How to get the Instagram Lifestyle, and is it Worth it?

Instagram LifestyleHow to get the Instagram Lifestyle, and is it Worth it?

Instagram is hardly instant anymore, so it comes as no surprise that people’s feeds are heavily curated. I think it’s fair to say that most of the people dedicating their time to it have distanced themselves from the original ‘meaning’ behind the platform. And why not? It’s almost become a portfolio of sorts for budding photographers, influencers and socialites alike. My own Instagram is littered with photos from my travels, right down to my daily activities. My friends look at my Instagram and the reactions range from positives such as ‘wow your apartment is so stylish’ to the more negative ‘you only care about trendy, pretty things’. Neither could be further from the truth, but who better than a friend to keep you grounded, am I right?

Is the Instagram lifestyle worth it?

Curating an instagram feed isn’t easy. There are so many things to consider, from colour palettes to posting times, using the correct hashtags…the list goes on. For some it’s their job, which in some ways can make things a little bit easier. However when you’re working a full-time job and just do blogging on the side, well that’s when things begin to get a bit more stressful. I’m lucky enough that my career is in marketing, so I get to read articles on the latest algorithms (yay) for a living. That said, after a long day curating someone else’s Instagram feed, I don’t necessarily feel like coming home and working on my own. In fact most evenings I turn my phone off entirely, purely to avoid stress.

How to get the Instagram lifestyle

My advice for people who want to start an instagram, or take their own more seriously, is to relax and take it easy. Don’t look at it as a full-time job (unless it is your job), and take it step-by-step. You’ll enjoy the whole experience a lot more if you don’t associate it with numbers and anxiety. That doesn’t mean you can’t be ambitious though. It’s about finding a happy medium where you can put some time aside to do your research, and work on it. In a world overflowing with social media content, genuine TLC is more noticeable than ever.

Read more of my blogging guides.
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The Line Drawing Trend | Style & Interior

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The end of 2017 saw line drawing become popular in a big way. It started with art prints, but quickly moved onto shirts, jewellery and more. From there the style slowly began to infiltrate the world of Instagram, as all the greats have done. Before we knew it, Instagrammers alike were sporting those Mango earrings – which I love by the way – whilst simultaneously illustrating their Stories with chic line drawings. And we all know that once something has made it big on Instagram, we’ll be damned if we can’t turn it into a mainstream trend.

Drawing the line…

Joking aside, line drawing has quickly become a trend with creative folks and the mainstream alike. It’s simplicity fits in perfectly with the minimalist crowd, whilst also appealing to something bolder. It’s no surprise that such a versatile trend has made it big in both the fashion and interior design industries.

I myself have fallen for it numerous time, as is made evident by my Christmas and birthday wishlists. In fact I love it so much that I decided to write a whole blog post on it. I even plan to spread the love further by showing you how you can bring a piece of the trend to your wardrobe, and or home.

Add a bit of line drawing to your life

I’ve chosen some of my favourite pieces by independent stores, artists and brands below, for both the home and your personal style.

Style

Home interior

See, it really is quite easy to bring a little bit of line drawing into your life. Perhaps it’s a one-off sweater, or maybe you’re more of a quirky vase kinda person. Whatever takes your fancy, you can be sure that you’ll be on-trend and looking pretty damn stylish whilst you do it.

Whilst you’re here, why not check out more of my home and style posts.
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How To Make A Small Apartment Look Bigger | Interior

Small Apartment Look BiggerHow To Make A Small Apartment Look Bigger

I recently decided to do a big overhaul in our apartment. Over the years I’ve become pretty good at making the most of the space I have. And gradually with that has come the ability to make a space look bigger than it actually is. It’s something I have naturally picked up living in big cities with small apartments – oh hey Tokyo and London!

But one of my biggest challenges to date has been trying to add new pieces to our home. Well, without chucking out a bunch of stuff I’d really like to keep that is. The items in question? Trinkets we picked up on our travels, as well as gifts from friends. Small items that can so quickly make a small room look cluttered. So after taking on this challenge, I decided to share a few of my own personal tips on how to make a small apartment look bigger.

How To Make A Small Apartment Look Bigger

  1. Colour Scheme/Theme
    • White walls will help make a room look bigger
    • Sticking with a colour/theme will make the room look more put together (i.e not cluttered)
  2.  Storage
    • Make sure you have plenty
    • Built-in storage is heaven sent
    • Storage that doubles as decorative is even better
  3. Lighting
    • Natural lighting is primary – big windows, skylights etc
    • But if you don’t have it, try recessed lighting
  4. Buy a rug
    • Place it under your coffee table/chair to make the room look wider
    • The size of the rug should be based on how big your furniture is/size of your room
    • Light colours and basic patterns will work in most rooms
  5. Be Practical
    • Go minimal with chairs and tables
    • Choose furniture that has several purposes (e.g. hidden storage)

Items in this post:

Don’t forget to check out more of my interior posts.

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A Minimalist Home, with Amara

Minimalist HomeA Minimalist Home, with Amara

It’s been exactly one year since we moved into our new bigger and brighter apartment. It’s fair to say that not only has my housing situation changed, but so has my mentality. My old apartment left little room for furniture, let alone imagination. So we made a pact. We would furnish it how we wanted, and turn this new apartment into a home.

Of course it isn’t easy, nor cheap to furnish an apartment so we have taken our time and bought pieces throughout the year. It’s fair to say that we’re at a stage where we’re around 90% happy. Ben wants more plants, and I’m after some more stylised kitchenware. However recently we thought about the addition of some practical, design items to our shelves. That’s where Amara came in!

Purchases for a Minimalist Home

The process of ordering with Amara was an easy one. The hard part was deciding on what items to buy. We definitely knew that we wanted a new clock (after ours suffered a slight injury), and bookends. However the rest just “fell” in my basket. The speaker was a logical purchase; I love my bluetooth headphones from Kreafunk, so I knew their speakers would be good quality…as well as effortlessly stylish. As for the trays, well I’ve been eyeing up the apricot and grey HAY trays since my trip to Berlin. They concept of the trays is simple: they work as an interlocking puzzle, made up of five different colour ways and shapes. Whichever you buy, they will fit into one another. It makes for a great bit of design.

I’m really happy with all of our purchases from Amara. Thanks to the “shop by room” feature it was easy to find what I wanted…and those little extras I didn’t know I wanted until I found them. Amara doesn’t only offer accessories for the home though, they have pretty much everything ranging from furniture, to kitchenware and technology. The range of prices is fair, and the variety of designers and brands is enough to suit anyone’s tastes. I hope to make space for an office of some sorts soon, and when I do, I know where my first stop will be!

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This post is in collaboration with Amara however all views, photos and words are my own.
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In The Window with Waffle Design | Lifestyle

waffle designIn The Window with Waffle Design, at Sugarhouse Studios

As soon as I stepped in front of Sugarhouse Studios, I knew I was in for a creative evening. The space houses a variety of designers and artists. However on this particular evening I was there to see Waffle Design, courtesy of In The Window. You may remember my previous visit to Daniel Heath’s studios, where I screen printed my own wallpaper. I enjoyed the insight into the designer’s world so much that I knew I had to attend the next event. Thankfully I didn’t have to wait too long.

Who and What…?

Founded by Ciara, Waffle is a fresh range of organic cotton, home interior accessories using a tactile waffle weave. Using a non-trend orientated colour palette, Ciara aims to create timeless pieces that will fit into anyone’s home. Her creations are simplistic, but never basic.

The Creative Process…

After catching up with my fellow bloggers over some delicious snacks, we were given a tour of the studio by Ciara herself. She talked to us about her design process, and what inspired her to start the company. I was inspired by not only her technique, but her impressive use of colour. One other thing I picked up on whilst wandering around her studio, was that all of her designs seem so effortless. Even so, I could tell that a lot of hard work and love had gone into each piece.

After our tour we were given the chance to create our own woven pouch, using Ciara’s method of choice. I chose a colour palette of dusky pinks and greys, something I felt reflected Waffle design and my own personal taste. Ciara was such a good teacher, that I barely needed to ask for advice. It took us around 30-40 minutes to finish our designs; clearly we weren’t experts yet. Even so time flew by as we relaxed and focused on our pieces. Afterwards Ciara finished off our pouches for us and added her signature tag.

Thanks to Waffle Design and In The Window

I learnt a new skill, whilst getting to know one of my favourite designers from In The Window. I was inspired by Ciara’s work, and her approach to design. I never really think of myself as a creative person, but meeting designers and finding out more about their pieces is incredibly inspiring to me. It pushes me to find out more about the products I buy, and the story behind them. Not only that, but it inspires me to be more productive in my own work.

You can find out more about Waffle Design, at In The Window.
Follow #LiveTheStory on Twitter and Instagram to find out more.

(Photos of me are courtesy of In The Window)

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2 Lovely Gays x Secret Linen Store Collection

2 lovely gays2 Lovely Gays Collaboration with Secret Linen Store

I love when I get an invitation to a press event that’s a little out of the ordinary. A slumber party…in an interior designers house? Where do I sign up?! Ok so the “slumber party” was more of a concept, than an actual sleep over. I knew that. I totally didn’t re-read the email 3 times and remove my silky pyjamas from my bag…

In all honesty though, I was pretty excited to be invited to the release of 2 Lovely Gays (2LG for short) new bed linen collection, in collaboration with the Secret Linen Store. The fact that the event was at their house was even cooler. I’ve always loved diving into magazines and seeing what interior designers homes look like. I mean if someone is gonna get it right, it’s gonna be them, yeah? Well I was right, because as soon as I stepped into the 2LG’s home, I was in awe of the sheer style that played out in front of me. Everything was effortlessly arranged, and there was a flow that moved throughout the house, linking each room to the other. Basically I wanted to move in straight away!

But what about the 2 Lovely Gays x Secret Linen Store Collection?

There are 3 sets in the collection:

All of the sets look gorgeous and feel lovely – these would be so wonderful to cuddle up in on a cold Sunday morning. Each set has a story behind the design, which makes them feel that little bit more special. My personal favourite story was about a sweet old lady called Mary – who used to live in 2LG’s house – and is now the namesake for one of the sets. It makes the sets feel like you own something personal, and unique. A nice touch.

However stories aside, the Moon Bed Set is my favourite by far. It’s everything I look for in a duvet set: a high thread count (260), quality cotton (50% Egyptian), affordability, and a contemporary-minimalist design. I plan to buy the set when I get back from my travels next month, because I just can’t stop thinking about it.

You can check out the full collection online, at Secret Linen Store.

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Interior Design | In The Window

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As a child I loved wandering around showrooms and home stores with my parents. I would make imaginary wish lists in my head, choosing pieces for my dream bedroom. As a little girl, that was as far as I got. As an adult moving away to university, I started taking interior design a little more seriously. Although I still hadn’t quite found my style yet – my uni dorm was a jumble of pink bed sheets and Korean boyband posters.  After university the next big move was London, and my own little apartment. No more house sharing. However a small flat in Stoke Newington doesn’t really offer up much of a blank canvas. Still, I decorated the walls with art prints, and the tables with carefully placed trinkets. I had so many ideas of what I wanted to do to the flat, but realistically I knew it wouldn’t work. So when we moved in April this year to a bigger, brighter apartment, I was over the moon. I went into interior design overdrive. Luckily I had a little friend to help me – In The Window.

In The Window enables designers, makers, and brands to share their stories and collections in a uniquely visual way. It is about giving the designers and their products the spotlight. I personally prefer this to a company whose goal is only to sell to you. Of course if you like what you see, you can click through to a stockist where you can purchase your object of desire.

But the real point of In The Window are the stories – delving into the worlds of the designers. Each window showcases the work and story behind the designer, maker or brand. Users can take part too. In The Window’s community can discover, experience, and meaningfully interact with the content via curation, sharing, and conversations. My favourite aspect are the labels. By simply selecting any product or window, you can add them to custom labels you have created under your account. Other users can view these and comment on them, or add them to their own labels. You can even interact with the designers themselves. For creatives, and those who just adore interior design, In The Window is an innovative way to discover via a new, unique social network.

You can view my labels at In The Window.

Thank you to V.A who took the photos of me.

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