Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Brit Decor: Kitchen Clever/ Love Your Lighting









Never underestimate the saying, the devil is in the detail'. It's a phrase which has remained emblazoned on my mind ever since the heady heights of my university days, when a wise lecturer once imparted what I now know to be an invaluable piece of creative advice. How so...?

When it comes to planning and designing any room (today we're honing in on Kitchen lighting with the folks over at Homebase), it's easy to focus purely on the larger headline grabbing items such as those all-important kitchen units, an all-singing all-dancing extractor hood, or perhaps an American-style double refrigerator? The list of potential hardware and 'bling' goes on, and rightly so.

keep on scrolling downward...








However, neglecting to give the finer details, such as lighting, full consideration during the planning and design stages, can result in a lacklustre scheme which may not deliver quite the wow factor you were hoping for.

It's not only about that incredible jaw-dropping feature light (although I'm the first to swoon over one of these), but investing some serious thought process into task and mood lighting will pay dividends by enhancing the overall design of your kitchen.








If there's a particularly beautiful design element to your kitchen, consider using lighting to 'signpost' visitor's gazes to the features that you most want to show off. For those culinary kings and queens amongst us, adding task lighting, which emits adequate light for prep and cooking, is crucial and downlights & spots are best for the job.











Whilst task lighting tends to be light & bright, for obvious reasons, it's good to consider including some ambient lighting too. Under-cupboard strip lights and floor lighting can, at the flick of a switch, totally transform a kitchen into a far more relaxed space.

You can emphasise the chilled-out vibe with the help of less intense, lower wattage lighting. In terms of colouring, look at either cooler or warmer hues, which is as easy as selecting the right shade of lightbulb, literally!












If like me you are an avid collector of beautiful ceramics and glassware, consider applying some subtle lighting to cast a gentle spotlight on your favourite things in the kitchen. This will not only create an eye-catching feature, it will also add a personal touch.












A key trick to help you achieve the dream kitchen that you've always wanted is to actually visualise the finished scheme, in daylight AND after dark, which will ultimately aid the process of choosing the most appropriate lighting.













This post about kitchen lighting is kindly sponsored by Homebase so please take a peek at their full range of lighting!

Images (from the top) 1/ Decor Pad 2/ SFGirlbybay 3/ Coffeey Architects 4/ Desire to Inspire 5/ My Scandinavian Home 
6/ Studio Karin 7/ Sustainable Kitchens 8/ Decoist




Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Brit Decor: Palette Perfection/ Green Kitchen Crush










Green is most definitely here to be seen.

In recent months there's been a noticeable and, in my opinion, a welcome influx of green palettes filtering through into our kitchens. In the true spirit of caring and sharing here on Brit Decor, I've picked out some of my favourite green schemes to show just how effective this colour can be, in what is the hub of many people's homes. Just scroll down for more inspiration... 

Technologies and increased competition amongst suppliers has opened up a larger spectrum of colours and materials to the wider public than ever before - yep I think we are truly spoiled for choice! From pale through to deep greens, there's a shade for every occasion.

Green is the perfect partner for rich wooden detailing (think of a forest setting), whilst elegant materials such as marble, offers a far more luxurious mix. However, rather than limit myself to just one shade of green, I would be inclined to pair one light and one dark hue to create a dynamic duo of colour. For example, richly dark moss-coloured floor units crowned with refreshing peppermint green wall cupboards would just about hit the spot!











































Images (from top) 1/ Cote Maison 2/ Standaard.be 3/ Love Cooking Neff 
4/ Apartment Therapy 5/ Fiona Lynch 6/ Desire to Inspire 7/ SFGirlByBay
8/ Wolfgang Stahr 9/ MyDomaine 10/ Emmas Blogg.se


Wednesday, 14 September 2016

Brit Decor: Slumber Style/ 7 Ways to Style Yourself to Sle












Sleep, or lack of, is a topic close to my heart lately. With a stop-start-stop house purchase and moving saga currently playing out, it's been a tough few weeks and my sleep is always the first thing to suffer during periods of stress. 

My own erratic sleep patterns aside, whether you're a fellow insomniac or not, there are some simple styling tricks that we can all apply to our bedrooms to help plump up the quality of our slumber, and make bedtime a genuinely indulgent experience.

Scroll down for some incredibly simple styling tricks to get your sleep & style on track.

Sweet dreams!

This post is kindly sponsored by the folks over at Button & Sprung. Please hop on over to their online store to browse for the perfect night's sleep www.buttonandsprung.com






It's not all about visual aesthetics, scents can also influence the way we feel about a space. From room mists and body lotions, to scented candles, and even a favourite fabric conditioner, find a scent that soothes your senses.







Houseplants are frequently overlooked when styling bedrooms. Not only do plants nurture a calming environment, they literally breath life onto a room. If you want to introduce an added twist, opt for a scented leaf such as geraniums, which come in an amazing array of flavours including, cinnamon, lemon, chocolate and lavender.








Crucial comfort comes in the form of a damn good mattress! Neglecting to renew a mattress is tantamount to neglecting ourselves, in particular, our backs.  With a mattress to suit everyone, there's no excuse not to seek out the perfect match - visit a specialist showroom like Button & Sprung, who sell pocket sprung mattresses and a huge selection of quality beds, including a 100 night free returns policy.







Colour therapy really works - greens are traditionally very soothing. Just tweak the colour volume to increase the amount of light/darkness that best suits your bedroom. Darker shades tend to have an all embracing and comforting affect on the senses.









I guess the 'book at bedtime' approach is instilled into many of us from infancy. Many sleep experts recommend 20-30 minutes of reading before we bed down for the night. A beautifully bound book, or two, also looks 'the part' and is a favourite interior styling trick applied by many designers. 









Lighting and it's technological reaches are wider and more impressive than ever! As well as all -important task lighting for reading and beautifying ourselves, among other things, think about including gentler mood lighting to help induce a sleepy scene.






They say 'nature knows best' so why not cocoon ourselves in beautiful textiles, like a chrysalis!? I always layer from the back of a bed, starting with the headboard and moving forwards with a selection of pillows, cushions and finishing up with a throw at the foot of the bed, all with the softest fabrics I can get my hands on for maximum comfort. 


Images (from top) 1/ A Gentlewoman 2/ Sheerluxe 3/ Pop & Scott
4/ Button & Sprung 5/ My Scandinavian Home 6/ Style & Create/ Anna
7/ Fernandoalda 8/ The Design Files










Sunday, 4 September 2016

Brit Decor: Weekend Wandering/ Frome











Indie lifestyle stores are definitely on the Up!

Having had a couple of weeks away from the hustle and bustle of busy work schedules and easing off the gas pedal to bring my body's engine down to a gentle purr, we managed to take several road trips to help blow away the cobwebs and distract ourselves from the stresses of selling our cottage and buying a new home (aka 'The Project').

Whenever time permits me, I love to take the short drive east across the Somerset countryside to the small market town of Frome. Here, I always feel at home mooching around the independent shops with a freshly made coffee, each store is like a treasure trove filled with goodies.

One day I will make a more comprehensive list of notable stores to visit in Frome, but today I couldn't resist sharing some pics of my visit to menswear and homeware store, Assembly, and the newly opened Resident.

Owner of Assembly, Anthony, is a gent with an acute eye for style and always dresses the store to perfection, currently adorned in a gorgeous blue/grey, which immediately feels very welcoming and cocooning with some added industrial twists. 

Resident is the sister store of the incredible Electrical Shop, and this gem of a homeware & lifestyle shop, is filled with a wealth of must-have accessories for the home, stylishly curated by owners James & Greg.

Naturally I couldn't walk away from either store empty handed, so I picked up several really cool items for our new home, just as soon as we are able to move in!









































All Images / Mike Ahern
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