Pleated Architecture

Today I wanted to focus on structure. From the pleated preppy skirt to the folded cladding of a modern high-rise. How the light falls on a natural ribbed wooden surface and the wavy shell encasing a home. Love it!

Fashion and design ribbed and pleated

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Ribbed and pleated design in architecture, fashion and design

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Monochrome ribbed and pleated desifn - fashion and architecture

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Pleated and ribbed design in fashion and architecture

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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.

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 Details

As you may know I live in England and we have a wonderful thing called the National Trust. They basically look after our beautiful old buildings, preserving them for future generations, our coastline too. What it means is, nosey people like me can immerse themselves in amazing architecture, and imagine, what if… Near where I live in Cornwall we have Lanhydrock House, a gorgeous Victorian home that has a perfectly preserved upstairs-downstairs lifestyle.

You can get overwhelmed  by the amount of embellishment and grandeur, but I like looking at the details. We actually have a company locally, Bromleighs, who specialise in period fixtures and fittings. The door handles, light switches, letterboxes etc. that fit a specific period. They have even supplied the National Trust. I mean imagine a Downton Abbey parlour with white glaringly plastic light switches!! The shock.

In praise of period details, here a few elements that shouldn’t be missed, the unsung heroes that make a space authentic.

The real-life Downton Abbey, Highclere Castle

The Master in Downton Abby

Period details from Downton abby

Rich dark wood of the library in Downton Abby

Dramatic scene from Downton Abby

When you are restoring a period house some people strip everything away but the bones of the place, and then fill the interior in contrast with the ultra modern. Sometimes though I think the soul can be lost. I am zoning in today on the overlooked details that can preserve the integrity of a building.

Here we have a dove grey door with a silvered handle, complementing it perfectly.

Antique style door handles

As you may well know, I am a fan of mix and match. There is quite a lot going on in this bathroom, but I think it works. What I really like is the mirror and light fittings in this dark, brassy metal.

Old brass fittings in a contemporary space

I love these old radiators, especially in sunshine yellow!

Blue walls and yellow radiator

Beautifully finished, this kind of handle would look at home on a ruggedly knotted and aged door.

Brass ribbed door handle

The handles here, in my humble opinion, make this kitchen. Lovely rich dark blue units, marble counter tops and a touch of brass.

Kitchen units in navy blue with brass metal handles

I love this light, so solid, so certain. Bolted onto the wall like it really belongs there!

Wall light in brass and white glass

Back to blue again, it just works so well! And what a lovely leathery colour.

Bathroom door in dark blue with antique style handle and lock in brass

Of course it is important to look up too. Georgian houses especially had beautiful freezes of intricate plaster. This is actually taken from another National Trust property, Llanerchaeron in Ceredigion.

Plaster work detail from a National Trust house

Another great mix. I included this bathroom because of the peg hooks, a lovely detail, and because of the sage green and zesty orange combo!

Roll top bath, peg hooks and black wire storage in a contemporary twist on a modern bathroom

My final thought goes to lighting. You can’t go wrong with a chandelier, no really. Even this rustic space is made complete with an antique-style pendant.

Brown interior with dark wood and an antique style chandelier

The Writing’s on the Wall

When I was little a had a lovely bedroom, with an engaging freeze of alphabet letters all around my tiny room. For some reason I started reminiscing about my little room of peach and grey with Laura Ashly floral wallpaper, and it got me thinking, what alphabet options do we have for nurseries today? Oh and there really are some beauties! Take a look at my favourites…

I love this idea, alphabet cards pegged on a line! Fun colours too.

Illustrated alphabet cards hung in a children's room

I would love to illustrate my own!

Colourful abc pegged up in children's room

Make it monochrome with black and white wallpaper and lovely doodles.

Blackboard style wallpaper with illustrations and alphabet

You can’t go wrong with squidge, grey crocheted letters that are huggably good.

ideal for a nursery, grey crochet alphabet

Anything with an embroidery hoop I love, these appliqué letters are no exception.

Embroidery hoop framed abc

For a more neutral take, I love the white letters acting as a freeze.

Rain drop vinyl, hot air baloon, loly pop art and alphabet white wooden letter freeze in children's room

Or perhaps something like this, a white chest of draws up-cycled to be tactile fun.

Up-cycled draws with white letters

Not technically decor, but aren’t these brilliant? Wooden alphabet blocks with letters and sign language.

wooden blocks with sign language and letters

What a great idea, a giant magnetic letter wall!

Children's letter wall with magnetic letters

Or these lovely draws which have a deep richness with chunky wooden letters varying in size.

Wooden draws with alphabet letters

Creative ways with the alphabet! Nurseries can be such fun.

Kitchen Storage Thats oh so Pleasing

There is something so satisfying about a storage canister, sure call me crazy but they are just so snug, tactile and useful! I have a bizarre mixture at home, orange shiny ones that were my mums, an Orla Kiely ceramic and wood brown one from my sister, cut glass with stoppers and speckled pottery all sit together. Here are a few other kitchen storage jars that I wouldn’t mind clustered on my counter…

These trio are very pleasing, the tactile white ceramic pot is finished nicely with wood and leather lids.

Textured white and wood kitchen containers

For more strokable texture, below are storage pots that came from the Summertime range by Hornsea Pottery,  made between 1962 and 1964.

Retro 60s pottery ribbed white ceramic with navy blue and teal accent colours

These smoky objects are by Belgian architect Vincent Van Duysen. The oak lidded bowls come in ceramic, clear and smoky glass. Quite beautiful.

Smoky glass storage jars with glass wooden lids

Lovely and simple, and labelled so no confusion! The minimal text and glossy white vessels works really well. I believe they come in black too, for that gothic kitchen vibe.

Minimal and traditional white ceramic vessels with titles in black

The endlessly pleasing triangle motif wraps around these storage pots. Light wooded lids fit just so.

Light wooden lids with triangle designed rounded pots

A quirky shape and those great 80s colours of grey, yellow and black. I like the cork lids too!

Cork lidded grey, yellow and black storage pots with a funnel shape

Jolly patterned, again with a cork lid, these storage jars look substantial.

African style prints with cork lids

Mango wood lids, a hint of colour through the glaze and twirly knobs! A nod to Arts and Crafts, they would make a happy edition to the home.

Textured pots with wooden lids and mteal knobs

What a pleasing collection! Geometric black lines carve up the white space, all wonderfully different but all working so well together.

Geometirc patterned storage jars

An finally a little neon to brighten the day. That retro Nordic feel sits together with a grounding of grey.

Miss-matched wooden lidded storage pots for the kitchen

Just another opportunity to add some personality to the kitchen!

Oh So Plush Velvet Sofas

What could be more luxurious than velvet. Recently I’m hankering after a velveteen sofa that I could sink into, but what colour? From jeweled hues that dazzle to the perfectly pale – I love them all.

Where to start! This show-stopping blue sofa brings a little pizzazz to an antiqued interior

Antique round mirrors, lapis blue velvet sofa and smokey walls

Another moody room, this time matt blue walls and floor are perfectly complimented by a golden velvet coach placed at an angle

Blue walls and floor, yellow velvet sofa and dog

A cosy cat in a peachy velvet chair, could we get any more hipster!

Armchair in a dusky pink velvet with a curled up cat

This curved Chesterfield is a breath of fresh air in an icy greyed blue

Pure icy blue velvet sofa

Opulent gold looks so lavish with on a laid back sofa

opulent gold velvet sofa

Taupe shades are layered together with this deep, velvety sofa

Built in large velvet sofa in taupe

You can never have too much blue, cushions cascade to a waterfall effect

blue velvet sofa and cushions

The perfect combination of rustic wood, a woodland view and a verdant green tufted corner sofa

Light and airy modern room with wood, glass, abstract art and a green velvet sofa

A gentleman’s dressing room is set off by a dark wooden sofa upholstered in a deep luxe grey

A dark wooden dressing room with grey velvet sofa

Effortlessly elegant, this room boasts a blush pink sofa coupled with tufted rug and layered golden frames

tufted rug with layered artwork and a peachy pink velvet sofa

Oh my, black walls, tropical prints and a green velvet sofa that glows like an emerald stone

Black walls and an exotic green sofa

It may be little, but worth including in this velvet collection I think, tufted blue velvet is incased in an angular metal frame

Marbled floor, metal frame and tufted blue velvet upholstery

And finally, a orange-gold velveted chair that would be just like sinking into a sunbeam

Golden orange velvet sofar

Are you sold on velvet? I think I am.