Introducing The 9 New Farrow & Ball Paint Colours For 2016

F & B

A couple of weeks ago, I arrived at an exclusive building called The Albany ( so much so, that you’re not even allowed to photograph inside ) Full of interesting history and with name plaques on the entrance walls of past residents that turned my head  and nestled in the heart of London, set back a little from the busy streets of Piccadilly. It was all quite hush hush and has been until today.

It was to meet with the Farrow & Ball team and a handful of other UK bloggers and journalists for a preview of the new Farrow & Ball paint colours.

Let’s face it, I am a colour geek and so an afternoon in such interesting company and for such an exciting reason was going to be right up my street. It is not something they do on a very regular basis, so it felt very exciting to be part of this all.

After chatting for a while and enjoying the beautiful and regal surroundings, we all sat down for the presentation by Joa Studholme, International Colour Consultant for Farrow & Ball.

Now, finally, I can share with you, the new colours, as today is the day they have become available online and in stores. I can also tell you a bit about the inspiration behind each name. Yippee ! Let’s do it …

Shadow White Image

Firstly, Shadow White. No. 282. Named by the soft tone created when whites are used in shaded areas and good for lovers of light neutrals, both for walls and woodwork. It is a lovely contrast for Shaded White No .201. A paint that suits any style of home.

Drop Cloth

Then comes Drop Cloth. No. 283. Slightly darker than Shadow White.

It’s relaxing, easy and muted. You could use it with Shadow White No 282. It’s not too yellow or grey. Very easy on the eye, I would say. It is one 4 of their key colours for 2016.

It’s name is a nod to painters and decorators because ‘ Drop Cloth ‘ is the traditional name for their dust sheets which this colour embodies.

Worsted

Worsted. No. 284. belongs to their ‘ Easy Neutral Family ‘ stronger in tone than its counterpart ‘ Purbeck Stone ‘ but lighter than Mole’s Breath ( I never tire of their lovely names ). It works well with colour schemes Wevet. No. 273 and Cornforth White No. 228 for instance or with a stronger palette of Cook’s Blue No. 237 and No. 286.

Does this colour remind you of city suits made from flat woven fabric ? It is named Worsted after the village in Norfolk where the yarn was originally woven.

Cromarty

I love the softness of this hue. Cromarty No. 285 is a lighter version of and works well with Light Blue No. 22 or with both the colours Pigeon No. 25 and  Blue Gray No. 91.

Inspired by sea mist and named after the Cromarty Fifth Estuary, a place of swirling mists mentioned daily in The Shipping Forecast. Conjures up some very vivid images for me. How about you ?

Peignoir

Peignoir No. 286 is absolutely perfect, in my opinion. I fell in love with it as soon as I saw it. Very soft pink with a huge dose of grey. It works with red based neutrals and darker tones such as Brinjal No. 222. It could also work with Cinder Rose No. 246 and Charlston Grey N0. 243. It is also one of Farrow & Ball’s key colours for 2016, picked for being serene and east to live with.

I think you might love what this colour name is based upon – chiffon gowns in which ladies traditionally brushed their hair in boudoirs. Vintage and very romantic.

YeabridgeGreen3

Here’s another of my favourites and I can’t wait to try it out on something soon. Yeabrige  Green No.287. It is fresh and very uplifting. What do you think of this ‘ avocado ‘ colour ? I am pleased that it’s another key colour for this year.

It was inspired by a palette shade found in a gun cupboard and also lush colours in a field nearby. It works with many shades. I particularly like the combination of it with Cooking Apple Green No. 32 and Off White No. 3.

Vardo

Okay, here is my absolute favourite new colour. I think I’ve mentioned before how much I like teal. The richer the better and Vardo No. 288 is just that.

I think quite rightly, the word ‘ flamboyant is mentioned by Farrow & Ball ‘ regarding this one. Joa recommended Down Pipe No. 26 or  Pavillion Gray No. 242 to go with this which think would be stunning. Or Raddicchio No. 96 – wow, can you imagine ? There are also the neutrals too, obviously.

A colour aimed to make people smile and a colour brings out the light side of us. I like the sound of that. Aptly named after classic romany gypsy caravans from the late 18th Century. You know, the horse drawn ones ? Apparently a similar colour was used in the intricate patterning of these vehicles, often over a red shade. Seen as an important cultural high point in decoration.

Inchyra Blue

The clever thing about this wonderful Inchyrya Blue No. 289, which as you can see is an aged blue grey, is that it can read more grey, blue or even green depending on the light. An alternative to charcoal it can be used add a hint of colour in to a very contemporary home or a more moody feel with my beloved Vardo No. 288 or Black Blue N0. 95.

First used at the classic Georgian Inchyra House to work with moody Scottish skies, it can be found on the exterior doors of their barn which sits at the bottom of a rather grey and ‘ imposing ‘ hill. This  colour needed to have depth and work sympathetically with the dramatic natural backdrop.

Salon Drab

A chocolatey hue. Sounds great does’t it ? Salon Drab No. 290. It’s an ‘ informed tone ‘ that colour experts use. Really rich and can sit with Arsenic No. 214 and Rectory Red N0 217 – two other fab colours. It offers a calmness and feels historic but I think would work in a modern setting. I love that is the fourth key colour for 2016. Hope to see it in lots of homes.

Combining ‘ Salon ‘ which is the small outer room off a drawing room with ‘ Drab ‘ a term favoured by colourists  – it describes a colour as lacking in brightness.

So, there we have it. The new colours. Joa explained how Farrow & Ball really wanted for the new additions to happily blend in on their colour charts well and not stand right out. I think they have achieved this so well and it is clear to see the love and passion that has gone in to the 9 colours. It was quite an honour to be part of their unveiling and to listen to someone so inspiring and clever.

If you want to get hold of a new colour chart then have a look at the website or pop in to your nearest stockist. 

I’d love to know your thoughts on them and which might be your favourite ? Especially now you know mine :) Leave me a comment or tweet me @lucylovesyablog ..

Lucy x

All images copyright of Farrow & Ball 2016.

8 Blogging Tips – You’re Welcome.

Blog Tips!

This post has been a long time coming. Now, I really feel I have some advice to offer and have been blogging long enough to know that what I say in this post has been tried and tested.

Quite often, I receive messages from new fellow bloggers who aren’t really sure what to say in their first post, which direction to go in or just how to get started. It is quite daunting, putting yourself out there for all to see.

I’m always happy to offer some help if I can, even if it’s not my field, because there were some lovely people who helped me when I started out and they made all the difference.

There are literally millions of blogs on the internet, how do you make yours stand out ? Here are some tips that I hope that you find useful …

B

Be Yourself.

Sounds a bit obvious I know but I can’t stress this enough. Don’t try to imitate some else’s blog. Of course, take inspiration from others but the thing that will make your platform stand out from others is your uniqueness. It’s easy to compare yourself to a fantastic blog with a zillion followers but they’ve probably achieved it by being themselves. Why shouldn’t you ? :)

L

Love your blog.

Be in love with your blog. Do it because you enjoy every moment. That sounds weird doesn’t it ? You’ll feel much more inclined to keep writing those posts if they’re about things you’re passionate about. If it means writing less posts to keep the quality high then so be it. Personally, I tend to update a few times a week as I would rather spend more time on each post but each to their own on that one.

Also, love the brands that you work with. It’s very flattering to be offered to do a collaboration or sponsored post, especially when you’re starting out. Think long term about it and whether it is the direction you want to go in – would you be happy for the post to still be on your blog in a years time ?

O

Offer Something.

What makes readers return to your blog and remember it amongst all of the others ? There are many ways of doing this.

For a start, find your niche and stick to it so that readers know who you are. If you review new products for example and are really honest, then people will trust you and  return more often.

Maybe you could do some giveaways with brands that you like ? It can be quite hard work but also beneficial. Make sure you stay focused on products that are a good match for your style.

Tutorials are good. Some of my most read posts are DIY ones. In fact, even though they were written some time ago, they are still read a lot daily. So, food for thought there ?

Advice posts ( a bit like this one ) are also a fab way of drawing readers. I don’t know about you but I do love to read ” How to ” posts. Maybe I’m just nosey … :)

G

Get in touch.

As I mentioned earlier, there are literally millions of blogs out there. You may have the most beautiful looking blog, full of interesting content, but that doesn’t mean every company will know about you. Make yourself known to them. Send an email to say hi. Suggest collaborating together at some point – maybe offer some ideas on how that could work out. Don’t be shy – the worst they could say is no ?

T

Take loads ( and I mean LOADS ) of photos.

When I started Lucy Loves Ya, I used my phone camera to take photos and quite honestly, didn’t have a clue as to what I was doing with composition, styling or editing and then sizing the images for the actual posts. It took time and I am still working at it !

I would recommend getting out and about and taking as many photos as you can, wherever you can. You can sometimes end up using random photos you’ve taken as part of a future post.

When using other photographers images, make sure you credit them ( and ask permission too ).

I

Inspiration.

What is your inspiration ? My inspiration is colour, interiors and anything sewing. I also love fashion – as long as it’s colourful ! It took me a while to really work out exactly what I love to blog about but if you stick with what inspires you, you cannot go wrong.

If you’re having a down day, let all the lovely bloggers, beautiful photos on Pinterest and Instagram cheer you up. We’re all here to support each other and there’s room for all of us to inspire !

P

Persevere.

Don’t give up. If you want to get something amazing out of it all, then keep plugging away. It takes time to reach your goals ( and then you’ll probably have some more ) so don’t give yourself a hard time if you write what you would consider a brilliant post and then your analytics ( more on that in a minute ) seem to show otherwise.

You’ll be so glad you did in the end. I promise.

S

Social Media.

Some advice posts will tell you that social media is not too important for getting your posts read.

I totally disagree on that one. For one, it’s fun. But more importantly, you hook up with so many other like minded bloggers and all of the companies that you might want to work with. Okay, so you might not get as many blog hits from it as you’d like but every time you tweet or instagram a photo, you’re reminding your followers that you’re still here and that you mean business ! :)  I wouldn’t recommend over doing it on your social media though. Too many updates can be a bit spammy, so again, keep it quality rather than quantity.

You will also find on many of your social media accounts that you can check your stats to see how many people have engaged with your posts which is very helpful.

Also, set up google analytics to check your visits regularly. It can tell you where your readers live, what they’re reading and for how long.

I hope this has been interesting for you ? It is how I see blogging and it works for me, maybe you have some tips to add too if you’re an experienced blogger ? If you have any questions then please do leave me a comment. As ever, I’d love to hear from you ….

By the way – if you’d like to know where I got these gorgeous ‘ Iron On Alphabet Patches ‘ in my photos – they were very kindly sent over to me by the lovely Jennie Maizels for this post. Check them out !

Lucy x

Inspire Me – With Textile Designer Sarah Campbell

1 sarah portrait 2012

If you read my blog regularly, you’ll know very well how much I love Liberty London Prints.

So, can you imagine my surprise and excitement when the lovely people who represent Sarah Campbell got in touch for a meeting with her ?

Sarah and her sister, Susan founded textile design company Collier Campbell in the 60s, collaborating with Liberty, Habitat, Marks & Spencers to name a few. They also inspired Yves Saint Laurent on his first off the peg clothing line.

Today, Sarah is working with West Elm, Michael Miller Fabrics and also teaching workshops in London.

There is also an exhibition with many of their prints, currently running at The Fashion and Textiles Museum, exploring Liberty’s impact on British fashion …

How did you originally become a textile designer ?

I grew into it, almost behind my own back ! My sister, Susan Collier, had already begun her career as a textile designer in her early twenties and was also a mother of two small girls; she ‘ got busy ‘ and asked me to come and help. As I could draw and was an obliging younger sibling – I did. I was a teenager, and had no ambition to be a designer, or even anything ‘ artistic ‘ at all, but it turned out well – I had a feel for it – and we continued our working partnership for 50 years.

Collier Campbell-1

You’ve had an incredible career so far with Collier Campbell and now working as Sarah Campbell Designs, spanning over 5 decades – what have been your highlights and challenges since you first started ? 

Yes, we had a wonderfully productive career together and with our marvellous studio. Maintaining a business based on ‘ creativity ‘ is quite a challenge in itself, and the fact that there were two of us to withstand and share the slings and arrows was definitely important.

Some of the highlights have come as awards from our peers and the industry, the most prestigious of which was The Duke of Edinburgh’s Design Prize in 1984, given for our Six Views Collection. We were the first women to win this, and apart from one other, the only ones in its 52-year history – which is rather shocking.

There have been many feelings of achievement, and many knock-backs too. Looking from where I am now I think the whole collaboration with my sister and our extraordinary body of work is a tremendous cause for pride. There is a lovely book published about our years and work together – ‘ The Collier Campbell Archive ‘. I meet all sorts of people who tell me about patterns of ours that they’ve lived with and cherished over the years, and I feel very pleased that those fabrics went out there and did their jobs so well!

My challenge now is to continue solo, as I have been since Susan’s death in 2011, to invent and celebrate new and interesting patterns – I’m fortunate to be doing just this, and long may it last !

How have you managed to keep your feet on the ground with such a busy life and so many high profile collaborations ?

I’m not sure that I have always kept my feet on the ground … I think that maintaining busy-ness and good working relationships probably requires one to balance the fabulous flights of fancy with being pretty down-to earth; that takes acrobatic experience ! Children are helpful – watching the saturday football matches in the rain is an excellent exercise in remaining steady – especially when it’s muddy ! Susan and I saw ourselves as jobbing designers, which is a service as well as an inspiration – we earned our living by painting patterns, and I still do; as such income is determined by customers – generally very good levellers ! Success is so exciting and heady – but things can change quickly and there are no laurels upon which to rest for very long …

4 ysl board at current Art of Pattern at FTM

Collier Campbell inspired Yves Saint Laurent’s first ever ‘ off the peg ‘ clothing. What was it like working with one of the greatest ever fashion designers ? 

I have to clarify here: the original company Collier Campbell company wasn’t formed until 1979 / 80. All our work prior to that ( Liberty, early Habitat, Soiries Nouveautees etc ) was produced under our own names. When it came to YSL –  he was an established customer of Liberty of London Prints, the then wholesale arm of Liberty. Having said that, it was incredibly exciting when the European salesman Gilbert Saada told us that St Laurent wanted our prints. We had done a series of very freely painted folk-inspired patterns, and one in particular – patterned bands with a bird – took his fancy. It suited the Gipsy look that he was developing for his first off-the-peg collection – very Matisse and Russian blouse. But he didn’t want the birds ! So we repainted it, and made a little group of designs to be printed on Liberty’s lovely Tana lawn cotton; these then formed an integral part of his first famous ready-to-wear fashion collection. We loved painting those patterns, and went to it with gusto – and lots of singing and dancing ! The fact that one of the greatest French couturiers wanted our designs was a tremendous confirmation of our belief in the hand-painted, spontaneous look that we were developing ( among many others ).

Has your design process changed over the years ? If so, how ?

In essence I still hand-paint my designs in repeat as I always have done, and for the most part I use gouache on paper.  But added to that – for one of my customers I often send sketches, constructions and ideas in different mediums for them to work up for their own particular needs and products.

The process of translation and reproduction has changed: when we started, each colour would be hand-traced by the engraver to make each separate screen or roller. In the early days we often had to stop engravers from ‘ tidying up ‘ our paintbrush marks ! Every colourway was painted and balanced, and the skilful eye of the printer in matching was integral to the success of the cloth. Nowadays designs are scanned, separated and colour-matched by computer – though in the case of my work the starting point remains the same – the hand-painted mark. One of the advantages of digital printing is that each nuance of colour and gesture can be translated onto the cloth should one wish it, whereas traditionally conventional printing is about understanding flat colour and screens. These are different skills – but all worthwhile and full of adventure.

6 cote d'azur silk scarf 2015

Where do you find your inspiration ? 

Everywhere really; I can’t stop things jumping into my eye, or setting me off on a train of investigation. New briefs can send me seeking new materials – brushes, papers, techniques, types of paint – which in themselves bring their own inspiration. And particular requests often require research. But there’s nothing like just starting with a clear surface and the hint of an idea waiting to grow – they can push me down all sorts of self-inspirational alleys !

7 my paintbrushes 2015

When working on projects for brands – are you generally given a free rein with your ideas ?

Customers each have their own particular identities and needs, their place in the market and their history. I think people come to me for a fresh point of view about colour and pattern, and a skill in its execution – to see what I’ll make for them. Customers often say one thing, but in the course of a conversation may be unconsciously stroking a piece of paper with quite another thing on it – that’s the pattern they’re really drawn to ! It’s worth remembering – and listening very hard – in order to be able to use one’s skill to bring it all together and take a step forward at the same time. And if someone can never sell green, for instance, it’s a good idea to take note… but not necessarily to leave it at that …

8 liberty dress 1970

The Liberty in Fashion Exhibition is celebrating 140 years of the company. How do you think Liberty have had such a strong impact for so long, with their fashion and interior prints ?

9 liberty dolls 2015It’s an interesting question; certain names hold their magic for a long time through thick and thin, the ups and downs of fashion and the market. To start with, the word itself –  liberty – has special meaning and significance, a freedom to which we may all aspire.

The first Mr Liberty began his company with a clear position – providing beautiful cloth, interesting patterns, considered design, artistic integrity. He had a real feel for his customers and from the start he appealed to a particular clientele who shared these values. The company also achieved the remarkable feat of selling cloth, via both retail and wholesale, to everyone from your granny to Yves St Laurent – as the exhibition shows so well. But I think the secret of their success is that they have maintained their standards in design, quality, colour and have stood by their original commitment to excellence in cloth and pattern, newness and tradition – and there are very many customers who feel the same way and want to be able to be part of that.

10 west elm rug 2015 12 hand painted fabric 2014

What are you currently working on ?

Yesterday I sent off the latest batch of ideas and sketches to WestElm in Brooklyn for their spring / summer ’17 ranges; for the last three years or so I’ve worked for them for ten days each month developing new ideas and solutions to their briefs. It’s a really lovely collaborative job, and so exciting to see what they make of my work.

Today on my table is the new collection for Michael Miller Fabrics, actually for this summer; it’s our third together, and I’m busy completing the repeats just now. These gorgeous cottons are sold into the home-sewing and quilting market and are available worldwide; I so enjoy making a range and seeing the yardage coming through with its different colourways. I’d like to have the time and wherewithal to make some quilts myself – I’m often sketching plans for them; we have made some adorable art dolls with the fabrics though.

11 mmf sea holly fabric 2015

I’m also completing the preparations for teaching at West Dean next week; running short courses and workshops is something new I’ve been doing in the last few years and I really enjoy it. This one will be exploring pattern – how it works and how to make it. I teach painting directly onto cloth as well, both silk and cotton, and have several courses lined up at Bradness Gallery in the spring and summer, and at Morley College in the next academic year. And I’m invited back to Guadalajara to teach there again later in the year – exciting. Oh, and I’m hoping to run a flag-&-banner-making workshop in the Herefordshire woods later in the year…

Then there’s the next blog to write and illustrate – something I do every three weeks or so and due any day now. And a commission to hand-paint some curtains; I have to admit this has been waiting its turn for some time and now I’m just about ready !

I’m planning a new collaboration specifically with upholstery in mind using both printed and hand-painted linen on particular pieces. And I’m always sampling new products for our on-line shop – scarves, cards, painted creatures …

 

13 bedouin stripe scarf 2015And although the design work for this range was done a little while ago I’m really looking forward to our new collection of ceramics and homewares coming on the market any minute now. It’s called Viva ! and brings an abundance of colourful geometrics to the dining table – and the tea – tray.

14 magpie 2016

Can you give any advice to anyone wanting a career in textile design ?

Love pattern, listen to your customer, enjoy being useful !

Thank you so much to Sarah for sharing her inspirations and advice. Do you have a favourite print ?

If you’d like to have a look at her website. Here it is – Sarah Campbell Designs.

 

Have a good day.

Lucy x

Photo credits: Image 1, copyright of Virginie Guiriaboye. Image 5 copyright of Polly Eltes ‘as seen in Period Living Magazine’. All others images copyright of Sarah Campbell.

Introducing 2016 Trends In To Your Home

That 70s Trend

1. Rattan Lampshade 2. Portel Dinnerware Set 3. Cork Storage Jar 4. Gold Cutlery Set 5. Blue Vase 6. Folding Dining Table 7. Pestle and Mortar 8. Gold Wine Rack 9. Oak Dining Chair 10. Bamboo Place Mats

2016 is looking rather interesting, interiors wise. I don’t know about you, but I find it can be a bit daunting sometimes when looking to make some changes to a room in your home. Knowing where and how to start. There is almost too much inspiration out there on the internet ( if that’s possible ? ) sometimes and it’s not always all attainable.

So, I think it helps by just finding one thing that you really like and working around that. Maybe a vase or in this case ( above ) a lampshade. I’ve put together a couple of ideas for some of the latest trends and how I would build on it, with some finds from Habitat.

Being a sucker for anything to do with the 70s era, I’m happy to see a bit of rattan, bamboo and some wood textures re-emerging. All trends seem to return and some, more than others I am happy to welcome back. This one makes me want to pop on a flowing chiffon dress, flick my hair and dig out my vintage sunnies.

What about you ? Do you have a favourite ?

This rattan ceiling lampshade ( above ) reminds me of my childhood as do the placemats. Gold is becoming really popular again at the moment and I love this cutlery set.

Urban Jungle

1. Floral Cushion 2. Floor Lamp 3. Coffee Table 4. Velvet Sofa 5. Faux Plant 6. Orange Vase 7. Seagrass Basket 8. Elephant Cushion 9. White Bottle Vase 10. Bird Cushion

Lots of Bohemian and Asian inspired colours are also definitely up there, this year and green will be BIG in many different shades. Starting with the stamped design cushion, I chose some other saturated coloured ones with a hint of animal print as this is another big thing  – do zebra or leopard prints ever really go away ? I added some white the white coffee table piece too to balance it out a little.

You could go really to town and paint a contrasting colour on the walls or go white and let the furniture and accessories do the talking.

We will be seeing lots of houseplants in all shapes and sizes which adds to the green theme and also inspired by the 70s. Did you notice that the catwalks a few months ago had lots of inspiration from this time. The Peter Pilotto show that I attended and wrote about had many A line silhouettes and bold palettes. I love it !

The main thing, I find, is to be comfortable in your surroundings and feel that it totally represents you and your tastes. Even just a few little tweaks here and there will feel good if you’re craving a change and you can work on it from there.

It’s looking pretty bright, don’t you think ? Although there are also more subtle pinks, light greys and ombre patterns, similar to the dipped DIY look that we have seen in the last few years, on the scene which will please the pastel lovers among us !

How do you like to decorate ? Do any of the current trends inspire you ?

I’d love to hear your thoughts so please do leave me a comment or tweet me @lucylovesyablog …

Lucy x

This post is a collaboration with Habitat. All opinions are my own.

New Year and a New Course with KLC School of Design

KLC Interior Design DiplomaHappy New Year to you. Did you have a good one ?

We went to Edinburgh which was amazing – oh, they certainly know how to enjoy Hogmanay. We were lucky enough to see Biffy Clyro perform and from the side of stage  – I don’t think I could ever tire of their music.

I did plan on taking some photos there to show you, but I tripped over a suitcase in the night ( I don’t drink, before you ask … :) ) and sprained my finger and knee so was a bit out of action !

Anyway, on to all things new for this year. I’m very excited to tell you that I started a new course recently. An online diploma in Interior Design with the KLC School of Design. A little while ago, while I was nominated for my award, I was invited, along with some other bloggers, by KLC and Amara to an afternoon  ‘ Introduction to Colour ‘ Course at their college at Chelsea Harbour Design Centre East which is based at The Chelsea Harbour Design Centre, which was really interesting. We put together some ideas ourselves and talked about the colour wheel and also the different styles of interior designers.

Colour Wheel

I thoroughly enjoyed it and have been wanting to do one of their courses for a while so went home and had a think for a few months about studying with them on a more permanent basis.

I already know lots about fabrics and how to make things and hang them –  and I obviously already have a huge love of colour inspiration. What I want to learn more about is practical, in terms of creative concept, how to do a brief for a client, the business side and how to make 3d models. Basically, I want a good qualification in Interior Design.

KLC Study Lucy Loves Ya

So, I am now signed up to the KLC School Online Interior Design Diploma..

As you can see, lots of new equipment has been bought and I have made a start on the first section and feel pretty excited about what this all may turn in to. After all, it’s what I love doing and feel that everything else I have achieved in the last few years has helped get me to this point. There will be some challenges ( I am not a natural when it comes to technical drawing ) but I am totally up for getting better. There seems to be lots of online support, I am sure it will be fine.

Start of My KLC Course

Hopefully you will stay with me on the journey. I would love that. Lots of books to discover, interesting homes to study and loads of colourful images.

In fact, there are a few things coming up this year that I hope you will enjoy. It’s going to be very busy ….

In the meantime if you would like to know more about any of the KLC School courses either online or at their actual HQ – then you can find more information here.

Have a brill 2016.

Lucy x

Habitat Colombo Armchair Sofa Bed in Saffron

Colombo Chair in Saffron2

Not many more sleeps now is it ? I can honestly say that this has been my busiest Christmas so far and I’m looking forward to chilling out a bit.

The one thing that we never have enough of in this household, is places to sleep over Christmas. I try and make sure that no – one has to drive for the main day, so they can relax a bit more. So this new chair ticks two boxes.

Habitat very kindly sent me their Colombo Sofa Bed Armchair sofa bed to review. I chose the colour way in yellow as I’ve always fancied one on this shade and it goes great with the white walls and our Horace Panter print.

Colombo Habitat

Both the girls can both fit on it really comfortably and it’s easily a seat and a half. It’s roomy and easy to recline in to. According to the description  – the fabric is durable so that’s good too. It has a sprung base bed to pull out and foam top and you can use the pillows for your cushions. I love the wooden legs – they give it extra height.

This particular style also comes in various colours and different sizes and also as a standard armchair.

Colombo Habitat Chair2

I like it very much and am very grateful for the timing of it arriving. Phew. One less thing to think about. Thanks, Habitat !

This Colombo ‘ Saffron ‘ chair has a hint of green but it most definitely yellow predominantly. We also have some pink sofas – which I will be featuring soon and it works really well with them and breaks up the colour in the room.

Habitat Chair

I’ve fallen in love with it a bit. I might even get a chance to curl up and have a cuppa, while thinking about next year’s plans.

You can check out the other colours here, if you like the look of this model.

Are you all set for Christmas Day ? What are you going to be doing ? Wishing you a very Happy Christmas  – guessing  I will see you on the other side of the 25th now …

Have fun !

Lucy x

All photos taken by me  – Lucy Loves Ya.

This post is in collaboration with Habitat. All opinions my own.

Colour Your Christmas With Stocking Fillers

Colourful Gifts

A quick update today. Are you getting up to speed with Christmas ? I am getting there, just about !

Although stocking fillers are my favourite thing to do, they always ends up being the last to sort out so if you’re in the same boat or need some last minute extra gifts – I have pulled together some colourful items that I think make great little gifts. They’re fun and functional and fittable ( I think I just made that word up .. ) in a nice big sock. Hope you like them …

1. The scent of Jasmin is heavenly as far as I’m concerned. Do you like to too ? Designers Guild have these soaps in a pretty box. They’re £14.  2. We recently did an Alice in Wonderland play here for charity and it reminded me of how brilliant and mad the book and films are – and also how many people love the story. This Mad Hatter tea towel is by Mrs Moore Vintage Store and it’s £12. 3. Being a huge fan of Ban.do – this tote bag is naturally going to be in the list ! Pink and stripes, yes please. £18 from Birchbox. 4. Amara have a stunning range of gifts – like this dinner plate ( with others to form a set available ) by Christian Lacroix at £48. 5. Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without a candle or two. Although this is isn’t a festive scent as such, lavender is a lovely gentle alternative – and the motto on the front is perfect. By Rice DK – £17.99. 6. I was at a poetry festival recently and one of the speakers said ” there’s nothing like a new notebook ” .. I totally agree. Full of possibilities. Love the pastel shades of this one by Trouva. £10. 7. A gift for a patient friend who likes to grow their herbs ? Love that it comes in a teacup. This ‘ grow your own basil ‘ is from Not on the Highstreet and is £9. 8. What a lovely, lovely thing. Marimekko print pencils in a box. Amara £9.99. 9. Love this brand. Little Moose Gram. You might already know that I’m obsessed with flamingoes. So, this necklace was an obvious choice. It’s £39.95. Hint hint, husband ! 10. Everyone loves a yummy hand cream don’t they ? Look at the amazing packaging too … another company that I am rather obsessed with – Kiehl’s at SPACE NK. £17.50.

Kids Gifts

Here are some treats that I know my girls would like, so maybe they will appeal to you and yours too ?

1. For the older ones, obviously. Not for the littles. Some bright bubble gum balls from Liberty London. £6.95. 2. These little animal lights always go down well. My daughters love them. This Squirrel Night Light is from White Mint. £5. 3. Wow ! Such a good idea – Kids Nail Polish from Not on the Highstreet. It can be washed off with soap and has no solvents, phthalates, bisphenol A and is perfume free. £8.50. 4. I think this mug would appeal to boys and girls of all ages. Fill it with sweets sweets maybe ? From Scion  – £10. 5. Make your own Super Hero Mask from Not on the Highstreet. £6.95. 6. A beautiful mobile for babas from Leif. Although they are in the States so you will have to get your skates on if you fancy buying one. $70. 7. How can you not love Smiggle ? They’re popping up everywhere and full of cute things. The Yums pencils are £2 each and you can change the erasers. 8. Oh look, how did another flamingo themed item make it in to the list ? ;) One of lots of different birds or animal hangers by Capventure at Forma. £3.50. 9. Well, I wasn’t going to write a post without some elf ears, was I ? Enough said. Paperchase. £7.50. 10. Cannot get enough of Meri Meri. They rock. Cupcake cases and birds – a winning combination. These are £10 for the set.

So, that’s my mini round up. There will of course, also be chocolate coins and satsumas. It’s the law. ;)

Have you already got everything sorted ? If you have any extra ideas then please leave a comment or tweet me @lucylovesyablog .. or let me know what you think of these !

Lucy x

Penelope Hope Fabrics And Cushions …

Penelope Hope

One of the especially satisfying things about blogging is when you receive an email from a company that you totally love. The colours, the prints, the style – everything.

It happened recently when Nadia from textile and cushion brand Penelope Hope got in touch. I was already aware of her fabric collections – how can you miss them ? They’re so colourful and fearless. The opportunity for us to work together was too good to miss !

I received a bundle of goodies in the post to study, including the coolest cushions I have seen in a while, adorable material samples and a metre of  ‘ Pina Colada ‘ fabric from the  ‘ Cocktails and Dreams Collection ‘ in blue to make a little something for our home. I didn’t know where to start, I felt like a kid in a sweet shop.

Samples

Well, I can tell you that the fabrics are extremely good quality and  the patterns are bold and stand out as something really exciting and fresh. I love the contrasting palettes and the vibrancy of each one.

Every single pattern is created by Nadia who uses hand sketching, photography, ink and acrylic painting as well as digital design, so a flexible approach to her work which results in really detailed and unique products.  It’s interesting to know that the brand are committed to printing and producing their textiles in the UK.

Although Penelope Hope is a relatively newbie on the interiors scene – they have already made quite a big impression and turned the heads of Elle Decoration Gallery Magazine to name a few – and I reckon it’s just the start of big things for them.

Penelope Hope Cushions

Back to the fabrics. I want to tell you a bit more about the current range …

Lucy Loves Ya

The Oresome range is made of foiled fabrics and oozes on trend glamour. Copper and golds, silvers and gunmetal. My jumper says it all ! It’s going to be a fight over our ‘ Happy ‘ cushion. We’ll take it in turns, I think :)

Using classic geometrics like this herringbone and dogtooth, they are printed on to a silk twill and also a heavyweight cotton. Screenprinted by hand in small batches, they are limited edition, all called either an emotion or feeling. Adore, Lucky, Lust, Wish, Covet … Perfect names.

Then you have  ‘ Plunge Collection ‘ which is inspired by and in homage to Guernsey where Nadia grew up ( and it is incidentally a place close to my heart too )  –  where she remembers playing in rock pools, eating fish and chips and the salty spray of the sea. The prints are a kaleidoscopic and fragmented variation of her original artwork. The colours are blues and greens as you might imagine. They co – ordinate well with the others or just on they own. They have silk satin piping and feather inserts.

Marbelous ‘ is a capsule collection which is 100% silk satin with wonderful marbled print inspired by minerals and granite. The colours are quite incredible and I would like to stare at the swirls for ages. Mixing up total luxury with a huge splash of fun. Love it.

Penelope Hope Fabric copy

As I mentioned earlier I use some of the ‘ Cocktails and Dreams ‘ fabric in a little project – a yoga floor cushion. Yeah – I will start doing some classes soon, now I have this ! What do you think of this print design ?

Penelope Hope Yoga Pad-1 copy

Not only are there pineapples in different colour ways, there are also palm trees, tiles, cocktails of colour and even  ‘ Picking Coconuts ‘ which is one of my favourites.

Penelope Hope Samples

I piped the edges with a strong pink – like it with the blue ? I’m looking forward to using it and dreaming of an exotic holiday.

if you’d like to find out more about Penelope Hope then you can find their website here. You’ll also soon be seeing a collaboration with them and Swoon Editions in the New year on armchairs. Can’t wait for that !

In the meantime I have an exclusive discount code for you. If you spend over £15 in the store – you will receive 10% off. Just add  LUCYLOVESYA at checkout. The offer lasts for 3 months from now. Enjoy !

Which is your favourite print ? Or do you love all of them too ?

Leave me a comment or tweet me @lucylovesyablog – As ever, I would love to hear from you.

Lucy x

All images are taken by me –  Lucy Loves Ya.

I was sent the products for the purpose of this blog post. All opinions are my own.

Afternoon Tea With Amara and Friends at Ham Yard Hotel

Ham Yard Love

It has been a tad crazy here recently, hence my slight radio ( or blog ) silence … but I’m back !

We did a charity event including a play here and I was making costumes, decorations, selling tickets – you know the score …

But, in between the madness, was a very special few hours, spent at Ham Yard Hotel, as I was invited by Karen and Emily from Amara to have afternoon tea with them and some of the other category winners of the Amara Interior Blog Awards.

This time around I felt slightly less stunned, as I’m sure did the others, so, we caught up and discussed blogging. It was really interesting as we all blog from slightly different perspectives but all with a mutual love of interiors. You must check out the blogs of Victoria of Apartment Number 4, Hollie who runs Miafleur with her family, Teri from The Lovely Drawer and Phillip of English Buildings. All a really good read.

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Now, let me just tell you a bit about Ham Yard Hotel. As you may have read my post about the Awards Night, you will know it was held there and I loved it, but then to see it again in the day time, in all its colourful glory was something else !

Ham Yard Reception Area Ham Yard Restaurant 1Ham Yard Hotel LibraryHam Yard Bowling AlleyBar

Ham Yard Restaurant 1 Ham Yard Theatre
The Hotel is situated in a type of courtyard, slightly tucked away from the hustle and bustle that Soho is so well known for. The building is a U shape that revolves around trees and a bronze sculpture –  it’s hard to imagine how Tim and Kit Kemp ( the hoteliers and designers ) managed to create such an impressive place in what appears from the outside to be a modest size. For anyone seeking a little luxury in the centre of London, then it’s perfect. The restaurant decor is stunning as you can see from the pictures, there’s a drawing room, library – then there’s the retro bowling alley and the theatre downstairs – where the awards took place.

HYH 101 straight to bed C MRHam Yard BedHam Yard BedroomHYH deluxe angle to bed C MRHYH 108 straight to seating area MRHYH 122 straight to sofa landscape MRHYH 117 straight to sofa v2 MR

Upstairs … there are 91 bedrooms and also many apartments for a longer stay. The colours schemes are varying and run through the different bedrooms. From the roof terrace you can enjoy a wonderful view of the city.

I really would like to stay a night or two sometime because as well as all of the above, the staff are absolutely lovely and for me, that’s always the most important thing. It can make or break a visit somewhere.

Ham Yard Afternoon Tea

Did you think I was going to leave out the food ? Not a chance. We ate a selection of savoury and sweet treats, including scones and, macarons and cakes,  which were washed down with champagne for those who drink bubbles and I had a delicious Summer Mint Tea in a very delicate, vintage style cup and saucer.

A big thanks to Amara for a slice of calm and great chat before heading back to all the madness that was going on here. I loved it.

If you want to check out more details on Ham Yard Hotel, you can here.

Do you have a favourite place that you like to meet for tea, or to stay ? I’d love to hear about them. Recommendations are always the best way !

Have a good day.

Lucy x

All images copyright of Photographer Simon Brown 2015.

Inspire Me – with Charlotte Cosby, Creative Director at Farrow & Ball

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Are you a fan of Farrow & Ball ? I am. It’s hard to not fall in love with their paint colours and wallpaper designs. I love the depth of their colours and the feel, texture and quality of the papers.

Charlotte Cosby, Creative Director at Farrow & Ball is behind all of the beautiful shades and patterns, along with her team, based in Dorset. I feel really lucky to have had the opportunity to interview Charlotte and ask her amongst other things, about their new collection …

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A question I am sure you get asked a lot, as you have such a dream job, but how did you become Creative Director at Farrow & Ball ?

It was really just a case of being in the right place and the right time, although a love of design, interiors and colour certainly helped as well!

My first job was at a bank, but as it turns out, I wasn’t that interested in Swiss market intelligence so packed my bags and headed for an ad agency in London. There I worked as a planner but soon realised my heart was in creative and I went to work for a freelance interior designer and gallery owner. Finally, at the tender age of 23, I settled at Farrow & Ball. I was like a kid in a sweet shop full of colours and patterns and have spent the last nine years growing up with the brand.

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What are your earliest memories of colour and patterns ?

I’ve been drawn to colour and pattern for as long as I can remember but my most vivid memory is of the wallpaper in the living room of my childhood home. It had an off-white background with pale blue, peach and aqua irregular dots that created a loose impression of flowers in a garden. Coincidentally, I’m very attracted to patterns with that type of texture and this question has helped me to pinpoint exactly why that might be the case !

Research must be an integral part of your job. Do you travel far and wide ? How do you find these places ?

Yes absolutely, I’m very fortunate to be able to travel to lots of amazing places as part of my job. From research trips to the States to attending trade shows across Europe, I journey anywhere and everywhere for Farrow & Ball! While I’ll often start by looking for inspiration for new wallpaper designs in archives, initial inspiration could have come from anything from Japanese manhole covers to historic houses to something interesting I’ve found in the antiques fabric dealers in New York.

 

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Are you constantly updating your own home with your new hues and wallpapers ? Or do you have staple favourites ?

Yes I paint a lot! Every time we introduce new colours I end up painting another room with a new favourite colour. My home is an eclectic mix of contemporary and modern with a restful colour palette backdrop. I spend a lot of time around colour and am always busy so I opted for a simple, restful palette so I could properly relax.

My bedroom is painted Wimborne White which is a great backdrop for the 8ft high green banana leaf print I have on the wall! The living room is painted in the soothing Dix Blue which is extremely calming and the guest room is a combination of Ammonite and Purbeck Stone.

I also have some bolder colours and patterns, for example I have Lotus 2051 though my hallway. Being a first floor flat, this covers two floors from the bottom of the stairs. For my kitchen, I wanted something a little more dramatic so opted for rich Stiffkey Blue. My bathroom is also painted in Dix Blue and Pavilion Blue but with the addition of a giant pink Aubdon flamingo on the tiles !

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How would you recommend using palettes throughout a home to ensure a happy balance ?

If you want a house to flow from room to room, choose paints that have the same weight of colour within them. Strong colours are great but do think about how they relate to one another. Make sure you are happy with the flow and that it doesn’t shock or jar from one room to another. For example, a Stone Blue hallway leading into a Rectory Red living room will work well because the weight of colour is balanced.

Farrow & Ball have the most wonderful selection of whites. Can a subtle difference in shade make all the difference in a room and why ?

It certainly can ! As with all of our colours, our whites have different undertones. The key to picking the right white is taking the time to understand how these undertones will affect the space you are decorating as well thinking about the look and feel you want to achieve. For example, with its red undertones, Joa’s White is the perfect companion for Book Room Red or Rectory Red and will create a warm and homely environment. To create a cooler more urban style, neutrals like Blackened or Dimpse which have soft blue tones, illustrate how the undertone of a colour can not only change the overall feel of the room but also the style.

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I immediately spot your colours and patterns in people’s homes. What do you think it is about Farrow & Ball paint and wallpapers that make them so distinctive ?

Our paints are made using the highest quality pigments and resins and no low quality ‘ fillers ‘, which means they have a visibly greater depth and purity. The key ingredients of Chalk, China Clay and high quality Titanium Dioxide all combine to give our paints their unique absorbing finish. We also test every batch of paint by hand for colour accuracy, so they meet our obsessively high requirements.

Farrow & Ball wallpapers are just as distinctive. Our papers are handcrafted according to traditional production methods and created using our paints meaning it’s easy to combine paint and paper to create a cohesive look within a room.  You could choose to pick out the ground or pattern colour on woodwork or other walls, or choose fabric and furnishings inspired by the paper. The paint also gives the paper a uniquely textured appearance which makes them really tactile – you can’t help but want to touch them !

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Can you tell me about the new Farrow & Ball wallpapers – Hornbeam, Feather Grass and Blostma. What is the inspiration behind them ?

Living and working in Dorset, I am constantly inspired by the beauty of nature and the changing seasons.  I wanted to create a collection that celebrates the special influence that the British countryside has on you, and translate this into the home.

These papers are inspired by a desire to embrace and appreciate the beauty of nature around us. They are also part of a wider design trend for trees, plants and leaves, as people take a moment and connect with the nature around them. Feather Grass, for example, has a wonderful large scale border design that makes you feel like you a lying in a country meadow !

People are increasing viewing their homes as places of sanctuary and this collection really encapsulates the calm, restful feeling that we all strive to achieve.

Pink Ground

Finally, what are your colour predictions for 2016 ? 

The colours we’ll be looking to decorate our homes going into 2016 will promote a sense of tranquillity and wellbeing.  Sophisticated pastels shades that can be used in isolation or combined with classic greys will continue to be popular throughout the year. The smoky, silvery Light Blue, a colour that is neither blue nor grey but mysteriously somewhere in between and works brilliantly when combined with some of our cooler neutrals such as Dimpse, Blackened and Lamp Room Gray.

Warm Pink Ground reflects the desire to turn away from the more sweet and sugary pinks and towards a more soft edged colour that while remaining pretty, exudes a sense of class. Combined with the darker tones of Charleston Gray and London Stone, Pink Ground is the ultimate sophisticated chic pink for the year ahead.

A huge thanks to Charlotte for taking time out of her busy schedule to answer my questions about her inspirations and very cool job at Farrow & Ball. It was such a pleasure to meet her recently at the Amara Interior Blog Awards when she presented me with my award.

Some really insightful information there about colour inspiration. Has to got you in the mood for painting and decorating ? What do you think of the new wallpaper collections ? Leave me a comment or tweet me @lucylovesyablog … as ever, I would LOVE to hear from you …

Lucy x

All images copyright of Farrow & Ball 2015.