When I first went into Watts of Westminster, I was blown away. Their lavish showroom is a joy to behold. Their wallpaper and fabric are sumptuous and exciting. They recently put up a photograph of their Wolterton Verdure wallpaper. It instantly made me want to cover my hallway in it.
My friend put me onto this Instagram account. It's got a massive following, so I might be telling grandmothers how to suck eggs. But for those of you like me who weren't aware, I apologise for the procrastination this Instagram will cause. By god, these houses are delicious, and the prices are jaw-dropping.
Gardening is cool. Everyone knows it. It might not have entirely replaced Rock and Roll, but you wait. To make your patch of land that much cooler, look no further than Hoxton Gardenware, which sells 'Small batch terracotta garden ware produced by young people at Troy Town'. You can purchase online or pop by.
Fabrice Bana put up a picture by Bernard Boutet de Monvel of the Maharajah of Indore, showing at the V&A in the 'Fashioning Masculinities' exhibition. It's an extraordinary striking portrait. I could not remember seeing it before, but I instantly wanted to know more about the subject. I have learned that the Maharaja of Indore was a huge fan of art deco style and modernist architecture. He created Manik Bagh ("Ruby Garden") palace with the German architect Eckart Muthesius in Indore as a homage to these movements. That is where the portrait that Bernard Boutet de Monvel hung, along with a picture of his first wife, H.H. The Maharani of Indore by Bernard Boutet de Monvel (1934). As you might be able to tell this is the start of a love affair.
I came across the work of the Australian artist, Shane Drinkwater. I adore the colours and shapes he uses; his pieces have won me over in a big way.
We went away with friends a couple of weeks ago, and all the girls were wearing these beautiful velvet shoes. I had seen them before but hadn't taken much notice; now, on a sunny evening in May, I thought how charming they looked. A friend suggested Folkloore, who has a range of these shoes as well as a boatload of lovely goods so I thought I'd pass on the suggestion.
I came across Camerons & Mills the other day. I so enjoyed their mix of vintage and antique lamps. But what got me was their own collection of lamps. My two favourites had to be the 'The Brushed Metal' & 'The Tilting Reader'. Happy browsing.
Tat is on the move, so I constantly have my face pressed to shop windows, seeing what space they have. Sadly, the Tat shop was not around the corner as I learned about Business Rates, which promptly took the wind out of my sails. One good thing that has come out of my search is coming across the excellent shop Speciale on Portobello Road. Not only is the shop a beauty, wood-lined, exceptional paintings and fabric draped sofa, but also their array of items is simply dreamy. You've got magnificent knitwear, superb ties, and Nostalgia Chair, which I adore.
Bags are like shoes for me. I can't afford the swanky ones, so I try and go for vintage or simple. Deren Rice has created a not unswanky bag, but it is simple. Perhaps swanky in its simpleness. God, these pros are tricky. But stick with me - give them your eye as I think you too could be won over.
Simple is not a word that comes to mind when looking at Pardo Hats. But the way I appreciate the smooth lines of the Derne Rice bags is the same way I appreciate the madness of the Pardo hats.