Tag Archives: design

Oh Gatsby…..

10 Jan

For a long time now I have loved the roaring twenties era. The fashion, the design the sheer vivaciousness of life then..post war and full of decadence! So I was uber excited when I heard that the movie was being remade with Leonardo diCaprio starring as Gatsby.

Baz Luhrmann  of Romeo and Juliet fame is directing the new Gatsby movie and this second trailer was just released…the sets and costumes look so amazing I’m sure it will spark off a revival in 20’s deco style. I for one will be finding a way to incorporate flapper dresses into my everyday wear!

Will you be going to see this movie? What’s your favorite historical Era?



Dining in style…soon

4 Jan

For the last 6 years – since we moved to the USA from London my little family has been dining on a basic white round table from Ikea. We loved it when we bought it and lord knows we have had great use out of it but with more and more guests on the horizon and finally being able to entertain in our home it was high time to splash out and get a new table.

I have been keeping my eye open for a table for a while but I wasn’t getting very far – I really was torn about what to buy…wood or white? make our own concrete topped one??? Modern or traditional?

I needed help. So I started hitting my design sources for ideas (aka Pinterest!!) and I was heavily  inspired by this great dining set up……

Modern meets traditional dining room

Modern meets traditional dining room

I actually found this image on the Novogratz facebook page taken from the NY Times blog, the photograph is by  Magnus Marding.

The combination of modern & traditional is right up my alley and the legs on the above table are amazing. And so with this image in mind I finally knew what style I was looking for and after some time I found it. Yes, I have finally chosen a dining table…..

Grand Baluster in Black Drifted Oak

Grand Baluster in Black Drifted Oak

It’s from Restoration Hardware and I was able to take advantage of their end of year sale which was a bonus. I love the lines on this table and the black color is so dramatic! I cant wait to see it in situ. It also extends out to 96 inches which is perfect for the times we have more people over for dinner! (well not for another 4 weeks till we get it delivered!)

As for the chairs I am thinking I will add in some white modern eames moulded chairs around it to play off the traditional lines. Exactly like the ones in the first image above. What do you think – do you like the Black & White combination or would you add in some color???!!


Pantone Color of the Year 2013 is…..

12 Dec

Emerald Green! I am thrilled by this as its my birthstone color  but its a gorgeous rich color that is really difficult to use in interiors without it overpowering rooms. Too much and you could end up with a front room looking like the Wizard of Oz’s castle!

Here’s my favorite pin-spirations of people using emerald-green in their homes in a chic and tasteful manner…..

Emerald green walls

Emerald green walls

Accenting with Emerald green.

Accenting with Emerald green.

A chic entry way using green & polka dots!

A chic entry way using green & polka dots!

Bold curtains on a neutral backdrop

Bold curtains on a neutral backdrop

What do you think of this year’s color? Would you put any emerald-green accents in your home or is it too overpowering for you?

Pin Sources 1. 2. 3. 4.

Delightful lights by Delightfull

2 Oct

I just stumbled onto this website thanks to a weird series of clicks and redirects and its choka full of great design but my heart actually started pounding when I saw this chandelier…..

Brubeck sculptural lamp

It’s just so beautiful I don’t know what else to say…other than I MUST have this in my home!

And then I kept clicking and saw this one….

Botti ceiling lamp

and then this…….

Ike vintage lamp

oh god make it stop this is killing me… its  TOO MUCH …. I want them ALL. HELP.





Whimsical Murals for your Home.

27 Sep

The trend for murals in the home is slowly rising. Sitting right on the crest of this wave is Anthropologie  who have some wonderful ‘mural style’ wallpaper in stock at the moment. They have a few options but these two really made me stop and say WOW.

This gorgeous “Enchanted Forest’ mural was designed by Rebecca Rebouche, a native Louisianan living and working in New Orleans. The story behind it is that she was inspired to craft a family tree out of symbolic remnants that speak to your daydreams .

The Enchanted Forest by Rebecca Rebouche

I love it – it feels playful and reminds me of bedtime stories – how beautiful would this be in a kids space??!

My other favorite was this more abstract piece from Rebekah Maysales. This would be an amazing piece to hang in a little girls bedroom or as a talking point in a guest bedroom.

Dreamscape Mural by Rebekah Maysles

What do you think about the mural trend? Would you put a mural in your home?

Finding some Organic Modernism hidden in NYC….

18 Sep

Things have been a little crazy in the Renovation Diaries household the last two weeks as I have been on the road non stop travelling for work which has left me with very little time to post and NO time to update on our house progress. I will address that soon I promise and do some house updates but first I wanted to share a gem of a store I literally stumbled into in NYC.

Organic Modernism is a furniture company based out of Brooklyn  and they create and sell some of the most beautiful furniture I have ever seen. I walked about their store on Broadway just gasping at their stuff. Of course I whipped out my phone to start snapping pics and then it died on me (the joys of travelling!!) and so a few images from their website will have to do.

This Belt chair had me almost in tears – I love it so much…

Belt Chair by Organic Modernism

and check out the style of this Flamingo table – covering off two of my favorite materials  at the moment brass and walnut.

The Flamingo Table by Organic Modernism

And their lighting is equally as cool. I love the 3 light look of this aptly named Trilight.

Trilight by Organic Modernism

Finally one of my favorite pieces Alma Brass ..the bright blue fabric, the bronze dipped walnut legs..Swoon!!

Alma Brass by Organic Modernism

The awesome folks over at Organic Modernism will even work with you to create bespoke pieces, so you can design away to your heart’s content and have them make something for you. I think I just found a new favorite furniture store.



Addicted to Edition Paumes

4 Sep

Have you heard of the Paumes design book series? They are AMAZING. I am seriously addicted and need to stop buying them!!!

Edition PAUMES is a small and dynamic family-run Japanese publishers, who work in close contact with artists and designers all across Europe on different projects. The books are available in either French or Japanese but the language almost doesn’t matter as the imagery is so inspiring – the homes they feature are incredible and I would happily give my left arm to live in one of them!!


My favorites are the kids rooms and the family style books but there’s over 50 to choose from so there’s something to suit all homes – which one will you go for?

Designing a functional and stylish home office

13 Aug

My husband and I both work full-time in corporate roles – myself in marketing and him in the consulting space. We are usually based here in SF (me) and all over the world (him!) but we do get to work from home occasionally. So having a quiet serene space where we can focus and get our “real” work done is critical!

I had these grand plans of going all out girlie glamor on this home office but Jon gave me a firm NO on that front!!!!  I get it – how can he focus when surrounded by pretty pink shiny things??!!! (actually come to think of it how will I?!!).

So its back to clean and serene…here’s where I am currently  landing on the design front.

Clean and modern office space

I love the idea of an all white space and maybe adding in some pattern with a funky wallpaper

Pattern at play in a modern office

I love the graphic nature of this space – its clean but has life in it through the subtle use of color.

A graphic and clean office space

I love the way this space has been brightened through the use of prints and artwork.

A bright and cheerful space through the use of art.

Image sources. 1. 2. 3. 4.

What’s your favorite space?

When Orla meets Method…

6 Aug

Good things happen. Check this out.


Avail now at your local Target. Run.


Modern Kitchen Designs…. All By Ikea

25 Jul

We have been back and forth for the longest time on where to buy our kitchen from. Our space is fairly small and we need to utilize every aspect of it well and so we felt that getting a custom kitchen was the only way to go. Well it turns out they cost A LOT and our budget, as we get towards the end of this massive project, is getting smaller by the day so spending $30k on a kitchen isn’t an option.

So we have turned back to Ikea. I have been seeing more and more great kitchens in cool modern homes using Ikea cabinetry  and then adding in higher end appliances and a custom countertop. It seems to be the way forward especially when you are designing a simple modern all white kitchen like ours will be. They offer well made cabinetry at super reasonable prices. We think ours will end up in the $5-6k range…that’s a big saving!

Check out some of these beautiful designs all using Ikea…

1. Ikea kitchen wrapped in custom countertop via Dwell

2. Glass and white gloss kitchen via  House and Home

3. Sleek white kitchen via Living Etc

4. Real life Ikea kitchens via Apt Therapy

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