National Wallpaper Week with Graham & Brown

today is the last day of national wallpaper week with graham & brown. for each day of the week, graham & brown have developed ’7 feelings of wallpaper’ that focus on a theme, and sunday is social.

honestly? i’m not a wallpaper person. painted walls are more my kind of thing, but i am starting to crave the atmosphere that a wallpaper creates in a room as the days are getting colder, so deciding to take part in national wallpaper week might just change my mind about it.

focusing on the theme, myself and the other half don’t have a huge social itinerary on sundays. it typically consists of cat snuggles, cleaning, comfort food and a glass of gin before preparing for the week ahead. until project annex is complete, we simply don’t have the space to have friends over, so one thing we would love to eventually have is a bar area to home our (many) bottles of gin and throw a little gathering.

alcohol and interiors, pure heaven! take a look at this moodboard for inspiration…

National Wallpaper Week with Graham & Brown | Rose Gold & Black Bar Cart Moodboard | A Living Diary

i’ve opted for the simple texture wallpaper ‘rhapsody charcoal’ from the graham & brown superfresco easy range to channel a moody vibe. the not-quite-black finish of this wallpaper is the perfect palette for almost any interior style. i’ve pushed for a little feminine edge by accenting with rose gold/copper barware, a playful handlettered piece of art and washed out flowers.

1 – graham & brown rhapsody charcoal wallpaper
2 – glass portrait zinc frame from john lewis
3 – ‘smile, there’s gin’ print from society6
4 – faux peony flower arrangement from john lewis
5 – rose gold cocktail strainer from drinkstuff
6 – rose gold jigger measure from drinkstuff
7 – rose gold boston cocktail shaker from drinkstuff
8 – birch wood paper straws from confetti shop
9 – crystal skull head vodka from 31dover
10 – hendricks gin from waitrose
11 – copper geometric hexagonal tray from H&M
12 – ‘good things to drink’ book by mr lyan and friends
13 – three tier iron drinks trolley from out there interiors
14 – stemless wine glasses by dartington glassware

this post was a collaboration with graham & brown. you can see previous days from national wallpaper week by following the hashtag: #nationalwallpaperweek

Black Kitchen Accessories

Black Kitchen Accessories Inspiration | A Living Diary
{image source one & two}

if i’ve seen these images once, i’ve seen them a thousand times; but each time i look at them i’m sucked deeper and deeper into the fascinating fact that – whilst us interior folk are evident lovers of all white everything – the dark, glossy and mysterious appearance of these kitchens shed no light on the white trend whatsoever. and that’s sort of magic!

black paint and tiles shouldn’t just be for those wanting to make a statement. black is such a classic colour and never loses it’s impact, but it can be done wrong so don’t dive in uneducated! experiment with less permanent features first, such as textiles, accessories and chalkboard paint.

here i’ve gathered some beautiful black kitchen accessories that can be carried across a handful of different colour schemes without having to redecorate!

Black Kitchen Accessories Moodboard | A Living Diary

ikea brasa pendant lamp: a pleasing silhouette, that can be used in both traditional industrial or contemporary modern kitchens. it’s simple and cheap, what isn’t there to love?

pellet designs soap stone in onyx/cassia: i first spotted this stunning soap on a trip to kirkby lonsdale with my boyfriend, in a quirky little gift shop called ‘parma violet’. as soon as i laid eyes on this cinnamon scented onyx piece of soap, there was absolutely no way i was leaving until it was mine! not necessarily for kitchen use, but this cinnamon scent is enough to sway me to do more washing up that’s for sure!

string pocket shelving: storage is always essential in kitchens, so this string pocket shelving is a practical and visual piece that fits the bill perfectly. stack it high with contrasting white bone china crockery and pots of fresh herbs for access to the essentials that are simply too pretty to hide away.

wilkos blackboard paint: list making is one of my favourite hobbies (no, really!) so i find nothing more convenient than running out of milk and having a beautiful blackboard to jot down an active shopping list right where you can see it. try painting one of your cupboard doors with this chalkboard paint, or purchase an ornate frame and fill it with a chalkboard covered piece of wood and hang by the door of your kitchen.

matt confetti whisk: the cheap alternative to a food processor – a plastic black whisk that won’t rust when you put them in the dish washer, or scratch those expensive pans! simple.

hay scissors: you can never have too many scissors. this HAY pair have a nice big blade and strong handle so there’s no cracking of plastic when cutting things that are a little too tough.

cast iron kitchen aid food processor: this may be a little too expensive for most peoples budgets, but the industrial texture of the stunning cast iron body puts all other food processors to shame. even if you only use it to whizz up the mixture of the giant yorkshire puddings you make for your christmas dinner, i’ll back you up in saying it’s a totally justifiable purchase – go on, treat yourself!

marimekko siirtolapuutarha tea cup: sipping tea from a stylish mug makes it taste all that more delicious. marimekko have a range of colourful and eye catching crockery, but this monochrome spotted piece adds a playful but toned down touch to your kitchen table.

H&M glass box: this little trinket is very similar in style to the pelle designs soap mentioned above, holding a carved gem shape, with removable glass lid it becomes a miniature treasure chest of bits & bobs you can never seem to find a home for.

stelton pure black knives: these seamless tools were the first to grace my kitchen wishlist. pure black blades and harmonious sleek design was something that ordinary kitchen knives just couldn’t compete with and are sure to add charm to any chopping board.

What’s on my Bedside?

What's on my Bedside? | A Living Diary

What's on my Bedside? | A Living Diary

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

The Beauty of Concrete Flooring | A Living Diary
{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!

The Beauty of Concrete Flooring | A Living Diary
{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?