Monday, 15 February 2021

6 Miss Selfridge items in my basket lately


This post was written before the recent acquisition of Miss Selfridge by ASOS.
To locate the featured products - or similar - head on over here

The hit skirt you may have seen on Instagram

Admittedly the product images for this skirt aren't especially captivating (light green wrap around skirt as above) however I saw someone wearing it on Instagram and this was the selling factor for me. And turns out I'm not alone as the influencer picture is now on the product listing (well was, before the Miss Selfridge website went down).

The print on this floaty maxi dress

It's just so versatile. I can imagine this dress being perfect for city breaks, tropical holidays, after work cocktails, date night and brunch with the girls. Like waaaay in the future when we're actually allowed to do these things ;) I ordered my normal size but it didn't seem to have enough space in the boob department. Miss Selfridge had a 20% off discount code so I re-ordered the same dress (top left as above) and also in the size up to compare. The size up came up too big on me. Oddly the size that was too small before was perfect on the second attempt. What I didn't realise is that the dress has ties that can loosened or tightened accordingly (doh!).

The LOOK AT ME bag

I am trying to be more mindful of the environment so when I last worked in an office environment many moons ago pre Covid I made a conscious effort to stop using plastic bags and switch them out for totes. The tote bag I have is from a blogger event but the biege colour isn't practical for every day life. I also carried around a miniature handbag, the strap of which rubbed against the tote bag and stained it. Said stain is burgundy so could very feasibly be a wine stain given my love of red wine. Whilst I was considering a black tote with a suitably witty remark on it, this mustard macrame bag (as above) jumped out at me as it's a little more aesthetically pleasing than a carrying a large black rectangle around with you. Easily my best find of the year (was £28, in the sale for just £7).

The floral print bardot dress of dreams

This dress is just so effortlessly cool. I'm not always a fan of that elasticated corseting detail on dresses (very compressing on the boobs) but if the cut of the dress is right, it can be really flattering. Especially with a bardot neckline like this one. This dress has since sold out but the same print can be found on their tea dress version here.

The fluffy knit that looks blue but is apparently grey 

I'm baffled too. It's blue right? Now sold out but a sneak peek available in top right hand image

Itsy bitsy teenie weenie polka dot bikini

What's better than polka dots? Rainbow polka dots! I love the BlueBellGray essence of the watercolour polka dots on this bikini set which help transform a simple white bikini to something much more special. Currently in the sale with discounts within the 49-58% range, it's definitely tempting! 

Which items are your favourites?

You may also like: 11 things filling my ASOS basket lately


Wednesday, 10 February 2021

Future plans for our dining room // a dining room mood board

A slightly different approach to my hallway mood board as unlike the hallway, the dining room transformation is already under way! You can follow progress on my extension here on Instagram stories. 

THE PREVIOUS DINING ROOM

The previous kitchen diner was a lovely bright space with a large picture window framing the view of the garden, a galley kitchen one side of the room, a peninsula divider, and IKEA cabinetry fitted into the fireplace alcove on the other side of the room with translucent doors which bounced the light around further, as did glossy marble effect floor tiles. This room was magnolia like all other rooms of the house (the previous owner's work).

PROBLEM POINTS

The marble floor tiles although beautiful, were largely white with grey veining so showed every speck of dirt and had zero practicality. The dining part of the kitchen diner was really compact. The previous owner's wooden dining table (which he took with him) ate up all the space so we opted for a glass dining table to give the illusion of space. But even with a glass table, the space was still tight. We hosted eight for a dinner party once and it was pretty snug. Thinking ahead to the future, we knew there was no space for the pitter patter of little feet to run around in.

IDEAS

We wanted to create a contemporary look room but at the same time, we are heavily influenced by French style. We love visiting Versailles and all manner of historical stately homes, so were after a similar statement floor to give our characterless house some, well, character. We pick up a lot of inspiration from French bistros and restaurants and seeing as we haven't been doing a whole lot of that since the global pandemic(!) we wanted to bring that essence home to enjoy every day. 

FUTURE PLANS FOR THE DINING ROOM

Dining room mood board / Future plans for our dining room


Flooring - Wooden herringbone flooring was high on my wish list...until I found out how much it costs. Laying that aesthetically pleasing pattern takes time and labour can cost as much as the actual flooring (essentially doubling your cost), if not more. Also being in lockdown we couldn't go out and look at flooring, and there was no way I was blindly buying flooring online without seeing it or touching it first. Also after ordering samples, I learnt that the colours online never quite look the same IRL. In the end we opted for a wood effect tile (easier to maintain plus suitable for use with underfloor heating). We chose the above criss cross pattern which interlocks and creates one large pattern. It won't be everyone's cup of tea I'm sure, but for us it reminded us of French bistrots, French chateaux and French parquet flooring. I was pretty nervous as I hadn't seen anyone else with this flooring, but have zero regrets. It makes the room. 

Lighting - The navy blue chandelier that came with the house was a little school, but I did ask the builder to save it as I had another plan for it. Turns out he didn't save it (doh). When it came to replacing the light, I wanted to warm up the decor a little with a gold or brass light fitting. A Next light fitting I loved went out of stock and any Tom Dixon lighting was out of the question due to cost (sob). I love sputnik lighting but Mr Curiouser and Curiouser wasn't so sure. Turns out we are polar opposites when it comes to opinions on lighting. The one and only light we agreed on was this beauty from MADE. It's contemporary, it's brass, it doesn't have millions of annoying bulbs to change and having LEDs makes it a lot more efficient to run. Plus the shape mimicks the flooring and our dining table. 

Table - We already own the above table which was purchased to give the illusion of space in our old kitchen diner. The glass is good and thick so deals with heat well, and any spills can be wiped up easily. This will likely be replaced in the future for an extendable table now we have more space. Maybe a nice wooden number. 

Seating - Our Next dining chairs have seen better days. I feel like the cats sense my frustration with them and are 'helping' by ripping them to shreds. In the short term I'm thinking of investing in some velvet chair covers like these (colour still TBC) or having a go at upholstering them myself. But long term I would like to invest in some restaurant style bench seating to create that cafe / bistrot feel. I have already bookmarked pink and blue velvet chairs from Danetti (as above) to create a more relaxed dining experience with friends and family. Our new extension isn't one of these massive open plan kitchen / dining / living room affairs, so having a dining bench or sofa would make this a versatile space.

Decoration - The fireplace is the main focus of the room and sits alongside the dining table. The previous chimney breast was a crooked affair and has now been made good. It's currently white to contrast against our dark cupboards but in the future I'd like to cover this with a statement wallpaper like this floral design and add a wooden mantel and an industrial style mirror like this or a circular mirror. The void in the fireplace used to hold our booze collection but I'm planning to switch this out for a hurricane vase to display lit candles or pampas grass. I also want to incorporate some greenery in big pots like this and maybe some trailing plants like ivy on the alcove cupboards to provide a link to the garden. The dining room wall is also plain white for now but a future project is injecting some character with panelling and getting some artwork up. 

Storage - My vision was to replace the IKEA cupboards with something special and feeling inspired by Versailles' Hall of Mirrors, I was after mirrored cupboard doors. I had a specific company in mind and contacted them with the alcove measurements and asked for a quote. The sales rep I spoke to never got back to me. Their social media team promised they would chase this up for me. Still nothing. When said company lost access to their Instagram account and wanted support re-building their social media following, I asked if their level of customer service would be any better on this new account. They were horrified that I'd been ignored all this time and were ready to help me THEN but by that stage, the new cupboards were already in so they'd lost my business. Whilst I'd still love to have mirrored doors in the future, I at least now know which company to avoid! The cupboards that have been fitted are disappointing if I'm honest. I used to store tall items like the ironing board and the vacuum cleaner and there is a non adjustable shelf so I can no longer store these items there. And in terms of the look, they feel very flat. My future project is to try and mock up the mirrored look in some capacity or try applying my own panelling to get the look of this Maisons du Monde wardrobe (dark interiors for the win!)

Which items are your favourites?