Friday, 27 April 2012

blinded by the white

Have you been watching The Voice?  Each Saturday I suffer Jessie J and that bloke off of The Script's odd gurny approval face for Love. Him.  I want to be his friend really badly.  I'd like to take him to the pub, I reckon he'd be a hoot.  Perhaps we'd become besties and he'd give me a lend of his natty gloves...sorry, where were we?

The Voice yes.  Allanis is getting amongst it and would now like to be known as  (I mean, I ask you...)  And he keeps banging on about how people who watch the show at home do a thing where they turn their chair round when they like someone.  Or something.  Does that make sense to you?  I don't get it.  All I could think when he was trying to explain it to me for the 100th time was that most people have sofas and armchairs in their living rooms and how are you supposed to turn those round several times in an hour.  Well, how?  I am over thinking this?  Oh.

Well, we were bickering about this and I was rolling my eyes and Allanis - sorry - was doing a lot of sighing when he said "Well since we're talking about the sofa, I think we should get a new one." I'm sorry what?  W w w what?!  I have been after a new sofa since we moved to No 74 but I thought there was no chance!   And we're actually in agreement! You see here is the problem.  This is our sofa.  And the rug.  Hi sofa, hi rug!

It's great.  I love it.  But I love it in our old flat where we had really light coloured herringbone parquet and where light flooded in and the room was generally bright and airy.  Our new living room is very brown as I said the other day.  And dark.  And the big expanse of dark and brown leather isn't helping matters.  But we really like it so it's a tricky one.  I have tried chucking throws on it to brighten is up but they don't tend to work as well with leather, keep falling off and what not.  And frustratingly the leather has got better with age and is just at the right level of 'battered' that we wanted in the first place. If I could move it into another room I would.  So what to do.  We're going to stick it on eBay with a good reserve and if we make that we'll get a new one.  If not it stays and we just suck it up and keep the lamps on.

This is the sofa we'd really like...

It's ridiculously comfortable.  But it's purple and dark and so does not solve the problem so it's a no go.  You know what we have to do don't you?  Go lighter.  And if I'm going to go lighter it's going to have to be white.

I saw this and now I'm a bit obsessed.

If the covers are washable / replaceable and I use throws and cushions it'll be all right won't it.  Won't it?  You're not convinced this is going to work with The Baby are you?

Look, these happy people have two kids that were The Babies once and they're still smiling.  Or are they grimacing?  Is the guy hauling that wee boy off at the back to get the Vanish stain remover...?

Oh it will be fiiiine.  I'll hide the Ribena and crayon stains with the millions and millions of cushions that we appear to own a la..

And it'll work as a great blank canvas for some more colour to perk things up a bit...

It'll work.  Trust me. (Famous last words.)  Have a great weekend loves.  x

{images via 1. unknown, 2. me, 3. habitat 4. Blackbird, 5.Residence, 6. Domino 7. Residence}

Thursday, 26 April 2012

wonderwalls (II)

I have had a really busy day (drinking coffee with a fabulous girlfriend, a bit of shopping and then a bonkers bath time with The Baby where he giggled crazily at his reflection in the taps for about ten full minutes and then started drinking the bath water, BUSY.) Allanis is out on the tiles and I have just fixed myself a healthy and nutritious meal (spaghetti hoops on toast...whaaaaat?!) and I was catching up with some blogs, thinking I might turn in for the night early, read my book if I can stay awake long enough and I stumbled across this...

It's only a bloody room with hand painted wall paper.  Seriously.  This has been done by a woman who has kids and runs her own business and did this in the evenings.  IN THE EVENINGS!  I have had a very undemanding day and I can only muster the energy for thinking about going to bed. How much of an underachiever do I feel now?  I'm going to nails.  Nail painting I can do.x

{images via Design Sponge}

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

a miami vice

So, I said that the whole plan for the bedroom had changed.  And in this post I said that the inspiration for the new plan was pretty much down to a tray, a directors chair and a picture hanging in my mate Jilly's living room.  Well ta-daaaaa!  Here is that picture.  In actual real life it's massive and it draws me in every time I see it.  And whilst one drawing in espisode it got me thinking.  Doing the house up means we can't afford to take a proper holiday this year so I want our bedroom to provide a bit of escapism.  I am going to make our bedroom a hotelly bedroom.  Bring the hotel to the us sort of thing.  Here's the mood board inspiration of  where we're going with this.  Where are you going with this Hayley you ask? Well, we're going to Miami dolls...

I want to keep things clean and pristine.  This little lady is the embodiment of my room.  Fresh, white with a (I don't want to say it but look, it is what it is...) pop of colour and gold.  We have a huge brass bed that I am in love with and is staying along with an knackered but beautiful gilt mirror that had Allanis peplexed when he first saw it ("are bits supposed to be crumbling off it like that?").  That crumbly gilt will look even more amazeballs juxtaposed with the clean modern lines of the rest of the furniture.

I want some puddly linen curtains at the bay but lined with blackout fabric.  We had white linen curtains at our old flat and they looked nice but 4am in the summer?  PING.  Awake.  I will not allow that to happen now. Noooo way siree Bob.  I am trying to convince my Mum to make them for me.  (Hiiii if you're reading this.  You didn't just see that.  Love you!)

I also wouldn't mind a sheepskin rug or two.  I once went shopping with my fabulous friend TQ, who looking through a pile of sheepskins declared them all "nice, but too small...I want a reeeeally big one."  I pointed out that they only came in one size, that being 'sheep'.  I think she's still a bit disppointed to this day.  I wish they came in Really Really Big Sheep size too to be fair.

Eventually we'll get a sofa to fit in the bay.  I always had a sofa in my bedroom when I lived at home which made me and my mates feel cosmoplitan when drinking vile Bulgarian red before a night out.  I like sofas in bedrooms, it encourages you to use the room a lot more. I think we shoud all do a bit more hanging out in our bedroom like teens but sans the crap wine.

We need a full length mirror.  At the moment I can only see what I look like by leaping about in front of the one in the dining room.  Life cannot go on like this.  I am going to go myself a mischief one of these days trying to check the length of a trouser or what not.  I would like just a clean sheet of mirror.  Nothing fancy.  Just BANG, you want a mirror? got a mirror sort of thing.  I'd like a bit of greenery in there too.  I moved a palm from the living room next to my bed  (I mean it's practically Miami already loves) and we have a jolly nice orchid but all that white is going to need some breaking up.

This is the directors chair.  It was the studding that made me think I'd go along the lines of a screen to conceal the hanging rail instead of looking for a wardrobe.  I'm going to use a linen again and toughen it up by hammering in some hardcore embellishments around the screen's edges so it doesn't look too chintzy.

Like this.  But not a screen not a headboard.  So nothing much like that, but do you see sort of that I mean?

Then there's more.  Baddabing....

Ooooh!  Niiice.

And some punchy abstracts to lift the white.  I really wish I could paint and I could do my own artwork.  Damn it.

And then to complete the whole thing on a like, totally aesthetic level I'll have this by my bedside ready for when I wake every morning please.  (Can someone have a word with Allanis for me...ROOM SERVICE!!)

There will be more on this bedroom.  I can feel it.  Night loves. x

{images via: 1. my mate jill's iphone,  2. A Piece of Toast, 3. Casa in Style , 4. Fjellby 5, 6 & 7. forgotten source, 8. The Decorista, 9. Fantastic Franks}

Monday, 23 April 2012

it takes all sorts

Well helloooo!  What's that?  Yes, I do rather have a swagger on today now you mention it.  Why?

Negotiating teetering piles of clothes in our bedroom?  Over.  Finished.  Done!

Allanis went forth last week to Ikea and bought these badboys.  No, they don't fit in with my initial plan to furnish the bedroom with one offs that I sought out at antiques fairs but what can you do?  No one wants to sell me really inexpensive one offs these days and my time is limited and I am short of patience when it comes to any unnecessary chaos in our house. So I have changed the complete design for the bedroom, simple as that.  Sometimes plans just need to be rethunk.  And these little beauties are going to do me proud until such a time that I have the money and the inclination to head off antiquing often enough to find a bargain or two.  I am actually rather fond of them already.

They are of course the ubiquitous Malm drawers.   I have topped them with glass which makes them look just that little more finished.  And they are HUGE.  Everything is away.  I couldn't be happier.
I was having a quick look at the Ikea website to check measurements when I saw this:
HOLD THE PHONE! I thought...HOLD. IT.  It's only a flipping Weinrib lookalike at exactly the sort of price I want to pay for a black and white rug to brake up the overwhelming brownness in our living room.  Champion!

Now, if you haven't heard of Madeline Weinrib she designs absolutely gorgeous textiles...

You see:

aaaaand you see.  Yes?

I even love her velvet Ikats (and that's not something you'll hear me say often)...

And Ikea's inspiration in situ...

I am a bit funny about carpets and rugs, I hardly ever like any. Straight up.  But sadly my rug crush is an atelier which = ££££'s so the Ikea version is the closest I was going to get.  I checked stock lists and Wembley had one.  ONE.  And for this mission Allanis had to go it alone.  Me, him, The Baby, massive set of drawers and a big rug wouldn't fit in our car so I gave him a list and instructions that "if you're not sure about anything find a nice friendly looking lady and hand her the list darling won't you..."   Balancing The Baby one one hip I hugged him at the doorway and whispered lovingly in to his ear "Come back with that rug.  DO NOT let me down."  The Baby and I gave him a look that assured him we meant business and off he went.  That ONE rug was on display.  Allanis had chaps unclipping it from the rafters,checking it for damage and rolling it up but he got it.  He is my hero.  I love it.  I love him.  I love the chaps that pulled it down from the rafters.  The living room was a sea of brown, brown leather sofa...dark brown wood flooring, painted wicker coffee table broooown but now it has been broken up by a giant liquorice allsort rug. Bravo. x

{images via: 1. me, 2. ikea, 3, 4, 5 & 6. Madeline Weinrib, 7. From the Right Bank, 8. me.}

Friday, 20 April 2012

let's go outside

I am torn loves.  I am caught between being delighted that it keeps POURING down because it's fantastico for the turf that we had laid a month or so ago, and feeling a bit antsy because The Baby and I are a bit restless.  We like to get out and do big walks and instead we are stuck indoors.  The Baby is getting by OK by driving about in his new car* and whooshing in to my ankles at every available opportunity but I can't fit in his car sooo, you know...bored now.

Anyway.  We had some turf laid by a very lovely gardener who did a top job and then then oof!  Hosepipe ban.  Great!  Nothing like paying a wodge of money to watch some new grass wither and yellow and whisper weakly at you to water it is there?  I was having none of that so equipped with my trusty teeny tiny watering can I have tended to that flipping grass for weeks.  I have Northern grit, I shall not be deterred by bans.  And it is doing very nicely but what now?  Allanis and I are actually rubbish at gardening.  We haven't got a clue. We excel at barbecues and quaffing Prosecco outdoors but plants?  No idea.  And of course we have 'problematic soil' according to the gardener. Pah.

I have been working on inspiration for the garden but it would seem that I have pretty much focused on seating.  And not a lot else. That'll be the Prosecco on the mind loves. Anyway, as it's a bit naff outside here we go.  The sun will come back at some point. It must!  Until then let's just look at what could be shall we?

An outdoor nook.  Even small outide spaces can make themselves available for Prosecco.  Thank you small spaces.  Bravo.

I really like a roof terrace.  I always feel as though I shouldn't be up there and that I'm living dangerously.  (Can you tell I'm the sort of person who loathes extreme sports and general risky risk taking from that comment? You'd be right.)

This is the sort of vibe I'd like for No 74.  I shall casually a Hermes throw on the back of my chair too.  In my dreams.

Ooh shaded dining?  Yes please.

And this.  It's all about this in summer.  Beautiful. 

The Ikea Mission full report next week peeps!  Have a great weekend loves. x

{images via: 1. forgotten source, 2. Rue, 3. forgotten source, 4. Haute Mama's Faves,
5. Casa in Style, 6. forgotten source.}

* Of course it's not an actual CAR you see.  It's a walker car...thing.  

Thursday, 19 April 2012

simple minds

It has been one of those days loves. One of thoooooose.  I'll spare you the details but Allanis and I just had dinner and the final line of my summary of the day for him was ..."and anyway, that's why the car smells like...that."  Just to give you the general idea.

In addition to an armoatic car situ, there is a lot of to-ing and fro-ing going on at No 74 at the moment.  Furniutre is being moved around, I'm planning my new paint jobs (living room furniture for which I need the sun because they can only be done in the garden) and a mega Spring clean. Allanis also did an Ikea dash (alone - oh how I feared the worst but he didn't let me down) and we now have more storage than we know quite what to do with. JOY! More on that when I haven't had a day like today.

In the interests of calm, let's look at some gorgeous images which are an ode to simplicity.  Clean lines, uncluttered spaces and most importantly on a day like today...unchaotic.

Are you settled?  Ready?  You have a drink there, you're comfy?  OK then, let's...

Would you take a look at this? I would like to shake the architects by the hand. And then move in. Full on glass done well is always a winner with me.

Sparse and raw dining...annoyingly I can't remember where this is.  I adore those chairs.

Aggghhhh!  I mean, really.  REALLY. No 74 could do with one of these bad boys for our living room bay.  I'm staring at my screen and sighing.  Leave it Hayley.  Leeeeave it.

I don't like the botanical prints so much, but as a grouping this works.

These tiles are what I was after before Dermot and his girlfriend convinced me on my beval.  I really like the way they catch the light.  I could really do with that exact mirror for our bathroom which is annoying.

Woah.  Dream shower room.  BOOM.

The magnifique Ms Alt.  Keeping it simple.  Zut alors, she's chic.

An simple pony.  Why do my ponys never look like this?  Mine droop.  Or they make my actual hair hurt.  Seriously.  How can that even happen?

And finally this. Bed.  Which is where I'm headed...

...Night y'all. Wish me luck with the situ yeah?
{images via: 1. Homes & Interiors, 2. Haute Mama's Faves, 3. Rue, 4. Atlanta Homes, 5 & 6. Fantastic Frank,
7. forgotten source, 8. This is Glamorous 9. Coco & Kelly}

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

do as you're told

I keep seeing a lot of instructive decor.  You know the kind of thing.  Wall lettering telling us to

and what not.  Sleep spelt out above a bed.  Bathe adorning the wall above the tub.  You can see where I'm going with this.  There's nothing wrong with these little instructions, I just wonder if we should have a look at something new a bit different loves?  We managed perfectly well before them didn't we so why don't we try 

You what?!  You're asking.  I mean, get us some

for our walls that just says stuff, rather than telling us what we should be doing and where.  Do you feel the same or are you wondering Hayley...

Oh.  Well I am loving a bit of neon signage.  In fact I'm going to suggest to Allanis that we should

I'll tell him it'll be perfect for

and then I'll say Allanis...

and give him a

and if I'm

he'll agree and we'll
Oh.  Bugger, we've had that.  It's getting tricky now.  Well anyway I'd like some neon in my life.  I'd also like to take a trip to err,

Or...something.  Or perhaps we'll

What?  What does that say?  Err, we could

WHAT?  What even is that word?  Louli? I'm floundering and it started so well.  Anyway, let's just

a bit more creatve with our words is all I'm suggesting.  And if we

with our neon we could just have a peace sign or a cross that look nice. 

Or a neon bedroom!  No not a neon bedroom.  Limits loves.  There are limits.

 {1. Cox & Cox, 2. Apartment 34, 3. forgotten source, 4. casa in style, 5 & 6. Not on the High Street - The Letteroom, 7. fjellby, 8. forgotten source, 9. fjellby, 10. casa in style, 11. the decorista 12. megsays, 13 14 15 & 16. forgotten source}