My Colour Consultation with Farrow and Ball

If you, like me, have ever felt totally overwhelmed by paint charts, spent far too much money and too much time testing various (and usually pretty identical) colours on your walls, ordered the wrong amounts, or just simply got the choices so completely wrong and had to end up repainting entirely… Then, breathe easy folks… Farrow and Ball have got you!

Having experienced the aforementioned paint frustrations more times than I wish to remember, I was determined that my boyfriend, whilst coming to the end of a long and tiring house renovation, was not to have this last and final hurdle be a stressful one.  Although we both had some ideas for what colours we thought might work on each floor and room (mine perhaps being the less subtle of preferences, unshockingly…) I suggested we get a Farrow and Ball in-home colour consultation to give us both some guidance and some peace of mind on this frequently daunting mission!

Walls:  Farrow and Ball Green Smoke , with  Strong White  skirting boards and doors. 
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Within one hour of Scott our colour consultant arriving at the house, during which time he speedily analysed both the structural detailing and lighting plan of the house, and listened patiently to our haphazard thoughts, he had brilliantly helped us devise an entire paint scheme to fit both the house and our lifestyle using some of the 132 beautifully rich Farrow and Ball shades.  

We decided on Farrow and Ball's Green Smoke for the hallway (above), using Strong White for the skirting boards and doors.  In a room that is used more as a walk way than a living space, you can afford to be a little bit more dramatic and daring with your choices.

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To compliment the Green Smoke, we chose Farrow and Ball's French Grey, which we moved into halfway up the stairwell at a natural divide, and then throughout the sitting room. This is a particularly calming colour, and it has a really chic feel to it.

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We decided on painting some of the kitchen cabinetry in Farrow and Ball's Smoke Green, which once more created a real synergy and flow between each floor.  

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Whether you're veering towards the subtle or the statement, the Farrow and Ball consultants understand the particular way each paint responds to light throughout the day, and which colours and textures combine to achieve the perfect, unique scheme for your home. 

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Scott's advice was decidedly helpful when deciding on the master bathroom colours, as the light changes so dramatically in there throughout the day. We chose Inchyra Blue for the cabinets, which is inspired by dramatic skies (much like the usual view from the bathroom window!) which when contrasted with Farrow and Ball's Cornforth White, a magically versatile grey'ish tone, and the bathroom's dark wooden floors and herringbone white marble, creates a wonderfully intimate space. 

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Following up from our consultation with Scott, we received a colour fan deck with our choices and the all-important quantities of paint required to complete each room. During a time when our minds were already pickled with light switch and cabinetry handle decisions (the last few months of last year were beyond rock'n'roll, can you tell?!), having this expert and invaluable help from Farrow and Ball, and being able to confidently make our paint order, took a huge weight of our shoulders, and is worth the investment many times over! 

Now, if only Farrow and Ball did carpet consulations…

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In collaboration with Farrow and Ball

Photography: Ella Sadika

Hair:  Taylor Taylor London

Nails:  Sophie Gass

All He Wants For Christmas 2017...

If you’re struggling to find something more exciting than the annual pair of socks, here is a little giftspiration for the (sometimes) deserving men in your life…  Hover and click on the items for their direct links.

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ABOVE:  Frangipani’s brilliantly unique and colourful cotton and linen designs are perfectly suited from beach to bar (RRP. £75.00 each). 
 

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Above: Pop Ottolenghi’s Chilli and Coriander Chutney in his stocking... It's deeeelicious!

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Above:  This luxury, multi-brand Christmas Collection Box is filled with nine stylish, yet practical, pressies, including a S’well Bottle, Aspinal of London Credit Card Case and Barbour scarf.  The ultimate spoil. (RRP. £150.00... But worth £228.45).  
 

All She Wants For Christmas 2017

Jingle Kells is back here with a little annual, last min giftspiration for the lovely ladies in your life... If, like me, amidst the haze of festive celebrations and trying manically to finish sign off various bits of work, you’ve left your present buying to the very last minute, fear not! We still have some time to place orders for our loved ones online, cuppa in hand, rather than having to brave the last minute high street dash on Christmas Eve!  Oh and the Net a Porter SALE started today too, so all our disorganisation might have have paid off...

Hover and click on the items for their direct links and Merry Christmas (shopping)...

Above:  'Buy to Give' this season by spoiling your loved one with jewellery that also directly helps fight against ivory poaching.  The Tembo Collection comprises seven Masai bead inspired bracelets which I designed with Auree Jewellery, and every purchase of a Satao, Pembe or Shina (RRP. £50.00 - £140.00) sees 100% of the profit go to For Rangers, a campaign in conjunction with Tusk that helps the heroes on the front line of conservation in their fight against elephant poaching across Africa. A real feel good pressie. 

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Above:  Pens, make up brushes, carrots… If they fit, they’re going in one of these Pentreath Hall Alphabet Pots (RRP. £42.50). How many is toooo many?! 

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Above:  A Cartwright & Butler festive hamper filled with thoroughly-British tasty treats… Let the feasting begin! (From RRP. £35.00)

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Above (L-R):  I already have a super chic, personalised Garment Bag (RRP. £175.00) from bespoke womenswear label Tephi, and now I'm after their perfect Washbag (RRP. £40.00) to match.  Edge of Ember's ethically and sustainably made personalised Love Letters (RRP.£95.00) are swoonsome and look even better when stacked together in different lengths. 

Oh, and don't forget that all important Stocking! 

 Dear Santa...!

FitFlop x Habitat for Humanity

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I moved to my flat in Notting Hill three years ago, after a short but tumultuous period of bouncing around from house to flat, and at one point, hotel room to friend’s sofas. Although still an ongoing process, slowly making this little one-bedroom flat, with its creaky black floor boards and New York loft style exposed brick and sky lights, my own, has been a total joy. Saving up for things has taken time, and in some cases, some extreme willpower (fixing windows over buying new shoes, for instance, takes the strength of an ox…!) and the arrival of my long-lusted after jade velvet sofa of dreeeeeams this month, just in time for my impending hibernation, has been a triumph.

My bathroom is covered in Matthew Williamson for Osborne and Little butterfly wallpaper, my wardrobe, in House of Hackney colobus monkeys, and Jo Malone candles and photographs of my beloved niece Safari Willow and nephew Zac cover most of the surfaces. Monkey book ends, giant coral prints, a Rosanna Lonsdale zebra lamp, and my framed Guy Malin leopard balloon photograph all remind me of where I’m from in Africa.  Stepping into my flat after a crazy day whizzing around London, throwing off my boots, popping on my slippers and attacking some Jaffa Cakes, makes me feel calm, cosy, and safe…

Basically, I feel at home. 

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I know, the word LUCKY springs to mind. Especially when one in five people across the world are living in slums or substandard housing, propelling them into a grinding cycle of poverty. When someone lacks a home, their health, well-being, educational prospects and ability to earn a living all become affected. 

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With this in mind, FitFlop are supporting Habitat for Humanity this year, a global non-profit organisation which helps build homes for families in need around the world, offering them strength, stability and self-reliance through much-needed shelter. 20% from each purchase of a pair of FitFlop House Slippers, in all their cloud-like double shearling and fluffy pom pom glory, is made to Habitat for Humanity

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Since 1976, Habitat for Humanity has worked tirelessly to provide access to decent housing for families in over 70 countries. From building homes and providing villages with clean drinking water, to natural disaster relief and micro-finance, this organisation have amazingly helped over 10 million people worldwide.

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The FitFlop House Slippers are available in two different colour ways, and I was immediately drawn to the charcoal grey pair with midnight blue pom poms. Not only have I practically not taken them off, but several of my friends have already gone and bought themselves a pair after seeing mine. With Christmas fast approaching, these make the perfect ‘Buy to Give’ present… Even if that present miiiight be to yourself… Hey, no one’s judging here! 

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Oh, and if that wasn’t enough, this pair of beyond comfortable, limited edition LOVE Slippers also see 20% from each sale go to support Habitat for Humanity’s life-changing work. What’s not to LOOOOOOVE, huh?!

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 “At FitFlop, people put their hearts and souls into making the world’s best ergonomic footwear, because they believe that if you want to live an inspired life, you’ve got to start with a great foundation.  And while a great pair of shoes will improve your life, a safe decent home is the ultimate foundation.” 

Marcia Kilgore, Founder of FitFlop.

 

“We’re really excited to be partnering with FitFlop on this venture. Both of our organisations are passionate about making a sustainable difference and FitFlop’s vision for solid foundations aligns perfectly with ours.”

Naomi Rothwell, Habitat for Humanity GB Corporate Partnerships Manager

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In collaboration with FitFlop

Photography: Francis Davison

Hair and Makeup: Secret Spa

#FITFLOPxHABITATFORHUMANITY 

The Watamu Turtle Pouch

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This week I launched my second ‘Buy To Give’ collaboration, the limited-edition ‘Watamu Turtle Pouch,' (£25.00) with the wonderful British home wear designer Elizabeth Scarlett.

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I am proud to say that 100% of the profit from our limited edition, intricately embroidered cotton pouches goes straight to Local Ocean Conservation, a non profit organisation based in my home village of Watamu, on the beautiful Kenyan coast.

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Local Ocean Conservation are committed to the preservation of Watamu’s spectacular Marine Park and Reserve. With a focus on protecting critically endangered turtles, they use practical conservation, community involvement and development, education, research and campaigning to promote the sustainable use of Kenya's marine resources.

I have grown up in awe of the work that this project achieves, and have been lucky enough to help with many of Local Ocean's turtle releases, and I can tell you first hand, nothing brings more joy than watching these beautiful beings healthily return back into the wild.

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Nearly all species of sea turtle are classified as endangered, slaughtered for their eggs, meat, skin and shells.  They also suffer from habitat destruction, plastic pollution, accidental capture in fishing nets, and having their nesting sites seriously affected by climate change (which is actually a real thing, Donald…!)

Being an avid fan of Elizabeth Scarlett, and sharing such mutual passions with the beautiful Lizzie herself (primarily, conservation and sustainability - oh, and a seeeeerious love of pineapples), I’m thrilled to be working together with her to raise some vital awareness and funds for Local Ocean Conservation.

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Please Buy To Give this Christmas…  #TLCxES

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The 'Watamu Turtle Pouch' can be purchased online at Elizabeth Scarlett.

All proceeds will go direct to Local Ocean Conservation.

Photographs of Elizabeth and TLC:  Ella Sadika

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Cosying up with Oasis

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Whatever the reason, be it the clocks going back, Millennials being perpetually concerned with their wellbeing, or perhaps even the recent release of the addictive Stranger Things Season 2, what we do know for sure, is that staying in is the new going out. 

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As someone who relishes in spending time at home, and feels no shame in enjoying regular bouts of ‘JOMO’ (the ‘Joy Of Missing Out’), the fact that loungewear has actually become not only ‘a thing,’ but an actual trend, makes me one happy little couch potato – albeit, now a stylish one.

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Oasis have just launched their own capsule collection of cosy loungewear and sleepwear, with suuuuper soft and slouchy separates for chilling at home on your weekends, for unwinding on those relaxing nights in, and for hitting that glorious hay. 

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From box set binges, to bed, to brunch, these comfy Oasis hoodies, chunky bed socks and oversized cardi’s will keep you stylishly snug, and all set for the impending Big Chill.

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My favourite pieces from the new Oasis Loungwear Collection include a relaxed fit, 'Wake Me For Brunch' tee, an oversized, extra-layer-of-cosy blue Edge to Edge Cardi, and an understated grey Ballet Wrap with matching grey, drawstring Knitted Joggers - the perfect, easiest of attire, to wear on that most arduous journey from bed to sofa, and back again!  

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I would recommend accessorising all the above with a delicious candle, hot chocolate, and one seriously large pizza (sharing optional).  

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Shop TLC's Look...

(Click on the items below for their direct links)

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In Collaboration with Oasis

Photographer:  Frances Davison

Hair:  Duck and Dry

Nails:  Sophie Gass

L’Occitane La Flamme Marie Claire Candle

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Knowing that less than a third of school children worldwide are girls, and that there are 33 million fewer girls than boys in primary school, L’OCCITANE has created a scented candle with Marie Claire to raise vital funds for the education of women.

I love a ‘Buy to Give’ gift, and each candle will see 100% of its profit donated to three really worthy charities; Rosa (England, Scotland & Wales), Toutes à L’École (Cambodia) and Entreprenuers du Monde (Burkina Faso) in order to help transform the lives of thousands of women and young girls around the world.  Help #ShareTheLight and buy one of these deeeelicious smelling candles… Solidarité Féminine!

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The L’Occitane La Flamme Marie Claire Candle is available in store and online (£9.00)

Wearing: Sisterhood Tee by Muthahood (£22.00), Fallen Star Necklace by Sophie Lis (£375.00)

Chelsea In Bloom x Bloom & Wild

Last week Chelsea was indeed in BLOOOOOM.  The theme of this year’s annual ‘alternative’ floral art show (lets face it, ‘dem Chelsea Flower Show tickets are like gold dust!) was ‘Floral Safari,’ and the shops and restaurants of Chelsea were all filled with the most creative of wild displays, all competing for several coveted awards.  

Bloom & Wild, the hugely popular letterbox flower delivery service and leading floral stylists, teamed up with Club Monaco, creating a stunning Borneo inspired installation at their Sloane Square shop.  With cascading lush greenery with intermittent flashes of bright, tropical colour, you could wander around on the scout for wild (albeit more fragrant than ferocious) exotic wildlife.

From camouflaged frogs to cheeky orangutans and elusive clouded leopards, a ‘safari guide’ was on hand to add to the interactive experience, and being from Kenya myself, with a true passion for wildlife, you can only imagine how much I enjoyed exploring this jungle.

I specifically loved the stark contrast of Bloom & Wild’s rugged combination of palms, ferns, over grown vines and moss, set alongside Club Monaco’s clean and modern Spring styles. The neutral-heavy Club Monaco outfit I chose to wear also served to highlight this.

Bloom & Wild, most deservedly, won the People’s Champion Award, as voted for by the public – Congratulations!  

In Collaboration with Bloom & Wild

Photography: Tom Griffiths

Hair:  Secret Spa

Nails:  Swanky

#OOTD: 19.03.17

I have been an avid fan of the British cashmere label Wyse London since their launch in 2014, even featuring them in my first ever column in Hello! Fashion Monthly.  Their unique, but totally wearable, cashmere is flattering, beyond soft, pretty affordable and most importantly, C.O.L.O.U.R.F.U.L. 

We all know one of my favourite colours is rainbow (‘rainbow-leopard’ to be specific…) and it just so happens, that amongst a love for stars and neon, Wyse London also shares my penchant for a bright, joyous, multi coloured stripe. Their charcoal grey, slouchy Ines Jumper (RRP. £180.00) and Lucie Loungers (RRP. £195.00) are now my GO TO outfit for hanging at home and for strolling around Portobello, and they're sure to become like a second skin on my upcoming skiing trip.  A winning combo of comfortable yet stylish, I challenge you to find something else as effortless and relaxed, yet wholly luxurious and fun.  

Shop TLC's Look...

Photographer:  Ella Sadika

Hair:  Ruuby App.  Nails:  Sophie Gass

TLC Vacation: Antwerp's Square Mile with Boodles

I was so excited to recently visit Antwerp with leading British jewellery house, Boodles. As well as being well known for its chocolate and waffles, this ‘other’ Eurostar destination is also recognised for its share in the diamond trade… Chocolate, waffles, diamonds… How had I not visited before?!! 

Given Boodles’ reputation for both its heritage and creativity, it was no surprise that they had organised for me to stay at the beyond charismatic ‘De Witte Lelie,’ Antwerp’s most luxurious boutique hotel, dating back to the 17th Century.  Contemporary and stylish, this quirky hotel, with its leopard print sofas, bowls of Chupa Chups and individually styled bedrooms, is the perfect pied à terre and it had me at Goeiedag.

The Flemish capital sees 50% of the world’s consumption of rough, polished and industrial diamonds all pass through its cobbled Square Mile, and people flock there to buy the most precious and exclusive diamonds.  Boodles naturally only acquires the most exquisite gemstones, and as their guest I was able to visit some of the most notoriously private diamond cutters and dealers in the Diamond Quarter.

Over $16 billion in polished diamonds passes through the district’s exchanges each year, and after learning a lot about the industry, my day culminated in playing with an overwhelming £17 million of the most sparkliest jewels I ever did see!  

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I decided that this rather subtle 37 carat yellow diamond would make the most charming of pinky rings…!  Keep an eye out out for my imminent crowd funding requests...

After a wonderfully spoiling dinner with the Boodles team, wearing my competitively sparkly party shoes, I woke up to breakfast and Boodles diamonds in bed… What a way to wake up!! My delicate 18ct Blossom Mini Rose Gold Diamond Necklace is both youthful and elegant, and works just as well when worn with jeans and a white tee, as it does with a cocktail dress.

After a quick trip back to London on the Eurostar with Leo, I was invited to the Boodles flagship Bond Street store.  Spanning a whopping 2.500sq ft, the showroom houses a luxurious VIP apartment where I was able to try on some of the brand’s most exceptional ‘High Jewellery,’ one-off designs.

A diamond necklace and emerald ring were the two pieces which caught my Magpie eye in particular.  The exquisitely special platinum necklace I tried on features 55 ‘Ashoka’ cut diamonds, making it exceptionally rare, as only 2% of all diamonds mined can be cut this way. Exclusive to Boodles, the necklace weigh a total of 55.33 carats.  I also tried on the giant platinum and diamond ‘Greenfire Ring,’ which features an 18.7 carat cushion cut emerald from the Muzo Mine in Colombia.  Taking these beauties off was heart breaking! My inner Elizabeth Taylor has officially been unleashed... 

Townhouse Photography:  Ella Sadika