One of Notting Hill’s finest bookstores, Book & Kitchen, has a couple of exciting events lined up for September!

First up, a ten-week masterclass in children’s picture book writing and illustration starts that month, taught by Dr Karenanne Knight. Starting on Monday 15th September, the course is perfect for anyone that’s got an idea for a children’s book  – whether actually properly planned out, only roughly jotted down, or even just kept in their heads for the moment – as at the masterclass, you’ll be able to find out exactly what it takes and what’s involved to develop such a book. The course will include special guest visit from publisher’s and children’s authors, which will help attendees find out more about not only the creative process, but also about the publishing side of things.

Book and Kitchen - Children's Book Masterclass

The ten-week course costs £399, which includes a copy of Dr Karenanne Knight’s The Picture Book Maker. More details on the course can be found here: www.bookandkitchen.com/ai1ec_event/masterclasspicturebookmaker/?instance_id=931

Also in September, Book and Kitchen will be hosting the Poster After Life exhibition by artist Gosia Łapsa-Malawska. The exhibition is based on a collection of old posters that Gosia photographed and collected in Europe and South America. The Polish artist – who is now based in London – has created new artworks from neglected ones, offering a fresh outlook on our streets and cities that is tinged with nostalgia.

Book and Kitchen - Poster After Life

The exhibition is on from Tuesday 2nd to Friday 29th September (closed Mondays) and entry is free.

Book and Kitchen
31 All Saints Road
W11 1HE

Madame Gautier Cookery Classes are perfect preparation for that big Christmas meal

The Madame Gautier Cookery School is offering a range of special classes to enable budding cooks to hone their techniques ahead of Christmas. These “Fetes de Noel” start on December 1st with a three hour course on Chutneys, which provides participants with a selection of fruit chutneys presented in elegant jars which could also make an ideal accompaniment to the Christmas cheeseboard.

Madame Gautier

Next is a two-hour course on December 8th, which deals with mince pies. By the end of this course, students will feel confident turning out rich buttery pastry filled with sweet mincemeat, which can be served either hot or cold.

Then, on December 15th, it is time to learn about curds, which again, provides participants with a range of beautifully prepared fruit curds which can also double as Christmas gifts or be consumed on the day itself.

Madame Gautier

Finally, on December 22nd, there is a three-hour course on mastering the art of chocolate truffles. Again, you will end up not only with the knowledge to create your own, but also with a lovely selection of superbly flavoured truffles, which again can be given as a gift, or more likely, consumed three days later. All of these courses cost £45 each and can be taken individually or combined for the special price of £150. If someone wants to bring a friend along to the individual courses, there is a special price of £75 for two.

Madame Gautier Cookery School

Other Cookery School courses range from a two-hour immersion in how to make Bouillabaisse to speciality pastry courses that run over eight sessions. There are also hands-on butchery lessons and Grand Technique courses which include knife skills, fish filleting and how to confit a duck.

Courses are run on a daily basis at Madame Gautier’s custom-built facilities next to their headquarters in West London. All equipment and clothing is provided and participants can take what they produce away with them. Classes are kept to very small sizes to enable personal tuition at all times. Please contact the Cookery School direct on +44 20 8964 5511 or email info@madamegautier.com.

For more details about the school, visit www.madamegautier.com/cookery-school

Madame Gautier
4 Enterprise Way
NW10 6UG

Right in time for the Christmas-present buying season – yes, it’s that time of year again! – Notting Hill’s excellent Book & Kitchen will be hosting their first ever Christmas Shopping Evening on 7th November 2013, from 5.30pm to 9pm.

Book & Kitchen Christmas Shopping Evening - Around the World in 80 Gifts

As well as Book & Kitchen’s own delights – they stock the best in classic and modern literature for all ages – interior design company Maud Interiors and Japanese accessories brand Keiko Uchida will also be displaying their wares on the evening. That means there will be plenty of suitable presents for all book worms, fashionistas and homeware fans available at the event – aptly titled ‘Around the World in 80 Gifts’.

The Kieko Uchida Collection is made up of some very pretty kimono dressing gowns and accompanying accessories, all truly fusing traditional Japanese ideas with modern European aesthetics. Having worked as head of the household division team at Muji for nine years, Ms Uchida launched her own company in 2012 and debuted her collection in the UK at Pulse London in May 2013.

Maud Interiors are an online boutique that offer a wide range of eclectic items – from vintage home accessories, such as hand embroidered tribal cushions, floor cushions, vases and wall hangings – as well as handcrafted gifts. They work with independent designers and social enterprises that seek to provide a livelihood for artisans and help preserve traditional handicrafts.

Don’t forget that you can pop along to Book & Kitchen daily to check out their books, or for a meal – their downstairs restaurant is open for breakfast through to dinner, serving salads, soups, cakes, tea and coffee.

Around the World in 80 Gifts
5.30pm – 9pm, Thursday 7th November 2013
Book & Kitchen
31 All Saints Road
W11 1HE

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The BiscuiteersIf the half term holiday has crept up on you all of a sudden and you’re not sure how you’re going to entertain the kids, why not drop into the The Biscuiteers Biscuit Boutique and Icing Cafe in Notting Hill where they can get utilise their creative talents by icing to their heart’s content?

The little ones (with adults also allowed to join in if they wish!) can choose from the daily selection of biscuit designs, icing designs and decorations with which they can come up with their own biscuit creations. Finished items can then be taken home in a hand-illustrated box, or popped in the biscuit post to send to a loved one – whether it’s going to be a surprise for Daddy or a special gift for Grandma.

Open every day during half term, no booking is necessary – simply drop in!

The Biscuiteers Biscuit Boutique and Icing Cafe

The Little Biscuiteers School of Icing has also recently been launched and there will be special icing classes taking place during half term. Lessons last an hour, and all necessary biscuits, cakes, icing and edible decorations are provided. Children also receive their very own Biscuiteers apron, a selection of biscuits or cakes that they’ve iced to take home, and an Icing Certificate.

Lesson cost £25 (plus VAT) per child (which includes soft drinks), with bookings subject to availability. A minimum of four children is required per lesson – why not get together a group of friends? A timetable of classes can be found online at www.biscuiteers.com/our-boutique.

The Biscuiteers Boutique and Icing Cafe opened in November 2012, offering the extremely popular Biscuiteers biscuit and cake collections which are also stocked in Selfridges, Harrods, Fortnum & Mason and The Conran Shop, amongst others. Started by husband-and-wife team Stevie Congdon and Harriet Hastings, Biscuiteers have been named as one of “Britain’s most innovative, disruptive and creative young brands” in the Future 50 Awards.

The Biscuiteers Boutique and Icing Cafe
194 Kensington Park Road
W11 2ES