Nearly Not There

Today I want to retreat into nearly not there neutrals. Those shades that are hard to categorise. Layers of tone that just come together so satisfyingly that you want to sit a while. To contemplate.

‘Neutral’ can feel like a dead word. Today, however, I am enjoying the colours that exist in the light and in the shade. the hard to define.

The masters of chalky whites, Farrow and Ball.

The masters of chalky whites, Farrow and Ball

What a space, those windows flood the room with a cool white light, the subtle grey walls slightly mottled. Perfectly Parisian.

Soft grey room with tall windows

This colour I have always referred to as ‘blackcherry yogurt colour’, ever since a child. The muted mauve is a great backdrop for the sprawled-legged light.

Chalky mauve walls

Painted white bricks are always a joy. Combined with the well worn cobbles and various sage painted wood work.

Exterior with white painted bricks and sage green paint work

Oh that chair, perfectly made for two. Soft colours of the sea mix with various textures. Linen, velvet, brick, tile and woven thread.

Softly rustic home with giant armchair

A Colonial sitting room with an amazing inlaid chest. The silvered greys are brought together with a moody Turner-esque painting.

Old India style interior

Well this is pretty perfect isn’t it. I love the clean cut marble unit and the depth the carved wooden adds. An ageing mirror and bud-like light fitting add interest. I am partial to a Bialetti coffee maker too.

Island unit clean cut wit silvered mirror

Peppermint ice whites and crushed velvet, what a delicate space. Decaying grandeur with modern moments.

Slowing decaying interior in ice white hues

Putty pink complements eucalyptus green, a happy combination I think.

Eucalyptus leaves and gloxy cermaics

White metal edged glass doors with ample linen curtains.

White metal doors to bathroom with curtains

Various shades of white harmonise in this boudoir. Apparently this colour is ‘elephants breath’, a strange notion.

Shades of white boudoir

Evidently I am drawn to wood panelled interiors! The rise and fall in the wood just creates so many tones to enjoy. This room incorporates coffee creams and metallic tones that lift the space.

Wood panelled interior with coffee greys and creams

A grand proportioned room with wildly contrasting pieces of furniture, ornaments and art. The soft pink is brought to life with the glossy deeper coloured pieces. That table is magnificent.

Grand space with black and pink

If a room can be a weather front, this one brews a storm. A picture window frames the Tasmanian countryside. Mottled walls soften a cooling space.

Picture window with stormy grey walls

In a similar vein, these walls provide a tonally textured backdrop to some striking furniture.

Modern room in dapple grey

More bohemian but equally beautiful, there is a French feel to this feminine room.

The feminine touch to a French feeling room

Modern art brings the dark to a cooling blue/grey palette. I love the parquet flooring too.

Parquet floor, detailed woodwork and modern art all with a blue tone

Enjoying the dreamy hues of Hydrangeas, pale lilac with a lemon yellow.

Classical yellow and purple sitting room

With just a hint of neon this collection works. That light is a little breathtaking.

Contemporary combination of neon hues

Linen blues, so calming and welcoming. It just so happens this room sports a Warren Platner chair, the design classic I illustrated for our November newsletter.

Warren Platner chair in a cool blue interior

An indoor swing, need I say more? Linen and chocolate combine bathed in glorious sunlight.

Swing hanging indoors

Another apartment with a stunning view. Curved furniture neatly highlighted. Marble, brass and eggshell come together with ease.

Muted interior

Finally we end with dove grey, enhanced by white objects, a giant woven lamp shade and deep, dark wood.

Soft grey room with natural shades and dark wood

Wintery hues for a muted day.

Advertisements

The Painted Interior

A slightly different slant today on my world of interiors. I wanted to appreciate a room through the eyes of the artist. Just as I am a lover of colour in decoration, I also enjoy vibrant art. Composition matters, drawing your eye in, appreciating a detail or being struck in awe at the whole. Here are some interiors caught on the canvas.

Lets lead with red, what a regal space. Golden walls are enriched by geometric panels of light off-setting the fiery accents in the room. ‘A London Interior’ by Herbert Davis Richter.

Richly painted room,

In a completely different style, Tom Haugomat plays with perspective. The Mid Century furniture emerges from the dark, your eye is drawn, like the lone man, to the window on the world.

Tom Haugomat illustrated interior

Emile-Jacques Ruhlmann, the French designer, captures my heart with everyone of his interiors. He celebrates colour through his varying tones. Subtle, dramatic, but definitely enviable!

Peachy pink Art Deco interior of Emile-Jacques Ruhlmann

Here, the room’s scale is beautifully communicated, painted in 1921 with evergreen and inky black.

French designer and illustrator Emile-Jacques Ruhlmann

The vastness of this room is evident, from the rounded ceiling your eye follows the immense chandelier to the intricate embellishment picked out in gold.  Ruhlmann’s vision for these rooms is breath-taking.

Pink Art Deco interior by Emile-Jacques Ruhlmann

Even in simplified lines Ruhlmann conjures an impression of that time. Here I love the how the colours play, the silvered blue, vibrant violet (I had the exact same colour carpet as a child!) and the fresh yellow. Do seek out more of his paintings, they are glorious.

Art Deco illustration of Emile-Jacques Ruhlmann interior

In a sort of unfinished frenzy of green we have this fireplace by Kathleen Melian. ‘Remains of Desire’ (2012) caught my eye with its rich greens and little interior touches.

Painting of a rich green interior by Kathleen Melian, "Remains of Desire" 2012

Peacock colours intrigue in this dramatic glimpse of the room beyond. I like this arrangement, entitled ‘Interior with Opera Cloak’, painted in the early 20th century by Francis Campbell Boileau Cadell. The cloak is the subject, but all I want to know is what the rest of that royal blue room contains, yet we are kept in the dark!

Peacock coloured interor painted by Francis Campbell Boileau Cadell

Who would have thought I would be happy to gaze upon a utilitarian sink, but painted by Chelsea Bentley James it becomes a thing of beauty. In cool blues the artist divides this dull spaces into a patchwork ready for us to appreciate.

Chelsea Bentley James paintings of room details

Sometimes a room exists to complement and frame a view. Here Edward Gordon paints ‘Music Room’, an inspiring space with stunning scenery wrapping round the house. With such skill the artist traces the light around the room, revealing the curve of the piano and the equally stunning Girl with a Pearl Earing by Johannes Vermeer in pride of place.

Music Room by artist Edward Gordon

To me this painting conveys one thing perfectly, jazz. My eye dances around the room struggling to settle but enjoying the ride. Painted by Anton Henning.

Anton Henning interior painting

Dark lines separate the cool colours in this series of rooms. Preston Dickinson painted this humble home in 1922, I like how the painting feels like a series of shapes rather than objects, I am rather partial to those rugs too!

Preston Dickinson (American, 1891-1930), Interior Scene, 1922. Oil on canvasboard, 20 x 16 in

Back to elegance, the wonderfully serene ‘Green Room’ by Marie-Louise Roosevelt Pierrepont. Such a happy space, a perfect reflection of the inviting garden shown through those giant windows.

The Green Room by Marie-Louise Roosevelt Pierrepont

Caro Niederer reduces her interior to its abstract essence. Citrus coloured blocks are recognisable as furniture and walls. Pink roses in the foreground remind me of Charles Rennie Mackintosh.

Caro Niederer

 

There are so many more I could show you! Its like a rabbit whole, once I started looking I couldn’t stop! Happy Friday everyone.

The Autumn Home

I am feeling decidedly autumnal. The air has turned fresh and crisp. Glorious golden light pieces through the deep dark clouds and then is swallowed up by gusts of wind and spats of rain. When the outside is this unpredictable I go in, time to think about an autumn interior and how to bring the warmth home. Here’s what I need to create that golden inward glow…

First things first, its all about blankets. Throws, rugs, textiles rule in a cosy home. With a grey geometric pattern and orange trim, this one works perfectly.

Grey geometric blanket with orange rim

Light is key, there is something about the flicker of a fire or candle flame that is so comforting. I love these geometric lanterns, a glowing cluster to guide you up the stairs.

little lights in glass and metal lanterns

The perfect view for that autumn cosy would be one like this. The undulating hills and evergreen trees emerge from the mist. Golden orange accents add a little of nature’s warmth to the scene.

Pine trees, undulating hills and misty skies

The sights and smells of the season are brought together here, a gorgeous array of colours from olive to turmeric to hang in the home.

DIY autumn decorations in the home

For colours think ochre and other earthy pigments. This herringbone blanket wraps around a wooden bowl on weathered table.

Yellow ochre blanket

Burningly bright, sculptural branches make a welcome addition to the autumn home.

Bring branches inside for autumn

My ideal vision of autumn comfort certainly involves food. Spiced parsnip soups, rustic bread inch thick with butter and hot chocolates swirled with cinnamon. This caramel, pear and pecan pie would fit the bill nicely.

Seriously tasty looking autumn pie

Grey and burnt orange textiles, neatly folded and piled high.

Folded grey and orange blankets

The mantle is the ideal place to layer your seasonal wares. Tiny pumpkins pile on cloth-backed books with an illustrated hare, an enamelled candle holder and deep green foliage brimming with berries.

Mental with rabbit illustration, candle and red berries

Mix and match the height of your lighting, I love my standard light at home, my shade is covered in delicate vintage florals but this mid-century-style mustard drum is beautiful in its simplicity.

Wooden light stand with a mustard shade

Still feeling cold? Nothing can rival a hot bath as the nights draw in. With matt black walls and a vintage copper bath, this is a room to wile away the hours.

Black wooden panelled walls and a vintage copper bath tub

Time to embrace the most magical of seasons!

Colour in the Kitchen

Fresh off the back of my India post, I’m still feeling the colour. Today I have turned my focus to kitchens. At home, my kitchen is in a cherry wood style with white mosaic tiles held in place with orange grout. It works but it wasn’t my choice, its how the kitchen was when I moved in. I fill it with colourful finds and happy patterns. On the notice board I pin illustrations I have drawn, or postcards I have collected. There is the vintage blue scales that were my grans, my nan’s ceramic salt and pepper and a wooden dresser piled high with teacups and patterned bowls. My ideal kitchen would be a mix of wood and white. Light, bright with clean lines and colourful flourishes and accents. When I cook, which I love to do, I like my food to look colourful, a little bit of everything goes on my fork – textures, colours, smells – in perfect balance. I think I like my kitchen to be like that too. Here are some kitchen’s that I’m enjoying today.

The best thing about my kitchen at home is the view! Gorgeous green hills fill my window. I like in this kitchen how the green foliage becomes part of the colour scheme. Adding a rug is an easy way to bring the colour.

Light and bright white kitchen with rug

Who doesn’t love a Smeg fridge, and in vibrant orange this one brings the joy! The wooden floor, Victorian style radiator and light shade are all things I love.

Orange Smeg fridge in a mix and match kitchen

Ultra sleek and ultra modern, grey tames this glowing yellow splash-back.

Grey and cupboards with yellow illuminated splash back

What a creative space, they make great use of the height with layered artworks and I love the mug hooks.

Two little girls in an ecclectic kitchen full of green vegetables and colourful art.

This kitchen has that Scandinavian calm. Mint green units are satisfyingly chunky, together with light wood and ample helpings of white.

Modern Scandinavian style kitchen with large pale green doors and white moasic tiles

This kitchen is like visiting an art gallery. I love the forest green units, brass handles and marble counter tops. The drama of dark kitchen’s always draws me in, but I don’t think I could have one – I need the light. It is so sophisticated though.

Oil painting art in a dark green kitchen with marble counter tops

Green is the colour of choice here too. A more industrial and rustic vibe. The island unit I love, and the concrete and wood dining table.

green industrail style kitchen with mis-matched chairs, plants and wooden furniture

I like the wooden in this kitchen, just the right amount of honey and grain. White counter tops gleam and the yellow stools just make me happy. Its the simple things!

Wood, white and yellow kitchen

This is pretty perfect – the long table, low lights, acres of books and framed prints just all work wonderfully.

Industrial chic kitchen with black units and white painted brick wall

This diddy kitchen maximises the limited space with sea green units and cream framed windows. The light streams in and what is essentially a corridor looks inviting.

Gally kitchen in a sea green with cream and lots of glass

A shelf window allows a plentiful supply of herbs. Lovely wooden counter tops and painted units make washing up less of a chore.

Wooden worktops with grey cupboards and potted herbs around the window

And finally, another flash of yellow! You can never underestimate the power of a lick of paint. Enjoy.

Yellow painted unit in a bohemian kitchen

Amazing India

It has been about 8 years since I went to India, and a place like that stays with you. It was a wonderful culture shock and a whirlwind of a trip involving driving a tut tut, gazing at the Taj Mahal, almost being kidnapped, meeting amazing people, crazy trains, cows, palm trees, azure waters, coconuts and bananas and of course colour, pattern and sound! Today I fancied diving back into those exciting hues and explore some interiors inspired by India. Take a peek..

Amazingly detailed room in a ice-cream blue. I love how Indian architecture is so decorative, saturated in embellishment and exotic hues.

Amazingly detailed blue interior, India

The beauty of a hot climate is bringing the inside out, with faded pink, intricate lanterns and handmade textiles this garden is a paradise.

Indian garden in aged pink

With so much to take in it can be nice zooming in, the powder blues here magnify the skill involved in this botanical carving.

Blue carvings in an Indian pattern close up

This is very similar to a sari I have, a great way to bring some interest to window treatment.

Pink Indian textile used as a window covering

Amazingly green! So fresh and vibrant.

Emerlad green detailed Indian building

You can never have too many Indian textiles! Pile them up for visual happiness.

Orange and yellow Indian textlies

A grand Indian home edged in candy striped pink and golden yellow. Love the canopied chairs.

Covered outdoor space in India with covered seating edged in pink

There’s an old world beauty to this deep jade bathroom. Dark furniture sits alongside a myriad of pattern.

Green and blue Indian bathroom

A richly coloured room that blends brick red, turquoise, orange and gold. That bed is pretty amazing!

Orange, turquoise and brick red luxurious Indian bedroom

A brilliantly blue sun room that is as elegant as it is bold.

Indian blue interior with white doecration

This is an easy way to add some ornate interest into your home, inlaid furniture. Though upcylcing an aged chest of draws with some bright paint, a steady hand and white stencilling might do the trick (see below).

Mother of pearl inlaid blue draws

Blue draws with white Indian pattern stencil

This immensely pink interior I remember spotting in a Vogue years ago, owned by Fashion designer Liza Bruce and her artist husband.

Pink patterned Indian interior of fashion designer Liza Bruce

There is an antique shop where I live that has random richly carved Indian doors, I love running my fingers over them!

Richly curved wooden Indian door

Tangerine dreams – intricately detailed orange corridor in an Indian palace.

Immensely detailed orange interior of an Indian paalce

I love this pineapple lamp stand, a little bit of the Indian tropics!

White shade and brass palm lamp stand

Just look at the amazing detail of this room – its like a festival of colour and illustration.

Amazingly decorative Indian interior

If that is a little bit much for your happy home, how about adding some regal Indian opulence with a crushed velvet cushion.

Golden yellow velvet cushion

And finally the amazing architecture that is the pink palace in Jaipur. Sadly I never got to see this in the flesh, but my trip to India will serve as rich pickings for inspiration for many years to come. So hope I make it back!

Pink palace in Jaipur with birds in flight

Dream Staircases

The kind of staircase I like is one that is elegant, falling from the ceiling like a ribbon cascading to the ground. Not clunky, asserting its presence – but brilliantly designed so you feel all the more lighter as you alight.

Like the flick of the brush this beautiful staircase makes the room.

statement staircase in flowing black lines

A pool of light is revealed as the curvaceous wooden staircase cuts out the floor. I love how it follows through underneath.

wooden curvy staircase

This feels very architectural, perhaps not elegant but certainly refined. The white steps stretch to the sides creating a perfect perching patch.

black and white stairs in slabs

A delightfully minimal hand rail flawlessly twists into the ground.

Black metal hand rail elegantly bent

Old school charm! Wonderfully wide for those gigantic skirts, this staircase transitions from wood to stone effortlessly. 

French feeling staircase in wood, metal and stone

A rhythmic staircase with a linear balustrade. There is something quite nautical about the black tripes. Perhaps it is their uniform nature, beautifully done.   

 Modern interior with beautifully elegant staircase

Black white and gold stair case with contemporary room divide in glass and black metal

We have an Egyptian feel next with these stone steps. Spacious and gently rising out of the ground, the smooth sides allow the light to bounce. 

white walls and stairs rise to an open space

A nod to Art Deco, these stairs create a pleasing zig-zag just stopping short of the floor.

wood and black metal with glass stairs

Striking putty pink stairs reveal a cut-out handrail as they swirl down the wall. 

smooth stairs in a pinky natural hue

Pleasing shapes are created with this simple black metal handrail. 

Pleasing shapes are made in this black metal handrail with steps cut from stone

Strong concrete stairs make their presence known as they twist from the ceiling. 

concrete grand staircase in public space

A slight but beautiful enclosed staircase. I like the blonde wood and vertical thin white-washed strips that follow the curve. 

wood and white stairs flanked by vertical wooden strips

Ending with a note of monochrome, a confident staircase that breaks away from the wall has a playful feel.   

black and white room with gloss black stairs that come from the wall

The Green Room

Its that breath of fresh air, green. It can be cooling, contemplative as well as bold and elegant or perhaps brash. I think the reason we love it so is because nature is so liberally painted with it, in broad varied strokes. Bringing green in the home feels, well, natural.

Not entirely sure where this colour fits, lets sit on the fence and call it blue-green. I always love a bit of wood panelling (as you can tell).

Wonderfully natural wooden paneling in a softly blue green

I don’t know if I would be bold enough to paint a wall in such a rich shade of forest green. I love the effect though, set off nicely by brass and a sumptuous tufted velvet settee.

Rich forest green walls and velvet sette

A fresh look, a geometric mural in soft green, a slight blue and a rose tinted white. The Mid Century Modern touches are lovely.

Dining table by a geometirc green wall

Golden orbs hang from chalky green walls and ceiling. Copper letters shimmer, all grounded with denim blues and a parquet floor.

Green walls in a cool restaurant Zona

What a peaceful spot, a sleeping nook with botanical touches. The carved wood is just lovely.

Botanical feeling room like stepping back in time

Sage green stairs in the perfect shade. I love them against that paper bag, I think a putty pink would be a nice complementary colour.

White wooden walls and a light green painted staircase

What an idea, pairing chalky black walls with grass green curtains! It works though, complete with a showpiece chandelier to boot.

Ornate gold chandelier with black walls and green curtains

The same emerald green here acts as backdrop for a refined floral chair.

Floral white coach with a rustic bright green wooden wall

Something about these elements would look just as happy with a great master’s muse sitting just so. The grey-green walls and worn wood are a welcome combo.

Cafe with green walls and simple wooden furniture

Achingly rich green is lavished on a wall of cupboards.

A storage wall in deep blue-green

Something about this image is very reassuring, a stripy green coach with giant cushion sits in front of a verdant green wall. It proudly displays slightly ancient botanical prints. Not too formal, a little shabby to go along with that chic.

green pinstripe settee with aged botanical prints on a grass green wall

Our final thought uses matt shades in a new Shaker style. The charcoal grey, mint green and milky lime are a soothing blend in a space that feels old and new. In the best kind of way.

Kitchen in green and charcoal