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Christmas 2017


next step

2 | www.westendermagazine.com

Be where you want to be.

Corum’s property knowhow gets you there.

Contact Corum West End today.

Contact us on

0141 357 1888

Visit our website


Corum West End

82 Hyndland Road, Glasgow G12 9UT the best sellers

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6 Fashion pages

naughty, or nice?

14 West End Live

with Greg Kane

16 Christmas All

Wrapped Up

21 Westender

Christmas gift guide

28 WIN! An overnight

stay at Crieff Hydro

30 Writer’s Reveal

meets Medeia Cohan

34 Sweet Liberty

36 WIN! A gift bag of

goodies from SPiRiTO

WIN! A Style makeover

at RRI Great Western Rd

37 Cocktails and Pan

Asian food at Wudon

39 Restaurant Review

at Basta Pizza Bar

41 Bar Review

The Ben Nevis

42 Top Things

44 Artist Interview

with Moy Mackay

48 Legal Matters with

Mitchells Roberton

49 Accountancy Matters

with Murrison & Wilson

51 Mum’s Notebook

52 Local charity Coach

House Trust

54 Interiors article:

Scandi Christmas

vs Victorian

59 The Christmas table

66 Hand picked

Christmas tree


4 | www.westendermagazine.com


Suzanne Martin


Gregor Reid


Jacki Clark

Fashion Stylist

Nicola Maule


Roberto Parrucci


Emily Donoho


Advertise today!

Call 07905 897238

Or email: info@westendermagazine.com

for a media pack.

Westender is on facebook and twitter

Publisher: Westender Magazine

Whilst every care has been taken to ensure that

the data in this publication is accurate, neither the

publisher nor its editorial contributors can accept, and

hereby disclaim, any liability to any party to loss or

damage caused by errors or omissions resulting from

negligence, accident or any other cause.

Westender Magazine does not offi cially endorse any

advertising material included within this publication.

No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored

in any retrieval system, or transmitted in any

form – electronic, mechanical, photocopying,

recording or otherwise – without prior permission of

the publisher.

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Book advertising space in the January/February

2018 Westender by Wednesday 6th December.


// Glasgow’s brilliant FREE bi-monthly magazine

// Great editorial features: fashion, dining out, health & beauty,

what’s on, local authors & artists, interiors & more

// Massive potential business audience

// 10,000 copies per edition

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jun/jul 2017


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…he’s gonna find out who’s



Images Gregor Reid

Stylist jacki clark


www.westendermagazine.com | 7

top, solo. boots, daniel footwear.

jewellery, liquorice tree

opposite page - top, jewellery & gloves, jasmine. boots, daniel footwear

8 | www.westendermagazine.com

www.westendermagazine.com | 9

dress, solo

shoes & bag, charles clinkard

Jewellery, LIquorice Tree

coat, jasmine

opposite page

dress, solo

boots, daniel footwear

10 | www.westendermagazine.com

lingerie, silks. shoes, daniel footwear

opposite page - lingerie, silks

www.westendermagazine.com | 11

12 | www.westendermagazine.com

www.westendermagazine.com | 13

skirt, top & bangle, jasmine.

opposite page - skirt & top, jasmine. boots, charles clinkard. necklace, pink poodle

model erin charters @ Coloursagency.com MUA terri craig, terricraig.co.uk

stylist jacki clark, jackiclark-stylist.co.uk location hotel du vin, hotelduvin.com/glasgow

photography gregor reid, gregorreidphotography.com

14 | www.westendermagazine.com



Blue Rose Code

Friday 1st December 7.30pm

Milngavie Folk Club


'Imagine John Martyn meets a young

Van Morrison shipwrecked with a crate

of Chet Baker records'. That’s how Time

Out described the sound of Edinburghborn

singer/songwriter Ross Wilson

who goes by the name Blue Rose Code.

His latest studio album . . . And

Lo! The Bird Is On The Wing has

contributions from legendary bassist

Danny Thompson (John Martyn),

Hollywood A-lister Ewan McGregor

as well as a role call of some of the

finest musicians in Scotland.

I’m not really a fan of the pursuance

of jazz/folk fusions but Blue Rose

Code seem to have the balance just

right. This version works well, enough

to convince me and maybe even enough

to set the bar for the many others

who attempt this type of mashup. He’s

steadily growing his tribe on and off

the stage. Check out his Live At The

Queens Hall, Edinburgh documentary

on YouTube, it’s a great little exposé

of who he is and what he’s trying to


Choice Track: Blue Rose Code



Monday 4th December 7pm

Òran Mór, oran-mor.co.uk

Moulettes are an experimental five

piece folk-rock band from Glastonbury.

All are multi-instrumentalists and

judging by the skill and execution

of their vocal harmonies all are very

capable singers too.

Their music does not fit easily into

any musical category but it is heavily

influenced by the folk/prog sound of

70s bands like Pentangle and Gentle

Giant. Progressive Rock is very

difficult to pull off. There’s also not

much payback for all the effort you

have to put in as it does not attract

the huge audiences it once did so you

have to be committed and that should

be admired.

So with all this ability and

commitment Moulettes have carved

out a niche for themselves and are

currently one of the most talked about

bands on the Prog scene. They are out

on tour promoting their new record

Preternatural so with kaftans and

tie-dye at the ready you should go see

their elaborate octopus-chameleon

inspired lovecraftian horror blend of

progressive rock. I dare you.

Choice Track: Moulettes ‘Songbird’


Friday 8th December 7pm

Queen Margaret Union, qmunion.org.uk

It’s quite unsettling watching 30

year old men singing of teenage angst

(They describe it as 'Make Out Music').

Cynical old songwriters usually hide

behind petty popstars to punt their

skilfully constructed hooks, but props

to LANY (pronounced Lay-Nee) for

coming out from the shadows to front

this electro-pop trio.

In my day our quirky named electro

pop trios were spearheaded by the

Norwegian boy band Aha, and Take On

Me was and still is an iconic slice of

www.westendermagazine.com | 15

by Greg Kane

pop. Can LANY get anywhere close to

that yardstick? Only time will tell,

but they are armed with the focus,

enthusiasm, ambition and the deep

pockets of Polydor Records required to

succeed in the cut throat business of


For me the French band Phoenix do

electro pop better, but LANY are pretty

skilled at it too.

Incidentally LANY stands for Los

Angeles New York … clever eh?

Choice track: LANY ‘ILYSB’

James Edwyn & the Borrowed Band

Saturday 9th December 9pm

The Bon Accord, bonaccordpub.com

This Scottish band were formed in

2013, influenced by Gillian Welch,

Woody Guthrie and Ryan Adams, their

music is a mix of alt country folk rock

roots orientated Americana.

The whole thing is centred around the

heavily bearded singer songwriter/

guitarist James Edwyn. He’s got a good

voice has our James and the subject

matter of his songs are personal day

to day observations presented in a

reflective mood, perfect for this type

of music.

They are out promoting their recently

released 2nd album High Fences coming

off the back of a successful album

launch at the Glasgow Americana

Festival last month.

I’ve seen many alt country acts play

at The Bon Accord and it’s a perfect

setting for this kind of music, with a

great sounding room and a bar with

one of the most extensive Whisky

collections anywhere in town. All

makes for a good night.

Incidentally, as I was researching

this band I stumbled upon The Fallen

Angels Club ... a kind of appreciation

society/promoter for Americana in

Glasgow. If this is your bag then you

should definitely go have a look at

their website.

Choice Track: James Edwyn & the

Borrowed Band ‘Pushing Statues’

King Krule

Friday 15th December 7pm

SWG3, swg3.tv

I’ve always been a fan of the self

indulgent – Krule is the King of selfindulgence,

especially on his new

record Ooz.

Listening to the 23 year old Londoner,

Archy Marshall aka King Krule can

be quite an unnerving experience.

It can sometimes be like listening

to old school Bill Withers but after

the consumption of some serious

hallucinogenics. It’s sometimes like

The Cure – there’s also some early

Radiohead in there – and thanks to his

musical parents he also draws on the

likes of Talking Heads, The Pixies,

The Damned, Weller and the inimitable

Donny Hathaway for inspiration, but

ultimately it’s all King Krule.

After a very successful tour of the US

in 2013 he decided not to come back

home to Old Blighty so this tour at the

end of 2017 is a bit of a homecoming

for him. Be under no illusions this

music is dark and demanding but if you

can manage to commit to it then the

rewards are well worth the effort.

Choice track: King Krule ‘Czech One'

16 | www.westendermagazine.com

Christmas Shop at

The Liquorice Tree


all wrapped up


Desperately trying to pass seriously slow tourists on

Buchanan Street on Christmas Eve, or merely inhaling

the not so yuletide aroma of wet umbrellas on the jam

packed underground; just don’t go there – to town that

is. Instead, here is our guide to everything you need for the festive

season right here in the winter wonderland of the West End.

Ican’t deny it, I love Christmas. I am one

of those annoying peeps who can’t wait

to get the tree up on the 1st of December.

In my head I’m living in the final scene of

‘White Christmas’ where the Christmas tree

has candy canes and candles, snow falls

silently as good neighbours wave from their

horse drawn sleighs. And there is absolutely

nothing wrong with wearing a Santa-themed

red velvet ball gown whilst doing the


Granted, in reality the candles have to be LED

for health and safety, I have to make do with

my dog Lucy in a reindeer headband instead

of the horse and well, the velvet ball gown?

Primark do a rather fabulous line in novelty

Christmas jumpers. Never the less, I feel Bing

would be proud...

So to get in the festive mood, here is the

Westender’s gift to you; a guide to sprinkling

some Christmas cheer.

For The Christmas Home

Christmas first and foremost is about

togetherness and having your home as

Hygge as possible is a priority. First stop in

achieving this is the West End wonderland

that is the Liquorice Tree Christmas shop.

Down stairs in the Great Western Road venue

is an Aladdin’s cave of festive finds. The

Christmas shop has decorations and gifts for

every theme. Silver fine glass baubles blend

with glass Christmas tree candle holders.

Stunning snow globes with Scotty dogs

and Labradors in the snow sit alongside a

fabulous tartan selection of baubles – pipers,

highland cows – perfect for sending to loved

ones abroad. And as far as gifts go, there are

some stunning champagne flutes available

– diamante, gold or silver. Why not go the

whole hog and opt for a Christmas themed

bottle stopper? Liqorice Tree has it covered

as far as Christmas decorations go – even

stocking a snowflake handwash dispenser for

the bathroom. Now that’s dedication.

Along on Cresswell Lane, Nancy Smillie also

has some lovely touches to complement

your home. In particular the beautiful dried

www.westendermagazine.com | 17

fruit and wicker garlands and wreaths:

round, heart-shaped, or in lengths, give

a lovely natural appeal to a festive home.

In the same vein, the boutique is also

stocking many wooden and felt tree

ornaments, super trendy and very homely.

With a choice of lovely stained glass angel

and Christmas tree votive holders, there are

some nice optional Christmas themes at the

Cresswell Lane shop.

And for something a little more traditional,

Shearer’s Candles on Byres Road stock

an incredible amount of options to have

your home smelling of yuletide yumminess.

For gifts, the Highland range are beautifully

packaged and have some stunning scents

– Hogmanay, Red Red Rose and Ae Fond

Kiss – evocative of the scents of Scotland.

To get your home smelling like a full on pot

pourri of all things crimbo, there are aromas

such as cranberry and ginger, orange and

pomegranate, frankincense and myrrh and

cinnamon spice, all available in candles and

home fragrance sprays. With a full range of

Christmas stock still to arrive, make a trip to

the Byres Road store.

Yuletide yumminess at Shearer Candles

18 | www.westendermagazine.com

stalwart of gift boutiques, stocks some really

interesting items from all around the globe.

Always a strong supporter of local artists,

there are some great present ideas, with a

good selection for the boys. The Cath Waters

ceramic collection are striking – mugs,

coasters, but so much more than that. The

Culinary Concepts Huntsman range is to die

for; a collection of beautiful wooden items

embellished with silver stag detail. Without

doubt, you won’t leave Cassiopeia empty


Personalised gifts at Spirito

The Thought Really Will Count

For thoughtful, unique gifts for all the family,

there are some fabulous little boutiques

on our doorstep. Spirito in Broomhill have

a fabulous range of personalised gifts for

him, her, young and old. Gifts that can be

personalised range from oak keep sake

boxes to cheeseboards and cufflinks. It’s

a really nice way of making a thoughtful

unique gift that extra bit special. The Crow

Road store also has some stunning jewellery,

unusual fragrances and the gift that no

woman can resist – some beautiful candles.

Along the road in Hyndland, Cassiopeia, that

Festive Food and Drink Gifts

Trying to think of gifts that aren’t run of the

mill can be quite a chore. Let’s face it, these

days if we like something, we often buy it for

ourselves. So what do you get the loved one

who has everything? A gift from Eusebi that’s

what! This fabulous Italian deli and eatery

on Gibson Street has some great creative

Christmas gifts available. For the woman

who has everything why not go for ‘Mama’s

Night Off’, a hamper of delights wrapped in

Eusebi’s own retro gift boxes. Inside, find the

deli’s home-made panettone as well as an

exquisite bottle of Capriana Bellini imported

all the way from Harry’s Bar in Venice. Not to

leave the guys out, ‘Dad’s Night On’ gift box

includes Eusebi’s own olive oil, tomato sugo

and pasta – everything he needs to get dinner

going! But to ease his pain, the Eusebi team

have also added their specially imported Labi

craft beer, the only outlet for the Italian brand

in the UK. And for a really fabulous gift, why

Cassiopeia, a strong supporter of local artists

www.westendermagazine.com | 19

not buy the Labi gift box? With a range of

four craft beers to choose from, a bottle of

your choice comes in a stunning presentation

box with two Labi fine craft ale glasses. If it

were my choice however, I don’t think you

can ever go wrong with a Coffee Lover’s Gift

Box: Derocci beans, with a mini panettone

and a gorgeous Eusebi espresso cup. I can

smell the aroma from here...

For something a little stronger and

gorgeously packaged, Demijohn on Byres

Road is a Christmas staple in terms of gifts.

Sloe gins, ginger wine, bramble scotch

whisky liqueur…perfect tipples for night

caps by the fire. In terms of gift ideas,

the Demijohn team have great gift sets of

stacking bottles, be they gin, vodka or even

specialist vinegars such as Tayberry and

Damson, available in sets of three or five.

For a seriously opulent gift, why not opt for

the Demijohn Drinks Chest – a gorgeous oak

chest containing ten glasses and six small

bottles of artisan liqueurs of your choice.

There is also an option of smaller stacked

bottles in oak presentation cases.

Try before you buy at Mellis Cheesemonger

And For Afters…

Christmas isn’t Christmas without getting the

cheeseboard out. And the annual event of

queuing outside Mellis Cheesemonger in the

days leading up to Christmas has more of a

‘Blitz comradery’ atmosphere than any usual

migraine inducing pre-Christmas queue.

Pray tell the reason? Why there is free food

and great service to be had! Is there any

better shopping experience than tasting

cheese, getting some advice about cheese…

then tasting some more cheese? I think not!

As usual the staff at Mellis will be delighted

to advise you and this year they are putting

together basic cheese boards which you can

then add to for 6, 8 or 10 guests. And with

the enormous array of crackers, chutneys,

salamis and cured meats available, where

will there be room for the actual Christmas


Finally, popping across the road to Valhalla’s

Goat, the staff will be delighted to discuss

your wine, champers or spirit requirements.

The staff at the Great Western Road shop

have a wealth of expertise and can advise

you based on your menu. In terms of

gifts, the number of specialist rums and in

particular gins available will ensure you aren’t

stuck for choice. The team stock smaller

specialist producers of wines and spirits too

so it’s nice to be supporting the little guys.

Festivities commence at Valhalla’s Goat

Some unique ideas to get you started –

without ever having to venture beyond St

George’s Cross! I’m off to don a rather jovial

flashing snowman jumper to do the ironing.

Well it is November the 20th after all…

20 | www.westendermagazine.com


F E A T U R E D : T U B E A U D I O S P E A K E R , D E S I G N B Y P I E T H E I N E E K / 8 0 G B P

6 5 H Y N D L A N D S T R E E T / G L A S G O W

www.westendermagazine.com | 21


a merry west end

Gift Guide

for home

Chrome Tube Clock £80

Concept 65

Seashore Champagne Bottle Holder

£140, Cassiopeia

Apple & Cinnamon Bauble

Candle £12, Shearer Candles

Copper LED String Lights

£8.99, Liquorice Tree

Beeswax Candles from

£14-£19.50, Hoos

Teatowel & Cheese Slice Set

£19.95, Nordic Outdoor

Mikasa 4 Balloon Glasses

£45 reduced to £20, Papyrus

Ribbon Clock £44.95

Nancy Smillie

Marbled Garland £10 each

Glasgow School of Art Shop

22 | www.westendermagazine.com

for her

www.westendermagazine.com | 23

Blue Silk Scarf £34.95

Nancy Smillie

Binge Thinker Notepad

£8.99, Liquorice Tree

Handmade Designer Cuff

£700 Cassiopeia

Gift Boxed Cerise Jar Candle £20

Shearer Candles

Spot Print Pyjamas £45


Fjällräven Ovik Fleece Hoodie

£129.95, Nordic Outdoor

Karl & Coco Kokeshi Dolls

£35 each, Concept 65

PomPom Hats from £15


Tree of Life Brooch by Gist £18,


P. Kirkwood Hobo Bag £156


24 | www.westendermagazine.com

for him

www.westendermagazine.com | 25

Stop Snoring Mug £7.99

Liquorice Tree

Harris Tweed Accessories

from £19, Cassiopeia

Golf Ball Ice Mould £11.95

Nancy Smillie Shop

Dale of Norway Tor Sweater

£179.95 Nordic Outdoor

iBeani Cushion £25.99


Bookmark and Pen Set £10

Glasgow School of Art Shop

D42 Brass Watch by Leff £189

Concept 65

The Liqueur Tower (with oak

gift box) £88.15, Demijohn

Fingal Laptop Backpack £95


Felt Bedside Caddy £20


26 | www.westendermagazine.com

for kids

Net of Chocolate Sprouts

£1.99, Liquorice Tree

Harry Potter Colour Change Glass

£10, Papyrus

Tropical Bird Mobile £28

Glasgow School of Art Shop

Supersoft Mittens for Babies £10


Didriksons Bjornen Coverall

£99.95 each, Nordic Outdoor

Cuddly Penguin Toy

£14, Spirito

LMF Fire Starting Kit £16.95

Nordic Outdoor

Official Emoji Game £8.50

Liquorice Tree

Christmas Ducks from Dcuk from £16


Olesen Crochet Fox £25


for foodies

www.westendermagazine.com | 27

Alessi Pizza Cutter £35

Liquorice Tree

Panettone & Amarena Cherries £20

Eusebi Deli

Cordial Gift Set of 3 £29.10


Joseph Joseph Chopping Boards £50 Now £35,

Sabatier Knife Block £100 Now £63, Papyrus Cookshop

Christmas Tea in Caddie £6.99 and Christmas

Pudding or Snowmen Chocs £5.99, Cassiopeia

West End Suppliers

Cassiopeia 165 Hyndland Road G12 9HT 0141 357 7374 cassiopeiaonline.co.uk

Concept 65, 65 Hyndland Street, G11 5PS 0141 357 0268 owenbisset.com

Demijohn 382 Byres Road G12 8AR 0141 337 3600 demijohn.co.uk

Eusebi Deli 152 Park Road G4 9HB 0141 648 9999 eusebideli.com

Glasgow School of Art Shop, Reid Building 164 Renfrew Street G3 6RF gsashop.co.uk

Hoos 715 Great Western Road G13 8QX 07788 480421 hoosglasgow.co.uk

Liquorice Tree 431 Great Western Road G4 9JA 0141 339 0648 liquoricetree.com

Nancy Smillie Shop 53 Cresswell Street G12 8AE 0141 334 4240 nancysmillieshop com

Nordic Outdoor 687 Great Western Road G12 8RA 0141 334 5400 nordicoutdoor.co.uk

Papyrus 374 Byres Road G12 8AR 0141 334 6514 papyrusgifts.co.uk

Quirq 21 Byres Road G11 5RD 0141 357 2208 instagram.com/quirqglasgow

Shearer Candles 388 Byres Road G12 8AR shearer-candles.com

Spirito 317-319 Crow Road G11 7BU 0141 337 3307 spiritogifts.com

Trakke trakke.co.uk

28 | www.westendermagazine.com

A Crieff New Year

Start 2018 as you mean to go on with fun,

festivities and a good old knees up at

Crieff Hydro.

With trees twinkling from floor to ceiling,

decorations throughout the hotel, and the

crisp Perthshire countryside outside, you’ll

enjoy your three-night New Years stay in a

real winter wonderland.

Their famous ceilidhs, discos and non-stop

entertainment mean you can spend all day

doing something completely different, or

simply kick-back and relax without lifting a

finger. And with all of your meals included,

from brilliant full breakfasts, right through to

the Hogmanay ‘Fizz and Stovies’ feast – you’ll

be that well fed, you could hibernate until


It’s not just their reputation for seeing in the

bells with a great party that makes their New

Year stays so memorable (although their

traditional January 1st Survivors’ Photo will

confirm that) – there’s also an incredible

choice of onsite activities available too.

Fancy spending New Year with all your

friends and family?

Crieff Hydro’s ‘home from home’ self-catering

lodges, cottages and apartments are the

perfect base to celebrate 2018 with the

whole clan. You can still have the at home

experience, with all the added extras of a

hotel experience – including the famously

warm welcome, leisure facilities and action

-packed entertainment programme.

So, bring the family away for some

countryside escapism this New Year or

Christmas and the Crieff Hydro team will be

sure to make it a magically memorable one.

WIN! An overnight stay for two at

Crieff Hydro this winter. Ts&Cs apply.

Visit crieffhydro.com/westender to

enter and follow the instructions on

the page. Good luck!

www.westendermagazine.com | 29


things up

this Christmas

at Crieff Hydro

Join us for a

famously warm

welcome, family

traditions, twinkling

trees and fantastic

Scottish ceilidhs.

Our Christmas and New Year

breaks include:

• Three nights’ accommodation in Crieff Hydro

• All your meals

• Action packed entertainment programme

• FREE childcare for 2 – 12 year olds

• FREE access to leisure pool, gym and cinema

• Special events including welcome drinks

reception and Hogmanay party in our

Melville Hall



Only £499

per person

for three nights

New Year


Only £799

per person

for three nights



From £60

per person,

per night

Book now crieffhydro.com/festive | 01764 655 555

Terms: Based on two adults sharing standard double accommodation, arriving on 24 or 30 December 2017 for three nights.

Subject to availability, full terms on request.

30 | www.westendermagazine.com

Writer’s Reveal

meets Medeia Cohan


www.westendermagazine.com | 31

simplicity – each page is dominated by a

brightly coloured picture. Text is kept simple

and pronunciation phonetic. Amongst others

we are introduced to a Sikh man in a turban,

a Jewish woman in a Tichel and a young boy

in a kippah.

The modest construction of the book makes

it easy to underestimate the amount of

research that went into it. The book took over

a year to narrow down which head coverings

to include, and in her quest for absolute

accuracy Medeia travelled the world to meet

faith leaders, costume curators, anthropology

and religious studies professors.

‘It’s a great responsibility to talk about

something as delicate as faith and there

is an awful lot of misinformation out

there,’ Medeia explains. The research was

painstaking. ‘I now know why the book didn’t

exist previously’ she laughs. ‘Our research

included speaking with the curators at the

Smithsonian and the African museum in

Washington. We also consulted with theology

professors, religious leaders and faith

members, and ordered every book on faith

for children out there.’

As well as Jewish and Sikh faiths the book

features Christian, Rastafarian and Islamic

examples but there were many coverings

that just didn’t make the final cut. Medeia

picks up. ‘The African head wrap was a tricky

one. I really wanted to include it but within

every African country and within that – every

African tribe – there are different reasons

for wearing one and different names for it.

I really wanted to be sure that what I was

putting out was accurate and factual.’

Could you easily identify the head

coverings you see around you today?

Would you know a Tichel from a

Turban? This was the starting point for

mother turned writer Medeia Cohan who

struggled to find a book for her young son

which describes the different ways people

cover their head to show love for their God.

Hats of Faith is a brightly coloured board

book covering five faiths and nine different

types of head covering. Its genius is in its

First drafts of the book included information

about each head covering which the

publisher suggested be taken out. Media

was devastated. ‘I had thought it was really

important we explain and rationalize head

coverings. But actually when we took the text

out it highlighted that head coverings are a

shared custom across all faiths. What the

text had done was actually emphasize the

differences between faiths.

The book was published in August and

Medeia has been busy promoting it – touring

her home country of America and getting

32 | www.westendermagazine.com

involved in Interfaith week here last month

(an awareness raising and celebration of the

different faiths in Scotland). She is also taking

part in workshop based events for families in

conjunction with the Scottish Book Trust.

Reaction to the book has largely been

positive with many parents sharing pictures

on social media of their children reading it

but not everyone approves. ‘We have had

some haters,’ Medeia says, with people not

keen to engage in discussion about different

faiths or practices. The other issue that has

caused debate has been the books title. ‘We

have taken a fair amount of flack for calling

head coverings ‘hats’ but the book is aimed

at young readers and that is the term young

readers are more familiar with.

Originally from Massachusetts, Medeia

came to London 12 years ago to study and

moved her family to Scotland earlier this year

enjoying the slower pace of life here. She

is keenly aware of differences in UK and

American classrooms.

‘We do live in a more diverse setting in

Scotland being physically closer to Europe

and the rest of the world. When I do school

workshops here and I ask if you have seen

an African head wrap or a hijab the answers

are much more frequently positive – yes

my mum wears one. Whereas doing that in

America, even in a diverse classroom, no-one

knows any of the head coverings in the book.

America is very different culturally.

‘I come from a very liberal family,’ she

continues, ‘and find when I go back home to

the States these days the Trump bandwagon


We have two signed copies

of Hats of Faith, to give away.

Visit westendermagazine.com

and click on competitions by

the 31st of December 2017.

is very hard to stomach. I think a book like

this is really needed in America and it is the

right moment for it – I want our future to be an

inclusive one.’

Medeia has big hopes for this little book.

‘I want it to encourage tolerance and help

prepare young people for the culturally

diverse world we live in today. It’s a starting

point for discussion on interfaith diversity.’

Lesson plans are being created and will

be available from the Hats of Faith website

(colouring sheets are already available) and

more books may follow. Medeia is keen to

tackle festivals of faith next.

Moreover, the amount of knowledge

accumulated for this project won’t go to

waste, ‘I could do a PHD on head coverings

now,’ she chuckles. It is quite ridiculous for a

12 page book. Winston Churchill once said

that ‘if I had more time I would have written a

shorter letter.’ I now realize how hard that is

– it was no mean feat to create this book but I

am proud that we have done it!’


Website special offer: Buy one book and

donate one for half price to a school,

library or children’s hospital.


Hats of Faith



RRP £8.99

*Exclusive offer for WESTENDER readers

at Waterstones 351-355 Byres Road

branch only, by 31st December 2017.

www.westendermagazine.com | 33


Neighbourhood dining. Italian infused menu. Stunning décor.

Booking for Christmas. Gift vouchers available.

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facebook: Pianola&co web: www.pianolaglasgow.co.uk tel: 0141 334 6171

34 | www.westendermagazine.com

Guilty Pleasures from Westender’s American in Glasgow

It's Christmas! Go

completely nuts with the

decoration - more is more,

in this case. Mismatched

glasses look especially


AMerican eggnog

www.westendermagazine.com | 35

by Liberty Vittert

I start listening to Christmas music in October

and my tree goes up in November, so I have

clearly been waiting for this eggnog with greedy

taste buds.

Eggnog has many purposes: keeping the cold at

bay when your central heating is on the fritz, a

sweet nightcap before turning in, or (my personal

favourite use) your booze/dessert in one allowing

you to still squeeze into that holiday dress that

just doesn’t quite zip the way it did before all the

Christmas cookies.

Eggnog has been around for ages, in many

different forms, but really what I love about this

modern day eggnog is the decoration. Easy peasy

to make, both kids (the non-boozy version please)

and adults can have a blast choosing their festive

spirit decor.


Shopping List

5 eggs, separated

5 tbsp sugar

1 nutmeg

250ml bourbon

(or whole milk)

500ml single cream

500ml whole milk

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp cloves

1 tsp vanilla extract

to decorate: food colour,

crushed oreos, cinnamon

sticks, chocolate sauce,

sprinkles, etc.



1. Beat the egg yolks and sugar together.

2. Grate in one nutmeg.

3. Add your bourbon, stirring constantly;

(Replace with whole milk if not using).

4. Beat the egg whites to a light froth,

and mix them nicely with the above.

5. Stir in the cream, milk and other


6. Have fun decorating individual glasses

for some Festive spirit (see what I did


7. Serve cold. Drink up!




Set of 6




RRP £30

*Exclusive offer for


at Papyrus,

374 Byres Road

36 | Westender www.westendermagazine.com

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n the run up to Christmas it’s going to

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38 | www.westendermagazine.com


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www.westendermagazine.com | 39


Reviewed by

Roberto Parrucci



you enter Basta Pizza bar you’re

immediately caught by the fresh

breeze of funk music, the flow of

Earth, Wind and Fire and the breakbeat of

Grandmaster Flash to create an ambience of

true relaxation fused with the smell of freshly

baked pizza dough.

Yet the music is never too much, allowing the

perfect soundtrack to create a blissed-out

atmosphere without disturbing conversation.

Playlists are all from Basta – you can find

them on Spotify as Basta561, by the way, if

once you leave you still have the beats stuck

into your head. ‘Good times’ indeed, to steal

the words of Grandmaster Flash.

Basta is well-appointed at the end of

Dumbarton Road where an array of small

local bars and restaurants are starting to

bring a wonderful local flavour in this quieter

part of the Partick/Thornhill area.

This bar stands out for its interior with a

distinct greenish hue and several wellappointed

plants bringing colours to a

relaxed, cosy and friendly pizza bar. The food

on offer is incredibly flavoursome – as an

Italian living in Glasgow I feel a certain sense

of happiness to have a quality pizza place

quite so close to me. I will fear Glasgow rain

no more!

While the simple Margarita is impressive, if

you prefer a Scottish touch you can select the

(odd) but nationally much-loved ingredients

within The Special, an 8-hour Irn-bru infused

ham, fresh pineapple, tomato and mozzarella.

My suggestion for these autumnal months?

When it’s gloomy outside and you just don’t

think you can take the dark nights any longer

hit Basta for a rather decisive but delicate

pizza with Tomato, Butternut Squash, Goats’

Cheese, Mozzarella and Sage toppings

(Number 3 on the menu). Being B.Y.O.B. you

can just choose the booze you like and bring

it with you to match your favourite pizza.

For desert there’s no better choice than

Basta’s homemade vanilla cheesecake

which is of a density and sweet flavour that

will leave you satisfied enough to begin your

winter hibernation right there and then.

It isn’t just good music and pizza though,

Basta is your local bar, where the owner – a

true Westender, will welcome you and make

you feel part of the neighbourhood – you

might even catch him dancing with staff to

the rhythm of the music.

Basta is also take-away designed so you

can just pop-in and order your freshly

baked pizza en route back from work, or

alternatively, you can call and they’ll helpfully

text to let you know when your pizza is ready.

There’s also a handy fridge magnet to take

home with their number emblazoned on it so

that the next time you frustratingly close the

door to your sad, empty fridge the next thing

you’ll think is ‘Mon ya Basta!’

Basta Pizza Bar

561 Dumbarton Road G11 6HU

0141 339 8698


Image I Gregor Reid

40 | www.westendermagazine.com


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Ben Nevis

www.westendermagazine.com | 41

Reviewed by

Emily Donoho

The Ben Nevis on Argyle Street is almost

as much of an institution as its

eponymous mountain in Fort William.

The pub has been in this location for over

15 years and was popular before Finnieston

became a hub of pubs and restaurants.

One of its enticements are the traditional

Scottish music sessions, running

Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays.

It draws some of the best musicians in the

city, many of them students at the Royal

Conservatoire or professional musicians

from bands like the Treacherous Orchestra,

Peatbog Fairies, Rura, and Session A9, to

name a few. Admittedly, the layout of the bar

isn’t the most conducive for a session: as the

bar is one room with no nooks nor crannies,

it can be challenging to hear the tunes above

the din on a busy night, and you have to crawl

over the session to access the ladies loo.

But these difficulties certainly don’t put off

musicians or listeners.

The Ben, as it’s affectionately known (just

like the mountain), isn’t only a music venue.

It has one of the best malt whisky selections

in the West End. Dozens of whiskies occupy

the back wall behind the bar, all the way

to the high Victorian ceiling (the whiskies

stacked on top of one another are supposed

to represent climbing a mountain). There are

about 160 of them – all the standard malts

and many rare ones as well. You can spend

anywhere from under £2 to over £60 for a

dram of your choice.

The pub has a wide selection of beer,

with two rotating cask ales alongside taps

with beers from local Drygate and West

Breweries, as well as Tennents, Guinness,

Heverlee, Caledonian Best, and others.

When I had a pint of one of their guest ales,

I thought the cask could have been better

kept, but they may have been having an off

day with the cask ale. The taps, however, are

always a safe bet.

The interior décor really makes The Ben

stand out. Designed by the architect Ranald

MaCall, it’s modern in style, but all the

materials are natural and Scottish; every

seat, panel, window, and wall decoration

representing something from Scotland’s

history. There’s a wooden beam from a 100-

year old pier; there are old house-building

materials, thatch and timber, on the walls;

there are iron tables and brass fittings

suggestive of the ship-building industry on

the Clyde; and of course, Ben Nevis itself

on the windows outside the bar. There are

many more – you can visit the pub on a

quiet afternoon and ask the bar staff what

everything means. Architecture students from

the university do.

You can also bring your dog to enjoy the

music and the drink. The Ben won the most

dog friendly pub of the year award in 2016.

It’s an interesting bar for its unique

architecture, the single malt enthusiast’s

dream, and it has some of the best traditional

sessions in the city, but if you visit on popular

night, you have to be prepared for it to be

rammed and expect to be standing.

The Ben Nevis

1147 Argyle Street G3 8TB

0141 576 5204


Image I Gregor Reid

42 | www.westendermagazine.com

Top Things To Do

in the West End

by Tracy Mukherjee

Merry Christmas to one and all! Give in Scrooge

and walk towards the light. In December there

is no point trying to avoid the holiday spirit.

Embrace the season! Whether it’s gladrags for

the Christmas night out, best of the sparkly

spots to have some Hogmanay bubbly or

merriment at Christmas markets, here’s the top

things for the top time of year.

Top for Christmas Markets

Avoid the crowds in the centre of town and

consider alternative and unique Xmas markets

available. On the 9th and 10th of December Tea

Green Festive Market are holding their seasonal

event in the stunning venue of the Kibble Palace.

Showcasing the work of Scotland’s best creative

talent e.g. Doris Does Doodles, The Canny

Squirrel and Victoria Leisa Bowles, there will be

a myriad of unique Christmas gift ideas.

Tea Green Pop Up Festive Market 9th/10th

Dec 10am-4pm, Kibble Palace, Botanic

Gardens, w:teagreen.co.uk

A little further afield, but with a great Christmas

vibe, why not take a trip to The Christmas Market

at Loch Lomond Shores. The regular Balloch

based weekend market will be transformed with

Christmas themed cabins and a selection of

festive goodies. The market runs each weekend

throughout December until Christmas Eve.

The Christmas Market at Loch Lomond

Shores, 19th Nov-24th Dec from

10am, Loch Lomond Shores, Balloch


Top for Meeting Santa

We all know Santa is super fast at getting from

place to place and there are just so many great

opportunities to have THAT CHAT with Mr C

before the big day. For example, what could be

nicer than having Breakfast or Tea with Father

Christmas and lots of fun into the bargain?

Dobbies, Milngavie is running this event each

weekend until Christmas. It requires booking

and can sell out, but if Santa is a tad busy at

breakfast time (he does like his grub) then why

not visit him in his enchanted Christmas grotto

at Dobbies?

Dobbies Garden Centre, Boclair Rd,

Milngavie, G62 6EP w:dobbies.com/events/


Dashing through the snow, Santa is also

available for a super snowy chat at Snow

Factor. Set in the Christmas room, you can

have breakfast, lunch or dinner with dear old

Santa. Then its story time with a gift, followed

by 30 minutes of sledging on real snow! This is

a very festive experience and one that definitely

requires booking well in advance. The event runs

weekends from 25th Nov till Christmas Eve.

Snow Factor, Soar INTU, Braehead, G51

4BN snowfactor.com/kids/santa

Top for Panto

Our top picks for Christmas pantomimes are

two classics... both with a twist! At Oran Mor

Cinderella 2: I married a Numpty is brought to

you by the team behind A Play, A Pint and A Pie

so you are guaranteed first class entertainment.

Given that in this version, Prince Charming

becomes Prince Kelvie (a G-Twelvie), you can

imagine that many a local West End in-joke will

abound. It seems that life with a G-Twelvie isn’t

all it was supposed to be (we can all empathise

there) and our heroine Cinders makes a daring

escape. Promoted as an hour of 'seasonal

silliness', this show is a great choice and just

long enough to maintain smaller children’s


Cinderella 2: I Married A Numpty, Oran

Mor, Byres Rd, Mon 27th Nov – Sat 30th

Dec, matinee performances w:playpiepint.



www.westendermagazine.com | 43

Top Things To Do

in the West End

Our second seasonal selection takes place in

the hallowed halls of Websters Theatre. Jackie

and the Baked Bean Stock is guaranteed to be a

cracking family show. With a great cast, lots of

laughs and songs to sing along to, the show runs

throughout December at the Great Western Road

venue. The team behind this year’s offering from

Websters were responsible for last year’s smash

hit Snow White and the Seven Wee Muppets.

With a pedigree like that, this is one not to miss.

Jackie and the Baked Bean Stock,

Websters Theatre, Great Western

Rd, Thurs 30th Nov – Sun 31st Dec,

matinee and evening performances


Top for Full On Spirit

of Christmas

If anything is guaranteed to bring a tear to my

eye at Christmas, it’s a choir. Therefore I can

only imagine the family (XXL) sized box of

Kleenex required were I to attend the events

being held at Glasgow University in December.

Beginning on the 1st of December, Light in Winter

is a glorious celebration of music and poetry

performed by the Miguda Quartet and from a

new collection of poetry by Alan Riach and Henry

Marsh. On 3rd December the Madrigirls perform

their annual advent service by candlelight. This

simply beautiful production merges carols as

well as readings for the advent period. Finally the

University’s Family Carol Service will be held in

the University chapel on 12th December with the

quite wonderful Kevin Bowyer at the organ and

the chapel choir in attendance. If this doesn’t

fill you with rousing joy and hope for the future,

nothing will.

Glasgow University Christmas Concerts,

University Memorial Chapel, The Square,

University Avenue, Glasgow G12, 8QQ


Top for Meaning of Christmas

Give a Dog a Bone is a charity that gives older

people the best gift that money can’t buy;

companionship. The charity brings over 60s

dealing with loneliness together with animals

in shelters. As well as helping those living with

loneliness to see that adopting an abandoned

pet can absolutely enhance their quality of life,

the charity helps the local over 60s with the

cost of looking after their pet. This can often

be a reason for having to hand over a beloved

companion to a shelter. In aid of their funds,

a charity screening of 'It’s a Wonderful Life'

will be held at the Blythswood Square Hotel.

With a glass of prosecco on arrival followed by

afternoon tea, it will soon be time to settle down

to the absolute epitome of Christmas movies.

As Clarence the Angel’s card says at the end of

the movie 'No man is a failure who has friends'.

Let’s get behind eradicating the epidemic that is

loneliness by supporting this incredibly charity.

It’s a Wonderful Life, Blythswood Square

Hotel, Blythswood Square, Sat 16th Dec.


Finally, Top for Hogmanay

As if there was ever any doubt it is, of course, the

Ashton Lane Hogmanay Street Party 2017! This

New Year’s Eve fun fest is set to be the best yet

with the usual outdoor bars, barbeque aromas

filling the air alongside the high energy tunes of

live ceilidh bands as well as DJs. Remember, this

is a ticketed event. Get wrapped up and although

we always applaud a stunning stiletto remember:

it’s December, you may have consumed one or

two glasses of bubbles and... it’s cobbled. Enjoy

dear Westender readers. Merry Christmas and

see you on the other side.

Ashton Lane Hogmanay Street Party

Sunday 31st Dec 7pm – 12.45am


44 | www.westendermagazine.com


thers have seen what is and why. I

have seen what could be and asked

why not’ – Pablo Picasso

There is a wonderful openness in the

understanding that we all see things

differently, with the idea of many possibilities

being fundamental to the concept of

creativity. A powerful and relevant message

outside the boundaries of art however it

is certainly more tangible when looking

at an artist’s body of work and directly

experiencing their unique and personal


The landscapes of artist Moy Mackay voice a

dreamlike feast of vibrant colour with an air of

magical wonder, a glimpse of a world where

this colour reigns supreme and skill of hand

forces the viewer to look closer and then

closer again. The picture itself lends itself

comfortably to the frame and glass façade

but it is not as first glimpse might suggest,

built upon painted swaths of oils on canvas.

It’s a rather more intricate process involving

layers of detailed application using tools of

the traditional crafter. ‘I use merino fibres

as my base, building up layers of colour and

form [much in the same way] as a painter

www.westendermagazine.com | 45

Lavender Dream © Moy Mackay


eye of





would use paint. My set of carders, which are

just like giant dog brushes is my palette. The

beauty of this method is that I can move parts

I am not happy with until I find the correct

place for it, without waiting for paint to dry.

Once finished I will cover the work with a fine

mesh and then add soap and hot water to

matt the fibres together by agitating,’ Moy


This is the first of four processes, the second

is needle felting where she uses fine barbed

needles to add fibres and thirdly through use

of a sewing machine, but without a guiding

foot allowing her to manoeuvre the work and

use it for fine lines and mark making before

lastly adding another level of texture to the

work with hand stitches.

The result is as unique as it is fascinating,

a rich landscape that the iconic legend of

colour and pattern, Kaffe Fassett was to

comment and admire, ‘Moy’s passionate use

of colour and deep texture created by felting

are what draws me to her work. I also like

the way she concentrates her surroundings

for her subject matter – her work is very

free.’ Lavender Dream is beautiful, whisps

46 | www.westendermagazine.com

Prussian Sky, Plockton © Moy Mackay

of fibre offer an ethereal delicacy, of stories

and possibilities and Prussian Sky, Plockton

depicts a scene of heightened vibrancy, bold

in colour and atmosphere.

Moy’s reach through her unique practise

and the paintings themselves attract an

appreciative global audience, one which may

not as yet be fully accepted into the mould of

the traditionalists. ‘I was a contestant on the

Sky Arts programme Landscape Artist of the

Year in 2016. It was great to receive feedback

from the three judges but I fear one may

have not quite been ready for this medium,’

she tells me. Adding, ‘the main reason I

applied was that I wanted to see if such a

show, that had been mainly focusing on

paint, despite being called Landscape Artist

not Painter of the year, would be open to my

form of painting. Since my days at art school

I was always very well aware of the divide,

snobbery even, that seems to exist between

what is seen as fine art and what is craft,

design or anything else for that matter. I was

keen to try do my little bit towards bridging

that gap and thought how better than on

national television!’

With two very successful published books,

pictures hanging in private collections

around the world and a third book, The Art

of Moy Mackay, due out late 2018 there is a

widespread fascination and love for Moy’s

paintings. I am very excited about this one as

it is going to be quite different from the first

two. My new book is going back to basics

Summer Pines, Glenelg © Moy Mackay

in a way, a bit like a first year at art school.

It hopefully will have more of a sketchbook

feel with lots of ideas, drawings, colour

swatches etc. within the pages. The idea

is to take readers back to the beginning to

create their own compositions, [by way of]

becoming more aware of their surroundings.’

This intention to give yourself permission to

start again, to look differently at the world

is a liberating scenario and what better way

to begin a new, fresh look at the way we see

than through the medium of art. ‘It’s amazing

that often we don’t actually look at what is

around us. Cloud formation, different lights

and different times of the day, years etc.

Simple things but things we often don’t give

much thought to. I find when I teach people

they will later get in touch saying how they

have just started noticing all sorts of things

around them that they may not have given

much thought to in the past,’ she says.

The wonderful thing is, the possibilities are

endless and the results will undoubtedly be

fruitful and perfectly individual, fuelling the

energy and spirit of creativity and very much

opening the question up as Picasso states,

from the ‘what is’ to the ‘why not’.


Moy’s paintings are available in The Thistle

Gallery, Park Road, and Lemond Gallery,


www.westendermagazine.com | 47

Primary 1 Insight Morning

Friday 1 December – 10.00 - 12.00 noon

Friday 2 February – 10.00 - 12.00 noon

Come along to see why more parents are choosing KA than ever before?

• See our P1 class teachers in action

• Check out the small classes where every seat is a front row seat

• Experience one of our Forest School sessions

• See our pupils learn with specialist teachers in Music and PE

• Learn why mindfulness sessions are so important

To book a place call Lynda Andonovic, Admissions Registrar on 0141 357 3376

Connect with /kelvinside1878


Charity number SCO 03962

48 | Westender www.westendermagazine.com

Magazine Promotion

Legal Matters

Glasgow legal firms Kerr Barrie and Mitchells Roberton

set to merge

Glasgow-based Mitchells Roberton,

which can trace its involvement in

Scottish legal affairs back to the

1700s, will merge on Wednesday I November

this year (2017) with another long-established

city legal firm, Kerr Barrie. The merged

firm will continue to be known as Mitchells


and Margot and to working with them and

their experienced colleagues.’

Martin McLellan, of Kerr Barrie, said, ‘We are

very pleased to be bringing our clients into

the Mitchells Roberton stable. As a firm, they

have the same outlook as we do and they

think the same way.’

The merger will increase Mitchells Roberton’s

complement of eight partners and 55 staff

by five. Of Kerr Barrie’s two partners, Martin

McLellan will become a partner and Margot

Manson will become a consultant. All will

transfer from offices in the city’s West George

Street to Mitchells Roberton’s premises in

North Hanover Street.

For Kerr Barrie, which can trace its history in

Glasgow back to 1813, the move represents a

return to its roots: John Kerr, who established

the firm, having first come to the city to train

as a clerk with James Hill (a founding father

of what is now Mitchells Roberton).

Donald Reid, partner and chairman of

Mitchells Roberton, said, ‘We are all very

much looking forward to welcoming Martin

Mr Reid said, ‘Both of our firms are relied

upon, and trusted by, our clients. We aim to

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Westender www.westendermagazine.com Magazine Promotion | 49



by Bruce Wilson & Simon Murrison

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www.westendermagazine.com | 51




by Michele Gordon thelanguagehub.co.uk

I’m dreaming of a white Christmas… there,

I’ve said it, I used the C word as many call

it in the run up to the 25th. Well, I have,

and I don’t care, I love Christmas! I admit,

booking tickets for the theatre on Christmas

Eve back in August this year did feel a little

early but what can one Christmas loving

person do if they want to be prepared?

As some of you know, I do miss some of the

German Christmas traditions. I especially

miss celebrating the four Sundays of Advent,

lighting the candles on the wreath or opening

the doors on the advent calendar which

are all reminders of why people actually

celebrate Christmas. I miss the Christmas

markets where you spend time with friends

while enjoying some Glühwein and usually

greasy or very sweet food. All these things

make up a more festive period, I feel, and

allow you to prepare and slow down before

the big day – which, in Germany, is of course

Christmas Eve!

However, there are also plenty of things to

do in the West End starting at the end of

November; there seems to be something for

everyone. Mums, if you’d like to get actively

into the Christmas mood, check out the

wreath making masterclass at the Grosvenor

Cafe in Ashton Lane on the 10th December

(11am-3pm); it even comes with a festive

lunch for all your hard work. Or make an

everlasting advent calendar! If you like the

idea, then sign up for the Sew Confident

Glasgow workshop on the 25th November,

10am-3pm (Hidden Lane, 1103 Argyle Street).

They will also be running a ‘make a Christmas

Jumper’ workshop in December in case you

are in need of an additional gift.

But if you’d rather shop for some presents

then maybe the Paul O’Gorman Christmas

Fair at Hillhead Sports Club on the 26th

November (2-5pm), the Green Tea Festive

Market on the 9th and 10th December

(10am-4pm) at the Botanics, or the Riverside

Christmas Fayre (Riverside Museum, 11am-

5pm) on the 2nd and 3rd December will be

for you, the latter will also provide some

entertainment for the little ones.

And if you need more things for the children

you can always book Brunch with Santa at

The Kelbourne Saint just off Queen Margaret

Drive (25th Nov, 3rd and 10th Dec 10-11:30am

and then just move on to one of the 2 o’clock

Christmas themed shows at the Scottish

Mask and Puppet Centre (8-10 Balcarres

Avenue, G12 0QF); there is one scheduled

every week. However, if you’d prefer a

proper panto, then definitely check out this

year’s performances at The Websters or the

Oran Mor.

Sadly, for me personally, all these events

cannot make up for the fact that the West End

still does not have its own proper Christmas

market. A Christmas market with traditional

stalls offering original arts and crafts, yummy

food and brass bands playing Christmas

carols. I’d love to see one on Mansfield Park,

I think it’s the perfect spot and I’m convinced

it would go down a treat…one can dream I

suppose. I was delighted though to hear that

this year, Byres Road will at least have its

own Christmas tree with an offical ‘switching

on the lights’ too! So, there is still hope to

bring more outdoor Christmas cheer to the

West End. At The Hub, we will do our bit

with our annual Christmas party on the 9th

December from 4-6pm; if you’d like to come

along, contact us for details. This leaves me

to wish you all Frohe Weihnachten und guten

Rutsch, see you in the New Year!

52 | www.westendermagazine.com

Coach House Trust

a charity with social inclusion at its heart

by Hannah Westwater

The West End boasts hidden gems aplenty.

With its cobbled streets and tree-lined

terraces, it can be a joy to explore the

nooks and crannies of what’s right on our

door step. But tucked away just off Great

Western Road is the Coach House Trust, a

stone-built sanctuary that’s easy to miss.

With social inclusion at the heart of its

mission, the Belmont Lane charity works to

empower vulnerable people to change their

lives. People referred to the Trust may suffer

from poor mental health, be recovering from

addiction, have learning disabilities or have

been homeless. They may have become

isolated as a result of their circumstances

and need a helping hand reintegrating into

their community.

At the Coach House Trust they receive

tailored workshops – in art, horticulture,

music, healthy eating and IT – as well as

continual support in order to overcome

challenges and develop their potential.

Launched in 1998 from a log cabin still visible

in one of their gardens, the Coach House

www.westendermagazine.com | 53

Trust refurbished their current building before

moving in 2003. The former outbuilding is

now a quirky-but-tranquil getaway adorned

with stained glass and artwork produced

by service users. With light streaming

through large windows into the open, bright

space, it’s difficult to disagree with business

manager Una Clive when she describes it

as ‘good for the soul’. If there is a home for

meaningful activity and empowerment then it

must surely be this.

The charity’s involvement with the area

reaches far beyond the ivy-strewn walls of

its headquarters, though. Having developed

several gap sites into workable spaces and

charming gardens, they also sell produce

grown from seed by their service users and

volunteers from their market garden on

Alderman Road, Knightswood.

Bespoke garden furniture and hanging

baskets are also sold, while their team of

professional gardeners provide landscaping

under the moniker CH Contracts. At a time

when available funding is decreasing, the

charity looks to social enterprise to ensure

they can do the most for their service users.

People are referred to the Coach House

Trust through a variety of avenues – social

workers, community psychiatric nurses and

self-referral. Tutors harness the therapeutic

benefits of horticulture and music but they’re

keen for time spent there to be dictated by

the clients themselves. ‘We are a personcentred

organisation – it’s at the core of what

we do,’ says Una. ‘It’s what the service users

want and need.’

Promoting employability and the ability to

move onto further education, the charity first

makes a point of teaching skills which many

of us may take for granted. Healthy eating

workshops, for example, were identified as

a necessity when staff realised the lunch

they provided could be the only meal some

service users would eat that day. And with

technology becoming ever more ubiquitous,

IT and smartphone workshops give clients

access to a world they may otherwise have

been excluded from.

‘You can actually see a direct correlation

between people’s attendance and their

confidence, their feeling of self worth, their

ability to try new things and expand their

geographical footprint. For some people,

getting on a bus is a big challenge. Once

they’ve done that, the next challenge upon

arriving here is interacting with people they

don’t know. And all these challenges that

they’re supported to meet make a huge

difference to their confidence and their ability

to move on with their lives.’

The charity is staffed by a team of employees

and volunteers who very much instil the idea

of community into everything they do. ‘It’s a

privilege to work with such a diverse bunch

of people. It makes work worthwhile,’ says

Una. When questioned as to the best way for

the local community to support their work,

she points to their seasonal fairs – equipped

with stalls, face painting, a bouncy castle and

produce for sale, locals are encouraged to


They can also make use of CH Contracts,

as opposed to a commercial business, for

gardening jobs. Perhaps most importantly,

though, people can think of them if they know

anyone who would benefit from the charity’s


Winner of the People Make Glasgow

‘Inspiring City’ award in 2015 for their

environmental work within communities,

the organisation’s praises are best sung in

testimonials from service users. The Coach

House Trust is described as ‘a place of

acceptance, friendship and motivation’ by

one. ‘[The charity] has given me confidence

and shown me how to live again,’ says

another. ‘I’ll forever be grateful.’

As Una guides me between gardens,

we bump into the music group who have

just finished practising. The band insists

on delaying their tea break so that they

can play me a tune. Shortly after, as I’m

treated to a great rendition of an Eagles

song, I’m touched by just how tangible the

organisation’s belief in people is. Their values

are clear - we all have potential and everyone

should have the opportunity to embrace



54 | www.westendermagazine.com

Homes & Interiors

by Susan


Minimal or


What’s your Christmas style this year?

Susan Robertson weighs up some of the

options for creating that festive feel.

www.westendermagazine.com | 55

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

I particularly love the festive editions of the Westender,

and pondering in these pages about baubles and

twinkly lights seems more of a treat every year I do it.

Christmas has always been a favourite time of year

for me. In our household, it’s our main annual break

from work so that makes it particularly precious as a

time for rest and togetherness, and we deliberately

approach every year differently depending on how we

feel, and how we want to spend it.

There is however the big Christmas bag that comes out

from the depths of the cupboard, earlier and earlier

every year for us. Every family has their stash of stuff

they bring out every December and we add at least

one new personal thing to ours religiously every year.

The process of going through the stuff is always part

of the fun – amazing how quickly I can forget what we

added just a year ago. But these things have traversed

different rooms and homes and can complement most

Christmassy looks in their own way.

So what will your approach be for this year’s festive

feel? Do you have the same tree you bring out every

year or do you get a fresh one? Are you in a new

home, or have you decorated since last Christmas,

find any excuse you can to take a fresh look at your


There are often two general overarching themes for

Christmas decoration. As with any type of interior

decorating, we often see tendencies towards ‘less’, in

the minimalism of Scandinavian styling, or ‘more’ in

the more traditional exuberant Victorian styles.

Choosing the right route for you will be a personal

choice based on your own taste, the style and

decoration of your home, and also practical factors

such as, do you need to go minimal to keep curious

pets and toddlers from the temptation of sparkly

things to grab at?

The traditional Victorian feel of Christmas is possibly

the one we immediately jump to in our minds, these

were times when Christmas began to be celebrated

more elaborately and images filter through to this day

in black and white films, and Christmas cards with

pictures of families dressing over-sized trees together

in front of a roaring fire, while people skate in little

red jackets and white mittens on the frozen lake

outside the window.

This type of image is an ornate and opulent

impression and creates a sense of warmth and comfort

so it has great appeal. It’s all about grandeur and

colour, so think extra-large Christmas trees with

pearl beading and huge golden baubles. Lots of tall

candelabra and layers of light, thick heavy fabrics in

reds and golds, large floral arrangements and drapery

across mantelpieces. Thankfully we have safer options

than actual candles on the tree now too – I’ve never

quite understood how they did that although I’m sure

it looked and smelled amazing to have a candlelit tree.

56 | www.westendermagazine.com

Homes & Interiors

Sticking to these loose themes will help to create

a warm and traditional Christmassy look and

feel to your home. You could make big draping

arrangements of greenery on your mantelpiece with

fairy lights and wide ribbons intertwined. Use lots of

big golden baubles on the tree and go overboard on

fairy lights. And make a big leafy wreath in green and

red for the front door.

Alternatively, there is an increasing trend towards

the Scandinavian look to Christmas decorations. This

is very much the opposite to the traditional look in

that it is very understated and minimal. There are a

couple of core looks that we see more often now. One is

a simple palette of red, white and green decorations.

Going this route, less is definitely more and think

modest real trees, matte rather than shiny, simple

clean lines, small white lights.

There’s also another look in this theme that is about

simple layering of whites and greys with touches of

matte silver or white glitter – another really lovely

look. Think of solid, pale colours, natural fabrics

and materials so lots of soft woollies and simple

wooden painted shaped decorations, and piles of

freshly chopped logs at the fireplace. You could try

hanging clear glass baubles at different heights above

your table, or spraying small pine cones white and

hanging them in front of the window. Create a simple

structure with pale twigs and hang some baubles

from it. Use some clear glass bottles to hold tall, white

candles or make a twiggy wreath and spray it white.

So which way will you go this year? I am always a

bit torn on this one. I love the minimal look in the

magazines and the Scandinavian feel probably

appeals more to my taste at any other time of the year

and maybe one day I’ll try and focus Christmas that

way, but when we open our big Christmas bag and

haul out the boxes of tinsel, and giggle over memories

represented by our collected gatherings, it tends to

naturally go a bit more towards the other direction.

The little light-up Christmas house with its tinkly

tune, the oversized handmade stockings and the

baubles with the flashing Santa noses don’t really fit

into any theme and I think, for us, I quite like it that


© Timorous Beasties

www.westendermagazine.com | 57

58 | www.westendermagazine.com


70 %


2 nd – 22 nd December

Up to

37 Otago Street, Glasgow G12 8JJ 0141 339 3787

www.westendermagazine.com | 59

by Susan


Homes & Interiors

Whether you go for the full turkey

dinner or a nut roast feast, the time

gathered round the table is the focus

of Christmas Day, Susan Robertson has

some ideas to make it look and feel

really special.


for dinner

The Christmas dinner is the focus of the day when

families and friends gather to eat and drink far too

much every 25th December. The choice of festive

food varies depending on family traditions and

preferences, but generally we gather around a big

roast dinner.

It will take some time in the planning. Do you order

a turkey from the local butcher, get an online shop

booked for a Christmas Eve delivery or do you brave

the supermarket yourself? Do you bother with the

sprouts, what about chipolatas? Do you have a starter?

How many puddings? And then the sauces, who likes

bread sauce or cranberry jelly, what type of gravy?

60 | www.westendermagazine.com

There is a list of things to think through for a

traditional Christmas dinner. You can also of course

just ditch it all and go out, go to someone else’s house,

or do something else entirely – all of which sometimes

becomes more appealing the later it gets in December.

However, if you’re the host on Christmas day and

you’re doing a full Christmas dinner, it’s worth

thinking about the look and feel of the whole occasion.

This means the focal point of the festivities, the dining


It makes sense to start with the practicalities with this.

Do you have a big enough table to fit everyone around,

do you have enough chairs to go around, will you need

to have a kids’ table and an adults’ one to get everyone

seated? Depending on your numbers, this can be a fun

option anyway and means you can tailor the tables a bit

more. Keeping the candles and the wine bottles for the

‘big table’ and the streamers and apple juice for the wee

ones is an option to consider if you have a large group.

Once you get the tables and chairs sorted – then you

can get creative. Think of the room as a whole, and

decide on your theme to carry through to the table. If

you need to use a tablecloth, think of this as the colour

basis, do you want to make this a colourful statement

in bold red or green, or will you go for a crisp clean

white perhaps? Would you leave off the tablecloth and

use a festive runner up the middle of the table? You

can have a bit of fun with these in strong Christmassy

prints and patterns, or keep it really clean and simple

in whites and greys. Will you use placemats for each,

and is the best silver coming out?

The main areas for personalising and fun statements

are the centrepiece, the name places and the crackers.

Consider firstly making sure that everyone can see

each other across the table and you have space to

actually put the plates and serving dishes down. You

might benefit from an extra table at the side for drinks

and dishes so that you can keep the table as clear as

possible. Then the centrepiece comes into play. If you

have a circular table, you might be more inclined to go

for one chunky centrepiece, a rectangular table might

lend itself more to a long, thin display or a few small

focal points.

It’s helpful to think of all the parts of the table coming

together as a whole. So, for example, you could choose

a simple arrangement in the centre with big chunky

candles surrounded by holly, ivy and berries, topped

off with a bit of tartan ribbon for a great traditional


Personalised crackers can double up as place holders

simply by adding name tags to shop-bought crackers.

Cut out green paper holly leaves with gold pen names

written on them, attached to red tartan crackers make

a lovely addition. Don’t forget to check what’s in the

crackers – the days of being impressed by a golf tee or

a mini pack of cards are long gone now and you can

get a wonderful array of options. Even better, make

your own, this is simple to do and you can match

your colour scheme easily and create an added layer

of surprise and delight by adding little special pieces

of jewellery as the gift, or make it personalised jokes.

You can add your festive games here too with dares

or charades as little notes inside. Or, you could add

in little memories from the year gone by – a funny

thing that person said, or a great thing they achieved

that year. The crackers are a lovely way to add other

elements to the meal and the group dynamic.

Or, you could go for something a little bit different, how

about a ‘deconstructed Christmas tree’? No-one would

miss a few branches snipped from the back of the

tree to make into a long, jaggy construction down the

centre of the table. Think a little bit abstract, envisage

it as a structure rather than an arrangement, ditch the

candles and use battery operated fairy lights to drape

around the needles, and sprinkle the whole thing with

glitter. Make the baubles into the name placers, use a

gel pen to write names and the date on some colourful

tree decorations and everyone can take theirs home for

their own tree when they leave.

The opportunities are endless but the key to it all is

remembering it’s the people that matter. Getting

loved-ones together is one blessing, then making them

feel special with personalisation and little surprises

is another, and adding in some laughs is even better,

think of your table that way and you have the ideal

starting place for a festive feast.

www.westendermagazine.com | 61

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Westender Magazine

Interiors & All Trades

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66 | www.westendermagazine.com

Homes & Interiors

Hand picked for the tree

You can never have too many baubles on your

Christmas tree, collecting unique items every year is

part of the fun of the season, and there are certainly

plenty options to choose from in the independent

boutiques around the West End. Here are a few ideas

to add to your collection.

Christmas Pudding Bauble,


Nancy Smillie

Hanging Snowy

House Bauble,


Liquorice Tree

Snowflake Decoration,

£4.95, Spirito

Origami Red Bauble,

£3, Spirito

Cassiopeia, 165 Hyndland Road, 0141 357 7374, cassiopeiaonline.co.uk

Liquorice Tree, 431 Great Western Road, 0141 339 0648, liquoricetree.com

Nancy Smillie, 53 Cresswell Street, 0141 334 4240, nancysmillieshop.com

Spirito, 317-319 Crow Road, 0141 337 3307, spiritogifts.com

Fairy Bauble,

£9.99, Cassiopeia


www.westendermagazine.com | 67

EST 1999





EST 1999

1016 Argyle St, Finnieston, Glasgow G3 8LX

0141 553 2677

68 | www.westendermagazine.com

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