Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Actual Abode {Volume I}

I have a group of girlfriends...there are 6 of us and we became close in the last few years of secondary school. The years when things got heavy. We shared a lot of teen experiences and did some major growing up together. At the time, we thought we were cool but there's only so much you can get up to in suburban Glasgow in the mid 90's...
Whilst down in London recently to celebrate one of the girls' last weekends of singledom, we realised that actually our teenage years were far from 'rock 'n' roll'. Yes, we would go into town and try to get into bars and clubs, but we spent a lot of time at each others parent's houses (when they were out), with boys, watching Four Weddings and a Funeral and Lost Boys, listening to 'vocal house', smoking, drinking vodka and tequila, eating chinese food...
One of these houses belonged to Vivienne's parents...I think it was the most effortlessly stylish house I've ever been to and I still remember every room. It was not the kind of house where you have to take off your shoes or feel like your messing it up just by standing still but a real home, with real character.
I think some people have a real talent for placing objects- furniture, artwork, trinkets, souvenirs- where the outcome looks ripe for an interiors photo shoot, but far from contrived.
It seems this talent is hereditary, as the flat Vivienne shares with her boyfriend, Joe, in south London is bursting with objects, beautifully and effortlessly arranged. Some objects are souvenirs of the couple's travels, some are heirlooms or gifts and even the collecton of correspondance on a pin board looks good!

It has to be said that Vivienne has been a bridesmaid an amazing 7 times! Above is one of her dried bouquets hanging in the hallway.
Cowboy boots waiting to be worn.
And what a lovely surprise it was to see one of my own sister's photographs hanging in her hallway!

Gorgeous smelling flowers sit on top of an mini rustic cupboard in the living room.
I love the painted wooden zebra table...

A very fitting 'Queen Of Scots' plaque sits above the window in the kitchen.
In the dining area hangs a beautiful little canvas by Vivienne's very talented sister Rosalind. Rosalind's collection, coincidentally and somewhat spookily, is a study of the 'social construct of the domestic ideal' (I feel a future blogpost coming on).
The living areas and kitchen are all open plan but each area is well defined. Photos of them with friends and a vintage soda bottle stand on a very cool extending table bought by Joe's grandparents when they first moved to London. They bought it from a student at the Royal Collge degree show!!

Shelves with organic veg and a pin board with all their invitations, cards and correspondance stands between the kitchen and dining area. You can also see the MUJI flying swallow postcard I got for Vivienne.
Only a few of Vivienne's many pretty toiletries arranged in the bathroom.
The gorgeous little round vase, was a gift from Joe's mum in Spain.

The amazing upstairs bedroom has a pitched roof and porthole window. The floor space spans across the majority of the flat.

On each side of the bed is a low shelf. Vivienne's side has another bridesmaid bouquet, photo of her and Joe, her family and black and white photos of her grandparents, along with artwork, and of course some bedtime reading...

I plan to do some more real homes or 'actual abodes' of people I know in the future so I hope you like this one!

Photos taken by me on my iphone (forgot the memory card for my camera...ooops)


  1. I totally knew I recognised that photograph!!!!!! Couldn't place it until you said it was mine! Doh! That's a few years old!

  2. Love the bedroom shot, what a great room.

  3. Oh wow, totally gorgeous. Love the bedroom. I get such flat envy as we bought ours on a whim just before the housing crash thinking 'oh, we'll just sell and move if we get sick of it'.

    sure enough, we got sick of it and are kind of stuck here for now!

    I like the fact the flat doesn't look professionally styled but reflects the obviously stylish owner. If that makes sense.

  4. Ooh what a lovely flat...ha ha! Thanks Lis, your smashing shots of it make it look v nice.
    I could get used to my new style icon status (more ha ha-ing)
    Danni, I have had that photo up in every place I have lived for the past ten years, so thanks to you too.
    Mrs GS, I would definitely like to see a blog on Rozie's stuff. She just did an exhibition involving giant hanging upholstered balls somewhere in Edinburgh...

  5. Obviously stylish ownerS, plural. Typo, no doubt...

  6. Cool flat and nice pics.. I hate that i'm so untidy :(


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