Happy Christmas!

Happy Christmas and season's greetings to all.

I'll be taking a blog holiday for a few days.

Thanks for reading : )

IMAGES & LINKS: © Heal's, richardsbm

Classy Swede

The lounge at the new Nobis Hotel, Stockholm.  Designed by Claesson Koivisto Rune it is a contemporary interior inside a traditional building.  I love the chairs in the foreground.

See yesterday's blog for the bedroom interior.

Dignified Design

Interiors which are "not loud, flamboyant or self-righteous, but toned-down and discreet, with many qualities that your body, mind and soul will discover up close, with time." This is the philosophy of the designers of the freshly-opened Nobis Hotel, in Stockholm. Neutral, mellow tones, wholesome, natural materials, and a combination of wools, wood, stone, leather and glass combined into pure luxury and meticulous attention to quality.

"The lighting is elaborate and a most important part of the rooms' atmosphere. The bathrooms are endowed with an added sense of luxury, plated with white Carrara marble from floor to ceiling," say the designers.  The traditional building with 19th century details has been renovated with a "razor sharp modern edge to the interiors, with a variety of different contemporary furniture, contrasting the traditional settings."

The hotel opened at the beginning of this month and it is a perfect example of Swedish subtlety and class from Stockholm designers and architects Claesson Koivisto Rune.

IMAGES & LINKS: Nobis Hotel

A Wood with No Trees

Eco-conscious store Anthropologie have embraced a woodland theme in their Christmas displays.  However, there are only real, living trees or hand-made ones in their shop windows.  The innovative retailer is trying to inspire its eco-ethos by creating trees from recycled materials.  Trees are made from items like paper plates or coffee stirrers and decorated with hand-made ornaments using items like fabric scraps to create miniature birds.

IMAGES & LINKS: Anthropologie

A Huge Cappuccino

This open plan area is a testament to huge.  A huge granite-topped kitchen island acts as a divider as well as unifier in the space.  The cappuccino-coloured finish combined with the large areas of white makes the decor look fresh, comfortable and inviting, especially so with the grand mocha sofa.

Bespoke Cappuccino Parapan and walnut kitchen Mowlem & Co 

Have a super weekend - thanks for reading : )

Christmas Tree Art


Here's a wonderful idea for an alternative Christmas tree, if you don't fancy an artificial one and want to be kind to the environment.  Made with three or four fallen tree branches, a box of IKEA star lights, and a white yarn of wool and propped up with fishing line, stones or bricks. I think it's stunning. 

IMAGES & LINKS: Alisha Peterson-Irwin, Apartment Therapy

Stylist's Christmas Tips

If you're looking for some contemporary Christmas decorating tips step inside this home for some inspiring ideas.   

Click to view video

Tweety Perfect

With all the chaos of Christmas shopping and seasonal parties here's a little respite.  The beauty of winter can be on your desktop with free monthly calendars from The Woodland Trust.  Isn't this robin just perfect?

Visit their website to delight in nature's beauty, find a wood near you, see when blackberries are ripening in the hedgerows and so much more.

O Christmas Tree

Photography: David Levene for The Guardian

It's that time of year when Christmas trees are bought up and down the land, carried lovingly into homes and businesses and decorated with tinsel, lights, baubles and bells.  I couldn't bear the thought of my real Christmas tree dead, lying on the pavement for recycling lost and forlorn on January 6, so this year I've bought a real one with roots.  Hopefully, once Christmas is over it will be planted outside. 

Artist Giorgio Sadotti has made a statement by unveiling a plain, undecorated Norwegian spruce Christmas tree as the Tate's tree installation this year.  The beautiful towering tree is standing in all its glory, as nature intended.  Many people have expressed shock and surprise at this apparent lack of display, fearing that it is merely another artistic attempt at being provocative to gain attention or a sign of economic hardship.  But Sadotti says:

“I’m showing what I believe to be a naturally beautiful object.  When you see a tree in the forest you don’t think, 'that tree’s naked, it needs a bit of tinsel.’ " 

I agree with Sadotti.  I loved my little natural tree just as much before I decorated it as I did after.  Nature is beautiful and I maybe should have been brave enough to leave it bare.

Happy weekend, and thanks for reading.

Christmas is Coming....

Christmas is coming and here's a subtle display to inspire you to start decorating.  It doesn't have to be gaudy.  Sometimes it's hard to know what to do with collected pine cones but they look seasonal as well as naturally beautiful displayed in a bowl with some silver baubles.

IMAGES & LINKS:  Australian Home Beautiful

Serene Swim

I'm back from a weekend away where I enjoyed far reaching views of thousands of trees, the smell of forest pine, birds tweeting, drifts of snow, spas, swimming and peace and quiet with no cars!

A vast 104 square metre serene swimming pool room with ancillary areas including a jacuzzi, double shower, changing area and plant room is located in the basement of this Kensington house.  The silver and white theme has been carefully selected for the owners, a large family, whose wish was for a funky, white home. 

IMAGES & LINKS: Shh, Contemporist

Different Angles of White

Here's a different view of the expansive living room in the six-bed house in Kensington I blogged about last week.  You enter through the centrally located double doors.  The angles within the room have been artfully arranged and the round rug creates balance and acts as an anchor by being placed at the centre of the entrance.  Notice the art has been kept in line with the white theme of the house.

IMAGES & LINKS: Shh, Contemporist

Cinema Paradiso

A 62 inch plasma screen graces a black suede wall, complete with removable panels for technicians to have access to the rear of the TV.  Lighting is variable around the room to help create drama when needed in this 36 square metre cinema room and a comtemporary glow emanates from the white organically-shaped Dolmen floor lights from GVUK.   Elsewhere in the room there are stone suede walls with matching fabric on the cushion covers, string curtains from Missoni, a Fat Fat table from B&B Italia and a large Boa sofa from Edra and Loveseats from Arkitipo.  A potent and lavish place to chill out and indulge in the big screen.

Have a super weekend and thanks for reading : )

IMAGES & LINKS: Shh, Contemporist

London Interior Design - Dining

I breathed a sigh of relief when I saw the dining room in this Kensington home.  The colour used here is a welcome break from the expanses of white throughout the property.

Minimalist style combines with a cross-combed polished plaster fireplace wall, opaque and transparent soft silk and voile panels and spheres of lighting decorated with thousands of Swarovski crystals in a ‘Milky Way’ constellation.

IMAGES & LINKS: Shh, Contemporist

Kensington Glamour

Do you love living with white?  In this home in Kensington, London the interior designer was given a brief to create something cream, off-white and funky.  Starting here with the 66 square metre reception room, you can see the layers of white give a crisp, clear outline of the room, creating a cool, white space.  The various textures, silk, voile, faux fur, glass, crystal etc, are vital in such a design so as to keep it from looking too stark or boring.  Do you think this is white overload? 

More from this six-floor, six bedroom/bathroom luxury pad tomorrow.

IMAGES & LINKS: Shh, Contemporist