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Monday, 11 December 2017


Since Christmas is just around the corner, I've teamed up with the fabulous Laura Ashley Blog to bring you some Christmas entertaining tips that will put you in the festive mood. I'm sharing the cutest Christmas Breakfast tablescape over at the Laura Ashley Blog today which was inspired by their Autumn/Winter '17 collection.

Of course I wanted the table setting to feel as glamorous as possible, so I styled our dining room table with some stunning gold accessories, elegant plates and beautiful gold rimmed flutes. I created a pretty little center piece with some white peonies (faux, of course!) and a beautiful brass terrarium.

Head over to the Laura Ashley blog here for the full details!

* This post is in collaboration with Laura Ashley UK.

Tuesday, 5 December 2017


Ah, it's finally December. December is such a fun (and busy) month, it feels almost a little surreal that we are so closed to Christmas now. Our house is looking very festive with all the garlands, wreaths and gold Christmas decorations. Not to mention the tree which I revealed in my last post!

But, I have been meaning to talk to you about our newish brass bar cart from West Elm. I bought it last April but I wanted to wait a bit before reviewing it on the blog. Now that I've had a chance to use it for several months I can honestly say that it was the best purchase ever. I love it and if you're looking to up your entertaining game this Christmas or New Year's, you'll love it too.

I really can't think of any negatives about this bar cart. My only regret is that I didn't buy it sooner. Seriously, that's how much I love it. I was a little worried that our 2 year old would want to climb on it (btw, if you're looking for a family friendly bar cart, you'll love this post!) but thankfully she hasn't shown any interest to it. I ordered the bar cart from John Lewis and the delivery took only few days. It was pretty easy to assemble too (or so my husband says). We mainly use the bar cart as a side table in the dining room but when we are entertaining it gets moved into our lounge (which probably happens every 2-3 months). The bar cart has two shelves so you can store the bottles at the bottom and the barware on top. It's super easy to wheel in and out and it's sturdy enough to hold quite a few bottles. I'm not a big cocktail drinker so we normally use it to serve wine or bubbly. I even used it on our decking during the summer which was super handy. Oh, and I absolutely love that you can lock the wheels (a must have if you have children!)

I styled the bar cart with some Christmassy decorations to give it a nice festive feel. I'm mad about nutcrackers at the moment. I bought my first nutcracker few years ago in the Nuremburg Christmas Market but they have become so popular in the UK recently that I've added 3 more to my collection now. I saw this white and gold nutcracker in the Ruxley Manor Garden centre last weekend (House of Fraser stock it too!) and it was love at first sight. They have a huge selection of nutcrackers this year and I just couldn't leave without buying one (or three!) The mini nutcrackers are actually tree ornaments but I cut the string since I wanted to use them as decorative items.

I'm also loving little glittery trees at the moment. I wish I could get away with displaying these all year round but maybe not.. I found them in the Polhill Garden Centre (can you tell I'm loving garden centres at the moment!) and they were such great value for £3 each that I couldn't leave them behind. I like to group 3 or more together so they stand out more. Don't they look adorable next to the gold rimmed champagne glasses?

I do think these gold champagne flutes and the striped straws with bells look amazing together. This is the first year that I have introduced more red to our Christmas decor. I know it's strange considering red is the official colour of Christmas but I personally like it in smaller doses. Gold is definitely still my favourite accent colour and I love that it instantly adds glamour to any setting. These Merry & Bright napkins are the perfect addition to a stylish festive bar cart.

Laura Ashley always have the most striking Christmas crackers. I adore these gold luxury Christmas crackers. I know I've mentioned gold like 10 times in this post but it just goes to show you can never have too many gold accessories in your home, right?

If you have any questions about this bar cart or simply cannot make up your mind just shoot me a message or leave a comment, I'm happy to answer any questions you may have. The only thing I would say is that since it is a mirrored bar cart I do probably baby it a little bit. I try not place anything too sharp on the surface or load it with 30+ bottles. You could probably get away with it but I personally like that it looks neat and organised. It's not badly priced either at John Lewis for £319.20 (for some reason it's cheaper than on the West Elm website..) but if you sign up for the West Elm newsletter you can also get 10% off the original price.

Happy bar cart entertaining!

Product List

Brass Terrace Bar Cart -  West Elm

Glitter mini trees (similar).

Dom Perignon Bucket (only available second hand).

Artificial glitter pine branches from Sainsbury's (in store only).

Medium sized nutcracker (also sold by House of Fraser).

Mini nut crackers.

Gold champagne flutes (gifted).

Striped straws with bells (gifted).

Luxury Christmas Crackers (gifted).

Gold leaf trinket (gifted).

Faux Succulent in a Marble Pot (gifted from Sainsbury's).

Home Etc

Tuesday, 21 November 2017


It seems that each year Christmas decorations go up a little earlier in our house and this year has certainly been no exception. We put up our Christmas tree last weekend all thanks to the lovely people at Amara. Amara gifted me some new decorations from their HideAway range that is to die for. Lucky for me, the hideaway collection is inspired by Scandinavian and Nordic interior styles, featuring some neutral tone colour palettes and irresistible greys.

Christmas tree decorating is a bit of a team effort in our house. My husband usually does the hard bit. He gets the tree down from the loft, fluffs it and puts up the tree lights (the part that I really hate!) I then decorate the tree with the 'help' of our children. Decorating the Christmas tree with my kids is a bit chaotic to  be honest. I always let them help as it's all part of the fun, but then I tend to rearrange all the baubles once they've lost interest. My youngest daughter is only 2 so shatter proof decorations are the way to go in our house. Also, we've never had a real tree but I'm seriously considering it for next year. Our artificial tree is 5 years old now and it's starting to show a bit. I can see that the branches are getting thinner but since it still looks pretty decent, I thought we'd use it again this year. We'll be getting a real tree for our TV room next year though and I'd also like to get another artificial tree for our lounge too.

Anyway, I usually go for a Scandi inspired Christmas tree (lots of contemporary style baubles with a dash of metallics) so I felt that the hideaway collection would go perfectly with our existing theme. I prefer baubles or small ornaments when decorating the tree and stick to maximum 3-4 different colours. Most of the decorations are monochrome, black, grey or white. I do like to add both silver and gold baubles to the mix too to give it a more glamorous look. I never use ribbons or tinsel. At the moment I really like a tree that is not entirely covered in decorations. I like to be able to see the tree too but I have also gone a bit OTT  in the past so maybe I'll change my mind again one day.

If you're going for a rustic chic Christmas look this year you'll love these wooden decorations. Wood looks stunning but also quite understated, which I love. I adore these stylish wood slice baubles. You can complete the look with these quirky beaded tree decorations.  I just love the abstract trees pattern and the monochrome detailing definitely makes them a statement accessory.

Luxurious faux fur is always a good choice for Christmas. I love faux fur cushions and throws, so when I spotted this furry star I knew it would look fabulous on our Christmas tree. Unfortunately, it seems to be out of stock at the moment but this metal hanging star ornament will also look beautiful on a contemporary style Christmas tree.  

Since we have kids, I usually go for shatter proof Christmas decorations. Obviously they are much safer around children, but I also like that they are not that heavy. I find that glass baubles tend to put too much weight on the branches and they can end up looking a bit funny. I love this shatter proof tube of 30 assorted baubles which gives you a nice mix of shiny, matt, glitter and horizontal rib and pumpkin patterned baubles. Of course plastic baubles are better value too and they definitely last longer in our house than glass ornaments. If I do use glass ornaments I always try to place them high so my children can't reach them.  

Funnily enough, we had to move furniture around in the living room in order to get our tree in. I quite like having the Barcelona chair next to the tree though. The wire wall art creates an interesting focal point in the room too. Who doesn't love a bit of industrial chic, right?

Christmas tree decorating tips

- Pick your spot first, then buy the size and the shape that suits the space (I prefer to keep our Christmas tree in the corner so it's a bit tucked away from the kids)

- Never place a tree (artificial or real) next to a radiator or any heat source

- Always inspect your Christmas lights before you start wrapping them around the Christmas tree (in case some of the bulbs are broken). Read this piece on How to put up Christmas lighting on a real tree if in doubt.

- If you've got an artificial tree, don't forget to fluff the branches first to give it a fuller look

- When decorating the tree, start at the top of the tree and work your way down. I like to place smaller baubles on the top branches first and then occasionally mix them with larger items to balance the tree.

- Try not to place identical baubles next to each other (you'll want to create a nice contrast and avoid the overly matchy-matchy look)

- Do place larger statement pieces on the tree (leave this last)

- Use a sheepskin rug as a tree skirt

- If you like glass ornaments that tend to be heavy and unstable, twist the string around the ornament and the branch several times to make sure the ornament is secure. This is also a great way to shorten the string without cutting it.

- Add snow dust to the tree to give it a real snowy look

- Place the tree topper last so you don't have to worry about knocking off ornaments when decorating the rest of the tree.

- Use only one type of decorations, ie. baubles to create a minimal, modern look

- Stick to fewer colours and shapes in order to create a more balanced tree

- Go for Christmas decorations that represent your personal style. I've collected mine over time and I feel that a nicely curated bauble collection makes the tree a lot more unique and personal.

I think that's all I can think of for now.. If you have any Christmas tree decorating tips you'd like to share, leave a comment or let me know on Instagram!

* This post is in collaboration with Amara Living.
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