• Archive for July, 2013

    Country style: Slouchy stripes

    by  • 10/07/2013 • Country style • 0 Comments

    Summer is really here so were all relaxed. Informal summer style means flowing fabrics and loose shapes so we’ve taken this to heart in our slouchy stripe decorating story (August issue, out now!) where we show how to ease into summer at home and give it a casual beach house feel using crumply linens with slouchy woven stripes. Shown here is a loose slipcover, a fabulous way to update a chair. Other ideas in our feature include layered pin tucks in the bedroom, woven rugs with ticking stripes and casual cloths for summer dining.

    Carver, The Dining Chair Company. Fabric, Orgon, JAB Anstoez. Cushion, Random Retail.

    Carver, The Dining Chair Company. Fabric, Orgon, JAB Anstoez. Cushion, Random Retail.

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    Country room: idyllic conservatory

    by  • 09/07/2013 • Country style • 1 Comment

    What a romantic room with a view! Just the place to sip a cool homemade elderflower cordial during the day or a glass of wine on a summer’s evening while admiring the garden.

    A key ingredient in a lean to conservatory like this is practical but pretty furniture. This set from Lloyd Loom comes in a pretty blue green (Tarragon) that provides a calming feel and complements both the plants and the warm tones of the quarry tile floor. Heritage brand Lloyd Loom’s furniture is made by hand in Britain using techniques learnt in the 1930s. Team with seat cushions in a pretty check (this one is Ian Mankin’s Avon Check Mint) or a floral.

    Then add the perfect finishing touches – dot black wrought-iron lanterns and candles in green glass jars around for extra atmosphere in the evening.

    Armchair, £645, two-seater sofa, £1,109, footstool, £379, all the Babbington Collection from Lloyd Loom of Spalding. The Babbington Collection comes in 15 weave colours or customers can choose a weave colour from the Farrow & Ball paint chart.

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    Country moment: strawberry picking

    by  • 08/07/2013 • Country food, Country moment • 0 Comments

    What a hot and heavenly weekend! The highlight for me was the local soft fruit farm finally opening its gate for Pick-your-own strawberries. ‘It’s the latest season for us in 20 years,’ the owner told me, but it was worth the wait. In beating sunshine, we chose the juiciest fruits and headed back to make homemade strawberry ice cream. Perfect!

    A month late but worth the wait

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    Country crafts: Lavender bags

    by  • 07/07/2013 • Country craft • 0 Comments

    Lavender bags

    Make pretty lavender bags from your favourite fabrics. We used a selection from The Silk Gallery, Hobbycraft, Lorient Decor at Voyage, Sanderson, Prestigious Textiles and Casemance. Lavender from Hobbycraft. Velvet ribbon, for similar try Josyrose.

    Fragrance linens and clothes with these delightful strawberry shaped lavender bags. Simply made using favourite fabrics, they make a lovely gift idea.

    You will need
    Pinking sheers
    Coloured fabrics
    Green ribbon
    Cotton thread

    To make  draw a template in a small cone shape with the pointed end snipped off – use the above photograph as guide. Fold the fabric in half, right side facing. Place the template next to the folded edge. Pin in place, then draw and cut around the shape using the pinking sheers. Remove the template and pin along the longer side edge to make a 1/2 cm hem and sew together.  Turn out the fabric. Fill with lavender. Tack around the top of the cone, push the fabric along the thread to tighten and enclose the lavender and secure in to place. Using the ribbon, make a series of loops and sew into place to make a leafy shape to disguise the top of the strawberry.

    If you like this idea we have lots more easy craft projects http://www.housetohome.co.uk/crafts for you to try. And for more country crafts, recipes and room ideas, why not buy our  Country Home Ideas app? http://search.itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZContentLink.woa/wa/link?path=apps%2fcountryhomeideas

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    Country days: Summer reading…

    by  • 06/07/2013 • Country moment • 0 Comments

    With guaranteed sunshine this weekend, we’re all set to head outdoors and enjoy those lazy hazy days of summer – with a copy of the latest issue in hand of course!

    Enjoy the August issue of Country Homes & Interiors in print or download the lightweight digital edition online and browse from the comfort of your deckchair…

    Inside you’ll find inspiring features from crafty makes for garden parties to French country style and scrumptious summer recipes. Enjoy…

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    Country buy: coastal treasures

    by  • 05/07/2013 • Country style • 0 Comments

    I’ve got my heart set on moving to the seaside, so my radar is very much on all things coastal. The object of my affections this week is the work of Jessica Hogarth; her designs beautifully capture the feel-good factor of living by the sea.

    Influenced by growing up in the picturesque fishing village of Robin Hoods Bay, on the North Yorkshire coast, Jessica’s charming illustrations depict coastal living – with wallpapers, cushions, kitchen textiles and stationery plentiful with bold sail boats, coastal cottages and marine wildlife.

    Coastal cottages cushion, £36; Sailor's life for me blank greetings card, £2.20; Seagulls blank greetings card, £2.20; Boat nostalgia tea towel, £10, all Jessica Hogarth Designs.

    Coastal cottages cushion, £36; Sailor’s life for me blank greetings card, £2.20; Seagulls blank greetings card, £2.20; Boat nostalgia tea towel, £10, all Jessica Hogarth Designs.

    Until I’m living the dream, maybe this quirky wallpaper is enough to evoke the spirit of life in a quaint coastal village…

    Coastal cottages wallpaper, £120 a roll, Jessica Hogarth Designs.

    Coastal cottages wallpaper, £120 a roll, Jessica Hogarth Designs.

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    Country food: creme de la creme

    by  • 04/07/2013 • Country food, Country moment • 0 Comments

    At The Great Taste Awards: in case you’re wondering that’s cider jelly in the pork pie

    I went down to Dorset last week to judge a raft of speciality food and drink products at the Great Taste Awards – like an Oscars ceremony for foodies with everyone going for gold. You’ve probably noticed the much sought-after stickers on artisan products in your local farm shop or deli – those with a ‘gold’ really are the best in the country. The whole shebang is organised by the Guild of Fine Food and takes place over several days with literally thousands of products being tasted by teams of experts who are truly passionate about food. It takes a certain sort of stamina – a spoonful of chutney, followed by a nano-scoop of ice cream, followed by a teeny sliver of pork pie and so on (you get the idea – it’s important to pace yourself…). My personal favourites included a stunning parsnip chutney with nigella seeds, a fig and Welsh honey ice cream, and a salt rub with seaweed. Afterwards it was off to Puddletown foodie haunt The Blue Vinny for a much-deserved glass of Pimm’s and some Portland crab cakes…

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    Country style: Holiday at home

    by  • 03/07/2013 • Country moment, Country style • 0 Comments

    A few hours sitting at home in the garden, when the sun is shining can be just as refreshing as a holiday. With this in mind we put together our Holiday spirit decorating feature, (August issue -out now!) which shows how to make the most of the time in the garden by kicking back and lazing upon a fabulous daybed with layer upon layer of floral cushions, as shown here. Other ideas include casual dining beneath the boughs of a tree and swing seats, do take a look!

    Vintage quilt, Country vintage. Cushions: Dobbies, Laura Ashley, Designer’s Guild, Indigo Rose, India Jane. Fabric, Jane Churchill at Colefax and Folwer.

    Vintage quilt, Country vintage. Cushions: Dobbies, Laura Ashley, Designer’s Guild, Indigo Rose, India Jane. Fabric, Jane Churchill at Colefax and Folwer.

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    Country moment: wildflower roof

    by  • 02/07/2013 • Country moment, Country style • 0 Comments

    In March, we had a green roof laid on top of a new flat roof extension at the back of our house. I chose a wildflower and sedum mix that echoes the surrounding environment. It looked awful when it came at the start of spring – just a patchy carpet of earth and ‘weeds’ (as my son called it). But look at it now – ox-eye daisies, viper’s bugloss, red clover all happily say hello when I open the curtains in the morning – I love it!

    The view from my son’s bedroom onto the green roof.

    Ox-eye daisies and viper’s bugloss

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