Dealing With Grime One Day At A Time – Descaling An Iron

It’s been a while since I posted any home maintenance and cleaning tips on the blog but it’s something that I would like to share more of. When I chose the At Home With Ellen title, I wanted to encompass a variety of aspects of home living, from decor and enjoying the space you’re in, to looking after it, sharing opinions and reviews on products, meal ideas and recipes and more.

I have confessed many times that I am not the cleanest and tidiest person. I work, I’m planning a wedding and trying my best to keep on top of the blog too, and see myself as an ordinary kind of woman. Sometimes I cannot be bothered to wash up after dinner! Shock! Horror!

That doesn’t mean I’m not houseproud. I love my home, and I hate for people to see it when it’s messy. That’s why I my posts about home maintenance will never tell you to be more like me. Rather, I want to show you that I’m also on the journey of day to day life, and hope to create a place where we can share tips and ideas, and maybe give you a little inspiration and motivation along the way – I know having the blog certainly motivates me!

So with all that said, I thought I’d create a new little series – Dealing With Grime One Day At A Time. I’ve created a new category for it, so you’ll be able to search all posts in the future by the tag, and over the coming months I’ll be adding little posts like this one about those little jobs that you might not otherwise get around to.

So, descaling an iron. Yep, that’s what we’re talking about today. If you don’t already know, it’s an important bit of maintenance to maintain the lifespan of your iron, and save your lovely white shirts from the telltale signs of a scummy iron. If you’ve ever ruined a shirt with jets of brown steam, and little pieces of debris from the bottom of your iron, then you probably haven’t been descaling it often enough. I probably don’t do mine enough. Some companies recommend every 10 uses, but it will depend on your usage, and it’s always best to follow the recommendations of the manufacturer.

I’m going to try and do mine around once a month. I won’t always use a descaling product – if you clean your iron regularly (a lot of irons have a self clean button) then there shouldn’t be a need to, but I do live in a hard water area and that can make it worse.

I love the Oust sachets (not sponsored – it’s just the brand and type I’ve always used), and buy the ones that usually come as a pack of three and can be used in the kettle too. In fact, I bought this box to descale my kettle, and then decided it was definitely time I did the iron too.

I’m naughty and don’t bother to empty to water out after ironing (it’s recommended to) and I also use plain ol’ tap water (definitely not recommended) and the telltale white deposits end up presenting themselves around the steam holes.

It’s a simple case of heating up the iron, then unplugging, adding the Oust sachet and topping up with water, and using the self clean button or pressing the steam button a few times over the sink. If you’ve let it get really bad, you may have to do it more than once, but for regular maintenance, once will be just fine. I’ve also read you can get fantastic results with vinegar, so I may have to give that a go too, as I already use it for many other tasks around the home and get great results.

I like to flush out my iron with some fresh, clean water afterwards, and with a quick wipe of the soleplate, it’s as good as new. The descaler is so inexpensive (around £1-£1.50 for a box of three sachets), and it really will lengthen the life of your iron. So if the next time you’re ironing and you think yours is underperforming, give it a little tlc and enjoy the benefits!

I have another bargainous Top Picks under £10 post coming up next, so don’t forget to bookmark the blog and come back for that. If you’ve any tips to share, or anything you’d like to hear about from me, please do share in the comments section.

For now, with love,
Ellen

COTM: March – Wax Lyrical Amaryllis

Spring isn’t quite in full swing yet, but the weather has warmed up a little and the daffodils are popping up to say hello.

I noticed these fragranced tea lights in TK Maxx, and as a discontinued fragrance from the Wax Lyrical Royal Horticultural Society line, I knew I had to snap them up. I love Wax Lyrical candles – they are some of my favourite, and the beautifully floral and fruit scents from the RHS range are just as beautiful.

With top notes of citrus, heart notes of jasmine and base notes of musk, these are just what they say they are. Delicate, floral, slightly sweet with a hint of something else… a sharp, zesty green note. The sweetness and floral notes also make me think of sweet peas, or violets and lavender. They’re soft, garden blooms, and as per usual with Wax Lyrical, the smell is just as beautiful when burned as on cold sniff.

The pack claims up to 6 hours burn time from these tea lights – I got around 4, but I was more than happy with that and still think they’re fantastic value. Burn time can depend a lot on the holder, your room and atmosphere, so there will always be some variances there.

I have been burning three at a time, so got three uses from this pack of nine. I found that was a great amount to have in the centre of the coffee table, and offered a subtle, pretty scent. Sadly, dear Fiance wasn’t so keen – probably the sweet Jasmine note was a little too floral for him, but I have to say I really enjoyed them.

For another Wax Lyrical review, check out one of my favourite ever candle scents here, and do check www.wax-lyrical.com for their beautifully British candles. I feel like I’m spoilt for choice with candles at the moment – there are so many beautiful floral, fruity and calming clean scents out there at the moment, so don’t forget to come back to find out what will be my choice of the month for April!

For now, with love,
Ellen

Top Picks Under £10: March

Wafting in like a gentle breeze on a fresh Spring day, aquamarine is the order of the day this time around. It’s both the gemstone and colour associated with March, and seeing as the weather here in the UK can’t really make it’s mind up, I think this pretty aqua hue is the perfect option to put a little Spring in your home whether the weather is playing or not.

Sure, the Sun will catch up eventually, but as Easter themed décor is in abundance in stores, you’re probably more than ready to freshen up your home a little and inject a little colour in a pretty, subtle way.

As far as pastel blues go, aquamarine is my kind of shade. It’s not as vintagey as duck egg, or as green as mint, but it’s certainly got that coastal feel that true sky blues don’t. It also works wonderfully with greys and whites, or tan and ivory, and minks and creams, so whatever your neutral pieces and most likely your sofa, this is a colour that will work with what you already have.

So here are my Top Picks at £10 and under for March 2017:

1. Riviera Escape Wax Tart – YankeeCandle.co.uk – £1.43 Currently on Offer

A fresh scent is the perfect way to add a little Springtime to your home. If the colour aquamarine had a scent, it would be this seasidey wonder. I mean, it has marine in the name… no wonder it seems just right.

2. Yankee Candle Sanremo Votive Holder – House of Harris Gifts – £4.99

No longer available at yankeecandle.co.uk, this votive holder is part of the same collection that the Riviera Escape tarts and candles came from. It’s still available at many other retailers however, including the one linked ablove.

3. Jacquard-Weave Hand Towel – H&M – £4.99

As traditionally one of the smallest rooms in a house, a bathroom can be the most affordable to give a mini-makeover. You don’t have to replace all your towels either, just adding fresh, colourful hand towels which are the ones most regularly on display, are an easy way to begin to coordinate a theme or colour.

4. Drona Box (Blue) – IKEA – £2.50

A perfect fit for the Kallax shelving units, but also ideal in or on the wardrobe, or any other furniture, colourful storage solutions can be as pretty as they are practical, and these ones are a great size and value.

5. Dorma Hydrangea Stem – Dunelm – £7.99

I love hydrangeas, but fresh cut blooms can wilt quickly, and dried don’t always retain their beautiful colours, so artificial options can be a huge success when it comes to hydrangeas. These pretty blue ones from Dunelm are great quality for the price, and the colouring is so realistic. Love!
6. Decoart Americana Chalky Finish Paint (Escape) – The Range – £6.99

If you like upcycling, or are tempted to try it, chalk paint can be ideal. Perfect for that rustic look, but in a distressed, sea-weathered way, the shade ‘Escape’ looks perfect to tie in a coastal theme.

7. Supersoft Throw – George at Asda – Was £6.00, Now £5.00

Ideal size for an armchair, or to centre over the sofa, it’s nice to have a soft, lightweight blanket for when the weather is really grotty outside, and just the pretty pop of colour for when the sun starts shining. And for the price, it’s a very affordable way to add plenty of that pretty shade.

8. 2 Pack Knobs – H&M – £4.99

Whether you decide to go for painting your upcycled furniture or not, simply changing over the handles can really lift and modernize a piece. Whether for a sideboard or chest of drawers, these gorgeous shaped and colour door knobs are a quick and easy update you can do yourself in no time.

9. Mint Velvet Living Cushion – Primark – £5.00

Well, this wouldn’t be complete without a cushion, now, would it? Off to Primark for this beauty. Gorgeous colour, perfect price, what more could you want?

And there you have it, my Top Picks for this month. A post that’s come a little later than intended but that’s just how things go sometimes! Stay tuned though for another post coming shortly, and my Candle of the Month post which will be up at the end of the month.

For now, with love,
Ellen

Kelly Hoppen’s 8 Interior Design Trends for 2017 – My Views

I was reading this article over on House Beautiful, in which Kelly Hoppen discusses her 8 Interior Design Trends for 2017. I thought I’d recap them here, and take you through them with my own thoughts and views on how you can incorporate them into your own home.

I love her initial piece of advice to “Use trends as a guide rather than a rule as they can be very dating to an interior.” Which I think it great. Our homes are for us to live in and love, not to photograph solely to wow strangers on Instagram. It’s not just about how something looks but how it makes you feel, and a lot of that will come down to practicality in terms of day to day living, so having a hint of this and a nod to that can be much more livable than a statement so large it overshadows your whole home.

1 Colours

First up are colours. “Splashes of burgundy, dark grey, pastel pink, emerald green, and burnt orange will be the shades of next season” the article states. Now each to their own when it comes to colours. I could certainly embrace emerald green, and I think pastel pink can work wonderfully in many ways, also alongside either dark grey or burgundy, if used right. I have to say, burnt orange isn’t a colour I immediately draw towards. I think it depends on what it is paired with and the overall vibe. As a stand alone shade, I’m not a fan, but I do like rich tan leathers and metallic copper which share the shame hue, so with the right contrasts, it could definitely work.
As ever, I like to play safe with trends, and tend to go for easily updateable pieces rather than whole room themes, so this pastel pink table would be a perfect nod to the season, and could easily tie in with some textiles and art in the same hues.

2 Wall Coverings

Now the article mentions a few options here, but the thing that stood out for me was the mention of geometric wallpaper. Especially with the younger crowd, I’m seeing more and more geometric patterns, and companies are now embracing this on everything from cushions to duvet covers to, of course, wallpaper. It’s a modern and funky vibe and there’s countless pattern and colour combinations out there. I like this one from B&Q.

3 Accessorizing

Kelly states that for 2017 “Retro plants, palm trees and rubber plants are huge, very 60s” and I couldn’t agree more. We’ve seen such a huge revival of real life greenery recently and it’s time to get green fingers and be ready and willing with the watering can. The tropical types are my favourite of the moment (and probably yours, everyone is loving palms and the like) but easy care options like Spider plants are also back in vogue. I also love this rubber plant from Waitrose.

4 Art

The article mentions fantasy-like art, such as that of artist Tim Walker. If you’re not quite so keen on the surreal scenes he creates, you can still have a hint of the madness with delightfully bow-tied zebra, from Graham & Brown at Debenhams.

5 Space

Now this is something you may not be able to change. Open plan versus cozy and intimate can be very limited by your house and rooms, and whilst open plan areas can be divided up, if you have cozier rooms, then that’s what you have to work with. Choose lighter colours for the walls, (and in my opinion, almost everything) to increase the bright and lightness of the room, and add mirrors wherever possible to really get the light reflecting around the room. Ikea always has a fabulous, varied selection of mirrors and I love the large, round Stockholm mirror.

6 Concrete

Another one for the modern, urban fans. Again, concrete can sound like a big commitment. It can be fantastic as a polished floor (my partner’s favourite), but can also come in smaller formats such as candles and candle holders, and plant pots such as these from notonthehighstreet.com.

7 Flooring

Texture and contrast, though not carpet, seem to be the order of the day. Mixing tiles and wooden flooring is set to be big, and this wood effect ceramic tile literally mixes the two, for a fabulous parquet style floor, without the maintenance and upkeep. I really love this look!

8 The Old vs. The New

And lastly, we have the old, versus the new. I feel this is perfect for me. I love to take old furniture and upcycle to give it a new lease of life. And also contrasting old and new is a great option. Take great priced basics from Ikea and mix them up with one off finds from Antiques shops and Charity stores. Literally go for your favourites without worrying if all the styles match perfectly. They’re not supposed to.

So there you have it. Some tips and ideas to try out if you’re updating or decorating this coming year. What’s your favourite point? I’d love to hear and discuss with you what décor plans you have if you’d like to leave a comment below.

For now, with love,
Ellen

COTM: February – DW Home Candles Peony Petals

It may still be Winter, but as soon as Valentine’s Day hits, there’s a sense that Spring is on it’s way. The daffodil and tulip bulbs I planted have started peeking out of the dirt (a little late due to the lack of sunshine on these chilly cold days) and there’s that noticeable delay in the sun setting each evening.

A short month anyway, February hasn’t seen much candle action from me. I’ve purchased a few (do I need more?!) but I have enjoyed a little of this beautiful, delicate, floral yet clean scent.

It’s Peony Petals from DW Home Candles. I purchased this one, as well as others, from TK Maxx. These small (and oh so cute) glass jars are a bargain at £2.99, and a lot of the medium jars are just £5.99, when you can get hold of them.

I love the pretty pink coating to the glass, and it coincidentally matches perfectly to my calendar this month! The scent is delicate, yet powerful enough. It’s noticeable but not overwhelming, and I find that the scent stays exactly the same throughout the whole of these smaller candles.

I haven’t even burned the whole thing… it’s been one of those months, but what I have burned has been very clean and I can’t fault it at all.

The scent is pretty – a rosy, clean flower scent, not overpowering or old fashioned but fresh and reminiscent of real blooms.

I’d definitely recommend it, and I will (and already have) purchase more from DW Home. Beautiful!

Do you like to match your scents to the time of year? Do you save particular scents for certain holidays and occasions? Or are you more of a ‘whatever I’m in the mood for’ type? Please share your thoughts in a comment, I’d love to hear from you!

For now, with love,
Ellen

Top Picks Under £10: February

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Fabulous and frilly, fun and flirty, it’s time for my February Top Picks featuring flamingos!

Flamingos seem to be everywhere right now. At any price point, it’s an image that seems to be around every corner. So instead of an out and out sweet and lovey Valentine’s theme this month, I’ve put together a selction of fab, affordable flamingo themed products, all at £10 or less.

They can be cute and kitsch, really embrace a pastel pink or coral colour scheme, be wacky and retro, or tasteful and demure, or all out Mad Hatter’s Tea Party. But there’s a style to suit almost everyone, so it’s time to embrace the current trend!

1. Sass & Belle Flamingo Mug – Asos – £7.50
Available at various retailers, including Sass & Belle and Asos, this super cute chevron printed mug with flamingo handle will be sure to make you smile in the mornings. Coffee at the ready!

2. Printed Porcelain Plate – H&M – £6.99
There are cups and side plates alongside this kitsch little plate. Get tea-party ready and pop your scones and finger sandwiches on this fine bit of porcelain.

3. Flamingo Hiball Glasses (Set of 6) – George – £3.90
A total bargain at just £3.90 for a set of 6, these glasses are so sweet. The white stripe design works really well with the pink birds and they have a fun, tropical feel to them.

4. Light Pink Voile Curtain Panel – Primark – £.3.00
While we’re dreaming of warmer Spring days, we can at least get our homes ready for the coming months. Voile panels are great to add a little interest to your window décor, and this pretty pastel pink will tie in any flamingo theme you’ve got going on.

5. Fresco Wallpaper Flamingo Hot Pink – Wilko – £10.00 per roll
If you like feature walls, you can really commit to Flamingo Fever with this fun wallpaper. It would really add some interest in an otherwise neutral room, and would work perfectly with pale greys.

6. Hemsta Lamp Shade in Pink – Ikea – £9.00
Also available in White, again this pretty pastel pink is perfect to compliment the flamingo pieces. Perfect for the bedroom, this would work perfectly on a silver lamp base for a glam look, or on a white or lgiht turquoise base for a sweet and soft look.

7. Flamingo Cushion Cover – Dunelm – £8.00
If you prefer bolder pinks, the details and reverse of this cushion are hot pink. Alongside the natural linen of the front, this would work beautiful with stark black and cream. A few more hot pink and linen accents and you could really jazz up an otherwise monochrome look.

8. Peony Bouquet – The Range – £3.49
For the price, these peonies are fantastic. Five full blooms for just £3.49, and the colour of them is just perfect.

9. Flamingo String Lights – Matalan – £8.00
Perfect for a little one’s bedroom, these string lights add a little colour and a lot of fun.

That’s just a little selection of what’s out there in those pretty pink hues and fabulous flamingo imagery. Sometimes it’s nice to not take your décor too seriously. At the end of the day your home is somewhere to relax and to enjoy, it doesn’t hurt to add some funkier details now and again, and with so much of offer out there, it’s never been so easy and affordable to achieve.

For now, with love,
Ellen

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COTM: January – Yankee Candle Shea Butter

How is January over?! Where did it go. Time is flying by at the moment, and with the wedding just six months to go, a little panic is beginning to set in. You might have noticed as much by the absence of me posting recently.

However, January did come (and go) and as ever, I like a new, fresher scented candle to kick off the New Year. I usually go for clean cotton type scents but a lovely friend gave me this shea butter candle on my last birthday and I felt this was the best time of year to burn it.

It’s a creamier and cozier scent than I would typically go for in January, but wonderful and clean smelling all the same.

The scent notes are:

Top: Orange, Bergamot, Mixed Berries
Mid: Vanilla Orchid, Jasmine, Shea Cream
Base: White Musk, Vanilla Sugar, Guaiacwood

And it comes with the description, “Pure contentment – indulge yourself in this creamy smooth scent with hints of beautiful fruit blossoms.”

It’s interesting because I don’t get a real sense of fruit, or citrus from this. I’m not saying it’s not there, it’s just well blended and has that complete and complex scent rather than a couple of strong, identifiable notes. Going along with the shea butter name, it has a lot of characteristics of a subtly fragranced body cream – one that doesn’t have a named fragranced as such, but just has a wonderful aroma alongside it’s moisturizing properties.

The burn time was good (these small jars suggest 25-40 hours, and I think I got around 32-ish) but the burn itself wasn’t great. I had to persuade it to burn evenly instead of tunneling, which for a candle this size was unexpected, and come the second half of the jar, it was impossible to keep it up. Towards the end, I had to tip some wax out, which obviously ended up resulting in wastage, and not much burn time left thereafter. I sill got a good length out of it however, so can’t complain. It’s a good size for me for a month-long period, as I like candles for occasional evenings and long baths, but don’t like to keep too many half burned larger jars hanging around.

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The pictures for this post are few and far between. Admist the New Year, post Christmas and new phone chaos, I managed to delete all the pictures I’d taken of the candle. Luckily, I had a little rescue from my Instagram page, where I’d posted a picture, and obviously you can see the freshly cleaned empty jar at the start of the post.
Oh well! Live and learn. And import.

For now, with love,
Ellen

Home Decor Trends 2017

I’m a big believer in going with what you like and not necessarily following trends, but if you’re stuck in a rut, need some inspiration, or are simply wondering what might be popping up in the shops this year, then continue reading for the suggested big home decor trends for 2017.

Texture 

STOCKHOLM Sofa, Ikea

This has always been a great way to add interest and intrigue. Textured fabric sofas will be popular, meaning velour and velvets will continue to be on the rise. If you’re not into such heavy fabrics, pleats and folds can add texture to the most lightweight delicate fabrics, and still provide that sumptuous, albeit delicate feeling.

Terracotta and Unglazed Ceramics

Botella White Terracotta Vase, Maisons du Monde

Another thing I keep reading about and seeing is terracotta. Earthy, natural materials will be big this year, with terracotta, natural clays and raw white taking centre stage. No more glossy, glazed ceramics, it’s all about getting back to nature with these rustic items.

Artisan 

Olive Green Drizzle Flower Vase, CatMackGlass on Etsy

There’s a huge shift away from DIY items this year, and more focus on Artisan crafted pieces. Well designed, professionally made quality pieces are key, so perhaps splurge on one bigger, eye-catching piece per room and streamline the look elsewhere so all eyes are on your works of art. If you don’t have the cash to splash, then look in charity shops or eBay, for well made pieces that are a fraction of the cost of new items.

Tropical and Botanical Prints

SANTANA tropical print folding screen, Maisons du Monde

This was big in fashion last year, and will be even bigger still this year. No surprise then, that I’ve been featuring key prints on cushions, wallpaper and decorative items for the past six months then. Now in so many high street stores at such affordable prices, this is a trend everyone can get into.

Green 

Dulux Endurance in Kiwi Crush, B&Q

As I mentioned in Sunday’s post, Pantone’s Colour of the Year 2017 is Greenery, and this fresh, vibrant shade looks set to take off in home décor this year. Perfect for kitchens and bathrooms, where you can take a big hit of colour on the walls, or introduced more subtlely in living areas and bedrooms alongside those tropical elements, it’s a perfect shade for every room of the house. Let the outdoors in.

Blue 

Dream Big Collection, H&M

If green really isn’t your scene, thankfully blue is also big for 2017. With a move away from straight up Indigo inkiness, classic navy and vibrant cobalt are key this time around. Lucky for me, I picked cobalt as my main colour alongside all things white as a whole-house scheme, so it’s great to find out it’s on trend this year, as it should make buying key pieces even easier.

Headboards 

Laura Velvet Headboard, Wayfair

Statement headboards are back in too. Plush, quilted velvet styles (very reminiscent of the 90s for me) are back with a vengeance, and add to that sumptuousness we mentioned when talking about texture. This is something I’ve read about quite a lot looking into this year’s key trends, though I had to admit, not one I can envisage fitting into my own home at the moment.

Butterflies 

Graham & Brown Orange Butterflies Printed Wallpaper, House of Fraser

Something else I’ve seen mentioned more than once is butterflies. It’s certainly a print that’s easy to purchase on the highstreet. On cushions, wallpaper, artwork etc. there’s a huge array of butterfly themed products out there. Furthermore, the designs come in almost every colour combination, so whatever your current scheme, you can join in this trend without having to redecorate your whole home.

Hot or Not? Marble and Brass

Beleven August Coffee Table, Barker and Stonehouse

This is not clear cut. Some out there are still claiming marble and brass are still popular, and will continue to be this year, other’s are saying the over saturation and multitude of faux attempts mean it’s on it’s way out. Which for me means only one thing. Do you like it? If you do, fantastic, it’s still all over the high street and easy to purchase. If you love it, you won’t mind whether stylistically it has staying power or not. And if you’re not a fan? Then great, as mentioned in points one through to seven, there’s a whole host of other trends out there for you to try this year.

Ultimately you want to be happy in your home. So I will never advise anyone that they HAVE to have a certain thing or other. We’re all different, and we all like different things, so take your inspiration from what’s around you and create a home you’re proud of, that sometimes you like to show off, but most of all, that you love to be in.

For now, with love,
Ellen

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Top Picks under £10: January

13-jan_mood_boardI think the New Year is a fabulous time for freshening up your décor and streamlining your look. Autumn is so rich and abundant and the following festive season so vividly overindulgent, that by January, a clean slate is necessary.

The Pantone Colour of the Year for 2017 could not be more perfect for this time of year. I think it’s a shade that suits the first half of the year more, though depending on what you pair it with will determine how long it can last in your home and wardrobe.

Greenery. I even love the name. As a nature lover, I’m thrilled to see this vibrant, Spring shade as the Colour of the Year. Over a year ago, we picked ‘green’ as the colour for our wedding, although admittedly more in terms of actual live greenery than just the colour, but there’s something about the freshness and lushness and vitality of the colour that is simply perfect.

pantone-color-of-the-year-2017-color-palette-6For the cooler months of January through to March, I would pair this shade with crisp whites and soft blue and purple toned greys, and from Spring through to mid-Summer, I adore the colour combination Pantone has put together with ‘Fathomless’. I heart every single shade.

Furthermore, seeing as the botanical trend is here to stay another year, what better background than a pure, unadulterated green to set off those darker leaf shades and really make those tropical prints pop.

But back to January, and as a single, stand out month that screams ‘new start’ I’ve paired the greenery shade with cool turquoise and contrasting cobalt touches to say Winter is here, but Spring is on it’s way. It’s fresh, it’s vibrant, it’s seasonally apt, but it’s certainly not boring or monotone. Without further ado then, my Top Picks Under £10 are:

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1. Rundlig Serving Bowl – IKEA – £8.00 
This bamboo bowl from Ikea contrasts the natural bamboo inside and the vibrant green outside for a modern, stylish piece that could be used in multiple ways around the house. As a serving bowl, it’s ideal for that purpose, but also the perfect size for a fruit bowl, as a decorative item for any room, or catch-all bowl for the hallway or bedroom etc.

2. Rasch Palm Leaves Wallpaper – The Range – £8.99
It has palm leaves. It’s turquoise and green. It’s pretty much perfect as far as wallpaper goes. And you can also get the same design with added tropical birds and flowers too! Love!

3. Printed Cushion Cover – H&M – £8.99
Yes, yes and yes again. I love H&M for their cushion designs! So good.

4. Photo Frame – H&M – £6.99
While we’re there, here’s another great item from H&M. This pretty pop of turquoise would look amazing with a black and white image in. Photos aren’t just for Instagram, guys!

5. Snowdrops Canvas 48cm x 48cm – Wilko – £5.00
Could they have got this any more right for January? The colours are perfect, the image is perfect, and for the price point, the quality is decent.

6. Dovecote Medium Trinket Box – M&S – £9.50
Keep your dresser tidy with this perfect little trinket box. The colour and shape are simply lovely together.

7. Green Tea & Lime Large Hourglass Wax Melt – WoodWick – £4.49
This is fresh yet comforting all in one go. Ideal for that fresh and clean feeling, but still keeps you feeling cozy despite the weather. And it’s also the perfect shade of green to compliment the overall look we’re going for.

8. Pack of 3 Glass Bottles – Wilko – £8.00
I love blue glass, but the mix of colours here works so well together. Once again, well done Wilko!

9. Swirl Glass Bowl – Wilko – £5.00
Well, I really am crushing on Wilko this season! If you want to stick with an out and out Pantone Greenery theme, then try this decorative bowl, you can’t beat the price point.

So there you have my Top Picks, and an idea you can build on to explore 2017’s Pantone Colour of the Year. What do you think of Greenery? And what would you pair it with? Let me know in the comment section.

For now, with love,
Ellen

 

 

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COTM: November & Decemeber – DW Home Emerald Balsam

What a whirlind December 2016 was! We had a last minute (month long) dash to the finish line in order to get our living and dining room ready for a big family Christmas, and with my working hours also increased, it didn’t leave a single moment to catch up with you guys, and for that I’m so sorry. Lesson learned, in future I’ll be planning ahead for the blog as well as for Christmas itself.

I hope you all had a fantastic festive season however, and that your New Year has started in fine form. I love the New Year for the fresh start feeling, the post holidays clean up and all things new. And so I won’t post belated Christmas posts, except to keep up with my Candle of the Month post for November, and as it happened, December too. And that’s because this candle could easily take you into January and beyond.

I’m talking about DW Home’s Emerald Balsam. I purchased one of these from TK Maxx towards the end of October, and boy-o, does it smell like Christmas! It smells just like Christmas trees. It’s fresh and piney, but it’s rich and warm and simply wonderful. There are a couple of Christmas home scents out there I really like, and I don’t often stray too far away, but I purchased this particularly for that purpose. I wanted something Christmassy, but something that was different to what I usually go for.

Out of the three sizes, Medium Single Wick, Large Double Wick or Large Triple Wick, I opted for the triple wicked. You get less burn time for a candle the same size, but more oomph. As we were still mid-decorating and minus a floor in our living room, there wasn’t much relaxing time and I couldn’t have the candle in there with me whilst I was decorating. But when I did burn it, it was simply lovely, and I feel I got a little more than it’s suggested 26 hour burn time. With such little usage throughout November, it was more the latter half of December I used it, and enjoyed it so much so, I purchased another, which I will probably save for next Christmas.

DW Home describe the fragrance profile as “Fresh-cut balsam fir and Italian cypress enhanced with sage, and a touch wild thyme” and it really is a wonderfully green scent. It certainly enhanced the slight natural perfume of the Nordmann Fir we bought for the living room. With a back up all ready to go, I will certainly be burning this candle again.

January will see me get back on track with the blog, so please stay tuned for that. There’s still a lot to do in terms of redecorating and renovating, and we also have the fine details of the wedding to sort out, but there shouldn’t be any last minute rushes now and I can dedicate my time here accordingly.

Hope you’re all safe and well, and wishing you a great year ahead,

For now, with love,
Ellen

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