Category: Eureka moment

Getting old

We just hit the 100 posts mark everyone, wow, time is flying by!  Let’s try and get up to 100 subscriptions – why not sign up at the bottom of the page, and you’ll get a daily reminder to log in for my slightly inane and silly musings…

Fashion forward – part 2

Good morning readers and welcome back to part 2 of my attempt at deciphering all the crystal ball gazing and other mysterious activities surrounding the 2011 interior design trend predictions.
So yesterday we looked at which colours we can expect to see a LOT more of this year, and today I wanted to look at the specific styles forecast as being huge in 2011.  As far as I can tell, there seem to be two over-arching and radically polarised trends:
1) a simple, natural and pure style focusing on neutrals, natural materials and all that is good in the world!; and
2) a CRAZY, colourful, ethnic, mix-it-all-together-and-see-what-happens style, with big block colours, patterns, and general Fun Stuff.
Guess which one I like better…?
I guess the moody blues and greys I talked about yesterday are more suited to the first style, and the bonkers en vogue accents (fuchsia, lemon-lime, teal, tangerine, magenta, coral, canary yellow) are more suited to the second…
So let’s start with the more sedate of the two styles.  It seems to all be about a greater degree of austerity, with clients re-thinking what they really need in order to live well and leaning towards more simple clear-cut designs, manufacturing techniques and materials: wool, light woods (maple, pecan), stone, leather, knits, burlap, bamboo, plant fibres and cork.  All these natural materials give a huge textural palette, and we’ll also up the interest factor with distressed finishes, tie-dyes and hand-stencilled patterns.

The trend forecasting set-up Heimtextil (who I also nicked the above pics from) state that ‘People are looking for distinctive individualistic features marked by imperfection not perfection’.  Happily, this perfectly and succinctly sums up what I believe, in terms of beauty: it’s all about delighting in the imperfections and not all wanting to have identikit homes or all look like Barbie dolls.
The trend has also resulted from a strong consumer desire for locally sourced unique artisan products (the whole global/local ‘hearth and home’ argument) that are personal rather than mass produced, and that show their individuality, a higher awareness of quality and sustainability, and a greater push for ethically-produced items along with repurposed or recycled pieces such as reclaimed wood flooring or re-upholstering existing furniture. 
Couple of concept board inspiration piccies:

And some furnishings ideas (these stools are AWESOME – made by Claire-Anne O’Brien):

Applying the trend to the Caribbean:

LOVE the natural feel of the materials and all the textures! 
The second big trend seems to be ethnic- and folk-inspired textiles, colours, patterns and accessories (think African drums, Mayan textiles, Mexican votives, Morrocan lamps, Indian shishas and saris, I could go on…and I feel like singing, haha).  These items give your home instant depth and history (and perhaps link in to the desire for items that are personal and display individuality in the previous trend?).  The incredible ikat print is not going to leave us for a while yet, it seems (whoop).
Benjamin Moore have predicted the rise of rich berry tones and orangey hues such as coral, saffron and cinnamon, combined with browns, deep greys and bronze. 

And Farrow & Ball appears to agree!

Other materials like mother of pearl, tortoiseshell and beadwork are also looking popular – come to mama!
A few concept board pics:

And a few ideas for the home:

(Check out The Loaded Trunk for some ideas – I’ve been logged onto this website for about 4 days straight…)

A friend of mine over here in Cayman said to me a while ago ‘You know what Elly, you’re just like the ‘girl next door’’ (at which point I started getting offended as that sounds pretty dull, if you ask me), but he quickly corrected himself saying ‘I mean, if I were living in a hippy commune, you’d be just like the ‘girl next door’’, which I actually thought was hilarious.  So anyway, the hippy in me is loving all these colours, textiles and mixed up patterns etc. – can’t wait to see what the big designers come up with this year! 

Fashion forward – part 1

I have realised over the last few months that there may be an aspect of interior design that will be even more difficult for me to overcome than the rage-inducing torture inflicted by axonometric projection drawings: being fashionable.
Now don’t take this the wrong way – I do have nice clothes (in my opinion) but I am literally the polar opposite of fashionable as I just couldn’t give a flying monkey’s bum about keeping up to date with it all.  The issue I have is that even if I’m totally bananas about the item in fashion (whether it be harem pants or faux fur gilets, or zebra print rugs, ‘sunburst’ mirrors or Barcelona chairs), I get this weird (and very stubborn) refusal to conform to the flock attitude and copy what everyone else is doing.  This is pretty fortunate actually, as living in Cayman makes it fairly hard to keep up with the latest trends without hopping over to Miami 20 times a year. 
However, I realised fairly early on into my interior design adventure that interiors are crazily influenced by fashions, and often what you’ll see strutting down the catwalk ends up in pillow-form or all over your walls before too long, especially given the wave of fashion designers moving into creating homewares lines.  So in an effort to up the trend factor of my work, I’ve been looking into some of the 2011 trend predictions in the land of interiors.  Today we’ll cover colours, and tomorrow specific styles.
The Behr 2011 colour trends palette is chock-a-block full of greys, deep blues, muted purples, various neutrals, and accent colours in sunny yellow and bright rose colours (and other accents I’ve seen predicted elsewhere are magenta, teal and tangerine).

So it turns out that my Moody Blues room scheme from the other week was actually bang on trend!  That’s pretty jammy.  In honour of this most unlikely of events, let’s take a look at the greys and blues we’ll see more of in 2011.
Apparently the full spectrum of grey hues and shades will feature, not only as wall colours but also on textiles and furniture.

Farrow and Ball are releasing nine new paint colours this year (out in Feb), and a very telling third of them are in grey hues:

A few inspiration pics for you:

And it will also be combined with the en vogue accent colours:

Next up are the deep blue colours (I am going BONKERS over the midnight blue living room walls of pics 4, 5 and 6!!!!):



LOOOOOOOOOVE!!!  This design is killing me –  the yellow-green armchairs, the delicate coffee table on the brash zebra stripe rug on the dark wooden floorboards, the patterned cushions and pair of neutral elegant floor lamps…*swoon*.

And with some fun accents:

Make sure you stop by tomorrow for the style predictions!

Moody blues

I’ve been hearing non-stop about the crazy weather back home over the last couple of weeks (which, incidentally, had better not thwart my family from getting over here tomorrow or there will be Big Trouble) and am, I have to admit, pretty gutted to be missing the first 100% sure-to-be White Christmas in about the last 3000 years, but I have to say we’ve also been having our own mini freeze-wave here in Cayman.  It has been a pain having to consider wearing another layer over the sundress when going out (ha, sorry!) but one really awesome side effect is the fantastic surf that’s been loitering around on Seven Mile Beach thanks to a few nor’westers blowing in.
So we went out surfing last week on Tuesday evening in some pretty massive waves (I’m still learning and was a smidge out of my depth – pun not intended) and my upper-body-strength-of-a-mouse meant that I was getting a bit pooped and starting to vaguely worry about getting back into the beach, so I turned to face the shore and suddenly got this crazy snapshot of an incredible range of moody blue-greys in the sky and sea, topped off by the bright white and really light aqua colour of the waves breaking, and with the dark taupe sandy colour of the beach in the background – it was pretty awesome actually.  So anyway, this got me pondering a scheme for a master bedroom.  I’m thinking a luxurious dark wood four poster bed with textiles and cushions galore in a range of grey-blues/aqua and a separate fireside seating area with a chandy and gorgeous artwork.  Let me know what you think!

Zara Home – Cushions
3.50 GBP –

Rustic three drawer bedside table from Lombok
1,195 GBP –

Zara Home – Cushions
3,95 EUR –

Zara Home – Lamps & Lanterns
70 GBP –

Zara Home – Cushions
3.50 GBP –

Zara Home – Cushions – Haidyn Cushion
3,95 EUR –

39 GBP –

Farrow & Ball, Claydon Blue

ps. I literally am never going to get any more study done EVER, now I’ve discovered this Polyvore shopping tool thingie. This is a bit of a catastrophe…

Makeover genius

I have a massive soft spot for all things ‘before and after’ – seeing anything being transformed from the uggers version to thing-of-beauty makes me very happy indeed.  So I was totally inspired when I came across this property in Traditional Home designed by Amy Morris.
BEFORE (yuck – I don’t even want to enlarge the photo, it’s offending my eyes)

AFTER (*swoon*) – that is one statement entrance piece if ever I’ve seen one…

Just pause for a minute everyone – can we please take a moment to appreciate the beauty of these armchairs…  The marble fireplace/gold statement mirror combo is also super duper.


AFTER – I am going gaga over the slightly distressed mirror work and chandy.
I am absolutely LOVING this kitchen – the wooden beams, the Eastern lanterns, the crisp white cabinetry (drool).

Gorgeous gorgeous fabric on the Roman blind – I love the colour paired with the bed frame and the wall gallery, and the contrast with the whites.


AFTER – very bold use of wall colour but it works so well here with the window treatment and the coordinating ottoman/armchair.

BEFORE (wow, this one is really bad)

AFTER – I’m especially loving the wall sconces and wash stand, and the brickwork floor is a nice touch also.

Amazing blind/chair colour combo offset by the white joinery, and the shapes work really well together too.