Monday, June 29, 2009

Moody Coffee


Photos 1 and 2 by Annie Leibovitz for Lavazza’s 2009 Calender

Vincent Van Gogh was a big frequenter of the café society and said of his painting Night Cafe “I have tried to show the café as a place where one can destroy oneself, go mad or commit a crime.”


The Mad Tea Party has come and gone but my craziness has remained as I hope yours has! I whirled and I twirled. I’ve eaten so many cakes, drunk so much tea (and just a few glasses of champers), I’ve danced, I’ve played games and I am spent. But I cannot rest. After all the emphasis on ‘tea’ my coffee is jealous and is demanding I give the magic bean equal time. And you know it’s not wise to upset your coffee. It’s an addiction, a drug, a lover who’s always there guaranteeing satisfaction. And with every drug comes the ritual, the need for all the utensils and quality ‘stuff’. Life is too short for instant coffee. The ‘trip’ begins when I inhale the aroma of the ground beans, the heating and frothing of the milk, the water added to the French press, the ‘special’ cup. Aahhh that first sip, the exhaling, and the thought often verbalised 'you make the best coffee in the world girl!'.

The Sea, the Surge and the Seamstress Coffee Table Book from Samantha Lamb

Coffee inspires. Poetry. Stories. Paintings. Song. Any craftiness. The creative ‘lighter fluid’ has touched them all. Here is one of my favourite poetic odes to coffee, written by Linaji.

I will know him by his breath
cardamom and coffee
a wisp of drizzled raspberry around his lips
same color

Words and Pictures Coffee Table Book by Jennifer Gordon at Stiletto Heights

His eyes deep pools of mud
that lotus seek to penetrate
Power that
rich soil

creation here for my longing

Through the Viewfinder Coffee Table Book from Route 3 Photography

His laughter
the sound of my mother’s heart
beating in my mothers womb
on that ride of conception

The Flesh is Always Calling Coffee Table Book by Marie Vlasic at The Flying Pickle

His skin
exposing my joy
entertaining my will
I applaud!

Soya Wax Candle in Coffee Cup with Saucer from Twilight Spells

It is beauty that I’ve found here
like a piece of sand

Influence Original Mixed Media on Canvas from Jan Allsopp

coated with the molecules of
pearl orbed and adorned
I am transformed once again

Latte Eco Shoulder Bag from Where's Becky Bean

And by the divine patterns he creates’
for our pleasure
we dance the Terra Cotta two-step
and sing subterranean songs

Anatomical Espresso Cups from my shop

No whisper is needed nor promises made,
Because I will know him by his breath
Cardamom and Coffee
A wisp of drizzled raspberry around his lips
Same color

The Poet’s Desk Photograph from Robert Crum

A sprinkling of wisdom from the magic bean. Adapted from Carrot, Egg, or Coffee Bean? by Angela Davis via Story Lovers.

A young woman went to her mother and told her about her life and how things were so hard for her. She did not know how she was going to make it and wanted to give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling. It seemed as one problem was solved a new one arose. Her mother took her to the kitchen. She filled three pots with water. In the first, she placed carrots, in the second she placed eggs and the last she placed ground coffee beans. She let them sit and boil without saying a word. In about twenty minutes she turned off the burners. She fished the carrots out and placed them in a bowl. She pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. Then she ladled the coffee out and placed it in a bowl. Turning to her daughter, she asked, "Tell me what do you see?" "Carrots, eggs, and coffee," she replied. She brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She did and noted that they got soft. She then asked her to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg. Finally, she asked her to sip the coffee. The daughter smiled, as she tasted its rich aroma. Her mother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity--boiling water--but each reacted differently. The carrot went in strong, hard and unrelenting. However after being subjected to the boiling water, it softened and became weak. The egg had been fragile. Its thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior. But, after sitting through the boiling water, its inside became hardened. The ground coffee beans were unique, however. After they were in the boiling water they had changed the water. "Which will you be?" she asked her daughter. "When adversity knocks on your door, how will you respond? Are you the carrot that seems strong, but with pain and adversity, do you wilt and become soft and lose your strength? Are you the egg that starts with a malleable heart, but changes with the heat? Will your fluid spirit through trials have become hardened and stiff? Will your shell look the same, but on the inside you will be bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and a hardened heart? Or will you be like the coffee bean? The bean actually changes the hot water, the very circumstance that brings the pain. When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and flavor. If you can be like the bean, when things are at their worst, you will improve and change the situation around you.

Kimono from Plum Pretty Sugar

Some of my favourite coffee shops here in Brisbane – cafés with soul.


TheDecoDetective said...

Coffee shops are the best thing and your blog is pretty great too! Thanks for leaving a comment at mine!

Julia said...

Wow, I feel like the Mad Hatter now....I never win anything, well there's always a first time for everything!...
Thank you so much, the sweet teacup will have a wonderful life on my sideboard,,with other sweet things

Chrisy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chrisy said...

forgot....forgot....if you haven't already done so, head over to Aussie Handmade Giveaway where they're giving away two of my plates this week!

REread said...

i love the smell ... but i'm too piss weak to drink it properly ... i get heart palpitation if i have more than 2 cups!!

Bec said...

Oh what a gorgeous post. I adore that ode to coffee - just beautiful. Thanks so much for including our bag. We're very chuffed to be included in such inspiring company :)

Rose said...

I really do like your blog very much. I love all the photos in this post! Especially all the beautiful dresses in the first photo.
Thanks for stopping by my blog also :)


Renee said...

Chrisy coffee will never live up to tea in my books.

Because tea has a certain white rabbit that I am so excited about.

Love Renee xoxo

Jetta's Nest said...

I want to be like the bean!

You know Chrisy, you really shouldn't knock instant until you've had it made by me....I wasn't known around the office as the 'Instant Coffee Goddess' for nothing!! it wasn't that good but how much can a girl do with Blend 43??

FrenchBlue said...

Oh Oh Oh oH my~~ This is a STUNNING post! I am perched high sitting on top of our globe with my cup of deep magic, my soul & my love.... Thank you so much for this post!

Mary-Laure said...

A mad tea party? Tell us more!

I want a typewriter just like the one on the pic you featured.

TesoriTrovati said...

So sorry to arrived so dreadfully late to your tea party! I would agree that I have had my fill of tea...but never too much of the coffee! You have a delightful blog!

I am still tea-partying! I am holding a giveaway of my own to keep the party rolling. Please come by and say hi at

Enjoy the day!

Jan Allsopp said...

I LOVE coffee! and I've just had to go off it altogether! I wonder what it will do to the frequency with which coffee appears in my art? That longing face in my painting (thanks for including it!!) is now mine!

Twilight Spells said...

Thank you so much for featuring my tea cup candle in this beautiful post! Your blog is just stunning, I will follow it from now on. Such gorgeous pictures!

Hey Harriet said...

Coffeeeeeeeeee!!! Oh yeah! I enjoyed tour previous Mad Tea Party post but I have to admit I'm not a fan of tea. Coffee for me thanks! And as you say, the ritual plays an important role...the grinding and aroma of the fresh beans, the steaming of the milk, the pour, the fave coffee cup. I totally relate to this!!!

Oooh lovely to see a Where's Becky Bean coffee bag here. I'm the proud owner of one of the first ones they made and I adore it! I also adore your Anotomical Espresso Cups! They go perfectly with the gorgeous giveaway you have over at the Handmade Giveaway blog. Which I just entered btw with huge hopes of winning :D

Hey Harriet said...

Forgot to say I enjoyed your local cafe slideshow. I spotted some of my faves in there, and some of them I didn't recognise but they looked cool!

Christina said...

Thank you for sharing! Great collection of pictures and poetry! :)

parasols and maryjanes said...

This was a delightful post. I love the story of the three cups of water. That first sip of coffee for me is by far the best.
Thanks for visiting our blog this morning too.

Shell said...

Beautiful poetry and pictures.

amy said...

hello, thanks for visiting my blog :) it was so random, i was just on your etsy shop earlier today, decided i needed some of those flying ducks! i love your anatomical espresso cups too. i am officially following you. i will come say hello at the markets on saturday :)

Anonymous said...

what a delicious post... one of those coffee shops wasn't in west end was it?

MagicMarkingsArt said...

simply beautiful post and thoughts. your coffee shop pictures are fabulous.

ArtSnark said...

Thought provoking & full of eye-candy! I do love visiting your world ;D

flossy-p said...

OOOOooo, I'm off to find me one of those glowing tea cups!

Thanks SO much for your comment of support and understanding on my last mopey post. I SO appreciated it. Thank-you :)

studioJudith said...

How did I miss the glorious post???
perhaps I found it at just the right moment.

me! said...

a gorgeous post.....


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