A La Carte | Decor


TFG (The Foschini Group) has added furniture to its eMall enabling laptop and smart phone shoppers to order everything from dining room tables to sofas at the @home online store. With the bulky items delivered to their front door.

The functionality at www.home.co.za also enables shoppers to use drop-down menus to customise their furniture purchases, with 10 different styles and 96 different permutations on the Oxford couch alone. And because the furniture you order online comes directly from an @home warehouse, if the online site says that there is stock available, you can buy it on the spot. You can then pick it up from the distribution centre nearest to you free of charge, or have it delivered to your door with the option to have the assembly completed in situ.

By adding furniture to its eMall, TFG is not only creating a mall that satisfies the needs of an expanding and savvy online audience, but is simplifying the shopping process.It's as simple as popping online, selecting a couch, choosing your style, adding it to your bag and picking your delivery preference. At check out you get to choose one of five ways to pay: EFT, credit card, SnapScan, TFG account card or TFG eGift cards.

Free your sherry from the sideboard: the drinks trolley is back. This mid-century staple is having a revival, with owners swapping styling tips and pictures of their carts all over social media. Mobile drinks trolleys are part of a bigger mid-century interiors trend. “Bar carts date from the late 1930s and early 40s, and their popularity stretched though until the 70s,” says the drinks writer Kay Plunkett-Hogge, author of A Sherry and a Little Plate of Tapas (Mitchell Beazley). To test out the new furniture order and delivery feature on the site, I ordered one for myself; opting for a dark wood industrial inspired trolly because unfortunately, the shiny gold one I wanted was a little out of budget.

Don Draper is partly responsible for their revival, says Plunkett-Hogge. “Mad Men featured gorgeous bar carts and trolleys and made the whole thing look glamorous.” Plus, with space in short supply for many of us, the bar cart is a surprisingly hard-working piece. “They are an extra surface, a stylish storage unit and they can serve as indoor and outdoor furniture.”

If you're thinking of buying one, the interiors stylist and writer Joanna Thornhill has these tips: “Retro-style carts are particularly popular - think gold and glitzy with glass or marble shelving. But look for contemporary details, such as oversized wheels and sleek lines, to stop things feeling too Abigail's Party. Two shelves works best, allowing you to store booze at the bottom and serve-ware on top.” 


Drinks trolley essentials

| Spirits and mixers



Pick three key spirits to start your collection. “You must decide what your favourites are, but mine would be Beefeater gin, Maker’s Mark Bourbon and Appleton’s Rum,” says Kay Plunkett-Hogge. My personal favourites are a premium Gin and an artisanal Gin, a good bottle of Red Wine, a Whiskey and a Rum.

Christian Maspes, the head bartender at GŌNG in London, recommends: “Premium gin for classic drinks. Vodka for a more neutral base. Good Scotch whisky, as that can also be enjoyed neat.”


Add a bottle of dry vermouth for martinis (Plunkett-Hogge favours Noilly Prat); Campari and – Maspes’ pick – a bottle of Luxardo Maraschino.

Bitters and liqueurs: This is where you can really get creative. Angostura bitters is the classic bottle, and you’ll find a dash in many a cocktail recipe. But these days there are all sorts of craft bitters on the market. Plunkett-Hogge recommends The Bitter Truth Orange Bitters.

Meanwhile, Maspes says a well-stocked trolley should include some lighter flavours such as plum wine, and elderflower and hazelnut liqueurs.

Finishing touches

Be ready with a bowl of lemons and limes and lots of ice. “Have a chopping board, knife and squeezer on the cart for your fresh citrus,” says Maspes. “But keep tonic and soda water in the fridge so it’s chilled and ready for those who like a longer, lighter drink.”

Buying your trolley is just the beginning, if the beautifully styled carts on Pinterest and Instagram are any indication. Follow these style pointers from Thornhill: “Add a decorative accessory such as a vase with a few flowers, a candlestick or a lush green houseplant. Display striped paper straws in a cute vessel and drape a quirky tea towel over the handle.”

Don Draper might not approve of the straws, but I'm sure he’d be first in line for a drink. Now I can be the hostess with the mostest or simply live out my wildest GirlBoss dreams, which may or may not include being Olivia Pope. Shaken or stirred?