Tuesday, 26 July 2016

HEAL'S AW16 PRESS SHOW

Can you believe it's almost August? We are half way through summer and I feel like it's going way too fast. We've been on holidays for the past few weeks but June and July have also been quite busy in terms of press events for me. I attended Heal's AW16 press show earlier this month and it gave me a nice insight into upcoming trends in the interiors industry.

If you're a frequent visitor on the blog, you probably know by now how much I love blue at the moment. Luckily for me, blue was a pretty predominant colour at Heal's press event. It's such a popular colour right now and I can see why. Decorating with blue is easy since it works very well in both contemporary and country style homes. The darker the shade, the bigger the impact, and I absolutely love dark navy colours as much as light pastels. It all depends on the mood I'm in! You just cannot go wrong with blue in my book and I also adore blue interiors with the occasional pop of colour.

Accessories really make the decor in my opinion, so naturally these pretty pots were the first thing that caught my eye when I arrived at the event. Heal's Design Africa initiative brings together a stunning selection of home accessories from designers across South Africa and Swaziland. Lisa Firer's beautiful blue and white porcelain vessels are certainly easy on the eye. They really are a piece of art on their own and go perfectly with a contemporary Scandi look. All pieces are handmade and have their own story to tell, which illustrates the pure talent coming from the emerging artists throughout the continent.

Heal's Cooks Table range is absolutely stunning in person. It provides a versatile space that is both suited for dining and preparing a meal. What a great space saving idea for smaller apartments! You also have three different options for the worktop; marble, solid oak and concrete, and they have all been pretreated so require zero maintenance what so ever. I love the marble worktop but concrete was definitely my second favourite material. It's quite unusual and minimalistic, and looks nicely textured which makes it quite interesting.





The stunning Blythe bedroom range will work very well in both traditional and contemporary type of homes. The light textures and contrasting tones of the exclusive Herringbone Jaquard Bedding is the perfect complement to the range. I adore the rich navy colour here - it's versatile and timeless so you don't have to be worry about getting bored of it anytime soon.

The Balmoral sofa was probably one of my favourite pieces of furniture at the event. The design is elegant and minimalistic, but the bright yellow colour makes sure that it doesn't just blend in with the décor. This is definitely one for the sophisticated living spaces. It also goes to show that bold colour choices pay off and can look incredibly smart when paired with the right kind of furniture and accessories. The Balmoral sofa is made to order in the UK and is available in a range of Heal's fabrics.



I wonder if anyone else is obsessed with Tom Dixon home accessories at the moment? He creates amazing everyday pieces out of copper, metal and cast iron that are both practical and aesthetically pleasing. I think my all time favourite is his Etch Tea Light Holder but I was thrilled to see that his new glass range feels a bit more feminine. Or what do you think? Even though his designs are minimalistic, the materials, especially metallics, is what makes them luxurious and unique. I attended Heal's 'Meet the Designer' event last year where he was giving us an insight into the inspirations and processes behind his iconic projects and new collections. I really enjoyed his talk and got to see a whole new side of him!



Even though I'm enjoying our little heatwave at the moment, I'm starting to get a little excited about the next season and all the new accessories and trends that are out there. My favourite autumn/winter interior trends at the moment are; blue interiors, metallics, marble and industrial style lighting, and luckily I do not see any of these trends disappearing anytime soon.

What interior trends inspire you at the moment?

For more information visit www.heals.com

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Tuesday, 12 July 2016

NOT ON THE HIGH STREET CHRISTMAS (IN JULY)






Yep, you guessed it right. This is a Christmas related post in July, so if you're not ready to talk about Christmas just yet, stop reading now! June and July are busy months for retailers as they are showcasing their AW/Christmas collections and I'm always curious to get a sneak peek of the upcoming interior and homeware trends.

Last week I attended the annual Not On the High Street Christmas (in July) press event in London and it was a marvellous +22 degrees outside as I stepped into their Winter Wonderland. It was a little strange, I must admit, but it didn't take me long to get into the Christmas spirit. I absolutely loved everything I saw; decorations, clothing, candles, tableware, Christmas food, gift ideas you name it. But it was really their entertainment side of things that had me planning my next Christmas party in my head already, yes in July.

I think most people in the UK are familiar with notonthehighstreet.com these days. It's a great website for buying personalised presents but they are so much more than just a company selling gifts. Not On The High Street  partners with small independent businesses to bring creative products to people who expect unique and quality items that are hard to find. It's pretty much as the name says; you will not find these products on the high street, and personalisation is a massive selling point of course.  The product ranges vary from homeware products to personalised experiences, so there's plenty to choose from.

I love entertaining but party planning is definitely half of the fun for me. Actually, I think it's more like 70% of the fun! I don't enjoy the stress on the day, but with some seriously good planning, and cute accessories of course, you have nothing to worry about. Tableware is looking very glamorous and quirky this season. Pineapples and flamingos are still going strong, and let's face it, they definitely bring a fun element to your dinner table. Gold and brass are also very popular this upcoming festive season and you can mix them up with monochrome accessories for a more understated look.



Matte gold cutlery is always a real statement in the dinner table and I love the way they have paired them up with wooden coasters - perfect example of understated luxury! The big trend seems to be mixing different colours and materials together for a nice layered look. It's perfect for a casual 'thrown together' look which is very refreshing in my opinion. Christmas table doesn't always need to be traditional or 'boring'. Have a bit of fun and mix traditional Christmas accessories with everyday items that you think will glam up the table.



I absolutely love these marble effect dinner plates! The popularity of marble doesn't seem to be slowing down anytime soon. Marble is such an elegant choice for dinnerware that it will be a guaranteed hit at a dinner party. Also, it is such a timeless material that you can be sure to make plenty of use out of them afterwards. By the way, I never buy tableware for just one occasion in mind, they need to be versatile, so I can get as much use out of them as possible.

Personalised Christmas table setting also sends a pretty powerful message to your guests. It goes to show that you have put in the time and the effort to take your guests into consideration, even if it's really as simple as adding items to your shopping basket and clicking 'buy'. My favourites are personalised coasters, Christmas crackers, candles (great as presents) and of course a nice bottle of Sherry on the table with a personalised message.

I just love monochrome décor for Christmas. The classic black and white trend with a dash of gold looks even better, don't you think? I prefer Christmas décor that doesn't shout Christmas but is subtle and stylish to look at even after the festive season has passed. Plus most of the accessories, such as reindeers and stars, can be used all year round - how handy is that! Even though sequin cushions might seem a little too much for everyday décor, you will definitely get away with them during the festive period. The more sparkle, the better I say!








Another showstopper for me was this Art Deco Metal Trolley that is a both pretty and incredibly practical. I really think I need it in my life! Bar carts are very 'in' at the moment and they are perfect for Christmas parties. Even if you're not able to fit a proper size bar into your house, there will be always room for a bar cart in a corner somewhere. Plus what's better than a bar on wheels?! Partygoers will love that refreshments are nearby and it will serve you as a storage/display unit once the festive season is over.

Candles are such an essential part of Christmas celebrations that you notice them straight away when you enter a room. When I arrived at the Christmas party, I immediately noticed a deliciously fruity scent at the reception. Well, it turns out it was a lovely scented candle called Prosecco made me do it. Love the name by the way, just genius. I adore the packaging and the message it sends - don't take life too seriously, have a bit of fun! You can also buy personalised candles which make great presents for Christmas and look very cute on the Christmas dinner table too.



The gold succulent pots and Mojito Planters also looked adorable. Personalised homeware accessories will really make your décor stand out and the options are pretty unlimited. I have so many personalised items in my home, some gifted and others I've bought myself. We actually bought our dining room chalkboard from notonthehighstreet.com few years ago and we still use it everyday. Such a great purchase and excellent quality!
I get very excited when I look back at the photos from the event -I really do! I loved everything from the unconventional food and drink ideas to the fun and glamorous home décor trends. In case you are wondering, most of the new season products will be available to purchase from September, but you can find quite a few on the website already! It was also lovely to talk to some of the small businesses that partner with the brand and to get to know how they actually make their products. I attended a workshop with Oakdene Designs and was blown away how they make each product individually by hand.

So did you see anything you like? I've definitely added a few items to my Christmas shopping list!

For more information visit www.notonthehighstreet.com
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Tuesday, 5 July 2016

THE ROYAL CRESCENT - DECOR INSPIRATION




You know when you stay at a hotel and just love everything about the interiors; the neutral colours, design, textiles, pop of colour, luxurious finishes, how they combine rustic with glam. I could go on forever but I think you get the point. Every now and then I just have to share some pictures from my recent travels. Especially when the hotel décor is as pretty as this!

We have developed a family tradition that we visit Bath every summer for a few days. Bath is only few hours away by car and it's so nice to get out of London for a mini break. We stayed at The Royal Crescent last month for the first time and the Georgian architecture and the interior design details really impressed me. The hotel is situated in Bath's Royal Crescent,  one of Bath's most iconic landmarks, and from the moment I walked in, I just loved everything about it.

I think most people like to feel spoilt when they are staying at a hotel and the Royal Crescent certainly makes you feel special. It almost feels like you have gone back in time! The whole building just oozes tranquillity and opulence but it doesn't feel cold or impersonal like some hotels do. I think it's all thanks to their amazing attention to detail and exquisite interior choices which made me feel like a kid in a candy shop during most of my stay.

I love minimalistic contemporary design but whenever I'm staying at a hotel I tend to prefer luxury over simplicity. I think it's because it couldn't be further from what my own home looks like, which let's face it, is refreshing and gives you chance to escape the reality. The Royal Crescent didn't let me down and I got so many wonderful ideas that I cannot wait to use when decorating our own home.

The hotel has been newly refurbished and you can really tell. I love the way they mix more contemporary looking pieces with antiques; mixing old and new elements in a room seem to work every time. Art deco style mirrors, contemporary style lamps and pop of blue in different rooms give it a more current touch as well. I especially enjoyed the blue themed bar/lounge, the pale blue detailing in the stairway and the navy outdoor lanterns that make me wish I had chosen a different colour for our own lanterns a few years ago.




Drawings room are quite old fashioned but I don't mind them in a hotel. There's something very relaxing about them. I think it's to do with having a separate closed space where you can relax and read a book, or have a quite drink or two! Although, I think most people who live in an old house would prefer to adapt it to their modern needs rather than keep the rooms closed. I loved the decorative elements in the drawing rooms which can be easily translated into modern living rooms as well. Like I said, it's all about skilfully mixing old and new pieces together which is particularly easy to do in neutral rooms.


The mood lighting and the table lamps also caught my eye. Lighting is such an important part of decorating that you really don't want to skimp on it. The warm shades made the space feel intimate and relaxing while the wall lighting was highlighting the paintings on the walls. Fresh flowers and coffee table books were the icing on the cake without a doubt. I can only imagine how cosy this place must look around Christmas time when it's cold outside and you're drinking a hot chocolate next to the crackling fireplace.

I'm still trying to find 'the' perfect side/console table for our hall and I couldn't take my eyes off this one (below). It wouldn't be practical in our hall but it definitely looks unique and impressive on its own. The table top is leather and the design is absolutely striking. I just love everything about it. It's a shame that sometimes the most beautiful things can be also the most impractical.

Luckily our room was as beautiful as the rest of the hotel. The neutral colour palette was elegant but the clever way of using colour as an accent really paid off. I loved the golds, different shades of beige, luxurious finishes and the bold red furniture pieces. It's all about getting the balance right and it certainly did it for me. I mentioned lamps before but I actually love the bedside lamps in our room the most. We have very contemporary, minimalistic lamps in our bedroom at the moment but I'm thinking about replacing them. I find that our current lamps don't really produce enough light to highlight the wall art above our bed, which we got more recently, so it might be a good time to find new bedside lamps, with a larger shade and base.



Our recent garden make-over has proven how important it is that the exterior of the house complements the interior as well. I like that the garden flows with the house décor and I thought the gardens at the Royal Crescent were perfectly designed for that purpose. This is the ideal spot for some alfresco dining or afternoon tea on a sunny day. Everything was so well thought out from the garden furniture to the navy blue lanterns on the exterior walls that perfectly match the interiors as well. I'm also a big fan of structural plants and you cannot go wrong with buxus in my opinion.

I hope you enjoyed reading about my interior highlights at the Royal Crescent and if you are ever planning to visit Bath, I can absolutely recommend this hotel. I got plenty of interior inspiration during my stay in Bath and it's great to see how bold colours can work so well in a such a luxurious and elegant setting. People are often afraid to use strong colours but touches of colour can come from ornaments, books, flowers and art and it's probably better to start small in case you happen to change your mind.

I'd love to know if anyone else gets inspired by hotels? Do you prefer contemporary or more 'old school' interiors?

Happy Summer Holidays!

For more information visit www.royalcrescent.co.uk
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