Christmas on Deeside

I am going to leave you with a fabulous Xmas story from Royal Deeside, just published in the current issue of Country Homes & Interiors.

The owner, Gillian Alexander, has undertaken a beautiful renovation of her home.
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A Winter Kitchen

Preparations are underway in our house for Christmas, the fire is lit every night, every afternoon if possible!

Doug has had the pleasure of photographing a beautiful kitchen belonging to a Swedish family in Glasgow. Scandinavians are experts at bringing cheer to this potentially gloomy time of year of course – they have to be really!

Traditional baking includes iced biscuit houses, jam buns and cinnamon swirls, all easily achievable, fun, xmas treats.
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A bit of a doormat

Everyone is talking about Christmas jumpers…People are having ‘Christmas jumper days’ in their offices to raise money for charity.

Well we can do better than that, we have a ‘Christmas Jumper doormat’ in our office.


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Christmas Panic

If anyone else out there has not given a second thought to Christmas shopping either (oops!) they could do a lot worse than go to Context Interiors. An Edinburgh based home and giftware company, suddenly taking Hong Kong by storm. Doug photographed their beautiful apartment in Greenhill a couple of years ago.

They had a little shop in Morningside then. While we have been contentedly carrying on our lives in Gullane, photographing the odd house and wondering what to do with our garden building, they have set up a second shop in Edinburgh’s Old Town and moved to and set up a third shop in Hong Kong!! Hang on…what about sleeping? Going for walks??

Their range is really beautiful – a little bit of Edinburgh that can be shipped around the world at the click of a mouse. They have collaborated on some products with iconic Edinburgh illustartor Iain McIntosh whose work you will recognise from the novels of Alexander MacCall Smith.

Iain also, very kindly, created the beautiful logo for the Gullane based charity, the Teapot Trust that provides Art Therapy for children in hospital.

Don’t forget that Christmas is not just about presents. Of course we all enjoy buying lovely things for family and friends, but amongst extended family or colleagues, why not think about agreeing to donate to favourite charities instead?

Wendy Inkster

Christmas is NOT coming – it is only November, but of course we are having to start thinking about our plans. I sincerely hope things fall into place for everyone, but there might be someone far away who you are thinking of, very fondly, who you cannot be together with? Do they have any connection to Scotland? They might be homesick? Or it might be somewhere they have always longed to visit.

If so, I think there could be no better present for them than their own Burra Bear

Wendy Inkster set up her company when she recycled an old hand knitted Fair Isle patterned Shetland jumper, into a bear, as a keepsake for her sister. It, understandably, brought such a positive response and demand for more bears, that in time it gave her a full-time job!

Doug has had the very good fortune to be asked to go to Shetland to photograph her home. A beautiful modernist self build right on the edge of the sea. He was anxious about the trip as it is a tricky place to get to, especially if you choose to go by plane and once the tickets are booked you realise that your driving license is out of date…hiring a car then becomes that much more challenging.

Anyway, nothing that could not be sorted out by a wee bit of correspondance and a couple of hours in a telephone call queue!

When he got there, he was stunned by the scenery, the friendliness of the people and the sense of community and wished he had booked a longer trip.

Can you spot two friends?

They have created a lot of space.

A wee home office – useful

Wendy herself welcoming you with her two Borders!