A few of my favourite pins – 7

What a week! The first five-dayer in what seems like forever is finally over and I’m pooped. I’m totally ready for bed – is 7pm too early for a 30-something? Can’t we just all agree to work four-day weeks in future? They’re much more fun.

I’ve been a busy bumble bee this week, so no blog posts but there are some coming up. After my whingeing post about how hideous the extension was, we’ve turned a corner and it’s going really well. I’m a happy gal. A much more positive update coming soon.

Here are my preferred pins from this week…

A few of my favourite pins - 7

1. Pattern clashing bedroom Sooooo good. It just works. Even with 8 different patterns and colour. This is my inspiration for a little decor problem I’ve got at the mo. I’m looking at clashing patterns but something’s missing. I might post my quandry soon.

2. Fiat 500 Adorable. What’s not to love? My favourite car of all time. In mint. With a soft top and a picnic basket. *faints*

3. Lipstick picture This made me think of a 13 year old me. I’d kiss my school books all the time, normally wearing Rimmel’s Heather Shimmer.

4. Colour co-ordinated wardrobe In my dream-dream world this is how my wardrobe would look. Organised, sorted by colour and on matching hangers. (The reality is some way from this!)

5. Open living space Double doors. Bright light. Round table. I’ve totally fallen for this  look – decision made. Expect to see it soon at Casa J.

6. Dolly Parton  Oh Dolly, you’re so purrrdy.

7. Washi tape cups In black and white – of course! I have a mini-confession… I love washi tape too much to use it. Is that odd? I have stationery hoarding issues, I know.

If you like what you see – have a look at all my boards here. All sorts of goodness – I take no responsibility for how much you’ll want to spend!

So, what have you got planned this weekend? A soft-top cruise in a Fiat 500 with a picnic? Hoarding your washi tape? Or listening to Dolly Parton on repeat?

Whatever you’re up to, have a good one!

Nicky x

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A few of my favourite pins – 6

What a difference an hour makes – I’m writing this and it’s still (just about) light outside. British Summer Time is here – now we just need a touch of summer! The lighter evenings have massively improved my bear-like winter-hibernation tendencies. And I’m a bit more inspired to get working on a few projects including some updates around the house.

I also bought some lovely goodies from The White Company this week. I bought them online and squealed when they arrived – they’re so much lovelier in real life than on their lovely website. Score. Don’tcha just love it when that happens? I’ll maybe post on them next week.

Here’s my favourites from this weeks stash…

A few of my favourite pins 6

1. DIY paper lanterns These look so cool, and totally do-able. I think they’d be great for a summer party outside hung from some trees.

2. Zip line in Switzerland Wow – how fun does this look? I know I’d be less than subtle and scream all the way down.

3. Christian Laboutins Hello girls!

4. Striped entrance I’m so drawn to stripes. This hallway mixes bold wallpaper with a graphic floor – but kept to the same tones it works brilliantly. The simple console is inspired and the gold chunky mirror adds some bling.

5. Nutella cheesecake Dinky, individual pots. Antiqued dessert spoons. Nutella cheesecake. Yum. You had me at Nutella.

6. RSVP I adore this. So funny – this would definitely make sure there were no stragglers to reply to any parties or events. ‘Will not be there – heard there’d be people with bells on.’

Have a fab weekend all – be careful, it’s meant to get up to a balmy 9 degrees. What are you up to?

Nicky x

Shopping Spree: French Connection homeware

OK, so I know I live in the sticks, and I might not be as hip as a hip young thing – but I fear I’ve been living under a stone. French Connection does homeware?!

The new French Connection homeware look-book plopped out with all the other throw aways when I opened a monthly magazine this evening. (Confession – I actually love all the inserts that you get in a magazine. Give me the tut that’s in the Sunday papers and I’m a happy girl) My first reaction was surprise – how have I missed this news? And second reaction was ‘hello homeware’.

Pared back and simple, the homeware feels totally different from their clothing. But in a good way. Think Scandinavian cool meets airy loft apartment. It doesn’t feel like French Connection from the high street.

A quick log onto the website  (I hadn’t even taken my coat off) shows that there are loads of gorgeous pieces.

I adore this safari chair

Safari chair

And here are a few of my other favourites…

French Connection

Washed mango table light, from £85 / Industrial ladder shelving, £255 / Tripod tray table, £85

Woven copper side table, £95 / Turquoise jug, from £32 / Porthole mirror, from £49

What do you think? Are you sticking to French Connections clothes or switching allegiance to homeware? Am I the last person on the planet to know about their homeware line? Have I missed any other recent updates? There’s a new Pope? What?!

When extensions don’t go to plan…

It’s a good job we have a sense of humour. It’s fair to say that since we started the extension we’ve been plagued by bad luck and some odd turns of events. We’re used to big projects that take time and patience, but just two weeks in and we feel like we’re being tested.

My pink wellies

Here’s a little run down of some of the things that’ve gone wrong. Cue the Benny Hill soundtrack….

– The digger crew were due to turn up at 8am – one day (due to a hangover) they rolled up at 2pm.

– One day’s digging the footings turned into 4 days and 2 evenings.

– When we dug the soakaway we hit the water table within the first 10 mins.

– We kept hitting water, so brought in a water pump. The pump wasn’t long enough, so we pumped it from the garden room footings into the main footings, and from there into the drain.

– Our drain then got blocked.

– Then the water pump blew up.

– During this time it rained for about 4 days straight and the garden and front of the house turned into a quagmire of mud and clay. It was so sticky it pulled my wellies off and stopped the wheelbarrow wheels from turning. Walking over the boards we’d laid was like bambi on ice.

– One of the guys dropped a single key in the mud. We spent a few mucky hours looking for it.

– The day the guys turned up on time it snowed.

– We budgeted for one grab lorry. We’ve had 4 and counting.

– When we’d been pumping water for 3 hours and still couldn’t get rid of it, our neighbour told us that before the houses were built a river was diverted and the tributary ran under our garden.

– All the quotes we had said we’d need 6 cubic metres of concrete for the two sets of footings. We had 12. In one of the footings.

– We poured the concrete and had the hardest frost we’ve had in 8 weeks.

You’ve got to laugh! Hopefully we’ve turned a corner now and things should be plain sailing. It looks like we’ll have to pile the garden room before we can start on that part of the project – which will cost a lot more than we were planning. We’re waiting for some quotes to come back before we can book it in. In the meatime we’re full steam ahead with the main extension. And secretly hoping that the stream under the garden room can be bottled and sold as expensive spring water.

A few of my favourite pins 5

Phew – we made it! After a busy week in London I’m so happy for a few days off. I hope you’re enjoying the Easter break.

At Casa Jones we were hoping to be putting the roof on the extension this weekend but – the weather has been against us. We don’t have walls let alone a roof! But, fingers crossed we may have walls this weekend. The bricklayers have arrived, they’re drinking tea like it’s going out of fashion and the sun seems to be peeking out of the clouds.

Here’s this weeks pick of the pins.

A few of my favourite pins 5

1. Retro travels In true Miranda style – such fun! This shot makes me happy. I adore their style – so casual. And Fiat 500’s are my favourite.

2. Kindness and mischief What a combo. And one that I intend to be always! 🙂

3. Hotel Chocolat Easter Egg I’m really hoping I wake up to one of these on Sunday morning. How does it work? Is it like Christmas when you have to be good? Yum!

4. Bright flowers and graphic table linen Swoon! Where can I get this table linen from? It makes the colours of the flowers pop so much more.

5. Neutral decor I just love this room. It’s so sophisticated. I’d maybe add a colourful cushion to the sofa – and then sit back and relax.

6. Cupcake fondue Simply genius. Mini cakes, melted chocolate and toppings – why have I not done this before?!

Happy Easter!

Nicky xoxo

Easter decor

I know I sound old when I say this, but this year is flying by! I can’t believe that Easter is just over a week away. I feel like I just took the Christmas decorations down.

Given the current muddy/messy/chaotic state of the house at the moment, we don’t have any grand plans. We want to use the four-day weekend to get as much done on the house and extension as possible. And as the Mom-in-Chief will be in sunny Florida over Easter, hosting the family lunch falls to us in-between the mucky extension stuff.

In an ideal world I’d plan the menu and decor, and then spend a few leisurely weekends gathering the items I need to make it wonderful and stylish. In reality I’ll be juggling bricklayers, deliveries, bacon sarnies and an underground stream! So I can only think about easy options and reusing what I have already. I also want to keep it as cheap as possible as the extension is draining my bank account quickly.

Here’s some of my inspiration….

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1. This is so simple and chic. Just need to grab a few egg cups and some cuttings from the garden.

2. I don’t really like hot cross buns and fruit cake, so cupcakes are how we roll at Casa Jones. The decoration is do-able but looks great.

3. A mismatched table is bright and cheery. I think I could pull this look together with what I already have, and finish it off with some floral bunting.

4. Just wicker basket and a mix of different eggs – topped off with some herbs. Gorgeous styling. I’d never have thought of this – thank you Pinterest!

5. Colourful tulips – even if there is no other decor in our house, I will have a big bunch of spring flowers.

6. Fancy Wedgewood china – a special lunch requires special dinnerware.

7. A little Lindt bunny has to be part of our long weekend – sat in a cupcake wrapper with some filling.

8. A lovely calm, simple setting with a natural linen runner and glasses. Very elegant.

9. Everyday eggs prettied up with a white paint pen. No messy paint jobs here.

As the surroundings at Casa Jones are so very grey at the moment (mud, chalk, bricks and more mud) I’d like to inject some colour and fun Easter elements to brighten things up. I’ll definitely use a few of these as a starting point – I’ll let you know how it turns out.

What are your plans for Easter? Have you got a DIY list you’re going to tick off or is it a family filled fiesta? I’d love to hear what you’re up to.

A few of my favourite pins 4

I really don’t want to be a weather bore. But, what is up with this weather?! This time last year, 21 degrees and sunny. Now? Blustery with the promise of proper snow! Hmmmpff. It’s not helping with our extension let me tell you! I hope that wherever you’re reading this from it’s warm and toasty.

On a more positive note, we’re hurtling towards Easter and the lovely prospect of a long weekend. Just a wild weather-filled weekend and a few more days at work to get through first. Pop back tomorrow when I’ll share with you my Easter interior plans and some inspiration.

Here are my pick of the pins this week….

A few of my favourite pins - 4

1. The Bahamas *Swoon* I bet they don’t have snow do they?!

2. Sunny Rannuculus I love these flowers, but have real trouble finding them. I can’t seem to buy them anywhere and my attempts at growing them last year failed. Any ideas?

3. Slouchy jumper and scarf Standard wear this weekend methinks. If we have to still wear scarves, let them be leopard print – my favourite type!

4. Button biscuits Yum. How cute do these look? A cold weekend definitely calls for some baking. I’m going to channel my inner Delia and give them a go.

5. Iris Apfel How cool is Iris? I’d love to be in her gang. She has style in bucketloads.

6. Stella McCartney floor  Parquet-style floor. Pinks, creams, blacks. Stella McCartney store. What a combo. I think the floor looks amazing and adds loads texture and colour.

If you’d like to follow me on Pinterest, you can find me here.

Happy Friday!

xoxo

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