Welcome to My House Sanctuary

Instagram followers will know that I’m having a bit if an identity crisis and the reason is this: The never-ending house renovation has knocked the sugar coating off me. Too much House Candy has made me feel sick and I'm in search of sanctuary!

My fresh new interior thinking (and fresh eco kicks)

My fresh new interior thinking (and fresh eco kicks)

It's grated on me for a while, but the realisation that maybe I'd outgrown the House Candy label was all too evident last week. The snow had come to make a difficult living situation just that little bit more trying and a trail of discarded wet clothes led me to my boys who were thawing out watching Shrek in the lounge, the only room that remains unaffected by the house renovation. It was that bit at Shrek's kids' birthday party when the ogre can't cope with being nice anymore and lets rip with the most outrageous roar. 

When Shrek had had it with sweetness.

When Shrek had had it with sweetness.

"That's you!" they all laughed, hysterically.

Ha bloody ha.

Now I wouldn't normally take any notice, but there was something about party pooper Shrek that really struck a chord. There were all these people in his house, it was noisy and messy, he should be having fun and yet "ROOOOOOOOAAAAAARRRRRRRRRR". He just longed for his old life back and the sanctuary of the cosy little hideaway he used to call home. I totally get Shrek’s beef.

Life is stressful and our home should be our escape from that. When we come home, it’s important to feel relaxed and yet so often we come home to be faced with more mayhem. There’s the pile of ironing waiting for us, the kids to feed, the dog to walk, the bathroom to clean… the list goes on. That’s just life of course, but I totally believe that your surroundings can soothe your mental state and suddenly I'm all about interior design being my self-help for the home.

I’ve designed my new spaces with wellbeing in mind. I want to create a home that appeals to our senses and helps us all to be our best selves, not the fat, green ogre some of us have a habit of turning into. 

So that’s why I wanted a new start and a name change and why I'm hoping to re-launch the blog when I've finished re-launching my home! The decision may appear to have come out of the blue, but please know that it actually comes from a good place in my heart and a better place in my home. 

My House Sanctuary is definitely where I’m at style-wise at the moment thanks to the opportunity I've had to start over with the house renovation. The clear outs have made me vow never again to fill my space with pretty stuff just for the sake of it. It takes up space in my house and my head that I no longer have room for. 

Maximalism suddenly feels too chaotic for me. Trends feel too fickle, flat pack too throwaway. I've filled WAY too many skips and would really like to leave more than landfill as my legacy when I'm gone.  I've been involved with every little detail of re-designing my living space and am excited to show you how it turns out over the next few weeks. But this time around, I'm not looking to wow you with a jaw-dropping instagram hit of a house. I want it to be more laid back than that, more soulful in its styling. Be prepared to be under-whelmed!

I've always said that your house should tell your story and My House Sanctuary feels like the next logical chapter in the design journey for me. I've learnt so much about myself in the last six months and would like to think it's time to lose the candy floss fluffiness and get serious about my style. I''m all about relaxed living spaces that give us less reason to lose it.

Soooooo, a refreshed blog is in the pipeline and hopefully I will be ready for a bit of a re-launch when the house is finished in a couple of months' time. That surely means we need a party right? (I'll be the green monster stifling a roar)  

Happy Mother's Day to all you other Mummy Hustlers out there. I've just had the most amazing news that tomorrow's football match is off due to waterlogged pitch which means breakfast in bed is most definitely ON. How's this for a bedroom sanctuary tho?

Fornasetti II Collection Chiavi Segrete wallpaper by Cole and Son

Fornasetti II Collection Chiavi Segrete wallpaper by Cole and Son

Claire x

Why I'm still in a flap over exotic bird wallpaper

What is it with me and brightly coloured birds with big beaks? I somehow find myself gravitating towards them. Like, there I was on my first night on holiday here in Portugal. I'm just finding my way around, when suddenly a wrong turn has me treading a path paved with a giant flamingo. What are the chances?

And then when I tried out the gym over here and, on my first sit up, noticed the ceiling was one huge mural depicting a sky of exotic flying birds, swooping at my imagination. An intense set of cloud gazing was all I could manage thereafter. (Okay, so it doesn't take much).

Regular readers will know I have this thing with flamingos and I was alarmed when recently, somebody asked me if they were passe? I laughed, obviously.

Sure, they've been a round a while, but I still don't think I'm late to the party. More like I refuse to leave the party. Especially the one hosted by King of maximalism Matthew Williamson whose wallpapers, lamps and side tables all err on the side of exotic.

Matthew Williamson Flamingo Club wallpaper from  Amara.com

Matthew Williamson Flamingo Club wallpaper from Amara.com

Exotic birds are great for adding a bit of unexpected interest. I particularly like to find them in downstairs loos, dressing rooms, utilities.... anywhere in fact that's not an obvious place for showing off.

But if you are concerned that flamingos are too, um, 5 years ago, here's a few other birds of wallpaper paradise that might still fit the bill.*

Hummingbird Wallpaper by  Cole and Son

Hummingbird Wallpaper by Cole and Son

Swans wallpaper by Nina Campbell available from  Rockett St George

Swans wallpaper by Nina Campbell available from Rockett St George

Bird print wallpaper by  Julia Rothman

Bird print wallpaper by Julia Rothman

Happy bank holiday all. Hope your feet help you seek out some inspiration too!

Love Claire xx

*It's 30 degrees in the shade and I got off my blow up pool flamingo to bring you this post. Allow me one little holiday pun won't you?