Happy holidays

Last post of the year from me at rather an odd time (apologises) the next few days are pretty frantic with food shopping and last minute running around. Wanted to leave you with a very festive scene of Amanda Brooks holiday pad (as recently featured in US Vogue) to me it pretty much conjures up this festive time of year. A cosy interior coupled with  a roaring log fire – happy holidays everyone xx

Heavenly, whisky and a big fat book I think    I am getting slightly obsessed with these type of rugs as they add such warmth to a space modern or traditional.

Where ever you may be spending the hols in warm climes or cold may you have a wonderful time and happy new year.

Dilemmas on colour

Over the holidays with the store shut for 10 days (yikes) I was thinking we might do a spot of painting.  Hubby’s office to be more precise  – it is one of the worst rooms in the house  (no lights apart from the recessed above) no furniture apart from a desk and chair and boxes of paperwork so piled high that in order not to have a migraine every time I pass by I have to run at high speed.  The boxes I should add are not even sweet such as old apple crates they are plastic and either blue, red or beige. Hideous.

I am juggling with a couple of colour palettes – either a deep chocolaty hue for the walls floors and ceilings or a soft grey. I am leaning towards chocolate its quite gentleman’s club and I envision a big old tweed chair by the fire with coffee table and a tumbler of whisky and a little bed for Maud. Maud likes to hang out with however is at home apart from Graham that is as she will not venture in their either –for a canine she is very design savvy if I say so myself. Yes I should probably ask Graham but if you live amongst multi coloured plastic boxes you can’t really have an opinion right?  Anyway two images that have been occupying my mind of late because of their tantalising colours below, both shot by Jean-Marc Palisse.

Option one – chocolate and teal beautiful and I think the front runner.

Then I see this space and love the combination of pale grey and pink and yes pink is a feminine hue but it doesn’t feel at all girlish is this space. Plus Maud’s a girl all be it a dog, and she may want the odd snooze in the room once revamped so I have to consider her too.


Kitchens and softening them for the holidays

For those of us hosting some of the holiday gatherings the count down is on to make our houses magical and festive. The kitchen is a hard one to turn into a wonderland especially if its open plan as mine is – whereby the dining area merges seamlessly into the kitchen. I want it too look fabulous but at the same time its got its work cut out with a zillion pots. pans and ingrediants everywhere. This year I am thinking of putting a little mini tree on the center island and then decanting nibbles in all sorts of sweet little containers so people can munch whilst hanging out with me stiring and know doubt getting in a flap. I am also going to sling a line of fairly lights along the floor as when we eat all the kitchen lights will be dimmed to the softest glow and only candle light and fairy lights as well as the light from the fire will illuminate the space.Candles and t-lights are fabulous to cluster in the kitchen once all the cooking is done as is the odd decoration artfully placed on the counters.

One of the coolest kitchens I have seen in a long while is a Kelly Wearstler design. I am a little biased since I am obsessed with black but I love the whole stacking of crockery everywhere. Heaps of plates, stacks of cups looks super sweet and it softens what could otherwise be quite a harsh looking space. Even more genius is how the super sleek feel of the kitchen works so beautifully with a collection of girly almost granny esq crockery. Who ever thought industrial chic coupled with a granny/feminine vibe could hang out so well together.

Decorating your home for the holidays

I keep it simple it may surprise you to know  yes I want charm and grandeur but in a rather toned down sort of way. Christmas card displays are a no no for me, though delightfully festive they are something of a style challenge which I realise is not the point but then again they leave any room less than stylish which surely is the point no?

For me its all about candles the most beautiful way to lighten a home during the Christmas period I think. From small clusters of t-lights in beautiful little containters to big fat church candles in lanterns. Outside I fill my garden with  jam jars containing t-lights and cluster them on tables or suspend from bare branches. It drives everyone potty as I am out there for hours but hey ho to that. Foliage is another big thing for me – wreaths and lots of vessels containing  berries, branches and mistletoe. My christmas trees have just literally been layered with white fairly lights and apart from fairy lights strung over paintings and across mantles thats pretty much me done. Whether you plan a full on artfully decorated look or something simpler like me its all about doing what you want and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

Simple, beautiful, sophisticated – nails it for me. Photography by Mel Yates.