Branch Design strikes a chord

Elegance and style

Just back from a trip to Sarasota Florida looking at Sarasota style architecture. Working on a travel story for the Hamilton Spectator.

Needlework just openend on Jame Street North in Hamilton. I'm writing about it for the Hamilton Spectator. Learn to sew, buy cool fabric, it's a fine addition to the street.

Mansions and mills on Mary Street North in Hamilton. Did you know about the rich history of one of the city's oldest streets. Look for my story in Thursday's Hamilton Spectator Go section.

The aging gems of Hamilton. I'll be writing about them in this Thursday's Hamilton Spectator.

Medinilla could be your next favorite plant. I write about it in the Hamilton Spectator Go section today. You can find more info at

Hyacinths on my desk. Such a sweet thing.

Loved this table at the Interior Design Show, Toronto. Made by The Recycler of Goderich. He also had a seat make of bike tire tubes.

Beautiful blankets from Oleana, made in Norway.

Chair made from the sails of famous boats, by Spinnaker Norway. At the Interior Design Show .

Watch out for this plant. Medinilla, it's grown in Ontario greenhouses, and can bloom in your home for four months. I'll be writing about it in Thursday's Hamilton Spectator.

Big and little ideas from the Interior Design Show in Toronto.

Looking at my pictures at the Interior Design Show in Toronto. Orange was everywhere, if it wasn't organge, than black white and sometimes shiny seemed to be the theme. Other catchy things, the $8,000 remote controlled toilet, the shower with settings that can be programmed for each user, the kitchen in a box for the cottage. It's about $13,000 by bulthaup. As a decor item, books are still big, stripped of their covers, they look completely neutral.

The Bay goes orange at IDS 2012

Fron the Interior Design Show in Toronto. It really is true, that orange is big.

I just bought a new printer. My last one was 17 years old, but it was a good one. The new one is ok, but seems rickety and gimmicky in comparison. I am blowing through a lot of ink to try and get good photo prints.

The stone house on Mary Street is near one of my favorite homes in Hamilton, a rare pre-Confederation wood frame house that is both simple and elegant.

The house at Cannon and Mary Streets in Hamilton is for sale. It is a gem, built in 1855 with an elegant spiral staircase and curved doors into the dining room, its architectural importance was recognized with a heritage designation. The seller is hoping it remains a single family home, and is loved by its new owners. $349,000.

At the auto show I tried my new camera bag the Passport Sling by Lowepro and I gave it very high marks. Great for female frame, doesn't kill your shoulders, holds a bunch of useful stuff.

My take on the auto show: Tone was more confident, show looked great, but still conservative as far as new car introductions with most makers introducing just one new vehicle, and some of them none. Ford brought out the new Fusion a great looking car. Dodge introduced a compact and a throwback to another era….the new take on the Dodge Dart. GM spent a lot of time talking about the Chevy Sonic- a subcompact I love…and they are trying to reach the audience-kids-who will buy this car..even though their research says 54 per cent of young adults would rather be online than driving!!! Ford had an entire media section reserved for BLOGGERS NOBODY talked about all electric cars. The consumer is still leering of them. Hybrids were introduced..including a couple of new Benz models…but to lukewarm response because sales of these are minute. CUVs are still hot..even Maserati introduced one-a concept- called if you can believe it the Kubang. I say kapow to the kubang Hyudai has all the fun..They waltzed away with car of the year award for the Elantra..and introduced a new 200 horsepower turbo version of the Veloster. In the fashion department I thought the men in general both car makers and media (especially European) had cooler clothes, haircuts and glasses –than the women.

I will be posting more pictures from the Detroit Auto Show (NAIAS). If you like design and lighting it is a great place to go to get ideas.

I am live blogging at the North American International Auto Show for Toronto Star Wheels.

I will be at the auto show in Detroit live blogging for the Toronto Star. Also writing stories about high performance and luxury cars.

Scenes from Hamilton Harbour.

Today's Brushes painting at DVSA

Another core value.

Commmitted to Hamilton's core.

Working on next home feature for Hamilton Spectator.

Peonies, perennials, and trees. My January 6 column in the Hamilton Spectator.

What's on top of my file cabinet

I had the Hyundai Veloster for a week test drive. 6-speed manual very satisfying, It feels young, hip, and modern. Writing a review for Grand magazine.

Still working with the Brushes app for iPad. This is a fine beagle at his cottage.