TOP DRAWER news round up

January 18, 2011

Yesterday, I wore flat pumps, stashed some Evian in my bag and ‘did’ Top Drawer. The wheat has been separated from the chaff. Here’s the news you need to know: New cushions from Barbara Coupe with a nautical feel…

Natural History launched a new hummingbird range including cushions, notebooks and pretty tissue paper…

Neisha Crosland has teamed up with Make International to launch a new range of geometric tableware…

…Rebecca Winter of Raw Xclusive fame (you’ll recognise her Louis chairchandelier and DADDY RULES designs from Rockett St George and others) has launched a new spoons design…

…Two’s Company by Mulhouse had the coolest stand by far – an apothecary shop papered with pages from old books and filled with butterflies and bell jars – and launched some extremely cute numbered napkin rings and storage pots. Sadly, it’s wholesale only, so I need to find a stockist sharpish for these pots…

…Latvian ceramic artist Aiga Siceva-Sattler (who has recently started selling some of her work online via Notonthehighstreet) showed me her new tableware collection decorated with her trademark black silhouettes. I like the new bowl featuring a hunter and pheasants…

Michelle Mason showed me the new version of her cute Columbia Road flower market cushion…

Prey (you’ll recognise their 1950s-inspired accessories – they’re stocked by Caravan but you can buy direct, too) were showing their new 1950s-style tins and textiles…

…the lovely Lush Designs launched a fabulous new lampshade design called ‘Stag’, featuring pheasants, a viaduct and some very dozy dogs…

…Embroidery legend Jan Constantine was showing her new licensed London 2012 Olympics range…

…and, although I admired these at Tent, I couldn’t resist another peep at the new Ary Trays collections featuring Michael Angove‘s spoon, feather and egg designs…

…and more lovely trays…Tana Lawn fabric ones from Liberty, fishy Scandinavian ones from Alabasta, and London-themed trays from Anna Viktorsson

…cute button artwork from new company Hello Geronimo

…new stationery from Showpony

…and lastly, some very cool pool ball lighting from the 95% Danish stand…

…lots of exciting new designs to feel inspired by! – Ellie

Advertisements

HOT SHOP: Caravan

October 20, 2010

Last week, when I wasn’t bopping along to IKEA‘s ‘You’ll always find me in the kitchen at parties‘ Jona Lewie advert,  I managed to bop on down with House to Home to stylist Emily Chalmer’s eclectic shop Caravan, on London’s Redchurch Street. It gets better every time I visit. And this time I actually remembered my camera for once…

The vintage-themed, quirky buys are watched over by the enormous, resident, ginger shop cat: ‘Bagpuss’. Every shop should have one, really. He’s such a cool cat, he hangs out with glowing Bambi lamps and wears a neck scarf:

Following on from last week’s floorboards post (and thanks so much for all your fabulous advice – much appreciated!) Emily told me that her floors are painted a very forgiving but stylish off-white colour – Dulux Trade floor paint in 1002Y, ‘fashion finish’ – mental note! There’s something else for me to obsess about…as well as large golden ants in jars…

Emily revealed that she’s been working on a new book called ‘Modern Vintage’ due out in February 2011 – can’t wait to see it. If Flea Market Style is anything to go by, the new book is sure to be right up my street.

Caravan has something lovely to admire, wherever you look! Emily kindly gave me some little rusty wings to put on candles – you can see them on the angelic blue candle in the bell jar below left…

Still not sure how I feel about Bambi and his little glowing friends…but the bird cages are definitely on my ever-growing wish list! – Ellie

Caravan cool

February 10, 2010

Oh, if only I had a 1950s caravan to play house in and decorate in a crazy, retro way…

Our lovely Book of the Week is My Cool Caravan (£14.99, Pavilion), and it’s packed full of inspiring interiors. This first one makes me want to sew some Cath Kidston bunting, fill a vintage thermos flask with tea and take to the road for an adventure!

I love the moody Ralph Lauren floral wallpaper and the pretty Cole & Son Hummingbird paper in this next caravan (which used to belong to Pearl Lowe apparently)…

Note the glamorous crystal light fitting in this interior – just because a room’s on wheels doesn’t mean it can’t ooze decadence!

This next caravan has an American country diner feel about it. NICE Coca Cola chairs…

…wooden panelling and checked curtains? yes, ma’am…

…and this retro Mike’s ‘drive in’ hot dogs sign is a thing of beauty:

The last caravan we’re going to take a peep at belongs to Shoreditch stylist extra-ordinaire, Emily Chalmers, who owns the appropriately-named shop, erm, Caravan

Now, here’s the thing. Her ‘caravan’ is actually a vintage French undertaker’s van! (Hearse Chic? Stop it.) But she’s made it look very pretty all the same…here are some more cute pics of it (borrowed from Casa Sugar):

To see all these gorgeous interiors and many more, place your orders now – My Cool Caravan is out later this month. – Ellie

The bell jar obsession

November 25, 2009

There’s an atmosphere of slight hysteria in the office today. It might have something to do with the arrival of a scratch ‘n’ sniff Yankee Candle press release (low-lights include  ‘Strawberry Buttercream’ and ‘Tutti-Frutti’…), or perhaps it’s the news that two of the most lovely home brands, Farrow & Ball and Jo Malone, are teaming up to launch an exciting new collection next week? (We’ll keep you posted!) Then again, perhaps it’s the thought of today’s annual Cath Kidston sample sale that’s getting us all a bit over-excited. For me though, it’s bell jars that are floating my boat today…

Whether it’s ogling the gorgeous bell jar displays in London’s hippest Shoreditch shops, Comfort Station and Caravan, or staring longingly at the stunning pages of Australian stylist Sibella Court’s new book Etcetera (which has just landed on my desk. Hurrah, hurrah! Hopefully we’ll show some pics on here soon – it’s due out in April in the UK. For now, check out her shop The Society Inc for a flavour or click here for a preview…), I seem to be surrounded by glass domes filled with curious objets…and I’m hooked! This all ties in with the current vogue for dark romanticism, macabre Victoriana drama and dusty museum display cases – something we’ve discussed before. All very Darwin. All very Gothic. All very dead. Of course, you don’t have to fill your bell jar with beady-eyed taxidermy or creepy skeletons…dried hydrangeas, vintage silk ballet pumps and mercury glass candlesticks would all look lovely. Or you could always opt for a little china bird. For reasonably-priced bell jars, see yesterday’s hot shop, Dee Puddy (£22 for a large 30cm one), Hibbitt, or Crocus. If you can wait until springtime, we spotted a fab little glass bell jar in the new Sainsbury’s spring/summer 2010 collection for just £7.99! Bargainous, to be sure. Of course, garden cloche bell jars DO look a bit like boobs, and they don’t come with bases – but a glass cake plate does the trick. Vintage lab bell jars with bases are REALLY expensive, even on eBay, tragically.

Here’s a cute bell jar pic from The Guardian to add yet more fuel to my bell-jar-obsession fire! I really can’t stop thinking about bell jars. Perhaps I’m actually losing the plot. Or maybe I’m just high on ‘Tutti Frutti’ scratch ‘n’ sniff…– Ellie

Emerging from the Antiques Barn the other day, like a mole, blinking and blinded by the cold, harsh light of day, I felt a wave of happiness wash over me, for in my pocket was a key – the final item on my Top Five Vintage Magpie Buys list. The quest was complete. The search was over, the misson at an end. And I could rejoice.

vintage key1. A key. Preferably old, ideally big, slightly rusty, with an interesting shape and a Secret Garden look. Illustrated here by Yvette Inufio‘s lovely photograph – which you can buy on Etsy incidentally. Tie an antique velvet ribbon to the key, then place it on a pretty, vintage book for the ultimate effect. Alternatively, tie a luggage label to the key with words ‘La cle de mon coeur’ on it in old-fashioned letter stamps. Pretentious? Yah. Lovely? Oh yeah.

Picture 92. A pair of wooden shoe lasts. Yes, they’re creepy. They look as though they might start tap dancing around your house at midnight, but they’re SO handy as door-stops, and look pretty darn cool on a shelf, too. You can buy them in Pedlars, and they’re always knocking about at car boots, but check for woodworm.

vintage scales3. Vintage kitchen scales. Retro, metal, old. The larger the better. Of course they will take up valuable work-top space and are completely impractical and often inaccurate or broken and unusable but they look so completely and utterly charming, you won’t care. You might be unable to cook but at least you’ll have a cool kitchen to admire. And you can put things in the bowl, such as apples, onions, or a small cat.

emily chalmers e collection4. Letters. Collect them. Preferably your initial. Think rusty signs, inky wooden printing blocks, old Scrabble tiles…I wish I could pretend that this beautiful collection of Es is mine. But it’s not. It belongs to stylist Emily Chalmers of Caravan fame. SIGH.

anglepoise

5. The Anglepoise lamp. Effortlessly cool. Always a winner. The Little Black Dress of interior style. If you find a vintage one you fall for, but it doesn’t work, don’t despair. If you visit the Anglepoise website, you can buy a re-wire kit, and download a handy PDF of instructions too. Hurrah. – Ellie