Grand Design

Gorgeous feature in this months Grand Designs Magazine…had, had, had to share!



It’s the renovation we all want to do – buy an ordinary house, in a pretty spot and transform it into something spectacular.






You need vision to do something like this – imagination and a can-do attitude are essential. A budget that is not too tight is helpful as well or a lot of skill and buckets of time – a very able builder who does not need to work could probably do this…


Do not try if you have a full time job, three children under five and would be uncertain how to put an Ikea shelving unit together.

Thank you to Grand Designs Magazine and the visionary, imaginative owner, Marion Venman, for sharing – Douglas will never forget the little foxes on the day of the shoot, who play in your garden!

Award Win!!

Thank you so much to and all my wonderful followers and voters…
I WON my category…follow the link and you will find that it says:

Home Design Twitter Award

Our clear winner in the Home Design Twitter Award category is Alison Gibb of The voting public were clearly impressed with her enthusiastic style, friendliness, and eye for what looks good in interior design.


I am a CLEAR winner and voters were clearly impressed with my enthusiasm, friendliness and eye for Interior Design…what can I say – clearly THANK YOU and I hope you are following me on #Twitter!!

Congratulations to all the other winners, particularly Sarah Akwiskombe who was the overall winner – briliant…busy, talented, clever lady!


The Wee House Co

What a brilliant idea – a turnkey service to bring you a Wee House – in your garden for relatives maybe? Or on a Lochside plot of land in the Highlands as a holiday home? A dream for many of us, but in this case, utterly reasonably priced and completely seamless.

The brainchild of young entrepreneur, Jennifer Hope, a graduate of Strathclyde university, where she studied Business Entrepreneurship and more recently, the Entrepreneurial Spark Scheme. Jennifer’s father is a builder and the whole family are involved in the business and Jennifer just knew that there were a lot of people out there who would love to self-build, but are simply, quite scared of the process.


It’s the unknown that we don’t like, but The Wee House Company provides a solution in advance: a beautiful wee house, that would look equally good in a rural or a suburban setting. It won’t cause you any stress or grief, the costs are agreed in advance and the process is tried and tested, by Jennifer’s extremely experienced team.



Jennifer’s own home is beautifully furnished in a style that is a pleasing cross between Cape Cod and Contemporary Scottish




A clever and insightful business, an ideal solution for so many: from anyone looking to downsize to someone wanting a starter home. A self build solution for people too busy to self build basically!

Feature by Douglas and Beverley Brown in this months House Beautiful May 2014

Award nomination

Absolutely delighted to be nominated for a lovely award – a major! Up against some very big names in the blogging world – so I am very nervous. Feel very cheeky asking you to vote for me, but, please, please do! Votes need to be in by April 18th.

As it is sponsored by a bathroom company, I thought I had better rustle up some beautiful, groovy bathrooms to inspire you to update your own – easily done with the good value products available from!



This tiny jewel like bathroom has long been a favourite – a look that any of us could easily recreate with the simple, contemporary sanitary ware, the small mother of pearl mosaic tiles and the little pops of red – absolutely gorgeous.



And the perfect finishing touch to any bathroom is a bottle of Beatitude Bath Oil

Joy Bath Oil

Developed by a friend of mine in Gullane, Rebecca O’Connor – it disperses in the water – so your skin is left wonderfully soft and nourished but there is no oily film left. Rebecca and I often swap notes on running our businesses and her New Years resolution for me was to tweet more and here I am nominated for a interiors twitter award.
Gosh – you reap what you sow!

Rebecca’s own home can be seen in this month’s Prima magazine – May 2014, in the shops now…

Sounds cuckoo!

The sounds in a home are really important…not something that is ever captured in a photograph for a magazine obviously, but often it is the sounds of a house that make you feel that you are really home.
I was brought up in a flat in Central London that had warm air central heating – all the rage in the 1970’s!

I now live in a 1970’s house beside the seaside, and it, also, has warm air central heating – a sound that to many people is probably quite intrusive – it does whir a bit when it is getting going – but to me, there is no other sound that makes me feel more at home…


It must be the same for people brought up in a house with a cuckoo clock – that hourly birdie call, combined with the sound of the mechanism that propels the little bird forward, once you get used to that, you won’t feel at home without it.

The cuckoo clock has come a long way…

8 Cuckoo-Clock-1-day-movement-Modern-Art-Style-18cm-by-Rombach-Haas__32-KS-Swiss_01 6 Cuckoo-Clock-1-day-movement-Modern-Art-Style-24cm-by-Rombach-Haas__32-KB-125_01

5 Cuckoo-Clock-1-day-movement-Modern-Art-Style-20cm-by-Rombach-Haas__32-OD-13H2B_01 7 Cuckoo-Clock-8-day-movement-Modern-Art-Style-28cm-by-Rombach-Haas__1012_SN342_01

I love these modern updates of an old favourite….all available from the Cuckoo Palace a proud member of the Black Forest Clock Association.

Update your home as soon as you can with one of these timeless heirlooms…