I've mentioned many times that I moved home at the beginning of 2014. I used to live in a beautiful one bedroom cottage in a town near Oxford. Making the decision to sell it was hard, because it was such a lovely house, full of history and character. It had been an outbuilding at the bottom of the garden of a much bigger house in the street behind, then a functioning upholstery workshop until the 90s, when someone decided to turn it into a home. It was small but perfectly formed, and full of nooks and crannies, wooden beams on the ceiling and a gorgeous stone wall in the living room. The building was so stunning that you just had to respect that and be quite simple with furniture.
However, I needed to move to gain some quality of life, be closer to work and friends and return to the hustle of a city, albeit a small one. Oxford is one of the most expensive cities in the UK, and I simply couldn't afford a lovely house with lots of character on my own, so there was a compromise on that front, but I managed to find somewhere with quite a lot of space that was a blank canvas. I have had to inject some character into it through using colour and texture to make my living room bright and cozy or the bedrooms restful. Although still a work in progress, it is my little haven, my home, where I return to in the evening, close the door to the world and relax.
Today I'm going to share with you the bits that I really love about it.
Cross stitch rug
If I had to choose the one thing I love the most about my home it would be this rug. When I moved last year I needed a rug for my living room, as it looked a bit bare without one and I have a hard floor, so it can be a bit cold. I looked everywhere but nothing was catching my attention until on a trip to London I spotted this beauty at Oliver Bonas. My living room is a mixture of muted taupe and wood and a few brighter pieces, and the star of it is definitely this rug in the centre of the room. Everything clashes a little bit but somewhow it all works together.
As well as making my home warmer and brighter, since I started blogging it has also become a great background for photos!
This rug is still available from oliverbonas.com as part of their sale.
Just Be print
Finding art for my walls has been a harder task that I thought considering how much I enjoy it. It took me nearly a year to create my gallery wall in the living room because I wanted it to be perfect, which was a stupid rule. This print, however, was the first I found for my new home. I normally find those slogan art prints a little it twee, but this one really resonated with me, because I have a tendency to always be on the go, to worry about everything, so just being is probably what I find the hardest. This sits at the top of my stairs and acts as a reminder of the importance of its message.
Photo of Positano
As much as I love taking photos, most of them end up being pretty rubbish, but I have always loved this one I took of Positano, in the Italian Amalfi Coast. I love all the little houses spread across the mountain, with the beautiful tiled dome at the bottom. A few years ago I had it printed and framed and now it hangs in my living room.
This is by no means finished (no art on walls!), but even so I actually nearly prefer it to my bedroom. I love the simple colour scheme, which is very restful. I have contradictory taste and love bright colours as much as I love a simple white-grey-black combo. You may be sick of seeing those Ikea cushion covers on every home blog and magazine under the sun, but they are a brilliant way to add a bit of texture and pattern to what is otherwise an extremely simple scheme. My mum made the light grey covers from leftover fabric from the curtains, also from Ikea.
There is still a lot I want to do to this room. Next up are a new lamp or lamp shade, I'll finally finish some wall art I am making and I want find an old chest of drawers to replace the bedside table and give me more storage space.
My comfy sofa
We all need a comfort spot, a place where all feels good, and this is mine, sitting against the bright cushions under the comfort of my blanket. This sofa did't fit through the front door on moving day, which sent me into a spin. I've had it for years and years and it is so big and comfortable that I didn't want to have to buy a new one, so in the end we had to remove a back door to get it through. That makes me appreciate it even more, ha ha!
The cushions are a mixture of Ikea and Habitat and I like that they brighten up the room and the colour palette fits in with the rug.
I hope you enjoyed this little ramble. What are your favourite spots at home?