Tuesday 31 May 2011

Style Britannia: Me and Tweed

Top: Oasis, Skirt: Marks and Spencer,
 Bag: Made by me with Cabbages and Roses fabric,

Hey rabbits,
Come on in.....

Today, let's talk tweed.
Itchy, scratchy and clammy?
Or super-duper scrummy?

{I want to hear what you think....}

But here's my tuppence-worth:

Tweed totally makes
my Style Britannia list.
when it's fitted,
when it's cut well,
when it's paired with right pieces.

Here's why I like this look:

It's Modern
The three-quarter length sleeves
The ruching around the shoulders

It's Country
The classic styling of the lined, tweed pencil skirt

It's Modern Country
My lovely home-made bucket bag.

Remember the first

I've had so many compliments about that bag.
 People ask where I got it from and I get to say,
in the casualest voice in the world,
'Oh, this? I made it'...
{and then I absolutely glow for the rest of the day}

If there's one thing you make this year,
it should definitely be a bucket bag. Adorable.

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Monday 30 May 2011

Style Britannia: Tweed

If I think tweed, I think country.

{Hand in hand like
a steaming mug of cocoa
and lashings of whipped cream.}

But do I think Modern Country?
Do I think Style Britannia?

A big fat yes from me.
Just take a squiz at these.
Then look me in the eye and
try to tell me you can't see a
glimmer of goodness in them.

You can't do it can you?

I see that glimmer in your eye, cherry pie.
Thinking: how can I make that look work for me?

That's exactly where I hope I cam help you.
Tomorrow I'll show you how I style it my way.

Tweed's come a long way, bab-ay.

Images: Marie Claire via Wolf and Willow

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Friday 27 May 2011

Country Kitchen: Rule Number one

Hey there, honey pie,

Yesterday, I showed you some of
Weren't they gorgeous?
And, now, here's the bit where I start to share
how I put the Country into our Kitchen.

My first Country Kitchen Rule is this:

If you're going to have clutter,
then make it beautiful clutter.

Not beautiful in an aesthetic way necessarily
but beautiful in meaning.

Things that make you feel good.
Things that make you smile.
Things that make you happy.

And if those things look great
too then so much the better.

When I want to bake or brown or braise {or burn!},
I want to have things around me that I love to look at.
I want any clutter to be homely.

My favourite recipe books.
Our mugs waiting to be filled with hot chocolate and whipped cream.
A glass jar that belonged to my mother.
A wool felt heart.

All these help to combine to make
our Kitchen feel like home to me and my family.

And what about rule number two.....?
Comin' up....

I'll be linking with some of my favourite parties in the sidebar.
Images: Mine

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Thursday 26 May 2011

Country Kitchens

Welcome back, m'darlin', to
Modern Country Style's
Makeover Your Kitchen Series.

We're on Part 4:
Finding Your Style.

And first up are Country Kitchens.

I think every kitchen should
have a touch of country in it.

What do you think of
when you think 
'Country Kitchen'?

I think it's a place where the whole family
- muddy dogs and muddy children -
or muddy friends for that matter -
congregate to enjoy the warmth and smells
of whatever yummyliciousness
is slowly cooking in the oven.

That's what I want in our home.

I WANT my children to loiter
while I'm getting tea ready.
I WANT our kitchen to be a
welcoming place for guests.
I WANT to look forward to
preparing our evening meal.

I WANT a bit of Country in my kitchen.

So I guess what I'm saying is that my test of
whether a kitchen has a country feel is not
whether it has the latest super-duper hi-tech gadgets 
but whether you'd want to dawdle while you're there,
pottering stove-side and chattering to friends.

Sometimes my children put their
craft things on our worktops, and sometimes,
I want to bake my little heart out.....
that means clutter
- temporarily, maybe -
but clutter nevertheless,
and I want a kitchen that
can stand up to family mess.

Come on by tomorrow and see how our kitchen fares. ;-)

Images via Country Homes and Interiors, Homes and Gardens, Period House,
Country Homes and Interiors, Period Living, House to Home

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Wednesday 25 May 2011

Wanna look at my tabs? Well, come on over, sunshine...

Notice any changes around here?
Did you see?
Did you notice the change at
the top of my blog?

It probably doesn't seem like a biggie to you
but let's just say I don't think I have ever
p r o c r a s t i n a t e d as much as I have for
putting those li'l tabs up there.

See 'em?

One small step for man, one humongous leap for
Modern Country Style.

Errrrr.....why did it take me so long?
Who knows?

Who knows the evil mind of the
{small} part of my brain responsible
for any procrastinating that goes on around here?

{Oh, and if you can think of any
more tabs that you'd like
to see up there, then
I'd love to hear from you.}

How to contact me?
*very pleased face*
So glad you asked, sweetie pips.
There's a tab up there for that too.

Now...on with the show...
Welcome to Step 4 of
Makeover Your Kitchen:
Finding Your Style.

Step 4 is all about seeing what's
out there to use as inspiration.

Here's the deliciousness
that's coming up on
Modern Country Style.

I'll be taking aspects of kitchen style I love
and then showing how I've worked that
loveliness into our kitchen.

Starting tomorrow,
with a little bitta country.

Images via: Self-Empowerment Secrets, Mine

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Tuesday 24 May 2011

Kitchen Ponderings Part 2

Come in, my lovely, come in.
Let's have a sit down and a chat shall we?

Mmm? You demand a drink before we get going?
What are you like, missy? Go on then, seeing as it's you....

Well, whoooooooooo-hee, there was certainly split opinion over yesterday's kitchen serving, wasn't there?
Such a kerfuffle. 
Ladies, ladies. Whatever am I to do with you.

I have a plan.
We split into two groups:
those for the gorgeousness of that kitchen
and those against its over-styledness.

We see which team can eat the most
chocolate between them...
{yes, arbitrary but yummy....}
 and we announce that team the winner.

You in?
What do you mean you don't sort out
every disagreement like that?
It's the only way; you know I'm right.

And that's why I should
rule the world.

But my point. Yes, there is a point to all this.
Yesterday, wasn't so much about that particular kitchen being lovely or not lovely. It was more that.

On the surface it was just my cup of tea, you see.
Let's see how far it would have got through my
Makeover Your Kitchen Rules:

I think it would have got through Step 1: Kitchen Foraging.
I'd give it a 10 out of 10. It is gorgeous, after all.

Yup, still loving it.

You know I love the Blue Grey colour.....veering into obsession, I know. I know.

So, this kitchen hasn't been eliminated at all.

But yet. But yet.

It doesn't do it for me.
I know it was gorgeous but no means no.

How To Makeover Your Kitchen
definitely needs a next step.

Drumroll, if you please.
{Drummer boy, where are you when I need you?  
And this is when I introduce you to

Step 4: Find your style.

And, speaking of style, I feel a little trip into the fashion-world a-coming up.
Can you feel it too?

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Monday 23 May 2011

Kitchen Ponderings

Well, hello there, petal.
Good weekend?

Look at this incredible Modern Country Kitchen.
The colour, the details...
You'd think it was right up my street, yes?

Today, I want to talk about kitchens that look completely awesome in magazines but......really?
Can you have too much of a good thing?

I'm not sure what I think of
a whole, entire kitchen filled with,
more or less, the same colour
.....even if it does look utterly stunning in the photos.

Is it me or would this kitchen look
a little bit sombre in 'real life'?
A bit dark.
A little bit lifeless.

Perfect for a magazine shoot, but... would you live with it it?
Would ya? Could ya? Should ya?
Day in? Day out?

The moral of the story is to
find a look you love
not just for the
magazine-fairytale look-alike....


for your every day life......
for the way you do things.

How to do that?

How to find a look that'll
suit you down to the ground?

Swing by tomorrow and let's talk it over, shall we?

Images via Plain English

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Friday 20 May 2011

Modern Country Colour Scheme

Hey buttercup,

Do you ever wonder how to put together a
Modern Country Colour Scheme?

Remember what I said here about Kitchen Foraging?
{I explained how I narrow down my choices kitchen-wise, using only images that I'd give a 10 out of 10?}

I do exactly the same for choosing colours.
Certain images just jump out at me.
Watch me drool.
Actually, best not.
It isn't my most attractive look...

See, here are some of my
c o l o u r  s c h e m e  l u s t s.

Today's offering is
and creamy off-white,
with mid-toned unpolished wood.

These became the basis for our
Modern Country Colour Scheme.

I'm really hoping that reading these posts will prevent you having to go down this route...

A stockpile of sample pots the size of a small continent.

The colours in these beautiful homes helped me to narrow down my choices to get to here.........

Next up in Makeover Your Kitchen is Choosing Your Style.
Come back for more kitchen deliciousness next week.

Images: Mine, Unknown, Beautiful Homes,
CasaanVersa, Mine, At Ease Interiors, Mine

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Wednesday 18 May 2011

Case Study: Farrow and Ball White Tie

Farrow and Ball Blue Gray White Tie
Farrow and Ball Blue Gray and White Tie with Emma Bridgewater teapot!

Hey duckies,

Yup, it's Farrow and Ball Case Study time again...
{Can you hear their siren-like call?}

I LOVE Farrow and Ball paints.
Love 'em.

Farrow and Ball's Blue Gray would have been too dark a colour for our kitchen. It has so many internal corners that the colour intensifies hugely. The Blue Gray needed toning right down in this room...and what better way to do that than to introduce a gorgeous creamy white?

But which one?
There are seriously a bajillion off-whites
to choose from out there.

We chose Farrow and Ball's White Tie.
It's been perfect. Just exactly the right amount of white to really knock back the Blue Gray but enough yellow to warm up the room.

And it goes superbly well with the cream Shaker cupboards.
That was a big concern.
I compared a lotta, lotta off-whites to get this right.

When I put together a case study, I source as many pictures as possible of the paint colour, from our house, here in the Cotswolds, and from the internet, in lots of different situations and lots of different lights so that you don't just have to rely on a teensy little square of colour on the tester card before you splash out on yet another sample pot.

Farrow and Ball White Tie Blue Gray
Farrow and Ball White Tie and Blue Gray

I hope these Farrow and Ball Case Study posts can do all the legwork for you so you can see at a glance whether the colour is going to work for you in *your* house with *your* lighting conditions.

I've only selected pictures that I think are accurate reflections of what the colour really looks like, discarding those where the image has been tweaked beyond recognition or the flash has distorted the appearance of the colours.

Here you can see the same part of our kitchen, with my lovely China Jack Mosaic, at three different times of day: morning, noon and evening, with the weather ranging from overcast to sunny.
Farrow and Ball White Tie Blue Gray
Farrow and Ball White Tie in overcast skies

Farrow and Ball White Tie Blue Gray
Farrow and Ball White Tie In Sunshine

Farrow and Ball White Tie Blue Gray
Farrow and Ball White Tie and Blue Gray in the evening

If you're going to use Farrow and Ball's Blue Gray,
then I'd truly recommend Farrow and Ball's White Tie
as its accompaniment.
They go together like bacon and eggs.

See my kitchen-appropriate analogy?


My favourite blog for fantastic paint tips and information is the Relics of Witney blog. Have you seen it yet?

Images: mine, Shirofugen, Veranda, mine, mine, Farrow and Ball,
mine, Farrow and Ball, Mine, mine, mine.

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