Wednesday, October 16, 2013

London interior décor shops

I recently returned home from a lovely trip to London where I visited my cousin Kate. With our new build, I was excited to find design inspiration, and the city did not disappoint. I came away with lots of great ideas - although I always find the more I see, the more I question what my tastes are. I've always gravitated to the modern look, but a lot of the things I loved were far from modern. Here's a peek at a few of the bits and bobs I thought were brilliant...

Andrew Martin was out-of-this-world unbelievable. Kate brought me here, and her mom had highly recommended the store after visiting London earlier this year. It was like nothing I had ever seen before and there were so many unique finds. It was a massive store I could have spent hours in.

There was a ton of great furniture that had been reupholstered with beautiful textiles - I'd love to find an old armchair or bench and recover it like in the photos above and below.

Or find some antique suitcases and turn them into side tables.
Inspiration overload.

Liberty was at the top of my must-visit list and I was overwhelmed by their housewares department. From the Moroccan rugs section to the lighting to the textiles, I was in home accessory heaven. Luckily for my bank account, most things I loved wouldn't fit in my suitcase.

Their fabrics are absolutely stunning...
I loved these hammered metal pendant lights. If our wiring was the same as the UK, one of these babies may have come home with me.

This was the only photo I took at Harrods, and it was probably the most obscene thing I've ever laid eyes on. This rhinestone-encrusted tub will add some major bling to your bathroom for a mere £199,999. The friendly, 60-something, loo-department employee started chatting with me when he saw me eyeballing this atrocity. He asked where I was from, and when I said Canada, he proceeded to list Canada's first 15 prime ministers. Pretty astounding considering I can't do that myself. He's had some pretty interesting experiences in his time at Harrods - he got the job after he tired of retirement. At Harrods he's served royalty from all over the world, and even helped David Beckham pick out a £6,000 dust bin. Blimey.

I stumbled across Divertimenti on my way to Harrods. It was a lovely kitchen supply store with some of the most beautiful stoves I've ever seen - AGAs in multiple colours and the stunners above and below from La Cornue. I know just by looking at them that they are way beyond my means. They would be the piece de resistance in a French bistro kitchen.
Even if it's out of my league, I suddenly feel I can't live without this turquoise version I found on their have I been cooking without this?
Before my trip, I discovered Pitfield London by searching for images of London on Pinterest - one of the most helpful sites for trip planning. It was a tea shop/eclectic emporium in the trendy Shoreditch neighbourhood. The first item I glanced was something I actually own. The blue ceramic garden stool is pretty much the same one I purchased at Home Outfitters a few years ago, except mine is a bit bigger. I loved the geometric rug that sat underneath it.

Kate got me watching Mr. Selfridge earlier this year, which piqued my curiosity about Selfridges. It's a massive department store - the second largest in the UK after Harrods. I had a lovely afternoon tea here, and spent far too many hours perusing the clothes, shoes, books and housewares. The housewares section was especially colourful.
Carnival letters like the one above are trendy right now. I'd love to have a J (it helps when you have the same initial as your husband) but I'd rather have one with white bulbs - which I'm sure is an easy fix. They aren't cheap though - at least not these ones. If I remember correctly, this was about £1,000.
I apologize in advance for the poor quality of the photos below...and the fact that they probably hurt your eyes to look at. Below is an almost hypnotizing felted rug, and below that is a pillow - if you can believe it. Although I think it's one of those pillows you're supposed to look at and not rest your head on. It felt like it was made of uninflated long, narrow if you did lay your head on it, your hair would probably get all static-y. I love colour, but my eyeballs burn just looking at it.

The kitchenware section was like being a kid in Willy Wonka's chocolate factory. Which one would you pick? I think I'm gravitating towards the Caribbean blue, or apple green, or maybe one of those glimmering copper ones...

I was excited to find Pehr's gorgeous textiles at Selfridges as they are a Canadian company I've loved since finding one of their table runners at The Cross in Vancouver. Selfridges is actually owned by Canadian Galen Weston, who purchased the store for £598 million (or 2,990 sparkly Harrods bathtubs) in 2003.

So that's it for now...I'll follow up with a few more London posts soon.



sylvia said...

OMG... those stoves!!!!! i want one.... *drool*... and i'll take one KitchenAid mixer in each colour!!

Jules said...

Aren't they DIVINE Syl? I seriously can't stop thinking about them. I've never been so attracted to an appliance before :)