Candle – Dolce & Gabbana. Perfume – Gucci Bamboo. ‘Hello’ Ornament – West Elm.
The two things you will learn about London in the first hour: 1) WALK ON THE LEFT, STAND ON THE RIGHT (this quite literally will be yelled at you in the tube, but you will never have a conversation with a stranger otherwise), and 2) Every space is multi-purpose: Heathrow, for instance, is basically a giant sandwich shop that is also occasionally an airplane parking lot. With nearly 9 million inhabitants trying to divide into cupboard-studios and oddly shaped 2-bedroom flats, walls are no longer used for what it’s made for. (Which reminds me: for the love of God, landlords, stop trying to make cheap IKEA screen-dividers happen, it’s not going to happen.) I, for one, don’t remember the last time I’ve actually been in a ‘living room’ that didn’t have some part of the kitchen and/or bed/closet spilling out into a corner, but perhaps I should stop hanging out with teenagers.
We recently moved out of our duplex studio loft flat in an attempt to grow up, where – if you remember – we had a wall of shoes next to the dining table, sofas next to that, and an open kitchen opposite all that. I think we only barely got away with the bed being above this all on the mezzanine. Our new abode is indeed a proper house, and while I can pride in the fact that our kitchen is actually surrounded by four walls and a door, we still had to find a way to fit the bedroom and living room into the second room for the sake of an office next door.
After having paced the room scratching our heads, noticing one too many echos, calling Ghostbusters and getting put on hold, we decided to consult outside help. I’ve had my eye on West Elm long before we could afford to place yet another thing in the stir-fry of a studio we were living in, and now that we were starting from scratch, decided it was time. I noticed their free Home Stylist service and got all up on it like a crazy Asian lady over spinach sale. Well, now that the room is finished, here’s some handy tips I learnt from Ben, the Home Stylist, on fitting two rooms into one without breaking a sweat.
Sequin Shag Cushion Cover
Don’t overfill with patterns and colors that you might tire of. Pick out a few belongings that are must-haves in the space and use them as starting block for the rest of the room.
I decided on going for a mix of dusty blue, pewter and grey for the warmer seasons. In winter I plan on swapping in with lots of texture and monochrome accessories.
Hex side table
Avoid bulky furniture – you’ll most likely have a lot to fit in to the space so pick out pieces that will help lighten the room not overwhelm it. Light-surfaced furniture like glass or marble are great for this.
We have a basket under the marble side tables for all bedside necessities.
Group three decorative items in different heights to allow the eye to follow the triangular shape, brings harmony and focus into the particular area.
Riad wool rug
Use rugs and flooring to divide the space. That alone works with dual purpose – giving clear definition between the two functionalities whilst adding essential warmth to the room.
this shaggy rug feels like a fluffy cloud at the end of the day…
Use patterns cleverly to bring fluidity in the room.
We opted for this long herringbone-esque pattern on the cushion to direct the eye towards the window and the garden.
Gold-dipped bowls and ‘hello’ object – West Elm. Glass Vase – H&M. Black marble vase – Dwell.
Top – Uniqlo. Dungarees – Alexa Chung for AG Jeans.
Click below to watch how it all came together ↓
This is entirely a personal initiative, but as a disclaimer, a discount was kindly given by West Elm.