Today I’m sharing a lovely shoot that I did recently in collaboration with Aspinal of London. I’m a huge fan of the quintessentially English brand and have a few of their items at home, including my beloved Dockery handbag.
It seemed like a perfect match when they got in touch to ask if I would be happy to do an at home shoot with them in Dorset.
Another bonus was that I am finally able to share some of the rooms in the house other than the kitchen. They have only just been finished (still bits and bobs to do), but lovely to see them finally coming together at last. I will be sharing full room tours on the blog soon.
Click here for the full shoot and interview – have a lovely weekend!
The post is in assocation with Aspinal of London, but all opinions are my own.
Working from home is a joy. Overall I don’t have many complaints; it is so lovely to be able to wake up in the morning and just potter to my office – I don’t often miss the hours on a hot stuffy train or bus to and from work, but I do from time to time pine a little bit for my morning routine from that life. I used to love the feeling of rushing out the door (usually a few minutes late) grabbing a coffee on the way to the bus stop and if there were blue skies, walking as far as I could before jumping on the bus for the last part the journey.
Most days I would really enjoy the bus commute (except those days when traffic was hell, making me even later!). Sitting on the top deck, watching the world go by and admiring the lovely displays in the shop windows, whilst browsing through the morning news online, it was usually quite a gentle start to the day.
Now that I am based at home, all of that is a thing of the past. One of the biggest challenges when working from home can be managing your time effectively –household chores often get in the way (washing, cleaning, washing up, walking the dog, there is always a long list of things to do). In order to overcome this and try to make the most of your working day it is key to create a calm, cool and inviting office space.
We have recently moved into our new house in Dorset – we have fully renovated the whole house and it’s been chaos! One of the last spaces to get sorted has been my office, but I am thrilled to say and I am finally there and can already feel my productivity and efficiency improving now that it is unpacked and tidy.
Here are my top tips for creating a beautiful space that you love working in at home…
Keep it tidy!
First things first keep things organised and tidy – when I chose my new desk, I went for one with lots of drawers. My old desk only had one and this was a nightmare – much better to keep all that filing (that you will get round to doing soon!) hidden away so you have a calm, clear desktop. I also love to use trays to keep bit and bobs more organised in, like this lovely brass tray.
Think about the details – it’s your space to make it pretty as well as functional. I love having a candle burning on my desk – I find it calming and a bit of an indulgence. I also need to have a lamp for when I am stuck at my desk late into the evening. I wanted to have something stylish as well as functional and was thrilled when I found this beautiful, curved brass one that ties in perfectly with the brass frames and mirror on my wall.
Finally, choose your stationary well. Since I was a little girl I’ve had a mini obsession with stationery – these beautiful feather note cards and journal add the pretty to my desk and having them so close to hand means I’m much more likely to use them.
So I’ve been wanting to share this with you for a while, I’m sorry it’s taken so long, but we’ve been snowed under trying to complete the rest of the house, finish a flat in London and keep on top of other work!
So finally here is the first room tour of the house in Dorset. For those new to the blog, my husband Patrick and I started renovating a Victorian carriage house in February 2016 (see previous post). It’s been a labour of love, but we are almost there and the kitchen is one of the first rooms to be completed.
The room that we decided to house the kitchen in is HUGE – originally this was the space where the horses were stabled and is 16 meters by 8 meters by 4.5 meters high. We fell in love with this space when we first viewed the house and had wanted to make it our kitchen, living and dining room – a space we would use most of the day, every day.
When we started on the designs I started to feel nervous that the space was actually too large for a kitchen and that all the furniture would be lost, but I’m so pleased we stuck to our guns, as the result is a wonderful family space.
Being such a large space, I decided to paint the kitchen a darker colour than I would usually choose to really make it pop. After much deliberation we chose Railings by Farrow & Ball and matched it with a super chunky marble worktop. Because the ceilings are so high, a standard worktop would have been lost in the space – so we were brave and went big!
We also chose to not have any wall units as I wanted the space to feel different to a traditional kitchen. I wanted it to almost feel like the kitchen just happened to be in the elegant living room, rather than the other way round.
We were lucky to stumble across the perfect dining table in the very early stages of designing the space. It was in one of my favourite shops in Sherborne, Circus – we didn’t even own the house when we bought the table!
We just knew that if we didn’t snap it up, it would be impossible to find something similar in the future. Luckily it did all work out – a bit of a risk, but there’s always eBay!
I’ve dreamed about having an Aga in our kitchen for years – as a child we always had one and it is something that I am so pleased to have back in my life again. I chose a bright white colour to contrast with the dark units. We commissioned the gorgeous and talented Kristin Gaudio Endsley to paint a piece to go above the Aga – it is central to the room and so we wanted to make a statement. She did an amazing job, we love the painting and I get lots of comments about it on Instagram too.
Patrick designed these amazing shelves to go above the sink. We’ve had them in a few houses now and they are genuinely amazing – we never need to dry anything with a tea towel – it all just drips dry into the sink and it also leaves glasses totally smear free!
We chose warm brass for the taps and cupboard handles, it contrasts beautifully with the dark paint and I love the overall feel that it gives – elegant and slightly decadent.
This month (as with all months this year) has flown by – blink and you’ve almost missed it sort of speed. We are almost in June and isn’t the weather telling us so! I would love to be basking in the garden today catching some rays, but sadly far too much work to do. This week it has been the Chelsea Flower Show in London – one of my favourite annual events and I have been so sad to miss it this year. Especially in this amazing weather. I also love pottering around the Kings Road admiring all the Chelsea in Bloom displays – the area really comes to life and I’m a huge fan of anything that celebrates flowers. I’ll be there on Monday for a spot of shopping, so hoping that lots of the displays will wait for me! With all the flower love around at the moment, this month’s edit had to have a floral theme. Whether in the garden or in your home, flowers have the ability to really change your mood, usually for the better! Here are a selection of lovely things to bring a little floral sunshine into your home. Have a gorgeous long weekend in the sunshine! Laura x
I can’t believe we are already in April and actually not far off mid April and Easter! The weather has been so glorious that I’ve found myself dreaming of lovely soft pastels for both my home and my wardrobe. It’s the perfect time of year to refresh your home with soft colours – pinks, greens, blues – anything that’s a pale pastel and makes you smile. Time also to update those wine glasses from the larger ones for red wines, to the perfect size and shape for sipping rosé!
I also love to refresh my candle collection at this time of year with Spring scents – two of my current favourites are the gorgeous White Rose and Lemon from Jo Loves and Diptyque’s mini candle collection, which is perfect for this lovely sunny time of year.