Saturday, 20 December 2014

Curl up, it's 4 sleeps until Christmas!



Can you believe Christmas day is almost upon us?

I've spent the weekend wrapping presents listening to cheesy Christmas tunes and drinking red wine way too early in the day. Feeling very festive indeed :)

Our front room looks a bit like Santa's grotto at the mo; we've gone all out on decorations, logs in the fireplace, bauble filled vases, the lot. It's looking really special, so I decided to keep the rest of my place looking less festive but still cosy with splashes of bright colours here and there so as not to take away from the christmas-chic room.

I thought I'd share our new bedding from Argos' range with you. I try to freshen up the look of our room quite regularly by changing the cushions, blankets and duvet covers, and over the past few weeks I just haven't been able to get enough of the colour mustard, so when I saw these cushions and knew they had to be mine.


Argos wouldn't usually be the first place I look for cosy bits and bobs but they've recently collaborated with Habitat and have the NICEST range of bedding available. Have a little look here. I think these cushions will look fab from Winter to Spring, and I paired them with some simple crisp grey sheets so the colour pops. 

What do you think? :)

They were bargains too! £12 each for the floral cushions, £4.99 for the poppy red cushion, £7 for the Habitat geometric pillowcase and just £10.99 for the grey double duvet set - crazy good value.




Thursday, 18 December 2014

Getting Christmassy with Home Sense, Brighton

Home Sense Interior blog Brighton

Home Sense Interior blog Brighton

You might have remembered me inviting you all for an evening of interior chats, mince pies and all things Home Sense in Brighton at the beginning of December, oui? Well, the evening went wonderfully :) I thought I'd share some photos with you all (this time by me, my photographer wasn't on hand that evening haha)

Get ready for serious levels of Christmas cosiness and snaps of some of my favourite picks in the Brighton store at the moment. There was bucks fizz a'flowing, mouth tingling canapés and cheese and a heap of inspiration to get everyone thinking about gift ideas and tarting up your home on the big day.

With only 7 or 8 shopping days left until Christmas, if you're still on the market for unique gift ideas I'd really encourage you to pop in and take a nosy around. I just bought a beautiful lamp for my nan for Christmas there (lucky she doesn't read my blog!) and knew it was for her within 10 mins of being in the store!

Happy shopping you lovely people. Oh and if you do pop in to the Home Sense store, look out for the pretty Hang a Bauble campaign they're initiating to help the Surrey charity Action for Children.

Customers are invited to pop in store, buy a bauble for £1 on which they can write a festive wish or happy childhood Christmas memory and add it to the hundreds of baubles that line the till-side walls :) what a wonderful initiative for charity eh? 

Home Sense Interior blog Brighton

Home Sense Interior blog Brighton

Home Sense Interior blog Brighton

Home Sense Interior blog Brighton

Home Sense Interior blog Brighton

Home Sense Interior blog Brighton

Home Sense Interior blog Brighton

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

7 things I'd buy for my living room if money was no object!


We can all dream about what we'd buy if we won the lotto right? In fact, I think it's healthy to create an online wish list of things you'd pounce for if cash was at your disposal. It makes you really think what exactly you'd like in your home, and whether it's even worth picking up lots of cheap items rather than saving for bigger items you'll love for years instead. 

I thought I'd share what's on my wish list at the mo. Some financially achievable, some seriously not.

7 things I'd buy for my living room if money was no object!


Just ignore the price tag for now, and look at how rich and beautiful the hand printed silk, piped cushion is. I love the colours, the splash of yellow and autumnal reds and think it would go beautifully on our Chesterfield sofa in our living room. Sigh, if only I had £400 knocking around...

7 things I'd buy for my living room if money was no object!
2. Winston Aniline Ash Leather sofa, and matching pouffe! 

I love deep mahogany brown leather sofas. There's something so cosy, wintery and traditional about them that make them instantly give an expensive feel to a room. Furniture Choice stock a pretty nice range with small wheels that I think would look so cute as a mismatched sofa beside our Chesterfield. If only we had the extra space!
7 things I'd buy for my living room if money was no object!

3. Wood burning stove for a country-chic open fire - without the mess.

We currently have a decorative fireplace with bare brick at the back and resting inside are some logs just waiting for a wood burner to be installed to fire up the chimney. Our next big purchase on the house will be something like this Ashdown wood burning suite from Next. It's long been Neil & I's dream to have an open fire and we can't wait to eventually get one built in come winter 2016.


7 things I'd buy for my living room if money was no object!


Okay this doesn't break the bank if you buy just one, but I'd plan to buy a whole group of different sized candles with different coloured candlesticks and place them all together decoratively on the hearth. I have an obsession with copper at the moment, since buying a round copper mirror from Oliver Bonas, these would match beautifully :)

7 things I'd buy for my living room if money was no object!

 5. Bronte herringbone and tartan blankets

 If money was no object my home would be filled to the brim with thick woollen blankets in all different patterns and colours. I lust after Bronte's old english classic collections. The patterns, wools, and colour combos on offer tick so many boxes, it's just the biggest tease that they're about £75+ a pop. Please Santa, can you bring me my very own x 10?

7 things I'd buy for my living room if money was no object!

6. Wicker basket storage, Marks & Spencer, £39.50 for a pack of 3 

Well, when I own so many Bronte blankets one day, I'm going to need some top notch wicker storage baskets to house them! I'm addicted to wicker. These baskets from M&S look like they're fantastic quality, and really not a bad price if you think about the cost-per-use ;) washing, products, towels, bed sheets, blankets, wicker baskets are so handy to have lying around and I love their countryesque traditional feel. 

7 things I'd buy for my living room if money was no object!

7. Rose Gold Candleabra from Zara Home

I speak for every woman that has ever stepped into Zara Home and smelled the sweet aromas of their wide range of infusers when saying, Zara Home is the epitomises dreamy home ware. If I was minted, I would deck my whole home in all things Zara, like this luxurious rose gold candle holder which would make a wonderful centrepiece to any table this Christmas.

I best start saving for the January sales eh?!

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

10 sites to look at if you're struggling with gift ideas

10 sites to look at if you're struggling with gift ideas

1. Oliver Bonas

If you're a regular around these parts you'll have heard how much I love Oliver Bonas. Their fab clothing, home furnishings and copper mirrors and frames will inspire you with ideas for mums, in-laws, sisters or girlfriends.

My pick under £20: This beautiful copper and glass frame. Fill with family photos for a loved one or pressed flowers for a colleague's secret santa prez.

10 sites to look at if you're struggling with gift ideas

2. Edited

Easily my favourite independent store in Brighton (and now, Tonbridge Wells!) I'm delighted Edited now stock a brilliant selection of gifts and interior dazzlers online too. Edited are my go-to place for eclectic presents and home buys. If you need to wow someone with a really individual gift, this is the place to look. Whether for the men in your life or contemporary fanatics, they have lots of options from clocks to cushions, to candles to blankets. They also do stunning christmas decorations to brighten up the festive season.

My pick under £20: I can't decide between the mixology glass candles (for the more romantic souls) or the sky planter (for defying gravity)

P.s, how cute do Edited wrap their gifts?!

10 sites to look at if you're struggling with gift ideas

3. ASOS

How hard are men to buy for?! I struggle every Christmas, birthday and valentine's day. Lucky I don't have many men in my life, but I've got to say, ASOS is THE place to shop for boyfriends, brothers, dads and father-in-laws. ASOS make it so simple, and cheap too. If you're after some jokey books, hip flasks and other stocking fillers, hit this place up and buy your whole Christmas shopping in one clean swoop. Free delivery too, what's not to like? Check out all of their Christmas gifts for men. Great selection!

My pick under £20: This Gentleman's shoe shine kit looks so much more expensive but is a steal at £14.99. It makes the perfect gift for Grandfathers or papas.

10 sites to look at if you're struggling with gift ideas


We all know somebody in our life with a slight addiction to luxurious tea (accompanied by a thick slab of victoria sponge.) JING Tea have the most stunning glassware tea gift sets that make the most thoughtful gifts for friends, parents or couples to spend time together brewing up JING's finest blends. I recently wrote about how giving the gift of time (and tea!) is a really sentimental present. Go have a read and see the gorgeous tea set Carrie & I played with over a cup of Yunnan Gold.

My pick under £20: JING's top 10 gift sets make me go weak at the knees a bit. Wow. If your limit is £20 though, this walled glass cup makes a really lovely present paired with a mixture of tasty teas to try out. 

10 sites to look at if you're struggling with gift ideas

5. FOLDS

If you have anyone who's super house proud to buy for, step inside Folds! With a collection of handpicked products you'll be sure to find something for all the interior lovers in your life. I recently styled up their cosy fluffy cushions, which have made the BEST pillows to chill with watching Christmas films, and since then I can't get enough of their bespoke designs. 

My pick under £20: I simply can't choose just one. These cut glass smokey vases come in beautiful colours, and look much more expensive than £8.85! I also love these branch candle holders, these quirky glass candle stick holders and this fab geometric necklace, very ethnic chic.

10 sites to look at if you're struggling with gift ideas

6. Lindt

Need I say more? For me, Lindt is the ultimate Christmas chocolate, and the ONLY option if you're giving chocolate lovers a box all to themselves this Christmas. As soon as those lindt reindeers and bears make an appearance on the supermarket shelves, it's officially Christmas in my eyes (and yes, I had to massively refrain from opening and scoffing all 24 doors on my Lindt advent calendar.)

My pick under £20: It HAS to be my beloved Lindt Gold Reindeers & Fluffy Antler ears as modelled so lady-like in the photo above. If you're buying for children (or those who still act like they're in primary school, a la me) Lindt is the place to stop for stocking fillers and keeping the kids quiet on Xmas day.

10 sites to look at if you're struggling with gift ideas


I speak about HomeSense lots on this blog. I had a nosey around the Brighton store (for the fourth time in the same week) when the Brighton Bloggers came to hang out and eat mince pies and play christmas games there, and on my travels saw that just about everything was gift potential at incredible prices. Check on their site and locate the nearest HomeSense store to you then take a look at their throws, mirrors, clocks, frames, glass sets, plate sets... the list is endless and the ideas are limitless. You're sure to find something for all here. 

My pick under £20: I picked up very large, grand copper candlesticks to sit beside the fireplace at just £7.99 each. I will talk more about these in an upcoming post but they'd make a fantastic gift for someone who has just moved, looking to make a house feel like a home.

10 sites to look at if you're struggling with gift ideas


If it's sentimental gifts you're looking for, there's nothing more sentimental than personalised gifts with his or her name on it. I love this site because not only do they sell just about everything bespoke (from glasses to sweetie jars!) but it's a super reasonable price and speedy delivery too. This is another site where I could easily do ALL of my Christmas shopping in one go as it ticks a lot of boxes. If you're super organised and already done your shopping, make it that extra special by wrapping it all up in PERSONALISED WRAPPING PAPER! Um, wow. 

My pick under £20: This 'lean mean' beer tankard that can be personalised with your beer lover's name on it is epic! Gift him one of these and a crate of fine ales and he'll be nice and merry all the way until New Year.

10 sites to look at if you're struggling with gift ideas

9. Loaf!

Just their very home page will bring you out in a festive flurry. "Deck your halls with all things Loafy" makes me smile. Loaf provide some of the most visually stunning furniture and home accessories that are perfect for delighting somebody this Christmas. If you are looking for a statement console table or pouffe for your grandma to rest her feet, look no further than here.

My pick under £20: These Turkish Hammam towels are a lovely present for anyone with plans for travelling this year. You can't hit up beaches without a shiny new towel to show off, and when they whip it out they'll always think of you :)

10 sites to look at if you're struggling with gift ideas


Christmas is a time for all things white, snowy and cosy. Hello The White Company. This is the place for classy presents. If you know anyone with impossible taste to get right, I guarantee you'll find something here. Silky nightwear is a timeless and romantic gift for her, or effortless entertaining sets for the social butterflies. 

My pick under £20: These mercury vases (set of 2) are a statement of pure love. Pop some roses inside and surprise a loved one with them when you call to visit for Christmas lunch. They won't be disappointed :-)

I hope my list of favourite shops has inspired you with gift ideas. Let me know others in the comments below! There are still lots of people I have yet to buy for :)

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Spotlight on... LOAF.COM & a cosy cushion giveaway (worth £45!)

Spotlight on... Loaf.com | wonderful interior websites

Are you up to speed on my latest interior feature? Right, let's begin. 

Last time I shared the wonderful Folds story, and chatted to founder Emma Gurner all about her interior loves, which inspired me to so much. Next up is a company that's a prime spot for quirky home accessories as well as solid, reasonably priced furniture. Introducing Loaf, the place where all your interior wants are fulfilled!

Spotlight on... Loaf.com | wonderful interior websites

3 pack of churnie vases, £45


I am so excited to share the fabulous Loaf.com and with that it's inventor, the lovely Charlie Marshall :) I came across the site on my homeware hunts a long while ago now, and continue to visit and be inspired by their pastel furnishings, textured rugs and beautiful, period fabric sofas made for ample loafing. 

The attention to detail in all of their offerings online are next to none. The Loafers handpick only the finest craftsmen to make beautiful, long-lasting furniture that they'd be proud of to have in their homes and I love that stories of every one of their makers is feature on site so you can hear exactly how your bouncy mattress has been made and who by. This kinda stuff fascinates me. 

Spotlight on... Loaf.com | wonderful interior websites

Margot bed frame, £745

With Christmas fast approaching, I can't recommend taking a peek at Loaf's site enough if you're lacking gift ideas. If you can get someone's interior taste right, they can make a very sentimental touch depending on what kind of thing you go for. 

Some personal favourites I'm looking at for family and friends are Loaf's crisp bed linen, their magical mirrors, gorgeous brass vintage lamps to adorn desks, and aztec-inspired cushions and pouffes for creating ultimate snugsville. Read on for an epic cushion giveaway from Loaf!

They have it all. It's just insanely difficult not to see something you want for yourself and spend all your budget on that ;)

I'm delighted to introduce Loaf's founder and inventor, interior genius Charlie Marshall, who was happy to answer a few of my burning questions. It's an inspiring story the way Loaf came together, and I think you'll come away wanting his house... it sounds like the dream :)



Charlie Marshall, founder of Loaf.com

Hey Charlie, tell us a little bit more about you, what you do at Loaf and your passion for all 
things interior

I’ve always been passionate about design and all of my family is obsessed as well. I grew up on building sites developing one property before we moved on to the next. You’d find me with a copy of the builders’ favourite News of the World tucked under my arm and my top drink was builder’s tea and two sugars as a kid!

I’m focusing on creating the magic of the business working closely with our in-house designers to create pieces that are unique, look great and aren’t going to blow the bank for our customers.

I travel a fair amount and interiors inspiration comes from all over. It can be anything from an antique French bed at a Parisian flea market or a cool, retro sofa in a Berlin hotel room.

How did you come to opening up your own online store?

Frustration really! Having lost a whole Saturday trying to buy a bed, I decided to make the shopping experience as hassle free, affordable and as speedy as possible. So two years, 187 mattress factories and some seriously comfy beds later, Loaf was born. The idea is that we’ve done all of the testing so that the customer doesn’t have to.

We’re now a one-stop shop for the whole home and excitingly we’re planning our first retail destinations called ‘Loaf Shacks’.

Tell us a little bit about your home, what's your most loved interior possession?

My wife and I have a big living, kitchen, dining and playroom rolled into one. The ground floor space is on one level and forms a ‘U’ shape around the house. It’s perfect for the kids to whizz around on their trikes. The rooms have high-ceilings, light wooden Dinesen floors for a clean Scandi look, neutral mid-century furniture, pops of colour with quirky ethnic pieces, a colourful striped ‘Finca’ rug and a giant magnetic blackboard. My favourite design is our Crumpet sofa just because it’s so
darn comfy! I ordered it in a large so that me, my wife, and our two kids can all loaf about on there together.

What are your best tips for decorating a home?

Keep the basics clean and simple. At home we’ve gone for a palette of off-whites, which is livened up with pops of colour including statement furniture pieces and vibrant textiles. A geometric patterned or textured piece is a great way to easily update a scheme. Is the lighting right? Opt for a warm glow rather than stark white light. Side or floor lamps give a nice cosy feel.

What's your favourite home look for winter?

Winter is the time to hunker down and cosy up. At home we add really soft woollen blankets to the end of the bed and throw them over sofas for an inviting, layered look. I love a brightly patterned rug in front of the fireplace adding warmth and some contrast to a room. Oh and a log fire!

Spotlight on... Loaf.com | wonderful interior websites

Loaf are feelin' festive and would like to give one of you lucky readers the perfect gift this Christmas, your very own embroidered 'Hiccup' cushion (worth £45) with the prettiest pastel shades that will make a wonderful addition to your room, or perhaps a loved one's couch?

The giveaway runs FOR ONE WEEK ONLY, ending on the 16th December 2014, so you'll receive your new cushion just in time for the festivities to begin.

All you need to do is enter via the Rafflecopter below.

Go ahead, you never know you might win :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The giveaway is open to UK residents only. The very lucky winner will be chosen at random and the giveaway will end on 16th Dec 2014 12am.

To enter, you must follow my blog via Bloglovin or GFC and like my page on facebook. A winner will be drawn and I will check for proof of entry. If that person has entered without following or liking my page on facebook I will choose another winner and email you directly to post it on.

There's lots of bonus entries on there too, so fill your boots and good luck! I'll just go crawl into my envious cave.....


Wednesday, 3 December 2014

Dinner with Jamie

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

Well, well, well. What do we have here? a slab of the most chocolatey honeycomb-y arctic roll with chocolate shavings ready to bring in December in style. All good restaurant reviews skip straight to the pudding, right? ;)

Let me tell you, that moreish chunk of love might have been a heart attack in a bowl, but every last morsel was divine, and not an ounce of guilt overcame me. 

I find myself day dreaming about it to this day...

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

You guessed it, Neil & I played 'food critic' at Jamie Oliver's Italian in Brighton a wee while ago, and honestly? I couldn't fault the whole experience. 

Actually, we had a Jamie look alike sitting at the table behind us. I almost cried when I realised it wasn't him - put a slight downer on the evening. Who goes to Jamie Oliver's Italian looking like a stunt double of the man?!

Anyway, the food. Oh the food. 

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

When I ordered starters (an array of slightly chewy but deliciously battered crispy squid, and fresh lemony crab bruschetta) I was initially worried about portion sizes being too small. I have eyes bigger than my belly you see, that stems from a genuine fear of being left hungry.

I looked to Neil for consolation. The mains arrived, and I was instantly at ease. A great big pile of chips, flat steak spread out the size of the plate and a pile of delicious spicy sausage pappardelle. YUM.

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

We tend to do a little sharesies whenever we go to restaurants, and Jamie's was the perfect place for this, tempted by their meat share boards. On this occasion, Neil chose the steak and I was left with a slight case of food envy until I took a bite of my pappardelle and was blown away by the rich taste. 

No meal is complete without an alcoholic drink to swig on beside it, and whilst we usually opt for a bottle of house red, the price kinda swayed us so we stuck with beers. Libertá, the home-brewed lager was just the ticket to accompany my spicy pasta. I was smitten with the branding on the bottle too, it's the little things. 

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

All in all a top eve with fine food and company. Great table service, delicious food, an exceptional menu to choose from and even a Jamie lookey likey to keep you entertained. I wouldn't hesitate to visit this place again (we usually pop here for our office Christmas do!) and have yet to be disappointed. 

If you're looking for a place to celebrate the festive season, or a special occasion, this place is perfect. They can cater for big groups and small, have a huge selection of starters and mains to sink your teeth into (pudding menu a little less choice, but everything made me say 'wow') - just don't go expecting change from a 20 if you're wine lovers like us ;)

10/10 for atmosphere in there, and the décor also makes me happy!

Here, have a slice of arctic roll before you go book a table...

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

Jamie Oliver's Italian review in Brighton

Thank you Mr. Shaw, for the wonderful photos and accompanying me for an evening of fine dining. 

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