Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Delicious Vintage Floor Tiles from The Spanish Yard

Some friends are looking to tile their dining room floor. Inspired, I found these brilliantly eclectic antique tiles from The Spanish Yard. Specialising in reclaimed Spanish tiles, the site does have some lovely repeating patterns, but I love to mix and match...

Wishlisted for our next bathroom. Or kitchen. Or garden.

For happier ablutions.
all images The Spanish Yard

Saturday, 21 July 2012

I Made That: Valentines in July

When you have a kid, there are a whole new set of rules as to how you run your life, and among these rules is one of my favourites:

Sometimes things just don't get done on time, or even close to on time. Sometimes these things will get done 'someday' and sometimes they won't happen at all. 

And that's ok.

This project falls into the penultimate part of that rule, it's July, and so it must be 'someday' because I'm blogging about the valentine I made oooh 6 months ago.
I was inspired by this how to from the Liberty Scrap Challenge on acuppaandacatchup:

Of course, I couldn't just do a simple word, oh no, I gotta have a whole sentence.

It's a bit wiggly, but hung on pins I like it. Made from pipecleaners (mine were sparkly!, but i don't believe thats a requisite), wrapped in fabric. I used heavier cotton than Liberty tana lawn, hence slightly scrappier finish, but that was what was in my cupboard, so that was it. Get the tutorial here.

Here it is on the wall, of course my husband didn't even notice his gift until I stood underneath pointing at it.
Forgive crappily lit iPhone photo.

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Magical Magnetic Wallpaper from Sian Zeng

Check out Sian Zeng's 2012 collection of magnetic wallpapers. The whimsical designs with added magnetic fun are perfect for an eclectic, eccentric, English house. And while this wallpaper may obviously be placed in a nursery,  I do think that the patterns and colourways are totally liveable, totally beautiful, for any room.

Sian Zeng is part of the brilliant Cockpits Arts studios, who have an open studios event this weekend in London: Sian Zeng Studio 112, 18-22 Creekside, London, SE8. Get down there!

Sian takes her talent for illustration and fairytale ideas into other products too:

Dry erase thought bubble

Hedgehog in the grass cushion

Drapery Girl Print

Magnetic Art Board, make your memos memorable

all images

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Wallpaper your dollhouse with Ferm Living

I love this idea from Ferm Living, download small versions of their papers to decorate your doll's house. Or think of the other crafty things you could do with the lovely stuff.
How to and download here

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Birthday Butterflies With Damien Hirst

I know I know, my birthday was in April, but I forgot to tell you about the wonder of the day.  We put Max in nursery and took a few hours for ourselves. I love my baby but oh my, it is so good to be off duty with my husband. 

First we went to the Damien Hirst expedition at the Tate Modern, then lunch at the Brunswick House Cafe - totally eclectic, totally delicious. On to Drink, Shop & Do near Kings Cross, for a spot of inspiration, tea and cake (tea is very important, never forget), and finally a spot of bowling at Bloomsbury Lanes. It was a perfect day of fun which reminded me how awesome it is to live in London with these things on my doorstep. Sometimes this city can just seem like one big obstacle course, but on days like these, it's an adventure playground.

The day was filled with colour, as you might imagine, but it was the Damien Hirst Butterflies that rocked my world. See the etheral beauty of the wallpaper, available to buy from Other Criteria. Not cheap, but magic.

left, Hope Wallpaper £250 per roll, right, Butterfly Wallpaper £700 per roll

If you're feeling even more flush, the limited edition prints, The Souls I, II, III and IV are also available. This is just an example of different colourways. Hirst is one man who knows how to make money, and has produced each of these designs in over 20 colourways. Guaranteeing something for everyone:

 images: all, except first image, from Other Criteria

Sunday, 10 June 2012

A-Z of Pattern: C is for Chintz, Checks n' Cheek

This post is brought to you by the letter C. C took a little while, because I just wasn't terribly inspired. But that, my friends, is what Pinterest is for! (Not joined yet? follow me here). After a little browse I realised that C was full of colour (duh) and pleasure. Chintz, checks (ok, gingham), and cheek all had their day in the 1950s, but I've got some fine examples of totally modern ways to continue the cool.

You may think that chintz is the domain of grannies, but this stalwart of country chic was once banned from the UK. Not because the powers that be couldn't take the chi-chi ditsy prints any more, but because French and English mills were concerned about the amount of chintz being imported from Asia in the late 17th century, as they hadn't worked out how to make it yet. Time passed, they worked it out, and the ban was lifted, and thus, Laura Ashley was born. That's probably how it happened anyway.

And we shouldn't forget the House of Hackney's wonderful ombre take on classical chintz in their Dalston Rose range:

Next , when it comes to checks, gingham, tartan, all: going for bold brings these patterns up to date.

On the other hand, up to date can be overrated, here's some proper vintage chic:

Or vintage brought up to date matched with with colour blocking:

Let's face it, everyone likes a little bit of loving. So I think there's no harm in having a few titillating touches (ooer) in the home. So here I've included Dupenny, above, who go all out for a kitsch kitchen with their drawings of ladies in compromising positions, while the Graham and Brown designs below by Marcel Wanders add a slightly more magical element, with the winged goddesses hidden within the designs. Kinda sexy if you've got a thing for Tinkerbell...

Images, all left to right:
Chintz 1:Shoes - Grandma's Dream, Tiles - Made and Found, China - White Porcelain, Liberty Outside Wall - Anzu London
Chintz 2: Hari Chintz - Standfast & Barracks, Teacup - Burleigh, Cushion - High Street Market, Chair - Apartment Therapy
Checks 1: Blanket - Design Sponge, Floor - Wide Open Spaces, Chalford Linen Check - Fabrics and Papers
Checks 2: Dining Chairs - These Tings Take Time, Black Gingham Duvet Cover - Linen House, Black Gingham pillowcases - Remodelista, Tweed upholstery - Sula
 flickr, nanimo, , An Apple a Day
Cheek1: Time for Tea and 50s Housewives - Dupenny
Cheek 2: Erotica - Louise Body, Vintage 70's Nude Women - Design Your Wall, Key Muses - Graham & Brown
Cheek 3: Forest Muses -  Graham & Brown

PS The alternative title of this post was going to be 'C Drives Me Crazy'. 
There's a Muppet version of this song sung by the Fine Young Camels.
Muppets rock.

Friday, 8 June 2012

More than Your Average Council Flat: Hackney Colour

I've just been shown this article by the New York Times about the home of furniture designer Martino Gamper and artist Francis Upritchard in Hackney. An inspiring home, wherever in the world it is, but when described by a New Yorker as a 'public housing project', our old council flats are given a whole new urban-cool edge.

This mother loves the colour.

Source and images NY Times

Sunday, 3 June 2012

Coloured Kitchen Inspiration

We've spent the last little while updating our kitchen, which I shall show you when it is ready. For now, take a look at some inspiring uses of colour in the kitchen. These make me dream of large open spaces to cook and entertain. Not terribly likely in London town. Sigh.

First, coloured cabinets. The picture above makes me ridiculously happy.

Slightly more contrived, but still great. Would that more people could be adventurous with colour (we haven't been outrageous it's true, but you'll have to wait and see!)

Having the lower cabinets in a colour that draws the eye means you barely notice the white wall cabinets, they float in space.

Lavender blue in a country kitchen.

White with Colour Pops. Always my favourite, because white is so easy to live with, and touch up when it gets grubby, and is the perfect foil to owning lots of colourful objects, because white goes with EVERYTHING people.

Yummy yellow

Coloured crockery should not be hidden away.

Mint coloured fridge, gorgeous items on display, and a bah humbug rug. Love it.

Coloured accents: One step on from colour pops, adding in permanent (or semi-permanent) features in deeper hues is slightly braver than above, but need not overwhelm. No-one needs overwhelming with their morning coffee.

Coloured peg board, brilliant and practical storage a la Julia Childs 

Coloured sinks by Jonathan Adler in gorgeous colours. Don't take life, or kitchens, too seriously.

Giiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiirly kitchen. Satisfy your inner Barbara Cartland.

A slightly darker rose pink mixed with dark wood and more masculine black and stainless steel is much more liveable.

Red units + Red apple = tasty

Muted accents of lilac and mint stop a white kitchen being, well, boring.

Yours, dreaming of high ceilings and french windows in my kitchen... Sara x

Coloured Cabinets:  1. apartment therapy 2. Harvey Jones 3. apartment therapy 4. 1st-option locations

Colour Pops: 1. apartment therapy 2 & 3 1st-option locations

Coloured Accents: 1. apartment therapy 2. Jonathan Adler at Kohler 3. Opticolour 4. Krailler 5. Elle Decor via desire to inspire 6. Homes and Gardens via desire to inspire