A bit of brand news for you today, as H&M Home has just launched a new range of premium-quality products for the bedroom. It’s called ‘Relaxed Elegance’ and it looks beautiful, with lots of soft, calming tones and natural textures that are ideal for snuggling up on chilly autumn nights.
The textiles are particularly pretty: washed-linen bedding and robes in muted greys and whites, cashmere-blend cushions and bed socks in dark charcoal, and a quilted satin bedspread with a stylish circle pattern. They’re complemented by striking accessories in luxurious materials, including brass candlesticks, porcelain mugs and plates, and a mirror, box and cushion covered in beautiful blush-coloured suede.
Apologies for the lack of posts over the last few days, but I’ve been in southern Sweden, discovering the wonderful design, food and scenery of the Skåne region. More on that to follow soon, but first I have a find from home turf to share with you: beautiful Forest of Dean hotel Tudor Farmhouse.
The Forest of Dean is only an hour north of Bristol, but for some reason I’ve never spent much time there. So, when Tudor Farmhouse asked if I’d like to join a small group of bloggers and journalists for one of their autumnal foraging breaks, I jumped at the chance to explore the area. I soon realised I’ve been missing out. This sprawling oak woodland – the oldest in England – is utterly magical, with mysterious glens, twisting tree trunks, haunting mine ruins and roaming wild boar. It’s said to have inspired the works of Tolkein, and more recently it’s been used as a location for the Harry Potter films.
It’s time for another round-up of stylish places to stay in some of my favourite destinations, and today I’m turning my attention to Madrid.
I’ve visited the vibrant Spanish capital several times over the years – most recently at the end of the ‘Sunny Design Days’ tour in July, when I couldn’t resist tagging a quick city break onto the end of the week – and I’ve always been captivated by its energy. It may lack the major sights of Paris and Berlin, but it’s full of charm: maze-like alleys open onto grand boulevards and 17th-century plazas, and the whole place is brimming with innovative restaurants, cutting-edge boutiques and lively bars (this is famously a city which never sleeps). It’s also home to plenty of wonderful hotels – here are my top recommendations…
More and more of us reside in small homes, but that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy style and comfort – as this duplex attic apartment proves. Located in the Swedish city of Gothenburg, it’s a great example of how clever design can be used to make compact spaces beautiful to look at and practical to live in.
The apartment’s layout has been carefully considered, and every nook is used to maximum effect. The landing has been turned into an additional sitting area which also doubles as a guest bedroom, and a cosy snug accessed via a ladder has been created in the space between the bathroom ceiling and the eaves.
Today I’m sharing another find from Cornwall: super-romantic self-catering hideaway Fallen Angel. This sleek rubber-clad house is set in one of my favourite villages, Mousehole, and I first spied it perched on the hillside above the harbour when Chris and I spent our minimoon there in May. I couldn’t resist Googling it to find it what it was, and I loved the look of it so much that I included it in a round-up of top tips for western Cornwall. You can imagine my excitement when owners Mark and Jane then got in touch to ask if we’d like to stay for a weekend and try it out in person.
So, late one Friday afternoon in early September, we jumped in the car and headed back down the M5 for ‘Mousehole Minimoon #2’. Having spent the first one in a cramped rental with a leaking bathroom and noisy construction work taking place next door, we were both looking forward to a second attempt at post-wedding relaxation – and what a treat we had in store.
If you crave simplicity and a slower pace of life, you’ll love my latest discovery: UK-based boutique interior and lifestyle store Ingredients LDN. I first stumbled across it on Instagram, and I was instantly smitten with its thoughtfully crafted home accessories and quietly beautiful styling.
Owner Nina has a background in clinical psychology and spent years supporting people with depression and anxiety, as well as working as a brand-strategy consultant. She founded Ingredients LDN to translate her interest in well-being into a tangible brand, and it’s based around the importance of taking time to savour the small moments that give everyday life meaning and value.
As you might have gathered from some of my previous posts, I love plants. The only problem is I’m not actually very good at caring for them, and my low success rate when it comes to keeping greenery alive has put me off trying anything new. So, when I was invited to join a group of lifestyle and design bloggers at a terrarium-building workshop with TV botanist and author James Wong, I jumped at the chance.
The event was organised by Fiskars, one of the world’s oldest companies, which was founded in Finland all the way back in 1649. It’s perhaps best known for its iconic orange-handled scissors, first designed in 1967, but it also makes a huge range of gardening tools.
For me, few things say September like juicy, sun-ripened sweetcorn. When my brothers and I were children, buttered corn on the cob was one of our favourite seasonal treats – we used to love opening those foil-wrapped parcels, still hot from the oven, and munching the golden kernels inside as melting butter dripped down our chins. We even had special corn-shaped skewers to stick in the end, though they didn’t stop us from making a total mess of our clothes and the table.
Sadly, dodgy orthodontic work during my teens means I now struggle to eat corn off the cob (and whole apples – they make my teeth move!), so sweetcorn fritters are a handy substitute. This version from Kym Grimshaw of Bristol-based food blog On the Plate is super-easy and adds a spicy kick with chilli, coriander and cumin. Just pair with eggs and smashed avocado, and voilà – a quick and delicious early-autumn brunch or supper.
Apologies for the radio silence over the last week – I’ve been on holiday in Puglia and, although I had planned to write a couple of blog posts while I was away, exploring soon took over! I’ll have more about my time in Italy further down the line, but first I want to share a recent discovery from a little closer to home.
As you might have seen on Instagram, Chris and I have spent a lot of time in Cornwall this summer, and on one of our visits we booked a night at The Sandy Duck, a brand-new B&B with a Scandinavian twist, set in the buzzing town of Falmouth.
As much as I love the balmy days of summer, I always get excited when the first hint of autumn appears in the air. There’s something special about the crisp mornings, the golden light, the shifting colours of the trees and fields… And, as the evenings grow darker and colder, I have the perfect excuse to cosy up with candles, blankets and a crackling fire.
Autumn is also a wonderful time of year for relaxed gatherings with family and friends, and I love hosting dinner parties that make the most of all the delicious harvest produce. I always dress the table for the season, and this year I’ve had fun styling our dining room with some of the new autumn arrivals from Rose & Grey. It’s one of my go-to places for stylish homeware and furniture, and its latest range brings together lots of Scandinavian-influenced textures and muted colours that are right up my street.