Posts Categorised: DIY/Projects

How to Make a Summery Seaside Teepee

Tutorial Seaside DIY tent stripes happy fabric kidsSo we are in the full swing of Summer Holiday here which can mean only one thing. Time to make a Teepee for the beach. I have meant to do this for years but finally we have achieved it.

I’ve written up a little tutorial for you in case you fancy trying one out for yourself. It’s teesy peesy …. sorry, I know …

You can use my measurements or adjust to work for you and your fabric, hopefully my instructions will make it easy to do either.

Teepee tutorial seaside tent diy

What you will need:

4 metres of fabric – 150cm width ( Less if you are not wanting to pattern match )

5 sticks diameter 2.5cm at least. I used broom handles from a local DIY store measuring 155 cm in length.

3 metres of string or thin rope.

2 metres of large pom pom fringe ( optional )

sewing machine, scissors, tape measure, pins and an iron.

teepee southwold hut striped pom pom kids fun

Instructions:

Assemble the 5 sticks so that you have 2 at the front, 2 at the side and one pointing backwards. the 5th one adds extra space in the teepee but you could live without if necessary and it would mean using slightly less fabric. Bind the sticks together with string / rope like your life depends on it. Or just do it tightly .. :)

Before I start on fabric – please make sure you add 1cm for each seam. So add it to every measurement I have given here if using my pattern. I’ve added the odd reminder but do it every time. I haven’t added it to my instructions in case you are using a variation on size.

So here we go …

Measure at the base between each stick. The distance between the two front sticks and the 2 behind them should be equal on both sides – for this teepee it is 92 cm. Then measure round for the back panel from one side stick to the other including the 5th back stick which will be sticking out a bit hence being a larger panel of fabric needed – for this you will need 146 cm.

The front panel will be split in to 2 pieces for your ‘ door ‘ so measure between the front 2 sticks. So for this teepee -140 cm that will be cut down the middle and not forgetting seams on either sides of both panels.

Now measure up to where you would like the top of the teepee to start, making sure you allow room for sticks to meet and cross at the top. In this instance the length needs to be 127 cm plus your seam allowance each end. Work out desired top lengths for each panel. For this it is 14 cm for all 3 panels and seam allowances.

Next – draw out your panels on your fabric. Incidentally my fabric here is from The Stripes Company ( perfect for the beach and home ! ) I found it quite helpful with the perfect stripes as it helped indicate exact measurement. The two side panels are the same so you can cut one out and then lay it on top of the fabric, pin it and cut out the second. The third will be slightly larger as mentioned before. For the front panel, fold it in half long ways and then cut in half along the fold.

Pin then sew all of your panels together with seams facing inwards. Then press open all of the seams with your iron. Press the 2 front split panel seams and sew down 10cm and back stitch it. Then press down seams at the top and bottom, press and then stitch down.

Pom Pom teepee pink pretty fringe sewing diy

At this point you can add pom pom fringe  – again this gorgeous pink ones are from the Stripes Company. I just measured out amount needed and attached it inside with pom poms facing outwards, sewing carefully as it’s a tad fiddly but worth the effort.

Teepee sticks diy tutorial seaside fabric

Then all you need to do is slip the teepee over the sticks and you have your very own little hut to keep the kids happy and un – windswept and entertained for at least a week. Am I being optimistic here ?

 

seaside teepee tutorial stripes pom poms

But anyway, we took it to Southwold as you can see and although it was windy ( spot the stones weighing down the bottoms ) we sat very snug and cosy in the marshes. We felt like something from an Enid Blyton book watching kids run past with buckets and spades and we sat and ate our ice creams without wind blowing everything over.

We have put it at home in the toy room and its brightened up the space. So well worth the time making it.

If you’d like to get hold of some of this ‘ Baseball ‘ fabric or trim or see the entire fabulous range then have a look at the shop here. If you remember I used their deckchair canvas in my DIY Beach hut post.

AirBnB and Pantone Create a Greenery Haven

pantone greenery airbnb door east london haven

As a blogger, I get invites to many different events and workshops and I feel very lucky. I don’t attend too many of them as it often takes a large chunk out of the day to attend, but when the opportunity to visit an Outside In House in London pops up. Yes please.

You may have heard about this amazing AirBnB and Pantone collaboration in Dingley Place, East London .. cool front door, hey ?  They have transformed this home in to a plant oasis and project venue based on Pantone’s Colour of The Year  – Greenery – for a family of four for overnight visits.

greenery pantone

I was pleasantly surprised to hear on my tour around the home that one night’s experience in this entire place, so close to the centre of London is only £200 per family. Even better is that every nightly fee is matched by Pantone with all proceeds going to charity.

greenery pantone greenery pantone

This setting of trees was just as you walk in the front door. Apparently it took them two days to convert the whole house, which is pretty impressive.

Maybe because we are a little closer to Spring than when Pantone first announced Greenery, I loved it even more. Such a refreshing and zingy colour and it really works on such a big scale.  The aroma of the herbs planted around the rooms was incredible.

greenery pantone

I’m pretty sure my girls would squeal with delight at the thought of staying indoors in a teepee adorned with fairy lights. This was downstairs below ground level along with the master bed and bathroom. I loved the lawn flooring and continuation of sweet and healing scented plants surrounding the beds.
greenery pantone

greenery pantoneSo serene and hidden away in such a busy and non stop city.

herbal tea pantone airbnb green house greenery pantone stay london design inspiration

screen printing greenery craft london teacher After a tour and a super healthy cup of herbal tea drink we sat down in the dining room / craft table with Walthamstow based, textile and surface designer Daniel Heath, and tried our luck at screen printing on wood surfaces.

pantone greeneryyellow green lemonsGreenery Pantone Airbnb home hotel stay london travel cacti succulents

Daniel showed us the process and then we looked around the conservatory for a plant that inspired us to have a go ourselves.

It was incredibly therapeutic to do and also great fun watching everyone’s stencilling turn in to a cool creation to take home.

Definitely a blogging afternoon to remember !

So, has Greenery grown on you yet if you didn’t love it at first ? Or maybe it was love at first sight ?

Leave me a comment under this post  – I’d love to hear from you.

Lucy x

 

Five Favourite Posts on Lucy Loves Ya for 2016

As we are really close to Christmas now, I am hanging my boots up until the New Year  – although I no doubt will be posting pictures over the festive period on my instagram. I can’t stay away.

I thought you might like to see some of my favourite posts for this year – the ones I have enjoyed making the most. Although actually, I have enjoyed curating all of them.

If you remember way back in Spring, I did up my living room a little and made new curtains, cushions with Designer’s Guild fabrics and put up some new artwork ? Well, this is it again above and you can see it in full here.

 

More and more, I’ve loved trying out recipes in 2016 and sharing a few with you. My Dad is a meeeaan curry chef and passed on his wisdom with a lovely monkfish curry for this post. Omg – it was tasty. Do try it out.

Then there were the moodboards.

I came up with three colour palettes that I really liked for the bedroom. Are you thinking now that I am a huge fan of green ? Well, I am, but check out my other boards – and you will actually see the bedroom reveal early next year ( It was delayed due to some things taking longer than expected ) and I can’t want to show you.

In the Summer, we brightened up the design room with some new paint and and accessories. It feels much more contemporary now and still love the freshness. Unbelievably, I’ve managed to keep those fabrics in the cupboard all pretty neat too .. somehow.

If you’d like a little tour around the room then you can find the post here.

Like I say, lots of things I have enjoyed doing this year – but this is the fifth one I have chosen.

I was asked by The Joy to Plants to photograph some Speciality Orchids as they are Houseplant of the Month for November. It has made me really fall in love with them. In fact I’ve become a bit of a nerd when it comes to looking after them here at home. Such amazing and interesting flowers. I’ve never really been very good at looking after plants but the last year has made me much more aware of their needs and, well, they just look so lovely around the home don’t they ?

So, that’s my little roundup. Have you enjoyed any posts in particular ? Which ones do you like the most .. my days out, recipes, home DIYs or fashion shots ?

Once again this year, I’ve been lucky to interview some really inspiring designers and authors. In January I have another really good one.

I’d like to also say a big thanks to all of you who have added your amazing and colourful photographs to #InspirationIsColour on instagram – we are heading toward 8000 and it’s such a treat to see and share them on my other account @InspirationIsColour.

Have a really Happy Christmas. Hope you get to relax and enjoy some time with your loved ones.

Thanks for reading.

Lucy x

How to Make a Colourful Terrarium

Terranium

It has been a manic weekend. A good one none the less. More on that at the end of this post … :)

As it has been half term this week just gone, we spent a bit of time making things. Now the girls are that bit older – things like play doh and colouring in don’t really cut the mustard so much.

So, I thought it was about time, as they are always admiring the succulent collection in our home, that they made their own terrariums. We have some glass sweetie bowls left over from the wedding a few years ago so these are perfect   – just needed the contents for the inside.

I’ve written a little tutorial because it was really fun and thought it might be useful if anyone is thinking of making one for themselves. It’s really easy and at the end of it you have something colourful and easy to look after. Honestly, if I can keep these plants alive – anyone can !

Adding Stones

You will need:

A glass terrarium or something that resembles one. Even a large used jam jar will do the trick.

Some medium sized stones from the garden or wherever you can find them. Depends on the size of the glass container – if it’s small then smaller stones.

We have also used 1 bag of colourful ( of course ! ) aquarium gravel  – you can use this or plain if preferred.

1 bag of suitable terrarium soil – we used one with added charcoal to keep it fresh  – I found some online.

1 bag of terrarium moss.

Several plants ( that will depend on how many you need ) They will need to be suitable for your type of terrarium. Check on this before buying.

Fun bits to decorate the plants. Whatever you fancy !  ( Optional ).

Tongs if you have a slim glass terrarium – to add your decoration at the end.

Some succulent scissors to keep the plants looking fabulous for the future.

All of this should make you at least two terrariums, dependant on the sizes.

 

Adding Stones Terranium Stones

First – add the bigger stones to the base of the terrarium. Then add in the gravel and mix it up together. As these are coloured I wanted that to be a feature so we added quite a lot but less is fine if preferred.

The ratio can either be same stones as soil or 1/3 stones and 2/3 soil.

Then put in the soil and make holes for the plants that you will put in next.

Potting the Succulent Plant in

Make sure you make enough room to plant them and then pop them in to the soil. Ensure  you look after the roots while removing them from their plastic pots and don’t pull them away from the plant by mistake.

Adding Moss to Terrarium

Once they are in – pat the soil all around so it is firmly in place and then grab some moss and pull it apart before applying it all around the plants. Pat it in. so that it is below them.

Lego Friends!Succulents

Add your decoration. We chose some of lego friends and some kitsch birds to complete them.

Birds in a Terranium

They only need watering about once a week, so very low maintenance. A sprite of water a few times a week will keep them looking lovely and healthy too.

If you would like to add any tips to this DIY or want to just say hi – do leave me a comment under this post or tweet @lucylovesyablog – I would love to hear from you.

As I was saying at the beginning of the post – It has been these last few days  – we popped to Manchester to see our   Daddio hard at work and watch Coldplay at Etihad Stadium. You can see the colour inspired pics from the set pics over on my Instagram page.

Have a good day.

Lucy x

Lightening The Living Room With Designers Guild Fabrics

Designers Guild by Lucy Loves Ya

These past few months I have slowly been making some new cushions, blinds and curtains for the living room. I wanted to lighten the room as although it is South facing, it still needs some help with light at times.

The sofas are both pink ( luckily Andy likes this colour) and I love to put pinks and greens together, so my first choice for some of the cushion fabric was Santiago in mint from Designers Guild. I made up some envelope cushions in it – it’s a plain weave made from polyester. It’s very sturdy and easy to sew with.

I also love, love, love stripes – especially on silk, so chose from the Franchini collection – Noir. Again very easy to work with, surprisingly so, actually considering it’s silk. The cushions are so crisp and tactile. I have plans now to use the turquoise colour way on another home project.
Christian Lacroix Fabric

When I first saw this digitally printed print by french fashion designer Christian Lacroix for Designers Guild, I was kind of mesmerized. It’s very clever because as you can see, the butterflies almost look 3D with their shadows. It creates movement on the cotton and the palettes used are really vibrant and striking – I had to have this design in the mix because it’s so intricate and it feels like adding extra artwork, but just on cushions instead.

Jessica Zoob Print

Talking of artwork, I hope you like our new print on canvas by the lovely artist Jessica Zoob ? I have been a fan of Jessica for a long time and was lucky enough to meet her last year at the Amara Awards. She was as sweet as I thought she would be. Totally in love with it. It’s called  ‘ Feeling Good ‘ and it makes me feel that every time I study it.

Designers Guild Christian Lacroix

Back to the curtain making … I used a corduroy ribbed velvet in ‘ Snow ‘  – it’s lovely to touch, very soft and rich. I’ve used this before for a bedroom and would recommend it for blinds or curtains. It comes in so many shades. Bliss !

It’s the first time I have made such big curtains. I added to widths of fabric to each side and was please that I did as it added extra volume which I think you need for the cosy effect. Of course, to use less you could make eyelet ones, but I like pencil pleat ones the best.

Designers Guild

The blind has turned out well and I was really happy to finish them and rest my fingers as with both the curtains and the blind my thumb had gone numb with all the hand stitching !

Designers Guild by Lucy Loves Ya Designers Guild Fabric

Putting all of these different textures together has added warmth to the room but the colours have lightened it. If that makes sense ?

Designers Guild Stacked Cushions copy

What do you think of the fabrics ? Do you like my updated living room ? I hope so. Do leave me a comment under the post – I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Designers Guild Cushions

If you want to have a look at some more gorgeous Designers Guild fabrics and their collaborations, wallpapers, paints or gifts –  have a look here and feel free to ask me any questions of you are tempted to use of them yourself.

Lucy x

I was sent fabric by Designers Guild for this post. All opinions are my own.

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.

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.

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

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.