Big news – S. and I are buying a flat.
I’ve always been more a fantasist of a dream home than a fairytale wedding. I was even obsessive as a child about rearranging the furniture in my bedroom and plastered the walls floor to ceiling with a faux wallpaper made up of magazine tears. Summer-y #FBF moment for effect..
So, buying a place is pretty exciting and it’s letting me release all my latent passion for interior design. The trouble is, where to start? Yesterday I went to Heal’s AW14 press show, which was as good a place as any.
As I walked around the gloriously sunny 5th floor of Heal’s TCR store, a lot of the lights captured my attention. These lamps are pleasingly minimal.
This lamp has been up-cycled from chicken wire. Below it sat a fantastic wooden patterned table – a chic dining room pairing.
The designers at Heal’s have spent some time looking back through the archives and were heavily inspired by their wrought iron bedsteads from 1905 (v. Bedknobs and Broomsticks!) Their modern version, below, the Abacus is available as a standard or four-poster. The oak abacus detailing and thin satin black powder-coated steel make modern bedfellows (excuse the pun..). The addition of the hanging three bulb lamp really added to the look and made me want to jump in.
Outside on the terrace, Heal’s Discovers was celebrating its 10th anniversary with five talented designers. Below, Ester Comunello’s coffee table and light which clamps onto this or any piece of furniture. This was sadly the best pic I got of these bright new designers, as the sun was so blinding I couldn’t see my iPhone screen!
My absolute favourite, though, was the Rickard Stool by up-and-coming designers Philip Luscombe and Josh South. The stool cum kitchen step makes use of contrasting natural and fumed oak and has an ergonomic curve on the top, suitable for bums! At £295, it might well make it onto my wedding list.
Last week I had the pleasure of attending a special beauty evening at the Heals store on Tottenham Court Road. The Sleeping Beauty event saw speakers Sarah Stacey and Jo Fairley, of Beauty Bible, joined by Geraldine Howard of Aromatherapy Associates. Between them, they discussed the link between a good night’s sleep and good skin. They illustrated how, aided by AA’s cult Deep Relax products (‘knock out drops’, according to Jo) and the best apps, it’s possible to ‘sleep clever’ – blocking out the day’s stresses and sleeping deeper, resulting in better looking, younger skin.
One of Jo’s favourite apps is the Brainwave Dream Inducer by Banzai Labs (69p on the App store). With this app you can set your own music or listen to pre-programmed soothing sounds, while the app sends gentle pulses to your brain to help you relax and enjoy a deep sleep and vivid dreams. Definitely want to try that one out!
Unlike so many press events, I really felt that the evening struck the right chord. The speakers were witty and friendly – and quite importantly succinct so the evening didn’t drag on. We were free to stay and chat as long as we wanted, have hand massages courtesy of Aromatherapy Associates using their heavenly rose scented serum & lotion and peruse products. During my massage I got talking to one of the AA beauty girls about aromatherapy, which honestly I’ve never really considered an essential in my beauty arsenal. She explained how simply sniffing pure frankincense oil can interrupt nervous anxiety or even a panic attack. Suffice to say, I bought a bottle!
One of the most interesting and ‘aha’ moments I had during the evening though was when talking to Sarah about my skin concerns. Thinking she was going to recommend me a cleanser, she in fact explained how the skin is simply the gut on the outside and if I don’t take care of that then I can’t expect my skin to improve. Showing me a green juice recipe from one of the Beauty Bible books it was clear that these women live ‘wellness’ and it made me stop and think about what I’m doing to my body and how to take better care of it. Easier said than done, but definitely worth investing in.