Bespoke Framing Service from King & McGaw

Scandi Artwork Bespoke Framing King & McGaw

I can’t believe January is almost over already, that has just whizzed by. I’m starting to worry that I’m not going to get through all my plans for my home (again) this year. There just isn’t enough time in the year. But one thing that I am going to be able to achieve is finally getting all my artwork framed. As I’ve explained before I’ve never been great at choosing artwork for my home and the fear that I will go off it has often stopped me from actually buying any in the first place. But I’ve become far more confident with my choices in the past year or so and I’ve finally invested in some really lovely pieces. Challenge overcome! Well almost. I was pretty disappointed to learn just how difficult it can be to find the right frame for your artwork. Having finally taken the leap and chosen some great art for my home, I ended up still not being able to display it as I couldn’t find a frame that was the right size or colour. It was really quite frustrating. I mean the last thing you want to do is end up having to trim down a print so that it will fit into a frame, right? But luckily, I have since discovered online art retailer King & McGaw and their bespoke framing service. Read More…

Brighten up Your Blue Monday

Blue Monday

I don’t know about you guys but it already feels like Christmas and New Year was a million months ago. As usual, once the festive dust has settled and all the decorations have been packed away for another year, we all slip back into the daily grind and winter no longer seems quite so magical without all the twinkly lights and mirror finishes. By mid January we realise we have at least another few months of this dreary weather to endure before spring arrives and it’s all made that little bit more depressing by the fact that Christmas was very costly so money is tight. It’s usually around this time also that we start to give up on those New Year’s resolutions that we were so invested in a few weeks previously. Our motivational levels start to sink and I think you’ll agree that the combination of all this doom and gloom makes us start to feel like we need to take action and start making changes. Today, the third Monday in January, has become known as Blue Monday and is allegedly the most depressing day of the year for countries in the Northern Hemisphere. But fear not, I have teamed up with the brains behind the new online paint service Dulux Amazing Space and together we can overcome the January blues and turn Blue Monday into ‘Happy Colour Monday. How can we do that, you ask? Well, the New Year is a great time to think about refreshing our home interiors and there is no simpler or easier way to do that than with a simple lick of paint to create a whole new look. Dulux Amazing Space has selected five bright and beautiful colours from the Amazing Space Paint range that they believe will give a new lease of life to our homes and help us fend off the winter blues until the spring arrives. Read More…

Review : Avvolta Kettle & Toaster by De’Longhi

De'Longhi Avvolta White Kettle and Toaster

Happy New Year lovely readers! Can I still say that this far into January? Have you all had a good start to the year and made your resolutions? I’m not one for making new year’s resolutions anymore. Every time I make them I usually find that I don’t really stick to them and the weight of the added pressure is just too much to bear. However, there are a few lessons that I learnt in 2016 that I will be taking with me into 2017 and beyond. One of those lessons is to buy high quality, well-designed products that will pass the test of time. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve always known that was the smart choice but my budget hasn’t always allowed me to do that. I think everyone knows that buying cheap products is a false economy but my generation has grown up with such a throw away culture that it has been very acceptable to buy products knowing they won’t last that long.

In 2017, I’m planning to wholeheartedly reject the notion of our throw-away society which breeds overconsumption, excessive waste and in my case unhappiness. You see I’m starting to feel suffocated by all my belongings. When you buy cheap things you tend to buy more of them and you don’t value them or treasure them like you should. Since we’ve had kids this feeling of suffocation has increased dramatically and I now feel like I’m drowning in stuff. It is such a horrid feeling and I am desperate to live a more minimal life. In fact, I am sure that this is the key to my happiness. So in 2017, I am going to focus my energy on decluttering my home and donating all those cheap impulse purchases and when I need something new I’m going to save up and buy the best quality version that I can possibly afford. Read More…

Book Review : Urban Jungle | Living & Styling with Plants

Urban Jungle Bloggers Book Cover

I hope you all had an amazing Christmas and were able to take time off to enjoy all the festivities with your loved ones. We certainly did. Christmas has become so much more fun and enjoyable since we’ve had the kids, they really do bring a sense of magic and excitement to this special time of year. As usual it all went too fast, I don’t feel like I’ve had enough time to indulge at all and I certainly haven’t eaten enough mince pies yet. In fact I’ve been really rather restrained this year, which is disappointing. But I have had a little time to relax and I’ve finally got around to reading an amazing book that has been on my shelf since about October. Today I wanted to share with you this brilliant book that has me totally inspired for the New Year.  Read More…

Made About The House Capsule Collection

Made About the House Capsule Collection by Kate Watson-Smyth for Made.com

I’ve been blogging for about seven years now and in that time I have met some absolutely amazing bloggers, many of whom I now consider to be friends. What I love most about the interiors blogging scene is how friendly and supportive everyone is. I am inspired on a daily basis by how wonderfully talented my fellow bloggers are and how well they are all doing. Many have become published authors with book deals, some have gone on to launch e-learning courses, some have founded their own print publications, some have opened their own online shops and some have gotten into TV presenting. How impressive is that? Today, I want to tell you about one of my favourite bloggers who I really admire and look up to. Her blog has won a number of awards and it’s not surprising as her wit and humour make reading her blog a sheer joy. An established journalist, she has been writing about property, interiors and design in national newspapers such as The Guardian and The Daily Telegraph, and magazines including Red, She, and Living Etc for more than 15 years, so she really knows her stuff! She recently published a book called Shades of Grey (not that one you filthy lot!) and she has now launched her own capsule collection for Made.com. There is no stopping this woman. Do you know who it is yet? I bet you do! Yes, you’re right, it’s none other that THE Kate Watson-Smyth of Mad About The House and she is here to tell you all about her new collection. Read More…

Review : Oreck Magnesium RS Vacuum Cleaner

Oreck RS Magnesium Vacuum Cleaner Review

So, hands up anyone who has heard of Oreck? Nope? Don’t worry, I hadn’t either until I became the proud owner of one of their vacuums. Now I feel like I’m part of some exclusive secret club. So anyway, I’ve had this vacuum cleaner for a little over a month now and it has revolutionised the chore of hoovering for me. We’ve already learnt here in the past that I’m not a big fan of housework. I don’t really enjoy ironing, I can’t say I’m a big fan of laundry and I’m not really one for washing up either. Well we can certainly add hoovering to the list of household chores that I dislike and while we’re here let’s put it at the top. When I first moved in with my husband and we divided up the housework, he got the hoovering, that’s how much I hated it. But why did I hate it so much? Because hoovers, whether the upright or cylinder variety, tend to be really heavy and hard to manoeuvre, which makes the task pretty damn exhausting. So that was definitely one chore I wanted to trade off right from the start. Since we’ve had the kids though, the flat is in constant need of hoovering. It’s gone from a weekly task to a multiple-times-a-day task. We previously had a Vax cylinder model, something like this, which was a pretty great hoover, but dragging it around the flat and lugging it over strategically placed stair gates was not really ideal. I ended up using a little hand-held hoover to hoover the livingroom most days. Crawling round on my hands and knees actually became preferable to getting out the big hoover, that’s how bad it was. Until we got the Oreck Magnesium RS. Read More…

Introducing the VQ Retro Mk II Emma Bridgewater DAB+ Radio

VQ Emma Bridgewater Retro MKII Polka Dot DAB+ Radio

By now you guys probably know that I’m a big fan of VQ radios. My first experience with VQ was when I reviewed the Bardot radio, which I still really like. I then wrote a whole article about how the products manufactured by VQ are designed primarily with women in mind, which is one of the main reasons why I like them so much. And earlier this year I took part in VQ’s Mother’s Day Campaign, where I wrote about VQ’s collaboration with Emma Bridgewater to introduce some fantastic designer patterns to their range. Well today I wanted to share some more exciting news with you regarding VQ and Emma Bridgewater. Read More…

Designer Student Accommodation in Newcastle

Plummer House Student Accommodation in Newcastle - Bedroom

Earlier this year I received a message from one of my best friends that I met at University. He pointed out that we’ve known each other for 16 years now. 16? What the what now? I went to uni 16 years ago? It feels like yesterday, I’m a little in shock! Then I received an email about some new designer student accommodation in Newcastle and I was even more shocked. Students these days don’t even know they’re born!! (I’m really starting to feel old now). This is the most unstudenty student accommodation I think I have ever seen. When I was a student, I had a tiny prison cell-like room that contained nothing more than a single bed, a desk and a wardrobe with a pin board on the wall above the bed. I shared a kitchen with 12 other students and a toilet, bathroom and shower room with six others. It was anything but luxurious I assure you. It was worlds apart from this amazing development in Newcastle by the UK’s leading luxury student accommodation provider Collegiate AC.

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Review : Brizebox, the Secure Parcel Delivery Box

Brizebox Secure Parcel Delivery Box

I can’t believe we are already midway through November. Christmas will be here before we know it. I’m normally really starting to stress out by this point having not even started the Christmas shopping and having no clue what I’m even going to buy. But I’ve been more organised this year. I’ve already ordered all the kids’ presents online and have them safely stored away in our bedroom. So that’s a good start. Now it’s just the rest of the family and some friends that I need to buy for. I don’t have much time to go shopping on my own so I’ll probably be getting everything online because it’s so much easier and I can get it all delivered to my home. The only problem with that is the fact that my husband is at work all day and I’m out and about with the girls in the mornings and at work in the afternoons. So there is a very high chance that I won’t be home to accept all the deliveries. Some delivery drivers will leave parcels in our porch but not all are prepared to do that as it’s not secure. My heart sinks every time I come home and find one of those “Sorry we missed you” cards on the doormat and I realise that I have to then go and collect the parcel from the post office sorting office, or worse, some main depot in Exeter, which is an hour away. Luckily though I have found a brilliant solution. Let’s take a look at the Brizebox.

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Creating a Cosy Winter Home with Cox & Cox

Create a cosy winter home with the AW16 Sage Velvet & Linen Kingsized Quilt from Cox & Cox

Velvet & Linen Kingsize Quilt

So this past weekend was bonfire night and I have to say it really feels like winter now. There is such a chill in the air and our central heating has certainly been working overtime. A few weeks ago we changed the duvet on the bed for the big 15 tog one and we are slowly starting to prepare our home for the winter months ahead. So today I wanted to share some tips with you on how you can successfully transition your home for the colder season. At the same time, I wanted to introduce you to some wonderful new products from the AW16 Collection at Cox & Cox that will help you to create a cosy winter home that will keep you feeling all snug and comfy in the coming months.

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