OK, this is proper faux leather upholstery in brown. Fantastic attention to detail on an otherwise classic design. NO attention to detail is spared – look at the rear of the chairs. How often will that be seen? Rarely. But with an attention to detail you think about the times when it will matter. Great stuff.
This pine cone-like light cum chandelier by Amber design is a great centre piece for any living room ceiling.
We like this one too (below)
Astounding Interiors designed this special London bar. We like the detail on the tiles and the vertical bar front – interesting combinations of hard, geometric textures.
Great green lighting and of course the obligatory faux leather covered stools in the seating area to the rear.
A contemporary lounge chair or sofa attains its contemporary’ status by having the right combinations of ‘form’ and an expertly upholstered, quality finish. Here we will just look at upholstery and, in particular, silk velvet upholstery fabrics.
Contemporary furniture is designed to be striking, with the better examples typified by great craftsmanship. Consequently you will find many designers and upholsterers specifying fabric such as that sold by leading fabric houses including Kravet, KOTHEA and Donghia.
A velvet fabric is one where the fabric is made with very many tight loops of yarn. A cutter then chops off the end of every loop leaving yarn that ‘points’ upwards, tightly packed together. Often you will have encountered this type of fabric in theatres and cinemas – more so now in private theatres. The length of the remaining yarn can vary and this is called the pile; it could be a few mm or several mm long. The longer the pile the more likely it is to ‘fall over’. This, by itself, is neither good nor bad. It depends on what you prefer. The direction in which the pile falls is called the ‘nap’ and when upholstering a high quality craftsman must understand how to correctly work with the nap.
The nap can show some of the side of the individual strands of yarn and the sides can be more reflective than the cut ends. Thus, often, velvets have ‘shine’. Shine also occurs with wear as the pile becomes compressed, exposed and rubbed/polished with usage. People often, incorrectly, associate this solely with ‘silk velvet’ but that is not necessarily always true as many velvets can show more shine with age.
So we have learnt a little about how velvet is made and how it wears. Where does the silk come in?
Well, velvet can be made from many yarns. Cotton, viscose, mohair, linen or sheep’s wool. Silk is a natural substance spun by a silk worm. Silk is commonplace but varies tremendously in quality. Often silk is combined with other yarns to increaser its strength or to achieve other properties. For example one of our most luxurious fabrics is a silk and cashmere velvet. The resulting mohair velvet fabric feels great AND also has much improved durability properties. Cheaper silk will degrade much more rapidly.
So, typically, silk velvet is mixed with other yarns and often has a shine. This makes it great for contemporary furniture
We’ve scoured the net to find and list the sites we know and love. Some you already know, some you will love once you see them for the first time. Either way enjoy the depth and variety of the information on our industry and don’t forget to see which ones are voted as the ‘best’ at the end of this article – you can vote for your favourite too.
These are all sites that might be useful for interior designers rather than ones created by interior designers (or their suppliers) to promote their business. Maybe they provide a nice showcase or perhaps just a tad of inspiration in a seemingly never-ending sea of banality. Enjoy!
In no particular order then:
- Houzz.com – probably one of the best resources.
- pinterest.com – yep, you know that one too
- saniapell.com/athomeblog – At Home !! Best Image Curation !!
- Dezeen – Architecture, Interiors, Design
- Design Spotter
- The Business Bible For Interior Designers
- echochamber.com Retail matters
- thecoolhunter.co.uk Roaming the UK and the globe so you’re in the know
- roomreveal.com – Like Houzz
- Remodelista – Sourcebook for considered living
- homeshoppingspy.com – Irresistible home buys you will love
- emmas.blogg.se – Design and style from a Scandinavian perspective
- The Fabric Blog
- thebeatthatmyheartskipped.co.uk – Dedicated to daily design inspiration !! BEST NAME !!
- icreatived.com – Interesting Creative Designs. Find a different world in site..
- Apartment Therapy
- My friend’s house
- Moon to Moon – Sharing the best in eclectic Interior design from across the web
- The Selby – is in your place
- Design Sponge
- Design Squish
- The Accessorator – Musings from Judi Roaman
- A Library of Design
- Slim Paley – Cats, Queens and other things
- A Bloomsbury Life – Within Shopping distance of Hollywood and Vine
- Design Tripper
- Herriott Grace – A savings account for things I like
- Emerson Merrick
- Even Cleveland
- Past Imperfect
- Moco Loco – Design Interiors, Art Architecture
- wowhaus.co.uk – Wow property for sale
- brightbazaarblog.com – quintessentially colourful
- roomenvy.co.uk – Dedicated to finding the latest lust-have schemes
- thepeakofchic.blogspot.co.uk – Musing on stylish living
- Arianna Interiors – the woman rocking the world of interiors
- witandwhistle.com/blog – Stylishly quirky paper goods
- thishomesweethome.blogspot.co.uk – Interiors DIY inspiration
- designismine.blogspot.com – bringing on the inspiration
- stephmodo.com – Where practical meets pretty
- decor8blog.com – fresh finds, inspiring interiors and ideas
- Fresh Design Blog
- The Design Sheppard – Rounding up the very best in interior design today
- Isak Blog
- InHabitat – design will serve the world (and show you quite a few adverts…)
- Web Urbanist – Daily New Articles Featuring Architecture, Art, Design, Travel, & Technology
- Swiss Miss
- Desire to Inspire
- Better Living through Design – Your design guide to home and style
- Freshome – Design & Architecture
- Trendir – Home decorating trends
- the style files
- Sub-Studio Design Blog – a compilation of products, furniture, jewelry, architecture and artists that float our boat
- Funfurde – Funky. Furniture. And. Design.
- 2Modern Design Talk
- Coochicoos – a design blog for modern parents
- Home Design Find
- Haute Nature
- Hatch: The Design Public Blog – Fresh new design
- Gaile Guevara
- Breathe Modern
- Belle Maison 23 – Inspirational finds for creating a beautiful home
- Yanko Design – Form beyond function
As the cleverer ones amongst you have spotted there are not YET the 99 promised. Suggest more to me using the voting mechanism below (you can add voting options)….
Please LIKE or SHARE … it keeps us sane to know that you are out there benefitting from the information WE share. XOXOXOX
Now VOTE for your FAVOURITES – you have ONE CHANCE to vote but you can vote for lots of sites in that one voting chance. You can also add your own website or blog to the list if you feel brave enough in the face of very stiff competition!! If you get ‘lots’ of votes I’ll add you to the list with a link 😉 But YOU can only vote once.
A big thank you to Kiki for our nomination for the Inspiring Blog Award. It’s always great to know that we are reaching out to new generations of Interior Designers.
Following the rules of this award, I have to tell you a little bit about myself.
1. Many years ago I danced with Brad Pitt. Well; I was in the same nightclub and I sort of manoeuvred myself into his general vicinity. That counts right?
2. One of my scariest moments is travelling at over 230kmh in a sports car. I wasn’t driving (luckily someone else was) and you will be relieved to know that we were on a race track.
3. I inadvertently inherited a collection of 1980s vinyl ‘LP’ covers. After years of sitting in a box, I discovered that when framed then made a great art installation next to my work area at home.
4. The first paint I chose was for my own bedroom. Dark green. Hmmm.
5. I like people, dogs and cats. In that order.
6. Most interesting party venues: On a rooftop in Manhattan and some bizarre, mostly uninhabited, island somewhere near Comodo that even now I can’t quite remember the name of.
7. Most stupid question, “Do you like chocolate?”
Inspirational Blogs (I’d like to nominate!): Here are some that I enjoy:
There are a few rules to accepting this blog award…
1. Display the award image on your blog page.
2. Link back to the person who nominated you and ‘like’ the post
3. State seven facts about yourself.
4. Nominate 15 other bloggers for the award.
5. Notify your bloggers of their nomination and link to their posts.
Pink linen is a rather rare and unusual flower. Not often specified in your average interior designer’s scheme. I found this scan that we had emailed someone recently for the client to choose for some curtains. We were even able to introduce different pinks into the warp and weft of the linen for an unusual effect. (We can do that with most of our linen colours).
Anyway, I just thought the pink linen image looked nice and I wanted to share it with you!
I was wondering just “Who is the best interior designer in London?”. I recently wrote about who was the best interior designer in the world and got some rather unexpected results.
You could, and of course, probably did, do that same Google search to find London’s “best interior designer”, just like you’ve probably also googled your own name at some point.
And yet here you are.
Is it really important? For example, I’m writing this in 2013 and Victoria and David Beckham have just, apparently, commissioned Kelly Hoppen to do their London pad. Do you think they did that Google search? Probably not, in fact certainly not, as I am sure they were influenced by many other factors. So even if you target ‘rich people’ then you might argue that your target market will never make that search.
I bet some of them do though. I bet some of those responsible for recent influxes of property investment in recent years do as they are based out of London. Perhaps they did have one or two recommendations but perhaps they also wanted a few new faces to present fresh ideas. & you weren’t on that list!
So how do you get on that list? Well, this blog page probably did get on or near the top of that list. So you might wonder why? Well if you look at the first paragraph you will see that I use ‘who is the best interior designer in London’ near the start of my article (google likes that) Oooh and look I’ve just included it again in the previous sentence. Google likes that too. But I will stop putting it in as if you do it too many times Google does NOT like that. & now take a look at the title, the name of the page and the excerpt…do you see a pattern emerging? 🙂
So the lesson is that you actually have to put the words into your website that people might type (keywords). That’s an art in itself. Covered elsewhere on this blog. Of course, now you know the trick you will all do it and I will get bumped further and further down the listing…giving me a reason/excuse for not being on the first page when you finally get around to reading this!
Then, of course, you actually have to have a good website and I ‘m sure you’ll agree that those companies that come up do have amazing looking websites. We deal with some of them and they certainly ARE at least amongst the very best designers in Europe, let alone London. And yet if you have the time to check their technical google ranking or ‘pagerank’ (I’ve done it for you!) you will find that most are 3 or 4; which is not so great. Certainly no higher than this blog. So you DON’T have to have a really high pageranking to get on that first page. You have to have the right content (as well as an OK pagerank).
Now here’s how you can cheat. Search instead for a generic “interior designer in London“. Different results. And you will see that maybe your adwords advert for those keywords appears on the right-hand side (you don’t use adwords? why not?). You will maybe also see that you need to have a google business/places listing to get put there as well a perhaps a listing in Yell.
So you can cheat by paying for a position on the ads on the right-hand side. It might cost you a bit though. And if you get a lot of ad clicks then google will promote you to the ads at the top of the search (because your ad generates more revenue for them). And you will see that those ads at the top don’t always look like ads and then kind of blend into the normal search results. And people kind of think that they are the first results of the search…and click them. Good clicks if you can get them maybe?
Maybe a listing in Yell is a good idea and getting a Google Places/Business listing IS DEFINITELY a good idea.
So who is the Best Interior Designer in London? Well Google’s first page for that search shows designfinder.co.uk and their listing says that www.forsterinc.co.uk are the best designers…so it must be true.
Modern vs Contemporary: Contemporary is usually something that is modern or recent looking yet which takes something ‘good’ from the past such as, for example, GOOD traditional materials. Modern may sometimes (and probably incorrectly) infer a degree of futuristic design.
Vintage vs Retro vs Reproduction: Something vintage is from its original period. Retro is something that has been recently made in the style of an older piece or period. Reproduction is a copy of an item some time after its original period has finished. A fake is a reproduction that is specifically designed to be passed off as an original.
Selective indulgence: You probably haven’t got the budget to have a fully indulgent design. So instead you choose to be indulgent on certain concept or focus pieces that make a statement.
Organic – This can mean ‘eco’ in modern parlance. But you should also be aware that others use it to mean natural in a very broad sense – for example to how your entire scheme works together and fits to the space.
Energy: This is more about emotions and feelings than the vividness of colours or eye-catchingness of objects.
Re-purpose – this means more than just to re-use something. Yes you re-use it but you re-use it for a different purpose.
Diversified Portfolio: You have more than just taupe in the photos of your past work 😉 Your portfolio will show different types of projects, say, a classic villa and a contemporary restaurant
Collaborative spaces – allow spaces for group work but also allow such spaces to be able to be used and re-used for different functions or groups.
What do you think?or what is your bug bear?
KOTHEA Fabric Picks For A Chilly Winter’s Day
With Verity du Sautoy of KOTHEA.
We love the seasons. All have their beauties and all have touched our senses in memorable ways over the years. Winter is no exception: lower, more balanced light; quietness and chaos with both the shopping and the weather; festive celebrations; the cuddle of a loved one; the hope and expectation of early spring flowers grasping for rare and tiny glimmers of light; and, perhaps, the welcomed warmth of a beautiful fabric.
Some of my best memories are centred on family: a warm fire; a little baby; or a bouncing toddler. Then an old children’s classic on the iPlayer watched on my Mac as it balances precariously on an elegant coffee table. I stroke my children’s hair with one hand and rest my other hand on my sofa. A generous cushion is warm, encapsulating and a bit of fun for the little ones to hide under. The curtains are not yet fully drawn but they smooth the boundary to the cold outside and give us tantalising glimpses of the world beyond – should we venture too close to the sheers that offer the final, soft protection from the elements.
I work for a fabric company. I love fabric. I can’t pretend that it (fabric) is a be-all and end-all to life and that somehow it will make your life complete. It can’t. But what it clearly can do is complete the sensory experiences in the parts of life that, if you choose, you have control over…the parts of your home. Memories are not just photo-like snapshots in your brain; they are stored, multi-sensory splashes of emotion.
Here are my Winter picks. They are actual ‘picks’ that I’ve recently purchased or are about to purchase.
Take my sofa as an example. My sofa isn’t Continue reading “A Chat With Verity du Sautoy – Her Thoughts On Winter Fabrics”