If you want to experience a cross between a magical midsummer night’s dream whilst entering the secret walled garden of a genteel country house (one whose Victorian glass house has charmingly ‘seen better days’) – then Richmond’s Petersham Nurseries is the place for you!
If only it were as simple to change your interior decoration as it is your clothes. If it were, exploring the depths of Indigo blues would be high on my decorating agenda this summer. The trend for Indigo blues has been simmering away for a few years in the UK. For holiday homes in the Hamptons, Scandinavia and in parts of the Greek Islands, it never really disappears. Blues are sometimes accused of being cold, but there is nothing icy or ‘blue’ about Indigo. It is velvety warm at its deepest hue and can be as smart, boho or as classically pretty as you wish it to be.
When I was approached by Helen Cormack of Tissus D’Helene to style her Chelsea Design Week (12 – 17 March 2017) window display, to say I was excited was an understatement! As dream jobs go, this is right up there. When I styled some features for Homes & Gardens magazine, they often used Helen’s fabrics – and I have always adored them.
A very Happy New Year 2017. Rather than wait for the first daffodils of Spring to open, I thought I would slice through the grey gloom of January to present one of Spring/Summer ’17’s most joyful interior and fashion trends. ‘Mellow Yellow’ is all set to bring its mood enhancing properties to our lives and I for one can’t wait!
At the beginning of the 1970s, a particularly ‘domestic’ revolution was taking place, this wasn’t the ‘Chuck Out Your Chintz’ advertising campaign (as extolled by Swedish furniture giant, IKEA) – that came later. Households up and down the country were, in fact, joyfully ditching blankets, eiderdowns and flat sheets – breaking free from the chains of endless bed making and the ironing that entailed…
Turn away now if your school uniform was bottle green and you swore that the colour wouldn’t darken your door again. Every which way you look, the mystical and glamorous combination of green and velvet is, to put it quite simply, ‘big’ for Autumn/Winter 2016 fashion and interiors. Although I put my neck out and made a prediction at the beginning of February with my post on the launch of Farrow and Ball’s Paint Colours 2016 that it might be, even I have been taken aback at the the groundswell of this new direction.
Well before the UK design community had reconsidered Moroccan pattern and encaustic tiles as desirable for the home, Karen Kennedy, owner of Indigo Rye had them up as the surround to her reception desk in her hairdressing salon. Hanging above the desk are a couple of punched metal Moroccan pendent lights from Liberty. Not only that, but Niki-Jones home cushions sit on window seats either side of the front door to the salon and literally scream ‘come inside’ to the passers by of Berkshire and Oxfordshire. At least they do to those of us sensitive to exquisite decorative home accessories … !
As the seasons change, do your ideas on how you wish to decorate your home alter a little too? Do you adopt a bit of a squirrel mentality and find yourself stockpiling various homely items to line your nest for the winter months ahead? The Autumn/Winter ’16 interiors ‘Global Fusion’ trend is definitely one for those with strong hibernating instincts but also for those who want their home to reflect a little of far away places too…
For the second of my British Design Edit posts, I am thrilled to have been given a blog ‘worldwide exclusive’ interview by British porcelain ceramicist Vanessa Hogge (Wallflower London). There are two reasons: one is that I love her work but the second is that I believe that very shortly Vanessa will be feted in every blog, newspaper and magazine in the land for her extraordinary work. Gardeners and painters who portray flowers such as Georgia O’Keeffe, Frida Kahlo and Marianne North have all been inspirational to Vanessa’s work.
As London’s Chelsea Design Week comes to a close this weekend, I am opening my stylist’s notebook (a closely guarded document – mined with more tripwires than the vaults at ‘The River House’ – aka MI6!) to share some of the beautiful designs showcased for 2016.