Are you ‘going early’ this year, are undecided or maybe waiting until the winter solstice to ‘deck the halls’? A neighbour put their front door wreath up on 16 November, which under normal circumstances might seem a little premature but then everything is different this year. In a bid for some much-needed festive cheer it seems our neighbour is not alone. Even though this Christmas is going to be tough for so many, people all over the UK are decorating earlier than usual. So when I got a commission to do the same, I didn’t hesitate.
As the temperature is again set to soar above 30 degrees in London and the South East, it’s high time the blog shared some practical style strategies on how to stay cool in Saharan Britain. Especially if you find yourself wishing to hang out in the refrigerated isles of your local supermarket for more time than is strictly necessary! Here then, to save you from such grocery ignominy, are 7 ideas for keeping your style cool high and your temperature low:
It may be the smallest room in the house, but the ‘powder room’ (as it’s sometimes more glamorously known in the US) is becoming the focus for a bit of serious interior design attention. Brits have long been known for a bit of humour when decorating a cloakroom or loo be it with quirky family photos, cartoons or with trophies of sporting triumphs. Now designers on both sides of the Atlantic are going all out with maximalist decorating schemes.
Continue reading “How to create Powder Room chic”
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.
While friends in the North of England and Scotland have already had their first snowfall of the year, in Berkshire we awoke to the work of Jack Frost yesterday. The light had that twinkly, bluey tinge and every surface in the garden was covered with tiny white light reflecting crystals. I don’t know if it is the same for you, but this awakens all sorts of childhood images and fairy tales in my mind from the snow laden forests of the Snow Queen’s Palace in Narnia to the breathtaking scenes of Russia in David Lean’s film masterpiece, Dr Zhivago. The idea of the 17th – 19th Century Frost Fairs that took place on the frozen Thames in London has always captured my imagination too.
With just over a month until the Winter Solstice, when the days shorten and we are in much need of light, I am in the mood for some inspiring crisp white interiors. Some might instinctively wish to cosy up their homes with a pot of Farrow & Ball’s ‘Rectory Red’, a forest green or midnight blue, but I like to take inspiration from Swedish interiors who use plenty of white and light with a touch of evergreen foliage to decorate their homes.
Scandinavian simplicity was the inspiration for these panelled baby and toddler rooms I styled for Mothercare.
The trick with white is to layer up and combine different textures from quilting, to knit, faux fur and linen. Look no further than The White Company or in fact John Lewis’ Croft Range. Add in some neutral colours, such as greys and taupes, and finish off with lots of twinkly fairy lights, tealights in vintage French jam jars and plenty of evergreen foliage. Wooden furniture adds in another texture too.
On one of the hottest days this Summer, I styled some images for the sofa company Dfs. The theme was white decorating ideas for Christmas and we were featuring their new Marl Mid Century style sofa by French Connection. I used some vintage white leather skates and a bunch of fresh Eucalyptus (the scent and longevity of its freshness at Christmas is nice to have in the house) and hung fairy lights and paper stars from a fallen branch from my garden.
Sofa fit for a Snow Queen
Get your skates on
If you love the thrill of skating outdoors, the UK now proudly boasts some fantastic venues around the country. Check out the nearest one to you in this round-up by The Daily Telegraph.
Snow White interiors
For more snow white interiors, check out my Pinterest board here:
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 … !
Beach-style interiors is a trend that surfaces each Spring pretty much without fail. I must admit to being one of the many willing ‘goldfish’ who forget from one year to the next that its jaunty style isn’t actually anything new. Continue reading “Beach style interiors”