A Room with a View

The thought of a mural can often conjure up awkwardly painted kids rooms, at least with me it can. However at the same time I love the dreamy interiors of grand houses where walking into a room is like walking into a dream. There’s a middle ground of course, glorious murals can now be purchased as wallpaper and voila, you can transport your room to another dimension.

As you may be aware by now I am slightly in love with trees, nature in general helps me breathe deeply and gives a calming sense of relief. This lush forest features some Regency ladies relaxing underneath its epic canopy of leaves.

Lush forest mural covers a wall

What a stunning room, the structure itself is noteworthy, every surface has exotic birds in flight, peppered amongst the leaves. Known as the Birdcage Room in Grimsthorpe Castle, Lincolnshire circa 1760.

Golden room filled with painted exotic birds

These pictures hold a world of wonder, oh to be a child in that room! The imagination would run wild. Boschereccia, or “Little Wood”, dates back to 1810 and is one of the finest examples of garden style trompe-l’oeil from the early 19th century.

A painted interior with a tree mural on an epic scale

Painted garden room

Equally as grand but more up to date, you can cover your walls with marble. Silvered greys and copper flecks add depth to an otherwise plain room.

Marble mural in the bedroom

Keeping it monochrome, your humble home can rival the interiors of Italian masters – well almost.

Marbled wallpaper on soft grey and white

Bringing the bright back we have this vibrant mural in the Arroyo Hotel, Buenos Aires. Local artist Eloísa Ballivian was responsible for the beautiful 10 metre hand-painted mural, it took two months to complete.

Giant painted flower mural

Forest green wafts up the walls in this watercolour mural. Brilliantly bold, I think I would team it up with deep blue wood work and golden accents.

Green watercolour mural

If in doubt follow the masters, Van Gogh’s painting of almond branches adorns this wall. That shade of blue is mesmerising.

Blossom mural inspired by Van Gogh

Into the woods again, this painted tree brilliantly merges ceiling and walls. The dark furniture adds to the drama.

Painted tree covers wall and ceiling

So many shades of green, who could count. A tropical paradise lining the walls.

Painted trees and monkey in this grand house mural

In a totally different style, the everyday becomes wall art here. Avital Pudinsky, from Tel-Aviv, hand drew this wall with her marker pen. Nine hours with no planning or sketches, just whatever came to mind. I love the impact it makes.

Monochrome wall mural with everyday objects

A more modern take on the forest room. This paper mural brings drama and depth, perfectly paired with velvets and silk accents.

Modern take on a forest room

Wow, serious wow. This mural is based on the Dutch painter Jan Davidsz de Heem’s artwork and is pretty mind blowing.

Rubenesque floral mural in a huge scale

And there you have it, some walls to inspire. With so many modern builds lacking soul, murals can be a great way to bring the drama!

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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.

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

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

The Versatility of Tiles

Its sizzling hot here is Cornwall today, lovely and very much holiday weather. It does make my toes appreciate a good, cool, slab of tile underfoot. In my kitchen its grey slate but today I am exploring geometric beauty and rich exotic shades. Tiles to me have a far away feel. I loved the ones I came across in India and Morocco. So much detail on something we just walk over.

This is how I think the universe would look if tiled. The deep inky blue is carved up with mesmerising shapes.

Complicated deep blue geometric tiles

Lovely layered tiles just like mermaid scales. Every shade is beautiful in its own right.

Beautiful tiles like mermaid scales

Pale pink patterned kitchen tiles perfectly complement copper pots, pipes and pendants!

Pale ipink pattern tiles with copper pots, pipes and light

Sky blue higgledy-piggledy tiles look so fresh and vibrant alongside the mottled white.

Hand cut sky blue and white geometric tiles

Elegant shoes for an elegant floor. These fanning mosaic tiles are just perfect.

White fan pattern with mosiac floor tiles

These must be Moroccan, jewel rich colours in intricate patterns. Its tiles like this which make maths beautiful.

Geometric intricate tiles in green, yellow blue and purple

A modern take the geometric design. These gold and grey tiles have a 3d effect with tactile surfaces to touch.

Gold and grey cube tiles with texture

The wall tiles in this bathroom catch the light adding depth and interest.

Bathroom wall tiles that catch the light

I love this depth of green, I could just dive in. Stylised blooms fit together in pleasing shades of turquoise and teal.

Teal green tiles in stylised floral forms

A feathery zig-zag in soft white and dove grey. The perfect backdrop to black taps and a marbled sink.

Bathroom tiles in stripy zig-zags with a pendant light and a marble sink

Giant geometric floor tiles impress in terracotta, grey, pink and black.

Terracotta, pink, grey and black huge floor tiles

Little blue square tiles carry a mesmerising sun pattern.

Little square tiles in blue with white sun pattern

This ice-white snowflake pattern looks very luxurious, with shimmering grey diamonds.

Snowflake pattern in white tiles

An easy way to add some glam to the bathroom, these large white tiles shimmer with an intricate gold pattern. Love the fittings too!

Large white tiles with gold geometric pattern on top

Here we have the same interlocking hexagon design but first in forest green, white and black while the second is more subtle using a blush pink, a slight grey and deep blue. I love the effect.

Overlapping geometric patterned tiles in green, black and white

Geometric tiles in overlapping shapes

And to finish off this tiling collection we have mosaic squares framed in black, complete with silver sandals!

Square patterned mosaic floor tiles