what’s on my bedside?

bedside

elle stack

until myself and my boyfriend start to build an annex at my parents house, i live and share a room with him at his parents. it isn’t the smallest room, but it isn’t the biggest; so i do like to make a habit of re-arranging everything quite often to keep it looking fresh.

our bedside table is an ikea expedit shelving unit, and it’s the only surface in the room besides the windowsill that i can play around with. i love interior styling and spend an unhealthy amount of time swapping objects around until i get them looking just right – it’s a little hobby of mine and i’d love to enroll on an interior course in the future.

on top of our bedside, arrangements always tend to include a combination of an anglepoise inspired lamp, one or both of our arne jacobson design letters cup, my ambre diptyque candles, some form of plantlife and a HAY hand; everything else is an assortment of bits i rotate every now and then. my favourite object in this vignette has to be the engraved ceramic skull that my boyfriend brought me back from mexico, and my stack of elle decoration magazines that have recently grown far too big to put anywhere!

what’s on your bedside?

the beauty of concrete flooring

grey concrete floor interior design
{above photographs can be found on pinterest}

concrete floors sound pretty dull, don’t they? but i’m not interested in what they sound like – i’m obsessing about what they look like! not many would chose concrete as their ideal floor of choice, but the organic texture and natural, mottled tone has me hooked! i’m drawn to grey floor in particular; i love the calming mood.

whilst they’re perfectly practical for warehouses, factories and basements, they don’t hold a strong reputation for being used in residential property – and to an extent, it’s understandable why – but the opportunities are endless. bathrooms, living rooms, kitchens and even bedrooms all have the potential to suit concrete, trust me!

grey concrete floor interior design
{above photographs can be found on pinterest}

it’s too cold!
this is true, concrete doesn’t retain heat very well; but there’s an amazing little system called ‘radiant heating’ that can be installed into the concrete, which sends waves of heat through the concrete and slowly fills the room it occupies. it’s also really easy to keep cold feet toasty with layers of thick rugs, which make your space look cosy, like this room and this one too. don’t forget, concrete flooring will be a blessing in those hot summer months – it’s easier to add heat than take it away!

what about the dull grey colour?
that can be changed! concrete floors are available in a range of different colours, which are mixed before being poured. you can also buy specialist paints that you can apply over the top of set concrete. the same applies for different coatings and finishes.

surely it can’t get wet?
before installing concrete, a vapour barrier guard can be installed to stop any moisture rising from below. once the concrete is set for use in a room where it may get wet, it is then sealed with a chemical treatment which fills all the tiny holes in the concrete, which then makes it stain and water proof! dependent on how heavily the floor is used, this treatment is to be reapplied every 1 to 2 years.

i don’t like the gritty bumps
you don’t need me to tell you that concrete can be polished and finished beautifully, do you?

seven things to expect from your first yoga class

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{above photograph taken from my instagram feed}

everyone should experience yoga at some point. i started yoga at my local studio; studio one yoga with michelle almond, three weeks ago and can’t believe i hadn’t started sooner! there are a lot of yoga guides available for beginners, and so rather than writing the obvious: make sure you breathe, take your shoes off before class, etc. i’ve skipped those and jumped straight into what you should expect from your first classes!

you won’t understand your teacher
of course, it isn’t possible for your teacher to explain everything that she mentions in your class! luckily my teacher explained well, but there are some words thrown about which can make it difficult to keep up with. don’t worry about these in your first yoga class, understanding them comes with time and experience. words such as ansana (meaning pose), vinyasa (a flow style of yoga), namaste (gesture of respect ‘i bow to the divine in you’) may be mentioned, so now you know what they mean!

it will be awkward
unless you know everybody in the class, or you’re naturally very confident at doing anything in front of strangers, this doesn’t apply for you – but for most, your first yoga class will be awkward! posing with your arms over head, your legs and butt up high all trying to control your wobbly muscles is difficult! it’s normal for people to get embarrassed (that would be me!) but it helps to remember that everybody is learning, and yoga is a personal journey; others aren’t judging you. relax, let go.

you will be jealous
nobody is perfect at something they have never done before. eventhough you might take a beginners class, not everybody will be at the same level. others may have taken the class only a handful of times, yet some may have been there for 20+ classes, it’s all relative to your ability. but there will always be somebody there that you are jealous of – the way that they bend and stretch, those weird positions they get themselves into and their seemingly perfect breathing pattern. it’s natural to be jealous, just don’t compare yourself too harshly and always concentrate on yourself!

you will be sore
if you’ve never practiced yoga before (or aren’t overly active) you will be sore. some people ache instantly after a class, others may only notice their muscle aches a day or two later; but don’t worry because this is normal – yoga stretches muscles that you’re not used to stretching!

you’ll want a ‘yoga uniform’
yoga has it’s own kind of uniform; tight leggings, cute cross back tops, perfect pedicures and a matching mat. these certainly are not something that you need to practice yoga, but it will become something that you want! dressing in something that you feel comfortable is the best way to dress for yoga – it’s always recommended that you wear something that doesn’t restrict your movement, but don’t panic because there are stylish options available for all you fashionistas!

it’s addictive!
it’s likely that if your first class was a good one, you’ll want to go again! most yoga studios offer a discount for classes that are booked in blocks of ten, which is great value for money and it gives you something to look forward to! i have only been to three classes, but after my first i surely became obsessed. yoga is a healthy activity for the mind and your body, and there’s no such thing as too much yoga!

lastly and most importantly, you will love it
after your first class you will indefinitely feel relaxed, happy and energised! despite having mentioned that you will be sore, in the long term you will benefit from improved muscle strength and enhanced state of mind.

namaste, future yogis.