Posts Tagged ‘interior designer’

Secrets of a Stylish Home is a book that I have been working on for the last year with the brilliant interiors photographer Simon Whitmore, and all the lovely and talented people at Merrell Publishing. The book is a look behind the scenes at our approach to interior design and photography is all taken in the beautiful homes of friends and clients of Angel and Blume. It is due for release in April this year and I am really delighted with the results.

Secrets of a Stylish HomeSecrets of a Stylish Home

Secrets of a Stylish Home

Secrets of a Stylish Home

Secrets of a Stylish Home

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The new Crayford collection of fabrics and wallpapers from G P and J Baker draws on it’s archive of designs from the 20s and 30s. The influence of the Arts and Crafts designers is prevalent throughout the collection giving it a comforting familiar feel with new colourways keeping it fresh and up to date. I think this is a delightful collection, highly useable and one that will last the test of time.  

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Here in Angel + Blume, Autumn is one of the most exciting times of the year as it brings with it the launch of the new fabric, wallpaper, carpet, lighting and accessory collections.

This autumn we are seeing a return of the wonderfully warm Chinese yellow so popular in the 1980s alongside bold overblown florals and small scale geometrics.


This picture shows Sanderson’s gorgeous Chinese Peony wallpaper from their new Richmond collection.  This teamed with curtains in a rich velvet such as Harlequin’s Folia in Cocoa

Folia Cocoa


together with cushions in Sancerre Lime and Lisanne from Harlequin’s Impasto Collection and in Nobilis gorgeous Hector fabric, and you would have a beautiful, up to date, not overly designed room scheme.

Harlequin Sancerre

Nobilis Hector

Whilst yellow used with red and pink can look pretty and country, yellow teamed with Charcoal and Silver looks particularly smart and  a bit more sophisticated.  Again, this is illustrated particularly well in these lovely Harlequin Giverny curtains, which look as if they have been painted, and the really unusual coordinating People wallpaper.

There would appear to have been a resurgence in period glamour with restrained Art Deco influences.  And there is an abundance of metallic accessories from mirrors to lamp bases, to vases and even furniture.

Dahlia Mirror from Clayton Gray Home, Lillianan Lamp from John Lewis and Casa Couture Bronze Metalic Bulb Vase from House of Frazer

Sage Luxury Brass Bed from And So To Bed

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We have just spent a lovely day at the Bennison fabrics sale day – we were all blown away by the beautiful fabrics that Bennison designs and produces and I thought it was interesting that despite the very different, but all exquisite, interiors taste of our team, we each found a fabric or two (or more) to lust after!

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We have just launched our courses for 2013 and you can get all the information at www.interiordesigntalks.com. The classes on are on Interior Designing Your Own Home and they will be held on Tuesday evenings at our new office which is on the corner of Emmanuel Road and Orchard Street. Keep an eye on the website for more courses to be announced!

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We have set eyes on the new collections from Osborne and Little and Nina Campbell this week and we are delighted to say that they are lovely! Wallpapers, fabrics and trimmings in up to date versions of classic designs and all in delicious, delicate colours. Watch this space, they may be featuring in designs coming to you soon!

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Our new evening classes started last night at Angel and Blume (see more at www.interiordesigntalks.com) and as the subject of the first class was ‘Finding Your Style’, I chose ten of my favourite books to show a range of different interiors style to the group. These have been sitting on our meeting room table all day so I thought it was a good opportunity to share some all time Angel and Blume book favourites with you! Here are the first five, more to follow later……


Practically Minimal

Maggie Toy Published by Thames and Hudson ISBN 0-500-28370-2

Minimalism can be thought of as huge, bare white spaces but this book presents beautiful liveable pared down spaces that focus on light, textures and materials and it makes even an accessories junkie like me want to go home and have a good clear up. It is a truly inspiring book that presents elegant, comfortable spaces that are a triumph of form AND function and I would urge any of you that love the minimalist way of live to invest in this book – I love it and I am sure you will too.


Contemporary Chic

Rozemarijn de Witte Photography by Hotze Eisma

Published by Conran Octopus Limited ISBN 1-85029-925-0

I have owned this book for many years and I keep coming back to it for ideas. It is full of comfortable, relaxed, carefully thought through interiors that all have a contemporary slant but often in a period setting. I think it is a very useful book for most people undertaking a project and there are so many lovely images, there really is something for everyone.


Shoestring Chic

Gail Abbott with photography by Mark Scott

Published by Cico, ISBN-13:978-1588163097

Gail Abbott wrote this book from her heart and she lives and breathes the art of shabby, shoestring chic. This book is about restrained beauty, seaside influence, vintage Swedish, French antiques and understanding the style so thoroughly that pieces picked up from a charity shop, flea market or car boot sale, anywhere in the world, will look a million dollars when they installed at home.


Perfect English

Ros Byam Shaw with photography by Chris Tubbs

Published by Ryland Peters and Small ISBN 978-1-84597-344-5

For me, this book captures the heart of English decoration – it isn’t the perfect, beautiful decoration of Henrietta Spencer Churchill or Nina Campbell but the real look of an English home that has evolved over the years. It encompasses farmhouses, stately homes, townhouses and cottages so if you love a bit of home grown style, this book is more than worth a look.


 Dream Homes, 100 Inspirational Interiors (and More Dream Homes, 100  Inspirational interiors, same authors and publisher, ISBN -13: 978-1-8589-4377-0)

Andreas von Einsiedel and Johanna Thornycroft
Published by Merrell ISBN-13: 978-1-8589-4349-7

A friend of mine bought me this book a while ago and initially I thought it wouldn’t be one of my favourite as it is simply a collection of beautiful homes. However, I have to say that I have found so much inspiration for my project work and for my own home that too many pages have been torn out and a new copy has had to be purchased! A really good book if you are just starting to identify your own style and want a wide range to look at and if that still isn’t enough for you, there is the aptly titled follow-up, More Dream Homes!

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The new Rapture and Wright catalogue has just dropped through the Angel and Blume letterbox and it really is worth a look. This lovely British company specialises in linen and linen union printed cloths that work beautifully for curtains and blinds but also (as you can see from their gorgeous web images) for upholstery, lampshades and bed headboards.  They have produced four of their fabric patterns as wallpaper which really shows off their beautifully drawn designs to their best advantage. Take a look, we don’t think you will be disappointed!

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I briefly visited the International Art Fair at the Royal College of Art of Saturday and was amazed at the number of stands and the range of work there. As ever, it reminded me how difficult it is to choose art, particularly when confronted with such variety, and just like shopping, much depends on the quality of the stand and the way that the work is presented. My golden rules with picking art, both for myself and as part of an interior design project, is to know your style before you start looking and to ensure that you really LOVE the piece before you buy. Try not to buy a piece based on size of space you want to fill or colour of the room – you run the risk of ending up with a compromise.

Of course I would say that my friend Lynne Strover, who runs the truly wonderful Strover Gallery in Fen Ditton had the best stand but I was also delighted to see that she has found a wonderful new artist Rosemary Vanns and I was/am sorely tempted by her work.

Strover Gallery - Clive Blackmore Lynne Strover - Peter Joyce

Clive Blackmore                                               Peter Joyce

Lynne Strover - Rosemary Vanns Strover Gallery - Maggi Hambling

Rosemary Vanns                                             Maggi Hambling

Other stands that for me were worth noting were the Lime Tree Gallery based in Suffolk (Long Melford) and Bristol

Lime Tree Gallery Lime Tree Gallery

Lime Tree Gallery – Gareth Thomas           Lime Tree Gallery – Robert Newton

and Dominic Kemp who has a great range of good prints.

Dominic Kemp Prints

Dominic Kemp Prints – Terry Frost         Dominic Kemp Prints – Edward Dawden

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What do you want to know about interior design? Whether you are thinking of a career in interior design or want to know more about the subject for your own interest, we have an interior design talk for you. We are interior designers ourselves and our aim is to give you an insight into a profession that we love.

studio bookcase

This year we are running three different types of interior design courses on Saturdays and our aim is to give you lots of invaluable insights and practical information into being an interior designer or into interior design tips for your own home.

studio image

We will draw on our own experience showing you examples of work that we have undertaken as interior designers and we will give you tips and advice so that will go away inspired and ready to make changes to your home, or possibly to your career!


We have three different Saturday courses on offer for the first half of 2011. A one day course that is designed for those of you who want to work in the interior design field and two different half day courses for people who have a personal interest in the subject or who have home improvement projects you want help with. No previous experience is required with any of the courses and if you would like to attend more than one course, we would be delighted to see you twice or even three times!


Book early to avoid disappointment. Sign up here.

Images: Mark Box


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