Sunday, 27 December 2009

A belated Merry Christmas!

How terrible - I haven't written a blog since October. Crazy. I'm not really sure why - work was very busy, we've had quite a few visitors, I had nothing to say or show that was a patch on what fellow bloggers share... ANYWAY - practically new year, and hence the time for resolutions. I resolve to write more blog posts, and to do some of the housey things I'm always talking about!

We've been having a lovely Christmas break and, counting weekends too, I've got 17 days away from the office. Brilliant, eh? We had a London Christmas this year, with my Mum coming up from Dorset to stay with us. On Christmas day itself we went around to some good friends who conveninently live about 2 minutes away, and ate with them. So, Christmas without having to cook - even better!

To ease myself back into the blogging habit I just thought I'd share a few pics of our Christmas decor, our ever growing kitten, and the dining room table around at my friends house...I love decorating our tree each year, bringing out the big box of decorations, many of which my mum and I made together when I was small. We add to it each year too, and I love having a mixture of things on the tree. I'm afraid we don't have themes or colours just a big mixture of Christmas memories and campness (pear necklace wearing festive frogs, anyone?!) The big, slightly scruffy cardboard Santa (or Santy if you're Irish) on top of the tree came from the boy's childhood, so that sits atop each year too!

Our Christmas dining room table -

Lovely Christmas bunting - a present from a friend

Millie the kitten found the tree quite exciting, but to date has been very good and not pulled the whole thing over. She does like to play with the decorations though!

She also loves paper...and wrapping presents took a bit longer than normal

A cute garland with wooden hearts and pegs, that holds some of our cards

Our own table - we had friends to dinner on Christmas Eve

Sunday, 11 October 2009

A huge renovation

A friend of mine has just bought an ENORMOUS house, around the corner from us in North London. He's going to be renovating it over the next few months (estimates from builders suggest it'll take about 5 months, but I can't see how it'll be that quick) and I'm going to try and keep track of his progress on this blog. The house really is in quite a state, and it smells very badly of damp and other nasty things. It will however, be amazing when it's done. It's 3 stories, plus basement, and is going to have 3 bedrooms, a study, 2 large bathrooms, 2 reception rooms and a kitchen (which he's going to extend slightly to the side of the house).

The first thing I'm going to tell him he should buy is this -

I can just see it hanging in the front reception looking very elegant!

Wednesday, 30 September 2009

A bedroom reorganisation

Sooooooo, it struck me yesterday, whilst at work and taking a mini break from hammering the phones and nagging journos, that maybe the solution to the big bedroom dilemma (I'm forever whittering on about hating the decor but not knowing what to do) was to switch our rooms around. My slightly mad proposal is to move the boy's music studio into the large bedroom, and move the guest bed and our clothes into what is currently the studio (the medium sized room in our three bed pad).

The benefits are:
it's at the front of the house so get more sun than the back;
it's cosier and would suit some fantastic wallpaper I've seen (Osborne & Little Foxglove!);
we could fit a double bed, a double or quadruple wardrobe and maybe even a little mini dressing table area;
the boy would feel so guilty about snagging the biggest room that he has agreed another wardrobe could remain in the new studio space;
the boy would have space for music stuff and another desk for freelance design and marketing work (the perfect live/work solution).

The wallpaper I like -

Anyway - the change won't happen before Chritmas I wouldn't have thought - when we can take some time off and switch things around. I also think if we're doing that we might as well get wooden floors downstairs (maybe in January sales...) Pictures and more dull musings on this issue to follow, I'm sure! ;-)

Monday, 28 September 2009

Shopping in Bruges

We went to Bruges recently, which is the prettiest, prettiest place in the world. We also found a brilliant shop there called Maisons Dumonde. As it was my birthday the boy let me browse for as long as I liked! It's a little bit like Zara Home, and was really reasonable. I bought some great distressed looking silver tea light holders and a couple of presents for a friend for Christmas (yes, Em, that's you!).

Here are a few of the other delights I liked -

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Wednesday, 23 September 2009

Pretty things on stones

I'm often talking about how I like to snap things I notice as I'm walking about the place, so thought I'd share these two additions to my file of 'pictures-I-must-print-and-do-something-with'! The first we noticed whilst on a brilliant clifftop walk in the south of France, and the second was on the side of one of the buildings we saw this weekend, in Bruges.

A reminder of these two great images as well, taken near my home in North London.

As I've probably said before, I really like using this sort of thing to make a great, cheap picture for the wall!

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Thursday, 17 September 2009

More bedroom inspiration

No posts for weeks, and then two in one evening! Who'd have thought?!

My mind has been turning yet again to our large bedroom, which I still haven't re-decorated. I realise that there's a problem with these pictures - my eye is often drawn to bright and white, and sadly the east facing bedroom can't carry this sort of look off. I don't think. However, you can never compile too many inspiring pictures! What do you reckon?

Images from Living Etc

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Mille the kitten ventures outside

Sorry I haven't been updating very regularly recently - everything has been very busy...with no change in sight for the next 6 weeks or so!

We have had time, however, to take the kitten for her first trips out to the garden. She was soooo terrified the first time she could barely walk her legs were shaking so much. Here's a little picture of her once she go into her stride, and realised that the outside world was full of exciting things to look at.

And here she is looking just a little bit evil - on the stairs!

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Monday, 31 August 2009

Cushions - and a resolution

As I've said before I'm not great at DIY (and neither is the boy) and so I love the fact that it can be so easy to update a room quickly and cheaply by adding some new cushions and other accessories.

Cushions are a fantastic way of adding a bit of colour to a room, or character to an old couch, or interest to a bed. I’ve bought lots of our cushions online - there’s a lady in Cornwall who makes cushions with popular fabrics and so I have cushions to match the Summer Palace wallpaper in the small bedroom and also the Erin wallpaper in the larger room.

I think that my favourite cushions are these Designer’s Guild style ones that adorn our Barcelona chair.

And just visible in the corner here is my cushion with russian dolls - it adds some fun to our sofa.

Here are the summer palace fabric cushions...

And the erin fabric one...

Here are a couple of cushions that are on my wish list (from Grey Loves Pink and Karen Elton design) -

It would of course be fairly easy, I'm sure, to make your own cushions. And this is where the resoultion part of this post comes in! There's somewhere in Islington called The Make Lounge and they run day courses in various crafts - you can make cushions and many other things. There's lots more information on their website. They say - For the price of a night out or less, we’ll teach you to sew, make jewellery, work with leather, crochet or embroider, create your own bath and body products and much more.

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Thursday, 27 August 2009

Cox & Cox Birds - thank you!

Thanks so much to Huma at who ran a competition to win a few pairs of friendship birds from Cox & Cox. How cute are they?

I've got one in our bedroom, and I intend to give one to my mum whose birthday is in a couple of weeks.

Whilst we're on the subject of birds I finally snapped this cool pigeon that I'd been looking at every morning on my way to work! Maybe I'll print it out and frame it.

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Tuesday, 25 August 2009

To do list, post 3 - the kitchen


*Paint kitchen cupboards . Sadly we can’t justify getting a new kitchen, but I would like to get the cupboards painted. I hate this dated pine look, and instead would like a shabby chic distressed white finished. I’d also like a new work surface. This kitchen has been here since the our home was built, about 10 years ago.

Here's the far corner of the kitchen, as you're looking from the door.

And the other side - as you come in the door on the right hand side, next to the fridge freezer.

Our lovely tea and coffee caddies, and cake stand / fruit bowl (minus either at the moment!)

The view out of the kitchen window to our little garden.

*Paint the walls pink. The boy thinks this is plain silly – but I saw a picture of Sophie Conran’s bright pink kitchen in a magazine once and fell in love. Our kitchen might be too small to pull off such a strong colour, but I’d like to give it a go. Although it would mean changing our pictures, which are there to bring out the blue of the current kitchen.

Here's Sophie Conran's kitchen (in a photo from Red magazine) - isn't it gorgeous!

And another pic I found on the Living Etc site that I loved!

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Thursday, 20 August 2009

A small bedroom digression - I want, I want some yellow art

Have just been browsing around blogland and have come across

How would this rather wonderful yellow print look on the wall to the left of the bed? So, as you look at the bed in the previous post, the white wall you can just see. It's the wall with the window on it.

I think the typography of this print would be in strong contrast to the prettiness of the wallpaper, but maybe that doesn't matter... Opinions welcomed! x

To do list, post 2

Small bedroom

I do love this room, especially since the introduction of the ‘LOVE’ pillow cases, but we could do with a few more things.

*curtains - at the moment we have the cheap, rough cotton curtains we got when we moved in, as a quick solution to privacy. I would like something much prettier, and floatier. No inspiration pics yet, but I will look for some soon.

*vintage mirror on a chain - I think this would add interest to the wall opposite the bed, the one that also contains our bird pictures. It would also reflect the lovely bird wallpaper. I love this collection of mirrors.

And here is our little bird gallery.

*a bedside lamp - to sit atop our little 40p-spray-painted-blue bedside table. Isn't this vintage number cute? (via flikr)

And here's the table it would sit on.