Saturday, November 29, 2008

add warmth with velvet.....

I am having a bit of a velvet moment right now.... maybe it is the cold winter days, but there is something so rich, warm and comforting about this fabric.
And there seems to be a lot of it around.... if you are in the market for a new sofa you couldn't go far wrong with this traditional style Chesterfield upholstered in black velvet, incidentally from Velvet in Brighton. (£995)

If a new sofa is a bit extravagant, then there are plenty of velvet accessories to add texture to your home....

Graham & Green have a great selection of velvet cushions from £25

Zara Home has a nice selection of accessories for the bedroom such as  
Hot Water Bottle Cover - £17
Wardrobe sachet - £8
The Cosmetic bag is from Something... - £20

And finally also from Graham & Green are these velvet and linen doorstops which have an organic filling. £30

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

laundry luxuries.....

Is it just me... but I feel like I am in a constant cycle of cleaning, washing up & laundry! So in an attempt to make these tasks slightly more bearable I have been looking out for products that will add some gorgeousness to those chores!

Eco-friendly household polish - £3.50
Eco-friendly glass cleaner - £3.50
Dinky bannister brush - £7.50
Dustpan - £7.50

Roses rubber gloves - £5
Cotton fresh delicate fabric wash - £6
Both by Cath Kidston

Bath cleaning brush - £15
Toilet brush & holder - £16
Both from Labour & Wait

Washing powder box and laundry room sign - £35 

Wire sponge holder - £4.95

Sunday, November 23, 2008

books.... Home Girl by Judith Matloff

I have just recently finished reading 'Home Girl - Building a Dream House on a Lawless Block', and have to say it is one of the best reads I've had in a long time....

Author Judith Matloff, a foreign correspondent, who has spent most of her life reporting on and witnessing some of the worlds most harrowing events, decides to return to her home of New York City and settle down and start a family.  Being a natural risk taker, she buys an extremely run down brownstone in West Harlem, an area riddled with drug dealers and crack houses.
The story is beautifully written and takes you through the process of Judith and her husband turning the house into their home, and how they manage to live alongside the dealers and drug users in unconventional harmony.  With powerful characters and the ability to make you laugh and cry, this book will leave you with a sense of inspiration that change can happen if only you can see the potential....

Buy on Amazon - £11.26 and view a video of Judith giving a tour of her house at her website -

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

fireside style

The weather reports for this weekend is that the UK is to expect an arctic blast.... so what better time to stay indoors, light the fire and curl up with a good book.
I, unfortunately do not have my own open fire, and will be outside painting my front door this weekend! ...but for those of you lucky enough to have one, you can give you fireplace an extra special touch with these Cinnamon Scented Kindle cones from Hunter Gatherer.
These natural pine cones set in cinnamon infused wax, once lit can be set into the kindling and will make your room smell (and look) fab.  A bag of 12 costs £12.75

...and to store you fireside essentials Hunter Gatherer can also supply you with a beautiful Heart Shaped Log Basket - pretty AND practical!  

...and finally, sit down, grab your book, and snuggle up with a cute blanket from Andrea Williamson, from £45.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Christmas fair favourite

I've been doing the rounds of the christmas fairs recently, and this week it was the Country Living fair in London.  There were lots of fab stalls with ideas for gifts and inspiration for the home, but one stall stood out particularly for me, which was Welbeck Tiles.
All tiles are designed and made by hand in their factory in Cornwall, and I think what I liked about them is that you could add these in as a feature to a plain kitchen or bathroom wall, or you could even add them to a fireplace, or just prop them up on a shelf or mantelpiece. 
Below are their food related tiles....

They also do a great range of seaside tiles which would work well in the bathroom, some of which are vintage postcards recreated on tiles....

Visit their website to download their brochure and see the full range and pricelist.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

this week's shop to see...

One of my favourite shops in London's east end is Caravan.  It is based on Redchurch St, right next to Brick Lane, and not far from Liverpool St station.
Owner Emily Chalmers, an interiors stylist and author, started Caravan as a weekend hobby, and after recently acquiring the new premises on Redchurch St, now runs the shop full-time.

The shop itself has a very distinct style, which carries across beautifully to the website -
The shop stocks an eclectic mix of old and new products from around the world, from as far a field as Japan.

From candles with angel wings to knitted dogs to anglepoise style lamps, you will definitely find something unique for your home at Caravan... check it out. x

Monday, November 10, 2008

love nest loveliness...

Congratulations to my two good friends Jo & Zac who are celebrating their first year of marriage today, and in honour of them and their recently purchased victorian terrace, I promised I would pass on a couple of ideas for creating the perfect bedroom!
Generally I think you should start with a blank canvas, that you can then accessorize and add to as you pick things up, so this is just a basis from which you can build from.

Next do an array of coloured plain duvet covers and pillow cases at reasonable prices, this one in black would cost around £55 for a double set.

From this you should try and pick up a great piece of furniture that will look striking next to your plain backdrop....
I love these drawers from Graham & Green These aren't cheap though at £875, but.....

Check out these similar ones for £125... just as pretty for a fraction of the price.  Visit Decorexi for their full range.

 If you want to add some interest to your walls there are lots of fab wallpapers around, although you may have to splash out a little for something different...
This Crazy Botanic design from Shop Floor Project would look fab on the wall behind your bed for example... This is £165 per roll. (but think what you just saved on those drawers!)

And finally, throw some cushions on the bed ... and you are off to a good start!

Vintage fabric Union Jack Cushion - £85 - Cox & Cox
Long black LOVE cushion - £42 - Velvet
French Sack cushion - £49.95 - Pedlars

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Christmas fair visit...

Yesterday I visited the Spirit of Christmas Fair at Olympia in London, to find some new ideas and products to share with you... there were lots of great stands but SO many people, so now I can give you a few of my fave picks from the day, so you can peruse them from the comfort of your sofa, rather than the battling through the scrum of shoppers!

Heart Memo Chalk Board with pegs



              Lisa Stickley Enamel Teapot              



Wire Shelves



Wednesday, November 5, 2008

books... 'Old & New' by Katherine Sorrell

What is great about this book, is that it embraces what I love about decorating a home... which is that it should be organic, in the sense that it is a gradual process, something that you are always adding to as things catch your eye, which could be anywhere - and you don't necessarily have to think if things will 'go' together, they are just bits and bobs that you pick up as you go through life and this book then helps you to see how they can work together, giving your home personality and more importantly, individuality.

The book is in 2 sections - The Spaces, and The Elements.
The Spaces moves through each room and looks at how you can best combine old and new in the various environments. The Elements focuses on the items that you fill your home with, and how they can complement each other and there are tips and advice throughout the book on 'Getting it Right'

Published by ©Ryland Peters & Small
Buy at for £5.99

Monday, November 3, 2008

the American dream (home)

As the world waits with baited breath to hear the outcome of the U.S presidential election in the next day or two, I thought it fitting to have a bit of a stateside theme to my blog post today....

Box Brownie Trading are stocking some hand distressed pillows, giving them a great vintage feel.  You can select your own U.S. state to feature... the one pictured here is Texas.

These pillows are priced at £70, so pick your favourite state and get ordering.... be sure to check out the Folk Art section too - original art by Rebecca Puig printed on wood - very sweet.

I am also loving the American diner 1950's phone which you can pick up at Pedlars for £64.50.
It is fully functioning phone, and is as easy to use as any modern phone, and would be a fun & retro addition to your home.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Classy Christmas

this weekend I received the latest catalogue from Plumo, and I am really excited by their festive products... their items for decorating your home this Christmas are classy with a rustic feel.
I always find displaying your cards in a creative way can sometimes be tricky, but Plumo have two great options for this which look fab, see pics below...
I am especially loving the Cinnamon log fire lighters that will fill your home will the scent of Christmas while you curl up next to the fire.  The set of glitter stags will add some sparkle and look really pretty.  Check out further Christmas bits and bobs to deck out your home at
Glitter Stags - £39 for set of 2
Christmas card pegs - £5 for box of approx 48
Cinnamon log fire lighters - £16.95

Christmas tree card holder - £28

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