Archive of ‘Homekeeping’ category

Five Lessons We Learned From Marie Kondo

decluttering

With the news of Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up finally hitting the number one spot in USA TODAY’s Best-Selling Books list, we thought we would celebrate by sharing our most-loved tips from Marie’s book.

Marie’s fresh new approach to decluttering has given homes across the world a new lease of life by simply saying goodbye to items we don’t need, and cleverly arranging those we do need. So, without further ado, here are five lessons we’ve learned from our new guru, Marie Kondo.

Tidy by category

When it comes to cleaning, most of us start the job room by room.  For a more productive approach, Marie tackles her decluttering category by category, for example books, clothes, documents, etc. This prevents us from simply putting unwanted items into the guest room, and dealing with them head on.

Don’t go down the nostalgia rabbit hole

The task of decluttering often means coming across a lot of old items that you had forgotten about. More often than not, this leads to an unscheduled hour of reading old letters and looking through photo albums. Kondo insists on putting your blinders on, and only focusing on the task at hand. You’ll thank yourself in the long run.

It’s ALL about the vertical fold

Ever tried to find something at the bottom of a drawer, only to mess the whole thing up in the process? Worry no more, Marie’s vertical folding technique is here to solve all your problems. By folding your clothing and stacking them vertically instead of horizontally, you can see every item in the drawer and grab each one with no hassle. Life changing.

Fall back in love with your closet

With clothes stacked and piled in various places around the bedroom, getting dressed in the morning can become a chore that you dread. However, by mercilessly tossing any clothes you no longer wear, you can fit all of your favourite and most worn clothes into your closet, and fall back in love with it all over again.

Does it spark joy?

If you’re umming and ahhing when it comes to donating or disposing of your belongings, Marie suggests picking each item up and asking yourself “does it spark joy?”. If the answer is no, throw it out. If the answer is a yes, keep it! It’s that simple.

We don’t know about you, but when it comes to decluttering, we are total Kondo-converts. If you are too, head over to our Facebook to share your favourite tips.

 

Make your own #ChristyChristmas Crackers…

Christmas 08

Make your own #ChristyChristmas Crackers

Looking for extra festive fun in the lead up to Christmas?
Making your own Christmas crackers is not only super easy, but it’s fun to share with the whole family.

The equipment list is as follows:

• Wrapping paper
• Scissors
• Ruler
• Ribbon
• Glue
• Cracker Snaps
(these can be bought inexpensively from most craft shops.)
• 3 Empty Toilet Rolls
• Token Gifts, Handwritten Jokes and a traditional Christmas Hat

Firstly, roll out your wrapping paper and cut a landscape rectangle measuring 20cm (across) x 30 cm (down). Take your rectangle, turn it face down and rule 10cm in from each end. Mark the 10cm point, by drawing a line from bottom to top, firmly with a sharp pencil.

Next, take one of your Cracker Snaps and affix with a blob of glue at either end in a straight line across the top of the rectangle.

You should end up with something like this:

diagram

Using the pencil markings, place the 3 empty toilet rolls in the columns drawn out. Delicately roll the toilet rolls so the wrapping paper wraps around and covers them. I like to add a dot of glue in the centre to hold the paper together nicely too.

You’ll now have a wrapped cylinder. Pull one of the end toilet rolls out very slightly. Gently twist and push the end back inwards to make a crease – this will become your first end. Grab your cut of ribbon and tie in a neat bow around your newly made groove. Once it looks exactly how you’d like it to, remove the toilet roll altogether.

Take your gifts, hand written joke, Christmas hat (… and anything else you want to throw in for that matter)  through the opposite end, then repeat the last step (ensuring none of your inner items fall out in the process!)

You should now have your final cracker! You may want to decorate further using name plates. Children may choose to decorate further using pens, stickers or bows too!

Share your crackers with us @christy_linens. Hope you enjoy!

 

Create the perfect pillow arrangement

Romany (4)

Create the perfect pillow arrangement

A beautiful and well-laid bed can be easily achieved at home. By following a few simple arrangement rules, you can transform an empty, cold looking bed into a warm cosy retreat.

Firstly, it’s good to look at the entire arrangement of your bed. Once you’ve chosen and set your bed linen, you’re left with a blank canvas where we can now lay the pillows – this will become the masterpiece of the master bedroom!

We recommend adopting a pillow layout similar to the diagram below…

diagram

Starting with the largest first, take two coordinating Shams and lay them in an upright position against the headboard. Shams create a staggered look to instantly revitalise any bed. Secondly lay your first set of pillows. We tend to chose a Plain Dye colored, non-patterned under pillow to breakup any color from the linen design. Prop the second set of linen matching pillows at the front. Make sure the back pillows are peeping over the top. You have now set the foundations of your bed fort. Make sure your pillows are straight, and fluffed! Now onto the front pillows… The fun part!!

A great place to start is by adopting pops of bold solid colors into your design. Your choice of pillow can make two beds, set with the same design look completely different. Don’t be afraid to choose contrasting palettes. Pick color shades from other items around your room such as: lamp, flowers, artwork, etc to bring in and tie the whole bedroom together.

So far your bed will look symmetrical. Create a more interesting tone by adding an odd amount of cushions. I’d suggest arranging from left to right, keep the larger cushions to the back to continue the staggered feel. Mix different sizes and styles towards the center. Be careful not to over do it – there is definitely such a thing as too many pillows!, Stray from using correlating colours and designs. It can, on occasion become overkill. Bright colors are the winning combination!

Ensure once again that all cushions are fluffed and pressed!

Don’t forget to place your favourite throw at the foot of the bed. It’s important to ensure at least one of the pillows chosen to layer, matches or compliments the throw, it will amalgamate all items together… Don’t forget, throws are not only aesthetically pleasing, but they are the perfect ‘just in case’ layer for cold nights.

Now all that’s left to do is to slip into your cosiest of pyjamas, grab a good book and cuddle into your new retreat.

WARNING: Once you’ve created your perfect bed, getting out (especially on a cold morning) can cause difficulty and/or distress.

We would love to see your finished bed. Tweet us your pictures @christy_linens.

 

#ChristyChristmas: Time to… Welcome Guests with the Perfectly Folded Towels

#ChristyChristmas: Time to… Welcome Guests with the Perfectly Folded Towels

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It’s finally that time of year where friends and family travel from far and wide to stay with loved ones over the Christmas period. If you’re expecting guests this year, it’s crucial you create an environment that ensures your visitors feel at home whilst staying with you.

A good host understands exactly how to prepare their home in order to make their guests feel comfortable at all times. This includes keeping your house clean and tidy, and filling it with all the amenities your guests may possibly need.

If in doubt, take inspiration from top hotels. How do they welcome their guests? What do they provide for them? How do they lay out the room before a guest arrives? By recreating your favourite hotel room, you’ll be sure to provide your guests with everything they could possibly need during their stay.

A common item that guests often don’t have space for is a big fluffy towel, a key item for after a shower on a cold winter’s morning. Your guests will think it’s a Christmas miracle when they arrive to see a much needed towel perfectly placed at the end of their beds.

But remember, presentation is everything. We all secretly want our friends and family to be impressed when we show them where they will be staying for the next few days, so we asked our friend Jennifer Scott from The Daily Connoisseur to create  this handy little tutorial to show you a quick and easy way to fold your towels like the professionals.

This neat little trick will give your guest room a professional touch that will leave your visitors wondering whether they’ve stepped into a five star hotel. Watch Jennifer’s video below and find out exactly how to fold your towels in a way that will impress your guests.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mRipK3z3LBw

Have you tried out this tutorial for yourself? Head over to our Facebook page and let us how you got on. Send us a photo if you’re feeling brave, we’d love see your results!

 

House Envy – The Best Houses of the Small and Silver Screen

One of the best things about curling up with a blanket and your favourite TV show or movie is the chance to see some truly stunning houses, from the imposing Grayson Manor in Revenge to the glitz and glam of the Lyon family mansion in Empire, not to mention the country elegance of the homes in hit show Nashville.

Here are snapshots of some of the most beautiful and awe-inspiring houses on TV – which is your favourite?

Santa Barbara Spanish ranch, It’s Complicated

Although this romantic comedy, starring Meryl Streep and Alec Baldwin as a divorced couple who begin an affair years after separating, received average reviews, the home that Streep’s character Jane lives in is certainly deserving of a five star rating.

 Images from Hooked on Houses and Traditional Home

Combining rustic bright colours, traditional materials and modern touches, the Spanish ranch is a gorgeous home. It has a warm and inviting feel but remains chic – the best houses are always those that combine practicality with elegance.

The Grayson manor, Revenge

Home to the warring Graysons, this manor is everything you would expect from the home of a successful business mogul and his scheming wife. Filmed partly on a sound stage and partly in real-life homes, the manor is certainly imposing, but retains a homely feel due to comfortable squashy sofas, plenty of soft furnishings, fresh flowers and thoughtfully placed lamps and candles.

Images from Hooked onHouses

Rayna James’s house, Nashville

Rayna’s impressive home is big on rustic touches, such as a lot of exposed brick and wood, and retains a homely feel, despite its size, thanks to the use of classic style furniture rather than modern pieces.

One of its best features is an incredible wraparound porch with an eaved wood ceiling.

Images from Hooked on Houses

Best H

 

Updating your home when spring has sprung

Spring is a time of new starts and new birth, and this feeling can be brought from the outside in with a few simple changes to your home’s interior design. Spring florals and pastel shades can lighten up a home after the darker winter months, freshening the feel of each room with a breath of invigorating air.

 For a quintessentially English country cottage look, our Bloomsbury Plum design is perfect. Featuring a blooming deep purple print, velvet details and a contrasting stripe to the reverse, this print is the cornerstone of any Spring-inspired bedroom.

 We think it looks best teamed with our Bloomsbury Stripe, an elegantly designed style made using soft cotton sateen.

 If you’re more of a fan of plain colour or white bedding, you can bring Spring inside with floral wallpaper, but steer away from darker shades or large floral patterns. Think ditsy prints, small designs and lighter colors.

 For the crafty DIYers amongst you, a great way to give a room a Spring makeover without stretching the purse strings too far is to reupholster existing items. With the aid of some fabric from a haberdashery store, a nail or glue gun, and a bit of patience, you can transform any old and tired fabric chair into a slice of Spring. The best place to start is Pinterest – there are plenty of crafty bloggers who offer great step-by-step tutorials to help even the most amatuer decorator produce a high-end result..

 Mason jars are the absolute go-to design solution, and the reason is simple – you can do absolutely anything you like with them, and it’s almost guaranteed to look great.

 A great way to add a touch of Spring to your home is to revamp your existing kitchen storage using pastels. We came across these gorgeous jars on every crafter’s favourite site, Etsy, but the look is easy to recreate at home.

 A few top tips – use acrylic paint to ensure maximum coverage of the glass, and to achieve a neat finish when sanding off the paint over the text, use a nail file for extra accuracy?

 

A cosy winter with Christy

A cosy winter with Christy

The autumn and winter months are a great time to give any room in your home a cosy makeover, ensuring that you feel warm, comfortable and as relaxed as possible during those chilly evenings when it is frosty and blustery outside.

Our range of cushions and throws includes everything you need to transform your living room or bedroom into a cosy haven during the winter months. We have embellished cushions, heavy knitted throws, and gorgeous linen cushions in a variety of colours.

Below are our favourite autumn and winter picks from the Christy range – plenty of items can be mixed and matched for a quirky look, or you can combine cushions and throws from the same collection for a go-with-everything neutral feel.

Rosa cushion

Silk instantly adds a touch of elegance and luxury, and our Art Deco style Rosa cushion – which has been featured in Country Homes and Interiors – is a luxurious addition to living rooms of all kinds, or you could add it to a comfortable bedroom chair. The Rosa is 100% silk and features stunning embroidery.

Cosy up in front of the fire with our Odessa throw this winter – with 15% wool, this super cosy blanket, which is a gorgeous slate grey, looks great over the back of a sofa, or used as a cover up during cooler evenings. At a generous 55 inches by 73, there’s plenty of room under this throw, too.

 Loop throw

If your living room is neutrally decorated, you’ll love our Loop throw. Made from 100% cotton, this textured blanket comes in an elegant cream, and is fluffy and soft to the touch. Combine it with Loop cushions in the same textured circular design, and you’ll create a cosy and inviting seating area for autumn and winter.