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Fired Earth Alhambra Palace

On our travels around London, we often see beautiful and colourful tiles evocative of Moroccan and Moorish architecture and design.

Fired Earth have released a wallpaper design – Alhambra Palace – which cleverly emulates this style.

Fired Earth Alhambra Palace wallpaper

Colour Makes People Happy

We hope that more painters and decorators in London discover the fine paints made by Colour Makes People Happy, which is run by Simon March in East Dulwich. 

In Port Magazine’s interview, Simon nicely removes the mystique which so often surrounds the marketing of paint… 

“Making paint is no more difficult than making bread. It’s made of three basic ingredients. If you want your paint for outside use, you put more resin in it: if you want it interior use, very often people want it to appear “flatter” so you take resin out and put more chalk into it. It’s quite a simple thing to do.”




Mylands – London’s last paint manufacturer

Mylands, a venerable English paint manufacturer established in 1884, is deserving of your attention if you are planning any redecoration or floor sanding.


“Today, we’re still in Lambeth, the last remaining paint manufacturer in London, and John’s great-grandson Dominic Myland carries on the family tradition of perfection in paint.

We’re preserving the time-honoured, traditional approach to making the finest quality paints and finishes, while making the most of the latest technical advances in paint development. By blending the old with the new, we’re creating time-honoured shades and finishes with all of the benefits of modern performance and technology.”

Mylands have just released their new spring collection, which can be found here.

We hope to use their products more often in 2017.

Mylands spring colours

VQ restaurant decoration in west London

With spring around the corner, it’s a good time to revisit the commercial decorating job we carried out in late summer 2016: VQ, a new restaurant in Notting Hill.

As well as completely redecorating the facade, we decorated the interior of the restaurant, both front and back of house.

The Notting Hill site is VQ’s third, with more openings to follow.

Visualisation for VQ in Notting Hill

Facade of VQ in Notting Hill

Facade of VQ in Notting Hill at night

Miles & Wilde

A brief nod on a Friday afternoon to a firm of craftsman whose work we have respected for several years.

Miles & Wilde, founded and run by Leigh Miles and Jason Wilde, specialise in the manufacture and supply of fibrous plasterwork such as cornices, ceiling roses, corbels and panel mouldings.

We recently recommended Miles & Wild to clients in Belsize Park; by the time we arrived at the project, new cornices had already been installed by M&W in the living room and main bedroom. We used an XVLP sprayer to paint the cornice; we’ll post the photos of the work in the next couple of weeks.



Best of Houzz 2017

best-of-houzz-2017-badge-e1484941514302 We’re delighted to have won a 2017 Best of Houzz Award – the awards were announced recently.

We have been active users of Houzz since early 2016, and intend to expand our presence on the site during 2017.

Houzz is a trove of diverse information and inspiration related to domestic renovation and decoration – at the latest count there were almost 13m photos on the UK site, all rigorously categorised according to the rooms and styles they represent.

Even if your plans in 2017 are modest, a visit to Houzz will almost certainly repay you with some handy guidance and ideas.

Our profile is here.

Screenshot 2017-02-06 at 16.09.58


Kodrin Spachtel – the “10 Downing Street” finish

2016 was the year when David further refined his Kodrin Spachtel process for giving the “10 Downing Street” finish to a front door.

Kodrin Spachtel (made by the Dutch firm Sikkens) is a dense, oil-based surfacer which lends a flawless smoothness and shine to any timber it is applied to – abrasives as fine as 1,000-grit round things off.

The Edwardian front door below was prepared by David in summer 2016 – the two, polished coats of Kodrin Spachtel were followed by Sikkens XD gloss, tinted by Holman Paints to Down Pipe by Farrow & Ball.

Down Pipe, a dark lead grey, has definite blue undertones that prevent it from feeling too hard. Originally inspired by the colour used to paint downpipes and guttering it has been embraced for use inside the home with fanatical zeal! Fabulous as a background to art, and extremely effective for use in halls to create a dramatic entrance to a home.


Hallway inspiration from Farrow & Ball

Farrow & Ball’s website always carries inspiration which is accessible and usable.

Here are a couple of colour schemes for hallways…


Hallway walls in Charleston Gray



 Hallway walls in Hardwick White No.5; woodwork in Pointing No.2003; floor in Cornforth White No.228

Repair Care

We have for some time been devoted users of the advanced joinery repair products made by Repair Care — these are the best products on the market for repairing partially rotted timber windows.

With David having attended the Repair Care training course, we’re even more confident that we can make the most of these fantastic products during our exterior decorating projects.


The Trim Guide to Decorating: no.2

We’re following up on our introductory post about the basics of decorating, and using colour — this week, we turn to some of the ever-thoughtful guidance in Farrow & Ball’s handsomely produced “Inspiration” A5 booklet.


There is great historic precedent for using one colour on both walls and woodwork and it is also popular in contemporary settings as it creates a strong, clean look.

It generates a sense of calm in a room, as well as exaggerating its size, as there are no contrasts to draw the eye.

And, as this image shows, there is indeed a calming balance to this approach — definitely an idea to consider if you have panelling of any sort in your home.