THE NED- RECREATING THE LANDMARK'S OLD SCHOOL CHARM

The Ned is the place to be in London right now. It's got that Soho House buzz that Nick Jones has a magic for creating. A killer combination of decadence and breezy laissez-faire, it's a setting where despite the grandeur one feels it would be rude not to let one's hair down!

In the spirit of Lutyens era loveliness I've created a beguiling Ned influenced look to inspire you to add a bit of Edwardian meets deco charm to your home. Read down for my tips and a special deal for stays booked at the hotel over the summer.

AND SO TO BED...

UPHOLSTERY FABRIC

The bedrooms feature an array of sumptuous fabrics in autumnal colours, including a few sensuous Art Nouveau prints.

To recreate the look, you could try R. Beauclair's  iconic Ianthe linen, designed in approximately 1900 and still as lovely as ever. Ianthe is Greek for purple or violet flowers, suggesting that the flowers in the design may have originally been drawn from violets.

£75 per metre- Liberty London

£75 per metre- Liberty London

If you wish something even more sumptuous, you could try Liberty's Shand Voyage in velvet. The print was inspired by a hand-painted shawl from The Liberty Archive, originally created in the mid-19th Century when paisley production increased in the UK and France, to meet the demand for all things oriental.

Shand Voyage was inspired by the 'Secret Garden' and was designed to represent Mary's journey across the ocean, from India to Yorkshire. Adorned with wild ferns and leaves, concealing a beautiful paisley, it symbolises the secret door behind which Mary discovers the Secret Garden.

£120 per metre- Liberty London

£120 per metre- Liberty London

COCKTAIL HOUR..."What one needs is some kind of a party that starts at half-past five"

What better way to usher in the evening than to mix a cocktail and recline on a plump velvet sofa, before heading to supper? It's those little rituals of a bygone time that are mostly forgotten and usually only revived when we spend a weekend away, that make life that much more enjoyable. To introduce a bit of Gatsby era sophistication to your home a proper cocktail cabinet, as opposed to a bar cart, is the connoisseur's choice...and so much more room for all of those delicious libations!

COCKTAIL CABINETS

For serious deco enthusiasts it would be hard not go all weak at the knees over this 1930s Odeon Cabinet with its Rubenesque curves and contrasting walnut veneers.

£1,350- 1st Dibs

£1,350- 1st Dibs

If space is a problem but deep pockets are not, then Linley's bijou cocktail box would be a small but perfectly formed additional to any city pied a terre or bachelor pad. Handcrafted in dyed charcoal veneers of rippled sycamore and highlighted with mother of pearl dots its craftsmanship speaks for itself and would be certain to encourage decadent afternoons sipping pre-pranials!

£16,000- Linley

£16,000- Linley

BATHING BEAUTY

Screen Shot 2017-06-06 at 09.45.13.png.jpg

And after you've been fed and watered, where better to see to your evening ablutions than reclining in a gigantic tub full of scented bath oil? If space permits, a comfy slipper chair and oriental rug invite perching so you can be read a bedtime story before lights out.

FREE STANDING BATHS

Drummonds cast iron Bute bath has a very similar look with a hand-finished steel skirt wrapped around it that can be custom finished in a kaleidoscope of colours. A little more masculine in shape compared to the traditional claw footed, roll top bath, it has a striking simplicity that would look equally at home in a more contemporary bathroom.

£4,985 (exc. VAT)- Drummonds

£4,985 (exc. VAT)- Drummonds

For the ultimate Edwardian bathing experience, Catchpole & Rye's copper bateau harks back to a time when one bathed in front of fires and copper baths had to be light, so that they could be easily carried from room to room. Available in a 2m length, it's large enough for two making it ideal for a romantic ensuite. And for those who are blessed with long limbs, there's the option to have an even roomier bespoke bateau made to fit your proportions. 

£5,000 (exc. VAT)- Catchpole & Rye

£5,000 (exc. VAT)- Catchpole & Rye

LAST BUT NOT LEAST...

If you quite fancy all of this but don't wish to commit to giving your home The Ned treatment just yet, get in touch for a special rate and gift for any stays booked at the hotel this summer.

Please share, comment and get in touch if you have any questions!

Love,

xAx

Poetry, Rabbits & Mothers Day- A Special Mural for a South London Family Home

There are many things I get excited about when beavering away in the studio but creating something unique for my clients that will be appreciated and treasured is probably the most fulfilling of them all. In the spirit of Mother's Day here's a short story about an 11 year old girl called Bea and her mother.

Back in October last year I began a new project for a bohemian family home in South London. My first brief was to create a magical bedroom for a bright as a button girl called Bea who loves books and animals in equal measure.

When I asked Bea's favourite book her mother gave me a copy of Flora & Ulysses, a tale of a girl and a wise, poetic squirrel. Bea had run downstairs to her mother after reading a verse within it proclaiming "I've found a poem and it's all about you!"

I knew I wished to incorporate this special poem into the room and got in touch with the talented artist Diane Hill to collaborate together to produce a mural for Bea's bedroom. As well as Ulysses the squirrel, Diane painted 'Peanut' Bea's adorable miniature lion head rabbit.

As Diane beautifully put it, "Reading the words 'nothing would be easier without you' is such a great story of love. It meant so much to me that this small mural will mean so much to the family. When asking Bea if she was happy with the mural, she said "yes but there's one thing - what do we do when Peanut dies? Oh actually I'd have a lovely Peanut reminder on my wall forever" 😍"

 

xAx

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

How To Decorate Your Home With Colour

With a rainbow of possibilities it seems a shame not to embrace more than a sliver of the kaleidoscope. The use of colour can seem a mysterious alchemy and there is certainly a lot of science behind colour theory, from the way light interacts with different textures and finishes, to the psychology of colour. But colour, like most things is instinctive above all else. We are drawn to certain palettes, and whether it's rich saturated colours, that make us feel at home or delicate, soft tones, there is every reason not to shy away from colour.

 

There are many things I'm not good at, running, cooking savoury food, not creating spontaneity sapping itineraries for holidays, to name but a few, however, one gift I have is a fine tuning to colour and confidence using it. The latter is as much important as the former when it comes to sticking to your gut and going for it.

Confidence is something that grows and a little experimentation is often the best way to start pushing your creative boundaries to get a good feel for what you like. To encourage others to dabble with colour I've jotted down a few of my top tips...

LOOK AT YOUR WARDROBE

It may sound daft but often, though not always, we are attracted to the same kinds of colours for our homes as our clothes and looking through your wardrobes can be a brilliant place to identify what colours you relate to. My own wardrobe is full of black, white, turquoise, coral, blue and red, so it was no surprise that when it came to decorating at home these colours were prominent ones.

BROWSE INTERIORS MAGAZINES

Seeing that something daring can be done with panache can prompt even the most reluctant colourists to give experimentation a go and interiors magazines are one of the best places to draw inspiration from, especially as there has been such a boost in popularity for colourful homes after a decade of grey.

One of the most exuberant examples I've seen recently is a sitting room by Beata Heuman in House & Garden where strong pink walls provide the backdrop to midnight blue velvet armchairs. A slightly unusual combination but a very beguiling one!

CHOOSE COLOURFUL UPHOLSTERY

If painting your walls in colour seems daunting, picking a neutral paint and using colourful upholstery to add oomph can be a wonderful way to add colour and emphasise the curve of a  headboard or shape of a sofa.

EMBRACE COLOURFUL TEXTILES & ACCESSORIES

In our recently completed 'HIGH RISE GLAMOUR' project our client asked for the studio to create an elegant and serene apartment that would provide the perfect sanctuary to their busy City life. They were keen to keep things soft and pared back, preferring metallics and champagne tones, but with a little bit of gentle coaxing they plumped for carefully chosen colourful touches, such as, hand glazed celadon ceramics and vibrant Ottoman silks that provide just the right amount of drama.

PAINT WOODWORK & KITCHEN CABINETS

Another effective and joyous way to add colour is to paint woodwork and joinery, including kitchen cabinets, in interesting and unexpected colours. Whilst white kitchens are classic, there are a lot of them and by going for something unusual such a glorious mossy green you can create something that instantly feels bespoke. This gorgeous kitchen by Middleton brings leads the eye to the lush garden and despite the bold colour has a restrained simplicity when read against the whole walls and simple shaker style that has forgone wall units for a streamlined space.