**Our Living Room Shortlisted on Apartment Therapy’s Room For Colour 2013!**

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So I have been asleep for the last month and apparently failed to notice the exciting news that our living room (which I entered 6 weeks ago) had been shortlisted by compendium of modern style Apartment Therapy in their international category for rooms with the best use of colour. Am posthumously very excited (and annoyed with myself that I failed to notice or ask anyone to vote for us). I absolutely love this site, which Forbes described as “one of the most influential interior design sites on the Web” with good reason, so to have come 7th out of 25 in this category is a real honour. Go check out the other rooms on here there are some real beauties.

Ruthie’s “Sociable Green” Room Room For Color Contest

London UK
Inspiration for my palette:
This green is my perfect green. It’s light, elegant and -unlike many sage tones – it feels like a really sociable color. Our living room is very eclectic and evolving all the time. It is filled with objects that have a history or a story and I find this light and social palette the perfect background. It is not an intrusive color so I am able to put brightly colored pieces in it without assaulting the eyes to distraction. Its equally mellow ambiance is a perfect background for tired and worn vintage pieces.
Colors used in my room
I used a color that lies in the hinterland between blue and green. By day it is green and by night it is nearly blue – Farrow & Balls Teresa’s Green.
Tips for using color successfully
I am like a child in a sweet shop with color and find narrowing my choices down the most painstaking part. I have been known to drive myself to distraction with color choice. If you are a color magpie, like I am, I recommend painting 4 or 5 tester shades in different parts of the room where the light falls differently and living with them for at least a month. The color that makes you feel happy or inspired most instinctively is the color you should then choose.
Sociable Green

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Top 5 Design Books.

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So this weekend we have been plagued by the noro-virus, as a result I am lazy posting today, here are my top 5 Design Books:My Favourite Design Books

Design as Art by Bruno Munari. 

Probably the greatest design book ever written, will make you look at 
the world around you and its objects in a different light. 

Design as Art - Bruno Munari Penguin Classics.
What the dust jacket says: Bruno Munari was among the most 
inspirational designers of all time, described by Picasso as 'the new 
Leonardo'. Munari insisted that design be beautiful, functional and 
accessible,and this enlightening and highly entertaining book sets out
his ideas about visual, graphic and industrial design and the role it 
plays in the objects we use everyday. Lamps, road signs, typography,
posters, children's books, advertising, cars and chairs - these are 
just some of the subjects to which he turns his illuminating gaze.


London Hidden Interiors by Philip Davies & Derek Kendall. 

This is my current favourite coffee table book, an immense 
encyclopedia of the interior gems of London, some known, many you will
never have heard of before. As a pictorial sourcebook it is wildly 
diverse plethora of beautifully shot spaces.

London Hidden Interiors English Heritage.
What the dust jacket says: 180 of London's best conserved and least 
known interiors are revealed in 1500 spectacular photographs. 
Philip Davies turns his attention to London's conserved heritage, 
presenting an expert introductory essay followed by the most 
extraordinary collection of contemporary photographs of London's 
historic interiors ever published. London Hidden Interiors has one 
hundred and eighty examples which have been selected from a complete 
range of building types to convey the richness and diversity of 
London's architectural heritage and the secrets that lie within. It 
concentrates generally on the buildings and interiors that are lesser 
known and to which the public are not normally allowed the hidden and
the unusual, the quirky and the eccentric, although there is space 
too for some of the better known. 

The London Design Guide: 2014-2015 Ed. Max Fraser.

Invaluable guide to the capital, packaged beautifully and complete 
with exceptional front cover.

What the dust jacket says: London Design Guide is the only publication
dedicated to the capitals flourishing design scene. Featuring reviews 
of the latest contemporary and vintage hotspots together with the more
established, this guide reveals the city's leading design gems.Be it a
shop, gallery, museum, restaurant or bar, all are gathered by
neighbourhood and supported with maps, verifying London's reputation
as the design capital of the world.

The Medium is the Massage: an inventory of Effects - Michael Mcluhan &
Quentin Fiore. 

Similar to Walter Benjamin's thoughts on mechanical reproduction, a 
bedfellow of Guy Debord's Society of the Spectacle, this is an 
illuminating work on our relation to things and how these impressions 
are influenced from outside of the inner life.
What the dust jacket says:In a dazzling fusion of Quentin Fiore's bold
and inventive graphic design and Marshall McLuhan's unique insight 
into technology, advertising and mass-media, The Medium is the Massage
is a unique study of human communication in the twentieth century.
Marshall McLuhan is the man who predicted the all-pervasive rise of 
modern mass media. Blending text, image and photography, his 1960 
classic The Medium is the Massage illustrates how the growth of 
technology utterly reshapes society, personal lives and sensory 
perceptions, so that we are effectively transformed by the means we 
use to communicate. His theories, many of which are illustrated in 
this astonishing 'inventory of effects', force us to question how
modes of communication have shaped society. This concept, and his 
ideas such as rolling, up-to-the-minute news broadcasts and the
media 'Global Village' have proved decades ahead of their time.

I guess I must include a specific interior design book so I am going 
to choose two of the best. Kevin Mclouds bible to style The Principles
of Home is full of middle class style dilemmas about authenticity but
it is unfailingly right about the issues it tackles and a really
helpful blueprint for thinking about a home space from scratch. 
Abigail Ahern's Decorating With Style is brilliant. I read this 
recently and felt a real affinity with her sense and approach to style
which I guess shows how much she has become a part of 
lexicon of modern interior thought.

Principles of Home Kevin McCloudDecorating_with_Style Abigail ahern.
What the dust jackets say: In this inspirational yet also 
practical paperback Kevin explores all areas of domestic living, from 
materialism to sustainability, craftsmanship to comfort. Kevin’s
beautifully written text brings insight and understanding to enjoying 
life in the 21st century, but crucially he offers detailed, helpful 
and incisive advice on design, construction and style.

Decorating with Style gives you the confidence to take risks with
interior design, embrace what you love, and fill your home with 
infectiously fabulous stuff: comforting, inviting and imbued with 
personality. Decorating Abigail Ahern style is about creating spaces 
that make you happy - not just buying the latest 'it' chair. According
to the internationally renowned interior designer, the most successful
homes always have an element of the unexpected. Good taste is 
wonderful, but without a touch of eccentricity - some tension between 
spontaneity and rigour, refinement and rebellion - beautifully 
co-ordinated rooms can leave you cold. Proving that style has nothing 
to do with money and everything to do with confidence, Abigail goes 
back to basics to help you determine your own style, then demonstrates
how to take interiors to the next level by mixing and layering 
different styles and eras; injecting intrigue into a room with some 
maximalist lighting or a decorative rug; playing around with scale, 
colour and texture to create an enchanting, idiosyncratic vibe.

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Chasing the Winter Blues away at Liberty

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With the weather getting dark and icy and with the yearly arrival of minor ailments and hibernational moods, I decided it was time to take myself on one of my twice yearly sojourns to Liberty to get lost in their cathedral of consumption for a couple of hours.

Like many girls of my generation, Liberty is a byword for the beautiful, it is one of those stores that across its four floors still maintains the feel of intimacy in small wood panelled spaces that feel like treasure troves to the particular, whilst collectively encompassing its original conception as a nineteenth century bazaar built on a grand scale, a true example of Zola’s Ladies Paradise.

Liberty London Store Shop Floor Patterned Sofa & Telescope 2013 Liberty London Store Christmas 2013 Crates QueueLiberty London Store  Shop Floor Inteer-war feel display 2013

The store is such a sensory overload, everything is chosen and curated to within an inch of its life, but still there is something chaotic and charming about all the beautiful things on displays and it is quite possible to spend many hours looking and holding a million different kinds of objects of desire.

I am continually astonished by how successfully Liberty manage to update their look and products whilst still maintaining their old world innocence and charm. Only in Liberty would you happen upon original 19th century toy theatre’s from a London museum in display cabinets casually beckoning the eye away from the comparatively mundane selection of Christmas cards they stand next to.

Processed with VSCOcam with g3 preset Liberty London Store Christmas 2013 Pollocks Toy Museum Vintage Topy TheatreLiberty London Store Christmas 2013 Pollocks Toy Museum Vintage Topy Theatre 3

They stock the store so cleverly, there are exorbitant but unique and beautiful pieces for people with large wallets alongside beautiful fabrics bi-annually updated from their archive for the home sewer and also many charming items at obtainable prices for the casual shopper. I bought some beautiful pieces from very chic and accessible Danish company Bloomingville’s new china collection, including this particularly charming creamer for £7 and a wonderfully kitsch white elephant teapot for £14, alongside the Fish’s Eddy tray I’ve had my eye on for some months for £9.95.

Bloomingville Cup Saucer Creamer 2013 PatternLiberty London Store BIA BRH Collection Elephant Teapot Liberty London Store Fish's Eddy Admit One Tray

It just isn’t possible to visit Liberty in Winter months without spending some considerable time getting lost in their Christmas department. I have a decade long tradition of going with my two best friends and picking out a couple of decorations for each other. Lovely Kathryn is currently away in the far warmer and exotic climbs of Buenos Aires so instead I wandered on my own, here is what I saw in this years Liberty Christmas bonanza:

Liberty London Store Christmas 2013 Gisella Graham Painted Holly Glass bauble Liberty London Store Christmas 2013 Gisella Graham Retro Peg Fairy Decoration Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

Liberty London Store Christmas 2013 Gisella Graham Fabric Sppol Sewing Reel Decoration Liberty London Store Christmas Baubles 2013 Processed with VSCOcam with g3 preset

Liberty London Store Christmas Decorations  2013  Liberty London Store Christmas 2013 Nordic Deer Decoration

Final mention goes to my very favourite purchase of the day, this Zoetrope wrapping paper. I don’t own a zoetrope (working on it) but I am totally in love with this and am going to have to find a space to frame it somewhere.zoetrope

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An Aladdins Cave of Objects of Desire – The Paint House.

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Paint House Northcote Rd Convex Vintage Mirrors
Amongst the endlessly mundane interiors stores of South West London churning out the same gift-store-style homewares there is one store that uniquely charms me. It is rarely not on the money and there is always something surprising and eye catching. The items range from the purse pinching to the extravagant. This weeks entry is a passing nod to emporium of faultlessness  – The Paint House on Northcote Rd, Battersea.

The buyer at this store has such a good eye when sourcing stock, I have bought so many items from them over the last 18 months, many of which are designed by French company Atelier D’ambiances Chehoma. Here is a brief photographic reconnaissance of the style  inspiration I took on my last visit there a fornight ago.

Paint House Northcote Rd Starburst Mirror for Mantlepiece Paint House Northcote Rd - sea anemone coral vase
This Starburst miniature mirror on stand is a brilliant concession to
 a trend I am not daring enough to embrace on large scale and I love 
this sea anemone coral vase.
Paint House Northcote Rd Chrysler Building Model Pewter lookPaint House Northcote Rd Porcelain Pineapple
I just couldn't leave the store without buying this kitsch Chrysler 
building model cast and the Pineapple and paperweight on the right 
are both gorgeous.
Paint House Northcote Rd Artichoke Salt & Pepper Paint House Northcote Rd Porcelain Mice Cheese plate
I bought some Lobster salt and peppers here last year, this artichoke 
version is gorgeous. The porcelain mice cheese plate - beyond divine.
Paint House Northcote Rd Ornante Lighting Bus Blind Paint House Northcote Rd Ostrich Feather Dusters
This light is a bit too high-end-opulent for our flat, but it is
 beautiful all the same. Who doesn't need an ostrich feather duster 
in their lives!
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The Paint House, Exterior.

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Things That Made Me Smile This Week…

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  1. Design crush of the week goes to the website of Hoxton store Caravan style. I absolutely love their homewares. My current favourite is this Pineapple wall sconce alongside these magnetic insects – swoon…pineapple wall sconce by Caravan at Abigail ahern Magnetic Bug Decorations Caravan store East LondonMagnetic Bee Decorations Caravan store East London
  2. Lapin & Lapinova, a short story by Virginia Woolf written for Harpers Bazaar magazine in 1939, reprinted in last months issue. It is such a short vignette, more of a thought than a short story, and on first read it is very twee, almost uncomfortably so, but with a brutal ending . I found it very disturbing and it stayed with me on the days after my initial read. You can read it online here. Read it, its very short and you’re life won’t be the poorer for it!Lapin Lapinova Woolf Harpers Bazaar
  3. I am choosing not to bemoan the fact that I missed these (and only discovered either of them via Instagram after they had both closed) but am celebrating the fact that they existed. Located at Kings Cross Station and on The Southbank, last weekend saw London transformed with a vintage fairground at Kings Cross Station including Ferris wheels, helter-skelter and Victorian style acrobatics alongside the closing weekend of what looks like a particularly fabulous venture –  Wonderground on London’s Southbank, rolling up for tickets for next year already!                           Kings Cross Helter Skelter     Kings Cross Funfair      Kings Cross Ferris WheelSouthbank Wonderground 4281-Mastercard Wonderground Southbank Wonderground 1
  4. To coincide with the opening of the new Birmingham Central  library (which I think looks like a giant Christmas present, but concede is absolutely stunning inside) the library has digitized much of its archive online. It contains a wealth of curiosities, from Victorian Scrapbooks, magic lantern slides and old collections to vintage illustration, these are my personal favourite finds:Frogs Umbrellas Vintage Childrens Illustration Birmingham Library archiveCollectors - Digital archive Birmingham Libarary Victorian Scrapbook - Birmingham Library Archive

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A Cornucopia of Winter: Blankets

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Downton Abbey returned last night, which I like to see as official unveiling of the Autumn Season! It was also the real official first day of Autumn, so thoughts have inevitably turned to wardrobes, wooly sweaters and cosy nights in. And nothing says Autumn/Winter more to me than blankets, so as the nights start to draw in and morning dew begins to feel chilly I have been airing out blankets that have been unloved all Summer.Cornocopia of Blankets

I think blankets are a brilliant way of adding interest to rooms and I have a blanket or throw in each room accordingly. Textiles are one of the two things that frame a room along with paint colour, all else is layering points of interest atop these two staples. With this in mind, I have been amassing an array of blankets for the last few years. As with tablecloths and shoes, you can never have too many blankets, here are some of mine:

Missoni Blanket - Multicolour Striped Missoni Stripe Blanket   Missoni Stripey Blanket Detail

This blanket is my very favourite, my pride and joy (along with my credit cards shame and woe!) it’s a Missoni one from a few collections ago. I have a major design crush on all things Missoni, their patterns are always so provocative to the eye and I find  their proclamation of bold hues so enticing.

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset Dinah the Kitten on Hot Pink Honeycomb blanket

Gorgeous Tweedmill Beehive Hot Pink blanket bought from Urban Outfitters for £75, I just love the honeycomb pattern, it is ultra soft as well. Cute kitten accessory, stylists own.

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This was a superbly cheap and chic monochrome one I picked up last winter at IKEA, cost around £15, IKEA does both textiles and stationery so well.

quiltI adore quilts, the homespun bespoke charm of something that takes the time and patience I don’t possess to form. I am an terribly lucky girl with a super talented best friend Tamla who made me this exquisite quilt for my birthday. The fabrics she choose were from a twenties inspired range called Pavilion and they are just perfect for me. I am far too impatient for crafts that take an age to take shape so feel very spoilt to have something I so enjoy looking at that was created just for me (although our new kitten, Dinah, has begun to claim it was made for her). Tamla is an amazingly versatile crafter and as a new mother open to commissions!

Fabrics details from my lovely quilt.

IMG_7225 IMG_7227 IMG_7223

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An old Cath Kidston plaid picnic rug and a rainbow-bright-table-cloth from Habitat, both bought in the sales. It’s surprising how many items that aren’t described as blankets and are much cheaper end up to being so cosy!

My Favourites of the New Season:

If I were allowed to buy any more blankets I would really like something geometric and an heirloom Welsh blanket, perhaps one of these:

Baileys5 Welsh Blanket - Labour and Wait

TWIST-A-TWILL-dark-brown-425x505_376  Habitat Bloomsbury Geometric Rug

From top Left: Welsh Blanket from Baileys store, Welsh Rug from Labour & Wait , Brown Geometric Merino Throw from aptly named Smug Lifestyle Store and The Bloomsbury Rug from Habitat.

Dinah the Kitten on Missoni blanket

Dinah, my adorable saboteur of blanket photo’s!

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Window Licking The New Season

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It’s that time of year again where everything re-launches, there’s a green glint in my eye, and I am looking longingly at everything. Forget the September issue of Vogue, or the edit from London Fashion Week, it’s the new season in home design and I feel like a child in a sweetshop! Although I can’t actually justify buying any of these items I am vicariously browsing the online emporiums, I believe I have mentioned this before, but I am indulging in what the French term window licking – far closer to the truth than the banal English term window shopping I think!

This is my personal edit of the best of the new season, no trend alerts, just a long and fabulous list of over 20 covetable things! The  Anthropologie items are sourced them from their American site, but keeping fingers crossed that some make their way across the sea (or not as ones bank manager may dictate).

Top of my Lust List:


Brocante Cabinet in Turquoise, £650, from Graham & Green.


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Hand carved Contractor Table, an eye watering $798.00 from Anthropologie.

Industrial Chrome Utensil Rack, $298.00, also Anthropologie.



Fishs Eddy Admit One Tray £9.95 at Liberty.

Glass display globe, £19.95 from Rockett St George.


Wafers_Chair_WEB CustardCream_2012_Three_WEB

These cushions are actually quite old stock, but oh so cute,

£44.50 & £29.50 respectively by Nikki McWilliams.


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Pinta Vase, quite pricey at £50, from the new collection at Habitat.

 ZitaGreys Throw, £60,  again new in at Habitat.


24682999_007_b J25682014_010_b Abate Slatted Mirror $298, Anthropologie.

Ceramic Pelican Stamp $14.95, again Anthropologie


Small Square Framed Round Mirror,  £120, Graham & Green.


2013-08-08 15.18.54 Belgian Industrial Tool Cabinet sourced from Textile factory, POA, from The Old Cinema.


IMG_6888 IMG_6886

Mason Jar Cocktail Shaker, £34, Rowen & Wren.

Cartouche White Rimmed Boards, £76, Rowen & Wren.


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These exquisitely expensive, but equally exquisitely beautiful cushions, from American firm Design Legacy $158-185, available from The Designer Pillow Shop.



Light Industrial 789 Sideboard Cabinet, £250, from Rockett St George.


baileys2Coca Cola crates £45.00 at Baileys Home.


ss13chis509000698-nocolour Model of the Hoover building, £135,  available from Liberty.

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Things That Made Me Smile This Week

  1. My blog has moved and changed name to DESIGN SODA, I’d love it if you followed along with my new content there.


    The mice have done a lot of peeping around online this week. Top of the pile from the online trawl is this wonderful Yellow Teapot from The Tate Gallery online store and these lovely Pigeonhole Wall shelves from Urban Outfitters:                 798b353b1c0373512b75243c9a096795 5520439590020_Brown_z1
  2. A dear old friend recommended a brilliant short story this week – The Sandman by E.T.A Hoffmann. A truly incredible, grotesque, burlesque, carnival of horror by one of the great German Romantics. It sent me on to read Freud’s essay on The Uncanny which references the tale, not sure I’m buying his castration complex, still a great story and an interesting companion piece.$(KGrHqN,!iEFChVEHCnkBQ2Uvzydbg~~60_12
  3. My favourite purchases of the last month is a vintage coffee box I picked up at Petrsham Nurseries.  It’s currently being used as an occasional table in the living room, in lieu of having an actual purpose for it, maybe an umbrella stand? Either way I keep smiling at it, I love pelicans, they look too ridiculous to be real animals…DSC09340
  4. It’s our Fourth wedding anniversary this week, which I am told is fruits and flowers, we celebrated by spending the day on the Southbank drinking Bellini’s. On our first wedding anniversary I sent my husband the lyrics from Cole Porters You’re The Top, although I still can’t think of anyone better to send them to, I have come across another one that tickles me, step in Regina Spector:                                                                                                                                                                                             You’re like a party that somebody threw me,                                                                      You taste like Birthday,                                                                                                    You look like New Years                                                                                                You’re like a big parade through town                                                                           You leave such a mess, but you’re so fun’
  5. These fabulous old school drawers found on eBay, no idea what I’d keep in them as we have amassed so much of this type of storage, very cute though:$(KGrHqJHJB!FH6g1sQWoBR--GkTyzQ~~60_57


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Peak Around Our Kitchen and Into Our Kitchenalia…

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DSC09283When we moved into this flat last year we knew that the kitchen would be one of the priority spaces for redecoration. There is something a bit depressing about cooking and trying to impersonate a domestic goddess with artex ceilings, yellow walls and orange & red tiles! And there is almost nothing I dislike more in the home than something false pretending to be something else, melamine cupboards and mdf worktops are essentially the trompe l’oeil of the kitchen world and our kitchen sang its impersonation boldly! However, the word kitchen is, like the word wedding, a touchstone for throwing money down a wishing well. Looking at the cost of a completely new kitchen is  dream shattering, everything is amazingly expensive when the word kitchen is attached. In lieu of many thousands of pounds we have spent the last six months slowly transforming the space into something that we could be happy with for under a grand.

DSC09301 One of the main obstacles in our kitchen had been lack of light due the small window part obscured by a giant but essential boiler cupboard, therefore our starting point had to be lighting. Despite factory task lighting being used in every restaurant and trendy bar re-fit to the extent that it is quite the high-street bombardment I just adore bashed up old enamel lights.ImageHandler.ashx One of my favourite uses of this lighting  was from a designers home whose name I can’t recall who’s kitchen was featured in a Farrow & Ball coffee table book loaned from the library.  I looked at modern inexpensive repro’s but found them disappointing. My brief was to find a grey shade with more than one part to its hanging with a story behind it for under £150. Unlike the kitchen pictured, our kitchen is not big enough to comfortably hold a cluster (thank goodness because they are so expensive) so after 6 months of hunting I finally secured one (above) just before Christmas which had come from a GWR station waiting room and untold joys bought for under £100. Given our lighting challenge, one central light just wasn’t going to cut it, but I found these (below) on Rockett St George for £59 each and bought them with some birthday money. We were super lucky that my fabulous friend Har’s father-in-law fitted both sets of lights and re-wired our railway one with a striped cord flex for an absolutely amazing rate.

DSC09309 DSC09310

Once the lights were in we could look at the space and start toCapturew envisage what it would look like minus the artex and all the earthy toned distractions! In our previous flat we had a vintage kitchen with blue walls accented by some fabulous Alice in Wonderland tiles bought from Florian Tiles. But having moved back to London I wanted something more urban, rustic but not chintzy. I am the most un-modern of girls so sleek glossy high tech kitchens are not for me (or my price band). We decided on white and stone as a colour palette and we kept Captureqreturning again and again to the much in vogue metro tiles. I hate rooms that are staged and conscious of themselves, and this is a massive pitfall of browsing too many design magazines, as I do. When decorating a room everyone wants the result to reflectCapturet both their needs and an expression of what interests them, but how to do this without looking like your home is a finely curated museum piece can be a fine line to balance if you spend as much time looking at interiors as I do.

Having chosen some super cheap miniature metro tiles in Whitechapel from Walls & Floors, so often paired with industrial task lighting, I decided to put down all interiors magazines and just let our kitchen naturally and gradually fall into place. The next thing we sourced was this dresser to house some of my vintage china for £40 on ebay which with a lick of Farrow & Ball Cornforth eggshell paint came up like this:DSC08983

Then we turned our focus to the units which were those terribly popular beech veneer ones.  It would have cost well over £1,000 to replace them even during sale period so I had a look around online for tips and found advice that when painting melamine cupboards it’s  recommended that you use a floor paint to maintain a hard-wearing surface in an area of heavy use. We used Farrow & Ball’s Pointing as it wasn’t their whitest shade but also didn’t have much yellow to it and we were really pleased with the result.


Our biggest outlay was on the worktop, it was the one thing I just couldn’t compromise on. We really wanted a white work surface, granite quotes gave me a heart attack, equally Carron and acrylic, so after much deliberation and disappointment at the falseness of cheap white options we went for oak worktops. We had an IKEA oak worktop in our previous flat but unfortunately theirs just weren’t deep enough to fit our units so I had a look around online and can wholeheartedly recommend Kitchen Surplus whose worktops were both cheaper and thicker than any other similar ones I found. Our biggest nightmare was our sink which had to be one particular model that fitted our units, it took 12 weeks of setbacks before it finally arrived complete with phallo-centric extendable tap that was my husbands hearts desire and bunny dish-rack that was mine:


I have a bit of a mania for collecting things (anyone who has visited our flat can no doubt attest to this) and kitchenalia has become one of my current favourites. These are some of my favourite bits of kitchenalia in our home. From the Liberty print canisters bought with wedding tokens from fabulous friends, to the ceramic tealight holders cast from vintage copper jelly moulds, to the Porte Savon lemon soap used throughout France in public buildings and cafes, all of the items I have amassed have a meaning or connection for me:

   DSC09265 DSC08990 DSC08991 DSC08988 DSC08972 DSC09032

Finally, if we manage to save a bit of money and stop looking at holiday dreams, we both have our hearts desire set on a new floor to complete the kitchen, if it happens we will get this slate grey vinyl option from  The Colour Flooring Company.


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Bathroom Ideas – Magpies and Suds

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bathroom ideasSo, I’m doing a lazy post today as we have too much kitchen going on to breathe, but in the midst of kitchen chaos I have been thinking about what to do with our tiny bathroom. There’s nothing really wrong with our bathroom, compared to the horrendously dated earthy colors and horrid textures in the rest of the flat, the bathroom is relatively modern and clinical. However, I am really bored with it being such a blank canvas, not bored enough to spend a fortune but am thinking of updating it by painting the walls, re-tiling the floor, replacing the sink and making a feature splashback for it.

Above is my current mood board, for the basics I’m thinking the walls should be painted in Blue’s Blue by The Paint and Paper Library, I love this colour, could simply drown in it. Blues-BlueThe floor is going to be flanked in white hexagonal tiles with black grout as shown in this picture from an old issue of Elle deco: bathroom idea 001But I also really like this Merola tile: tilesI prefer the rustic to modern in bathrooms and my dream bathroom would either be Art Deco or Moroccan in style. As I am a style magpie, I have decided to combine the two. I am totally in love with these Targa tiles from Fired Earth: mtarga_1 newmarrakechroom_1_2

They are eye wateringly expensive, so I have decided to have four rows, two rows in pattern, one in yellow and one in turquoise, as a splash back behind this charming Ikea Hemnes sink. I think you can channel the Marrakech look in a bathroom without going wall to wall and in the spirit of the bazaar I also really love these metallic mirrors from John lewis, the smallest one is definitely destined for the bathroom. 13c_02_hi_240_01In the arc of Art Deco and to marry in with the floor tiles we have a scissor armed pull-out shaving mirror and I think one of these Dualit retro scales would be perfect. Another bathroom I tore from a design mag in the last year and adore is this art deco style one, I Love, Love, Love yellow and white as colour combination, so classically Italian and fresh.bathroom deco 001Finally here are three of my favourite bathrooms found on Pinterest, the first is Chloe Sevigny’s, I have the biggest crush on her home:

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My blog has moved and changed name to DESIGN SODA, I’d love it if you followed along with my new content there.