Monthly Archives: June 2012

Traffic cones a go go

S3i Group and Heatherwick studios have installed this hanging traffic cone sculpture at V&A Museum. Photo credit: Lise Colyer

Have you seen this amazing art installation at the entrance of the Victoria & Albert Museum, made of traffic cones?

It’s by S3i Group and Heatherwick Studios and is advertising the British Design exhibition, which runs through August 12.

Thanks to my London friend Lise Colyer for snapping this gorgeous photo!


The world’s ugliest dog is British

Meet Mugly, a Chinese Crested who was crowned World’s Ugliest Dog, at the Sonoma-Marin Fair held last Friday. The Peterborough-based pooch competed against 29 other dogs from around the globe for the illustrious title that comes with a trophy, a $1,000 prize and a photo shoot.

Read more about Mugly.

Strawberries and cream – a winning Wimbledon double

Wimbledon is in high gear and that can only mean one thing: Strawberries and cream!

Check out the video from, showcasing the beauty of this winning combination (particularly when you grow the strawberries and whip the cream yourself).

Spice Girls reunion

The Spice Girls back in the day. Photo credit: AP.

It’s official! Today the Spice Girls will reunite to launch the group’s stage musical “Viva Forever.”

Posh Spice, Sporty Spice, Scary Spice, Baby Spice and Ginger Spice (wow, this is nearly as difficult as remembering the names of the seven dwarves) haven’t been together since 2008. I will have to break out the old songs in solidarity. My personal fave? “Wannabe.”

Happy birthday!

Photo credit: Wikipedia

Whoo hoo! It’s my birthday today! I am going to be celebrating with cupcakes, candles and champagne! Happy Monday, everyone.

And in case you’re wondering, Brits do sing the Happy Birthday song but they also sing “For He’s (or She’s) a Jolly Good Fellow” with slightly different lyrics to the American version:

British version

For he’s a jolly good fellow, for he’s a jolly good fellow
For he’s a jolly good fellow (pause), and so say all of us
And so say all of us, and so say all of us
For he’s a jolly good fellow, for he’s a jolly good fellow
For he’s a jolly good fellow (pause), and so say all of us!

American version

For he’s a jolly good fellow, for he’s a jolly good fellow
For he’s a jolly good fellow (pause), which nobody can deny
Which nobody can deny, which nobody can deny
For he’s a jolly good fellow, for he’s a jolly good fellow
For he’s a jolly good fellow (pause), which nobody can deny!

When is a bird not a bird …

Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

Q: When is a bird not a bird?

A: When it is a ladybird.

What exactly is a ladybird?

It’s the British name for the insect, which has become better known as ladybugs in the U.S. Entomologists actually prefer to call them ladybird beetles or lady beetles since they are actually not “true bugs.”

Read all about ’em!

Big Ben print

I kind of like this modern twist of Big Ben, which is selling on Etsy in ialbert‘s shop, based in Didcot, England.

It’s printed using archival pigment inks on heavyweight fine art paper and sells for $25.

(The shop also sells an iPhone case using the same motif!)

Banned at Royal Ascot

Photo credit: BBC News

Yesterday was the first day of the Royal Ascot and the new dress code is in effect and causing quite the stir.

Under the new rules, no fascinators or cravats are banned in the royal enclosure. Strapless dresses are outlawed. Waistcoasts and ties are required, as are skirts and/or dresses that are just above knee length or longer. Personally I am a lover of a good fascinator and cravat and am sad to see them both go.

Someone might need to stage a “Footloose”-style intervention…

A bed fit for a queen

Hypnos is the only bed manufacturer to supply the Royal Family. This is one of their beds.

You’d think a country with a queen would have a queen bed, but no.

British mattress sizes aren’t the same as American mattress sizes (even though they use many of the same terms – well, aside from “queen”). Their sizes are as follows:

Single bed: Close to our twin size, but a little smaller

Double bed: Close to our double/full size

King bed: A little smaller than our queen size

Super King bed: A little smaller than our king size

Confused yet? Yeah, me too.

The full English (or Scottish, Welsh or Irish) infographic

I love this infographic by Tokketok that illustrates what a full English breakfast (or Scottish, Welsh or Irish breakfast) actually entails, in case there was ever any question. Actually there might be some items up for debate – for example, I was surprised to see that baked beans were not included in the full English. I’ve had breakfast at plenty of B&Bs and restaurants in Britain where the full English has included the beans. What do you think?