House? Home? Hotel?
Edinburgh – 2013
House? Home? Hotel?
Edinburgh – 2013
As I mentioned the other day, I am a wall art hoarder! And with an open-space and therefore limited amount of walls in the house, I have to be creative when decorating the space.
In the kitchen, I opted for a small gallery wall between the two french windows, and lined up with our kitchen island.
I wanted to set the stage by sticking to a kitchen/food theme on this wall. Luckily, I already had most items and only had to curate one piece in order to balance the layout.
I will do a post about the entire kitchen but for now I will just go into the details of the wall itself.
We made the shelf ourselves with simple wood cut to exact dimensions, brackets and white glossy paint, all found at B&Q.
The pig print comes from a butcher shop in Italy, and the frame is from Habitat. Also, please make sure you go to Antica Marcelleria Falorni, in Greve in Chianti, if you are visiting Tuscany, all their products are delicious!
Staying with the Italian theme, we bought this cat sign on the Amalfi Coast, where ceramic art is a speciality. It is also good to note that our cat’s food bowl is right by this wall, so it all ties together! 🙂
The clock is a finding from my husband, it’s by Karlsson and we just loved how simple yet different it was with the copper accent and the black face.
Finally, the Cafe du Bresil print was a gift from my parents a few Christmas ago. I am not sure where they got it from but it is a real vintage print. The frame is from Habitat.
Hope you like this little corner of my kitchen!
I have to come clear… I have an addiction… I cannot stop buying wall art…
Prints, paintings, posters, etc. It’s becoming an issue and some of my friends make fun of me saying that I could open a gallery if I wanted.
I just cannot help it, I love curating bits and bobs for walls I don’t have. A very expensive hobby? Only if you make it expensive! I personally prefer to shop in little markets and local galleries where the biggest and most expensive piece is around 200 pounds. I am also lucky to have a very talented grand-mother and painter.
In our new house, and with the living-space being completely open plan, I am limited to four walls for about 20 items and three spaces (kitchen, living room, dining room). The solution? Gallery walls!
This is the only way to be able to display most of what I own in an esthetically and pleasing way. The risk with a gallery wall though is that it can easily become too much and create unbalance. I therefore limited myself to two spaces, the wall behind our TV (not complete yet) and the wall in the kitchen (complete and coming up soon on the blog!).
But before I show you the results in the kitchen, I wanted to share some sources of inspiration.
As I mentioned a few weeks back, I developed an obsession for black walls! So I took my courage in both hands and I went on the quest for the perfect hue of black as soon as I got the keys of the house.
What you need to avoid with black paint is black paint. Bear with me here!
Pitch black is a very harsh colour which, at time, and depending on lighting, can take some weird shades of maroon – not the look I was going for.
I therefore looked for a very very dark grey with a hint of blue, a little less committal but still a dramatic effect, with more softness. I settled on Railing by Farrow and Ball and couldn’t be more happy with it!
As described by the brand it is “…a softer alternative to black […]The fact that it is definitely more blue than black makes it soft enough to use in interiors, to create dramatic enveloping spaces”
I then dressed the wall with one of my grand-mother paintings (she is talented isn’t she?). The bright colours really pop against the wall to create even more drama!
I also used the letter lights I bought for my wedding as I love the effect of the light bulbs against the black wall.
Another decision I am very happy with is to have painted the frame of the window at the top. It makes it more settled as I am not a huge fan of it. At night you don’t even see it anymore!
Overall I am very happy with it! I am still considering getting a console as well but I find the current staging very satisfying. The best compliment I get is that most guests don’t even noticed that there is a black wall. It fits so well in the space that no one is shocked by it. This for me is the sign of a good design decision!
Not sure I would use this as an inspiration for redecorating my bathroom… There is something fishy about those tiles.
Amalfi Coast – 2013
I spend way too much time on Pinterest, it’s a fact.
After hours, browsing on there I became slightly obsessed with black walls (read extremely obsessed with black walls!). So much so that I decided that I would have at least one black wall in my new place. And guess what, I did it!
The final result isn’t complete yet, so in the meantime let me share with you the pictures I used as inspiration.
Come back soon to see which perfect off-black-not-too-dark-not-too-grey-with-a-hint-of-blue I went for!
Topkapi Palace is full of architectural details. Heaven for me!
Istanbul – 2014
As I mentioned a little while ago, British new builds have so little storage that you need to be very creative and make the most of any negative space available. In my case, I had the space you can see below that just had an armchair and decorative cases. I really wanted to 1) give that corner of our living more character (mid-century-modern anyone?) and 2)have more storage to be used as a bar/wine cellar.
So did I succeeded creating a cosy space with decent storage? Well you tell me! 🙂
My first priority was to balance the proportions of this corner as one side has a double-height wall and the other is a half-height wall. I therefore looked for a piece of art that would look big enough on the tallest wall and colour-coordinate with the furniture against the second wall.
The poster is from King & McGaw, it is a quote from Andy Warhol – “I never read, I just look at pictures.”. I went for the 3 cm black satin flat frame. This online art shop is absolutely fantastic and I have since order a few other pieces from them. The quality of the print and frame is great and the delivery super fast!
For the furniture I have been faithful to my love for affordable mid-century modern.
In order to not come across as alcoholics, I styled the shelves with a mixture of wine bottles, books and spirits.
I got the the wine racks add-ons from Ikea as well.
I styled the top of the bookcase with little figurines I got over the years in different countries. The horse is from Sweden, the turkey from Brazil and the elephant from Thailand. I also added some of my favourite coffee books and a Moroccan inspired candle.
For the table lamp, I wanted height and texture, so it would overlap with the height of the wall and pop against the grey wall. I fairly quickly figured out that concrete was the texture I wanted, and found this little gem at Oliver Bonas. The shade has a hint of green in it which at first I wasn’t too sure about, but I learned to love it.
I completed the space with a side table. I think this is what really bring the cosiness and make it into a well-definedspace. These two little marble and copper tables are from Oliver Bonas too! (I could live in that shop…)
I styled them with a couple of books and the only plant I cannot kill. The pot is from Oliver Bonas too (old collection)!!! Do you think there is such a thing as Oliver Bonas addiction?
Finally, I left on the armchair a sheepskin from Ikea and a cushion bought in Debenhams (old collection).
So what do you think of my reading corner/liquor store?
Time to show you the updated dining area! As I mentioned in my previous post I wanted to create something contemporary and fresh with a rustic twist.
Overall, I would describe my style as contemporary mid-century modern, which hopefully I translated successfully in this space. Now let’s go into the details, my little designer assistant cannot wait to show you the results!
So first thing first, here is a little reminder of how the dining area looked like originally.
The wall colour is perfectly fine being a very neutral pale grey. I didn’t need to do any painting here, which my right arm thanked me for. However, I went for something very different with the furniture. Oranges and warm browns are not my colours.
For the table I wanted something almost rustic, a very simple big solid wood table. You have no idea how complicated it was to fine this table! When looking at wood tables, either the finish wasn’t natural enough, the legs too thin/fancy, or the designer tried to add some unnecessary finishing touches.
We eventually found the perfect natural light wood table at Furniture Village. I never in a million years thought I would find anything I would like there, but here it was, waiting for us in the entrance hall!
Unfortunately I wasn’t able to find it on their website. So if you are interested in it show them the picture and ask if they still carry this exact model. Also note that you can pick a different finish (lighter and darker) and legs width. Almost bespoke furniture! 🙂
Now that I had my rustic table, I needed to bring the contemporary touch with the chairs.
The first one I chose is a little bit of a mid-century modern cliche, you see it in all the interior books, on all the blogs, and it pretty much owns Pinterest interior section… Yes, I went for Eames inspired Eiffel wooden legs chairs. So predictable, I know, but soooo good looking!
The originals go for around 250 dollars a pop, out of budget for us. We therefore went for lookalikes (cough *** replicas *** cough) from Dwell. I picked white for the four as I wanted to achieve a miss-match look with another design rather than a colour.
For the two other chairs, I wanted a modern look with a classic silhouette. The Parisienne model from Calligaris is exactly that! The design is inspired by the chairs you find in cafes in France, yet the polycarbonate material makes it very modern.
For the colour we went for ‘Smoked Grey’ rather than completely clear. The material is transparent so the hint of colour makes the chairs pop a little more, and the grey matches the rest of our living-space colour code. I am so pleased with these!
Now for the final touches. I am very fortunate to have a talented artist in my family – my grand-mother. The painting I aligned with the table is a gift I received when I was born. The scene of the little girls having tea around a table perfectly matches a dining room setting, and the bright colours help make it the real statement piece in that space.
Finally, I added some vases matching the colour and style of the space. One is an old bottle, one an old home-sense container and the last one I found in a little pound shop.
For the flowers, I usually prefer to use foliage in this space, such as eucalyptus, so it matches the simple contemporary theme.
That’s it peeps, this is my new dining-room! I hope you like the final result!
The main challenge with new builds in England is the absence of storage.
The main challenge with our living-space in the new house is the absence of walls. As you can see on the picture below it is completely open plan with double-height ceilings.
I therefore needed to create in this space a wine-cellar/bar-cart/book-storage, while still making it stylish and cosy with the double-height ceiling… Challenge accepted!
But before I show you how I created a cosy library-liquor-store area, have a look at the pictures I used for inspiration (thank you Pinterest!)
Find out how the reading nook turned up here!
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