Month: August 2014


Stop Look Listen: Three things to do this week

Summer may be slowly slipping away, and rainy evenings coming, but here’s three lovely events for you this weekend, from an Olafur Eliasson exhibition at Tate Britain to a showcase of paper artwork and a must-see French film with Marion Cotillard. Enjoy and have a great weekend! STOP What: Olafur Eliasson: Turner colour experiments Where: Tate Britain, London When: Until January 25 Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson, creator of the Turbine Hall’s dazzling sun for The Weather Project in 2003, has made a new series of paintings in response to the work of J.M.W. Turner. Eliasson has analysed seven paintings by Turner to create Turner colour experiments, which isolate and record Turner’s use of light and colour. LOOK What: Paper Cut Where: The Proud Archivist, London When: Until September 25 Paper Cut presents the work of 25 paper craft illustrators and includes original artworks, paper sculpture and prints. Curated by notable paper craft illustrator Owen Gildersleeve, highlights include hand-cut artworks by popular UK artist Rob Ryan, Bianca Chang’s Comparative Form in White series, large-scale creations by LA-based artist Jeff Nishinaka, hand-crafted props from Andersen M Studio’s animation Going West and a selection of Kirigami artworks from …


Travel: The Pig on the Beach, Dorset

For the bank holiday weekend I escaped the hustle and bustle of London to The Pig on the Beach in sunny Dorset. The Pig on the Beach is the latest ‘pig’ in a line-up of hotels (they already have The Pig in Brockenhurst, The Pig in the Wall in Southampton and The Pig near Bath) perfectly located just minutes away from the beaches of Studland Bay. We spent one lovely night in this get-away location, enjoying the sea views, crisp bed linen and homely breakfast. The hotel features around 20 bedrooms as well as a couple of outdoor huts for those who prefer a more rustic lifestyle (they have a separate dunny or loo). Our bedroom (we weren’t quite brave enough for the huts) was cosy, with a de rigueur Nespresso machine and Roberts radio. The bed was super comfy and I had one of the best night’s sleep in its white sheets. In the morning there was the usual option of croissants or full english, but also more healthy choices such as delicious courgette muffins and homemade granola …


StreetHub: championing independent shops in London

Some of my favourite shopping districts in London are small high streets with unique, independent shops, such as Lambs Conduit Street with Persephone for books, Darkroom for jewellery and The French House for brocante, or Exmouth Market with Family Tree for gifts (see my insider London guide here). And that’s where StreetHub comes in: it’s a new app that supports local retailers in London, offering a click-and-collect network of boutiques ranging from design to fashion. It works by taking your current location and showing you products that are in-stock and in that area, so you can either collect it at the shop or have it delivered at home. It’s also a great way to discover interesting shops you might otherwise not have heard of in your area or further afield. Last Thursday they hosted a party with Future and Found, a beautiful little shop in Tufnell Park, an area I would never normally go to. There was a pop-up from Lois Shop from Peckham, wine tasting by Newcomer Wines from Boxpark and yummy handmade ice-cream from Ruby Violet. …


Ferm Living Autumn/Winter 2014 Collection

Danish design and interior brand Ferm Living has just released the lookbook for its Autumn/Winter 2014 collection and boy it’s a good’un. It has a much warmer, grown-up feel than its previous collection (see an example here). There’s marble coffee tables, new modern cabinets with leather handles, graphic kilim rugs and soft mohair throws. And I love their styling for this one too. They say: This is a collection of reflections from our life and the lovely things that surround us. Small moments are said to make life big. Moments like enjoying a dinner with family and friends, having a good cup of coffee, reading a book in a favourite chair or just staring at a vivid shadow. Having thoughts and listening to the silence. Or sharing thoughts and breaking the silence. Embrace the small and sincere moments in everyday life. We do. Here are my top picks from Ferm Living’s Autumn/Winter 2014 collection: I love the kilim cushions and marble-topped coffee tables, not to mention the new round carpets with simple geometric patterns. Check …


Bind chair by Jessy Van Durme

Jessy Van Durme is a Belgian designer who creates objects and furniture with a clear simple look and an honest use of materials, all with a nod to Scandinavian design, under the banner of Studio KLAER. This chair is formed of a lightweight birch frame and a woven leather seat. The four different parts of the chair, from the arms to the legs, are held together by thin strips of unblemished pale pink leather. Jessy used dampened leather to strengthen the connections, but she believes the leather may soften over time and with continual use. She says: When designing the chair I was searching for a new material context for the use of crafts. Always taking into account a fair, simple construction, materials and a pure formality. This Rattan technique came forward, a simple inexpensive braid technique that has both structural and aesthetic properties. By using this approach, multiple components tied together with leather strings, this technique gets a new context.   Images courtesy Studio KLAER. Check out this facebook page for more Belgian designs.


Summer inspiration at Another Country’s Marylebone store

I’ve previously written about Marylebone’s new shop, Another Country (have a reminder here); it’s a contemporary craft furniture company set up by the founding publisher of Wallpaper* magazine. At the weekend they kindly invited me, along with fellow blogger Lucy from Decorenvy (check out her post here), to style up their products at their showroom in Marylebone, a stone’s throw away from the High Street. Another Country’s designs are just my sort of style: modest, well-designed and sustainably manufactured. They say: Our designs are inspired by archetype, calling on the familiar and unpretentious forms of British Country kitchen style, Shaker, traditional Scandinavian and Japanese woodwork for inspiration. We make use of traditional and modern craft techniques, endeavour to produce our product and run our business in a sustainable and responsible manner, and design for products to last. So they have simple three-legged stools, elegant solid wood dining tables and a collection of accessories, from ceramics to linen napkins. These are complemented by David Mellor cutlery, bespoke linen by 31 Chapel Lane and Ian McIntyre pottery. For our styling session we wanted …


Stop Look Listen: Three things to do this week

Forgive me, I haven’t written a Stop Look Listen in a while, but I’m back with a bang, alongside a new gallery of illustration in King’s Cross and a gory opening at Barts Pathology Museum. Have a great weekend! STOP What: Alexander Calder Where: Gagosian Gallery, London When: Until August 29 This exhibition of Alexander Calder’s gouache paintings on paper has been extended. Parallel to his sculptures, Calder created a series of paintings in gouache during a year-long stay in Aix-en-Provence in 1953. Painting quickly, he transcribed the vocabulary of his sculpture into a medium far more immediate than the large-scale works in sheet metal produced simultaneously. Here they are displayed in all their colourful glory. (Head’s up- there will also be an exhibition on Alexander Calder at the Tate next year) LOOK What: Quentin Blake: Inside Stories Where: House of Illustration, London When: Until November 2 A new gallery dedicated to illustration has just opened next to Central Saint Martins behind King’s Cross station. They are opening with an exhibition on Quentin Blake, one of England’s best-loved illustrators, known for his work …


I wish I lived here: a converted school building in London

When I saw this old converted school on The Modern House’s website, I knew instantly that I could live there; I mean just look at the light, airy, spacious rooms and tall ceiling heights. It forms part of a 19th century school building converted by British architect Tony Fretton, in the centre of Brixton. His design highlights some of the original architectural features (it was originally built in 1853 and designed in the the Tudor style by the architect Benjamin Ferrey, a student of the great A.W.N. Pugin, who designed the interior of the Palace of Westminster) such as the Portland stone dressings and exposed roof structure. The home itself centres around a double-height living room with doors out onto a private terrace and a communal garden. A mezzanine level that overlooks the living room currently provides two workspaces, perfect for the architect/freelancer in me. The first floor provides a master bedroom with an ensuite bathroom and dressing room (the latter was once a separate bedroom) as well as two further bedrooms. Paddle steps lead up to a roof terrace with ‘far-reaching …


Toast Autumn/Winter 2014 Lookbook

Another beautiful lookbook from one of my favourite brands and homeware shops, this one is for autumn, with cosy knits, crisp white shirts and warm coats. Toast this time it seems has almost taken inspiration from the black and white shots favoured by Margaret Howell (see my post from last week). Well, I don’t mind, they both do it for me! See the full collection here.      


3LEGS table collection by Studio Nomad

David Tarcali, member of the Budapest-based Studio-Nomad, has designed a coffee and side table collection called ‘3LEGS’. The three different types of tables are inspired by geometric patterns and architectural shapes, the name reflecting the simplicity of how these forms work. Despite not having actual legs, each table is folded from a single sheet of 3mm thick steel that gives it the characteristic abstract appearance seen from different perspectives (as shown above). Have a look at the project on Behance or check out the studio’s other work here.