It’s no surprise to tell you how much I love candles, there is something lovely about lighting a candle, whether scented or not, that can add so much to any day. I love how candles can create an ambience and atmosphere, create a cozy atmosphere on cold days, add a sense of occasion to any meal, fill the home with lovely scent, create an aura of intimacy, and add light to different areas.
But candles aren’t the only source of alternative lighting that is available for creating atmosphere and ambience and this blog post will show you some other forms of alternate lighting that I love.
First up is salt lamps. I know there has been a lot of hype over the past year or so regarding their health benefits but for me I just really like the light that they give off when on. I currently have 2 that I use regularly, one in my bedroom and one in my living room. The light they give off is a soft, calming almost fire like tone which creates a lovely warming, cozy atmosphere. It is a soft sort of light, really diffused and not overly bright, though I find I can read by the one in the bedroom which is perfect for me as having a light that is too bright can make me more awake than sleepy.
Next up is lamps. Lamps are really good at adding directional light where you need it most, whether it’s a desk lamp, table lamp or floor lamp, they are great for brightening up certain areas or using to highlight certain aspects that you want people to notice. I have several different types of lamp and use them for different things. My anglepoise lamp is perfect for when I am working on something – usually an art project or when I’m at my laptop of an evening and working on my blog. I like that you can direct the lamp in almost any way so that the light is in the right place for whatever you are working on. I have my side lamp (the dinosaur one) which is on a timer because it gets quite dark here of an afternoon and sometimes I don’t really notice how dark it is if I’ve been absorbed in doing something. I have the lamp behind my cuddle chair which I really only use for reading or if guests are round and its a bit dim in the room. It creates a really nice cozy atmosphere and makes the cuddle chair even more appealing and comfy looking than normal (if that’s possible!)
And lastly, novelty lights. All sorts of lights are in this category – fairy lights, word lights, a fish bubble lamp, this category is just about adding fun elements really rather than being proper light sources. However, these lights can create a good atmosphere regardless of how they are used.
I have fairy lights in my bedroom around the alcove that my bed sits in, I don’t really use them (they are battery operated and eat batteries like no tomorrow) but they are nice to have on once in a while and create a really lovely, magical vibe. I also have fairy lights in my garden, they are solar-powered and I use them to light the steps and handrail at night, there is something really lovely about sitting in the garden on a warm summers night and seeing the lights twinkling away, plus they are a safety feature too!
I have word lights, they spell the word JOY and, though they are supposed to be Christmas lights, I’m considering leaving them up for the year as I really like how sparkly and fun they are. They add light to my shelving unit which in turn brings people’s attention to it and the items on it, and being a black unit, sometimes people don’t notice the things I have on display there. Plus they always make me smile, even on the dullest day.
And lastly, the fish bubble lamp. I can remember these being a bit “trendy” back in the 90’s and always wanting one but never being able to have one so when I saw one on sale locally I decided to buy it. There is something really soothing about watching this lamp and I’m not sure if it’s the bubbles, watching the plastic fish bobbing up and down or the lights cycle through a spectrum of colour but it really does help me to calm down and relax!
My style can be described as being bright, fun, non-traditionalist, hippy and boho, and my Christmas decorations really embrace my style. I’m not a huge fan of tinsel or traditional Christmas decorations, though I do add elements of the traditional into my decor.
I have Christmas trees, fairy lights and stags,but not in traditional colourways, I prefer white or black trees, my stag decorations are bright pink and glittery, instead of tinsel I choose bead ropes, marabou feathers and pom-pom trim. I have really bright baubles on my black tree and have chosen little dinosaurs to hang from my other, scroll down to see the photos that I have taken of my non-traditionalist, seasonal decor!
I didn’t want to hang my wreath on the front door because, well, its Wales and it rains! Not just that but I really didn’t want to get him all dirty either. I hung my wreath on the next available door – the door to my downstairs living room.
Joy lights which I have placed on the shelving unit opposite the door to my living room. This is the first thing people see when coming into my home.
My small tree that I have decorated with multi-colour fairy lights, pom-pom trim, marabou feather trim and tiny plastic dinosaurs!
Here’s a close up of the dinosaurs!
My second tree which is decorated with beaded ropes and baubles.
A close up of one of the decorations on my black Christmas tree – my initial!
Pink stars, green stars and purple stars also adorn the tree.
Skull and Crossbone upcycled tree which I’m thinking of having as my table piece for Christmas dinner.
My pink glitter stags, my mini Christmas Tree and its pom-pom decorations (which are also lights!) on my back windowsill.
Here’s a close up of one of the stags! I’m really liking the effect the rain on the window has!
And lastly, my santa card peg fairy light garland.
How have you decorated your house for christmas? Do you have a theme or colour palette that you use?
There are so many different Christmas decorations available now, from cute, retro funky baubles to minimalistic metallic ones. With the array that is on sale its easy to get overwhelmed so I’m here today to give you some ideas with your Christmas decorations!
I think the easiest thing to do when deciding which decorations to choose is to first come up with a theme and colour palette before actually purchasing any decorations. Here are a few that I really love….
Traditional – Green, red, gold.
Minimalistic – Metallic silver and one colour.
Bright – Pink, blue, yellow, orange, lime green.
Pastel – Baby pink, baby blue, lemon and soft green.
Jewel – Red, gold, green, blue, purple.
Galaxy – Metallic blue, green, purple and pink.
Retro – Bronze, gold and metallic brown.
Elegant – Black, white and silver.
Once you have chosen your theme and colour palette you can then choose the colour of your tree, and with so many different colours and styles to choose from sometimes it can be hard to know which colour to go for. Here are some ideas for you…
Once you have decided on the best tree for your theme the next thing to decide upon is the lights for your tree. There are 4 main ones to choose from – coloured, cool white, warm white and bright white. Coloured are the more traditional sort of fairy lights with bulb colours of red, green, blue and yellow, cool white give off a blue tinged light, warm white lights are yellow toned and bright white lights give off a brilliant white light.
I would choose Coloured lights (like these) for the Bright and Retro Theme
Cool White lights (like theses) work well with the Pastel and Galaxy Theme
Warm White lights (like these) work well with the Traditional Theme
Bright White lights (like these) work well with the Minimalistic, Jewel and Elegant Themes.
Now that you have chosen your theme, tree and lights we can now look at the fun stuff – all the shiny baubles and other decorations to hang on the tree!!!! First though, you should decide whether you want tinsel on the tree or not? I personally dislike tinsel, having Aspergers means I can be hyper-sensitive to certain smells and tinsel is one of those things that I don’t do well with smell wise so I choose not to use it at all. However, there are alternatives to tinsel including beaded ropes (like these) which come in many different colours, marabou feather trim, ribbons and other haberdashery trims works well too and you can buy that in many fabric or craft shops. Whatever you decide on pick out one colour from your colour palette so as not to overwhelm the other decorations.
Choose big baubles in one colour from your palette and add smaller ones in either the same colour or another from your colour scheme, mix up finishes to add interest (choose shiny ones, matte ones, glitter finish, dimpled etc) and if you want, mix up the shapes of the baubles – tear drop ones work really well for the bottom of the tree where as I find round ones work well for the middle.
Select smaller baubles in differing colours (that match the colour palette of your chosen theme), again you can choose different finishes and textures. Smaller baubles work well for the middle of the tree and top. Most of the large and small baubles can be bought in multi packs and are fairly cheap to buy so you can add as many or as few as you wish to your tree!
Now for the extra fun bit, choosing the eye-catching elements! These elements are things like bows, shaped baubles, clear baubles, and baubles with special finishes (like these iridescent ones) Most of this type of decoration are the ones that are sold as single decorations (and are a bit more expensive than the regular baubles) and are designed so that you only add one or 2 of the same one to the tree, this means that the eye will be drawn to them, add a fun element and are a way to really personalise your theme. Most places that sell trees will sell this type of decoration, I have found Asda and B&Q to be good places to have a look as they carry a good range! Whatever you choose, have fun with these decorations and add as many or as few as you wish!
What sort of theme are you choosing for your decorations?
THIS POST IS IMAGE HEAVY… (just to warn you incase it doesn’t load on your device…)
I’ve decided to add to my blog “A Look Around My Home” posts, essentially photo room tours, partly to share with you what my rooms look like and how I style them but also to serve as reminders to me. I like to move things around, add things and take things away so sharing these posts will be a little reminder for me in months to come, how my room looked at certain points in time.
Today I am sharing photos of my living room. I hope you will like them!
This is the full view of my window sill. I received the hanging which I use as a curtain for my birthday last year, you can find similar on Amazon .
I bought the Unicorn Ring Holder and the votive candles (part of a set) from Asda. Unfortunately the Unicorn Ring Holder no longer seems to be in stock but you can buy similar here. The votive candle came as part of a set of 2 along with a reed diffuser which smells absolutely divine – really fruity, from Asda.
I bought this little fellow about 20 years ago when I was on holiday in Devon from a cute gift shop.
The Incense Burner was purchased in a local shop and the Tea Light holder was a Birthday gift from a friend a few years ago.
I bought the Moroccan Tea Light Holder in my local TK Maxx. I can’t find the item on their website but you may find similar in store!
My Coffee Table was a bargain find from FaceBook Marketplace and was free to whoever collected it! I’d been searching for one like it for what seemed like an age and is now one of my favorite possessions! I can’t remember where I got the Hurricane lamp from but use it every now and again as a vase. At the moment I like using it to hold a chunky church candle.
These coasters were a Christmas present a few years ago from my brother, Richard. They never cease to make me smile!
I bought my tv stand from Argos and was using it previously in my bedroom to store clothes in. I moved it downstairs after my neighbour gifted me her spare tv when I moved in. It currently houses a few ornaments and my classic (original) Sony Playstation and games.
I’ve had my sheep skull since I was in college doing an Art A Level (back in 1998) when I used him in several drawing lessons. I named him Bob and painted him silver several years ago. The Dragon is made from Welsh coal and was a present from my brother Richard.
I bought the terrarium (complete with a fake succulent) in Asda, they don’t seem to stock it on their site anymore but you may be lucky to find one in store. The little frog was a present from a friend when she was on holiday, it opens up and can hold really small things. The tortoise is made from Tigers Eye, it was a gift for a birthday many years ago.
I love this vignette of the corner of my room! The chest is from my friend who runs RoofRack Ragamuffinsa local shop here in Pontypool. The table lamp was upcycled by me (I added the dinosaur fringe). The dinosaur planters were a gift from my Mum and were purchased in Morrisons supermarket. The little table is a find from Facebook Marketplace. The plant and pot came from Wilkinsons.
Here’s a close up of the little table, I bought it from a lady on Facebook Marketplace, it holds a handful of gemstone chippings, a plastic duck and a customised My Little Pony which I’m in the middle of decorating.
These wood carvings were made by a friend and I bought them at festivals I have been to. They are called Lenny (the big one) and Pigwig (the smaller one). The lamp is filled with water and when switched on a light shines up through the water and cycles through different colours, it produces bubbles and little plastic fish bob up and down.
This is where I like to sit and read my books. The cuddle chair is from Facebook Marketplace. The floor lamp I upcycled myself. (You can read about that here) The bookcase came from Ikea.
The camel mobile was bought at a museum in London on a trip there years ago.
On the top of the bookcase is a pyramid shelving unit that I painted gold. It is filled with small nick-nacks.
Next to the pyramid shelves are 2 jars, one contains tiny bird skulls that I found and used in art classes for drawing and painting skills.
The other glass jar contains a Sea Anemone Skeleton that I found on a beach when I was on holiday a few years ago.
This shelf holds items that I inherited when my Grandma died. I have no idea of the origins of the decorated bottles or the puffins. The little tortoise is a holder, when you lift off the shell there is a place to keep small items.
The next shelf down is home to my Horse and Carriage that my Granddad bought back from one of his trips abroad. The oil burner was a gift from my manager when I worked in a pub and the skull was a present from my Dad a few years ago (it’s a money-box).
I’ve collected feathers for years and have chosen to display some of them in a pink candle holder on my shelf.
This is where my “books to read” reside along with my filofax and other bits and bobs necessary for everyday life that I tend to lose! The Buddah ornament is a backflow incense burner that I bought a while ago from Amazon. (You can find backflow incense burners here) The bottom shelf (which you can just see…) holds books and the rest of my planners and diaries.
This artwork is something I created on my Foundation Art Degree. I have placed it onto the chimney breast and placed a shelving unit below it as the chimney is not used anymore and the fire-place has been blocked up.
The small glass photocube was a present from my workmates when I left my last job.
My Mum bought me the Llama mug to use as a plant holder. It’s currently housing a silly dinosaur pencil!
The votive candle holders (S & R) came from Asda and stand for Suzi and Roxy! The squishie animals came from Wish.
I can’t remember where I bought this little box from, its been in my possession for longer than I can remember. It currently keeps incense cones safe!
I had this troll figure (and the other one shown lower down in this post) as a Birthday present when trolls were all the rage first time around (in the late ’80s!) I’m surprised that I still have both of them given that many of my things from then have got lost over the years!
I love this pair and their cute faces! They are salt and pepper shakers that I bought for a uni art project several years ago. I have never used them for the purpose they were made for but as ornaments to have out on my shelves!
This was bought years ago from a charity shop! I use it to keep Roxy’s pocket-money safe!
Another of my ’80’s childhood toys that has survived many moves!
The salt lamp was a Birthday gift a few years ago. I bought the side unit and drawers from Argos to use as side tables as I didn’t have any. I have one for each side of my sofa and are perfect for putting a lamp on and holding a coffee cup. They are also perfect for hiding paperwork and magazines!
The sofa is a new addition to my living room. I did have a sofabed in the space (you can see it here) but decided to move that to my spare room. I found this (and another one) exactly the same on Facebook Marketplace for £15 for the pair! The bolster cushions and covers are from Amazon (you can find similar covers here ) The rabbit cushion was a Christmas present.
The anglepoise lamp on the other side of my sofa was given to me by my brother Richard when I moved in. I’ve seen similar in several different stores including Argos and Ikea.
The wall clock is one of my favorite things! My friend gave me it a few years ago and I couldn’t decide where to place it. When I moved in here I knew that I would put it on the wall space behind my sofa!
This picture of my niece and nephew was printed by Saal Digital. If you want similar then there are several places you can upload your own images from to be turned into wall pictures!
I’ve had my disco ball for years and years and previously had nowhere to hang it. I’ve hung it in front of my room divider curtains.
One of my room divider curtains. I wrote a post about them here.