31 March 2008

Bringing the inside out!

(I try desperately to keep my ears warm)
(James thinks the acoustics in that field are great!)

Yesterday myself and James woke up at 5am to do a photoshoot at sunrise...in Cavan! Tired doesn't even begin to describe what we were feeling. Fortunately though, I was really excited about this shoot because it involved moving a really really really old piano out into the middle of a field.

It was fabulous! Half the keys didn't work, the ones that did were completely out of tune, the veneer was peeling off from 15 years of being stored in a damp shed, and we're pretty sure it was home to many a rat. The thing was so old, it had candlestick holders on the front. It had so much character to it, it was sad to see it in the condition that it was, but hey, at least we got some use out of it before it's destroyed completely.

I wish I could post one of the pictures of the musician with it. They look so cool together. But since I can't, you just get pictures of me and James with it instead!

29 March 2008

French AIDS Awareness Posters

A friend of mine in California found some French AIDS Awareness Posters and I thought I should share them. They're quite disturbing, so instead of actually posting the pictures, I'll just provide the link. Viewer beware. However, from a photography, photoshop, and design aspect, they're incredible. And I just love the herringbone floorboards and silver lamp in the first photo!

Colour Glass in Ranelagh

Last week, James took me down the street to show me the new Colour Glass showroom here in Ranelagh. Of course, to prevent any sort of purchases, he brought me down on Easter Sunday when the shop was closed. Thanks Sweetie! Fortunately, they've a lovely website with brochures to download. Colour glass is a hot trend at the moment that replaces the need for tiles, and it comes in about a bazillion colours to fit your needs. With all my tiling frustrations at the moment, one sleek piece of glass seems so nice right now.

26 March 2008

Like a bird with a French Fry

I remember as a child going to the orthodontist and seeing loads of those inspirational posters with pictures of kittens and mountains with the obligatory bible verse or Albert Einstein quote slapped on top of it. So needless to say I've been a bit turned off by them since my youth. I found this one on Etsy by Dazey Chic for $45 and thought it was just so clever and nice to look at that I'd have to post it. Don't let the crappy Dublin weather get you down people!

Playing it by ear...should I sell my drum kit?

I've been battling with this question for months. My predicament started just over a year ago when I decided to buy a drumkit. I had already been taking lessons for a while and I was ready to make the big purchase. For a while, it was brilliant. I was learning a lot, and my teacher said I had the potential to be a really good drummer. Then in September, he moved to London for a masterclass (he was one of less than 10 people who got accepted), and my practicing sort of...well...stopped. We got together a few times when he came back for Christmas holidays, but I just haven't had (or should I say made) time to continue practicing.

Now here's my dilemma, my kit takes up space...and it's pretty ugly. One thing that's missing from that picture is the massive amount of wires that accompany it. Should I get rid of it? I'd hate to sell it just because of it's looks; it's ok with furniture, but I have an emotional attachment to this thing. I think I'd like a real drum kit that looks good, but I can't really afford one. Then I wonder, would I start practicing again if I had a nicer kit? My musician friends say I should keep it. Everyone else says sell it. What do you think?

24 March 2008

Hulger/ Plumen

This is sort of a double blog. Two subjects for the price of one. The first is a company called Hulger, who make stylish handsets for mobile phones, most of which are fairly retro in design. This is exciting for me, because I absolutely detest mobiles. What was once an invention of convenience and the way of the future (I remember my parents owning one in the early 90's that was the size of a brick), has become a festering wound on society's manners.

But if I can't destroy the some 3.3 billion mobiles of the world in a giant blazing phone fire, I can at least make mine look a totally cute and a bit less mobile-like. They also work for Skype, so no more fiddling with those horrible computer microphones.

The Hulger company have also created prototypes for their Plumen Project, and holy crap! It's CFL bulbs that actually look cool! I would almost be willing to say it's ok to have bare bulbs in the house...as long as they popped in a few of these babies. Besides, why should lampshades have all the fun? Please, if you happen to be a bulb manufacturer in Ireland, I implore you to set up a meeting with this company, as it would be totally awesome if these were readily available at the likes of Woodies or B&Q.

Knitted Icons

Today James and I were wandering about the photography and design sections of Waterstones in the Jervis Centre when I found, quite possibly, the most pointless, yet highly entertaining books I've ever read. It's called Knitted Icons by Carol Meldrum. Each page has instructions on how to make knitted versions of celebrities we all know and love.

When I think of little knitted people, I tend to associate them with single, middle-aged women who own a massive collection of them that they keep in their own special room, which is generally covered entirely in salmon pink wallpaper with several mahogany display cabinets to store the little knitted community in. These women would also, more often or not, have another room to keep their twelve cats in.

For some reason though, I didn't think those dreaded thoughts when I saw this book. I actually thought they were quite cute, especially the David Bowie one. I could see young parents making these for their kids to teach them about cool people in pop culture. Still quite pointless...but for some reason, I kind of have the urge to make a few myself. I mean, how can anyone resist the charms of the Jackie O doll?

23 March 2008

Happy Easter

(Photo by .Eti)

Happy Easter everyone! Unfortunately Me, James, and his entire family are all sick, so we've decided to skip Easter lunch in favour of staying home and resting. However, that hasn't stopped me from rearranging furniture in the livingroom or James installing a new hallway light (pictures will be posted later this week). I'm sure I'll also get some tiling in before the day is through.

20 March 2008

Dublin Waste chairs!

Just browsing Dublin Waste this morning and found these two awesome looking chairs. They look like they might need a bit of recovering, but the shapes of them are just so cool! If someone here doesn't take them, I will!

19 March 2008

The Library- Koh Samui

After much coaxing by friends and family, James and I have decided to spend a much needed holiday in Thailand. I was doing a bit of accommodation research last night when I found this fantastic looking hotel called The Library. We probably won't stay there though, as it's a bit too expensive...Well, expensive for Thailand that is.

At about €200/night, it's around the same as a moderately priced London hotel. However, The Library is decorated much like that of modern art museum, or at the very least, something from Grand Designs. In that sense, you'd definitely get your money's worth.

It's really hard for me, because I absolutely love the look of this place; I just can't see the sense in spending that amount of money when I know there are hundreds of 3 and 4 star bungalows in the area that only cost €30-€40/night. On the flip side, how many times can you say you've swam in a bright red pool? Oh decisions, decisions!

18 March 2008

Sit Stil

This weekend I was desperate to cut off the mop that was inhabiting the top of my skull, so I went to see my hair dresser, Richie, who just happens to be the most amazing hair dresser on the planet. His style of cutting and chopping is not too dissimilar from Edward Scissorhands (but with much better results obviously).

Even if Richie wasn't there to make my hair look cool, I think I'd still go to the Sit Stil salon anyway, just based on it's interior (ha ha, see how I tied that in there?). The waiting area has gorgeous, recovered antique furniture and instead of covering up the floor with cold, boring tiles, they've varnished the original floorboards. The place is truly unique and the staff are excellent! I'd recommend it to anyone who's in need of a hairdresser that cares.

How to make invisible shelves!

I found this video whilst browsing Apartment Therapy. Rather than buying them online and waiting a week or two for them to be shipped to you, try making these invisible shelves yourself. It should only take about 10-15 minutes and cost about €5-10.

How To Install Invisible Shelves

17 March 2008

Happy St. Patrick's day!

(a lovely Holga photo by BobbyGreg)

Happy Paddy's Day, everyone! Sorry I haven't been around the past few days. Between photoshoots for the new music magazine, State, family visiting from Germany, and even more family visiting from Belfast, I've hardly had a minute to myself. But I promise I'll be back tomorrow with more goodies for you to have a gander at.

12 March 2008

some colourful inspiration

A good friend of mine is moving into a new apartment, just a few minutes away from my place and has enlisted me to help her make it all stylish and pretty, and since she and I have very similar tastes in interiors, this'll be a cinch! However, I've been flicking through flickr for a bit of inspiration.

(Photo by Brocante Girl)

(Photo by Lutterlagkage)

This one's from Interior Decoration A to Z from 1965. Provided by Jackie121467

Photo Provided by ChicFreakSali

Photos Provided by Decor8

Happy Owl Glass @ Little Paper Planes.

For about the past year, I've been loving Little Paper Planes (the website, not the actual bits of aerodynamic writing scroll. Though I do love those too). It's such a great resource for colourful, affordable art, and with dollar value dropping every day, that makes it super affordable! Check out these prints by artist, Happy Owl Glass. Everything shown here is priced at $10!

11 March 2008

1 hr Project

Here's something fun and creative you can do in under an hour. James bought one of these cheap, bare organizers up at Ikea for £7.99. Last night as we were watching a programme about the most expensive houses in the world, he hands it to me, and says "Here, do something with this." So I busted out my decoupage glue and some fancy paper and go to town. If you let the surface dry in front of the radiator, it only takes about 5 minutes ;-) I think I did a pretty good job for a first timer. Might do the insides of the drawers next.

10 March 2008

Birthday Wishes

Today I got packet in the post from Birmingham, Alabama. That could only mean one thing. MATTE STEPHENS PRINTS!!!! I've got some serious framin' to do :-)

07 March 2008

RTE's Show House= Blah!

I don't even know why I watch this show. I always end up swearing at the telly screen, which I don't like doing because our telly has been very good to us the past couple of years. I'm just absolutely amazed at some of the people who come on that show and describe themselves as "designers." I've yet to see anything eye-catching or innovative. It really makes me worry that maybe that's the best Ireland has to offer. I have to keep telling myself that it's ok, because the kinds of Irish designers who actually are innovative and forward thinking wouldn't be caught dead on an RTE reality show. I also think that perhaps I'm looking at it from the wrong perspective; that the people on the show know that they have to appeal to the general public to win, but then again, even if that's so, it still does not excuse some of rooms I've seen on the show. Here's some examples:

I know I've seen this room on daft somewhere...hmmm....

No amount of lilies is going to save this room from such a bland colour scheme.

Ok, I'm not a designer or anything, but seriously! This person should have known better than to leave a room so empty and barren-looking.

Oh my GOD! Attack of the beige walls!!! This is a good example of how not to use pastels.

Furthermore, there seems to be absolutely no camaraderie between the designers. What ever happened to inspiring each other and benefiting from each other's ideas and knowledge? Sadly, I'll probably continue to watch the show as it gives me something to yell at.

Light at the end of the tunnel

As much as I'd like to post some gorgeous photos of my finished bathroom and all our new Ikea shelving units assembled with loads of interesting books on them, I just can't tonight. This is a picture that describes the absolute agony of having a messy house full of unassembled furniture, loose tiles, and cleaning products strew about the place. You also might notice my husband making an appearance as he giggles at my misfortune. I have to keep telling myself "Don't worry, it will all be finished soon and your gaff will look fabulous!"

06 March 2008

Aiveen Daly

Lately I've been fascinated with upholstery (sometimes day dreaming about patterns has gotten me in trouble in work), so when I read an article about Aiveen Daly in the March issue of Vogue, I was thrilled. Her chairs and sofas are so unique. I wish I could afford to have her cover all my furniture!

She wasn't always an upholstery genius though. She has a degree in Russian and business from Trinity College, but after finding herself trying to pin new fabrics on her generic, contemporary furniture, she decided to enroll at the London College of Furniture and soon opened up a studio in West London.

After reading that article a couple weeks ago, I came home to find an ugly, neglected armchair in the hallway of our building. I was inspired, and now that ugly neglected armchair sits in our livingroom waiting to be covered. I also mentioned the article to my boss, and as it turns out, she knows a little about upholstery herself and is more than willing to help me out with my first covering experience.

05 March 2008

Girls Girls Girls!!!

Etsy seller, Amandakindregan is newest artist to watch out for! Her goauche and acrylic paintings are fantastically retro and walk a fine line between cutesy and sexy. They're reminiscent of the German Bild Lilli comics that inspired the Barbie doll. She also has blog you can check out here. Here's a few of my favourites from her Etsy shop.