Amazing Architecture

How to use lighting in a bathroom

Design Essentials – Lighting 

Lighting is literally the life blood of a design; it can make a design shine (pardon the pun!). Interior Design is all about making the absolute best of every space, and bathrooms can unfortunately be sadly overlooked when it comes to lighting.  This is a huge shame as it can create some of the most dramatic bathrooms.

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This bathroom was designed for a gorgeous town house Interior Design in Mayfair.  It needed to work within the more traditional design of the house, but with a slightly more contemporary feel.  We needed to replicate the original cornice that we had retained throughout the rest of the property; this had unfortunately been removed from these two levels during a 1970s renovation, however was still present on the other 4 floors of the house.  However, we wanted to create more of a feature with the cornice and lighting on the newly renovated floors.  Normally, the bathroom gets abandoned at this point and gets stuck with the normal spot lighting.  We will not abandon the bathroom, we want it to be just as gorgeous as the rest of the property, and so we also used the beautiful cornice lighting within both bathrooms.

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As you can see it makes quite an effect! This bathroom was designed with blue LED strip lighting and completely changes the room from a more contemporary feel to a rocking modern feel that literally charges with energy.

It can be a much more subtle effect when using a bright white LED light, as you can see below.  It still makes the entire shower room glow, but is less “in your face” and more subtle.

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We always treat each of our clients as individuals, and we realise that the LED blue lighting may not be for everyone, but it exactly fulfilled our clients brief. Interior Design is always about the finished project and we were ecstatic to see the look on our clients faces when they saw the bathrooms that we had created for them.

Then book your first consultation today. We can’t wait to work with you

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One of the best design shows in London…

September is always a really interesting time of year in the design world; together with the change from flip-flops to boots we are invited to attend a whole host of amazing design shows.  One of my favourites of these shows is Tent London, held in the Old Truman Brewery in Shoreditch this show always produces something wonderful that gets you instantly thinking of how you can push your designs further, make more of your space and widen the choices you offer clients.  This year’s tent was no exception; in fact it was by far the most inspirational yet.

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This year I was super impressed that Tent actually took over the ground floor area of the brewery which was transformed beautifully from its normal market stalls and gorgeous food to a sleek and modern design show – the space was almost unrecognisable!  The show really made the most of the different levels available to it and it flowed together from level to level very easily – I loved it!

These are a few of my favourite selections from the show…

First up, and the first things that hits you as you come through is Portuguese company Ginger & Jagger’s collaborative stall with Munna.  The Walnut cabinet is simply beautiful (although I think it would be greatly improved with slow close hinges!) and will make a fantastic feature piece for future designs as it would work great as bedroom storage or even as a bar in a formal lounge!

The detailing is fantastic.

One of my favourite finds was Endesigns (http://www.endesigns.eu/) they do some amazing, quirky and very differently designed pieces. I love the floor tiles below (how cool would these be in a funky boutique hotel lobby?!)

Overall the show, I felt, was a great success and was a wonderful way to spend a Sunday as we woke up much more energized and excited to look in to all the new products on Monday morning!

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Behind the white on white design

This design was the Finalist in the Living Space design of the year only recently and we are constantly getting questions on how to re-create parts of this wonderful white on white design.  Here we break down a few of the amazing features of this design

The aim of this bathroom was to have some glitz and glamour whilst still having a completely usable space…and of course it HAD to be white! Mosaic by Bizazza Floor tiles by Surface Bath and toilet by Living House.

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1. Did you used the same tile on all walls?
The wall tiles are two different colours of Bizazza Tiles, the beautiful splash back is actually inlaid with white gold to create an extremely glitzy finish. They are called ‘Narcisio’ part of the Shading blends

2. What size are the floor tiles?
They are 60cm square
(Did you know the image below has been added to almost 10,000 ideas books over on Houzz??!)

Project 3 - Notting Hill - Image 63. How is the bed held up?
The bed is attached to the supporting wall behind the headboard and has a central leg. It’s from a company called Lago and the details of the bed can be found here

4. Do you remember the brand of flooring used here? Is it laminate floating floor?
The flooring used here is an engineered German oak in a brushed ‘fridge white’ it is from one of our trade suppliers so unfortunately I can’t pass on any contact details that would be of use to you. It was very important with this flooring that it as a brushed finish rather than a sprayed finish as it means that it retains more of the patina of the wood.

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5. What is the wall colour?
The whole property has been painted in Brilliant White

6. How do you tuck the duvet underneath the bed?
There is a thin platform with the slats underneath for the mattress, this is where the duvet is tucked in

Interesting in having your property designed?

So if you have any more questions on any of our designs please don’t hesitate to leave us a comment or give us a tweet

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Why bespoke wardrobes are best for busy people

Wardrobes are wardrobes, right? Wrong! Bespoke wardrobes add value to your property, make your rooms look gorgeous and they even save you time! They are a fantastic investment for you and your property.

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Most of our clients are extremely busy people who run their own businesses, they are CEOs and Directors, they don’t have time to waste and, let’s be honest, fashion isn’t always the top priority in the boardroom. However, everyone likes to look their best and creating a wardrobe storage system that is tailored perfectly to you will allow you to look your best and may even give you a few extra minutes in bed (we can’t promise that however!)

 

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This wardrobe system was created for a client that had a teenage daughter, the wardrobe is actually triangular and contains a larger variety of different internal storage so that there is a place for everything! Just the way it should be!

Looking to have your home re-designed? Want a unique approach that doesn’t waste your time and creates a home that not only looking amazing but works for you?

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Behind the award nominated design

Just FYI we have been nominated for the International Design & Architecture Awards 2013 and so we have decided to give you a little bit of behind the scenes knowledge of one of the most popular award nominated design projects we have completed.

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We often get asked a lot of questions about parts of this design so here we are going to answer a few of them.

1. Bar stool/stools? Isn’t anyone going to ask – are they a custom design?
These amazing stools are actually not a custom piece, They are actually a piece from Ligne Roset and are called the Mirlino
2. I love the finish on the floors. Do you know what was used?
The flooring is an engineered German Oak parquet with a natural varnish. We thought it would be the perfect offset for the gorgeous high ceilings and modern look

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3. Can you tell me who makes the chair? – Beautiful! Who makes the chair?
The chair is acutally from Andrew Martin.

(Did you know the design above is one of our most popular designs having been added to over 1200 idea books on Houzz?)

Project 2 - Earls Court - Image 44. Who makes the drops and where are they available?
The pendants over the dining room table are by Tom Dixon and they are available from his store. They were the perfect pick for this design as they produce a wow factor without being overly fussy

If you have any other questions on our designs please feel free to either visit us on Facebook and leave a comment on our photos or tweet us

If you feel like voting for us you can do that here! Thank you!

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Timorous Beasties Rugs for Brintons

 

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There are certain companies that always strike a cord with you, Timorous Beasties is one of those companies.  This year they have seemed up with Brintons (the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality woven carpets operating in both commercial and residential markets)

This is the second collaboration between these two fantastic companies and I have to say that I adore there latest collaboration that is going to be launched next month at Clerkenwell Design Week!


The Collection has been divided into seven themes that are inspired by natural and spiritual influences. Arboresque, Atholl Gardens, Aviary, Paradise Lost, Plantation, This Modern World and Tree Of Life.The collection features many traditional elements that have been re-interpreted through contemporary design.

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On Thursday 23rd May, during Clerkenwell Design Week there will be a talk in Brintons showroom.
Timorous Beasties & Archive discussion forum 2pm – Part one – Alistair McAuley, Paul Simmons (TB) and John Bain (Brintons Global Design Director). Part two of the forum –  Brintons Carpets holds one of the world’s largest design and historical pattern archives which is preserved by Brintons own dedicated archivist, Yvonne Smith. Yvonne will talk about the archive and some of its treasured pieces.

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Why You Should Never Try And Colour Match Paints

Specifying paint colours is always more of an art than a science.  What we tend to do for most projects it pick a colour for the initial design and then when it comes to fully specifying it we are insistent that we order at least 3 samples for each room. Lighting will always affect colours however it can often be very dramatic and so putting up 3 similar tones can often produce wildly different results.

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On a recent project we had a slight dilemma, we had originally specified up the entire house in Dulux paints. As they have a selection of over 20,000 colours they offer a remarkable selection of whites and off whites.  However, a bit of miss communication with the German house builders and we were told that we could in fact only use their own eco friendly paint…which can only be made up in colours from NCS colour system.

Well I am sorry but that just doesn’t work for me, white is not just white, we went through over 50 different dulux colours on site so that we knew we would be completely happy with the end result and there is simply no way to colour match a white from one company to a white from another.  I did give it a go

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But as you can see the tones are ever-so-slightly off and unfortunately ever-so-slightly is more than I would be able to stand. So after many a debate we have decided to aim for perfect but not so eco-friendly and have gone with the original Dulux colours.

Have been really happy with how they have all turned out! You’ll get to see more in the big reveal in a few weeks!

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Creating A Bespoke Piece Of Art For A Client

For me interior design is so personal, every room we create is created especially for that person in mind, it is created to full fill their brief and to create a space in which they can live comfortably and happily.

A huge part of any design should be art work, we often work with clients who have extremely large selections of artwork – a client recently had one of the most beautiful collection of MF Husain artwork I think I have ever seen, we could probably start an amazing gallery with their beautiful artwork collection! However, this is not always the case and so for some of our clients we create artwork that perfectly fits the designs scheme rather than being the initial inspiration behind it.

This was the case for a recent project we have completed in Baker Street.  These artworks were created to bring together every colour and texture you see in the interior design from the walnut TV unit to the silk Armani Casa rug to the amazing faux flowers (which we will be showing you next week!)

We are going to breakdown for you here exactly how this amazing bespoke piece of art was created…

Firstly I wanted a piece that flowed through the lounge, I didn’t want it to be a main focal point I wanted it to harmonise the room and to pull the viewer attention around the room.  The large white walls of this project provided a wonderful backdrop to be able to let this happen as the artwork would sit beautifully on it in a gallery style.

Here was the wall minus artwork:  IMG_4347-smThe design was really coming together but it needed a piece of art to really push it to completion.   The inspiration for the artwork was actually taken from a piece I had seen the company had produced beforeTAY_big-img-sm

However we wanted the painting to flow further along the wall and to incorporate all the colours of our design, we looked at two optionsKIA_APT9_TRIPTYCH_350x100cm_OPTION1-sm

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And decided that the first one was best as it was more subtle and the colours worked a lot more in the space.  Then it is the waiting game as your amazing bespoke artwork is created.  We of course get a chance to sign off on it before the canvases are stretched. At this point you really have to use your imagination as the artwork can look a little distorted

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However, it was all worth it in the end when it was stretched and put up it really makes the room!

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This quirky design should be award winning!

We go to a lot of design shows and a lot of different showrooms, but every now and then there is a product that just stops you dead in your tracks. This year the product was “Venus of Cupertino.”

Your eyes do not deceive you.  That is exactly was you think it is: a fertility goddess holding an iPad. And yes, she is naked.  Not only is she holding the iPad, she is actually charging it! Described as a, “sculptural docking station,” Venus gently cradles your iPad to her bosom and looks after it until you need it . You will never misplace your iPad again!!

All images from http://venus.io/  and you can now purchase online here

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A very special armoire

Every now and then, you will stumble across a product that stops you in your tracks[G1] . For me, this armoire from Alexander Lamont is one of those products.  An extremely elegant piece, it was inspired by the idea of light beneath the ocean and the surface is actually covered with parchment – this gives it a quite fragile and weathered look.

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Of course the highlight of the armoire is the handles; they are simply stunning and were made especially for the piece. I am especially excited about this piece as it is from a Thai company that we will be visiting at the end of the year – I cannot wait to see all their gorgeous products in-the-flesh!

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For more information visit Alexander Lamont 

 

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The dark days of a project…


A wonderful quote from one of my favourite movies is, “They say there are only two days you enjoy a boat: the day you buy it and the day you sell it.” Thankfully this doesn’t ring true of our homes; however, it can seem like it when you are in the middle of a huge building project!

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You start off with an amazing set of plans and such a huge choice of, well, everything, that your eyes become glazed with all the amazing possibilities.  For me. the beginning of the project is so exciting! We get to find out how our clients are actually going to use their home.  This project is a complete new build so we started off with some gorgeous plans from the architect. However, we were still able to make a large amount of changes when we were in Germany with the clients specifying (how cool  is it to be able to move a wall just because you want the dressing room 20cm larger?!)

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Then you get to the exciting part where the previous gets razed to the ground and the amazing new basement goes in.  Although it is still a building site at this point, all the plans are fully realised, we have all the layouts, furniture, wall finishes, lighting, and everything is arranged, ordered and ready to go.

photo-7-smThen, it gets even more exciting when the house arrives in great big, huge trucks and gets put up in an amazing five days!! The staircases are already fully in and you can walk around your new home; it’s wonderful at this point as clients start to be able to get more of a feel of exactly how they are going to be able to live in the space even though it is still just a shell.

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IMG_4495-smNext,  it feels like everything slows down, progress seems slow, and the site can look like it never changes.  This is probably one of the most difficult parts of the project, as all you want at this point is to have it finished and to move in!  It’s most definitely worth the wait. but it can be difficult when three weeks worth of progress takes you from that, to this….

IMG_4978-smDoesn’t look like much of a change really does it? Never mind, it’s getting there and when it’s all finished you will be amazed that it ever even looked like this!! So what’s this area suppose to look like in the end? Well it’s going to look like a much more alive version of this!

Mr-&-Mrs-Penny-updated-finishes-sk3-smYes. it’s going to be spectacular!! We will, of course, be keeping you completely in the loop as to how it is going.

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Maison et Object – A glimpse inside the gorgeous world of interior design

Last month, I was lucky enough to find time to pop over to Paris for one of the most amazing shows in the interior design world. Maison et Objet is a absolutely huge and is one of the most inspirational shows in existence.

For me this year, the lighting displayed was something special.  I loved the chandelier, but the wall light was something really special.

2013-01-20-16.03Completely bespoke the light could be made for any space and any shape.  Each piece is hand made and hand placed, simply spectacular!

2013-01-20-16.08I am really hoping to use this in an upcoming project as I think it will be the most amazing feature!

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Daring hotel in Vienna

Within cities, there are always a number of hotels popping up left, right, and center.  A lot of the time they are built on relatively small sites and need to be extremely unique and eye-catching if they are to gain any real traction.  This hotel in Vienna succeeds on both counts:

The sleek, curvy design stands out in contrast to the surrounding architecture, but somehow manages to fit in seamlessly.  The curved nature of the hotel also works nicely within the interior:

The curve in the corner gives the room a far more open feel and makes the room a lot less stuffy (an ailment that affects many hotel rooms).  The architect has clearly taken a risk by deciding upon oval windows:

There is little doubt that these windows, which are a microcosm of the hotel’s look, insert a distinct look into the overall makeup of the hotel and give it an edge in a very crowded market place.

Credit: Freshome

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Stunning Greek hotel

Having been to a number of excellent hotels worldwide and having a mild fascination for the hotel business, this retreat in Greece really caught my attention:

Located on the island of Mykonos, this hotel adds a touch of simplicity and calmness to the crowded luxury hotel genre.  Unlike many hotels which submit to a very uniformed design, the hotel room in this property feels more like the spare bedroom in a charming villa:

With this type of hotel, the big question always is: Do I want to go to a hotel which isn’t “luxurious” in the broadest sense of the word?  The answer, although not definitive, is that rustic charm may not offer the same comfort as typical 5* accommodation, but it has a natural ambiance which cannot be replicated en masse:

My conclusion would be that a hotel such as this is not for everyone.  In order to appreciate it, it is necessary to disregard one’s knowledge of top hotels and accept the simple charms that life gifts us:

Credit: Freshome

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Minimalist home in the backwoods of Finland

I have always been impressed with Scandinavian architecture and design; its minimalistic nature is a refreshing change from more conventional Western designs in which more storage is a necessity to house the assortment of items that one collects over time.  The dining room, in this case, is undoubtedly catering to a certain taste:

For me this is a refreshing clearing of the palate that, although I would not want to visit too often, holds the almost forgotten virtue of simplicity.  I also believe that the beauty of the exterior of the property, along with its surroundings, help to add to the appeal of the property:

Considering that this property does not have running water one can suppose that a more natural and secluded way of living was very much in the architects mind when they created this home – this theme has been continued through the usage of some very nice furs:

I can certainly understand many people’s aversion to a property of this nature: within it one would feel very alone but that is the idea perhaps – meeting oneself through seclusion …

Credit: Freshome

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