Thursday, 27 September 2012

Eyes opened

Negative space…do you know I have been reading about this for a little while and was a tad confused by the concept.  But just read a piece on Abbey Koplovitz’s blog ( and all makes sense now.  I don’t know about you guys but perhaps those of us who are not trained in such arty stuff don’t know about negative space but see it and understand it unconsciously all the time.  I now am looking around my house seeing the shapes negative space creates between pictures and objects and such.  Fascinating, my eyes are opened.  Look at this picture below and see the brilliant patterns in the negative space of this beautiful table and chairs by Riva. 
Oh how I love this stuff ……wish I never had to go back to work sometime and earn a crust as learning about all this stuff is such a luxury and feel a very lucky girl indeed to be able to do this for a short while.  I was saying to my husband this morning how there isn’t enough hours in the day for all I want to see, do and learn about interior design as it’s not just about that specifically, its where my searches take me.  One minute I’m looking for descriptions of negative space and the next I’m off on a merry tour of beautiful Italian furniture then onto Italian art and then…hay where did the day go….and I promised myself solemnly today I would finish module 1 of my assignment, hay ho tomorrow!

Monday, 24 September 2012

cushions cushions everywhere!

Blog 4
My husband is always complaining that I have bought yet more cushions into the house and what was wrong with the old ones?  He has no idea what updates a look of a room or cheap ways to change the look of a room if one feels bored with it.  It’s not the expense of new cushions but he just doesn’t understand why I may need to change something.
I don’t think it’s specifically a girl thing but it’s a him thing!  I’m surprised he even notices when new things appear around the house.  I love cushions and want to change them frequently but they are so darned expensive…well the plump, feather, snuggly, fabulous fabric ones are.  Redundancy does not stretch to buying anything right now, let alone new cushions, so when my friend replied and asked if I could look for readymade cushions I jumped at the chance to live vicariously through her wallet….yay I have an excuse to look at wonderful web sites and immerse myself into the land of lovely things!!   It is so nice to have a legitimate reason to avoid my assignment too…struggling with concept of line at the moment (never done art which might have been helpful).
Now I looked at some darn right beautiful cushions and then reeled myself back into to reality.  Said friend cannot afford silly money for cushions but I know she would want something that looks expensive but is really reasonable.  I simply could show toms of fabrics or cushions but here are just a few that I really thought would be good in said friend’s room. 

M&S do a Conran range that really smacks of luxury but not too expensive but nothing in fabric discussed although there are some lovely felt cushions in this range that can add the tonal aspect especially in grey. has some absolutely gorgeous cushions and I want them all really but the ‘Giverny’ looks simple and classy with a lush square of velvet on a linen background. is also another great site and has a quirky cushion with a pug print as said friend loves dogs.

But I think might just be the best to look at as it has so many fabrics to choose from and they make them for you at very reasonable prices (from about £15.50 onwards depending on fabric of course). 
This is a William Morris Green  Willow Bough Minor fabric which picks up on the accent wall colour

Or this one which is William Morris Lily minor fabric

This fabric above Cheret Autumn would be great on leather as said friend has ordered a new leather sofa and also would pick up the wall again.

Lastly for just plain simple white or taupe cushions The White Company have a good range of styles and textures but can be pricey but Amazon do a good cheap one which the sofa could be loaded with and then just a couple more expensive cushions can add colour, contrast and rhythm to the room.

There….foray into cushion world very much enjoyed but its back to the assignment and getting head around ‘line’. 


Thursday, 20 September 2012


Looking at fabrics today as a very dear friend of mine is re-decorating her living room and we were discussing colours.  I said I would have a scout around to give some ideas of possible fabrics for cushions.  My first thought was Liberty prints as she has a fireplace that has a distinct Art Nouveau style and this might give a little rhythm to the room.  We considered pink as an accent colour as she has Farrow and Ball Lichen on one wall and white on the rest.  The pink might just so the trick to add a little vibrancy, especially if she is bold enough to also decorate her bookcase in pink….were talking a bright pink here, not a baby pink…yuck that would be horrid.  Go to for more wonderful fabrics and there is a brilliant video about how the designers came up with their creations for A/W 12.
This one is Mauverina A Tana Lawn from the Liberty Art Fabrics collection.
And this one is Viola B Tana Lawn from the AW12 Embellishment story. This would be a bit of a curve ball as it has a dominant blue…but just maybe????
This fabric has different dimension of being cord which might add a different layer of texture and I love that idea,  Ianthe C Rossmore Cord from the AW12 Liberty Art Fabrics collection.
I love this one and again its cord, Kitty Grace A Rossmore Cord from the AW12 Liberty Art Fabrics collection
My friend is so clever with a sewing machine so making cushions will be a doddle and she could embellish (one of the continuing big trends for A/W 12) with some fab buttons from the V&A shop online ( as they have some on the theme of the ‘arts and crafts’ movement which would tie in with the prints above quite well.

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

A little light learning!

Blimey who would have thought there were so many different types of vaulted ceilings?  I have been working on my interior design assignment and started to look at the space in a kitchen I’m making observations on…Ina Garten’s beautiful kitchen in her barn designed by Robert Stillen (look at who is a genius in simple functional beauty …and looked on Wikipedia to explore more about vaulted ceilings (as you can see from the picture below the kitchen has a vast vaulted ceiling) and found out there are dome, barrel, groin, rib, fan vaulted ceilings and then goes on to describe Byzantine vaults and domes, Romanesque , Gothic and Renaissance… much to look at and learn and was only seeing if Ina’s ceiling could be described as a vaulted one!

I do like this kitchen though and love the classic Hamptons style. If I ever achieved such heady heights as an interior designer I think I would like to create spaces that evoked a laid back functional vibe like this. Hay ho….back to learning for now eh!

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Thought I would share my little journey with you.  A few months ago I was made redundant from my job as a Service manager of a Drug and Alcohol service that helps those with substance misuse issues get a little recovery in their lives. However, times are hard in the land of government funding and the mantra is 'more for less' and I was the less...booo!
I decided I needed to take a sabbatical and discover a different part of me.  I have worked for the past 20 years with substance misuse and found it challenging but rewarding.  The charity I worked for have been brilliant in allowing me opportunities to grow and develop professionally but its personal development I'm looking for now.
Having worked for so long in this field, first as a counsellor then social worker and lastly a service manager I thought I might try something a little different. I always said it was my team that were creative and I (being a systems girl) took their creative ideas and designed a system it might work in.

Did I say I am not creative...pragmatic, focused and diligent maybe but not creative. I want to change that. I must have some creative bones within me, so I'm out to find them.

I recently enrolled on a Interior Design course to kick start this process and find myself looking at books and magazines with real purpose now. Unfortunately I can't seem to stick to task on my first assignment as my research takes me wider and wider...exciting but not very good at getting my work done....ooops!

This blog is to chart my voyage, interesting to me only, I expect but one never knows.  I guess it will contain all sorts of stuff that excites me and no doubt the stuff that does not.