Archive of ‘Lifestyle’ category

COSY HOME, HAPPY HEART: THE BENEFITS OF HAVING A FIRE IN YOUR HOME

Since the leaves have started to turn and there is a noticeable chill in the air, we’re looking ahead to the Fall Winter months and our favourite ways to enjoy the dark evenings. We love sitting fire-side during the colder months, and being warmed by the crackling heat and cosy settings. Brian Irvine, CEO of Firemizer explains more.

How often do you gather with your family and friends, and relax in the living room with the fire ablaze? Take some time out, unwind and surround yourself with the ones you love. Not only is family time important, but having a digital detox and really focusing on being in the moment is a healthy step in the right direction. Rediscover the art of conversation and enjoy the comfort of hearing all your family’s news at the end of a busy day.

Of course, there are many benefits of having a fire in the home – here are just a few to get you started:

Romance

There’s always a scene in a romantic movie, where a happy couple cosy up in front of a dimly lit fire, sipping wine and laughing. Well, this doesn’t just have to be fiction. Make this your reality and have your very own movie moment with the one you love. What’s better than being snuggled up in front of the fire when it’s cold outside?

Comfort Food

Cook your dinner on a wood burning stove, saving money on the heating and electricity bill. You’ll have a delicious meal and a warm home, perfect for a social get-together or quiet night in. You’ll often find if you have a tiled floor in your kitchen, that it’ll be chilly in the autumn and winter months, so using the wood burning stove will also help to heat them up nicely.

Heart of the Home

Having a fireplace, mantel or open fire in the heart of your home creates a focal point for family and friends to gather, providing a perfect alternative to sitting in silence watching the TV. Socialising with your family creates a calm and cosy atmosphere and with a fire lit in the background, there’ll be the perfect amount of warmth too.

Staying Eco Friendly

Lighting a fire in your living room can save you money, look great, and give a cosy but traditional feel to your home. But, staying eco-friendly is often the worry. You can become even more eco-friendly and reduce your carbon footprint with Firemizer. This device sits at the base of your stove or hearth and makes sure all the fuel is burnt thoroughly, allowing you to enjoy your fire for even longer whilst also limiting emissions by up to 72%.

Decorative Focal Point

A mantelpiece can sometimes be overlooked and becomes a little unsightly if you don’t look after it. Once cleaned and refreshed, it can become an impressive focal point in your home (rather than the TV!) Pinterest is awash with ideas and inspiration on how to decorate your mantelpiece so it reflects your interior style season to season. Get pinning and make your mantelpiece a real focal point in your home.  

Fire

 

5 Essential Spring/Summer Interior Trends of 2016

With interior design trends changing as often as fashion, it is essential to stay ahead of the curve if you want to achieve a modern, stylish home.

Keeping up to date with the latest interior design styles may seem time-consuming, but it will keep your home feeling fresh and updated, meaning you’ll never get bored of the same four walls.

Here are five trends that are sending shockwaves through the interior design world this summer.

  1. Botanical

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The whole aim for the botanical theme is to bring the outdoors in. We’re talking statement, leafy motifs, cacti and ferns, and tropical colours. When it comes to botanical, the bolder the better. To easily achieve this look, invest in some earthy cushions for the sofa and some cheap and cheerful cacti from your local gardening store.

2. Rattan

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The theme of global-inspired trends this summer continues with the rattan revival. We’d recommend introducing rattan on your porch in the form of a chair, lamp shade or storage baskets. This natural-looking furniture sits well against white walls for a beachy, outdoorsy feel.

  1. Retro Orange

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Haven’t you heard? The 70s is back with a bang. Not only in fashion but interior design, too. And what’s more 70s than a pop of bright orange in your home? Try adding simple accessories, such as towels or bedding, or go big and bold with retro orange wallpaper or furniture.

  1. Marble

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Marble became an en vogue material in late 2015 and has since exploded. But it isn’t just marble surfaces that have seen a revival, this sleek texture has been cropping up in more unusual places, such as bedside tables, chairs and wallpaper. The smallest touch of marble can give any room an instant touch of luxury, so what are you waiting for?

  1. Warm Metals

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It’s fair to say that just about everybody is currently enthralled in a deep love affair with copper. Whether it’s fruit bowls, kitchenware or candle holders, we don’t care. This trend is still going strong in S/S16 so now you’ve got the perfect excuse to keep adding copper to your shopping cart.

What’s your favourite interior design trend this Summer? Head over to our Facebook and Twitter pages to let us know!

 

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.

 

#ChristyChristmas: Time to… Reflect on our Blogging Highlights of 2015

#ChristyChristmas: Time to… Reflect on our Blogging Highlights of 2015

2015 has been a great year for Christy. We have worked with some talented bloggers who have mentioned us in creative and captivating posts that we have loved.

We’ve listed a selection of fantastic blogs that have kindly written about Christy this year. From interior design blogs to lifestyle blogs, we’ve proudly featured on a range of amazing websites that keep us coming back for more.

Take a look at our list of beautiful blog posts featuring Christy below:

The Simply Luxurious Life

Back in April, Shannon from The Simply Luxurious life featured us in a dedicated blog post all about her love of our luxury bed linens. Not only did Shannon sign our praises, but she also gave her readers some interesting facts about the heritage of Christy. To add to her post, she even told us the secret to getting a good night’s sleep. What more could we possibly need?

Coco and Mingo

This stunning blog post from Jessica over at Coco and Mingo certainly caught our attention in May. Jessica updated readers on her spring and summer bedroom whilst providing a selection of amazingly crisp images of Christy lines proudly displayed on her bed. To remind yourself of this stunning Coco and Mingo post, head over to the blog here.

Little Miss Momma

Lifestyle blogger, Ashley recently took her readers on the journey of renovating her master bedroom. Ashley’s before and after pictures captivated us here at Christy. We couldn’t help but admire just how amazing the transformation looks, particularly the colourful new bed that takes centre stage.

Anna E. Lee Interior Design

In November, Anna from Anna E. Lee Interior Design updated her bedroom and chose brand new bedding from Christy. We were more than flattered when Anna explained her feelings about our linens. “The combination of linen and cotton, provides this bedding set with the most exquisite texture – creating a true sense of luxury.” Now we’re just blushing.

2015 has been a great year for working with amazing bloggers, most of which we didn’t get a chance to mention here. If you mentioned Christy in your blog this year – thank you.

We can’t wait to see what 2016 brings to our door!

 

#ChristyChristmas: It’s time to… Beautify for the Holidays

#ChristyChristmas: It’s time to… Beautify for the Holidays

Hello there! My name is Lauren. I run a lifestyle blog called Live.Happy.Inspired out of my little cozy studio in San Francisco. The blog covers everything from decorating to cooking to beauty. It is about the things that inspire me in everyday life.

Today, I’m going to be sharing with you a few products that I use to keep me looking beautiful all winter long. The key during the winter months (other than an insanely cozy blanket) is to keep your skin hydrated. That means drinking lots of water and tea. These beauty products are my favorites that I keep going back to throughout the winter.

1 – Clinique Take the Day Off Cleansing Balm

I’ll admit that the thought of rubbing oily balm all over my face as a means of cleaning it, sounded terrifying. Why would I put oil all over when I’m trying to get rid of it? Well, just trust me and try it. First, you apply to dry skin, rubbing especially on tough-to-wash makeup. Let it soak for a few minutes. Then rinse off with warm water. Not only does it leave your skin clean but also it’s not stripping like some cleansers. In the winter it’s important that all of your steps work to keep skin moisturized.

2 – First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Instant Oatmeal Mask

Masks are one of my favorite parts of my beauty routine. I always do a mask every Sunday. Catch up on your favorite shows on Sunday morning while masking. I promise you, it’s the best. I have a few masks that I rotate between depending on what my skin concern is at the moment. In the winter, when my skin is feeling dry, I reach for this ultra-soothing and moisturizing oatmeal mask. It works wonders at repairing red, irritated winter skin.

3 – Belif True Cream Moisturizing Balm

It’s hard to find a moisturizer that is super-hydrating without feeling heavy or greasy. I actually have both of Belif’s moisturizers. I switch between this and the Aqua Balm depending on the season. This moisturizer works beautifully beneath makeup because it absorbs quickly yet manages to keep skin hydrated all day.

4 – Bite Agave Lip Mask

No one likes scaly lips during the holidays. How are you supposed to smooch your sweetheart under the mistletoe with scratchy, dragon lips? That is just not happening. Enter the Bite Agave Lip Mask. It keeps my lips hydrated for hours. I also like that the ingredients are all food grade and organic. This shade has a slight shimmer but there is also a red one and a clear one. If I’m going to wear lipstick, I put this on while getting ready then wipe off just before I get ready to apply. Then my lips are smooth and perfectly ready for a dark lip.

5 – Marc Jacobs Le Marc Lipstick in Blow

Speaking of dark lipsticks, my absolute favorite wintery shade of lipstick is Marc Jacobs Le Marc in Blow. I love how it looks with my darker hair. It looks pretty stunning on mostly everyone. You just have to make sure you have the confidence to go along with wearing such a gusty shade. It’s perfect for holiday parties and special events to add a little edge to your ensemble. It’s definitely a statement-maker.

So I hope you have enjoyed reading about my top 5 beauty products to keep gorgeous all winter long. Keep following along on Instagram @elliesf and online at www.livehappyinspired.com

Xoxo L

 

Make your own #ChristyChristmas Crackers…

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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

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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.

 

5 tips on Decorating your home for Christmas

5 tips on Decorating your home for Christmas from Anna E. Lee, award winning blogger from Anna L. Interiors

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The Christmas season is one of my favorite times of the year for many reasons. Between the time spent with family and friends, the old Christmas movies, and the sparkling outdoor lights, what’s not to love?

I have to say, that as an interior designer, something I look forward to the most is coming up with new ideas on how decorate our home for the holidays.  While last year, our design was “rustic elegance” – with soft golds, bronze, burlap, and lots of pine; this year’s décor is going to be a bit more bohemian chic – offering a combination of pattern, greys, browns, sea shells, and non-conventional greenery.  It’s something that is totally different from what I would normally do however I’m very excited for the challenge!

Whether you come up with a new theme or not each year, holiday spending can quickly get out of control.  To combat it, I’m going to do my best to use home décor items that I already own, making small purchases as needed.  As a recent college graduate and newly-wed, money is a bit tight; so I’m all about cutting corners.  However in saying this, I can’t stress enough that just because you are financially strained that doesn’t mean you cannot have a beautifully designed home.  Everyone deserves good design.  Below I’ve shared with you a few tips on how to decorate your home for the Christmas season.  I hope you enjoy!

I N C O R P O R A T E   F R E S H   G R E E N E R Y

Whether it’s from the store or the farmers market, incorporating fresh greenery into your home is one of the easiest ways to brighten it up the holidays.  Along with the traditional pine, I’ve incorporated some eucalyptus into my design scheme this year.

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I N F U S E

Scent is something that can be easily overlooked when designing a space despite the fact that it plays a major role in the overall feel.  Whether you have scented candles or plan on boiling some cinnamon sticks on the stove, don’t forget to infuse your home with some holiday flavor!

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R E P U R P O S E   I T E M S   T H A T    Y O U   A L R E A D Y   O W N

One of my favorite things about designing for the holidays is the challenge of repurposing items that I already own.  While I do end up buying some new décor each year, using what I have helps to dramatically decrease overall holiday cost.  The fun thing about my theme for this year, bohemian chic, is that I can get really creative and eclectic with it.

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M I X   I T   U P

Don’t be afraid to experiment with non-traditional patterns and colors.  While last year our Christmas décor was a combination of soft golds, bronze, and burlap; this year it’s going to be a bit bohemian chic, featuring a lot more pattern along with greys, greens, and browns.  I might even incorporate a few seashells!

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I N C L U D E   T H E   W H O L E   F A M I L Y

Even if you’re the one who is in charge of the decorating, make sure to include your family somewhere in the process.  One of our traditions growing up was to make a day of going out and picking a Christmas tree.  When we got home we’d put on Christmas music, have some hot chocolate and sugar cookies, and decorate the tree.  This is one of my favorite Christmas memories.  If you live alone, invite some friends over to join in on the fun!  Who doesn’t love putting up a tree?!

 

 

Eating and entertaining outside

The warmer summer months make al fresco dining a great option, but you do not need to spend a lot of time, money or effort making your outdoor space ideal for enjoying a meal – with a few small changes, your garden will be transformed into the perfect outdoor dining room.

Outdoor dining in a small space

If your garden is smaller make the most out of its nooks by repurposing an old door or piece of wood into an outdoor dining table – great for displaying plants in the winter months when eating outside isn’t as much of an option.

Image from Flickr

Smart storage

If you’re going to be eating outside a lot, you might not want to have to walk to and from the house bringing everything you need – upcycle old food cans to create fun and practical knife, fork and utensil holders.

 

Image from home-dzine.co.za

No extra chairs? No problem

Here at Christy, we are lovers of soft furnishings, which means that while we may sometimes not have enough spare chairs, we never run low on cushions and blankets – so why not bring them outside for an al fresco meal?

Image from eye-swoon.com

Head to the flea market

Outdoor furniture can often be eye-wateringly expensive, but there are bargains to be found at yard sales, flea markets or vintage stores. We love this idea we saw on Lauren Conrad’s blog, in the picture below, which shows an old 1970’s style metal table and chairs set being used outdoors. If you find something wooden or made from a material such as ratten, just invest in some waterproof varnish or paint to protect it from the elements.