Have just looked at my new post and noticed the font has gone a bit weird which under normal circumstances I would look into but there is a courier bashing on the door, Maud my puppy is tearing up the bin and the phone keeps ringing non stop. The drunken light (we house a series of drunken pieces of furniture in the store) has obviously had one to many over night and fallen completly off the table knocking over everything in its wake! I want to go home and start the day again.


We are producing our own line of lighting which I am incredibly excited about but to say it’s been one of the hugest learning curve of my year is a smidge of an understatement. I wanted to get our lights produced in the UK as opposed to China and beyond but that meant far higher production costs which worried me. It also meant if we produced locally we could guarantee a far superior quality as I could easily whiz up north andmicro manage every step of the way should I need to (being a total control freak this appealed greatly)! And now we have our poodle lamps made by a small ceramic studio in Stoke and I have to say I am so glad we didn’t go down the mass market route. Being handmade there is something intrinsically beautiful about them – ok they are not cheap and therefore not easily obtainable but I think they have an inherent individually that you wouldn’t see if they were mass-produced.This in the most rambling intro ever got me to thinking how like my lamps we want everything in our homes to mean something to tell a narrative. And so below – a few spaces that marry handmade objects with vintage finds. God save good taste even if it means sometimes we have to bash it over the head, knock it sideways and revamp it a smidge with the odd kitsch yet beautiful poodle lamp.


Below Julianna Moore’s NY pad which marries hand crafted with vintage with modern – just beatiful.

moore 2

Planning your space

With the holiday season fast approaching why is that we (I should say I) look over our homes with a most critical eye. We are hosting Christmas this year and suddenly everything looks shabby and half finished. The whole house needs a fresh coat of paint, the ground floor needs to be transformed into a library, the hallway into a cosy little gallery. The bedroom needs to be relocated to another floor and the office to another room – my oh my I am exhausted just thinking about it. Mentioning such plans to my husband over the weekend was not met with the kind of response I was hoping for. Hey ho as they say – will keep working on it. First up on the revamp plan is the study more out of necessity than anything else since we have come to the conclusion that we simply cannot work together in the same room.  Graham is a clutter bug with heaps of mess all ovcr the place (breakfast bowls, papers, and god knows what else). I on the other hand cannot function in such clutter I need my scented candle, a fire flickering in the hearth and some jazz on in the background. So on putting together a mood board for myself I came across this image which I thought would make a very sweet home office. Its cosy not clinical and I like its rustic charm. Whether I can convince hubby this is exactly what we need is a whole different matter!


From drab to fab

Before I start yabbering on about design I must mention that my publishers have just told me that my book is being translated into German, French & Spanish so am incredibly excited about that – thank you Germany, France & Spain – that has brightened up my thursday morning no end.

So onto the business in hand – creating a stylish retreat takes a bit of work and a big dose of creativity but the good news is it doesn’t have to cost a load of money. By hunting around thrift shops and flea markets you can piece together some fabulous unique finds that make you want to hang out at home and never leave.

Suddenly I find myself really into signage and letters – I love how they transform walls adding instant personality. Old letters and signage are quite easy to hunt out on ebay and at flea markets. My sister used some old bus roll signage on her bedroom wall which I adore and I have also just come across a design by Nate Burkus which surprisingly I am rather liking. Mr Burkus’s style is a little too uptight and structured for me but I find myself drawn to the image below. The  painting totally transforms this room and I totally love  the black and white link between the floor and the artwork. Now if I could just paint the walls a colour and unstyle those cushions would totally move in!


My sisters bedroom and her bus roll signage which she has used as wallpaper – clever, clever, clever (lets not tell her that)!

Photography Graham Atkins Hughes

Photography Graham Atkins Hughes