A Stylish Halloween

Whether you get caught up in the spirit of Halloween or not, it’s an undeniable fun and colourful time. Here is my “Halloween” display, really just a selection of fresh vegetables and fruit I had in the house together with autumn leaves, candles for a glow and of course these cute mini-pumpkins I found.

Happy Halloween, autumn leaves wreath

 

A Stylish Halloween display

 

5 MINUTE IDEA: Not so keen on scary faces? Then make your mini-pumpkin into a candle holder instead.

halloween pumpkin and candle idea
Photos, Styling & Feature by Theoda Solms Iles

Indigo Blues – Interior Trend Watch

The latest interior trends for winter are beautiful. Over the next few weeks I will show you the leading ones, with a selection of my favourite pieces to incorporate this look into your own home.

TREND WATCH:  This winter, get moody with deep indigo blues. Dark shades of navy, cobalt and inky blue come together to create a contrasting effect with white, giving this look a crisp fresh feel. Some textiles have an inky bleed appearance, where imperfections and colour blending are part of the details. Ombre´effects are still popular even on glass and ceramics, while brushstrokes in patterns give an authentic feel to this style. The contrast of pure blue and white is a great alternative to the monochrome look and a much fresher, contemporary approach.

Indigo Blues Sainsbury's Home

Above: Indigo Ceramics, £10 for set of three bowls, £10 for set of 3 tea plates, jug £15, serving bowl £15, all Sainsburys.co.uk

Above: Indigo bed linen, from £20, knitted cushion, £18, pattern cushion, £16, knitted throw, £30, all Sainsburys.co.uk

 

Get the Look

Get the Look

BUY INTO THE LOOK. Above, clockwise: Bloomingville cushion, £42, Debenhams.com. Ombre´ glass hurricane, £10, Sainsburys.co.uk. Beaded Chandelier, £580, Outthereinteriors.com. Anders Chair,£399, Westelm.co.uk. Avoca Donegal throw, £111.25, Amara.com

Indigo Blues - How to get the look

 

Feature by Theoda Solms Iles

Images supplied by companies mentioned.

 

Passion Flower – Friday Flowers

Just before autumn really sets in here in the northern hemisphere and dries up all the flowers and turns all the green leaves orange, these beauties are still holding onto the last rays of sunlight.  Made up of flat petals on the outside, sheltering this delicate centre surrounded by lots of ombre´shading purple spiky leaves.  The exotic passion flower is as delicate and equally intricate as they come.

Passion Flower

Passion Flower

I cut of only 3 stems and put them in a wine glass and champagne flute. Being a climber plant, I love how the foliage trails from the glass. Sadly the flower itself does not last long after being picked, so its lifespan in a vase is very limited, so enjoy it while it lasts.

Passion flowers on my dresser unit.

Passion flowers on my dresser unit.

 

Passion flowers, close-up.

Passion flowers, close-up.

 

Photos, Styling & Feature by Theoda Solms Iles

Autumn Colour Palette

Autumn has arrived and with it, a new colour palette to inspire you. This season there are mainly two colour schemes to be leading the trends, below are the two schemes that have emerged this autumn.

 

 

blue palette copy 2

The first one is slightly cooler with navy, charcoal and greys being the base colours. These cool hues gets warmed up by the additions of  copper and a hint of berry, perfect colours to use as highlights to your room scheme and ideal to keep in mind for accessories.

blue grid copy 3

Clockwise:  Artois wine glasses by La Rochere, from £5.95 each, Ictc.co.uk.  Grey cushion, £12.99, Navy throw, £39.99, Copper bronze pot, £4.99, Hm.com.  Jumper, £125, Weave throw, £239, reindeer hide, £145, all Toast.co.uk.  Ceramics from the Field Harvest collection by Gregg Moore, £10-£20, napkins, £8 each, all Anthropologie.eu.

 

 

orange palette copy

The second colour palate is a bit more of what you’d expect this time of year. Burnt oranges melting together with chocolate browns, metals like copper and brass brings a bit of shine, while lighter shades like nudes and mink brightens the whole look.

orange 3 copy

Clockwise:  Liberty Art fabrics Interiors, Patricia Anne wallpaper in spice, £69 per roll, Velvet fabric, £115,  Liberty.co.uk.  Bud lantern holders, £19 each, Scape dinner ware, from £7 for a bowl, mercury glass tea light holders, £5 each, Westelm.co.uk.  Henley headboard, £175, Scroll Rose duvet set, £15, faux fur throw, £30, Tesco.com/Direct

 

 

Feature by Theoda Solms Iles

Images supplied by Companies mentioned.

Jewell Colours – Friday Flowers

The deep regal purple and emerald-green of this flower got my attention straight away in the flower shop. The vibrant colours reminded me of a jewels and I knew I had the right vase for them. The Japanese Gentian is a very striking looking plant with purple flowers budding between the leaves and then springing from these long green stems.

Purple Japanese Gentian in vintage jewel coloured vase

Purple Japanese Gentian in vintage jewel coloured vase

Just two stems was enough to make a real show in this vintage vase, an old emerald and turquoise handblown glass vase I picked up at the local charity shop for £1, one of my best bargains ever.

Purple Japanese Gentian

Purple Japanese Gentian

The luscious greens shading into turquoise is so mesmerising and because of the age of the vase it reminded me of another heirloom piece, a neckless I got from my mother, one she wore in days gone by. The turquoise crystal necklace with the gold and green stone clasp is just so pretty and special to me.

Vintage emerald & turquoise vase with antique necklace

Vintage emerald & turquoise vase with antique necklace

Fotos, Styling & Feature, Theoda Solms Iles

Quick Flooring Transformations

Your choice of flooring can transform an ordinary interior into extraordinary. Even if you want to stick to a pretty neutral scheme, by opting for a bold flooring choice your neutral interior will come alive and take on a whole new look. Flooring in the form of carpet and vinyl, are so easy to be fitted and your room is transformed within half a day.

Below is an edit of the latest striking flooring trends, bold and stylish alike.

Crucial Trading WFS1 Wool Audrey Sunrise, £140m2

WFS1 Wool Audrey Sunrise, £140m2, Crucial Trading

A BOLD CHOICE. This wide stripe in an array of colours is not everyone’s choice but I love it and not much else is needed in this hallway. I have seen this carpet used in a living room and on a staircase and the effect is fabulous. WFS1 Wool Audrey Sunrise, £140m2, Crucial Trading

 

Crucial Trading, SV3125 Wilton Svelte Willow, £123m2

SV3125 Wilton Svelte Willow, £123m2, Crucial Trading

NEUTRAL WITH A TWIST. If you just can’t quite commit to all this colour, then at least choose a neutral with a texture like this herringbone design. SV3125 Wilton Svelte Willow, £123m2, Crucial Trading.

 

Abbeyglen Cavan Plaid Carpet £80m2, Abbotsford Maccines carpet £80 m2. both from Brintons

Abbeyglen Cavan Plaid Carpet £80m2, Abbotsford Maccines carpet £80 m2. both from Brintons

CHECK MATE. Tartans and plaids are back in fashion, and although it is quite a traditional design, when used with retro or modern furniture it takes on a tongue-in-cheek, quirky feel, ideal for this winter. Abbeyglen Cavan Plaid Carpet £80m2, Abbotsford Maccines carpet £80 m2. both from Brintons

 

WFN501 Wool Fabulous Helsinki Narrow in Diamond £140m2, Crucial Trading. Padstow Candy Spot Carpet £75 m2, Brintons

WFN501 Wool Fabulous Helsinki Narrow in Diamond £140m2, Crucial Trading. Padstow Candy Spot Carpet £75 m2, Brintons

HIGHT OF FASHION. A stair runner is the ideal way to make an impact, here you can be a bit more bold and embrace a pattern or colour. Use your stairs as a blank canvas to start living out your colourful dreams.  WFN501 Wool Fabulous Helsinki Narrow in Diamond £140m2, Crucial Trading. Padstow Candy Spot Carpet £75 m2, Brintons

 

Mardis Gras vinyl, Sagres diamond , Filez tiles,  both £12.99m2, both Carpet Right

Mardis Gras vinyl, Sagres diamond , Filez tiles, both £12.99m2, both Carpetright

FLOORING ON A ROLL. Vinyl has certainly come a long way, who would have thought vinyl can be this trendy? It is practical and the perfect choice for high traffic areas, where you want something a bit different, and fitting to most budgets too. I am so impressed with this range. Mardis Gras vinyl, Sagres diamond , Filez tiles, both £12.99m2, both Carpetright

 

Feature by Theoda Solms Iles 

All images supplied by companies mentioned.

 

Delightful dahlias, part 3 – Friday Flowers

Delightful dahlias in full bloom, another reason and opportunity to celebrate these beautiful flowers. Today my dahlias are being showed off in large glass lidded urns that I’m using as vases. Instead of arranging the flowers the same way in both urns, I have used the one urn to ‘hide’ the flowers inside and the effect is so striking, just see below.

 

Dahlias in glass lidded urns

Dahlias in glass lidded urns

Simply arranged in glass urns, these Dahlias look so elegant. I love seeing the full flower heads through the glass, inside the lidded urn. It gives it a kind of mysterious “look-but-can’t-touch” effect.

Dahlias inside lidded urn

Dahlias inside lidded urn

 

Dahlias in window

Dahlias in window

 

The dahlias that took part

The dahlias that took part

For more ideas on dahlias, see my previous posts, dahlias part 1,  dahlias part 2,  and dahlias in my daughters bedroom.

 

Photos, styling & Feature by Theoda Solms Iles

Bluebellgray, feel-good colour in a big way.

In the words of Fi Douglas, owner and founder of Bluebellgray, “It’s all about bringing colour and happiness into your life”. Well I couldn’t agree more or think of another brand that illustrates this more clearly and in such a beautiful way. Fi was a student at the prestigious Glasgow School of Art and her passion for colour and flowers inspired her to set up Bluebellgray. Her vibrant oversize water-colour florals come to life on textiles like cushions and fabrics and now ceramic and other interior pieces too.  I love you how you can see the brushstrokes on some designs and the water-colours fading and dissolving.

Fi took some time out of her hectic schedule to answer a few questions. Oh, and she also lets us in on what her next new project will be, read more below…

Fi Douglas from Bluebellgray

Fi Douglas from Bluebellgray

How would you describe your work to a stranger?

Colourful, uplifting feel good design; a modern take on florals.  It’s really about bringing art onto textiles – the original watercolours are perfectly replicated onto the pieces.

 

Somerset Collection by Bluebellgray

Somerset Collection by Bluebellgray

What inspires you?

Anything and everything.  Inspiration is everywhere you look – from a walk in the park, seeing a great movie, reading a book or even a tree in your garden – for me inspiration is about taking the time to look and appreciating what a beautiful world we live in.  Colour combinations can often be unexpected but spark my creative imagination – they could be anywhere like an incredible blue front door paired with beautiful pot plants that you see on your walk to work to traditional textiles you stumble across in a foreign market.  A little time to switch off is when inspiration comes to me – it can be so easy to get caught up in the day-to-day runnings of the business but it’s important to take that time out and feed the creative part of your mind.

 

Which designers do you admire and why?

Quentin Blake is my all time favourite artist/illustrator – his use of colour and fun style is something I have loved from a really early age.  I really admire Donna Wilson – she has such a unique and happy outlook on design and is really true to her brand and style.  I love the furniture designer Russell Pinch – his designs are just so carefully considered and timeless, real classics of the future.  Jonathan Adler is another favourite for his colourful designs; his happy design ethos really rings true to me and I love his style.

 

Somerset Collection & Anniversary butterfly cushion, by Bluebellgray

Somerset Collection & Anniversary butterfly cushion, by Bluebellgray

How would you describe your signature look, the Bluebellgray look?

It’s all about feel good design and primarily colour.  There’s a natural colour palette that runs through everything I design – I am always drawn to vibrant and fresh colours and believe they can really change a mood.  The design ethos is one of mix and match, taking modern painterly florals and placing them alongside antique treasures and pieces from your travels, layering pattern and layering colour is really key.  Ultimately it’s about filling your home with things you love and make you happy.

 

So far, what has been you career highlight or proudest moment?

Being part of the John Lewis Design Collective has been amazing – to be able to work with such a well respected and iconic store has been a dream and opened so many doors on the Bluebellgray journey.  I have been so delighted to receive gold awards from House Beautiful 2 years running; it really means a lot to me to be recognised by such a fantastic publication.  But ultimately it’s great customer feedback that means the most to me.  Receiving a phone call or email from a happy customer really makes everything worthwhile and is the reason I do this.

 

Mode rug ii, by Bluebellgray

Mode rug ii, by Bluebellgray

From your own designs, what is your favourite piece and why?

The Taransay bedding has a special place in my heart – it really sums up the Bluebellgray style.  I adore large, oversized florals and using a rainbow of colours – it may not be traditional or expected but it really comes from the heart and to be able to share a design I love so much, and for other people to love it too, has been fantastic.

 

Taransay bedding collection by Bluebellgray

Taransay bedding collection by Bluebellgray

I got to know your designs first through cushions and fabrics, and now your have bedding, rugs and ceramics. What will be next?

For the last 18 months we have been working on a new project and I am very excited about Bluebellgray’s first step into the home fragrance market with a range of scented candles and diffusers in beautiful Bluebellgray printed vessels.  It’s been a dream project and seemed like the perfect product to add to the range – it’s going to be full of beautiful florals and amazing scents that have been blended just for us.  I can’t wait for it to launch in the springtime!

 

If you were not a designer, what would you be in your next life? 

A children’s book illustrator – it was what I wanted to do as a little girl… maybe one day!

 

What is your favourite colour?

Anything on the blue spectrum from deep indigos to vibrant turquoise to soft duck egg – I love them all.

 

Chloe & Eleanor Cushions by Bluebellgray

Chloe & Eleanor Cushions by Bluebellgray

 

Images supplied by Bluebellgray

Feature by Theoda Solms Iles

Divine Dahlias, part 2 – Friday Flowers

This time of year, I just can’t get enough of dahlias. They lend themselves to being used in so many creative ways. Mix their vibrant colours with grey-green foliage and arrange them in vintage or antique vases for a classic look .

Below, in this second instalment of Dahlias, are a few more ideas perfect for your home.

divine dahlias

Divine Dahlias

 

Dahlias in vintage Dee Cee Stoneware green vase

Dahlias in vintage Dee Cee Stoneware green vase

 

Dahlias in vintage Chippendale trophy vase

Dahlias and grey foliage in vintage Chippendale trophy vase

 

Close-up of Dahlias

Close-up of dahlias and foliage used

 

Photos, Styling and Feature by Theoda Solms Iles