Last week I participated in Abigail Ahern’s master class on how to decorate her way, which is all about being bold, breaking the rules and creating new ones. The design school is in her jaw-droppingly beautiful house in trendy East London, which has a sublime interior. As I
walked ran through her door (I was running late and in a bit of a panic after getting lost) I was enveloped by the rich inky coloured walls and eclectic spirit of the room. This is the kind of house that moves and inspires you. The aesthetics of the house are dramatic and bold with a bit of humour thrown in. Abigail plays with proportions of scale by using oversized chandeliers and mirrors to create that Alice in Wonderland feel, mixed with unexpected decorative items at different heights plus layers of texture using pops of colour through textiles and flowers, all played against dark walls.
The workshop was informal yet fun and full of great tips and advice. Abigail spent the morning taking us through her design mantra using real life visuals to illustrate her points. She also shared her sources for art, furniture and decorative items, which I thought was a nice touch. On a practical note she also gave advice on where it’s important to spend and where you can save when decorating.
One of the highlights of the day was when we were let loose to explore her home with no room off-limits. I took advantage of this and took as many photos I could of her beautiful space for inspiration. We were asked not to share any photos online as she is about to release another book, so you’ll just have to go out and buy her book to see her latest decorative tips. The images I have used today are courtesy of The Selby. To be in her home and to see her design principles put into practice made this day so unique. Sometimes you have to see it first-hand to really understand how something will look as so much can get lost in two dimensional photos.
I came away from the day feeling really inspired with loads of new ideas and a bundle of new sources to explore. I would highly recommend the design school for anyone interested in interior design, working in interior design or just wanting to get inspiration for your home. If you go to Agbigail’s website you’ll find all the information you need to enrol in the NY or London classes. For all my Aussie peeps you’ll be happy to know that the Master Class is coming your way in October but you better get in quick as I imagine it will get booked up pretty quickly.
I would love to hear from other people who have done a class with Abigail and what they thought of the day.
I love the idea of bringing the outside in and an easy way to do this is through the use of plants. It’s usually about this time of the year when I do my flower boxes and plant herbs but sadly the weather has been pathetic here in the UK and there ain’t much sun about. So I love the idea of indoor vertical gardening, also great if you don’t have much floor space to work with. One day when I build my dream house I plan to have a whole wall covered in tropical plants. In the meantime I have found a great and affordable solution called woolly pockets, which you can find here.
I absolutely love these crystal light bulbs by Lee Broom. The combination of industrial influences and the delicate hand-blown crystal is very clever and the end result is oh so cool. Broom has collaborated with experts at Cumbria Crystal, the sole remaining producer of handmade English full lead crystal in the UK. I’ll have three please! x
Our wedding plans are coming along nicely and I’m soooo excited I could jump out of my skin!! We’re heading to Ibiza next week to finalise everything and meet with the wedding planner and florist. I will also be visiting my favourite shop Sluiz to pick up a few bits and bobs to help decorate our wedding space.
Sluiz is more than just a shop it’s a creative destination that inspires and captures your imagination. The Dutch-owned shop specialises in decorative home-wear but also sells quirky books, clothing, jewellery and lingerie. It’s more like a lifestyle boutique with its very own restaurant, bar and art gallery. In the afternoons you can catch DJs playing chill-out music while you have a mooch around. Now that is retail shopping at its best in my opinion! I love this concept of shopping and would like to do my own version in London…….hmmmm one can only dream x
Just to prove I was there.
This is retail heaven! I love how everything is stacked and organised by colour making it easy to find what you’re looking for.
I’m going to ignore the miserable weather outside and drool over these liquid-like Calabash pendant lights. They are gorgeous and I would love to have a cluster in my kitchen area.
The genius behind these creations is Komplot Design, a design duo who go by the names of Boris Berlin and Poul Christiansen. In their words they were inspired by the greatest creator and source of inspiration in the World: Mother Nature. The pendant lights were inspired by the Calabash pumpkin and take the same recognisable shape…ish. I will never look at a pumpkin in the same way again. The lacquered and iridescent surface is what stands out for me and I love how the images in the room distort and are amplified within the pendant. Pendelicious!
Its day 1 of the February photo-a-day challenge so there’s still time to get involved by clicking here. I love using my instagram app so that’s what I’ll be using throughout the month and sharing via twitter @sommerfruits. I’ll also be posting a round-up of February’s efforts on my blog at the end of the month. A couple of my friends are joining me, so I’ll be posting their photos here at the end of the month too. I think it’s fun to get a little glimpse into other people’s lives and to see how they view the world on a daily basis. If you’d like to see who’s participating head over to Fat Mum Slim and check the links. If you’re on Twitter, you can follow along with the hashtag #febphotoaday.
Today’s word prompt is My View. I spent most of the afternoon working from home sitting on my Chesterfield warming up in front of the fire.
Day 1: My View
A good friend of mine Lou just sent me her view…..
Lou: Day 1 My View
and this is my gorgeous fiance Will’s view….
Will Pyne: Day 1 My View
Happy snapping x
“Presumably, the creative capabilities of a craftsman are the same as those of a sculptor. A chair is not just an industrial product in space. It becomes form and space itself” Finn Juhl, 1952
Finn Juhl was a Danish architect, interior designer and industrial designer who would have been 100 today, 30 January 2012. He was one of the leading figures in Danish design in the 1940s and 1950s who was often referred to as the “Father of Danish Design”. His unusual style and sculptural pieces were acclaimed worldwide and propelled him to international stardom within the design world. His work today is being celebrated around the world and to read the full story of this amazing designer you can visit one collection.com
To honour this great designer I thought I would share with you some inspirational Nordic interiors. The first is the home of Icelandic interior designer Rut Kara.
Stylist: Gerdur Hardardottir : Photographer : Trine Thorsen : Images : kool and Kreativ blog
Images via The style files blog
Images via Lovenordic design blog
I really don’t like the cold winter months and February is one of the hardest months to get through. It’s dark, cold and grey but to add some colour and creativity to my world I’m going to join Chantelle Elem’s photo-a-day February challenge. I think this is a great idea and lots of fun so why don’t you join me.
How to take part in February photo-a-day:
1. Using the list as inspiration, take a photo each day.
2. Share it on Instagram or Twitter using the hashtag #FEBphotoaday. You can also share on your blog or on Facebook … or even keep the photos privately for yourself.
3. Check out other people’s photos and like them or comment on them.
Note: The list is purely for inspiration, however you interpret the daily prompt is up to you. There are no hard and fast rules. For instance for day 22, if you don’t officially ‘work’ and are a mum or looking for work – then show something that you consider to be work (or a chore perhaps). It doesn’t have to be office stuff … it’s as loose as you want or need it to be. Just have fun and enjoy!
Happy New Year, hope you all enjoyed your holidays. I’ve just returned from sunny Sydney and I feel fresh and ready to tackle a new year. I’m not a big fan of New Years resolutions but I think it’s a great time to reflect and plan for the year ahead. Here’s to a bigger and better year.
Sydney once again captured my heart with it’s shimmering harbour, buzzing streets and its laid back, anything-goes attitude. Since I was last there a lot of new exciting restaurants and little bars have popped up everywhere. And it’s the design and interiors that really caught my eye, which I’d like to share with you over the next week or so.
First on my list is a butcher shop called Victor Churchill (vegetarians look away). I never thought I would blog about a butchery but this is no ordinary butcher. In the leafy streets of Woollahra I stumbled across what can only be described as a boutique butchery, some call it the Tiffany of butchers. As soon as you walk through the door it oozes luxury and indulgence. From the marble floor and rich timber wall panelling to the mirrored cabinets displaying dressed veal racks, forests of upright lamb shanks, to the huge pieces of meat rotating on a conveyor belt in a glass dry-age room, finished with a backlit Himalayan salt brick wall.
Butchers perform behind a glass-walled butchery so spectators can watch the meat being freshly prepared.
The design is a blend of traditional European butcher shop in look and feel with modern design elements.
If you like your meat prepared with a dose of drama and humour, Victor Churchill is the place. Epitomised by their ‘chook cam’ wall (a nod to a Louis Vuitton window display), multiple video cameras watch the daily specials, which are housed within a glass domed display on a pedestal.
I love that they have applied principles from up-market luxury clothing boutiques to stand out in their own sector. It’s genius and as a result they have created something outstanding and unique. We definitely need something like this on London.
Enjoy the rest of your week.
Christmas is on its way and I’m on the look out for unique gifts and in my search I stumbled across an artist call Gatz, from Paris who created box stories. Gatz uses 2cm characters in grandiose situations to tell a story. In his words Gatz likes to divert the figurines from their original functions, by shaping them a tailor-made destiny. The humoristic and poetic moments he captures in his boxes are enlightened by their titles. You can view his work on his website www.box-stories.com
Here are some of his story boxes that I picked out to share with you. What do you think? Do you like them? x