Fresh Design colour: Cobalt blue home decor ideas

April 14th, 2014

Fresh Design cobalt blue decorating ideas

What does cobalt blue mean to you? For us, it’s the colour of deep blue seas and clear blue skies. It evokes happy memories of warm days and summer vacations. It’s a colour that can be warming, yet soothing, enveloping you in a feeling of comfort.

Comfort is always a good feeling to have in your home. The colour can be used in a variety of ways and works as a interior decor theme for many rooms. Typically, blue is often used in bathrooms, but it can be a soothing shade for a bedroom too. Team blue with a soft cream for a balanced, calming and contemporary look.

To get you started, here are some ideas for using shades of cobalt blue in your decor. From rich wall paint and stunning wallpaper, to wall tiles, rugs and decorative accessories.

1. Water Street blue paint, £30 from Graham and Brown

2. Cobalt blue ocean cushion, £20.98 from Etsy

3. Blue handmade wool rug, £950 from Heal’s

4. Memory lane destination framed crossword print, £49.95 from The Poetry Studio

5. Designers Guild Savine wallpaper in cobalt blue, £83 per roll from Wallpaper Direct

6. KitchenAid stand mixer in cobalt blue, reduced to £386.10 (was £429) at House of Fraser

7. Jan Constantine blue iPad case, £40 from Lisa Angel Homeware and Gifts

8. Rina cobalt blue tiles, £30 per box from Topps Tiles

9. Cobalt blue mohair-blend throw, £99 fromLiberty

10. Linen union grasshopper tea towel, £8.50 from Warbeck & Cox

11. LSA Cirro flared vase in cobalt blue, £40 from John Lewis

12. Inspiro Coupe plates, £18 each from Sarah Taylor

Egg-tastic Easter egg cups

April 10th, 2014

Easter egg cup ideas from Fresh Design Blog

If there was ever a time to have boiled eggs for breakfast, it’s Easter.

And if you’re going to be serving them, then why not do so in style. Treat your family or guests to a fresh egg served in one of these egg cups….from the quirky and novel, to contemporary and elegantly designed, there’s an egg cup for all tastes and occasions.

Top row:

Wooden oak bunny ears egg cup, £18 from Hop & Peck

Bloomingville set of 4 porcelain Emma egg cups, now £14.40 (was £18) from Debenhams

Middle row:

Arthur knight egg cup and spoon, £9.99 from Mocha

Takae Mizutani egg cup castle and horse solider holder, £23.50 from Yoyo Ceramics

Porcelain double egg cup, £6.50 from Whisk Hampers

Bottom row:

Twin set of egg holders, £12.99 from Not On The High Street

Ceramic animal egg cups, £10.95 from Graham and Green

Unusual upcycled Lovely Legs climbing wall lamp

April 8th, 2014

Lovely Legs upcycled wall lamp featured on Fresh Design Blog

We’re always on the lookout for unusual designs, and love examples of creative upcycling, so this wall lamp certainly caught our attention.

The Lovely Legs design wall lamp is constructed from discarded old legs from traditional Windsor chairs. They’re combined with copper elbows to form a novel design that ‘climbs’ the wall. The lamp is finished off with a hand woven lampshade.

This very individual design is made to order by Furniture Magpies and you can choose your desired lamp shade colour. It comes with full instructions on how to attach it to a wall, plus three wall attachments.

It’s definitely a contemporary lamp that’s likely to become a conversation piece!

How to add colour to a wall using wall accents

April 3rd, 2014

How to use wall accents in your interior design decor

We all know that a fresh lick of colourful paint or a new wallpaper design can transform the walls in your home, but if it’s not possible to decorate a room, for example if you’re in rented accommodation, how can you spruce up your walls?

One way is to focus on using wall accents. Accents can help add colour, interest and focus to a wall, but without requiring major amounts of DIY or expense to achieve.

For example, the metal feathers (top left) are actually coat hooks, but make a really funky wall decoration. Use them individually, or grouped together, as hooks or simply for aesthetic pleasure. They’re £9.95 from The Little Boys Room.

We love wall stickers and if you want to create visual impact on a wall, then a design like the space invaders wall sticker set (middle) certainly does the trick. You can arrange them how you wish and eyes will definitely get drawn to that wall! They’re £24.99 from Bouf.

Use a wall vase, such as the dot wall vases (top right), to create a 3D effect on a wall. As well as being decorative, you can also add a flower stem or two, giving an extra creative element. They’re £20 from Deservedly-So.

Another wall sticker favourite is the Big Little Ben working clock wall sticker (bottom left). This wall decal stands out from others as it’s also a functioning wall clock, so you get more for your money. The bright colours all work well against plain white or natural walls and the stickers are easy to apply (and should also be easy to remove). They’re £85 from Funky Little Darlings.

You can never go wrong with hanging pictures on a wall. For an on trend, colourful geometric design, check out the honeycomb design giclee print (bottom right), £21 from Violet May.

Anyone for ice cream? Novel ice cream cone lights

April 1st, 2014

Novelty ice cream cone design lighting

Celebrate your love of ice cream, with an unusual ice cream cone design light.

The lights are handcrafted from ceramic by designer Alex Garnett and are inspired by good old Mr Whippy ice creams. They’re designed to be used with bayonet style light bulbs and, when the bulbs are fitted, they provide a rather apt extra element to the design.

Would you believe a bulb could help resemble a Mr Whippy so well?

The ice cream cone lights are available in two cone sizes (small or large) and cost from £45 from Let it Reign.

Spring cleaning: The kitchen

March 31st, 2014

It’s officially British Summertime, and that means the days are getting longer and brighter. While we’re really looking forward to the summer and some nicer weather, it also means we’ve noticed that the Fresh Design house isn’t quite as…er…fresh as it could be. It’s time to get cracking with the Spring cleaning, and we’re starting with the kitchen.

We can see clearly now

Start by cleaning the windows – if you do a lot of cooking, you might be horrified by the amount of grime that comes off! Make your own natural window clearner with 500ml water, 60ml white wine vinegar and half a teaspoon of eco-friendly washing up liquid. Put it all in a spray bottle, give it a good shake, spray it onto the windows and wipe off with a dry, lint-free cloth. Eh voila!

Cleaning the oven

Instead of a chemical spray, we prefer to use a more natural approach. Mix four or five tablespoons of baking soda to a stiffish paste with some water, then use a cloth to cover the inside of the cold oven with a thin layer (avoiding the heating elements). Leave it overnight, then scrape off the residue with a plastic spatula and wipe the surfaces with a cloth and some warm water.

Cleaning the floor

If you eat family meals in the kitchen, the chances are that the floor under the table could do with a bit of attention. Move the table out of the way, and give the floor a really good sweep and mop. The cheapest non-chemical floor cleaner is warm soapy water with a little squeeze of eco-friendly washing up liquid (don’t go mad, or you’ll never clear all the suds up!).

If your floor is wood, use as little water as possible then dry the area with a towel wrapped round a broom head. For stone and terracotta floors, follow manufacturers instructions. For vinyl and linoleum floors, wash the area again with warm water with a slosh of white wine vinegar added, which will give a brilliant shine.

Kitchen cleaning goodies

Keep yourself motivated with these cute, quirky and colourful kitchen accessories.

Dish Wish, Maiden


We’ve all wished we could wave a magic wand and get the washing up done. Well, we can’t promise supernatural assistance, but we’ve found the next best thing – this wand-shaped washing up brush, £8.50 from Maiden, will keep you smiling while you get the job done.

Squirrel dustpan, Koziol

Cute and practical

Who wouldn’t love this squirrel dustpan and brush from Koziol? In bright spring colours, it’s almost enough to tempt us to start cleaning the rest of the house as well. Priced at £29.

Dish draining rack, Umbra

Red-y and organised

Tidy up your sink with this bright dish draining rack. The handles mean it’s easy to move it safely from the draining board to the sink, and the integral funnel will stop waste water sloshing onto surfaces. There’s plenty of room to drain plates, bowls and cutlery and a steel band to stop cups and glasses tipping over. £29, available from Red Candy

Dishcloth and Tea Towel, Jangneus

Going cheep

 Treat yourself to some bright new kitchen textiles ready for Spring. We love this ‘blue bird’ Swedish-designed dishcloth – made from a mixture of cellulose and cotton, it’s fully washable and reusable, and is biodegradable once it’s reached the end of its life.

Something fishy

The tea towel features a bright block print of fish and is made from a mix of linen and cotton for a top quality finish. The dishcloth is £3 and the tea towel £12, both from Berry Red

Curate your home shopping ideas with eBay UK Collections

March 28th, 2014

Shopping ideas on ebay from Fresh Design Blog

Confession time: I am a major eBay addict.

I shop a lot on my favourite online auction site (I really should get back to selling as well) and over the years have bought lots of home-related products on the auction site. For example, everything from new furniture at cheaper prices than the high street, to a second-hand local dining table and chairs, modern headboards, paintings by my favourite artist, out of production crockery lines, kitchen bits and pieces, and various home accessories.

So when eBay got in touch a few months ago and asked if I’d like to be involved in the launch of a new feature on eBayUK, I bet you can guess the answer…

Introducing eBay Collections

eBay’s new Collections feature officially launched this month. It’s an easy-to-use way of collecting together ideas and inspirations on eBay. It can be things you’d like to buy, things you covet, future ideas for furniture or décor inspiration for different rooms in your home. If you’re already familiar with Pinterest, then eBay Collections is very similar in style, as you end up with individual boards of collections, which are very visual.

In addition to creating your own collections, the social element means that you can also follow other users, some of their collections or both. For example, you can follow Fresh Design Blog on eBay or follow a specific collection, such as Orla Kiely Home, with its home and decorating ideas focusing on the lovely designs of Orla Kiely, or Scandi Style, which features ideas for home furnishings, furniture and decor with a Scandinavian feel to it.

Fresh Design Blog collections on eBay

I created a range of collections for the launch of the feature, and have been updating them regularly since, with more new collections coming soon.

As a bit of a taster here are some examples of my collections.

Geometric Home Collection

It’s probably no surprise that I love geometric designs, as they’ve featured frequently on Fresh Design Blog. As well as incorporating lots of gorgeous geometric shapes within designs, this collection will also help add a splash of colour into your home, as many of the pieces are awash with a rainbow of colours. From wall prints and rugs, to wallpaper, cushions and clocks, you’ll find all things geometric here.

Geometric design home ideas

Scandi Style Collection

The fresh, clean living and stylish designs of Scandinavia have swept into UK homes and interiors. If you love all things Scandi, then check out this collection, which features soft furnishings, crockery, home accessories, clocks and furniture with a Scandi theme.

Embrace the Scandi style home trend with Fresh Design Blog

In addition, some of my other collections include Coffee and Cream, Trendy Teatowels, Cool Contemporary Blue and Cooking Companions, to name but a few. Check them all out now on eBay, and why not have a go at creating your own collections of shopping ideas?

***Disclaimer: This post is in partnership with eBay***

Gorgeous Pols Potten mouth blown glass bottles

March 26th, 2014

Handmade mouth blown designer glass bottles

We seem to have a bit of a thing about colourful glassware at the moment, but who wouldn’t be drawn to these gorgeous bottles?

They’re all handmade from mouth blown glass and we love the combination of uplifting bottle colours combined with zesty round bubble-like bottle stoppers.

Aptly named Bubbles and Bottles, these ones come as a set of four and would look brilliant displayed on a window sill.

Modern and contemporary glassware by Pols Potten

Other similar bottles, vases, jugs and more from the same brand are available to purchase individually from Heal’s, plus they do some very attractive hand crafted ceramic pieces too.


Fresh window treatments: Patterned roller blinds

March 25th, 2014

Treat your windows to a new look, with the help of patterned roller blinds.

There are numerous options available on the market, from subtle designs to vibrant patterns, in ready made and ready to hang format, or made-to-measure to exactly suit your window size. Here are some fab examples:

Contemporary patterned roller blind

Pimlico flare roller blind, from £28.35 at Direct Blinds


Tuiss patterned roller blind

Totem Sitka window blind, from £28.45 at Tuiss.


MissPrint Little trees designer roller blind

MissPrint Little Trees design roller blind in red chilli, from £35 at John Lewis


Best patterned roller blinds

Sea Life black and white roller blind. From £30.25 at Blinds 2 Go.

Home entertaining: Flower design serving bowl

March 24th, 2014

Decorative serving bowls

It’s always useful to own some serving bowls, so you’ve got something at the ready when you’re entertaining. Of course, plain round bowls do the trick fine, but to serve nibbles in style, why not opt for something more decorative like this daisy flower design chip and dip bowl.

The white daisy petals are formed from five ceramic dishes and the look is completed with a yellow bowl that sits in the centre, acting as the centre of the flower head.

Home gift ideas

The ceramic bowl comes beautifully packaged in a yellow and white daisy shaped box, that you can store it in when not in use.

The daisy chip and dip bowl would be great to use at Easter, especially if you’re focusing on a spring theme, plus it would make a lovely gift. It’s available from Primrose and Plum.

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