Friday, October 21

Fantasy House Friday [Bethan Gray]

Unfortunately I didn't get to see the Bethan Gray exhibition on my whirlwind tour of Design Junction. My highlights package is still on it's way in case you're wondering.

However, I'd have had to be blind not to notice the absolutely stunning Nizwa cabinet popping up again and again in my Instagram feed.

Image: Bethan Gray

Part of The Shamsian collection, it was launched at Design Junction - a collaboration between Bethan and Iranian artist Mohamad Reza Shamsian.

'The exclusive Shamsian Collection highlights the meticulous technique of inlaying/overlaying solid brass and paua shell inlay into coloured solid wood and maple veneer, creating a highly detailed, exquisite patterning that perfectly accentuates Bethan’s designs. The remarkable collection merges traditional craft with modern, elegant and contemporary design to create a truly unique and timeless aesthetic'

That. And it speaks to me on ALL THE LEVELS. The colour. The shape. The materials. The detail. Divine.

Have a further look at the Shamsian collection here.


Wednesday, October 19

A Mini Bathroom Makeover

On Monday, I had an epiphany (or possibly, a tantrum). I decided that I couldn't stand our main bathroom in it's current state any longer, and that something had to give. My husband is going to be THRILLED I tell you.

Unfortunately it won't be immediately ripped out so I can have the bathroom of my dreams, no, that will have to wait, til, er, some day in the distant future, when I can justify the spend.

However, I can no longer stand the horrible stained grout, which despite my best efforts with industrial chemicals, remains stubbornly awful.

Urgh. I can't believe I'm sharing these pictures here again. Yep, the bathroom still looks likes this, though I have now at least started on some of the work below...

A Mini Bathroom Makeover - French For Pineapple Blog

A Mini Bathroom Makeover - French For Pineapple Blog

Pretty underwhelming and grotty isn't it?

The peeling paint on the window, isn't going to fix itself, nor the peeling paint on the ceiling (did you see what happened when I scraped off a tiny bit of it on Instagram Stories? Half the paint on the ceiling came off! Wah!). The cracks in the grout and ceiling are also on my hit-list, as is the door that was painted the wrong shade of grey many moons ago, and in the wrong finish.

The too high tiled in mirrors will sadly stay for now (even though I have to stand on my toes to see my whole face!), and I won't be changing the chrome taps and shower head for black or brass just yet either (boo!).

I'm really only changing a few small-ish things, rather than creating my dream bathroom, but hopefully these changes will make it a much more bearable bathroom to live with for probably, another few years.

I found this beautiful, simple yet elegant bathroom whilst searching for inspiration, for my makeover, and although I won't be able to achieve anything quite this lovely on my non-existent budget, it's now my inspiration, to encourage me to breathe some much needed life back into our poor neglected bathroom.

A Mini Bathroom Makeover - French For Pineapple Blog
Image: House and Home / Michael Graydon

Here's the plan!

Stain and seal the grout in grey. Sometimes you just have to admit defeat with white grout. Yes, it will be busy with the small tiles, but I don't mind busy in a bathroom. I'm not a relax in the bath for hours kind of person - in fact I hate baths. I'm in and out of that shower as quickly as possible, so busy is fine. I've found a product that is a grout stain and sealant rather than a grout paint, and makes pretty impressive claims. Does this make me nervous? Yes! I'll have to do a test or two in an inconspicuous area first.

[In an ideal world all the tiles would go, and we'd replace them with a marble in the shower area, and the walls would be skimmed and painted. This is the plan for the eventual full makeover.]

Scrape back and re-paint the window, door frame and ceiling. Not sure about the colour yet, but it will be either pink, green or black! We'll have to have a family meeting about this one. I'm leaning towards a green at the moment, and I have a few in mind along these lines...

A Mini Bathroom Makeover - French For Pineapple Blog

A bit of colour in the room will also help to distract from the less than perfect grout, that even once stained isn't the dream grout job. We were not responsible for the grout job, I should add.

Replace the water damaged top, side and doors of the built in cupboards with painted mdf or probably more suitably, marine ply, and something a bit more special on the top. Like marble. Obvs. I may add some moulding to the doors too. Or clad them in brass. In my dreams.

As for the floor, my brilliant idea of pale grey glitter vinyl that I liked for approximately two seconds eight years ago, and never even bothered to finish sticking down, has got to go. I'll replace it with plain cheap vinyl tiles for now. To be honest, almost anything would be better than what we've currently got!

[The dream would be underfloor heating and marble tiles on the floor eventually!]

These things will make a MASSIVE difference to how I feel about the bathroom, because at the moment it's actually awful and grotty, and really not a nice place to be, which is why you never see it here, or on my Instagram account. So I'm determined to change that over the next few weeks.

So here's a little moodboard, to give you an idea of the direction I'm heading. Things will no doubt change, but all hopefully for the better. Wish me luck!

A Mini Bathroom Makeover - French For Pineapple Blog

I have a lovely Fantasy Friday for you on, um, Friday, funnily enough, and Fab Five is back on Monday. Then on Wednesday, make sure you pop in, because I'm running a fun competition! The first one ever on French For Pineapple in fact.


Monday, October 17

Fab Five - Umbrella Stands

It's quite possibly a true sign of age when you start thinking about super practical items for your home such as umbrella stands. Do you own one? I don't, but I certainly get annoyed by dripping wet umbrellas dumped in the hallway or precariously hanging off radiators, so perhaps it's time I did.

If I have to consider owning such an item, it had better be beautiful as well as practical. After all, if it's going to be in the hallway near the front door, you want it to make a good impression, right?

It's the first time I've ever looked at umbrella stands in my life (yep, definitely an age thing), and I certainly wouldn't consider spending a huge amount of money on one - I've come across some for several hundred pounds! So I decided to cap the price of this selection at £100. Plenty enough I think to spend on such an item.

I've excluded any that were too open to be useful for folding umbrellas, and I should have excluded the India Jane one for not being very practical, and really only being suitable for dry umbrellas. Easily remedied with the addition of a plastic pot to line it, though they should have thought of that shouldn't they? Tut, tut. Anyway, I kept it in because it's beautiful.

Double brownie points to West Elm for having not one, but two beautiful options. I do love West Elm.

Boy have I looked at a LOT of umbrella stands!

As I suspected, such a 'grown-up' item sadly means that so many options are very traditional - much too much for my taste, but search hard enough and you'll find the good ones. Oh wait, I've done that for you...

Fab Five Umbrella Stands - French For Pineapple Blog

1.  Safari Cane - India Jane
2. Geo - West Elm
3. Blue Ceramic - Graham & Green
4. Deco - West Elm
5. Ceramic - Acacia Home

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