Interior Inspiration: Mad for Marble

A beautiful material that has been used since ancient times, marble is in my opinion the most elegant of stones – smooth and cool to the touch, it simply oozes luxury when incorporated into an interior design scheme. My other half has rejected my suggestion of a marble countertop for our kitchen on the grounds that it is too showy, expensive and impractical and I probably have to agree on the last point. Because of its tendency to stain and scratch, marble countertops in kitchens and bathrooms is not always the most practical choice. However, that doesn’t mean I can’t indulge in a few choice marble accessories around the house.

Marble Collage

{A classic tulip dining table or a marble top coffee table like these ones by House Doctor and Asplund would be lovely but, failing that, any of these accessories would fit nicely into our home as well. Marble trays by Hay, chopping board by House Doctor, kitchen utensil holder from Crate & Barrel and marble candlestick by Menu at Royal Design}.

Let the Christmas Countdown Begin

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Only five weeks to go until Christmas and I for one Can. Not. Wait. There are so many things to look forward to – putting the decorations up, buying and wrapping the presents, the school Christmas concerts, our village Christmas fair, all the yummy food… I could go on and on, and no doubt I will be doing just that, right here on this blog, over the coming weeks!

The boys have been busy writing their letters to Santa this week. Casper has rather optimistically asked for a Play Station, an X Box and an iPod so I had to explain that it is unlikely he will receive everything on the list. For the first time Cameron has been expressing doubts about the existence of Father Christmas (he is ten so I guess it is to be expected..) but he is under strict instructions not to voice these in front of his younger siblings unless he wants to find an empty stocking on Christmas morning! He didn’t want to take any chances so his letter is also winging its way to the North Pole as we speak…

Nothing beats the magic of Christmas morning even if it does tend to start at the ungodly hour of 5am in our house. This year we’re actually away on Christmas Day (it’s my dad’s 70th birthday on the 25th so we’re going to stay in a country hotel for three nights) but that won’t stop me from decking out the house in its festive finery. I love these inspirational pictures from Danish brand House Doctor, especially the big paper stars and the illuminated snow sign.

House-Doctor-Christmas-2013

Currently Coveting #13: The Perfect Advent Candle Holder

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With just over two weeks to go until the first Sunday of Advent, the search is on for the perfect Advent candlestick to take pride of place on our dining table. It needs to hold four candles as each Sunday until Christmas a candle will be lit until, on December 22, all four are alight. Last year I bought four chunky white candles from Ikea with the numbers 1-4 stamped on them in red. I tied a piece of red and white gingham ribbon around the base of each candle  and placed them on a silver tray in the centre of the table. It was a cheap and very pretty arrangement but with no trip to Ikea on the cards in the next couple of weeks, I need to find another solution fast.

I’m drawn to the understated elegance and simplicity of this wrought iron Advent candle holder by Finnish brand Iittala. At the moment Royal Design are offering £5 off the original price so it would be a good time to invest in a candlestick that we could carry on using for many, many years. It also comes in a bigger version that can hold six candles, which I would be very tempted by if my requirements weren’t so specific. I like the idea of using different coloured candles to jazz it up a bit – Christmassy red or sparkly silver would look stunning.

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Let there be light

Lanterns Collage

When we get back from our holiday it will only be a matter of weeks before autumn is upon us. Hopefully there are still plenty of warm days ahead but as the evenings get darker, these lanterns from Nordic House will add a soft, romantic glow inside or outside.

In the picture: Big stainless steel lanterns from £135; Nautical hurricane lamps from £26.95; Numbered glass hurricanes from £19.95,; White willow hurricane £29.95.