It’s a good day when a giant box of Taschen books arrive at the studio! The one I have been most excited about reading is Cabins. I became aware of this book last November when I was researching the christmas gift guide and have been desperate to get hold of it ever since… and now I have it in my hand! It’s a beautiful big hard back book with a really cool contemporary illustration on the cover by Marie-Laure Cruschi. There are lots of her striking illustrations throughout the book and really it’s worth buying just to see those.
This new Taschen title is full of creative cabin architecture and mind-blowing photography from all corners of the planet. It includes some of the most incredible, innovative buildings I have ever seen and explores architecture’s creative thinking, the ideas of a refuge appealing to the modern busy lives that we lead. For me being isolated for a while and alone with the elements really appeals. The rustic raw materials of the structures mirroring the surrounding nature would be the perfect sanctuary.
The book discusses and array of briefs, clients and their situations. One that really caught my eye was the Franke- Marzipan Bunkhouse originally built as a presentation booth for the Cottage Life Trade Show now a permanent cabin on Drag Lake, Hailburton. It has a flat square roof which is cantilevered over the structure with large deck doors. The interior is just stunning, finished with the walls covered in Douglas fir. The plan is square sitting on four concrete piers with terraces on two sides that look out over a beautiful woodland.
Other amazing structures to look out for is firstly the container guest house – I absolutely love this one, built from an old shipping container and painted deep marine blue is set with in an oasis of tropical planting, including a cacti roof garden… what’s not to love! At the other end of the spectrum the Four Cornered Villa in Finland is pictured with a bright white snowy out look reflecting the all white interior. It would be so peaceful and calm with its minimal skandi decor. The four cornered design was inspired by the island situation of the house, the architects sought out 4 different views towards the lakes and forrest. Its just an incredible building. I cannot recommend this book highly enough. A Life in the woods would be a very nice life indeed.
Cabins by Taschen is available from soo-uk.com/cabins
The South of France is still on my mind since our trip there earlier this month. I just can’t get the beautiful deep inky blues of the stunning Cote d’Azure landscapes out of my head and unsurprisingly it’s been flowing in to my work. I have hunted down some gorgeous interior pieces that really depict the feeling of the ocean and the invigorating sense of escape.
Firstly a piece that has been on my mind for quite some time, The Oilva Saapaivakirja plate designed by iconic Finnish design house Marimekko, with a striking blue watercolour design reminiscent of rippling water. I adore this piece it completely takes me straight back to the water every time I see it. Marimekko’s simple signature prints and bold use of colour keeps them at the forefront of design every season. This beautiful plate is available from amara.com
Another piece that has caught my eye this week is a striking painting by contemporary artist Tommy Fitchet of Saorsa Art. I could happily get lost in this painting with all it’s vibrant aquatic hues. Tommy paints directly on to glass to achieve this amazing depth of tone and colour giving his work a radiant energy. Tommy’s work is mainly inspired by Scottish landscape, sea scape and the changing light of the seasons. You can see more of his amazing work at saorsa-art.com
Stelton have a new moody blue range out this spring called Stockholm Aquatic it is a collection of vases and bowls inspired by ‘the full pallet of blue nuances reflected in the Baltic sea’. The pattern is of waves breaking over the shore. I love the deep midnight blues set against the stark white porcelain. This whole collection is stunning. You can see more at stelton.com.
‘The Blue View Cushion’ is inspired by ink blot prints and mirrored landscapes. This cushion invokes thoughts of the Rocky Mountains and is painted in gorgeous watery blues. I couldn’t find any information about this designer but I wanted to include it as it’s so unique and completely on trend for spring summer. It is Available from rockettstgeorge.co.uk
‘Out of the blue’ is a print designed by Crisp Sheets of Amsterdam you should take a look at there whole collection of stunning botanical art prints and inky bedding. There are several pieces I would like to of included in this feature. The print is made with aquarelle and printed on high quality 300 gram matte, bright white bamboo paper. It would be perfect displayed with a collection of framed prints.
Hopefully some of these beautiful accessories will of wet your appetite, they certainly transport me back to the freedom of being out on the water. A few of these pieces will help me hang on to the Cote d’azure for a little bit longer, my life aquatic.
I am soooo excited about these lovely new products we have arriving in the shop next week, I just had to share a few pictures with you. These little One Must Dash – ‘This is a damn good day for disco’ totes are perfect for fashionable trips to the shops and are only £18 (bargain!) plastic bags be gone. We also have a new print arriving from One Must Dash which I have been lusting after for a very long time ‘This is not a bloody hotel’ which just makes me smile every time see it, hopefully some one will take note when I hang it up in our house. We have also been continuing to expand our own SOOuK range of botanical prints with all this spring feeling in the air, these sunny day’s have been inspiring. We have two very beautiful Eucalyptus giclee art prints arriving to the shop, the perfect seasonal additions to our existing collection. Enjoy the sun lovely people and long may it continue!
Last week instead of heading straight to the studio I sneaked in to Edinburgh with HB. We went to the botanics to have a look inside the tropical palm houses. Its well over a year now since my palm tree obsession started and it still seems to be going full swing, along with many other botanical obsessions which I have added on! There was a definite feeling of spring in the air as the sun was streaming through the enormous pre-victorian windows. It was just a beautiful visual escape and so nice to feel warm after a long Scottish winter. I have noticed that it hasn’t taken long for the sizzling palm trend to be picked up by the interiors market (us included). Lots of designers have developed palm print ranges for 2015. I am particularly liking House of Hackney, they have a wonderful collection of interior pieces with a real 1930’s feel to them. They have embraced bold prints and bright emerald greens, although the tropical trend is not all about wild colours and statement walls it can be done in a more minimal way too, with a subtle pop of pattern that can be seamlessly introduced to your current home decor to create your own paradise. Our range of palm leaf prints are about bold graphic pattern and texture rather than bright busy colours. Showing that there are many ways to make sure you don’t get left in the shade this season.
Notebook’s- House of Hackney.
Wallpaper – Amara.
Mugs, prints and cards – SOOuK.
We have another feature out this week, this time the Scotland On Sunday featured a beautiful house we shot last year in Edinburgh. I have been excited to share this really quirky ground floor flat set at the foot of Calton hill in. The property had wonderful detailing and great proportions when the owner Tobiaz Brunning bought it 5 years ago, but it had an awkward layout and needed a bit of life put back in to it after a developer had neutralised the whole house, it was a bit bland! Now the house has had a whole new look, subway tiles and brick effect wallpaper in the kitchen give the room a New York loft style. Tobiaz has a real passion for vintage furniture and accessories and the house is now filled with wonderful unique pieces in every room. I fell in love with the old leather trunks stacked up beside the bed to make perfect bedside tables. Tobiaz’ flat also had a typical Edinburgh flat box room which benefited from victorian celling hight. He has cleverly installed a double bed deck for when guests come to stay, leaving all the floor space for a desk and extra wardrobe storage. The bathroom was also an awkward space, but through clever thought and reconfiguration Tobiaz managed to fit a bath in and continue the decoration with the subway tiles. I absolutely love the Mathew Williamson wall paper that greets you on arrival, the bright orange and pink pattern paper is on all walls of the vestibule and is teamed with a beautiful old bureau. The over all look and style of his home is really eclectic, one of a kind. This home really has been transformed in to the perfect hill side haven.
I am delighted to see another of our features in House Beautiful this month. The stunning property’s are designed by two architect friends Ryan and Sandy from Arka Architects. They joined forces to design two contemporary homes and are now living right next door to each other! Both homes boast beautiful large open plan living spaces with clean unfussy lines that carry through to the decor choices too. I absolutely love the bespoke American Ash slatted screen that Sandy had commissioned, it’s perfect for dividing the space with out installing a chunky door. I also LOVE the cut out aperture’s in Ryan’s house they add really beautiful detail, everywhere you look there is a perfectly framed view. Both homes show that planning to perfection, considering each other as well as design and layout creates stunning contemporary living. You can have a look at more gorgeous work from Arka here. These two really are the perfect pair!
You can read more about their story in Februarys addition of House Beautiful as always beautiful words by Fiona at the property files.
The only good thing to come out of January – Top Drawer and Home London have been on (woo hoo!). I flew down first thing on Sunday with the lovely Holly (aka Holly Brown designs) and what a day we had. Olympia was the new venue for the design show this year, a much better venue in my opinion. The stands were well laid out and there was a great feeling of space with the spectacular domed ceilings. I was excited to look for some new talent for the SOOuK shop and I was not disappointed. Over 700 hand selected Iconic designers and manufacturers of lifestyle and fashion products, many new and exclusive to Top Drawer. One of my new favourites includes Above and Beyond founded in 2011 by Claudia Pape. A Graphic Designer by trade, she has a simple monochrome pallet throughout, (are you surprised I like it?!), prints, plates and bedding – all gorgeous. She creates ideas and concepts that go beyond simply applying a graphic or pattern to an item. Whether it is to connect two pillow cases to form a unit, or turn two plates into a set telling the time, there is always a reason behind what she does, her stand really stood out above (and beyond) the rest.
Another stand that I was completely blown away by was Skagerk. The styling on this stand was phenomenal with modern white tiles grouted in black, succulents and brass accessories made this one a clear winner for me. Is it natural to get this excited about furniture? This Danish company famous for many pieces, but more recently Skagerak’s prizewinning Georg series. I fell madly in love with Christina Liljenberg Halstrom’s console table and stool a while back. It was quite a moment being able to see and touch it. This season Skagerak has extended the series with three new items in untreated oak. But it’s the black one for me.
International had a very striking lighting display again this year – I went looking for it as it was a real highlight last time! I actually NEED their industrial apollo white lights in my life. So beautiful and I love the idea of mixing and matching to get a different effect, just a brilliant design.
We spent 5 hours walking round, meeting companies and seeing all of their new ideas. I would highly recommend any design lover a visit to Top Drawer and Home London when it next comes round in September. I am over whelmed by the wealth of design talent at top drawer this year. A little look in side the best Top Drawer ever.
This week I am mostly obsessing about marble. It started with a beautiful necklase I saw on & other stories and it been spiralling out of control ever since, those of you who follow me on Pinterest I’m sure will of noticed! Layers of beautiful white, black and grey stone every piece completely unique, sleek and smooth, I need to marbalize! I have noticed the trend filtering though to interiors too. Top of my list is Ferm livings brand new range of marble candle holders, they are stunning, I also adore their marble coffee tables which were brought to my attention only this evening by the lovely ‘property files’ I have attached some gorgeous pictures of Ferm’s new range and an image of an apple computer with a marble cover. AMAZING. I found this image on Pinterest and must find out more… perhaps a little christmas pressi (HB hope your listening) Ive also included some other accessorise from this seasons coolest trend.
It’s all been go go go at SOOuK head quarters the past few weeks. My head has been crammed pack full of things to do! I have been organising new lines for the shop (more on that coming soon!) and also working on our new collection. The first art prints arrived today and I am SO excited about them I had to share them with you. I have spent the summer obsessing over palm trees and just generally being outside as much as I can. Living in Scotland you have to seize these opportunities! I have two Palm trees in my studio (they would never survive outside) they’re my own little bit of paradise to keep me calm on the dark winter days. When the bright sunlight floods in they cast the most incredible shadows on my white floor and white walls. This has been the inspiration behind the collection. The Palms are printed on the most beautiful soft, bright white art paper. The contrasty black palm leaves look so punchy set against black frames and white walls. We are taking pre-orders for these now please email [email protected] Have a great weekend!
We are just back from a fantastic long weekend in Copenhagen. It was my first time visiting the city and it was truly a design lovers paradise. I am going to share a few different posts about our trip but firstly here are some pictures of the very cool apartment we stayed in. The STAY Copenhagen is a block of 12 different apartments set on the waterfront. The apartments are incredibly light and spacious with floor to celling windows in all of the rooms. All of the interior spaces have been designed by HAY keeping a simple pallet of only black and white which was heaven for me! no clutter just clean and extremely minimal. We were lucky on arrival to be told that ours had been upgraded to a 3 bedroom apartment with balcony which was enormous. There was an organic store on the ground level which had pretty much anything you could need for your trip. The hotel also has its own danish bakery stacked with delicious pastries and fresh artisan breads.What more could you ask for!
As I said in my ‘fun and fabulous’ post (20.07.14) I have been revisiting house features from last year. This is another of my favourites from 25 Beautiful Homes last year. It is the stunning home of Jack Irvine also known as Brave Little Note, a musician from Edinburgh. Her gorgeous victorian double upper was featured in the Januarys edition. Beautiful high ceilings allow light to flood through the house, the enormous floor to ceiling victorian windows all have original shutters leaving the windows free of imposing curtains. I love the brave paint and wall paper choices in this house, the black living room is a bold statement and works amazingly well with the furniture in particular the Charles Eames basket chair which Jack found on ebay. She chose more delicate tones for the sleeping spaces, with a soft blue for Amelie’s room and a striking feature wall paper with birds for her own room. Jack completely redesigned the kitchen maximising space by having high units which sit comfortably with the high ceilings and leave plenty of space for a large dining table for friends and family. I love the kooky handles Jack sourced for her units they add a huge amount of character as well as style. There are so many lovely parts of her home, again it would be hard to choose a favourite… the colour coded book case is a must and obviously the Eames chair, Its amazing!
Grey dreaming…. something I find my self doing on a regular basis! Grey interiors have been having a major moment of late, some associate grey with industrial environments or maybe colour that is depicting the nations mood? depressing?. Not me I LOVE grey. All shades.
Soft, pale, calm shades for light, open, airy spaces adding texture for a decorative soft edge. These are perfect for bedrooms, studios or rooms with high ceilings to promote quiet relaxation.
Deeper, darker, richer hues for snugs, smaller rooms and to make a bolder statement add ascents of neon or burnt orange. I actually need to stop painting grey walls in my home, it’s getting out of hand! We have a large sliding grey wall separating our living room/sung and another grey feature wall in the sung (which is a very small room) with a bright yellow sofa in front of it. The two contrast brilliantly and make for a really inspirational space to read and chill out in away from the kids.
These pictures are some of my favourite ‘Grey Dreaming’ pictures found on pinterest.
I thought I would share a few of my favourite Magazine features from shoots we did last year. Starting with this gorgeous victorian house in Edinburgh shot for House Beautiful UK. Owned by Juliet and Justin Moletta (of Moletta Munro). The 3 story house with all of it’s original features intact is a beautiful blend of period and contemporary styles. I shot and styled this house over two days last summer and everywhere I looked there were amazing styling props to be found! It was quite a job lugging kit up and down the large staircases but such a treat to work in such a beautifully light space.
There were retro and iconic vintage furniture styles combined for a strong architectural look. Purple Muuto socket lamps, Eames chairs, bright moroccan pouffes and Neon Hay throws all put together against a soft grey walls and the over all look is fun and fabulous!
There are just too many beautiful pieces of furniture and art dotted all over the house for me to pick a favourite, but on my list of bits to steal would be the bright moroccan pouffes and lets’ be honest pretty much anything by Hay!
The day has finally arrived… The new season Claire Gaudion delivery is here! I have been SO excited about sharing these geometric beauties with you. For those of you not familiar with the amazingly talented Claire she is a British born textile artist. Her patterns are inspired from the kaleidoscopic landscape of her beloved island Guernsey. I just can’t get enough of her bright, bold and graphic patterns. We already stock her gorgeous scarves in our store, but you all know my heart lies with interiors so the homeware addition to her collection is just too much!. These cushions and new stationary lines are now available to buy on our website. I hope you love them as much as me!
Punchy typographical, black and white art prints have been around for a while now, but I still just can’t get enough of them! I have quite a sizeable collection around my own home and the quirky phrases really make me smile. Some of my current favourite artists include Anthony Burrill, the first piece of art we bought for our house when we had finished the build, ” I like it what is it”, makes me laugh out loud everyday. One must dash’s, “small talk”, is one of my all time favourite pictures and I am seriously lusting after, “this is not a bloody hotel”. I love Anki and Anneli’s hilarious out look on life, it really come across in their work. Ham is a new discovery and I first became aware of them at a design show in London. Established in 2011 by Jo Robinson her designs are based on her own childhood nostalgia, keeping all of the designs minimal, punchy, black and white. The superhero rabbit is a personal favourite but I found it hard just to pick one. Kristina Dam’s (based in Denmark) stunning 3d and embossed illustrations are also on my list of current obsessions. I will run out of wall space if I keep this up! All of these artists are completely amazing and I would highly recommend checking out their work.
|www.onemustdash.com| www.kristinadam.dk| www.hammade.com| www.anthonyburril.com| other prints from SOOuK
I’m really excited to be featured in June’s edition of House Beautiful. It’s a lovely spread written by the very talented Fiona Reid on how we built our studio. Reading it brings back great memories of the build and all the hard work that went into the planning. The studio was designed by Arka architects at the same time our farm house was being redesigned. I am not a very patient person and this process took AGES! Planning permission, building warrants and worst of all motivating builders! I had very definite ideas on how the building should look externally and feel on the inside. These things have absolutely been achieved. The white walls and flooring create a calm and relaxing work environment, they are practical for my work too. I look forward to going to work and even though the studio is just at the bottom of the garden it separates work and home life. It was well worth the wait.
May’s issue of House Beautiful has hit the shops featuring our garden room shoot ‘inside out’ so I thought I would share a few more images from the shoot with you.
This secluded garden room is one of the most beautiful extensions I have ever set foot in. Cleverly extended from the original victorian house the room is completely hidden from the drive and gives the illusion of being a floating glass box. The combination of woods used in the window frames, flooring and furniture looks incredible as set beneath the owners tree house which is hung above the garden room in an enormous pine tree! it’s branches cascade over the windows and when in full summer bloom give a feeling of being ever more tucked away.
We shot this room on a VERY wet February day, the room was so cozy with the wood burning stove on and the underfloor heating. It was lovely to be tucked up inside and so close to the stunning garden views at the same time.
This project was designed by an amazing team of architects at Arka Architects in Scotland. I would highly recommend taking a look at there website to see their other award winning projects.
for further information on styling or photography please contact me through soo-uk.com
This months House Beautiful features a lovely shoot I did a few months ago of Cat and Stuart’s Home. The mezzanine apartment in Glasgow’s west end was a former military building. The property has stunning double height, south facing sash-and-case windows which let light flood in to the house. Cat and Stuart have filled the apartment with quirky, eclectic vintage finds which add real character to the contemporary space and reflects their interests in art and design.
I absolutely loved the strong graphic lines from the black mezzanine. It really works well with the images from society6 and the prints from SOOuK of course!
This post is a little later than it was supposed to be… honestly I had the post London blues! I spent a fantastic weekend with @bravelittlenote and @ladyfoo at the London design shows Top drawer, Gift and Home.
We spent the night at the very cool Ace hotel in Shoreditch (photo above). It’s a little style over substance but the style is so lovely it’s definitely worth a visit.
The shows were brilliant. It was like christmas all over again! We had a lovely time meeting up with our existing suppliers and meeting some fantastic new design talent. We definitely have our eye on some great new pieces for the SOOuK shop. Watch this space!
This months House Beautiful is out now and features the stunning home designed by owners Mhairi and Steven Dobbie. Its on the island North Uist, possibly one of the most beautiful and serene places I have ever visited!
Here is a little preview from our latest shoot. The throw is from a stunning range from Tori Murphy and the prints are our very own SOOuK exclusives. All available online at SOOuK from January.
Hope you love them as much as we do!
Above are some photographs I took for House Beautiful magazine about this time last year, (printed april 2013). It is the very beautiful home of Jenny, John and little Elspeth. Jenny and John, (founders of happinest), lovingly restored their top floor Edinburgh tenement while adapting it to suit their families needs. A branch from the garden adds unique impact to the bedroom. The mid-century bureau, (middle left), looks fabulous set against their retro styled living room while the black and white thirties style bathroom really compliments the original roll top bath. There are so many great finds in this immaculately styled house. I’d quite like to take a few things home with me…
Autumn is well and truly set in here. It’s time to look cosy socks and jumpers out! I am LOVING all the beautiful earthy autumnal tones and in particular I am having a moment with wood. Bring the natural world in but keep your space fresh and light. These pictures show how natural materials, neutral tones and texture can create a dramatic yet tranquil interior.
Maybe the boys need a tree house….
I have posted a few photo’s from a shoot last week. The beautiful Manor Place in Edinburgh. I would highly recommend a little break here! The first floor room comes complete with it’s own drawing room that spans length of the building! The lovely owner Corinne has impeccable taste with calm soft greys throughout and beautiful styling. It was such a treat to spend time there.
Photography by Susan Burnell
Styling by Jennifer Angus
In 2008 James, Leon (then just one) and I stumbled upon an old run down farm house close to where we were living. It was surrounded by beautiful fields and I fell madly in love with it straight away. I was completely blind to any of it’s flaws.
After two years of trying to obtain planning permission (and had another baby!) we finally began the build in the winter of 2010. It was the coldest snowiest I have ever seen!
But finally as the snow began to thaw and spring broke through our beautiful home did too.
I cant even begin to describe how exciting it is to build your own home from the ground up. I would recommend it to anyone. I was so lucky to be introduced to the lovely Adam Toleman (arka-architects.co.uk) He was completely on the same page as us. Actually probably a few pages a head of us! His drawings were far beyond our dreams. Listening to the needs of our new family and adding in the beautiful design features we longed for to make our home truly unique.