Posts Categorised: Interiors

Make Roman Blinds – a Tutorial

As promised recently, having shown you my new sewing room roman blinds – here is a tutorial on how to make one for yourself. I’ve had some emails and tweets asking where my fabric is from – Kingdom Interiors and it’s Perroquet by Nina Campbell.

Before we get started, you will need:

Main fabric ( we will work out how much shortly.. )

Interlining ( Optional )

Blind lining fabric

Thread and sewing needle, scissors, pins, fabric chalk, tape measure, scissors, sewing machine, staple gun

Wooden baton cut to size inside or outside recess

Dowel rod and base bar – both of which you will need to cut to size.

Eye rings, blind cord, blind acorn, screw eyes and 1 cleat with screws.

All of these things should be obtainable from your local fabric shop, if not, try eBay.

Measuring up

Main fabric

You will either want the blind to sit inside or outside the recess. As you can see the one I made sits outside. You can do either as I have instructions here for both. Either way this tutorial is based on you using a 20 mm deep wooden baton. There are other methods but this is how I like to make them. If you are going outside the recess, the width of the window sill is your guide on how wide to make the blind and cut the baton.

Whether making for inside or outside the recess – measure vertically and horizontally , the top of the blinds will be stapled to the very top of the baton so remember to add allowances in the fabric length for this –  plus 5cm for a return at the top and 12 cm hem for the bottom. Each side of the blind will need 5cm return = 10cm total.

Work out all of these measurements below before buying your fabric to ensure you have enough – make sure too that your fabric width is wide enough for your window. Unless you have a plain fabric or a non obvious pattern you won’t be able to use the fabric sideways.

Horizontal: Desired width of finished blind + 2 x 5 cm ( 10 cm ) = Total width to cut.

Vertical:  length from very top of baton down to window ledge or desired finished drop + 17cm ( return and hem ) = Total length to cut.

NB. Before you cut, if the fabric has an obvious pattern – make sure you have decided on which parts of this you want to use and that you have it the right way up. In other words, frame in your mind the finished blind and how you want the it to look. I made sure on mine that the birds were as central as possible.

Interlining ( optional )

Same measurements as main fabric. I like to use this as it makes the blind more sturdy and it blocks out some light. You could use black out lining instead if you are making a bedroom blind – this will make your room much darker when they are down.

Lining fabric

Horizontal: Finished width + 4.5 cm either side ( 9cm ).

Vertical: Finished drop + 5cm return for top edge.

You will also be adding rod pockets to the lining – so will need to also add on 2.5 cm per pocket ( dependent on size – the larger the blind the more rod pockets will be required )

Putting your baton up

I recommend cutting to size and stapling the rough side of your velcro on to the top before doing this. You can always do it afterwards but if you have little space between baton and ceiling it will be trickier once it’s up.

Making the blind

Cut out your fabrics. Double check you have the right measurements ( above ) and go for it. Do the same with your lining fabric.

Starting with your main fabric – lay out flat with wrong side facing up. Place the interlining on top of the main fabric so that all corners match up and press both sides towards you by 5 cm. The interlining should be sitting inside the main fabric. Snip the corners ( see pic below ) off the interlining at the bottom of the blind to avoid too much bulk later when you mitre them ( you will see what I mean .. ). Then fold the lining fabric in by 5cm each side too and press.

Now, you need to work out where the rod pockets are to be sewn in on the lining fabric.

To give you an example – my blind has 3 rods and so is divided into 7 sections ( the number of sections is always the number of rod pockets multiplied by 2 then add 1 ) from the base of the screw eyes to the bottom of the finished blind is 121.5 cm so divide this by 7 and each section measures 17.4 cm – therefore the spacing between each rod pocket is 2 x 17.4 cm which = 34.8 cm.

Making sure the wrong side ( the side you have pressed the seams into ) of the lining is facing up Stick a pin where each rod pocket is going to be and then mark 125mm either side of each pin. One by one, fold and press each pocket so that the marks are facing each other ( each ” loop ” should total 2.5 cm ), press them and then machine sew all along the widths of the blind. You now have your rod pockets.

As above, lay out you main fabric ( if you have added interlining this should still be sitting inside ) with right side facing up. Lay the lining on top, wrong side up – checking that the top and bottoms of the main and lining fabric are adjacent and that the lining is placed centrally, you’ll find that the lining is just short in size of the main fabric – about 2.5 cm each side. Ease out any wrinkles, then mitre ( fold corners ) the bottoms of the main fabric inwards ( this is why you cut the the corners off the interlining ) so that they are the same width as the lining and pin to the main fabric. Machine sew a 1 cm line along the width off all of these layers to hold them together.

Turn the main fabric and lining out the other way so that the right side of of each is on the outsides. The interlining is now in the inside, still folded inside the main fabric. Pull the top of the lining up so that it matches the top of the main fabric and ease out any creases in all layers and then pin all along the top and sides. The recess bottom of the blind should look like this:

Give the blind a pressing all over. Double check for any creases because you are next going to machine sew a 1 cm line all along the top width of layers. Once you’ve done this, either machine or hand sew the soft side of the velcro all along the top of the wrong side of the blind ( above ).

Place the base bar inside the bottom of the blind. They generally come in metre lengths so you may need to cut to size.Now, from the very bottom of each side, herringbone stitch the reverse of the main blind to the lining. Don’t yet stitch up the rod pocket as you haven’t inserted them yet :)

Hand sew eye rings 5 cm in on each rod pocket and then space others in between, depending on how many cords you are using vertically, to pull the blinds up ( I used 3 on my blind ) and then stab stitch just under each of the rod pockets. I tend to do two stitches as find it holds all layers together better, especially if you have interlining.

Insert your cut to size dowel rods and then sew up the ends of the rod pockets. 

Screw the screw eyes into the base of the baton. They need to be directly above the threads and one above the cleat – time to decide here if you want this to be on the left or right of the window. Screw the cleat in half way down the window ready.

On each bottom eye ring attach a cord by tying a knot and then thread up through each eye ring above then to the left or right, dependent on which side the cleat will be.

Putting the blind up

Velcro the blind together at the top. Now cut and thread the blind cords up through the relevant screw eyes above and then if going left thread all cords through each screw eye including the one above the cleat or vice versa if you are going right. Gently pull all cords down at the side so that the they are all taught at the back and threaded without any loose cords and then braid all cords together down the side ( this is for safety too ). Cut the braid where the cleat is and attach a weight on the end by threading the plait through and then knotting it underneath.

When you pull the braided cord the blind should pull up evenly ! It might take a few days to sit “right” so I recommend leaving it up for a few days for the folds to settle.

Pinch punch first of the month.. Our Matroyshka inspired creations..


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happy April to you. It’s time to show off the really cool things that some of my lovely, talented readers have made this month, inspired by these ‘ere vintage Matroyshka Dolls… remember ? :)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sabrina from www.wolvesinlondon.com decided to emblaze a cute Russian Doll stock photo onto a babygrow using iron on transfer paper  – and has tips on her blog if you’d like to know how to do it. It’s really effective. I also recommend the blog because she has some other good tips on there if you’re crafty – it’s fun to read too :)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jo Kinnish of Hello Material made this handy little travel bag in a really cool print. She has an Etsy store but not only that – 2 small kiddies.. one being a newborn, so you’ve got to respect a lady for being together enough to make and sell such luscious products too.



 

 

 

 

 

 

How sweet is this little Matroyshka cushion lady ? She’s also Impeccably dressed ! Sharon, owner of etsy store modflowers made her using vintage 60s and 70s fabric. She’s got lots of other cushions in her shop and a beautiful, colourful, blog that truth be told, I’m slightly addicted to….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Matroyshka in the form of a hot water bottle ! Sandie from Powder Grey made this with her 7 year old son, inspired by the cowboys in his bedroom. They left the face blank so that he can draw different faces and slot them in. Really imaginative and will keep him busy I’m sure. Love that they have stayed true to Sandie’s blog and her store ( soon to be online ) colour schemes.

 

 

 



 

 

 

I was also sent a couple of Russian Doll inspired pieces made recently that the makers thought we might like to see. The quilt made by Vitoria when she was doing 52 weeks: a year of creations  –  and a keepsake babygrow ( wish I had thought to do something like that when my daughters were born ) by Emily at sewnaway-gifts. Thanks to you both, very much.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I made an A line dress for my youngest daughter from a Kwik Sew Pattern.  All it required was a cheeky little bit of red ric rac trim at the base as the pattern does the talking. Hard to show off the shape though – we tried arms up … out to the side … but settled with on the hips. She’s quite the model y’know ;) Now all we need is some sun please ? …. Whoever it is organising this bizarre weather …

There you are. Loads of interesting takes on one Matroyshka image – thanks again to John for sharing the dolls in the first place and a MASSIVE cheer for all you clever partakers. You’re bloomin’ brilliant, the lotta ya !

Has it inspired you to make something ?

I am looking to pass the baton on of this monthly Inspiration challenge due to setting up my new business – and getting going on my first book … The posts draw lots of interest – maybe it’s something you fancy doing ? if anyone else wants to have a go – let me know – lucy@lucylovesya.com – I will still take part and make something inspired ! :)

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Giveaway! 5 pairs of tickets for The Ideal Home Show – THIS GIVEAWAY HAS CLOSED

DSC7951Here at Chez LucyLovesYa we are really looking forward to this years Ideal Home Show in Earls Court, London. Stacked with Interiors, Homeware and Garden inspiration – there’s also a shopping area with accessories, gifts, toys and new technology… and then chill out time in the Champagne Beauty Bar. Only a few weeks to wait now…

I have 5 pairs of tickets up for grabs for 5 winners – courtesy of the lovely people at the Ideal Home Show and you only have to do a two things to be entered for this giveaway.

Here’s a bit more about the Show and details and what you have to do…. FINAL-Celebs

WIN TICKETS TO THE IDEAL HOME SHOW 201

From 15th March – 1st April 2013, the iconic British Home Show will return to Earls Court, London for its 105th Year and we have 5 pairs of tickets for our lucky listeners to win!

With seven dedicated show areas catering to every need and taste, and boasting over 600 exhibitors, the Ideal Home Show is the only place to visit when making your home ideal. From ideal Interiors, to ideal Home Improvements, with ideal Gardens, and ideal Technology, plus ideal Food & Housewaresideal Shopping and ideal Woman, the enhanced sections give you more choice and bigger brands, all under one roof.

It’s a great day out for the whole family – shop, see new product launches, explore full scale show homes and gardens, visit the revolutionary Technology Hub, powered by Virgin Media, and enjoy a glass of bubbles in the Ideal Gardens champagne bar, sponsored by Hydropool. You can even celeb spot and enjoy a spot of lunch in the Celebrity Chef restaurant.

Not forgetting the fantastic Celebrity Ambassadors and Experts that will be on hand at the show, both on the Super Theatre stage, and B&Q’s own DIY theatre, to share their knowledge and skills through 1000s of demonstrations and workshops. Don’t forget to stop by the Drinks Theatre, sponsored by Regina, for tips and tipples too!

Plus this year you can see a very special interiors makeover on a very famous TV home and visit the ITV ‘Love your Garden’ show garden, sponsored by Oceans. IMG_5910

GIVEAWAY DETAILS

For your chance to WIN 2 tickets to this year’s show:

1. Simply answer the question below by leaving a comment under this post.

In 2013, how many years will the Ideal Home Show have been in London?

2. Tweet or facebook the following quote:

I’ve entered the @lucylovesyablog giveaway to win a pair of tickets for the @ideal_home_show. 5 pairs up for grabs ! www.lucylovesya.com

That’s all ! :) Make sure you do both to validate your entry.

Terms and conditions

1. This offer is only open to UK residents – one entry per IP address.

2. Giveaway will end at 7pm on Wednesday 6th March 2013. Winners will be picked at random.

3. Postage supplied.

2. Complimentary tickets are valid for one day only, on any one day of the show between the 15th March – 1st April 2013 at London’s Earls Court

3. Tickets are non transferable. One pair of tickets per winner only.

4. Complimentary tickets obtained through this offer may not be duplicated.

5. All tickets will be scanned on entry to the show.

6. I will notify all 5 winners as soon as the giveaway ends by email supplied on entry. If I do not hear back from you within 24 hours  – a new winner will be picked.

7. Travel and accommodation will be your responsibility.

8. No purchase necessary.

For those not lucky enough to win, you can still get a great deal booking in advance. Visit www.idealhomeshow.co.uk / 0844 858 6763

Find out the latest news for the 2013 show @ideal_home_show

Please share the love by clicking on the links below xx 

Nothing you can see that isn’t shown…. :)

I couldn’t let Valentine’s pass by without a cheeky little “Amour” post.

So, here’s an eclectic, loved up array of goodies from some of my fave online stores….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lady Dragon heels – Every Season Vivienne Westwood / Melissa come up with perfect colour combinations. These dove blue ones are from Coggles.

I Love You Necklace – Tatty Devine aren’t mincing their words here – the feeling’s mutual !

Kinky Knickers by Mary Portas -These are from Liberty London. Doing your bit for supporting British design too… :)

Heart ring – by Tarina Tarantino. Three rows of Swarovski crystals. Pink. What’s not to like ?


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Love Tattoo Bag – Dolly Dagger have a really nice selection of heart themed treats. This is by Kate Garey and can be found on the Dolly Dagger site. The Fascinator below is also made exclusively for them.

Heart earrings – I’m quite a fan of MeandZena – they’re always coming up with quirky new pieces – these above are a collaboration with Saatchi Gallery.

BugJewelled Heart Scarf – by Elizabeth Kate. Silk Crepe De Chine fabric. The colours are beautiful.




 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Irregular Choice heels – Just one word for these Thumper heels – KITSCH ! Okay.. maybe two – CUTE !

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For the crafty…

Colourful Heart pins – I have some of these, they’re from Nettle Green.

Bias Binding – from SeamStar. There is a great range of trims and all sorts on their site.

Floral Hearts fabric – from Fancy Moon I have to get some of this to make a skirt. It’s perfect !

Blue and Pink Heart fabric – from Fabric Rehab. So many possibilities with this – what would you make with it ?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Love Heart Stamp – this one is from Liberty London. Love it ! :)

Heart Mug – these are from Clothkits. Have you also seen all of their sewing kits ? Great site.

Heart Plate –  I’m alway banging on about my love of Pip Studio. This pretty gift boxed plate is from What a Lovely Shop.

Cushion – Remember my interview with Jennie Maizels a little while back ? Here’s one of her fabric prints cushions. Gingham. tick. Hearts. tick. Love. tick – lovely !

Oven gloves – Love Cake ? Me too ! Great gift idea from HunkyDory Home.

Hot Stuff trivet – by Square Pear Designs at Not on The Highstreet.

Please share the love by clicking on the links below xx

This is not a sponsored post. All images copyright.

Happy Christmas and thanks :)


My last post this side of Chrimbo !

Time to wind down and hang up my stocking…. are you all set ? Is anyone ever ?

In the meantime, I want to say a big thanks to my sponsors, all the wonderful people and companies that I have collaborated with and interviewed this year including:

Rocket Dog, Kitty Finegan, Janome, Fabric Rehab, Horrockses Fashions, Ditto Fabrics, Fabric Yard, Curtains Made Simple, ZPM Trolley Dolly, Seamstar, MiaFleur, Lekue, Irregular Choice, Beauvamp, Horace Panter, Zakee Shariff, This is Rude, Tatty Devine, Chie Mihara, welovekaoru, Jennie Maizels, Steve Neaves, Wilbur and Gussie, Retrosun, Romero Bryan, Paris ( Coldplays artist in residence ), Anna Lou of London, KissmeZombie, Melody Miller, Dolly Dagger, Serendipity Studio, Loaf, 2d Scrumptious, Bombus and Vowed and Amazed.

It’s been a busy one and I have enjoyed every minute of it ! The prizes have been top notch and very generous. The inspirational advice given by such amazing designers has been invaluable. I’ve got lots more lined up for early next year – and have some exciting news too :)

I hope you have enjoyed my own designs and projects this year ?

If you think you think we are a match made in heaven and are interested in sponsoring LucyLovesYa, running a product giveaway or requesting a product review in 2013 do get in touch. Would love to hear from you.

Wishing you a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS…. and will update soon.

Please share the love by clicking on the links below xx

Image courtesy and copyright of Mike Stimpson 2012

INSPIRE ME – with Horace Panter

Today, ‘Inspire Me’ is with Artist Horace Panter – whom you may well also know as Sir Horace Gentleman, bass player with Iconic Ska band The Specials.

Horace already had a Fine Art degree under his belt when he joined The band in 1977 and so it was just a matter of music, tours and an interesting teaching role, before he would produce his own icon inspired artwork. The first public exhibition of many took place in November 2011 with great response and there are plenty more to come.

News of a 2013 tour with The Specials is out, so all in all, next year is sounding good too.

I could’ve asked many questions to someone with such an interesting and varied life to date – but I managed to narrow them down and hope you enjoy …

You studied art before even joining the Specials – you had your first exhibition at the Strand in London only last year – what has the reaction to your work been so far ?

I think it has surprised people. There have been a lot of positive responses and Iʼve been taken a lot more seriously than I was expecting, you know, the ʻsemi – retired rock star with too much time on his handsʼ reaction, but itʼs been more like ʻwow, this guy can actually paint !ʼ

Do you think it’s important to study your craft at college or university, be it fine art or whatever you choose in life ?
If youʼre going to be a doctor or an architect, then yes ! I suppose it depends on what sort of artist/musician you would like to be. Francis Bacon, for example, never went to art school. It has helped me, I know that, by giving me a credibility I would not otherwise have had. Also, a grounding in Modern Art History has helped but you donʼt need to go to university to study that.

Has working as a musician developed you as an artist – and vice versa ?

Only in as much as it has enabled me to travel and visit art galleries and find inspiration from around the world. No, thatʼs not all, if I wasnʼt a professional musician with lots of ʻdown timeʼ I wouldnʼt have the excess of free time to paint. When Iʼm rehearsing in the studio or doing a gig, I have to fit into a team and concentrate on what works best for the group; when Iʼm painting, Iʼm solo, making all the decisions.

When you are painting do you like to surround yourself with solitude or paintings and music ?

Preparing boards and preliminary stuff I can listen to music, but I canʼt multitask very well; I could never do my homework in front of the TV so, when Iʼm painting, I like solitude.

Did you design The Specials logo ?

Not entirely. Jerry did the two-tone man and I did the 2 -Tone Records bit.

You were Head of Art at a school for autistic children for ten years – how did this come about and did any of the students work inspire you ?

I went into the special needs school as support for one specific pupil. As he settled back into the school, I was ʻabsorbedʼ into the staff and once it was discovered that I had an art degree  (the art teacher was really a PE teacher who took the job because no-one else wanted it … yes, school is like that! ), I was offered the job so a bit ʻunder the radarʼ really. It was a fantastic experience, especially dealing with children on the autistic spectrum. It made me change the way I viewed art – to make it more immediate.

Who and what are your biggest influences ? Is this ever evolving ?

Musically, most stuff on Tamla/Motown and Stax/Atlantic, Chicago Blues and Dub Reggae. Artwise, the list is longer – Henri Rousseau, (Sir) Peter Blake, Wayne Thiebaud, Mark Rothko, Kenneth Noland, Robyn Denny, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Andy Warhol, Roy Lichenstein, James Rosenquist – mainly American 1960s artists, but they, the 60sʼ, were my formative years. Lately, I think Iʼm like the Borg out of Star Trek inasmuch as I accumulate everything and it becomes a source for work. I like the phrase ʻappropriation and subversionʼ!!

As a bass player and teacher you are in a supporting role – how does it feel to be the front man ?

The art career is my ʻsolo albumʼ. It is a different kind of creativity.

Are there certain galleries that you look forward to visiting when you’re on tour ?

Oh yes ! There is a probability we will be in New York towards the end of summer. I have never been to the new MOMART. The year before last, we were in Europe and the Ludwig Museum in Cologne was fantastic, as was The Hamburger Bahnhof in Berlin.

Is you work influenced by pop art ?  What do you love about it ?
To my way of thinking, Pop Art was to Art History what Punk Rock was to Rock and Roll. You had Abstract Expressionism, which was very elitist and metaphysical ( I love Rothko by the way ) and then along comes a guy with a soup can ! My work is heavily influences by traditional iconography and the word ʻmundaneʼ is used a lot in iconography as it is in Pop Art. ʻElevating the Mundaneʼ is one of the tropes of Pop Art and a lot of my work looks like Pop Art. Peter Blakeʼs technique and his use of colour are also big influences.

I love your cassette paintings, they really remind me of my treasured mix tapes  – if you were making up your ultimate mix tape of 30 minutes / 10 songs.. what would they be and why ?

1. Road Runner, Junior Walker and the All Stars

2. All Down the Line, Rolling Stones ( off Exile on Main Street ) !

3. Too Much Alcohol, J.B. Hutto and the Hawks

4. A Little Bit of Love, Free

5. Outta Space, Billy Preston

6. Dub Tree, Joe Gibbs ( from African Dub Chapter 3 )

7. Trampolene, The Spencer Davies Group ( worldʼs greatest B-Side )

8. PCH, ZZ Top ( great driving music )

9. China Girl, David Bowie ( with Stevie Ray Vaughan channelling Albert King )

10. Pour Me One More Drink, Robert Ward ( the Blues – for real )

What inspired you to write your book  – Ska’d for life ?

I had these two diaries from our US and Japanese tours and my parents had collected 11 scrap books full of Specials and Two-Tone related press. I was always the one that people were being directed to: ʻAsk Horace, he remembers stuff like thatʼ. There had been a couple of ʻfan-relatedʼ attempts at writing about the band but I thought they were far from accurate and no-one in the band had done it … so I did. Also, I twisted my ankle during the summer holidays and had fuck all else to do !!

Could you offer some words of advice for any aspiring artists and musicians reading this on how to fulfill their dreams ?

Self belief and persistence. Oh, and a good manager. Thatʼs A GOOD MANAGER!!

Do you have any exhibitions coming up ? .. and will The Specials be touring next year ? I will look forward to both..

By the time you publish this, The Specials May 2013 UK Tour Dates will have been announced. In 2012 I had 14 exhibitions – great fun but too much! In 2013 I am discussing exhibition dates in Liverpool and Glasgow in the early months and have one pencilled in for Number 9 Gallery in Birmingham for the summer. As soon as I have confirmation of any exhibitions the dates are published on Twitter and Facebook and also in the ʻHoracePanterArtʼ quarterly newsletter … all the logistics are handled by Clare, the woman I love !

A massive thanks to Horace ( and Clare ! ) …it is an honour to interview someone whom I have grown up listening to and loving their music, and now am very inspired by Horace’s artwork too.

You can see more of Horace’s work on his website – www.horacepanterart.com Follow him on Twitter @horacepanterart and you can become a fan facebook for info on upcoming exhibitions and shows.

All images copyright Horace Panter 2012.

Leave me a comment here to say hi or tweet me – @lucylovesyablog I’d love to hear from you :)

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Giveaway ! WIN this MiaFleur silk Floriography cushion worth £65 – CLOSED

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A new day and a super giveaway !

I’m rather taken with new online homes and interiors Boutique MiaFleur who are very generously offering up this 16″ x 16″ Floriography 100% silk cushion worth £65 as the prize. A very opulent treat for yourself – or a really thoughtful gift for someone lucky in your life, eh ?

The centre panel is machine embroidered with the words “Happiness is to hold flowers with both hands” … hence the name “Floriography” meaning the language of flowers ( I didn’t know that, did you ? ). MiaFleur love that flowers have their own language and can represent so many different things. The cushion has a beautiful raspberry red border with a cream centre panel. The filling is feathers, and it has a button back fastening.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

www.miafleur.com launched recently to fill a gap in the market for truly indivdual homewares with a strong emphasis for items made in Britain. You can expect a quirky mix of handmade textiles, decorative mirrors and pictures, home accessories and gifts, reclaimed and vintage furniture and some incredibly weird and wonderful handmade ceramics.

Scouring the countries craft and design shows, hand selecting the very best in quirky interiors from British designer makers – MiaFleur have a penchant for eclectic styling and a desire to stand out from the crowd.

By the way.. this Tuesday 11th – MiaFleur have a pre – Christmas sale starting with some items marked down by up to 25 % ensuring everyone gets some great gifts at brilliant prices…

To get yourself entered for this giveaway there are just a few things to do.. and they are:

1. Make sure you are following @lucylovesyablog and @MiaFleur_home on Twitter

2. Sign up to the MiaFleur newsletter for special offers, latest products and a free gift with your next order. To do this – click here 

3. Tweet or facebook this quote:

I’ve entered the @lucylovesyablog giveaway to win a gorgeous @MiaFleur_home silk cushion worth £65 check it out ! www.lucylovesya.com 

4. Leave me a comment under this post to let me know you have done the above – and to validate your entry.

You’re done, dusted.. and entered !

T’s and C’s

The winner will be picked at random on Friday 14th December at 6pm – and notified by email.

This giveaway is open to UK residents only – more overseas giveaways coming soon !

Prize not redeemable for cash and no alternative prize offered.

P and P supplied by MiaFleur

One entry per person

Thanks for your entry… and good luck !

Please share the love by clicking on the links below xx

Having a Cool Yule…. ?

Hope you’ve had a good week ?

I’ve been putting together my sewing room – it’s all a bit exciting.. finding inspiring images to put up, finally sorting out my fabric stash and putting it in my new cupboard ! No more cutting out on the kitchen table.. Yey ! I’m making some roman blinds for the room in a Nina Campbell fabric. Can’t wait to show you, quite frankly !

In other news….

How’s your Christmas shopping going ? .. and have you bought your cards yet ? :)…

Being as the 25th is well and truly on it’s way, I thought I’d share with you a few of my favourite designs this year…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is just one from a Kitty Finegan multipack – “The Rockettes”.. paying tribute to the “weird and wonderful towns of Brighton and Hove” where Kitty lives.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mrs L Cards do a really nice colourful range of handmade cards – this Mistletoe and Holly one can be adapted for husband / wife / girlfriend / boyfriend.. and there are lots of other ones on the website including more stick people with button heads ! Cute.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I interviewed Amelia this year from the lovely company – Bombus. Handmade and bespoke map art, including a great range of cards ! The Christmas penguin is good enough to keep and frame really isn’t it ?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Horace Panter has designed this cassette card for the Teenage Cancer trust. I have a feeling that they may be sold out now ( hardly a surprise ) but they also have packs by other designers available. Keep your eyes peeled next week for my interview with Horace about his art work and band – The Specials.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I like the simplicity of Marmaduke Marmalade cards – there’s a good selection on their website.

What do you look for when you’re choosing your cards ? Do you like to buy from the same company or organisation each year ?

Please share the love by clicking on the links below and leave me comment xx

INSPIRE ME – with Zakee Shariff

Zakee-portrait-by-AL-Newman-copyThere’s nothing like artwork that makes you feel happy.

Having luckily discovered the artist and designer Zakee Shariff a little while ago during her collaboration with fashion website ASOS – I fell in love with her work. Vibrant art, cool designs – and always with a positive message.

With her cult following – Zakee’s clothing collections have sold globally and she has worked with many fashion brands including People Tree and Urban Outfitters.

She has had a versatile career so far having also worked as a stylist, in publishing, as an art director and interior design – amongst other avenues.

I am ever so slightly in awe and hope you enjoy Inspire Me today with Zakee Shariff !…. a-to-zHighRes

You started out with your own clothing label as well as doing your art work – How did you get into fashion design ?

I had never thought of starting a clothing label and a dear friend who is one of the owners of a mens and women’s clothing label called YMC You Must Create, convinced me to start my own label and very kindly introduced me to various contacts to enable me to make it happen. It all just kinda unfolded.

I always knew I wanted to work both as an artist and a designer. My training was in printed textiles but it was very much rooted in painting and drawing and abstracting from that into design.  So it was a great way to explore that process, and learn about the business side too. Youth_0510

You’ve worked with textiles, fine art, illustration, styling, interior and product design.. and you’ve also been an art director – has this worked out as a natural progression ?

Definitely. One led to another and another and back again, like a creative dance.

 

Is there one particular field of design that you enjoy the most ?

I enjoy all the different design projects I have been blessed with doingI love designing textiles. Peace-heart-cushion-small

 

There are very positive messages within your designs – is this something that is important to you ?

Yes it is, I hope my work can give people joy and maybe help them to think more about the world from a different perspective.

 

Your collaboration with People Tree is going really well – how did this originally come about ?

 A lovely friend if mine Vickie Snow from Snow PR introduced me, as she thought we were a match, and we all just clicked. They are lovely to work with and very inspiring in the the way they are able to create everything they do ethically correct.

Safia the owner tends to sit with me and we go through old prints of mine and we brainstorm and I then recreate the prints and make some new ones and then her team and i work together to get them right. I don’t get involved in the garment shapes and styling….its purely a focused and joyous experience of drawing, making patterns and colouring them. And  I create the prints and we work on colours together.

 

Having worked with ASOS, Urban Outfitters, Japanese store MAYZ, Roxy Heart.. to name just a few – what do you enjoy the most about collaborations ?

I have such a love of collaborating. I thrive when I work with another creative or a team of people and make a vision come alive. That is very fulfilling and inspiring to me.

 

Describe a perfect working day for you ?

Drawing, painting or screen printing listening to some great music in my studio – loud ! main_8bd11_MOVEMENTANDCHANGEOFTHEj

 

What kind of music do you listen to ?

I love listening to all different types of music when I work,  it depends on the mood I’m in.
I’d say when I’m printing however,  I like to listen to loud Hip Hop, Soul, R n B, Dancehall and reggae.. a bit of a soul girl then, eh ?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                                        Can you offer some inspirational advice on how to get into fashion design and textiles ? 
Be honest to your creative vision, ask questions, ask for support there are amazing beings out there that do want to help. Work hard, research and give your self permission to have fun and make mistakes. Do choose to do work experience, it’s the best way to learn. Knock on doors, as you find your path and follow your instinct. Have a clear vision of what you would like to achieve, even if its a really basic feeling and the rest is unsure, get in touch with the ultimate desire. That sets you on your way for sure. main_758bc_PEACE2j

What are you working on at the moment and when will we get to see it ? :)

daydream-freedom-bigger-2

I’ve just created a few prints for a great new kids collection called Ruff and Huddle. www.ruffandhuddle.co.uk The collaboration is for AW13. I love making prints for kids.

I’m creating a new print for my lovely friend Nick who has a beautiful womenswear brand. Studio Nicholson. www.studionicholson.com. It’s a very chic minimal collection.

I’m working on two personal projects. One is product based and the other is a group of new fine art screen prints.

The rest is pending research that I am doing.
Thanks Zakee :) Full of talent – and what a lovely person ! If you’d like to see more of her work online – go to www.zakeeshariff.com, become a fan on Facebook for updates and/or follow her on Twitter !

Please do leave me a lovely comment and share the love by clicking on the links below xx

INSPIRE ME – with welovekaoru

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m a firm believer that a cup of tea tastes so much nicer in a cup and saucer – and perfect if it’s vintage inspired, beautiful, fine bone china. Like all of these pretty welovekaoru pieces, right before your eyes :)

Kaoru Parry established welovekaoru after graduating from Central St Martins College in London. She owns Shoreditch collective boutique  Luna and Curious “offering a cornucopia of finely rendered objects and clothing” as well as stocking her own full collection of tableware.

The ethos of welovekaoru is to preserve the traditional values of real craftsmanship and work closely with small independent family run potteries to produce their pieces exclusively in the United Kingdom.

I had a little chat with Kaoru recently….

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                                   What did you study at Central St Martins and would you recommend college if you want to become a designer ?

I studied BA Ceramic Design at Central St Martins. The course has great contacts with the industry and puts a lot of energy into preparing you for the real world. It also houses a great team of technicians and facilities to assist in the practical aspects of design and manufacture. Now that you have to pay so much for further education, I would make sure that the course is definitely right for you. Even look to other European countries as their fees are often lower.

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Where do you get your inspiration from for your designs ?

Anything old inspire my designs. I like the way beautifully crafted objects were often made to an industrial scale yet each one by hand and by highly skilled artisans.

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                                   I first spotted your teacups in Liberty London – did it take long before you were asked to stock in lots of prestigious stores ?

I was discovered by Liberty at my first trade show in 2009. They have been stocking my designs since.

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                                     Would you say your work is influenced by Japan ….. having been born there ? 

Sometimes. The Take range ( green bamboo design ) was a direct influence from a beautiful antique kimono. But it’s probably more our company philosophy that’s been influenced most by Japan. Our values of excellent craftsmanship and quality.

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                                      Can you talk me through your process from your initial ideas to production ?

Lots of research and development followed by sketches and maquettes. I have great relationships with the small family run potteries in Stoke where we develop new products together. It may take years to finally get a new product into the market.

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                                       Do you have a signature design ?

Not really but my ABC tea cups and mugs continue to be one of my best sellers.

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                                     Can you offer some advice for anyone reading this wanting to start a new brand ?

Work hard, do your research, understand business especially pricing, production and marketing.

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                                            What are your welovekaoru’s plans for 2013 and beyond ?

I’m really excited about 2013 as I’m going to launch a new range of products that are not strictly tableware. I’m also looking forward to interesting collaborations and projects.

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                                         Thanks Kaoru ! Really elegant pieces, don’t you think ?..You can follow Kaoru’s store Luna and Curious on Twitter – @lunaandcurious or become a fan on Facebook.

Don’t forget to enter my giveaway.. win a Janome Mega Tote Bag – it’s perfect for all of your sewing accessories !

Please share the love by clicking on the links below xx