Last summer, back in the days when life was still ‘normal’ and we thought nothing of getting in the car and going places (remember those days?), we went to visit Holyrood Architectural Salvage in Edinburgh looking for something for the garden. As we were wandering around, I spotted an array of vintage tiles that were arranged by pattern in small batches, and as I was looking at them, admiring their rich hues and retro feel, I was wondering what someone might use them for. As that’s a problem when considering period tiles: finding enough of the design or style you want to work for the project you might have in mind.
As we find ourselves in week four of the UK’s lockdown, knowing that there will be more weeks stretching ahead – and many more with some level of restrictions even once this lockdown has been eased – I realise that I feel very differently about my home these days. I appreciate it differently. I’ve always appreciated it. The recession taught me never to take home for granted – indeed, my youth taught me this – but still, my perspective has shifted. I’m glad that I don’t live in the city any more; that I can walk to our local beach or around the ash lagoons, a place where I walked as a child, when the landscape looked very different, and that I’m rediscovering now, unexpectedly. I’m so glad that we have a garden, even though it’s tiny, as that slice of outdoor space has never felt more important. Just knowing you have some space beyond your walls.
And when I’m scrolling through interiors, while I’m always drawn to spaces that exude an uncluttered sense of calm, I’m also looking at houses that I could imagine escaping to. Places that are connected to nature in some way.
For every incredible house I come across, I’m always just as inspired when I encounter a smaller property that’s been really well thought out and designed. Indeed, living in the city means I tend to gravitate towards smaller properties – the quirky flats and fantastic mews buildings that have clever spatial design. When you look at more compact properties, so often there’s a poky internal kitchen or an even smaller and gloomy internal bathroom (my pet hate), or the flow of space is just a bit… odd.
Which brings me to this garden flat in London’s Kensal Rise – a one bedroom property where every inch of space has been considered and packed with great styling, and where the layout has been reworked to create a flow of space from the entrance right through to the rear garden.
I’ve been doing some online research recently looking for interesting holiday homes, and I realised that this is one feature that I haven’t covered on the blog: holiday homes, cool hotels, Airbnbs – just amazing places to stay combined with cool and quirky finds. So I’ve added a new STAY category to the blog and thought I’d kick off this theme with a hotel that I would love to escape to: the Hotel Henriette in Paris.
Do you ever come across a photo and it just sticks in your mind? I felt this way when I spotted this apartment posted by Dustjacket Attic on Tumblr. There was just something about that combination of parquet flooring (a lasting obsession) and dado panelling, combined with the classic Mies van der Rohe daybed and the rather glamorous drinks trolley, and how this elegant combo is offset by the contemporary abstract painting. It’s a great mix. Continue Reading…
A few weeks ago I posted about this compact and clever urban house in Victoria called Lightbox, which has been shortlisted in the Residential Category in this year’s Australian Interior Design Awards. Needless to say, perhaps, this wasn’t the only project to have immediately caught my eye while scanning through the images of the shortlisted projects on the AIDA website. This project, called Swinging Seventies (great name, right?), literally popped out from the screen, thanks in no small part to the fantastic images by Derek Swalwell. Continue Reading…