I had a fantastic day out on Saturday with Mr B. We visited Salts Mill in Saltaire village near Bradford. The village was built by the mill owner Mr Titus Salt for the well being of his workers and is now a UNESCO world heritage site and quite rightly so. It is a fantastic example of the victorian industrial revolution with beautifully preserved workers houses, shops, a church and the spectacular Victoria Hall, as well as the vast mill itself. The mill is home to a permanent exhibition of one of Bradford’s most famous sons, the artist David Hockney and is well worth a visit if you are a fan of his work. The smell of fresh lilies hits you before you enter, they are apparently David Hockneys favourite flowers and are there in abundance at his insistence. Further up on the next two floors the mill houses 2 cafes, a fabulous book shop with some of the best art, interior and fashion books you will find anywhere and The Home store which has a vast collection of furniture and interior items, many mid 20th Century design classics and quirky pottery and gifts. The top floor is an Aladdin’s cave of collectables and vintage clothes, there is generally something for everyone there.

http://www.saltsmill.org.uk/

As well as the retail and dining facilities, there is currently a small exhibition in collaboration with Leeds University, showcasing a collection of 20th Century clothes and information regarding their origins, in the form of photographs and memoirs . The clothes have all been donated along with their personal history from the women of Yorkshire who wore them and it’s a fascinating insight into our social history.

http://www.yorkshirefashionarchive.org/

Within the small row of shops in the village opposite the mill is The House of Rose & Brown, a tiny vintage clothes boutique which is definitely worth a visit for it’s great mix of vintage home wares and clothes at incredibly reasonable prices. It is also worth registering on their website for information regarding the vintage fairs and fashion shows that they regularly host.

http://www.roseandbrownvintage.co.uk/default.asp?textpage=home

I am a huge fan of Neisha Crosland designs and was really excited to view her new wallpaper 7 collection.

http://www.neishacrosland.com/wallpaper/papers.html

I am currently working on a period property in a conservation area and am keen to keep the design fresh, calm and restful and true to the architecture of the property. The samples of the wallpapers popped through my letter box this morning and I was not disappointed with Ms Croslands new offerings. Each of the colours were inspired by her personal early memories such as gold tipped cocktail cigarettes and her grandmothers little espresso spoons and the names given to the colours are just as evocative. Green tea, milk and parma violet conjure up images of a more glamorous age.

The 6 geometric designs are inspired by North African architecture and crafts, a recurring theme of Neisha’s and the 2 large scale florals take inspiration from 1920’s embroidery and jacobean paisley work.

My only problem now is which ones to use, I love them all! The image below is a favourite of mine and the colour combo of mauve and grey is both feminine and timeless, perfect for the master bedroom. Maybe I have found my inspiration?

http://abigailahern.wordpress.com/

Lantern in Pigeon Blue – Wallpapers 7

majorelle in Lupin – Wallpapers 7

Happy Easter to you all. As I’m a bit obsessive about Tim Walker I’m taking advantage of today to post some of his amazing images. With all this sunshine and chocolate it’s going to be a great day!

http://www.timwalkerphotography.com/

http://www.mariotestino.com/

Last weekend we made our first visit of the year to the garden centre where we spent the equivalent of the world debt on plants which when brought home barely filled one corner of the patio. In for a penny we thought so decided to completely go for it and bought the most gorgeous crewel work parasol,with the exact olive green coloured pom poms to match the wall in the back room, which can be seen from the garden when the French doors are open. I know, I know, it’s sad but I can’t resist attention to detail! With the new parasol resplendent in the garden our outdoor furniture suddenly looked more shabby than chic so this weeks shopping mission is to secure some new furniture to complete the scene. I am completely torn between keeping it vintage, which is always my first love and going for something contemporary but pared down and timeless. There are so many options and some great high street bargains.

My lovely new parasol standing proud in the sunshine!

I love this light weight fibrestone table and cube stools by Habitat but it isn’t entirely practical as it has to be brought indoors in heavy rain, which lets face it in Blighty is most of the time.

Another great design for outdoor living by Habitat is this Kilo table. The wooden legs look great with the white metal top, which is both durable and practical. To bring a bit of colour into the garden I am considering the Air chair by Jasper Morrison, which come in a range of colours from bright pink to a more sobre olive. They are a design classic and can be stacked for easy storage. 

http://www.habitat.co.uk/?gclid=CLSg45PVpqgCFcoa4Qod1mc2HQ

http://www.jaspermorrison.com/html/7226891.html

B&Q have a fantastic choice of outdoor furniture this year and at unbeatable prices. They really have raised their game in recent years with some products hard to distinguish from designer pieces. Nice styling Alwyn!

http://www.diy.com/diy/jsp/?_requestid=161868

I absolutely love this Danish 1960’s retro set and would sell my soul to the devil to get my hands on it but sadly it now belongs to another. I came across it on the online retro trader Bleu Furniture who are based in London but source on a regular basis on buying trips to Europe.  

http://www.bleufurniture.co.uk/vintage_antique_chairs.php

The white company are masters at beautifully styling their marketing shots and this image perfectly captures summer outdoor living for me. The white Parasol is £250 but I have seen it on other websites for £175.00 so worth doing some shopping about first. The vintage chairs and table are still a favourite style of mine and I was hoping to bring some back with me from Newark but they are getting harder to source now that vintage style is more main stream. It’s always worth checking out salvage yards who can always look out for specific items for you on their buying trips. Try In-situ based in Manchester and Cheshire Demolition in Macclesfield.

http://www.thewhitecompany.com/

http://www.cheshiredemolition.co.uk/ 

http://www.insitumanchester.com/

The Spring/Summer ’11 issue of trend forecasting magazine Mix Trends is predicting the colour scarlet, anchored with a neutral palette, as a look we will see coming through in the near future.

http://www.globalcolor.co.uk/index.php

Red always works well as an accent colour, The interior designer David Hicks said that a room was never finished without a touch of red. It certainly brings a look to life, think of Coco Chanel with her monochrome uniforms and a slash of red lipstick which lifted the whole palette and turned her monastic designs into something sexy and sophisticated.

On this note the next purchase for my spring summer wardrobe will be this vintage inspired dress by Pearl Lowe for Peacocks. The bright red fabric across the back of the dress is the perfect surprise and at £40.00 leaves change for some statement wedges. Don’t think I’ll be working it quite like the lovely Daisy though!