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Thursday, 10 May 2018

HASTINGS HOUSE RENOVTION

We're doing up a house. Eek! I don't think I ever really thought it would happen but the scrimping and saving, baked beans on toast and working like a demon years (and I mean years) have paid off and we are actually, really, doing up a house. 

Quitting London also made this possible, so we've now set ourselves up in a big yellow Victorian house by the sea in Hastings. It's totally liveable, but at the same time everything needs doing up. It needs a bit of love and quite a lot of paint. Which means we've got loads of little mini house renovation projects. It's the dream (well my dream). But putting my finger on the *exact* dream is causing me no end of gip. 

You'd think that over 10 years of working in interiors PR, reading homes magazines daily, immersing myself in the homeware world of my ex-daily grind might have set me up nicely for my first home renovation. 

But no, oh no, rather than feeling fully prepared...I am lost. Drowning in Pinterest pages of perfect subtley seasidey wallpapers, bathroom tiles (oh my) and dozens of open tabs for each ideal tap. Suddenly knowing seven places to buy the best door furniture isn't very useful when you don't reeeallly have a plan. Or a huge budget obvs.   

I've got lots of aspirations but no solid desire for one look or feel. Classic modern life problem of too much choice. So here's to making decisions and getting shit done. I'm now officially calling this my part-time job. Watch. This. Space.




Monday, 4 December 2017

MONDAYS ARE FOR MUGS: HAUS OF MONO

This one's for me. For all the knock backs, assumed slights and petty worries. I need this full of perfect tea (English Breakfast, a little milk and no sugar *ever*) every time sneaky anxiety gets on my back. Three words to get me back on track: Take. No. Shit.

Take no shit mug, from Haus of Mono, price £8


Thursday, 23 November 2017

DESIGN CRUSH: LAURA SLATER

I've got to admit I think I might have a design crush on this one: Laura Slater is a British pattern and print textile designer. Her distinctive painterly dots, dashes and curves in tonal colours make beautiful homeware products. Each of her pieces has a unique feel drawn from the warm hand-drawn quality of her designs. 


I think it's the naive, easy lines and bold colours that draw me to her work and keep me wondering what's coming next. 

Her designs first appeared on textile products but she has transferred her designs onto a whole range of products other than cushions, lampshades and throws. Her abstract, bold prints can be spotted across wallpapers, prints and even a clothes collection



I first came across Laura Slater when I was working with SMUG and PR'd an exclusive cushion collection. She's also been picked up by lots of other retailers for collaborations using her graphic designs like Heal's, the Tate and her clothes range for John Lewis - from which I have my only personal piece of hers - the lovely shirt I'm wearing in the picture below (it was my birthday outfit - hence the cards!). But believe me I'll be adding to my collection someday soon.




I've been coveting this quilt of hers since I saw it at a trade show many moons ago - I think I missed the boat with this particular product but I'll be keeping my eyes peeled for more lovely pieces.



In fact I've just discovered this range of hand-screenprinted birch ply wood kitchenware - which might just have to be the piece make its way onto my dining table one day...


Monday, 20 November 2017

MONDAYS ARE FOR MUGS: RED TEMPLE PRAYER

This is a classic Monday morning mug, one to get you through all those typical Monday feels. Keep topped up with the hot black good stuff til you get the jitters. Or til you can replace with something stronger. 



Sunday, 19 November 2017

GEORGE AT ASDA YOU SAY?

I'd clearly taken my eye off the ball with George at Asda as I had a lot of pleasant surprises previewing their SS18 collection. 

The best surprise being that the price points were what I'd expect from a supermarket homeware collection, but the variety and quality far exceeded what you'd imagine picking up with the weekend shop. They even do proper furniture pieces (how did I miss that?!). 

The collection includes nifty little sofas, beds and (my favourite) really swish outdoor furniture. Along with great accessories, textiles and lighting across themes including a calm Scandi inspired look with Exhale and bright pops of hot summer colours with Iberia. 

Here are some of my highlights from the SS18 collection:
Rope Sofa Set, £399:

Triangle Chenille Throw, £15:
Duvet Sets from £12: 
Diner Pendent, £22: 
Now the slightly more kitsch bits...cos why not. How could you not love this his Cat Plate, £4 (my kinda kitsch!)
Parrot Vase, £10? Such an obliging face (yeah - sure put flowers in my head, it's fine...): 
And last but definitely not least - I'll be queuing outside Asda waiting on the day they launch this glorious Pineapple Bathmat, £9:



Friday, 17 November 2017

RUGS NOT MUGS

Winter is coming. Bring out the rugs. Shaggy, fluffy, killims, drurries or sisal. I love 'em all. On carpet or floorboards you can't beat the cosy, homely feel of a rug beneath your feet. I could find an excuse for a rug in any room, given the space (except maybe the bathroom - soggy permanent bathmat doesn't sound like the best idea...).

Getting ready for the prospect of a draughty old house for winter, after being in a brand new permanently-toasty flat for three years, can only be an excuse to indulge my rug obsession (and probably jumper on too to be honest). I've already got me one of these badboys (badly haggled from a Moroccan market) that I'm earmarking for the bedroom. But with rug layering quick becoming a trend I'm willing to add a few more to the mix. Y'know in the name of the science of interior decoration. I'm generous like that. 

Here's some of my favourites on the market at the moment:
From Arro Home, Haze Rug in pink, £199-£399 (or any of their rugs to be honest!)

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

BED LINEN OF DREAMS

I'm still working on my bed of dreams (although this one in a recent Toast campaign came pretty damn close). But when my favourite creator of curious knitted products Donna Wilson launched her very own bed linen collection...I knew what my perfect bed would be wearing. 

Riffing on her well-loved naive designs and lovable characters, it's a super sweet range of crisp linens decorated in sausage dogs, bird feet and rain clouds. And it's dreamy. 
 
The Rainy Day design is just calling for a duvet day:

Just add *real* cats and the Flying Birds design is ready to go:

The sweet Bird Feet design has stamped its mark on this set of linen.

Never thought you could get a subtle Sausage Dog print? Me neither. But this'll prove us wrong: 

Donna Wilson, bed linen collection, price from £75-£105