Design, Interiors & Lifestyle Blog
Design, Interiors & Lifestyle Blog
Style your home like a stylist

I was recently asked by the lovely team at Shurgard, a self storage facility, to reveal my 5 top tips on how to style your home like a stylist. Here is a photo of my coffee table. I thought I’d show you one of the tips on styling a coffee table, in steps:

Step 1 – Arrange coffee table books in piles.

Keep the books closest to the sofa, in a vertical pile, so your guests can see the cover images. Keep the piles furthest away from the sofa,in a horizontal stack, so you can show off the colourful book spines.

Step 2 – Add a scented candle.

Place the candle on top of the books. It becomes a decor feature and makes the room smell lovely when lit.

Step 3 and 4 – Create space between the piles of books.

Add a few decorative glass dishes in the space between the books. I’ve placed some candies on the plate for guests, and added a few trinkets to inject some personality.

Step 5 – Add a pretty coaster for drinks.

Step 6 – Add  some fun and colourful objects.

I’ve added a bright pop of yellow with a pineapple dish.

Step 7- Add a piece of art.

I’ve placed a colour blocked, hand made ceramic bowl, bought from Oregon, on the table.

Step 8- Add some plants.

I’ve placed a cute cactus in a pot, to add some fresh greenery.

This is only one of my 5 tips on how to style your home like a stylist.

Do pop over to Shurgard’s blog now to see my other 4 easy and affordable steps for transforming your home.

Hope you enjoy it. I will be back soon with more interiors posts. Wishing you a lovely week ahead.

( Photography and styling are by Geraldine Tan, editor of Little Big Bell.)

How to create the perfect outdoor Summer garden party with Philips Lighting.

Warm Summer evenings are meant to be enjoyed, and even more so, now that I have spruced up my outdoor space. Philips Lighting Last weekend, I decided on an impromptu garden party for my extended family.  We all decided to make a Summer dish each. We had on offer, a spicy herb Cauliflower with olives salad, a Citrus fennel with dried grapes salad and an asparagus, pine nuts with Parmesan salad. We also had kebabs and roast lamb, grilled on the outdoor barbecue.
One of my sisters made a tasty homemade strawberry tart and Summer fruit drizzle cake. I wanted to create the perfect ambience for a chill out party.

I added lots of colourful cushions to the outdoor sofa and a soft throw, for when it got chilly.

As we would be sitting outdoors and chatting into the evening, the outdoor lighting to set the mood had to be right.

I recently installed a pair of myGarden wall lights by Philips Lighting which you can see mounted on the deck wall. The wall lights were LED, in die cast aluminium and glass. They were slim, elegant and gave out a warm glow via the glass plate. This was the perfect soft lighting to set the mood.

The other great news is, that these luminaires can survive the coldest nights, the wettest days or the hottest evenings.  I had decorated the seating area with a variety of flowers and greenery.

I didn’t want to lose the effect of the decor, so I decided to use a few strategically placed Philips Lighting portable myGarden lanterns.

The lanterns came in a variety of colours, and I had them in green, red and white. The lanterns were specially designed for outdoor use and were waterproof. They were also USB chargeable. What’s amazing about the lanterns, were that they had different light modes.

There was the powerful light mode feature which provided a warm, white light. This was bright enough to allow for outdoor night time reading.

The light was also dimmable, to allow mood setting, and there was a candle mode which made the light flicker. I could have sat out in my garden all night. We had a wonderful time chatting and eating a lovely dinner. Look at how beautiful the sky looked that night.

After our guests had gone home, our immediate family snuggled up on the sofa. It was a warm night, but there was a gentle breeze blowing.

It felt so good, just like being on holiday in a warm Mediterranean country. Finally, isn’t it great to know that Philips Lighting LEDs deliver the same light quality throughout their lifetime and save on energy?

Hope you’ve enjoyed the post. Wishing you a wonderful evening.

(All photography and styling are by Little Big Bell. This is a sponsored collaboration with Philips lighting. All views are my own).

An interview with Viveca Olsson, the creative leader behind IKEA’s STOCKHOLM range 2017.

It’s wonderful now that Summer is here. We have been lucky with the warm and dry weather in London.

I’ve enjoyed spending more time in our garden. It’s actually quite therapeutic to have that quiet time with nature, to unwind and think.

We’ve invested in an IKEA outdoor sofa, and I’ve decided to style it with the new IKEA STOCKHOLM range.
Here are some of the IKEA STOCKHOLM 2017 products, styled in my living space.  I was excited with the opportunity to interview Viveca Olsson, the creative leader behind IKEA STOCKHOLM.
It’s always fun to delve behind the creative process of a collection.

So here goes: IKEA STOCKHOLM What has been the key inspiration for STOCKHOLM 2017?

VO: STOCKHOLM collection always take its inspirations from nature. This time the blue colour comes from my private photo of a winter night sky in South Sweden, and the orange came from a beautiful sunset image. Viveca Olsson Talk me through the design process for creating a new iteration of the STOCKHOLM collection.

VO: We take extra care in designing the best quality in our range. Care in material, tactile surfaces, details, colours, sizes and proportions to be long living products over time in different living situations. I like to see the new products as a continuation of the previous collection, with new elements. We wanted to continue the visual direction, but make sure it felt new. We also continued to work with the same values in mind that STOCKHOLM has always stood for — exciting quality for everyday use, long-lasting products made with graceful materials, pieces with well-thought-out, everyday functions and warm, human qualities with a caring, homely feel. The STOCKHOLM collections are also about wellbeing, sustainability, and most of all convenience. What is your favourite piece from this year’s STOCKHOLM collection?

VO: The rattan products, for the beautiful tactile expression and the sofa is my absolute favourite piece. It’s a 24/7 sofa — somewhere to socialise, relax, sleep, eat, work, do homework, play, listen to music, be together, and have a space of your own. It’s casual, convenient, comfortable, and beautiful, with many uses, and is made to fit any expression of style. I believe it will become the favourite piece in many homes. How important is showcasing sustainably sourced materials in STOCKHOLM?

VO: Sustainability is one of the key pillars of the IKEA Democratic Design process and STOCKHOLM is no different. In each element of the design, we have worked closely with suppliers to ensure that, where possible, materials are sustainably sourced and recyclable. Rattan and glass feature heavily in this year’s collection. Is this responding to trends which we are seeing in the home?

VO: We like the tactility in both- the materials are different and makes an interesting contrast. We were looking for materials with a soft, smooth touch in order to give the collection a sense of warmth and a homely feel.

Materials with different textures that would work well together, such as rattan, velvet, hand-blown glass, woven carpets, as well as the natural feel of beautiful wood like ash. Why do you think STOCKHOLM continues to be a popular range for IKEA?

VO: The collection is a perfect example of our Democratic Design process, and our customers love the stylish designs of the IKEA STOCKHOLM ranges. We are sure that it will continue to be popular for years to come!

Hope you’ve enjoyed reading Viveca Olsson’s responses to the questions posed. It’s always so interesting to get a behind the scenes view.

You can find many of the IKEA STOCKHOLM products used for this post’s garden styling here.

I will be back soon with more outdoor living posts. Have a good day all.

( All photography and styling are by Geraldine Tan, editor of Little  Big Bell. The IKEA STOCKHOLM home wares were gifted to me.. this is a sponsored collaboration with IKEA UK. All views are my own. )

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