Real Homes: We think you might love this home…

This morning was far too dark… does anyone else think so? I woke up and thought “oh yes, it’s mid-September, alright.” Summer is too soon gone… but we are excited about the broodiness of autumn, and the wind of hope that the crisp air brings. New beginnings, we’ve said to each other.

In keeping with that spirit, it’s time for another inspiring round, as we swing by the home of Brandy Schuman. Brandy runs A Sensible Habit – lifestyle, interiors, stationery, all-round pretty store. She hand paints linen, designs, quirky rubber stamps, and comes up with great supplies for your party. Amazing. If you like pretty, colours, DIY, homewares, you have to drop by A Sensible Habit. And tell us what you think! Let’s see what her home is like now…

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Brandy: “Our home is colorful and very FULL. I’m envious of homes that are more minimalist, but I’m accepting the fact that I’m a hoarder who loves color and pattern.

“There is a mix of old and new and lots of little things that don’t look like much, but are a memory trigger for me. A blue ball jar that belonged to my grandfather, a kitchen utensil that belonged to my grandmother, or a jar of sea glass from Italy.

“I like having little things around that remind me of certain place or time.”

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“I recently invested in linen bedding from AREA and I’m in love. The bedroom has been the last room to come together and I really wanted to have a bed that I looked forward to crawling into. We still need a few pieces like a bedside table, but the crispy white linen sheets are my favorite.”

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I want a lived-in, comfy home, where everything is out of place, but also right where it belongs. Our home was built in 1940 so with an older home the house dictates the flow and some decor. There are quirky layouts and small spaces that you have to work around.”

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“I think about a relaxed environment for entertaining friends when decorating the house. Music is also very important. We have a vintage record player in the living room (shown under my painting near the front door).

“Apparently, I love chairs! We have several vintage chairs and everytime I thrift I usually see a chair that I want. I need a bigger home for all of my chairs. My boyfriend showed up the other day with 3 vintage metal chairs (pink, blue, and an orange one) and they are my new favorite. We recently put in a patio out back, and they are the perfect pop of color. He earned some major points.”

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“Everyday life (inspires me), I suppose. There is color and pattern everywhere we look. I like to take a blanket to the park or go for for a hike. I love boating with my dad… Anything where my brain gets a chance to stop racing.

“Travel is always good for a recharge. As far as what inspires me in decorating the home… I guess I would have to say entertaining with friends, and the slew of gorgeous homes on pinterest. I like vintage shopping and finding colorful unique items. Bright Copco pans, vintage platters and glasses.”

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“I like a lot of Midcentury modern, but also a kind of southern cozy home… big quilts, relaxed and inviting linen fabrics or a little floral pattern.”

“The wood bowls hanging in my dining room from Montes Doggett. They have display hooks on the back so I can store them up out of the way and take them down when needed. I also just got a new wood serving board from Star Provisions at a great price. I like that these items are functional and also work on display.”

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“Glasses and bar accessories are (other) items I hoard. I could never have too many vintage glasses or specialty cocktail glasses!

“We also (have) a custom stereo cabinet that was built locally by South of Urban – it houses a record player, stereo, and cassette tape player. It’s definitely a favorite item in the house.”

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Styling tips? “Vintage thrifted finds are a must. We have a few little shops here in Atlanta that are my go to spots. West Elm‘s recent midcentury collection was a great way to find a bed frame and rugs that work well with the look of our vintage pieces.

“Oh, and treat yourself with fresh flowers around the house!”

We think so too! Thanks so much for that gorgeous tour, Brandy!

 

For more of Brandy’s vintage-modern blend style, visit A Sensible Habit at http://www.asensiblehabit.com.

 

Images: Brandy Schuman

Real Homes: Visit Jennifer’s elegant living space…

So excited!!! The wonderful Jennifer Ashley of gorgeous lifestyle blog, Pretty Little Details, is showing us round her home today!

We met Jennifer on the blogging course we wrote about earlier in the year. Since then, her blog has been a source of inspiration for recipes (um, sweet & spicy maple pecans? Yes??), style (Sequins!!! Parties!!!), and lots more. Her photos are stunning – light and airy and full of life. We are hooked. You will be too.

Off we go now to Jennifer’s home!

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The overall feel of my house is modern and glamorous. It took a while to convince my husband when we were renovating to include some of the more girly accents but we both agreed on a soft grey colour pallet with natural textures and touches of aqua. My favourite room is probably my office, because it’s so bright and girly!

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Office: Instead of buying a desk for my office, I opted to find an oversized dining table. I love that it gives me tons of space for whatever project I am working on, whether it’s blogging, sewing, scrapbooking… whatever!

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Bedroom: I think white sheets are romantic and I love these textured ones from West Elm. Because the bedroom is a space I share with my husband, we kept things pretty neutral with a few subtle feminine touches.

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Living room: I love throw pillows! They are such an easy way to update a room, and can add so much fun and colour. Right now, I’m loving these aqua blue quatrefoil print pillows (by Colin & Justin via Homesense) mixed with the soft mongolian lamb pillows (from West Elm).

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One of my favourite styling tricks is adding height and dimension to decor piece by placing them on top of stacked books.

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OMG. We love. There is so much in here to be inspired by – the pairing of deep colours and cheery pastels, the collection of belongings so artfully displayed, the use of pale, neutral interiors to expand the space… We love the large crafts table and the marble top kitchen surface. And those shoes??? Thank you so much, Jennifer, what a delight!

For more of Jennifer Ashley’s style, visit http://www.prettylittledetails.ca.

 

Images: Jennifer Ashley

Chelsea Flower Show Series: Scarlet & Violet at Anthropologie King’s Road

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When we found out that Scarlet & Violet (S&V) was going to be at Anthropologie (for which our love will require a whole other post, some other time…) on the King’s Road, our eyes brightened and our hearts leapt with joy. It just sounded the most sensible idea: Anthropologie with all it’s beautifully curated wares surrounded by S&V’s country blooms? Yes, please!

In tribute to the Chelsea Flower Show, Anthropologie has teamed up with the much-loved S&V to turn its King’s Road gallery into a traditional florist. The store will be filled with creations specially made by Victoria Brotherson, S&V founder and owner.

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S&V started life in Chamberlayne Road (also known as London’s Hippest Street), back in 2006. Victoria’s plan was to run a small workshop, manageable by one person. She had planned to give herself the chance to step back from the pressures of work. Funnily enough, life had its own plans for Vic, and 10 years later, the business has 7 full time florists, a driver and Vic’s sister, Emma, otherwise known as the office mastermind.

S&V is no stranger to fame – the company has enjoyed the enviable task of being wedding florist to Kate Moss and Lily Allen, among other celebrities. You can see why. Vic’s style artfully combines the elegance and charm of an English country garden. She also draws inspiration from the vintage aesthetic, and bases her signature designs on the dreamy combination of both. Seasonal foliage and blooms such as peonies (everyone’s summer favourite!), roses and lavender perfectly match antique pitchers, planters and retro-charity shop finds that she readily incorporates into her work. Her designs are beautiful, romantic and inventive, from traditional creations to ones with eclectic dashes of colour.

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The Anthropologie store has been transformed into a country flower market from now until 31st May, which we think is absolutely delightful. “We were inspired by the collecting, storing, and over-saturation of texture, colour and shape,” Vic said. “We have set it up in a very similar way to Kensal Rise as it works well.”

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“Look out for scent, layering of tone and texture and amazing peonies!!” she exclaims. Fitting in with the flower market theme, we asked which ones Vic would recommend. “I havent travelled extensively, will do in retirement,” she confesses. “We swear by  New Covent Garden Market.” We couldn’t agree more.

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Join Scarlet & Violet tomorrow, Wednesday, 21st May, where Vic will be doing a talk and workshop at Anthropologie, Kings Road. You can get tips on choosing flowers, and learn how to group them. You can also learn how to make hand-tied posies within a modest budget, and how to use different containers as vases, from a marmalade pot to a pickling jar. See you there!

The Event

Scarlet & Violet pops up at Anthropologie, Kings road from May 17th – May 31st

Workshop: Wednesday 21st May, 6-8 p.m.

At: Anthropologie, 131-141 King’s Road, London, SW3 4PW

Cost: £40

For more information or to RSVP, contact: community@anthropologie.eu

Images courtesy of Anthropologie EU and Scarlet & Violet

Chelsea Flower Show Series: The Cut Flower Project at West Elm London

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Photos by Emily Quinton

I love flowers. I don’t know many people that don’t, but I REALLY love them. As in, they make my insides turn to treacle, make my heart trill like a canary, kind of thing. Something about the colours and the shapes of cut flowers in whatever container just beams intrinsic pretty. And we love pretty!

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Which is why this week, I am in the Best Mood Ever – not just because the sun is out, but because it’s the annual RHS Chelsea Flower Show, the harbinger of Summer! Plenty of events and beautiful blooms everywhere. Tomorrow, West Elm London joins in the festivities by turning their store into a floral delight with help of The Cut Flower Project. What a great idea! We kick off the Flower Show feature with the lovely Saima Ishaq of The Cut Flower Project and her journey through floristry.

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The Cut Flower Project is based in South London, and was founded by the energetic and creative Saima. After years of working in the media industry, Saima discovered that her passions lay with floral arrangements, and left to learn the art of floristry.

“I practised and practised,” Saima recalls, “I enrolled on a college course, attended many flower workshops, watched online tutorials.” She documented the hours of hard work and her progress on Instagram.

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The effort clearly paid off, because The Cut Flower Project is growing (like a weed!). “Friends and family began asking me to do their wedding flowers, and the Southwark Arts Forum invited me to host a workshop at the Bermondsey Street Festival.” The Cut Flower Project also recently hosted workshops for Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day at Boxpark, Shoreditch.

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Top photo courtesy of Emily Quinton; bottom two images by Saima Ishaq (The Cut Flower Project)

The success is clearly spurring Saima on to greater things. “There’s so much I want to learn,” Saima enthuses. Besides being booked up for various weddings this summer, The Cut Flower Project is busy preparing for their first pop-up store at West Elm London. Inspired by the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2014, West Elm have asked Saima to take over their London store with her flowers,  from 20th to 24th May – a challenge which she is grasping with both hands.

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The Event 

The Cut Flower Project will be at West Elm all day from 20th to 24th May, selling pre-arranged bouquets. There will be a focus area by the front of the store, with Saima’s beautiful creations dotted around the rest of the store
(sigh, sounds great already!).

What’s even better, on Saturday, 24th May, between 12pm and 5pm, The Cut Flower Project will be hosting a flower workshop. You can either buy a vase/pot/vessel from the store and create an arrangement or create an arrangement in a repurposed food tin. How fun does that sound? SO FUN. We can’t wait!

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West Elm London is at 209 Tottenham Court Road, London W1T 7PN, UK 

Details of workshop, 24th May

Tickets are £25 (covers flowers, tools, tins, etc.)

Ticket-holders can drop-in anytime between 12pm and 5pm

Purchase tickets from: https://thecutflowerproject-westelm-flowerworkshop-may2014.eventbrite.co.uk/

Visit the Facebook event page: ‪bit.ly/cutflrprjct

Hashtags: #WEflowershop #westelmevents #TCFPflowershop

All photos by Emily Quinton, courtesy of West Elm London and The Cut Flower Project