Welcome to my design blog, where you'll see posts about anything from my current interiors obsession, the latest fabric and wallpaper collections and 'how to' guides for all things interiors related. I love colour and mixing pattern, but also covet an uncluttered interiors look. I especially love the moment when you see something so beautiful that it makes you take a sharp intake of breath. Happy reading, and if you have any questions, would like to chat about anything interiors related, or share your interiors obsession, please use the contact form to get in touch.

Thank you,

Louise

House of Hackney's first outdoor fabric

26 Jun 2019

A photo of the new House of Hackney Palmeral print for outdoor use.

One of my favourite interiors brands, House of Hackney, who are known for their daring and quirky prints, have just released a new fabric which is suitable for our door use. They took one of their designs, Palmeral, and reimagined it in a fresh colour palette of off white and green. This colour fast and water resistant fabric can be used for anything from outdoor cushions to furnishing yachts (if you are lucky enough to have one!)

My thoughts on the colour Living Coral in Cardiff Life Magazine

31 May 2019

A photo which accompanies the Cardiff Life article about Living Coral
Hear what I and my fellow designers have got to say about Pantone's colour of the year, Living Coral, and how to use it, in this month's Cardiff Life magazine. The article is on pages 84-86, and you can read it here. Do you think you could use it in your home?

Sustainability in furniture design

7 May 2019

A photo of the new Componibili Bio.
Sustainability is something that is becoming more and more important in interior design - not just where we buy items from and how far they've travelled to get to us, but also the materials that they are made from. Kartell, one of Italy's best known design brands, have just released the world's first piece of furniture made from a bioplastic called Bio-On. It's a fully sustainable version of one of their best selling items - the Componibili modular unit, and it comes in four delicious pastel shades. They may be 100% sustainable, but they are also super cute and bang on trend with this seasons colours. You can buy them here

The latest trend in shutters

24 Feb 2019

A photo of California Shutters new range in ash wood.

Forget painted shutters - the new style direction for window shutters is bare wood. These full height shutters made from sustainably sourced ash are the newest product from California Shutters, and are set to be big this year.

californiashutters.co.uk

My new favourite tile!

7 Feb 2019

A picture of the Lampas Marint pattern tile from Topps Tiles

I was searching for some tiles for a client's splashback recently and came across these beauties from Topps Tiles. There's long been a trend for patterned tiles, with lots of geometric shapes and bold colours going on, but I've begun to see more and more tiles with a pattern in the surface of the tile itself. These ones are a lovely example, and the deep blue colour is just stunning. To get a closer look at them, follow the link below.

Lampas Pattern Marine tile

Pantone announce their colour of the year 2019

11 Dec 2018

a shot of a coral reef with the description Color of the Year 2019

Leading colour experts Pantone have annouced the shade which they think will be the colour of the year for next year - Coral pink. It might look very bright and scary, but it's actually quite easy to use. I wouldn't suggest painting a whole room in it, as that might be a bit overwhelming, but I would use it in small doses, such as on cushions or in artwork, to liven up a shceme. Pantone say that the colour is meant to 'embrace us with warmth and nourishment and provide comfort and bouyancy in our continually shifting envirnoment', which basically means it's a happy, uplifting colour, and might just cheer us all up!

My work featured on Homify

8 Oct 2018

a view of the dressed bed, pink walls and blackout lined curtainsMy work has been featured in an article on Homify - one of the leading online ideas platforms for all things interiors. My project is in an article on how to avoid common mistakes when designing a bedroom. The article mentions how important it is to block out light for a good nights sleep - something I addressed by adding blackout lining to the curtains and adding an extra layer of window dressing with the wooden Venetian blinds. To see the article, please use the link below.

Homfy article - Are you guilty of these 8 bedroom design mistakes?

Colourful lamp update

A photo of my painted and wallpapered hallway cupboard.

If you’ve been reading my blog posts, you probably know that I’m a fan of Annie Sloan chalk paint, and I love using it to update and refresh tired bits of furniture. I recently painted and wallpapered an old Ikea cupboard in my hallway (which you can read about here) which I was really pleased with. Once I’d done that, I decided that the green lamp base I had on the cupboard wasn’t sitting quite right with the darker green walls of my hallway and the rich teal of the newly painted cupboard.

A photo of the green lamp base before painting.

I knew I wanted to add some more colour to the scheme, and found this fab lamp from Pacific Lifestyle:

A photo of a table lamp with an orange base that I liked.

I loved the colour and thought it would be a perfect contrast to the darker green and teal colours around it, but in the interests of not replacing things for the sake of it, I decided not to buy a new lamp and to paint my green lamp base in a similar colour instead.

I don’t know if you’re familiar with Annie Sloan’s chalk paint, but it comes in a wonderful set of colours. I love them all, but the perfect colour for my lamp wasn’t there, so decided to mix the paint colour myself (this is something Annie suggests doing herself to get the right shade).

I bought two tester pots, one Barcelona Orange and one in Emporer’s Silk.

A photo of the Barcelona Orange tester pot. A photo of the Emperor's Silk tester pot.

Mixing the colours was as easy as putting them into a bowl and adding little bits of each until I was happy with the colour.

A photo of the two open tester pots before I began mixing them.
A photo of the colours being mixed together. A photo of the finished mixed colour.

Now the colour was right, I was ready to start painting. I wanted the lamp to have a smooth contemporary finish, so as Annie Sloan advises, I added a small amount of water to the paint and to achieve a flat, non-textured look.

A photo of me adding water to the paint.

I worked all the way around the lamp, turning it as I went so that there were no drips. I used two coats of paint to cover the green of the lamp base, and then left it to dry.

A photo of my painting the lamp base.
A photo of the lamp painted three quarters of the way.
A photo of the lamp with two coats of paint on it.

Once the paint was dry, I used the Annie Sloan wax to finish and protect the chalk paint.

A photo of the Annie Sloan wax and a cloth to apply it with.
A photo of me applying the wax with a cloth.

I then put the lamp back together and added the shade. It really was that simple. Here’s the finished lamp back on the cupboard.

A photo of the finished lamp sitting on the hallway cupboard.

I really love this pop of colour against the dark walls and cupboard. It picks out the colour of the terracotta tiles on the floor, and the rust colour on the cupboard handles. The reason this colour works so well is that red-orange is opposite blue-green on the colour spectrum, so the shades really contrast and set each other off.

The colour reminds me of Living Coral, Pantone’s colour of the year for 2019. That colour works so well with turquoise for the same reason. I think this shade has lifted my whole hallway scheme, and I like it so much it’s inspired me to add more of it into my hallway - watch this space to see where it turns up next!

 

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@louise_m_interiors

Happy Sunday! I've been working on a revamp of my website and a new way to display my portfolio, so have been looking through my completed project photos to choose some more detail shots. I love this one as I am a bit obsessed with lighting and love the combination of black and pale pink, so it's definitely going in. What are you up to today? And it's finally finished! I've been showing you bits of this project along the way, and there's a piece on my blog about it, so your probably pretty familiar with this one. I started on it back in December, and there have been a few ups and downs (especially with the carpentry) but it's all done now, yay! It needs styling, and I'll be going to take pics soon to show you the whole thing, but I couldn't resist sharing the final piece of the jigsaw. I wouldn't usually post a before pic on here but I'm so excited to be involved in this one. It's a local centre for the community run by a church, who provide services such as an emergency night shelter, hot meals three times a week and a clothing bank for the homeless and vulnerable members of the community. The lovely Nkini who runs the centre has wanted to make the it more welcoming to guests for a long time, so I offered to help in any way I could. What we can do depends on the funds we can raise, but we'd like to widen the kitchen (to make it safer), make a wetroom/loo with wheelchair access, change the windows, redecorate, add some nicer furniture and generally make it feel a lot nicer. The two spaces are also used for a women's group, choir, exercise class and a prayer group, so they need to be functional and work hard. Easy eh?
If anyone has anything they could donate or would like to help, please get in touch. New project time!
We're starting with the kitchen, moving it from one room to another which is much bigger. We talked through all the possibilities of knocking through the existing kitchen to make it larger, but they didn't make sense for the footprint or flow of the house. The new kitchen will be in the old lounge, which has a huge, deep chimney breast which I suggested taking out to make room for some banquette seating, so that we can fit in both an island and the client's large round dining table with enough seating for all the family. It's a big job - we've got a structural engineer looking at it this week - but the client is amazing and wants to go for it!

P.S. the client sent me the pic when we were discussing ideas, so I don't know where it's from - if anyone does please let me know so I can credit. Look what came with my trade pack from @linwood_fabric yesterday! Gorgeous packaging of samples, using designs from their new Omega Prints collection, and a perfect set of postcards that are almost too lovely to use. I love it when brands add in these touches, it really gets the creative brain going and makes me want to get designing with their wonderful fabrics. Here's a concept or moodboard for a kitchen I'm working on, with a client based in London. We started with the colour for the kitchen units which is Goblin from Little Greene - a colour I absolutely love and have been wanting to use for ages. I'm so pleased the clients loved it too!