The Loo Series meets the Lavatory Project

I couldn’t quite believe my eyes when I stumbled across this exhibit of smallest room room sets at Grand Designs Live at the Excel last May. I mean it was made for me to share with you but somehow I didn’t get around to editing the photos, until now, and I’m excited about them all over again.

There was a whole block of individual room sets, each different and each put together by different designers. I have a varying number of photos for each design, which all this time later gives more of an insight into my favourites, but you’ll discover that as I share the posts.

This first one is all about the glamour and it’s by Grace and Grey, who have plenty of quirky home accessories and furniture on their site, which is well worth a look. And who can resist a flamingo wallpaper?

The lavatory project at Grand Designs Live

The thing that struck me most about this room set was the large free standing-looking mirror - if you look carefully it’s secured, but designed to be at this angle - but it’s quite something isn’t? Despite the theme of glamour, it has a bold design that mixes pastels and geometrics, and does it well.

Modern geometric floor at Grand Designs Live

But there was one final surprise, and that was on the wall opposite the mirror. This beautiful oversized chevron tiled splashback, whose colours complement the pinks of the wallpaper. Splashback is probably doing it a complete injustice, tiled wall art is probably more accurate.

chevron pastel tiles in the grace & grey lavatory project

Isn’t it unusual, but effective?

I’m also a fan of the simple clean lines of the sink unit, and I’m a firm believer of having somewhere to put essential junk in a bathroom so I’m hoping that the left-hand side provides that. Overall this lavatory works for me, and demonstrates how chevrons and patterns, darks and pastels can work together well. I think often in our own homes we err on the side of caution in our decor, and need these reminders that it’s ok to be a bit braver.

What do you think?


Is it too early to be thinking about Valentines day chocolate?

Yes, I know it was only yesterday that I said I was getting around to the healthy eating and fitness regime that most people are already two weeks into, but you know how it is, you can’t rush a good thing and I’m hardly known for being early for pretty much anything, and I’m easily sidetracked.

I start off with good intentions, make a plan and then often somewhere along the way get derailed. But this year I’m hoping that will happen less often as with the tenacious attitude I’ll be adopting, there’s a chance that this year I’ll be buying Valentines day chocolates earlier than my usual night before the big day.

Photo by  Jesse Goll  on  Unsplash

Photo by Jesse Goll on Unsplash

But even I know that if I spend the next month looking forward to and drooling over the Valentines day chocolates that I might buy, or even the ones that I’d leave large hints for MOH about, then January would be even a duller and longer month than usual.

So instead I’m going to be wondering about the history of the day and I’m sharing 5 facts that you might or might not already know:

  1. Valentines Day is linked back to not one, but two, early Roman saints, both named Valentine but the connection to romantic love came later.

  2. The first Valentines Day was in 496, so quite a while ago, and is thought to have originated from a Roman festival, called Lupercalia held in the middle of February, and the official start of their springtime.

  3. Its first link to a romance appeared in the ‘Parlement of Foules’ poem by Chaucer in 1382, which contains one of the earliest references as St Valentine’s Day as a special day for lovers.

  4. In Queen Victoria’s reign exchanging small tokens of affection or handwritten notes became common for friends and lovers of all social classes, as did the Cupid-themed gifts and cards.

  5. The first Valentines day heart-shaped box of chocolates was sold in England by Cadbury in 1868 and was known as the Fancy Box, which as you might have guessed was a huge success.

So know you now, fascinating hey? There’s so much more to our romantic box of chocolates than you first thought, I bet.

And in answer to my original question, is it too early to be thinking about this, I think not. I mean January is well known to be the longest month in the calendar, with at least 91 or so days, so we definitely need something to look forward to.

* This is a collaborative post, but all views and opinions are my own.

Reflecting on my week #66

After managing to survive my first five day working week of the year relatively unscathed, the weekend called for some taking it easy. Like most of the population I’ve been trying to get January off to a healthy start, and for me that’s involved walking to and from work each day and so most days I’ve clocked up a healthy 4-5 miles.

After watching a recording of the Twinstitute, where they pitched one of two sets of twins to lose weight through diet, and the other through exercise to see which fared better, both did well, but with diet just tipping the scales I realised something I already knew deep down. And that’s, this year as well as getting more active - I mean, I am seriously threatening to actually make it to the swimming pool this month - we probably should look at what we’re eating, or more specifically our portion sizes.  So maybe a fortnight or so after everyone else we’re getting on the healthier eating bandwagon.

We've fallen into a bit of a rut, especially with the lunches we take to work so I’m looking to branch out from our failsafe rolls, which if I’m honest can be quite dull, but easy to put together of a morning. It’s going to take more planning, but it’s entirely doable and if we work it right our lunches will be tasty, and good for us, and not leave us starving!

Getting organised 

My craft supplies drive MOH mad, well not mad exactly just a little exasperated. He doesn’t get them, and doesn’t see why there’s so many, or why I keep things just because they might be useful one day.  On one level he does have a point (there’s no need to let on, is there?) and I do need to have a bit of a sort out as everything is everywhere, it’s all mixed up somehow and I’m struggling to find what I want, which is hardly conducive to a productive and mindful craft session.  

Oh, and I want the storage to look pretty too, surely that’s not too much to ask. On Saturday I rounded up the ribbon I’ve saved and wound them securing with pegs, real size or miniature depending on the quantity and dropped them into this glass storage jar, which is now on display.

I bought the jars originally to use in the kitchen a good few years ago, and while I regularly use the smaller size, I  use this larger size less.  I think it’s worked well and is much nicer than having the ribbons shoved out of sight. I’m not sure if MOH has clocked it yet, so there’s no verdict from him as yet...

Russian doll and a jar of ribbons

I don’t mind having my supplies split between our two upstairs rooms, but I’m as keen as MOH that they don’t take over - and with wool for crochet and knitting projects, materials and threads for all sorts of sewing projects and card making loveliness too, that’s quite possible.  I’ve been hatching a plan to get items for the same crafts together to make it easier for a little while now, but I’ve needed some of MOH’s DIY skills as the plan only works if I’m able to access the storage space I have. 

And that’s meant fixing the shelves to the shelving unit, rather than balance them on the boxes. lt’s a small thing, but it’s radicalised my craft supply storage. The shelves have been cut for a while, and the boxes and baskets have been storing stuff. It’s just that, in the case of the boxes I’m not sure exactly what and finding out has been a palaver.  

baskets shelves and boxes makes me happy

But no longer. Now the shelves are attached to the units - like proper shelves - I can get the boxes out easily, and that’s meant card blanks and envelopes can be stored in the grey boxes, and other “they’ll be useful” items, like maps and music can for the first time be stored together in the larger cream boxes.

All of which makes me inordinately happy.  

music and maps

During this latest sort through I rediscovered all my momentoes from London 2012, including tickets and maps from the events we attended and much from my time volunteering as a London Ambassador. So many memories, some of which I’d forgotten all about, but all of which came flooding back with extraordinary detail once prompted. These included my pink and purple uniform, walking maps, pin badges and my ID, along with the handbooks of useful information and the celebratory teamwork baton presented once the Olympics and Paralympics had completed. What a great time, and experience that was. 

I’ve a couple more spaces to sort out - not craft supply spaces (at the moment anyway!) - and who knows what memories they’ll provoke, I’ve no idea, but I’m quite interested to find out.  MOH is just pleased that his DIY skills were much appreciated, and happy for them to be stood down for the next phase, I’m sure.

And the best bit? Once the organising is done, the crafting and card making can begin again - yay!