How I'm (not) handling Hygge

I'm struggling with this Hygge thing. 

For a start, here's a word (a funny one) that shares lots of letters with the word Hygeine and yet none of the sentiment. All that cocooning oneself in faux fur, fire on full blast, whilst slurping endless cups of hot chocolate. Isn't it a bit, um, sweaty?

My hotbed of hygge

My hotbed of hygge

I hygge dabbled last Saturday. I bought the boys furry bear shaped onesies, lit ALL of the candles and answered the door to the pizza delivery guy wearing my PJ's, dressing gown and fur lined slipper boots at 7.30pm. I experienced my first hot flush.

I don't want winter to feel like the menopause. Turns out I'm not overly keen on hibernation mode, especially since I bought a 70s inspired wide brimmed felt hat and realised November was the perfect month to do that Brigitte-Bardot/Paris in the fall look.

Way more me.

'Cos BB knows how to work winter

'Cos BB knows how to work winter

No, I like a bit of glamour to my winter. It's going to be a long, depressing season if we spend it mostly huddled together in front of the telly fighting over the last Caramel Keg. 

So my winter room update is still cosy, but it's also sparkly and a bit pink in places. In our house we'll be warm, but won't develop heat rash. We'll be zen, but not overly zonked. With the exception of Christmas Day night when we're so tired we will fall asleep dribbling Terry's chocolate orange down our new jumpers.

I've realised that for me to embrace this hygge (pronounced hoo-ga) concept, it needs a top layer of vintage glamour adding to it. I'm good with the furs, obvs; all winter looks need furs, but I need a bit more old fashioned twinkle than lots of the skandi looks we are seeing on the gram. I'm starting with a mirrored wall that can be gradually added to as I get more involved.

My winter room update featuring star mirror £80 by  Cox and Cox

My winter room update featuring star mirror £80 by Cox and Cox

The curtains are closed for so much longer these days and a wall of mirrors above the sofa helps me feel a bit less claustrophobic. Mirrors bounce light about the place, but its the contrast of the shiny reflective glass against the fluffier textures that gives this a lovely lick of glamour. 

I like to have a cluster of smaller mirrors rather than just one big one and it's great to find a mix of shapes to add interest too. I get a lot of bevel edged and gilt framed mirrors from junk shops and markets but I think it looks way cooler to throw in one or two modern shapes too. This brass star mirror from Cox and Cox is a game changer.

Brass star mirror £80  Cox and Cox

Brass star mirror £80 Cox and Cox

It looks fab propped up on the original period fireplace in my guest room but I couldn't see it enough up there in the attic, so for now it's here in the front room for a bit of glamorous star gazing.  

Cox and Cox are great at vintage style accents. In fact if you're not one for rummaging round second hand markets, they've created this 3 mirror collection that will give you a similar vintage effect to mine.

3 scollop edge mirror cluster £175  Cox and Cox

3 scollop edge mirror cluster £175 Cox and Cox

Then there's the candles. Hygge fans must get through a lot of candles over the course of the season, which begs the question, how long is one supposed to hygge anyway? 

The big white church candles are great but they flicker more than twinkle. Tea lights grouped together in vintage cut glass beakers on the other hand feel fancy enough to make a Saturday night in appealing. These gold rimmed babes were my favourite find from this week's junk shop rummage and will be perfect for a glamorously lit Christmas table too. My tip? use black tea lights which cast a pinky glow when lit.

And then there's the furs.

Chroma Faux Fur cushion £45  Anthropologie  

Chroma Faux Fur cushion £45 Anthropologie 

I'm doing a nod to nordic and a wink to pink with this beautiful Anthropologie number. It feels more like a kitsch stole slung carelessly around the shoulders of a cheeky cocktail dress than a middle aged mum in a onesie. I just think that's a better place to aim, don't you?

And while we're on the subject of a suitably glamorous way to lounge, there's this:

Silk velvet kimono £285  Toast

Silk velvet kimono £285 Toast

Give me a blush silk velvet kimono to lol about in and and I'll Hygge all you like.

Let me know your thoughts on this Hygge business. It's HUGE. What am I missing? Are you layering up like a good 'un or so totally over the hygge hype? Get in touch below, I'd love to hear your thoughts.

Claire xx

 

 

 

Next Stop Christmas

Bonfire night is so last week. I like it, don't get me wrong. I love the sparklers and the parkin and it's genuinely not until the 50th banger has gone off in my neighbourhood, sending my Lhasa Apso into yet another yapping fit, that I start looking forward to the end of bonfire night and the automatic igniting of Christmas.

But that touch paper is now lit. My thoughts have turned to locating the perfect Nordic Spruce and I do not want to see another whizzy, bangy (and please not squeely) firework until New Year.

As you may well have predicted, decorating the house for Christmas is a big deal at House Candy HQ and I'm always on the lookout for new ideas to bring the JOY.

Noel letters £60  www.next.co.uk

Noel letters £60 www.next.co.uk

My letter box is already heaving with the bulge of Christmas catalogues and I am eager to take a peak at what decorative treats Christmas 2016 has in store. Today's offering came from Next and it got my festive feels off to a flier. 

Every year Next delivers one or two pieces that could easily be mistaken for designer. As I thumbed through the Christmas fashion today, I couldn't help folding corners of pages bearing such high end copycats as red velvet platform ankle boots and quilted animal print handbags. Luxe winter boho was also temptingly well represented with a multi-printed tie neck dress that looks straight off the runway. It would be very easy to get distracted, but let us just focus on the homewares shall we?

Next is always one of my go-tos for a quick, on trend update that won't break the bank. This Christmas they've got all interior trend angles covered ... and then sprinkled them with glitter. Here are my favourite festive picks so far:

1) No brainer neon

Red led heart light £35  www.next.co.uk

Red led heart light £35 www.next.co.uk

White LED Love sign £50  Next

White LED Love sign £50 Next

Well LED lights actually but at £35 and £50 respectively, these are the perfect entry level light up signage. Agree?

2) Infinity and beyond lights

Infinity arrow light £55  Next

Infinity arrow light £55 Next

These infinity lights will be a sell out, I am sure of it. Personally I'd prefer to splash £55 on this beauty that can be used all year round than invest in the life size LED nodding reindeer that my kids are swaying towards, but hey, apparently they are the experts in this department. 

3) Gold trees

Gold tree £100  Next

Gold tree £100 Next

Gold is the new black where Christmas trees are concerned. Okay so it looks a bit like a real one in January after a month of central heating abuse, but teamed with these coloured berry LED fairy lights in an oh-so-trendy dark painted room and you've got one achingly hip bauble hanger.

Coloured berry lights £28  Next

Coloured berry lights £28 Next

4) Festive furs

Present stocking £12  Next

Present stocking £12 Next

Now I'm not one for a festive cushion. I do not have a Christmas table cloth, nor a saucy santa pinny to cook my turkey in (sigh). However, I'm strangely drawn to this blush pink faux fur velvet stocking with gold effect sequin trim. Santa come hither...

5) Christmas bunting (I know, Christmas bunting FFS!)

I almost couldn't include this on the basis of it epitomising the very category of Christmas decoration that by rights should be banned ...  and yet...

Christmas bunting £12  Next

Christmas bunting £12 Next

Pretty innit? Like it's been written with a sparkler.

So that's the seal broken. I've placed my first Xmas mail order and any minute now I'll have popped my first mince pie and choked on the stench of a cheap cinnamon infused candle. 

What catalogues have got you excited for Christmas? Do you go all out to deck the halls or does the idea of trimming up fill you with dread? Like it or not, Christmas is coming and your letter box will not let you forget it! Let me know your thoughts in the comments section, I'll crack open the mulled wine in anticipation.

Claire x

 

 

 

 

Holy Faux-liage - why I worship at the altar of artificial plants

I don't normally advocate faking it. Preserve what you've got is my motto. But try as I might, there are some things I fail to keep looking perky and pot plants are one of them.

Faux-liage is the answer to my green-fingered prayers. Hallelujia! then for Abigail Ahern the patron saint of succulents, who has blessed us with her fabulous faux florists, at Heals on the ground floor of Yorkshire interiors heaven Redbrick.

If ever there was a more beautiful display of plastic products, I'd like to see it. 

Abigail Ahern's faux flower shop at Heals in Redbrick, near Leeds.

Abigail Ahern's faux flower shop at Heals in Redbrick, near Leeds.

You might be fooled into thinking into thinking these stunning plants and flowers are real, but please don't be fooled into thinking AA fauxs are extortionately priced. OK, so a Hydreangea stem will set you back £12.50.

A pretty pale pink Rannuculous is £5.50

A simple burgundy cow parsley spray is £6

You're looking at around £40 for enough stems to make a statement vase, not cheap, I get that, but what you need to remember is that this is the bunch of flowers that keeps on giving. Week after week, month after month, year after year. Anniversary after anniversary... ahem, it's this week, love (winky face) 

Fauxs actually make excellent plant maths, so as one by one my disastrous attempts at home grown greenery depart this world, I am just going to replace them with perma-plants instead. I mean, I've got enough mouths to feed. I'm over it.

Goldenball cactus from £60

Goldenball cactus from £60

Large Yuha Cactus £145

Large Yuha Cactus £145

Staghorn plat £70

Staghorn plat £70

String of Pearls £50

String of Pearls £50

From lush trailing ferns, to the coolest kingsize cacti, these are the fakes to bring a room scheme to life. Ironic when you put it like that isn't it?

But hey, you can't just take my word for it. Like all the best fake jobs, you need to have a good look and see if they really do pass as the real thing first. Then go on, cop a feel. I guarantee you won't be disappointed. Don't worry, Heals won't mind you fondling their foliage one little bit.

Here's where to get your hands on these fabulous fauxs, whilst also taking in the best interior design destination in the North of England, home to over 40 top brands and innovative retailers.

Redbrick  is situated in Batley, on the outskirts of Leeds.  Click here for directions.

Redbrick is situated in Batley, on the outskirts of Leeds. Click here for directions.

Happy Monday all. my advice to get you through the week? Go buy yourself flowers of course!

Please get in touch, I'd love to hear from you and will gladly accept any floral deliveries also (joke) Leave a comment below and stalk me on social media... stalks... flowers... get it? Sorry, I'll go now, before you tell me where to shove my Tule Cactus. 

Faux Tule Cactus £65  Abigail Ahern

Faux Tule Cactus £65 Abigail Ahern

Claire x