Styling The Seasons - September

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Whenever there are big changes happening I always seem to revert back to simplicity and nature, whether that be a new year or new season. A clean palette of whites and greens always makes me feel clear headed and calm. For this months Styling The Seasons I have kept everything as simple as possible, in between finishing work to start maternity leave and getting ready for my new arrival I haven't had much time to get really creative. I put this together a few weeks ago and really enjoyed working with simple textures and a limited (for me) range of colours. 

When I look back through the big events in my life new starts always seem to occur in September - starting school, university, first job. It's been ten years since I left uni and in those ten years I've feel like I've been bouncing around trying to find some kind of career that fits As this September welcomes a whole new chapter in my life I feel really ready for a change and I'm looking ahead with a mix of extreme excitement and terror! 
Like last September, I always like to hold on to what remains of the warm months as long as possible. As the flowers in my garden are past their best I gathered these beautiful leaves instead. I love the tropical feel of the twisting passion flower and the fragrant jasmine. The passion flower is actually next doors and has the most amazing pink flowers, I'm delighted that it spills over the fence. 
There have been updates all over the house lately and sadly we've had to cover the wooden floor in our our lounge with carpet (for now) but I have installed a side table with this gorgeous pineapple lamp kindly given to me by Laura Ashley. It makes such a difference to the room and I really love the dull silver of the base. I've mixed in this fab vase which was only £6 from Anthropologie, for Anthropologie it makes it pretty much free! It's so heavy and tactile it's a perfect partner for the lamp. I also included this sweet etched dish from Decorators Notebook, I love all their homewear I just wish my furnishing budget was bigger so I could buy more. 

 So this is what my September looks like, clean and simple. Katy and I would really love to see how you reflect the seasons in your home. In preparation for the bloggers Vintage Jumble & Prop Sale on October 4th at 1.30 – 4.30pm in King Edward Hall, Lindfield, West Sussex , we'd love to see your vintage take on styling this month, I'll be playing along on Instagram search for the #stylingtheseasons hashtag. If you need some inspiration take a look at Katy's mouth watering post for this month, its my favourite so far! 

Styling The Seasons Review - August

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Last week I wrote about what I had learnt from a year of Styling the Seasons for today's round up I wanted to talk about my personal experience as well share my favourites. 

For me Styling The Seasons started way back last April, I had spent a month commuting up to London followed by every weekend stripping varnish from what was then a dark and dismal hallway. It was only when I stepped outside in late April I realised that the seasons had changed and I had completely missed it. Being constantly on the go - balancing a full time job, my blog, projects for magazines, workshops, house renovations left me little time to be mindful and notice what the world was doing around me. From that moment I knew I needed to something to readdress the balance.

Katy and I meet through our projects with Liberty, we spent an evening cooing over their beautiful fabric range and instantly clicked. I had been wanting to collaborate with someone for a while and I just knew Katy was the perfect person. When we met in the park last summer I told her my woes of missing this seasons and together we formed Styling The Seasons.

From the very beginning we wanted the project to be inclusive and open to anyone who wanted to join in. One thing I had found about hashtags was I often missed the day being at work - which is why we kept it open all month. Since launching last September we've had nearly 6000 beautiful entries on Instagram and over 500 blog posts, you can see them all on our Pinterest board. We have also hosted two fabulous events our Crafting the Seasons event at Liberty was a definite pinch me moment and our Wreath Workshop was a morning of complete floral gorgeousness where we had the opportunity to meet so many of our monthly participants.

For me meeting so many inspiring people has been the highlight of the project, I'm continuously telling myself no one wants to hear what I have to say or likes what I do. Having a reason to talk to a community of like minded people is amazing. I've spent so much of my time in a grey office where people just don't understand the joys of Instagram or seasonal flowers having a beautiful world that I can escape into through my phone has got me through some very dull days!

I can't believe it's been a whole year, so much has changed. I've loved working with Katy and learnt so much from her - seeing her transition from teaching to full time blogging has been a really inspiring experience. I've loved working with brands to create such exciting posts, I'm still staggered at the creativity that was generated for our Laura Ashley collaboration back in Feb - see wallpaper post here. Personally for me I've really begun to find my style, this is the the first time I've ever owned a property and I've loved creating a home for myself, Dan, Rosie the cat and hopefully our family to come. Nothing makes me happier than spending time shifting furniture around, hanging shelves and adding flowers to any surface going, my house is definitely my happy place.
So onto my August favourites, this month more than ever I needed everything to be simple. I was finishing up my day job to start maternity leave, co-ordinating new carpets and new to me furniture and well as getting myself mentally prepared (as much as you can) for the arrival of the baby. I loved the simplicity of Julia at Humphrey and Grace's gathered summer finds, I foraged a bunch of fennel last week too. I adored the textures in Jane from Tea with Ruby post it definitely makes me want to add more linen in my life! And because I love yellow and the sun has been lacking lately fell in love with Kelly from Refreshed Designs beautiful yellow cupboard and display.

You can see all the August entries below - a huge thanks to everyone that has joined in so far.

The Villa on Mount Pleasant / Refreshed Designs / Beautiful Simplicity / Cate St. Hill /Tea with Ruby / The Vintage Good Life / Seeds and Stitches / Humprey and Grace /Gathered Cheer / Beak Up Crafts / Janice Issit / Candy Pop / The Ordinary Lovely / The Lovely Drawer / Little Maldod / KT Robbins Ceramics / Pink Wellies and Pearls / Lotts and Lots / Apartment Apothecary

I'll be back tomorrow with September's post - sorry I'm a day late the bank holiday has thrown me!

Inspiration - hairbands

Friday, 28 August 2015

I always get a pang of excitement when I hear that hairbands are back in fashion, they are one of my all time favourite accessories and (not so guilty) pleasures. Sadly I could give you a run down of hairbands I have had and loved throughout my life starting with a particularly fetching curly ribbon number I demanded from a french market aged four...I have been feeling rather inspired and rounded up some of my favourites. My maternity leave starts today, so providing I don't go into labour and can manage to waddle from bedroom to craftroom I'm going to get working on a few ideas this weekend - I can't wait! 

Hairband with net - Jennifer Behr at Liberty 
Wire crown - Cecile Boccara 
Pink jewel - Asos 
Gold leaf - Ontop Barcelona
Gold embroidery - Anthropologie

Handmade - wedding headpiece

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

I really wanted to share this beauty before the summer comes to an end (although looking out the window it feels like it has). I made this way back in April for a friends wedding. It's a dream when a bride says to me I don't like neat or symmetrical (my two worst things) but also comes with a clear idea of what she wants. From the beginning Steph wanted a backwards birdcage veil that was full of net, feathers and flowers. The net went across the back of her head and the flowers and feather sat at side - I wish I had a photo of her wearing it as it looked so good! It's always scary making for a wedding but at the same time I love it as I get to do some really detailed bead work. It always get me thinking that I should make more...

Styling The Seasons - what I've learnt

Monday, 24 August 2015

With the first year of Styling The Seasons coming to a close, I wanted to reflect on what I have learnt throughout the past year. I was so nervous when I published my first post, photographing my home was brand new to me I really didn't have a clue as to what I was doing. 

Don't let the word styling put you off. In the blogging world stylists are held in huge esteem, they're the ones that set trends and influence. Once I got over the fact that I wasn't a stylist and didn't have to be like everyone else I began to settle into my style and find what works for me. Layered textures, rustic recycled finds, an abundance of flowers and colour seem to get me most excited. 

It can take a while to find your style. We're all at different stages, some of our amazing Styling The Seasons bloggers were sharing their homes long before this project started. I love the fact that each month there is so much inspiration to be sourced from posts and on our hashtag - #StylingTheSeasons. I always try and analyse why I like something and then let it influence next months post. If it doesn't work then I move on.

You can't be inspired every month. And that's ok. 

Make time. Finding any minute of spare time has always been biggest challenge. I now look forward to the half a day I set aside for this project. My styling, photography and confidence have all massively improved as a result of having some breathing space to focus and try new ideas. 

Collaborating. I'm not sure if Katy will agree (wink!) but one of the things I have enjoyed most is collaborating. Not only is Katy generally amazing but having someone to bounce ideas of plan events makes ideas much more likely to happen. Our Styling The Seasons events have definitely been one of my blogging highlights (you can see the Liberty Crafting The Seasons here and Floral Wreath Workshop here)

We're all the same really. Meeting people in real life makes me realise we're all just the same. We're all guilty of comparing ourselves and thinking everyone is better. When I hear  the stories behind posts and reasons for people picking up their cameras, I realised that everyone is a little bit scared and worried of not being good enough - what we all have in common is we're done our best and put ourselves out there which is the most important thing. 

As always thanks so much for all your support over the past twelve months. You can see all my posts on the Styling The Seasons tab on the side of my blog. x

DIY - leather trimmed hanging vase

Thursday, 20 August 2015

I love it when you when you have an idea in your head and it actually works out better in reality, this is how I feel about these leather trimmed hanging jars. I seem to have issues with hoarding jars I just can't let go, I really need to. As a way to preserve my collection I decided to jazz them up with a little leather trim and create a hanging version. They are really quick to make and are perfect for summer flowers or if you have an outside space with added tea lights.
You'll need - Old jars, neutral leather, sam brown fastenings (go for medium), hot glue gun, leather punch (optional)

Step 1. Measure the circumference of your jar and the depth of the neck part (where the lid screws on).

Step 2. Cut a piece of leather to your exact measurements.

Step 3. Fold your leather in half and half again and mark this point. 

Step 4. Using a leather punch or anything sharp make a hole - keep it as centred as possible. Repeat on the other end. Add your sam brown's - I love these, they make everything look so fancy! 

Step 5. Using a hot glue gun, glue the leather around the neck of the bottle. If you can line the sam browns up to where the joins in the jar are even better, it will make everything look much neater.

Step 6. Cut another piece of leather the same depth as the neck and approx. 24cm long. The length can be totally up to you for my short jar the length was 22cm and long jar 27cm, have a play around and see what looks best.

Once happy mark 1.5cm from the end of the leather strip, keep it centred. Punch a hole, I set my punch to no. 4, then cut a tiny line (just a few mm) with a craft knife into the main length of the strip, this will help your leather go over the sam brown. Add the 'handle' to the jar.

I really love these jars and have kept mine full of sweet peas since I made them (see this month's Styling The Seasons). I wanted to be able to use them outside but think I'll have to wait until next year when the garden is in better shape. 

Amara Interior Blog Awards 2015

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

A quick post today. If you haven't already seen I've been nominated for an Amara Interior Blog Award in the best DIY & Craft category. I'd really love your vote to get through to the next stage (feel free to use multiple emails!!!). I have put the voting link below and will try and get it into my side bar at some point. 

Delivering original DIY's and tutorials is my passion, so it would mean the world if I you could spare a few minutes to vote.

Photo of me - Jo Crawford, The Only Place (sorry it's blurry Jo!) 
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