CHUCK OUT THAT PAPER LAMPSHADE!
We've been looking at lighting - a lot of lighting. Not being the easiest part of the room to get right, as it should never be just the big light on (as Peter Kaye would say). Lighting should be layered, there can be more than one light source in a room and know that dim-able and even subtle coloured light can transform the ambience without it being seedy and it needn't be extortionate.
Use groups of lights together, light through coloured glass, show off your vintage bulb, chic up your desktop. Stick them on the floor in the corner of your living room for a classy uplight, add lamps to tables, fireplaces and walls and play with the combinations of light (including the big light but on a dimmer please). Treat yourself; buy an investment and conversation piece or buy two or three budget pieces which together will give a more considered and expensive look to your scheme.
Movable, delicate, glowing, sit down on-able, childlike and classic, here are our top shops which you might not have heard of before, for relevant and stylish pieces many of which you can plug in today.
And if you now need an extension lead this company will build one for you. Here's one I made earlier
Are you a fan of those Grand Designs and £100K Houses with their minimal Plywood surfaces and furniture? Us too. Hot of the Press - we've just stumbled upon Plykea (launched this month) who can give you a cool, architect designed looking kitchen using IKEA cupboard frames.
This lovely company can make bespoke, hand finished doors, cover panels and worktops for your IKEA’s Metod base cabinets to re-vamp your out-of-date kitchen and get a the Scandi (Hygge) vibe on. I'm sure Piers Taylor would approve.
Last week we visited London Interior Design and Lifestyle Show 'Top Drawer' and we're really excited to share these inspirational finds with you. Let's make beautiful Homes together...
1. 'Homework' Wallpaper from the cutest design company around, 'Mini Moderns'. Find quirky, graphic lampshades, duvet covers, cushions and wallpaper here.
2. 'Studio' modular kitchen by Frama. As well as this minimal timber, metal and Corian beauty they also design stunning lighting.
3. The 'Bee Brick' Bee Hotel. Makes a perfect gift plus you can physically build it into the walls of your property to help those essential little fuzzy pollinators. Ingenious design by 'Green and Blue'.
4. 'Retro' range by 'Bloomingville'. This company never misses the current trends and makes sure they reach you at a great price too.
5. 'Swim With Whales Forever' tablecloth is one of hundreds of pieces from designers complex epilepsy, learning and physical difficulties. Their Designs and Artworks are lovingly transformed into interior design gems and unique lifestyle gifts. All of their proceeds go back into the company 'Art House Meath'. A gorgeous company with style and outstanding ethics.
6. Wood and woven jersey chair and bungee cord lampshades. 'Veega Design' is a one woman (with masses of creativity) show. I would love to find a fun project for these pieces.
7. The most minimal shelf bracket ever. Concrete and in two designs, these shelves would be perfect for your minimalist interior design project
8. 'Concrete Skateboard' by 'The Dorset Stone Carver' demonstrates what happens when an old skill is given a modern spin (or nu-craft as I like to call it). I will be urging my commercial interior design clients to commission some weird and wonderful Objet D'art as centrepieces for their bar and restaurant designs from here.
9. Scandi fabrics done well - very well. The rugs are stunning and effortlessly chic too. Johanna Gullichsen is to thank for this.
Click on the images above for links to these lovely peoples' websites and then call The Open Plan to see how we can make wonderful things happen in your London house, apartment, cafè, bar, office...
Just thought I'd alert you lucky people to the new colour range in The Dulux 'Heritage' collection. The chart is ordered to show harmonious colours together with a "we've done the work for you" specially selected white that will coordinate effortlessly with the other tones in the same column.
And here's the link to get yourself a free colour chart. Get Some!
Today I downed tools and went to the Hayward Gallery's off-site exhibition 'The Infinite Mix'. An amazing pop-up show of 'Audio-Visual' art with, surprisingly for a building still derelict in parts, a very stylish café/bar as part of 'The Store'.
'The Store' which is described as offering "a new kind of experience fusing art, music, food, fashion, broadcasting and work" contains a creative hang-out with views of the Thames, as eclectic and surreal as the A/V pieces in the galleries.
Just as the disparate exhibits form a coherant exhibition so too does the collection of furniture and decor here. This "mix and max" design style combines different eras and styles linked by luxe materials (marble, linen, velvet, wool, wood, perspex and glass) and lush planting which is ingeniously hanging in the old suspended cable trays. This all contrasts and yet compliments the stark architectural featues of the building - a kind of plush Brutalism.
It's not clear how long the space will be around for, whether it's semi-permanant or permanant, so go now for the Art, wifi, food and gorgeous interior design.
The Store, 180 The Strand, London, WC2R 1EA
One of London's Best Interiors Bloggers (Ideal Home magazine), The Open Plan Interior Design, London produces contemporary interiors for homes and business' and this very useful home interiors blog