Fresh Design lighting: Fab light ideas from Notonthehighstreet

September 12th, 2014

Fresh Design blog's pick of fab home lighting ideas

If you’re keen to have lights in your home that are both practical and decorative, with an added distinctive flair that makes them stand out or be admired, then there are plenty of excellent options available. In fact, we’ve found a host of fab lights at, including designs made from materials such as concrete, wood, metal and recycled old pallets.

Here’s our pick of some of the freshest options:

1. Geometry light, by Jenny Walsh Design

2. Industrial handlebar wall light, by Tony Miles Designs

3. Handmade recycled pendant lamp shade in shades of pink, by FactoryTwentyOne

4. Handcrafted concrete pendant lamp, by Gant & Mania

5. Random wood lampshade, by Randomlights

6. Personalised light box, by Occasional Studio

7. Skull pendant light, by ATTN Studio

Fresh Design colour: Green home decor and product ideas

September 10th, 2014

Decorate your home in fresh greens

If you’re not yet ready to embrace the changing seasons and the autumnal shades that will soon start appearing outside, then why not opt to bring some fresh greens into your home to keep reminding you of lush green fields and trees covered in green leaves?

Cheery, bright, calming and, in some cultures deemed lucky, a green colour palette can work across many rooms in your home. Change the decor by updating your walls in green paint, create a stunning green feature wall with some elegant wallpaper or make some easier changes through swapping pieces of furniture or accessories to those in shades of green.

Here are some home decor and product ideas in fresh green shades to get you started:

1. Kartell Francois ghost mirror in green by Philippe Starck, from £238 at Heal’s

2. Little gems wibble bottle vase, £20 from Dartington Crystal

3. Lucky charms Georgian green wallpaper by Barneby Gates, £78 from Clippings

4. Water stripe leaf green ikat-style wallpaper, £15 from Habitat

5. Bird mobile, £35 from Littlenestbox

6. Green button drawer knob, £3.95 from French Grey Interiors

7. Kilo leaf green metal side table, £25 from Habitat

8. Dino dinosaur lamp, £28 from Next

9. Lacquered steel storage unit, designed by Frederic Gaunet for Tolix, £286 from Made in Design

Top 10 silhouette home accessories for a fresh look

September 8th, 2014

Here at Fresh Design, we like our home accessories simple. The clean design of these monochrome cushions and decorations will stop an interior looking too fussy.

1. Kissing stag coasters, Anorak

Join the stag party with these striking coasters

These coasters from the Kissing Stag range from Anorak uses a simple stag silhouette to maximum effect. Inspired by the childhood camping adventures, of Anorak’s founder and creative director Laurie Robertson, these coasters are  made with a melamine front and cork back so they won’t damage furniture. £13.50 for a set of four, available from Home Candy.

2. Cocker Spaniel mug, Sweet William

This mug will make you smile every time you put the kettle on

How adorable is this mug? Featuring ‘Hugo’ the Cocker Spaniel in a repeat pattern all the way around the mug, it’s the perfect addition to your home or present for a dog lover. Dishwasher and microwave safe, it’s handmade in Stoke on Trent from Cornish clay and has “Lovingly handmade in England” inscribed into the base. £15.95, available from Sweet William.

3. Safari walk animal wall stickers, The Bright Blue Pig

Create a talking point with this safari sticker

Go on safari from the comfort of your armchair with this safari animals wall sticker. Made from self-adhesive low-tac vinyl they’re simple to use and can be removed without damaging the wall when you want a new look. This would make a great focal point in a child’s room or conservatory. £36, available from The Bright Blue Pig.

4. Boy with hoop picture, Greypeg

Add a little retro chic

Originally a calendar illustration from 1937 by Margaret W. Tarrant, this picture features a silhouette of a boy playing with a hoop and a stick in  blustery winds. Framed in solid wood which is hand-painted with a subtle distressed effect in Farrow and Ball paint, it costs £90 from Greypeg.

5. Window silhouette Paris, Spin Collective

Bonjour la France

Keep those holiday dreams alive throughout the year with this sticker showing the instantly recognisable Paris skyline. Available in two sizes and 20 colours to suit any decor, it costs £18 from Spin Collective.

6. Pylon cushion, In-Spaces

This unusual cushion features a bold, structural design

Here’s an ultra-modern cushion that’s a bit different. Featuring the recognisable silhouette of the modern day electricity pylon with its steel geometric forms, this graphic cushion comes in a range of colours including this alumina blue and sulphide grey combination. With a reversible design inverting the colours, the cushion is digitally printed in Britain and made from 100% cotton. It comes with a duck feather insert, and costs £60 from In-Spaces.

7. Birds in flight wall stickers, Koko Kids

Let your imagination take flight.

These birds in flight wall stickers add a vibrant splash of colour to walls. They’d look great in a baby nursery but are also funky enough for teenagers’ rooms. The silhouettes of the birds are created with a combination of Asian-inspired prints and are easily repositioned over and over again. Available in a range of sizes, prices start from £19.95 from Koko Kids.

8. Handmade aviation cushion, Le Cocon

Chocks away!

Add a touch of old Hollywood glamour to your home with this silk cushion, made from 100% pure handwoven Thai silk. It features the silhouette of a vintage aeroplane, comes complete with a duck feather pad and costs £105 from Swanky Maison.

9. London skyline letter rack, Susan Bradley

Don’t let your post go to rack and ruin

This London skyline letter rack is made from pressed steel, and can be free-standing or wall mounted. It’s designed by Susan Bradley, and costs £20 from One Brown Cow.

10. London skyline mirror, Chandeliers & Mirrors

This mirror makes an unusual focal point.

Another depiction of the iconic London skyline  - this time it comes as a frameless, black edged, bevelled mirror, with a  black perspex silhouette picking out the shapes of the buildings. £215, available from Chandeliers & Mirrors.

By Sara Walker

Life’s a beach: Cool, fresh seaside design

September 4th, 2014

Once functional, now highly desirable, beach huts have a long history.

The twin Victorian passions for sea bathing and modesty boosted the popularity of bathing machines, which were little mobile horse drawn huts in which the shy bather could change into a swimming costume before stepping directly into the sea, avoiding the curious gazes of those on shore.

As the rules concerning the segregation of male and female bathers became more relaxed, striped changing tents began to appear on the beaches of the Edwardian era, quickly followed by more permanent wooden beach huts.

Allowed to fall into disrepair during the Second World War, beach huts regained their popularity in 1950s Britain and remain desirable today, with some particularly well-located examples fetching tens of thousands of pounds.

The secret of a beach hut’s appeal is simplicity, with furnishings kept to a minimum and lots of light and space.

To get the look, paint walls, paint or sand and varnish floorboards and use open shelving to give your home a similar airy feel. Use focal points such as chairs made from reclaimed driftwood or brightly-coloured rag rugs on the walls or floor.

Highlight the ocean motif with a single item, such as seashells in a blue glass bowl, but keep accessories to a minimum to avoid a fussy, cluttered look. Here’s our pick of what to use:

Paint: No 249 (Rose Theatre) from Mylands Paints

Mylands paint in Rose Theatre

This pinkish grey has warm overtones that will stop a bare room feeling too stark. Named after the site of the first Elizabethan theatre on the London Bankside, it’s available in a range of finishes. Prices start at £3.95 for a 100ml sample tin, from Mylands Paints.

Walls: driftwood heart by Giggling Hedgehogs

Show your home some love

This heart sculpture is hand made in Brighton from local beach-combed driftwood, and each piece is unique. Measuring 40cm by 35cm, it’s built onto an MDF frame and backed with hessian for durability. Hand crafted to order, prices start from £20 from Giggling Hedgehog.

Floors: blue Andina rug, Alhambra Home

This ‘jarapa’ Spanish rug would also look great as a wall hanging.

This Spanish ‘jarapa’ rug made is from soft recycled cotton, so it’s machine washable. In soft, sea-inspired blues and greens, it would be perfect for adding a seaside feel to a room. Available in various sizes, the 140cm by 200cm version costs £85 from Alhambra Home.

Seating: Henley garden bench, Mobius Living

Add a little rustic charm with this bench

Ideal for extra occasional seating, this handmade, reclaimed teak bench is designed for garden use, but would make an unusual addition to a ‘beach chic’ sitting room. With its open design, it won’t block light and it features a high cross back and armrests for comfort. Priced at £365, available from Mobius Living.

Cushions will dress and soften a wooden bench

These hamman towels made perfect wraps, sofa throws or even picnic blankets.

Accessorise your bench with this French linen cushion with a sackcloth weave, £34.95 from Coastal Home, while this hammam towel, made in India from organic cotton, would look great as a throw over the back. £24, available from Darwin’s Home.

Storage: Tiger shelves, LOAF

Tiger, tiger, storing bright

These ‘Tiger’ shelves, £225 from LOAF, would be a perfect addition to any beach hut. They’re ladder-style shelves, so made to lean against the wall, and the open design and bleached wood finish complement a minimalist decor.

By Sara Walker


Contemporary woodland inspired home ideas

September 3rd, 2014

Woodland inspired home decor ideas from Fresh Design blog

“If you go down to the woods today….”

For a contemporary take on a woodland inspired home interior, we think these four pieces are great. Both the modern tree branch style bookcase and wild oak table lamp mix practical use with stylish design, whilst the animal wall vases and Mr Deer stacking cups add a touch of their own unique quirky appeal. Just the right balance of fun and practicality.

1. Walnut branch bookcase, £149 (usual price £199) from Dwell

2. Ceramic animal wall vases, £35 from Graham and Green

3. Mr Deer stacking coffee cups, £45 from Jimbobart

4. Wild oak table lamp base, £78 from Anthropologie

Fabulously fresh fabrics by Yuyu Design Studio

September 2nd, 2014

If you’re looking for fabric designs that are uplifting, zesty and full of life, then check out the collection from Yuyu Design Studio.

Founded by Jules McKeown, Yuyu fabrics meet all these requirements and more. They’re vibrant, colourful and many have retro style influences, with images such as flowers and birds featuring heavily.

The fabrics are ideal for using for various home projects, including cushions and curtains, and many would be well suited to use in children’s rooms.

These designs caught our eye in particular:

Chirpy 1

Chirpy 1

Fiesta Floral

Fiesta Floral

Bloom 5

Bloom 5

Retro Lounge 4

Retro Lounge 4

Bella 4

Bella 4

Bloom 3

 Bloom 3

The Yuyu fabrics can be purchased via Spoonflower, who ship internationally. We’re impressed at the range of fabric choices they offer, from basic combed cotton and heavy cotton twill, to silk crepe de chine and faux suede, and suspect there should be an option for all your home project needs.

Product review: The new Samsung WW9000 Ecobubble touchscreen washing machine

September 1st, 2014

For a while now, my washing machine has been on its last…er…cogs. Odd subterranean noises during the spin cycle and a tendency to tango into the middle of the room on a high speed spin  were starting to alarm me, and it was time to look around for a replacement.

Enter the Samsung WW9000 ecobubble touchscreen washing machine, possibly the sleekest, most high tech washing machine I’ve ever seen. If astronauts ever needed something to get the lunar dust out of their spacesuits, this is the machine they’d want installing in the space station.

Touch screen technology mean that all unnecessary knobs and buttons have been removed, leaving a neat control panel and a nice clean design. With a whopping 10kg capacity and capable of running a full cycle in less than an hour, it’s ideal for families or anyone with a busy life, and you can even control it from your Smartphone.

 Technical specification:

Energy efficiency class A+++ (-50%)

  • Annual energy consumption: 119kWh
  • Annual water consumption: 11500L
  • Spin efficiency A
  • Noise level (wash) 46dB
  • Noise level (spin) 72dB
  • Maximum spin speed 1600rpm

Samsung WW9000 washing machine


The Samsung WW9000 control panel

Despite its space-age functionality, the WW9000 fits well into my traditional, painted kitchen as the design is so neat. The door and drum are larger than usual, but otherwise the machine has a clean, unfussy frontage and isn’t intrusive.

First impressions

My first thought was that the WW9000 was pretty complicated with its wide range of wash cycles – but I soon realised it’s actually been designed for people like me, who aren’t exactly domestic goddesses.

The secret is to leave the programme set to ‘auto optimal wash’. Once you’ve done that, the WW9000 will automatically weigh and assess your washing (yes, really!) and wash it accordingly. Although there’s a wide range of specialist washes, such as ‘sports’ and ‘wool’, that means I only have  to think about it if I’m doing something out of the ordinary.

The Samsung WW9000 intelligently sorts your laundry

If you can use a computer, Smartphone or tablet, you’ll be able to use this machine with ease as it’s very intuitive.

Bits I loved

  • When it’s finished a load, the WW9000 plays a happy little tune to alert you to the fact of a job well done, which was oddly satisfying. 
  • The internal drum light seems like a gimmick at first, but is actually great for making sure you haven’t left any orphan socks behind.
  • Its large capacity, meaning fewer loads to get the job done. 
  • The noise – or rather, almost complete lack of it. With my previous washing machine, it was hard to have a conversation with someone in the same room if the spin cycle was on. With the WW9000, you have to stick your ear right against the drum before you can tell it’s running.

The Samsung WW9000, WW10H9600 retails at £1,700. For more information, to order or to find stockists, please visit the Samsung website.

By Sara Walker


Fab Friday Bargains: Kelly Hoppen for QVC

August 29th, 2014

Luxury home bargains

If you love the luxurious home interiors by designer Kelly Hoppen, then we’ve got some Fab Friday bargains for you today.

Some of Kelly’s exclusive products for TV and online shopping channel QVC are currently reduced to clearance and last click prices, providing good savings on the original prices. In particular, we like the look of the high thread count bedding options, many of which come in sets of six, so you could kit out your bed in luxury for less.

1. Paisley print velvet throw – now £27.36

2. QVC 20th birthday wide stripe cushion by Kelly Hoppen – now £18.60

3. 600TC Egyptian cotton damask six piece duvet set – now £127.80

4. Egyptian cotton 600TC Hidcote Dobby six piece duvet set – now from £90

5. Floral Egyptian cotton 500TC six piece duvet set – now £58.50

6. Herringbone Egyptian cotton continental pillowcases – now £13.68

7. Stripe design bedspread – now £38.64

8. Set of three bubble paperweights – now £25.20

9. Egyptian cotton 700TC paisley jacquard six piece duvet set – now from £96

Fresh Design wallpaper: 4 coral pink and neutral designs by MissPrint

August 27th, 2014

Four fresh wallpaper designs by MissPrint

It’s no secret that we’re rather fond of the work of UK-based wallcoverings, fabrics and home furnishings company, MissPrint.

They produce a wonderful range of contemporary designs in a variety of colour palettes and we’ve featured several of their designs before. But if you’re drawn to soft pinks, corals and neutrals, here are four wallpaper designs that could work for you.

1. Poppy wallpaper in blush

2. Ditto wallpaper in cocktail and champagne

3. Little Trees wallpaper in copperslip and fuschia

4. Denver wallpaper in blossom

These wallpapers are all in stock at John Lewis, but other retailers carrying MissPrint products include Heal’s, Wallpaper Direct and Liberty.

Star style: Home ideas featuring star designs

August 25th, 2014

Take inspiration from the stars and add a touch of star style to your home!

We don’t mean celebrity star style (although that’s fine if you wish), but inspiration from the classic star design. It features in heaps of home accessories and decor and is an image icon recognised around the world.

Here’s just a few of our current favourite home ideas featuring stars.

Star themed home inspiration

1. Mini Lena star lamp, £137 from Sisters Guild

2. Branch with stars fabric wall sticker, £28 from Koko Kids

3. Reach for the stars wooden print, £10 from Alphabet Interiors

4. Round star door knob, £3.95 from Graham & Green

5. Trio of vintage map stars wall art (made to order), £85 from Bombus

6. Small fairground star lights (made to order), £74.95 from Goodwin & Goodwin

7. Large hand carved fair trade mango wood stars, £12.95 from Paper High

8. Porcelain star dish, £55 from Stephanie Earl

9. Black star door mat, £35 from Graham & Green

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