Two things

All good things seem to come in pairs at the moment and this week the first good thing is that the H&D showroom at Hutch is now open. We have been painting, decorating and even dismantling our own homes in order to make it look top notch and now - ta da - here it is!

Hutch is an an absolutely beautiful shop and well worth a visit (not just for the basement H&D delights) so get on down to 61 Golborne Road, London, W10 6NR.

The other fabulously exciting news is that we are now only three days from Glasto touch down AND it's gearing up to be a sunny one! Glastonbury has been an annual pilgrimage for me and my friends for the past decade or two and truly is a world unto itself. Added to that I first clapped eyes on my now husband in front of the Pyramid stage on a sunny afternoon a couple of years ago.


Exciting times

There are two very exciting things happening in Hickey and Dobson land at the moment. First up I think I mentioned last week, I am going to open a little pop up shop at Hutch on the Golborne Road. There is a room in the basement of the shop which is currently not being used and the lovely Georgia has asked if I would like to take it over for a little while as a sort of H&D show room. Of course the answer is a big fat YES! The space is actually pretty cool with a window that looks on to a little courtyard. I could spend a fortune on flowers and pots etc and make it look utterly splendid, but the idea is really to make some money not blow a load!

Anyhow Nick and I have been spending our spare time painting and decorating and putting up curtain poles and generally faffing away down there (Nick = a saint, I am very lucky to have a husband who will happily give up his Saturday to paint skirting boards!)

We are going to have an opening "do" when it's looking all posh and ready to go, so watch this space for more info on that.

And now on to the second v exciting development which is tied in with all the super cool chair pictures above. The wonder that is Abigail Ahern would like to show case Hickey and Dobson chairs on her website (cue extreme excitement and much whooping). It will be on her Open Call section which she describes below:

I am extremely excited to announce that we are launching a segment entitled Open Call Monday’s for all designers, artists, suppliers, new, emerging and existing! With a tough economy and retailers closing down like no tomorrow its hard getting work showcased. We get approached a zillion times a day with products and its tough saying no we can’t take so I want to do something about it, by showcasing and highlighting the best. 

Abigail Ahern is an inspirational woman; she owns a gorgeous interiors shop in Islington, is the author of a number of fab interiors books and was described by the Sunday Times as being, "The woman rocking the world of interiors". On top of this she has amazing personal style, works incredibly hard and has a wonderful attitude towards helping others, a woman of both style and integrity (I shall now be rather embarrassed if she reads this!)

I wanted to get some really cool images for her to use, so on Friday I borrowed my friends Sarah and Chris' house for the day and as you can see, what a house! I had no idea the stunning paint colour would work so well as a back drop and am very pleased with the end results :)

 1950's Cocktail chair in natural linen and wool weave: £380
 1950's Communist chair in Designers Guild   linen: £170
 1950's Communist chair in Designers Guild velvet and linen: £170
195's Cocktail chair in Designers Guild natural weave: £370

1940's Danish high arm chair in Designers Guild weave £490
1950's box arm chair, in Designers Guild weave and cotton mix: £520
1950's Communist chair in Designers Guild weave: £170

As you can see there are a few new chairs as well, and I am going to do a discount on the little Communist ones. I normally sell them for £200, but for a limited time only I will be selling these little beauties for £170 on my shop.

Enjoy your week one and all x


The joy of gardens

I am very lucky to have a ground floor flat with a lovely garden, which is (as I'm sure you know if you read this blog regularly) my refuge as well as the root of all my financial woes - I just can't say no to a pretty tray of flowers. Take this morning for example, I was running round doing errands when I remembered everything at Homebase was 15% off this weekend. After about 2 seconds deliberation I had persuaded Nick that it was a good idea  to go and buy one lupin which would look perfect by the pond, only to emerge an hour later, £60 lighter - what happened?

But, despite the amount of time and money I spend on it, it's still 100% worth it. This blog is really an ode to the joy of gardening, so if you haven't discovered your green fingers yet, make sure it does happen at some point because even in a little square of grass and flowers in one of the biggest cities in the world I can feel completely absorbed by nature and totally de-stressed from all the frustrations of every day life - plus if your a visual/creative person it's like painting a big picture out of plants PLUS you get a lovely sun tan!

In the summer the garden is like an extra room (albeit when it's not raining). What with all the beautiicious weather we've had over the last week we have been eating breakfast, lunch and dinner outside and have rearranged the space so that we have our BBQ up by the house to maximise the amount of char grilled sausages , asparagus' and tuna steaks I will eat over the forth coming months - yum!

On Saturday I left the lovely confines of Kensal Rise to go and have lunch with my friends Mike and Georgie at Mike's parents house out in Surrey. This is a family which takes all my ideals about aesthetics, easy living style, garden obsessions and a true love of nature to a finely honed forty year state of near perfection. 

Surrey gets a bad rap and generally this is pretty deserved with its bling mansions and range rover driving yummy mummies, it's not really where I see my future. But this house is the exception to all the rules. Nestled down the end of an over grown lane it's a gorgeous little cottage in a beautifully wild garden with bee hives dotted around where the family make their own honey, no wonder Mike's t shirt reads, "I'm awesome".

In a nearby field they keep highland cattle and pigs and local people use some of the space for allotments.

Wandering back to the cottage you walk though a really magical wood with a stream running through it which a few weeks ago was covered in blue bells. As I've said to Mike many times, if I'd known his family owned a place like this way back when we were at university together then I would have definitely had romantic designs on him. 

I love a man in wellies.

 A little pic of me and my littlest sis' Lucy, hanging out in the blissful sunshine.

We wizzed back to London in style (my mate Webs has just got himself an awesome 1980's soft top BMW) so we flew back in that. I was in the back where it was a little chilly and ended up wearing a pair of Webb's jeans as a scarf, added to the glamour I'm sure!

I arrived home to find that in my absence Nick had got completely bored with writing his doctoral thesis and had entertained himself getting ready for some friends who were popping round in the evening - another BBQ!! But also another opportunity to bang on about how great gardens are and to show off our newest garden purchase - the fire bucket - ta da! This was bought with the aim of revolutionising summer evening outdoor dining. I think we will all admit that in England there are very few balmy evenings where you can actually sit outside of an evening and not start to shiver by about half past eight. Step up the fire bucket, now our garden is all about 24 hr garden enjoyment! It did actually work really well and last night was pretty chilly, the only downside was that we had our back door open and the house now has a distinct smell of fire wood.

 And lastly on to chair news. As I've said before, I've recently started selling in a lovely shop called Hutch Interiors on the Golborne Road. Hutch is owned by Georgia and the property consists of a ground level shop and then a basement area where Georgia runs day courses in all things crafty (think lampshade making and upholstery). There is also a second area downstairs which I am going to turn into a little pop up Hickey and Dobson shop where you can go and view/sit down on any of the chairs that take your fancy. I don't want to say too much at the moment but we are hoping to get it up and running within the next month and I will keep you posted with any and all updates.

I thought I'd leave you with a before shot of the future pop up - a really exciting project.


Chicken run

I went to our farm in Spain this week for the first time since I got married there last summer. I think I've yabbered on about how beautiful it is before, but I shan't feel curtailed in saying how out of this world lovely it is again. It was quite funny being back out there, some of the "wedding" signs are still nailed to trees on the way up to the camp site where we got married. Various villagers clapped me on the back and babbled away incoherently,  reminding me of how over one hundred London folk descended on this sleepy village causing varying degrees of mayhem.

This trip was an entirely different affair being just me, my sister and my mum and dad - not forgetting Iggy the dog, Rucio the donkey and some chickens. 

Rucio was a highlight, he follows you round the farm and is prone to creeping up behind you and giving you a bit of a head butt when he wants attention. We're worried he's lonely so sheep are next on the list of farmyard animals to arrive at Hacienda de Gredos.

The chickens are not such a happy story, they have a very lovely hen house built in the old sheep enclosure with one half being a chicken coup and the other an outdoor run around area - the feng shui is gorgeous.  It's just a shame that each day another hen gets picked off by an unknown assailant (we think stoat or weasel). It's like some Agatha Christie novel where each day another character is murdered. Poor hens. Perhaps now we need to get something to guard the hens!

Iggy was absolutely no good as a guard dog, here he is standing on top of the hen house inciting violence by constantly yapping at the flustered chickens and once actually killing one himself. It was a total disaster.

So back to happier news, the views were still incredible, the veggie patch is coming on a treat and the dream of being self sufficient (at least by way of fruit and veg - no eggs yet!) is shaping up nicely. When I say self sufficient I am excluding ham, cheese and red wine from the list - these can not be home made and nothing can compare with the village salchicon and manchego - it is super.

So, although you wouldn't think so from the pictures the weather was not that hot with some pretty rainy days, I was aghast, rain in Spain, in June!!! Anyway, we kept ourselves busy with a day trip to Toledo. Amazing place with an amazing cathedral.

So that was my holiday to Spain, no chair news to speak of at all. I'm now feeling totally rejuvenated and the sun's out so I have no excuses for not hitting the ground running and getting stuck in to some heavy duty upholstering. Watch this space.