Candle of the Month: April – The Body Shop Green Tea and Lemon

If you can see the image, you’ll see this month’s candle of the month is not even a candle! Luckily for me, I make my own rules, and I’ve decided that this beautiful home fragrance oil is acceptable. Besides, it’s either this or no post!

So I’m currently enjoying some beautiful, hot sunny weather in Crete, and with all the wedding planning and working that’s been going on, it’s been another month that’s flown by. I’d used up the last bits of a couple of candles, but not started anything new, and this was the only thing I’d been burning, and I really do enjoy it.

It’s such a citrussy, zingy scent. Compared to last month’s candle from Price’s which is a subtle citrus whiff, this is a real blast of tangy freshness. The Body Shop describe it as a “crisp and lively aroma” and they couldn’t have put it better. It’s beautifully blended, the lemon lifts and squashes what can be overbearingly green in a green tea scent, and instead makes it just work. I really do love this as a scent, and may have to pick up the matching room spray.

A little goes a long way, although I am quite generous when using fragrance oils. Especially in scents like this. My favourite perfumes are zesty, green citrus scents so it’s no wonder I adore this. Whether it’s bergamot, lime, grapefruit or lemon, even if it’s touching on being a clean, masculine scent, I love it!

I add around 10 drops of oil to as much water as I can fit into the bowl of my oil burner and the scent really does fill the room. You have to keep an eye on your tealight candle and the bowl to check it isn’t dry, but you can always top it back up.

I’ve tried a couple of the home fragrance oils from The Body Shop, and this is definitely my favourite. They seem to be out of stock in all varieties on the website, so hopefully they’re just waiting for stock, and that the range isn’t being discontinued.

On another note, don’t you just love the colours in this stained glass effect oil burner?! I nearly let go of it the other month when I was sorting out some things to donate, but I’m glad I’ve kept hold of it for now. On a lovely sunny day, I do like mix of vibrant, pretty colours!

Well, I think I’ll get back to a bit of sight-seeing and sun-bathing, and I’ll see you again soon!

For now, with love,
Ellen

Are Fake Flowers a Faux-Pas?

A lot of people are quite opinionated on fake flowers. A lot don’t care. Within home décor, I think they can be great. Especially in seasonal décor, I like artificial blooms. They add a pop of colour, can be very affordable, and aren’t even necessarily trying to fool anyone into thinking they’re the real thing. They’re just another decoration.

The thing that got me thinking about the subject, however, was wedding talk. Myself and dear Fiancé are in the process of planning our wedding, and inevitably, the subject of decorating has come up! With weddings, a lot dislike and a lot totally adore silk flowers. I can see the benefits. They’re available out of season, allergy-friendly, can be DIY’ed with some basic skill, and most importantly, can be made in advance. Oh, and the options are somewhat endless. But I’m not fooled into thinking they’re ever real, regardless of the price point – and I’ve seen some beautiful (and costly) examples.

I’m undecided with my own wedding. I’m not sure I can justify the cost of real blooms for just one day, and there’s also the stress of them being last minute and someone else doing them. I appreciate that faux flowers can cost more than real, but they last infinitely longer! I do like the idea of potted flowers and plants. They seem a lot more ‘natural’ to me. They’re growing, they’re still alive. I really like that aspect. And as I mentioned with artificial flowers, I like the thought of them being prepared in advance, knowing exactly what they look like and there being no chance of wilting.

Clearly, undecided!

I certainly, however, do NOT think that fake is a faux-pas. I cannot understand some people’s strong aversion to them. Each to their own, definitely, but I don’t think anything as simple as a silk flower can be offensive to anyone! It’s its own thing. It doesn’t have to be a poor representation of a real flower. It doesn’t have to be compared to a real flower at all. It’s not real. It can be enjoyed for being a pretty, silk decoration in it’s own right.

I’ve often incorporated artificial flowers into my Top Picks under £10 posts, and at that price range, there’s definitely no fooling anyone about the fabric of the flowers. But I still like them. They can still add vibrancy and softness to an otherwise dull corner.

Let me know how you think the real and fake flowers above compare. I’d also love to hear  your opinions, especially if you have favourite brands, or species. Or even your reasons for not liking silk flowers. Leave me a comment below :)

For now, with love,
Ellen

White Marble and Silver Mini Haul

IMAG2020I’ve been a little quiet recently regarding working on the house, and that’s because it’s just going so slowly. We’re working away, as and when we can, and we’re definitely getting there, it’s just slow going.

We now have new lights in each section of the lounge, and we’re busy sanding and filling cracks and that sort of thing. Decorating seems a long way away. That’s not stopping me buying the odd bit here and there though.

So I’ve got a mini-haul, a few bits I’ve picked up at TK Maxx because I love them!

I was undecided on whether to go with silver or copper as the metallic accent in our living room, as I saw an absolutely stunning copper-coloured multi pendant light fitting that was utterly gorgeous. And I really do love copper, and rose gold, as the metallic element in a room. It’s been such a big trend in recent years, but I worry that it will become ‘so last year’ soon, and while I always say, go for what you like, not what you’re told is in fashion, I know that my tastes change pretty frequently anyway.

So I saw this beautiful bookend in bright, white marble with the brilliant silver detail, and the colour combination was winning. Knowing that I want bright white walls for the house, it made it clear to me that silver would be the way to go for any metallic elements that might feature in the room. (You’ll note, I haven’t mentioned gold at all, and that’s simply because it’s not really a favourite of mine).

IMAG2041I also found these coasters at TK Maxx, a very similar white marble, with a silver detail around the edges. I’d previously bought (about 18 months ago) some lovely white marble coasters and mats for my brother and his girlfriend when they moved house, and I really loved them, and wish I’d bought myself some at the time. What a great thing hindsight is! They are really similar to these ones, but without the silver detail. I do like these ones, but wish the silver was brighter – more like the bookend. If I see plain white ones, I may be tempted to get those too.

IMAG2035IMAG2033 Finally, I bought this fantastic trinket box with silver lizard decoration on the top. I love it! I’d seen it a few times, and told myself I didn’t need to buy anything else, but then saw it had been reduced, and was such a bargain, I couldn’t resist! At less than half the original price, it finally came home with me. It’s not quite as white as the other two items, but as they’ll be on display/in use in different areas of the room, I don’t think that matters at all.

I love how the image of the room is coming together in my head, and should use that as motivation to get on and get some DIY done so we can make some real progress! I’ll keep you updated though.

For now, with love,
Ellen

Top Picks under £10: April

A few days ago I was perusing the internet and saw a ‘Spring Decorating Ideas‘ article on House Beautiful. As I’d already featured pastel pinks and blues back in January’s Top Picks, to represent Pantone’s Rose Quartz and Serenity colours of the year, it was great to see other pastel hues on trend for Spring. Taking inspiration and sticking with a lemon and coral theme with a hint of a print, I’ve scoured the web and once again come up with my top picks under ten pounds for all you home-loving bargain hunters out there.

1. Patterned Cushion Cover – H&M – £7.99
Another post, another H&M cushion cover. But they always do trends just right. Can’t say no to this one.

2. Cosy Skandi Ochre Galley Pendant – Dunelm– £7.99
I’ve purchased one of these myself in another colour (see my Dunelm Haul post) and love the style of it.

3. Coral 100% Egyptian Cotton Towel Range – George – from 75p to £8.00
Coral is a great shade for a bathroom, it really warms up what can be an otherwise cool, white room. These towels are a bargain!

4. Multi Love Letters Decorations – George – £8.00
Give your decor a little love with these fun multi coloured wooden letter blocks.

5. Mirrored Print Photo Frame – BHS – £10.00
Mis-matching photo frames has been all the rage for a few years now, and this one is simply beautiful. With such a gorgeous coloured frame, a simple black and white photograph would look wonderful in it.

6. Sweet Pea in Glass Vase – Next – 8.00
Add a touch of colour to your dressing table with a sunny Spring floral arrangement, like these sweet peas from Next.

7. Coral Micro Cosy Throw – Primark – £10.00
It might be warming up outside, but this sumptuously soft fleece blanket is just perfect for those chilly moments that remind us it’s not quite Summer yet!

8. Patterned Cushion Cover – H&M – £3.99
Yes. It’s another H&M Cushion Cover. And yet again it’s delightful!

9. Clementine & Peony Geo Print Candle – Primark – £2.50
And lastly, another little bargain from Primark. I’ll be honest, I like this candle for the print more than anything. And that’s ok. It is functional, but if you don’t want to burn it, it’s also simply gorgeous.

I love taking inspiration from articles and websites. There are so many hundreds of images out there, so many ideas, and you don’t need to copy something exactly to get a very similar look and feel. Identify the key elements and shop around. You don’t have to break the bank to follow current décor trends.

For now, with love,
Ellen