A Duck Egg Living Room with a splash of Orange!

If you come to visit me, you won’t be shown into this room, not for any other reason except I don’t use it!

I show anyone who calls into the kitchen.  I invite them to sit at the table and I make a brew/pour a glass of wine, depending on the time of day and, generally we stay there, chatting!

However, this room does exist, it is on the right as you enter through the front door, and this is the view from the entrance.


Looking at this picture, it seems quite cluttered but actually I think it still feels quite sparse in real life. The are two windows on the full length, right wall , that look out onto the Chapel.


We purchased this huge mirror in 1991 and it has hung in every house we have lived in ever since.


Now where it is hung allows the light to be  reflected from the front bay window that looks out onto The Glade, all around the room. This little nook was an ideal space for our Christmas tree last year.

In the meantime, it houses this lovely comfortable pouffe that we use for extra seating.


I chose duck egg blue for this room very early on but quickly realised that I would need to have a darker coloured rug, one of the pit falls of having a black dog in the family. I chose orange because I think it adds interest and breaks the neutrals up a bit. It must be one of my favorite colours because I always seem to turn back to it.


I hope the accessories also help to make the room feel co-ordinated without being too matchy.


I  usually have flowers or candles next to the TV, I have just realised that they are missing in this picture.


This sideboard, the two drawer chests, either side of the two sweater sofa, and the coffee table are all striped pine and, like the picture,  are all from Next. The small brown boxes are for extra strorage but don’t actually have anything in them at the moment.


This standard lamp is in the corner opposite the door, I don’t like rooms to have dark corners and having this lamp on gives the room a lovely glow. Again this box is here for storage and extra seating.

I have plans that include a duck egg throw and an oversized clock for this corner. I will post an update soon.


The wire basket, for the John Rocha range at Debenhams, houses the multiple remote controls on the coffee table shelf, it keeps them all in one place, but out of sight.


I decided on a simple light fitting because I didn’t want it to look too fussy, especially because the ceilings are quite low, this one was from Homebase. The copper effect picture frames are on the bay window sill, they are from Debenhams. The rug is from Next.

That’s our living room, still a room in progress. The walls are still painted with the builder’s magnolia. I think we can paint over them now with a breathable paint but can’t wallpaper for another year.

Will we paint the walls all one colour?  or have a feature wall? What colours would you choose? I have an idea, it has to be a neutral, but I’m open to suggestions.




Have a lovely day!


Spicy Orange Cake!


I absolutely love mixed spice and think it is sad that it is usually only popular at  Christmas. I  use it whenever I can, for example a good spoonful gets added to my Carrot cake with Orange Frosting.

Last week I wanted a spicy but sweet cake and looked through my cupboards to see what I had in. This gorgeous creation was the result. The orange flavour really shines through.

I chose the rub in method because it is so simple to do and you don’t need any equipment except your fingers.  I hope that if you think you can’t bake, you might just give this a go.

It keeps for a couple of days if stored in an airtight container.  I was delighted with the outcome.


225g self raising flour

pinch of salt

1 teaspoon of mixed spice

100g butter

100g sugar

175g sultanas

Grated rind of 1 orange

2 eggs

2 tablespoons of freshly squeezed orange juice


1. Heat the oven to 180 degrees and line or grease an 18cm cake tin.

2. Mix flour, salt and mixed spice together,  rub in butter until it resembles breadcrumbs.

3. Stir in the sugar, sultanas and grated orange rind.

4. Beat together eggs and orange juice then add to the other ingredients.

5.  Beat together until soft.

6. Add to prepared tin and bake for about 50 minutes.

Enjoy x










Carrot cake with Orange topping!


A very firm favourite cake in this house is Carrot Cake.

I never mind because I always kid myself into thinking that I am providing one of their five a day. Tentative?

Give this a go, I promise it is worth it!



225g self raising flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon ground mixed spice

150g soft dark brown sugar

150g peeled and grated carrots

2 eggs

150ml sunflower oil

2 tablespoons milk


50g butter

2 tablespoons orange juice

½ grated orange

225g icing sugar


1. Pre heat oven to 180ºC and line a square cake tin

2. Mix the flour, baking powder and mixed spice in a bowl

3. Stir carrots and sugar into the flour mix

4. Make a well in the centre of the mix and add eggs, oil and milk then mix well

5. Place mix into the tin and bake for approximately 30 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. Leave to cool on a wire rack

6. Place orange juice and rind in a pan with the butter and melt together

7. Remove from the heat and add icing sugar, beat until smooth

8. Spread topping across the top of the cake

9. Cut into 9 squares