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C U STO M C r a f T e d LU X U rY

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Contents i s s u e 27 8 a u g u s t 2 018

Cover Home

Cover stories



28 gardening Special 30 Chelsea Flower Show 2018 36 What’s New 38 Bloom Festival 2018 42 Knockpatrick Gardens 44 A Tree-mendous Honour 46 Garden Redesign 48 Field of Dreams 49 Pot Luck 57 The Real Deal? 58 Edible Flowers

112 Cookery 119 Destination Abroad 122 Destination Ireland


Readers’ Homes

60 74 88

Lake View

Egon and Richard have transformed this formerly rundown cabin into a stylish and comfortable retreat that makes the most of the stunning lake views.

Character Building

In the beautiful countryside of County Down sits the recently renovated, stylish home of Mike and Kate who moved to Northern Ireland to be closer to family.

Sheer passion


With sheer passion, determination and clever creativity, Des and Kathleen transform a once derelict church in County Limerick into a modern masterpiece.

Reader’s Kitchen 106

Classical Contemporary This bright and shining kitchen was designed by Newcastle Design who have used clean lines and bespoke finishes to create a modern and stylish space.


DeSTINATIoN ABroAD: FLy DrIve For muSIC LoverS

Features 5

Stylish furnishings and accessories.

The latest interior updates.

Kitchen, bedroom and bathroom focus.



Interior Spaces


In the Know Interesting ideas, tips and events.


Brand Profile



Creative Profile Garden Special 32 pages of garden inspiration.


Bosh! by Henry Firth & Ian Theasby.

Food & drink ideas for the month ahead.




For the Ladies Stylish travel, fashion and accessories.


Destination Abroad




Food for Thought



Amy Scott’s hand designed cushions.



We learn about Neolith.



In House News



Fly drive for music lovers.

Destination Ireland Ireland’s summer festivals.

Irish Getaways We visit The g Hotel, Galway.


Style Icon


Vener Panton’s Panthella Mini lamp.

Competition 26 Amy Scott Design is offering one lucky reader the chance to win a colourful





velvet Amy Scott cushion with decadent trims worth £60. Harper Collins is offering five readers the chance to win a copy of Bosh! worth £20. Total prize value £100.


publiSHer mike keenan Finance director suzanne livingstone coMMercial Manager bobby keenan advertiSing Manager vanya Campbell

Ir el a n d ’s

Homes InterIors & living

editor sara larkham editorial Jenny mcCleery editorial aSSiStant gareth edwards

august 2018

deSignerS Jenny mcCleery, michael robinson, walter steele

No 278

adMiniStration heather withers credit control yvonne watson contributorS penny Crawford-Collins, philip lauterbach, mike mulcaire, deirdre prince, derek robinson, michael robinson

SubScription rateS uk – £40, roi – €57.90

europe (air mail) – £59.04 outside europe (air mail) – £95.64 surface mail (any destination) – £58.08 bangor addreSS

po box 42, bangor, Co. down bt19 7ad tel: 028 9147 3979 email: dublin addreSS

ashgrove house, kill avenue, dun laoghaire, Co dublin tel: (01) 2722616

coMpetition WinnerS FroM tHe june 2018 iSSue

1 reader WinS a coMMiSSioned FraMe pebble art piece FroM Sc deSign & art. total €75. mary heath, ennis. 3 readerS eacH Win a copY oF baSicS to brilliance KidS FroM HarpercollinS. total £60. gillian mcbride, belfast; kathleen doyle, magherafelt; siobhan hardiman, ballaghaderreen.

© Copyright of all material published in this magazine belongs to: ireland’s homes interiors & living magazine

all priCes quoted in the magazine are the reCommended retail priCe at the time of going to press and should be used as a guide only. priCes may vary due to the exChange rate and Can be CheCked with retailers.

member of audit bureau of Circulation


hat glorious weather we have been getting in these recent weeks; it certainly feels like summer is in full swing. It seems like we wait all year for the sunshine and being able to get outside and enjoy our gardens. Our August issue is jam packed with inspiration for your garden, and it isn’t too late to make changes so that it can achieve its full potential. First up we look at the world’s most famous garden event, The RHS Chelsea Flower Show and some of its show stopping gardens for you to draw inspiration from, or simply awe at the imagination used for each installment. Each year, new varieties of flowers are presented at Chelsea, from all over the world, so we take a look at some of these beautiful creations too. We also recap on Ireland’s largest garden festival, Bord Bia’s Bloom, as it welcomed its one millionth visitor through its gates back in June! Ever wondered how some of the marvelous gardens open to the public look as fantastic as they do? Well we talk to the owners of Knockpatrick Garden in County Limerick and they let us in on their secrets for keeping this beautiful garden in top shape, as well as its history! Taking on a garden redesign can be daunting, so we look at what Jo from Caragh Nurseries has done with her own garden to give it a complete makeover. We also look at the pros and cons for artificial lawns as they have been growing in popularity over recent years. Castlewellan Arboretum and Annesley Garden in County Down receives a prestigious award in recognition of its tree collection and we feature a recently launched book entitled Field of Dreams by Bob Salisbury on transforming a rural desert into a thriving wildlife garden. Lastly, if you want to add in some interest without too much effort, why not add in some potted plants or garden decorations? Our selection should help give you plenty of ideas. As for our readers’ homes this month we visit a formerly rundown lakeside cabin that has been transformed into a bright, wood panelled comfortable retreat in County Westmeath. In the beautiful countryside of County Down sits the recently renovated and stylish home of Mike and Kate who moved to Northern Ireland to be closer to family and in Limerick, Des and Kathleen transform a once derelict church into a modern masterpiece. Our reader’s kitchen this issue is a bright and shining design by Newcastle Design who have used clean lines and bespoke finishes to create a modern and stylish space. Our travel this issue takes us on a fly drive in the south of the US seeking some of the best music spots in the country! Closer to home we showcase a taster of summer festivals that are taking place the length and breadth of the country. Our cookery pages focus on delicious meat free dishes from Bosh. We hope you enjoy this jam packed issue, and as always, if you have a home that you would like to see featured in the magazine contact editorial on 028 9147 3979 or

22 YearS over 4.6 Million* SaleS abc veriFied *4,637,972 combined sales to december 2017 ireland’s Homes interiors & living 4,438,805 all ireland Kitchen guide 199,167

homestyle An inspirational selection of the latest traditional and contemporary furniture, fabric and accessories for your home.

Betty armchair in Olive matt cotton velvet from ÂŁ590/â‚Ź673.

homestyle Store Away

Alessi biscuit storage jar from Black by Design. £130. Phone 01889 502716.

Green Globe Artichoke stoneware bowl from Amara. £14/€16. Phone 0800 587 7645.

Curvy Comfort Rouen striped taupe stool from Swoon Editions. £199/€226. Phone 020 3319 6332.

Feather Fan Peacock Arte velvet chair from Made. £299/€343. Phone 03442 571 888.

Green Hues

Taro cushion from Andshine. £16/€18.30. Phone 01736 366568.

Run Ahead Herringbone cotton rug in citrus as stair runner from Dash & Albert. From £40/€46.


For the Birds Lime Belle bird feeder from Green & Blue. £26/€30. Phone 01872 858658.

Radio Head Radio-controlled pocket watch wall clock from House of Bath. £49.95. Phone 0871 230 0867.

Graphic Base Geometric taupe table lamp from Cox & Cox. £60/€75. Phone 0330 3332123.

Wild Cat Graduate collection cheetah wallpaper from Lime Lace. £125/€138. Phone 0330 058 4158.

Cover Up Natural willow cheese dome from Gisela Graham. £42/€48. Phone 020 7708 6396.

My My My Delilah dining chair from My Furniture. Set of two, £179.99/€207. Phone 0845 309 6356.

Plant Box

Neptune Southrop square planter. From €260.

Dizzy Mat Round rug from Homesense. £69.99/€80. 7

homestyle Brass Neck Gubi brass base multi lite pendant from Rume. £507/€582. Phone 01273 777810.

Path Mat

Tray Bake Marimekko Unikko plywood tray from Amara. £39/€45. Phone 0800 587 7645.

Outdoor rug in blue and white from Cuckooland. £49.95/€57.30. Phone 01305 231231.

Tall Order

Blue and white jug from Home Sense. £12.99/€14.90.

Blue Stripe

Lise garden chair from Amara. £299/€341. Phone 0800 587 7645.

Hare Hare

Dürer Hare from Lime Lace. £59.99/€68.80. Phone 0330 058 4158.

Snap Crackle Pop Hey Jude

Jude chair from Harvey Norman. 3696/€799. Phone Belfast 028 9038 9600 or Dublin 01 4916300. 8

Blue crackle drip candle from Oliver Bonas. £23/€26. Phone Belfast 028 9066 1038.

A different perspective.

You want a dream kitchen that can stand up to whatever life throws at it, but you don’t want to find it’s cheaper a few months down the line. So, we’d like to make that dream a reality (even if it’s a muddy one). This July the sink cabinet is on us. Come and see us in Belfast. Dublin. Fermanagh. Kildare. Kilkenny. Limerick. Mayo. Meath. Offaly. Wicklow.


About Turn Super soft reversible throw in teal and charcoal from Tolly McRae. £125/€144.

Mellow Yellow

Pitch Perfect

Janeiro yellow arm chair from B&Q. £22/€25. Phone Dublin 01 8708 599. Belfast 028 9039 7744.

Yellow pitcher from Homesense. £4.99/€5.70.

Cute Grill

Jamie Oliver grill from Design 3000. £52.20/€59.95.

Safe Keeping

Jewellery box from Debenhams. £20/€23. Phone Belfast 028 9043 5546. Dublin 018 147200.

Love Birds

Wilko Overture teal wallpaper. £8/€9.20. Phone 08000 329329.

Risk it for a Biscuit Yellow custard cream cushion from £35/€40.20.



Festive Fabric

Bohemian Collection fabric from Vanessa Arbuthnott. £52/€59 per m². Phone 01285 831437.

Gloss Blue Pendant light with a metal retro-styled shade in gloss blue from Elite Lighting. £96. Phone Ballymena 028 2564 4600.

Box Life Yellow house box with drawer from Rex London. £14.95/€17. Phone 020 7993 2377.

It’s Mustard Mustard yellow Finn bar stool from Danetti. £89/€102. Phone 020 3588 1380.

Bright Basket

Piki yellow basket from Bobby Rabbit. £25/€28.70. Phone 0114 3217000.

Feathery Friend

Velvet eiderdown from Printer & Tailor. £178/€204. Phone 01432 265094.

Take it Easy

Aurora three seater sofa from DFS. £399/€579. Phone Belfast 028 90687472, Derry 028 71310950, Cork 021 4359306 and Dublin 01 6404232.

Surface Shine Teal and silver cushion from Penelope Hope. £85/€98. Phone 01481 721410. 11

homestyle Throw Over Tweedmill pure new wool throw from Hurn & Hurn. £49.95/€57. Phone 01603 559 250.

Best Cocktail Pina Colada red mix outdoor fabric from Penelope Hope. £60/€69. Phone 01481 721410.

In the Shade

Red parasol from Home Sense. £174.20/€199.99.

Floral Platter Sofa So Good Raffles grand sofa from DFS. £1,599/€2,079. Phone Belfast 028 90687472, Derry 028 71310950, Cork 021 4359306 and Dublin 01 6404232.


In the Fold Three dimensional origami flamingo from Design 3000. £14.30/€16.50.

Pip Studio floral platter from Daisy Park. £30/€34.50. Phone 01769 575077.

In the Pink Hygeia pink bust from Audenza. £84/€96. Phone 0116 2986393.

Calia Bookcase €429

Calia Dining Table €449

Calia Bench €239

Grover Chair €129


I n house n e w s

New product release French Connection exclusive to DFS

Capture Californian cool closer to home, with the relaxed look and organic textures of French Connection’s new Hoxton sofa, exclusively available at DFS. The Hoxton is the latest addition to DFS’ exclusive collection of sofas designed in partnership with French Connection, bringing a relaxed and effortlessly cool look to your home with its modern silhouette and timeless style. Blending a mixture of the organic textures of wood, leather and cotton, the Hoxton has an artisanal feel that makes for a comfortable and inviting place to lounge. Large oversized bed pillows create a relaxed sit that wouldn’t be out of place in a Californian pad. The Hoxton’s slender exposed turned oak frame, the hand stitched leather strap detailing and the stone washed cotton fabric – repetitively tumbled for an aged effect – celebrate the craftsmanship of the sofa and deliver an on-trend mix of textures to give your home understated, informal style. Every DFS sofa is handmade to order and the Hoxton is available in Mink, Silver, Blue, Rose or Ocean.


Gardeners’ Question Time Summer Garden Party at Mount Stewart

BBC Radio 4’s Gardeners’ Question Time (GQT) visited the shores of Strangford Lough on Saturday 9th June where they held their annual Summer Garden Party in the beautiful surrounds of the National Trust’s Mount Stewart. Ticket holders were able to meet the GQT panellists, put their questions to the gardening gurus in person, and participate in demonstrations and horticultural happenings across the gardens. The glittering line up of gardening royalty at the event included Matthew Wilson, Christine Walkden, Bob Flowerdew, Bunny Guinness, James Wong, Pippa Greenwood, Matt Biggs and GQT chairmen Eric Robson and Peter Gibb, who all offered their insights into the art of gardening. As well as recordings of BBC Radio 4’s GQT and BBC Radio Ulster’s Gardeners’ Corner, there was a host of other activities running throughout the day, including talks from RHS Chelsea gold winners Diarmuid Gavin and Ian Price.

About Mount Stewart Mount Stewart is one of Northern Ireland’s most loved historical houses cared for by the National Trust and has recently undergone a three year £8 million restoration programme, making it a must-see attraction on the island of Ireland. Voted as one of the top ten gardens in the world, Mount Stewart showcases rare and tender plants from across the globe, which are allowed to thrive when coupled with the mild climate of Strangford Lough. Podcasts of Gardener’s Question Time at Mount Stewart are available to download at

Franke’s sleek Cloud hood With its organic, curvaceous design and suspended installation on barely visible wires, Franke’s new Cloud extractor hood looks like it’s floating effortlessly above the

worksurface to create an uber-stylish focal point in your kitchen. It is available in fashionable Grey (pictured) or in Cool White. It is operated with illuminated touch controls that are intuitive to use and its three speed settings, plus intensive, give you exceptional extraction. The sophisticated LED lighting has a built-in sensor that automatically adjusts the brightness to suit the ambient surroundings. The Cloud is 1,150mm wide x 225mm high and works in recirculatory mode, with its two brushless motors which work quietly and efficiently to give it an Energy Rating of A. £3,995.

I n house n e w s

Sage appliances launch in Ireland Cooking restaurant quality food at home has just got a whole lot easier, as Sage Appliances, the award-winning kitchen appliance brand, is now available in the Irish market. This impressive range delivers innovative yet simple solutions, to produce the best results – to put it simply, cooking restaurant quality food at home. The company originated in Australia in 1932 as Breville and in 2013 it launched Sage Appliances in the UK and has expanded throughout Europe since 2015 – growing in every market. The SageTM Appliances range includes coffee machines that would make anyone a world-class barista, restaurant quality at home cooking appliances that will make it simple and easy to create restaurant-worthy quality food – the range is completed with a wide range of juicers and blenders to fit any lifestyle.

Neolith® announces Instagram sensation @pepitamola as its new brand ambassador

Pepita Sierra, better known on social media as @pepitamola, has become the new brand ambassador for market-leading Sintered Stone brand Neolith®. The three year old’s life has already won over 200,000 followers through an Instagram account on which her mother, Fabiola, narrates the dayto-day of a little girl with Down’s syndrome. Every day she shares her daughter’s zest for life, and the joy and happiness she brings. Pepita truly inspires and her story’s honesty and authenticity made her a natural choice when Neolith were looking for the perfect person to front its 2018 marketing campaign. @pepitamola’s Instagram, with its insightful and heart-warming snapshots of everyday family life, fired the brand’s imagination, influencing the ultimate decision to bring the surface and the social star together.

Working with Pepita, Neolith wants to showcase how its remarkable slabs combine beauty and performance in different residential settings, where both the ordinary and extraordinary happen daily. By celebrating these moments Neolith also wants to contribute to the awareness and social integration of people with the extra chromosome, T21. Furthermore, Neolith will donate a part of its 2018 profits to the Pepitamola Foundation whose main objective is to fight for the acceptance and integration of people with different and extraordinary abilities like Pepita. In the international territories where this campaign will be launching, part of the annual profit in each respective country will also be donated to Down’s syndrome charities.

Brand new Quirc Interior Design opens in Kildare

Quirc Interior Design is an interior design studio and boutique located in the historic Old Forge building in Straffan, Co. Kildare. Straffan is a beautiful village situated on the banks of the River Liffey and is home to the K Club and its two championship golf courses. Led by chief interior designer Catherine Quirke, the Quirc Interior Design team specialises in creating stylish yet very functional spaces for both residential and commercial properties. Their design style is contemporary and luxurious with just a hint of the unexpected to make a home unique. As a designer, Catherine Quirke is renowned for really investing time to thoroughly understand a client’s design needs and she has a very impressive portfolio of completed projects. The studio in Straffan houses a perfectly curated collection of furnishings, gifts and home accessories by design-led European brands. These include Julian Chichester, Triss, Eichhotltz, Zoffany, Vera Wang and Kartell, glassware by Nude, frames by Vera Wang, lighting by Tom Dickson, art by David Rees and rugs by Passion du Tapis. Visitors can browse through the extensive furniture collection and library of wallpaper and fabric samples. Consultations with the interior designers can then be made by appointment. The design team guide the client from concept through to completion, sourcing the perfect pieces of furniture, bespoke joinery, paint colour, curtain fabric or lighting. Customers can relax at the in-house Quirc Café which sells Hausbrandt coffee and a range of delicious breakfast and lunch options. Quirc Interior Design of Straffan is also the perfect destination for gift buying with luxury candles and diffusers by Baobab and La Bougie and semi-precious statement jewellery by British brand Soru. 15



Cushion the blow Stylish throw cushions.

A selection of inspirational ideas for the bedroom. Orla Kiely bird cushion. £34.99/€40.99.


Tropical Cockatoo cushion by Jan Constantine. £120/€165.

STyle STeAl

Harlequin Quintessence bedding from Bedeck. Price on request. Phone Belfast 028 9066 9828.

BRing summeR fReshness tO yOuR BedROOm By neptune


owever you make your bed, the chances are, now summer is here, you will want to make some changes to welcome the warmer weather. While redecorating each season is not really practical, leading design house Neptune have some timely tips on how you can bring summer freshness to your boudoir. Summer’s arrival hopefully means warmer days, but when it comes to actually making your bed, don’t put all the bedcovers away just yet.

It’s always good to have an extra layer nearby because, as we all know, warm nights are not a given in an Irish summer. Which is why Neptune’s canny designers recommend keeping some cosy throws to hand that can be added to the bed when a little extra warmth is required. Their 100 per cent cotton Stamford, Islay and Kingswood throws are ideal for a summery feel. you may not want them on the duvet each night, but thrown over the footboard, or on a nearby chair, they can be easily grabbed when needed. Some new cushions here and there will also help ring in the changes. As it’s summer, think of nature inspired colours such as fresh greens or pinks, or you could go for some all-white additions that can be swopped for darker shades as winter approaches. Sheets are another very important element in summer bedding. you want something that feels good against your skin and here Neptune’s cool and crisp egyptian cotton sheets have several advantages. A great all-rounder for every season, they are carefully woven to keep you refreshed on balmy summer evenings while offering cosy comfort on winter nights. Now, when it comes to bringing your summer bedroom look together, lean towards the simple and the laidback. Think of folding the duvet over a bit more – to air the bed both literally and visually – and scatter just a couple of cushions around.

empire Bee cushion from Rume. £80/€95.

Klevering bodil toucan cushion from print + tailor. £55/€70.

A throw or two will add colour and visual appeal while also being very practical. The key here is to put in a little effort so your bed feels inviting, rather than slightly messy. A few fresh touches will help keep you well rested during those long summer nights.



Spaces A selection of inspirational ideas for the bathroom.


Comfy Feet Stylish bath mats.

Abode Duckboard from Lime Lace. £69/€79.

Pebble grey bath mat from Coastal Home. £39.99/€46.

Mood board

What good is a beautiful shower or bath if you have nowhere to store your essential products?

Good storage ensures that your shampoo, soap, and razor are right where you need them while keeping your space looking clean and organised.

Keep it Tidy


Bathroom organiser from House of Bath. £19.95/€22.70.

Harwood cloakroom basin proves that the best things come in small packages

STyle STeAl

Secure seal four fold over-bath screen from Merlyn Showering. £399/€456.

The perfect statement piece for any cloakroom, the beautifully designed Harwood washbasin is the latest addition to the Thomas Crapper collection. Small yet perfectly formed, the Harwood basin features a deceptively generous bowl depth and a raised cartouche that proudly bears the Thomas Crapper name as a clear symbol of quality and style. Simple to mount on the wall as an extra space-saving measure in the compact cloakroom, the Harwood washbasin is the perfect partner for a wall-mounted basin mixer and high-level WC set for authentic and quintessentially British styling in the smallest room of the home. Washbasin £399.

Bath Shelf

Washed wooden bath rack from Dunelm. £15/€17. Double basket with wiper blade from Pure Bathroom Collection. £150/€171.

Mineral bath mat from Amara. £254/€290. Anorak Kissing Badgers bath mat. £24/€27.

Tribe bath mat from Dunelm. £10/€11.50.

Umbra Flex shower caddy from Red Candy. £25/€28.50.

Allure wire metal suctioned shower caddy from Wayfair. £52.99/€60. 19

Style SteAl

the Biella satin lacquer kitchen from Schüller. Available in a range of colours.



Stylish Storage Display your best wares. Garden Trading Brompton canisters. From £12.50/€14.20.

A selection of inspirational ideas for the kitchen. Smoked glass storage jar from Printer & Taylor. large, £68/€77.


Open Storage Do you like your personal items, cooking utensils and other homeware kept out of sight or on show to the world? Practicality, cost and style are just a few things to consider. Here are some of the benefits of open shelving.


ShadeS of Grey With a contemporary twist on a design classic leading kitchen specialist Caple’s timeless Parkhurst Grey kitchen will work perfectly in classic and country homes as well as more modern interiors. Caple’s Furniture Manager Doug Haswell says, ‘Grey is a versatile colour, which makes it such a popular choice. It is ideal for those who are looking to introduce a muted on-trend shade to their classic or contemporary kitchen. the grey finish in our Parkhurst collection beautifully enhances the elegant, timber graining effect on the doors and is perfect for creating a light-filled, open-plan kitchen.’ With six other sophisticated, modern neutral colour-ways to choose from, Caple’s Parkhurst kitchen features a classic style design and five-piece, foil-wrapped doors. this kitchen features a painted effect with beautiful bow handles in a stain nickel finish.

Shelf Life

On a Budget

Orla Kiely storage cake tins from andshine. Set of five, £39.95/€46.

lSA bonbon jar from Black by design. £50/€57.

embossed coffee jar from Creative Tops. £14/€16.

• Open shelves increase your storage options. Items become more accessible and create a more modern and relaxed space. • Open shelves invite visitors to feel at home and help themselves to whatever they need without asking where things are. • Replacing closed cabinetry with open shelves can let more light in from windows and make the space feel bigger. • Don’t worry about dust and grime. Just run a damp cloth or duster around every so often. • Shelves are easier to organise. everything finds its way back to its designated spot.

• Open shelving can be budget friendly, quick to create and makes a huge statement when done well. • Show off your pretty glassware, dishes and storage jars that have been hidden behind cupboard doors. • you can try it out before taking the leap by removing your cabinet doors to emulate what they will look like.


in the



Minsmere blue denim box cushion and throw Whether it be indoors or outdoors, you can take this blue stone washed denim fabric box cushion anywhere thanks to its handle feature. Perfect for picnics! It will also look great in kitchens and dining rooms and will increase the comfort of your chairs and outdoor furniture. And all the comfort of your favourite denim jacket come in the form of a matching throw, with a super soft curly fleece fabric on the reverse side. Perfect for draping over the back of a sofa or throwing over the end of a bed.

Our mix of interesting ideas, tips and events.

Expert Tip: Bring the outdoors in with a living wall mural Plant life décor is at the height of popularity in interior design, as finding ways to bring all things botanical to life is a growing trend. This new collection of Living Wall murals allows for a visual vertical garden experience within the home, going beyond potted plants and forming a blur between your interior and exterior environments. Partner a Living Wall mural with living greenery to create an oasis escape.

Sisters & Sons blog We are Kerry and Tara, sisters and mums to Zac and Sam from County Down, Northern Ireland. We have been blogging since February 2017. As well as talking about our experiences of motherhood and how our boys can be so different even though they were born only six months apart we also share a keen interest in interiors with both a new build and renovation project providing some creative content for our evolving photo library. We love being there for our followers – often at 3am for a night feed!

What’s On...

3 of the best... In the shade

Malta overhanging parasol from B&Q. £60/€69.

Geisha garden parasol in fuchsia pink from Cuckooland. £79/€90.50.


Sywawa Tahiti detour parasol from Go Modern. £1,990/€2,279.

Bray Air Display, 28th and 29th July 2018. The most famous and celebrated aerobatic display team on the planet, the Red Arrows, are set to blaze a trail across Irish skies once again this summer, as headline act of the hugely popular, 13th award-winning, Bray Air Display 2018*, supported by the Irish Aviation Authority (IAA). The free, family event is one of the most popular air shows in Europe and Ireland’s biggest air festival, attracting 140,000 people. Activities will kick off from noon each day with a fun-fair, live music, food and craft markets. The Red Arrows will perform on the Sunday as part of the IAA’s #AviationIreland weekend which includes Foynes air display in County Limerick on Saturday 28th July. Visit and follow on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. *Subject to licence

Show your support for your local breast cancer charity by donating your unwanted bras to our bra banks. Your unwanted bras will be used to help women in 3rd world countries as well as raising vital funds for breast cancer patients here in Northern Ireland. To find your nearest bra bank, or to order a bank for your home or office visit our website at:


Neolith Neolith launches a range of revolutionary surfaces.


n 2009, TheSize Surfaces was born in Castellón de la Plana, north of Valencia. The founders, brothers Jesús and José Luis Esteve, wanted to create a new material category for both exterior and interior construction. After over two years of meticulous research and planning, the Neolith® brand was launched as a revolutionary new surface that would be both functional and beautiful. Over the past nine years the brand has expanded rapidly and is available globally. In 2017 alone, it recorded a revenue of over €100m in sales. As testament to Neolith’s ambitions for future growth, the brand launched its fourth production line in January 2018. The new line will almost double production capabilities, making Neolith’s factory one of the biggest in the Sintered Stone sector. With this enhanced capacity, Neolith plans to capture an even greater share in a highly competitive market. Thanks to exceptional growth last year, the Spanish company has been motivated to strengthen its position in more regions. After extending its reach with a new UK warehouse and showroom earlier this year, the brand is now looking to Ireland. The Irish residential market is booming and Neolith, keen to take full advantage, has already made big plans. Stay tuned for exciting news on the next stage of Neolith’s Irish strategy that will be announced in the very near future.

Neolith & PePitamola CamPaigN.

KitCheN iN Neolith Calatorao SilK.


Innovation is key and the brand is always looking to improve its already sizeable range of surfaces. To this end it released a brand new collection for 2018 with four new colours, Retrostone, Mirage, Calatorao and Krater. Retrostone is an elegant surface inspired by the design classic, Terrazzo. Mirage is based on richly textured sandstone, a throwback to Europe’s medieval churches. Calatorao is Neolith’s take on the distinctive limestone hewn from Zaragoza’s quarries for millennia. Krater’s deep, inky pattern was designed to be an homage to natural soapstone. Not only is Neolith developing new patterns, it also annually ensures it maintains pace with design trends, regularly introducing new sizes, thickness and formats. The brand noticed a growing popularity for thicker kitchen surfaces towards the end of 2017, and added 15 colours to the 20mm range, one of the thickest formats of Sintered Stone on the market. This includes the ever popular Nero Zimbabwe and Calatorao, two vividly dark stones as a response to a swelling appetite for darker stones. Another important project, close to Neolith’s heart and core values, is its new partnership with Instagram sensation @pepitamola. A little girl with Down’s Syndrome, Neolith intends to collaborate with her to raise awareness of people living with her condition and will donate part of its 2018 profits to the Pepitamola Foundation. In addition, in each international territory the campaign is launched (including Ireland), Neolith will donate to a local Down’s Syndrome charity. Pepita’s Instagram account, run by her mother, narrates the day-to-day life of someone with her condition, sharing the joy and happiness she brings to her family, friends and fans.


Find your summer style The latest ranges from DFS allow you to inject colour happiness into your life and bring your holiday inspiration home.

Bring a little Hamptons chic home with the DFS Melody sofa. Deep sofas dressed in inky indigos, crisp whites and seaside blues will ensure a laid back summer feeling all year round. £2,199/€2,799.

Go wild with the DFS Salsa sofa. Inspired by the global fusion trend focusing on vibrant colours and prints, the Salsa invites you to go bold and to mix and mismatch inspiration from all over the world. This is a star piece that will remind you of starry evenings, bustling markets and sun filled days. £849/€1,079.


Continue California dreaming all year round. Be a trend setter with the new Hoxton from French Connection, exclusive to DFS. The stone washed cotton fabric and exposed turned oak frame of the Hoxton will bring you luxe lounging with a retro twist. £999/€1,299.

f you’re looking to find a new style or step away from the expected sofa shades, DFS is the ideal choice. Every DFS sofa is carefully handcrafted, with a wide selection of colours and fabrics available to choose from, whether you want to go bold, or are searching for more muted hues. DFS boasts its own dedicated design studio and new ranges which take inspiration from the latest design trends, from Hamptons chic and cool Californian living, to vibrant global colour fusion. With an unrivalled reputation for offering high-quality, stylish sofas to suit every style, space and budget, DFS has been designing and manufacturing sofas for nearly 50 years. Nothing says summer like colour and no one does comfort like DFS, so bring these two elements together and you have the perfect makeover! Plus, DFS’ interest free credit offer makes getting the home interior you want extremely affordable. Visit the knowledgeable DFS staff in store at DFS Belfast, DFS Derry, DFS Blanchardstown, DFS Carrickmines, DFS Cork, and DFS Limerick, or browse their extensive range online at / For more colour inspiration see: 25

designer c r e at i v e profile prof i l e

Amy Scott Design

Amy Scott creates amazing hand designed cushions that are bright, fun and decadent!



’m English, originally a Shropshire lass, but I have been living in Northern Ireland for twenty years having come over here straight after university,’ explains Amy.‘ My family are made up of artists, designers and interior decorators, so I guess it’s in my blood to be creative! I didn’t study design, I just fell into it when I got to Northern Ireland and haven’t looked back since.’ Amy’s cushions show her love for vibrant fabrics and rich textures, and the final design is always decadent yet fun. Each one of her cushions are carefully designed and then skilfully hand sewn. ‘I use lots of striking pinks and florals coupled with soft velvets and usually finished off with my signature trims,’ she says. ‘It all started just over a year ago, when I was focusing on sourcing unloved bits of furniture and re-covering them in bright fabrics and trims. I was importing a few cushions on the side, and these were selling well but I had the reoccurring problem of shipments going missing or arriving damaged, so one day while I was despairing over another missing consignment, I had a brainwave and decided to make my own cushions! I started experimenting with remnants of fabrics which I had from reupholstering the chairs and so my first designs were born.’ Amy has four children, so her working hours are limited, as come two o’clock her attention turns to them. ‘A typical day involves laying out lots of fabric

and trims until I find the perfect combination for a new design’, says Amy. ‘The result has to make me giddy with excitement! When I’ve found the right design it gets dropped to my trusty seamstress who weaves her magic and makes the creation come alive. Then the paperwork has to be kept on top of, as do emails, queries and social media and the website. I’m currently in the process of designing my very own Amy Scott fabric range so I’m working on that whenever I can but at the same time developing my current ranges. ‘It might sound very general, but my biggest achievement is getting my business up and running! Five years ago I would never have believed it was possible or that I was capable enough, and every time I sell cushions or people come up to me and tell me they love my work it just confirms that I’ve done it. Having said that, featuring on the cover of Ireland’s Homes Interiors and Living Magazine in the spring was a very proud moment!’ Amy aims to have two different ranges in the near future, one using her own fabric, aiming to be more exclusive, and another which will consist of simple designs that are accessible to everyone. ‘Over the next few years I hope to have my cushions stocked with stores and designers all over the UK!’ Amy says.

COMPETITION Ireland’s Homes Interiors & Living magazine along with Amy Scott are offering one lucky reader the chance to win a colourful velvet Amy Scott cushion with decadent trims worth £60.

How to enter Answer the following question: How many years has Amy lived in Northern Ireland? Send your answer, name, address, email and phone number marked Amy Scott Competition to Ireland’s Homes Interiors & Living magazine, PO Box 42, Bangor, County Down, BT19 7AD or Ashgrove House, Kill Avenue, Dun Laoghaire, County Dublin or enter online at: Entries must be received no later than 5pm on Friday 3rd August 2018. One entry per household. One separate email/postcard for each competition. Judge’s decision is final. No cash alternative. Prizes are non-transferable. If you would like to receive our monthly newsletter please include your email address with your entry. View our privacy policy at

Trendy Reads! Here are some fantastic reads on stunning interiors, kitchen design, renovation solutions and.

The Kitchen Bible: Designing the Perfect Culinary Space by Barbara Ballinger, Margaret Crane & Jennifer Gilmer

Kitchens have been transformed from a purely utilitarian workspace to a culinary-familyfriends’ mecca where everyone congregates. While kitchens in small houses may still be limited in square footage, even a tiny galley-style space is often now open to living and dining areas in loft-style arrangement for better camaraderie and conversation. Divided into two sections, this book will guide you through the process of designing the perfect kitchen. The first section takes you through a step-by-step approach to kitchen design and renovation, complete with questions to ask contractors, layout suggestions and check-lists. This is followed by over 50 inspiring kitchens, highlighting different options and styles to help you create your ideal space.

Rockett St George: Extraordinary Interiors by Jane Rockett & Lucy St George

On offer is a treasure trove of oddities and curiosities produced by designers and manufacturers around the world and a million miles away from mass produced chain-store products. In this, their first book, Jane and Lucy share their insights and expertise when it comes to creating magical, inviting and imaginative interiors. Friendly and down to earth, they reveal how to create a home that reflects your personality, interests and passions so it truly makes you feel at home. Jane and Lucy start at the very beginning, taking the reader by the hand and offering sound advice on making the right style choices. They go on to discuss finding inspiration, analysing a space, choosing paint colours and wallpapers, arranging and styling furniture, finding the right lighting, showing off treasures and making style statements that will stop others in their tracks. Illustrated with real-life homes, Extraordinary Interiors helps the reader to navigate the sea of choices out there when it comes to decorating, all with a dash of humour and a light-hearted approach that makes interior decorating fun.

Make the Home You Love by Fiona McPhillips

After completing her own home renovation and extension, Fiona McPhillips, author, journalist and interiors fanatic, was inspired to bring together everything she learned along the way. In collaboration with three award-winning architects, Fiona provides you with the most holistic approach to your design and build. A practical step-by-step guide to surviving the transformation of your home, taking the reader from the design stage, through the planning process to building, decorating and finishing touches. The balance of personal stories and professional advice makes this an accessible and inspiring guide to renovation. Filled with photographs of real homes, this book is bursting with great ideas and will no doubt inspire you to make the home you love.


Garden Special In this 32 page feature we showcase this year’s most prestigious gardening shows, offer advice and garden inspiration and feature products to keep your garden looking its very best all year round.


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Chelsea Flower Show 2018 Highlights of the magnificent gardens on display.

What’s New New varieties of flowers at Chelsea Flower Show.

Bloom Festival 2018 A roundup of Ireland’s premier garden festival.

Knockpatrick Gardens Visit Tim O’Brien’s farmhouse garden in Limerick.

A Tree-mendous Honour Castlewellan Arboretum wins a prestigious award.

Garden Redesign Garden redesign with Caragh Nurseries, Kildare.

Field of Dreams Transforming a rural desert into a wildlife garden.

Pot Luck Make a statement with decorative pots and urns.

The Real Deal? The pros and cons of real grass versus artificial grass.

Edible Flowers Grow your own rainbow of edible flowers.

Jardin Suspendu baskets from Chaplins. Set of eight, £1,390.

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The RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2018 The RHS Chealsea Flower Show 2018, sponsored by M&G Investments is unquestionably the world’s most famous garden show. Here we highlight just a few of the magnificent gardens on display this year.


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Show Gardens Morgan Stanley Garden for the NSPCC Gold Medal Winner Designer: Chris Beardshaw


Lemon Tree Trust Garden Silver Gilt Medal Winner Designer: Tom Massey



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Space to Grow Gardens Urban Flow Garden

Gold Medal Winner Designer: Tony Woods Sponsored by: Thames Water



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New West End Garden

Gold Medal Winner Designer: Kate Gould Sponsored by: New West End Company COPYRIGHT: RHS/SaRaH CuTTle.


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Artisan Gardens The Supershoes Laced with Hope Garden

Silver Medal Winner Designer: Laura Anstiss Sponsored by: Frosts


O-Mo-Te-Na-Shi No




Gold Medal Winner Designer: Kazuyuki Ishihara Sponsored by: G-Lion

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The Embroidered Minds Epilepsy Garden

Silver Gilt Medal Winner Designer: Kati Crome Sponsored by: Embroidered Minds



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What’s New? Each year at Chelsea Flower Show we get to witness new varieties that have been bred through dedication, from all around the world! Here are a selection of some of this years new contenders.

Horicultural Trades Association Calibrachoa Discover this Calibrachoa’s completely new three-dimensional colour pattern. DOUBLE PINKTASTIC truly catches the eye thanks to two bicoloured pinkwhite circles of inner petals in each flower. It looks great as a stand-alone item in a pot, but also works wonders in combined containers. Flowering from spring until autumn, this beauty with its novel bicoloured pattern produces new flowers over and over again and provides a nice summer backdrop.


Viola Carousel

Zantedeschia ‘Flirt’

New large-flowered cultivar, flowers are cream edged with mauve. Offers continuity of scented flowers over a long period on a plant of outstanding vigorous growth. Highly recommended for pots, bowls and containers. Regular deadheading throughout the season will enhance continuity of flowering and healthy growth.

Zantedeschia ‘Flirt’ was bred in New Zealand by Andrew Wearmouth. A departure from the sombre colours, ‘Flirt’ is vivid, fluorescent pink and unstoppable, with each plant producing 20-25 flowers. An absolute novelty within the species, Z. ‘Flirt’ is the first hybrid close to being a miniature Zantedeschia. Compact and petite, Flirt is the new accessory for patios, ideally suited for tables and furniture.

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Cayeux Iris Sorcellerie Five to six buds on average but this offspring of ‘Macaron’ and ‘Ciel Gris sur Poilly’ is most enchanting: Soft yellow standards with cream falls surprisingly threaded and edged with purple-red. Yellow beards and a pretty shape.

Malus toringo ‘Aros’ Bred in Denmark by Karsten Jensen, a passionate and knowledgeable plantsman and nurseryman. An avid fan of flowering Malus, Karsten collected many seeds from ornamental Malus over the years. Malus toringo ‘Aros’ came to the forefront of his breeding: a dark purple/black leaved, disease-resistant crab apple with a tight columnar habit. In spring the tree is adorned with dark pink and white flowers and in autumn small deep red crab apples persist into the winter. Its compact nature is perfect for smaller gardens and containers for spring flower, summer foliage and autumn fruit.

Rosa fragrant celebration ‘Beamerry’ Healthy and robust during its trial stages, the large blousy apricotpink blooms and sweet perfume really stand out. In 2016 the rose was chosen to be launched for Peter Beales Roses fiftieth anniversary. This beautiful climber will happily grow in partial shade as well as full sun making it ideal for transforming any wall, fence or building. Alternatively, the delicate colour blends can be trained around an obelisk or over an arch making it the perfect addition to any garden.

Eryngium ‘Blue Waves’ Big showy bracts in scale with stem height. Long lasting and repeat flowers. A hardy herbaceous perennial, long lived in favourable conditions, easily grown, average soil, full sun for best colour. Does not need staking and is great for pollinators. Great as a cut flower.



Bord Bia’s

Bloom Festival 2018 Ireland’s premier garden festival, Bloom once again delivers highly creative gardens and plant displays to inspire visitors from all over the country.

Bloom 2018 facts • Bloom had their one millionth visitor! • Almost a third of exhibitors within the Food Village were new to Bloom and a third of the Craft Village retailers were new companies and/or new to Bloom! • More than 20,000 plants left in the Plant Creche to be cared for while they enjoyed the festival. • Three quarters of a tonne of strawberries were eaten in Bord Bia’s Polytunnel and Kids’ Zone. • It takes 14 days to clear the Bloom site.


round 119,000 people attended Bord Bia’s Bloom festival at the Phoenix Park, Dublin over the June bank holiday weekend. Tara McCarthy, CEO of Bord Bia, the organisation that created Bloom, commented, ‘Since our first Bloom event in 2007, we have welcomed over one million visitors to experience the best of Ireland. Bord Bia is proud of how our Bloom festival has blossomed and continues to showcase our world-class horticulture and food sectors, both of which play a significant and sustainable role in Ireland’s story and economy.’


PhOTOgrAPhy By Fennell PhoTogrAPhy

• It took seven weeks to build Bloom.




Winner Winner show Garden Winners A total of 10 gold Medals were awarded to the Show gardens which are the central feature at Bloom 2018. In addition to the overall large garden category winner, the overall medium sized garden award went to garden designer linda McKeown for The enable Ireland Beyond Boundaries garden in association with Solus Bulbs, while the overall small sized garden medal was awarded to Peter O’Brien for his Enchanted Wood garden sponsored by Plan Eden. The Best Concept garden award went to Tünde Szentesi for her Mamma Mia! here We go Again garden sponsored by Universal Pictures International Ireland and Best Planting was awarded to Alan rudden for his life is rosé by Santa rita ‘living la Vida 120’ garden.

Nursery and floral art Winners Fresh from his Chelsea Flower Show medal win, Billy Alexander from Kells Bay gardens in Kerry received a gold Medal and ‘Best in Show’ in the nursery and Floral Pavillion. In the AoIFA Floral Art competition Adrienne Flood from Sutton Floral Art Club received the overall prize for her ‘In homage To…’ display while Shevan Doherty from Sandyford in Dublin received a gold Medal and Best in Category for her Botanical Art piece.

Postcard Gardens Sponsored by FBD Insurance, Bloom also hosts thirteen small but perfectly formed postcard gardens which were also judged. In this amateur postcard garden category, pupils from Villierstown national School in Cappoquin, Co. Waterford received ‘Best in Show’ for their garden which tells the story of a hurling game temporarily stopped to allow players to look for a sliotar somewhere in the futuristic Dromana gate garden.


The Sustainable Seafood Garden Gold Medal Winner and Overall Show Garden Winner Designed by Andrew Christopher Dunne Following a rigorous two-day judging process with an independent panel of expert judges, the award was announced as Bord Bia opened the gates on the 12th annual Bloom festival in the Phoenix Park, Dublin. The Sustainable Seafood garden tells the story of the journey from tide to table, of the fish and seafood that surround and inhabit this island. It boasts a large water feature with shimmering fish sculptures and an upcycled fishing boat which doubles as a kitchen.


No Limits GOAL’s Garden for Women Gold Medal Designed by Cornelia Raftery This garden celebrates the role of women in the developing world, and highlights some of the challenges they continue to face. It depicts a journey from bleak to blossoming, merging dry arid with lush tropical planting, all creatively assembled to represent some of the inequalities that women endure, and the efforts they are making to improve their lives and the lives of their families and communities. This garden represents women’s present and future story, by utilising the symbol of a pathway.

Marie Keating Foundation Sunsmart Garden Silver Medal Designed by Peter Cowell and Monty Richardson This vibrant yellow and orange garden has been created to raise awareness of the fact that skin cancer is the fastest growing cancer in Ireland and the importance of being SunSmart. Using trees and canopies for shade, along with umbrellas, hats and sunscreen, volunteers will be asking visitors to protect themselves in the sun. The garden’s meandering path and planting reflects the cancer journey, which includes a tranquillity corner where cancer patients can take time out during their treatment. A large balloon sun has been added to draw attention to the garden and the pervasive nature of UV rays, even on cloudy days. It floats high above a large oak tree which represents the end of the cancer journey and offers shade from the sun and an opportunity for visitors to ‘Tie a yellow ribbon around the old oak tree’ to show their support for those affected by skin cancer.


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Garden SecretS:

Knockpatrick Gardens Knockpatrick Gardens, a farmhouse garden, was started by Tim O’Brien’s grandfather about 100 years ago. He was passionate about unusual and colourful trees and shrubs, uncommon for a farmer at that time in Ireland. Gardener Profile:


im took over the farm, house and gardens in the 1960s and continued his grandfather’s and father’s passion for botanicals by planting and maintaining the garden. He was also keen to build shelter around his home which is situated on the side of a hill just outside Foynes, County Limerick. Tim was lucky enough to marry Helen, a teacher, who also shared his passion but was so busy teaching and rearing seven children that she didn’t fully realise her interest in horticulture until she retired about twenty years ago. Helen is the creative one in the partnership and has designed the layout and stone and water features while Tim loves to plant and do much of the labour intensive work. In the last twenty years Tim and Helen have experimented with hundreds of varieties of plants, shrubs and trees bringing them to where they are today – a botanical paradise in the middle of farmland in West Limerick.


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GardeninG Brief: The garden is approximately three acres in size. It is divided into several different areas: The Entrance and Avenue is where visitors are welcomed through an archway decorated with Wisteria and Laburnum intertwined, creating a perfect mixture of yellow and purple grape-like flowers. The Avenue is lined with Rhododendrons, Bananas, Azaleas, Chrinodendrons, Astilbes, Fig, Embothrium and Magnolias. The Courtyard is the old farmhouse yard which offers all the shelter of a walled garden. It is south facing and a sun trap for Roses, Oriental Poppies, Abutilons, Geraniums, Echiums and more. The garden is built on concrete with only about 10 inches of soil behind railway sleepers. A prize Freemontodendron (native to California) died after twenty years, following last winter’s frost. The Cow Path is where the cows used to walk back to the fields after milking. A stream runs through this area. It is damp, shaded and has rich acid soil. It is the perfect habitat for Candelabra Primulas, Hostas, Skunk Cabbage, Bamboos, Tree Ferns, Sinogrande Rhododendrons and a beautiful and exotic Lobster Claw. At the moment this area is covered in Echium seedlings which Tim and Helen are happy to share with visitors. The Scree Bed is a dry, sloping, south facing area which is the

perfect habitat for many alpines and perennials, Acquilegia, Dierama, Scilla Peruviana (Peruvian Lily), grasses, lilies, Eryngium Sea Holly Thistle. Adjoining the Scree bed is a lawn bordered with a row of red roses. There is also a large decking area near here overlooking a natural looking stone water feature and with a view of the Shannon Estuary and countryside. The Old Orchard area was created from an apple and pear orchard and is now home to many beautiful perennials including Lilies, Oriental Poppies, Delphiniums, a great collection of Eucomis, a dry stone moongate and a row of white, pink and blue Hydrangeas. The area also has a natural stone water feature and is overlooked by a rockery. The moongate leads to The Arboretum which is home to a large collection of Magnolias, Acers, spring daffodils and bluebells as well as a summer ‘wild flower garden’. Children love to hide under the large Weeping Ash. The area has a large collection of David Austen roses in different varieties and colours. The Hidden Garden lies between the avenue and the Arboretum and is sheltered with rich soil and home to more Rhododendrons, Azaleas, Meconopsis (Blue Poppies), Cardiocrinum Giganteum Lilies, Magnolias and Cornus.

Garden Maintenance: The garden needs a lot of maintenance but has kept the two Octogenarians fit in body and mind. There is constant weeding, pruning, planting, growing seedlings in the greenhouse, soil management, watering in hot weather and wrapping tree ferns and bananas in winter. They get some help from their children and grandchildren but most of the hard labour is done by their trusted and valued gardener Gigi, to whom they are eternally grateful. Helen and Tim love to share their passion for gardening with visitors, friends and family. The garden has opened up a varied and interesting world to them and they have met fascinating people from all over the globe. It has been such a gift but one which they have created for themselves and for those who have enjoyed its many treasures.

Gardener’S favourite: The Cardiocrinum Giganteum Lilies are a favourite. The bulbs were bought in Bodnant Gardens in Wales and took seven years to grow. They are beautiful and fragrant lilies that grow 6-8ft tall. There is a charge to see Knockpatrick Gardens, a percentage of which goes to the Cystic Fibrosis Ireland charity. Calling ahead is advised. Phone Limerick 069 65256. 43

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A Tree-mendous Honour for Historic Garden in Castlewellan Castlewellan Arboretum and Annesley Garden in County Down receives a prestigious award in recognition of its tree collection.


he International Dendrology Society (IDS) presented an IDS Plaque to Forest Service, who now own and maintain the garden as part of Castlewellan Forest Park. Speaking at the presentation, Forest Service Chief Executive John Joe O’Boyle said, ‘This is truly a prestigious honour which recognises the unique nature of the Castlewellan Arboretum and Annesley Garden. It is a place of unquestionable beauty in all seasons and particularly at this time of year as the blooms are emerging. It is also a place of great history, as many of the trees here are more than a century old and have grown through world wars, momentous events and times of great upheaval. The arboretum and gardens also have great scientific value as the specimens here represent a horticultural collection of unequalled diversity.’


Hundreds of species exist in the garden, including examples from across the world and local plants such as the Castlewellan Gold. It also boasts over 30 champion trees, which are considered leading examples of their species. Mr O’Boyle added, ‘Yet for all this unique environment does to stimulate the senses, it is also a place of calm and stillness. You don’t need to know the background or be a botanist to appreciate the splendour of Castlewellan Arboretum and Annesley Garden.’ Mr O’Boyle continued, ‘This award recognises the generations of care and attention which have gone into the gardens since its establishment in 1750, and particularly through the efforts of Hugh Annesley, the Fifth Earl Annesley creating here in Castlewellan something that has been much enjoyed by many through the decades.’

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Forest Service Chief Executive John Joe O’Boyle is presented with the IDS plaque by IDS chairman Giles Crisp.

‘Today, these gardens and the wider Forest Park thrive on partnership. Our work in Forest Service is supported by many organisations, and the community around us, all of whom have a part to play. The partnership here at Castlewellan between Newry, Mourne and Down District Council and Forest Service has opened up exciting new leisure and recreation opportunities with over 300,000 visitors coming to the Park on an annual basis. I have no doubt the partnership will develop further and the enjoyment of visitors will continue for many years to come.’ Thomas Pakenham, Vice-President of the IDS for Ireland, said how delighted the Society was to be able to present a plaque to Castlewellan. ‘In the 60 years since our foundation, we have only presented 16 plaques. This is the first given to an Irish garden or Arboretum. It demonstrates that this is a place that registers high on the global scale, a unique place to inspire the senses as well as a place for education and research. This is one of the most remarkable tree collections not only in Ireland but in the whole of Europe. Just a few miles from the Irish sea, sheltered by the mountains and surrounding woodland, Castlewellan Arboretum and Annesley garden contain a truly extraordinary number of trees of great rarity, beauty and size.’



Garden Redesign Caragh Nurseries is a family owned nursery providing a full service from design to planting for both domestic and commercial clients.


ituated on 55 acres on County Kildare, Caragh Nurseries has a huge range of wonderfully large trees, specimens, plants and shrubs. Jo McGarry of Caragh Nurseries recently underwent a redesign of her very own garden. Here Jo talks us through the process. ‘When you spend every day designing gardens for other people, your own can suffer from neglect so I was determined to invest a bit of time and energy into our own garden for the summer. I spent about three months thinking about it and planning it, it’s a labour of love when it is your own garden getting the detail right is really important.


First step is to clear the space by removing any unwanted old shrubs etc and levelling the areas, adding compost to the soil. You can then look at the hard landscaping you need to make your garden work for you in terms of eating or sitting outside. Having fallen in love with a grey porcelain stone while working on another garden, we decided to use that in our terrace so we went with that combined with a grey Mediterranean tile for the sides of the steps in order to soften the look. A contractor laid the stone and the tiles for us and we added a path in the stone down one side of the garden.

GA R DE N SPECI A L To break the look up we added a pebble path down the other side of the garden. I decided to leave the end of the garden in bark mulch rather than having more stone, it would also suit the wicker sculpture that I had planned in that space. More of our customers are looking for unusual focal pieces for their gardens so a sculpture from natural materials is ideal. With the stone and paths ready for planting, we laid a lawn using a roll out lawn. This is a great option if you need your garden ready for an event or you don’t have the patience to plant and wait for new grass. The key at this time of the year is to make sure that the sprinkler is on the lawn regularly. I am always asked how often, so my guide is three times a week to check all new trees and plants (and new lawns) for water. Another note on watering is that the first year, and especially over the summer, of planting is the critical time for water. It is when most plants dry out and then can either die or be susceptible to

damage, usually shown in browning, falling leaves and wind scorch. After the first summer they should be fine to mind themselves if they are in the ground, but in a pot they will need to be watered at least once a week during spring and summer and checked for drying out at other times. If ever we have an unusually dry period like that in May and June this year then best practice is adding a little extra water to avoid putting them under pressure. Next stage is the planting. If you are not sure how to go about this, have a read of a few home and garden magazines and take pictures of the look you would like to see in your own garden. Consulting a garden designer is always a good idea as we can advise you on what will work best with the aspect and size of your garden. Consider your borders and hedges first. You can introduce maturity and structure in the form of trees. Pick your shrubs for structure and form before adding the colour. I decided to plant whole blocks of buxus or box hedging to form a full solid square in my garden. I had a few ideas of what I wanted but when I had a wander around the nursery, the magnolias stood out and so I have three blocks with three Magnolias coming from the middle. Similar to accessories inside your home, always work with odd numbers of trees as this works best. I then added my colour in the form of herbaceous plants and grasses between each block of box, I picked seven or eight varieties. Always try to avoid planting only one of each thing as this will resemble a pincushion of dots. It’s far better to plant in threes, fives or seven and avoid forming cloud-like blobs. Make a triangular shape, or a narrow ribbon that looks like its waving in the wind. This is much more pleasing on the eye. We had the existing hedge already, a stunning Yew hedge that creates a good barrier and gives me privacy in the garden. I added a row of espaliered Hornbeam trees to the front to really give me added privacy as one of the bedrooms looks onto this garden. I also included three beautiful sculptured evergreen oak trees along the opposite side to the planting and a bonsai form clipped tree for real interest in a spot you only get glimpses of as you enter the garden. Adding outdoor furniture is the next fun step so try to find a table that fits with the design and maybe a sculpture such as the wicker one I included in my own garden. The final stage is lighting for the garden at night. Keep it simple, in our case I put two lights on the side of the house and five hidden spots to light key aspects in the garden.’ For more information on Caragh Nurseries visit or phone Kildare 045 879170.


G a r d e n special

Field of Dreams Transforming a rural desert into a thriving wildlife garden.


hen Bob Salisbury and his wife Rosemary moved back to County Tyrone from Nottinghamshire and bought a seventeen acre piece of land with the plan of building a house and establishing a garden, they soon noticed that the plot was devoid of animal or birdlife. Nothing moved and there was no birdsong, let alone a dawn chorus. ‘It was when we first spent time on the land we now owned that Rosemary asked whether I noticed anything odd. Eventually I gave up. ‘There is no birdsong,’ she said. ‘In terms of wildlife this land is barren.’ She was absolutely right!’ They decided to change that. They weren’t experts in gardening or wildlife; they didn’t have a large budget; they wanted some elements of a traditional garden within the site – it was going to be a challenge. Field of Dreams is the inspiring story of how Bob and Rosemary, both enthusiastic but amateur gardeners, set about transforming an unloved rural wasteland into a thriving, renowned wildlife garden. Through hard work, determination, and trial and error, they created a home for a host of birds and animals – including hares, owls, hawks, otter, woodcock and bats and many other species that hadn’t been seen in the area for years – and a haven too for them and their family. Frank, engaging and funny, this book shows how perseverance, unfailing optimism and a true love of the countryside – along with a formidable line-up of friends, family and willing local wildlife – can make a field of dreams a reality. Field of Dreams celebrates the Irish countryside and its wildlife with great warmth, humour and lightness of touch and is a book that reminds us of the profound importance of maintaining a connection with the land. From time to time, Bob and Rosemary invite gardening societies to enjoy their formal gardens, wildlife-friendly gardens, orchard and small lakes. Some 5,000 trees, planted a few years ago, complete the picture and already tower over the tallest of walkers. The various habitats – all joined by paths, steps or grassy areas – are home to a plethora of birds, insects and mammals.


Bob Salisbury and his wife Rosemary. Field of Dreams is published by Blackstaff Press and available now from all good bookshops. £9.99/€12.99.

‘This is an inspiring story of how to make a difference to our native wildlife by looking after a small piece of land with passion and hard graft. And what shines through is that in the end it’s not just nature that blossoms and thrives in such places. It’s the human spirit.’ Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall.

Pot Luck

Decorative pots and urns can act as focal points or statements in the home or garden and can reflect your personality, tastes and favourite colours!

From Next, silver face planter, £35/€40; set of two wood effect planters, £70/€80; silver effect planter, £40/€45.

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The benefits of container gardening


row colour, incredible edibles and fragrant plants in containers. If you’re not convinced about growing in pots and containers, here’s a list of reasons why you should get started right now no matter where you live: Versatile: Container gardens allow you to grow on a balcony, patio, courtyard, indoors on windowsills or rooms with adequate light, the deck of a boat, rooftop or high-rise building. More variety: You can grow plants that may not be suitable to grow in your garden soil and grow plants next to each other even though they may have different soil needs. Accessibility: Growing plants in containers makes gardening accessible to almost anyone including children, those with limited mobility and the elderly.



No weeding: Due to the small surface area, it’s unlikely weed seeds will find their way into pots. No heavy garden tools and equipment: Saves your back and money with less maintenance. Mobility: Plants in pots can easily be moved to suit your needs or to a more suitable sunny or shady location during the day. Change your look: Easily vary your colour scheme. As each plant finishes flowering or fruiting, it can be replaced with another. Portable meals on wheels: Suitable for renters, edible gardens in pots can move house with you.


Less disease problems: Most of the time plants that are grown in containers have fewer problems with diseases than plants grown in the soil. Fewer pesky pests: Insects that move from plant to plant in the garden are less likely to discover plants on a balcony, verandah or deck. Even if a problem is detected, you can isolate affected plants by relocating the pot until the problem is under control. Fertilising is easier: Keeping your plants wellfed is much easier when they are confined to a small area. Not as much nutrient tends to be lost or absorbed by neighbouring plants like when they are grown directly in garden beds. Time and labour saving: Less time is spent weeding, walking and watering when plants are grouped all in one place. Close to the kitchen: Convenience of only reaching out or taking a few steps to fresh home grown herbs and veggies. Street appeal: Well-designed container plants placed strategically at a home’s entrance can add value and make the home more welcoming. Reduce food miles: Growing even a few fresh herbs or salad vegetables in pots means less trips in the car or public transport to the shops or markets and saves money too.



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1 Pots from Idyll Home. £21/€24. 2 Vintage style fan embossed plant pot from The Contemporary Home. £14/€16. 3 Adjustable vertical climbing support from B&Q. £46/€52. 4 Oversized rattan planter from Cox & Cox. £150/€170. 5 Zinc effect planter with stand from Audenza. £72/€82. 6 Balconera rectangular self-watering rail planter from Wayfair. £36.99/€42. 7 Gradvis plant pots from Ikea. Pink, £4/€4.50. Grey, £6/€6.80. 8 Three fluted zinc planters from Cox & Cox. coxandcox. 9 Wilko cane support planter. £12/€13.70. 10 Foldable planter from Wilko. £6/€6.80.




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1 Menu wire plant pot from Nest. From £86/€98. 2 House Doctor low planter pots from Lagoon. £207.50/€236. 3 Aldsworth wooden plant stand from Cuckooland. £90/€102. 4 Skagerak Edge outdoor pot from Nest. £77/€55. 5 Garden Trading Malmesbury planters in galvanised steel. Set of three, £120/€137. 6 From Amara, textured ceramic plower pot, large £48/€55; Ferm Living concrete pot, small £32/€36. 7 Floral hanging basket liners (three) from House of Bath. £16.95/€19. 8 Bohemia enamel hanging planters. From £16/€18.






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Wet your plants

Metal or plastic, size and handle position, with or without sprinkle attachment, all things to consider when choosing the perfect watering can.

Lavender cachepot from Wayfair. £9.97/€11.30.

Standing duck watering can from Annabel James. £18.95/€21.50. Vattenkrasse watering can from Ikea. £9.




Ferm Bau watering cans from Cloudberry Living. £34/€38.60.

Garden Trading ten litre watering can in carbon. £40/€45.40.


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Garden Treasure Mossy terracotta garden fish ornament from The Farthing. £58.65/€66.

Brighten up your outdoor space with carefully chosen garden ornaments to suit your personality or simply bring life to a dull corner in your garden and convert it into a focal feature.

Two rusty sphere decorations from Cox & Cox. £40/€45.

Debenhams outdoor hanging tea lights. £8/€9.

Cast iron garden rake hook from Rex London. £12.95/€14.70.

Debenhams Broste lantern. £8/€9. Rabbit candleholder from Natalia Willmott. £50/€56.60.

Rustic style bird bath from Roman at Home. £8.50/€9.60.

Stone apple from Meeknest (14cm x 16cm). £10/€11.30. 54

ga r de n speci a l White arched window mirror from Melody Maison. £87.95/€99.50.

Buddha statue from Harvey Norman. £44/€50.

Faking It! This year, Harvey Norman has launched a faux flower shop, giving you something you can keep for life not just for a few days. You won’t believe they’re not real! With the Harvey Norman faux flower collection you can enjoy fine dining every evening by creating a beautiful centrepiece for your dinner table. Faux flowers are the perfect choice if you suffer seasonal allergies. Creating your wedding bouquet or festival flower crown with faux flowers that will stay in bloom all year round. The Harvey Norman faux flowers collection is available in all stores across the island of Ireland and online at

Faux hanging Viburnum spray, €8; faux Scabiosa spray, €8; faux Astrantia spray, €8.

Pink glass lantern from Homesense. £17.65/€19.99.

Faux succulent mix in round pot, €40.

Rusted classical head outdoor planter from Audenza. Set of two. £18/€20.30.

Glass vase, €30; faux flowers from €5.

Qeeboo rabbit chair from Smithers of Stamford. £179/€202.70.


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Large blue plant pot from Home Sense. £15/€16.99.

Small window box in Parisian Grey from Bay & Box. £40/€45.

Charcoal and white palm concrete pot from Gisela Graham London. £5.50/€6.20.

Elephant planter from George Home. £12/€13.


Sea green ombre pots from Annabel James. Set of five, £19.95/€23.

Rustic potting shed large seeding tray with pots from Meeknest. £25/€28.

Succulent string garden from Harvey Norman. £10.50/€12.

Ceramic plant pot from Oliver Bonas. £20/€22.60.

Modern handmade wooden planter stand from Oostor. £53/€60.

Ferm plant box in rose pink from Cloudberry Living. £179/€203.

Ceramic plant pot with stand from Oliver Bonas. £55/€62.

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The Real Deal? Everyone wants the perfect, lush lawn, but it can take quite a bit of maintenance to have it looking its best.

Real lawn.


ith lots of people now opting for an artificial alternative to a real grass lawn, we look at the pros and cons to help you make an informed choice for your own garden.

The first place to start is to ask yourself some questions about the uses of your lawn space and your lifestyle. Do you have time to dedicate to looking after your lawn every week? What will the space primarily be used for? Do you have children or pets that will use the lawn? Does your lawn area receive enough light, or is it in a shaded area? Once you have asked yourself these kinds of questions you will begin to see more of what you might need for your lawn. Now that you have a bit of an idea how it will be used, we will look at the pros and cons for both artificial lawns and real lawns.

Pros for real lawns • Overall real lawns are better for the environment. It has been said that an average sized lawn can capture up to 300 pounds of carbon per year. • Real lawns provide habitat to wildlife and are better for the ecosystem. • The aesthetic of a real, well maintained lawn is hard to beat. • Laying a real lawn is cheaper than artificial.

Cons for real lawns • Real lawns do not wear well with heavy footfall. • Cost to maintain a lawn is greater, when you consider mowing fuel/ electric, sprinkler cost, and any treatments. • It can take a fair bit of time to keep your lawn looking in top shape.

Pros for artifiCial lawns • There is little to no maintenance needed for an artificial lawn, so it is great if you don’t have the time or don’t want to commit to caring for your lawn. • Can cope much better with high traffic and copes better in the winter months. • Some artificial lawns can be laid straight onto concrete meaning you can lay a new lawn straight away without having extra work done. • Good for shady gardens where real lawns would not flourish.

Cons for artifiCial lawns • It costs a lot more to have an artificial lawn installed, so it would probably be better suited to smaller lawn areas if budgets were tight. • Artificial lawns are not great for sloped areas. • It has been deemed a hindrance for local wildlife and the atmosphere.

Carpetright Ambleside artificial lawn, £24.99 per m2.


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Grow your own Rainbow of Edible Flowers Growing and eating your greens, reds, oranges, yellows, blues, indigos and violets, has never been so easy!

Images 2, 8 by KeIth DIxon. Images 1,3,4,5,6,7 by DeIrDre PrInce.



hen I was growing up, eating five vegetables and fruits a day was considered a very healthy diet. according to the Department of health, nowadays, we should increase this to seven a day! eating our greens has always been important but there are so many other colours we can eat, which could make achieving a healthy diet more exciting. We are familiar with different colour fruit and vegetables but how about eating the brightly coloured flowers too. Why not try eating a rainbow of flowers instead? (Fig.1). buying edible flowers can be expensive and they need to be eaten the day they are purchased. growing edible flowers from seed is incredibly easy and they can be picked as you need them. If you have grown them yourself, you can also be assured that they haven’t been sprayed with any chemicals or have any harmful pests or diseases. edible flowers are a great way to add a bit of colour and flavour to any meal. take note that there are some flowers which are poisonous so make sure you know its edible before trying it. there are lots of good websites that will point you in the right direction.

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DeIrDre’s raInboW of eDIble floWers Red Carnation (Fig.2) Dianthus. carnation flowers are slightly spicy and tastes like a mild clove flavour and are a great addition to a salad or cakes. they are also delicious when added to ice cream, sorbets or even stir fries.




Pot Marigold (Fig.3) Calendula officinalis. these flowers are so easy to grow from seed and the bright orange colour will liven up any salad. they taste slightly peppery and spicy and can be added to breads and cakes too.

Yellow Pansy (Fig.4) Viola.the flowers of viola have a mild flavour and make a great addition to any salad. Pansies can be crystallised with sugar and used to decorate cakes or drinks.

Green Parsley, Mint, Basil etc (Fig.5) We are not stuck for inspiration of the many green leaves we can eat from the garden but don’t forget that the flowers of all of our common herbs are just as delicious and can pack a punchier taste than the herb leaf.

Blue Borage (Fig.6) Borago officinalis. borage is an annual with bristly leaves and stunning blue star-shaped flowers, dangling in bunches from its stem from may to september. the flowers taste sweet and can be used in drinks and on salads.

Indigo Sage (Fig.7) Salvia officinalis. the flavour of sage flowers is similar to the taste of the leaves but they add a splash of colour to any salad or stuffing mix. I love the purple colour and they look great in home-made vinaigrettes or sage infused oils.



Deirdre Prince MLA Dip Arch Tech MGLDA Landscape Architect. Phone Dublin 01 6350032. Mobile: 087 9916961. Winner of gold medal and Best in Small Garden category in Bloom 2012 in conjunction with Patricia Tyrrell.

Violet Chives (Fig.8) Allium schoenoprasum. my most favourite flowers to eat are chives. the colour alone is delicious. they are slightly oniony in flavour and taste (and look) great on a salad or even mixed in with scrambled eggs. Just remove the flower head from the top of the stem and separate the florets.


Lake View Egon and Richard have transformed this formerly rundown cabin into a stylish and comfortable retreat that makes the most of the stunning lake views.

Editorial and styling by PEnny Crawford-Collins. PhotograPhy by PhiliP lautErbaCh.


ack in 2010 when Egon inherited this wooden cabin he already had ideas on how best to maximise the idyllic setting and fantastic views of Lough Ree. ‘As a child I loved this cabin but remember thinking it was a bit dark and cramped and the windows weren’t big enough to enjoy the magical views’ says Egon. Determined to make the most of the fantastic location, Egon and Richard could see that the connection with the outside had to be improved, so larger windows and doors were needed to bring the landscape in. ‘We wanted the place to feel cosy, warm and inviting, and make it a real home, a place you would yearn to return to and not the holiday home it had been,’ explains Egon. ‘It took a few years to carefully plan out the layout and find the right builder.’


‘Most of the builders we approached didn’t understand what we wanted to achieve, most thought we should knock the cabin down and build a proper house’ he says. Eventually Egon got a recommendation from a family friend suggesting he should contact Liam Clancy a local builder, who turned out to be the perfect man for the job. ‘He really understood what we wanted and we had a sense that he would take pride in his work and that achieving a good result would be as important to him, as to us,’ explains Egon, who divided his time between London and Ireland to over see the works. ‘I went over once a month and stayed on at critical times when I knew decisions would need to be made or when I knew the workmen could do with a hand. The build and fit out took a year to be completed.’


The layout and flow between the rooms needed to be improved. The hallway and the number of doors meant there was a lot of wasted space, the couple decided that an open-plan living area would be the best way to improve the use of space. ‘The internal walls were knocked down to create a large open plan kitchen dining living space. The ceilings were removed to expose the rafters and to create a sense of vertical space, tongue and groove paneling was used to clad the walls, and the roof, floors and walls were heavily insulated,’ explains Egon. In addition a new kitchen was fitted, supplied by Jim Kelly and painted in Downpipe by Farrow and Ball. The original floorboards were all sanded and repaired where needed, and the whole cabin was re-wired and re-plumbed. The couple also decided to extend to the eastern side of the property to house two en suite bathrooms. ‘The bathrooms had been between the two bedrooms and were impossibly narrow and created a lot of dead space in the bedrooms,’ says Egon. So by adding the new extension they created much better use of the bedroom space allowing nice views through the bedrooms into the new bathrooms. ‘I’m a great believer in making interesting viewpoints through rooms rather than always closing doors.’

Making the cabin cosy all year round was an important factor in the revamp. All the newly fitted windows and full length sliding doors are triple glazed. These were all fitted on the lakeside of the cabin so the view can be enjoyed from the master bedroom and main living space. The couple also fitted an energy efficient heating system and a Charnwood woodburning stove with a boiler that heats the hot water and some of the radiators. ‘We also installed some electric radiators and a remote access system so we can control the heating and lighting when we are away. We can turn on the heating and have lights on before we arrive over from London.’


‘I’m a great believer in making interesting viewpoints through rooms rather than always closing doors,’ says Egon.

‘There is something very rewarding about making something beautiful and welcoming with a small sustainable footprint.’ When it came to the décor and furnishings Egon kept the overall palette neutral, with a selection of paints from Farrow and Ball, introducing lots of natural colours and textures and giving the overall look a bit of edge with the use of some bright colours and some unusual wallpapers. ‘I’m a big fan of mid century architecture and design. The cabin was built in the mid sixties so it made sense to furnish it with pieces from that period. I love the mix of old and new and it was great to find some auction pieces and some antique shop finds and match them with contemporary art and design,’ says Egon. 70

The couple have successfully transformed this cabin into a comfortable and functional home that they can enjoy the prospect of spending time in. ‘There is something very rewarding about making something beautiful and welcoming with a small sustainable footprint. It’s a home that offers us everything we need, we really love spending time here, it’s so relaxing to enjoy the beautiful views, you really feel the stresses and strains of modern life fade away,’ concludes Egon.


Create the look From the west meath home

A rundown, dark, lakeside cabin is now a bright, wood panelled, open-plan space combining a neutral palette with bright colours and unusual wallpapers.

Eames Plastic chair with dark maple base from Nest. £345/€393.

Kyoto serving tray from Wayfair. £19.99/€22.78.

Wesco Grandy bread bin from Red Candy. £64.95/€74. Narbeth lambswool throw from Made. £59/€67.

Tom Dixon Beat wall light from Houseology. £325/€370.

Saffron plush velvet cushion from Danetti. £25/€28.50.

Marseille accent armchair from Oak Furnitureland. £344/€392. 73

Character Building In the beautiful countryside of County Down sits the recently renovated home of Mike and Kate who moved to Northern Ireland to be closer to family. PhotograPhy by michael robinson


ike and Kate enjoyed renovating and redeveloping their previous homes in England and were keen to take on a bit of a project again. But firstly, they had to find a suitable property. ‘Our criteria were to find something to fit our lifestyle in retirement, probably a bungalow, with a nearby bus route, a pub and shops, and with a view of Strangford Lough. We got two of those – a bungalow and a pub!’ says Mike. Although from the north aspect of the house is a stunning view of the lough.


Before finding a house the two main things on Kate’s wish list were to have a large laundry and a small garden. ‘Instead I got a huge garden and had to create a laundry!’ laughs Kate. ‘When we went to view the house and I saw the size of the garden, my heart sank, and my back groaned!’ On seeing the house itself, Kate knew Mike would love the 60s influence and as Kate was trained as a horticulture and landscape architect she knew what was involved in the upkeep of the garden.

They decided that the house’s potential needed expert guidance and so, after some research, they chose architects Crockard Building Design to develop the scheme and Maranco to build it. ‘We developed an excellent relationship with all our contractors and worked collaboratively with them all, largely living onsite through the build. They were very longsuffering!!’ Back in the sixties Mike’s Mum and Dad designed

and built their own house and it was very much of its time, so Mike was brought up in a forward-thinking environment surrounded by teak furniture, Swedish design and new materials. ‘In the 60s, Scandinavian design was having a strong influence on British furniture and I have carried my love for it through my life,’ says Mike. In the several houses Mike has renovated, his love of 60s style continued, and it is clearly evident in this, his latest project.


Much of the furniture is inherited from Mike’s parents which fits the old part of the house beautifully.

Much of the furniture is inherited from Mike’s parents which fits the old part of the house beautifully. ‘We now have a combination of three styles – Mike’s parents, new classic pieces and certain items from Ikea – which all blend to create the present décor,’ adds Kate. ‘From the outset it was important to retain the building’s original style and character whilst adding up-to-the-minute technology. The house had been built to a high standard and the spaces

were well designed and thought out. For example, it already had underfloor heating – cutting edge for its time – filled cavities, and floor to ceiling windows. So, while we wanted to restore parts of the house, we didn’t want or need to make too many changes.’ Advice on energy management and control was provided by Element Consultants and the systems were almost invisibly brought into the 21st century. ‘We chose to retain the cedar ceiling in the

original living room and the stone partition housing the fireplace which we replaced with a wood burning stove. We kept the teak builtin shelving units in the living room and the bedrooms,’ Mike explains. ‘The original 1968 carpet remains in the hall – hard wearing and back in style! We also restored and retained the original 1960s light fittings, although they were all taken out and rewired.’


The original lamp still sits over the old dining table, plus similar, modern Louis Poulsen versions in the new space, which were sourced from Living Space in Belfast. ‘They were amazing at Living Space. Really thoughtful and helpful when choosing new furniture to complement and blend with the overall style of house,’ adds Kate.

When designing the extension, natural light was the most important consideration. ‘As the original house faced north we had to find a way to capitalise on the sunny aspect at the back of the property. Our solution was to build a wraparound extension on the south and west side of the house which allows the main living area to be south facing. With the site being quite exposed, a sheltered area was also created beyond the kitchen

end of the extension,’ says Mike. The result is a bright, open-plan living area which seamlessly blends with the outside through large sliding doors and lots of glass, leading onto a large terrace and garden. ‘We wanted the extension to blend with the existing building and the interior design to do the same. The most difficult decision in the build was the floor treatment which we felt should link the old to the new,’ says Kate.

‘After much discussion and laying of samples we chose the same large square porcelain tiles throughout the living space.’ ‘The original kitchen was quite a 60s feature, which again we left largely untouched and it is now used as a laundry cum storage room. ‘I love this room,’ says Kate, ‘I keep everything in here and all my appliances like the combimicrowave and Magimix always sit out but are


hidden away. This meant that our new kitchen could be in a more compact galley style since much of the storage is in the laundry room. It’s a big room, out of sight, in the middle of the house and accessible from everywhere!’ ‘We love our kitchen which was designed by Interior360. It fits so well into the new living space. Everything is accessible. We even kept the spice rack from the original kitchen – they

don’t make them like they used to!’ laughs Kate. ‘When the kitchen was being designed I didn’t want a sink in the island unit because, with the best will in the world, you always have a mess round the sink and the first thing you notice when you walk into our kitchen is the island. However, the one thing I did give in to, against my will, was the boiling water tap. The boys had to bludgeon me into

having this boys’ toy tap in the kitchen... and now I wouldn’t be without it!’ adds Kate. One of Mike’s great passions is his music system and rewiring gave him the chance to network the house to allow coordination and flexibility of the entertainment system. ‘I used to sell hi-fi equipment as a teenager in the 70s and much of the equipment from my student days is in the house.


I still use my old turntable in conjunction with the Sonos streaming system and some vintage speakers. It incorporates an audiovisual system with cinema, and speakers built into the external soffits around the terrace.’ Norrie and Gus at Down Aerials were terrific with this. When asked would they change anything Kate concludes, ‘I still don’t want a huge garden!’ ‘But no, we wouldn’t change a thing. We feel we’ve got it almost perfect for us.’

Create the look From the killinChy home

Mike and Kate add a wraparound extension to a 60s bungalow creating a bright, open-plan space while keeping the style of the original house. Curved walnut desk from Wooden Furniture Store. £599/€685.

Retro style rotary telephone from GPO Retro. £49.95/€57.18.

Onda coffee table from Distinctify. £314/€360.

Knoll Womb chair from Nest. £6,756.

Orange Louis Poulsen suspension light from Nedgis. £655/€750.

Alif outdoor two seater grey sofa from Made. £499/€570.


Sheer Passion With sheer passion, determination and clever creativity, Des and Kathleen transform a once derelict church in County Limerick into a modern masterpiece.

photography by mike mulcaire.


t was 30 years ago that Des discovered the derelict building of Cahernorry Church in County Limerick. Struck by the sense of neglect he was inspired to take on the significant task of transforming it into a family home. ‘I came across the property in 1988 and was attracted by the history and proximity to Limerick City,’ he recalls. While he hired builders to make the church and gardens habitable, the remainder of the work, from fitting the contemporary interior and reconfiguring the building into a home, was all done by Des himself.

The transformation, including an extension added in 2001, is testament to the hard work and creativity that Des has put in over the years. Des puts his love of design down to the passion of his parents, ‘My father, Jack, was an auctioneer and antiques collector, my mother Marian was a primary school teacher. Both loved design and had a strong sense of style which has inspired and influenced me from childhood.’ The seventh son in a family of eight boys and one girl, Des has always been interested in arts and crafts, ‘I developed a very early interest in art and craft activities and created an elaborate model railway display in my pre-teens. I loved to lose myself in creative pursuits.’ 92

After graduating from the Limerick School of Art and Design Des established Signcraft sign company and worked throughout Ireland for over 30 years, ‘The recession hit me hard so I have scaled back the type of projects I do to a more manageable scale and size. This gave me more time to work on Cahernorry church and gardens.’ Tackling a building of this nature obviously involved wading through a lot of red tape, however planning permission for the conversion was not a problem, ‘I had finished the conversion and extension before a preservation order was placed on the building, so we were lucky we had the freedom to do as we wanted at the time.’ 93

Des and his wife Kathleen were always conscious of the history of the building, ‘We believe the building was extremely fortunate to have us as custodians and us for having the good fortune to acquire it. We have always been conscious of the sensitivities of such a restoration and have been sympathetic and careful with design decisions.’ The plan for the ground floor was to keep everything as open as possible and to utilise the existing windows to flood the building with natural light. A large sun room/foyer leads to the main living space – the church proper – integrating the former altar as a kitchen with the sacristy repurposed as a utility room. The original entrance porch is now Des’s office, entered through the dining room. Upstairs, there is a master bedroom with en suite, two smaller bedrooms, a large main bathroom, and a separate shower room. The design of the interior takes its cues from steam-punk, and is full of interesting and unique features. The entrance foyer creates a welcoming tone with low couches, hidden neon lighting and ceiling speakers. The main living area with its Italian stone floor features a stunning stone fireplace and a ceiling made from laminate flooring boards. Underfloor heating runs throughout the ground floor into the showpiece kitchen. With dramatic arched windows running from floor-to-ceiling, distressed zinc panelling and white stone counter tops, it is a space that demands attention.


Des strived to minimise clutter, so he designed plenty of smart storage. The main bathroom features a strong religious theme including statuary, a repurposed oak altar, and a bath recessed into a red brick gothic arch. The master bedroom takes advantage of a large triangular front window to soak up views over the surrounding countryside. Des and Kathleen sought to find innovative ways to furnish the house, spending little in the process, ‘I like to find my own design solutions for making lighting and furniture. I very rarely buy things for the house – most of it is my own work. I’m an expert at repurposing and most of the fixtures and fittings are items that had a previous function to what we use them for today.’ Heating is provided by kerosene, with a solid fuel fireplace, while the abundance of glass downstairs helps with natural sunlight heating. ‘The house is highly insulated and very efficient – warm in winter, cool in summer.’


‘I like to find my own design solutions for making lighting and furniture. I very rarely buy things for the house – most of it is my own work.’

Des and Kathleen no doubt found themselves a beautiful home, however, it was through sheer passion and determination that it became such a great home.

With the interior complete, Des turned his attention to the gardens. ‘I took my inspiration and style from the period of 1862 when the church was built and introduced a subtle religious theme. I have been working on it since – it is almost complete – and will be opening to garden tours with ‘The Secret Gardens of Limerick’ next season.’ The gardens were such a success that family and friends suggested he enter RTE’s Super garden competition. His entry, ‘Rustica Hibernia’ was inspired by the rural Ireland of his childhood, ‘I won the competition and recreated the gardens at Bloom 2017. I won a silver medal and the viewers choice award.’ That success led Des to set up a new garden design business and has ambitions to go to the Chelsea Flower Show in 2018 or 2019.

The renovation and garden works were all achieved during a difficult period for Des, who battled chronic depression and addiction, ‘I have finally overcome dreadful times and have been reborn in so many ways. I am extremely proud of my family and myself for having survived such catastrophic events. I have lost too many friends who suffered similar experiences and feel blessed to be alive and grateful for my good fortune.’ Des and Kathleen no doubt found themselves a beautiful home, however, it was through sheer passion and determination that it became such a great home. Projects of this nature and magnitude are not for the faint hearted. You must be committed and determined to battle through to the end. While content to enjoy the fruits of their labour, and insisting that they would never move, Des isn’t ruling it out, ‘We could never move. Well we might trade up and buy a cathedral! I certainly would do this all over again but only if I had a lot of money as it would be on a far greater scale.’


Create the look From the limeriCk home

Des transforms this derelict church by singlehandedly fitting the contemporary interior and reconfiguring the building into a home.

Golden feather swirl wall mirror from The Farthing. £84.50/€96.

Janinge bar stool from Ikea. £100/€120.

Wilko purple open handled kettle. £20/€22.70.

Quilted velvet plum cushion from Blackbird London. £40/€45.60.

Skagerak deck chair from Nest. £549/€626.

Farlov corner sofa from Ikea. £1,295/€1,525.


PhotograPhy by derek robinson

Classical Contemporary This bright and shining kitchen was designed by Newcastle Design who have used clean lines and bespoke finishes to create a modern and stylish space.


esigner Ronan from Newcastle Design describes this client’s previous kitchen. ‘It was quite a dark space and wasn’t very contemporary. For their new kitchen they wanted a bright and airy space with bespoke cabinetry and modern appliances that would suit the family’s needs.’ After their initial consultation with Newcastle Design, the clients explained that they wanted a space that would be stylish as well as being homely. They understood that a relaxed atmosphere was necessary because they would be spending most of their time in the kitchen. The clients wanted the kitchen to be primarily bright and airy, so choosing the white finish on the bespoke cabinets has helped achieve this. Having a room that would be welcoming and a place where the family could spend time together was also crucial and the open-plan style with table and chairs was a great addition to the final design. Newcastle Design had previously designed various bespoke


pieces for other rooms of their home and the client was so satisfied with the craftsmanship and design, there was no hesitation that Newcastle Design would be the kitchen company that would create their new space. Structural changes came in the form of the room being extended, with large glass sliding doors and a large glass skylight being added. Once these changes were made, designer Ronan could get down to work creating the cabinets, island and helping the clients to choose their appliances. ‘I knew I had to design a kitchen that was both stylish but also practical for the family’s needs. I wanted to provide solutions to improve how they work, cook and socialise in the kitchen,’ explains Ronan. Tall cabinets housing excellent storage facilities are evident in the final design and the clean lines of the under counter ovens brings a streamlined effect to the kitchen.

The island brings the wow factor and the Silestone by Cosentino worktops on the island and the other countertops blend the colour scheme perfectly. Ronan was also able to design other elements to suit the family’s lifestyle such as the area in the hallway for storing coats, hats and shoes, which adds an extra stylish dimension to the home. Unique elements and design features include the contrasting timber flooring and the clean white bespoke cabinetry, which brings a Hamptons style finish to the overall kitchen. Hidden elements in the kitchen include an extraction system which is concealed in a bespoke unit and the fridge freezer which is hidden in the recessed cabinets. ‘It was a real pleasure designing this kitchen,’ concludes Ronan. ‘The clients were over the moon with the finished result and explained that it is everything that they wanted. They spend most of the time in the openplan space now which is great, and I feel I have created a stylish design with classic and contemporary elements that suits their needs perfectly.’

Kitchen Contacts KITCHEN DESIGN Newcastle Design Rathnew 040 465000 Worktops: Silestone® by Cosentino

ApplIANCES Fridge freezer: Miele Ovens: Miele Induction hob: Miele


Extractor: Miele Microwave: Miele Warming drawer: Miele Dishwasher: Miele

VISIT US ONLINE Offering high-resolution imagery, articles from the magazine and fully connected to social media, you’ll never miss a thing. Want to order a subscription or back issue? Need a list of quality suppliers for kitchens or appliances? offers all of these services and more bonus content, so what are you waiting for?

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by Henry Firth & Ian Theasby photography by lizzie mayson. 2018.

Henry and Ian are here to show you can eat delightful meals that are easy to cook and incredibly satisfying, all using just plants! Cauliflower Buffalo Wings

These delicious wings taste naughty but are actually healthy, since they’re baked. The spices are gorgeously deep and the panko breadcrumbs give a crunchy coating that contrasts nicely with the smooth cauliflower. It’s the perfect starter or dish to share with friends. We promise, you’ll love it. Serves 2–4 IngredIentS 1 large head of cauliflower 150g plain flour 300ml plant-based milk 2 tsp garlic powder 1 tsp onion powder 1 tsp ground cumin 1 tsp paprika ½ tsp salt ¼ tsp black pepper 100g panko breadcrumbs 120g dairy-free butter 200g buffalo hot sauce FOr tHe rAnCH SAUCe 150g cashew nuts 150ml plant-based milk 1 tbsp lemon juice 2 tsp garlic powder ¾ tsp salt ¼ tsp black pepper Handful fresh parsley 4 chives You will need Line 2 baking trays. Small saucepan of boiling water on a high heat. Food processor or liquidiser. MetHOd 1 Preheat oven to 180°C. 2 Add the cashew nuts to the pan of boiling water and boil for 15 minutes, then strain and run under cold water to cool slightly.

5 Tip the cauliflower into the batter and toss to coat. Transfer to the bowl of breadcrumbs, a few pieces at a time, and toss gently until well coated. Spread the cauliflower pieces over the lined baking trays and bake for 20 minutes.

3 Meanwhile, break the cauliflower into florets and cut the stem into bite-sized pieces.

6 Meanwhile, melt the dairy-free butter in the microwave and stir in the hot sauce.

4 Put the flour, plant-based milk, garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, paprika, salt and pepper into a bowl and whisk to a batter. Pour the panko breadcrumbs into another bowl and rub them between your thumb and fingers to break into slightly smaller breadcrumbs.

7 After 20 minutes, remove the tray from the oven, pour over the hot sauce and carefully roll the cauliflower around until the pieces are fully coated. Put the tray back in the oven for 20–25 minutes, until a sharp knife glides into the thickest parts of the cauliflower and the outsides

are really golden brown and crispy. Remove from the oven. 8 While the cauliflower is cooking, put all the ingredients for the ranch sauce except for the herbs into the food processor or liquidiser and whizz for 1–2 minutes until smooth and creamy. Transfer to a serving bowl. Finely chop the parsley and chives and add most of them to the sauce, reserving a little for garnish. 9 Serve the cauliflower wings while they’re still hot on a serving plate, sprinkled with the remaining herbs and with the ranch dip on the side. 113

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Curry-Crusted Sweet Potatoes

We’ve mixed up the traditional stuffed potato by putting our filling on the outside in this recipe. The flavours work a treat with a fresh lime crust contrasting really well with a delicious sweet potato. This is one to freestyle with and try different flavour combos. It works great in the oven or cooked on a BBQ. Serves 2 IngredIentS 2 large sweet potatoes (about 300g each) Vegetable oil, for greasing Salad leaves, to serve, optional 1 x portion Guacamole (shop-bought), to serve, optional For the curry paste 5cm piece fresh ginger 3 garlic cloves 1 fresh red chilli 1 lime 8 sun-dried tomatoes, plus 1 tbsp oil from the jar 30g fresh coriander (leaves and stalks) 40g desiccated coconut 10g panko breadcrumbs 1½ tsp salt 1 tsp garam masala 1 tsp ground cumin 2 tsp water


You will need Food processor. Baking tray. Foil. Preheat oven to 200°C. MetHOd 1 Prick the whole sweet potatoes with a fork and put them on a plate. Microwave on high for about 10–15 minutes until quite soft (alternatively put the potatoes in a 220°C oven and bake for 25 minutes, remove them from the oven and reduce the heat to 200°C). Remove and set aside to cool down slightly. Score the skins with a sharp knife. 2 Peel the ginger by scraping off the skin with a spoon. Peel the garlic. Rip the stem from the chilli, cut it in half lengthways and remove the seeds if you prefer a milder flavour. Cut the lime in half and squeeze the juice into the food processor, catching any pips in your other hand. Put all the rest of the curry paste ingredients into the food processor and whizz to a thick paste. 3 Cut 2 squares of foil big enough to fully wrap your sweet potatoes in and grease one side with oil. Take half the curry paste and use your hands to encase one of the potatoes with a thick layer of paste. Repeat with the second potato. 4 Tightly wrap the sweet potatoes in the foil squares, put on the baking tray and bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes. Take the sweet potatoes out of the oven, remove the foil and serve with a small side salad and a big spoonful of guacamole, if using.

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Jackfruit tacos

Jackfruit is a fantastic and crowd pleasing ingredient with a fibrous texture and flesh that soaks up flavour brilliantly, but it can be hard to find. Try your local Asian supermarket and be sure to choose green jackfruit in water. These tacos are perfect finger food, combining tasty jackfruit with a Mexican combo of zingy salsa and creamy guacamole. Serves 6 IngredIentS 1 serving Guacamole 1 serving Salsa 1 400g tin young green jackfruit in water 1 white onion 4 garlic cloves 1 tbsp vegetable oil 1 tbsp maple syrup 100ml vegetable stock ½ tsp Tabasco sauce 4 limes 1½ tsp ground cumin 1½ tsp smoked paprika ½-1 tsp chilli powder ½ tsp salt Handful fresh coriander 12 crunchy taco shells MetHOd 1 Place a deep frying pan with a lid on a medium heat 2 Tip the jackfruit into a sieve or colander to drain off the excess water and pat the pieces down with a clean tea towel to dry them off. Cut into 5mm strips and put to one side. 3 Peel and slice the onion and garlic very thinly. Warm the vegetable oil in the frying pan. Add the onion and garlic to the pan and stir with a wooden spoon until soft and translucent. Add the jackfruit, maple syrup, vegetable stock and Tabasco sauce. Cut 1 of the limes in half and squeeze in the juice of one half, catching any pips in your other hand. Stir until the jackfruit is well covered. 4 Put the lid on the pan, turn down the heat and let it simmer for 7-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the liquid has been absorbed into the jackfruit. Take the lid off the pan and sprinkle over all the spices and the salt. Stir until the jackfruit pieces are well covered and taking on the colour of the spices. Transfer the jackfruit pieces to a serving dish. 5 Slice the remaining limes into wedges and remove the leaves from the coriander by running your thumb and forefinger from the top to the base of the stems (the leaves should easily come away), saving the stalks for another recipe. Serve the taco shells, jackfruit, guacamole, salsa, lime wedges and coriander leaves on individual plates and let everyone build their own tacos.


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COMPETITION Ireland’s Homes Interiors & Living Magazine together with Harper Collins are offering five readers the chance to win a copy of Bosh! worth £20. Total prize value £100.

How to enter answer the following question: What is the main ingredient of the buffalo Wings?

Spanish Beach Churros

We remember eating churros on the beach in Spain as kids and decided we needed to recreate the memory (even if we are in East London in the rain!). This is such an easy dish to make, you could even make a giant churros snake if you were feeling adventurous. Trust us, try this, you will thank us! Makes 12–15 IngredIentS 215g sugar 2 tsp ground cinnamon 1½ litres + 2 tbsp vegetable oil (preferably flavourless, like sunflower) 500ml water ½ tsp salt ½ tsp vanilla extract 240g plain flour For the Chocolate Sauce 100g dark chocolate 185ml plant-based milk 40g sugar ½ tsp vanilla extract You will need 1 small saucepan on a low heat. 3 disposable piping bags or 1 clean reusable piping bag. 1½cm star-shaped nozzle. Large deep saucepan. Cooking thermometer, optional. Baking tray lined with parchment paper. Medium saucepan. 116

Line a large plate with a double layer of kitchen paper MetHOd 1 First, make the chocolate sauce. Break up the chocolate and put it into the small saucepan with the plant-based milk, sugar and vanilla. Stir to a smooth sauce. Transfer to a serving bowl. Set aside 2 Sprinkle 115g sugar and the cinnamon over a large plate and set aside 3 If you are using disposable piping bags, pile them up and roll them together to make one thick cone (a single bag is likely to split). Cut a small hole at the tip, insert the piping nozzle and push it all the way down to the bottom so that it sticks out of the hole. Spray or brush the inside of the bag with a little oil. If you are using a reusable bag, insert the nozzle and coat lightly with oil. 4 Pour the 1½ litres of oil into the large saucepan so that it comes a third of the way up the sides of the pan. Heat the oil to about 180°C, or until a wooden spoon dipped into the oil sizzles around the edges 5 Meanwhile, put the water, the remaining 100g sugar, the 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, salt and vanilla extract into the medium saucepan and place on a high heat. Bring to the boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Remove from the heat, add the flour and beat vigorously with a wooden spoon until it forms a thick, sticky dough (you’ll need to use a little elbow grease). Spoon the

send your answer, name, address, email and phone number marked Bosh! Competition to ireland’s homes interiors & living magazine, po box 42, bangor, County Down, bt19 7aD or ashgrove house, Kill avenue, Dun laoghaire, County Dublin or enter online at: Entries must be received no later than 5pm, Friday 3rd August 2018. One entry per household. One separate email / postcard for each competition. Judge’s decision is final. No cash alternative. Prizes are non-transferable. If you would like to receive our monthly Newsletter please include your email address with your entry. View our privacy policy at

mixture into the piping bag. 6 Pipe 6 churros on to the lined baking tray, each one about 10–15cm long. Carefully transfer the churros to the hot oil (if you’re feeling brave you can pipe them straight into the oil). Fry for 8–10 minutes, until golden and cooked through. Use a wooden spoon to move them around if they stick together. 7 Remove the churros with a slotted spoon and lay on the kitchen paper for 1 minute to drain. While they’re still hot, transfer to the cinnamon sugar and roll until completely covered. Repeat with the remaining dough – you may need 3 or 4 batches. Serve with chocolate sauce.

e at & d r i n k

food for

Thought Some foodie inspiration this August.

Who’s Cooking?

Nadiya returns to your TV and your kitchen. You can get the official companion cookbook, featuring the beautiful, simple and must-try recipes from her upcoming BBC TV series Nadiya’s Family Favourites. Nadiya shares the food she loves to cook and eat with her family and friends, offering fast, easy and delicious new recipes for every kind of day. This cookbook shows you how to create the perfect dishes to complement the moments we all love, from days out with friends to big get-togethers and lazy weekends at home, as well as simple and satisfying solutions for busy weeknights and speedy showstoppers for impromptu guests.

Peach Melba Cooler Non-alcoholic!

IngredIents 1 cup granulated sugar 1 cup water 1 medium, ripe peach (about 6 ounces) ½ pint fresh raspberries (about 6 ounces) 1 bunch fresh lemon thyme (about 30 sprigs), rinsed and woody ends trimmed 1 litre cold sparkling water Ice Method 1 Bring sugar and water to simmer in a saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally until the sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature. Transfer syrup to a small container.

newsflash! Dingle Original Gin, from the award winning Dingle Distillery, has grown in popularity year on year since its launch in 2012. Dingle Gin, London Dry in style, has a unique fresh floral character resulting from a carefully selected mix of botanicals including rowanberry, fuchsia, bog myrtle, hawthorn and heather, for a real flavour of Kerry. Winner of ‘Best Irish Gin’ in 2017, Dingle Gin is best served with large cubes of ice, a wedge of fresh orange and a sprinkling of juniper berries. (Dingle Original Gin 70cl, 42.5%, RRP €37, available nationwide.) ‘Dingle Gin is the perfect summer pour’, said Elliot Hughes of Dingle Distillery. ‘Crisp, complex and very refreshing, a Dingle G&T is never more popular than when the sun is shining. Already embraced by Irish gin afficionados, it’s now being enjoyed by more and more drinkers across Europe and the US.’ In Ireland, a Dingle Gin & Tonic can be enjoyed in most quality bars and restaurants.

in season Strawberries are thriving at this time of year, as you will know if you have any plants in the garden. There is nothing quite like a strawberry picked straight from nature and enjoyed as it is, but there are plenty of ways to enjoy this versatile berry, beyond dipping them in chocolate or cream! Adding strawberries to salads is a fantastic way to sweeten things up, and you can even make a strawberry salsa to go with burgers or hot dogs – it is not as strange as it sounds!

time to dine... Al Fresco!

Sophies at the Dean Dublin Marco Pierre White’s Courtyard Bar & Grill Dublin Terrace Bar at Aghadoe Heights Kerry Terrace at Robinson & Cleaver Belfast The Daily Grind Some stylish pestle and mortars! Marble pestle and mortar from Ian snow. £25.99/ E29.50.

2 Cut peach into slices. Add the slices to the syrup and stir. Seal container and refrigerate for at least four hours. 3 When ready to serve, strain peach syrup over a bowl and add half the raspberries and half the thyme sprigs. Smash the raspberries a bit to release juices. 4 Strain mixture into glass and add sparkling water and ice. Garnish with peach slice. *Sparkling water can be substituted with Prosecco.

Joseph Joseph orb design pestle and mortar. £28/E32. normann Copenhagen pestle and mortar. £75/E85.


lifest y le

for the

Ladies Take yourself glamping or catch a show this summer.

treat yourself... This Month:

Wish list...

Portsalon luxury Camping, Donegal

A poolside outfit for sunny climates.

In Brief Portsalon Luxury Camping is located in a stunning coastal setting in the North of Donegal.

Palm print kimono by F&F. £20/€28.


Black swimsuit from M&Co. £32/€45.

At Portsalon you can stay in one of five luxury yurts, fully equipped with king size beds, lovely cosy interiors and a wood burning stove. You will be surrounded by breathtaking scenery, and there is no shortage of things to see and do in the area, or you can simply relax in a beautiful setting. Nearby you will find the three-mile long, blue flag sandy beach at Portsalon to enjoy. So why not do something a bit different this summer and go camping without all the hassle and all of the comfort?

Contact details

Culture Club Wicked at Bord Bias Energy Theatre, Dublin. 17 July - 26 August So much happened before Dorothy dropped in! Long before that girl from Kansas arrives in Munchkinland, two other girls meet in the Land of Oz. One – born with emerald green skin – is smart, fiery, and misunderstood. The other is beautiful, ambitious, and very popular. How these two unlikely friends end up as the Wicked Witch of the West and Glinda the Good Witch makes for the most spellbinding musical in years.

Tortoiseshell sunglasses from Next. £14/€19.50. Straw bamboo handle bag by Maison De Nimes. £49/€56.50.


Destination Abroad:

Rhythms of the South For a fantastic fly drive holiday to suit the music lovers, why not experience live jazz, blues and country in the cities where they were born.

New Orleans, Louisiana Start off your American adventure in New Orleans, the melting pot of culture that has created one of the USA’s most vivacious and charismatic cities. It is known for its round the clock night life, vibrant music scene and French, African and American influenced cuisine. The Big Easy, as it is often referred to for its laidback way of life, is located in Louisiana state on the Mississippi River and has live music around every corner, from traditional blues to R’n’B and has a bustling night life that will have something for everyone. When there, the French Quarter is a must visit,

as the city’s oldest and most famous neighbourhood it is steeped in history – but there is plenty of new mixed with the old. Enjoy boutiques, eateries and antique shops while meandering around this beautiful part of town. If you want to experience true home grown jazz and funk, head to Frenchmen Street where you will be spoilt for choice in live music, great food and cocktails. Be sure to visit one of the many museums there is in the city, and of course no trip to New Orleans would be complete without sampling its most famous sandwich, the Po’ Boy! 119

D e s t i n At i o n A b r oA D : r h y t h m s o f t h e s o u t h

Natchez, Mississippi Next stop on our road trip is into Mississippi to visit the historic city of Natchez on the banks of the river. It is just three hours drive out of New Orleans, so it makes for a great stop off on your journey. Natchez was originally founded by the Native American Natchez tribe, and so is steeped in valuable American history. Why not sample some of the locally brewed rum, wine or beer, or take a tour of some of the many famous houses, inlcuding the mansion from Gone with the Wind. For something a bit more laid back, you can take a paddle in the Mississippi river on a guided canoe tour.

Memphis, Tennessee Onwards north to Memphis, the home of the blues and the King of Rock’n’Roll himself. Music lovers will lose themselves in this fabulous city, as will any barbecue connoisseur! This city is understated in its charm, with mansions built beside small city homes, but there is no doubt it is captivating. Even if you aren’t a massive Elvis fan, a visit to Graceland is a must for anyone passing through Memphis. You take a tour bus over to the mansion where John Stamos voices your tablet tour that takes you through the house, including the famous jungle room, around the grounds and concludes at the memorial fountain where Presley and his parents are buried. Stand in the very same studio as some of music’s greats at Sun Studio. Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley and BB King, to name a few, all recorded in the famous walls of this Memphis institution. It is tucked into the street in such a way that you would easily miss it, and inside offers the same unimposing environment. You can stand in the very spot where Elvis brought a new sound to the world, and even hold the microphone, and discover the magic behind Cash’s ‘Walk the Line’. Then when the days tour ends, it goes back to its night job as a working studio. A visit to the National Civil Rights Museum is a must visit. It won’t take you a whole day to visit this profoundly moving museum, built inside the very same motel building where Martin Luther King Jr was assassinated, but the effect of your visit will be hard to shake. It’s an incredibly difficult part of American history to delve into in detail, but rarely will you find a museum as carefully constructed and as thorough as this one. Last but not least, no trip to Memphis would be compelte without taking in the sights and sounds of Beale Street, where the city and its music scene really comes alive. 120

D e s t i n At i o n A b r oA D : r h y t h m s o f t h e s o u t h

Nashville, Tennessee Welcome to the home of Country music! A three and a half hour drive out of Memphis and you are into another amazingly unique and vibrant city of music and culture. For country music fans and wannabe songwriters all over the world, a trip to Nashville is the ultimate pilgrimage. Since the 1920s the city has been attracting musicians, who have taken the country genre from the ‘hillbilly music’ of the early 20th century to the slick ‘Nashville sound’ of the 1960s to the punk-tinged alt-country of the 1990s. Explore the many musical attractions the city has to offer, from The Grand Ole Opray to Jack White’s niche record label. Take a walk down music’s hall of fame in downtown Nashville through one of the dedication museums; learn all about Johnny Cash or Willie Nelson as they delve into their own personal journeys. Head toward the neon lights of Broadway for round the clock music, seven days a week, and be sure to check for festivals before arrival as there is usually something going on to enjoy in the city.


Destination Ireland:

Festivals Summer is in full swing, and Ireland is in full bloom with events and festivals taking place the length and breadth of the country. Take the opportunity to visit parts of the country that perhaps weren’t on your radar this August.

All Together Now Festival: 3rd – 5th August Ireland is blessed with a number of music festivals throughout the year, but one of the newest and most intriguing is the All Together Now festival set in the grounds of the spectacular Curraghmore Estate. PLaying host to 10 stages including an alfresco ballroom, the 3000 acre site will play host to some of the biggest names


from the world of music, comedy, theatre and art including Feet Foxes and Villagers alongside appearances from Tommy Tiernan and David McSavage. The festival promises to be a family friendly affair with a strong focus on entertainment for children with creative workshops, a scavenger hunt and much more.

D e s t I n at I o n I r e l a n D : F e s t I Va l s

Kilkenny Arts Festival: 9th – 19th August While initially the main focus of the festival was classical music, today the Kilkenny Arts Festival has grown to include poetry and literature. Boasting some of the biggest names from around the world including Nigel Kennedy and Alfred Brendel, the combination of Kilkenny’s historic surroundings and unique musical collaborations create a magical experience for visitors. For 2018, alongside performances of A Midsummer Night’s Dream and new works from Irish Modern Dance Theatre, for the first time the festival will stage a full scale opera: the first ever production of Monteverdi’s The Return of Ulysses in collaboration with Opera Collective Ireland and Akademie fur Alte Musik Berlin.

Puck Festival: 10th –12th August Laying claim to being Ireland’s oldest festival, the Puck Festival in Killorglin, County Kerry has taken place every August for over 400 years. While the origins of the fair have been shrouded in the mists of time, there is no doubting the continued vitality of the fair that attracts visitors from all over the country. With a craft fair, bands, activities for the kids as well as plenty of food and drink on offer, the entertainment goes on long into the night.

A Taste of Donegal Food Festival: 24th – 26th August Attracting food lovers from all over the world, Donegal Town hosts some of the most renowned chefs from across Ireland for a weekend of pure gastronomic indulgence. Over 120 exhibitors will showcase the finest local produce from confectionary to craft beer, with an abundance of samples to satisfy the taste buds. Guests lined up for 2018 include ‘The No Salt Chef’ Brian McDermott, Tv3’s Edward Hayden and Catherine Fulvio. Complementing the fantastic food on offer will be music, comedy and street entertainers located throughout the city.


D e s t I n at I o n I r e l a n D : F e s t I Va l s

Fleadh Cheoil: 12th – 19th August This years Fleadh takes place in Drogheda with its usual array of musicians showcasing the very best traditional music. With a host of famous names attracting over 400,000 visitors every year, the Fleadh is a celebration of Irish music and the largest cultural festival in the world. 2018 marks the first time the festival has visited Drogheda and the city is determined to put on a spectacular programme of events to entertain visitors from all over the world.

Waterford Walls: 17th – 26th August A weekend stay in Waterford is normally a weekend well spent, with plenty to see and do in Ireland’s oldest city. The Waterford Walls street art festival is maybe just the excuse you need to visit the city and explore the medieval streets. Now in its fourth year, the festival is a showcase not only for some of the worlds greatest street artists, but also for the city itself with the aim to transform some of the more neglected parts of Waterford. With the opportunity to watch the artists in action as well as workshops, guided art trails alongside live music and food stall, the festival is a unique way to celebrate the city.


ADVERTISE IN IRELAND’S LARGEST SELLING MONTHLY INTERIORS MAGAZINE Now in our 24th anniversary year Ireland’s Homes Interiors & Living Magazine is firmly established as Ireland’s original and best-selling monthly interiors title. Why advertise with Ireland’s Homes Interiors and Living?


Have you heard...

“I’m just in love with Neptune” Holly, Co. Dublin - May 2014 NEPTUNE STORES:

Neptune by Browsers Co Limerick 061 414490 Neptune by Global Village Co Dublin 01 4055035 Neptune by Malone & Smyth Co Fermanagh 028 67741885 Neptune by The Orchard Co Kildare 01 6288903

PREMIER PARTNERS: IRELAND Blackrock Kitchens Co Dublin 01 2108005 Lots Co Kerry 066 7127117 Country Kitchens Co Kildare 045 864 169 Castle Cabinets Co Kilkenny 056 7764800 1933 Furniture Company Co Meath 046 909 3012 Deanery Furniture Co Offaly 050 547066 N. IRELAND Belfast Grosvenor Kitchens 028 9068 5363 Ireland Homes and Interiors_INTERIOR_DPS_OS_JULY_2014.indd 2 PICTURED:

Eva Grand Sofa €2,650, Tolsey Flint Grey Rug €400, Henley 120cm Rectangular Coffee Table €995, Olivia Armchair €1,150, Cushions €55, Accessories by Neptune


Eva Grand Sofa €2,650, Tolsey Flint Grey Rug €400, Henley 120cm Rectangular Coffee Table €995, Olivia Armchair €1,150, Cushions €55, Accessories by Neptune

Ireland Homes and Interiors_INTERIOR_DPS_OS_JULY_2014.indd 2 N. IRELAND Belfast Grosvenor Kitchens 028 9068 5363 Castle Cabinets Co Kilkenny 056 7764800 1933 Furniture Company Co Meath 046 909 3012 Deanery Furniture Co Offaly 050 547066 PREMIER PARTNERS: IRELAND Blackrock Kitchens Co Dublin 01 2108005 Lots Co Kerry 066 7127117 Country Kitchens Co Kildare 045 864 169 NEPTUNE STORES:

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Neptune by Malone & Smyth Co Fermanagh 028 67741885 Neptune by The Orchard Co Kildare 01 6288903 Neptune by Browsers Co Limerick 061 414490 Neptune by Global Village Co Dublin 01 4055035

TO fIND OuT MORE cONTAcT uS AT OR cALL 028 9147 3979

Have you heard...


Holly, Co. Dublin - May 2014

“I’m just in love with Neptune”


Irish Getaways

The g Hotel, Galway

We enjoyed a short break at ultra modern, 5-star The g Hotel in Galway.


s we arrived in the heart of Galway at The g Hotel, we parked our car in the convenient underground car park – which couldn’t have been easier. Taking the elevator from the carpark and stepping out straight into the amazing Grand Salon lounge, we were pleasantly surprised by the beautiful eclectic décor that we were greeted by and there was a great buzz as other guests enjoyed midday drinks. We made our way through to reception, which again was stunning in its ultra modern style – it is instantly clear that the design in the hotel is incredibly unique – we couldn’t help but look around in awe. We were shown to our luxury room by friendly staff, and enjoyed the handmade chocolates and cupcakes on arrival. The hotel itself is situated on a main road, but it is very quiet. Our room was at the front of the hotel with a beautiful view over Lough Atalia to enjoy. The décor was in keeping with the rest of the hotel, trendy and luxurious, and adorned with a very calming oyster toned wallpaper combined with natural toned furniture. The facilities in the room were great, and we enjoyed the comfortable lounge area after a long drive. The bathroom was incredibly luxurious, with a freestanding tub and a TV to watch while you relax, as well as a fabulous double shower. There is nothing more we could have wanted! On our first night we decided to see what Galway City had to offer, with The g Hotel a good distance for a walk we took ourselves to Eyre Square, the main shopping area in Galway. Just past Eyre Square is the nightlife area with plenty of traditional Irish shops, restaurants, bars and winding streets to adventure down. Back at the hotel we freshened up for dinner at Restaurant Gigi. The restaurant has a unique atmosphere and style, with oversized shell shaped banquettes in rich purple velvet and accompanying jewel-coloured Andrew Martin chairs. There are two menus to choose from, and we opted for the à la carte Indulge menu and we were not disappointed! The menu covers most tastes, and the descriptions were very detailed and clear. The staff had fantastic knowledge of everything on the menu and were able to recommend complementing wines with our chosen dishes. The food was absolutely divine, with exceptional attention to detail in each dish. It comes as no surprise that Restaurant Gigi is the proud holder of 2AA culinary rosettes and holds the award for Best Hotel Restaurant in Galway. The g Hotel is also home to the luxury spa, ESPA at the G. There are many treatments on offer along with a thermal spa experience. We decided to take advantage of the relaxed thermal spa area and enjoyed the vitality pool, steam room, sauna and heated loungers. It is a truly great way to unwind before or after a busy day’s exploring the city. Breakfast was very relaxed with a great range of choice on the menu, from pancakes to full Irish breakfast and an amazing buffet on offer with everything you could possibly want. Our stay at The g Hotel was a unique experience – we loved the glamour at every turn and the eclectic mix of modern stylings throughout. Phone Galway 091 865200.


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