Monday, 2 February 2015

One Fine Stay

Have you seen the movie "The Holiday" where Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslett swap homes - one luxurious pad in California, and one quaint little cottage in Surrey, England? The two women not only swap homes, they swap lifestyles and leave their own behind for a few weeks. Well, I stumbled across this great website, One Fine Stay, where you can have a similar experience (although I can't guarantee that Jude Law will knock on your door!).

It's not a house swap, but you do get the opportunity to stay in someone else's place while they're out of town. Rather than visit the same landmarks and attraction as every other tourist, you get to experience the 'real' city, with recommendations of shops, restaurants and more from the home owners themselves. I love that! When we were on holiday last we asked some locals where to eat out, and we had the most fantastic meals in places we would never have found otherwise.

The website is based in London but it features homes in London, Los Angeles, New York, and Paris. All incredible cities, who wouldn't want to get off the beaten track and experience them in this way?!

The photos I've featured in this post are from a young family's home in Cobble Hill, New York. I picked it because it's the only city out of the four that I haven't been to, and would dearly love to. And when I do I would be more than happy to stay here with it's beautiful parquet floorboards and backyard oasis.

Isn't it a wonderful concept?! To find out more about One Fine Stay visit their website, and check out all the fabulous homes on offer. All are quite different so there's sure to be one that you'll fall in love with.

Friday, 30 January 2015

Petra Bindel

A little interior inspiration to take us into the weekend... I love the work of photographer, Petra Bindel and have featured it before here. I've chosen to share with you three shoots I love, all very different, starting with photos for Urban Outfitters. They always have amazing styling, and in this shoot Petra worked with stylist Emma Persson Lagerberg.

This beautiful home belongs to Ylva Mazetti, and was featured in Elle 2011. The soft pastel colours and vintage furniture pieces give it a lovely relaxed, homely feel.

And these gorgeous photographs are for the R├Ądda Barnen (Save the Children) design shop - all profits go to their work for children in need. Petral worked with stylist Lotta Agaton on these photos.

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Thrill, Fill & Spill

When I'm styling a vignette I like to work with layers of height, texture, shape and colour. Something tall at the back, maybe a piece of art on the wall, a vase or lampshade, and layering smaller pieces in front.


I have to admit to not being much of a gardener, my husband is in charge of ours at home. Although I don't know much about soil types, and what to plant where, I do know what I like the look of, and I've found that the same principals I use in interiors also apply in the garden. Layers of texture, shape and colour make for a very visually appealing garden.


People used to tell me that when I got my first home I'd become interested in gardening, but that didn't happen. Funnily enough it's creating a small garden for my first office that has sparked my interest in the botanical world. Dael & I are in the process of moving our business out of my living room and into a little office/showroom in Ahuriri. Our friend Anna, from My Veggie Patch, has helped us pick the right plants to withstand the hot conditions down there, and to provide some colourful impact. We're now waiting for our hibiscus and portulaca to burst into bloom. We plan to add a large pot by the front door, and it's Anna who taught me about "thrill, fill and spill".

A pot created by Anna of 'My Veggie Patch' outside FG Smith cafe

I love that phrase, and it's really quite self explanatory... it describes how to plant a container garden. Your 'thrill' is an eye-catching plant with some height at the back of the pot. 'Fill' is a selection of lower plants that fill the rest of the pot. And the last component, 'spill' refers to the plants that fall over the edge of the pot. Here are a couple more examples to show you how fab this looks...

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Although this example (below) is slightly different, in as much as the plants are in individual pots, it has a similar effect - tall foliage at the back, with smaller plants in front. The different textures are gorgeous, don't you think?!


I really feel inspired to have a go at gardening at our place now. But maybe I'll start with a pot before I let loose in the garden itself :)

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