Monday, 2 February 2015

Chairish: Style Challenge

A few weeks ago, I discovered this inspiring online used and vintage shop called Chairish, and decided to participate in their Style Challenge. You can check out their vintage furniture for yourself here. I wish they shipped to the UK, can anyone recommend a UK site that sells this kind of thing in such a good way? I'm stuck with the considerably less attractive ebay in the meantime, and my little black book of independents. Oooh gap in the market?

Anyway, their challenge is to style a room using some of their products. I went the whole hog and chose everything shown here, from their site. Here's what I came up with:

For the challenge they gave me a few suggestions to get started, from which I chose the George Nelson Clock, the sideboard and the armchair.  I realised pretty quickly that I was channelling Don Draper's office, or a room from The Incredibles, but in my own way (pretty sure Don wouldn't have had owls in his office, and coffee would be replaced with cocktails).

Here's the full deets:
1. Coffee Set. Mmmm caffeine. In yellow!
2. Madeline Weinrib Westley Thunder Cotton Rug. Because I love a flat rug, and especially Madeline Weinrib - look!
3. Pair Danish lamps. Smart.
4. Succulent in terracotta pot. I love a succulent, and a cactus.
5. Abstract Geometric painting - monochrome baby
6. Marimekko fabric panel - because I am a colour-lovin' mother
7. Badelli Owl Money Bank. He's friendly, and yellow, and holds your cash. win-win-win!
8. Olivetti Typewriter. Obviously not going to replace my mac(s), but it looks pretty.
9. Rotary Phone. Because I love taking four hours to dial a number. And having to remember that number in the first place.

Thanks for everything Chairish, let me know when you cross the Atlantic!

Monday, 12 January 2015

I Made That: Liberty Scrap Clouds

2014 was a good year, many things fell into place and I reconciled myself with both things I could change, and the things I could not. I am grateful, so very grateful for what I have. Some serious things have reminded me of this lately,  and as I put my youngest down to bed last night, as she carefully checked that she had her soft baby, her muslin, and a black plastic telescope to snuggle down with, I counted my blessings a few more times. I hope you all had a wonderful holiday and can enter 2015 clear-headed and happy. 

So here's January, and true to form, I'm showing you a thing-that-I-made flipping months ago. As usual I had high-falutin' ideas of making 4 of these lovely things, for 4 babies I know (teenagers by the time I've finished these). So anyway, I have completed 3, the 3 I was giving away, which means now I can talk about them because the surprise won't be spoiled. The last one is for Ren, and one day I shall finish hers, maybe even before she starts driving. For now, I stole her bedroom to take some pictures of the last one I sent out.

I bought some Liberty fat quarters and a scrap bag from The Greene Stitch Company back in June, and decided to make these soft cloud mobiles. This sort of thing is all over the place at the moment, so I can't claim to be original, but I liked the idea of adding some patterned happiness. So I drew myself a pattern on some newspaper, and set about creating these: plain grey on one side, with the baby's name and birth date embroidered on it, and patterned on the other (sorry to everyone who received one, I clearly haven't embroidered in 22 years). A little grey cumulus dripping drops of joy. 

Sunday, 7 December 2014

Revill Revill Lampshades

Revill Revill St Judes Natures Table Lampshade
Nature Table in Paynes Grey/Rose
Hello there, how are you? All is well here, the season is coming in and we're getting snuggly with it.

I love St Judes fabrics, their workshop is fairly near us in Norfolk and I knew I wanted more of their prints in my home, the white walls begged for it. Plus our living room is a big space and needed more mood lighting to open up the corners, to stop it feeling a bit like a doctors waiting room, so I popped along to Habitat and bought some new lamp stands, and knew that I wanted some St Judes shades.

Revill, Revill is run by Karen Revill, who makes bespoke lampshades using gorgeous fabrics sourced from makers in the UK, including pretty much the full range of St Judes fabrics. I chose 2 colourways of the Nature's Table design and one of the Hedgerow, both designed by Angie Lewin, because I like to mix and match and I'm rubbish at making decisions. I needed a bespoke size for one of the shades and that was no trouble for Karen. In fact, nothing seemed any trouble, her contact was great and the shades were with me way earlier than I had expected. Nice service Karen!

PS When you buy new lamps, prepare to get the duster out, they light up corners you never looked at before, and freak the spiders out.

PPS How the frickin frack do you take decent pictures of lighting? I think it may require more lighting, apologies for crappy pics.

Revill Revill St Judes Hedgerow Lampshade
Hedgerow in Olive/Blue on linen
Revill Revill St Judes Natures Table Lampshade Bronze Green
Nature Table in Holly / Bronze
Revill Revill St Judes Natures Table Lampshade

Sunday, 27 July 2014

Hello Sunshine! - Interview with Virginia of roddy&ginger

Hey hey how are you? enjoying the weather? I really am, I love nothing more than having my lunch in the sunshine, catching a few freckles despite the factor 30. This week has been full of beach, picnics, paddling pools and chicken pox - not necessarily sun related but it seems much easier to deal with when the sun shines! 

So how better to celebrate the heat than getting a bit frisky, whipping off your cardigan and getting your sunglasses around this friendly sunshine:

Sun Spot Sunshine

I discovered him when I visited Virginia Armstrong's home during the Dulwich Artists Open House, and knew he had a place in my house on one of the new Ercol chairs.

Virginia's home is one of the deeply beautiful homes I visited that day, and one of the best things about it was that you could BUY HER STYLE. Or at least buy products from her brand, roddy&ginger. Her designs and illustrations complement her mid-century home perfectly. I picked up a few more of her lovely things - her hand printed half circles poster was so perfect for our spare room, that I bought two:
Sorry about the sunshine. Actually I'm not.

+ Vintage welsh blanket from ebay,
While I was there I asked her if she wouldn't mind answering a few questions for my little old blog. And you know what? she didn't, so!

CLM: Where did Roddy & Ginger begin? 
Logpile Wallpaper

VA: It began at home. I got back into screen printing about 6 years ago, took a couple of courses and grabbed our basement room for my studio space. I opened an Etsy shop at first, selling prints, bags and cushions. It evolved organically from then on. I like to try something new every year, wallpaper, house wares etc. Not always successful but always learning. I am a graphic designer and illustrator by trade so running roddy&ginger is still a bit of a sideline.

CLM: What inspires you? 
VA: Colour, pattern, vintage, nature, collecting children's illustrated books and mid-century ceramics. Living in a 'sixties house overlooking woodland is very inspiring. If my designs work in my environment then I am happy.

CLM: If your prints and products could live in anyone’s house, who would it be? 
VA: Anyone who is generous enough to want to spend money on one of my designs, I am delighted whenever I make a sale.

image: hearthome magazine Autumn 2013

CLM: Where do you shop for your home? Who are your favourite designers or artists? 
VA: I shop mostly second hand; charity shops, bootsales, flea markets, local vintage stores. Ikea for studio and kitchen basics and bits and pieces from the high street. Nothing expensive or fancy. I travel to Spain a lot and bring back glassware, ceramics and useful stuff from their excellent hardware stores. 

Stepping into a Margaret Howell shop always makes me happy, I really love their edited style. Though I would find it hard to be that pared down, I am addicted to acquiring things for the house. So much so that I have started a small prop store in my garage which gets used when I let the house as a photographic location.
Smalltown Cushions

CLM: What’s next for Roddy & Ginger? 
VA: Fabric on a roll would be nice, I am looking into it at the moment. I am also in the slow process of redesigning my website and I am going to use it as a way of tidying up my brand, editing my products and getting things consistent and integrated, a little less organic!

Thanks so much Virginia!

Buy from roddy&ginger here
Or at the Etsy shop here

These are a few of my favourite things:
Dishes Cushion in Indigo or Yellow

Smalltown Wallpaper

Pirate Screenprint
Rocking Horse Print in Olive

More amazing house. Not available on Etsy.
image: hearthome magazine Autumn 2013
image: hearthome magazine Autumn 2013

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Pinspired: 21 Ways with Watercolour at Home

Bluebellgray cushions on Ercol chairs via Pinterest

This week I'm inspired by watercolours, the washed out beauty can be seen everywhere at the moment. It's the next step on from the ombre trend, as ethereally lovely, but a bit more timeless. Not as formal as Monet, but the same essence of vibrant colour, washed out by the rain.

Here's a selection of inspiring images to see how it could work at home, and down the bottom I've brought together a collection of products you could buy to add a little delicate water wash to your house.

Don't forget, just hover over an image to see the Pin It button to pin to your own boards!

See more on my Pinterest board too: Living in a Watercolour

by Dean Crouser via Pinterest
buddha interiors on via Pinterest
Ampersand wall art on Society6 via Pinterest
Indigo Rock -20 by JenniferJennyJenJen via Pinterest

from via Pinterest
Tidal Wallpaper by Emma Hayes via Pinterest
Source unknown via Pinterest
Blue Drops from Scandinavian Wallpaper & Decor  via Pinterest
Watercolour Damask by Timorous Beasties via Pinterest
Bluebellgray cushions again, on Heart Home via Pinterest via Pinterest

1. Flamingo Cushion by Lox & Smith 
2. Blossom Bird on etsy
3. Watercolour damask by Timorous Beasties
4. Saapaivakirja Dinnerware by Marimekko
5. Eberson Rug by Designers Guild 
6. Fresco Linen Union in Lagoon by Liberty
7. Painted Garden - Sapphire fabric by James Dunlop
8. Akimbo Pillow by Eskayel

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Norwich Art Car Boot Fair - Art, Beer, Music, Yes.

So Sunday saw us doing the whole Fathers Day thing - he got a lie in until 8.30.  That IS a lie in, all Dads of under 5s will tell you. That is a lie-in the length of Frozen, so there. And then he nearly got to eat his breakfast in bed, if it weren't for the small ravenous beasts, stealing the toast and leaving crumbs on our sheets. Mmmmm crunchy.

After a lazy morning we mooched down to Norwich to visit the Art Car Boot fair at the Redwell Brewery. The scene was colourful and eclectic, the beer was plentiful, the music was cool, the food was delicious (Fathers Day meant nothing once the small girl had tried her Dad's curry from Comrades Canteen, luckily he had beer) and the people were smiley. A good choice for a lazy Sunday.

And the art, oh the art! Yes, we looked at that too. Here's my picks from the day...

Ella Goodwin - gorgeous illustrations, I thought they had a manga element to them. Take a look, especially if you like cats (you know who you are). We bought this 'Bumbelina' print for our mighty girl's room:
Image: Ella Goodwin on Etsy
Kellee Rich's pattern's caught my eye - see her Etsy shop to see the full range, some really special prints and hand painted brooches:

Image: Kellee Rich on Etsy
Fiona Gowen had some lovely maps, I'm a bit map obsessed...
Image: Fiona Gowen on Etsy

Beverley Gene Coraldean
As I said, map obsessed, I truly love what this lady does with maps, cartography on another level. Also, check out her Spiegeltent poster on her website. Octopi are cool, end of.


Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Norfolk & Norwich Open Studios

Having been along to the Dulwich Open Studios a few weeks ago, I was so pleased that the Norfolk & Norwich Open Studios happened over the last couple of weeks. And most pleased that a whole host of artists live pretty much in my back garden.

I didn't get along to as many as I'd have liked - you know, life gets in the way, it's not easy to take small people into artists studios - things are all far too interesting and artists don't generally like rugrats being inquisitive*, but here are my highlights, I really recommend you check out any open studios in your area, they are such an insight into otherwise private, and often magical spaces.

*wrecking the joint


Jules Allen
Jules Allen creates artists books, and altered or sculptural books, using a range of materials and techniques. I was particularly taken with the artist's book in the main image and above, a collaboration between the artist and singer/songwriter Marina Florance. It combined original copperplate etchings with lyrics from a CD entitled 'Fisherman' which is contained inside the cover. It really turned a book into an experience.

 The book on the right simply bursts from it's cover, adding a whole new dimension to an otherwise plain book.  See more...

A Quilt in Time
I am always amazed at the time and effort that goes into quilting, creating exquisite, beautifully finished pieces of art that beg to be lived with, not just looked at. The colour matching, the pattern planning, the stitching and the finishing take such skill, they put my efforts to shame...
This quilt was like a stained glass window. See more...

I loved the range of styles and techniques that Jane uses in her work. The little fishies that came home with me don't look so happy about it, but they reminded me of Marianne Nilsson's classic 1950's 'Sill' pattern for Almedahls, featuring herrings all in a row. 

The jugs below caught my eye too, they are slab rolled and then wrapped with wallpaper to get the leaf pattern, once removed, the texture is lovely, highlighted by a wash of blue. Gorgeous!


Hope you enjoyed these, I'm off to finish some long-abandoned projects - newly inspired!

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Geometric Living: Interview with Homes & Gardens Young Designer of the Year Lindsey Lang

I discovered Lindsey Lang at Design Junction 2013, as part of the London Design Festival. I was totally taken with her clever geometric patterns, with their nod to 60's Op art (reminding me very much of Sydney Harry), and classic Marimekko, which lift cement tiles from something functional and often mundane, to really very lovely.

Recently named 'Young Designer of the Year' at the Homes & Gardens Designer Awards 2014, Lindsey's designs decorate a gorgeous range of kitchen and home accessories, but I think they really sing on a grand scale when they are across a whole floor or wall as tiles, with really beautiful, but equally, really liveable pattern. This lady can teach everyone a few things about bringing colour and pattern into everyday living. Move over subway tiles, your time is up!

I caught up with Lindsey to ask her a few questions about her work - I think she may just have my idea of a dream life right now...

CLM: You trained as a Fine Artist, how did you make the change to surface design?
LL: Well, actually my Degree is a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Textile Design with a focus on print and weave. At the University of Kansas, they considered Textile Design to be in the Fine Art category. The thing that really changed my perspective was when I transferred to Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design and finished my degree here in London where Textiles comes more from a commercial perspective. So, the odd thing was that I landed a job in graphic design after university. After working my way up to become design director at a graphic design agency in London, I realised that what I really wanted was to go back to my textile roots and launch my own company.

CLM: What inspires you?
LL: I am constantly surrounded by loads of things that inspire me. It could be architecture, fashion, typography, vintage clothing shops, or anything and everything I see. I try my best to always keep my eyes open and stay inquisitive. My whole family makes fun of me because when I am travelling in a car or train it is as if I don't hear a thing. My mind just goes into la la land while I stare out the window for hours and drift off into imagination.

CLM: What would you dream house look like? Where would it be? 
LL: This might sound quite annoying but my husband and I are building our dream home right now! I am sure that I could dream bigger, but at the moment we are working to restore our 102 year old dutch barge which is moored on the river Thames.…2 bathroom, 2 bedroom and a life surrounded by nature in the middle of London…I couldn't ask for anything more. It is totally a building site at the moment but will be glorious when it's finished!

CLM: If your tiles or homewares could feature in anyone’s house, who would it be?
LL: Ha, I really have no idea because I love each project like it's my own… I suppose I am sort of a nerd in admitting this but, I would love it if my tiles or kitchenwares were owned by Ina Garten from Barefoot Contessa. My guilty pleasure is watching the food network and cooking delicious dishes whenever I have a spare moment.

"Make colourful meals, in a colour filled kitchen."  - Lindsey Lang

CLM: Where do you shop for your home? Who are your favourite designers or brands?
LL: Retail shops like West Elm, Selfridges, John Lewis, Heals…and if it is online shopping then I might buy from or Monoqi.

CLM: What’s next for Lindsey Lang?
LL: I am so sorry but, I can't really tell you much about anything at the moment! You'll have to stay tuned! All I can really say is that I have been working on 5 different collections in the past 3 months…all for completely different projects! There will be loads of new products by the end of this year, some of which will be launching in September during the London Design Festival at Design Junction. The brand is really expanding this year which has been very exciting. Life's good.

Exciting times, can't wait to see the new products, and I think I might just have spent my savings on

Thanks so much Lindsey!

See the full range at 



all images