Friday 17 April 2015

B r i t D e c o r : Outdoor Living/ Simple

Here in the UK many of us have been well and truly awakening from the slumbers of Winter to embrace what is becoming an exceptionally mild Spring. My friends in the capital (London) and the Southeast corner are typically the first to feel the benefits of warmer temperatures as Spring fever takes hold and everyone, or at least most of us, heads outdoors - it's our prerogative as human beings, right? 

Talking of natural instincts, the gardeners amongst us will already have been hard at work preparing and tending to their very own gardens of Eden, however big or small. In tandem with this very practical side to outdoor life,  for the style-conscious amongst us, there's also the uber-important issue of aesthetics as we look ahead to those Al Fresco moments and the indulgence of affording the time for a moment (or two) of lounging in the sun. 

For those of us who have access to outdoor space at home, whether it's a balcony, courtyard or full-on estate, now is the perfect time to re-assess how this area will be used over the Summer months. The  first question to ask is what will the primary focus of my outdoor experience be? For some, it's all about horticulture and creating an oasis of style through planting, whilst for others there may need to be a more practical focus with, for example, a child friendly scheme. And then there's outdoor entertaining which will often require some kind of seating and a table. 

Once you are clear about your needs, it's much easier to decide upon and deliver the style-factor. In the first part of a series of features on Brit Decor, I will be focussing on some of the latest style-trends for outdoor living this Summer, beginning with today's 'Simple Style' for that raw natural look - with an edge!

Graphic copyright of Mike Ahern

1. Shower towel £12.99 H&M Home
2. Terracotta plant pot £22 House of Hackney 
3. Concrete tea-light holder £15 An Artful Life
4. Cotton cushion cover £12.99 H&M Home
5. Natural fibre lanter £39.99 Zara Home
6. Dark grey plastic pitcher £6.99 H&M Home
7. John Vogel teak lounger $1019 West Elm (coming to UK soon!)
8. 14s wall/ceiling light £396 (pair) twentytwentyone

Monday 13 April 2015

B r i t D e c o r : Photojournal / Bath

All images copyright of Mike Ahern

Yes it's been a while since my last post and I really have missed you! Why so quiet? I took some time out over the Easter break to work, rest and play, which included redecorating my lounge at the cottage (more to come on that at a later date) and restoring a salvaged Victorian fire surround. 

Once again, taking time out from the 'normal' routine showed me that I still have some way to go in order to stop working quite so hard, and to know when to slow things down - a lot! When I'm at home I am at my most relaxed, however, it is during these times of relaxation that I begin to compile a mental to-do list which reads like a novel. 

But wait, there's hope! I find that creating my own distractions can offer the perfect antidote to this sometimes frenzied workaholism, so with this in mind I recently set off into Bath with @simonwatsonpt, camera in-hand, and with a spring in our step. 

Because I have spent much of my life living in or around this World Heritage city, I do sometimes take both its Georgian grandeur and rich history for granted by assuming that everyone else has seen it too. So over the next few weeks, I will be sharing some of the sights with you, yes YOU, through my eyes so we can explore Bath together.

So here's to us all finding new and exciting distractions...

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