Thursday, 26 April 2012

Toy Storage

Play room? Craft room?

One thing is for your baby grows into a toddler, so will the toy collection! Unless you are lucky enough to have a spacious house, you'll need to source additional storage solutions. There are plenty of products on the market, most of which however are targeted at children. Personally, I don't want to look at toys when the children are in bed. I like a clutter free space where I can relax without Lego, Thomas trains and jigsaw puzzles. Don't get me wrong, I'm all for mess and a creative environment for play during the day, but in the evening I want a living space that I can easily transform to an adult area for relaxation. The same applies in the bathroom. Who can relax in a candle-lit bubble bath when the Octonauts are staring at you? Instead of ugly plastic baby wash/shampoo bottles I decant into beautiful containers.

Having a small bathroom I've opted for a simple wicker storage box for bath toys which I've lined with a hand towel. You could line with a plastic binliner but I've found a towel perfectly adequate to catch any moisture.

I don't have the luxury of a play room but hopefully our next home will have space for one. Here are a few ideas for a play area.  I have a bit of a bee in my bonnet about plastic toys (they are great to play with but not to look at). Beautiful wooden toys on the other hand can be shown off and displayed.

kid's playroom

Creation of different zones encourages crafting,
 floor play and reading.

Kid Art Work.

Keep artwork in one central place in the playroom. 

Would love a version of this when we have a playroom

This canvas is easily made at home. 

IKEA Hacks... bookshelf turned "window" seat.

This bookshelf can be made into a comfy seating and storage area.

Storage Jars.?

Zone an area of the room for crafting.   

This would be fabulous for the girls' room for school.  Sam could totally do this!

When planning a playroom consider how it will accomodate your child as he/she grows up.
Ikea Spice Racks

Forward facing book storage encourages pre-readers to pick up a book.
 These shelves are painted spice racks from Ikea!

Hopefully you are inpsired to create an organised area for play and storage. You can add a bright or neutral palatte to suit your home and taste. 

If you like my blog please click `follow'.........Now, I'm off to have a baby anytime soon.

Thanks for looking!  Sarah.                                                      

Saturday, 21 April 2012

Invite to New Child Friendly Mini Cinema/Cafe

Want to come too?

I'm very pleased to have been invited to review a new retailer in Sandbach, Cheshire on the 26th May. Miola has been created for busy parents to shop and socialise. The child-friendly emphasis appeals to me as by then I will have have a 3 week old baby and young pre-schooler to take with me! There will be an interiors/gift shop (with toys), a small garden with play area, coffee lounge with snacks and a children's mini cinema.

If you would like a VIP invite to the launch party with Emmerdales Carl King and X Factors Lucy Jones then drop me a note and I will arrange entry. There will also be face painting and a hog roast.  

Abbeyfields, Lodge Road, Sandbach. Cheshire. CW11 3HD

Thursday, 19 April 2012


The colour of a room will probably be one of your first considerations in home design. You might have a favourite palette, a fabric swatch or other key items as your colour inspiration. Getting colour right isn't always as easy as it may seem. Colour affects our mood and energy levels, it can calm or energise. I strongly believe that you should surround yourself with colour that YOU love. Don't be drawn into the latest trend or follow the `pink for girls and blue for boys' theme if you really don't like it. There isn't a splash of blue in my son's room, instead I have opted for a neutral palette. Does this mean the room is boring? Far from it. When decorating children's rooms it's hard to get past the retailers constant obsession with pink and blue. Be bold and remember it's your home, you should walk into a room and love it...not cringe. Oh, and don't be bullied into decorating with the latest superhero character wallpaper! This would be my worst design nightmare.

You will need to consider light. Does the room have a window? Is the lighting artificial or natural? Is the room a sunny south facing space? What about shadows and mood lighting? I can't stress the importance of using tester pots before painting the area. You might test the paint in a showroom or in the DIY centre but the likelihood is that it will look totally different on your wall. Make sure that if you are painting a vast area that you buy paint from the same batch. Even the same colour may vary from tin to tin. I adore Farrow and Ball paint. If you haven't used it before it is certainly worth a look. If you are decorating on a budget then you can use tester pots without going to the expense of buying a regular sized tin. I have used two tester pots to decorate one feature wall in my son's bedroom.

Have a think about whether the colour will be a complimentary accent splash, a dominant feature wall or a background neutral palette. You will be able to do this more successfully if you create a mood board before starting. Consider what other colours and materials you will use in the room. Personally, I am colour averse. My favourite palette is a range of taupes, greys, creams, black and white. Can this palette become boring? Not if you use texture within the room. Generally speaking bronzes and golds compliment taupes while silver and glass compliment greys. These are all important design choices if you are to pull a room together. If you are still unsure where to start then search the Internet and browse magazines and print off room settings that you love. You should start to see a common colour theme that you can use as your design inspiration.
So, over to you. What are your thoughts on the pink and blue theme? Let's have a look at your designs. I'd love to hear from you and see your photos.

PS. With a baby girl due to be born any day now, only time will tell whether I will succumb to the pink obsession. Place your bets!

Home Scents

My favourite home scent of all time has to be the Neom candle. I'm using three at the moment, one in the bedroom, one downstairs (only to be lit when my Son is in bed so that I can fully appreciate the aroma), and the other is a travel size packed into my hospital bag heading for the maternity delivery suite, (I'm sure the midwives will be delighted).

Once you have experienced these `treatment' candles you will never want any other brand. They are a luxury but they last for ages. If you are on a budget you could start off with a travel size. But be warned, once you have bought one the addiction will commence!