Monday, 30 August 2010


Nights are growing shorter and temperatures cooler, yuch! Never mind only a few more weeks then a trip to Spain where it should be a bit warmer. Just the next 2 weeks to get through; this week getting our house ready for a photo shoot on Friday, then the following week getting another house dressed and ready for sale.
Just thinking that adding panelling to a room has got to be the simplest way to create a really beautiful, glamorous, timeless space. The house I will be working on in a couple of weeks has the orginal panelling.
But its simple to add to an existing room. Tongue and groove to add a cottage feel or cut ply a more contemporary feel which is what has been used to clad the bedroom above at Chiswick house hotel. Its doesn't have to be prohibitively expensive but a good carpenter is a must. I am really looking forward to starting work on an ensuite next week where we are going to use panelling, its going to look amazing. Pictures to follow in a couple of months.

I am going to upload some pictures tonight onto my facebook site ( interior design bath id homes) of a room where we created a panelling effect by just using dado and architraves. The carpenter used a laser spirit level which made sure that it all looked fab when it was up.

Happy days, off to watch a couple of Gavin and Stacey episodes for the rest of this bank holiday Monday, tidy!

Thursday, 26 August 2010


I booked to go on a 1 day upholstery course months and months ago. I have been so busy I completely forgot about it until the day before, then had to madly look for a smallish piece of furniture to recover. What a revelation, I hadn't really appreciated how much time is involved and how many stages there are. It took over an hour just to strip the chair back to its frame. I loved every minute of doing it though. It was so rewarding to see an object completely transformed. Thank god I am so busy otherwise I would be straight down to the auction house to start filling up the house with potential recovering projects.
I am passionate about recycling objects they have much more soul than anything you can buy new. My favourite sites are RE who sell these amazing recycled newspaper place mats and old jelly mould lights. I would love to find room somewhere in my home Baileys apple storage crates they would look fab in a contemporary or cottage home
so much stuff to buy, too little room to store it all!
love where you live

Monday, 16 August 2010

entertainment built in

when your successful property developers and have 7 kids, what do you do when you build your own homes? The only thing you can do, build in as much entertainment to keep the kids occupied. I love the way Husband and wife team Cortney and Robert Novogratz have built their trampoline into the ground ( much safer) at their Hampton's home. In their New York homes they have build the most amazing roof baseball court and an indoor bowling allies. You can find out more about their inspiring design style in their book downtown chic. Its chronicles some of their best known projects. Each project features an eclectic mix of contemporary and vintage finds and shows their unfailing knack of seeing beauty in the most unlikely locations and places. Its a great book, put it on your reading list!

love where you live

pushing up daisies

Not sure that anybodies first choice of location for a home would be a cemetery. But this home owner thoroughly recommends is. Built in Highgate Cemetery London it took 10 years to get planning permission and build. Richard Elliot the owner a developer and photographer says "it not like living in a graveyard, its more like an enchanted forest"

The brief to the architect was to build a James Bond baddies lair, thoroughly masculine and modern with acres of polished concrete and Italian furniture. Features include an amazing kitchen roof that fully retracts.
I think the views from the house are to die for and I would imagine the neighbours are very quiet! I am not sure I have the patience to wait 10 years for a new home though
what do you think?

Thursday, 12 August 2010

up the wall

I love wallpaper but in our home its banned by he who must be obeyed (not really I get away with all the decorating decisions, the wallpaper ban is the only concession I have made!).

I have thought about sneaking in a decorator and getting a few rolls up on the wall. But I am not brave enough to risk being made to take it all off again. I guess he has a point it is quite permanent and not like a paint which is cheaper and quicker to change. I haven't found a business project yet where the client is adventurous enough to go with wallpaper either. But its doesn't stop me admiring some of the ranges that are out there. My favourites this year are Farrow and Ball's Chelsea papers in Stone, Cole and Son and Cowslip. Plus a new collection from Catkin Collection, I love Birdhouse and Porcelain, would look fantastic in a cloakroom or if your feeling very decadent the inside of cupboards and wardrobes, a great way to put to brighten up the day.

Saturday, 7 August 2010

Maximum Impact

I love blue as a colour for interiors but with our sour summers and cool light it can look
horribly flat and cold. Challenged with blue being the only colour that a client would have in his house (despite there not being much natural light in the house) meant getting creative with accessory colour. Particularly as the scheme had to stay masculine (no hot pinks or lilacs to add vibrancy). In the end mustard's, golds, yellows especially in soft fabrics like velvet had a magical effect of just bringing a scheme to life (and his!). I am voting it my favourite colour combination of the month!

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

hotel couture

The interior designers dream job has got to be designing hotel bedrooms. Gone is the need for too much practicality (storage and all that) and much more the need for supporting the brand values of the hotel and flights of fantasy to entice customers back. In Milan the ultimate whimsical rooms must have been created for Hotel Moshino. Its billed as a "fantasy, fairy tale world" a contemporary take on wonderland. There is definitely a wonderland theme with cloud shaped lights in the lobby and iconic dress lamp shapes. The restaurant wall features frocks as wall art and the rooms range from Alice room with a giant teacup room and little red riding hood complete with its own fabric wolf. Where else can you sleep on a giant velvet or silk ballgown or a bed of velvety rose petals.
I am completely enthralled by the look of the place. I am smitten by the luxuriousess, the glamour and the quirkyness. Look out Milan here I come!