Design, Interiors & Lifestyle Blog
Design, Interiors & Lifestyle Blog

How to incorporate some Oriental decor into your home.

Have you ever been on holiday overseas and seen a piece of furniture that you want to buy but at the last moment, decide otherwise because of the cost and effort in shipping involved?

Aside from the shipping difficulties, do you also worry that it may not blend in with your decor style at home ?

An eclectic home, styled with pieces collected from foreign travels can really add depth and interest to a space.

Having statement pieces of furniture that can blend with different styles is key to showing off these finds.

In the past, I have brought home antique figurines and red betel boxes from Thailand, and more recently artworks from China. However, I haven’t found the right place to display them. oriental-decor It was lovely to discover The Nine Schools, a U.K based online store selling beautiful and elegant Oriental inspired furniture, that can also fit in well with a modern interior.

The Nine Schools was a name inspired by the nine tenets of Chinese thought.

As I have this thing with colour, I was drawn to their blue Oriental bookcase and cabinet.

They are both finished in distressed turquoise with hand painted gilt decoration. The bookcase comes with 3 removable shelves and is deep enough for tall reference books and small novels.

It’s such a pretty piece, perfect for creating an eclectic feel at home.

It would look lovely in the alcoves of a Victorian house or even mixed with  English style furniture in a child’s room. I have decided to style my bookcase flanked by the matching blue small cabinet and some artwork on the wall. That pretty red and green print above the blue cabinet is by Gosia Poraj. The blue cabinet is adorable isn’t it?

Check out that antique steel pin closure and the pretty gilt decoration with pops of gold, pink and green.

The blue cabinet would look wonderful as a bedside table.

I remembered once seeing how similar cabinets were being used as bedside tables in an English style guest bedroom in Hong Kong.

I remembered thinking to myself how two different styles could go so well together. Anyway, now I get my chance to try out some Oriental decor in my colourful living space.

I’ve also been able to use my antique finds from Thailand and China to style. So, what do you think?

I love this touch of Oriental decor in my space.

If you are interested in ordering, you can also request swatches of different finishes. This would make a wonderful and unique Christmas gift don’t you think?

The last day for The Nine school’s Christmas delivery is 8th December.

Wishing you a lovely day. x

(All photography and styling are by Geraldine Tan, editor of Little Big Bell. This is a paid partnership post with Nine Schools on Oriental decor but all opinions are my own).

How to restore a wooden dining table to its former glory with Ronseal Interior wax.

I can’t believe it’s one more week till December and soon the Christmas rush will set in.

Last year, I went all out with a rainbow Christmas tree, but this year I’ve decided to do something a little different.

I’ve decided to convert one of my workspaces into a Christmas room.

This will be done over 3 phases and I will show its progress over 3 posts. I’m not sure if you’ve noticed my large oak study table previously on Instagram, but it has taken quite a battering over the years. It was originally a dining table with two wooden benches. I’ve decided to restore it back to its former glory.

I’m not sure what I was thinking of, but I had painted the benches white too. That now all needs stripping out. I’ve discovered a fast and effective way to restore wooden furniture, and I thought I’d share the steps here.

I’ve decided to use Ronseal Interior wax for a matt finish. I’ve picked a natural matt finish to match my table.It’s really simple to use, just brush on after the table is prep. No buffing required. It provides excellent protection against knocks, scuffs and touch dries in 20 minutes. Here’s a list of what’s needed to start the project: Ronseal interior wax, 120 grit fine sanding paper, sanding block, gloves, mask, lint free cloth and brush.

Step 1: Sand along the line of the wood grain very gently. You can see the area sanded on the left compared to the right.

Step 2: Once sanded, wipe the table down with a wet lint free cloth. Then allow to dry. Step 3: gently brush on the Ronseal interior wax on the wood surface. Paint along the line of the wood grain. Step 4 : Allow to dry. It only takes 20 minutes. Can you see how beautiful the table now looks? The wood grain has come through so well. I’m so looking forward to styling this table for our Christmas feast.

I hope you will follow me in my progress as I refurbish this room into a warm and cosy Christmas space.

The next step in my Christmas DIY would be the walls. I’m going to do a Christmas statement wall. What colour do you think I’ll go for?

I’m so happy to have this table back to its former glory. Such an easy update to make everything tired look new and beautiful again.

Have a lovely start to your week.

This is a paid partnership post but all opinions are my own. All photography are by me.

A fun and colourful advent calendar DIY.

Hello! First of all, can you believe that it’s only 3 more weeks till December?

Since time is flying by, I thought it would probably be fun to make something in anticipation of the Christmas countdown, hence my advent calendar DIY. I’ve decided to fill my advent calendar with indulgent Green & Black’s chocolates. Green & Black’s chocolates are simply a treat because they are smooth, velvety and delicious.

This year, they have given their Organic Miniature Bar collection and Organic Milk Miniature Bar Collection a new look.

Each box contain twelve 15g miniature bars with numerous flavours, from Sea Salt to Butterscotch and fiery ginger.

As you can see wrapped up for Day 25 is one of the Miniature Bar collection boxes. If you fancy gifting a bigger box, then there’s another option.

Feast your eyes on Green & Black’s Organic Tasting collection (on my desk above). It contains a perfectly indulgent collection of chocolate flavours from all over the world I thought it would be fun to show you how I’ve created the advent calendars.

1 : Cut festive gift wrap paper into 17x17cm squares

2 : Fold the paper with a slight 2cm overlap.

3 : Tape the edges together  4 : Fold one side up by around 2 cm to create the base of the bag. Open up the base folds by creating 2 triangles on either side.  5 : Fold the base edges together and secure with tape.  6 : Open up the bag by pushing out the base of the bag so that it can even stand on a flat surface. 7: Fill the bag with treats, and in my case, Green & Black’s miniature chocolates.

8: Fold top of bag over and seal with tape  9: punch a hole over top of bag and thread a ribbon through. I joined my ribbons together with double sided tape. 10: Print out some cards printed with numbers and stick it onto the advent bag with double sided tape.

So here it is!

What do you think? I’ve also used one of my old metal grid boards to hang the advent bags. Don’t they look pretty? I’m starting to get excited for Christmas. Will you be creating your own advent calendar this year?

It really seems like time is now rushing by doesn’t it?

At least I can reassure myself that I’ve done something in the run up to Christmas right? advent calendar diy Hope you’ve enjoyed the post.

Finally, I’m now tempted to go make myself a cup of tea and taste one of my Green & Black’s miniature chocolates. They are most certainly moreish.

( all DIY, styling and photography are by Geraldine Tan, editor of Little Big Bell. This advent calendar project is part of a paid sponsorship project with Green & Black’s).

Search the blog