Archive for the ‘'The Room I Envy' by …’ Category

Going for gold

August 10, 2012

Trend predictors can foretell our looks, tastes and spending habits (or so they tell us) but every now and then unpredictable things happen to change their best-laid plans. In the early ’60s The Beatles suddenly appeared and music changed forever. In the ’70s Dallas became a TV hit overnight so everyone (except me) suddenly sported power-dressing shoulder pads. In the same era, princess Di came onto the scene and the world (and his wife) went for that flicky-under hairstyle fad. Right now we’re winning a stackful of golds so I hardly need to point out what the next colour trend in interiors will be. But don’t take this as gospel…

Seán O

The midas touch…


Sheds and summer houses

August 2, 2012

The need for a refuge – somewhere a man can firtle around on his own – is a basic instinct (no, not that kind of basic instinct). So when I see images of sheds, summer houses (like the one in this West Sussex home), even old garages, I feel a little flutter. I haven’t got my own refuge at the moment, but I dream of what I’d do if I had. A recording studio to create that hit single that never was. A workshop to mend those bikes that were left to rust in the rain. Somewhere to do a bit of potting, perhaps? Hmm, let’s forget that last one.  So women, when you’re dreaming of that new kitchen extension, spare a thought for ‘im indoors and what he’d like. Plus think of all the benefits of not having a man around the house…

Seán O

The great escape…


Fun with florals

July 25, 2012

Here at 25 Beautiful Homes we’ve always loved a pretty floral print, and whether it’s rain or shine, they never fail to put a smile on our faces. From delicate to bold, graphic to vintage, floral prints help create a warm feel within the home…


We love this feminine boudoir which uses shades of soft pink and cream, with a delicate floral design.


 Vintage-style florals are used within this dining area on the cushions, tablecloth and within the shelving unit. They’re even carried through to the crockery, with some pretty blooms as a centrepiece on the table.



 A bright-coloured floral wallpaper has been used to create a feature wall in this sitting room, with a variety of pretty cushions and equally bright curtains. Bold, yet beautiful.


Summer paradise

July 24, 2012

Finally the sun has made an appearance, so we thought what better way to celebrate than to show you some fabulous ways of combining your indoor and outdoor areas. Make the most of the summer by incorporating big expanses of glass that will let the light pour in – you’ll feel as though you’re outside whist carrying out daily chores, too…

We love the way this seasonal bright blue shade has been used both inside and out – on cushions, wallpaper and a rug – linking both areas together.

Here, folding doors open wide to let the sunshine in, with a wooden dining table echoing the timber door frames.

In this kitchen, floor-to-ceiling glass provides a picture-perfect view of the exterior.

Fling open your doors to the garden and make the outside an extension of your home.


When old looks new…

July 23, 2012

I think it’s fair to say that most of us fall into one of two camps when it comes to style of houses – old (think rustic, traditional, cosy…) or modern (light, glass-filled, open spaces…) and I have to confess to loving the latter. Working on 25BH we see every imaginable kind of home but even I am pleasantly surprised at how fresh and contemporary this 17th-century cottage has been made to look. Largely thanks to white emulsion, quirky accessories and modern fabrics, I’d happily live here. Given the chance, that is…

Seán O

A look I could warm to…



French fancy

July 18, 2012

Escaping the rain and heading to a holiday home in France sounds like bliss right now, and so I couldn’t resist showing you this little gem. A 1960s architect-designed property in the South of France, I especially love these two rooms, both for very different reasons.


Woven furniture, an antique coffee table and ceiling fan give this sitting room a colonial air.


Who wouldn’t want a bedroom that opens out onto a sunny terrace?

Click here or visit to take a peek at the rest of the house.


Animal magic

July 11, 2012

We’ve been to an influx of Autumn/Winter press shows of late, and one trend that keeps cropping up, is that of animals. You’ll no doubt have spotted the popularity of birds and butterflys this summer, but a little tip is to keep your eyes open for all things fox, owl and stag related for winter. We can’t get enough of them, so here’s a few ideas on how to get your home looking animal-friendly…

Go for dog-print wallpaper in the hallway – with a few framed pooch pictures to boot.

Owl cushions fit in nicely with this tranquil bedroom scheme…

Pretty as a picture with butterflys…

A stag’s head and dog-print cushion make a feature on this landing.


Devoted to dining room

July 9, 2012

For everyday purposes I can take or leave the dining room. After all, in this age of kitchen-diners, we don’t tend to create a special space for this function any more, do we? You know what I mean, the kind of place that would get a dusting down just for Sunday lunch, or if the relations paid an unexpected visit (heaven forbid…). But if you’ve got a special occasion I’m not against a grand setting such as this home that is a former church. Chance would be a fine thing…

Seán O

Dine in style…

Swede inspiration

July 6, 2012

I’ve just returned from Stockholm (don’cha know) and I’m infused with a new-found appreciation of all things Swedish. I was slightly taken aback at the variety of styles – the Nordic style we all know and love is far from the whole picture. Colour, minimalism and modernity are all words that spring to mind. The study shown below typifies the relaxed style the Swedes employ – modern accessories (perspex magazine holder) mixed with Gustavian furniture and delicately coloured curtains. I’d call it a veritable (yes you guessed it) ‘smorgasbord’ of styles.

Seán O

A study in good taste…

So black and white

July 4, 2012

Bathrooms are often seen as a functional space rather than a room to really be creative with – which is why I like this scheme so much. It may be black and white, but the tree-print wallpaper and elegant French-inspired furniture gives it that little something extra. Add to it the black tiles on the bath panel, a glass candelabra and some luxurious towels, and you’ve got yourself a bathroom to be proud of.