How Does Your Garden Glow?

As brightly as this we hope!

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M&L Paints has partnered with it’s sister company – the Victorian-inspired greenhouse manufacturer, Alitex – to create a palette of 15 shades that will match, complement or contrast with Alitex’s popular greenhouse colours.

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Available in a host of interior and exterior finishes, this new collaboration will allow homeowners to create a stunning vista, with paint options available for all surfaces: from interior walls and woodwork to fencing, outdoor chairs, bird tables and benches.

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The Alitex Collection by M&L Paints is inspired by the breadth of colour found in a beautifully planted English garden. Wood Sage, Passiflora, Deep Mauve, Silver Lavender and Juniper Green are all botanically influenced hues, whereas Downland Stone, Sussex Emerald, Greensand and Chalkhill Blue all take their cues from M&L Paints andAlitex’s joint home in the beautiful countryside of the South Downs.

M&L Paints will launch at The RHS Chelsea Flower Show (21-25th May).

Available exclusively from

Summer Lighting with Umage

With summer right around the corner, it’s time to think about summer dinner parties. With the kitchen being the focal point of the home, why not create functional and ambient table settings with new lighting from UMAGE to extend the summer glow further into the evenings.

Søren Ravn Christensen, UMAGE founder, talks about the importance of lighting in setting the mood for dining. “It is vital that the guests feel welcome and at ease with the surrounding interior, and lighting is key to this ambience.” Through UMAGE’s sleek designs, they provide the right ambient lighting for summer outdoor dining, whilst not distracting from the room or the company. 

UMAGE’s brand values are simple; functionality and sustainability combined with style the key to a brighter future. UMAGE ensures that all their lights are packaged in gift boxes which optimise worldwide logistics and storage costs- reducing the environmental footprint of their products and eliminating the need for bulky storage solutions. This cost saving technique means that the focus is on the product and the consumer.

Acorn black polished brass black cord, from £64 John Lewis of Hungerford Kitchen, photography John Lewis of Hungerford

Acorn black polished brass black cord, from £64 John Lewis of Hungerford Kitchen, photography John Lewis of Hungerford

Asteria, Pearl, £179, UMAGE

Asteria, Pearl, £179, UMAGE

Clava Dine, Matt White, £129, UMAGE

Clava Dine, Matt White, £129, UMAGE

EOS white mini, from £69, UMAGE

EOS white mini, from £69, UMAGE

Bank Holiday DIY - Upcycle a Mid-Century Sideboard

A long weekend is the perfect time to flex your DIY skills and create something with far more character than any flat-pack purchase. Treated properly, charity shop furniture can look stunning and can be completely transformed with just a lick of paint and some paper. And voila! You have an item and that is completely tailored to your taste.

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Here’s how the people at Rust-Oleum upcycled a vintage sideboard found in a British Heart Foundation charity shop for just £15 and turned it into a mid-century, modern display unit.

Before and After

Before and After

You Will Need:

  • Rust-Oleum Satin Finish Furniture Paint

  • Self-adhesive wallpaper

  • Paint brush 

  • Masking tape

  • Tape measure

  • Paint stirrer and paint tin opener 

  • Paint roller and tray

  • Scissors

  • Screwdriver

  • Cloth for cleaning

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1. Clean the furniture thoroughly, remove handles and mask any areas you do not wish to paint with masking tape.

2. Take your can of Rust-Oleum Satin Finish Furniture Paint (we used the colour Slate) and stir thoroughly.

Satin Finish Furniture Paint requires no sanding or priming on most surfaces, so you can get cracking straight away. Using a roller for large areas and a brush for harder to reach nooks and crannies, paint the unit and leave to fully dry. You may need up to three coats.

3. Measure the area you wish to cover with self-adhesive wallpaper and cut to size.

4. Apply your wallpaper, smoothing any bumps or bubbles with your hand as you go.

Rust-Oleum Satin Finish Furniture Paint, now available at Dunelm, is perfect for upcycle projects, as this clever one-step paint requires no sanding, priming or topcoat.

The superior, silk-touch satin finish comes in two of Rust-Oleum’s most popular shades, which have been carefully curated to enhance contemporary interiors.

A Lick of Lacquer With Annie Sloan

Floorboards looking worn? Kitchen cupboards a little tired? A coat of Chalk Paint™ by Annie Sloan followed by new Chalk Paint™ Lacquer will re-energise high traffic areas, making for a quick and cost-effective weekend project.

Chalk Paint™ Lacquer is a hard-wearing, water-based polyacrylic varnish with built-in UV protection. Use it over Chalk Paint™ for a robust finish that will withstand wear and tear – perfect for kitchen cabinets, dining tables, floors, skirting boards and more. Available in a gloss or matt finish, Chalk Paint™ Lacquer applies perfectly clear and dries quickly without yellowing over time, allowing for long-lasting transformations.

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Annie Sloan - Kitchen - Chalk Paint in Antibes Green, Graphite floorboards with Gloss Lacquer detail - Lifestyle - Portrait (2).jpg
Annie Sloan - Kitchen - Chalk Paint in Antibes Green with Valeska stencil, Hands stencil on jug, fabric in Tacit - Lifestyle - Portrait.jpg

Cupboards and table in Chalk Paint™ in Antibes Green by Annie Sloan from £5.95 for 120ml. Floor in Chalk Paint™ in Graphite with square in new gloss Chalk Paint™ Lacquer £21.95. Chairs in Chalk Paint™ in Amsterdam Green Valeska stencil on table, Hands stencil on jug £4.45 each. Cushions and napkins in Tacit in Graphite £44.95 per metre 01865 803 168

Foolproof Floristry Using Bottles, Jam Jars and Bud Vases

Extract from Living with Flowers: Blooms & Bouquets for the Home by Rowan Blossom, published by Laurence King. Available at and at all good bookshops. RRP £19.99.

The beauty of arranging flowers in this way is that they will look informal, by the very nature of the vessels – washed-out old bottles and jam jars, with the odd pretty bud vase picked up along the way. I got most of mine from Golborne or Kempton markets or charity shops on my travels. I do find it hard to resist a rummage in a charity shop – you never know what treasures you might discover!

I love dotting these dinky arrangements around the flat, on the entrance table where I leave my keys, maybe one by the soap in the kitchen so there’s something pretty to look at when I’m doing the washing up, or clustered on the kitchen table for a casual centrepiece.

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The informality of this arrangement, and the fact that you don’t need loads of flowers, means that you could quickly rustle up a display with a couple of bunches from your local florist or supermarket, or, if you’re lucky enough to have a garden, snippets of homegrown blooms.


Selection of bottles, jam jars and bud vases. I like having different heights, shapes and sizes, but work with what you have – old or new, as long as they can hold water they will do the job.

Foliage and Flowers:

Foliage – Eucalyptus, Hebe, Olive, Rosemary, Variegated Pittosporum

Flowers – Astrantia, Daffodil, Genista, Hellebore, Icelandic poppy, Lisianthus, Miranda rose (David Austin), Prunus blossom, sweet-pea flowers and tendrils


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1. Gather your bottles, jam jars and bud vases and fill them three-quarters with cold water. Start by adding a sprig or two of foliage to each vessel, varying the height and type.

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2. I always start by adding the tallest flowers. These will give a lightness to the arrangements, so keep the length where possible (even if it initially looks absurd). Next add the babes, the big-headed flowers. Keep some tall and cut some super-short so the heads just peep out.

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3. Now go in with your dainty, wispy flourishes. Here the twisty curlicues of sweet-pea tendrils give a relaxed feel to the assortment.

Photographs by James Stopforth.

Living with Flowers Blooms & Bouquets for the Home by Rowan Blossom, published by Laurence King (2).jpg

Living with Flowers: Blooms & Bouquets for the Home by Rowan Blossom

Published by Laurence King.

Available at and at all good bookshops. RRP £19.99.

The Difference Between a Wine Cellar and a Wine Cooler

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Wine coolers are a refrigeration unit which is designed to maintain wine at their optimum storage or serving temperatures. In order to be classified as a wine cooler, they need to prove that they can manage: temperature, humidity, light and vibrations.

A wine cooler will maintain the temperature in the cabinet to between +/- 2°C, in practice the wine coolers cooling system will kick in when the temperature reaches 2°C above the set temperature and turn off when it reaches 2°C below the set temperature. In order to maintain the temperature of the wine, the average temperature reading will always be the set temperature. It takes a lot more energy to change the temperature of the liquid because of the thermal mass.

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The humidity is managed through a system which allows the wine cooler to maintain the humidity above 55 and below 85% and some wine coolers have new equipment to allow you to set the humidity level. If the air is too moist in the wine cooler, during the cooling phase the excess water will condense on the back wall of the cabinet, which will then find its way down to the water channel and into the container during the off phase. The excess water will then evaporate off.

UV light is very important, wine will be adversely damaged by UV rays which will cause irreversible damage. Although the wines are somewhat protected by the glass bottle, there is still a chance that this will not fully protect it. For this reason, a wine cooler will either have a solid door, which will prevent any UV rays entering and also allow full darkness inside the cabinet, or the wine cooler will feature a full UV protected glass door which looks much nicer in the flesh but also protects the wines.

Vibration is key, in a wine cellar, the bottles are moved maybe once a year so they basically see very little vibration or disturbance throughout their ageing period. A wine cooler needs to mimic this, so the compressors are mounted on rubber mountings to ensure there is no unwanted vibrations. Excess vibration will cause the wine to go sour as it will encourage unwanted reactions to occur.


The difference between a wine cellar and a wine cooler is primarily that a wine cellar will maintain all of the above without having to have electronic interference. A wine cooler will effectively imitate a wine cellar, they do this well, much better than a standard refrigerator. However, a wine cellar will be much better suited for long term storage of around 10-15 years. A wine cooler will store your wines reliably, but is best suited for wines that will be drank within the next 5 years or so.

The good thing about wine coolers is that they are extremely versatile, with a wine cellar its sole purpose is for long term storage and to be honest unless you want to be showing your wines off all the time nobody is going to see it. A wine cooler is available in many different model types to suit different lifestyles, capacities and the space that is available.

If you need more information with regards to wine coolers and wine storage, contact Elite Wine Refrigeration for a wide range to suit all budgets.

Exotic New Homewares From A New Tribe

From their Chatsworth Road store in London, A New Tribe brings together an eclectic, curated mix of interiors objects and textiles from across the globe – representing countries like Morocco, the USA, India, and as far east as Japan. As well as featuring homeware from lands afar, they also celebrate talent closer to home, stocking artists, designers, and makers from London and elsewhere in the UK. Everything in their store is sourced from independent designers and small brands, and selected for the ethos and care that goes into each item, as well as the design. If you’re into handmade and small batch production, this is the place for you.
A New Tribe are also proudly home to ‘The Rug Trade’, a one-stop-shop for all your Boucherouite, Azilal and Beni Ourain needs. It includes rare vintage finds, and newly designed rugs all made by hand using traditional techniques in Morocco.  

You'd be forgiven for thinking that everything here was made far away in exotic lands - reminiscent of goods sold on ancient trade routes. While some do indeed hale from North Africa, Morocco in particular, others are sourced closer to home from London and Bristol - who would guess? 

Ella Jones is the master of selecting items that radiate a worldly feel, and placing genuine antique pieces amongst them that have been discovered and brought from overseas - completing the illusion. Amongst the Moroccan gems sit treasures from London-based Milo Made, as well as ceramics made by Sophie Alda who resides in Bristol. 


Ella needed extra baggage-allowance to bring all of these goodies home, fresh from the Souks of Morocco. The selection oozes decorative and ornate decadence, with hand painted pattern-work and intricately carved detailing featured throughout. There's also a smattering of utility here, afforded by the rattan storage containers that come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Even the carved wooden stool provides a perfect vantage point for some of your potted plants!

[A New Tribe] Hand painted Moroccan eye plates, from £20.jpg
[A New Tribe] Painted antique vases, from £60.jpg


Nestled in the South-East corner of the exotic island-nation that is England, you'll find the bustling city of London. These abstract, clay face planters and mug come from the ceramics studio Milo Made, who are based here. Sip your morning coffee while enjoying a fresh, floral display on table. 

The sculptural, ceramic vessels below are hand built and would make decadent vases or candle holders. Made by Haar East, otherwise known as Sarah Jeffrey, who is based in East London. 


Head west and you'll find the port city of Bristol, where ceramicist Sophie Alda calls home. These blush pink and vibrant blue 'rocket' vases would look equally at home in one of the palaces of Marrakech. 

The wide, stable bottom tapers up into a narrower opening at the top, still allowing room to display some greenery. 

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Pearl Lowe Wallpaper Designs for Lovers of Vintage Chic

Fans of Pearl Lowe will be as excited as us over this second design collection in collaboration with English wallpaper company, Woodchip & Magnolia.

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Following on from her successful debut collection of wallpapers launched at London Design Fair last Autumn, Pearl has introduced a small, curated collection of classic, vintage inspired prints for Spring 2019. Once again the new designs again reflect Pearl’s unique style, celebrating her love of vintage clothing and interiors, bohemian luxury and flapper girl chic. Shades of dusky, vintage pink teamed with mint green permeate the collection, giving it a distinctly feminine, Art Deco elegance.

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But as always, rock n roll is never far away! In among the dainty florals and heritage prints, Pearl has introduced her very own leopard and snake print designs.

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Commenting on the new collection, Pearl said: “I’m so excited to be doing more designs with Woodchip & Magnolia, especially with the introduction of upholstery fabrics, which is something I always envisioned. The new designs are very “me” – incorporating all the things I love. It’s all there...ditsy florals, Art Deco inspired patterns, seaside Regency stripes, and of course, my beloved animal prints. It sounds crazy, but I’ve always struggled to find my “perfect” animal print, especially in velvet. Now I have my own, I couldn’t be happier about that. Suffice to say, I’m planning lots of exciting soft furnishing changes in my home very soon!

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For details of the entire collection go to:

Win Two Delicious Cake Books

Easter is always a time we get excited by chocolate and cakes. So we’ve decided to give away two books that solely focus on cake. What’s not to love!

Magic Cakes: Three Cakes in One by Christelle Huet-Gomez

Three cakes in one, this is every cake-lovers dream! Composed of just eggs, sugar, flour, butter and milk, and with a super simple preparation method, at first glance these recipes look just like any other cake recipe. But the magic in these cakes is in the cooking. Baked at a low temperature, the cake mixture divides itself into three layers, each with a distinct texture and taste: a dense, moist cake base; a delicate cream filling; and a light and fluffy sponge to top it off. The result is a cake like you've never tasted before - an explosion of textures and flavours in a moreish cake you just can't have one bite of! With chapters covering the Basics; Tutti-Frutti; Special and Occasion Cakes; and Savoury, there are a host of flavours at your fingertips, from the simple vanilla cake of chocolate hazelnut, to more exotic flavour combinations of raspberry and Matcha green tea. Take the magic cake to a whole new level with the occasion cakes - try the Valentine mango passion cake or the intense chocolate Easter cake. More than just cakes, there are recipes for cupcakes, pies, cheesecakes and brownies - all with the special 'magic' touch. So what are you waiting for? Discover the magic for yourself!

Three Cakes in One by Christelle Huet-Gomez (   Hardie Grant   , £9.99).

Three Cakes in One by Christelle Huet-Gomez (Hardie Grant, £9.99).

Miss Hope's Teatime Treats by Kitty Hope

Celebrate taking tea in all its guises. In this charming cookbook, Miss Hope treats you to an array of recipes for teatime delights, from Potted Prawns and Scotch Eggs, to Marmalade Cake, Sea Salt Millionaire's Shortbread and Custard Tarts, all washed down with the perfect tipple such as a Sparkling Jasmine Tea or an Earl Grey Vodka.

There's also an insight into the art of teatime etiquette, including how to make edible garnishes and the all-important table decorations.

Exquisitely designed with full-colour photography and all the charm and appeal of the Hope and Greenwood brand, this little gem of a book epitomises the beloved British tradition of afternoon tea.

Miss Hope's Teatime Treats by    Kitty Hope   , Published June 7th 2012 by Ebury Press

Miss Hope's Teatime Treats by Kitty Hope, Published June 7th 2012 by Ebury Press

For a chance to win a copy of each of these amazing books make sure to click the link below and fill out the form - That's all you have to do! Good Luck!

Terms and conditions: The prize draw is open to individuals in the UK residents aged 18 or over. Any person or persons connected with Heart Home magazine, without limit, their families, agents, or anyone else involved in the administration of this offer are not eligible to enter. All entries must be received by 06:00 21st May. By entering this competition you consent to share your email, name and postcode with Heart Home magazine, who may wish to send you mailings in the future. There will be one winner who will receive the prize above. The prize must be accepted as offered (there are no cash alternatives) and they are non-transferable and non-refundable. The winners will be chosen from the list, at random, on 22nd May and the winners will be notified by email or post within 7 days. No correspondence will be entered into. Unclaimed prizes will be redrawn after 28 days of the original draw. Heart Home magazine reserves the right to replace the prize with a product of equal value, if necessary. The winners will be asked to confirm their postal address before the prize is awarded. Details of the winners may be posted on the Heart Home magazine website and Facebook page. By entering this competition, you automatically agree to the terms and conditions above. Promoter: Heart Home magazine, 4 Oak Crescent, Wickford, Essex, SS11 7FF.

Simple Spring Styling Ideas for the Garden

If like us you are itching to get into the garden but the recent cold snap has had you racing back indoors, there are a few things you can do now to improve the look of your outside space.

Make a Feature of the Patio

Rectangle Printed Emblem Cushion £12.99, Herringbone Throw £29.99, Rattan lantern £16.99, Various Herbs £3.99 or 3 for £10, all Dobbies Garden Centres  (Wire basket – stylists own)

Rectangle Printed Emblem Cushion £12.99, Herringbone Throw £29.99, Rattan lantern £16.99, Various Herbs £3.99 or 3 for £10, all Dobbies Garden Centres

(Wire basket – stylists own)

It may be too cold to sit outside yet but you can still make the patio look a welcoming space. It’s the spot you can see from your backdoor and windows so there’s no excuse for not tidying it up. A few potted herbs will survive the cold temperatures and be handy for when you are rustling up an Easter feast in the kitchen. Add a few cushions and a throw and you never know, you may venture outside after all.

Plant Up a Spring Box

Sempervivum (Houseleeks) £2.49 5 For £10; Various Succulents £2.49 5 For £10 all Dobbies Garden Centres

Sempervivum (Houseleeks) £2.49 5 For £10; Various Succulents £2.49 5 For £10 all Dobbies Garden Centres

A simple wooden box planted up with spring bulbs and succulents will provide a lovely, colourful feature that will catch the eye. Place it where you will see it from the house to get the biggest impact, and if frost threatens you can easily move it to a more sheltered spot.

Make a Feature of your Entrance

Rattan lantern £16.99, Carex Everest £8.99 (2 For £15 2ltr Pot), all Dobbies Garden Centres

Rattan lantern £16.99, Carex Everest £8.99 (2 For £15 2ltr Pot), all Dobbies Garden Centres

A porch or covered entrance will provide enough shelter for a few hardy potted plants. Add a few storm lanterns to the arrangement and you will have a stunning display to welcome guests over the holiday period.

All images and products from Dobbies.

Bethan Gray Launches Exploring Eden

A sustainable furniture collection with NATURE SQUARED

Bethan Gray is delighted to announce a new partnership with Nature Squared who have been at the cutting-edge of sustainability and social responsibility for 18 years.


‘When I met Nature Squared co-founders Paul Hoeve and Lay Koon Tan, I knew we were kindred spirits as soon as I heard their story and realised how passionate they are about nurturing craft. The opportunity to work with these incredible materials, and apply them to furniture for the first time, has been really exciting, especially as it will bring Nature Squared’s work to the attention of a wider audience and expand their stewardship of Filipino craftspeople in the Philippines ’  -  Bethan Gray

With a shared commitment to natural materials, nurturing artisanal craft and sustainability, Nature Squared and Bethan Gray are both thrilled to showcase their ground-breaking Exploring Eden collection of furniture and accessories to the public for the very first time.


After significant research and development, Nature Squared have diligently created new engineering solutions that merge traditional artisanal skills with precision furniture making and exquisite design. The inlay process for each item takes many weeks to complete due to the intricate detailing and high quality finish – and the results are unlike anything that has ever been created for the furniture market before.


Utilising nature’s finest and most beguiling materials, this collaboration brings Bethan Gray’s highly innovative and elegant designs to fruition.

The collection consists of a capiz shell shelving unit, jade and pheasant feather lounge chairs, pearl shell cylindrical stools, with the hero items including a scallop shell table and a pen shell coffee table.

‘Exploration is at the heart of everything Nature Squared and I do. The Exploring Eden collection of furniture and accessories is our first expression of our shared passion for discovery, experimentation and pushing the limits of natural materials. Our journey has only just begun’  -  Bethan Gray


Exploring Eden will launch at Rossana Orlandi during Salone Del Mobile Milano 9-14 April. Via Matteo Bandello, 14/16, 20123 Milano MI, Italy

Give Your Home A Spring Refresh With These Floor Tile Ideas

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New floor tiles are the perfect way to give your home style a thorough update

Are you looking to give your home a style reset alongside your annual spring clean? A sure-fire way to grant any space an instant face-lift is by replacing your flooring with new floor tiles. When we’re thinking of giving our homes a new look, walls and floors and often overlooked in favour of new furnishings and accessories. There is a quick-fix appeal of refreshing your living room with a new throw or updating your bathroom with a set of fluffy new towels. But there is no substitute for truly uplifting the foundation of your home – your floors – with a style overhaul.

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Bring the outdoors indoors with natural finish tiles

One concept that is taking the interior design world by storm in 2019 is ‘bringing the outdoors indoors’. More and more people are looking to incorporate the natural beauty of the outside world in to their homes, and with good reason. The popularity of natural finishes owes a debt to the Scandinavian concept of ‘Hygge’ – which refers to cosiness. With minimalist interiors on the rise, natural shapes and textures help to breathe new life in to otherwise sterile spaces.

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Wood effect tiles

If you want the look and feel of natural timber in your home, without any of the maintenance, consider wood effect tiles. The appetite for using porcelain wood effect tiles in the home is growing, and it isn’t hard to see why. Well-made wood effect tiles are indistinguishable from real wood. The tiles perfectly replicate the grain of real wood with variations in pattern, texture and colour. Choose a distressed wood style for a flawless rustic finish. If you prefer a classical look, choose a polished tile and lay them in a parquet style. Crown Tiles carry an extensive wood-effect collection to suit any space.

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Natural stone tiles

With their unpredictable array of colours and textures, natural stone tiles are one of the finest design gifts that nature has to offer. The visual interest created by stone’s idiosyncrasies is a perfect complement to the clean geometry of modern interior design. Matching interior and exterior stone tiles draws the eye beyond the threshold of your home and makes any room appear much larger.

Invite subtle colour with new neutral tiles

The colour trend of the year is the ‘new neutral’. This refers to a palette of pinks, lilacs and duck-egg greens and blues. These delicate shades are ideal for introducing subtle colour in to a room. Inspired by the Scandi trend in interior design, ‘new neutrals’ work perfectly to soften minimalist spaces. Pastel tones are ideal for brightening a room, so if you’re looking to maximise a space, muted neutral wall tiles are perfect. Use grey-toned blues to create a calming influence, or dusty roses for a feminine feel.

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Make a statement with patterned tiles

Patterned tiles are the perfect way to bring character to a room that is feeling a little stale. Moroccan-inspired tiles have an enduring popularity and introduce the influence of sunnier climes to a space. Kitsch and retro patterned tiles are ideal statement flooring and bring with them a sense of nostalgic charm.

Whatever your design plans, renovating from the ground up is a sure-fire way to change the look and feel of a space. We hope these tile trends inspire you to bring the joys of spring to your home.

The New Clematis Wallpaper Collection from Sian Zeng

Enchanting is the word we’d use to describe the new Clematis wallpaper collection from Sian Zeng. It features the simple beauty of the clematis flower, spilling over the side of a garden wall and shimmering in the sun. At the same time, it encapsulates the magic of a fairy tale, like a scene from sleeping beauty where time slips away, and you can escape for a while into a made-up realm.


It would be sure to cast a magic spell over any room, and the design is cleverly positioned as a perfect backdrop to furniture, as the downwards climb of the pattern ends where household objects begin.


Fashion stores would benefit from this design as the bottom half is a solid colour, giving a definitive background to patterned clothes.


The Clematis is also great for weddings or events, the dreamy blend of pinks and greens creating a beautiful backdrop to portraits.


DESIGN DETAILS After eight months of designing, the Clematis Wallpaper is painted at 100% scale and authentically reproduced onto a luxurious Fiberous non-woven material. As a result, the tonal qualities on this wallpaper mural are almost indistinguishable from hand-painted wallpapers. Available as a classic wallpaper in romantic pink, the Clematis Wallpaper Mural is also available as a magnetic wallpaper. A unique feature of our storytelling wallpapers, the magnetic versions are backed with a magnetic liner, offering a beautiful backdrop on which you can act out your own stories with a cast of illustrated character magnets.

Available from Sian Zeng.

Top 5 Signs You Need to Replace Your Mattress

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Do you often wake up from a restless night’s sleep? If so, it’s likely that your mattress is the culprit.

If your mattress isn’t giving you the chance to get that soothing and satisfying sleep experience you deserve every night, then it’s time for a change. To help you know what to look out for, here are 5 signs that your mattress needs replacing.


Waking up to aches and sores

When you frequently wake up to nagging pains in your neck, shoulders, and back; it could indicate that your mattress isn’t giving you the support you need. Overtime, your mattress will eventually lose its ability to support your body’s pressure points, leaving you to be held up by the springs.

Low quality springs, such as those in cage sprung beds, will only exacerbate your aches, pains and sores.

The mattress is 7 years old

Age is important when it comes to your mattress, and unfortunately they can never keep the same level of quality indefinitely. The average lifespan for a mattress is actually around 7 years, after which you’ll need to think about a replacement.

With proper care and consideration, such as turning and rotating, your mattress could last a little longer than this. However, in the majority of cases a mattress that reached this age will start to leave you struggling to sleep well at night.


That sinking sagging feeling

Restless sleep and particularly back pain can be caused by a sagging mattress. This is caused by a number of things, such as when poorly layered or thin comfort layers in the mattress compress. If your mattress contains a cheaply made sprint unit, it too can fail, leading to irreparable sagging that can force you into an uncomfortable sleeping position.

Your mattress can still leave you feeling like you’re being swallowed up even when there’s no noticeable sag. This can again be down to compression or even the breakdown of foam layers. It’s always best to choose a luxury natural fibre mattress designed to give you lasting support, and one that’s protected against sagging thanks to having high GSM upholstery layers.

Dust allergies are acting up

Sneezing, wheezing and coughing constantly at night could be a sign that your aged mattress is suffering from dust mites. Unfortunately, they are one of the most common allergens and will pretty much always have a presence in your home. However, an old mattress that hasn’t been cared for, can cause their numbers to thrive.

Although, frequently washing pillows and bedding and using a dust mite resistant mattress cover can help to mitigate the mites, it may be time to consider getting a completely new mattress to put an end to the problem.


A change in weight

Everyone’s weight can change; either because of a sudden change in lifestyle, your diet, your age, an accident or even after surgery. Even if your mattress is in a good condition, it may no longer offer you the support it once did if your weight has fluctuated significantly.

Getting yourself a suitable mattress topper, to add some firmness to the mattress and support your pressure points, could provide a temporary solution. However, it won’t do much to improve your sleep experience if your mattress is simply to soft, or lacks the support required to cater for your bodyweight.

New Season Pastels from Dartington Crystal

With winter rolling into spring, we’re beginning to see buds and blossom emerge in this fresh new season. As we welcome back the longer days, make blooms centre stage with the new Juno collection from Dartington Crystal.


This simple, but fun range of three vases comes in fresh pastels, a new colour palette for Dartington Crystal and features white inner detailing.

The flared rim reveals the white inside and acts as a ‘shelf’ for heavy headed blooms and promotes an open posy formation.

Dartington Crystal_Juno_Peach Short Vase_£
Dartington Crystal_Juno_Mint Green Medium Vase_£
Dartington Crystal_Juno_Dusky Pink Tall Vase_£

Priced at £30 each, the new Juno collection is available to buy from and stockists nationwide.

2 Ways to Style the Tropical Look in Your Home

The tropical trend in interiors has been around for a while, and trust us, it’s not going away any time soon.

Rebecca Snowden, Interior Style Advisor at Furniture Choice explores how to showcase this tropical look in the home, in two signature ways: first, an all-out maximalist approach and second, an elegant minimalist take.

Pembroke Grey Velvet Sofa

Pembroke Grey Velvet Sofa

1. Play with prints, colours and patterns for a maximalist approach

For a huge dose of personality, a maximalist take on the tropical trend is the way to go. With vibrant hues, nature-inspired motifs, and colourful prints all part of the mix, the trick here is in layering them all together.

“The maximalist approach is a fun, chic way to introduce the tropical look in key areas of the home such as the living room or even the bedroom,” Rebecca explains. “It all begins with a good centrepiece: a cosy grey sofa, or dark fabric bed is a solid, comforting anchor to add and build on. And from there, anything’s possible! To really celebrate this trend, animal-inspired decor and art are a fun way to go, and other tropical elements such as palm prints and lush indoor plants also up the ante. Round off the look with gold or brass accents for an elegant, contemporary touch.”

Brompton Blue Velvet Bed

Brompton Blue Velvet Bed

“Colour also takes the tropical-meets-maximalism approach to new heights by adding a cheerful boost to the space. Whether it’s through brightly-hued cushions and throws or colour-blocking the walls, opting for striking colour combinations - such as Pantone’s Living Coral with teal -  really embraces the tropical aesthetic and creates a strong, stylish contrast."

2. Opt for a light, breezy palette for relaxed, minimalist style

Tropical’s calmer, natural qualities can also be embraced through a more minimalist aesthetic. “This take on tropical works in all parts of the home, all the way from the living area to dining room, thanks to its welcoming, soothing aesthetic,” Rebecca says. “It’s a stylish, versatile look that can be adapted from season to season, while still evoking a fresh, summery feel.”

Charleston Emerald Green Velvet Sofa

Charleston Emerald Green Velvet Sofa

“Opt for airy hues like off-whites and cream for a breezy, well-lit interior. This creates a chic backdrop for a comfy grey velvet sofa, or even a rich green settee for a luxe boost. Soften the look with various textures such as cushions, rugs, and of course, natural greenery to keep in with the tropical theme.”

Charleston Mink Velvet Sofa

Charleston Mink Velvet Sofa

Green’s lighter tones can also double as a stylish neutral for the walls. “Sage is still a trending colour for the home, and its tranquil vibes fit right into a minimalist, tropical-inspired space,” adds Rebecca. “Its soothing, warm undertones offer a subtle pop of colour, and lends a welcoming feel to rooms like the dining area. Lighter furniture will contrast beautifully with this versatile hue – a white dining set stands out nicely as a strong focal point. Natural textures are go-to elements for this look, so slip in materials like rattan and wood to tie the entire room together.”

Albany Table and Pendle Chairs Dining Set

Albany Table and Pendle Chairs Dining Set

About Furniture Choice:
Founded in 2005, is an independent furniture retailer. The company combines a deep knowledge of contemporary furniture manufacturing with first-class e-commerce expertise.

With a dedicated UK call-centre and an experienced quality control team in Asia, Furniture Choice is able to offer customers the greatest variety of high quality contemporary furniture and best-in-class customer service, backed-up with fast, free delivery and returns. To find out more visit Launch Fashion-Forward Sample Service

Staring at a room of white walls can be slightly daunting but interior design should be about fun! Take the guesswork out of creating your forever home with’s new curated sample service. Rupert two and a half seat slip cover sofa in Mercury smart linen, £1790 (mooboard 1).jpg

Choosing colours online can feel a tad overwhelming, so it’s always worth seeing and feeling your fabrics in person before investing in a sofa or armchair. At you can choose upto six samples totally free of charge, delivered straight to your door to try them against your colour schemes and existing furniture. Seeing how the colour or texture might complement your living space should prove invaluable when creating your dream room. Olive cotton matt velvet, Twilight wool marl, Grey Marl Highland tweed, Stone brushed linen cotton.jpg

To make the decision process easier, have consulted with their top experts to create a range of on-trend fabric looks for this season. There’s a total of five looks to choose from, allowing you to bring balance and sophistication to any room. These include the Edit (the brands most popular fabrics), Cool and Contemporary, Timeless Classics, Bright and Beautiful, and Sophisticated Neutrals. SS19 fabric swatches, free to order online.jpg

Think of it as a virtual stylist hand selecting six complimentary tones for you to try out at home in your very own space.

A Guide to Painting the Kitchen with Benjamin Moore Paints

Now that the season of DIY is almost upon us, a kitchen refresh might be just the thing to bring your interior up to date.

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Ideal for those not wanting to undergo a complete kitchen overhaul, an accent wall can help you to make a distinctive statement in the heart of the home. When it comes to the colour choice, it ultimately comes down to personal preference and what will work best in the scheme. Whether you’re looking to add a splash of colour to a sleek white scheme or wanting to complement wooden cabinetry and accents with more earthy tones, there are endless possibilities when it comes to accent wall colour choices.

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Opting to paint your kitchen cabinetry provides you with the flexibility to work with a varied palette. If you want to stick to white or a lighter shade on your walls and worktops, a darker paint on your cabinetry can create a truly standout scheme whilst a complementing neutral shade will also provide you with subtle colour variations without overpowering the space.

It might be hard for some to believe, but with the right preparation, any type of kitchen cabinet can be painted. Even a glossy or laminate cabinet can be painted as long as the surface is primed with an adhesion promotion primer first.

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For the ultimate wow-factor, fully embrace your chosen colour scheme and paint the same shade across your walls, cabinetry and island. Whether you opt for a daring blue or an all-out white scheme, this approach to kitchen décor is guaranteed to deliver a beautifully cohesive scheme.

1. Wall - Louisburg Green (HC-113), Ceiling - Atrium White (OC-145), Trim - Atrium White (OC-145).
2. Accent Wall - Banana Yellow (2022-40), Wall and Ceiling Colour Paper White (OC-55).
3. Accent Wall - Tomato Tango (CSP-1145), Side Wall - Harbor Gray (AC-25).
4. Wall - Ochre (2151-30), Ceiling - Atrium White (OC-145).
5. Walls - White Opulence (OC-69), Cabinets & Moulding - Stone (2112-40), Door - Wolf Gray (2127-40),
Trim - Moonshine (2140-60).
6. Cabinet - Hale Navy (HC-154).
7. Walls - White Opulence (OC-69), Cabinets - Stone (2112-40).
8. Wall - Province Blue (2135-40), Ceiling - Baby’s Breath (OC-62), Cabinetry & Raised Paneling -
Province Blue (2135-40).
9. Wall - Stonington Gray (HC-170), Wainscoting - Sparrow (AF-720), Ceiling - Stonington Gray (HC-170),
Cabinet - Iron Mountain (2134-30).
10. Cabinets - Simply White (OC-117), Wall - Mascarpone (AF-20), Floor - Mascarpone (AF-20).

All from Benjamin Moore Paints.

Introducing Visual Comfort & Co

Since 1997, Visual Comfort & Co, has been the premier resources for signature designer lighting. Just over 30 years, Visual Comfort & Co has produced lighting with some of the most influential names in design using materials of exceptional quality and distinctive, hand applied, living finishes. Visual Comfort is proud to offer the industry’s widest range of incomparable lighting choices of extraordinary quality at a remarkable value.

Visula Comfort & Co was established to bring together premium quality and the ultimate style in lighting design. The array of amazing designers include E.F. Chapman, Ralph Lauren, Kate Spade New York, Thomas O’Brien, AERIN, Kelly Wearstler, Julie Neill, Alexa Hampton, Barbara Barry, Suzanne Kasler, Christopher Spitzmiller, Ian K. Fowler, Peter Bristol, John Rosselli, J. Randall Powers, Lauren Rottet, Eric Cohler, Barry Goralnick, Clodagh, Michael S. Smith, Joe Nye, Studio VC and Niermann Weeks.

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INTERIOR DESIGN RULES: Which to Follow and Which to Break

Extract from My Bedroom is an Office & Other Interior Design Dilemmas by Joanna Thornhill, published by Laurence King Publishing.

They say rules were made to be broken, but in order to do that, you must know them in the first place. Here are five common interior design truisms, and how to interpret them to make them work for you.

Liesbeth Disbergen, Sloppop Yeah

Liesbeth Disbergen, Sloppop Yeah

1. They say: Follow the 60/30/10 rule when choosing colours. Sixty per cent of the room should contain the dominant colour and thirty per cent the secondary colour, leaving ten per cent for accent pieces. We say: Loosely following this makes sense since going all-out colour crazy can result in a frenetic, disjointed feel, especially if you’re not sure what you’re doing – but don’t let it bog you down. Sometimes the most successful schemes are those that incorporate ‘a little bit of wrong’, which actually gives depth and soul to a space.

The Lovely Drawer

The Lovely Drawer

2. They say: Use symmetry to create a balanced space. We say: It’s true that our brains are programmed to find symmetry pleasing, even therapeutic. But too much of it in a small space can feel bland and dull, and possibly even overwhelming. Try using a symmetrical approach with key elements or focal points – a circular table directly in the centre of a square room, for example – but break it up with an off-centre sideboard or ornaments arranged together in odd numbers.

3. They say: Decorate with natural colours. We say: Mother Nature is not to be trifled with, and she certainly knows what she’s doing, though ‘natural’ certainly needn’t mean neutral. Look at the way she balances hues and proportions (in fact, we think she might be following the 60/30/10 rule), whether it’s in the sombre, muted tones of a stormy sky or the vibrant, unexpected contrasts of a bird of paradise.

Little Greene Paint Company

Little Greene Paint Company

4. They say: Choose furniture and flooring that are proportionate to the size of the room. We say: Common wisdom might dictate that the smaller the room, the more diminutive the objects you should put in it, but in fact this can create a cluttered, broken look. Think less, but bigger: go bold and choose a show-stopping L-shaped sofa over a two-seater and armchairs to act as a bold and inviting focal point, for example. The same rule can be applied to flooring, using largeformat tiles or wide planks.

Little Greene Paint Company

Little Greene Paint Company

5. They say: Stick to white or light tones in a small space. We say: While white seems an obvious choice – it reflects light and brightens dark corners – there’s also a danger that it will feel bland, and if there’s not enough to attract the eye the space will ultimately still look small (albeit pale). A vibrant hue might not be to everyone’s taste, but it can give a luxurious jewellery-box vibe, while dark tones add atmosphere and mood as well as highlighting interesting architectural details, creating an inviting sanctuary.

My Bedroom is an Office & Other Interior Design Dilemmas by Joanna Thornhill, published by Laurence King Publishing (1).jpg

My Bedroom is an Office & Other Interior Design Dilemmas

by Joanna Thornhill,

published by Laurence King.

Available at, RRP £14.99.