To the Lake

The fleeting hour of life of those who love the hills is quickly spent, but the hills are eternal. Always there will be the lonely ridge, the dancing beck, the silent forest; always there will be the exhilaration of the summits. These are for the seeking, and those who seek and find while there is still time will be blessed both in mind and body.” ~ Alfred Wainwright

The Lake District has my heart, our forever place, a home from home and we adore it so.  To be able to visit even for those short fun filled days, come rain or shine, in any of the seasons, the landscape, the air, the water, it’s magical presence will always be.

I will never tire of sitting by the waters edge watching the boats and people walking along the tracks of the fells.  The views, no matter where you are simply take your breath away, I always try to imprint them to memory for a rainy day but they always take you by surprise when you are there, looking at it’s greatness.

The light seems to be different there somehow especially at this time of year, everything is bathed in an amber glow.  Time stands still for a while, life takes on a different pace, no rush or fuss.

I wanted to be able to bring a piece of this trip home with me and I was lucky enough to purchase a piece of abstract art work that is currently on display as part of the Cumbrian Artist of the Year 2016 at the Rheged Centre.   I have to wait until mid November to get my hands on it, so the excitement builds!  I also got to see my friend Ali’s beautiful new tweed bag range for Ruskin, made with wool from local Herdwick sheep, of course I am now coveting the Quentin.

I seemed to notice the smaller details while away this time, so hopefully you’ll enjoy what I have captured.  From rocks on the waters edge, perry pears that were freely falling from their boughs (and on my head which caused great peals of laughter) to a rustic woven cushion on a window ledge, log piles and rough stone walls.

Happy memories made, until next time.





Well the season is well and truly in full swing and I’m embracing it with open arms, hello Autumn I rather like you.  I am always a little apprehensive betwixt the end of Summer and the glorious few months that follow.  I am ready now to let go of that limbo, the reluctance to let go of the warm sun and sandal wearing days, and whole heartedly grasp the magical moments that Autumn brings.

I like it when the temperature drops so that I can start layering my wardrobe, chunky knits over skinny jeans, woolly socks in boots, snuggle into well wrapped scarves.  I even change my handbag from wicker basket to my Nara bucket bag with it’s beautiful soft buttery leather.

Dark mornings snuggled under the duvet for 5 more minutes than usual, bowls of warming porridge by candle light before the day gets started.  Then at the end of the day curling up under blankets with warming cups and indulgent books.  If I had a log burner it would be lit, crackling warmth infusing the room, one day I will have one!

Bracing walks kicking the jewel coloured fallen leaves, comfort food made with locally sourced delicious seasonal produce. Displaying a myraid of pumpkins and gourds in all their varying colours shapes and sizes.

To truly feeling those moments of hygge to wrap it around you to savour those precious memories created whilst doing all the wonderful Autumn things that you do.  To get a sense of what this means I would highly recommend this profound little book written by Louisa Thomsen Brits called the book of hygge (the Danish art of living well) a perfect read whilst snuggled up in your favourite armchair.

So yes once again Autumn I rather do like you…..


Image source  2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 & 11 the rest are my own





Pinterest = Happiness

Hello my name is Jane and I am a Pinterest addict and quite proud of it too.  It’s my happy place, my staple go-to to glean inspiration, aspiration, current moods and trends.  Somewhere where all my daydreams are placed as a visual reminder, all categorised in the right place so at a click of a button I’m transported into the kitchen of my dreams, the recipe I want to try or the fashion store that has the perfect dress.


I am a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to how my feed looks, I like it to be fresh with a touch of cool simplicity to each board so when you look at it on a whole it just flows, a tad OCD but I don’t care as I said earlier it’s my happy place.


I like to take a few moments on a morning with a cup of coffee and pin, along with my daily swim it’s a routine I like, it brings calm to my day creating visual mood boards that I can look at at any point.


I was over the moon when I was invited to a PinterestUK evening of ideas event in London.  So I hopped on a train and rocked up to be involved in a unique inspirational moment with like minded souls.  I felt a connection with the talk that Alastair Cotteral, Pinterest Head of Creative gave, the emphasis for expression, visually arresting images and the inspiring content that we can create by using this wonderful tool can lead to making  contact with some pretty cool folk.


I came away with a head full of ideas, small improvements to be made and new additions to be added to take my feed to the next level.  For now though I am happy collating my ideas, hopes and darn right lovely interiors as my everyday aspirations.


Come and follow me here and say hi.


Mood boards created using images from specific boards on Pinterest 1, 2, 34 & 5

Design Elements // Childrens Books

I know before anyone asks if I’ve gone mad then the answer is most certainly NO!   Children’s books in all their colourful, imaginative, educational other world inspiring glory are full of design.  Can you see the connection?   I wonder how many times you have read a book to your little one and studied the art work, I know I have.  Pondering questions of what inspired the illustrator and how they came up with their brilliant concept that will be treasured at bed times by so many small people.  Even to the point of connecting with a child so much that this is what they end up doing themselves when they grow up.

Design is everywhere you look and I was fascinated when I was asked to take a look at three new very unique children’s books based on their design ethics. The books in question are Handstand by Lisa Stickley,  An Animal ABC by Alice Pattullo (to be released on 13th October 2016) and a re telling with a twist on a classic tale Sleeping Beauty: a mid century fairy tale illustrated by David Roberts and retold by Lyn Roberts-Maloney.  Rather than me review each one I thought that I would ask the author illustrators about their creations as they know far more about design than I!

1. Where did the design influence come from when putting the book together?

Lisa ~ I wanted to create a ‘fresh air’ feeling for this book so I embraced the naivety and simplicity of coloured pencil and oil pastel often used in my work. Combining this with mono-print and injections of colour by way of collaged pattern I hope it evokes a feeling of unfussiness and ‘only just cut grass’, which is exactly what I think of when I remember ALL of the handstands I used to do when I was little. Books on Saul Steinberg, David Hockney and William Scott were regularly perused when I was creating Handstand too.

Alice ~ I’m generally very inspired by mid-century artists and illustrators like Edward Bawden, Eric Ravilious, Barbara Jones, Enid Marx, Barnett Freedman….I could go on! All of these artists crossed the (invisible) line between ‘art’ and commercial illustration and I like to think that I am doing this with my own work now. I am also very interested in the print aesthetic of 1930s/40s lithographed children’s books, like the Puffin picture books (of which a few of these artists produced designs for). I particularly love the limited colour palettes which force an ingenuity when it comes to layering colours – so you make the most out of the few you have. I wanted to adopt this technique and stick to just 4 colours throughout the whole alphabet, emphasing different colours in different animals to make it look like I had a wider array than I really did.

David ~ It came from the idea of how the culture of the 1950s envisaged the future. Sci-fi films, robots, comics and cartoons were all an influence on the look. I also looked at furniture, fashion, surface patterns and textiles of the period. Russian architecture was also an influence as it seemed to have a futuristic look to it.




2. Who or what inspired you as a child?

Lisa ~ I was always a maker and a doer from a very early age, with huge encouragement from my aunty who is a great sewer and knitter. When I wasn’t cart wheeling myself around the garden I would be painting, playing at shoe shops, baking cakes or making things.

When I was a young teenager I remember having a Dryad mini screen-printing kit, and my first print being a ‘flower power’ type flower in two colours on a white pair of shorts! I used that little screen for years after that, and ended up printing some of my very early labels with it onto cotton binding tape.

My art teacher at secondary school was also a huge influence. She was the most wonderful lady and I remember how she would sit at her desk before class sharpening all her coloured pencils with a penknife. She used to set up the most fantastic still life compositions for us to draw and opened my eyes to the world of Art and design. I had found my happy place.

Alice ~ I was brought up in a creative household. My mother is a textile artist (who has also actually just released a book with Batsford – ‘Textile Collage’ by Mandy Pattullo) and my father is an architect, so I guess they were the initial inspiration that led me down a path towards a creative profession. Myself and my brother were always encouraged to draw and paint and be creative at the kitchen table and were regularly taken to galleries and museums. I remember a visiting a particularly influential exhibition as a young adult of Shirley Hughe’s work – seeing her sketchbooks and inspiration and how they translated into her picture book work was really pivotal in pushing me in the direction of ‘illustration’ as a career.

David ~ I was very much inspired by music, particularly Kate Bush. I also loved fashion and dressing up.



3. Can you tell me a little about your design background?

Lisa ~ I trained as a printed textile designer at Central Saint Martins and The Royal College Of Art. Having originally founded Lisa Stickley in 1999 (from my bedroom, using the original Cash’s labels my mum used to sew into my school socks, and subsequently said screen printed ones above) I was lucky enough to sell my first ever products to Paul Smith, Designers Guild and The Cross. Since then I have collaborated with the likes of Burberry, Harrods, Liberty, Tate, Selfridges, Heals, Boots, Debenhams, John Lewis and Japanese stores Ships, Hankyu & Isetan.

I opened my first shop in 2007 in South London, which, behind the scenes, doubled up as a bustling print studio and creative hub. I have designed and developed lifestyle brand concepts, and have produced and sold home-wear product and accessories all over the world.

Alice ~ Other than my childhood as explained in the previous questions, I studied a foundation at Newcastle College which was brilliant (I’m saddened to hear that a lot of universities aren’t looking for this as a pre-requisite any more and that many of the foundation courses across the UK are now being cut altogether) – It was a really encouraging and explorative year – although you have some art education at school – it by no means is reflective of what you could be studying in higher education and foundation really provided a glimpse of this and again helped me understand that I wanted to pursue illustration, in particular more concept driven work. I went from here to study BA Illustration at Brighton University, with a brief stint in the US at Minneapolis College of Art and Design. Upon graduating I continued working on self initiated projects which would generally manifest themselves as a series of screen prints which I then showed to various shops and galleries around the UK that I particularly liked and thought my work would sit comfortably in. From this my first few illustration jobs actually came from people seeing my prints in the right place at the right time really – and a lot of my commissions generally have come from word of mouth to begin with. That in itself is humbling that people want to share my work. Now in an age of the internet, I find a lot of my commissioned work actually comes from other people’s pinterest boards which is almost the same thing! I now have an agent for my illustration work, Central Illustration Agency as well as continuing to produce self initiated screen prints, such as the ABC series.

David ~ I left school at 16 and I went to art college with the intention of becoming a costume designer but I found I had a keen interest in fashion design and textiles so I went to study for a BA in Fashion Design at Manchester Polytechnic. Whilst there I did a short course in millinery which I fell in love with and so on leaving college I went to Hong Kong and worked as a milliner and a fashion illustrator. I returned to the UK and found work with the milliner Stephen Jones but I’d always at back of my mind had a secret wish to become a children’s book illustrator. I did a short course at the City Lit in children’s book illustration which led to my first children’s book in 1997.




4. Is anything in your home’s interior reflected in the book?

Lisa ~  I think being a designer you never really switch off from the ‘day job’ so your work and style often seeps into everything else in your life too. I think I have quite distinctive handwriting and that aesthetic is part and parcel of our home too… albeit a lot more untidy of late having two very little ones running around the place! An eclectic mix of pattern and simplicity is quite a big part of the look and feel of Handstand, which runs true at home. For specific and quite literal inspiration, book two (out in spring 2017) includes quite a big chunk of my eldest daughter’s toy collection, so keep your eyes peeled for that!

Alice ~ No! Can’t really expand here!

David ~ Yes, I have one of the robots. My personal style is more 1930s and 1970s so I don’t have many 1950s pieces.



5. Do you have any words of wisdom to children who are passionate about design?

Lisa ~ Explore, experiment and don’t be afraid to try all sorts of styles and techniques. Happy accidents are the best way to learn and discover new things. If you are passionate about what you are doing then do LOTS of it and keep going. Draw draw draw, and look look look, these are the fundamentals of design and will give you the best grounding to become a good designer.

Alice ~ Words of Wisdom? Just to be aware of your environment and history and to make sure to keep drawing and observing.

David ~ Be indulgent.



Many thanks to Lisa, Alice and David for being so generous with their time to answer my questions.  Also to Ruby for being my model even though she is a little older than the books are aimed at she poured over them looking at every detail.  My girl devours books, draws like a demon and has an imagination that makes my head spin.


This post was in collaboration with Pavilion Books, with thanks


Double Merrick // Eclipse Solaire

Double Merrick has been on my radar for a while now.  A contemporary take on screen printing, I love the vibe of Merrick’s work, the simplicity with a nod to pop art, the striking graphical images.  The pared back nature of the prints speaks volumes from the moon and sun to pencils and watches.  French slogans and holiday destinations with a feel of another era but also certainly  very current right now.
malalune Not only is Merrick very talented he enviably lives in France in the most wonderful house where he draws inspiration from his surroundings.  I asked Merrick how he ended up living in rural France, what inspires him and of course what his favourite room in the house is.  He kindly agreed, here is what he said….
“Thirteen years ago I accidentally moved to France. Because that what happens when you meet a pretty girl and you take your eye off the ball for a nano second – You end up in a forgotten corner of France, that was only really known for it’s Communism and ability to blow up Nazis in WW2. You find out you are the only man in your village who is a) English b) under 55 c) over 5ft 9.
After a while the whole fish out of water vibe begins to wane and I realise this area has amazing things lurking at every turn: old posters, books, signage. It all ferments and I realise I want to share this grubby pop art aesthetic with the world – Double Merrick is born!
Our house was built in 1799 and we moved in January 2003, with no hot water and one plug for the whole house. The house by necessity has been an organic process – we were young fools who had very little money and even less of a clue about what they were taking on. But bit by bit we got there, doing most of the work ourselves and furnishing the place with Brocante finds.
If I’m put on the spot I’d have to say my favourite room of our house is the back yard. It’s a beautifully quiet place, private, filled with flowers, and a day bed. It’s just a lovely little spot to eat with the family or enjoy a quiet cup of coffee”
 You can find Double Merrick products in many influential stores such as Liberty, Selfridges, Pedlars and Urban Outfitters but also his own online store which is a joy to browse and of course lust after as I want it all!

Merrick generously sent me one of the Eclipse Solaire prints, it is now a prized possession. The circle created by the moon covering the sun is quite a powerful image with great meaning and as you all know my connections with circles I thought it a perfect addition.


  • this post was written in collaboration with Double Merrick


I have a confession, I’m a little bit obsessed with ceramics in all it’s guises.  I’ve had a good clear out of old crockery, mugs and bowls that are no longer used or serve any purpose, even most of the vintage china has gone.  Clearing out and starting again feels good and I’m starting a curated collection of beautiful ceramics and pottery.

I have a few pieces of old that have come back into the foreground but it was a Parkwood pottery mug by Lane that started me on this path and obviously my need to clear out and feel free from clutter.   I have recently invested in some new dinner plates from Minor Goods which have the most beautiful glaze.  I don’t want matching I want mix and match but all within the same hues of stone through to deep blue.

I am fascinated and in awe of those who use there hands to create objects that have been born from the ground and turned into useful, practical objects and art forms in their own right.

I love the tactile nature of ceramics, the different methods and stories applied to each piece that make that certain mark or colour.  There is nothing better than wrapping your hands around your favourite mug or bowl and the comfort it brings, like saying hello to an old friend.

There are many artists out their that I admire greatly who turn, sculpt and manipulate wonderful pieces using their hands, Sue Prkye, Pip Wilcox, Sarah Jerath and Jono Smart to name but a few.

Follow my ceramics board for more inspiration.


Image 1, 2 and 3 my own 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 and 11 sources highlighted.


September Reclamation Special

It was a joy to be asked again if I would review the Arthur Swallows Decorative Home and Salvage Show at Ripley.  It was a beautiful serene Saturday morning when I arrived, the air slightly Autumnal.  Walking through the gates makes me feel like coming home, a familiar place that has a special place in my heart.  Seeing old friends and catching up, wandering around the perfectly styled stands full of new finds.  There is always such a warm friendly vibe at Ripley and definitely something for everyone, it’s simply a great day out and if you leave with that perfect item you’ve been looking for, even better.

You’d think that the exhibitors had all talked and compared notes about the look of their stands, they all flowed and coordinated so well: green tones, metals and neutrals.  These elements always catch my eye, it’s a look that I’m extremely inspired by at the moment.

As always Millington and Hope‘s careful arrangement made me gasp, tactile wooden bowls, rough hewn linen chairs and tactile ceramics.  I was also drawn as always to Chris Holmes display, Chris has such an eye for the unusual. He is the master of curation and is so knowledgeable of his stock.  Chris was also showcasing a body of work by Chloe Holt an artist who creates stunning contemporary paintings. I fell in love with them and I am seriously saving my pennies to own a piece of Chloe’s work that I can call my own.

This fair Matt Dixon of Tallboy Interiors in Aberford has taken his own stand. A qualified interior designer with a flair for the unique; I loved his stand and it’s curios but also thoroughly enjoyed talking to Matt who really knows his stuff.

I’m so pleased that this fair has taken place twice this year, you always find something new for your home. I was looking for something in particular this time that I didn’t find so the search goes on. Maybe it will appear in May next year when I next visit.  I did get seduced by a simple ceramic vessel to add to my collection as ceramics are a growing passion of mine so I left a happy customer.


A Gallery of Summer

This week has been a tough one, I don’t do transition too well and Autumn is on it’s way, there are little tell tale signs but I’m trying so hard to hang on to Summer.   Also my daughter started her first foray into the big scary world of senior school, she is coping far better than I!  We are all feeling a little exhausted to say the least.

So I thought I would go back a few weeks and share with you some of my memories from our Summer getaway to the most beautiful of counties, Somerset.  We’ve never been to Somerset before so it was a delight to find so many wonderful things to see and do all within easy access to where we had chosen to stay on the outskirts of the picturesque village of Batcombe.  If you like quiet, quirky and rural this is the camp site for you.  So simple but wonderful for children to explore and just be, no play park but trees to make dens in and a lake to go boating on which caused great excitement.

Of course whilst so close to Bruton we had to go sample the pizza At The Chapel which was such a treat.  I bought bread there first thing on a morning from the bakery too, their sour dough loaf is one of the best I have ever tasted. We visited the Hauser and Wirth Gallery with it’s contemporary art juxtaposed with heritage farm buildings brought back to life to create the most wonderful atmosphere in a quintessential English setting.  As you wander through the gallery you find yourself coming out into the most stunning gardens I have ever seen designed by Piet Oudolf, I could have stayed there for hours and hours running my fingers through the grasses, gazing at the clever planting, swallows swooping and diving above our heads.  It was one of my favourite places and as we were so close we went back again and enjoyed a meal at The Roth Bar and Grill simply prepared fresh sustainable and seasonal dishes that were superb, the friendly atmosphere and surroundings are rather intoxicating.

The rest of our time away was spent lingering at many a National Trust property, Stourhead and Barrington Court being our favourites.  Sitting in orchards having picnics, whiling away moments on swings in oak trees and sampling the  best cider.

On a recommendation and luckily for us perfect timing we were able to go to the Frome Independent Market that is held on the first Sunday of the month.  One of the best markets I have ever had the chance to go to.  The town square is full with artisan makers, street food stalls, organic produce and vintage wares.  The vibe was electric, the independent stores that were open on Catherine Hill have a such a vibrant feel, all unique in their own way, I loved Resident and happened to make a purchase.

From the hulabaloo of shopping, galleries and stately homes it was always a joy to get back to Agatha and wind down the day sitting in a deck chair watching Ruby rowing with her new friends, enjoying the tranquility and peace of our surroundings in the glow of the warm evening sun.

Now back to reality we are planning our next escape to try and keep the inspiration alive.  The simple way we try to live and to embrace the slowness that we crave, finding that balance can be tricky but I don’t think we are doing so bad.




Inside / Outside

If you are like me, you’ll like nothing better than being outdoors. Be it in a grand garden that you are visiting or just in your own little plot.  I try very hard not to get bogged down with the daily routine and take a few moments to step out of the patio door with a coffee, take stock and go through my mental task list for the day.  I find that sitting on my bench, surrounded by the scent of my plants, really does help me stay focused on the day ahead.

I think seating in any outdoor space is key to bringing your garden scheme together.  When wandering around any large garden you will notice little pockets where seats are placed, perfectly positioned in the right spot for maximum effect to enjoy the vistas.  You will normally find that the seaing in these public spaces is usually beautifully honed wooden benches that have silvered over time; or if you get to visit somewhere like the Hauser & Wirth Gallery in Somerset the Piet Oudolf garden has the most exquisite contemporary designed metal chairs that fit the surroundings of modern design to a tee and are also exceedingly comfortable.

Getting the right balance is key, if you are a modernist at heart your garden will reflect your sway to contemporary design through it’s planting and what furniture you choose to place in it.  The same will go with those of us who like a cottage garden, wild and abandoned foliage mixed with fruit trees and vegetables.  You will most certainly find an old vintage bench or folding chair placed next to galvanised potting benches and possibly a French café table.

Blending your interior style to that of your outside space is relatively simple too, using your garden as an extra room especially in the summer months and into autumn is a bonus.  Create an area close to the house where you will spend the most time, position a seating area that can be shaded if need be, add an additional table so that meals can be eaten outside too.   A communal area that can take your right from your first coffee in the morning to enjoying a glass of wine in the evening.

I also like to mix things up a little in my interior style too.  If you choose correctly, garden furniture makes for a quirky look inside so why restrict it solely to outdoor use.  I love the mix of industrial style café chairs and benches around a dining table.  I myself have folding wooden garden chairs mixed with chapel chairs around the chunky farmhouse table in my kitchen.

Deckchairs in a large open plan modern living room would work well as extra seating. Metal stools can be used in bathrooms to place your towel when you are having a soak.  Wooden garden benches look fabulous in hallways with shoes neatly lined up underneath.  Why not throw away conventional thinking and shake things up a bit, creating a space where the outside comes inside and vice versa.  Blending the two spaces makes for a perfect interior that flows.

A great source of inspiration for me is my outside board showing you ways of creating a well designed room outside using the correct garden furniture for the right space.


  • This post was written in conjunction with Homebase.  Images 1, 2, 4 ,6, 7 & 8 are my own, the collaged images are all from here


G&T Time with a Twist

Just because the Summer is in its last throws of decadence it doesn’t mean that we can’t enjoy these heady warm evenings just that little longer with a few G&T’s on the terrace.

I try to keep the Summer vibe going as long as I possibly can before I give in to the Autumnal pull but for now there is nothing nicer than creating a cool drink after a long day at work and taking the time to enjoy each sip.

I was asked by Diageo to give some of their classic cocktail recipes a try from the myriad of choices on website but my eye was drawn to simplicity and the elderflower G&T.  Firstly as it’s my husbands tipple of choice and secondly we made our own elderflower cordial this year so I thought this would be a winning combination and very simple to do.  No messing about as long as there is ice in the freezer and a lime in the fruit bowl you can mix a delicate and delicious cocktail in seconds.

The elderflower cordial lifts the gin and tonic with it’s floral notes enhancing the vibrant botanicals and highlighting the subtle juniper aroma, adding a squeeze of lime finishes it off to perfection.  I can honestly say this combination is becoming one of my firm favourites.

As it’s the bank holiday weekend some of you may be entertaining, having friends over for a BBQ, or a cocktail party of your own in the garden.  There are some super Summer cocktail recipes to try at with simple step by step instructions and lists of ingredients to help you create the perfect tipple of your choice, what could be easier.

So I raise my G&T filled glass to you and I hope you all have a super long weekend with a few cocktails thrown in for good measure.


  • This post was written in conjunction with Diageo with many thanks


Holiday Moodboards

While I’m away I thought I’d fill a page with beautiful inspiration that I have collated over the months.  A happy moment that I get great pleasure from putting colour and form together to make cohesive mood boards that bring joy.

These boards have a summer vibe from perfect natural sunkissed tones to a refreshing hint of lush green. Summer frocks, al fresco dining, shadows, holiday home inspiration.  All conjuring up time away relaxing, unwinding just being in that moment.  Thank you Summer you are worth waiting for.

Whether you are on holiday yourself or planning to go, take time out to enjoy each precious moment.  Have a lovely weekend everyone.





Take A Break

The next few weeks I am going to be away, downing tools hooking up Agatha the caravan and hitting the road for some seriously needed rest and relaxation.


The summer frocks and sandals are packed the green fields of our campsites are waiting.  New and exciting destinations are longing to be explored, the days to be played out in front of us.

No rush, no worries, simple living at it’s best. As long as I have a cold glass of wine and a good book to indulge in once back at our van, sat outside in my deckchair bathed in the glow of our new festoon lights until the sun goes down I shall be one happy girl.

See you all on the other side, if you follow me on instagram come and see what I’ll be getting up to over the next few weeks, it will be full of holiday moments.


Images Source ~ 2, 3, 4 & 5 (1 & 6 are my own)


Bedside Matters

There is something lovely about curling up under the sheets with a cup of tea and a good book.  Even better if your book is bathed in a soft glow, not too harsh but gentle enough to light the room while aiding relaxation.

I like the contrast of these industrial table lamps against my antique French bed.  Mixing things up a bit by putting contrasting things together refreshes a space and I think these work very well.  The cool marble stand with the added touch of copper against the grey walls, pale bedding and grain sack cushion unites the paired back scheme perfectly.

The fabulous MiniSun filament bulb is a revelation, not only is it one of the first LED bulbs to replicate that of an Edison style filament but is ultra energy saving only using 3W.  It gives off a warm ambient glow that is perfect for a bedroom.

With thanks to Iconic Lights for making my favourite room in the house even more hard to leave than it already was.



A couple of weeks ago I spent a wonderful Saturday in the great outdoors.  I helped set up a great event that hopefully will become more of a permanent fixture through the coming months.  The meaning behind Gather.Harvest.Feast to me is an appreciation of the seasons, taking time to enjoy the nature around me, the food I can forage and create, the seasonality of natural home grown flowers to fill my home.

Jen has written it in a far more eloquent way that I ever could below;

“Gather. Harvest. Feast. is a collaborative project between creative bloggers, writers, photographers and artists.  It is our way of celebrating the seasons through nature, food and flowers. We want to spend time in our beautiful landscape,  learn new skills and enjoy the wealth of produce our Northern part of the country has to offer. 

Our aim is to make new connections, seek inspiration and gain knowledge from one another. We will be holding workshops in floristry, foraging, traditional crafts, photography and natural skincare. 

We hope to meet once every season, with picnics, lunches and days out and all in locations that showcase our beautiful North. Our plans are to incorporate family friendly events too. 

Together we will gather, together we will harvest and together we will feast.”

It was a day filled with friendship, laughter and learning, being surrounded by nature in every sense. We didn’t need the sun to shine we made our own sunshine through the home grown flowers we arranged, the mocktails that were made with foraged seasonal ingredients and the natural skin care we blended using natural plant extract and essential oils.

Days like these cement the belief I have in a better world, that each and every one of us can create a healthier place to be by simply living in a more considered way that help us to achieve a balanced beautiful life.


With  many thanks to Jen, Clarey, BeckyLiz and Sarah for friendship, flowers, mocktails, detailed botanical artwork and the most wonderful bath oil (top note of blood orange, who knew!)


Best Laid Plans

I was supposed to be full of vigour and write a post about my wonderful day at Manor Garden to celebrate our first foray with Gather Harvest Feast but life has put a spanner in the works.  Not a horrible spanner by any stretch of the imagination simply time poor when it comes to having a moment to put my thoughts down articulately.

Ruby my very cool, strong, clever, funny, wonderful little girl is leaving Primary School today, a big thing in any child’s life and this week has been filled with proms, assemblies, performances, late nights and tired eyes. So I have decided to postpone my Gather Harvest Feast musings but I will tease you with a few images to whet your appetite hoping you will return next week.  If you can’t wait until then Jen has written a beautiful post on Little Birdie about what the day meant to her.

See you next week….