Two weeks

Since I lost the only man in the world that loved me unconditionally and expected nothing in return.

I miss you so much Dad.

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Brick House Bread Bakery Visit & Interview

Brick House Bread Bakery Visit & Interview – 30 Apr 2016

DSC_0970.jpgBrick House Bread is this brilliant bakery, sitting in a tree-lined street of East Dulwich. I was recommended the place for my artisan bakery design project and was pleasantly surprised with the tastiness of the food as well as the interior.

The place has brick exterior (hence the name I guess) and looked small from outside, but is a real Tardis inside! We walked in through the light double glass doors and were shocked by the openness and lightness of the place. I was also shocked by the emptiness of the bread counter, which I was later informed, that was because I didn’t get up early enough to buy them.

Walked pasted the shop counter looking past the café counter, I can see the bakers in action in the kitchen space at the back, with a huge baking oven in-between. Furnishing wise, apart from a few birch boxes covering unsightly services and a very large wooden box for the WC, everything is kept bear minimal, with whitewashed brick wall and dark cement floor. There was a beautiful bunch of fresh flower in a jug at the counter and a few pots on the enormous windows. In a sunny day like today, I felt so happy merely by sitting there.

5mins with owner/baker Fergus Jackson:

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  • What is the story of the bakery and how did you start?

I started out doing wholesale (bakery) in a garage back in Jun 2012 and a year ago with my wife opened the Brick House Bread here in Dulwich, so it is very new still.

  • What is the history of this building?

I think it was an indoor market selling stuff like vintage clothing.

  • What is the idea behind this design of the space?

We worked with architect Liam Nabb from Margate who designed the space very open with no dividers between kitchen space and café dinning area. We had to redo the roof as it was in a bad state.

The oven is intentionally placed visible to the customers so that they can see we make the bread fresh here on site everyday.

The materials (pale birch pine wood and cement flooring etc) chosen are intentionally utilitarian, raw and natural.

  • What do you like the most about the design of this space?

I like the spaciousness, high ceiling and the openness, it is great especially for family customers with young children with spaces for pushchairs etc, although our customer base is rather mixed.

  • What do you wish were different space wise?

The implementation part by the contractor who did the whole space was not meeting up to our expectations. Such as leaky roof, and cement flooring which we intended to use concrete instead as the former is rather powdery.

 

Fergus has kindly allowed me to watch the bakers in action in the kitchen, and it was such a joy to watch them working. With all the process of laying out and piling up the breadbaskets, spaying the flour and kneading the dough, it is almost like watching a church ritual worshiping God, which in this case, is the natural goodness of bread we are praising. Amen!

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Reflection: The Meaning of Interior Design – 20th Apr 2016

I used to think the best interior design is all about the look and the function. If I make a space work and it looks gorgeous, then I have done my job. But by doing the Collector project and looking around for great interior designs, I have gradually changed my mind.

When I look at photos or renderings of a designed space, it makes a difference whether there are people in it. People give a space its purpose, and its life. It is almost like the principle for traditional Chinese ink landscape painting. When I was young my Chinese calligraphy teacher always told me a landscape painting only comes alive when there is a person in it, even if it is just in the form of a dot on the paper.

It is because ultimately, Interior Design is all about people – the people who are or will occupy the space we are designing. So it is very important that we design spaces with these people in mind. If it is to design for a house, this is a home reflecting the owner’s life style, aspiration and dream; if a restaurant then a space that creates the right mood and lasting memory with friends and family while enjoying good food. Not only should we create a space that functions and is pleasantly looking, but we should also facilitate and enhance people’s life/experience within it. And we as a designer can only achieve this with skills, creativity and most importantly a deep understanding of its purpose.

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Hello again!

Hello world…again!

I think it is about time to dust off this once loved place and write some update:

Long story short: yes I have finally made the move to quit banking and is now studying Interior Design. It only took me 5 years… Well in between getting married, having a child and buying a house, I reckon it is okay.

The key thing is I am pretty damn sure this is the right thing to do now, cos I have been so happy since the day I started the course.

It has not been easy though, esp with lack of sleep but I am getting used to it now(kind of). And now new journey begins, I am up for starting new life in the brave new world! Scary but exciting! Just like 11 years ago when I first stepped onto this island.

Sometimes when I meet up with the old colleagues from BAML and talked about the old days I still find myself care about a lot of those things happened then. But I am in a much calmer place now that I can see things clearer. Nowadays I am overall just a much calmer person, and a better person too. It is so empowering to be myself and not pretend to be that “SuperDriven prod support analyst” person that I wasn’t meant to be. I was trying my best to play that role, but in the end if my heart wasn’t in it, nothing was making solid sense and I was angry at everything and everyone around me.

I am not sure what will become of me but I just feel I am at the right direction and I will figure out the next step when I am ready:) thank you God that I am here! Xx

 

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Parenthood

It drawn on me that what they really mean by having a baby is a big responsibility. It’s not just about keeping a living human alive and well, bit also to cultivate and to bring out the best of them.

I thought of this because I used to love hands on her food when we started feeding her . Then Nainai decided to hold her hands down while feeding because she would otherwise make a mess. Now when it’s feeding time, she obediently puts her both hands on the table and never go near the spoon anymore.

Not saying that Neinei has made a massive mistake or I won’t make similar misjudgement myself, it is the fact that how easy it is to diminish a good sparkle on a child and miss the opportunity to catch that and lead her to a better way. Small thing like feeding herself, big thing like making big judgements in her life.

I can’t and won’t be a perfect parent, like everyone else. But what can I do best to try to be one?

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I remember

I’ll always remember that dreadful feeling inside me, when three doctors were trying to help B on that mini station, the siren on our room door kept going, and blood was still flowing out of me under the blanket. I could still see the panic look on the trainee midwife’s face and hear the shouting of “baby is flat” from that always calm till then more experienced midwife.
Nothing matters more than what was going on behind the backs of three scrubs.

I remember the softness of her skin when I finally got to give her a kiss before they sent her to ICU.

I remember the anxious tears on K when he came back from ICU and us crying desperately together with arms around each other tight.

I also remember the most amazing feeling in the world, when she sucked on me, though hand still with needle and nose with tube. I remember the rush of joyful and excited tears inside me when holding her tiny body close to mine. I remember the satisfying look on her after the feed, lying there half bare, cheeks full and round. And I remember that was the best Birthday gift ever received in my life so far.

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一声叹息

生了孩子成了家,才知道什么叫做无我状态。

没有时间去洗澡 蹲厕所 吃早餐,更别提悠闲看杂志,作画写字。或者是做一个很简单的决定都要思前顾后。出不出门散个步都是巨大的决定,更别提出去旅游,出国,回家。

也不过是几年前,我还是买一张火车票就往newcastle 爱丁堡跑的人。想去希腊,办了签证,定了机票就飞了。错过飞机,再买一张第二天去。

后来跟自己说一定要找个伴才好一起去,结果找了伴去不再是说去就去那么简单了。结果还找了一特倔强的人,不能说一就二。

后来说理想可以等,梦可以明天做。结果生了孩子,连睡觉的时间都没有,还想做梦。

自由啊自由。梦想啊梦想。特别地想念你们!

只能趁大家都在熟睡,肯定无人打扰的情况下,牺牲我最宝贵的睡眠,换取更宝贵的片刻自由!

这就是做一个靠谱的女人的下场!可是做不靠谱的女人,除了自己,全世界的人都要来纠结你为啥不靠谱。靠谱了,大家都可以安心睡觉了,就我睡不着!

所以,只能,一声叹息,给自己听。

过几个小时 该干嘛干嘛!

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