A Tour Around Whitworth Locke Hotel, Manchester.

The Conservatory Bar, Whitworth Locke, Manchester

The Conservatory Bar, Whitworth Locke, Manchester

An exciting new hotel has opened up in Manchester and it’s been done slightly under the radar. Relying on word of mouth and a beautiful Instagram feed, Locke hotels have opened their flagship in the heart of Manchester to sit alongside the already successful Edinburgh and London sites.

Chair detail, Whitworth Locke, Manchester

Chair detail, Whitworth Locke, Manchester

Wall murals, Whitworth Locke, Manchester

Wall murals, Whitworth Locke, Manchester

Designed by Grzywinski+Pons, this 160 room apart-hotel is completely reinventing the notion of what a hotel should be. Focusing on design at the forefront with the city as the backdrop, Whitworth Locke is entered through the bar. You are immediately greeted with a social space rather than a reception desk, allowing you to feel more relaxed and at home instantly. There are co working spaces, a Foundation coffee shop and plans for a nightclub in the future to mix city and hotel residents together.

Textures, Whitworth Locke, Manchester

Textures, Whitworth Locke, Manchester

Manchester is at the heart of this design, from the nods to the red brick buildings in the terracotta tiles to the yellow bar which is a subtle tribute to the worker bee.

Each room has been designed around the building which as an Interior Architecture alumni really appealed to me. The space fits round the existing bricks and mortar so if a column has to run through the middle of the room, so be it.

Yellow Bar, Whitworth Locke, Manchester

Yellow Bar, Whitworth Locke, Manchester

Bringing the outside in, Whitworth Locke, Manchester

Bringing the outside in, Whitworth Locke, Manchester

Unlike most hotels, Whitworth Locke is focused around apart-hotel living with every room having a kitchen and living space, appealing to people who work away all week and would like some home comforts instead of a naff hotel restaurant serving microwave curries and burgers. What I wouldn’t have given for a place like this in my days as an Area Visual Merchandiser and all those store openings I worked on. After one week of living in a hotel, all you want is some home cooked food and a salad!

Whitworth Locke room, Manchester

Whitworth Locke room, Manchester

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The muted colour palettes run throughout the hotel, highlighting calmness and peacefulness which is also important in the hotel world - a good nights sleep is essential.

I love the soft pinks used on all the walls and ceilings. By painting everything one colour you really start to notice the imperfections which is exactly what Grzywinski+Pons want you to do. They want you to look at the wonky beams, the odd nail and the uneven textures as it all lends itself to the Manchester “theme”. You can feel the history and the stories, something else existed before and that, to me, is fabulously romantic!

Celebrating the imperfections, Whitworth Locke, Manchester

Celebrating the imperfections, Whitworth Locke, Manchester

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A sign of a good design is where everything has been thought about, from the level of the curtains framing the windows to the placement of the remote control when you walk through the door. Every inch of this hotel appeals to me and it is so fresh to see this open up in Manchester competing with the design hub cities such as London, Paris and Amsterdam.

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The sense of community is also at the heart of Whitworth Locke and every part of the hotel is open to the public. They actively encourage local residents to use the co working spaces, pop in for a coffee or a bottomless prosecco night in the Conservatory, or come join a yoga class in the gym.

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If you haven’t already visited Whitworth Locke then I highly recommend it, even if it’s only for the Ecuadorian hot chocolate from Foundation which is my all time favourite drink (after espresso martinis of course!)

For more information click here!

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Christmas with John Lewis

Jet Collection by John Lewis

Jet Collection by John Lewis

I was recently invited by my local John Lewis store in Cheadle to come and see their brand new Christmas collection for 2018. I know, I know - it’s probably slightly too early to be talking about the looming big day but I was really impressed by some of the themes this year and I couldn’t wait to share my favourites.

One of my favourite memories from Christmas as a child was going to the local garden centre with my Dad and brother and getting to pick a new decoration for the tree. They used to have donkeys in the stable and a Santa’s grotto and it was magical.

Always choose cats!

Always choose cats!

Over the years the tree decoration box grew and grew, and my Mum still decorates her tree with all the baubles we chose from those years. I love going round and being reminded of all the memories behind each and every decoration. I strongly believe that’s what a Christmas tree should be. It should be full of memories and love and moments that bring happiness. It shouldn’t just be about colour co-ordination and themes, although they are just as great too.

This year I think John Lewis have recreated the magic of picking decorations and there really is something for everyone. The clever merchandising of colour co-ordination on the shop floor means you can still achieve a certain colour look but judging by the current trends, it’s time to embrace the quirky and the kitsch.

Jet Christmas Tree by John Lewis

Jet Christmas Tree by John Lewis

I’m torn between two themes as my favourites but I think the Jet Collection just wins. The jet black and silvers are the base for this futuristic collection. It’s fun and striking with flying saucers and astronauts in snow globes sitting alongside glitter and marble designs.

Astronaut Snow Globes by John Lewis

Astronaut Snow Globes by John Lewis

This collection would be my brother’s dream as kid! And I actually love it as a 32 year old grown woman! I chose a marble bauble to take home with me but I’m definitely going back for the snow globe!

Emerald Christmas Collection by John Lewis

Emerald Christmas Collection by John Lewis

Next up is the gorgeous jeweled tones of Emerald. Think peacock feathers and tropical animals - it’s a lovely collection which would look great on any tree. I also loved how John Lewis styled the tree with succulents amongst the baubles - it’s a really fresh take on a traditional tree.

Succulents in the tree

Succulents in the tree

And I can’t not mention the fabulously kitsch Sapphire theme which encompasses everything “Under the Sea”. It’s an amazing combination of the Little Mermaid and Finding Nemo! I absolutely love it!

Sapphire Collection from John Lewis

Sapphire Collection from John Lewis

There’s even a tree that’s made out of coral to keep the water theme going and I can see this being a big hit. It’s just so different from anything that’s been before and I think it’s utterly brilliant!

Amazing Octopus Christmas Decoration by John Lewis

Amazing Octopus Christmas Decoration by John Lewis

There are lots of other collections too so there will be something for everyone. Get down to John Lewis and let your inner child go wild!

Succulent Garland

Succulent Garland

Baked Eggs With The Campden Cookware Frying Pan

Paid Collaboration with Robert Welch

Baked Eggs in Campden Cookware Frying Pan

Baked Eggs in Campden Cookware Frying Pan

How to make a frying pan look sexy - that was the dilemma facing me when Robert Welch got in touch and asked to collaborate. Second problem is I don’t cook very much - I’m lazy. Luckily I have a very talented Fiancé who can whip anything and everything when he puts his mind to it. Teamwork makes the dream work and we came up with using this Shakshuka recipe to create a really vibrant and rustic shot.

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Robert Welch is a household name in British design and I was very much aware of their cutlery designs. I didn’t know too much about their cookware before so was very pleasantly surprised with the Campden Non Stick Frying Pan when it arrived.

Robert Welch Campden Cookware Frying Pan

Robert Welch Campden Cookware Frying Pan

Some geeky technology features of the frying pan include a PFOA free Excalibur non-stick coating. Excalibur is considered to be the toughest, longest-lasting, most durable non-stick coating in the world. Even the name is impressive.

The base of each pan features tri-layering technology, a copper core sandwiched between two layers of stainless steel, which allows for an even heat distribution across the whole base.

Robert Welch Campden Cookware Frying Pan

Robert Welch Campden Cookware Frying Pan

So cue a miserable Sunday in October where we decided to make the baked eggs and create some shots. I was the photographer, Ben was the cook naturally. We picked fresh Parsley from the herb pot and pretended we were the perfect cooking couple!

Recipe for Baked Eggs

Recipe for Baked Eggs

It worked perfectly first time and I love the colours in the shots from the tomatoes and the peppers. I think we made it look pretty sexy!

You can get 20% Robert Welch’s Campden Cookware range until 29th October 2018 by clicking the link here.

BBC Good Food Shakshuka with Campden Cookware Frying Pan

BBC Good Food Shakshuka with Campden Cookware Frying Pan

Happy shopping, cooking and eating!

Getting Cosy for Autumn

In collaboration with Catherine Lansfield Bedding

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Autumn is my favourite time of year - so much so we’re going to get married in Autumn next year! Aaargh! As I write this though, there has been an unusual warm weather front so everyone has been baking today! Typical! Nevertheless I’m hoping it’s just a fluke and it will go back to crisp mornings and chilly evenings where it’s perfectly acceptable not to go out on an evening and instead hunker down under a blanket. Here are my tips for “cosying” up a space.

Wedding Date Announcement

Wedding Date Announcement

The Bedroom

My bed is one of my favourite places to be when the weather turns colder, I would go to bed as soon as it got dark if it was socially acceptable! When Catherine Lansfield got in touch and asked me to try their Stag bedding, I jumped at the chance to cosy up the bedroom with this gorgeous duvet set. It’s also a great piece for Christmas if you like to update your decor at this time.

Cosy bedroom decor

Cosy bedroom decor

I added a Catherine Lansfield charcoal chunky knit throw and a sheepskin rug to add extra texture to the room and make it look really warm and inviting. Of course fairylights also help! You can create your own little sanctuary where you can curl up with a good book and a massive mug of coffee, tea or hot chocolate - whatever floats your boat!

The Living Room

Candles and pumpkins

Candles and pumpkins

Candles, candles, candles are the key here. Light them all and have them everywhere (obviously be really careful and never leave them unattended) but there’s nothing better than turn the “big light” off, switching on the lamp and lighting the candles. It creates a gorgeous cosy space with a lovely ambiance. Perfect for nights on the sofa under a blanket watching a film.

The Dining Room

Autumn pumpkins

Autumn pumpkins

Pumpkins. They are everywhere at this time of year. I’m not talking about the ones carved with triangles for eyes, although don’t get me wrong I love a good carving session - it brings back so many good childhood memories. But there are so many more amazing varieties out there these days that you can use them as a styling staple all through October. Create a gorgeous display in a fruit bowl or use them as props on shelves. The possibilities are endless. Shoutout to my favourite florist - The Flower Lounge for supplying me with the most beautiful mini white pumpkins.

Autumnal Dining Room Decor

Autumnal Dining Room Decor

The Kitchen

I’m just going to say one thing - Cake! Get baking, cooking, hosting dinner parties; whatever you can to spend time here all toasty whilst the weather rages outside. If cookings not your thing - there’s always deliveroo!

Kitchen And Cake

Kitchen And Cake

And lastly - Leopard Print

Leopard Print

Leopard Print

You can’t escape it this year. It’s everywhere. I’ve always been a leopard print fan, Ben calls me the crazy leopard print lady. I once turned up to the airport wearing a leopard jumpsuit, leopard shoes and pulling a leopard suitcase. That’s what happens when I have to get up at the crack of dawn for an early flight!!!

Anyways I digress - but I just wanted to share this gorgeous scarf from Accessorize and think it’s the perfect Autumn accessory.

Cosy Cat

Cosy Cat

Have a lovely Autumn from me and Bojangles!

Colours for 2019

September in the interior world always feels like a fresh new start as everyone starts looking to the next year and the next big thing. It has seen the launch of lots of new colours from a few of our favourite companies and I’d thought I’d share some of my key ones.

GIF via juergenland.tumbler

GIF via juergenland.tumbler

First up : Farrow & Ball

I was lucky enough to be invited to the launch of the new Farrow and Ball colours in the Manchester showroom and catch a first glimpse before they were unveiled at London Design Week. They are all lovely but two colours that really grabbed my eye were Preference Red and Sulking Room Pink.

Preference Red via  Farrow & Ball

Preference Red via Farrow & Ball

Preference Red is such a rich and inviting red, it immediately feels grand yet contemporary. I can imagine it being used in traditional period homes or as a statement in a modern new build. It will also work fabulously as a pop of colour in small formats such as a painted chair or stool.

Sulking Room Pink has the most amazing name, drawing upon inspiration from French boudoirs of the past. It feels feminine and romantic but also fresh and modern. I can see this pink being used in any scenario.

Sulking Room Pink via  Farrow & Ball

Sulking Room Pink via Farrow & Ball

Dulux Colour of the Year 2019 : Spiced Honey

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At first I wasn’t so sure about this announcement. My first thought was “oh no it’s beige”. But this is ANYTHING but beige. It has such an earthly tone and feels very grounded. When teamed with a dark navy, the colour becomes really contemporary and sophisticated.

Spiced Honey via  Dulux

Spiced Honey via Dulux

Continuing on the Earthly theme, Sherwin Williams have released Cavern Clay as their Colour of the Year 2019. This is a gorgeous terracotta tone which when teamed with prints gives a real bohemian palette.

Cavern Clay via  Sherwin Williams

Cavern Clay via Sherwin Williams

And for the eccentric colour lovers - Tiru by Graham & Brown. This is what I love about the interior world, there is always something for everyone. I love this vivid teal which looks so luxurious against the dark woods and bright brasses. Again this colour can work as a whole colour scheme or in small doses.

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What do you think? I would love to hear your thoughts, drop me a comment below or message me on Instagram!