Thursday, 16 December 2010

A cultural collection of websites

I thought I'd share my favourite websites with you that I keep going back to at the moment. One is French, another Mexican and the last one is Scandinavian, I'm feeling quite multicultural this Christmas!

An Angel at my Table
This website describes itself as 'French style quirky and unusual accessories and painted furniture' and is a small family business run by a team of 6 including the dog.

They stock eccentric and quintessentially french products from jewellery to vases. My favourite item changes each week but what with needing some bloom in winter these silk flower cuts are a sweet reminder of spring days. They are priced at £9.50 for all three.

Based in London's East end this Mexican shop is an injection of Latin American energy, its name refers to religious folk charms. The shop was established out of a love for the country and has a nice story behind its beginnings "In 1990 Tom travelled in an old Saab from California to Mexico. He was swept away by the beauty of the county and the bold, colourful and strange aesthetic qualities in their Art and Craft. He abandoned a career in academia and returned a year later to established Milagros."

I am slightly in love with their wedding bunting 'paper pricardo' which is hand cut paper streamers. Have the wedding just for the streamers! Priced at £6 for 6m of streamers.

Mit Hus Home
I have already blogged about this gem of a site but perhaps I didn't do it justice as I just blathered on about stags ornaments (yep that flame of obsession hasn't calmed down yet either!) The website and catalogue specialises in Scandinavian inspired accessories for the home, garden and gifts and is a refreshing antidote to all the Cath Kidstonising going on in many people's homes.

This Nordic tea pot gets my heart fluttering very earthy and natural. It's priced at £29.95 including VAT.

It's an Ikea invasion!

Ikea have been literally breaking out of their two up two down box with some guerrilla marketing imagination. Earlier this year in Paris Ikea took over some of the metro's platforms transforming them into cozy lounges for weary commuters.

For Christmas, the season of shopping, pooped out Parisians can enjoy a comfy sofa rest at one of 12 bus shelters dotted across the city.

This is a marketing campaign even your tired feet can appreciate!

Monday, 22 November 2010

How to make a cushion cover from an old jumper

I have been wanting a soft cable knit style cushion for ages, though I need to stop splurging my hard earned pennies and am getting quite into the old make do and mend thing (OK so I watch Kirsty's homemade home, get fired up and then when it all starts looking distorted and most definitely homemade by a five year old I get in a raging sulk) However this project involves NO SEWING and you can even make it while watching the telly, my kind of making stuff!
All you need is a cushion, an old woolly jumper (mine was a Marc Jacobs jumper, a rare charity shop find killed by the its evil nemesis the tumble dryer) bondaweb which can be found in all haberdasheries, some pins, an iron and scissors.
First place the cushion in the jumper to get a good fit and pin your hems at the neck and bottom of the jumper and then iron to get them flat and neat.
Don't forget to use a tea towel if you don't have an ironing board, I know don't judge me!

Next snip strips of bondaweb and place inside the folded hems instead of sewing them. I had to cut off the arms and taper in the corners to keep it neat and secure with a wodge of bondaweb and a good steaming with the iron.

And there you have it, a cosy and unique cushion to cuddle!

Thursday, 18 November 2010

More Skandinavian style...dribble dribble lust sigh

My main obsessions in interiors are eccentric bits and pieces rather than overall 'look', though I suppose that could be called a style in itself? The new eclecticism? Hmm more magpie nest in my case!
Anyway I am seriously coveting, in no precise order; glass bell jars, stag head mounts (not taxidermy ones, find them slightly creepy and generally wrong), silver stag ornaments, quilts, cable knit cushions, wide board warm walnut wood flooring and homemade felt style Christmas decorations. If my head were a magpies nest this would be what it looks like right now..mmm!

I just came across this amazing website which sources all products Scandinavian, from jewellery to home interiors items. But I literally have my heart set on these cast aluminum stag and deer and for £16.95 for the large one (20cmx9cmxh17cm) and only £8.95 for the small deer (15cmx6cmxh14cm) they are not to be overlooked!

Go visit

Friday, 5 November 2010

Get the Skandi look at home

I am finding it very hard to contain my excitement at seeing that H&M has launched a home range! When comparing to their skandi over sized cousins, Ikea, how does H&M do it differently? Well known for it's high street on trend fashion it has chanelled its quirky style into a whole range of home products, the illustrated designs are unusual and add make smaller items, like a bath mat or a tea towel, a design feature. The prices are also incredible with duvet sets starting from £19.99 and Christmas decorations from £1.99! I think many people will be having a fashionable Christmas this year doing the skandi red and white theme.

Anyway here are my favourites, I'll be snapping some up online and photographing them in my flat for you all to peek at soon!

Visit the online shop to nab these stylish pieces asap!

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Get Cape, wear cape, fly

Capes were massive on the AW10 catwalk with everyone from Missoni and YSL to Alexander Wang cloaking their models.

Alexander Wang and Matthew Williamson AW10 (

Aviator jackets have saturated the high street and the cape is creating the iconic shape for this Autumn and Winter. Best of the high street buys are these numbers from Dorothy Perkins (£65), M&S (£125), New Look (£45) and Michael Kors (£180)

Top of the class is this Camel Cape from Tu at Sainsburys. Bread, check, milk, check, two AW10 trends in one coat- CHECK!

If you are also a bicycling fan then capes are the perfect wear for your two wheeled adventures. Bobbin Bicycles in London's Islington has a range of classic capes in tweed.

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Barcelona fashion

While on holiday in Barcelona with my mum we stumbled upon a brilliant fashion photography exhibition 'Outumuro Looks: Twenty years photographing fashion 1990-2010'. It was a collection of 200 images from the Galician fashion photographer Manueal Outumuro's glamorous collection.

Outumuro has worked with the world's most infamous models and for the most prestigious brands and clients shooting for glossy magazines and campaigns. His work was divided into six different areas: Surroundings, Portraits, Black and White, Sequences, Poses and Attitudes and Celebrities. I just took a few sneaky shots on my mobile camera so apologies for the dodgy yellow hue.

'The locations used for the photographs, together with the treatment of light and the poses of the models, are defining features of the photographer's style. Grand natural spaces, chaotic urban spaces and spectacular architectures are occupied by still or moving figures that merge with their surroundings.'

'Moody close-ups of pensive personalities, evocations of the portraits of Renaissance painting and the early works of the pioneers of photography, these pictures focus attention on the clothes and accessories that complement faces accentuated by make-up and expression.'

'The abstraction of two-dimensional bodies clothed in black and white against a background devoid of colour. The volumes are flattened, the greys are contrasted and the lines are sharpened. Everything takes on a geometric clarity that takes us back to the photographer's early years as a graphic designer.'
'In the photographs in this section Manuel Outumuro conjures up the cinema, which has so often inspired him in his work. The exhibition also includes a short film created especially for this room by Isabel Cioxet, a compilation of excerpts from some of the photographer's favourite films.'

'The model photographed as focus of attraction. The gestures and movements place a new emphasis on the clothes and their relationship to the body. We share this room with timeless personages who come and go, their indolent attitudes and sophisticated poses baring the soul of fashion.'
'In this room we appreciate the magnetism that fashion exercises in great actresses, top models and other famous people. Outstanding personalities from a variety of fields disport themselves with joyful spontaneity in the latest creations from the most celebrated designers.'

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

The gentlewoman

Like an albatross about my neck I feel perpetually guilty for not tending to the needs of my blog. Though the word backlog when chopped into is virtually an anagram for blog... so perhaps I'll just febreeze through the rotting animal stench of my absence and like a mother bird to her young regurgitate her findings. Ouf I feel a bit sick after all that! These scans of the first issue of The Gentlewoman, from the creators of the style bible Fantastic Man, will help dispel any queasy stomachs.

Apologies for the lack of photo order but blogger is playing up so in no chronological sequence is; the front cover featuring Phoebe Philo, the head designer of French fashion label Celine, Sarah Perez the chief winemaker behind Mas Martinet and Venus Vineyards in northeast Spain, Princess Julia the 80s iconic DJ, a series of updos titled 'Knots' created by the expertise of Peter Gray a renowned celebrity hair stylist and a page from the photshoot 'Tall 'n Small' featuring Marta and Sofia and photographed by Daniel Riera with styling by Jodie Barnes.