Price Points: New Year’s Eve bubbly

Selection of New Year's Eve bubbly | H is for Home

What are you doing on New Year’s Eve? We’ll be having a quiet one at home, probably watching a film and then maybe Jools Holland’s Hootenanny on the box. We’ll be enjoying a bottle or two of New Year’s Eve bubbly listening to the fireworks going off around the neighbourhood.

We can heartily recommend all the bottles featured below – we’ve personally tested them ourselves! Who needs to spend hundreds of pounds on Cristal Champagne and the like? These are excellent value and taste great!

What’s your tipple of choice on New Year’s Eve?

  1. Wm Morrison Vintage Cava Brut: £6.50, Morrisons
  2. Astoria Corderie Prosecco Di Valdobbiadene Extra Dry: £11.25 Gerrard Seel
  3. Tesco Finest Vintage Champagne: £25, Tesco

Tibor Reich exhibition

Tibor Reich tapestry | H is for Home

Last week, I made an all too rare visit to Manchester; I was meeting a friend at the Whitworth to view the Tibor Reich exhibition.

Tibor Reich exhibition room at the Whitworth in Manchester | H is for Home

Tibor Reich mural at the Whitworth in Manchester | H is for Home

Tigoware sketch by Tibor Reich displayed at the Whitworth

Tibor Reich Tigo-Ware 'Florence' and 'Espanola' vases | H is for Home

It was wonderful seeing his work ‘in the flesh’ so to speak, rather than in books or on the internet, to appreciate the scale. The ‘Florence’ Tigo-Ware vase on the left of the photo above is over a foot tall.

Examples of Tigo-Ware designed by Tibor Reich and produced by Denby Pottery in the 1950s | H is for Home

Tibor Reich designed ceramic tiles | H is for Home

His black & white sgraffito designs are very eye-catching and distinctive.

Ceramic ashtrays designed by Tibor Reich | H is for Home

Apparently, he designed and produced these keyhole-shaped ashtrays as presents for friends one Christmas. I’ve never seen one on the open market, they’re absolutely beautiful!

Ceramic ashtray designed by Tibor Reich | H is for Home

Tibor Reich pen & ink sketches | H is for Home

A lot of his ceramic work is concerned with the female form and visage – my friend and I wondered whether his wife Freda, who was pictured in many of the photographs in the exhibition, acted as his muse.

Colour sketches of women by Tibor Reich | H is for Home

A displat of tools and other objects used by Tibor Reich | H is for Home

Tibor Reich's sitting room which he designed himself | H is for Home

Reich may be best known for his textiles (his designs were on the seats of Concorde and the QE II), however his practice was multifaceted. Ceramics, fine art, photography… he even designed his own home including the ‘flaming onion’ fire in his sitting room, shown above.


A photo posted by TIBOR (@tiborreich) on

Tibor Reich: Art of Colour and Texture, shown above, was published earlier this month to accompany the exhibition. It can be purchased here (£35.00). The Tibor Reich exhibition runs until August 2016, so you still have lots of time to check it out – it’s well worth it! If you can’t get to Manchester, the University of Leeds (where he studied) have a huge archive of his textile work which can be viewed online.

Wallpaper display at the Whitworth in Manchester | H is for Home

In an adjoining room, there was an exhibition of vintage wallpaper (which runs until the 4th of September 2016). With the room’s huge, tall walls the long rolls were shown off to spectacular effect.

Wallpaper display at the Whitworth in Manchester | H is for Home

Although I loved most of the designs, it also made me realise how overpowering some of the patterns would be if all four walls in a room were papered. A small feature wall would suffice!

Vintage 'Promenade' wallpaper sample | H is for Home

There were display cabinets of wallpaper samples – here are two of my favourites.

Vintage wallpaper sample with birds pattern | H is for Home

Home Tones: Green Flash

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cottage entrance with green flash front door


Whatever happens in the fashion world filters down into the interiors world. The following is what Pantone had to say about Green Flash, one of the top 10 fashion colours they picked for spring 2016.

Green Flash calls on its wearer to explore, push the envelope and escape the mundane, radiating an openness that combines with the rest of the palette in unexpected but serendipitous ways. The popularity of this brilliant hue is representative of nature’s persistent influence even in urban environments, a trend continuing to inspire designers.

Perhaps not the easiest colour to use (nor wear for that matter), but it is very striking when successful. It’s fresh & clean so perfect for bathrooms – and also looks great near large windows where it helps bring the outdoors in. The ideal partner is a crisp, contrasting brilliant white.

modern kitchen with green flash splashbackcredit

white chest of drawers in front of a green flash painted wallcredit

Kid's bedroom with green flash painted wallcredit

kitchen diner with green flash coloured tile splashback and feature wallcredit

shower room with green flash pained and tiled walls and ceilingcredit

green flash painted porch and wooden railingscredit

bedroom bay window with green flash painted wallscredit

Price Points: 2016 Diaries

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selection of 2016 diaries | H is for Home

2015 is almost gone – just a fortnight’s worth of sand left in the timer. I don’t know about you, but with the proliferation of tech gadgets and apps around, I still like having the physicality of pen & paper to record certain things.

Every year, I carry over everyone’s birthdays from the previous year’s diary to the following year’s. I love to flip through the pages to remind myself of what I’d been up to during the prior 12 months. The work I had on, the deadlines that I had to meet, the weekends away, the people who came to visit…

I’ve been searching for a bright one for next year – orange being my favoured colour. Here’s what I came up with for 2016 diaries – budget, mid-range and deluxe.

  1. Panama collection orange 2016 Portobello diary in cross-grain lambskin: £180, Smythson
  2. ‘Colour a Month’ daily planner: £31.99, Moleskine
  3. Letts Two Tone A5 week to view diary: £9.49, Filofax

Home Tones: Rose Quartz and Serenity

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Armchairs and cushions in Pantone's 'Serenity' colour of the year 2016credit

In the past week, ‘Rose Quartz’ and ‘Serenity’ have been chosen as the joint Pantone Colours of the Year for 2016. We’ve chosen to highlight various homes that use the two colours. Personally speaking, we’re not keen on using them together – it’s a bit reminiscent of 1980s coach seat upholstery.

They’re colours we think would be used to paint the walls in babies’ rooms – a little uninspiring – pink for girls, blue for boys. We have however found some interiors that use them successfully.

Scandi living room with pink painted mid-century modern chairscredit

Shower cubicle in a Victorian barthroom with Serenity painted wallscredit

Pink painted filing cabinet in a home officecredit

Harvey Jones kitchen with Serenity coloured central islandcredit

Rose-quartz kitchen countertopcredit

Serenity painted bathroomcredit

Rose quartz painted panelled wall with blue bed linen and headboard