A little home tour

So, long time no blog. This has been the longest I haven’t been on WordPress since I got an account years ago. The past three months have been the busiest I’ve ever had, thanks to work, general life, and settling into our new home. The sunny, leafy place above is where we now live, nestled in South London, and it’s a world away from where we thought we’d be right now. After giving up on the house we toiled with trying to buy for so long out in zone 7, we came to this place on a whim one snowy, freezing morning in February and never for one second thought we’d be interested in it, yet here we are. This isn’t an average flat and it’s certainly not an average development. It’s a purpose built eco development, with no gas (yep, no heating! Not that it’s ever ever ever cold) and lots of little quirks which make it environmentally friendly. We have solar panels, big funny turbine chimneys, some sort of special water heater and it’s known locally as the Tellytubby place, because well….


Everyone who visits us remarks on how weird and wonderful the place looks, and we’re so thankful we found it. There’s big landscaped, community gardens surrounding the buildings with plots to grow vegetables, an outdoor gym, space for children to play and lots of flowers. It feels like you’re totally removed from London, but I can still see the Shard from my bedroom window and get to work in Waterloo in half hour, so no complaints here.

We’ve slowly spent the past few months turning it from a big airy shell into a home (we’ve put up a total of three pictures, but every little thing counts) and it’s been the most fun, but also the most tiring and NOT good for my poor achey joints. We still have lots to do, and most of our money is still going on buying things to decorate with but it feels much more homely now we have some of our stuff up and displayed. The best thing about the flat is the light – there is so much light, which I wasn’t really into yesterday morning when I was feeling a bit fragile post-cocktail evening, but it’s bloody lovely. The ceilings are also absurdly high, which makes it feel big and even brighter.

The first thing we did was rip up the carpet in the master bedroom, get a new wooden floor and paint the room light grey. This is probably the biggest room in the house and I didn’t see a bedroom bigger in the whole time we were house hunting, so we were properly chuffed with it – I can actually store my stuff in relatively good order and find things without getting stress rash. We’ve got one curved wall with loft style windows which we still need to do something with, but thanks to the handiest of brother-in-laws this room was done and dusted in about a week.

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We’ve put our energy into making the living room cosy and less empty looking over the past few weeks, and it finally looks more like somewhere you’d want to lay and binge Netflix as opposed to uncomfortably sit and wish you were back in bed.

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We have quite a big space where fully functioning adults would put a dining table, but we’ve sort of just not got round to that and still eat at the kitchen breakfast bar or just on our laps (or you know, in bed when needs must). We do have the most gorgeous little wicker rocking chair which was Dan’s grandad’s and has a new lease of life thanks to TK Maxx’s amazing cushion selection.

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The rest of the place is still a work in progress. We have a spare bedroom full of stuff that we obviously don’t need having not touched it since we moved in but both can’t quite face throwing away yet and I don’t see the situation resolving in the very near future. We need a new bathroom, it all works fine, but it could use some sprucing up and we need to do stuff in the kitchen, but that magic money tree hasn’t made its way here yet, so all in good time.

The other thing we randomly have is a room running along the back of the flat which is made up mostly of glass. The ceiling is glass, as is the main wall, and it has exposed brick walls and a strange tiled floor. I love this room, even though it looks like a weird accident right now, and basically I’ll one day drive to B&Q, buy all of the plants and turn it into a jungle. At the moment we just dry washing in there and store fun things like a bin, drills and coats I’ll never wear again, but I think it could become a nice little entertainment room or something.

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So that’s really where life is at right now. Home designing, home buying, running out of money because of the home buying and googling ways to make plant pots more exciting to look at. Once we’re back from Italy next month (magic money tree, we are ready now if you want to grow in the living room), we’ll probably tackle the glass room and start saving for the bathroom. Until then I’ll just keep buying candles on sale in supermarkets.

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Tripod lamp is from Wayfair
Bedroom basket , blue rug and rocking chair cushions are TK Maxx
Armchair is Ikea 
Sofa is French Connection Zinc at DFS 
Stand By Me print is by the amazing Claudia Varosio who makes amazing film posters
Framed postcards pictures are from an NYC market 

 

 

 

8 things I want in my kitchen

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The closer I get to actually moving, the more I keep letting myself look at homeware. One of the only rooms we have stuff for is the kitchen, so it feels easy to just build on that rather than face facts that we have other entire parts of a functioning home missing. These are all the fruits of random phone shopping on the train this week, apart from the teapot, which I found in Westfields. I’d never heard of  T2 before stumbling upon it a few weeks ago but I can see myself getting VERY well acquainted. If you know of any other places that sell homeware that I can browse online during my train strike fun times, link me up.

1) Printed porcelain mug – H&M – £4.99

2)  Stripe gold rim mug – Matalan – £3.00

3)  Salter vintage scale – Dunelm – £16.99

4)  Skyscraper coasters 4 pack – H&M – £1.99

5)  Leaf salad servers – H&M –  £12.99

6)  Agate bottle opener – Anthropologie – £16.00

7)  Dazed & Dazzled teapot – T2 – £46.00 Salter vintage scale

8) Denby halo cereal bowl – Dunelm – £8.99

Interior style crush 1- everything grey

I’ve never been much of a Pinterest person I have to admit. That’s always mostly been down to not really getting how it works or ever having anything big to plan. I’ve watched friends get completely swallowed by it while planning weddings or holidays or decorating, and now I’m edging closer to moving, I’ve finally fallen under the Pinterest spell.

I downloaded the app after deleting it ages ago in a ‘phone storage full’ emergency while I was on holiday and had sunset photos to busy myself with taking. I’ve never had to do any proper decorating but as the time to be a fully-fledged adult approaches, I find myself thinking about paint more and more. Thinking about paint makes me feel like I don’t really  recognise myself, but it’s also really exciting.

I remember my parents redecorating our bedrooms when I was in my teens and picking an explosion of colours and various, really bright photos frames, lamps, rugs and fairy lights from Ikea. Now though, instead of ALL the colours, I’m suddenly really into grey. REALLY, REALLY into. It’s unfortunate that my boyfriend thinks grey is ‘cold and unwelcoming’ because it means I’ll have to decorate the whole house in it while he’s out one day.

These are my biggest forms of grey inspiration that Pinterest has served up so far, and some of my favourite home boards, if you’re into that sort of thing.

Above are all from Barker and Store House- New Nautical board

Above are all from Red Online boards

Above are all from Interior Decorating board by Lawrence

Got any favourite interior pinners? You can find me pinning all of the grey and all of the world map murals here: pinterest.com/laurenrellis010/ 

Home inspiration from a year of travel: Hotels, apartments and houses

My camera roll is my best friend right now. I’ve been really lucky to have stayed in some beautiful places while travelling in the last year. From Air B&B gems to amazing apartments, it’s all been rather pretty. I’ve saved a few of my favourites on my phone for inspiration for eventually moving in the next year and these are my favourites. Shocker: White things make me happy. As do amazing armchairs because who doesn’t love sitting?

Isle Of Skye, Scotland  

I stayed here in February with five friends and it was pretty much a Pinterest dream. There were blue wooden floors, white walls, long flowing white curtains and an open fireplace, not to mention a garden that led straight to the sea and a casual brook running through the back straight into the bay. This place was my dream house. I loved everything about it. It also massively helped that it was in such a beautiful place. Scotland is immense. This was also an utter bargain from Air BnB.

Colombo, Sri Lanka 

This girls trip was one of my favourite two weeks ever. Sri Lanka is beautiful and you should all go there at some point. I blogged all about it if you’re interested in tips. This apartment was a last minute decision, we booked it on someone’s phone at the beach, and rocked up to amazing views, amazing decor and the cleanest, most idyllic little sea view bedroom. The colour of that chair is the colour all things should be.

Copenhagen, Denmark

Another ridiculously cheap Air BnB deal, this place in Copenhagen was colourful, modern and full of so much quirky character. I love the bookshelves and the bright prints and OBVIOUSLY the white wall. I fear my future home might look a bit like a dentist waiting room with all the white, and when I say fear I mean I hope and dream.

Killaloe, Ireland

Okay, not an interior, BUT LOOK AT THOSE WINDOW BOXES. And the peachy doors. This was the cutest, quietest street in the tiny village of Killaloe, in County Clare. Ireland has all of the colourful houses any blogger could ever hope for.

Galway, Ireland 

This little cottage was the ultimate shabby chic girls house. It’s been featured in interior magazines and I can see why. I’m not into the twee look massively but the bedroom was lush. Dark wood and white pops and the warmest duvet I’ve ever slept under. (Seriously, it gets COLD in rural Ireland.) Love the white chair and table and LOVE this bed. 

  

Do you have the UK’s messiest bedroom? DO YOU? 

I think having a tidy bedroom has been a battle I’ve fought my entire my life. I remember days spent tidying up the room I shared with my sister under my mum’s supervision and getting so stressed out about where to put various Barbies and craft boxes and where the lid to Pay Day was. Oh the 90s ❤

Anyway, it’s now 2015 and not much has changed, apart from now I’m tidying up life admin and work clothes instead of Malibu Barbie and Sylvanian families. I have a massive bedroom, so it really shouldn’t be a problem, yet it still so often ends up looking like a post-apocalyptic accident. I do have to share it with my boyfriend so it’s not all my fault I guess, and we DO try. Life just happens. I can’t be the only person with ‘the chair’ in their bedroom: a place to dump discarded clothes, random things, odd socks and belts and which is absolutely never used for sitting. Life happens. Mess happens.

I do bloody hate having a messy bedroom though. It makes me feel stressed and annoyed when I want to be calm and relaxed, and now I’m at the grand old age of 25, I’ve realised the answer is storage. I love storage. That’s the lamest thing I’ve ever said but it’s true. Sometimes I search just ‘storage ideas’ on Pinterest because my life really is that hip and happening. The party never ends. Ahem.

I’ve come to the realisation that you can’t have a bedroom that looks like a Showroom. It’s just not possible. So now my room is full of storage, large and small. I’ve used the thrifty brilliance of Gumtree to get some drawers and shelves and other bits of furniture in my room. I also regularly buy trinkets and vintage tins on eBay because it’s possible I need to get some new hobbies.

I don’t think I have the messiest bedroom in the world, although there have been days I’ve woken up after chaotic nights out or long, stressful work weeks and wondered HOW DID THIS HAPPEN?!?!? If you have or know of someone who has a bedroom that literally can take more, then Time4Sleep want you. They’re giving away a storage bed worth up to £500 and all you have to do is send a photo. You can even do it on Twitter using the #messybedroom hashtag. The extended comp has 8 days left, more details are here.*

Happy tidying. (Not really. It’s Sunday afternoon. I’m going to have a nap.)

Bedroom accessory lust list- £15 and under

Maybe because I know I’m imminently moving and maybe because I spend too much time searching the ‘interior’ section of my Bloglovin account, I’ve become obsessed with looking at bedroom accessories. I even tried to do it on the tube this morning when I had no signal and was stuck in a tunnel. Copper candle holders are urgent. I’m all for anything cheap and cheerful and these are all saved in the notes section of my phone, so I thought I would share.

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1) Paperchase- Jungle fever frame £15

2) Tiger- Strawberry alarm clock £3

3) H&M- Laundry storage bag £6.99

4) H&M- Metal tealight holder £2.99

5) Urban Outfitters- Mini brass edge jewel box £15

6)  Next- Copper candle lantern small £15

7) Wilko- Home sweet home bottle £3

8) Wilko- Glass storage box £12

9) Zara Home- Striped fabric hangers £9.99