DESIGN NOTES - The Power of Sleep

With a spot light now on the quality and quantity of sleep,  the health benefits and how the quality of our sleep can dramatically improve your day.  I wanted to give an insight into how we start designing a bedroom.

The first thing I concider is the light and orientation of the room and then move on to the furniture and decoration.  Controlling the light levels at night and how to control the morning light to the clients particular preference are key to a successful design.  These two aspects will filter into the lighting and curtain designs and the decoration scheme to an extent.  Moving onto the most important piece of furniture, the bed.  Your bed is the piece of furiture you will use the most, so I would suggest it should be the best quality you can afford.  Personally I have found that a sprung base makes all the difference and I think it is esential that you lie before you buy.

Picture by Tim Walker

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DESIGN NOTES - A second life...

In Spring rebirth is all around us in nature.  I particularly like the work of these two designers who are inspired to give a second life to materials. 

Maracin Rusak,  whilst studying at the Royal College of Art, began experimenting with different ways of preserving the waste he saw at London’s flower market.  The decaying leaves and flowers are encapsulated in resin appearing like fossils appearing from the depths of the resin, reminiscent of a Dutch flower painting. The resin is then used in a veriety of pieces of furniture and lighting.   

He is interested in the ephemeral, the idea of value, the idea of things not being permanent. It shouldn’t then come as a surprise that the flowers and leaves will slowly decompose.  Over time the flowers and leaves decompose becoming silvery, but leave the form of the flower trapped in the resin with voids of light around them.  He hopes that in the way that brass or leather ages, we appreciate if for what it is, his pieces of work will be enjoyed as it changes over time.

Sophie Rowley  took common waste materials, such as denim, paper, Styrofoam and glass and has given them a second life by using them in furniture or building materials.  The Bahia stool, shown above, is made from repurposed denim. It is made out of denim offcuts from Diesels denim production.  The disgards are draped over the mould and the layers are adhesed together in bioresin.  Once dry it is carved to create a flat surface.   Her belief is that in the face of urban waste growing faster than the rate of urbanisation we will need to forget the difference between waste and resource and our trash will have to become a starting point for something new.

DESIGN NOTES - February -

I don't really take much notice of the Pantone colours issued each season for the manufacturing industry.  Sadly you can't really get away from their predictions as the manufacturers take heed when planning the colour pallets for their products.  Having said all that they have come up with a lovely colour combination this year in Rose Quartz and Periwinkle Blue.   What could be better than a Rose Quartz coloured silk velvet sofa and Periwinkle Murano Chandelier ! The photograph by Laurent Cheheref, is Le Voyer

DESIGN NOTES - January - Spaces

At the beginning of a New Year we all have a impulse to start afresh.  Whether it takes the form of a list of Resolutions or a Detox, for me, this is started by banishing the Christmas decorations.  I find a visual detox is wonderful for promoting a sense of focus, calm and mindfulness.  Sometimes we need spaces to focus and rebalance our lives and homes. 

DESIGN NOTES - November - Hygge

Hygge (pronounced Heu-gah)  is the Danish concept of cosiness created when enjoying good food, drinks and fireside times with dear friends and family.  Hygge life is slowing down to engage with the present where time is taken to enjoy the simple comforts of each day.

Whilst sourcing for my latest project I have found the ultimate cosy chair upholstered in white sheepskin. Designed by Flemming Lassen in 1936 called "The Tired Man".  As every cosy chair needs a cosy throw this super soft hand woven merino wool throw would be my choice and is available in 42 different colours.  As food is part of the Hygge equation what could be better than some delicious food on these hand made ceramics,  from a Danish father & son team.  Each piece is hand made by Mr Wurtz (snr) and then they are glazed by Mr Wurtz (jnr).