One of the things I like to do from time to time is to enter competitions. I don’t spend hours every day as some people do, but if I see something that looks fun or interesting I might take part.
I was recently invited to enter a competition to ‘design’ my dream room, hosted by Dear Designer on behalf of Good to be Home and Laura Ashley. The main prize is an Anglian door with Laura Ashley etched glass (worth £1,000). Five runners up will also win £100 vouchers to spend at Laura Ashley.
I tend to have quite simple tastes in style. When it comes to decorating, the most critical things for me are that a room is comfortable, practical, and that it looks tidy/neat and inviting – so a degree of space and good storage is important. I also like to choose items that reflect my interests and/or personality.
I love this dog-themed duvet set (please click on the images to open the product pages). I love animals, and nature, and have quite a few pets (cats and dogs). This duvet set with a plain white background, and a quirky animal design is perfect.
I also really love the simple white wooden floor in the picture – it’s clean, practical, and bright. To soften it and to add some texture: I’d add a nice rug, a soft throw, and some funky cushions that pick up on particular colours.
I like natural, earthy colours and fabrics, with a pop of brightness or pattern on them. My favourite colours are blush pink, pastel yellow and a pale/mild grey. I think these wallpapers are really pretty – I like the natural, rustic, earthy and slightly weathered feel of them. I’d match these with a bright white gloss paint for skirting boards and coving.
I think that storage is very important. I don’t like clutter. I prefer clear, neat surfaces, but I also have a lot of different items. I really like the build-a-custom-wardrobe idea of Sliderobes, since it minimises wasted space and provides a tidy dedicated space for all of your items. My favourite finishes tend to be black glass and/or walnut, but I also like plain white. Since these wardrobes are designed to fit the space that you have, the prices vary according to your needs. If I had the space, I’d love this walk-in version.
I also think that good lighting in a room is very important. This lovely ‘White Desk Lamp with Chrome Ring’ would be great as a bedside light, or on a nice desk for late-night writing sessions. It’s £9.99 from Dunelm (find it here).
I really like this picture of a dancer. I already own two very lovely ballerina pictures, and this would go with them so well. They would look lovely together on a nice open wall.
I’d like a nice houseplant in my room too – this Areca Palm (Butterfly Palm) is £19.99 from Homebase. And this amazing set of 4 Hunterhill Dogs drawer pulls would be perfect for putting a personal touch on white furniture. They are available from LauraAshley.com for £20.16.
Finally, since this is my ‘dream’ room, and space and money is unlimited … I should obviously also include the (so far) two items that I have come across in the last 10-15 years that I must-one-day-possess. I’m not really sure they go too well with the rest of the room I have designed, but anyway.
This is the ‘Playstation Chair’ by Jerszy Seymour. I first saw it (in person) at the Design Museum in London, although the one I saw had a black leather cover – not this two-tone grey fabric one. It’s admittedly not the most average looking of seating, but it was – and is to this day – the most comfortable chair I have ever sat in. There’s also a version with two foot-rests, and a two-person sofa design. I’m not sure if it’s even available to buy, or how much it would cost … but I want one.
My all-time favourite artist is Neil Canning. I first found his work during my Art GCSE. I emailed him a short set of questions for inclusion in my work, and was lucky enough to receive a full response. More recently, Neil Canning has also branched into sculpture – but for me, his paintings are something truly special. I would love to have an original Neil Canning picture one day. This image, Sea Concerto, is painted using oil on canvas.