7 instant styling tips for added wow in your home March 09 2017, 11 Comments
Good day! So... I'm often asked if I'm an interior designer ( BLUSH!) and I'm known for handing out tips to customers on a regular basis (when they ask of course - I don't just plod on over in my jimmy choo's) on ideas for giving their lounge a boost or their downstair loo some added pezaz (I don't think that's an actual word but lets keep it shall we... yes)
SO... I've put together a list of tips inspired by how I've styled my own home which I hope will help you to add the zing you desire with minimal effort and spend. I'd ADORE (capitals because I really mean it) to hear if they work for you and if you send me a photo, I will plonk myself on the couch with wine and applaud your excellent work, so lets begin shall we...
1. Create a scene
When I say scene, I really mean little vignettes. It can be a bit daunting to attack a whole room so start with a small corner, or a shelf. Now lets make it beautiful. I like to cluster objects together to create a little picture or tell a little story. Try and stick to objects of a similar colour pallet OR objects of the same style to keep the look unified. Arrange objects to your liking and try and avoid too much symmetry so it looks natural rather than contrived.
2. Get creative with wallpaper and wrapping paper
These are your secret weapons! Next time you're out shopping and you see some gorgeous good quality paper pop it in your basket. Paper can be used to transform the backs of shelves, dressers and the inside of glass cabinets to keep clutter hidden. You can even frame pretty pieces as a collection to create a feature wall.
3. Add foliage
It's incredible the impact a snip of greenery can do to a space - cut 3 sprigs from your garden and pop them in 3 separate glasses/ bottles for an instant style boost. Faux foliage is also my new best friend - I've just ordered some eucalyptus from Tilly and Sage (find them in Instagram) which I can't wait to receive as it looks so real!
4.Nail a feature Wall
Many people tell me they are too scared to start one for fear it won't look right, but I promise once you've popped that first nail in you won't look back. Try laying out your haul on the floor first arranging it so it looks right then take a photo and re create on your wall. Try and keep hanging heights different rather than level. Again, follow the odd numbers rule.
5. Play around with height and layering
Different levels keeps things interesting! Also, don't be afraid to overlap and pop things in the background, as long as you stick to a theme or colour pallet you can't go far wrong.
6. turn books and magazines back to front
It may sound a bit bonkers but after seeing it in a boutique hotel I recently stayed at I've caught the bug! Tie with string or lace for added charm and use as a mini shelf in one of your vignettes - instant style points for minimal effort!
7. Light a candle
It may sound obvious but I can go weeks without doing so and when I do I think 'why did I not do this sooner? It makes everything look prettier and creates an ambience that money can't buy (except for the cost of the candle of course)
I was going to do 10 tips but I fear you my have dropped off your sofa mid snooze so I'll save my next lot of babbling for my next post! I hope this puts you in full titivating mood, so grab a tray, de robe a shelf and get re arranging!
Goodness - Did I forget to blog (again?!) January 04 2017, 4 Comments
New Year, New Start, New resolution to TALK TO YOU!!!
Let's just ignore the fact that it's been a while and start as I mean to go on - a couple of blogs a month AT LEAST - said out loud so I must make it happen - I loose hours to creating (which actually equates to twiddling around of which I am an actual expert) but new time shall be spent babbling. That I also happen to be rather fond of.
Well, it's been a fabulous start to the year for little old echo designs - Christmas saw unprecedented sales for me and I don't mind telling you (actually DYING to tell you) that my humble wares decorated the very lovely Fearne Cotton's beautiful London home, I mean - fancy flipping that! I did several happy dances and nearly toppled over when I saw she had instagrammed my Christmas plaque. Other highlights included being asked if Style at Home magazine can use my image in their Valentines Special this Feb (er YES I think that would be ok with me!! so look out for that one coming soon - I feel an entire blog entry should be spent just on this when it launches :-) AND as things come in threes - a brand new little proud moment came just yesterday when one of my favourite girl bosses ordered a print to go on the wall of her incredible empire - Creator of children's clothing brand Fred and Noah. That will do nicely thank you kindly!
Aside from all of the above I've been indulging my love of monochrome - sleek; pared back modern design featuring uber stylish typography. I metaphorically tredded the earth for a font I actually want to marry and have made that the focus of my newest print which I'm happy to say has been going down a storm. What do you think?!
(See special offer for all email subscribers and blog readers to buy 2 get one free)
Inspiration came in the form of de chintzing my dresser with floral pottery and instead filling it with monochrome and rustic style homewares (see photo for my finished result.) After a couple of titivating days (reshuffling candles, straightening tilted plates) I had a cha ching moment when I realised it needed some eye catching typography so I made a couple of prints and the rest is 2 day old history. As it happens people - its practically live!
Anyway I hope you like my dresser...
...and I hope you like the prints which I'll subtley add can say anything at all because they are completely personalised for you) and I pinky promise (sorry - I own a 5 year old) that I will blog again very soon. I'm going to bore you senseless with my home interior tales and favourite things as often as my roving brain allows. For now, I'll wish you the woppingist of happy new years, I hope its full of merriment, long hot baths and typography, Liz x :-)
Happy New Year! January 13 2016, 0 Comments
I know I know - I was supposed to be brilliant and blog every week with witty words that would leave you chuckling in your coffee and eagerly anticipating my next post... alas, a little thing got in the way I HAD A BABY - not like an epiphany or a creative idea or a pet - an actual child - he crys and drinks milk and everything. So I hope you can forgive my lack of me (remember me? *sobs) .... Anyway to say I'm back with a bang would be a little bit of a fib, I'm still on maternity leave and using my come back to work days to keep in touch and prop up the order book along with some very much appreciated help to keep me ticking over whilst I'm cooing to my babe in arms (read; frantically rocking him to GET HIM TO SLEEP DEAR GOD) SO... thank you for bearing with me (you are bearing aren't you?) and for keeping my little team so busy and my business thriving, I appreciate it more than you could ever realise. I'm itching to get back to it, but also treasuring the time I have with my little boy as I know how quickly they grow up - my four year was only 2 like a week ago... so.... I'll be back soon with tons of new things, a whole new lease of life and bags under my eyes xxx
Did someone say rustic wedding? June 24 2015, 0 Comments
Oh I do love a good wedding, I almost want to get divorced just so I can get remarried again - I'd even remarry my husband again I would just love the chance to design my day all over again. Fortunately for my husband (I think) my itch is scratched by making things for other brides (you see I'm a terribly nice person as well as a spiffing wife.) Being a small part of other people's big day is - quite sincerely, terribly exciting, I don't mind telling you I feel rather privileged each time. So for now my husband can hang fire with the divorce papers, and I'll happily stamp a little part of me on other people's day when their kind enough to let me!
These are a few of my favourite things June 10 2015, 0 Commentsbeautiful lace, old keys, vintage style hearts, dried lavender, pearls... So when I had itchy feet recently it was of no surprise that I used all of these in abundance in a picture for.... Me! Believe it or not I rarely get the time to make myself something and really I didn't have the time on this occasion but sometimes you have to appease your creative brain and do what it wants to do - it can be very forceful when it wants to be you know... And with a house full of dust (renovations NOT lazy me she hurriedly explains) I needed to readdress the pretty balance thus my vintage love story box frame was born. If I was feeling a bit showy I'd run in in a cocktail dress yelling 'ta dah' however the cats would judge me so I'll remain subtly dignified with a shy 'here it is' - :-)
Life is a beach June 03 2015, 0 Commentsrenovations are full swing in our house at the moment, amongst other things we are having our modest back yard renovated to include a summer house... Just the words make me tingle with excitement, my mind is already on overdrive thinking of how to dress it... I don't live anywhere near the sea but my summer house will behave as though I do; I'm thinking bunting, beachy inspired plaques, nautical colours, wooden hearts... I blame my recent holiday to Norfolk for overpowering my mind with beach hut beauty. It's not all plain sailing though, we have a lot of dirt and clearing up to do before the dream is realised, so for now it shall remain in my head until I'm let loose like a dog in the sea. I may actually find time to make this vast array of ideas in my head!
Treasure your bouquet forever May 27 2015, 0 Commentsthank goodness for trusting customers! I was delighted to make lots of rustic goodies for a particularly lovely brides big day, an easy job as it turned out we have identical taste. 2 weeks after her big day she asked whether I could do anything with her bouquet which she couldn't bear to discard.... I said yes, she dropped off said blooms and I stared at them for a week before daring to touch them let alone chop them! Then in a brave moment I lost all inhibition and chopped them to pieces and happily 'went with the flow' - (my creative process if you will - I hadn't planned what it would look like, I very rarely do, I just kind of play around until I think it's worked.) Fortunately, my like minded bride loved the result (phew) and I have a new addition to my range and bookings throughout June, July, August and September for many other trusting brides! Isn't it funny how some things work out... Unplanned is often the right way to go!
You're never too old for fairytales May 22 2015, 0 Comments
Having a 3 year old daughter is the best thing in the world, not only for the constant cuddles and unwavering adoration, but for the excuse to sit down and watch childrens films... a vat of inspiration right there! The joy of childhood as she watches in awe princesses in twirling dresses and crowns (that's like a tiara isn't it mummy?) and her insistence that these fictional characters are absolutely real and if only they would come 'to our house to play.' There is nothing quite like seeing life through a child's eyes, so fresh, so innocent, so inquisitive. I may be 34 (sshhh don't tell anyone) but you're never too old for fairytales - ooh now that would work on a plaque wouldn't it?! More so the fairytale is living with a 3 year old with the most incredibly active imagination and enthusiasm for life and all the new discoveries it brings every single day. I really had no idea when I was blessed with my daughter that it could be this amazing. The secret of life it seems, is all in the mind of a 3 year old.
the good thing about having a cough May 20 2015, 0 Comments
There are many amazing reasons why I love working from home. The obvious ones of course - no commute, being my own boss, not having a boss, and not having to work out what mood boss is in today; listening to radio 2 and working to my own timeframe (often well in to the night but with the added bonus of doing so in my lounge whilst watching The Walking Dead - current TV obsession!) But... (sorry to start a sentence with but - I know its frowned upon) BUT... it's the little things... there really is something in that phrase - its the many little things that add up to - well put simply, a happy life.
Wednesday is my first full working day of the week - I do a lot on a Monday, but its revolved around my daughter, her half day childcare and after hours working so its a bit of a jerky, start stop working day. Wednesday is my first full day alone in my studio where real progress is made. This morning I woke up with a hacking cough that has been threatening since Sunday. Immune system is poor being 26 weeks pregnant, and the house is full of dust mid house renovation so it was of no shock but a bit grotty all the same. However - I've woken up feeling incredibly positive - isn't it strange! The cough woke me up early - really early so I'm down in my studio at 7.30am - a good hour and a half earlier than normal - I don't need to look wonderful for work - on my studio days I don't wear a stitch (of makeup) as anybody who has collected an order from me on these days will testify to - sometimes I'll even wear pyjamas - I don't mind that you know that - its one of the pro's! However I don't want to scare off the builders so clothes are on today :-)
BUT (she does it again - and now she's referring to herself in the third person golly) the biggest loveliest thing that ALMOST makes me sway to being a morning person (which I hesitate to add I'm physically unprogrammed to be) was the bonus cuddles with my little girl this morning. You see usually on a Wednesday my husband will have taken her early doors to childcare on his way to work long before I have risen, but today, mid hack, I got an excited visit which has literally made my day, made me feel positive, and - dramatic warning- a little bit inspired by life. I feel reflective, incredibly grateful and appreciative of the little things. I am sat doing a job I absolutely adore, overwhelmed in the most positive way with orders which I'm itching to get going on, a thousand new ideas in my head, a messy desk full of pretty things and a full day ahead to indulge the creative calling which fulfils me in a way my hectic job in the media never did.
Radio 2 is on, and as though some mysterious stars have aligned - or my senses have opened, Baz Luhrman 'Sunsceen' is on and its as though I'm hearing the lyrics for the first time and they are resonating in such a powerful way I almost feel embarrassed! (makes note to print of the lyrics and read them everyday), and with it a realisation that the little things are actually the big things - I know we have all heard that before, but today I understand it and feel it with much intensity and gratitude.
Happy day people. I'll leave you with one of Les Crave's more poignant lines (the writer of the poem behind Baz Luhrman's Sunscreen) Whatever you do, don't Congratulate yourself too much or berate yourself either.
Your choices are half chance, so are everybody else's.
Must try harder... May 13 2015, 0 Commentsmust try harder... to blog more! It's just so hard when there are oodles of pretty things to be made and I have to keep up with my new 'flavours of the month' - current new obsessions include toadstools and clouds, you may have noticed a couple of items added to my range influenced by this current fad - and I expect more on the way! I've also launched a Father's Day collection AND a selection of thank you gifts for teachers so you see, my head isn't completely in the clouds....! Working in my studio is one of my favourite things to do, especially as we are having some work done to the house, in my studio I can forget the dust and drilling and plan exactly where I can pop all these cloud and toadstools I'm planning to make as I don't mind telling you, the best thing about my job is keeping the samples I make... Every cloud :-) thank you for your continued loveliness, blush inducing reviews and of course purchases - every single one is so appreciated x
love is in the air January 22 2015, 0 Comments
Isn't it just?! Well it is for me as I'm well underway with my Valentines orders - thank you for choosing me to make yours! (if you have... if you haven't why on earth not?!!) :-) I've loved it actually, It's the first year i've had the time to focus on a range and the response has been amazing, I've loved making all of your personalised cards, and the response on my Facebook page to the question 'what was your first dance?' was epic and inspired me to create the Song lyrics card - you see how you help me?! Next will be a lovely little range for Mothers day, so if there is anything you want to see, please let me know, as always your input is invaluable. In other news I was thrilled to be featured in a beautiful blog with a name as beautiful as its content 'rising out of the ocean', I felt a tiny bit famous answering all of the questions (its lovely chatting about yourself isn't it!!) - see the finished article here: https://risingoutoftheocean.wordpress.com/2015/01/04/liz-nagle-of-echo-designs/ Thanks for reading! Liz x
Out with the old... December 29 2014, 0 CommentsAre you all full to the brim with brussell sprouts?! Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas, doesn't it go quickly? - all that preparation and its over before you know it. I'm now in full focus for 2015 and all the new items I'm intending to develop for echo. Its been a whirlwind month for me here, as well as housing 2 new cats, having 2 full on family Christmas's at my humble abode I left the day job at ITV so I can give my full focus to echo - living the dream! Can't quite believe I've taken the plunge, but thanks to your incredible support and custom, I can - and I have! So... look out for some lovely new items, lots more whittery blog posts (don't weep...) and hopefully a lot of lovely offers and exciting things in the pipeline... my studio has had a little makeover (once I've tidied it up I'll pop a piccie up - don't want you thinking I'm a messy so and so - which I am - just don't want you knowing about it.... !) Anyway... a heartfelt happy new year to you all, I hope 2015 sees you following your dreams and I thank you from the bottom of my crafty heart for allowing me to follow mine, I hope I can tempt you back in the new year, Liz xx
Babies and cats December 29 2014, 0 CommentsIt's all about babies... Is there a baby boom happening?! You are loving the boxsets this month and I've been making lots of pink and blue goodies for your bundles of joy. I've also had my own little treasure arrive (no not my baby!) but one of my dearest girls had a baby called Iris, I absolutely love hearing all of the wonderful names that come through it almost makes me want another baby! (Not quite - I have a 2 year old Isla already) so we are talking of getting a cat - slightly less responsibility and no nappies required, but we get to pick a name! Isla wants to call it Berry.... watch this space! (there's a cliffhanger if ever there was one!)
Christmas - there I said it! September 25 2014, 0 Comments
Christmas is here and I don't care who knows it!! Overwhelmed with orders and over the christmas pudding moon to be so - it seems you all love sparkly things too! My studio is stacked high to the rafters with plaques waiting to be painted, and reels of sting to thread - and my stamps are on speed drive; there also appears to be a mini baby boom! My best seller this month alongside Christmas items is baby plaques and pictures - very useful to know for your next pub quiz :-) and your favourite Christmas Item? Delighted to say its my brand new 'letter to Santa' plaque which I designed in June and have been bursting to show you since then! I think its the appeal of the vintage stamp... so obsessed am I with these, I've just purchased wallpaper with stamps all over it - if I can ever organise putting the flipping stuff on the wall I'll show you..... anyway, must dash, time to watch Elf (its NEVER too early) :-)
Ps - you have whizzed me right over 300 sales on my new website - THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!!
The season that sharn't be named... August 21 2014, 1 CommentMy new studio is taking shape (my desk is up - a good sign surely?!) I just need to find a spare day to titivate to my hearts content. I've been busy perfecting my Christmas range which you may have seen sneaky previews of on Facebook - already inundated with orders which makes me giddy as a kipper, it can't come soon enough for me :-) Full range will be officially launched on Sunday 31st August - you heard it here first! I've also just had my 200th sale through on this website which makes me an even giddier kipper - your support is TRULY appreciated, also... a huge thank you to everyone who has written me a review - they make me an actual kipper! Everytime one pops through I get all excited and so far (touch wood) they've been nice! Over and out :-)
Here I am! August 06 2014, 0 CommentsHave you missed me?! I hope so... apols for the quiet period, I've been busy beavering away behind the scenes (plus the small matter of moving house - I mean really - who's idea was that? Utter chaos!) The good news is that I have a humoungous new studio (actually the cellar but for glamourous sounding purposes I'm sticking with studio) so I'm packing it to the rafters with very important things like buttons, pretty paper, sparkly things... you get my drift. Also, I'm starting to think about the season that shan't be named (more of that next time I think) AND I'm in talks with a group of other craftys about a big market night to be held on Facebook - so watch my page for more info about that. I've also gone all fancy pants and am on Instagram so if you like pictures of cushions, house things generally then come follow me! I'm echodesignsuk. Ta ta for now - thanks for sticking with me x
I do, me too May 20 2014, 0 Comments
Welcome to May at echo designs where its wedding HQ in my overflowing studio! I'm thrilled to have contributed to over 30 big days coming up over the next few months. Its been particularly exciting as I've joined forces with the fabulous classy rooms; in house providers of decor at the very beautiful Hyde Bank Farm in Romiley as well as a multitude of other wedding venues. I've been making lots of rustic style table plans, place settings and table decorations to add a touch of personalised country to some very stylish brides. I can't wait to upload some pics when the big days have happened, until then I'll leave you with a little taster - I'm sure you can hardly contain yourselves! I can't leave with a mention of how grateful I am to all of you ordering through my website, its changed my life! Everything is so organised I can't possibly mess it up! Well so far so good at least.... keep your eyes out for new designs, there are a few in the pipeline, Liz x
The verdict is in April 29 2014, 0 Comments
Well your loving the new website I'm so pleased! Thank you for your continuing support and to those of you who have subscribed to my newsletter you will have received the first ever one... I'm a technical whirlwind! Actually I can't lie, Nathan at bokaprint set it up for me (thank goodness) so all I have to do is choose the content and choose what special offers to do which is dead exciting! In other news I'm moving house and therefore studios...(glorified garden shed) No date set yet so I'm completely avoiding any thoughts of packing up echo to move; how will my gorgeous little jars of buttons survive a boisterous move?!) Those of you that know me won't be surprised to hear that my daily process of pouring over interiors magazines has promoted itself to an almost unhealthy level, I'm dreaming of lampshades and doing mathematical equations of how many cushions can be squeezed into a standard lounge- results (and pics) to follow when the move finally happens, it shall feed my home addiction for months to come, I can't wait! Liz x
New studio inspiration....
New Website at last! April 03 2014, 1 Comment
I'm so excited to be able to launch my new website. Huge thanks to the very patient Nathan at Boka Print for spending so much time making it for me - my original site served me well but It was time for a change, and time to get a professional on the case - my last one did what it needed but it did look a bit like a 3 year old had made it (that would be me!) So... I hope you find this easy to navigate and full of all your favourite echo creations. It will get bigger and better over time so please come back and visit - and let me know what you think, I love any feedback! Thanks echoers :-) Liz x