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The Saturday Edit

Design and Photograph: Studio McGee Welcome to the latest Saturday Edit, brought to you this week on a Sunday! (I blame the long weekend for putting me out of kilter)! 1. I’m at my mum’s in Scotland for the Easter long weekend. We are catching up, exploring and last night…

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Are beige interiors making a comeback?

Beige interiors - natural coloured kitchen cabinetsDesign by Prairie Home Styling, Photography Prairie Home Styling

I’m going to caveat this post with ‘I know it may be controversial’ but bear with me…

Beige interiors have been out of trend for a pretty long time. No doubt when you conjour up an image in your mind of beige interiors you will think old fashioned and dowdy. I certainly did…

That is until recently, when I have been feeling the need for some warmth in my home. I think it is a backlash from years and years of cool grey – and don’t get me wrong, I LOVE grey! I have pretty much every shade of it in my house and I am not making a mass move to get rid of it all. But when I am obsessing over Pinterest for hours at a time researching interiors, I am finding myself leaning towards the warmer tones of oatmeal and linen rather than cooler greys. Technically beige, but do we need to call it that?

I have started to see images of this shade pop up in a fresh and modern way, and I like it. A lot. Thinking about it, it never strayed too far from the fashion scene, only there it is called camel and reserved for the ultimate classics – a trench, a cashmere jumper etc. So why not in interiors?

It feels most modern and fresh when it is paired with crisp white and black accents, when it is in the form of natural materials – pared back oak, rattan, sissal – or when it is rustic linens, on the bed, table, sofa or at the window. I have plenty of wood in my kitchen after all so I am bound to like it!

Beige interiors - white and natural living areaCynthia Hayes

Beige interiors - natural linen bedAlvhem

Beige interiors - natural oak drawersCate St Hill

Beige interiors - natural coloured DeVOL kitchenDeVOL Kitchens

Beige interiors - Camel coat on Lydia E MillenLydia Elise Millen


If you are not quite ready to start painting your walls and cabinetry, here are some of my favourite beige neutral accessories to get a hint of this warm hue in your home:

Beige interiors - shopping guide

1. La Redoute Rug (Currently 40% off WHOLE site)
2. La Redoute linen duvet cover (also 40% off)
3. H&M Home washed linen cushion cover amazing value
4. Cox and Cox embossed vase
5. Zara Home Jute Rug
6. Eat Drink Nap
7. H&M Home stoneware mug
8. Zara Home nordic style stool
9. Cox and Cox oak sideboard


So have I gone mad?
Or do you think beige interiors might make a comeback? Let’s discuss!

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The Saturday Edit

Here’s my weekly round up of what’s been happening, things I like and more to the point, things I think you will like. Grab a cuppa and get stuck in.

1.Last Saturday I had the absolute pleasure of going for lunch with bloggers Amanda from Online Stylist and Monica from The Elgin Avenue. I travelled down to Winchester by train, and we spent several hours quaffing bubbles and scoffing all the tapas. Although we had previously met, this was the first time I’d spent as much time with these ladies but it felt like they were old friends immediately. I love it when that happens, don’t you? Their blogs are definitely worth checking it if you aren’t already a dedicated reader of them!

2. My latest guest post for the lovely website A Life Loved went up on Thursday. It is all about the trials and tribulations of mixing romance and renovation! Will and I feel like we are pros at this now!

3. I am still obsessing over the weather – or more to the point, the season. Seriously, come on summer! Thankfully, the clocks will change this Sunday (don’t forget, we lose one hour sleep here in the UK) and the lighter evenings will certainly give me a spring in my step. In preparation of putting the winter coat away, I have been eying up trench coats. Here are some of my favourites (ps can you spot the SPLURGE item?):

 

4. With the change of season in the offing, I am hoping to get out in the garden this weekend. We landscaped the whole space last summer but it needs some further planting and TLC to get it to where I want it to be. I am going for a modern English country garden look. You can see my inspiration over on my Garden Ideas Pinterest board.

5. Talking of plants, I have managed to kill a few more houseplants. Gah! I am putting in a new order for some more though, especially as this very cool planter has arrived from qvcuk.com (gifted) and I can’t wait to style it up in the house somewhere.


That’s it for me this week. As always, I hope you enjoyed it and i’m wishing you a lovely weekend x

 

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Style staple: the blazer

Style staple: the blazer

I will be the first to admit I am all for a simple style when it comes to clothes – well most things in life really. I love classic pieces that will last longer than a season and that can be used in different ways. The blazer is the perfect example of this – it is a style staple that will outlive any trend and last in your wardrobe for years to come.

My favourite way of wearing a blazer is teamed with jeans, heels and a blouse for work or for more casual days then with jeans, trainers and a t-shirt. These types of outfits are stylish classics and to keep them up to date and interesting I like to add interesting accessories such as statement earrings, a leopard print belt or killer shoes. If you have a job where you need to where more formal clothes, a blazer over a dress looks so smart and I absolutely adore the more trend-led colourful two piece sets that are popping up on Pinterest lately (although I think one for me file under ‘love to look at’ rather than wear myself).

Now with the weather (hopefully, and finally) turning warmer, a blazer is the perfect item to dig out from behind your winter jumpers or invest in something new.

Style staple: the blazer

Style staple: the blazer

Outfit: Blazer (similar here) | Shoes | Jeans (old) similar here | Top (only a few left in the sale)
Interiors: Patterned tiles | Chest of drawers | Patterned tiles

 See our porch makeover post here

This season I have seen so many beautiful blazers popping so I thought I would round up some of my favourites here:Style staple: the blazer1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8 // 9 //

 

How would you style up a blazer?

Photography: Marlene Lee

 

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The Saturday Edit

Am I the only one who thinks this week went by in a blink of an eye? There was so much that I wanted to get done, but didn’t manage to…. like another blog post for this week – sorry guys! Will try harder for next week! But I hope you don’t mind that i’m bringing you another weekly Saturday Edit.

1.Did you spot my kitchen tour on the VERY gorgeous site of Laura Butler Madden? I mean – her house is swoon-worthy so I was incredibly honoured and delighted to be featured!

2. What I did spend most of the week doing is my latest hobby and obsession – arranging flowers! A few weeks ago I went to the launch of the Swoon Editions pop up in Birmingham (they are in Grand Central until the end of March) and whilst there I took part in a Bloom & Wild workshop. It seems to have ignited something in me! On Saturday morning I got up bright and early and went to the flower market to buy armfuls of blooms. Throughout the week I made up three bouquets – one for Mother’s Day and two for friend’s birthdays. Who wants one next?!

3. We have booked an impromptu long weekend to Mallorca for the May bank holiday and it has me dreaming of summer clothes. I’ve already bought this beautiful top and I also have my eye on this one. Here are some more items on my wish list now: 

If it could all magic it’s way in to my wardrobe, that would be great thanks!

4. The temperatures here in the UK are taking a nose-dive again this weekend. I am so ready for spring now, but the chill does mean I get to rock out my new pink sheepskin slippers for a while longer!  I was sent them by Celtic & Co and I must admit they are the cosiest things I have come across. Check out their site for more colours and for other items including women’s sheepskin boots perfect for the chillier temps.

5. Anyone else love a good podcast? This week I was hooked on The Lifestyle Edit’s interview with Mavenly founder Kate Gremillion. It was really inspirational and had loads of really sound advice especially if you have your own business or side hustle.


Hope you’ve enjoyed this week’s edit. As always, I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below or over on my Instagram.

And don’t forget to sign up to my newsletter to get these posts straight to your inbox on a Saturday morning! 

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The Saturday Edit

For a while I have been thinking about doing something a bit different on the blog – a weekly post where I can share things that have caught my eye or interested me, a place to share snippets of what’s going on in my life or with the blog, or anything that I think you would like in general.

The idea is that it will be quite short and snappy for those who are time poor (I know some of my posts are a little lengthy) and perfect for skimming over and picking out which bits you would like to delve further in to.

So here we are! Welcome to the first Saturday Edit post.

1. Last week I hit a momentous goal in my blogging life – I was featured on The White Company website. If you have followed for any time at all you’ll know that I love TWC, so this is a dream come true. I styled up some of their Spring/Summer dresses – you can see the full article here [yes ME, on THE WHITE COMPANY website] and below are some of my favourites from the range:

 

2. If you like a home tour this one is for you. Monica has the most beautiful website The Elgin Avenue and I always enjoy her articles. She recently shared her 3 favourite home tours which had me clicking to her site in double time. Don’t be too surprised if a similar post pops up on my site before too long! 

3. I have been writing monthly articles for the lovely, heart-felt site A Life Loved. This month I explored my career change leap into the unknown and why I think no career needs to be for life.

4. I have been procrastinating (again) about getting our home finished, but Studio McGee is giving me all the inspiration and I am absolutely loving the pared back, slightly more rustic look with metallic touches. I am more than a little tempted to paint our island blue now…


Credit: Studio McGee

5. I made this Roast Chicken Pie recipe last weekend (we did meat for Will and I made a vegetarian version for me) and it is the perfect cold weather comfort food. It was so delicious I will be making it again for our family Mother’s Day dinner this weekend.


So, what do you think?

I would love to hear what you think of the new Saturday Edit series –  you can leave a note in the comments below or you know you can always get me on Instagram. Any thoughts or ideas of what you would like to included will be gratefully received. 

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My top picks for the home this spring

1 / 2 / 3 / 4/ 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 / 9 

 

Whilst I am loving this snowy weather, I can’t help but look forward to (the real) spring with its lighter days and warmer temperatures. I am looking forward to adding brighter and fresher elements to my home and my love affair with natural textures is amping up. Linens, woods, unglazed ceramics and hessian baskets are all catching my eye just now. Although, I don’t think I will ever fall out with velvet!

 

  1. I love a basket for the home and these woven storage baskets are great for storing blankets, toys or even to put a plant in. Can you believe they are from QVC and only £29.99 for two!
  2. Boho cushions are very on-trend right now – mixing them up rather having them all match keeps it effortless and stylish. This tufted cushion looks so cosy and I have my eye on it for my kitchen window seat.
  3. Brass isn’t going anywhere and that makes me happy! This table lamp is subtle and stylish and would make gorgeous bedside tables.
  4. I am still hankering after a pink velvet sofa but whilst I get the nerve to press buy, this beauty will sate my pink velvet dreams for a while longer. I have ordered it for my dressing room and can’t wait for it to arrive.
  5. Millennial pink washed linen napkins to jazz up the kitchen table – delicious!
  6. Now, do I need new mugs. No. But that doesn’t stop me from wanting these stoneware mugs to sip my morning tea from.
  7. Books are my favourite styling props and Sunday Suppers nails it in terms of content and cover.
  8. Now, let’s talk about this rug. I need it somewhere in my home and it is only a matter of time until I sink my feet in to that shaggy pile!
  9. I love the rustic industrial vibe of these side tables.

 

 

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Lusting after: Shutters

Lusting after shutters

I have been a shutter devotee since my first ever visit to London – there is nothing quite like a bit of house snooping in the capital, and spotting those beautiful slats through the windows of the white town houses makes my heart flutter.

If you have been following this blog for any time at all you’ll know about my love for period properties (we have been renovating our Edward home for years) and shutters on a period property is my interior jam.

In fact, I have been eyeing them up for my home for years but didn’t realise just how accessible they were for non-Londoners.

Shutterly Fabulous got in touch with me to see if I would like to talk about their products (errr, yes!) and made me realise that I can actually consider shutters for my own home.

The brand began in Brighton in 2001. Their ethos from day one has been to give customers unrivalled product quality, care, value and expertise in custom-made premier shutters. Their commitment today is stronger than ever, but now it’s open to the whole country. They have design consultants based in London, Manchester and Birmingham, and installation teams fitting for customers nationwide.

This makes me very happy!

There are a few things that really stand out to me. Firstly, they are passionate about the quality of their products. They only use premium-grade timber for and ensure all their employees are experts in their field.

They also pride themselves on their pricing – not only that it is easy to understand but they offer the best value available guaranteeing the lowest UK price for wooden plantation shutters and will match any like-for-like quotation!

So, if you are anything like me you are ready to start creating that Pinterest board and get planning your shutters! Or if you still need a bit more convincing, keep reading…

Lusting after shutters

Lusting after shutters

Lusting after shutters


5 reasons to consider shutters in your home


1.There are so many style choices

Don’t be fooled in to thinking that there is just one style of shutter and that you can only have them if you live in a grand Georgian home in London. There are loads of different styles that would work in almost any style of home or interiors. Shutterly Fabulous offer:

• Plantation window shutters

• Solid panel wood shutters

• Wooden shutters for doors

• Tier-on-tier 

• Café-style 

• Full height 

• Tracked door 

• Special shapes

And what’s even better is that they offer a colour service meaning that they will colour match a shade of your choice. Hello ombre pink of dreams!

Lusting after shutters

2. They keep the heat in and the noise out

Shutters are brilliant at keeping the noise out so are perfect if you live on a busy road. Also you can close them at night and keep all your heating in your home rather than the all that warm air from the radiator billowing up behind curtains and being lost.

Lusting after shutters

3. Privacy

You can position your shutters so prying eyes can’t see within the room but you can still get plenty of light coming in – again win win if you live on a busy road or if you want some privacy in your bathroom and don’t want curtains or blinds which would only get damp.

Lusting after shutters

4. Beautiful from the inside and out

I have already mentioned how beautiful they look from the outside, but it goes to next level on the inside. They have that minimum effort maximum impact thing which I absolutely love. They are simple and unobtrusive to the rest of your decor whilst also bringing a little bit extra to your interiors.

Lusting after shutters

5. They are customisable and bespoke to you

Whilst I am most likely to be a traditional, white plantation shutters type of girl, I love how customisable they are and how they can be completely personalised. Not only can you pick the style and colour, but they can be made to fit bespoke spaces.

Lusting after shutters

Lusting after shutters


What do you think? Would you consider shutters in your home?

This post is in collaboration with Shutterly Fabulous but all views (and love for shutters) are absolutely my own. 

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My intentions and priorities for 2018 | Ad

This post includes a link to a blog post that was a paid partnership with Virgin Care Private. 

Happy New Year!

I hope your 2018 has started well? I know, I know it’s been a while since I posted but I have taken my time to ease back in to full swing this year and it has given me the opportunity to think about how I would like my 2018 to go.

I have never really been a fan of resolutions as I feel they can be too easily forgotten and pushed to the side, but I knew I wanted something to work towards so I decided to set some intentions and priorities.

Time goes by so quickly (seriously, what happened to 2017?) and I know I am not alone in feeling like I am busy all of the time. Next December I want to look back on 2018 and say ‘wow’ rather than, what did I do?

My intentions and priorities will form the basis of my daily life in 2018 and give me some direction in setting actual goals.

First up is my priorities – I have been thinking about what areas of life I want to prioritise and in what order, in the hope it means I don’t end up feeling anxious and overwhelmed.

Monica Welburn from The Elgin Avenue wrote something last January that resonated with me so much that it has stuck in my head for an entire year.

In her post, Monica wrote about her priorities of Health. Home. Hustle. That framework is just as relevant today as it was a year ago.

She said:

“Overall the Health. Home. Hustle. approach is a pretty simple one. It’s about prioritising your own wellbeing first, your home environment and your relationships second, and your business and hustle third.

In order to achieve all that I would like to achieve with business, I have to look after my foundations. My health and my home life hold me up.”

Yes, yes and yes to that!

So thinking of the Health. Home. Hustle. approach, I have a few things that I want to build into my daily life that will become more habit than goal, and that over time, will hopefully help me reach the goals that I want to.

Health

Exercise – I need to continue to invest time into my fitness. For almost a year, I have committed to working out once a week, and I have really noticed the benefit. Now it is time to build on that – so far this year I have increased, so I am excited to see if I can keep it up.

Nutrition – The other area of my health I want to continue to improve on is nutrition.

Just before Christmas, Virgin Private Care got in touch and asked if I would like to contribute an article on my approach to wellness as part of their recently opened health and wellbeing clinic in Birmingham.

Of course, I jumped at the chance and even created two recipes for them that I believe find the balance between eating well and living life.

Head over to have a look (spoiler, I LOVE both recipes), and I recommend scrolling through some of the other articles on there for more nutrition tips, ways you can build self-care into your life, and advice for coping with depression and anxiety.

Writing the article made me realise that I am pretty happy with where I am with my nutrition. Of course, though, I know there are areas I can improve on:

Breakfast – In recent months, I have improved, but still more often than not I don’t have breakfast. I need to get better at this and have started pre-preparing breakfast goods – check out my recipe for on-the-go smoothie pouches on the Virgin site for my favourite breakfast right now.

Water – I simply don’t drink enough throughout the day. I’m going to add in a glass of water when I wake, get home from work, and before I go to bed as a memorable way to remind myself to get more H2O in!

Down-time – Working full time, finishing off the house and writing the blog (as well as being Instagram obsessed) means I really don’t have much time to switch-off. I need to schedule in time to do things that aren’t on a list!

Home

The house – I am taking home in its most literal sense as really, it is my greatest priority for this year. It is high time this house was finished! We have completed all major building works, but now I have a lot of empty house to furnish. Time to get to it!

Getting the house finished means I might be able to reach one of my life long goals to have it featured in a home magazine.

Hustle

Work – I entered 2018 with enthusiasm and excitement for my fulltime work. It is a busy year ahead and I can’t wait to play a part in the company growing and thriving.

My blog – I have a lot of ambition for my blog, much of which is slow to take form, but I hope to continue to grow and improve it. By the end of the year I’d like to rebrand, launch a newsletter, and double my readership and social media following.

So with those priorities in place, I started to think about my overall intentions. Basically, I wanted one word to guide me through the year. As it happens, I ended up with two…

First up is FOCUS. 

In a world where there is inspiration around every corner, it is easy to become overwhelmed and overstretched.

I will be the first to admit that I am easily distracted and too often change my mind, or can’t make up my mind. This year I am going to actively bring more focus to my life. I can see how this will work in day-to-day life, pushing aside distraction to get tasks done, help me be more decisive, but also in helping me realise what it is that I do want to achieve.

With our house, for example, I need to focus on what rooms I need to complete, in what order, and then focus on getting it done – without distraction!

Second is CHALLENGE.

When I started thinking about my overarching intentions, I wanted only one. Maybe picking two just goes to show how much work I have to do on the first one (!) but I also knew how much of a challenge bringing more focus into my life would be. I have a classic case of wanting to do it all, now.

However, I also realised that to grow and improve, I need to challenge myself. My life is wonderfully comfortable (which I am very aware of and grateful for) and I could happily carry on exactly as I am – but I always want to strive to be a better person.

In day-to-day life, I want to challenge myself to step outside my comfort zone, from trying new activities, to improving my fitness, to actively doing things that scare me. Who knows what this might mean, but I’m going to be more open to giving things a go. As they say, feel the fear and do it anyway.

So that’s it from me just now. I am also going to work on some more specific goals that I’d like to achieve, and I am also hoping to give The Law of Attraction a go (Victoria wrote a very interesting and compelling article on her blog here).

So, over to you….

I would love to know what your take on New Year resolutions, intentions and priorities, and of course, if you have set any?


SHOP

Blouse – Sezane | Jeans – old | Shoes – Sezane |


Photography by Marlene Lee

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Christmas decorations – Adding some festive touches to the guest bedroom

Christmas decorations - a festive bedroom

So, we have one week until Christmas eve and if you are anything like me you still have plenty to do.

However, I did get productive one day last week (thanks to the massive dumping of snow grounding the whole of the West Midlands to a halt) and I managed to get a load of Christmas shopping done online and put up a few more Christmas decorations around the house.

Our living room is currently undergoing a not-so-well-timed revamp which you can read about here, so I decided to spread the festive cheer around my house and deck out the guest bedroom with some Christmas decorations.

This year my Dad and his partner are staying with us over Christmas. They both have jobs in hospitality so I know the weeks and days leading up to them arriving at our house late on Christmas Eve eve will have been hectic to say the least.

I really wanted to add some Christmas decorations for them in the bedroom they will be staying in so they feel welcome and hopefully get them in to that Christmas feeling as soon as they arrive.

Christmas decorations - a festive bedroom

Christmas decorations - a festive bedroom

Christmas decorations - a festive bedroom

shop the post

Wreath – Amara c/o (in the sale)| Garland – Amara c/o | Natural cosy throw – BHS c/o (in the sale) | Pine and Eucalyptus Candle – Jo Malone | Black and marble lamp – Aldi, similar here | Chunky knit throw – Lauren Aston Designs | Winter candle – The White Company |
Bedding – The White Company | Coco bed – Loaf.com | Curtains – Hillary’s c/o |
Christmas wrapping – see this post here


Christmas decorations – how I added some festive
touches to our guest bedroom


A wreath

I know traditionally a wreath is for the front door, but there are so many beautiful options available now that it is a shame to limit yourself just to one! When I saw this beauty from Amara’s Winter Blush Christmas decoration collection I knew I had to have it. I just love its dusting of snow and dense foliage.

I tried it out in a few places in the bedroom, including hanging from the fireplace, on the wardrobe doors and on the door to the room itself but settled on above the bed. I added a velvet bow to hang it from and think it looks so beautiful. I think I will be sad to take it down come the New Year!

A Garland

Adding a garland to a fireplace, end of bed, or even a shelf immediately adds festive cheer. We are lucky to have fireplaces in almost every room in the house and they never look better then when they are loaded up with Christmas decorations.

I strung some battery powered fairy lights throughout the garland and absolutely love how it looks.

Fairy lights

And talking of fairy lights, this has to be the easiest way to add some Christmas decoration to a bedroom. String them around the doorway, over a bed, wherever you can! They look so gorgeous with the lights low.

I love these if you want to splash out and these are so cute and battery powered which makes it really easy to use them in places that aren’t close to a plug socket.

Candles

Adding candles is a no brainer!

I couldn’t believe how realistic adding some simple pillar candles in the fireplace was! It created a lovely glow almost as if there is a roaring fire in there.

Scented candles are a win win too – my lovely friend sent me a Jo Malone Pine and Eucalyptus candle a couple of weeks ago as my Christmas gift. It has a personal engraving and is the most thoughtful gift! Burning this for a couple of hours before guests come over will fill the room with a wonderful Christmassy scent.

And of course, lets not forget the *actual* scent of Christmas itself with The White Company’s Winter candle.

Winter flowers and foliage

I am obsessed with the scent of fresh eucalyptus and think it makes a lovely display at this time of year. You can normally pick some up from a florist and it lasts weeks, if not months!

A posy of holly and berries or the traditional Christmas flower the Poinsettia is also perfect for adding a touch of festive cheer to a bedroom.

A little bit of hygge

A chunky knit throw, sheepskin rug and a cosy blanket to snuggle up in create a perfect place for a little hyyge time. I created a little reading nook by the fireplace and I am a little tempted to kick my dad out of this room and muggle up there myself.

Gifts

And finally, some gifts that your guests can open early are a lovely way to make them feel really welcome. I added a stocking with some little stocking fillers (and some empty Jo Malone boxes – a girl can dream about getting a pile of JM goodies as a stocking filler, right?) and put them by the fireplace.

Christmas decorations - a festive bedroomAnd yes, I did forget to take the tag off *eye roll*!

Christmas decorations - a festive bedroom

Christmas decorations - a festive bedroom

Christmas decorations - a festive bedroom

Christmas decorations - a festive bedroom

Christmas decorations - a festive bedroom

Christmas decorations - a festive bedroom

Christmas decorations - a festive bedroom

Christmas decorations - a festive bedroom

Will you be adding any Christmas decorations
to your bedrooms this year?

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Choosing the right paint colour with with Farrow and Ball colour consultancy

Let’s talk paint colour!

I am sure you already know I am a bit of an interiors obsessive and that I have a strong opinion on what I want my house to look like (although if I am honest, this can change often!).

However, when it comes to choosing paint colour I find it HARD!

I am that person who has a sample pot of every shade of paint colour – with a focus on greys – from every paint company. I stare at each of them for hours until the point where I can no longer make any decision, panic buy a shade I don’t even have a sample of and then hate it as soon as it goes on the walls.

I can tell you, my husband does NOT appreciate this personality trait!

Even when I know we are going to have to paint a room months in advance it still creeps up on me and I panic. I have taken to painting everything a shade of off white and whilst I absolutely love this look – such as in our kitchen which I still adore – it is simply not right for every room.
Take our living room for example; it is south facing but the window is tucked at the side of the house so doesn’t get much light and there is a lovely large bay tree right outside the window blocking the rest of the light.
As a result the room is a bit dark. I started off painting it white but that just accentuated the lack of natural light and made it look very gloomy.

A year or so later I finally managed to convince the other half to get out his paintbrush and we went for a light grey. It was better but still not right.

Fast forward a few more years and the itch to sort it out has not gone away. I know they say that you should embrace a dark room and go ahead and paint it dark but this felt terrifying!

I realised I needed the help of a professional, so I called in the colour experts – the Farrow and Ball colour consultancy service.


The Farrow and Ball colour consultancy


The Farrow and Ball colour consultancy is basically a service where a trained colour experts come to your home armed with large swatches of each of their paint colours and share tailored design advice bespoke to you to help you decide on colours for up to four rooms in your home.

Sounds great, right!

I booked in and eagerly awaited my appointment with colour consultant Emily from my local showroom in Solihull.

On the day I was a bit nervous, but Emily was absolutely fantastic. She so quickly understood my style, home and the sticky points and was very understanding about my inability to make a paint colour decision.

I wanted her help with the rooms that received the least light – so the living room as I’ve already mentioned but also the hallway which suffers from a similar issue. If we had the time (you get about an hour), I wanted to move on to a couple of bedrooms that I thought could do with spicing up!

We started with the hallway. Emily took a look around and suggested I needed a bit more depth than what is currently there – which is an off-white/pale oatmeal paint colour. She brought out some swatches and we played around looking at the different ways the light hit (or didn’t hit) different part of the space, working with the items that couldn’t be changed such as the carpet and looking at the different architectural elements such as the woodwork and the picture rails. She pushed me but not so far that I felt uncomfortable with our final decision which was similar to what I already have but a couple of shades deeper.

We did the same process in the living room and I was relieved and excited when Emily agreed that we needed to go darker! Again we looked at the light in different parts of the room, the architecture and the furniture that was staying.

I was ready to go for a really dark paint colour, but Emily picked out Mole’s Breath and it just worked perfectly – a warm grey that worked alongside the blue velvet sofa and would look cosy and inviting without being cave-like.

Emily also suggested painting the ceiling a different paint colour – skimming stone – and keeping the skirting board and picture rail the same colour as the wall for a modern take on my quite classic looking room. Normally I would be quaking in my boots by all this decision making in such a short amount of time but I felt so confident with our decisions thanks to Emily’s guidance and expertise.

And if you sense a little bit of a girl crush here you would be spot on 😉 She just really knew her stuff and I couldn’t help but be more than a little impressed.

We finished off with the other rooms which I will keep to myself for now as it’ll be a fun surprise to reveal them to you when we get around to redecorating them.

After only a few days following the colour consultancy service, I received a gorgeous pack in the post with swatches of each of my chosen paint colours and notes on what we had decided to go where.

I am SO excited to finally get the living room where I want it to be…and don’t worry, you aren’t going to have to wait long to see it as a decorator is booked TOMORROW to start!


Did the colour consultancy help me pick paint colours?


Absolutely!

Would I recommend the Farrow and Ball colour consultancy? YES!

In fact, next time I need to redecorate I will be calling for Emily’s help!

Having an expert opinion to help you see your space from a fresh perspective was invaluable. They don’t push you to do anything you don’t want to but will help you consider paint colours and ideas that you probably wouldn’t have on your own.

It is also particularly great because the colour consultants are independent to your immediate circle of friends and family who will by no fault of their own probably only just confuse you!

I really was buzzing the whole day after Emily left and couldn’t have gotten on the phone to the decorator any quicker.

I was lucky enough to be gifted the colour consultancy service, but I think it is normally about £200 and £50 of that is redeemable against paint. Whilst I know this can seem like a lot of money, I really think it is brilliant value for money if, like me, you struggle to make a firm decision with colour. If nothing else, I know it will save me more money and time from getting it wrong and re-re painting.


Three things I learned when picking paint colours


If you are eager to start repainting and aren’t quite ready to book your own colour constancy, I asked Emily to share her top tips when picking paint colours for your home.

First up Emily really recommended the latest Farrow and Ball book How to Decorate which walks you through the process of choosing the right colour for your space. I have since bought the book and love it.

Here are the three main things to consider when picking your paint colour:

Light: The room you are decorating will have it’s own unique light, be that cool northern light, or warmer souther light but in both cases the most important thing is to monitor how it changes though out the day.

Farrow and Ball recommend to not fight against dark spaces by painting them white but say to embrace a darker more striking colour – they suggest painting hallways a dark colour which will make every room leading off it feel brighter and lighter.  Conversely, their say large rooms with lots of light can benefit from a lighter, airy shade.

Architecture: Colour can appear to visually alter the proportions of a room. Lighter colours are best suited to larger airier rooms whereas darker tones will enhance small areas. It is also worth considering the shape and architecture of a room – awkward shapes and low ceilings can be off set with the right treatment, and you can highlight or play down features. For example in my home I will be paining the fireplace in the hall the same colour as the wall as I want our mirror which sits next to it to be the focal point in the room, not the fireplace.

Personal Style: This is a key element to any design choice. It is important to think and gather ideas about your own style before decorating be it through a Pinterest board, cutting from a magazine or family heirloom. Don’t focus too much on current trends but pick colours that will work for your life today and reflect your personality.


Want to know more?

Visit the Farrow and Ball website here
Find out more about the colour consultancy service here
Check out their Instagram for inspiration here
Buy the book here (I did and I love it)


I was gifted the colour consultancy service but as always all words and opinions are my own and I would never promote something I wouldn’t be happy to pay for myself. 

 

 

 

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