Just when it feels like winter will never renounce its chilly grip something magical starts to happen. Buds on branches, birds excitedly foraging for worms in the warming ground and tiny crocuses pushing up through the warm earth. When we catch sight of the first crocuses it finally feels like Spring is finally in the air. These tiny flowers, more delicate than most, drench patches of land with the most wonderful splashes of ochre, purple and white. We love their pigmented appearance that makes early March such a delight.
Here at Makers & Brothers we love arranging stuff. Our desks, our shelves and obviously the wonderful collection of objects we sell. It is a simple thing arranging, or at least that is the perceived wisdom, but in reality it is a lost art that takes much care and attention, it is an approach to gathering objects that has little to do with the constraints of ‘taste’ but everything to do with taste. Our mother is amazing at arranging objects and so is Martino Gamper.
‘Design Is A State Of Mind’ is a super nice show that opened this week at the Serpintine’s new Sacker gallery. Curated by Martino it showcases “ a very personal way of collecting and gathering objects – these are pieces that tell a tale."
On a range of different shelving systems some bespoke, some designed by Martino, some classic and some from Ikea there are a series of different arrangements. Collections of objects gathered by friends of Martino. Collections gathered over time offering unexpected insights into the curious collectors. There is Ron Ards collection which covers knuckle dusters to carved cats, Max Lamb and Gemma Holt share their collection of Bernard Leach Pottery, Richard Wentworth’s gardening equipment and Enzo Mari’s found paper weights.
It is a space layered deep with wonderful thinking and summarised best with the line 'interesting things collected by interesting people on interesting shelves'.
We recommend a visit.
Breakfast is our favourite meal of the day and the most important according to some. Just in time for Pancake Tuesday, 4 March, we are sharing our favourite recipe for the tastiest pancakes from the super Rose Bakery Cookbook, 'How to Boil an Egg'. A cookbook all about the wonderful egg, a cookbook which we will be stocking here soon.
The recipe is by Rose Carrarini, co-founder of the Rose Bakery
60g butter, melted, plus extra for greasing
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon caster sugar
Whisk together the eggs, milk and melted butter in a bowl.
Sift the flour, salt, baking powder and sugar into another bowl.
Pour the egg mixture into the dry ingredients and gently fold it in. Take care not to overmix; in fact there should still be some small bitsof dry flour in the mix.... just a little.
Grease skillet with a little butter and set over medium-high heat.
Once pan is hot, drop about 3 tablespoons of the mix into a pan and cook until bubbles start to appear on the surface.
Flip pancakes over and cook for another 30 seconds, until golden.
Serve immediately. Add what ever you fancy. We like maple syrup and blueberries or maybe a squeeze of lemon with a sprinkle of sugar and sometimes a large scoop of Nutella.
Ireland recently lost a truly great creative soul. Patrick Scott, an artist by reputation but so much more besides.
He studied architecture, and practiced at one of the country’s most interesting architectural practices in the mid 1900’s. Alongside Louis le Brocquy and Michael Scott he founded Signa, one of Irelands first real design consultancies. An interdisciplinary design studio that, more importantly than its body of work, developed an approach that was both contemporary and wonderfully Irish.
He observed and took care to watch over every detail. A very human approach during a very industrial period he was slowly eliminating the boundaries between art, design and architecture. He was instrumental in the founding of the Kilkenny Design Workshops (the world’s first state run design agency) and alongside Sir Terence Conran sat on its standards and advisory board ensuring best practice and quality were maintained.
He worked across graphic design, textile, exhibition, interior, architecture he even designed the livery for the countries train network.
Pat Scott will long be remembered for his extraordinary refined artwork but for us here at Makers & Brothers it was his contribution to Irelands design culture that we admired the most and his holistic approach to design.
Above is a selection of his work and the Irish Museum of Modern Art is currently holding a super retrospective that opened the evening of his passing.
Fail Better at the Dublin Science Gallery is an exhibition which explores the idea of failure through a variety of different failed scientific endeavors, some noble and some just plain silly. The exhibition is the brainchild of the Gallery’s Director Michael John Gorman, who fittingly enlisted Jane Ní Dhulchaointigh, inventor of the repair-oriented, wonder rubber, Sugru, as a co-curator.
The failures being exhibited are all selected by people whom no one would consider failures. To name a few economist Tim Harford, engineer Ross Brawn, explorer Ranulph Fiennes, writer Anne Enright and inventor James Dyson.
Fail Better is an examination of the way we perceive and react to failure. While it doesn’t celebrate failure itself, the exhibition recognises and displays the value of failure as a learning point and creative stimulant. All this is perfectly summed up by the iconic lines from Samuel Beckett’s novella, Worstward Ho, “Try again. Fail again. Fail better”
A charming little video where delicious cranberrys, almonds, chocolate and more prepare themselves into a tasty treat. The ingredients do the work and quickly teach you how to bake the perfect Florentine for a romantic night in.
The recipe is by British Bake Off finalist Ruby Tandoh.
The video is by our friend Yuki Sugiura.
When you are old and grey and full of sleep,
And nodding by the fire, take down this book,
And slowly read, and dream of the soft look
Your eyes had once, and of their shadows deep;
How many loved your moments of glad grace,
And loved your beauty with love false or true,
But one man loved the pilgrim soul in you,
And loved the sorrows of your changing face;
And bending down beside the glowing bars,
Murmur, a little sadly, how Love fled
And paced upon the mountains overhead
And hid his face amid a crowd of stars.
By William Butler Yeats
The art of sign painting is a world we only started to fully appreciate early last year when we discovered a film called SIGN PAINTERS by Faythe Levine & Sam Macon. SIGN PAINTERS was recently screened in Dublin along side a local production called Gentlemen of Letters. It is funny how one can rush about one's own city and hardly even notice the signs that are all calling for your attention. Gentlemen of Letters is a wonderful short examination of the rich history and art of hand painted signs in Dublin. We really enjoyed this short film from Colin Brady and ToeJam Productions. We loved how Kevin Freeney's son can always spot his dad's work even when it is over 30 years old and covered in graffiti. We think you will enjoy this.
The weeks that have just past were all about indulging. Indulging in all things Christmas. The nostalgic aromas of the mulled wine, the turkey, the mince pies and the feeling the days bring when there is nothing too important to do except see family and friends. We love it. It’s the one time of year you can really kick back, relax and go a little over board.
But sometimes it can all be a little too much, too much food and, dare we say it, too much family. Now that the madness has dissipated here is a simple, seasonal, super juice that anyone can easily blend together. It’s easy, will cleanse and have you ready to go.
Beetroot, Kale and Ginger Juice
Ingredients for Four
3 medium unpeeled organic beets, washed and quartered
100g kale, roughly chopped
2 inch piece of ginger
Place all of the items in the juicer. Serve over ice and enjoy!
Recipe and food styling courtesy of Ajda Mehmet
Photography courtesy of Al Higgins
Beans on Toast, it doesn’t get much simpler. A classic little supper laced with nostalgia, easy and perfect for a lazy Sunday evening. Wherever its aroma takes you back to this homemade version, spiced with Cumin, is a tasty twist on a classic.
Spiced Beans on Toast
Olive Oil – 1 tbsp
Onion (diced) - 1 large
Tomato Puree - 1 tbsp
Tin Tomatoes - 400g
Sugar - 2 tsps
Balsamic Vinegar - 1 tbsp
Cumin (ground) - 1 tsp
Chilli Flakes - 1 tsp
Chicken Stock - 150ml
Cannellini Beans - 400g tin x2
Flat Parsley - large handful
Crusty Loaf - a thick slice toasted
Heat the oil in a saucepan over a medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 5-6 minutes until soft and starting to colour. Stir in tomato puree and cook for another minute. Add the tins of tomatoes, turn up heat and bring to the boil. Once boiling reduce the heat slightly, stir in the sugar, balsamic vinegar, cumin and chilli flakes. At this point add the beans, stock and parsley, season, partly cover and let it simmer for 15-20minutes. The beans should grow tender and the sauce thickened. Serve on a thickly sliced crusty toast, garnish with parsley add more chili flakes if you like more of a kick.
Recipe and Styling courtesy of Ajda Mehmet
Photography courtesy of Al Higgins