FEBRUARY Pinterest Board of the Month

Dedicating this month to beautiful mugs! My Pinterest Board of the Month for February is called Mugs Love by Nadine Walid.

If you’re looking for maybe a Valentine’s Day or a Mother’ Day gift at the moment I’d highly recommend getting your inspiration from this board of gorgeousness. I LOVE a beautiful mug, and I love me a hot brew too so I feel it’s only right to have a kitchen stacked full of stunning mugs ready for lots of guests and beverages of all sizes… Be it a small and speedy espresso cup or a huge bowl mug for herbal teas to wrap your hands around in the evenings. The more unusual and handmade the better!

Sky-Siouki-Pinterest-Board-February-Mug-Love-Handmade

Here are a few of my fave picks from the board, featuring It’s A Public Holiday (above) and Anthropologie (below). As you can probably guess, dreamy hand-painted glazes and shiny gold details are my favourite. I’d also recommend checking out Bristol maker Libby Ballard Ceramics and Exeter based SBH Pottery for more places to shop for beautiful mugs.

Sky-Siouki-Pinterest-Board-February-Mug-Love-Gold
Sky-Siouki-Pinterest-Board-February-Mug-Love-Cups

Even if you don’t have a gift to buy this February, why not just treat yourself to a nice new mug to see yourself through the rest of the Winter?! See the full Mugs Love board here.

JANUARY Pinterest Board of the Month

First Pinterest Board of the Month feature for 2018! This January’s choice is a mix of homey vibes by Jane McCormack simply called ‘BEAUTIFUL THINGS’. Nice.

It’s full of earthy tones, mainly in beautiful home interiors but it also includes a few lovely items like handmade pottery and succulent plants. There’s even a couple of infographics on plants that purify the air in your home!

January Pinterest Board of the Month Images

 

Here’s a selection of my favourite four images from the board. Having just moved into my very own project house I am getting super obsessive about kitchen tiles and layouts and those rich aquamarine hexagonal tiles are just to die for! Mixes of retro furniture, copper lamps, shelves full of intriguing items and exposed brick are totally in line with my homestyle vibe and I am also a massive sucker for a beautiful bowl! Just can’t say no to a nice bowl, honestly my partner will tell you it’s a problem. Plus that succulent image is just so darn pretty! Not quite at the plant buying stage yet but I’m certainly thinking low maintenance (and air purifying even) is the way to go!

Stay tuned for my TOP 5 Valentine’s Gifts feature and February’s Pinterest Board choice!

Sky x

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DECEMBER Pinterest Board of the Month

As it’s December I had to make this one a Christmas feature! I have chosen a wonderful festive Pinterest board for the month of December called HOLIDAYS…. by Suzi Park and it is packed full of wonderful resources for Christmas baking, cooking, gift wrapping, decorations, table settings and even how to make your dog look festive! I love the choice of nature based styling and rustic traditional ideas with a bit of a Nordic influence coming through.

With Christmas day now only 6 days away, you are probably ready to prepare the final finishing touches for the big day like wrapping presents, cooking chutneys and cake in advance and making a few final decorations for the house and dinner table. This Pinterest board is full of inspiration for all of the above so go get creative and Merry Christmas!


chocolate-pinecones-christmas-cake

How amazing is this Christmas chocolate cake decorated with flaked almond pinecones?! Can’t get over how beautiful it looks. There are lots of other gorgeous looking baking ideas on the board too.

 

Christmas dog decoration hat

I’m a big dog lover, and I know lots of Sky Siouki fans out there are too. This Pinterest board has plenty of adorable festive dog photos on it too. They’re fun to have a laugh at even if you don’t fancy trying to wrestle your dog into a tangle of tinsel yourself on Christmas day.

 

Nigel Slater Christmas Turkey Guide

There are also tips on how best to cook your turkey and make delicious condiments. Plus ideas for interesting side dishes such as braised red cabbage. Prepare to start drooling.

 

Simple effective Kraft Christmas gift wrap

One of my favourite parts of Christmas what with being a creative and all, is the gift wrapping! There’s some great inspiration here for how to make your gifts look extra pretty this year. I love the simple style of this one. Always a fan of using recycled Kraft paper and jazzing it up with rustic twine or natural accessories like leaves as shown here.

This will be my last blog post before Christmas and most likely the new year since I’m about to move house by the end of the month! I have two last Christmas markets in Bristol left to go which are Harbourside Christmas Market on Saturday Dec 23rd and Tobacco Factory Christmas Eve Market on Dec 24th! If I don’t see you there though, a very HAPPY CHRISTMAS to you all and thank you a million for supporting Sky Siouki. See you in 2018!

 

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APRIL Pinterest Board of the Month

 

Live Beautifully by Lobster & Swan.

A new monthly feature for the blog featuring snippets from a beautiful Pinterest board of my choosing each month for you all to enjoy. This is something I used to do via Twitter and Facebook quite often but I thought why not give these boards the full glory that they deserve and bring it on over to the blog!

This month I’ve picked this gorgeous selection of interiors titled Live Beautifully, exquisitely curated by photographer and stylist Lobster & Swan. All of these homes have a very floral, country living style Spring vibe going on so I thought it an apt choice for April’s pick. There are lots of flowers, antique furnishings, distressed wood and hues of pinks, greys and sage greens going on all creating a wonderfully rustic English garden style. I’ve picked three highlights below which I particularly liked for their use of vintage vs. contemporary furnishings, pastel shades and indoor plants but check out the whole board to get really inspired!

Pinterest Board of the Week - Live Beautifully. Piano

Pinterest Board of the Week - Live Beautifully. Living Room

Pinterest Board of the Week - Live Beautifully. Dining Room

If you enjoyed this post, stay tuned and subscribe via the links on the right for my Pinterest board of the month for May! Here’s my very own Pinterest profile if you fancy a gander at that too. Until next time! X

Stone Placemats Now Available Online!

If you’ve been keeping up with Sky Siouki on Instagram you may very well have heard that I’ve been busy working on a new set of stone placemats to match my stone coasters! Well the day has come and they are now officially available to buy online in all sixteen Flight designs to match all sixteen coasters. So that’s four bird of prey illustrations and four waterbird illustrations either with coloured abstract backgrounds or larger scale with the the beautiful natural stone exposed behind them.

Barn Owl Natural Stone Placemat

Sandhill Crane Stone Placemat

The limestone tiles are absolutely beautiful with lots of incredible natural markings and imperfections making each placemat really special and unique. Due to the handmade nature of this product please be aware that each placemat does vary especially in colour. They are backed with a large square of cork to keep them from slipping or scratching surfaces as with the stone coasters. If you’re a fan of my coasters then these stone placemats are the perfect way to accompany them on your dining table. You could try mixing and matching the natural and coloured versions for an eclectic look or choose the same ones to make a complete set. They would also work really well in the kitchen as trivets for hot pans!

There is limited availability for now, but hopefully if they prove popular it will be a product line I can continue in future. Snap one up now just to be safe though! Shop here.

INTERIORS INSPO – Keeping it Cosy

It feels like Winter is making it’s approach in full force this week. Definitely time to get the blankets, hot water bottles, big scarves and extra large mugs out! But at least it’s an excuse to give the house a little seasonal makeover to keep you cosy throughout the next few months so I thought I’d seek out a few of the best cosy living spaces I could find on good old Pinterest and share some ideas on how to give your home some rustic, homely vibes.

Modern Meets Rustic

Cosy Fireplace

WOOD: These homes have a wonderful modern rustic feel with their use of natural wooden floorboards, painted wood wall panels, indoor plants and antique fireplaces complete with vintage armchairs alongside. The addition of a few big logs in the fireplace or a basket full of kindling ready to get that fire roaring really completes the look. Love the ceiling high bookcases here too, somehow lots of books seem to make a home feel extra cosy, perhaps because they tell more of a story about the people who live there.

Velvet Sofa

VELVET: As far as I’m concerned, nothing feels quite as amazingly soft as velvet does. I’m such a sucker for velvet sofas and cushions. You can bet you’ll be comfortable on a sofa like this one plus it look so effortlessly glamourous.

Scandinavian Living Room

RUGS & THROWS: This Scandinavian style living space is made to feel cosy with it’s big high pile rug, sheepskin throws and candle collection on the coffee table. Candlelight in the evening always adds a wonderful warm glow to a room on a cold night and it really does add heat too. Even the deer skull on the wall here adds to the rustic Winter style perfectly.Earthy ColoursEARTHY COLOURS: Colour is so important to the mood of a room. Although I love the pure style of Scandinavian homes I do find it can be a little too much white sometimes. This home shows how more dusky and earthy colours can create warmth in a space and works especially well when paired with antique furniture and textiles. A nice big Persian rug is ideal to create this look. Even if you’d rather keep the walls light it’s easy to bring in a bit more earthy depth using cushions and painted furniture instead. My fave colour choices are dark mauve, rusty orange and dusky rose pink.

Happy decorating and stay warm! I’ll be launching my new product collection this Friday, Nov 11th, so keep your eyes peeled and read all about the making of in next week’s post!

PRESS! Featured in Period Ideas

My Blessing of Unicorns large, luxury velvet cushion has been featured in this month’s Period Ideas magazine in the Style Edit section amongst a lovely selection of oriental garden themed products. Very nice! I’ve only got one of this design currently in stock but a couple more are available made to order.

Period Ideas Feature

TOP 5… Botanical Fabrics

Since Spring is finally approaching, this month I’m featuring five plant themed prints for the home. I’ve gotten very into botanical studies of late and think there’s a lot to be admired in the beautiful variety of leaf shapes and sizes as well as just pretty florals. Botanical prints are really on trend right now and I’m enjoying the range of fabrics featuring delicately illustrated plants that’s about at the moment. I’ve featured interior fabrics since that’s my speciality but I have to say they are some gorgeous fashion prints about too. Here are my Top 5 leafy fabrics for the home…

1. Woodland Ferns by Sanderson

Love the drama of this colourway although if it’s a bit too dark for you it is also available in paler hues. The black really brings out all the intricate details of the leaves though and would look great used to furnish seats of dining table chairs or stools.

Sanderson

 

2. Foliage by Shelley Steer

I love this designer’s style. You should also check out the cactus print she did for Australian brand Sanctuary Boutique Linens – gorgeous! Palm prints are so big right now, especially love the mix of dark green over pale peach pink here too.

Shelley Steer

 

3. Jindai by Designers Guild

Quite similar to the Sanderson design but with a slightly more handprinted feel, I love the variety of shapes and textures used here. It is available in other colours but I think the monochrome has a lovely simplicity.

Designers Guild

 

4. Mathilda by Abigail Borg

A bit more of a quirky, graphic print in Abigail Borg’s classic illustrated style. I love her use of line and all the delicate detail within this print. The black and white over a bright colour creates a stunning contrast. This one also comes in other colours.

Abigail Borg

 

5. Topical Tropical by Timorous Beasties

This one is much more of a statement print but what an incredible burst of colour and energy. The amount of detail in Timorous Beasties’ prints never ceases to amaze me, I love the contrast of scale they’ve used in this design. The directional style would be ideal for long drapes.

Timorous Beasties

New Stockists for April

Just a quick little update on the most recent happenings here at Sky Siouki HQ. Most exciting of all the new Flight collection cushions and coasters are now available through two new UK stockists as of this week! The Golden Hare Gallery (top image) in Ampthill, Bedford and Jane McIntyre Design (bottom image) in Winchester. They’re both beautifully curated spaces that I feel very proud to have my products within. Hopefully Sky Siouki will be gradually spreading it’s wings further and further throughout the country so that you all can find a stockist near to you soon enough.

Golden Hare Gallery

Jane McIntyre Design

In other news I have been keeping up with my 100 opportunities challenge for 2016 and have now reached number 30 now so I’m making good progress! Might even reach 100 before the year is out at this rate. It’s been an excellent way to encourage myself to make more contacts and do more things that scare me.

I’m itching to get some more designs out in the form of giclée prints and perhaps even some original artwork and printed fabrics by the metre eventually. I’ve been a little preoccupied with getting orders out this past month so it’s been hard to find the time to get creative what with being a one woman act and all. Keep your eyes on my Instagram for updates and rest assured soon enough the designs will come. I’ve already received some lovely comments on a couple of the designs I’ve revealed a sneak preview of though so I’m very excited to get them listed in the shop.

5 Exciting Twists on Fresh White Bedsheets

Spring is coming! I know it really doesn’t feel that way outside but I swear, it has to get here soon. I feel like giving my home a fresh update at the moment ready for the warmer months and so I’ve been drooling all over the thought of crisp new bedsheets. What with all the printed cushions and quirky home accessories I own I’ve found myself craving something unusually plain however… Which isn’t like me at all but it seems necessary to have some clean white bedsheets to balance out all the pattern and colour everywhere else. I couldn’t ever go full on plain white though because that’s clearly just way too boring so here is my little shortlist of favourite ways I’ve come across to have minimal white bedsheets with an exciting little twist.

1- Subtle Polka Dots

Probably my fave, I just can’t get enough of good ol’ polkas. Love the subtle use of them on these sheets in a pale neutral colour, organically dispersed and fairly small scale. Fun but classy polkas! These were from Urban Outfitters but I’m gutted they’re sold out. Closest I could find available to buy are these available in various colours from Australian brand Feliz. Check out Country Road too.

Gentle Polka Dots

 

2- Pleated

Things just got way classy. Who needs patterns when you can have texture? I have to admit a few years ago I think I would have hated the thought of pleated white bedsheets but styled with some complimentary prints and bird themed wall art this example makes a killer contender. Check out West Elm for some beautiful textural choices like these available in other colours too. These seersucker sheets from Debenhams are also a great option at a very reasonable price.

Pleated

 

3- Ethnic Borders

I love to mix in some cultural style influences in my home. This simplistic Indian inspired pattern works so well used minimally as a border instead of an allover print… and if you can find something embroidered even better. Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie are the masters in this department, like these printed ones for example.

Ethnic Border

 

4- Pom Poms

Much like polka dots, pom poms are a great way to add fun to anything in danger of becoming dull. This is another theme Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie excel at… can you tell I’m a fan? But I did find these very nice and simple pom pom edged covers from Marks & Spencers which come in pink, blue or lilac. Or… you could even make your own à la this amazing tutorial! (Tassels are also great.)

Pom Poms

 

5- Tonal Linen

Probably the most sophisticated of all. Linen and it’s beautiful organic feel will really make your bed look a million bucks. I think linen tends to look best in off whites and greys like this example to compliment it’s very natural aesthetic. The mix of tones here really is divine. Etsy shop, Linen Tales, from Lithuania has a stunning selection of shades on offer, or once again you could try West Elm or Anthropologie. Even H&M and Zara have some gorgeous options, clearly it’s a big trend right now.

Tonal Linen Stonewashed

 

Ok, now I’m seriously lost with which to choose. All of my money is about to be squandered on beautiful bedding. Hope you all enjoy these ideas and find the bedsheets of your dreams too. Sleep tight! x

PRESS! Featured in Period Living

My Kitten Tales large velvet cushion has been featured in Period Living magazine this month! It’s the March 2016 issue on page 15 amongst a lovely selection of other designer cushions all featuring portraits in a feature called ‘Face to face’. Special thanks to Pippa for choosing to include my design!

Period Living Feature

Period Living Magazine

TOP 5… Dinner Party Serveware

Only three days until Christmas and then the stuffing of bellies and getting merry can begin! I hope you’ve all got your Christmas shopping done and dusted and are just looking forward to delicious Christmas lunches and seeing family now. I thought that what with all the big dinners and parties that everyone will be having over the festive season that a TOP 5 post dedicated to dinner party serveware would be perfectly apt. I’m such a sucker for pretty dinnerware so was quite happy to have an excuse to ogle gorgeous glassware and ceramics. Plus I mean if you’re going to own lots of lovely kitchen things then what better time to show them off?!

Dinner Party ServewareDinner Party Serveware

From left to right, top to bottom:

1. Granada Juice Glass from Anthropologie, £6 – They may be called juice glasses but I imagine any beverage would look great in these beautiful rose-tinted tumblers be it water, wine or whiskey!

2. ‘Galaxy’ Chawan Bowl by Émilie Pedron from Neëst, €36 – I believe a chawan bowl is technically intended for serving Japanese tea but I love using beautiful small bowls like these to serve sauces or herbs for guests to help themselves from. These have such a wonderful handmade quality about them.

3. Taika Pitcher and Serving Plate by Klaus Haapaniemi from Iittala, €49,90/€89,90 – I’ve been a big Klaus Haapaniemi fan for a while and I honestly can’t imagine ever finding a more beautiful pitcher than this one. You could perhaps use it as a non-traditional gravy boat or for the custard to go on the mince-pies after dinner!

4. ‘Lux’ Chopping Board by Haidee Drew, £50 – This handmade bamboo board is too beautiful to be hidden away in the kitchen, I’d be using it at every given opportunity on the table under hot platters. Haidee has a whole range of designs and sizes available in her Etsy shop.

5. Castile Blue Vine Pattern Spoon Rest from Cats Paw Pottery, $16 – It was difficult choosing just one from all of the lovely variations and colours of these gorgeous Victorian style plates and bowls which are all handmade to order! I love the idea of having an intricate little dish like this for placing serving spoons on.

This will most probably be my last post before Christmas so I hope you have beautifully set dinner tables full of serveware as stunning as the selection here, and a very Merry Christmas too of course! X

6 of the Best DIY Christmas Garlands

We’re well into December already so it’s probably about time to get some pretty bits of festive sparkle up around the house. When it comes to Christmas decorations I personally think natural and understated is the best way to go. Obviously a bit of glitz is always necessary to still create some festive cheer but glitter can certainly still be classy! I love making my own decorations, as you can imagine what with being a creative and all, but there’s also something very fulfilling about making them yourself – I think it’s all part of getting into the Christmas spirit. So I’ve narrowed down some of my favourite nice and simple DIY ideas for Christmas garlands… with a little help from Pinterest. All of these ideas are really quick and easy and won’t cost much at all to make so why not have a go and make your own this season?!

 
Glitter Leaves Garland1. Glitter Leaves Garland – So easy to do but looks super pretty! This tutorial says to use artificial leaves but you could always just collect some fallen autumn leaves from your garden or a nearby park to make it cheaper although they probably wouldn’t last until next year that way.

 

Giant Wooden Star

2. Giant Star with Lights – I love the rustic feel of this one but it makes a great bold statement too. This tutorial explains how you can make one just using some scrap wooden laths from your local garden centre or perhaps the waste recycling centre.

 

Gingerbread Men Chain

3. Gingerbread Man Chain – Think this might be my favourite, nothing to do with it tasting good too of course! However you may end up having to remake them a few times if you’ve got lots of hungry mouths around, but it’s so simple to do anyway and you could try a different shape each time. Why not try angels, hearts or reindeer too!?

 

Sparkly Pine Cones

4. Sparkly Pine Cones – This one could even work just as an autumnal decoration as well as for winter. In this example you can see how to embellish your pine cones with gold leaf but you could alternatively use glitter or even just white paint to create the appearance of snow for an extra Christmassy look.

 

Paper Cut-Out Scene

5. Paper Cut-out Scenes – This one admittedly is a little more complex and requires someone who’s handy with a craft-knife but you can of course make the design as basic or as intricate as you like, and as personal as you like too. I originally saw this idea used as window decal stickers available to buy readymade from Cox & Cox in white which I actually prefer but it’s not exactly DIY. I’m sure you could easily make your own like this though by just getting a white sheet of vinyl decal to cut out from.

 

Paper Snowflakes

6. Super Snowflakes – Last but not least paper cut-out snowflakes are such a timeless classic that when done well can look really chic like these ones pictured. This tutorial shows you such an easy way to make your snowflakes look intricate and 3D. Why not go really big or thread together large and small snowflakes to make them ultra three dimensional?

Happy making and I hope these tips help to make your home look extra festive and cosy this season!

TOP 5… Wildlife Inspired Gifts

Christmas is approaching and there’s nothing I love more than a beautiful wildlife based design so I’ve brought you my five favourites of the moment all available to buy online now! Happy gift hunting and remember you can buy animal themed gifts from Sky Siouki too!

Wildlife Inspired Gifts

1.Birds Night Out Lampshade by Mountain & Molehill £55-£105 – Really love the playful mix of traditional Victorian illustrations with humorous pun names telling a little tale behind each of Mountain & Molehill’s designs.

 

2.Circus Elephant Pocket Pillow by Coral & Tusk $124 – These embroidered cushions are really something special. All of the designs tell an animal based story, lots of which have a novel edge to them such as this circus elephant design with a little pocket for the baby nelly! Cute!

 

3.Wild Masquerade Canape Plate by Florence Balducci for Anthropologie £10 – This hare design is so adorable and so elegant too with it’s monotone palette and delicate fluted edge.

 

4. Colourful Butterfly Leather Keychain by Tovi Sorga £15.58 – There’s something so irresistible about printed leather. This butterfly keyring is really beautiful and would make such a unique gift. I’d definitely recommend checking out Tovi Sorga‘s other products too.

 

5. Badger Pouffe by Orwell and Goode £115 – Love this cute but clever badger design using badger faces to create a pattern. Even the pattern around the edge is inspired by badger markings!

8 Independent Stores for Online Christmas Shopping

It’s mid November and I am beginning to realise I can’t go on ignoring Christmas shopping much longer! I’ve been so focused on making Christmas gifts for other people to buy that I’ve barely thought about buying any myself. I think I’ll be relying on a lot of online shopping this Christmas, but that by no means you can’t still shop independent. I love that the ‘Shop Independent This Christmas’ slogan has become so popular and it’s certainly one I’m backing so I thought I’d compile a list of some of the best online stores I could find to buy beautiful, handcrafted and ethically made gifts. Not only because I’m an independent designer myself, but because you get something so much better quality and more unique when you shop indie.

  1. The Other Duckling – Discovered this one only today via the brilliant Homegirl London blog and love nearly everything they have to offer! They mainly stock vintage things, which is great as it makes it so much easier to find what you’re after than in an actual vintage shop. Hard to choose a favourite, but love this quirky china dog lamp! So kitsch but somehow charming too.

China Dog Lamp

 

2. The Lost Lanes – Admittedly, one of my stockists, but I loved this site before they became a stockist hence why I wanted to sell on there! They’ve recently made it a big part of their ethos to only sell ethically made products by independent UK designers and give details of how each product is made to be ethical with easy to understand symbols. This eco soy candle sounds divine!

Banana Nut Bread Soy Candle

 

3. Decorator’s Notebook – Another one with a strong focus on ethically made products with a beautiful selection of boho style products for the home. I’m so in love with the Indian Kantha quilts they stock, all made using recycled saris by a fairtrade company that helps women who were victims of sex trafficking.

Kantha Quilt

 

4. Eclect Design – Ok, I realise this feature is getting a bit homeware fanatical but I mean what more would you expect from me? There are yet more gorgeous homewares on this website. I LOVE this mug, and anyone who knows me will know it’s because I love deer. May just have to ask Santa for this one myself this year.

Menagerie Deer Mug

 

5. Wolf & Badger – Also with two real-life stores based in London but for those of us who don’t live in London or just prefer to shop from the comfort of our sofas, you can also shop online! They sell a brilliant mix of clothing, accessories and homeware all by independent designers. Just to prove I do like things beyond interiors, check out this gorgeous cork skin handbag from their site!

Pelcor Cayenne Cork Handbag

 

6. In Spaces – Another of my stockists with an extensive collection of interior products. Just came across possibly the coolest clock ever on there and had to share it. It’s a mechanimated weather clock that detects the current atmospheric pressure and responds by displaying the appropriate weather art. Amazing!

Traditional Mechanimated Weather Clock

 

7. Here Today Here Tomorrow – This store is all about sustainable, ethical fashion – something I feel there needs to be a lot more of in this world. Have to admit I always say buying someone clothes is a little risky, unless of course they’ve put something specific on a certain wish-list… These stylish handmade trousers have been woven using a traditional Nepalese technique.

Fairtrade Dhaka Trousers

 

8. The Shop Floor Project – Full of quirky UK artist made products. How lovely is the idea for this cushion collection… each features a collage of the home of a famous British writer. Of course I had to choose Beatrix Potter as my favourite.

 

Beatrix Potter House Cushion

If you’ve got anymore suggestions drop me a comment below! Think I need all the help I can get this year. And of course you can buy gifts from Sky Siouki too, my online shop is right here!

The New Sky Siouki Collection – ‘Flight’

This week was very exciting for me as I finally got to launch my brand new collection of designs after a long time coming! I’ve spent many weeks articulately drawing birds of prey and botanicals and spraying lashings of oil and acrylic paint to canvas boards and so it feels amazing to have now produced some final products just in time for Christmas. The new designs are currently available as linen cushions, A3 giclée prints and stone coasters although there may be more to come in the new year.

Cushions

I can’t believe I started planning this collection all the way back in June. There have been a few obstacles along the way as there tend to be in life but I’m so pleased to have got there in the end. The process really made me realise how limiting the project deadlines at university were and although I would never take back anything I did during my degree, I never could have produced a collection like this at uni because of the high expectations for quantity of work. I feel so much better about having four strong designs that I put my all into and didn’t rush than if I’d produced 20 quick and easy designs that meant little to me. These designs seemed to come together so much more naturally than ever before and I’m not sure if this was because I wasn’t under pressure to tick all the boxes on the marking scheme or perhaps just because it’s been so long since I created something new that all of my enthusiasm just fuelled me forwards.

Jackal Buzzard Cushion

After much deliberation I’ve named the collection ‘Flight’ highlighting the central focus on birds of prey but I also really liked that this word seems to suggest ideas of feeling uplifted and weightless. The collection has quite a natural, fresh look and the paintings used are very expressive and dynamic all of which I felt the word Flight emulated well as it relates to nature and movement. It is simple but creates impact, as does the composition of the designs.

Coasters

When I set out to design this collection I made a conscious decision to move away from the look of my previous work and create something more subdued in colour, less kitsch and more elegant. I didn’t originally intend to only draw birds of prey but once I’d drawn one, the rest sort of just followed. I’ve always loved birds and birds of prey in particular make me feel incredibly awed and empowered so I decided since it was working to just go with it.

Since I started Sky Siouki my tastes have changed a fair bit which I think this collection reflects very truthfully. I hope that it still sits well alongside the Curious Kingdom collection since my style of drawing tends to be quite recognisable but I also would be encouraged to know if customers can distinguish the change in direction I have taken. Anyway, this has been quite a wordy post but hopefully an interesting insight into my design process and the journey designing ‘Flight’ has taken me on. I hope the journey isn’t over yet!

You can have a proper look at my new products available in my online shop and I post little insights into my working day everyday on Instagram too.

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TREND SPOT! Pineapple Interiors

Pineapples are right on trend at the moment and in my opinion it’s trend that can never really go out of style.. because who doesn’t love pineapples all of the time?! Their textural tessellated skin and unruly leaves have a wonderful quirky aesthetic that works so well on so many designs. Below I’ve picked out some of my favourite pineapple interior products for you all to admire…

Pineapple Interior Products

Top left to bottom: Pineapple Wall Sconce from Caravan – £99, Double Old Fashioned Pineapple Glasses from Drake General Store – $12, Golden Pineapple Bookends from Graham & Green – £48

Top centre to bottom: Pineapple Linen Napkins by Bonnie & Neil (available from Holly’s House – £14.50 each), The Ananas Cushion Cover Small from Oka – £55, Piña Sola Wallpaper by Aimée Wilder – $165 per roll

Top right to bottom: The Pale Pink Pineapple Limited Edition Print by Jessica Russell Flint – £50, Pineapple Silk Cushion by Silken Favours – £125

6 Ways to Give an Old Chair a New Life

I love a good DIY makeover especially when it involves interiors. Since I’m still renting at the moment I’m itching to one day be able to paint walls, strip carpets and fit shelving but for now I can at least make do with rejuvenating furniture. I recently repainted a pair of dowdy looking wooden chairs for our dining table with a fresh lick of minty pastel green and they now bring a lovely pop of colour to the room. But it got me thinking about what else can be done with a set of ordinary old chairs to breath a new life into them so below you can find my favourite six ideas.

Painted Chairs1. Paint – Perhaps the most obvious choice is to paint your chairs in beautiful bright hues like I did, however why not get a little more creative and just paint the legs or the top of the chair to create an edgy contrast. This colour combo from HeartHandmade UK works brilliantly.

Decoupage Chair2. Decoupage – I tend to find decoupage a bit unimpressive as I think it’s often overdone and looks somewhat tacky but this minimalist example featured on The Graphics Fairy works beautifully. The delicate lavender imagery is placed perfectly as if just naturally growing around the chair and the colours are really well balanced against the distressed white.

Folding Chair3. Paint and Recover Folding Chairs – This DIY tutorial using cheap folding chairs is ideal if you need some extra chairs for the garden or perhaps party guests. Read the blog post from My Fabuless Life to discover how to spray paint and recover the seats with spangly new fabric. I never thought a folding chair could look so good!

Seat Cushion

4. Seat Cushions – Perhaps you’ve already painted some chairs but you’re looking to add a little pattern to them or added comfort even. All it takes is some pretty fabric and these seat pads by Makezine are super easy to make so long as you’ve got some basic sewing skills. I love the use of contrasting ribbon to tie it to the chair.

Dip Dye Legs Chair5. Dip Dye Legs – Another take on painting your chairs, why not go ombre like these examples from Apartment Apothecary? Perhaps you really like the natural wood or the aged appearance of your chairs as they are already but just want to do something small to jazz them up. This is a perfect way to add a simple modern twist to your chairs using a subtle pinch of colour.

Reupholstered Chair

6. Reupholster – Last but definitely not least, if you’re up for a bigger challenge a reupholstered piece of vintage furniture can look really impressive when done well. This example from OhhSit! especially caught my eye as the upholsterer has used vintage photos of her mother and grandmother printed onto fabric making it really special and personal to her. The idea of using new technology to digitally print old photographs for an antique chair is something I love too and it works so well.

I hope you’re now bursting with ideas to makeover any old boring chairs in your house. If you liked that last one you might also like some of my cushion designs using old photographs, especially The May Queen. Check out more of my favourite DIY ideas on my DIY Pinterest board.

TOP 5… Floral Interior Products

In the spirit of Summer and spending more time outdoors, this week I’m featuring floral printed homewares! Flower designs mix so well with all sorts of interior styles and make a fantastic way to add a pop of colour and energy to a living space. So below are my favourite five floral items for the home that are available this season.Floral Interior Products

  1. Autumn Tea Towel by Whitney Elizabeth – Although technically Autumn themed I think the flower illustrations on this tea towel have enough colour and spirit to keep your kitchen feeling fresh all year round.
  2. Laburnum Cushion by Abigail Borg – I love Abigail Borg’s graphic design style and use of vibrant colour contrasted against muted tones. This floral cushion would sit well in a modern or a traditionally styled home.

  3. Flower Market Colander by MacKenzie Childs – Pretty and useful! This floral colander deserves to be given pride of place hung from a kitchen cabinet for everyone to see.

  4. Sissinghurst Castle Dinnerware by Anthropologie – You can always be sure to find lots of beautifully patterned pieces of crockery in Anthropologie. This collection of flowery tableware is my favourite from their current range, but it was hard to choose!

  5. Botanical Coaster Set by Rifle Paper Co. – These stylised floral illustrations by Anna Bond have a very pretty, summery appeal and would be the perfect way to add some pops of colour to your dining table layout.

That’s all for now, but keep up with my blog to see more of my Top 5 features every month. You can find more of my favourite interior products on my Pinterest board NICE THINGS. and shop for my own Summer themed products in my online shop here.

10 Ways to Bring the Garden Indoors

It’s the 1st of June although unfortunately it’s not so Summery outside today. I’m sure there will be plenty of good weather for gardening coming soon enough but in the meantime here are some ways to bring some outdoor greenery inside for the rainier days and for those without gardens.

1. Plant Succulents in Teacups – A very cute and easy way to display small plants in a girly vintage style, perfect for cacti and succulents. Here’s a guide on how to do it.

Succulents in Teacups

2. Frame Dried Plants – This idea would work wonderfully using Nkuku Kiko glass frames. Love how they look like museum specimens. Get more tips for using dried plants here.

Frame Dried Plants

3. Make A Terrarium – A little more time consuming but the results can be stunning. There are some beautiful vessels about, such as these from Love Glass Lenka on Etsy, and here’s a great guide on how to make one.

Make A Terrarium

4. Display Flowers in Tins – Why not go for something alternative to a vase to put your flowers in and use a vintage tin, or perhaps a jar or jug as shown in this blog post from Vintage Whites.

Flowers in Tin

5. Hang Vintage Botanical Prints on the Walls – I love the fine detail of these old fashioned illustrations. Available to download free from Poppytalk, these prints would look great framed or even just taped to the wall.

Vintage Botanical Prints

6. Display Dried Twigs in Vases – Even just a collection of interesting branches or twigs clustered together in a beautiful glass vessel can make a great statement.

Dried Twigs in Vase

7. Cover a Wall with a Garden Scene – If you want to go all out with bringing the garden indoors this is the way to do it. If you don’t fancy painting a mural yourself Ananbo sell stunning panoramic wallpapers in classical landscape designs, or try this Olaf Hajek design for something more contemporary.

Garden Mural Wallpaper

8. Upholster Your Furniture in Florals – If covering an entire wall in garden patterns seems a bit much, how about keeping the walls white and giving your sofa a floral makeover. Try Liberty or Abigail Borg for gorgeous floral fabrics.

Floral Fabric

9. Hang Framed Taxidermy Insects on the Walls – Plants and florals aren’t the only things lurking in the garden. Framed insects can make fascinating decorative props, especially effective displayed as a collection.

Taxidermy Butterflies

10. Cluster Exotic Fruits in Bowls – Never underestimate the humble fruit bowl. Use an interesting vintage bowl as a centrepiece and put a collection of exciting fruits like pineapples or lemons in it. Looks best if you use lots of the same fruit.

Pineapples in Bowl

That’s it! Here’s to outdoor greenery indoors! Find more interior inspiration on my Pinterest and if you’re looking for more nature themed interior accessories be sure to check out my online shop too.