Friday, 31 July 2015

Brit Decor: Easy ways to style a bedroom down - with Sealy

Images (from top) / 1/ Blog Milk 2/ Aura Home 3/ B&B Italia 4/ Lovely Life 5/ Poliform

These days the style-stakes are higher than ever before in our homes; around every corner, or with every new Season, there's more inspiration waiting to pounce upon us. The notion of a bedroom being merely functional - a space to sleep and get dressed in, has long since disappeared. On the contrary, bedrooms are now places where we can read our favourite books and magazines, watch TV, or escape from other nosier zones in the home. (Maybe those of us who used to frequently skulk off to our bedrooms as teenagers, had the right idea after all...?)

However, one thing that I didn't have as a teen was the design knowledge that I have accrued today. Crucial to the success of any room design is it's ability to simultaneously deliver both style and comfort. Therefore, I have excitedly teamed up with the world's biggest bed brand, Sealy, to bring you some easy win-win tips on how to 'style a bed down' by mixing comfort and aesthetics to create the bedroom of your dreams.

There is also cause for celebration - as Sealy has recently and very deservedly won their second award from Which? magazine, for their Teramo 1400 mattress - Congratulations!

My number one mantra when styling my own home is - keep it simple. This is particularly relevant for the bedroom, which doesn't need to be overcomplicated in its design, especially if we are searching for a relaxed feel. 

However, this doesn't mean that all bright & energetic colours should be barred from the bedroom, merely their inclusion should be carefully considered and applied. Take for example the bold wide stripe duvet cover (image no.2 'above') which brings instant warmth and a fun feel. Natural cotton and linen sheets help to tone down formalities and crumpled textures can accentuate this informal style. Upholstered beds are also huge right now, so embrace textiles as your friend and invite them into the bedroom - layer up where required for maximum comfort, as in image no.7 'above'.

Achieving the correct balance of light is also hugely important. For daytime, if you can, allow as much natural light and fresh air into a bedroom to re-oxygenate and breath new life into the space. Open the windows, let the daylight  pour in and consider taking a mini-break in bed! Alternatively, introduce scented candles to suit your mood. For after-dark, apply softer lighting to help you mentally shift down a gear.

Books at bedtime are definitely not just the reserve of children - I love to see books in bedrooms, as they create a relaxed-look and are an easy means of adding subtle colour, detail and interest. Reading in bed is also a tried and tested way of winding-down before sleep, so make sure you have a good bedside table within easy reach, on which to place your book down when your eyes become heavy.

Feeling relaxed yet?

*This is a sponsored post in collaboration with Sealy 

Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Brit Decor: Loves/ Brand new Bert & May paint range!

Images / Bert & May

The iconic tile designs of Bethnal Green's very own Bert & May have long been at the top of my decorator's black book of go-to materials suppliers, so imagine my delight when I discovered that this British store will be launching a brand spanking new range of paints!

'Above' are some tantalising taster images of the new paint in its full glory, which has been created to compliment Bert & May's beautiful range of tiles, including 7 palettes in 35 colours - all in a dreamy lime-wash finish.

We know from ancient printmaking methods that lime-washing is the end product of crushed limestone which has been burnt and slaked with water, resulting in a lime putty. This is then left to mature over a number of months before it's thinned-out with water.

Lime-wash is great for that chalky, worn look, and looks incredible in old and new properties alike. The full colour range will be available in emulsion and we will be able to purchase online at Bert & May. My finger will be poised on the 'purchase' button!

RRP: 5 litres from £69.50

Monday, 27 July 2015

Brit Decor: Loves / San Giorgio hotel, Mykonos

Images / 1 / Design Hotels / 2-6 / San Giorgio Mykonos

Today I feel it's my duty as a Brit who is currently enduring, along with millions of others, a very damp July with heavy and, at times, torrential rain in many parts of the UK, to divert our attention to sunnier climbs. In fact, wherever you are in the world right now, even if it's sunny but you just can't get into your Monday, I'd like to take us all on a journey that will combine relaxed interior styling and traditional Greek sugar-cube architecture, and of course, some golden sunshine...let's kick-back.

I don't know why this trip has not yet happened, because I remind myself every year that Mykonos is on my must-see list of places to holiday, but it just hasn't materialised. Once made famous by the likes of Jackie Onassis and the world's glamour-atti, this golden island offers textbook classic architecture and styling along with some surprisingly contemporary finds too. And of course, with the current dire financial crisis gripping many of our Greek friends, little islands like this need our tourism more than ever before.

So here we are, you and I standing in the instantly soothing reception at San Giorgio Hotel, Mykonos.   The outside is a whitewash of classic Greek goodness with palms and olive trees cutting their dappled silhouettes against the white rendered sugar cube buildings. Whilst the interiors do bear the hallmarks of the grecian style, there are plenty of contemporary twists to be found in this design hotel.

Take the on-trend seat swings in the foyer, the raffia weave rugs, or perhaps the striking silhouette chairs - this hotel is not short on detail (so important in interiors styling) but it's all cleverly delivered within a neutral and calming context, one that instantly transports its guests into 'holiday mode'.

Did it work, are you feeling the holiday vibe?

I'd love to hear from you if you have visited Mykonos, where is good to go on the island...?


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