House of Hacks - The art of beautiful cheating

There are some beautiful cheats out there. Ref Maria Sharapova. 

Cheating is wrong. Of course it's wrong, but weellllllll, tennis would be ugly without Maria, so I have found it in my heart to forgive her. Just like I know you will forgive me for my recent (but rather beautiful) cheating spate too. 

Sainsbury's Botanist cushion and Ikea striped fabric.  Swan Lake wallpaper  £67 per roll by Nina Campbell. 

Sainsbury's Botanist cushion and Ikea striped fabric. Swan Lake wallpaper £67 per roll by Nina Campbell. 

So it's time to come clean.

I love House of Hackney. In fact I have an unhealthy obsession with the brand. I love its modern vintage vibe, its unapologetic maximalism and I adore its rock star credentials. 

Palmeral  print cushions £148 House of Hackney

Palmeral print cushions £148 House of Hackney

And yet (guilt face) I've been reduced to cheating in order to achieve the look.

Exhibit 1 -  My twelve quid Sainsbury's palm print cushion. Intended to pretty up outdoor furniture and currently residing very happily indoors.

Botanist cushion £12

Botanist cushion £12

But that's not all. Unable to land this dreamy (and yes, rock-star expensive) House of Hackney London stripe Mortello chair to the tune of £2,495 ...

... I bought some £6 per metre Ikea copycat fabric and made my own accent chair instead. (Exhibit B below and top).

Sofia fabrc £8 per metre

Sofia fabrc £8 per metre

But you know what? Throughout this sordid designer hacking ordeal, I have experienced none of the shame associated with real life cheating. In fact. I'm actually quite proud of myself. You will be pleased to know that interior cheating, done well, feels really quite good.

What's more, it allows me more cash to splash on gorgeous actual House of Hackney accessories that:

a) I would not otherwise be able to afford and

b) Will fool everyone into believing that the fake stuff might actually be designer anyway (because a House of Hackney soap dispenser says a lot about your standards if you know what I mean.)

Palmeral ceramic bathroom gift set £55

Palmeral ceramic bathroom gift set £55

Clean hands and clean conscience. Who'd have thought cheating could be so rewarding?

Got any designer cheats you want to 'fess up about? Tip me off in the comments section below. It takes one to know one, right?

Claire x




Ikea, the Vogue squad & me - The Candy Files

The Candy Files; What's hot, what's not and what's what at my place. This week:

House Candy = Gallery Walls

Mosslander Picture Ledge £8.50  Ikea

Mosslander Picture Ledge £8.50 Ikea

I'm lethal with a hammer. I get the urge to put up some pictures and before you know it there's a wham, bam, thank you mam style of holy crap carnage going on.

So when I framed a whole set of 10 vintage Vogue magazine covers this week, my husband hid the tool box. He knows, as deep down so do I, that lining up two rows of five perfectly straight pictures is not in my DNA. (And DIY is definitely not in his) 

Hurrah then for Ikea who yes, once again, have come up with a genius quick fix solution to creating an oh-so-ofthemoment interior trend. Of course they have addressed the gallery wall situation with their usual amount of affordable chic, that has you slapping your forehead in a WHY-DIDN'T-I-THINK-OF-THAT stylie. This unassuming little picture ledge is the result:

Mosslander Picture ledge with built in groove!

Mosslander Picture ledge with built in groove!

Valkommen to my life Mosslander, the ready to fix picture rail that allows me to go framed print mental whenever I like and without the need for hammer, nails or subsequent marital unrest.

Watch this space as these fancy flapper girls prepare to strut their stuff, Scandinavian style on my walls.

IMG_0937 (2).jpeg

Fine and Candy = Gallery Goals

Vogue 100  exhibition National Portrait Gallery, London

Vogue 100 exhibition National Portrait Gallery, London

My life plan de-railed when, aged 21, I took the first job offered to me at a Leeds PR firm instead of pursuing my dream to write for glossy magazines in London. Damn.

But one happy marriage, countless suburban school runs and a house I could never afford in the smoke later - and I promise I'm not bitter. Whilst the career goals may be in the gutter, the magazine obsession is still very much alive and I'm super giddy to be nurturing that love this weekend at the Vogue 100 exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery, which runs until 22nd May.

You know, I don't often pat myself on the back, but when I picked up the book of vintage Vogue covers (framed above) for £2 at a second hand market back in January I was a bit smug. Smugness turned to euphoria when I learned that it was Vogue Magazine's centenary year and they were marking the occasion with  an exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery featuring 280 prints from the hallowed Conde Nast archive. The collection tells the story of one of the most influential fashion magazines of all time and for me, a bible of style, glamour and a life just that little bit out of reach. (It's true, an extra four inches would have made all the difference). 

With any luck, the compulsory trip to the museum shop afterwards will see me adding to my collection of Vogue cover drawings with some examples of their iconic fashion photography too. Get ready for overload my new picture ledge friend. 

Candy Pandy = Gallery Silence



I'm not sure how to put this without sounding a) desperate or b) unprofessional. Here goes: You couldn't drop me a comment from time to time could you? It would make all the difference to this blog if we could "reach out" to one another a bit more. It's a phrase I loathe but a feeling I love. Call me needy but I just want to hear what you like, what you don't like, what makes you click so that I can keep improving this creative space and turn it into one awesome little gallery of interior ideas worth shouting about. 

Make some noise people! And have a super fun week in the process.

Claire x