Friday, January 14, 2011

Designing a fun and ideal home office space for yourself.

I have never made an introduction before, so very briefly here it is.  It has been almost four weeks since I arrived in the big bustling city of Mumbai.  Leaving my pretty little cottage back in England I now live right at the heart of the city, where the life outside feels and sounds as though it is in our home. In fact every house feels the same. I can't escape the noise, but I sure have applied all the yoga and meditation techniques I have practiced in the past to block the never ending hooting of the tuk-tuks, cars, trucks, taxis - all part of the citylife in India. Word is I'm moving to another apartment soon!

Having moved and lived in four cities in the past nine years has not given me a feeling of permanency.  Here I am in a 3 bedroom suite contemplating on how I can turn this apartment into a home; not this one but the new one, thinking of ways to make it warm and inviting and comfortable enough. Everywhere I have lived, there is always a corner and a desk by a window - this becomes my oasis, my bliss, my sanctuary!  This space is where I retreat, where I put my thinking cap on and ponder about the many ways and means I could make the next three years as wonderful as it could ever be.  These days I often find myself glued on a chair reading my book, design magazines or browsing my favourite websites getting myself abreast with family matters, friends and the news back home.  Around me are a few photos of family and things that remind me of home.  I also take delight in listening to Classic FM broadcasting all the way from England.  Mind you it does help the blocking...

Thinking of something productive to do sat behind my desk three hours and thirtyfive minutes later when ideas flowed, this is what I came up with, a selection of wonderful and fun home offices we could create for ourselves.  It could be a playground as much as a working environment.  Do the exact opposite of what a corporate office space does because nobody is going to play police and tell you the dos and don'ts and things you can't have. Your own space is a reflection of your lifestyle and individuality.  Make it efficient and functional with a lay out and style that suit you most.  Remember, your rules run here!

So scroll away, get ideas, get inspired and get carried all the way to Carrie Bradshaw's amazing home office space!

Your home office doesn't need to be large or expensive.
Tuvan desk find it at The Dormy House or search through second-hand shops
 paint it in creamy white shade. Create your own homemade
fabric covered wallboard DIY by me at the bottom of this post.
photo featured from All About You, March 2010

An eco-friendly office, desk and chair from Lombok
Decorate wallboard with pictures and postcards and
surround yourself with plants or flowers and anything that makes you smile.
featured photo IdealHome July 2005

Let plenty of light in!
Trestle table offers plenty of workspace and adds a relaxed touch to the room.
They're widely available even Amazon has a selection or bespoke at Soane.
White paint and glass wall gives a contemporary feel to it.
photo first published Livingetc April 2009

An L-shaped desk is practical and has dual purpose that can be tucked in a corner.
Choose bright and effective lamps and a pretty scheme.
 Surround yourself with lovely things making you feel more creative and inspired.
Desk and chair IKEA photo IdealHome June 2010

Craft corner home office.
Use clear glass jars, bright storage tins and neatly stacked open shelves.
Find a foliage of printed fabrics at Cath Kidston for upholstery and many more.
photo credits to Country Homes and Interiors March 2008

Creating an inspiring space to work with a garden view.
Find a second-hand desk with distressed finish and a patterned blind or curtain to match. 
Keep it simple and calm.  Allow a continuous flow of colours and feel to it.  
Hand printed fabrics & wallpapers at Rapture and Wright.
photo from Country Homes & Interiors May 2009

The contemporary and minimalist style.
Can be recreated with Louis Ghost Chair by Philippe Starck 
or here for other distributors Ghost Chair.
I found this great site for classical bespoke printed wallpaper at digitex!
Ball glass lamps at Nextag for a good selection that suit the budget.
photo featured from Chanel4 Homes 

Smart and classic - the understated look.
Highlights of honey yellow for curtains to soften the dark coloured desk and chair.
Fabrics at Zimmer-Rohde has branches in the US and the UK.
Lovely treasures at The Conran Shop, they deliver worldwide.
photo first published in Homes and Gardens February 2006

Carrie and Big's bedroom with Carrie's ultra chic home office
entire bedroom design by Lydia Marks

wallpaper Rococo Damask by Cole & Son
rug Harem by Tamsin de Roemer for The Rug Company 
photo credits and thanks to Hello Lover of Beautiful Things & Stylist

Carrie's office designed by Thomas O'Brien for Hickory Chair called Haillings Secretary
photo feature from casasugar

Notes, post cards and photos organised with a homemade French memo board.
French memo boards can be made of wood or foam board - materials available at Paperstone.
Quilt batting is then attached to the foam board and tucked with a staple gun underneath.
Your fabric should be larger than your board so you can tuck it underneath as well.
Lay your ribbons diagonally and across pinning where they meet.
 Choose a fabric and ribbon that complement the theme you're aiming for.
Get ideas or buy one from etsy!
photo published Ideal Home March 2010

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Putting a little bit of adventure into styling our homes.

Sometimes we need to add a little bit of adventure into styling our homes.  I have chosen a couple of pieces from some of my favourite designers. They're a treat and something to be had when sky's the limit!

Probably seen these around but I'm posting it here again
for those who haven't noticed them yet.
They are called Bright Woods by Giancarlo Zema
These stools are made of wood and resin powered by LED lights.

Bright Woods unlit
and more to see on this link Contemporist

Voyage Daybed handwoven polyethylene on steel frame
another version made out of handwoven buri (palm leaf spines also known as abaca) 
An innovative desinger from Cebu, Philippines

La Luna chair made of rattan woven into two patterns. Comes in ash or brown.
by Kenneth Cobonpue

I am forever inspired by them...

Eva la Yerbabuena
one of my Flamenco teachers in the past

Jim Thompson
founder of the Thai Silk Company

Andalucia, Spain
memories of my school days, breezey nights with my tinto
in the company of some lovely good friends

Monday, January 10, 2011

The Best Features: Home Interiors my top 3 to start the new year. Be truly inspired.

a mixture of colour and texture on soft white flooring,
wooden framed windows and timbered ceiling

Oscar de la Renta's house in the Dominican Republic

Monique Lhuillier's living room in Bel Air
decorated by Jennie Abbott
featured on elledecor