Styling The Seasons - May

Monday, 2 May 2016

The May bank holiday has always signalled the start of a new season to me - light bright mornings, warm days and the whole summer stretching ahead. I get so excited at the possibilities I don't know where to start! As someone addicted to colour I find setting the tone with a fresh colour palette really helpful - I adore all the bluebell shades that are scattered around the garden at the moment and couldn't resist adding the delicate peach, lilac and white shades to the mix for this months post. 
I had to venture outside and away from my own home this month, as I mentioned in this post the second part of our house renovations have begun so there is stuff everywhere and there is not a single surface to be styled. My home away from home is at my parents house and luckily for me there is creativity and props to be found everywhere. I took these photo's in my dads driftwood corner - a place in the garden where he displays and stores his beach finds. I love the colours and textures of the sea beaten wood and always take a nose to see his latest finds.
May is also a time of celebration it's our fourth wedding anniversary this month which I completely forgot about until I spotted this vase! I thought I should include as a reminder to myself, I'm so forgetful lately I feel like I need to spend some time off the internet this month and focus on simplifying and getting my brain in order. Whenever I see this vase I'm always taken back to our wedding day, it was the best and we had so much fun organising it. Just looking at it reminds me of the sight of all the flowers in the barn, the sound of all our loved ones laughing and all the crazy dancing that followed. My BFF is getting married this summer so I'm beside myself with excitement for the celebrations that will be happening over the next few months. 
I hope that everyone has a good May, things maybe a bit quiet around here this month as I try and balance building work and a lively baby but I'll be checking in when I can. If you want to join in Styling The Seasons this month the upload an image to any social media platform and make sure you tag in Katy and myself so that we can see. Have a wonderful month. xx 

Styling The Seasons Review - April

Sunday, 1 May 2016

It would appear that forgetting what day of the month it is is becoming a thing - the days are moving so fast I just can't keep up. The beginning of the month arrives and then its over before I know it, I've only had the chance to catch little snippets of Styling The Seasons this month as away from my blog home renovations and keeping up with a little one have kept me more than busy. My favourite posts this month are from Tea With Ruby and Little Maldod. I just loved the colours of Jane's whole post but its these linens that made me swoon, I'm back to being obsessed with interiors and am really drawn to the opposite of my natural style which is currently messy and chaotic! My other favourite post was Lowri's post about her treasured forget-me-nots it's a privilege to read people's stories behind their Styling The Seasons posts and I'm always so grateful when people take time to share. 
Thanks as always for to all everyone who has taken time to write blog posts this month, you can read them all below. I'll be back tomorrow with May's post. xx

Lobster and Swan / Growing Spaces / Bradshaw and Sons / Three Sons Later / The Nice Nest / The Twinkle Diaries / Tea with Ruby / The Cabinet Maker’s Love Tale / The Lovely Drawer / Under the Plum Blossom Tree / Little MaldodLotts and Lots / Apartment Apothecary

Ways to display

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

There are exciting changes happening here, the second part of our home renovations have begun. The process of finding a builder and getting the work started has happened relatively quickly - I cannot wait to have the final rooms finished, useable and not have random stuff everywhere. Like last time I find focusing on the end result the best way to get through the initial chaos, I'm really excited to get all the treasures I have stashed away out on display.

As I've mentioned before at{mine} is my favourite place to look for real life home inspiration. I'm really keen to work on the way I display my stuff around the house - everything on the walls has either been there since we moved in or propped up in a temporary home. As our needs at home have changed I feel its time for the rooms to reflect the changes and give everything a shake up. 
image - Claire Carlos
I love the mix of cushions and framed pictures in the top two pictures. Both different in style I really like how they have been clustered asymmetrically and tie in with the cushions below. I'm really not a neat and orderly person when it comes to hanging prints on the wall so these both really appeal to me.
Ihavethisthingwithplates, plates are an addiction of mine and I'd really love to get more of them out on display as I normally buy them for the colours. I wouldn't think to put them in a bedroom but I like it!
I'm really loving clusters of items at at the moment - I really like the mix of vases and natural treasures in this image.
I've brought this rug for my lounge as the current one is on the grotty side and I'm thinking of changing the room slightly by adding a picture shelf. There are hardly any photo's around the place so would like a ledge to increase the surface display area and perhaps a few new frames and cushions wouldn't go a miss! 

There's a round up of all my home renovation posts here and a kitchen before and after post here

DIY - simple supermarket bouquets

Friday, 22 April 2016

For todays post I want to show you a very simple way of creating simple bouquets from supermarket flowers. In a dream world I'd buy florist flowers all the time but sadly my budget doesn't allow, these flowers make a great alternative and as summer progresses I'll be adding my homegrown blooms into the mix.

A few months ago I took a flower arranging course at Hyde Hall my local RHS garden. I really enjoy flowers (growing, photographing and buying) and usually add a bunch in with my shopping. Since Stanley was born I haven't had much time away from him as he refusing any kind of bottle. Therefore anytime I do spend away from him as to be totally worthwhile and fairly close to home. The course was great as not only did I learn some really useful flower arranging skills, I got four hours of none baby time to do something creative. 

Here is what I remembered/picked up during my day, florists look away everyone else read on..!
First select your flowers, you want a mix of solid flowers like the carnations and germini and soft flowers like tulips and daisies. I normally find Gerbera's really annoying but loved the colour of these Germini's, if these weren't available I probably would have used roses instead. Carnations are a weakness of mine I love their kitschness and the colour range is amazing (I always try to get petals with a variant of colours). To add a dash of whimsey I used these daisies that I did buy from the florist, adding just a few special flowers keeps the bouquet looking interesting but overall costs low - the total for four mini bouquets was ten pounds.  
Now strip the stems and separate your flowers into piles. I did end up taking all the leaves off my tulips, you'll be surprised how much easier it is to arrange with all the leaves removed. I didn't end up using the foliage, it looked too heavy.
Now start to arrange your bunch. Start with a solid stem like the carnation and then lay the next stem across at an angle. Keep the flowers loosely between your thumb and forefinger and start to build the bouquet adding stems at an angle creating a spiral. I work in an anticlockwise direction but a clockwise direction might suit you better.

Make sure you mix the flowers as you go adding hard and soft blooms. Then general rule is to use odd numbers of each, I had to cheat slightly as I didn't have enough to use three in each bouquet. You can use the spiralling technique to create any size bouquet, I decided to stick with mini bouquets as I wanted to give as Easter gifts. 
When you think you've finished take a look from the top to check everything balances out and you have a good mix of flowers.
When you're happy tie the stems with string or twine and then cut the stems to a hands width. If you're giving these as a gift in a vase you might need to cut the stems shorter so they fit sungly inside a vase. Talking of vases I went for a classic jam jar but you could use a fancier vase and incorporate as part of the gift. 
I LOVE getting and giving flowers as gifts and whilst I know the lifespan of them can be limited they make me and my home much happier. This technique is so versatile as you can make bouquets in any scale and for any occasion from table settings at home through to a huge bridal bouquet. Have a great weekend and happy making! x 

five o'clock inspiration

Friday, 15 April 2016

I have a new goal of getting as many tassels scattered around the house and on my person as possible. I was searching for tassels for a project I am planning and couldn't help but find so much other tassel inspiration along the way.

Marks and Spencer cushion - I was in M&S looking for a swimming costume (the selection is awful) and came across their fab homeware section instead. There was so much I could have bought but fell in love with this cushion, its much nicer in real life so hoping it will go on sale at some point.

I discovered some great sources to buy interesting tassels for craft projects and general use.
For the unusual try  Woman Shops World on Etsy
For sweet Silk Tassels have a look on Ebay
For Indian Tassels these from Ebay are great too

@Kelaoke - on Instagram is my new favourite, I just love her jewellery designs. She has an Etsy shop too.

I love this boucherouite rug from Buklina, I was searching for an image for this post but got sucked into dreaming about how much I need one of these rugs - love!

Other images  - tassels/ door tassels 

How to pick a colour palette for your craft project

Tuesday, 12 April 2016

In the spirit of my confidence post (thanks so much for your kind words btw) I want to talk about one of my favourite subjects and one I know that I'm really good at - putting colours together. I think about colour combinations all the time, I look for the unusual and interesting where ever I go. Flowers naturally are one of my biggest sources but I love to discover the patina of crumbling brick work and peeling paint or colourful packaging in random supermarkets, anywhere can be a source of inspiration. 

Since last year I've had a few embroideries on the go, I stitch freehand as I'm not great at following patterns and I love to watch a design grow before my very eyes. I thought they would be a great way to start showing you how I pick and put colour palettes together. 
Sweet vintage - In my head this is a vintage colour scheme, soft bright colours that sit really prettily together. The base colours are the mauve-y grey, mauve and pink, I picked these colours as they are the main colours on the base fabric. To bring the pinks and mauves 'alive' I added in some accent colours, a buttery yellow and mint green - they all harmonise together as they're from the same colour range but provide enough contrast to be interesting. 

If I was using this palette for a room I'd use the grey colour as a base on walls and then build up layers and accents with the other colours. 
 Bright florals - I had to work a bit harder on this palette to get it to sit well together but when the embroidery was finished it looked great. I created three palettes in one - the orange, pink and grey all work together as do the greens and the grey. To make all the colours work as one I made sure the pink, darker green and grey all complimented each other making the orange and spring green the accent colours. 

When using more difficult colours, I never use more than five colours in one piece of work. I once read a colour rule from the 1920's which said always pick two colours to compliment and one to contrast, I've used this as a guide ever since. 
Tonal colours -  I talk about tonal colours a lot in my projects. I love to use varying shades of a similar colour to add depth to a craft project. Here I have gone for warm orange, coral and pink shades stitched onto a red and pink base fabric. I have done a simple running stitch with a few knots added in inspired by my love of Indian quilts. 

This leather, jewel and chain necklace or jewel box clutch are perfect examples of how I use tonal shades. This method works especially well when you have contrasting textures like jewels or in a patchwork or knitted quilt when you can use slight variations of a similar colour. 

Before I end this post I should talk about the base fabric I have been using to stitch on. I hand painted silk with random lines, dots and splodges, I made sure the fabric was damp before I painted so the colours would be soft and blend into each other. You can buy silk here and silk paints here. Make sure you dry your fabric flat so the patterns stay as you painted them.

I hope this post has given you some insight into putting colours together. I'd like to do some more posts like this so if there is anything you'd like to see just let me know.

ways to stay creative (when you don't have much time)

Friday, 8 April 2016

Being creative and living a creative life is something that is truly important to me. It's the reason I started my blog and the reason I keep blogging even when there are times I feel like I should stop. Through posting on a regular basis I've noticed the ebb and flow of time and ideas. I'm currently in a low time patch which I'm ok with and I know there are many of you in the same position. I thought I'd share my simple ways to stay creative when you're pushed for time.

Take a photo - you don't have to share it just look around you and see what sparks your imagination. If all you can see is laundry and washing up then clear a space on a table top, find a piece of white card or even better create a flat lay board, full out a selection of your favourite things and snap away!

Arrange some flowers - the chances are you'll be passing somewhere selling a few blooms, treat yourself dig out a 'vase' and spend a few minutes arranging them around your home. I do this a lot a really love playing with different and unexpected colour combinations.

Start a slow project - I've had some sewing on the go for the last six months, I pick it up do a little bit then put it down again, it's good to have a project with no deadline.

Create a mood board - If you follow me on Instagram then you'll see I've been making little mood boards on a Monday. They are really quick to do and I find they set my week off on a positive track

Quick projects - On the opposite end of the slow project spectrum are quick projects. I keep a list and set full supplies gathered and ready to go for when I have a spare bit of time to make my current favourite projects are candle making and speedy jewellery making like this agate ring or hoop earrings

Have a wonderful weekend xx 
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