Thursday, 23 July 2015

{ L i v i n g r o o m }

Summer updates
(new sofa, new layout)

Isn't it funny how just changing out one piece of furniture can make such a difference to the look and feel of a room? 
This is exactly what happened in our living room when we got a new sofa a couple of weeks back.
Gone are the old , uncomfortable leather sofa's......
.....hello new, squishy, deep-seated sofa-chaise!
And it has made such a difference!

So this has been a long tome coming....
When I posted about my plans for a new sofa back on October last year, I had the entire living room mapped out how I would ideally like it. But because I lacked the funds to get a new one at the time, I ended up DIY'ing a new sofa cover for one of the old ones instead...
It has served me well. Even if it didn't make the sofa's more comfortable, at least it was easier on the eye....But of course it meant keeping that old awkward living room layout....

....until now!
Finally I've got the layout I'd planned all those months ago....and what a difference!
The room is now less stuffy, more open and more comfortable... has actually improved the way we use the room: With more floor space and a more defined area for just chilling at the end of the day.

So today I am sharing some pictures I quickly took of the new and improved living room yesterday:
With the new sofa, and other changes that has subsequently happened in there...including my most recent DIY, which is perhaps the one I am most proud of to date: A new sideboard, MCM style!!

If you're curious you can see the old living room layout and what it used to look like here.
And here's what it looks like now:

I can tell you: Finding the perfect sofa/chaise , which was essentially the style I was after in order to achieve my dream lay-out, to fit this space was not easy, but I am really happy with my end choice: This IKEA soderhamn modular range combination works perfectly.
And I love the deep seats and the relaxed feel it adds to the room. And that minty-blue works perfectly in this room (And if I ever grow sick of it, I can change the color by swapping covers on the sofa....bonus!!)
I can't tell you guys how pleased I was to see the back of the old sofa's...having been with us for almost 15 years, they really had seen better days.
...and of course , the observant of you all will have noticed that the old bookshelf is gone as well! Hello, mid century modern sideboard!!
And yes....that's a DIY....from scratch: Made from a piece of ply-wood....
Can you tell that I am chuffed with it?
It is my first attempt a cabinet-making, and I think I've done a great job....even if I do say so myself!
I love it...
....and yes, of course there will be a tutorial on how I made it, so stay tuned for that one, coming next week!

If you have been following along here for a while, you will recognize that gorgeous rattan chair from my garden post a couple of months back....I love it so much I decided to move it can easily be brought back outside if it is a particularly glorious day, and I feel like lounging in style ;)
Doesn't it look great in it's new space by the window?
I also love the way my vintage Formica coffee table from An Artful life ,now has pride of place in the middle of the room, as unfortunately my DIY MCM coffee table is now a bit too big for the space...
You win some, then you loose some...
C'est la vie!

So what do you think of my new look living room and my new sofa?
Do you think it was bold of me to go with that icy-blue color?
And what do you think of the new layout....and THAT DIY sideboard??
I hope you'll all tune in for the how-to next week.

Until then, happy weekend peeps!

Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Laura Lea Design

#Eclecticcollective pop up shop

There is something quite exciting happening in the little premises just outside Leytonstone tube station in East London...
Filled with beautiful and unique textiles, art, furniture and quirky homeware, a little shop has emerged....
But this is so much more than that...
It is the beginning of a movement:  to encourage, support and enable talent to grow in a collective environment, sharing ideas and nurturing new talent...this is the Laura Lea Design boutique! 

Laura Lea is a curator and a self proclaimed collector of all things quirky and beautiful:
"I would honestly rather have art than food"
And she founded Laura Lea Design in the summer of 2014, out of a sense of wanting to collaborate with and support new and up-and-coming build a platform for emerging British artists and talents to grow in a collective environment, sharing ideas and support each other.

She has previously worked with a range of designers and artists , from emerging talents to the big names, curating and setting up exhibitions and art shows, and this is her second pop up store.

" I am trying to create a collective- a moving, revolving collective of artists and designers who are open to each other and want to connect and share. Who want to lift each other up."

I am lucky enough to be part of this #eclectivecollective movement that Laura is spearheading with her infectious enthusiasm, as through Laura's collaboration with An Artful Life's Kate Withfield, my gilded concrete bowls are available to buy at the Design boutique.
And of course I had the pleasure of going to the opening night of the store on Saturday:

It felt really amazing to be part of such a creative group of people and to meet some of the other designers and makers ....and if Laura has set out to create a community of like-minded design enthusiasts, she has definitely succeeded in creating a great vibe, with people milling around inside and outside the shop, drink in hand, chatting away to each other and perusing the work on display.

 The store is filled to the brim with beautifully unusual home-wares, art, cards and jewelry by an eclectic range of designers and artists , sourced and handpicked by Laura and her creative associates.

Laura Lea's creative vision is evident in the collection of stock displayed:

 This is not your usual home-ware shop
"some of it is quite raw and has a punk edge"

Featuring all aspects of art and design, the collective has come together in Laura Lea's design boutique to rethink the way makers and artists work together to tell their stories and connect with the customers.
Many of the products has been made exclusively for the pop up to provide an original collection showcasing emerging trends, and providing customers with the opportunity to discover the next generation of UK design talents.

Featuring work by artits such as Angharad Jefferson, Sophie Adamson, Lorna Syson, Augusta Akerman , Archie Proudfoot, Rebecca Mason and Anna mention a few(???), alongside products from An Artful Life, Edge of home, East Wick, Grain and Knot,  Geo Fleur, This Way To The Circus and Espergaerde.....I could go on....
It is an unique and eclectic mix of products by a stellar line up of up-and-coming talent, carefully curated by Laura Lea.
The shop looks amazing and all the uniquely crafted work is beautifully displayed:


From neon art to soy candles, handmade lampshades to greeting cards, Laura Lea has realized her vision of an eclectic collective community of art and design.
But this is so much more than just a shop: 
Laura wants to bring the artists even closer to the customers, by providing interactive experiences every weekend, when visiting artists and designers will be on hand to discuss their work live, making bespoke pieces in the shop and hosting workshops...

A lot of Laura's handpicked designers and makers are women, and Laura is on a mission to empower them through the collective, by uniting them and supporting them:
A community of sharing and collaborating, helping each other become more successful, stronger and better. 
Look out for Laura's self penned hashtag #wearethewomen on social media to get involved!

Laura Lea may be a relatively new name on the London art scene, but with her vision and determination, definitely one to watch!

The Laura Lea Design boutique pop up will be at 

No.1 Station Forecourt
Church Lane

until 31st August.

Visit Laura's website for more information on visiting artists and designers and dates for the weekly in-house workshops!