Alpine Lifestyle Boutique

One of the things I love to do here on the blog is to feature local independent shops.  I believe they make our towns what they are by creating a truly unique experience.

Any of you perusing Living Etc in the coming weeks, will see Alpine Lifestyle Boutique which  has just opened right on our door-step in Ilkley.


The name’s a giveaway; though it’s a long way from the slopes, everything through the doors transports you a la piste via exquisite LUXURY homewares. Read More


How To: Create a Gallery Wall Feature

Gallery walls are a great way of creating a bespoke feature in the home and are so easy to do yourself.  The wall below was both painted and dressed in a day with zero additional expense.


Rooms with high ceilings can sometimes be hard to style.  Unless you have big art pieces to use, photos and pictures can look lost.  A gallery works especially well in this setting in making use of the space.  The wall below was bare for months (yes along with the filler!); so in an inspired moment, the ladders came out and I decided to begin by painting it dark (Farrow and Ball Hague Blue).


Curating your gallery should be easy.  Unearth pieces you own that don’t have ‘a home’ (as I did here), then lay them out on the floor to get a feel for positions.  3D items look great, a string of lights adds a whimsical touch and personally think you can’t beat a bit of sparkle against a dark wall.


A little shelf is also useful as you can change the look by adding candles, a small vase of flowers, whatever you fancy throughout the year.  The shelf can be positioned anywhere on the wall but I wanted it more-or-less central, so it became my starting point when it came to hanging the other items.


You may find as you start that you need to readjust slightly as you see things on the wall for the first time, but just go with it.  Some pieces like a mirror, that you want to use practically (i.e. at eye-level) will naturally determine the position.
IMG_2902IMG_2900 IMG_2906 IMG_2901IMG_2904IMG_2903

The end result will be 100% unique and bespoke to you.  As I said earlier, nothing new was purchased for this wall, but now it’s finished, I like the different components involved. If you’re struggling for what you use, consider these as a starting point:





Something with Text

Piece of clothing


At the end of the day, your wall can be added to and taken from, so if you only have a few pieces, start there; allow space for it to evolve and enjoy the process!

If you want to know more about styling your home, you can get in touch with me here at The Butler.


A Visit to Antiques Curio & Salvage Barn

The Antiques Curio & Salvage Barn is repeatedly a popular post on this blog.  Perhaps it’s stuck in Google or something (no disrespect!) but it’s up there every month as a top post and yet the pictures have just not been doing it justice… Soo, last month, I revisited.
The Barn has evolved so much since the original post last March.  The signature style that makes this place truly unique is even stronger.  It is simply quite wonderful to walk round and renders one wishing for a large empty house to furnish.  The original post is below this (so just keep scrolling).

Last week I made the time to go to a place I’ve been meaning to visit for at least a year/eighteen months, the Antiques Curio & Salvage Barn, Harrogate.  After seeing so many amazing posts in my Facebook feed from their page I was compelled to pinpoint their location and pay a visit.  It’s such a gem of a place I had to share with you.
The barn is a place you’d go when you want to find something unique for the home without it needing to be too specific.  Antique furniture a plenty; there are chests of drawers, stone sinks, chandeliers, pictures, skulls and ancient pictures – artefacts of all kind can be found within the draughty doors.  It has bags of charm and personality and so goes without saying that whatever you pick up there will also have oodles of character.  These images were just taken on my phone as I wasn’t planning on doing a feature but couldn’t not once I’d been.  Well worth a visit I say!

IMG_0557 IMG_0553 IMG_0556


Post notes:
If looking for the barn, do not look for a sign saying “Antiques Curio & Salvage Barn” from the main road, I’ve passed it SO many times without knowing simply because the signposts only indicate the Farm Shop and John Cain furniture polishing.  It’s literally a stones throw off the main Skipton to Harrogate Road (A59) and is ridiculously easy to swing into.

Bespoke Party Tassel Garlands – (how to choose right!)

Having fancied the idea of a tassel garland for a good long while, a November birthday for Miss P was the perfect excuse to get one bought!   Deciding I would want to leave it up for Christmas, I wanted a garland that would go with our room colours and look great in the weeks beyond the party itself. So, as it’s party season, I thought I’d share


Googling ‘tassel garlands’ I found this ↑, it is exactly what I wanted… in fact I LOVED it (can’t even find it any more to give you the link)… but found out it was made in/ shipped from The States.  Shipping to the UK bumped up the cost so needed ‘plan b’.  Pom Pom studio will tailor-make your garland and the service was great but as creating a garland is not as simple as ordering a ready-made one, here’s what I recommend.


1. Order lots of samples!  I’d sent Pom Pom the photo of the garland I wanted and straight away found out they have metallic coloured tissue but they don’t look like the photo (actual metallic paper).  Also, I knew I wanted to have pom-poms so ordered a load of colour swatches to play around with getting the right combo… took a little bit of time.


2.  Play around with the order you’d like the colours in then let them know.  The online shop allows you to pick colours but doesn’t specify order of colours and this can make a difference – drop them an email to clarify (in the end I took out the mint green.)


The garland arrived well wrapped.  Hang it somewhere straight away to let any creases fall out.  At this point don’t freak out…


The garland I ordered was 12 foot.  They shelf I hung it along ↑, about 4 foot.  I honestly wondered what the heck… how was it going to spread out to  12 foot and not look too spaced out?!


You will see, once in situ, they look just fine (panic over, I did not just waste my money)


3.  Use blu-tac to get them to stay in place. You will not need it on all of them but depending on the amount of sag in your twine, they may want to slide down a bit.  A small dot of blu-tac will act as a stopper.


4.  Roughly space them to start, then go along with something… like the invitation packet and get them more even – it doesn’t need to be an exact science.


Party ready! IMG_2052

5.  Finally, if ordering pom poms to go with your garland, opt for colours that can be found in the tassel garland to start with, then see how they fit and order more if needed.  I went for the metallic gold, champagne and ivory to start, puffed them all out then ordered more and included a gorgeous contrasting red so it wasn’t ‘too much of the same’


And so from November to December… and possibly January, lets face it these won’t be coming down before New Years!



How to: Style Hydrangeas with Lights

Darker nights = cosy lights and though we have zero need for any additional lights in our home, we spied these copper ones recently and had to purchase.  The same day I was given a whole bag full of hydrangea heads (as you do).  Though not intentional, I put the two together and the result is a rather effective decorative piece for the home that would liven up any empty space.  Here’s ‘how to’.

You will need:

Hydrangeas 1

Hydrangea heads

A mirror (with any fixings on the back removed) or a nice tray would do

A mirror (with any fixings on the back removed) or a nice tray

Some fairy lights. These copper ones look better than plastic coated wires.

Some fairy lights. These copper ones look better than plastic coated wires.


Lay the flowers out on the mirror (you could use an oasis to create height if needed)

Lay the flowers out on the mirror (you could use an oasis to create height if needed)

Till the whole mirror is filled

Fill the whole mirror

Weave the copper fairy lights round each flower

Weave the copper fairy lights round each flower (you can see here how fine the wire is making it almost invisible)

Slot the battery pack in underneath a flower

Slot the battery pack in underneath a flower

That's it! Notice how you can barley see the wire here.

That’s it. Notice you can barely see the wire here.

Wait for it to fall dark

Wait for it to fall dark

Hydrangeas 11Hydrangeas 10

I then faffed further adding the stare-y angel and some candles...

Faffing further, I added the starey angel and some candles…

That was the end of the post… till the next day during a room shuffle when I decided I needed the space the arrangement was taking up so popped the lot into a giant vase and added some copper baubles.  Little bit more faffing required to get the lights into the right place but by far my favourite end result that just looks so effective.

Hydrangeas 14Hydrangeas 15Hydrangeas 16

Here endeth the hydrangea post.




How to: Make the simplest Easter Tree

Last year during the Easter break we got into painting polystyrene eggs here at Beau HQ.  Although I grew up doing craft – I never sought to be a make-it, bake-it mother myself yet the season found us painting eggs (read the ‘how-to’ post here).  Time in the school holidays this year meant it was only natural to do an Easter ‘something’ and so we share ‘le tree’.

Easter Tree 6Easter Tree 3

The pussy willow bought a month ago is still going strong so we decided to add to it.  With Christmas is long gone, it’s kinda nice to make the effort and bring some additional colour inside the home if spring isn’t quite in full bloom… which it’s so not at present!  The eggs from last year we poked a hole in the top, filled with superglue then stuck some ribbon into.

Easter Tree 1

The owls were Christmas decorations I still  hadn’t got round to putting away (though the rest of the decs are away I promise)….

Easter Tree 2

Except these copper baubles which I deemed fit for the year through…

Easter Tree 4

Easter Tree 5

..and that’s very simply it!  Hope you have a great Easter whatever you do, love those you’re with… chocolate aside it’s what Easter’s all about – LOVE.


Christmas with James… (Brindley not Bond!)

Last week James Brindley Harrogate opened their doors for a festive evening.  As it started at 5.30pm I thought this a perfect ‘grown-up’ event to take my little lady too.  ‘Twas dark outside and a winter wonderland inside with a band crooning away the night we had a really lovely evening!

James Brindley HarrogateJames Brindley Christmas WindowJames Brindley WonderlandJames Brindley: WishJames Brindley baublesJames Brindley FurnishingsJames Brindley SofaJames Brindley Lanterns

Knowing that Momma is always taking photo’s for the blog, Miss P asked if she could take a few… I love seeing what she captures!

We were then asked to be photographed for Yorkshire Life Magazine so here’s our best ‘we are pretending not to be aware of the cameraman’ pose!

Yorkshire Life's capture of us on the night James Brindley candles James Brindley Christmas archwayJames Brindley hedgehog James Brindley stairsJames Brindley: PeacockJames Brindley displayThis is one of my favourite images from the night… one little girl mesmerised by the band, unaware I’m taking the picture of her.

Watching the bandJames Brindley window


If you are looking for some fabulous Christmas inspiration, Brindleys is definitely on my recommended list.  Although we do not need ANY more decorations come Christmas, we come away with some gorgeous copper baubles and vase that will be out in the home all year round!

You can visit James Brindleys website here.


%d bloggers like this: