8Aug

The Alphabet Of Arcane Trades: Y is for…

Y is for…

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Yatman
In my search for the various historical trades to explore, I also cast my eye over records of surnames and their meanings. Arriving at Y on this alphabet of arcane trades, the pool was quite shallow, so I thought a look at the surname Yatman would suffice. A Yatman was known as a gateman in Northern England and the name itself is thought to be a variant of the name Yates. Not only does the name Yates hold some power in today’s world, but the “gatekeeper” title also lends itself to a slightly ominous and mysterious business. Perhaps history has obscured some of the Yatmans’ secrets, or perhaps the role was a little too specialised to hold court. Tune in next week for our final instalment of the arcane trade alphabet – I’m a little sad to be coming to the end.

 

The Alphabet of Arcane Trades:
A is for…      B is for…
C is for…      D is for…
E is for…      F is for…
G is for…     H is for…
I is for…      J is for…
K is for…     L is for…
M is for…    N is for…
O is for…     P is for…
Q is for…     R is for…
S is for…      T is for…
U is for…     V is for…
W is for…    X is for…

5Aug

All The World’s A Stage… Including Your Home

The Society inc. by Sibella Court | All The World’s A Stage… Including Your Home

The theatre is a wonderful place for a stylist like me. Aside from all the obvious appeal of the acting, drama, music, and dance, the set design offers so many ideas. I love to watch the sets change before my eyes: one minute the action’s in a house, the next minute by the sea, but all on the same stage, I like to think of my home and shop in the same way, with each room providing the backdrop for my latest obsessions or ever-changing needs and wants. But while some of us revel in the though of frequent floor-to-ceiling transformations, other like to like to take a more low-risk approach by leaving the basics or the big-ticket items (the walls, carpets, light fixtures, furniture and window coverings) and changing the less permanent features when the styling urge takes over.

The Society inc. by Sibella Court | All The World’s A Stage… Including Your Home

I also like to think of my home as a set, as I feel like then you loosen your restrictions on how you think a space should be laid out. Forget for a moment about your preconceived notions of design and play around with your layout and details, like a moving palette of inspiration. As an example, I like to think about I shoot I did for my book Bowerbird. Above, you’ll see the living room. It’s set laid out to greet you as you enter, and the open-plan zone is marked out by the rug – here is the spot for relaxation & conversation. But then we did a reverso….

The Society inc. by Sibella Court | All The World’s A Stage… Including Your Home

Above, you see the room from another angle. The bed sits against the wall that made up the left-hand side of our living space you just saw, and you can see from the image that you have an entirely different look. Yes, this was for a photo shoot, but I think you can see the positives in feeling playful with your space and working with new formulas to try out your untested styling theories. I dare you….

4Aug

Object History: Collars

The Society inc. by Sibella Court | Object History: Collars

 

Man’s best friend – dogs and humans have been pals for almost 12,000 years. There are some very early records of human and canine friendship in the form of hieroglyphics, artefacts and even buried remains of treasured pets.

The Ancient Egyptians were renowned for their admiration of cats, but although not as elevated of a household animal, dogs were seen as handy protectors and hunting companions, often sporting decorative collars.

Often dogs that accompanied hunting parties in medieval times worn utilitarian and functional collars. Interestingly, dogs with shepherding duties sometimes even had spikes edging the collars as protection against their larger and wild wolf cousins. At the other end of the spectrum, dogs fortunate enough to be the loved pets of royalty often received exquisite and bejewelled collars. Cher Ami, the favourite greyhound of King Louis XI, was bestowed a gold collar studded with rubies!

Whilst collars embedded with precious stones may be a little out of your budget, your favourite pooch could look just as grand in our beautiful shibori leather collars and matching shibori leads.

The Society inc. by Sibella Court | Object History: Collars
3Aug

From Our Colour Box: Whisky

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In this week’s colour hunting expedition we focus our eyes on Whisky; which is always better aged! You will find whisky amongst other seafaring hues in my palette Tradewinds which can be found in my book Etcetera etc: Creating beautiful interiors with the things you love.

Tradewinds reflects my fascination with all things maritime, from the ocean-going explorers of the 18th & 19th centuries to the pirates to mythological sea creatures of storybooks. Whisky is the drink of choice for seafaring folk: the hue reflects this rich & smoky spirit. It is however soft & milky in appearance, reflecting the calm side of the Tradewinds palette.

Think sailors & sea shanties, beautiful aged barrels filled with home brewed whisky, rope lined canvas sails,  paper many-times read full of sweet whispers sent in bottles.

Whisky works with any of my foundation colours & perfectly amongst any of the Tradewinds hues. If you are going for a more moody interior mix Whisky with Dark&Stormy or Tattoo.

For a softer effect, splash Anchorage or Seaglass around your room.

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1Aug

The Alphabet Of Arcane Trades: X is for…

X is for…

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Xylographer
Wooden stamps are one of the pieces that rank highly on my treasure hunt list. I love the look and feel of them and I’m always hard-pressed not to bring them home when I see them. Xylography was the earliest form of wood-block printing, though of images and not of words. The xylographer would carve the timber with an inverted view of what they were hoping for, as the element left protruding would be what marked the page. I love this idea that they would have to think in reverse – a skill that is perhaps rarely called on but impressive nonetheless. Seeing the world as it is and not even inverting it can be confusing enough, sometimes.

The Alphabet of Arcane Trades:
A is for…      B is for…
C is for…      D is for…
E is for…      F is for…
G is for…     H is for…
I is for…      J is for…
K is for…     L is for…
M is for…    N is for…
O is for…     P is for…
Q is for…     R is for…
S is for…      T is for…
U is for…     V is for…
W is for…

29Jul

Adding Unexpected Details To Your Interiors

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Though it may sound like an odd thing to say, I am a lover of fun. I have always found great joy in my job and have relished all the adventures I have had because of it. And hopefully you see that I aim to weave a sense of fun into venues I design or the pages of my books. I love a little jolt of surprise or cheeky detail. We can’t be all serious, and yes perhaps we want our homes to exude an air of grandeur, but you can’t help but feel a bit of childlike abandon when you spy a slightly tongue-in-cheek detail.

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And it’s not only you that should enjoy adding these unexpected details that make you smile. A laugh is even more fun when it’s shared, so weave in your sense of humour in a manner that might catch the eye of a friend or guest. Here you see a considered vignette, but look a little more closely and you might catch the porcelain doll standing to the wall as if in disgrace. A detail in a larger picture that demands a closer look.

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I love the way these moustached men have such presence and airs about them, but there’s just something slightly comical. While the colour palette they bring to this space is refined, they also add a smile-inducing detail, which also rethinks the “pride of place” status of the mantelpiece. Design trickery that does not take itself too seriously.

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The game can manifest in literal forms. I have long been collecting random gaming pieces (not whole sets), which come in handy while styling. Who doesn’t love a game? And if you can draw some of that thrill into your interiors, no matter how big or small, you can enjoy the sparkle of fun and share it with friends, too.