Thrifty Challenge

So it’s been a while since I’ve posted, not for lack of motivation, but time to myself has been pretty limited. Today I decided to set myself a challenge while out shopping. With a £5 budget I had to find a second-hand bargain for the house from one of the local charity shops. I love browsing charity shops, you never know what treasures you might find. Not only is it good for your wallet, it helps create funds for charities and there is the added bonus of being good for the planet, reducing demand for newly manufactured goods by reusing those already in circulation.

A few months ago I picked up a complete vintage tea set for only £3.99 and I’m pleased to say today’s challenge was equally as successful, with 2 items purchased for under £5 and the change even went in the donations pot!

I browsed a few shops before settling on my final purchases, with a lace curtain and art deco vase nearly making the cut. But in the end I settled for an Aztec style table mat and peacock decorated jewellery bowl. As you can see below the new additions are already making themselves at home.

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Key Interior Design Trends for 2016

  • Mixing old and new: I’ve always been a fan of mixing old and new – because you get the best of both worlds! Classic, timeless pieces can blend effortlessly amongst modern styles and technology. With the recent minimalist trend, certain interiors can risk becoming bland and sterile, but with the addition of vintage or retro pieces, you can inject character into a room. I for one am very happy to see this trend gaining popularity.

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Source: Bloglovin

  • Adding the personal touch: Demand for bespoke and artisan interiors products has soared in recent years. Everyone wants something that sets their home apart. Handmade items are often perceived to hold greater value than the mass produced. They also provide a connection to the maker, add a storytelling aspect to the design process and give more value for money. The increased interaction between consumers and designers enables more customisation of products, creating unique pieces. This is an exciting trend that many retailers could use to their advantage. Daniel Hopwood, president of British Institute of Interior Design (biid.org.uk), says: ‘The recent up-cycling craze, is about to become more sophisticated. ‘This year is about taking the shop bought product and customising it to add character and personality or finding the craftsmen or artist to create the bespoke.’

artisan products

Source: Decorator’s notebook

  • High Contrast: This trend draws parallels with the mix of old and new. Creating a contrast of styles or textures creates interest and adds depth to a room scheme. I think this trend will most prominently be seen in kitchen design with a move away from plain white and cream gloss units and shift towards a mix of monochrome cupboards as well as contrasting the plain gloss units with more interesting and warming wooden cupboards.

high contrast

Source: Hitta hem

  • Graphic Tiles: Geometric prints have been making a statement in kitchens and bathrooms throughout 2015 and this trend looks set to continue. These bold prints and patterns can be used to jazz up walls and floors, while giving a modern edge.

geometric tile

Source: Mckimm

  • Brightly patterned fabrics: Vibrant fabrics with an Asian and South American influence are likely to be big this year. With the Olympics in Rio this year, Brazilian colour influences and exotic motifs are likely to be seen across fabrics and textiles.

    Philippa Prinsloo, design manager for John Lewis Home, says Brazilian themes will be big. ‘Brazilian brings out vibrant greens that celebrates the more exotic flora and fauna of jungle and the Forest,’ she said. ‘The bright colours help to accessorise a space and do so with a bit of wild abandon.’ Brightly coloured patterned fabrics can add warmth to a room and are a great way of adding style that can be easily changed.

brazilian prints

Source: Elledecoration

  • Statement lighting: Lighting is a big trend at the moment and an excellent way to creature a feature in a room without too much disruption. We’ve seen the growth of pendant lights, especially in kitchens and above breakfast bars, as seen here. This is likely to continue with more statement lighting making it’s way into other rooms.

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Source: West elm

  • Metallics: Metallics have been on trend for a while, with copper taking centre stage. With more 70’s influences appearing, a shift towards brass and gold accents looks likely. From appliances, to hardware to light fixtures, warmer metals will be adding interest, style and glamour to interiors in 2016.

gold accents

Source: decorpad

  • Calm, soft tone colours: This year’s Panetone colours (Rose Quartz & Serenity) provide a calming colour palette; with some predicting the soft dusky pink will become a staple neutral. These colours, reminiscent of the 1950’s work well with retro and mid century looks.

 panetonecolours

Source: Bloglovin

  • More eclectic kitchens: Kitchens are likely to lean towards a more lived in look in 2016. This makes sense with kitchens being the heart of the home. The move away from stark, single colour units and the introduction of contrasting units as well as natural elements, continues this trend. Open wooden shelving can help to achieve this vibe, with mismatched ceramics and crockery on display and easy to access.

eclectic kitchen3

Source: gofeminin

  • Statement bathroom mirrors: 2016 will see the introduction of luxe, high impact bathroom mirrors in place of medicinal mirrored cabinets. This is a fantastic opportunity to add glamour to your bathroom. It can also help maximise space in what can often be a small room by reflecting light at the same time as creating a focal point.

statement bathroom 2

Source: Apartmenttherapy

I’ve just picked a few of the key trends likely to be gracing interiors over the next 12 months, there are many more which may or may not take off.

It will be interesting to check back in later in the year to see which trends have made most impact and if any unpredicted trends surface. While it is important to be aware of the changing trends, it doesn’t mean you should be remodelling your entire house based on them. You may like to pick and choose according to your preferred style or you may not follow trends at all, but prefer more timeless decor.

Either way I’d love to know if you have incorporated any of these key trends in your interiors, whether it was deliberate or pure coincidence …

Under the glass dome

Autumn is upon us and it’s a time for change. For months I’ve been staring at the glass dome in our kitchen-diner thinking I could be much more creative with it’s display, but couldn’t think of anything outside the obvious. It’s currently used to display a bird ornament and while it looks cute, I feel it could be much more striking. I was hoping an amazing idea would spontaneously appear, but no such luck, so I’ve decided to search for inspiration.

Originating from 17th century Italy, the glass cloche was used to protect plants from frost, whilst acting like a miniature greenhouse. The idea soon caught on and spread across gardens in Europe. Today they have moved indoors and become an interesting way to display flowers, books, crockery and other intruiging objects. They can be a great way of adding personality or creating a seasonal display within your home and many retail spaces also use them to display their wares. They obviously lend themselves to the kitchen for food storing purposes, but don’t be limited by practicality; they really can be used anywhere.

The displays I’ve been drawn to range in style from intricately beautiful and kitsch, to traditional and more natural. I also love the idea of changing them with the seasons. So to coincide with the arrival of Autumn, I’ve included some creative Autumnal displays. There are so many interesting ones I haven’t yet decided which is my favourite, but I hope to try out several of them!

I hope you like some of the ideas below and I’ll be back with an update when I’ve found one that suits my style.

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Source: toy carsdeutinkamer, mediacache, cotton reels, dilcdn, rootedintime, bymildred, finehomedisplays, rowenandwren, lifechilli, forodecoracion, decouvrirdesign, juxtapoz, raisingmissmatilda, notonthehighstreet, white-living, theloopyewe, bhg, davidstarksketchbook, designsoda

Weekend Style File: Bringing the outside in … Botanical Interiors

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Spring is finally starting to arrive in Melbourne, the flowers are blossoming, the birds are singing and the sun is shining (well, in between torrential downpours!). Spring is a season I love, where nature awakens from it’s winter slumber and comes back to life. The colour green epitomizes this time of year and it’s a colour I have always been drawn to. It’s so fresh and bright and actually a very versatile colour, which is pretty neutral. After all, a plant will never clash with your room.

I love interiors that are all about bringing the outside in, so this week’s style file has a botanical theme. I hope to inspire through fresh, spring interiors, so that once your annual spring clean is over and done with, you’ll have plenty of ideas to brighten up your home or for my European followers … perhaps it will allow you to counteract the Autumnal/Winter blues.

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A beautiful bright room theme inspired by an array of tulips.

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Botanical prints on a green back drop provide a nature-inspired feature wall.

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Rustic country feel with botanical elements, such as the Portmeirion crockery and floral display.

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Fresh floral wallpaper contrasted with deep pink walls and industrial style accessories.

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Fresh and bright interior with gorgeous natural walls.

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Natural table decorations, plain & simple yet elegant.

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Matisse-inspired living room.

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Afternoon tea anyone?

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Plants as a feature.

Create your own fresh Spring Interior with these 5 steps:

– Don’t be afraid to use lots of green.

– Choose patterned wallpaper and soft furnishings with floral & botanical motifs.

– Hang plant & insect prints on the walls.

– Create a display with plants or make them a central feature.

– Choose rustic accessories to give an outdoor feel.

Good luck with the spring clean and have fun sprucing up your interiors!

Source: Homedit, Housetohome, Eclecticliving, Housetohome, Floraldiningroom, Decorreport, Realinteriors, Springdecorhousetohome, Natalaiesketchbook, Birdcagedesign

Weekend Style File: Scandanavian Style

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Having gone straight from Winter in the UK into an Australian winter, there have been a lot of cold, dark nights spent trying to stay warm and cosy. While an Australian winter is pretty mild by British standards it still feels like summer is a long time coming!

It got me thinking about parts of the world where long winters are the norm, so this week my style file is focused on the Scandanavian style. In Scandanavia during winter, the short daylight hours and sub zero temperatures mean it is frequently cold and dark. As such their interiors are styled to counteract this keeping them bright, warm and uncluttered. White washed walls with minimalistic, functional furniture form the basis of the style. The colour palette is kept simple with splashes of bright primary colours mixed in with florals, stripes, checks and organic motifs.

Take a look at the pictures below for inspiration for this style …

Clean, simple and functional. Love the pop of bright colours against the white backdrop.

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A cosy living room with a log fire.

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Bright and spacious living.

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Natural, bare walls with a cosy hanging chair.

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Green plants and blue cushions create a fresh, natural feel.

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Wintery feel dining table.

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Clean lines and functional accessories.

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A monochrome look with up cycled coffee table.

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Clean and sleek modern modern kitchen.

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Rustic chairs compliment the textured rugs.

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Clean monochrome scheme with cosy seating and injections of primary colours and patterns.
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Create your own Scandanavian style interior with these 5 steps:

– Create a white back drop with white washed walls.

– Use functional furniture and accessories.

– Layer soft furnishings to create a cosy feel.

– Keep decorations minimal and un fussy.

– Add colour with organic printed fabrics and primary colours.

This theme is very versatile, as ikea has proved and works well whatever the weather. I hope you’re managing to keep warm and have discovered an element of Scandanavian style that you love.

interiorclip, bobvila, decor feed, davinong, anyaadores, homedit, eaihelp, tuwuh, pickulove, nordicbliss

<a href="http://interiordesignawe.files.

Passport to Morocco

Having always been romanced by Moroccan style, last year I visited for the first time and was able to experience it myself. The beautiful architecture and interior accessories at the local markets did not disappoint. Since then, Moroccan design influences seem to be everywhere and will form the theme for my new living space. Join me as I explore the origins of Moroccan style and it’s key elements.

moroccan pic 1

How has Moroccan style evolved?

Morocco has a rich cultural heritage with many different influences. It is a style that is exotic, elegant and mysterious. Morocco’s early influences come from the Islamic and Berber eras and in more recent history from it’s French and Spanish occupiers. This fusion of different cultures has lead to a style based upon dramatic contrasts. With cool tiled floors layered with soft rugs, fresh white walls draped with luxurious fabrics and metallic lanterns emitting soft, warm light. This is often complimented with beautifully carved wood, plush, inviting seating areas and bold, geometric patterns. Another source of design inspiration comes from Morocco’s landscape. From the rocky mountains to the azure coastlines, from the dusty sahara to the lush oases, an eclectic mix of colours and textures can be found. The combination of Ancient Moorish, Modern Mediterranean and environmental influences has created the Moroccan style as we know it.

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What are the different elements of Moroccan style?

Bright Colours

Colours found in Moroccan interiors are often bright and warm, reflecting the climate and landscape in which they are found. Vibrant tangerine, sunshine yellow, exotic fuchsia, deep red, rich purple and brilliant turquoise. Alongside a cooler palette of brilliant white, cool metallics and dark wood. One of my favourite colour combinations is pink and turquoise and I am currently toying with the idea of a coral pink and aqua colour scheme for my own Moroccan themed living space.

moroccan coloursmoroccan pic 2

Patternmoroccan pic 3

Moroccan style is full of vivid patterns, both bold and intricate. A variety of tessellating shapes can be seen, often reflecting the architecture it’s contained within. I love the symmetry and intricacy of these patterns and how they breathe life into a room when combined with the warm Moroccan colours. Different patterns can be combined together, still remaining cohesive with the overall scheme. A popular design is the lattice pattern, which can be seen on many Moroccan-inspired fabrics.

Texture

Combining a variety of textures is a defining element of Moroccan style. Drapes and canopies are often used to create a tent-like feel and soften a room. Silver metal lanterns produce soft lighting and piles of odd numbered cushions in a variety of colourful designs, make rooms inviting. Floors are often tiled and covered with exotic, hand woven rugs, as well as leather poufs.

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Seating and furniture

Moroccan seating is usually low to the ground and designed to create a calm oasis to escape the heat. Long communal seating areas filled with soft cushions and a variety of poufs make for a relaxing hub. Moroccan style furniture is often ornate and intricate, with beautifully carved wood, imprinted metal trays or a a combination of iron scroll, wood and glass. White washed wood also creates a cool, clean look against bright colours.

moroccan pic 5moroccan poufs

tray table

Lighting

Creating a soft warm light through the use of lanterns, candles and lamps is essential to create the right ambience for Moroccan style. I absolutely adore lanterns and I have a wide growing collection, which fits in well with this theme. You can also produce a romantic Moroccan feel with paper lanterns, cut out lamps and carved scroll bases.

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Create a Moroccan-inspired interior with these 5 easy steps:

– Choose a palette of bright contrasting colours

– Mix a variety of textures

– Include repeating geometric prints

– Use well-made furniture with intricate detail

– Create soft lighting through the use of lanterns

modern morocco

I am looking forward to creating a Moroccan feel in our new Australian living space. And once our furniture arrives from the UK, I can start putting my plans into practise. Inevitably there will be elements that in reality don’t work, so I’m sure there will be some compromises. Still, I am positive it will look great and will be back with an update once my vision is underway! In the meantime, do you have a favourite element of Moroccan style? Feel free to share, I’d love to know!

Image Source: adesignerspot, moderndesignideas, housetohome, heinckerdesign, inspirationforhome, zunigainteriors, 79ideas, metrolic, homedecor, goodandglam, lushhome, craftsy, simplygrove

A Welcome Note

Hello and welcome to my blog, an outlet to share my ‘awe’ of all things Interior Design.

From a young age I’ve always been passionate about interiors. As a child I was always rearranging my bedroom furniture, scouring interiors magazines and spending all my money on accessories for my bedroom. Whether visiting friends, babysitting or trawling round English country houses I’ve always been fascinated to see what people have ‘done with the place’ and how it compared to my own vision.

Back in November 2011, my husband and I were lucky enough to buy our first house together. I envisaged with excitement how we would transform the place. However, most ideas never saw fruition due to financial constraints and our impending emigration to Australia. So neutral colours won out over more creative colour schemes in order to appeal to renters. Still, the process of mentally planning colour schemes and designs has taught me a lot and given me ideas for future reference.

Having recently arrived on Australian shores, I am now embarking on a new adventure in the city of Melbourne. I have already been seduced by the city’s multicutural atmosphere and laid back bohemian vibe and look forward to exploring what design inspiration Melbourne has to offer. Through this blog I will test out some of my ideas, explore different styles and generally inspire awe through beautiful Interiors.

I hope you find something that inspires you …