Autumnal living with Anthropologie

We love Anthropologie. As in, need-to-get-a-mortgage-sell-all-our-possessions-to-fund-a-shop type of love. LOVE! There is no other type of Saturday shop I like than to wander down the Kings Road and into the Anthro store there. Absolute bliss – the decor, the smells, the colours…

Of course, we couldn’t resist sharing the new kitchen/living collections when we discovered them in the catalogue. Christmas is coming, so if you want to score lots of brownie points or are thinking of goodies to request, look no further…!xx

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For more homely goodness, visit http://www.anthropologie.eu.

Images: Anthropologie EU

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Favourite Find: The Foodie Bugle

One of the things we would love to do (if the day job wasn’t 12-15hrs/day!) is to spend more time in the kitchen – baking, cooking, experimenting, making… We’ve always thought that it would be brilliant to live in the countryside, go on many long foraging walks, then return home with all the ingredients for delicious, refuelling food. The idyllic dreams of urban munchkins!

Given those dreams will remain such for now, it was to our great delight that we discovered The Foodie Bugle. You might be able to recognise our eclectic love of pretty includes elements of the reclaimed and the old; The Foodie Bugle (TFB) is a journal and shop that combines that feel, as it showcases artisans, places, food, drink, books and crafts… Wanderlust-stirring finds.

Foodie Bugle Lookbook (18th May 2013)

TFB is the work of Silvana de Soissons and  John-Paul de Soissons, who have inspiring stories: Silvana spent 10 years in the City trading money market products (very short term debt-type financial instruments – for more, see Investopedia), before moving to an entirely different career in cooking, catering, food writing and styling; John-Paul similarly worked in the City, gathering 27 years of experience in originating (issuing) and structuring leveraged finance transactions (again, Investopedia to the rescue!) for famous names like Pret a Manger. There really is life after the City…! (:

Foodie Bugle Lookbook (18th May 2013)

For now, Silvana and John-Paul are running the Journal and the Shop, with great and exciting plans for a high street shop and kitchen coming soon (we cannot wait). Meanwhile, TFB offers courses (breadmaking, how to set up an online shop) in the beautiful Wiltshire countryside – a great escape from the rush of city life, especially if you dream of rural idyll.

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Have you bought anything from TFB shop, or attended any of their courses? What is your favourite find in the shop?

 

For more information and Foodie Bugle treats, visit: http://www.thefoodiebugleshop.com.

Images: Jason Ingram via The Foodie Bugle

Real Homes: In the Kitchen with Katy Barraclough

If you’ve checked out our Blog Loves page, you would have noticed Folly & Bloom in the list of favourite reads. It was probably Katy’s gorgeous photos on her instagram feed that first caught our eyes, and her blog didn’t disappoint either. Katy lives in Ilkley, West Yorkshire, and runs her PR agency, Conway PR, by day; by night, she writes design+lifestyle blog Folly & Bloom. We thought it’d be great to sneak a peek into the kitchen of this creative mind!

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Thanks for having me! I thought I’d share a few of my styling tips for creating colourful, quirky yet practical kitchen spaces.

I’m not what you’d call a ‘dab hand’at DIY. Painting, yes. Knocking through walls and ripping out units? Not so much. So when the time came last year to do something with the kitchen (three years is just too long to have to endure lilac wallpaper and matching tiles), it was a case of examining what we could work with and what really had to go.

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In the end, we decided to keep the kitchen units because, while they’re not amazing, they’re well-made and pretty inoffensive. The floor could stay too. It wasn’t my dream choice, but again, good quality and neutral. Even the bright pine doors stayed because all they needed was some wood stain to make them look a bit more charming.

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So the two main things that changed were the tiles and the walls. Whatever went on the walls, had to complement the units so we went for a light grey paint matched with off-white, matt subway tiles, held together by dark grey grout.

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The only other change we made was to add a space-saving fold-down kitchen table (from Ikea) and two fold-away chairs. With space so limited, the idea of a fold-away table seemed like a savvy move as there’s never more than two people eating together at the same time so it seemed silly to take up unnecessary space with a big table.

To style the kitchen up, I drew on these few (self-created) guidelines which I hope spark some ideas for your own kitchen revamp:

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  1. Tell a story – why not dot souvenirs and memorabilia around your kitchen which tell tales of holidays or special meals out? I have a magnetic strip notice board above one of my units and I update it every now and again with postcards, photographs, nicely designed flyers and handwritten notes. Similarly, I love to collect beautifully designed menus, flyers or business cards from restaurants I’ve been too which I often frame.

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  1. Curated collections – whether it’s candles, plants, bottles, fruit bowls or jars, I like to curate kitchen items in small groups. I like that it creates little points of interest and also helps the room feel more ordered and avoids stuff being scattered everywhere.

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  1. Up-cycled style – why not re-use quirky glass bottles, jars, tins or boxes as vases or storage containers? I found this great beer bottle in Booths the other day and because the artwork is painted onto the glass, and not stuck on as a label, I can wash it and keep reusing it. I’d say the key to keeping this look non-studenty, is to only have two or three reused vessels out at a time and mix them up with more contemporary pieces too.

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  1. Neutrals and brights – I love to go big on colour but to avoid the kitchen looking like a children’s play den, I try to keep the ratio of colours to neutrals (whites, greys, metallics, woods etc), 30:70. Having more neutrals means you can go bigger and bolder with the colours you do choose and I think they have more impact that way.

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  1. Space savers – perhaps not a style tip as such but I think being savvy about the space you have and what you use it for, can help create a more pulled together look. I think you have to ask yourself how often you actually use something, whether it’s a table, a bread maker, a coffee machine or, in my case, a kitchen table. If it’s not something that you use on a daily basis, have a think about whether it can be downscaled, stored somewhere else or removed completely. Less clutter means more room for living!

I hope these little insights and tips help in some way when creating your kitchen space. Happy styling!

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Thanks so much for showing us your bright and unique kitchen! I love the dining area, and definitely want a Springer Spaniel in my home.

For more of Katy’s style, visit her at:

Coloured what?

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Where has this been all my life?? Coloured grout! What an invention! I first came across these on The Design Sheppard (thanks, Stacey!), and was immediately drawn to both the metro tiles and THE BLUE GROUT. BLUE GROUT! Such a quick and clever way to add colour to your living space, SO Bright Bazaar-worthy! When I used to think of grout (not that I would often think of it!), images of messy, half-renovated bathrooms would spring to mind. Or, perhaps bathroom walls which were at best, dull and white, and at worst, grimy and calcium stained. Yuck. British Ceramic Tile will be changing all that with coloured grout, which will make the process so much more like icing a cake than mucky, needs-to-be-done-not-glamorous-at-all renovation work. As the name suggests, British Ceramic Tile offers a wide selection of tiles for your redecorating needs. Bored with oblong? Try an adventurous shape (I’m looking forward to the day I have my own home and can have fun hexagonal tiles)! The Design Sheppard has some ideas on choosing colours; as I’m a blue person, the blue and white pairing above is a winner for me, but I am told there are plenty more colours available for infinite palettes. Somehow the bright borders between the tiles seem to really add a fresh and modern, almost Scandi-chic feel to the whole look. A quick way to freshen up your kitchen or bathroom!

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Photos from British Ceramic Tile