushion, R499, @home. 4. Fabio Allie chair, R6 599, 5. Peacock faux fur teal throw, R1 750, HAUS. 6. Deep frame brass mirror, from R3 990, Esque. 7. Velvet gallery bed extra length, from R7 999, @home. 8. Amelia small tray, R495, Block & Chisel. 9. Eva self-watering orchid pot, R1 029, Yuppiechef.


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2 1 4 6




Give the simple lines and textures of Scandi style a big-city edge with snappy black accents




10 1. Branch chair, R4Â 000, Love Milo. 2. Native Decor round cork clock, R599, Yuppiechef. 3. Metal side table, POR, OKHA. 4. Teak coat rack, R 1 595, La Grange Interiors. 5. Haiku bed, from R11 100, Weylandts. 6. Soho wool blanket, R5 201, KNUS. 7. Astro Ravello table lamp, R6 860, Newport Lighting. 8. Native Decor plywood candle set, R1 699, Yuppiechef. 9. Beckett stand, R2 895, Block & Chisel. 10. Oak frame chest of drawers, R19 990, LIM. 11. Arvie black and white scatter cushion, R299, Coricraft. | AUGUST 2019



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Choose the flamboyant route with fantasy wallpapers, gilded detailing and luxurious textures – in this case, more is more 9



1. Ponte table lamp, R1 290, SHF. 2. De Gournay Flamingos 2 mural, POR, St Leger & Viney. 3. Octopus crystal chandelier by Iris, POR, Euro Nouveau. 4. Bonny bed end, R5 995, Block & Chisel. 5. Long tailed bird ornament, R690, SHF. 6. Copper sea flower coral, R460, Bespoke Home. 7. Milan four-poster bed, R17 990, SHF. 8. Peruvian mirror, R6 999, @home. 9. Posy Rosewood rug, R10 400, NetDécor.


AUGUST 2019 |

2 1 3 4 5


MARRAKECH EXPRESS Take a magic carpet ride to exotic lands with tribal artefacts and handcrafted accessories

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1. Ruby pedestal, R9 080, Weylandts. 2. 40cm pendant light, R1 650, 8 Degrees South. 3. Apple leaf botanic, R390, SHF, in Caspian basket, R459, Coricraft. 4. Vintage pink Azilal rug, R30 000, The Storer. 5. Natural cane peacock headboard, from R5 000, Design Store. 6. Hammered plate, R599, Coricraft. 7. Brass tables, R6 999 (left) and R2 999 (right), Coricraft. 8. Uzbekistan scatter cushion, R3 500, The Storer. 9. Oasis box, R299, Coricraft. 10. Larae three-panel screen, R3 499, Coricraft. SOURCES @home 8 Degrees South Bespoke Home Block & Chisel CĂŠcile & Boyd Coricraft Design Store Esque Euro Nouveau HAUS KNUS LIM La Grange Interiors Love Milo Mr Price Home NetDĂŠcor Newport Lighting OKHA SHF St Leger & Viney The Storer Weylandts Yuppiechef | AUGUST 2019






These two bathrooms are proof that all it takes to create the illusion of space is a new layout and a monochromatic scheme


MODERN MOROCCAN Clever use of paint and pattern took this bathroom from dull to dramatic


hile it was adequate, it was very ordinary,” recall Esté and Reenen Kok of the original bathroom in their house in Stellenbosch. With a built-in vanity and bath, and the developer’s standard finishes and fittings, it had an outdated, boxed-in feel.

WHAT THEY DID The Koks’ good friend, designer Willem J Bruwer of Karakter Studio, had helped them transform their kitchen, so they asked him to work his magic once again. “Esté had fallen in love with a beautiful, hand-painted Moroccan tile, so we decided to use it to create a showstopping floor,” says Willem. To balance the busy pattern, he chose a simple black and white scheme for the rest of the room. “We kept the dado rail and painted it black along with the lower section of the wall. This immediately gave a sense of depth, which made the room seem so much bigger,” he explains. Painting

the rest of the walls and ceiling white also added to the sense of space, as does the new, seamless shower. “Without a frame, it blends in, especially as we chose a black mosaic floor and white tiles for the walls.” To form an interesting contrast, Willem designed a freestanding vanity with an oak veneer and a metal-framed mirror to hang above it. Adding a splash of colour is a framed Frida Kahlo print

above the bath. “A large single piece is much more effective in a tight space than a grouping of smaller artworks,” says Willem. The existing window blinds were sprayed black to fit in with the scheme. “We love the result,” say Esté and Reenen. “It’s stylish yet quirky and even though we haven’t increased the floor space, it feels so much bigger than it did before.” 

The patterned floor tiles from Moroccan Warehouse were the inspiration for the new look. The dado, the lower section of the walls and the window frame were painted in Plascon’s Dark Onyx. The floor and wall tiles in the shower are from Tilehouse. Willem J Bruwer of Karakter Studios designed the oak-veneered vanity and fitted it with taps from Hansgrohe. The sanitaryware is from On Tap. THIS SPREAD, FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:

SOURCES Hansgrohe Karakter Studio 084 402 7795 Moroccan Warehouse 021 461 8318 On Tap Plascon Tilehouse | AUGUST 2019



GETTING FRESH A new floor plan and finishes made this compact room feel twice its size


AUGUST 2019 |


his bathroom was covered floor to ceiling in ugly tiles, which made it cold and uninviting,” says Louise Liebenberg of Cape Town. “There was an awkward gap between the bath and the shower, the toilet faced the door and there was no storage space.”

WHAT THEY DID After seeing a kitchen makeover that Lee-Ann Vigus of LVstar Interiors had undertaken for a mutual friend, Louise asked her for help. As the budget was tight, they agreed that Lee-Ann would design the new look and Louise would source the finishes and fittings and

GET MORE ONLINE For more makeovers, visit

She then recommended a spaceenhancing all-white scheme. The lower half of the walls was clad in white metro tiles and the remainder of the walls painted white. To save the cost of a vanity, a dresser that Louise had inherited was repurposed with a modern basin mounted onto a new stone top and now provides plenty of storage space.

“Despite its size, it fits in comfortably and the wood adds warmth to the white surfaces.” A large black-framed mirror was hung above it and the curtain and rail replaced with a simple aluminium Venetian blind. “It’s now upbeat and modern and our sons, who use it on a regular basis, love it,” says Louise.

THIS SPREAD, FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: “I wanted a striking light fitting as a focal point,” says

project-manage the renovation. The first step was reworking the layout. “To optimise the space, the bath was removed and the shower replaced with a combination shower/bath. This way we could move the toilet to the right-hand side so it’s not visible from the door,” explains Lee-Ann.

Louise. This pendant was made by her neighbour, Gawie Swanepoel. The floor tiles are from Tiletoria, the sanitaryware from Waterstone, the rug from Mr Price Home and the extendable shaving mirror from Gelmar. Louise’s husband Kurt made the magazine rack from the ladder of an old bunk bed. Lee-Ann sourced the prints from Etsy and had them printed by Give Thanks. The white metro tiles are from Tile Africa. SOURCES Etsy Gawie Swanepoel 082 495 6811 Gelmar Give Thanks LVstar Interiors Mr Price Home Tile Africa Tiletoria Waterstone | AUGUST 2019



Good to

GLOW Expert tips for versatile and functional bathroom lighting


ighting, or the lack of it, can make or break a bathroom. In fact, it’s sometimes more important than the sanitaryware. It doesn’t matter how much money you’ve spent on the latest finishes or fittings if you can’t see to put on makeup or feel as though you’re in a sterile operating theatre. But before you even buy a bathroom light, consider the following:


AUGUST 2019 |

Under-counter, motion-sensitive lighting ensures that a bathroom is lit when needed. These vanities were designed by Kirsty Lindley.

SAFETY This is of utmost importance. To avoid the possibility of electrocution, bathroom light fittings must be protected from moisture. Before installing a light fitting, check the ingress protection (IP) rating. The closer the fittings, the switches and dimmers are to a water source, the higher the rating should be. For instance, a downlight above a shower will require a higher rating than one in the middle of the room. See the box on page 56. “Bathroom fittings must be sealed

so that the bulb, LED and electrical connections are not open and accessible, and fittings should be limited to 12 volts in zones 1 and 2,” says Thys Hustwayte, director of U-Light, a division of the CTM Group. “Make sure that there is good ventilation,” says Kelly Klopper of Eurolux. “If your bathroom has tiny windows or no windows at all, then install an extractor fan to prevent the build-up of moisture and steam.” All bathroom lighting must be installed by a qualified electrician.


In this bathroom designed by Bespoke Bathrooms, a mirror with built-in lighting helps with tasks such as shaving and applying make-up.

LED backlit brass pill mirror, from R8 690, KNUS.

You can have a chandelier in the bathroom if it is the right fitting for that zone.

Use soft, diffused lighting such as under-cabinet LEDs for a relaxing ambience.

Eye-level sconces are the best way to light your face.

White Lighthouse pendant light, R1429,90, U-Light (suitable for zone 3).

LED cubes wall light, R2 770, K. Light Import.

Clifton recessed brick light, R399, The Lighting Warehouse.

LAYER THE LIGHTING “As with all rooms, include ambient, task, accent and decorative lighting for a versatile scheme that will enhance the appearance of the bathroom and allow it to function well,” says Kelly Klopper. AMBIENT This gives the room overall illumination and is usually provided by a pendant or flush-mounted ceiling fitting. “As wiring must be concealed, downlights are a good option,” advises interior architectural designer Cara Slater-Middlewick. TASK Include lighting around the mirror so that you can perform tasks such as applying make-up and shaving. “Don’t place a ceiling or recessed downlight above a mirror as this will light your

forehead and nose, creating shadows on the rest of your face,” says Eli Kalmi, owner of K. Light Import. Instead, mount a pair of sconces at eye level on either side of the mirror to light the face evenly. “Mirrors with built-in lighting are a big trend,” says Kelly Klopper. Another option is to fit concealed LED strip lighting right around the mirror, suggests Cara SlaterMiddlewick. “This gives an even glow. It’s also a good idea to place a brick light just above the skirting next to the toilet. Leave it on all night so you don’t have to switch on the overhead lights and wake your partner,” she explains. Lights inside drawers and cabinets that help you find things easily should also be considered. ACCENT “If your bathroom has interesting features, use accent lighting such as recessed directional lights to highlight them,” says Kelly Klopper. Adding LED strips to vanities and shower niches is another way to draw attention to standout features. Enhance the showering experience by

fitting the shower with any light that has an IP rating of 67 or 68, suggests Thys Hustwayte. “As long as it has a suitable IP rating, you can choose any style that appeals to you,” he says. DECORATIVE If your heart is set on a chandelier or particular pendant, first check with the electrician and supplier whether it is suitable for a bathroom, advises Thys Hustwayte. You can highlight features such as floating vanities by placing LED strips below them to accentuate the floating effect, or choose a pendant that casts a patterned shadow on the walls for a more romantic feel. Frosted glass fittings create a soft diffused light. | AUGUST 2019



Zone 0

Zone 1

Zone 2

Zone 3


Inside the bath, shower basin or basin.

Above the bath or shower up to a height of 2,25m from the floor.

From 0,6m outside the perimeter of the bath and to a height of 2,25m from the floor. Plus the area around a wash basin, within a 60cm radius of any tap.

Anywhere outside zones 0, 1 and 2 and where no water jet is likely to be used.

Minimum rating of IP44, IP65 preferably, especially for shower lights.

At least IP44.

No special requirements. However, a light with a rating of at least IP20 and above is recommended.

IP RATING Fittings should be a maximum of 12v and rated at least IP67, which is immersion proof.

Brass chandelier with crystals, R4 657, Eurolux (suitable for zone 3).

Under-counter lighting makes this vanity look as though it’s floating. Design by Vara Ross Design and Belong Interiors.

Opal glass wall light, R1 630, K. Light Import.

Cabinet with mirror and lights, R4 360, Eurolux.

MAKE IT ADAPTABLE As bathrooms are used for different purposes at different times of the day, the lighting needs to be versatile. “Bright light will help wake you up in the morning, while a soft glow is more conducive to a relaxing bath,” says Kelly Klopper. “Put different fittings on separate switches, so you can play around with lighting combinations and establish the right mood for the occasion.” And fit dimmer switches so you can adjust the brightness.

CONTINUITY AND STYLE For continuity, install fittings that emit the same light colour throughout the room. “Warm white is a good choice for


AUGUST 2019 |

a bathroom as it creates a more relaxing atmosphere than bright white,” says Thys Hustwayte. “LED lights are easy on the pocket and last a long time,” says Cara Slater-Middlewick. Select fittings that suit the style and decor. “For instance, a contemporary sconce would look out of place in a vintagestyle bathroom. Also consider the finishes of hardware such as taps, handles and showerheads and look for fittings that complement them,” says Kelly Klopper.

LED frontlit mirror, from R5 790, Arkivio.

GET MORE ONLINE Visit for more lighting tips

SOURCES Arkivio Belong Interiors 031 562 0331 Bespoke Bathrooms Cara Slater-Middlewick Eurolux Kirsty Lindley K. Light Import KNUS The Lighting Warehouse U-Light Vara Ross Design 031 566 4949




Simply sign up online for your subscription, receive a monthly SMS code and collect your magazine at your local Woolies by swiping your WW Rewards card Call 087 405 2005 for more information


Open and shut “THE KITCHEN was neither practical nor conducive to socialising,” explain the Steyns who bought this Seapoint apartment as a base when their daughter went to university in Cape Town. They asked designer Bryce Henderson of TAG Design to remodel it while renovating the rest of the apartment.

HOW IT WENT FROM DRAB TO FAB As the Steyns didn't need such a large bathroom, Bryce decided to downsize it and reposition the front door to increase the size of the kitchen. This created space for a separate, concealed scullery and a smaller bathroom. “Having an area where the dirty dishes can be hidden is a boon in an open-plan arrangement where the kitchen is always visible,” says Bryce. He designed new cabinetry, which runs the length of the one wall, extends into the living area and culminates in a media cabinet. “It blurs the boundary between the



By incorporating space from a bedroom, designer Bryce Henderson turned a cramped galley kitchen into a spacious entertaining area

living area



NOW THE KITCHEN IS stylish and contemporary and blends


kitchen and living area, creating a sense of continuity and spaciousness,” he explains. While the cooking is done in the original kitchen, the cabinet in the living area accommodates the coffee machine, toaster, crockery and cutlery. These are hidden by pocket doors, which slide away neatly when they need to be accessed. Workspace that was lost by removing cabinets on one side was regained with the addition of a small island with a prep bowl, which also serves as a dining area. The stepped ceiling was a challenge, but by installing LED lighting along the top of the cabinetry, it’s now become a design feature. The tiled flooring throughout was replaced with wood-look vinyl.

seamlessly with the living area. “There’s no more bumping into one another when we cook,” say the Steyns, “and when we entertain, we can accommodate so many more guests.” THIS SPREAD, CLOCKWISE FROM BOTTOM LEFT: Adding a warm contrast are timber shelves and wood-look vinyl flooring.

The designer chose a dark duco finish for the cabinets so that they are unobtrusive. Cooking is done in what was the original kitchen. An ashwood splashback with a beautiful grain softens the industrial look of the cabinets. The island has a prep bowl and serves as a dining area. The narrow light fitting from Weylandts was chosen to fit under the low ceiling. The dining chairs are also from Weylandts. SOURCES TAG Design Weylandts | AUGUST 2019



STYLE YOUR BEDSIDE TABLE As you spend more time in your bedroom in winter, give it a lift by creating a chic arrangement of accessories on your bedside table as Kita Veale of Homestead Decor did


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here. Using a chest of drawers instead of the usual pedestal as the base, she combined a contemporary lamp with a candle in a holder, an inlaid

box and piece of crystal. Lilies in a jug add a gorgeous scent. And to finish it off, she hung a decorative mirror behind it.

SOURCE Homestead Decor


This month’s GOOD IDEA…

COMPETITION THE PRIZE INCLUDES A two-night night stay for four people in an Ambassador Chalet. All meals. Pre-dinner drinks. Morning and afternoon safaris.



etting back to nature is always good for the soul. The perfect place to do this is at the 10 000-hectare Inverdoon Private Game Reserve, just a two-and-a-half-hour drive from Cape Town. Set in the vast landscape of the Tankwa Karoo, it offers a Big Five safari experience in style and comfort. Safari experiences are offered on day trips or overnight stays. Luxury accommodation includes the five-star Ambassador Suite, which has a rooftop terrace overlooking the Ceres Karoo. The Ambassador Chalets are ideal for couples and the Kughana tented camp has everything you need for an undercanvas stay. The Tankwa Chalets are ideal for a family holiday while Lodge rooms have their own fireplaces and verandas. Start the day with a delicious buffet breakfast, then take a game drive with an experienced ranger and have fun spotting a variety of game including the Big Five. Learn more about the reserve’s cheetah rehabilitation programme before enjoying lunch under the trees. At night, three-course dinners are served in the restaurant or the lantern-lit boma next to the pool. Then take in the magnificent starscape and relax around the firepit. For more information, visit

WINNING IS EASY – ENTER NOW! To enter, SMS INVERDOORN, your name, email and postal addresses to 48406. Each SMS costs R1,50. Free SMSes don’t apply.

TERMS AND CONDITIONS: 1. The first correctly completed entry, randomly selected after the closing date, will win the prize. 2. The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into. 3. The prize is non-refundable, non-transferable and is not redeemable for cash. 4. Employees of Inverdoorn Private Game Reserve, CTP Caxton, their immediate families and advertising agencies may not enter the competition. 5. The prize is valid from date of notification until 29 February 2020, is subject to availability and excludes peak periods, public holidays and school holidays. 6. The prize excludes transport costs to Inverdoorn Private Game Reserve and all other sundries not specifically mentioned, such as beverages, telephone calls, laundry, conservation fees, gratuities, etc. 7. Entries close on 31 August 2019. 8. The competition is only open to South African residents over the age of 18. 9. The winner will be notified telephonically. 10. To comply with the Consumer Protection Act, postal entries will no longer be allowed and the winner will be required to supply their ID number. 11. By entering the competition, you give Caxton Magazines the right to present other Caxton offers to you. | AUGUST 2019


Even though it’s cold and frosty, there’s no reason to stay indoors. Make the most of glorious, sunny days and starry nights by warming up your outdoor living area with these winter must-haves



THE GREEN ROOM Eva Solo Fire Globe fireplace, R4 799, Yuppiechef.

EXPERT TIPS Reece Townsley of Infiniti Fires, Jo’burg, has this advice for heating outdoor living areas Traditional open fireplaces built of brick or stone are popular features in outdoor living spaces. However, to ensure that these don’t smoke and ruin the atmosphere, install a concealed steel damper unit in the brickwork. This also provides better heat and more efficient fuel burning. While ideal for cooking food, built-in braais can also be used to add warmth and ambience. If you choose a quality steel braai built with a reinforced back wall, you’ll enjoy many years of trouble-free cooking and a warmer, more inviting entertaining area. If there’s no chimney and you don’t want to embark on structural changes, consider infrared gas space heaters. Whether it’s portable with a 9kg cylinder or wall mounted, look for one that is designed to heat that particular space. Gas heaters are user friendly, cost effective, and fairly easy to install or manoeuvre. Dolce Vita outdoor gas heater, R39 999, Mobelli Furniture + Living.

Storm firepit, from R525, Storm Distribution.

Terrace Leisure 110cm clay chiminea, R999, Makro.

Alva GHP30 shortstand gas patio heater, R2 799, Builders.

Iron basket firepit, R3 900, Cécile & Boyd.

Terrace Leisure square firepit, R1 999, Makro.

Falo Evo outdoor gas heater, R25 999, Mobelli Furniture + Living.

SOURCES Builders Cécile & Boyd Infiniti Fires Makro Mobelli Furniture + Living Storm Distribution Yuppiechef | AUGUST 2019



Natural BALANCE Back to nature was the theme of this year’s Chelsea Flower Show. Top designers recognised the move towards naturalistic woodland and meadow gardens and the restorative power of green – a natural antidote to technology and climate change



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 THE POWER OF GREEN Awarded Best on Show, this woodland garden was designed by Andy Sturgeon for M&G Investments, main sponsors of the Chelsea Flower Show. With a clear message that green is the new black, it may have looked natural, but nothing was random. A superb design utilised plant forms, leaf shapes and textures to create movement and drama, offset by huge burnt-oak sculptures inspired by rock formations in Australia.


In the gold-awarded Morgan Stanley garden, designer Chris Beardshaw proved that it is possible to have a flower-filled garden that also ticks the right boxes in terms of recycling and repurposing, efficient water and energy use and practical plant choices. He repeated groups of plants, weaving a thread of colour throughout, using up to 100 different herbaceous plants, many low-water users like salvia, lavender, irises, scabiosa, geum, geranium, euphorbia and verbascum. His rationale: planting closer together crowds out weeds.

 TREE HUGGING IS GOOD The underlying theme in more than one garden was that forests and woodlands are fragile eco-systems that are under threat. The gold-awarded ‘Resilience’ garden was designed by Sarah Eberle to evoke an appreciation for forests and trees, while considering how woodlands could become more adaptable to climate change, pests and diseases. The wildflower planting under the trees almost stole the show, with flowering herbs, wildflowers and lilies in a graceful repetition of colours, and a swathe of blue perennial flax and spikes of red viper’s grass (Echium russicum) for drama.

 LIKE THIS GARDEN It was inevitable: Facebook came to Chelsea and won a gold medal for its garden ‘Beyond the Screen’. However, designer and landscape architect Jo Baker didn’t do the obvious thing by going high tech. Opting for a naturalistic coastal garden that expressed the real and diverse world of Facebook users, Baker used elements to make some intriguing connections. For instance, the copper of the canopy represented communication, the flow of water constant change, and the varied plants (succulents, grasses, bulbs, coastal shrubs), the different online communities made possible by Facebook. It was also awarded Best Space to Grow garden.

 THE OUTDOOR CLASSROOM Designer Jodi Lidgard not only made his debut at Chelsea, he won a gold medal for the ‘Montessori Centenary Children’s Garden’ in the Space to Grow category. Inspired by the Montessori ethos of using outdoor spaces where children can learn and explore, futuristic cerise entrance arches and a riotous meadow jam-packed with flowers set the tone for the garden. It included living, edible walls, a vegetable growing area using simple hydroponics, and a wildlife pond. | AUGUST 2019


PLANT FOR CLEAN AIR As a focal point, sculptor David Harber’s epiphany of a leaf, beautifully reflected in a still pool, pulled together this exuberant wild garden, which received a bronze medal. All the trees and plants in the ‘Savills and David Harber’ garden, designed by Andrew Duff, were selected for their ability to remove pollution. Large hornbeam trees acted as effective sequesters of carbon and a wetland garden purified and filtered grey water and permeable surfaces. A highlight was a green wall planted with ferns and other air-cleaning plants.

 ALWAYS A PLACE FOR ROSES There had to be at least one garden that featured roses. The romantic and elegant ‘Wedgwood Garden’, designed by Jo Thompson, and winner of a silver-gilt award, featured a sumptuous mix of copper, pink and yellow roses, irises and peonies in what was probably the most formal of the show gardens. The graceful stone and metal arches, intended to reflect the Victorian era, created a sense of enclosure, while a repeat of the stonework as a floating floor around which water flowed, symbolised the canals that were part of Wedgwood’s industrial history.

 DESERT CLASSIC Awarded a silver-gilt medal, designer Thomas Hoblyn’s ‘Dubai Maljis’ garden was a masterclass in how to use an array of drought-tolerant shrubs and flowers to provide an oasis of colour. Using surprisingly few succulents, his plantscape included our indigenous bulbine and silvery-leafed garden staples such as artemisia, santolina, stachys and yellow-flowering helichrysum with ground-covering herbs like thyme. Flowing terracotta and white limestone-clad terraces gave the garden a fluid yet sculptural feel, and evoked the wind-shaped sand dunes and exposed rocky outcrops of a desert landscape.

 RUSTIC MEDITERRANEAN It was no surprise that ‘Donkeys Matter’, designed by Annie Prebensen and Christina Williams, won the People’s Choice award for Artisan Gardens. Sandstone terraces and an airy combination of silvery-green foliage and sumptuous purple flowers, including banks of lavender, produced a rustic Mediterranean garden showcasing the Donkey Sanctuary’s international work in poor and vulnerable communities. The Mediterranean setting was chosen because of the predominant use of donkeys in that region. The garden was awarded a silver medal.

 BACK TO BASICS There were two edible gardens, one, a glimpse into futuristic indoor urban farming made possible by technology, and a climate-smart, women-led Zimbabwean food garden designed along achievable permaculture lines. Designed by Jilayne Rickards, the ‘CAMFED’ (Giving Girls in Africa a Space to Grow) garden (pictured) brought rural Zimbabwe into the heart of London, charming visitors and winning the People’s Choice award for the Space to Grow category. With its rich, red earth,

vivid colours and bounty of edible crops (the pumpkins alone were prize winners), it earned a gold medal.

SOURCE Royal Horticultural Society | AUGUST 2019




mbling along a gravel pathway towards a shadedappled dining table, it’s easy to imagine you’re in the French countryside. Although just two years old, this revamped garden has a mellow, long-established air. The viburnum hedging is beginning to screen a neighbouring roof, substantial hedges of lavender and rosemary


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abound and terracotta pots are brimful of buxus. “We bought the property 10 years ago from interior designer Krysia Back,” explains owner Jackie Wilken. “Although we loved the house, we were completely taken by the garden. It became a huge renovation project, one that fortuitously coincided with my new obsession with gardening. Only once

all the building works were complete, could we begin with the trenching and planting.” By rerouting the original driveway, the team at Studio of Architecture built a new garden space directly in front of the house. Softened by both shaped and rambling shrubs, this gravelled area leads around the western side, drawing you towards the new living wing 


Now and then



The existing sunken pool area was originally a tennis court. A pair of cypresses (Cupressus sempervirens) frame the entrance to the house. The view towards the pool room with the pleached syzygium along the driveway. A bed of Salvia ‘Mystic Spires’ with the original syzygium topiary balls and cypresses beyond. The front porch of the original house.

Jackie (pictured) and Deon Wilken, their two daughters, Olivia (9) and Eva (11), and schnauzer, Max.

THE GARDEN A generous Westcliff garden with a lawn-lined pool at the front. There is a series of new Frenchinspired courtyards closer to the house. | AUGUST 2019


I’m a self-taught gardener and learned early on to keep things relatively simple.�

Jackie created a veggie garden in the section between the kitchen and the outdoor dining area. The open-air dining table is accompanied by chairs from Block & Chisel. A new low-maintenance stone and gravel pathway connects the front and back gardens. THIS PAGE, CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE:

and outdoor entertaining area. “The sunken lawn at the front of the house was originally a tennis court,” explains Jackie. “We inherited this classical layout, with the pool and lawn bordered by topiary, clipped conifers and low hedging. Along the driveway side, I wanted something more modern, so we pleached the syzygium shrubs. It’s given the area a more cohesive look while adding a lot more privacy.” The pool is a dramatic feature in itself, reflecting the house at one end and a charming pool room at the other. A pair of large trimmed cypresses flanks the steps to the house, its terracotta roof offset by the suburb’s abundant, established trees. From here, the level changes again, leading down from the original portico via a shallow staircase to a stone and gravel pathway. “We wanted the new living areas to open directly onto the courtyard, so it made sense to raise this section,” says Jackie. Interspersed by rapidly spreading Aptenia cordifolia groundcover, the walkway meanders through a series of mostly water-wise ‘rooms’. “Overall, the structure is evergreen,” says Jackie, “and includes star jasmine,

syzygium and shrubs like brunsfelsia and Duranta ‘Sheena’s Gold’.” But, possibly the most interesting choice of all is a grid of spekboom, nurtured from tiny sticks in pots to hardy, shinheight hedging. 


Spekboom hedging and Ficus nitida topiaries flank the entrance to the potting room. Jackie created a sitting zone between the main living areas and the outdoor dining table. | AUGUST 2019


“Part of the renovation included turning an awkward room off the living room into a potting room, which opens up onto the courtyard garden,” she adds. “I love experimenting with water-wise plants and created a nursery using a series of terracotta pots. There’s also a fairly structured veggie garden with edible and non-edible plants just off the kitchen, plus a series of hanging pots filled with herbs like basil and sage.” Apart from the warm notes of pots, roof tiles and garden seating, Jackie has kept the palette predominantly green. “I’m a self-taught gardener and learned early on to keep things relatively simple. Choosing low-maintenance plants has really paid off, as has the combination of textures and different shades of green. The changing ground levels, bold shapes and differing plant heights arouse real interest; I didn’t feel the need to add masses of colour.” That said, there are gorgeous purple hues in the front garden, where Jackie replaced a formal rose planting with a bed of Salvia ‘Mystic Spires’. In spring, an ornamental cherry tree is a blaze of


AUGUST 2019 |

white blossom, followed by the scented star jasmine in summer. For Jackie, this garden has brought enormous personal satisfaction. “The

greatest joy was finding out that you can teach yourself anything – everything is figure-outable. There’s great value in that creative process.”

A tranquil corner next to one of the garden’s recycled pots. The original driveway was transformed into a gravel space backed by a ficus hedge, syzygium and Margaret Roberts lavender. THIS PAGE, FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:

SOURCES Block & Chisel Jackie Wilken Studio of Architecture


Beyond BORDERS This small garden in Franschhoek was cleverly designed as a visual extension of the surrounding fynbos reserve


A sheltered veranda overlooks the pool.

WHO LIVES HERE A Franschhoek businessman and his restaurateur wife who both love cooking, especially the fresh produce they grow in their garden.

THE GARDEN A small 600m2 sloping estate garden with a wetland pool, fynbos sections and an edible garden with espaliered lemon trees, vegetables and herbs.


he lush beds of vibrant coral watsonias that greet you at the entrance make it hard to believe that this compact estate garden is only four years old. The established look is thanks to thorough soil preparation and limiting the plants to those that thrive in the area. The owners, a local businessman and his wife, who owns a restaurant, work long hours and travel frequently, so when they moved here they wanted a low-maintenance garden that looked good throughout the year. Fortunately, they were introduced to landscaper Natie Ferreira of Tamatie known for his organic approach. The magnificent setting surrounded by vineyards, olive groves and fynbos with views of the Franschhoek mountains inspired the design. “I


In spring, Watsonia borbonica provide a warm welcome at the entrance. Landscaper Natie Ferreira designed the garden as an extension of the setting, which has magnificent views over the vineyards to the mountains. The design and planting mimic the unspoilt surroundings. Eco Pools built the wetland pool, which is fed by a water feature. LEFT:

wanted to incorporate rocks to reflect the mountains and introduce a wetland pool filled by a naturalistic stream so that the garden would look like an extension of the surroundings,� explains Natie. First, they had to build a road through the property in order to | AUGUST 2019


bring in the large rocks. Once these were in place, the wetland pool was constructed by Eco Pools. In addition to their attractive appearance, these pools are filtered by plants and require no chemicals. Natie laid out a winding gravel pathway leading from the gate through to the vegetable garden and used gravel for most of the garden floors.

“This created an alpine look, which we accentuated with succulents,” he says. As the area is prone to extremes of temperature, not to mention berg winds, the plants had to be able to withstand these difficult conditions. Fynbos varieties were the answer, fulfilling the owners’ request for a garden that’s both pretty and drought resistant. Those chosen include helichrysum and buchu,


The pool water is filtered through a gravel and a wetland section. Gum poles prevent the lemon trees blowing over in the strong berg winds. Vegetables are grown in raised boxes and herbs are planted in the ground. African rosemary (Eriocephalus africanus), with its grey aromatic leaves, and watsonias, restios and proteas line the pathway. LEFT:

The perimeter fence was carefully hidden to create the illusion that the garden is part of the fynbos reserve. A selection of fynbos plants, including buchu and helichrysum, were planted in front of the outdoor shower. The hybrid pincushion, Leucospermum cordifolium Ayoba ‘Tangerine Twist’ bred by Arnelia, is ideal for small gardens like this. THIS PAGE, CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE LEFT:

as well as perennials and shrubs such as wild dagga, pelargonium, buddleia and tecomaria. But before any planting could be done, the soil had to be conditioned. The existing combination of clay and rocks wasn’t conducive to good growth, so in some areas, the soil had to be replaced with new topsoil enriched with compost. Although fynbos doesn’t need rich soil, this helped speed up the growth, making the garden look established in a shorter period, and resulted in healthier plants.

Despite the fact that the owners have access to the estate’s boreholes, Natie kept water conservation in mind and arranged the plants in zones so that each section gets the right amount of water through the irrigation system – even the pots are connected. The edible garden requires the most water to ensure its abundance. “Even though my wife owns a restaurant, when we’re at home, we

love to cook, especially with vegetables and herbs we’ve grown ourselves,” says the owner. Aside from regular mulching to prevent the soil from drying out and a bit of pruning, little maintenance is required, making this the ideal lock-upand-go garden.

SOURCES Arnelia Eco Pools 021 761 3759 Tamatie or 083 578 7619 | AUGUST 2019


Something old,



t was during the renovation of their traditional Westcliff, Jo’burg, house, that the owners realised that, in order for the garden to complement the new style of the house, it would have to undergo a similar remodelling. Set on the rocky slopes of Westcliff, the garden consisted of a series of courtyards shut off from each other by gates and high


AUGUST 2019 |

stone walls. “We wanted more open space where our children and the dogs could play,” they explain. Turning to landscape designer Gregory Mark, they asked him to reconfigure the layout, removing some walls to establish open lawned spaces. “The site and the house itself had plenty of charm, and part of the brief was to retain the original

character. Fortunately, I was involved during the renovation so I could ensure that from the start, the design of the garden would work with the house,” recalls Gregory. The garden had a number of good features including the mellow Westcliff stone, which the owners wanted to keep. “The first step was to knock down some


This classic Westcliff garden was updated and restructured to suit the needs of a young family



To give this classic garden a contemporary look, landscape designer Gregory Mark laid concrete pavers in geometric shapes and squared off the edges of the beds. Buxus hedges are contrasted with soft plantings of salvia, angelonia and mixed annuals. Concrete pavers interplanted with mondo grass guide the way to the front door, which is framed by two Lagerstroemia indica. Timber steps lead up to a decked walkway that connects the front and back sections.

WHO LIVES HERE A young professional couple, their three children and two dogs.

THE GARDEN A sloping 350m2 garden in Westcliff, Jo’burg, which underwent a complete overhaul to open up enclosed spaces and establish lawned areas for playing.

of the walls and create level flowing areas so that the house could breathe,” explains Gregory. “Unfortunately, we hit Westcliff bedrock. After a week of acid breaking and chipping, we only managed to remove enough loose rock to build a path around the house and we couldn’t extend the level area as far as we wanted.” But he turned this into 

an opportunity and built a raised water feature against a retaining wall and linked the front section to the back with a timber walkway and steps. Gregory reveals that the hardest part of the project was limiting the variety of plants as both he and the owners are keen plant lovers. “We chose a simple green and white palette as this suits the style of the house, creates a sense of calm and makes the garden appear larger,” says Gregory. Boston ivy softens the stone walls while star jasmine frames the entrance to the summerhouse. He established straight lines and geometric shapes, squaring off beds and edging lawns with viburnum and buxus hedges, clipped at different heights for contrast. Raised stone clad beds against the boundary walls were planted with wild olives, Syzygium paniculatum and white arums. THIS PAGE, CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE

Three modern charcoal bowls filled with dwarf Gardenia ‘Radicans’ appear to float above a clipped hedge of Viburnum odoratissimum. A Lutyensstyle bench on the terrace overlooks the garden. When bedrock prevented them from levelling the entire area, Gregory built a raised water feature along the side of a retaining wall. LEFT:

Special care was taken to ensure that the ornamentation such as pots and pathways complemented the style and architecture. Large concrete pavers interplanted with mondo grass lead to the front door. This is framed by two pride of India (Lagerstroemia indica) brought in by crane. “Less is so much more in this case,” says Gregory. Oversized contemporary bowls filled with dwarf gardenia flank the gate to the garden and nearby, a Lutyens-style bench was placed on a raised terrace providing a view of the garden and the sunset.

Charcoal planters and strong lines give this classic property a modern twist. The shade walk is made up of informal plantings of toad lily, Viola odorata and arums. Boston ivy adorns the wall while a Japanese maple and a birdbath draw the eye at the end of the path. ‘Eureka’ lemon trees in square planters frame a set of French doors. THIS PAGE, CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT:

SOURCE Gregory Mark Landscapes 082 443 7251 | AUGUST 2019



beauties Contrary to popular belief, the new cymbidium hybrids are both affordable and surprisingly easy to care for


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ative to the tropical forests of the Eastern Himalayas through China, Korea and Japan, cymbidiums were first cultivated by the ancient Chinese in the days of Confucius. The genus consists of about 50 species, and from these, thousands of hybrids have been bred. Cymbidiums are evergreen with long, strappy, grass-like leaves growing from thick bulb-like swellings called pseudobulbs, which act as storage organs for nutrients and water. Each growing cycle starts in early spring, with fresh leaves emerging from the pseudobulbs. Their large blooms last anywhere from eight to 10 weeks and come in most colours except blue. Some species even exude a delightful fragrance. Tissue culture has allowed the orchid growing industry to produce the most desirable cultivars at a relatively low cost. As the clones are raised under ideal conditions, you know exactly what the plant and flowers will look like and they reach maturity far quicker than those raised from seed.

One of the reasons cymbidiums are so popular is their ability to thrive in cooler, drier conditions that other orchids can’t tolerate. However, to ensure happy plants, it’s important to replicate their natural environment as closely as possible. Unlike most cultivated epiphytic (tree-dwelling) orchids, cymbidiums are generally terrestrial, meaning they grow in the ground. In cultivation, they’re happiest in large pots. Use orchid-specific potting soil, like that by Pokon from Hadeco, which has a very airy structure, allowing maximum aeration around the roots. Their thick and fleshy roots rot if drainage is poor. Each flower spike only blooms once every season, so unlike other types of orchids, you won’t be able to encourage a rebloom from the spike. Once blooming is over, cut off the spike just above where it emerges from the mother plant.


Position Cymbidiums need bright light to encourage flowering, particularly in summer and autumn; 30–40% shade cloth, or next to an east-facing wall where they’ll get morning sun and afternoon shade is ideal. They’re also happy in dappled shade under a tree. If grown indoors, an east-facing windowsill is best. Check that your plants are receiving the correct amount

of light by looking at their leaves; these should be a yellow green, similar to a Granny Smith apple. Dark green leaves are a sure sign that they aren’t getting enough light and they won’t flower. Too much light causes the leaves to turn yellow. Many gardeners grow cymbidiums outdoors in optimum light, and when in flower, bring them indoors.

In autumn, cymbidiums need at least a 10°C difference between day and night to prompt them to flower. In summer, the day temperatures shouldn’t rise above 30°C, and those at night, ideally around 15°C. Winter temperatures should be about 15–20°C in the day, dropping to around 5°C at night. The plants will survive the odd cold snap when conditions drop to just below freezing, but not for extended periods. It’s better to bring your plants indoors if you’re expecting icy conditions. | AUGUST 2019


GET MORE ONLINE Find out how to repot orchids at

CYMBIDIUMS AT A GLANCE Position: Morning sun and afternoon shade or bright, diffused light. Plant: Repot in spring after flowering. Water: Once a week. Size: 30cm. Frost tolerance: Light frost (-2°C). Caution: Watch out for slugs and snails.

dry out slightly, before watering again. In late summer, once the pseudobulbs have finished actively growing, you can reduce the watering schedule, although it’s important not to let the plant dry out completely. The plants like a moderately high humidity, around 50–60%. You can raise the humidity by misting or by keeping a bowl of water next to the pots.



Watering is also important. More orchids die from overwatering than underwatering. Never allow an orchid to sit in water. If you have a drip tray under the pot, empty it out 30 minutes after watering. Don’t use tap water as it contains chemicals; rather use rainwater, distilled water or borehole water. As a rule of thumb, water once a week. Allow the surface of the growing medium to

It’s important to establish a feeding routine. There are a number of orchid fertilisers on the market. Pokon orchid food for example, is a balanced fertiliser (NPK 4:5:6) with a mix of trace elements that gives orchids all they need to grow and flower. Fertilise once a week, adding 5ml of fertiliser per litre of water. You can use it all year round, but when the plants go into semi-dormancy


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in winter, cut this down to every second or third week.

Repotting Repot cymbidiums every two to three years, but only if really necessary as they tend to flower better when slightly pot bound. Do this in spring when they begin to actively grow again. This allows them enough time to re-establish themselves before the next flowering season. Use a pot large enough to accommodate at least two years’ growth – a 23cm pot is ideal. The pot must have drainage holes and you need a specialised orchid soil. Divide plants into clumps of around four pseudobulbs. Always use a clean pot as orchids are susceptible to bacterial infection, and don’t bury the pseudobulbs. SOURCE Hadeco

Discover smart ideas for small spaces at GARDENANDHOME.CO.ZA ALL THINGS APARTMENT Clever ways to personalise apartments of all sizes

Join and Multiflora for a special spring celebration Thea-Mei Smit of Benir Creative Floral Solutions will share her floral expertise at two fabulous sessions

Saturday, 31 August CONTAINER SAVVY Whether it’s vegetables, herbs, trees or roses, you can grow them in containers

SPACE STRETCHERS Loads of tips for making a compact home look and feel bigger

SESSION 1: FROM ORDINARY TO EXTRAORDINARY In this demonstration, Thea-Mei will show you how to transform an ordinary bunch of flowers into a masterpiece. COST: Free, but space is limited. Please book your seat. TIME: 09h00 – 10h00. Lots of prizes are up for grabs and each person will receive a goodie bag. SESSION 2: BOTANICAL COUTURE Thea-Mei will show you step by step how to make your own botanical hair couture piece. COST: R275 per person, which includes all flowers and accessories for a beautiful floral hair decoration, and a fab goodie bag. TIME: 11h00 – 12h00. VENUE: Multiflora Flower Market, corner Fig Place and Vickers Road, City Deep, Jo’burg. Ample, safe parking is available.

DOWNSIZE AND DECLUTTER Good ideas for organising your home



Inside STORY Indoor plants are stepping up with dramatic foliage, vivid new flower colours and scaled-down versions of traditional favourites that are ideal for smaller spaces 86

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Breeders have extended the colour range of this popular orchid to include yellow and orange shades. Plants are now being grown in glass containers to display the roots as well as the spectacular flowers. Attention is being given to Midis (mediumhigh growers) that fit easily into all kinds of interiors. With their long flowering period (up to three months), and ease of care, phalaenopsis remain one of the most popular indoor flowering plants. Needs: Strong, bright indirect light and high humidity for the best growth and flowers. Drop two ice cubes on the top of the soil once a week; this will supply enough water. Alternatively, run water through the potting mix for one minute every three to 10 days, depending on the season.




 ZANTEDESCHIA  FICUS ELASTICA Popular as an indoor tree in the ’70s, the rubber plant usually ended up in a dark, dusty corner. It’s now making a glamorous comeback with dramatic foliage variations. ‘Tineke’ (pictured) has variegated foliage in a mix of cream, olive green and pink. ‘Abidjan’ combines bronze, maroon and black shades. These no-fuss plants can grow up to 2m high, but can be kept shorter. Needs: Good indirect light, even though they’ll grow in poor light. Don’t overwater. Let the soil dry out slightly between waterings. They tolerate ordinary household conditions, but not sudden drops in temperature. They also don’t like to be moved; find the right spot and leave them there.

Known as arum or calla lilies, these are now available in a range of eight different colours: black, purple, lavender, dark pink, rose, peach, orange and yellow. Newer varieties feature coloured leaves that echo the shades of the flowers. Indoor zantedeschia are small, with petite trumpet-shaped flowers and green pointed leaves. Needs: Bright light and early morning sun, but no direct midday sun. Normal room humidity is acceptable, or place them outdoors on a sheltered terrace or balcony. Water the plants as soon as the soil surface is slightly dry. During spring and summer, add liquid fertiliser to the water about every two weeks. The leaves are toxic to cats and dogs so keep the plants out of reach. 

 PILEA PEPEROMIOIDES (CHINESE MONEY PLANT) A new arrival that’s trending on Pinterest and Instagram, this fuss-free plant grows quickly. It has large, bright green nasturtium-like leaves and hardly resembles the normal peperomia. It grows upright to about 30cm, with the stems arching gracefully as it grows. Needs: Medium to bright indirect light (but not direct sunlight), high humidity and constant temperatures. The soil should not dry out completely or become waterlogged. Rotate the plant once a week to keep its growth even. New plants appear continuously from the base of the plant. | AUGUST 2019


 ANTHURIUMS These plants have had the biggest makeover, shedding their old-fashioned image. Originally bred as cut flowers, the new varieties are slimmed down, have smaller flowers and a greater variety of leaf shapes and sizes. The distinctive yellow spadix now comes in many other colours. Look out for ‘Mystique’, which has painterly leaves, and ‘Cirano’, a pocket-sized variety. With the right care, these plants are almost indestructible, lasting indoors for many years. Needs: Bright indirect light in a warm room. Let the soil dry out slightly between waterings and don’t let the plant stand in water.


 PHLEBODIUM (BLUE LEAF FERN) Replacing the popular Boston fern, now categorised as an invasive, this easygrowing, epiphytic fern with lobed, elongated blue-green fronds is the ideal plant for first-time fern growers. It is suitable for hanging baskets or kokedama, especially in bathrooms, bedrooms and even kitchens. Like the phalaenopsis orchid it can live in its pot for a long time. Needs: Low to medium light and relatively high humidity. Water it once a week (less in winter) and mist regularly. Make sure it drains well. Water around the plant, not in the centre of the rhizome. Add liquid fertiliser to the water once a month.


AUGUST 2019 |

If you don’t have space for indoor plants, visit and find out how to create your own Japanese hanging planter.

 GUZMANIA LINGULATA ‘SCARLET STAR’ This exotic bromeliad has yellow and red-tipped flower bracts. The flower bracts last for two months or more before the plant dies, leaving behind new plants called pups, which become the next generation. These plants create a lush, tropical effect. Needs: Medium indirect light and a warm room with good humidity. Keep water in the central cup – the space where the leaves meet and form a cup (or tank) toward the base of the plant. In winter, fill the cup with lukewarm water, or lightly water the soil leaving the cup dry. Don’t let plants get cold or dry in winter. SOURCE Plants supplied by Plantimex


Garden NOTES Lighten up your garden by planting an evergreen shrub with beautiful golden foliage


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MUST-DOS THIS MONTH Contributing gardening editor Marianne Alexander’s handy checklist of essential chores to do in August

For instant colour, fill gaps in borders and containers with established flowering plants in trays: dianthus, nemesias, ornamental kale and calendulas; and primula for shade areas. In warm areas, sow seeds of quick-growing annuals in situ: cleome, marigold, ageratum, phlox and scabious; in cooler areas, sow them in seed trays. Repot root-bound shrubs and standards into larger containers or tip them out, root prune, and replant with fresh potting mix, bonemeal and waterretaining crystals. Prune roses in frost areas only from the middle of the month to prevent frost damage to new leaves. Once they appear, feed with slow-release fertiliser such as Vigorosa 5:1:5 or Talborne Vita Green 5:1:5. Water in. In winter-rainfall areas, begin preventative treatment for black spot and mildew. Brush aphids off the buds. Scarify lawns, especially kikuyu and buffalo, and remove dead grass, which has built up a thick thatch. To level hollows, lift sods and fill the space underneath with weed-free soil or sand. Once the flowers of camellias and azaleas have faded, feed with a highnitrogen fertiliser. Cut back long ungainly shoots on azaleas. Give acid-loving plants, including brunsfelsias, gardenias and Mackaya bella and citrus trees with yellowish leaves, an application of Epsom salts and Trelmix. Prepare a seedling mix: combine good loam, fine compost (sieve coarser compost) and rough or sharp sand. To destroy pathogens, moisten, zip in a plastic bag and microwave for 5–10 minutes on high. Look for summer bulbs like indigenous gladioli, Zantedeschia spp. (arum lilies), watsonias, crocosmia, gloriosa (flame) lilies, eucomis (pineapple lilies) and summer hyacinth (Ornithogalum candicans); and exotic dahlias, chlidanthus, tigridia (tiger lily) and zephranthes. Plant them when the weather warms up. Trim soft-wooded plants such as salvias, pelargoniums and fuchsias, but wait until there’s no threat of frost. Remove twiggy shoots and reduce the size by about two thirds; mulch well with compost and feed with a high-nitrogen fertiliser. Lift and divide dense clumps of perennials, if you didn’t do this in autumn. Replant the fresh young shoots from the perimeter in well-composted soil. Keep feeding spring bulbs until the leaves turn yellow. Lift only when the leaves have died back. Tidy up groundcovers, sprinkle compost between plants and feed with a balanced 2:3:4 or 3:1:5 fertiliser. Repot water lilies.

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DRAWING WATER To give plants water at root level, bury ollas (unglazed terracotta pots) in the ground and fill with water. Different sizes, from R90, are available from OllaPots. Call 083 564 8056 or visit

PEST ALERT Check under the leaves of citrus trees for signs of woolly whitefly (1) and citrus psylla mite. Lumps or pits indicate an infestation. Spray with Biogrow’s eco-friendly Pyrol or Bioneem, or Efekto’s Natural Insecticide. Planting wild garlic (tulbaghia) (2) under trees is a good deterrent. 


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Why: Well branched, it has abundant flowers in vivid shades of orange fading to deep purple at the centre. With its compact habit (25cm high and 40cm wide), it also looks striking in containers and hanging baskets. Where: In full sun in beds and borders. Morning sun only is best for container-grown plants. In coastal gardens, plant it in a position sheltered from the wind. How: It’s happy in ordinary garden soil, providing it drains well. Before planting, mix in compost and fertilise with Vigorosa 5:1:5 in spring and again in autumn. Water regularly, but don’t overwater as it tolerates moderately dry soil. Protect it from frost in very cold areas. For more information, visit

FOR TREE-LOVERS How to Identify Trees in Southern Africa by Braam van Wyk and Piet van Wyk, R290, Struik Nature, features colourful illustrations and photographs that bring the world of trees to life. Covering 43 tree groups, it’s a useful guide to identifying the trees you come across.


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Local appeal Available in six different colours, Reel Gardening’s Shweshwe Planting Bag Kits, R249, contain two planting bags, seed tape sachets, fertiliser sticks and ties.






Abutilon pictum ‘Gold Dust’ (Chinese lantern) is fast growing with bold green and gold speckled foliage and spectacular pendant orange blooms in summer. Prune to keep it compact. The lowdown: Half-hardy, plant in sun to semi-shade. Height: 1,5m. Aucuba japonica (Japanese laurel or gold dust plant) has leathery gold speckled foliage. The lowdown: Frost tolerant, it will take some sun, but thrives in shade and copes with dry spells. Height: 1m. Duranta ‘Gold Mine’ has large, bright green leaves edged with gold. A compact plant, it lacks the flowers of other forms, but sometimes has thorns making it great for hedging. The lowdown: Semi-hardy, plant it in full sun. Height: 2–3m.

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Prepare empty beds for spring planting. Dig in compost and bonemeal, and in hot dry areas, water-retaining crystals. To warm the soil up, cover it tightly with sheets of polythene/plastic – black or clear (there is some debate as to which is best). Sow seed of summer salad vegetables like tomatoes, green peppers, chillies, cucumbers and aubergines in seed trays in a warm place, or buy ready-grown seedlings. Make small sowings of carrots, beetroot, radishes, squash, baby marrow, zucchini, aubergine and baby corn in situ in frost-free areas. Wait until September to sow beans, or sow in seed trays.

NOW UNTIL – 1 SEPTEMBER Garden World Spring Festival New and updated designer gardens showcase the latest trends and solutions for small outdoor areas and feature ideas for reinventing, redecorating and revamping gardens on a limited budget. The display area now includes a permanent ‘Outdoor Rooms’ feature. Garden World is on Beyers Naudé Drive in Muldersdrift. For more information and bookings for the talks, workshops and concerts, call 011 957 2545/011 956 3003, 083 997 6142 or visit 19 JULY – 4 AUGUST Big Aloe Sale and Festival On at Witkoppen Wildflower Nursery, 363 Vine Avenue, Ferndale, Randburg, the festival is open from Mondays to Saturdays 08h00 – 17h00 and Sundays 08h00 – 16h00. For more details, visit 23 AUGUST – 1 SEPTEMBER Clanwilliam Wildflower Show Themed ‘Harmony’, the show celebrates the beauty of endemic plants and flowers in the `Blomkerk’. Open from 08h30 – 18h00, entrance is R50 for adults and scholars R10.

Spread straw between strawberry plants. Feed berry bushes and granadillas. Divide herbs like marjoram, thyme, mints, tarragon, lemon balm and garlic chives. Annual fast-maturing herbs like rocket, dill, chervil, coriander, borage and basil can be grown from seed. Sprinkle slow-release organic fertiliser under lemon and other citrus trees together with Epsom salts, (magnesium phosphate). Spray a trace element mix, such as Trelimix on trees with yellowing leaves. Start a fruit fly control regimen. Sprinkle fruit fly bait mixed with sugar on the leaves instead of using poison on the entire tree. Plum elegance flower planter, R99,99, Mr Price Home.

THIS WEEKEND Sort through pesticides, fungicides and weedkillers; dispose of those that are out of date, or no longer needed, in a responsible manner. Ask your local municipality for info on how to do this safely.

Brookwood low planter shelf, R599,99, Mr Price Home.

Concrete birdbath, R259,99, Mr Price Home.


SEE PAGE 100 FOR OUR CHILLI GROWING KIT GIVEAWAY. TERMS AND CONDITIONS: 1. Standard terms and conditions apply. 2. An SMS costs R1,50. Errors will be billed and free SMSes don’t apply. 3. Entries close 31 August 2019. 4. It is not mandatory to supply your e-mail address with your entry. 5. Offer valid for SA residents over the age of 18 only. 6. To comply with the Consumer Protection Act, the winner must supply their ID number. 7. The prize is not transferrable and cannot be converted to cash. | AUGUST 2019





THE DIRT Putting time, effort and resources into preparing beds goes a long way to ensure that plants will perform well

Prepare beds at least two weeks before you plan to start planting. This allows the soil to settle and the fertiliser or manure time to permeate, giving it an even spread, ensuring that there are no concentrated pockets that can burn the roots. Turning over the soil also exposes weed seeds causing them to germinate. It’s essential to remove these seedlings before planting as they’ll be difficult to distinguish from the seed you sowed and will deprive your seeds of nutrients and water.



he roots of a plant are its foundation and determine to a large extent how it performs through its life cycle. Good roots generally make happy, healthy plants that easily survive the rigours of spring and summer. A poor root system won’t be able to support plants or allow them to grow to their full potential, leaving them open to attack by pests and disease. Garden soil must be fertile, meaning rich in all the nutrients that plants need. The most important of these are nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and potassium (K). The various fertilisers contain different ratios of these elements, for example 2:3:2 or 3:1:5. Check the packaging to ensure that the formulation is best suited to what you’re planting. Soil must also be friable, meaning that it crumbles easily. Take a fistful of soil then open your hand – friable soil will crumble. This type of soil allows water to drain while retaining some moisture, as opposed to sandy soil that dries out quickly, or clay that becomes boggy. The best way to achieve this is by adding plenty of compost when preparing the bed.

3 STEP 3 Dig in a generous amount of compost. If your soil has a large clay content, you can also add some river sand to improve the drainage.

WHAT YOU’LL NEED Garden fork Bonemeal/superphosphate Fertiliser

Compost River sand (optional) Rake Sprinkler

4 STEP 4 Mix in the compost and fertiliser as evenly as possible.

5 STEP 5 Rake over the bed. A steel rake will turn up pebbles, rocks and root fragments that you may have missed initially. The bed should be level and even.

1 STEP 1 Dig the bed over to a depth of about 25cm or roughly the length of the tines of a garden fork, breaking up soil clods and removing large stones. Look out for builders’ rubble, especially bits of concrete that will inhibit root growth. Also check for roots from neighbouring plants that will rob the new bed of water and nutrients; remove these.

2 STEP 2 Sprinkle superphosphate or bonemeal and a general fertiliser like 2:3:2 according to the instructions on the bag. Bonemeal is a slow-release form of phosphorus (P). The calcium infusion in bonemeal helps plants develop healthy cells, strengthens the stems and promotes the development of new shoots of perennials and shrubs.

6 STEP 6 Water the bed with a sprinkler. This will settle the soil and start breaking down the fertiliser so that it won’t burn the seedlings and the nutrients are accessible. | AUGUST 2019



GREEN Cut gardening costs by growing nutrient-rich fertiliser plants. Jane Griffiths has the lowdown



ertain plants, the best being comfrey and yarrow, accumulate diverse nutrients from the soil, which can be used to feed other plants. Comfrey, for example, contains more nutrients than


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kraal manure as its roots go metres deep, allowing it to draw nourishment way out of the reach of other plants. To get the benefit of these nutrientrich plants, use the leaves as mulch, grow them as a green manure, add the leaves (or whole plant) to the compost pile, or make a fertiliser tea.

COMFREY Accumulates calcium, iron, magnesium, nitrogen, potassium, phosphorous and silica. Growing tips: Comfrey grows easily from cuttings or seedlings. Large

plants can be divided in early summer to create new ones. It likes full sun, but can handle semi-shade and is not too fussy about soil. As it grows bushier, keep it neat by cutting off leaves. When added to the compost heap, these help it decompose quickly. Shred and use as mulch, especially for tomatoes. Leaves can also be used to line planting holes (particularly good for potatoes). Let the leaves wilt for a few days and then line the edges and bottom of the hole before planting. As they decompose, they supply the plant with rich fertiliser. Don’t use flowering stems as these will root.




YARROW Accumulates magnesium, calcium, copper, phosphorus, potassium and sulphur. Growing tips: This hardy plant, which likes full sun, is easier to grow from seedlings (or propagate from an existing plant) than from seed. Once well established, it will spread by sending out runners. To propagate new plants, dig around the edge and cut off runners with roots and foliage. Keep new plants moist until well settled.

GREEN MANURE This consists of a fast-growing cover crop that’s chopped down and incorporated into the top layer of soil. All the accumulated nutrients are broken down and returned to the soil. Suitable crops include buckwheat, millet, mustard and wheat. Legumes (alfalfa, clover, fenugreek, soya beans and vetch) have the additional benefit of fixing nitrogen in the soil. Growing tips: Sow a mixture of green manure seeds quite thickly in a bed that has been raked smooth. Press down well, cover lightly with compost, and water. Once the crop is lush and leafy, chop it down using hedge shears, leaving


the roots in the soil to decompose. Cut up the leaves and stems quite finely and leave them to wilt for a few days before incorporating into the soil. If the ground is wet, scatter the chopped plants on top of the soil. If it’s dry, dig half of them into the top 5cm of soil and then scatter the rest over the top and water well. Don’t let a cover crop become too woody before cutting it as it will take too long to break down. Most green manures should be cut before they start flowering, as nutrients are lost in the formation of flowers and seeds. However, alfalfa and perennial clovers are the exception and can be grown over a few seasons. 

Green manure in different stages of growth. | AUGUST 2019



Buckets of herbs to be made into fertiliser tea.

A recycled table frame holds this fertiliser tea bucket with a tap.



Half fill a bucket with nutrient-accumulating plants. Cover with boiling water and leave them to rot for about a month, stirring every now and then. If you use a bucket with a tap on the side, put the plants in a sack first to prevent them from blocking the tap. Top up the brew and pour it off whenever you need it. Dilute one part tea to 10 parts water, and use as a soil drench or foliar spray. Apply it once or twice a month.




Nitrogen fixer; iron, magnesium, phosphorous and potassium


Potassium and silica






Copper, iron, manganese, phosphorous and potassium


Nitrogen fixer; phosphorous and potassium


Calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium, silica and sodium


Calcium, magnesium, manganese and phosphorous



Copper, manganese, phosphorous and potassium

Many plants, even some that are considered weeds, accumulate nutrients and can be used as fertilisers. Before you pull these out and toss them away, check the list (right) to see what valuable elements you’re losing and rather use them to feed your plants.


Calcium, copper, iron, nitrogen, potassium, phosphorous, silica, sodium and sulphur


Calcium, iron, phosphorous and sulphur


Calcium, phosphorous and sodium


Nitrogen fixer; cobalt, copper, potassium and phosphorous


Calcium, copper, iron, potassium and zinc


SOURCE Jane’s Delicious A – Z of Vegetables by Jane Griffiths (Sunbird Publishers,


AUGUST 2019 |



HOT C Jalapeño


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Bishop’s Crown

hillies originated in the Americas, where they have grown for more than 7 000 years. Eating them can be addictive, very similar to the endorphin rush a runner craves. But, you can also get hooked on growing them. There are more than 50 000 varieties in cultivation, but the following are the most popular. Capsicum annuum: sweet Italian peppers, bell, Paprika, Jalapeño, Hungarian Wax, Cherry Bomb, De Arbol, New Mexico and Serrano. Capsicum baccatum: Amarillo and


Love hot, spicy food? Find out how to grow chillies with this advice from Jane Griffiths

Bird’s Eye

Peppadew. Baccatum originates in Peru and has a fruity or lemony flavour. Many have strange-shaped fruit such as Bishop’s Crown. Capsicum chinense: includes some of the world’s fieriest cultivars such as the Trinidad Morouga Scorpion, Bhut Jolokia and Habanero, which grow best in hot humid climates. Capsicum frutescens: the famous Tabasco as well as Bird’s Eye, Malawian Pepper and Mozambique Bastardo. They are ornamental, producing masses of clustered pods. They don’t grow much higher than a metre, making them good for containers.

Growing All peppers prefer well-drained, fertile soil and warm climates. Surprisingly, they don’t require full sun. “Chillies do well in light shade,” says Sean Freeman of Livingseeds, which offers the largest selection of chilli seeds in South Africa. They don’t like cold and they won’t survive hard frost. Growing them in pots in these areas is a good idea as they can be brought indoors in winter. Start them off under cover in seed modules in July. After about six weeks they’ll be ready to transplant. To


Trinidad Morouga Scorpion

encourage strong roots, bury seedlings so their leaves are just above the ground.

Feeding and watering “When transplanting, feed them with Talborne Organics Vita Grow (2:3:2), which helps them to establish themselves and build a good root structure,” advises Sean. When the first flower buds form, add Vita Fruit and Flower (3:1:5) to help with flower and fruit production. They prefer humid conditions when flowering and setting fruit. If it’s very dry, mist them.

Pests Protect seedlings from cutworms by adding calcium-rich bonemeal to the soil or pushing cardboard collars into the soil around the stems. Sweet yellow peppers

Harvesting and eating Fruiting begins about 15–17 weeks after transplanting. Peppers change colour as they mature, from green, yellow and purple to red, yellow, orange or brown. Their heat levels increase the longer they remain on the plant. The more you harvest, the more they bear. Nip small ones off with finger and thumb. To avoid damaging the plant, use scissors to

cut off larger ones. Chillies can be used fresh in stir-fries, curries, stews and soups. They can be made into sauces, chutneys, jellies and jams. Use dry pods whole or ground into powder for a spice mix or rub. Be warned: once you start adding a little heat to your food, you’ll soon find yourself addicted! | AUGUST 2019


REALLY HOT STUFF! For some people, the challenge is to grow (and eat) the hottest chillies they can. “The hottest commercially available chilli is the Carolina Reaper (pictured),” says Sean. This fiery beast is 22 times hotter than a Habanero (which already has a blazing kick) and 300 times hotter than a Jalapeño. “We also supply seeds of many other extreme chillies, like 7 Pots, Trinidad Morouga Scorpion and Douglah’s.” The hotter the variety, the more difficult they are to grow. “The reasons are not clear. However, there is a definite increase in germination difficulty as the heat levels rise.”


Chilli ristra

De Arbol

Saving seed Cherry Bomb

“Saving chilli seed is straightforward, as long as you have isolated the flowers and they naturally self-pollinate. Harvest once the pod is fully coloured,” says Sean. He recommends cutting the pods open and scraping the seeds onto a plate to dry out. “Once dry, pack into

Place a germination mat underneath the seedling tray, which increases the heat and assists germination. Another option is to use an old electric blanket on its lowest setting. Use a good-quality germination mix. We recommend a third each mix of: vermiculite, coco peat and vermicompost. This fine, nutrient-rich blend holds moisture well, but doesn’t become waterlogged. Finally, patience. Just when you’re about to give up, your seed will germinate. Some super-hot chillies take up to 30 days to germinate.

an airtight container and label with the variety and date.” The seed will be viable for around five years. Wear gloves when processing seeds from hot varieties.

WIN! We’re giving away a Chilli Growing Kit from worth R550. It contains a Chilli Growing Guide, four 6-cell seedling trays, germination mix, heating pad and eight seed varieties in a range of heat levels. To enter, SMS the word CHILLIES, your name and e-mail address to 48406. Standard rates apply. See page 91 for Ts&Cs.

New Mexican


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SOURCES Jane’s Delicious A – Z of Vegetables by Jane Griffiths (Sunbird Publishers, Livingseeds 073 141 7101 Talborne Organics 061 454 9632

When they established a wine farm near Plettenberg Bay, Doug and Sue Lund discovered a new lifestyle combining their love of entertaining with their passion for wine


hen you think of Plettenberg Bay, beaches, gorgeous scenery and holidays spring to mind. But these days, the area is also becoming well known for its wines. In 2006, Doug Lund, a professional polo player, and his wife Sue, purchased 11 hectares at The Crags and established Newstead Wines, now a popular stop on the Plett Wine Route. From KZN sugar-farming families, Doug and Sue were inspired by a trip


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to the wine-growing regions of New Zealand. “The Plettenberg Bay Wine of Origin region has a comparable geography and climate to that of New Zealand, which is especially favourable to the varieties we grow – Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir,” says Doug. And it wasn’t long before Newstead wines were winning awards. As their reputation for fine wines and bubblies grew, so Sue’s culinary prowess began to attract a following. She laughs when she recalls the impetus for their

Tasting Centre lunches. A passionate cook, she happened to be featured in a local magazine. A tourist who read the article got the impression that she ran a restaurant and cycled all the way to The Crags to sample her food. Instead of turning her away, Sue quickly whipped up a meal for her. When Sue refused payment, the tourist said she’d be back the next week, with guests. While these lunches have become legendary, the same passion for food and wine extends to the entertaining they




Doug and Sue Lund

Les Rankin, Tara Dalzel, Sue Lund, Sue Dalzel and Allison Brebner

do at home. Exceptionally creative in everything she does, Sue designed their beautiful farmhouse around hosting their extended family, seasonal polo parties and celebrations, which form a large part of their lifestyle. Even though their three children are away studying, Sue encourages them to bring their friends home for the holidays. “There’s nothing nicer than a full house,” she says, and a great excuse to serve the dishes she loves to cook. When it comes to food, Sue is

inspired by the seasons and what’s fresh and available. “I grew up in a rural area in KZN, where if you wanted something sweet to eat, you had to make it from scratch,” she says. “We used to pick whatever was available, and when there was abundance on our farm, we’d share it with neighbours. That’s always been my food philosophy. The hardest thing for us now is to charge for the wine we produce – ideally we would just love to share it.” 



Serve with Newstead MCC Brut or Rosé



(Serves 6)

(Serves 6)

½ cup hot smoked salmon 1t cracked black pepper juice of ½ lemon, or to taste ½ cup full-cream cream cheese 1t chopped dill TO SERVE baguette, sliced and baked, or warm crusty bread

1 packet leeks, sliced 1 packet celery, sliced good-quality olive oil, for drizzling 1T castor sugar ½ cup walnuts 1–2 pears 200ml full-cream plain yoghurt 2t finely sliced fresh mint Maldon salt and black pepper, to taste TO SERVE edible flowers and microgreens

1. Remove the skin from the hot smoked salmon and flake. 2. Season with cracked black pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice. 3. Stir the cream cheese in a bowl, add the flaked salmon and then the dill. Mix until well combined. 4. Serve with Melba shards or warm crusty bread.


1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. 2. Place the leeks and celery in separate foil parcels, drizzle with good-quality olive oil and bake until soft. 3. Melt the sugar in a saucepan and cook until it

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Serve with Newstead MCC Brut

becomes honey coloured. 4. Remove from heat and add the walnuts to coat. Pour on a greased baking sheet and allow to cool and the sugar to set. 5. Cut the pears into slices about 5mm thick. 6. Mix the yoghurt and mint together and season with salt and pepper.

7. Place a layer of yoghurt along the centre of a platter. 8. Add a layer of the baked celery and leeks followed by another layer of yoghurt. 9. Add the sliced pears. 10. Top with candied walnuts, season with Maldon salt and a sprinkle of black pepper, and serve garnished with edible flowers.

Sue and Doug Lund

SLOW-ROASTED LAMB SHOULDER (Serves 4) 1 shoulder lamb 3 cloves garlic, peeled ½ lemon, sliced salt and pepper, to taste TO SERVE home-baked pita or rosemary flat breads microgreens (optional)

1. Preheat the oven to 160°C. 2. Place lamb shoulder in a

roasting pan. 3. Add the garlic and the sliced lemon. 4. Season the meat with salt and pepper, cover with foil and roast for 3 hours. 5. Remove the foil, increase the heat to 200°C and cook until the meat is browned. 6. Garnish with microgreens, if desired, and serve with the pear salad and home-baked pita or rosemary flat breads.

ROASTED ROOT VEGETABLES WITH ROAST TOMATO SAUCE (Serves 6) 1 butternut, peeled and cubed 5 sweet potatoes, cubed 1 onion, peeled and quartered good-quality olive oil,

for drizzling salt and pepper, to taste 5 baby beetroot, quartered 8 tomatoes, quartered 2 garlic cloves, peeled ½t sugar (optional) 1 cup quinoa, cooked TO SERVE Danish feta, crumbled microgreens (optional)

1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. 2. Place the butternut, sweet potatoes and 2 of the onion quarters in a shallow baking dish. Season and drizzle with olive oil. Cover with foil and roast. After 30 minutes, remove the foil and bake until done. 3. Season the baby beetroot, drizzle with olive oil and wrap in a parcel of foil. Bake until soft. 4. Roast the tomatoes with

the garlic cloves and the remaining onion quarters until well done and orange in colour. 5. Purée the tomatoes and onion mixture in a blender, season and add the sugar, if desired. Set aside. 6. Place the cooked quinoa on a platter. Top with the roasted root vegetables and drizzle with the tomato and garlic purée. 7. Garnish with the crumbled feta and microgreens, if desired, and serve. | AUGUST 2019


QUICK CHAT WITH THE COOK My cooking style is laid back with abundant, layered flavours and fresh ingredients. No dinner party is complete without Newstead Rosé and intriguing conversation. The kitchen gadgets I couldn’t live without are my Magimix and Kenwood Chef. If I had just one recipe book it would be Nigella Lawson’s How to Be a Domestic Goddess (Random House). My store cupboard staples are Maldon salt, olive oil, almonds and Parmesan. My favourite comfort food is chicken broth.


Sue Dalzel

NEWSTEAD TIRAMISU (Serves 6) 2T sugar ½ cup flaked toasted almonds 3 shots espresso 2 tots good-quality almond liquor 6 ready-made chocolate cupcakes 2 large eggs 30g castor sugar ½t vanilla extract 500g mascarpone 6t Nutella 2½t good-quality cocoa powder almond praline (optional)

1. Heat the sugar until melted and allow to

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caramelise. When honey in colour, remove from the heat. 2. Pour the sugar syrup in a thin layer on to buttered foil or baking paper. Scatter with almonds. Allow to cool and snap into shards. 3. Mix the espresso and the almond liquor and pour into a shallow bowl. 4. Slice each cupcake into 3 rounds and dip in the liquor and coffee mixture. 5. Beat the eggs, castor sugar and vanilla essence

together and fold this into the mascarpone. 6. Place the mixture in a piping bag and refrigerate. 7. Place a teaspoon of Nutella in the base of each serving dish or jar. Top this with a layer of dampened cake, followed by a layer of piped mascarpone mixture. 8. Repeat this twice more, ending with a final swirl of mascarpone. 9. Dust the tops with cocoa powder and add a shard of almond praline, if desired.

SOURCE Newstead Lund Family Vineyards


Fresh and Fruity Fruits of the Forest from Clover are delicious mixes of fruits and crunchy cereals including oats, granola and sunflower seeds. Containing 10 vitamins, they’re ideal for healthy, on-the-go lifestyles. They come in three pack sizes, from R19,99.


Sweetly Does It Make breakfast a special occasion with a drizzle of Chaloner’s wild blossom honey, 100% pure maple syrup or fig jam on pancakes, waffles and French toast.

Get a taste of what’s new in the culinary world


Keeping it REAL With a selection of recipes suitable for both family meals and entertaining, A Taste of South Africa with The Kosher Butcher’s Wife, R290, Penguin Random House, is the latest book from Sharon Lurie, one of SA’s most trusted kosher cooks. Find the recipe for Shaksausage on mealie meal toast (pictured) on our website,

A FINE VINTAGE Alto Wine Estate in Stellenbosch is celebrating 100 years of quality winemaking. Drink a toast with a glass of their flagship M.P.H.S 2015, a blend of Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. Opulent and vibrant, it’s perfect with hearty stews. Older vintages are available at and

This new colourful kitchen and dining range from Skinny laMinx has everything from tablecloths to trays and aprons in three colourways. They’re available online at

BY GEORGE! Make believe you’re in a tropical paradise with a cocktail created by leading mixologist Jody Rahme at Gigi Rooftop at Cape Town’s trendy Gorgeous George hotel – a blend of culture, romance and intrigue. Visit

WHAT’S ON 2 – 3 AUGUST Free State Wine Show Taste and buy some of SA’s favourite wines at this annual show at Ilanga Estate in Bloemfontein. Tickets, from R180 pp, are available at or R200 pp at the door. Visit 15 AND 21 AUGUST Nedbank Cape Winemakers Guild Pre-Auction Showcase Taste exceptional wines produced in small volumes for the 2019 Guild Auction. Tuesday, 15 August at the CTICC, in Cape Town and Wednesday, 21 August at The Atrium, Nedbank Head Offices, 135 Rivonia Road, Sandton, Jo’burg. Tickets, R400 pp, include a tasting glass and are available at Visit 31 AUGUST – 1 SEPTEMBER The Chocolate Festival You’ll find a tempting chocolate line-up including artisanal offerings at The Woodmill, Stellenbosch, from 10h00 – 16h00 daily. Tickets cost R180 per adult, R50 for children under 18. Pre-book at as tickets are limited to 2 500 per day. Contact for details. | AUGUST 2019



OVER These spicy one-bowl dishes take midweek entertaining to a new level

(Serves 6) FOR THE CORIANDER PESTO 80ml olive oil 10 fresh sage leaves 30ml fresh coriander leaves, chopped 1 cup kale or spinach leaves, chopped 40ml shelled pistachio or macadamia nuts, dry roasted 60ml Parmesan cheese, finely grated salt and freshly milled black pepper, to taste FOR THE CHICKPEA SOUP 45ml olive oil 1 onion, chopped 2 cloves garlic, crushed 1 large carrot, peeled and chopped 10ml ground coriander 10–15ml harissa paste 500g butternut, cubed 1 (410g) can tomatoes, diced 15ml tomato paste 2 (410g) cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained 750ml vegetable or chicken stock TO SERVE 5ml oil 5ml paprika 80ml chickpeas (reserved from above)

1. To make the coriander pesto, heat 30ml of the oil in a pan and fry the sage for 30 seconds or until crispy. 2. Place the remaining oil, coriander, kale or spinach, roasted nuts and Parmesan cheese in a food processor and blend well.




3. Add the fried sage, season to taste and blend briefly. 4. Cover and refrigerate until required. 5. To make the chickpea soup, heat the oil in a pan and gently fry the onion and garlic. Add the carrot and simmer, covered, for 5 minutes. 6. Stir in the coriander and harissa paste and cook for a minute. 7. Add the remaining ingredients (reserving 80ml chickpeas for garnish) and simmer for 30–35 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender. 8. Allow to cool. Using a handheld blender or food processor, blend until as smooth as desired. 9. To serve, heat the oil in a pan and fry the paprika and reserved chickpeas. 10. Reheat the soup and serve with a spoonful of pesto, some of the fried chickpeas and dukkah breadsticks.

LIKE A SHOPPING LIST? Visit our website and go to Recipes to download the shopping list for this menu

DUKKAH BREADSTICKS 10–12 ready-made breadsticks 10ml olive oil 30ml dukkah

1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. 2. Brush the breadsticks with olive oil and sprinkle with the dukkah. 3. Bake in a single layer in the oven for 4–5 minutes.


15ml olive oil 1 small red onion, sliced 400g deboned chicken thigh fillets, cut into chunks 2 baby fennel bulbs, thinly sliced 10ml smoked paprika 15ml ground cumin 125g baby vine tomatoes 300g risoni (rice) pasta, cooked and drained 2 handfuls baby spinach leaves salt and milled black pepper, to taste

30ml fennel fronds, chopped TO SERVE lemon or lime wedges

1. Heat a wide frying pan or paella pan and gently pan fry the chorizo slices for about 1–2 minutes per side. Transfer them to a plate and set aside. 2. Return the pan to the stove and add the olive oil. Increase the heat and fry the onion and chicken for 5 minutes, until golden brown.

3. Add the fennel and cook for a further 5 minutes. 4. Stir in the smoked paprika, cumin and tomatoes and simmer for 3–4 minutes. 5. Add the cooked risoni pasta and spinach and simmer for 4–5 minutes. 6. Add the reserved chorizo and season with salt and pepper. Stir in the chopped fennel fronds. 7. Serve with lemon or lime wedges. | AUGUST 2019



Marvellous MILANO Milan is a fascinating contrast of modern attractions and ancient monuments, writes Judy Bryant



Exquisite architectural detail in the historic city centre.

FAVOURITE BITE Pistachio ice cream at Gelateria della Musica. WHERE TO EAT Eataly brand flagship. MUST-SEE SIGHT Prada Foundation. FOR CONTEMPORARY ART Triennale Design Museum.


have to admit that I didn’t expect to see pink and orange flamingos (what are they fed?) slap-bang in the middle of Milan. I was peering through a hedge enclosing an elegant villa, and to my surprise saw the long-legged birds stepping delicately around a small pond. “This was the home of Romeo Invernizzi, who took a dairy farm and turned it into a cheese empire,” explained our guide Caterina Ongoro. “He and his wife Enrica wanted to give something back, so the building became a research foundation. The deal was that the flamingos remained.” The birds were the first sighting on my Airbnb ‘experience tour’, which I’d booked online on the advice of my techsavvy daughter. I had caught the metro to Palestro, two stops away from the vast Gothic Duomo cathedral in the city centre, then hovered expectantly near a newsagent’s kiosk. Caterina, an estate agent and artist, first showed us around the upmarket area known as the Quadrilatero del Silenzio. We glimpsed hidden gardens and the homes of Milan’s industrial bourgeoisie. One building was clad in exquisite Art Nouveau tiles depicting elegant women in flowing dresses. Greenery cascaded from imposing balconies carved with stately figures. A quick tram trip took us to the Gelateria della Musica, where each delicious ice cream is named after a singer. There were three flavours of green pistachio alone. (Although my favourite foodie sight in Milan had to be the chocolate shoes.)

Flamingos in the Quadrilatero del Silenzio district.

The Bosco Verticale’s towers host a forest of trees and plants.

Navigli canal district.

The Bosco Verticale (vertical forest) building has two residential towers packed with about 900 trees and 2 000 plants. The UniCredit pavilion, hosting cultural events and exhibitions, is a curvaceous wooden structure on the edge of a park, contrasting with the modern glass and steel of the financial and residential blocks. Anyone who loves contemporary art and design has to visit the Prada Foundation. This complex of buildings incorporates an old distillery, but what strikes you most are the stunning expanses of exposed white concrete and glass. My first stop was the Haunted House, an old tall narrow building with a gilded exterior; the entire house gleams in the sunlight. This complex offers enormous gallery spaces. The walls, floors and ceilings have beautifully textured and finished surfaces and enclose striking installations, art and sculpture. One room had great red and white upturned toadstools suspended from the ceiling; in another, rain dripped from the top of a large glass box onto an umbrella sheltering two ducks. Afterwards, trying to absorb this visual inundation, I headed for the Foundation’s Bar Luca. It was a soothing contrast: 1950’s-themed Formica café tables and chairs in pastel pink, blue and pistachio, gorgeous vintage juke boxes, exquisite dusky pink wallpaper – and surely the best-looking

The Piazza del Duomo.

barristas in the entire city. I devoted another morning to La Triennale di Milano, the city’s design museum. It’s buzzy with enormous glass-fronted walls in the reception area, and you can steep yourself in  Italy’s design heritage. I lusted over everything from a 1950’s Olivetti typewriter to a Fiat car, a Moka coffee maker and an olive green Vespa. Naturally, in addition to such modern discoveries, Milan offers treasures accumulated over centuries. The vast square outside Florence’s cathedral, the Duomo, is the meeting place for locals. The cathedral took 500 years to construct and its huge roof is crowned with over 100 spires, plus statues and gargoyles. The square is the perfect place to join the pigeons in the shade of an imposing statue – and people-watch. Across the square lies the Museum of Contemporary Art, with good views of the Duomo roof and the piazza below. Nearby, you’ll also spot the neo-classical La Scala opera  house and the ornate Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II | AUGUST 2019


Art at The Prada Foundation.

The gilded Haunted House of the Prada Foundation.

Bar Luca at the Prada Foundation.

shopping arcade, opened in 1877. While the prices put most merchandise out of reach, gaze up at the glass and metal domed roof and down at the mosaic floors representing subjects from art to industry. Another popular destination is the Sforzesco Castle, former home of the Duke of Milan. I crossed the moat and wandered about the ochre and cream buildings and courtyards. Should you have sufficient time, it houses a dozen specialist museums on subjects ranging from antique furniture to musical instruments. Leonardo da Vinci’s famous Last Supper mural can be viewed south-west of the city centre in a beautiful 15thcentury convent – do book ahead. As Milan is a fashion and design hub, the shops are beautifully styled. I loved the Fornasetti outlet – a brand well known for its black and white plates depicting faces. Each room had a different colour scheme and theme (one had a polka-dot ceiling) and you could swoon over both vintage objects and bespoke designs. Porta Garibaldi is a stylish area with excellent shops, bars and restaurants. I peeped in the 10 Corso Como boutique hotel, design shop and gallery created by former Vogue Italia


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Painted tiles depicting Art Nouveau beauties.

Chocolate designer shoes.

editor Carla Sozzani, and also spotted the first bricks and mortar outlet of fashion blogger Chiara Ferragni, who has over 16 million Instagram followers. In the same area, the Eataly brand flagship is a must-visit: three storeys of Slow Food-inspired groceries, a bakery, wine

The UniCredit pavilion.

The Fornasetti shop.

Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II shopping arcade.

The needle, thread and knot public artwork.

A tram adorned in Armani advertising.

PLANNING YOUR TRIP WHEN TO GO May and September have good weather and fewer tourists. GETTING THERE Judy Bryant flew from Cape Town to Milan on Emirates Airlines. WHERE TO STAY Airbnb loft accommodation, R1 185/night. GETTING AROUND A pack of 10 standard tickets for the Milan metro costs €13,50 (about R220). VISAS South Africans need a Schengen visa. CURRENCY The currency is the euro. At the time of going to print €1=R16,26. A cappuccino costs €1,50 (about R25), a cheese roll €5,50 (about R90) and a sit-down pasta €12 (about R195).

shop, cookery books, sit-down dining and take-aways. On my last day I walked to the Cadorno metro stop to catch the airport train. I considered Milan’s contrasts: an old tram tailored in chic black and white Armani advertising scooting through city gates dating back to the Middle Ages; a serene

Madonna and child in a square filled with designer brands; a glass skyscraper reflecting a medieval bell tower. At the metro stop, I took a last look at a public artwork comprising an enormous, vertical metal ‘needle’. Its ‘eye’ was threaded with bright strands in the colours of the metro line, and a ‘knot’ emerged in a nearby fountain. For me, it summed up the industry, flair and fun of Milan. | AUGUST 2019




ANTIQUE MAPS with Michael Mole Ancient routes through unknown territories lead this young entrepreneur on journeys of discovery and adventure


o inspired was Michael Mole by his grandfather Spencer Thomas’s map collection that seven years ago, he started his own. During a long career spent travelling abroad, Spencer had amassed an assortment of antique maps. Michael’s collection now consists of 23, all from different periods in history. Most of them depict areas in Africa. “Maps of our continent bring to mind the early days of the Age of Discovery,” he says. Early maps weren’t just to get you from A to B, they were beautifully illustrated works of art. Cartographers would have them engraved in mirror image on plates and prints


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The earliest maps known were actually not of the Earth but the stars. Part of the night sky was outlined on a cave wall in Lascaux, France, and dates back to 14 500BC. A map-like representation of mountains, valleys, rivers and routes from 25 000BC was found in Pavlov in the Czech Republic, and is possibly the oldest. Ancient Babylonian maps were drawn on clay tablets, and one that dates back to the 24th–25th century BC was discovered in 1930 near the city of Kirkuk in Iraq. Early Western maps from the Middle Ages (around the 5th century) were hand drawn on parchment made from calf skin (vellum). The first world maps appeared around the 16th century, and Abraham Ortelius published the first modern atlas, Theatrum orbis terrarium (Theatre of the World), in 1570. Belgian cartographer Gerardus Mercator published one of the first world maps in 1569. By the 18th century, map-makers had moved away from woodblock printing to copperplate engraving, lithography and offset lithography. In the Victorian era (1837 – 1901), maps were made quickly and cheaply using lithography.

were stamped in ink. One of Michael’s maps was created by Flemish cartographer and geographer Abraham Ortelius (1527 – 1598), who published the first modern atlas. On this map is the faint image of a sea monster called a ‘ghost’. Prior to 1700, maps included decorative elements, some depicting myths and legends. These ‘ghosts’ were a subtle method of engraving intended to fade as more prints were made and ensure the map’s authenticity. Michael’s print has a ‘ghost’, which makes it one of the earliest in production and therefore very rare. One prized possession is a map over 350 years old by English cartographer John Overton. Published in 1666, it was



TIPS FOR ASPIRING COLLECTORS “A fold down the middle of a map indicates authenticity as most surviving antique versions were made for atlases and folded into books,” says Michael. “Choose maps that you like, but only those in the best possible condition,” advises map collector and dealer James Findlay. “Never buy a map glued to a board, as these are considered damaged and aren’t collectable,” he says. Remove maps from behind glass before buying them. Maps from the late 1500s to 1800s were printed with copper plates, which left ridges that can be seen or felt. Uncoloured maps are more desirable to purists as most antique maps were published uncoloured.


CARING FOR YOUR COLLECTION Dr Roger Stewart of the International Map Collectors’ Society has this advice for storing antique maps: Always keep them out of direct sunlight. Handle them as little as possible, but if you must, ensure your hands are clean. Never hold a map by the edges, as the paper can tear. Store maps flat between sheets of acid-free material.



said to have survived the Great Fire of London. Another is the ocean chart published in 1654 by Arnold Colom, the famed Dutch cartographer. “It was frequently used on sea voyages during the VOC era,” explains Michael, “but, as it placed the south eastern coastline of southern Africa several nautical miles west of where it actually is, it caused many shipwrecks. It’s amazing to think that almost 400 years ago someone would have used a map like Colom’s with all its errors to navigate the world.” Michael buys maps from other enthusiasts, dealers, and on rare occasions, those that have been in families for generations.



“I’ve met a lot of fascinating people who’ve all been passionate about maps. One map came from a collector who was willing to sell it purely because he could see my immense enthusiasm,” says Michael.

1. This famous map by Abraham Ortelius has the faint outline of a ‘ghost’ off the coast of Arabia, which is proof that it’s an early print. Its

estimated value is R30 000. 2. This map of the coastline of southern Africa was used during the VOC period. It was published by Arnold Colom in 1654 and is worth R35 000. 3. Said to have survived the Great Fire of London, this map published by John Overton would sell for R70 000. 4. Louis Brion de la Tour, cartographer to Louis XV, King of France, published this map of Africa in 1766. Priced at R7 000, it has a fold down the centre, evidence that it came from an atlas. 5. Most antique maps come from books and atlases. The page from this edition of Cosmographia, dating from 1550, features a map of Africa by Sebastian Münster. 6. Africae Tabula Nova by Sebastian Münster is dated 1580. It’s valued at R22 000. SOURCES James Findlay Michael Mole Dr Roger Stewart International Map Collectors’ Society | AUGUST 2019



Treasure chest What are your collectables worth?

“These were made by Maddock, who made some of the prettiest English china,” says Ingrid Aron of Kalk Bay Antiques Centre. “From around 1927, the company mass-produced these items. A more famous Maddock brother went to America in the late 1800s and made a dinner service for the White House. Maddocks with an ‘s’ usually denotes an American product. The larger jug would retail for around R250, and the smaller, R180.”

FIND OF THE MONTH Can you tell me the value of this china? It was handed down from a family member, Charles Sampson, a captain of the garrison on the island of St Helena in the early 1800s. The two plates have simple markings and the oval bowl a faint inscription, which I think reads MEISSEN. The square platter has no markings. Peter Sampson “During the 18th century, Chinese blue and white porcelain was in great demand in Europe,” says Johan Joubert, Oriental and Decorative Arts Consultant to Stephan Welz & Co. “As a result, Meissen started creating ceramics with Chinese designs, the most popular being the ‘Blue Onion’ pattern. Numerous other manufacturers across Europe then followed. One example appears to be Meissen as it’s painted in underglaze-blue with the Meissen mark. Although the reticulated porcelain basket is stamped Meissen along with a star, it’s not authentic and was produced during the late 19th to early 20th century under Carl Teichert who manufactured items imitating Meissen ware. The third plate is also not authentic Meissen, but produced by Ernst Teichert, brother of Carl. Pieces are always more valuable when in sets. The two plates won’t fetch much as individual pieces, but could be used by other collectors to extend their collections. The reticulated dish would be worth around R1 200, if in good condition.”

EXPERT TIP I’ d like to find out the value of this Chinese vase we inherited from my father. It was given to him by a Chinese Consulate. Marius van Luin Our Oriental expert David Calthorpe says, “Judging from the photos and without handling it, the vase appears to be a contemporary Chinese copy of a Japanese Imari design from the late 20th century. In the 1980 – 1990s, beautiful imitations of late 19th-century Japanese designs were made by quite a few well-known mainland Chinese porcelain companies. If this is the case, it would only have decorative appeal.”


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“There must be full authentication of the source of an item in order to add value,” says Johan Joubert.

THANKS TO OUR SPECIALISTS Ingrid Aron Kalk Bay Antiques Centre David Calthorpe 021 671 4613 Johan Joubert

WRITE IN AND WIN EVERY MONTH we give away a *prize for the most valuable or interesting item sent in. This month Peter Sampson has won a case each of Cape Ruby and Red Muscadel fortified wines from Van Loveren Family Vineyards worth R1 000. The Van Loveren Red Muscadel is full and sweet with raisin and muscat flavours, while the Cape Ruby delights with its Christmas cake and liquorice notes. Visit E-mail clear photographs and relevant information about your collectable item to with Treasure Chest in the subject line. Due to the volume of mail we are unable to respond personally. Pictures must be sent as separate attachments at a size between 1MB – 2MB. For guidelines on the best way to take your photos for Treasure Chest, visit


Can you tell me more about these jugs (pictured below) that were given to my aunt about 70 years ago? Johan Genis




5 4


Lisa STORER This world traveller and founder of decor and lifestyle store, The Storer, shares some of her favourite things


fter working in fast-fashion retail for 15 years, Lisa Storer felt she needed something new. “I’ve always had a deep love for authentic natural fabrics and textures, so I took the leap and started researching crafters in rural areas in other countries.” As Morocco is the place to go for handcrafted rugs, her travels started there. “Once there, I discovered other beautiful things such as naturally dyed cotton blankets and hand-made silverware,” she says. “These products aren’t influenced by trends or fashions – they’re all unique to Moroccan culture.”

Lisa then headed to Kenya, followed by Mexico, and she now regularly visits exotic locations worldwide. “Each place I’ve visited has led me to something new,” explains Lisa. “A visit to India to buy fabrics resulted in the discovery of a crafter who produces beautiful block prints.” All these unique pieces can now be found at The Storer at 44 Stanley in Jo’burg. It’s filled with colourful glass from Guatemala, ceramics from Cambodia and vintage items such as Moroccan teapots. “It’s important for me to share the story behind each piece,” says Lisa who is continually inspired by her travels. When decorating her own home, she reveals that she doesn’t have a particular style. “I choose pieces I love and that work together. Relying on trends results in an endless cycle of purchasing and throwing away,” she explains. When she’s not jetting off somewhere, Lisa loves being at home with her family. “Living on an eco-estate near Lanseria, we’re on nature’s doorstep and enjoy hiking and the natural experience the estate offers – it energises me and keeps me grounded.”

SOURCES BOSE Restaurant Mosaic The Storer Tonic


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1 RESTAURANT MOSAIC Awardwinning chef Chantel Dartnall turns her dishes into works of art at The Orient Hotel near Hartbeespoort Dam. 2 BOSE WIRELESS HEADPHONES I never travel without them. 3 MEXICO From the fresh, adventurous food to the laid-back lifestyle, what’s not to love about this country? 4 TAMEGROUTE CANDLESTICKS Made in Morocco, these candlesticks are unique. I place them all over my home to add a soft glow in the evenings. 5 TURKISH NECKLACE I’m mad about this piece made from upcycled fabric. Turkish artisans used vintage coins for the bronze, adapting ancient techniques that date back to the Roman Empire. 6 MEZCAL COCKTAILS I love those that have basil and ginger as they’re refreshing and authentically Mexican. 7 TONIC These designers effortlessly combine textures, finishes and classic style in modern pieces.

Next month in

Inspiring ideas from gorgeous homes Magical spring gardens The latest downy mildew-resistant impatiens A stunning courtyard makeover The prettiest garden party

It’s all in the September issue of Garden and Home ON SALE 12 AUGUST

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