Monday, 2 December 2013

How to Hibernate

You always know when it's officially Winter (and I'm talking the really cold, dark, makes-you-want-to-hibernate winter here) when all you want to do is nest down into a snug little pit and watch the world from afar until the balmier months of April and May bring with it a touch of Spring... I feel that time has most definitely arrived!

With the temperate set to plummet from Wednesday onwards, as well as a rumoured 100 days of snow due to grace us with its presence any day now, I'm starting to prepare. Arming myself, and my home, with warming oranges, browns and reds, and looking to the comforting textures of tweed, fur (faux of course!) and wool, I'm making like a bear and building a nature-inspired nest. What better way to start than with this little corker from

Whether you fancy curling up on the sofa with a good, winter-worthy film, relaxing in an autumnal-hue'd armchair or reclining in minimalist style on a wicker rocker (apparently it's the ideal gaming chair... one for the boys perhaps?), the vibrant, warming tones add a comforting touch to any style.

Top Tip - play with textures and materials to add an additional interest... tweed and sequins add a magical, Christmas-esque twist:

Monday, 8 July 2013

A framed space

Photo frames must be one of the biggest sellers within the home accessories industry; now I can't say I have any numbers to back this theory up but every home, office, hotel I ever go to will have frames on most walls and adorning many of the surfaces...they all add up! Photo frames are the ideal way to create a desired effect, with so many designs to choose from though where do you start?

After a recent renovation of a bright yellow box room to create a serene, calming office space I've opted for a mix of the old with the new, and the newest addition to the bunch, the brilliantly bold black and white number (from House of Fraser's genius Living by Christiane Lemieux collection) brings the whole display to life...

Combining new buys with a beaten up find from a car boot sale the frames add an interest to an all-white room. Adding a dash of pattern with darker hues gives the room an additional dimension and immediately catches the eye - an ideal frame for the most impressive image.

Photo frames shown from left to right:

Golden wonder - car boot

Whether you like to create a clutter or keep it calm, frames are an immediate, affordable update - here are just a few display suggestions...

The Lone Ranger 

Empty Spaces

Full-on Shelving

Masculine Heritage

Monochrome order

Grouped-print box frame

Hanging crowd

Happy experimenting! 

Friday, 5 July 2013

Something for the weekend - Pret a Vivre's 1-2-3 sale!

This weekend is due to be a scorcher so why not keep out of the midday sun and head along to Pret a Vivre's Fulham showroom. The curtain and blind specialist is hosting a brilliant sale, exclusively for those that head on down to the Wandsworth Bridge Road store - pick up fabric from as little as £1 per metre...not too shabby when you consider that some of the fabrics in the sale collection used to be as much as £50 per metre!! Act quick, sale fabric will be going up to £2 per metre as of next week and £3 per metre for the final week, the quicker to get there the better deal you get.

If getting crafty and making your own curtains, blinds, cushions, headboards etc isn't your thing then why not benefit from a limited time offer of bespoke Roman blinds for just £100 when you choose on of the sale fabrics.

If you can't make it along to the store fret not, there's a juicy online equivalent. Sale fabrics are up to 50% off online and if you book before Sunday you'll get an additional 20% off on top! This will be going down to an additional 15% for next week and 10% for the final week - win/win all round.

Head in-store (160 Wandsworth Bridge Road,SW6 2UH) or online to chat with their expert staff for more info

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

S&S loves Gerald - The self-assembly dog!

I've been a little absent recently so what better way to get back into the swing of things than with an adorable pooch.

Gerald, by Liam Hopkins, is an easy to care for, self-assembly pup - all of the joy and none of the mess! Available in various designs, my favourite is pixel...

A little help from a ruler, glue, scissors and a steady hand is all that's needed - et voila! 

Pixel Gerald - £16.95, available from Theo

Friday, 31 May 2013

Project - Bedroom makeover planning

Those of you that visit the blog regularly will have noticed a lack of activity - on top of an extraordinarily hectic May in general I've been busy decorating and sprucing up my home and, to be completely honest, on top of the day job I've just been too busy / shattered to post, now however, I could o with a hand! 

I spotted this little beauty on Achica this week and had to snap it up - it's an ideal addition to our spare bedroom, and the perfect place to start when choosing new colourways and trends...

Our spare bedroom is just waiting to be transformed into a sanctuary for guests - it provides a space to experiment with colour. I wouldn't perhaps want a busy bedroom all of the time but I'm just itching to get going and create a beautiful space that I can enjoy everyday without having to inflict such a feminine space on my boyfriend; as easy going as he is, I think having to sleep in a floral bedroom is perhaps just a step too far.

So I have the screen, now where to go with colour for the walls?? With a busy, attention-grabbing screen I know I want to keep the walls one colour - no wallpaper or feature walls to be seen. Now just to choose which colour to opt for? Here are a couple of front runners...

Farrow & Ball - Arsenic No. 214

Fired Earth - Garden City

Crown - Palm Springs

Crown - Originals 1980

All big, bold colours but if you can't experiment a little then what's the point, we can't all live in showhomes now can we!?

I'll be sure to show you the finished result, watch this space...

Sunday, 28 April 2013

Maison du Monde - First Flat collection

As a wannabe homeowner money saving is my general aim - easier said that done while working in interiors and drooling over every beautiful item that the likes of Elle Decoration and Living etc present on each glorious page! When an affordable yet brilliant collection comes along, I certainly take notice, which is what makes the Maison du Monde First Flat collection such a gem. Completely hitting the nail on the head, the collection compiles an easy-to-style pic'n'mix of the essentials needed to make your first house/flat/shed a home. Particularly relevant for me at the moment are the home office items - here's what I'd pick...

1. Paterson blue clock - £49
2. Paterson lamp in grey - £39
3. Industrial dresser in red CRANBERRY - £129
4. Desk EDISON - £199
5. Industrial stool in vintage blue JIM - £39
6. Black column bookcase OSAKA - £79

Total spend = £534

All available from Maison Du Monde.

Friday, 26 April 2013

This week's top 5...Dog accessories

This week's top 5 takes a slightly different route - I'm devastated that this week we lost this handsome man to cancer...

His partner in crime, Ralph the ShihTzu, is completely lost without him after spending every day for the last 6 years together so I thought it only appropriate that he is completely and utterly pampered and fussed over...

This week's top 5 looks at the best accessories out there for our beloved pooches - they bring so much love, comfort and happiness, a bit of pampering is the least we can do...

1. BrightSide collection - from £46, Holly & Lil
2. Bone Baby - £6.60, Creature Clothes
3. Bolster dog bed - £159, Mungo & Maud
4. Dachshund dog bowl - £35, The Stylish Dog Company
5. Harris Tweed dog lead - £22, Hugo & Hennie


Sunday, 14 April 2013

S&S Meets: Magpie Miller

There are more quirky, adorable homeware accessories stores both on the high street and online than ever, from the longstanding Graham & Green, Pedlars and Cox & Cox to the new, sometimes more niche, perhaps more experimental, more personal stores - there is more choice on offer, with all of the fabulous stores hunting out exactly what you didn't realise you ever needed but suddenly must have in your life, and best of all, scouting out the lost, forgotten treasures of years gone by. 

Enter Magpie Miller...

With an ingenious collection of lghting, stationery, accessories and artwork, as well as a unique collection of treasures in the 'Rescued & Reloved' category, Magpie Miller are certainly a go-to e-store when on the hunt for something quirky yet beautiful - the brains behind the brand, Elissa Miller, tells us more...

Why did you decide to create Magpie Miller?
I wanted to provide people with an alternative way to find interesting items. There are
so many fantastic larger shops out there but my intention was to share products on
Magpie Miller that are unique and individual. I’m also passionate about design made
with integrity and as such I source most of my items from independent designers and
smaller design collectives - something I always knew I wanted to incorporate within the
ethos of the shop.

How do you source your fab product range?
I source the product range in various ways; researching designers on the internet,
going to trade shows as well as attending antique fairs. I’m always on the lookout for
gorgeous new items and can find them in the most unexpected places. Discovering
items this way is always a real treat!

What is the best part about your job?
The best part of the job is finding great new items and working with such talented,
passionate people.

Do you have any favourite products that you just had to have at home too?
I wish I could have all of the Magpie Miller products in my home. I very much buy items
for the shop based on what I fall in love with which is quite dangerous! We’re just in the
process of buying a new house and I’ve got a tonne of plans for it – with the pink and
white Moth Origami Lamp featuring heavily…

You hunt out vintage finds and give them a new lease of life - what has been your best
My best discovery at the moment has been the West Virginia Blendo frosted ombre
glass. Its light pastel shades mixed with its mid century design make them so yummy to
look at and use.

You obviously have a great eye for design, will you ever try your hand at creating your
own range?
I’ve done printmaking before and I’m always trying to stay creative so it’s not something
that I would rule out. I do have ideas but with the business being so busy it’s just hard
to find the time. One day!

What's next for Magpie Miller?
I recently embarked on my very first photo shoot for Magpie Miller with super duper
interior stylist Charlotte Love and uber talented interior photographer Jon Day, which
was such a brilliant experience. Other than showing off the gorgeous photos I’ll be
buying lots more fabulous items for the shop!

Finally, what is your top tip for creating an ideal interior space?
Ensure that your home has cohesiveness – whether that be a loud and crazy clatter of
styles or a calm and soothing one, it’s always nice to have the feel of a house being a
whole rather than a collection of individually conflicting rooms.

So there you have it - the place to shop, what to look for and how to do it...I'm certainly on my way to making my house a home and this is most definitely one store I will be visiting again!

Friday, 5 April 2013

This week's top 5 - Paris-esque cushions

I'm more than a little excited to be heading to the city of l'amour, Paris this weekend. With my boyfriend running in the Paris Marathon on Sunday it seemed like the perfect excuse for a sneaky weekend away and where better than nipping across the Channel to possibly one of my most favourite cities in the world (well so far anyway...there's plenty more to see yet!). As I'm finding it hard to think of anything else, a round up of the cutest Paris themed cushions seemed rather fitting for this chilly Friday morning...

1. Paris Eiffel Tower cushion - £9.99, Achica
2. Paris cushion - £20, BHS
3. Paris! Ciel cushion - £95, Christian Lacroix from Amara
4. Paris cushion - £55, Michelle Mason at Not On The High Street
5. Moulin Rouge cushion - £30, Digitex Home

Thursday, 28 March 2013

Brand watch - Scion

The trend for beautiful, fun wallpapers and fabrics continues - enter Scion. 
Brought to us from the Harlequin Group, Scion adds gorgeously design-led fabrics and wallpapers to an ever-growing market. Gone are the days of striving for the show-home look, smothering the home in magnolia paint with a daringly 'different' feature wall; now is the time to experiment with fun, playful pattern and design - interiors is getting a sense of humour so where better to start that with the very walls that surround you?

Kicking off their journey with the Melinki range, Scion introduced us to an eclectic, British collection - inspired in part by mid-century archive collections. The next collection was Wabi Sabi which 'celebrates the beauty of imperfection, encapsulating the spirit of age-old hand crafted techniques' - with stunning Ikat designs it's certainly a difficult one to resist!

If you still need convincing of why to go immediately to you closest Scion retailer (they're all across the UK, Europe and the US) then let a little environment-loving sway you - its printed fabrics and wallcoverings are all manufactured in the UK, by factories that have clear commitments and initiative towards the care of the environment and to sustainability - done.

Monday, 25 March 2013

Shop spot... Petit Papillon

Snuggled in the beautiful lanes of Brighton, nestled in between interiors stores, eccentric jewellers and eateries is Petit Papillon. Little sister of 'Papillon', this smaller gem offers quirky, fun, eclectic finds that, yes may be slightly pricey but, are the ideal antidote to us all living in identikit show homes - here are just a few of the best bits...

There's no website so you're going to have to make the voyage to the fab seaside town - you can find it on Ship Street - enjoy!

Monday, 18 March 2013

Do The Look...Burberry-inspired metallics

Items that add the Burberry-inspired metallics into the home without going overboard...

1. Boutique woven cushion - £10, Matalan
2. Deep purple tealight holder - £1.49, Wedding Mall
3. Sobek metallic green frame - £105, Delconte at
4. Kartell Bourgie metallic multi-colour lamp - £298, Heal's
5. Gold polished square decanter light - £495, Rockett St. George
6. Cannes large sofa - £2,399 (sale price), House of Fraser

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

This week's top 5...Rose Print & Design

Last weekend I received my first ever corsage. Not being American or having attended a prom before, I had never had a chance to either receive, or wear, a corsage, so it came as a lovely surprise when my boyfriend presented this little one just before heading off to a 'Prohibition' themed ball at the military academy Sandhurst...

Having inspired this week's top 5 - here are the pick of my favourite Rose print and design items at the moment:

1. Wild Rose candle - €18.90, Compagnie De Provence
2. Mini Rose duck bath toy - £4, BUD at House of Fraser
3. Couture Rose cotton pillowcase - £22, Laura Ashley
4. Greenwich Rose bath towel collection - from £6 (Face cloth), Cath Kidston
5. Flamingo & Pink Rose dinner plate - £45, Lou Rota

Thursday, 7 March 2013

Natural History for dwell

This one doesn't need much explanation - Natural History (the wonderful, insect-adorning, botanical-esque, nature-inspired beauty of a brand) has created an exclusive range for dwell (the eclectic, fun-loving, flamboyant, modern high street interiors retailer). 

6 designs. 100% cotton. Made in Britain. £59 each. Simple. Brilliant. Go!

Wednesday, 6 March 2013 & The Showroom Extraordinaire

Last week I toodled along to the showroom - a fabulous space nestled away in Chelsea Wharf. I'm currently undergoing a bit of a home makeover, with everything from a new front door to the more indulgence unnecessaries, so you can only imagine my delight upon wandering into this...

With sofas every which way you look, the whole apartment-esque showroom is full to the brim of every style you could wish for. With the freedom to lounge as much as you need and a plethora of fabrics and designs to choose from, the decision process could be slow, purely because you will want everything, trust me, but it certainly won't be a chore - for those with little ones there's even a kids' space to keep them occupied while you browse.

For the more adventurous among you, why not make a statement with one of's 'Design Lab' styles, such as the Thornback & Peel designs below; slightly eccentric, typically British, totally gorgeous.

As soon as you step foot into's showroom friendly staff greet you with the offer of freshly made coffee and you leave with a pretty hyacinth... adorable and personable, just the service you need when making an investment like that of a new sofa or armchair (oh and don't let the name fool you...they also do beds!)

If, after all, you still want to think things through before placing an order then you can mull over styles and colourways from the comfort of your own home - simply order a Comfy Pack (you can do this online if you're unable to get to the showroom)...

And if you're still unsure then there's nothing left but to take inspiration from the fun photography - ENJOY!

Descartes - from £1,245

Yanna - from £845

Long Island - from £1,480

Isla - from £895

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