This summer has been a bit of a whirlwind. At the start of the year I had so many plans about what to do with the Summer months, and a lot of them didn’t happen. The company rebrand and website took up almost every waking hour and there wasn’t much room left in my head for anything else.
Now the mayhem of those days is becoming a near distant memory, I wanted look back at some of the things I DID do this summer, most of which I didn’t write about.
1. Open Garden Squares
I just loved the idea of this event where all of London’s private and secret gardens are opened up to the public for one weekend. I heard about it in January and was determined to go, however it coincided with a friend’s big birthday night out. Despite being completely hungover I managed to haul myself around six London gardens on the Sunday. I had a posh Belgravia breakfast, discovered the music of Sam Hardy bought a cactus and stroked some goats. Success.
2. Emily Quinton’s Makelight Workshop
I left Emily’s photography workshop full of creative inspiration and a determination to get to know my camera again. I learnt a huge amount and met some really lovely people. Unsurprisingly the website took a big fat dump on my plans to photograph flowers pre 10am, but I've saved the course notes and intend to put my dormant new skills to use in the coming months. I can’t recommend this course highly enough to anyone looking to improve their photography skills in a relaxed environment. Emily is fab (and she brings cake).
3. The Seven Minute Showcase
I belong to Sister Snog which is "a remarkable club for successful business women". They organise lavish events and connect amazing women who share similar passions. I love the Sister Snog girls, but I’ll admit to panicking somewhat (ok a lot) when asked to present Out There Interiors to them at an event called Seven Minute Showcase. This was held at Lumiere London which deserves a mention for its fabulous interior (below right) I told the story of how the company began and gave away a mannequin as a prize. Surprisingly fun!
4. The May Design Series Chairs
At May Design Series I entered a Silent Auction for some chairs which had been upcycled by three of my favourite journalists (Carole King, Arianna Trapani and Kate Watson-Smythe) with the help of one of my favourite furniture companies, Out Of The Dark. I couldn’t believe it when I had a call from the organiser in June to say that I had won Carole and Arianna’s creations! The chairs and Out Of The Dark deserve a post of their own, so I’ll be putting that together shortly.
5. Grow London
I went to the all-new modern garden show Grow London, based on Hampstead Heath. This was probably the best day of the summer. Not only did I meet some brilliant customers (I was giving out #footballfreefun discount codes) I stroked countless silly dogs, bought a pair of amazing vintage goblets and sat in the baking hot sun drinking kir royals until the early evening. We then got a drunken Mexican on the way home. Perfection.
6. Sunset In The Garden
I can’t divulge much about this event as it was a private affair organised by Décor Café Founder Debbie Blott. It was ‘just’ a garden party but also the most MINDBLOWING event I attended this summer. Want to know more? Get involved with the Décor Café. It’s brilliant.
7. The Fiera Launch
Fiera is the brainchild of Katie Treggiden (Confessions Of A Design Geek) and Jeremy Leslie (Mag Culture). It’s a brand new biannual design magazine showcasing new talent at the world’s design fairs. The launch party was held at The New Craftsmen – a Mayfair boutique showcasing the very best of British Design. This night meant tasty wine, inspiring people and the chance to contribute to an exciting new publication. Fiera met their funding target and are set to take the industry by storm.
8. Cosmo Super Blogger Event
As we collaborate with bloggers more and more I love finding out about the industry. I think I was the only ‘brand person’ in the audience at this event and it reminded me a bit of a pop concert. I refrained from dive-bombing the stage to have my photograph taken with Fleur De Force and Kat (Rock and Roll bride) but I have huge admiration for what they have created and gained some valuable insights from what they had to say.
9. The House Boat
We were invited to a friend of a friend’s house which happened to be a huge boat moored on the Thames by Chiswick Eyot. Not only did it have a mature garden hidden behind an adorable gate on Chiswick Mall. It had original portholes, a huge deck and a library built into the bow. This was the most inspiring living space I have seen this year and has had me day dreaming about living on the river ever since.
10. The Press Shoot
Finally, last week we had a very long overdue press shoot for Out There Interiors. Although staff were plagued with sickness and the light wasn’t right to do what I had planned, Lucy from My Heart Skipped made the whole thing an absolute breeze. I received the raw shots back on Friday and spent Saturday afternoon laughing at my computer screen like an idiot. Lucy has a talent for making you completely relax in front of the camera, which combined with her photography skills produces great pictures. Can’t wait to show you them.