ICE CREAM MADE EASY
Even in the era of Haagen-Dazs, nothing compares to real homemade ice cream. But even the handiest icecream freezers require lots of attention… and ice … and rock salt. Until now, that is, and the Minigel ice cream machine from Italy. The Minigel produces a quart of ice cream, sherbet, or sorbet in only 20 minutes. Just place the ingredients in the stainless steel drum and switch it on. The machine does the rest – stirs and chills; no fuss, no muss. $750. At Williams-Sonoma, 8405 Pickwick. Open Mon-Sat 10-6. 696-0348.
FASHION WITH A TWIST-AND A RUFFLE
One look at this Carmen Miranda-inspired playsuit tells you the designer has a sense of fun. John Currie also has talent, which was evident to Meredith Motley, owner of Lulu’s -the vintage clothing shop on Oak Lawn -simply upon meeting him. Motley urged Currie, an El Centro fashion design student, to bring by some samples. He did, she liked them, and now Currie is creating fashion fun for Lulu’s. Very much in keeping with the store’s name, every one of Currie’s designs is something of a lulu-with humor, a sharp sense of novelty, and a surprisingly low price. This ensemble is $42. At Lulu’s, 3408 Oak Lawn. Open Mon-Sat 12-6. 521-2862.
HIGH TECH TELEPHONES
The standard Ma Bell telephone is a clumsy oaf next to its Danish counterpart. In fact, the F78 is such a smooth application of advanced technology that it has earned a place in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art. Its visual appeal is obvious. It is also easy to operate. The tone ringer can be set for a variety of tones and volumes (including a true soft), it can be adjusted for left-hand use, and can be carried easily with one hand. Colors include off-white, red, and yellow-gold. $150. At S. Vogue, 4121 Lomo Alto. Open Mon-Sat 10-7. 522-9260.
A few well-placed strokes of ink and acrylic paint and, voila, greeting cards by Lira. Actually, the artist is Judy Barnes, a Dallas resident who in a few short months has developed her distinctive handmade cards from a few initial styles into a full collection covering a variety of occasions and an array of subjects, from bold one-word designs to more fanciful sprays of tulips or bubbles or balloons. All cards are heavy white vellum and come with folding envelopes and seals. They’re $2.50 each. Exclusively at Under Arrest, 3833 Cedar Springs. Open Mon-Sat 10-10, Sun noon-6. 528-3380.
You’re planning a dinner: rack of lamb and the trimmings. You want just the right wine for the occasion, but which one? In this case Paul Pinnell recommends a Cabernet Sauvignon, “a wine that will stand up to the character of the rack of lamb.” As a wine consultant, Pinnell is frequently called upon to provide the perfect wine for a dinner. He also arranges wine tastings and provides consultation services for collectors, including proper cellaring methods. (“More Dallas people have more good wines in more garages than I care to know about,” he says.) Pinnell bases his business at Spirits, the new wine and gourmet food shop in Caruth Plaza Shopping Center. He honed his expertise as wine steward for several Dallas restaurants: Arthur’s (which has the best California list in town), Old Warsaw (venerated for its older French wines), and Les Saisons. The experience has made him quite versatile, but he has his favorites, nonetheless. Among the wines that Pinnell says demand attention are California Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Petite Sirah, French Meursault, Montrachet and aged red Bordeaux, Chambertin from Burgundy, dessert champagnes, and aged Port (1963-1966). Paul Pinnell, at Spirits, 9100 N. Central Expressway. Open Mon-Sat 10-9. 696-3530.
KICK THE CHLORINE HABIT
If you have your own pool, hot fun in the summertime also means the drudgery of chlorination -not to mention the odor and eye irritation produced by chlorine. To the rescue comes a product from Diamond Shamrock that will chlorinate your pool while dramatically reducing the ill effects of pool chlorination. The Lec-tranator Chlorinator uses a process called electrolytic generation to produce chlorine from a low and unde-tectable level of salt in the pool water. The salt is applied once or twice a year – which means less pool maintenance and more pool enjoyment. $799.95. At Dolphin Pool Supply & Service, Inc., 11725 Marsh Lane. Open Mon-Sat 9-6. 357-0446.
This vase has a function, one its designer understands, even reveres. Lino Sabat-tini considers his work to be “totally in service of a precise use.” Still, a Sabat-tini vase is no mere flower container. It is a work of art, wrought with silver in Sabattini’s workshop north of Milan in the Italian lake district. Pairing silver with function, says Sabat-tini, “throws off the plated and decorative mask of the past.” The result has a look and feel that borders on revolutionary. Or so think the experts. Sabattini’s work is part of the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art. In Dallas the pieces (all signed) are offered exclusively by S. Vogue. S. Vogue, 4121 Lomo Alto. Open Mon-Sat 10-7. 522-9260.