Editor’s letter Hello, Hope this issue finds you and your families all well. Easter has come and gone and summer approaches, we hope. I have definitely eaten too many Easter eggs, think I might need to get back into jogging again, I can’t possibly call what I do running, anyway signing up for a 5km with my 17yr old niece is just the focus I need. Issue 7 is packed with all your usual favourites, and there is a focus on sustainability inside this issue. Don’t panic, it is not an issue preaching about cleaning up our acts but to help us think about what purchases we’re making and ways to make smart choices for our kids’ rooms and the planet, at the same time. I’d like to give a warm welcome back to Chloe Spillet, she’s sharing with us her incredible rainbow room. If you’ve been with Rooomy from the beginning, you’ll have seen Chloe’s joyful circus room in the 1st issue where Chloe featured in the Reader Room. Since then Chloe has turned her hand to children’s interiors full time and has just won this year’s Grand Designs TV “Under the Stairs” project, showcased at this year’s show at the London ExCel. Chloe is definitely one to watch. Rachel x
Editor in Chief Rachel Burns Art Director : Elizabeth Barrett Sub Editor : Ann Storr Assistant Editor : Joanna Olney Style Editor : Fi Campos Editorial Assistant : Helen Simmons Brand Consultancy : EB&Co Contributors : Lisa Mettis, Patricia Hoyna, Lisa Riddoch, Tim Forester, Sara Giese For advertising enquiries, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01732 359488
cover image: Cam Cam Copenhagen, see pages 96-105
Contributors Fi has had a life-long love affair with art, textiles and interiors from a very young age. With 10 years’ experience in Interior Styling, her multidisciplinary creative consultation services range from residential interior styling and home staging, through to commercial and editorial styling for photoshoots, events, exhibitions and retail visual merchandising.
Lisa is the director of Born & Bred Studio, offering nonintimidating design to regular folk. Lisa works with a diverse client range throughout London, designing for the whole home but has a special love for children’s rooms. With a love for vintage and the story behind a piece of furniture she creates a great cross design between old and new.
With two masters’ degrees in Textiles and Art Critics Patricia is perfectly equipped to point our readers in the right direction. “All I ever wanted to do was to create beautiful interiors for people to thrive in and be happy - it is one of the greatest pleasures in my life.”
Lisa Riddoch is mum to two gorgeous kids and has multiple skills sets. As well as being an interior designer she is also keen to supprort other mums in achieveing their goals in life and business. Lisa is taking over the Blow It vs Budget for the next couple of months. Thanks Lisa.
The Sustainable Home
Positive Vibes Only
Blow It vs Budget
Make A Wish
“To be playing about in a boat on the river with you” these words conjure up great images from Wind in the Willows but this art piece takes your child far from an idyllic English river to the running rapids in a jungle. With all those animals watching the boatman, who looks immensely relaxed, I wonder what might happen next? This would be a great story piece for any child’s room.
WE CAN INSPIRE OUR CHILDREN TO LOVE T H E E A R T H B Y S T Y L I N G S U S TA I N A B LY F I C A M P O S S H O W S U S H O W. . .
Making eco conscious interior decisions can come in many forms, including buying from independent designers who create handmade goods and can therefore control their materials, through to living more simply and creating an awareness with our children, to recycling and repurposing old furniture pieces. I’ve delved into the world of environmentally friendly interiors, and have been exploring the current market for some top handmade and sustainable styling ideas for your children’s bedrooms. There are so many ways to be more ‘green’ when it comes to styling your kids’ rooms, including selecting non-toxic paints, reducing plastic usage and buying wooden toys and accessories instead of plastic. It’s been so interesting getting to know more about this really important subject, and as a photoshoot stylist, I am on a mission to reduce wastage in my commercial work, too. We can all help protect our planet by making small, informed changes, one step at a time. Happy styling, Fi x
LEAF RUG If you want to encourage your little one to love and protect the planet we live in, itâ€™s a great idea to start early. Why not go all out, and inspire them with a complete nature based theme? Embrace the foliage trend (which doesnâ€™t appear to be going anywhere soon), by adding a splash of colour like this oversized Monstera leaf rug by Lorena Canals, available from Cuckooland. To offset the greens, pair it with lots of warm wood tones in the rest of the room. Fun and kind to the planet, this rug is made from 100% cotton, and non-toxic dyes.
DECALS If the walls are looking a little bare, why not reuse old paints to design a leafy mural? This is the beginning of a foliage mural I created for Little Folks Furniture, using up old paint testers in a variety of greens, as well as green backing card from a previous project. If you canâ€™t face a large scale scene though, try creating art to frame with your little ones. Wall art and murals are a great way to reuse and recycle tester pots before they dry out and have to be thrown away!
STORAGE We know that storage can be a bit of a sticking point from a styling perspective, but I think these cute natural woven jute baskets by Respiin from Babipur would look great in a nature themed space; a perfect fusion of modern design and ethical materials.
OPT FOR ORGANIC
Selecting Organic Cotton bedding is an eco-conscious alternative to buying regular cotton or polyester. Itâ€™s grown in a way that uses methods and materials that reduce the negative impacts on our planet. I adore the Himalaya bedding range by Nobodinoz, from Pop and Punch, and I think it would look amazing with this lovely organic bunting and bear from Fabelab, available from The Modern Nursery and Natural Collection. The lovely combination of mustard and indigo hues is not only a big trend in homeware and interiors at the moment, but it also really lifts the neutrals to create a hit of zing!
K N OW YO U R WO O D
Furniture is very much the focal point of a childâ€™s bedroom, and there are lots of ways you can make more environmentally friendly decisions, including mixing new pieces with repurposed time-worn classics. Investing in quality beds that have been consciously created and have had the time and attention during the design and manufacturing process, is a good way to buy investment heirloom pieces that have longevity, so that you donâ€™t have to buy again in the future. Independent brand, Little Folks Furnitureâ€™s The Edit solid wood bunk bed, is a great example that has been carefully designed and produced with protecting our forests in mind. It also has the ability to split down into two single beds afterwards, helping save some trees when it comes to decking out the guest room once the kids are grown up!
For a stronger hit of fresh colour pared with Nordic design, take this room, featuring the Scandi toddler bed by Oeuf, made from sustainably sourced Baltic birch plywood and ecoMDF. Itâ€™s a great example of fusing natural woods with pops of bright colours to create a bright, airy and eco conscious space.
PA C K A P U N C H
For wall prints that are created with love and have eco-friendly packaging at the heart of the designs, check out Lou Louâ€™s Lovely letters. Printed on card with FSC mixed credit means that itâ€™s from FSC certified forests, recycled material, or controlled wood.
This felt Jumbo animal head, designed and hand made by Sew Heart Felt, would look fabulous as a wall centre piece in a child’s room. Created using a chemical-free process, using Tibetan organic lambs’ wool, it’s most definitely an accessory that’s kind to the planet.
Origami Lampshades, Red Candy
ORIGAMI LAMPSHADES For a beautiful, delicate, yet powerful touch to your child’s bedroom these stunning lights are an absolute must! I would go on to write a more poetical description of them all and how glorious and magical I think they are, but I don’t need to because the pictures show you all you need to see, think and feel, which is why we’re sharing more than just one, it was too hard to choose.
Wicker Pear Basket ÂŁ75, Ferm Living
WICKER PEAR BASKET Storage is a topic always addressed at some point in every issue. This large wicker basket available from Ferm Living. Its great pear shape not only provides a large storage space, it also adds some character to a room with the bonus of a lid, meaning items are truly out of sight and not just thrown in a basket. Great for a kidâ€™s bedroom or for the lounge/living room space.
Rhino Lamp €120, Eco Birdy
RHINO LAMP Eco Birdy have been on my radar for over a year now because their products are inspired. Their child furniture products are all made from recycled children’s toys. They look great, feel lovely and smooth, are great for the planet and this year they reached Kevin McCloud’s “Top 10 Green Heroes” at this year’s Grand Designs Event. There is a chair, table and storage unit available. But my favourite has always been this Rhino lamp.
Foot Stool ÂŁ75, Baastool
SHEEPSKIN STOOL Purchasing something fun, practical, useful and environmentally safe is often not an easy task. Ticking all the boxes can be tough, but with this wonderful sheepskin stool you can relax and smile knowing you have achieved all of the above. It will look great in their room, they will use it all the time to ride on, climb on, stand on, sit on, put books on and more. You canâ€™t go wrong.
Star Basket £30, Southwold
F E LT S TA R B A S K E T Felt is the perfect material to be at peace with for purchasing, this basket offers more of that much needed storage. If you’re less into wood and wicker, then this dark felt choice might be perfect for your child’s space. This basket also has a few siblings, offering you a pen pot and paper bin option too. All made on Nepal from Fairtrade Felt.
C H A L K PA I N T S Adding colour to walls is a great way to have fun, Annie Sloan offers a great selection of chalk paints to adorn your kids’ walls with, you can have a lot of fun creating shapes like these and more. Equally, you might have a piece of furniture that needs upcycling, bring new life to something with a Chalk Paint Wax, save landfill, look after the planet and put a stunning piece of furniture in your child’s room. All chalk paints are eco-friendly and safe for kids. NB for items of children’s furniture, Chalk Paint™ Wax should be allowed to cure for 5 - 21 days to ensure that it has hardened completely
â€œI capture the true smiles and personalities of your little ones. I want to create memories of your family you will be proud to display on the walls of your home, that you will treasure forever.â€? Stephanie Chapman
N E W B O R N : C H I L D R E N : FA M I LY : P E T KENT : SOUTH EAST stephaniechapmanphotography.co.uk
PAT R I C I A H O Y N A O F S T U D I O H OY N A , T E L L S U S H OW S H E C R E AT E D T H E P E R F E C T H AV E N F O R M AC I E K
We knew they were leaning towards darker tones so we proposed this funky chalkboard design, full of positive messages like “be not afraid of greatness”.
We were hired by our clients to design a bedroom for their 9 year old son Maciek, in a recently converted attic space. They initially started with a colour consultant who selected dark teal for the walls, but they were unsure where to take it from there and that’s when they got in touch with Studio Hoyna. Knowing they have already spent money on the colour consultation we were happy to incorporate the suggested colour into one of our mood-boards. Then we went to explore other options and did what we do best, approached the brief from a completely different angle, the one they didn’t see coming! We knew they were leaning towards darker tones so we proposed this funky chalkboard design, full of positive messages like “be not afraid of greatness”. During initial consultation I always interview our little clients and ask about their colour preferences, and unlike adults they are very straight forward with the answers, they will say red, yellow or black. Sometimes it’s a family of colours, that will live happily together. Sometimes there are rather unexpected combinations, but despite the terrified expression on their parents faces already picturing the psychedelic mishmash in their heads, it’s all about curation. Just because their child loves red or yellow, it doesn’t mean we have to paint the walls and ceiling in citron or carmine.
It would be way too stimulating! We can however introduce cheerful yellows, warm reds and vibrant orange as accent colours, which is what we did in Maciekâ€™s room with comfy cushions in different shapes and sizes, warm blankets with fun pompoms and a textured rug for a bit of extra comfort.
a bespoke fitted wardrobe, they work really well in non-standard shaped rooms where every inch matters. All the furniture was painted in dark grey to blend seamlessly into the scheme, itâ€™s a clever trick and makes the eye wander.
The desk base drawers keep the room tidy and shelves above provide The bones of an attic room presented perfect display for book collection and certain challenges; first, the room is decorative objects of meaning. pretty compact, and on top of that there are plenty of angles and sharp We knew Maciek was an avid game corners. As always, we started with player and the socket for a tv was already spatial planning, placing the bed under in place, we came up with a clever idea the window and adapting one niche of hiding the cables and the equipment for a large desk and the other one for in a little niche next to the bed.
For that purpose, we have built a bespoke door fitted with a mesh window to keep the equipment out of sight while making sure the connection between the console and remote control was flawless. When decorating childrenâ€™s bedrooms, we love to use statement wallpaper, we believe it adds so much more interest than paint and makes the room much cosier. And last but not least we always address the lighting which plays a crucial role in every design. You can see we have changed the downlights for the black tube style, to form a more cohesive look, then added a work light for homework and drawing, reading light above the bed and a really hip table lamp. Now I am happy to report the boy adores his new room to the point he rarely leaves it!
RACHEL BURNS ASKS S A M A B O U T C R E AT I N G HER SONSâ€™ SHARED ROOM AND ABOUT WRITING HER FIRST BOOK.
Rooomy - Where has your love of interiors come from? Sam - From day one, my influence started with my Mum as she was always painting her walls (while listening to Tina Turner) and having a major cushion addiction, my fate was sealed. From an earlier age I was always changing my bedroom about and styling my shelves with my teddies. But the main trigger was when I was working in London in the Art Department on a production called ‘Lock Stock and 2 Smoking Barrels’ and had to go to a pub (someone’s home) where I was invited to take pictures for research to replicate for a set. I was swept off my feet with the interior, a parrot in a victorian cage to a stuffed crocodile wearing a crown...I could go on as it was ALL mind blowing. That’s where my love started and it soon accelerated when i got my first home, well, it’s all downhill...Interior addict here I come. Rooomy - You’ve written a book about the interiors of Instagram “The Big I”. What was this like to work on? Sam - It was like being on a rollercoaster ride, scary, fun and exciting. The best was being creative and working with Keeley, the other half of 2rebelbellas. We laughed, we cried but most importantly we chased our dream and made it a reality.
Rooomy - On a scale of 1-10 how they wanted to be together as they were important do you think a child’s interior originally in separate rooms. I was happy is and why? that they wanted to be together...the one thing I was not happy about was that they Sam - This is hard as I think the importance wanted bunk beds as am not a fan. So the of aesthetics is more for the parent than challenge was set to find a bunk bed that I the child at the early stages but I do loved and that’s how I ended up doing an think your surroundings influence you, IKEA hack and building one. unconsciously or consciously. So I would rate it 8 as who wouldn’t want a cool Rooomy - Why monochrome? bedroom to grow up in? Sam - Monochrome was chosen because Rooomy - What made you decide to put it’s a cool vibe, neutral aesthetics and the boys in together? works with any colour splash you want to add. Grows with you rather than against Sam - Funnily enough the boys decided you.
Rooomy - When you redecorate is there Sam - H&M Home, Vitra, IKEA a process/plan that you follow, or do you make it up as you go along? Rooomy - What are your three favourite items in their room and why? Sam - I do have impulsive moments, where you know it’s right. But I mainly produce Sam - The bunk bed (has to be, my Dad a mood board including the items I have made it), made.com bed covers (boys’ and want and most importantly I lock bedding is so hard to find so I was soooo down a budget. chuffed when I found these) and the little light pegs with the photos on the bottom Rooomy - Were the boys involved in the bunk wall (personal touch with the decision-making process? pictures and Jake uses the lights every night). Not an item but I also love the 80’s Sam - I would love to answer here YES inspired mural that I painted on the wall but it’s a no, as one boy would have had Chelsea football team colours and Rooomy - What do you enjoy most about branding everywhere and the other would being their mum? have gone for bright red. I just took it as Mummy knows best:) Sam - I enjoy making memories with them...they sometimes think that I am Rooomy - If they could have anything in crazy, especially when i get them involved their room what would it be? in my Instagram photos...but I know they will look back and smile. Sam - Hands down it would be a TV, a big one. Rooomy - The room is spacious, fresh and fun, it looks perfect, but is there anything Rooomy - If Money was no object, on you’d do differently? the market now, what have you seen out there that you would love to put in their Sam - No I don’t think I would:) The room? flooring is inherited from the previous owner so I would have definitely done that Sam - I think I would have to say... the differently but when budgets are tight am flooring ‘which is quite boring I know’ thankful it wasn’t a horrid carpet. but I would have a real wood floor that resembled floorboards and a gorgeous Rooomy - You would like your next book huge rug from West Elm. to be titled? Rooomy - Which three brands are your Sam - We would love to do another book, favourite when looking at interiors? vol 2, a sequel…. ‘The Big I Strikes Back’, maybe:)
Eleven year old Doris lives in London and has been diagnosed with HypopituitarismAdrenal Insufficiency and Cortical vision impairment. She lives with low blood pressure and blood sugar levels causing fatigue and a low tolerence for stress, and she has a decreased visual respnse due to a problem affecting the visual part of the brain. Doris had two very important things on her wish list for her bedroom: butterflies and a princess curtain around her bed. A plan was drawn up with all of Doris’ ideas and much more! However, the plan was only shared with Doris’ parents to keep the magic of the makeover a secret until the bedroom was finished. On the day of the big reveal Doris’ parents organised a big celebration, complete with a butterfly cake!
Tim Forster of Haus of London was assigned her bedroom makeover and what a job he did. It was a lovely first meeting Doris, she was very excited and enthusiastic to be working with us with the design for her new bedroom. She met us at the front door with the biggest smile on her face and quickly led us up to her room. Speaking to Doris and her parents it became very clear that she wanted a room full of butterflies and to have a princess feel to it. One of the main objectives was for her to have a bunkbed that she could hide away in. She asked for some curtains that could go around the bottom bunk as this would be where she will sleep. Doris needed a lot of storage and mum really wanted a fitted wardrobe. Thankfully Sharpes offered to donate a fitted unit for this room, it was wonderful to collaborate with them on this project as their wardrobe had a big impact, Doris loved seeing all her shoes lined up, just a like a princess would have. I was also fortunate in bringing Interface on board for the flooring, they designed and donated a two tone vinyl and carpet flooring design.
The install went through with no major hiccups. The most powerful detail of all was when we hand applied over 500 butterflies flowing from a corner of the room up onto a 3m high ceiling. This left us scratching our heads for a little while but it was completely worth it as the end result was stunning. When the handover was ready we opened the door to the happiest of smiles from Doris. She could not believe her eyes and said it was the best room she had ever seen. The family then followed soon after with the butterfly cake and nibbles to go with it. It is always lovely to be a part of a wish that brings such joy to the wish child. Make-A-Wish goes above and beyond to grant amazing wishes to very amazing children; their One True Wish made a reality at a time when they need it most. Because a child’s life shouldn’t be about illness, hospitals and diagnosis - it should be about wonder, joy and hope. For the purposes of family privacy, the little girl’s name has been changed in this account of her wish.
C H L O E S P I L L E T T C R E AT E S T H E P E R F E C T S PA C E F O R L I T T L E COLOUR LOVER EVIE
This bold and playful space belongs to Evie, 2. She is a mini colour lover and a fan of rainbows so naturally we hit it off. Don’t get me wrong, I love working with a reduced palette but as soon as rainbows are mentioned I’m firing on all cylinders... ALL the colours give me ALL the feels! Colour excitement overload aside, ensuring that all those gorgeous tones are perfectly balanced in the room is no easy feat and so this scheme needed to be carefully thought out. The dark blue backdrop provides the perfect medium to allow the full spectrum to really POP. It’s a brave choice and one that Evie’s parents were initially wary of, but with time it became their favourite element. For me that’s what the design service is all about; encouraging clients to step outside of their comfort zones and try something different. I’m pleased to report it’s a tried a tested method and as yet has never failed. It’s just the best tonic when parents say, ‘I’d never in a million years have thought to do that but I absolutely love it’ As for the bold rainbow stripe running along the back wall; the flash of colour aims to convey a sense of movement and fluidity; Think 70s roller disco and you’ll have insight to my inspiration! Colour is a very powerful tool in a child’s environment. It has the ability to alter their mood and even their behaviour. The deep blue is emblematic of the night sky, providing a sense of calm and tranquillity, while the intermittent bursts of colour deliver adventure and excitement; it all hangs in the balance.
Texture is also key to aiding child development and there’s plenty of variety in Evie’s new space bringing a sense of depth, cosiness and comfort. The bed is super inviting with a bespoke house canopy which not only conveys a touch of whimsical fun but also stimulates role play. The house bed was handmade using 15mm birch ply. It’s braced along the back and roof for additional support and fixed to the wall; safety first! The plywood accents continue throughout with the addition of the cloud wall light made from the bed canopy offcuts, the statement slatted ceiling shade, wall mounted dolls house and laser cut wall décor.
the flash of colour aims to convey a sense of movement and fluidity; Think 70s roller disco and you’ll have insight to my inspiration!
Evie’s bedroom combines old and new with the revival of an old Victorian oak wardrobe which has had a lick of chalk paint in a gorgeous forest berry shade. This piece was absolutely one of my highlights. Evie adores pink and purple and this shade is the perfect midpoint between the two. There were plenty of squeals all round when this upcycle project was underway. The completed room is a real triumph. Like many of my schemes, Evie’s room has been designed with growth in mind. This space will serve her long into her teenage years with some minor adaptations. My clients both big and small absolutely adore this space and that’s what it’s all about; I can ask for no more. Lots of ‘ooh’s’ and ‘aahs’ and ear to ear smiling. Best of all Mum reports that Evie has never slept better since being in her new bedroom; that’s the pinnacle!
C R E AT I V E B U I L D I N G B L O C K S NOOOK Do your children love to build? Do they like Lego, making dens and being creative? They do? Iâ€™m shocked! These paper building blocks are going to be a huge hit with boys and girls of all ages. A set consists of 36 pieces and the box they come in provides the perfect storage for them all. They can build a wall, a den, an arch, and if their mates have a set too, they can pair up and build even bigger constructions. Lego and Knex are great, but for them to be able to build something quickly that is lightweight, that they can actually get in is terrific for the sense of satisfaction in a project. What would you build with them?
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J FF Y M O
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COLOUR IN TRAINERS JEX Iâ€™ve become a big fan of colouring in pillow cases, place mats, bags and more. Earlier in the year I met the lovely Emily Vigor of Jex Shoes and she introduced me to her awesome colour-in trainers! Such a fun idea for children, being able to personalise their trainers and wear them out to show off to all their friends. These trainers are a fantastic way to encourage your kidsâ€™ creativity and above all enable them to express their ideas to the world. How wonderful! There are 5 different designs with different colour options, laces come in different colours and additional pen sets are available too. The shoe box is even fab to colour in, and it comes with a lovely care booklet which includes a few fab colouring pages too.
UNICORN COLLECTION SOPHIE ALLPORT The last issue featured Sophie Allport’s Flamingo cushion, however I was struck by how lovely the entire flamingo collection is. I do try and pick one item to showcase but it’s just too hard, so these are my favourites
CUBEBOT RUME My girls have a tiny wooden robot which they play with quite a lot and recently they have rediscovered their rainbow row of little blocks which are joined by elastic. They fiddle with them constantly, and love to show off the latest creation they’ve come up with. As soon as I saw these Cubebots I thought of them and how much fun they would have. I’m going to add them to a birthday list. They’re made from wood and you have the option of plain or colourful. I’m confident your kids will be enthralled with these as they love to fiddle and create plus they’re not huge so not getting in your way anytime soon, as long as they’re not left on the stairs!
ROUTINE CARDS ROUTINE FOR KIDS This is GENIUS! How many times do you find yourself repeating the same instruction over every morning and or every evening, day in day out? “Brush your teeth, stop playing with your Lego you need to get some pants on. No, you don’t have time to dance now you need to get dressed for school, why are you staring out the window, it’s time to put your socks on!” Oh my goodness. But these cards, they are just the remedy. If your child likes to do things on their own, doesn’t like to be nagged and of course we are trying to raise independent individuals here, well these cards are going to be a huge help. Offering them the autonomy to choose (to a degree) and to take control of their routine is hugely empowering and will stand them in good stead for the future. £12 for a pack of 52!
MAKING SPACE FOR YOU
B O RN & B RE D S T U D I O I N T E R I O R D E S I G N F O R C O O L FA M I L I E S & L I T T L E P E O P L E WWW.BORNANDBREDSTUDIO.COM
B RE D 63 STUDIO
Upcycled chairs by Born & Bred Studio Picture; Anna Stathaki 64
INTERIOR DESIGNER LISA METTIS SHARES HER THOUGHTS ON SHOPPING S U S TA I N A B LY F O R T H E W H O L E F A M I LY
Every interior space, kids’ or adults’, is always more appealing with a few vintage items that tell a story, have a patina and can’t be found on the high street.
Sustainability & Handmade allow parents for baby and to make my life easier. to make positive conscientious purchases And if you don’t succumb to the for their childs’ bedroom. marketing and the ‘new-born checklist’ it is inevitable by the toddler years you will BUY CHEAP BUY TWICE? have accumulated a lot of stuff (mainly plastic) from Christmas and birthday There is absolutely nothing like becoming presents, a large amount of hand-me a mother to make you realise the power -downs or items passed on from friends. of marketing on the vulnerable or eager, innocent mother-to-be (delete as You cannot get more sustainable than appropriate!). The amount of stuff you never buying a box fresh new item, buying are encouraged to purchase to raise a second hand and constantly passing on to child is ridiculous. In reality I can count the next grateful recipient. Personally, this on one hand the items that were essential is something I have implemented with my
child. I have never bought him anything new toy wise (cruel mumma?), so he knows no different, and guess what, he’s fine! Once we have finished with it, I pass it onto someone else. I think the stigma of second hand really is a thing of the past. We know a little more these days and what we don’t know, we can find out with a little will and the help of Mr Google. This is the same when it comes to purchasing homeware for your kid’s space. Every interior space kids’ or adults’ is always more appealing with a few vintage items that tell a story have a patina and can’t be found on the high street. It’s the best shortcut to an interior space that is completely unique to you and your family. It’s also so precious to have pieces that have a history for you, or you have picked up on your travels’ that evoke a memory of ‘that time’ and the thrill of the ‘find’.
I must confess to not personally being a huge fan of up cycling I have seen some terrible examples of imitating a look. Mainly shabby chic, I’m so glad that little trend has passed. However, I have seen some real labours of love that look great and of course the creation can be so therapeutic to STOP, CREATE and MAKE. I know I’m certainly at my happiest when I’m creating and making. Vintage is a great budget option but what other things can we consider for our kids’ room that will have true longevity? Design Classics, “yeah right” I hear you say. Yes, really, think cost per wear. If you invest well your kid will be taking these pieces off to university or their first home. Chairs and lighting are the obvious options. But my top tip would be to consider modular shelving for your kids’
Sideboard by Muck & Brass Picture; Anna Stathaki
Picture; Anna Stathaki
spaces. For the following reasons: 1. Modular furniture can be added to as and when needed, growing with your child’s needs. 2. Modular systems can be interchanged throughout the house at anytime in their life. For example, if you buy some Vitsoe or String for the kitchen and kids’ room it can later be configured together into one room, like the living room when the kids reach teen years. 3. If you move home the shelving moves with you and can be made to fit your new house. 4. It’s cheaper than a carpenter especially if you plan to move. 5. It’s great for renters. 6. Manufacturers of these systems have sustainability at the forefront of their brand values and are always at hand to provide replacement pieces or new suggestions and FREE plans on reconfiguring a new space.
7. It looks beautiful and not kiddy centric. 8. Whilst design classics are expensive, Ikea do a great version. Ikea have pledged to use only renewable and recyclable materials by 2030, and said that it aimed to reduce the climate impact of each of its products by more than two thirds by the end of next decade. In the homewares arena in recent years there has definitely been a move towards a more fast fashion approach. With most of the big players now offering an interior range (River Island, H&M, New Look). And whilst there are some great finds to be had, I think it pays to stop and consider, Why am I buying this? Do I need it? Where has it come from? We all recall the events of the Rana Plaza in Bangladesh in 2013. H&M & M&S consistently appear on tables as the companies who have strategies and manifestos on fair pay and Labour conditions. Based on the 2017
Picture; Anna Stathaki
Picture; Anna Stathaki
So, keep it simple, buy old, use what you have and share what you don’t need. Buy for longevity and make investments. Buy small and local.
Ethical Fashion Report, H&M received the top score of ‘A+’ for its Supplier Code of Conduct, although the code only applies to part of its supply chain. This is because you cannot always guarantee these items are not being outsourced to a third party (without the retailer knowing…as the retailer’s primary concern is margin and the factories need to fulfil the orders at the low price agreed, and deliver yesterday!). However, if you’re getting an all-over embellished bedspread for £29.99 I think you have to consider why is it so cheap? It’s a huge subject. Maybe in another article? Food for thought all the same. If you are in the market for fair sourcing, beautiful products and a brand that doesn’t waver from its original ethos I would suggest a perusal of Aerende. A beautiful brand
where all products are created in the UK by people facing social challenges. Produced in low-volume batches and designed to improve with age, each purchase of ethical home ware directly supports and provides opportunities for the talented makers. We have all seen the meme “When you buy from a small business, an actual person does a little happy dance”. I have made some fantastic purchases and great relationships from buying and supporting small brands. It has become a special part of my business and gives something truly unique to my projects. So, keep it simple, buy old, use what you have and share what you don’t need. Buy for longevity and make investments. Buy small and local.
ROOOMY GET THE LOOK
L I S A R O D D I C H TA K E S U S O N A T O U R O F A T W O - T O N E G I R Lâ€™ S R O O M A N D S H O W S U S H O W T O R E C R E AT E T H E L O O K 73
I designed this room for my six year old daughter Evie. She is really into science and like most six year old girls she is fiercely independent. So the inspiration for the room came from a black and white image I found of a female astronaut and I combined the theme with a Scandi feel, in keeping with the rest of our home. I chose a pink by Valspar Paint in a premium finish. Which is a scrubbable paint. Firstly I have to say I did not choose pink because it’s a girl’s room. In interiors pink has taken on a new meaning, it represents strong women/girls, and Peekaboo by Valspar is the perfect shade of pink for this statement. I used colour blocking, only painting 2/3 of the walls to strike the right balance of colour for the size of the room. To add an element of fun I used moon and stars wall stickers around the cabin bed and we made our own wall statements using black letter banners. The cabin bed was from Ikea and came with the desk which I’ve used on the opposite wall. I replaced the desk under the bed with a sofa bed which makes a cosy reading nook and is perfect for sleepovers. My daughter’s favourite pieces have to be the personal touches, her name in the pink neon light and the Polaroid style family photos attached with glitter washi tape. Lisa is an Interior Designer and and founder of Content & Coffee in Bristol To see more of her work visit www.mumdoesdesign.com
£23.95, CamCam £1,495, Scandiborn
£190, Connox £14.95, Mini Learners
£89.95, Not on the High Street
£30, Bobby Rabbit
34p each, La La Lab
£10, B&Q £12, Ikea
£15, Urban Outfitters £279, Ikea
With the focus of sustainability in this issue I have selected the wallpaper top five very carefully. I have ensured that all products are sustainably sourced and are recyclable. All wallpapers are sourced to FSC (Forestry Stewardship Council) standards, ensuring that for every tree used another four are planted. In addition to the sustainability of the paper we also want to know that the wallpaper is recyclable. Therefore all of these designs are printed using water-based paints, so non-toxic and can be recycled. Some but not all wallpapers are compostable, it depends if they are printed on fibrous wallpapers or not. Brands are very transparent about their sourcing and manufacturing, just check out their sites. All you need to do is purchase non-toxic paste and your sustainable wallpapering is sorted.
R O O O M Y WA L L S
MONROE NIGHT FLOWER LITTLE GREENE Dare to go dark and bold with our florals. This pattern has been recreated from a relatively small remnant found by English Heritage, in Brooke House (Hackney), before it was pulled down. It is undoubtedly inspired by the Art & Crafts Movement and its familiarity would have been used to help hospital patients feel comfortable and aid their recovery, although not in this colourway. There are five other colour options if this is not quite to your taste, but I think itâ€™s gorgeous and if the rest of the room is well thought out this would look stunning (think Iâ€™d need a professional to help me here). Again with great design it offers versatility, it would work from a nursery up to a teen room.
SOUTH DOWNS BOLD & NOBLE The motion of this design is lovely, the rolling hills of the South Downs, fun and adventure will be on the agenda for the child playing and dreaming in this room. I dare say my eldest would want to colour them all in as rainbows, but why not, she stays in the lines now, the odd rainbow here and there would be great fun. I enjoy the softness of the grey instead of being black, the perfect backdrop to any age or gender room. Printed with water-based inks in Lancashire!
C O W PA R S L E Y VA N E S SA A R B U T H N OT T Does your child have an old soul? Do you love a more traditional aesthetic? This delicate floral design by Vanessa Arbuthnott creates an enchanting backdrop for a kids’ room. The rich duck egg hue will make the room feel warm, without being an overpowering colour for the space, giving you freedom to still style as you wish. You could go full vintage or maybe you’d do a mix of modern and traditional? However you use it, it will look gorgeous I’m sure.
ANIMAL MAGIC PA P E R B O Y Do you roll your eyes when you see really cute safari or woodland animals, scattered all over a wallpaper design, usually lots of pale green, yellow, red and blue? Well Victoria, Doggo and the team have heard your cries, no you’re not alone. With the inspiration of animals in mind, including rabbits, cats, dogs and tortoises, they have taken a terrific leap into how kids think, as they are constantly wondering how things work and thinking about how things differ. It’s wacky enough to keep them entertained, it’s stylish enough to keep your home looking sophisticated, it’s educational and above all it’s different and completely brilliant!
H O R S E TA I L S K AT I E B O U R N E I N T E R I O R S Is there a horse fan in your house? Horse Tales is every horse and pony loverâ€™s dream. Create your own story tales within this stylish paper featuring pretty ponies, rosettes and jumps. The pattern has been carefully designed so that little equestrians can identify with the images and feel that special relationship between pony and rider. Katie thinks of great concepts and then visualises them from a childâ€™s perspective, resulting in her perfectly balanced design in both composition and colour. This equestrian themed design is available in 5 sumptuous colour ways.
Y UI N T ES RCVHI E WS T O N I K K I K I N G A B O U T T H E RRAOCO HO EM L B RN AT NEW SUMMER COLLECTION FOR BOBBY RABBIT AND THE NEW BEDTIME STORIES
RACHEL BURNS ASKS NICKY KING ALL ABOUT BOBBY RABBIT AND HER NEW SUMMER RANGE
Rachel - Hi Nicky, tell us about Bobby Rabbit and your mission? Nicky - Bobby Rabbit was my favourite childhood toy – a gift from my Nana on my first birthday. For about 10 years, Bobby came with me everywhere: to nursery, on play dates, to school, on holiday, and today he lives on, tucked away inside a shoe box in my wardrobe! Bobby is the inspiration behind my brand ethos: fun over fashion, lifelong over throwaway. Our shop is a lovingly curated collection of toys, home accessories and furniture for babies and children aged 0-8 years old. We like to think that every product in our collection captures the spirit of our brand values and has the potential to be as special and memorable as Bobby was (and still is) to me. Our strapline, “for little treasures” says it all. Twice a year (in summer and in winter), we launch new collections, taking our favourite
new finds and styling them into ‘Bedtime Stories’ – playful, magical rooms to spark little imaginations. It means that our customers can shop by product or by room and re-create the looks at home. Our mission is to inspire kids and grown-ups alike, helping them to create precious memories: “Cherish when small and remember with a smile and tall.” Rachel - In a nutshell, how do you feel about your new summer collection? Nicky - Without a doubt, Summer 2019 is my favourite collection yet! Over 220 new products from 35 amazing brands, and 4 Bedtime Stories full of colour and energy. I love the synergy across the collection and the 4 new rooms. And I love that the whole collection encompasses both natural tones AND pops of bright colour! There is a trend for softer, muted warm greys and beige tones in children’s interiors, but we don’t really follow fashion and prefer to do it our own way instead.
Our mission is to inspire kids and grown-ups alike, helping them to create precious memories: â€œCherish when small and remember with a smile and tall.â€?
Rachel - you’ve worked in the world of children’s interiors. Increasingly, parents children’s interiors for a while now, what’s are understanding the value of quality been the best improvement you’ve seen? over throwaway, and products that are responsibly sourced and made. Buy less Nicky - Definitely the influx of smaller, – spend the same! innovative independent brands – and this is what makes it so exciting! Fifteen Rachel - What is the best way to find years ago, when I was launching Habitat inspiration when planning or designing a Kids in London, most of these amazing new kids’ room? little brands didn’t exist. These days, there is so much more choice out there Nicky - Visual platforms such as Instagram for parents, not only in look and style and Pinterest are by far the best place but also in buying options and sourcing. to start. You can start by saving your The influx of social media has definitely favourite images on either platform and helped these smaller brands to get ‘out before too long, you will start to get a feel there’ and be noticed, and likewise has for your style and preferences. Ask your helped parents to gain inspiration outside kids! It is important to make them feel and away from the high street. part of the process as well – after all, it’s their space, too. Rachel - What do you think is on the horizon for kids’ interiors? Rachel - What do you think is the driving force behind a keener interest in Nicky - I think there is a definite move handmade items? towards longevity and sustainability in
It’s about creating longevity in children’s spaces: buying quality products that last longer and are ethically and responsibly made and sourced
Nicky - Care, love and attention to detail. Handmade items come with a special and unique story behind them – they are oneof-a-kind. And why wouldn’t you want to be a part of supporting that?
Nicky - I love wool (and this definitely shows in my collection!) It’s warm, cosy and practical for kids as it is naturally stain-resistant. We offer felted rugs, garlands – and my new favourite – pompom animals Rachel - Sustainability has been a popular (including a Bobby Rabbit mobile) that word for a while now in all areas of our have been specially handmade for us by lives but it’s starting to be used more in one of our amazing customers! relation to children. What do you think this means for parents? Rachel - Sustainably made items are often more expensive due to the price tag Nicky - It’s about creating longevity on the raw material and the care taken in children’s spaces: buying quality to look after the environment whilst products that last longer and are ethically producing them. What would you say and responsibly made and sourced to parents who are concerned about the using quality materials, rather than extra cost involved? throwaway options. At Bobby Rabbit, we are conscious about where we source our Nicky - With quality comes longevity – products. We try to choose FSC-certified buying a bedding set for £10 won’t last wooden toy and furniture factories, we as long as one that costs a little more. It is have a soft spot for natural materials – highly likely that there is more traceability and we love our organic cotton bedding to the manufacturing process in the more collection. expensive bedding set, too. It’s about understanding the value of this. By making the right choices, you are doing It doesn’t necessarily mean spending your bit to help your children’s future – more overall either – just buy less of the and you can’t put a price on that. throwaway instead! Rachel - If you could only have one Rachel - Sustainable materials are product from your new collection which wonderful, do you have a favourite? one would it be?
Nicky - It would have to be our Bobby Rabbit Mobile. He’s handmade from wool and cotton with a beautiful grape vine wreath. He’s perfect for nurseries and children’s rooms, and perfect for the grown-ups too – and you can’t get much more sustainable than that! Rachel - What is the process for Bobby Rabbit when curating such wonderful collections? Nicky - 4 months of thought, 1 week of travel, 1 month of buying and curating, 1 week of photography, 2 weeks of madness – then launch! The key is in the thought. I start to develop my vision for the next collection as soon as the previous one is
launched... The whole cycle takes around 6 months from start to finish. Rachel - I love all the bedtime stories and room planning ideas on your site. Do you have a favourite? Nicky - Our new Treasure Island room was a lot of fun to shoot. My vision was to create a shipwreck using the bed, inhabited by all the sea creatures! When we create our bedtime stories, we do it from a child’s viewpoint – How will they interact with the space? And most importantly, will they remember it? I think this one is pretty memorable, and I love how it makes kids and adults smile. Well, I hope so anyway!
SARA GIESE SHARES HER TOP 10 TIPS O N C R E AT I N G A N E C O - N U R S E R Y
Lack of products made from organic materials was one of the main drivers behind setting up Cam Cam Copenhagen. In Denmark we had been eating organic produce for a while but there was nothing available when it came to organic products for the home when decorating the nursery. Organic products are not only better for the environment but better for you and your baby. Think about all the surfaces and materials that your baby will come into regular contact with and you will think twice about the items you choose for your baby. At Cam Cam Copenhagen we are a GOTS certified company. The Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) is recognised as the world’s leading processing standard for textiles made from organic fibres. It means that we must fulfil a certain level of environmental criteria to receive this certification. Here are my top tips on how to design an eco- friendly nursery. Organic textiles - Give your child the best start by choosing decoration items and textiles that are made from organic cotton. All of Cam Cam Copenhagen’s products use GOTS certified 100% organic materials, free from toxins, safe for baby. I thought about how important it was when decorating my daughter’s nursery that the bedding, swaddles, muslins, sleeping bags, changing mat, baby nest, really everything that babies are in constant contact with – often for hours at a time – should be organic and free of chemicals and toxins. Look for the GOTS certification to give you peace of mind. Avoid the throwaway culture - Use products and furniture that have longevity, are flexible and avoid the need for frequent replacing. Opt for products which have a long lifecycle or can be passed down to future generations. For the first few years, you will need a changing table. Especially for the first year you will be changing a lot of nappies and you need a proper work place for this, both to make it a cosy, fun time with
Think about all the surfaces and materials that your baby will come into regular contact with and you will think twice about the items you choose for your baby.
your baby, but also to spare your back. The Cam Cam Copenhagen Harlequin changing table can be converted into a dresser/cabinet so you can hold onto it for longer after the baby years have passed. It works just as well as a cabinet in the living room or the hallway and who doesn’t need more storage? The Cot - go for an adjustable cot, which can be set to different heights – in the very beginning your baby can’t move around and it will be nice to have a high setting of the mattress, so you can easily pick up your child, when he or she is crying. Later on, maybe when 3-5 months old (depending on your child’s mobility) you should lower the mattress, so the child can’t fall out of the bed. Our Harlequin Baby Crib is a perfect match
and is finished in VOC (Volatile Organic Compound) free paint. The bed also transforms from a cot to a toddler bed by removing the side panel, meaning you don’t need to replace as soon as the baby grows out of it. Breathable paint or wallpaper - Our furniture collection uses only VOC free paint. This means it is free from toxins and harmful chemicals. If you are painting the nursery, choose a VOC free paint which will help in not triggering any allergies. If decorating with wallpaper, opt for wallpaper which is eco-friendly. All of our wallpaper at Cam Cam Copenhagen is CEcertified and has an A+ certificate in “Emissions In Indoor Air”, free from VOCs, free from toxins and harmful chemicals.
All toys should be free from BPA and phthalates. All of our toys use sustainably sourced wood or organic cotton
Toys made from natural wood & organic cotton - Babies love to explore so their hands and mouths will be on everything. Consider this when you purchase items for them to play with. All toys should be free from BPA and phthalates. All of our toys use sustainably sourced wood or organic cotton - our rattles are made from Maple wood, our playgym which converts into a playtent is crafted from birch plywood and uses GOTS certified organic materials for the tent cover. Even our dolls’ clothing and accessories are all made from organic cotton. Stimulation – It is your job to stimulate your baby and develop their skills from the very beginning, which can be quite challenging, if you’re out of habit with
playing. In the beginning a mobile and some music will be very entertaining and later on you need to learn all those songs with finger gestures and do baby yoga and somersaults and all that. A play mattress in organic materials will be nice for the somersaults. The range of mobiles and music mobiles will also be good entertainment. Lighting - Use lighting to create a nice atmosphere in the nursery with more muted light sources. A night light is important for most children. When it comes to lighting the nursery, use energy efficient lighting like LED lights which are longer lasting. Our textile balloon lampshade creates a dreamy and cosy environment for the nursery and can be used with LED light bulbs.
Playtime – It’s important to have a little corner for playing when the baby is around two months old. This can be in the living room or in a nursery, whatever suits the family the best. In the beginning when they primarily lie on their back, a play gym is ideal for entertainment and stimulation. You can hang lots of different toys from a play gym and change around, when the baby starts to get bored. Later the range of toys will grow and it will be nice to be able to put it away in baskets or displayed nicely on a shelf. Quilted playmats make an ideal addition to the nursery for playtime and tummy time. Opt for playmats made from organic materials where the baby will be in constant contact.
Bathtime - A soft organic hooded towel is perfect for bathtime. Cam Cam Copenhagen’s baby towels are made from the finest, soft GOTS certified 100% organic cotton. The towels are wonderfully thick and woven in a characteristic wave pattern which dries faster due to its airy design. Bamboo tableware - Opt for plastic free tableware like bamboo utensils when the time comes for weaning your baby. Bamboo has the added benefits of being extremely strong and durable, heat resistant as well as stain and odour resistant. Team with an organic bib for an all round eco experience.
K A LY N T U R N E R S H A R E S H E R S O N S N E W R O O M I N S P I R E D B Y S O M E R E A L LY W I L D W A L L PA P E R After we moved to our new home, I wanted to make my son Rowan’s new room extra special. He’s a toddler and was a bit hesitant about the move. He has a wild spirit; he loves nature and animals and is full of questions. We wanted his room to be ageappropriate, but also a room that would grow with him for a long time. My inspiration for his bedroom began when I discovered this tiger print wallpaper from Wild Hearts Wonder. It drew me in as soon as I saw it and I based the rest of his room’s design off that. It feels like artwork and really created a focal point. I showed Rowan the print and he instantly loved it, asking about each type of cat species. It was already sparking his excitement (not to mention his favourite colour is orange, so he loved the tigers). For the rest of the room’s walls, we decided to go with a soft white to keep it bright and airy.
It was also time to get Rowan a bigger bed, we went with a black rod iron. Itâ€™s a masculine look, so it anchored the room and pops against the wallpaper that has subtle black polka dots in it. It was also important to us that he have a space that he enjoys being in and can play and create. He has a vintage desk, which we happened to find in the basement of our new home, so we painted it a vibrant green. It still has its rustic wooden top, and he spends a lot of time drawing and reading at it. We have a few other vintage items in his room, which I think warm the space up and add different layers to the design. His night stand was made by his great grandfather, itâ€™s so special and holds his favourite books next to his bed. We stained it a darker tone and added a new knob from Anthropologie to make it more modern. His dresser was from an antique store and has its original white knobs; itâ€™s the perfect size for the room and was very budget-friendly.
Rowan’s bedroom has been such a fun project for him and I to work on together. Getting to see what he loves while making a place that’s truly his, it has really helped him feel settled in our new home
Functional storage was also important to us, as it is to all parents. On his walls, we have a round metal shelf from Pottery Barn Kids that holds a few toys and plants. He has a coat rack that is also from Pottery Barn Kids, which is fun and colourful -- plus it reminds him to hang his coats up! The teepee set against his back wall is a perfect hideaway for him and his sister to read and play, but we also store extra blankets and stuffed animals in it, which makes it feel cosy but also keeps the clutter hidden away. Most of all, Rowan’s bedroom has been such a fun project for him and me to work on together. Getting to see what he loves while making a place that’s truly his, it has really helped him feel settled in our new home, making this one of my favourite home projects ever. Kalyn Turner lives outside Boston, Massachusetts with her husband Jeff, her threeyear-old son Rowan, and her 18-month-old daughter Evelyn. Wanting more space for the kids to play, they moved a little further outside the city to the town of Hingham and bought a fixer-upper. Follow Kalyn’s home renovations adventures on Instagram at @home_twentyseven.
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