Saturday, January 12, 2013

Noma Copenhagen

I was writing up my piece on my trip to Copenhagen and got a little curious about Noma restaurant, recently voted third best restaurant in the world by British magazine Restaurant. Since it has two Michelin stars I assumed that it was beyond my price range, so I steered clear, but I got curious about what it looks like - after all, trendy eating spot + Michelin stars + Copenhagen has got to equal a fab interior. It doesn't disappoint - it's all classy pared-back design, simple but still warm and extremely inviting.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

An exciting new initiative

Here's something that will be of huge interest to anyone who is remotely interested in design and believes in the importance of creativity in society: Design 21c has been established to cultivate the concept of 'design thinking' as a way to enhance and develop social structures, viewing the imagination as a resource that can improve the lives of Irish citizens. It's a not for profit charitable organisation that works with public bodies, academic organisations and members of the public to bring about positive change through design thinking. By consulting with members of the public they invent concepts and projects that challenge the current norm. I remember a while ago reading something that a trends forecaster was saying in relation to the effects of the r*****ion on society, about how a major renaissance is in the offing, since the international worldview, what we know and what we expect from the world, has been turned completely upside down. If you want to be a little part of that then why not start right here, by submitting your wish for Dublin, the change that you would love to see something that would enhance the lives of city dwellers on a daily basis. And if you're a graduate then think about a more hands on role by applying for the Designing Dublin project, which will take place from September to November this year. The closing date is 30th June, so get your skates on and apply here.

Friday, December 7, 2012


Hi everyone and welcome to my very first post in our new House and Home blog! It's a project that we've been meaning to kickstart for a while, but we've been pretty busy so it has been hard to get a chance to get stuck in. Anyhow - here we are, and hopefully you'll be seeing (and reading!) a lot more from us from now on.

Like I said, it's all a bit hectic with us at the mo, between getting the next issue of Kitchens & Bathrooms together, getting stuck into planning for the next issue of H&H and organising the student design awards (now in association with the Crafts Council) - it's all a bit crazy but it's lots of fun! I'm currently waiting impatiently for the March/April issue of H&H to come back from the printers. It's our Irish issue, full of all that's great about Irish design right now, with wonderful furniture and designs from Irish designers as well as great shops and some seriously creative women in our regular real people feature. I'm especially excited to see how our shoot in a tumbledown Georgian house on Henrietta Street looks in print. 

So...I'll let you know when it hits the shelves! 

Monday, November 12, 2012

How green are your paint habits?

I've been asked to help recruit survey filler-outers for a pal who is doing some research on our environmentally friendly-ness when it comes to disposing of old paint - which got me to guiltily thinking of the tins of paint stashed in random locations throughout the office - if you could be so kind as to lend a hand please do so here. Now, I'm off to figure out what to do with the assortment of random shades of stuff lying about the place...

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Anyone buying?!

Every now and then I'll stop and wonder if I'm mad and maybe I should have just bought a house in walk-in condition? Such feelings are usually brought on by images of lovely houses, like these ones in today's Irish Times. Like, for example, this house in Clontarf (top two pics) or this one in Rathagar (bottom pic). Ever-so-slightly out of my price range, but utterly lovely.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

While I'm on the subject...

...of the endlessly inspiring Ilse Crawford, I noticed on her website that she has pics of some gorgeous new projects on there. Feast your eyes on these beauties.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Textile workshop

Anyone who is keen to get creative with fabric and trimmings but needs a gentle nudge along and a little hand-holding might be interested in a textile workshop that takes place in Longbord Studio, 54 Kenilworth Square, Dublin 6 on the 18th and 19th of June from 10am to 3pm. Textile designers Rebecca Devaney and Paget Scott-McCarthy (whose work is pictured above) will be giving classes on simple printing skills, fabric embellishment and contemporary stitch for everyday items. The workshop costs a thoroughly reasonable €95, which includes materials. To find out more call 086 821 7702/086 888 5771, email or visit

Thursday, October 11, 2012


It's getting brighter and I'm really anticipating evenings outdoors, chilling out in the garden. Since shiney brand new garden furniture isn't an option for all of us - and maybe it's not really a look that we would all necessarily strive for - give your outdoorsy bits and pieces a new lease of life with the Little Greene oil-based paints, now more eco-friendly with a significantly reduced chemical content. You can use them on both woodwork and metalwork, and there is a choice of 128 colours, all in low-sheen oil-eggshell or oil-gloss. For details of Irish stockists contact Tel: 01 450 7154.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Leo & Clodagh & Laura

The furniture of Irish designer Leo Scarff makes an appearance in the latest book by New York-based Irish designer Clodagh, called Your Home Your Sanctuary. Clodagh pioneered the concept of considering the natural environment in home design and Irish interior designer Laura Farrell of Scudding Clouds worked for her in New York before returning to Dublin to  bring that beautiful earthy, pared-back aesthetic back home to us.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

What a beautiful surprise

So, I was sitting at my desk yesterday afternoon, moseying away with my work, wondering if the sun was going to make a return visit at any stage and thinking about what I was going to have for dinner, when I saw Renata from reception coming down the corridor with a huge bunch of flowers. 'Hmmmm, wonder who they're for?' I thought to myself - and then she brought them over to me!I received a beautiful bouquet from Appassionata Flowers, and you really have no idea how much they brightened my day. They also brightened up my (currently rather grim-looking) little house. I decided that, to make the most of this massive bunch, I would do what I've seen my mum doing since I was a kid when she gets a bouquet of flowers - she spends absolutely ages taking bits and pieces from the bunch to fill up vases around the house. So, as you'll see from the pics above, my flower arranging skills leave a lot to be desired, but they look so bright and beautiful, they really cheer my home up no end. My friend Ciara got me the funky yellow vase for my birthday - it's by Menu and it's so handy for a large bunch of flowers because you can squeeze the stems in nicely. I love Appassionata, I'm always popping into their shop on Drury St (just at the top of George's Arcade, D2) for a little look, and I just bought myself this lovely lavender plant there the other day, it's a lovely scent to have right by my bed.

Friday, October 5, 2012

A terraced redbrick to fall in love with

I have a lot of love for 1) red brick houses, 2) terraced houses and 3) fireplaces, so when I spotted this little charmer in the Irish Times property section today I was totally smitten. So pretty.

Aaaaaaand the latest obsession is:

Josef Frank! I've been admiring this man's designs for yonks without having any idea who he is and then the pieces of the puzzle slowly came together. I had been wondering for quite some time who had designed the fabric on this lovely Astrid chair from Anthropologie (above). He is responsible for some of the most beautiful classic-but-quirky textile designs that I have ever seen, and if I could afford to have one of those designs grace my bedroom curtains then I would happily look at them forever - how could I ever tire of such beauty? He was Austrian by birth, but emigrated to Sweden in 1934, and was actually an architect who also designed furniture and textiles. I found this La Plata fabric on Swedish website Svenskt Tenn, and when I saw the funny currency I wondered 'hmmm, how much would that be in euro now?'. Answer: €81.28 per metre. Gulp.

Lovely but pricey La Plata. As ever, I dream on.

Grona Faglar

Jungle Blue