Can we please talk Parquet Porn?

I know your type, you're a Parquet Perv aren't you? You've got whole entire Pinterest boards devoted to the stuff. You want it so bad you catch yourself thinking about walking all over it in 6 inch stiletto heels, then you have to splash yourself with tap water and tell yourself it's okay, it was just a bad dream; in your house everyone will be made to wear slippers.

Take me to bed Chevron parquet in Bedroom 16 Montagu Square, By D-Raw

Take me to bed Chevron parquet in Bedroom 16 Montagu Square, By D-Raw

I get you, because I'm a Parquet Perv too. I have been for over ten years, since I took possession of my house keys, raced over the threshold, heart pounding as I ripped back the flea ridden burgundy Axminster to find... some b***ards had ripped out a full Victorian dining room of the stuff and flogged the lot on Ebay. Cue heartbreak.

I won't settle in this house until parquet is back where it belongs and at last I have found the perfect opportunity, with some exciting new build plans in the offing at House Candy HQ. This all calls for extra Parquet Porn as I research the styles and options available. Want to see? Oh I bet you do, you filthy ....

Parquet Particulars

Parquet Porn pinched from www.lovingit.pl 

Parquet Porn pinched from www.lovingit.pl 

Parquet is made of small, loose blocks of either solid or engineered wood and is characterised by a repeating, geometric laying pattern. This style of floor has been around for centuries and can be found anywhere; from country homes, to grand public buildings and retro school halls. Technically speaking, parquet has all the advantages of solid wood, but is designed to make a style statement.

The Herringbone pattern is highly en vogue right now and looks elegant and sophisticated in both light...

and dark colourways.

More Parquet porn on  PInterest

More Parquet porn on PInterest

Most wood parquet is made from oak, pine, ash and walnut, but you can find exotic species available at equally exotic prices if you're looking for something a little different. 

Reclaimed or engineered?

Personally I like the idea of a true Victorian parquet to replicate what would have been in my dining room originally (of course I'd like it even better if the original hadn't been ripped up, but there we go... move on Claire).

Reclaimed parquet offers unbeatable authenticity and character, but before you go bid happy on Ebay and bag yourself a chunk of the old Town Hall, be sure to know what exactly you are buying and the work involved in the sale.

For example, a stunning ex-school parquet floor, up for a bargain quick sale, may actually involve you taking the blocks up yourself. Even if there is a tempting picture of the blocks all neatly stacked on a pallet, bear in mind that they may need sanding down (yes all 6 surfaces) and bitumen removing before they can be treated and re-laid. That's a lot of elbow grease and a LOT of mess. Totally worth the bragging rights if you've got the time and skills to do the job properly, but if not, look out for firms like aptly named Parquet Flooring who will supply required quantities of ready-to-lay reclaimed parquet blocks for a nominal extra charge.

Premium oak parquet by  Parquet Flooring

Premium oak parquet by Parquet Flooring

If it's a super slick finish you're after and something a lot less labour intensive, you're probably better opting for engineered wood.

This large scale light oak is £47 per square metre and the increasingly popular Chevron laying pattern offers a clean, modern take on the traditional parquet floor.

Luxury Engineered Prime Chevron parquet Oak £47  Timber Trade Direct

Luxury Engineered Prime Chevron parquet Oak £47 Timber Trade Direct

Perfect Chevron Parquet in dreamy dark stain. See my  Parquet Pinterest board  for more where this came from

Perfect Chevron Parquet in dreamy dark stain. See my Parquet Pinterest board for more where this came from

What if you move in a house and discover you have got parquet under the old carpet (yay) but it's in the more old fashioned pattern of basketweave (boo). 

Imagination is required, and maybe a bit of professional help, but with luck on your side it can still look amazing, in a retro kind of way.

basketweave lounge.jpg

Cheat or Chic?

Now if I say the word laminate you're going to go all funny on me aren't you? Don't panic, I won't go there. But I will talk about click together parquet planks that no one would ever know was not the real thing. Richmond Engineered Herringbone Click Parquet Oak may sound like a bit of a mouthful, but is so simple to lay it means you can have a roomful down in a day. 

Click together herringbone parquet £45 per sqm  Timber Trade Direct

Click together herringbone parquet £45 per sqm Timber Trade Direct

And finally, there's this. Waterproof parquet (aka posh vinyl floor tiles).

Blonde Oak parquet floor, £45.50 per sqm  Karndean

Blonde Oak parquet floor, £45.50 per sqm Karndean

I  know, I know, it's not wood....it costs the same as the real stuff... why would you? Because you're a Parquet Perv, that's why. And it's a practical option for a lavish bathroom or a chic kitchen and if you/I can't have 50 SqM of stunning real wood reclaimed parquet anywhere else in the house, then for God's sakes let us have a few square metres of looky-likely parquet to enjoy whilst we're on the loo. Deal?

So that's where I'm at. Still perving, still pinning, still pining for a parquet floor to grace my new entrance hall and kitchen/diner.  Where are you on the parquet porn scale? Fancy it too, or does it bring back too many memories of school dinners? I'd love to know your thoughts on the subject. Please do drop me a line in the comments section or connect via any of the social media links below. 

Oh and if anyone is completely turned OFF by their original parquet and will be glad to see the back of it, please drop me a message, like NOW!

Claire x

Perk up your poky hall with £31 pounds

I'm in limbo. I hate my poky entrance hallway (again) and yet I've been told it's likely to be next year until the builders can fit me in for my big renovation plan. I need a cheap solution to perk things up and see me through just one more summer.

It's a big ask for a small carpet and yet I've convinced myself that a super colourful hall runner is the answer to my prayers. 

Pink to make the hall wink. Image from RugPal.com

Pink to make the hall wink. Image from RugPal.com

As this is a temporary measure, I'm on a particularly tight budget. In fact, it needs to cost less than the pair of blush pink leather brogues I've been eyeing up to bridge that other annoying time lapse until the warmer weather arrives. 

Knox nude flatform brogues £110  Kurt Geiger

Knox nude flatform brogues £110 Kurt Geiger

I know, I know and thank you for your concern. It's a sad day when a woman must forfeit her footwear for her floor. But sometimes we homeowners have to take one for the team, don't we? Unless of course, we can find exactly what we are looking for, for such an bargainous sum that there are still plenty of pennies left in the shoe fund. Now that would be clever.

Oh Hello Petal

Stina runner. £31.50  Urban Outfitters

Stina runner. £31.50 Urban Outfitters

This Stina floral runner is a measley £31.50 now that Urban Outfitters have been kind enough to slash the price. Faded out florals give it a lovely vintagey look that is so feminine it might just detract from the aroma of sweaty trainers wafting from the shoe cupboard. It is lightweight and cotton which means I'll chance it on a cool wash once in a while and ... wait a second... blow me if it doesn't go perfectly with those blush pink brogues. 'Cos we all match our shoes to our hall runners, right?

In my book there's nothing like a dash of pink to pretty things up a little. Call back soon to see if it does the trick.

Happy Monday all. If I can help perk up your week and address any niggly interior woes, please drop me a line in the comments section. I would love to hear from you.

Claire xx

 

 

Flamboyance rules at London Design Festival

Question) What do you call a group of flamingos?

Answer) A Flamboyance

It's hands down the coolest fact I know and one that may come in handy if my recent trip to London Design Festival is anything to go by.

See, flamboyance is big news. Huge in fact. Flamboyance - whether it be a group of flamingos hiding in the foliage...

Flamingos a go-go at  Hoxton Grill

Flamingos a go-go at Hoxton Grill

... A bunch of cheeky monkeys busting out of banana leaves...

New monkey print wallpaper by Clarke and Clarke at Decorex

New monkey print wallpaper by Clarke and Clarke at Decorex

... Or an over indulgent, brightly coloured, Liberty print carpet...

Alternative Flooring Co 's Liberty print carpets at Decorex 

Alternative Flooring Co's Liberty print carpets at Decorex 

Flamboyance is where it's at.

Shrinking violets take note. This is not a look you can pull off easily. Kindly stick to geometrics and/or graffiti inspired fashion statements if you will - another equally hip (but possibly longer term) design trend which I will cover to in a later post.

Today however, I'm still going OTT about the over the top vibe currently dominating the interiors scene. My head is actually hurting with the volume of extravagant patterns that I crammed into it my small brain on my whistle stop tour of London this week. It's either that or the naughty school night out at the Hoxton Grill on Tuesday to see the Rockett St George pop up tropical paradise. You can see how it inspires a bit of excess though can't you?

Neon pink flamingo £195  Rockett St George

Neon pink flamingo £195 Rockett St George

It's been a crazy week here as I've tried to cram in three away days on top of my normal workload and the usual stresses of family life. Amazing though, isn't it, how you think it's going to be impossible and then ta-da you get to Friday and it's done. (It's a big Fri-yay from me)

I'm looking forward to documenting all the exciting stuff I've been up to here on the blog, so please stay tuned and drop me a line if you see anything that floats your boat design wise. Remember to use the #myhousecandy on twitter or instagram if you've also got some fabulous decor wins to share. I'd love you to get in touch!

Meanwhile, I've got tired children, a neglected hound and two overworked grandparents to appease so I must keep this post short and tend to my flock. Which reminds me... I picked up this pinny at the Denby Pottery factory shop yesterday on my so very exciting bloggers trip to learn all about their impressive design credentials (details coming soon).

Flamingo pinny £8.99 from  Denby Pottery Factory shop

Flamingo pinny £8.99 from Denby Pottery Factory shop

It's exactly what I need for my Macmillan Coffee Morning next Friday. If you are in the area, you must pop by, but do be prepared for a bit of flamboyance with your fondant fancies, won't you?

coffe morning 2.jpg

Happy weekend all,

Claire x

Tickled pink with Interior blog awards nomination

VOTE MY HOUSE CANDY HERE

The Candy Files - What's hot, what's not and what's what at my place.

This week...

House Candy = Pink & perky

IMG_2313.JPG

Voting is now open for this year's Interior Blog Awards, hosted by gorgeous interiors brand Amara and it is with rosy cheeks and puckered lips that I thank you from the bottom of my heart for my nomination. 

I am totally bowled over to be in the Best Design Inspiration category and up against some ridiculously cool brands and actual journos-turned-superbloggers... I know right.

Voting is open throughout August when I will be ramping up my output here on the blog and bringing you more design inspiration than you can fill a vintage cadillac with. 

Starting today with a tickled pink inspired Candy Files, dedicated entirely to the colour of my latest crush.

I am officially obsessed with PINK.  

This thing with pink started back in Easter when I bought a pink trouser suit and realised after years of failing at any Kings Road style camel colours, THIS was a nude that actually suited me. Mine was from Next and is now sold out but Top Shop's new range proves the trend is good for Autumn/Winter too.

Pink trouser suit £100  www.topshop.com

Pink trouser suit £100 www.topshop.com

It got me me thinking, if pink works with fair skin and freckles, then maybe it works in other places it shouldn't too. Like doors for example. 

Tick.

Or beds that aren't for grannies or baby girls.

Tick.

Even boys can love pink!  www.loaf.com' s luscious lazy linen is similar to this.

Even boys can love pink! www.loaf.com's luscious lazy linen is similar to this.

Also on Floors.

Tick.

This blush pink thick pile sheepskin is a vintage find but  www.wayfair.com  has a large selection of pretty pink rugs.

This blush pink thick pile sheepskin is a vintage find but www.wayfair.com has a large selection of pretty pink rugs.

From palest blush to shocking fuscia, this month's Elle Decoration has hailed pink the hue of the moment and I'll happily drink to that.

Fine and Candy = Pink drinks

Always appropriate in summer, at weddings or on random Tuesday's when you get an actual IBA nomination. Pink champagne is the essence of this shade; all girly and giggly and glow inducing. 

So fond of pink bubbles am I, that I've taken to drinking them in dainty little vintage beakers, featuring... well whatdyaknow... more pink bubbles. Hic.

Pink spotty tumblers - find similar on ebay.

Pink spotty tumblers - find similar on ebay.

On the subject of pink bubbles, I'm wondering if they are also to blame for this retro blown glass lamp shade which I fell for at the skip shop yesterday. 

Flamingo lamp perhaps?

Flamingo lamp perhaps?

Does this trouble you? Follow me on Instagram to watch its reincarnation into sassy plant holder.... or something.

Candy Pandy = Pinky Promise

Like when you SAY you're gonna vote for me in the Amara Interior Blog Awards and then you never quite get round to it and all the other amazing bloggers get shortlisted and go to The Ham Yard for the glitzy award ceremony and I get to stay on my sofa with a cheap bottle of pink fizz to drown my sorrows.

Look, I scrub up REALLY well and nobody EVER in the history of my home town has been to a blog awards, never mind one about creating cool houses and, and well I'm 41 FFS. If it doesn't happen now, when will it happen? 

Seriously, my dad is getting impatient. He wants all the money he invested in my university education back and is threatening to find me a real job.

My kids are also breathing down my neck: "Believe in your dreams," I said, "You can be anything you want to be," I said. "Go on then," they said.

"Oh, alright."

You are the only people who can change this situation people. The power is in your fingertips. All you have to do is click on this link:

VOTE FOR MY HOUSE CANDY

And help me be that blogger from Brighouse who blagged her way to The Ham Yard with all the cool brands and the top bloggers. I mean, wow, if you really want to see someone blush. 

Do you?

Claire x

PS If you share this post you will also get put into the draw to win a weekend at my fave seaside hideaway as per my previous post .. because - and let's just be clear on this - I am NOT above bribery. Not yet.

Bert’s bargains - Flash sale on flashy floors

"Hola Amigo!" That’s the kind of welcome home I’m looking for on these dark days and long nights of November. Totally achievable when you open your front door to a few square metres of reclaimed Sevillian floor tiles sourced by all-things-beautiful-brand Bert & May.

Alfredo reclaimed tile from  Bert & May

Alfredo reclaimed tile from Bert & May

40% off Yard Sale

This Saturday, 28th November I’m heading to their one off yard sale in my neck of the woods near Leeds where there is 40% off all stunning reclaimed tile stock. Put YO26 7QF in your sat nav and you too can snap up an exotic architectural feature floor for a fraction of the normal price. And without the hassle of digging up an actual bodega. (These babies have even had a wash and brush up)

Red Majadas tile  www.bertandmay.com

Red Majadas tile www.bertandmay.com

Visit the website www.bertandmay.com for the full collection of unique stock on offer.

The sale is on 10am - 4pm and to make your trip to Wetherby EVEN more worthwhile (like you needed an excuse) there’s hot cider ready to welcome you and two of the blow-your-mind Bert’s Teeny Boxes to drool over. That’s one of these in case you were wondering...

It’s a mini version of Bert’s Box - the pre-fab mobile buildings that have re-defined pre-fab mobile buildings. You’ll know all about them if you read my Decorex launch post, when I fell instantly in love. Catch it again here.. http://www.myhousecandy.com/blog/2015/9/23/the-box-that-bert-built

Made top to bottom with trademark Bert & May wow factor - from the vintage timber cladding to the super slim steel windows. It’s the ultimate man cave; the perfect mobile holiday home; the greatest garden room in the world ever. I mean, it’s even possible to live in a Bert’s Box and build yourself a small, but perfectly formed haven of cool wherever the fancy takes you.

But look, I can’t convince you enough with a few words and pictures here. You have to go and stroke the sides of the walls and you know, get down on your knees and caress the super cool tiled floors. (It’s Okay, you're in Yorkshire, we’re an open minded bunch)

So, see you Saturday at Unit 14 Marston Business Park, Tockwith, YO26 7QF yes? Doesn’t sound like the most stylish of all Saturday shopping destinations does it? But it’s a Bert & May shopping destination so my bet is, it totally is.

Let me know how you get on :)