Our World

Our Favourite Things


Liz's top 5 things she loves at the moment

Photos by Liz Metcalfe

Favourite Fine China – Ginori 1735, Via de Rondinelli, France

On my trip to Florence this summer I had the opportunity to visit the lovely GINORI 1735 fine china flagship shop, showcasing two centuries of fine porcelain tableware from a company that embodies style, grace, and elegance. Under the new ownership of Gucci, with design direction by Alessandro Michele, Ginori’s traditional motifs have been reinvented, bringing the brand into the 21st century. It was amazing to see some of the incredibly beautiful original pieces designed by Gio Ponti, artistic director of the company from 1923-33. Their new collaboration with British designer Luke Edward Hall was inspired by “a mythical journey across the sea”, informed by Greco-Roman mythology and legends. Another new collection, LCDC, designed by Luca Nichetto, references the ‘symbolic sensorial journey linking Florence to Paris’, and the story of Catherine de’Medici. Totally in love with this beautiful store. A must see when visiting Florence.

Favourite Mirror – Les Branches Mirror. Circa 1990's

Designed by the legendary Herve van der Straeten, Les Branches Mirror has always been on my list of favourites. The beauty of this sculptural piece is its elegant sense of movement. Twisted branches interlace to surround a beautiful circular convex mirror. His designs have been described as lyrical and strong, powerful, and graphic. They incorporate bold shapes and contrasting materials with perfect proportions, exacting details, and uncompromising precision. Les Branches Mirror with its organic bronze branches was one of his first introductions into the world of furniture and lighting and has become a true icon in the world of design.

Favourite Chair – The Egg Chair. Designed by Arne Jacobsen

A masterpiece of Scandinavian design, revolutionary in its construction, Arne Jacobsen’s now famous Egg chair was originally designed in 1958 for The Copenhagen’s Royal Hotel. It quickly became one of the world’s most recognizable chairs for its simplicity and beauty. Fifty years later The Egg chair continues to be coveted. Fritz Hansen’s factory in Denmark continues the tradition of hand-stitching every chair. The leather edition has over 1100 stitches and is made so that there are no disruptive seams or joins.

Favourite Museum – Sir John Soane Museum, 13 Lincoln’s Field, London, UK

This magnificent museum feels more like an extraordinary house, because it is just that – the private residence of Sir John Soane and his wife, Eliza. As one of England’s greatest architects during the early 19th century, Sir John amassed thousands of museum quality objects and artefacts arranged with perfection into beautiful compositions. Amongst his collection are Greek and Roman bronzes from the excavations at Pompeii, an Egyptian sarcophagus from 1279 BC, 30,000 architectural drawings, 57 volumes of work by Robert Adam, countless marble and plaster busts, sculptures, architectural fragments, reliefs and ornaments; plus a collection of art including paintings by Joshua Reynolds, William Turner and many more. To say this museum is beautiful is inadequate. It’s beyond anything imaginable. If you love classical beauty as I do, this museum should be on your list to visit.

Favourite Designer – David Wiseman. Florence, Italy

I was first introduced to the work of David during a visit to London in 2015 at the beautiful showroom of jewelry designer Jessica McCormack in Mayfair. I had never seen anything quite like it – a magical, contemporary light fixture incorporating pieces of crystal, faceted glass, and porcelain flowers hanging from twisted bronze branches and a lovely hand-wrought chain paired with a traditional Robert Adam inspired plaster ceiling motif. When I met David in his Los Angeles studio a couple of years later, I was immediately captivated with how he saw the world – a world ‘blooming’ with his love of nature and animals. He spoke about collecting tree branches that he would later cast in plaster, spending time studying patterns and motifs, his love of sketching, and endless days exploring the wilderness for inspiration. David works alongside his talented studio crew that allows him to experiment, to create freely, to represent his interpretation of the world. A world that continues to ‘bloom’.