Sunday, 6 July 2014

Let there by light

Well the lampshade making is becoming rather addictive. They just always look so lovely-but that may well be the brilliant fabric that I've been using.

This week my order from Flohr & Co arrived and it's fabulous. This is the pheasant print, already being cut down for a shade


And a quick shot of the finished product! Taadaah!!!!


Flohr & Co is the brainchild of Carrie, a very talented surface pattern designer. She has 2 ranges at the moment-the wonderful pheasants and the beautiful storks (below). This just screams little girls nursery to me-which is lucky as I have a little girl who loves birds! Perfect. 

Can't wait to start my next project on the storks fabric, I'll keep you all posted. 


If you'd like to win this fabulous lampshade do head over to my Facebook Page and enter our competition (closes Fri 18th Jul 14). Good luck everyone! 


If you just can't wait until the competition is announced, then you can order one of these beauties directly - just drop me a line on Facebook or comment below and I will get in touch. 

Verity x

Monday, 23 June 2014

Could lampshades be the answer?

I mean, that really depends on the question and I'm not going to lie-they are not the answer for a lot of problems. However, when it comes to making your house looking fabulous then handmade lampshades could be the answer!

If you've ever tried to find lampshades, you'll realise it's not actually that easy. Beautiful ones are hard to find, unless you want to spend an absolute fortune and matching them to a new interior is much easier said than done. 


So, last week I decided that I would make some! Turns out, they look pretty good, but I mainly put that down to the very special fabric from Emily Bond. This one is called guls and honestly, the photo doesn't do it justice, it's just plain lovely. I can't wait to whip up some matching cushions.  What does everyone think? A winner? Do let me know! 

Emily has a wonderful range of printed linens at www.emilybond.co.uk



Verity x






Thursday, 19 June 2014

Part 3: Beautiful gardens (for lazy gardeners)

So, the sun is shining, the birds are tweeting and everything is marvelous. Except then I looked out of the window and realised that I don't have a garden like this:


I have a garden more like this: (well actually - this is my garden.)



Urgh. How depressing. Not the beautiful, colourful haven of tranquility that I should have, oh no, this is pretty much your issue Army garden. Lawn and fences (well apparently lawn, I'm not wholly convinced though). Now I'm not complaining, plenty of people have no gardens, but sometimes, just sometimes it would be nice to have a lovely garden. 

Now for us landscaping is not really an option, well technically it is, but then we'd have to re-landscape the lawn again and with the possibility of moving in another 12 months quite frankly its not going to happen. So, I've decided to go for some other options. These are things that won't involve having to be a landscape gardening, shouldn't break the bank - but should cheer up any gloomy space - small or large! And the best thing - you can take it all with you when you move.


1. Paint some Flower pots. Its not rocket science, but its cost effective and it looks lovely, anytime of the year. So grab a tin of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint (you know, the one your bought to paint every piece of furniture you own, but actually only managed to do one chair) yes that one - anyway grab it and get going. It takes literally a few minutes. 


2. Chimneas. Not an awful lot to say, but they are a great focal point and who is ever going to complain about roasting marshmallows in your own garden. You don't even need to spend the night camping to indulge. 




3. Cushions. Quite frankly, you can never have enough. Just get some. For your chairs, for the floor, everyone needs cushions. 


4. Ladders and Sheds. I used to think they were boring and unnecessary, but then I realised you could paint them, and now they are amazing. Think vintage, think shabby chic, think secret garden and you're there!


5. Benches. For some reason, massively underutilised. No idea why, they are brilliant for extra seating and for lounging and generally a useful piece of furniture. Get involved, they are lovely. 



Well, having now publically shamed myself I guess I had better get going...I promise to show you the "After" shots soon and when I feel lazy I shall remind myself of this beautiful garden below. Good luck everyone. 



Let me know how you get on! 

Verity x


Monday, 26 May 2014

Tallboys

Well firstly I need to apologise for the almost 3 month silence from me. Alas, I have had to return to work and we've also moved house so unfortunately the painting has had to take a bit of a backseat. But, it's nearly the summer and I need lots of new things for my house so the brushes are out again and it's back to business!

Finally, the sun has started shining and it feels like summer might just be around the corner! So, during my little painting sabbatical I made a vow that I would try and move away from Old White and Ochre. Yes I still love them, yes for the majority of the population neutral colours look classy and beautiful and simple and just well stunning-BUT if you live in a magnolia box like us and I mean every single wall is magnolia (Crown Silk Magnolia to be precise or rather as the military prefer: Silk, crown, magnolia) then you need your furniture not to be anything like magnolia.

So, my first anti-magnolia project is a tallboy for the upstairs landing. Somewhere to keep all the blankets and spare bedding and everything else that doesn't have a home. So I'm on the hunt!  To get some inspiration though of course the dirt port of call was Pinterest and while I tried to resist, I just couldn't stay away...it's GOT to be yellow. Nothing else will do. So the minute I can find the perfect tallboy I'm out with the English Yellow. Yeeeeeeessssss!!! But maybe a really distressed look this time, possibly with a touch of Aubusson Blue underneath. Oh yes, its going to look divine! Just the hideous brown/red carpets to tackle now....



Basically-this is what I NEED. 


But this is pretty nice 

As is this

And this

And this...

Watch this space, seemingly linen cupboards are harder to find than you would imagine! 

Verity x


Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Part 2: Headboards & some exciting interiors news

I am all for family friendly living. I believe that your house needs to incorporate the fact that there are little people in it, otherwise it really won't work. I don't think that you can get away with having a dedicated playroom and expect the rest of your house to be a child free zone. However, I draw the line at bedrooms- well specifically my bedroom!

I honestly think it is possible to have a child-free bedroom (fair enough not new born free, but in general) a grown up room that is just lovely. And for no other reason other than, well because.

But how do you do that if you can't paint your walls the finest muted greys or a beautiful cornflower blue or wallow in the thickest creme carpet money can buy? because, i can assure you if you are moving into an Army Quarter then you'll be lucky if they fitted underlay, in fact lets just agree the likelihood is they haven't. But fear not, there are loads of ways to get that luxury, hotel boutique look without having to undertake a serious DIY/carpet laying course. 

The answers: Be clever with soft furnishings. The biggest spaces you have available to add colour to your bedroom are the window dressings and a headboard. Here are some fabulous examples of lovely headboards that change the whole looks of a room (even a magnolia box).

 {Pictures from Pinterest}













Now for some exciting news. In the next few months Rascal & Roses are going to be bringing out a headboards and soft furnishings range (for bedrooms) that will make even the beigest of rooms dreamy! We're not just going to sticking to muted colours, there are definitely going to be some fabulous bright options and some amazing fabrics that will compliment all the lovely hand-painted furniture. Stay tuned and thanks so much for taking the time to read. 

 
Verity x

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Colour colour colour

One of the biggest problems I've found when people ask me to paint a piece of furniture for them, is which colour to use. Now clearly I don't mean a problem like starving orphans in Africa, or lest we forget the flood victims of Somerset, but it is a problem none the less.

The issue is lots of people look at the colour chart and pick a lovely colour, but then by the time you've covered a whole piece in Henrietta (a light mauve, but on the pink side) the piece only looks suitable for a 6 year olds princess themed boutique. 

Can you see Henrietta, looks gorgeous and subtle now doesn't it? Trust me you do not want a wardrobe this colour (unless you are an actual Disney Princess-then it's fine). A Vintage French console table however, completely different story.

So, what's the solution? Well, my fantastic powers of persuasion obviously help, but even they are not always enough. The thing is when you look at a a colour chart of a 1 inch block lots of colours look fantastic, but then imagining them on a larger scale in a room, certain colours just don't work. So I've I died I'm going to need something more than a colour chart. 

Lots of painters, designers and suppliers use lots of different props to show their clients what colours they have and now the time has come for me to to do the same! But what to chose? The list is endless and I'm still a bit stuck, here as some of the ideas others already use (courtesy of Pinterest):

Wooden block- Simple, do the job. 

Dark & Clear wax versions of make colour-genius

Who doesn't love anything involving a painted spoon?

Very clever use of colour all with different tones - not sure I have enough spare brushes to carry this look off though?

Looks amazing, but as a long term solution I don't think I can justify painting a new wall every other year.

This is my favourite, but again not overly practical...

So, lovely blog readers, what do you suggest? I'd love to hear what you think works best, or what ideas you have. I guess the only criteria really is that whatever I chose it really has to be wood. 

Verity x

Monday, 24 February 2014

Coffee Tables. Who knew...

That there is actually a proper way to style your coffee table! I don't mean where to have it, or which table to choose, oh no; I mean what actually goes on your coffee table and where on your table it should go. There are people's entire careers dedicated to coffee table styling. I am clearly in the wrong job. 

Now here are some beautiful coffee tables: 

The key is layers and a mixture of textures

Great use of books

Let's be honest any coffee table with macaroons is a winner

Match your books to your flowers - genius. 

Start with a double layer table and you're already half way there

You know what a sucker I am for upcycled items. This is awesome. 

The bonus of these books are that no one can question your artistic vision as you are clearly an expert. 

There is absolutely no denying it. They are all gorgeous. So, how do you attain a coffee table worth such adoration? Here's some simple tips:

Flowers - fresh preferably, silk acceptable, carnations never. Probably large buds are best with short stems. 

Something tall - I suppose you could use the flowers, but if you remember that your table will be admired mainly from a seated position, a better "tall" object would be an interesting piece of art or sculpture perhaps...you know something really precious so that when I can visit my toddler can wreck it and we never have to speak again. 

Books - obviously. Who doesn't want to how off their artisitic, creative, intellectual, hilarious side with a choice selection of books. Again, I would suggest the bigger the better and pile them up. I've been advised that two piles o books diagonally aligned to each other balance the table out. So there we go.

Trays - this year it's all about layers and a tray helps with this and if you leave enough room people can put their cups on it. That is if its not full of more priceless artefacts. 

Coasters - apparently people with good coffee table styling do not use coasters. It's very embarrassing if you spoil your look with aug practicalities. You've been warned, just don't do it. 

Now, you may sense a small note of sarcasm in my voice. I apologise. When I started this post I believed everyone should have a beautiful coffee table, perfectly styled and exquisite. But as I continued searching and hunting for all these beautiful tables I realised, this is never going to happen. Well not in the near future anyway. 

When you have a baby and a cat and a dog, the nearest I can get to styling my coffee table is a pile of "that's not my puppy" books, various remote controls (some work the machines in the room-half don't work at all) a pencil, blunt to avoid injury, the baby monitor (yes still) and various other crucial pieces that rotate on a daily basis (favourite toys, half written shopping lists, and a constant mug of cold, half drunk coffee). 

So while I will strive on a daily basis for my coffee table to look like the above in all likelihood it will continue to look like this:

I apologise in advance for the use of a coaster. I understand this probably means my 6 page spread in Country Living will now be cancelled. 



On a slightly more helpful note, this has caused me something of a conundrum. It is annoying- we all want our homes to look nice, but there are few of us that can style our coffee tables to achieve this. Lets be honest we all have other things to do and even if we did most of us would be "styling" at least 30 times a day to protect our masterpieces from, well, real life. So what's the answer? I'm not 100% sure yet, but I'm working on it. I'm doing some serious research into practical, (belonging and family friendly) options for coffee tables. I'll post them as part of my The Way to a More Beautiful Home Series. I warn you now though; my table is likely to have coasters on it. 

If you've missed any of the other posts in the series you can catch up here:

Introduction: The Army's on the move...again & Photo Display Ideas


Verity x