Join me here in explorations of the places and people who inspire my passion for interiors. I’m always on the hunt for outstanding design, ancient, modern, natural and crafted.

March 21st, 2013

Top 5 trends at London Design Week

The link between the new season fashion collections and trends in interior design is especially strong this spring. Whilst enjoying some retail therapy last weekend I couldn’t help noticing the return to brights and patterns (and I mean very bright and very patterned!) across the high street. I had a similar feeling yesterday at London Design Week in Chelsea Harbour.


Hot pinks, jade greens, bright cobalt blues are featuring strongly in many of the showrooms and pattern wise anything goes at the moment…

The new Manuel Canovas  range, with an exotic/Chinese influence is one eye catching example.

Manuel Canovas voyage en Chine

Voyage en Chine fabric by Manuel Canovas



The trend for brights isn’t just limited to fabrics.  As I  entered the Roger Oates showroom,  a new brightly striped “Masai” range of stair runners has been added to the New Hadley selection of vibrant Mandarin and Rose colour ways.

Roger Oates Masai Madder runner

Roger Oates Masai Madder runner

Roger Oates New Hadley Runner mandarin

Roger Oates New Hadley runner in “Mandarin”

… and prepare to be amazed at the range of brights now available in leather at the Edelman showroom. This is their colourful suede curtain:

Edelman leather colourful suede curtain

Edelman leather colourful suede curtain


Wow factor and fun for wallpapers

I’ve always found it hard to resist a statement wallpaper, maybe for a downstairs cloakroom or a study, one that makes you laugh or piques your interest at a friends’ house or in a boutique hotel….

My two favourites this season are “Penguin Library” by Osborne & Little and the new Fornasetti II range at Cole & Son – great for book lovers, cycling enthusiasts or anyone with a sense of fun!

Osborne and Little Penguin Library

“Penguin Library” by Osborne & Little


Cole and Son Fornasetti collection

Cole and Son new Fornasetti II collection


Trimmings are back?

Again, reflecting the current popularity for lace, beads etc. among the big fashion labels, trimmings are enjoying a comeback. For adding some dressmakers detail, the new Samuel and Sons showroom (their first in London) is well worth a visit. Try this as a border on a roman blind or some full length curtains.


Samuel and Sons Greek Fret border trimming for blinds and curtains

Greek Fret border from the Corinthia collection


New neutrals, Italian Style!

And for those who are finding the brights and patterns all a bit too much,  many of the leading brands have updated their neutral collections reflecting the catwalk trends for embroidery and lace. One of my all time favourite collections has to be the C&C Milano range in the Lewis & Wood showroom. True to form they have just added several new designs such as this beautifully embroidered linen…


C&C milano coco embroidered linen trends in interior design

New “Coco” range from C&C Milano


March 14th, 2013

Georgian splendour

This week’s post isn’t a typical blog, in the traditional sense of the word. Rather it is an opportunity to share  some images of these striking decorative plaster work ceilings.  Despite the dire predictions at the end of last century that there were insufficient skilled craftsmen either to restore or to create fine architecture and beautiful interiors, this clearly isn’t the case!


Georgian restored plaster work ceiling and decorative mouldings

The ceiling in the bathroom…


On a recent trip to Norfolk I was able to admire this intricately painted plaster work , in the master bedroom and ensuite bathroom of an old Georgian Rectory, which has been lovingly restored to its former glory by some very talented local  craftsmen. The monochrome ceiling in the bathroom, with strong black borders around the ceiling rose and the coving/cornicing, is particularly stunning  and eye-catching. It  had me transfixed for some time marvelling at the detail and accuracy of the work and trying to do a calculation in my head as to how many man hours of painstaking perfection had been involved!


restored Georgian plaster work ceiling Norfolk

Another close-up image of the restored plaster work ceiling in the bathroom!


Restored georgian plaster work ceiling

…and the ceiling in the master bedroom






March 6th, 2013

Yellow sitting room: sunny & vibrant or too much of a good thing?

Continuing the recent theme of “Inspiration”, last month I revisited the Soane museum in London’s Lincoln’s Inn Fields with a good design friend of mine. It’s well worth a visit, packed full of ideas and also some interesting stories as to how it became a museum. Given the current lack of sunshine, this particular room cheered me up, although possibly too much of a good thing (?). It’s the south drawing room painted in “Turner’s Patent Yellow”, a fashionable pigment of the day!  Farrow and Ball have several equivalents (try Babouche no 223 or Dayroom Yellow 233). It has to be one of the brightest yellow rooms I have come across in a while.


Yellow drawing room, Soane Museum
Martin Charles, Courtesy of the Trustees of Sir John Soane’s Museum

If you like it (not too much of a good thing?) here is the modern day version, the lobby of the Haymarket Hotel London  This really works, especially on a grey London day.

haymarket hotel, yellow hallway

Lobby, Haymarket Hotel, London

If you’re not that brave, but love an accent of yellow and want to ring the changes as Spring approaches, try something like this…

yellow bedroom

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