The Colour Factory or Fabbrica del Colore is the name I am giving to my
home in Brunate 700m above Lake Como. It is here that most of my
creations take place. Our magical place looks onto Monte Rosa, the
mountain that turns pink first thing in the morning with the rising sun.
The house can be reached by a very steep mountain road wth hair pin
bends..not for the faint hearted, or by funicular, the easier option. It
takes just 7 minutes to get to lake Como from Brunate.
The house has a secret garden behind it. They say when it was built in 1906 that the owner was an architect. Not knowing what to do with extra bits of building material he made a baroque garden. Water once flowed from the grotto and tumbled down the rocks. The sweeping staircase remains and the hanging balcony.
This garden is a great source of inspiration and loved by my husband particularly who can never plant enough roses. My cat Frisette enjoys it, although all the stone steps are hard on her 20 years. We grow a lot of fruit and next year I will try my hand at vegetables.
I travel quite a lot so the inside of the house is full of colourful pieces of fabrics brought back from India or Morocco and my paintings which are inspired by these trips. The house has become my own personal gallery as the very long staircase and large landing give me plenty of space to hang my works.
Recently we had a huge snowfall and our garden became a winter wonderland. I ventured out into the virgin snow, the first one to disturb the quiet hush. The place was unrecognizable- trees boughed to the ground with their heavy load of snow...I crept beneath them, wading up to my knees in the white powder. Now and again a robin or blackbird would fly past, their whirring wings breaking the silence in this frozen world. Our terrace became an inviting scene for a theatrical outdoor party. The table seemed like a huge cake with thick white icing and the chairs had fluffy white cushions. The deck chair had a thick white blanket to lie on....who would have cared to join me for a glass of hot wine?! Next time!