Designer Desire: Lisa Larson

Mosaic of Lisa Larson's ceramic work | H is for Home

Born in 1931, Lisa Larson is a Swedish ceramic designer. She worked for Gustavsberg, under Stig Lindberg, from the 1954 through to 1980 when she branched out on her own working for, amongst others, Royal Krona, Duka, Åhléns department stores and Kooperativa Förbundet.

Larson is probably best known for her small sculptures of animals and children of the world, but we absolutely adore her glazed tiles. The Viking ship at the top right of the mosaic is ours – and we’ve also got an elephant. So, it’s a collection of just two at the moment – but we’ve always got our eyes peeled hoping to happen across more. 🙂 

As you can probably tell, Larson is an animal lover – but she verges on the obsessive when it comes to cats!

Lisa Larson with a collection of her cat figures with a siamese cat on her shouldercredit

If you have a look at the short film below, she has the most beautiful sculpture of a cat which just begs to be stroked – so tactile. If you don’t speak Swedish, you can turn on subtitles by clicking on the left icon (next to the one that looks like a cog) along the bottom panel.

Image credits:
1st Dibs | Etsy | eBay

Price Points: Kitchen trolleys

Stainless steel kitchen trolleys | H is for Home

You may have read a post earlier this week in which we talked about a vintage stainless steel hospital trolley we’d bought – and its potential to make a great kitchen work station. So, for this week’s Price Points we’ve included it in our list of kitchen trolleys where it sits very nicely indeed. A cleanable work surface, storage areas for ingredients or equipment and manoeuvrability are the key requirements.

  1. FLYTTA kitchen trolley, stainless steel: £100, IKEA
  2. Vintage hospital trolley: £135, H is for Home
  3. Kitchen island with cook stainless steel counter top by Hahn: £495, Wayfair

Cakes & Bakes: Macadamia nut & cranberry cookies

Home-made macadamia nut & cranberry cookies | H is for Home

I keep forgetting how quick and easy it is to rustle up a batch of cookies. I have a bag of pistachios in the cupboard that needs to be used up, so I decided to make some pistachio & cranberry cookies using a recipe I found on the BBC Good Food website.

Chopped macadamia nuts ans dried cranberries | H is for Home

However, when I popped across to the supermarket to get some dried cranberries, I saw that they also did packets of cranberries WITH macadamia nuts.

Home-made macadamia nut & cranberry cookie dough batons | H is for Home Home-made macadamia nut & cranberry cookie dough batons wrapped in cling film | H is for Home

I love macadamia nuts – a little on the expensive side, but you don’t need that many in the macadamia nut & cranberry cookies I ended up making.

Home-made macadamia nut & cranberry cookies, uncooked on a baking tray | H is for Home

They were just so scrumptious! Crumbly, sweet and nutty. A few chunks of white chocolate added to the mix would have gone down a treat as well. I’ll try that combination very soon. I guess I’ll use that bag of pistachios some other time!

Home-made macadamia nut & cranberry cookies on a wire cooling rack | H is for Home

Macadamia nut & cranberry cookies
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Cook Time
12 min
Cook Time
12 min
Ingredients
  1. 175g/6oz butter, softened
  2. 85g/3oz golden caster sugar
  3. ½ tsp vanilla extract
  4. 225g/8oz plain flour
  5. 150g/5oz macadamia nuts & cranberries
  6.  
  7. Home-made macadamia nut & cranberry cookies ingredients
  8.  
Instructions
  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the butter, sugar and vanilla extract
  2. Stir in the flour
  3. Roughly chop the macadamia nuts & cranberries before adding to the mixing bowl. Bring the mix together as a dough
  4. Halve the dough and shape each half into a log about 5cm across. Wrap in cling film, then chill for an hour or freeze for up to 3 months
  5. Pre-heat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF fan/Gas mark 4
  6. Slice the logs into 1cm-thick rounds, place on a baking tray lined with baking parchment and bake for 12-15 minutes
  7. Remove from the oven, leaving the cookies on the tray for 5 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely
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Quick tips to make a family-friendly designed home

Sitting room with mustard velvet sofa in a family-friendly designed homecredit

Feel the need to redesign the look of your home? Start with the practicalities – have children or pets for instance? Then it’s probably not wise to put a delicate glass collection arranged in a cabinet for starters – it will end in tears. However, you wouldn’t like a home that looks like a day-care centre either. There is a middle ground: an attractive, comfortable and unique home that can withstand the rough & tumble of family life.

Colourful children's area with world map muralcredit

Moving in soon? This advice is even better if you’re looking to purchase a new home in a fresh location since you’ll have more freedom with regards to design and greater influence over the look of each room in your house. Start by looking at expertly-built homes in a good development beforehand. The houses for sale in Adelaide, Australia are worth considering during your house-hunting expedition.

Now, read on to discover the dos and don’ts when creating a home with family-friendly design.

Blue & green decorated family spacecredit

Consider your family’s lifestyle. Each room in your home might look beautiful, but if it doesn’t take into account the unique demands of your family, life will quickly become frustrating – and a little dull too perhaps. To avoid this, adapt your decorating style to stand up to the rigours of daily life – vomiting babies, sibling food fights, messy pets, indoor rugby matches, and even slobby spouses. Take into account everyone who’s living with you and decorate accordingly.

Colourful, built-in children's play areacredit

Don’t put off decorating. Many families hold off decorating their homes until their children are older – making the family do with tired furniture and household accessories many years after they’ve passed their best. It’s not necessary with a bit of thought. A fresh look gives everyone a lift! Even your youngest kids can benefit from the new, beautiful scheme. You can even get your kids involved in the process – asking what they’d like to have in their room when redecorating – and showing them how they could help. They’d learn skills that they might actually enjoy – and perhaps develop a sense of ownership. They might think twice before messing up rooms that they’ve helped to create!

Pop-inspired family roomcredit

Make it simple and sophisticated. There is beauty in simplicity. A clean-lined, but casual and comfy look is always a good way to go for family life. Avoid over fussy furniture and unnecessary detailing – real dust traps. Choose materials that can stand up to those dirty shoe prints and pet hair. Vintage and well-loved items survive kids better than precious antiques or the pristine new – a bit of extra wear & tear can even add to the vintage charm. Whatever you choose, low maintenance is a must! Once you have kids, you’ll have little time to plump up cushions, dust surfaces and constantly clear clutter.

Family-friendly boot roomcredit

Choose indestructible finishes and materials. Look for the toughest materials around. For the walls, choose a wipeable paint. You can also have a chalkboard paint or graffiti board for your little artist. For hallways, install kick boards and paint it with gloss or semi-gloss paints. For the windows, opt for simple, easy-clean roller blinds or good roman shades – those made with natural materials such as bamboo are also great – they’re durable, stylish and add a bit of texture to all the smooth paint. For floorings, look for surfaces that can be cleaned up with a damp mop. Wood, laminate, rubber and linoleum work well.

Well, we’ve covered the basics, just focus on function over form, and you’re well on your way to creating a family-friendly designed home. Know any other techniques? Please share them with us below!

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How many hours is a good night’s sleep?

Bedside table with alarm clock, pot of flowers, cup & saucer, teaspoon and bananacredit

Sleep is something that many people take for granted, but that should not be the case. If you don’t get enough sleep then you can end up experiencing difficulties in your life. You can find it difficult to concentrate when you’re working or studying. You can even cause danger on the roads if you attempt to drive your car while you are tired from lack of sleep.

The average adult needs between seven and nine hours of sleep each night to remain healthy; even missing out on as little as half an hour’s sleep can make you feel really tired. You shouldn’t experience any major problems if you do not miss out on sleep very often, but if it starts to happen fairly often then you can find yourself starting to feel irritable and stressed out. We’re going to take a look at some things you can do in order to try and ensure that you get the seven to nine hours sleep you need each night.

Arm showing above a duvetcredit

Making sure your bed is comfortable

One of the most important things you can do in order to try and ensure you get a good night’s sleep is make sure you have a comfortable bed on which to sleep. The idea of comfort varies from person to person; some people prefer their bed to be soft but others need a firmer level of support. This is often especially the case if a person suffers from back or neck pain.

The most important thing to do is make sure that the bed you have is comfortable for you. Do you need a firm mattress? Could a new mattress topper provide you with the support you need? You can take a look at online advice from experts such as Sleep Judge to get further information on how to make sure you’re comfortable when you sleep.

Laptop backlight shining on a bed at nightcredit

Switching off the lights

Most people switch off the lights in the room when they go to sleep but that is not always enough to ensure that you get the good sleep that you need. You need to make sure that the room you’re sleeping in is as dark as possible. Any light that is present can disrupt your sleep pattern. This is especially the case with the blue light that is emitted from electronic devices such as laptops and smartphones. You should never attempt to fall asleep in a room where one of these devices is switched on because you will find it difficult to fall asleep and remain asleep.

The amount of sleep you need to remain healthy varies depending on the individual but it normally lies in the seven to nine hours per night range. Making sure you have a comfortable bed to sleep on, and ensuring that you sleep in a dark room, are both important factors in determining whether you’re able to get the sleep that you need.

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Get their look: light-filled kitchen diner

Light-filled kitchen diner

We glanced an envious eye over this light-filled kitchen diner. Even at the hight of summer, our kitchen diner only gets direct light from around 4pm when the sun journeys round to the back of the house… if it happens to be a sunny day, that is – not guaranteed in the Pennines!

The long bank of skylights along the open corridor helps zone  the kitchen and dining areas and lead you into the sitting room and garden beyond.

It all feels so fresh and airy. There’s a calm palette of natural wood, grey and shades of cream flowing through these various zones, thus unifying the whole huge space. Fresh flowers and the large seed head light shade bring the outside in.

It all looks so practical too. Cook and chat, dine at the table – then move to the comfy chairs for a glass of port!

  1. Buster + Punch Heavy Metal ES pendant cord ceiling light, steel
  2. Painted high chair
  3. IKEA PS MASKROS pendant lamp
  4. Toledo style vintage stool – rustic finish
  5. Eames Eiffel-inspired DSW chair
  6. Munnar Dining Table by Ethnic Elements

Get their look: Light-filled kitchen diner | H is for Home