Exhibition – Unconcious Landscapes

Art, Exhibitions, Experiences, Flowers, Gallery Visit, garden landscaping, Inspiration, landscaping, sculpture

This week I visited Hauser & Wirth in Bruton to see an exhibition of female artists, with works shown from the private collection of Ursula Hauser.  She has collected these over the past thirty years and they range from artists such as Louise Bourgeois, Eva Hesse, Maria Lassnig, Meret Oppenheim and Roni Horn.   The exhibition celebrates female artists, often overlooked in contemporary art in the past.  For a detailed review of the exhibition, Rachel Campbell‑Johnston has written a great review in The Times.

I was so excited to see Meret Oppenheim’s work in the flesh.  These gloves are wonderful, and a prime example of her surrealist art.  The painting was a surprise as I had always associated her with 3D and sculptural pieces,

From paintings to sculptures, the works create different moods and reactions.  There was a lot of work by Louise Bourgeois, and I am not personally a fan of the spiders due to my own arachnophobia, but I suppose a visceral reaction is a key element to the pieces.  She also made these long legs below which I loved, they conjured up ideas of giants, myths and fairy tales.

A lot of the work was very textural, and these pieces by Sheila Hicks we’re probably my favourite in the exhibition.  The textures and colours are beautiful:

The other element at Hauser & Wirth which is wonderful to see is the garden, designed by Piet Oudolf, with the serpentine pavilion by Radic as a permanent installation.  I had not seen the gardens before at this time of year, and they were in full bloom.  The planting is in drifts of tall perennials which float in the wind, very worth visiting.

In the Roth Bar & Grill, (a welcome part of the site, delicious food…), they have the original design of the garden.  It is interesting to see the initial sketch to the final result.


So for anyone in that part of the world, it is definitely worth a visit.  The exhibition runs until September the 8th.

Wallpapering Wardrobes

before and after, Decorating, Flowers, House Renovation, Interior Design, interiors, Makeover, Renovation, wallpaper

It’s raining, in August as usual, and I am sitting looking through a window at a waterlogged garden.  So I have a quick moment of calm to post about the cupboards that I mentioned recently were being built.  They were fitted in a day, have a load of space inside and then it was my turn to get going on them.


Here they are going into the alcoves, this is in the room that has one built in wardrobe:

The room also had a horrible and ugly boiler cupboard, and my carpenters very kindly made me a new door and frame for free, (probably as it was so offensive in the room compared to the new one above!).

Once they were in they just needed a lick of paint.  They are going to be very simple and white so I had a plan undercoat applied in the workshop.  I will post more pictures once I have finished them.


The main bedroom was due two wardrobes, one in each alcove.  We went right up to the ceiling to maximise space and brought the cornice around the front of the doors. I had already asked for a specific configuration of shelves and rails in advance.

As you my have gathered, I LIKE DARK WALLS!  This room was painted in the inkiest dark blue called ‘Hague Blue’ by Little Greene – it changes from inky blue to almost black depending on the time of day.  I have left the ceiling, cornice and skirting white along with the window woodwork.  The flooring is very pale too, so light can bounce around as I didn’t want it like a dark tomb.  The cupboards were also going to get a coat of Hague Blue, so the undercoat was in a dark grey to help speed things up.

The woodwork paint was the same colour in their new range of dead matt eggshell which is water-based, and which is supposed to have a very low 10% sheen.  It is also supposed to be very workable.  However, to be honest I was not that impressed with it.  I used brushes for detail mouldings and  foam roller for the flat surfaces and it dried really patchy, even after 3 coats.  Next time I am sticking to normal eggshell.


See the streaky finish in the panel area?

However, my master plan meant that the finish on the flat panels did not really matter.  I have been waiting forever to use some House of Hackney wallpaper, and planned to set it into the panels of the wardrobes.  I had even asked the carpenters to make them exactly the same width of the wallpaper so there was no wastage, how sad am I?!


Most Hit Posts of 2016

before and after, Decorating, DIY, Flowers, Ideas, Inspiration, Makeover, plaster, Soft furnishings, tutorial

Today I have been looking back at last years blogging, sometimes done a bit intermittently I must admit, and noticed that the most popular posts always seem to be the DIY ones, so here is a round up of the ones that still get the most hits, and I only hope that as a result there are many Ikea hacks, Plaster Flowers and No-sew curtain pelmets floating out there now!  More DIY ideas coming soon as I tackle a spare bedroom in the coming  months.

Click on the photos to take you to the posts and tutorials…

DIY Plaster of Paris Flowers


No-Sew Curtain pelmets

finished wide

Ikea Hack Bookcase



Slate Effect Painted Fireplace



Moppe Drawer Makeovers



An evening event at Anthropologie

Craft, DIY, Experiences, Flowers, Painting, Paper Art, Photography, plaster, sculpture

anthropologieI will be at the Anthropologie store in Bath this week on 22nd September, where there is an event showcasing Bath design businesses, ranging from food to drink to decorating to arty crafts.  There is also late night shopping, a glass of fizz, plus food and drink tasters.

I teach art and craft courses through The Workshop Cabin, and we will be highlighting what craft activities and sessions will be coming up in the autumn and spring. There are some great ideas, like workshops for Hen parties who often come to Bath, where they can make table decorations and wedding favours for the Big Day whilst sipping some Prosecco, (always a plus!).  Plus there are courses in paperwork, plaster, sculpture, photography, wood carving and more.

The Workshop Cabin is also offering new event design services for any size of gatherings; weddings, parties, special occasions, dinners and so on.

Tickets are available here which are reedemable against any store spend over £20.


Wedding Flowers

Flowers, Wedding, Wedding flowers


This week I have been creating some lovely flowers for a country wedding that is taking place in the brilliantly named ‘Wick Bottom Barn’, which is an idyllic period barn hidden in the Wiltshire countryside.


The interior of the barn is stunning; ancient beams, flagstones and a large fireplace which came from a French Chateau that was being demolished:


Paper lanterns will all be lit in the evening


The Barn being dressed for the wedding before the flowers were added.

My mother and I were asked to come up with a bright, country theme for the flowers.  We sometimes do wedding flowers, mainly via word of mouth, and know the family so were more than happy to get creative for them.  The Bride wanted the table flowers displayed very rustically, so a multitude of old tin cans, oil tins, bottles and jam jars were collected in advance.  We planned that each table would have at least 6 varied arrangements clustered in the middle using these containers.  We also made up arrangements to display in the outside covered Bar area, plus on tables outside in the grounds.

We chose a mixture of flowers and plants to use; Lisianthus, Gerbera, Alchemilla, Mint, Stock, Poms, Chrysanthemums, Carnations and Peonies.  We ordered them in vibrant tones of lime, pink, magenta, orange, purple, yellow and red.  They looked great in clashing tones as we started to arrange them.  The tables will have a collection of jars, tins and bottles on them, creating a really vibrant grouping of varied heights:

The flowers in the barn were prepared the day before the wedding whilst it was being dressed for the event, and then they left in the coolness of the barn overnight to avoid wilting.

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The flowers look stunning, and it is a real change to not work with oasis, tape and wires that we usually arrange flowers with for weddings, instead to use the eclectic pots and bottles and jam them full of clashing flowers was really fun.

On the morning of the wedding we prepared the Bridal Bouquet, four bridesmaids’ bouquets and six buttonholes for the Groom, Ushers and close family.  Again, sticking to the bright colours, we also added vibrant ribbons to the Bridesmaids bouquets, here are their posies:

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 For the Groom, Ushers and fathers of the Bride and Groom, we continued the bright theme with sweet little button hole posies in magenta and lime.  The two pink corsages were for the mothers of the Bride & Groom

IMG_9962Finally, the bridal bouquet was created with a long trail of Amaramthus and Ivy.  I sprayed the Amaranthus a raspberry pink, using Florists’ spray, to compliment all of the other jewel colours in the bouquet.  The Bride had asked for peonies in her bouquet as well as bright colours, so there were some wonderful cream and rose tipped ones in the bouquet.

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Finally, we popped some fresh flower petals into a rustic basket to use as confetti at the Church.  There will be more photos taken on their magic day, which I will post up when ready.