Review : Copper Terrarium from The Urban Botanist

The Urban Botanist Copper Terrarium 4

I have wanted a terrarium for a long time now. What has put me off though is the fact that they are often sold empty, leaving the buyer to fill them themselves. This is all well and good assuming that you know how to fill a terrarium and what to put in it. For people like me who live one day to the next in terms of plant survival, the thought of this can be a little daunting…well no actually that’s an understatement, it’s terrifying. What if you buy the wrong soil, or the wrong plant? What if you plant it incorrectly? There are just too many variables that could lead to the demise of the poor plant and there is nothing worse than having an innocent plant perish at your hands. So this is why it has taken me so long to get a terrarium, despite the fact that I’ve always known that one would look fabulous in my livingroom. When I was offered a terrarium to review by The Urban Botanist, I seriously considered turning it down. Not because I didn’t like the products, they looked amazing. But purely because I didn’t want to fill it myself and risk having to take photographs of a dead plant. Can you imagine having to admit that the terrarium is wonderful but you can’t keep anything alive in it? What kind of review would that be? Read More…

My Mini Livingroom Makeover

Livingroom before Habitat KOTA 2 Seater Sofa Bed

I am so excited to share today’s post with you guys! Just after Christmas my husband and I decided that it was time to do a mini livingroom makeover. I say mini makeover as it was actually the first room we tackled when we moved in back in 2013 so it didn’t need much doing to it in all honesty. We were pretty happy with it, but I’ve always felt it wasn’t quite finished. We choose to paint the walls in a beautiful shade of dark green (Dulux Moss Blanket) but I was a bit apprehensive about painting all four walls in such a dark colour as it’s quite a small room and I’d only ever lived in magnolia homes before. So we opted to paint two walls green and leave two magnolia. Then in 2015, in celebration of National Wallpaper Week, we teamed up with Graham & Brown* for a decorating project whereby we used their beautiful Honolulu Palm wallpaper by Julien Macdonald* to cover one of the magnolia walls. This left us with one Magnolia wall, as you can see in the before picture above. We also had three massive canvasses hanging on this wall which we had brought with us from our previous, much bigger, home. They were too big for the space and I wanted to replace them with something more fitting. The new year provided us with the perfect excuse to make those little changes to our livingroom that we felt were really rather overdue. Read More…

Interior Trends 2016 : Mixed Metals

Copper Interior Accessories from Mia Fleur

The trend for metallics in interiors was pretty hard to miss in 2015, but it was undeniable that copper stole the show. It took a while for it to filter down to the highstreet but once it had there was no stopping it. Towards the end of the year brass started to make a bid for the crown and it shows no signs of waning in popularity in 2016. Gold has slowly started to make noise once again and this timeless classic will be making its way into our homes this year. Whilst we have previously seen trends for individual metals, 2016 heralds the age of mixed metals in our interiors. Warm metals such as copper, brass and gold can all be used together in the same interiors scheme and may even be seen alongside cooler metals such as silver or platinum, adding another layer of interest and dimension to a room. When these trends first started to appear in interiors it wasn’t easy to find affordable pieces to incorporate into our own homes, after all not everybody has the budget for Tom Dixon. However, there are now plenty of great places to source your metallic accessories and one of my current favourites is online interiors boutique Mia Fleur. Stocking a fantastic range of eclectic furniture & quirky accessories for the home & garden, Mia Fleur is definitely one to watch. Here are a few of my favourite metallic products from Mia Fleur. Enjoy! Read More…

Creating a Copper Christmas with

Copper Christmas Decorations Decorate a MantlepieceCopper has been a major trend in interiors for some time now and I still love it now as much as I did when I first noticed it. When it initially came onto the scene though there weren’t that many copper products that were available. Sure there were some really great (and really expensive) high-end homewares, but as always it takes quite some time for these trends to filter down to the highstreet and to become available at a price point that us normal folk can afford. Last Christmas, Ruth and I discussed how wonderful it would be to create a copper Christmas theme with our decoartions. Sadly though, after doing some extensive online research, we realised that copper Christmas products were simply not available yet to make this a reality. This is one of the downsides of being such a design geek; you’re acutely aware of trends before they properly take off and this can be a little frustrating. So last year I stuck with my red theme, which seriously did not look good against the backdrop of my moss green walls and I knew that this year I would definitely need to change things up a bit. So I was overjoyed when I was contacted by and asked to take part in their Christmas styling campaign. I was a little apprehensive as you all know that styling is not my forte, but I figured that the only way I’ll ever improve is through practice right? So I embraced the challenge and choose a selection of copper Christmas products that are a much better fit for our home. Read More…

Superfront Bathroom Furniture

Superfront Bathroom

I’ve been thinking about renovating my own bathroom since we moved in two years ago. I frequently see wonderful furniture and sanitaryware that makes my lust list but my teeny weeny bathroom simply can’t accommodate. But I have to say I think the new Superfront bathroom furniture is so far my all time favourite. For those of you who are not familiar with Superfront, it is a Swedish company that designs and manufactures fronts, sides and tops that fit Ikea’s most common cabinets. It makes doors for Pax wardrobes, kitchen doors and drawer fronts for Metod and Faktum kitchens, and doors for Bestå sideboards and cabinets. The fronts come with or without patterns in a number of carefully chosen colours. Superfront also supplies accessories such as handles and legs made from materials such as brass, copper, marble, birch and leather which give the finished items a really classy, not to mention expensive look.  Read More…

Lust List : Designer Kitchen Equipment

Dualit Architect Toaster & Kettle Bluebelllgray

When you have a really ugly kitchen that you can’t afford to replace I think it’s pretty standard to start looking around at all the lovely kitchen accessories that you could potentially try to spruce it up with. My constant dreams of a new kitchen have me drifting back and forth between thinking there is no point investing in lovely accessories when the kitchen itself is so hideous, and going all out on accessories to make the most of a bad situation. So with that in mind Ruth and I decided to do a round up our some of the designer kitchen equipment that is currently on our lust list. We both love the Architect range of toasters and kettles by Dualit because they have removable panels that you can get in a variety of colours. So if you decide to change the colour scheme of your kitchen you can just get new panels to ensure that your small appliance still match. Recently, Dualit have collaborated with floral home decor brand Bluebellgray to introduce the wonderfully pretty and painterly edition of the panels you can see above. This gives the somewhat masculine Architect range an instantly feminine feel and makes it a perfect addition to a more cosy, country type of kitchen. And all the other products we have featured have made the list because they are either just plain beautiful or really practical. Let us know if you think there is anything we have missed! Read More…

Take a Peek Inside Ruth’s Home

Ruth Adams The Design Sheppard Livingroom

A few weeks ago, I was contacted by Direct Blinds who asked me to take part in their new blog feature ‘Inside my Home’ where their readers are able to take a peek inside the homes of various interiors experts. Well anyone with tiny kids will know that it is almost impossible to keep your home from looking like a toy bomb has exploded and covered it in playful debris. About the only time when my home looks presentable is after 9pm once Matylda is safely tucked up in bed and all the toys are once again neatly stored in the toy box. Add to that the insane amount of baby proofing that is needed once babies become mobile, and that fact that my bedroom is midway through a makeover and only half painted, then it is obvious that my home is not particularly ready to be photographed and published. Thankfully though Ruth’s home is the exact opposite. It is beautifully decorated in her signature style and makes me want to up sticks and move in with her! It’s impressive how much she has achieved in the three short months since she bought her flat and she has some really exciting projects in the pipeline which she might share with us if we’re lucky! But for now why not hop on over to the Direct Blinds blog to read all about how Ruth has decided to decorate her home and to find out what her favourite interior trends are. Read More…

Trend : Dulux Colour of the Year 2015 – Copper Blush

ColourOfDulux Colour of The Year 2015 Copper Blush

You may remember my earlier post that featured a short video from AkzoNobel’s ColourFutures 2015 all about the colour trends we can expect to see in interiors in 2015. Well, you may or may not know that Dulux is actually the UK consumer paint brand from AkzoNobel and they recently announced their Colour of the Year for 2015. Drum roll please….’Copper Blush’! Described as a versatile, warm copper colour with an orange tone, doesn’t that just sound so divine and totally heart warming? Well, according to Dulux, the colour palette for 2015 will replace the cool blues and greens of recent years and will bring a warmer spectrum of pinks, reds and oranges, reflecting a more positive global outlook. Just what we need right? A good healthy dose of positivity! But forget waiting until 2015. I’m all over copper already and it is one of my biggest trend obsessions to date. Someone tell my husband to hide the bank card!  Read More…

Trend : The John Lewis Winter Luxe Edit

John Lewis Winter Luxe Edit 2014

In my last post I mentioned that there would be some exciting new content coming up on The Design Sheppard thanks to the involvement of my new blogging partner Ruth Adams. This is the first post that Ruth and I have worked on together and I think you’ll agree that it looks absolutely amazing. One of the things that has been missing from my blog has been original imagery created solely for The Design Sheppard. I have tended to stick to press images in the past as my photography skills were just not up to the job, but now that Ruth is on board we are able to have far more fun with our content. This is a collaborative post we have done with John Lewis to showcase their Winter Luxe Edit for 2014. Armed with a small styling budget we were able to shop the collection and set up our own styled photo shoot and I have to say I am absolutely over the moon with the results. I wasn’t sure how I would find it working so closely with someone else as it’s only been me for so long but I needn’t have worried because Ruth and I are on exactly the same wave length. Choosing which products to include in our shoot couldn’t have been easier. We loved the John Lewis Winter Luxe Edit as it encompasses the design styles and trends that we are both very fond of and would incorporate into our own homes without hesitation. So we drew up a shopping list and started to plan our little set up. Ruth shot the images in a cosy corner of her home and she did a great job on the styling, especially considering that she is currently suffering from a wrist injury and can only use one hand. Read More…

Trend : ColourFutures 2015 Identifies Copper

It’s that time of year again when AkzoNobel presents ColourFutures 2015. Around about this time every year I really look forward to finding out what colour will be announced as Colour of the Year. In this short video clip, AkzoNobel explains how this year’s overriding trend invites you to find the magic in the everyday by exploring under-utilisized spaces as well as exploring our relationships with each other and our environment. The extensive research that AkzoNobel carried out has led to the identification of an orangey copper tone for 2015 that reflects all of the major trends identified for 2015. This has made me extremely excited as I am so deeply in love with copper at the moment. It’s got so bad that for the past two nights I have had trouble sleeping as I couldn’t stop thinking about how I could incorporate more copper into my own home. I will undoubtedly be posting more about copper in the coming months and I will definitely be exploring the choice of copper as Colour of the Year 2015 in more detail. For me personally, adding copper to my interiors will certainly help me to add a little more magic (and sparkle) to my everyday. What about you guys? How do you feel about copper in interiors?

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