Friday, August 11, 2017

Interior Inspiration: Dressing Table Goals


This is where I spend a lot of my time in our house, but I've never featured it on the blog before, so I thought I'd share it with you today!

My dressing table is where I begin every day - often with a cup of tea while I'm waiting for the curling iron to warm up (I curl my pin-straight, medium-length hair on most days). Depending what time I wake, my routine is either rushed and slapdash, or ritualistic and considered. Often, I like to put on a YouTube tutorial (usually by Lisa Eldridge) or vlog (by Estee Lalonde) while I get ready ... there's something comforting about having someone chat to me as I do my own make-up!

It's also where I end my day: where I swipe on toner, pat on serums and oils, and critically examine my slowly-aging face before I climb into bed (from where John usually complains, "What's taking you so long?").

Years of renting in small apartments meant that I'd clutter up bathrooms and living room mirrors with rows of makeup and skincare products - it's a luxury to have a dedicated space for getting ready in the morning, and winding down at night.


Recently, I took clippings of fragrant wild flowers from our garden - calamintha nepeta 'Blue Cloud', lavender, and geranium - and put them in this beautiful vase from Dartington Crystal. The 'Blue Cloud' smells like mint, and I love the scent of fresh lavender, so having the smokey-hued vase on my dressing table is a beautiful way to start and end each day. Every piece from Dartington Crystal is handmade, and I just found out that you can watch the artisans in action at the Dartington Crystal factory in North Devon.

This floral arrangement also motivates me to keep my dressing table tidy. I'm pretty unorganized - in fact, my room is perpetually messy! It's awful, I know. I have a hard time putting things back immediately and as a result, my make-up is usually scattered all over the place. Having a tidy dressing table, with my brushes in their places and my lipsticks hidden away in well-labelled trays, helps focus my mind for the day ahead.


Now, I just need to work on that pile of clothes on the chair ...

Where do you get ready in the morning? Do you have a dressing table? Or a slightly more improvised set up? I'd love to know!

p.s. my favorite thing to do when I go over to a friend's house, is poke around their dressing table - and my friends do the same when they come over! I pick up perfume bottles and sniff them, and test lipsticks on the back of my hand (with their permission, of course!) - ha!

Vase provided courtesy of Dartington Crystal. All opinions are my own.
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Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Unpopular Opinion: I Like The Food in England Better


A few weeks ago, John and I went out for dinner at our local pub and had the most amazing dinner (not pictured). Simple, but fantastic. It was a warm, summer's evening (ha! ha! We won't be seeing much of those again here in London) and we sat outside on rickety wooden picnic tables, that followed the slope of the sidewalk. The pub's windows were flung open and, on the table opposite, two families sat with their young children. The sun was just setting, and the glow cast a warmth on my shoulders as John went inside to order our drinks.

I studied the menu for a while before my eyes landed on the clam linguine, tossed with white wine, garlic, cherry tomatoes, parsley, and a dash of red chilli. John settled for the pulled beef salad with barley, greens, and pomegranate seeds.

A pint of soda water and lime (for me) and bitter (for John) later, our food arrived and I eagerly dug in: easily one of the best meals I'd had in a while, hands down. The ingredients were fresh, simple, and tasty. The tiny clams were sweet, plentiful, and the shells soon piled high on my plate.

Mid-way through the meal, we traded plates (as we often do) and I tucked into John's light, refreshing summer salad: lovely, clean flavors that begged to be savoured and enjoyed.

Then, I thought back to my recent trip to America and wondered: where could I find this simple, yet delicious cooking in the States?


And then, I realized: I haven't. At least, not yet.

Don't get me wrong: I love my American sandwiches. Served with a cold, crunchy pickle on the side, with chips (that's crisps, for you Brits), a soup or salad, and stuffed with magical combinations (think: turkey breast, cream cheese, and cranberry sauce, or shrimp on a fluffy white baguette with shredded lettuce, mayo and a layer of melted cheese, or ham, turkey, and pastrami with provolone on a thick sliced bloomer) - American sandwiches are the best. Bar none.

And the milkshakes: thick, creamy, ice cold, in damn tasty flavor combinations (peanut butter Oreo, anyone?) ... perfection.

But that's where my love of American "food" kind of stops. I even have issues with eating out at restaurants - proper, "good" restaurants that charge, say, $80 for a steak (yes, really) topped with crabmeat.

It's always a little ... too much. Too much cheese. Too much seasoning. Too much butter. Too much everything. The flavors become confused; the essence of the dish is lost along the way.

And I'm not the only one who thinks so: I penned a tentative tweet about this months ago (lest my head be ripped off by all-or-nothing American food lovers) and a few fellow Americans agreed with enthusiastic virtual nods-of-the-head (one British person sent me a private message that read: "Are you f*cking kidding me?").


I think back to a recent experience I had at a popular waterfront restaurant on the Puget Sound, in Washington state. Having ordered the "Rockin' Rockfish Tacos" and a side of the restaurant's famous chowder, I couldn't wait to sink my teeth into a fresh fish taco with, what I imagined to be, a fresh squeeze of lime, plenty of cilantro, and some kind of cabbage concoction. What I received was a strange melted-cheese thing with a jarring sweet Thai marinade that tasted a bit like licking a Jolly Rancher alongside a portion of fish and chips. The chowder, in all is salty glory, made my head ache - I couldn't finish it, let alone taste the clams. And, you know, I wasn't even disappointed because I had a bad meal, I was disappointed because it was the lunch that I'd wanted to treat my family to, and it was, frankly, undeserving of this event.

And then there was this article that was recently published in Insider about the "8 Unhealthiest Restaurant Meals in America", which made me think ... why? Why the need for a Manchego, cheddar, pepperoni and sausage stuffed pizza topped with MORE pepperoni, sausage, bacon, marinara, mozzerella and Parmesan cheese? Calories, fat, and sodium content aside ... is that even enjoyable? (I don't know, I haven't tried it - maybe it's mind-blowing.)

After living in Europe for 10 years, my tastebuds have regressed, perhaps - regressed to a place where I find rustic charcuterie boards (with a smattering of cured meats and perhaps two or three cheeses, with a gherkin or handful of grapes thrown in for good measure) enticing; crusty baguettes smeared with a dollop of French mustard and a single but thick slice of salty ham enough; and linguine tossed with baby clams, white wine, garlic, parsley, cherry tomatoes, and a dash of chilli - divine.

I'm sure it's just me.
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Friday, August 4, 2017

Travel Link-Up: Travel Anxiety


There I am, on Instagram: tilting my head back, mid-laugh with a drink in my hand in Singapore, as the sun sets behind me at a rooftop bar. And, there's me: smiling astride a camel in a Moroccan sand dune, khakis rolled up to the ankle and the sun beating down on my shoulders. And, again: striking Triangle Pose at My Son Sanctuary in Vietnam, wearing shorts and a Breton tee as if I'd just been plucked from a picnic on Hampstead Heath, instead of exploring a UNESCO world heritage site.

I look at these photos and think, 'Who is this person?' Because it certainly doesn't seem like me - the person who carefully looked up the dress code not once, but twice for that Singaporean roof top bar; the person who overpacked for the camel-camping desert excursion (but failed to bring hand sanitizer, for which I suffered the utmost consequence after being struck by a stomach bug shortly after); the woman who spent the first 2 hours in Hanoi nearly crying from the chaos that came with mopeds clipping dangerously close to her heels with no paved sidewalk to escape to.

In short, I'm the world's most anxious traveler.

In fact, I'm not even sure I enjoy traveling.

There, I said it.

I mean, of course I love discovering new places, but getting to the airport? That, in itself, requires a CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy)-lesson-in-practice for me. Lots of deep breathing and such. I still print every single travel-related document and bring it along with me on the trip: proof of my travel insurance; our hotel confirmation; our flight confirmation; in fact, anything with "CONFIRMATION" in the subject line.

My husband, on the other hand, is the Cool Hand Luke of travel (particularly, aviation travel). Slinking into the airport an hour (at most) before his flight takes off, brandishing his passport at First Class check-in and waltzing through Fast Track security with the grace of a seasoned Strictly Come Dancing-professional, he is cool, calm and collected from the minute he leaves our house to the second he disembarks the plane at his destination. Completing 3-4 long-haul international flights per year for work (plus numerous other short-haul trips scattered inbetween) helps, not to mention that Gold Loung access, but frankly? He's always been this chilled out about travel before his job required him to whip around the world faster than you can say, "Doors to manual".

When we travel together, everything is golden. I fret, sure, but I unload my anxieties onto him and he sweeps them away like a genie granting wishes. "What are you worried about?" he'll ask, noticing my furrowed brow on the ride to the airport. "What if ... what if the taxi guy doesn't show up and we're stuck in Marrakech and we don't know any local cab numbers and I forgot the hotel number and what is the airport like and what if I need to go to the bathroom but there's no time or ..." and he'll listen patiently and have an answer for everything. And I'll sit back, satisfied, in my seat, the seatbelt tugging at my chest.


I think I inherited my parents' travel anxieties: road trips to Vancouver and the Oregon Coast wouldn't be complete with my mom and dad checking not once, not twice, but nearly three times they had turned off the stove, locked the door, and switched on the home alarm. Passports were checked, re-checked and counted for all to see in the car - and this was all before we'd even backed out of the driveway.

Further trips abroad - to the East Coast, the Rocky Mountains, and Japan, for example - were left to the professionals to organize; Chinese tour companies with guides who waved brightly colored flags and umbrellas, our smallish group attracting contempt and disdain from locals and tourists alike wherever we went.

When I'm travel-ling, I'm constantly on edge. Where is the bathroom? (Can you tell I have a pre-occupation with my pea-sized bladder?) Where will we eat? How will we get there? I have a headache. AM I DYING? It all gets a little bit out of control.

But lately, when I've panicked on a trip, I observe John, silently, and watch how he deals with a stressful situation. Severe and sudden snowfall, for example, meant that several accidents blocked the road to the airport in Reykjavik on our way out. We also hadn't put the coordinates for the car rental place into the GPS. Already, my imagination was going into overdrive: we would miss the plane. We'd never get to the airport. We wouldn't be able to find the car rental place. Our own car would skid off the road.


OBVIOUSLY, we made it to the car rental place in one piece, with plenty of time to spare. The car was checked in smoothly and a shuttle took us a few yards to the airport.

Later, when we were sitting on the plane, preparing for takeoff, I whispered to John, "How did you know where to drop the car off?"

He shrugged. "I didn't, really. I mean, I knew it was just a few feet from the airport, for goodness' sake, so how far could it be?" He opened War and Peace on his iPad and was, at once, deep in concentration. Shoes already off and tucked under his seat. That guy.

But I've learned something so valuable from him - John, my preferred travel companion. I've learned how to stop catastrophizing; how to stop predicting the worst. And when the worst strikes, how to problem-solve - not stress.

Do you suffer from travel anxiety too? Or are you great at dealing with anything unexpected that comes your way? I'd love to know (plus, any tips or tricks you might find useful!).

This post is part of this month's Travel Link-Up series on "travel fears and scares". Head over to Angie's, Polly's, Emma's, and Maggie's blogs for more posts on this theme!
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Thursday, August 3, 2017

Angloyankophile Shortlisted For The #BloggersBlogAwards!


I had scheduled a completely different post to be published today, but ...

Last night, I came home, made myself this breakfast casserole for dinner, put Jane The Virgin on Netflix, and happily served myself seconds and thirds of this delicious said-casserole before idly checking my phone.

Scrolling through my Twitter notifications, it slowly dawned on me that I'd been shortlisted for not one, not two, but THREE categories in the #BloggersBlogAwards!

I laughed.

I cried.

I ate more breakfast casserole. (And then I had some cake, because - well, cake.)

Founded by Hayley of Tea Party Beauty, the #BloggersBlogAwards seeks to celebrate (in Hayley's words) "the small to medium bloggers who are overlooked and overshadowed"; to "show some appreciation for the hard work [we] all put in, and to celebrate the community we have all made, together."

I have to admit: I've thought of throwing in the towel on this blog more than once this year. With a demanding full-time job and freelance writing commitments, plus the ever-insistent pressure on Instagram to "grow" an organic following while grappling with an impossible and frustrating algorithm, I felt - I feel - exhausted. Like I can't keep up.

So, I slowed down a little. Which, was better for me mentally, but tricky as I didn't feel great about it.

Still, I plodded along. But that's all it was (and is, at the moment): plodding.

And, just when I didn't think anyone was noticing, I got these nominations and - I felt so overwhelmed.

I've been shortlisted in three categories:

Best Use of Photography

Best Instagrammer 

Blogger of the Year

And to think that I've been nominated alongside so many "big" bloggers ... my mind's blown.

So, this shortlist has pretty much made my year already. I'm done.

But if you'd like (and only if you'd like to!), the next round of voting is open and you can vote here until 10th September 2017.

Thank you. Thank you for sticking with me, for reading, for voting.

Thank you for always being there.

For being here.

xo
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Friday, July 28, 2017

The Test Kitchen, Soho



When friends or family ask for restaurant recommendations, I wave them in the general direction of Soho and Covent Garden. Soho, in particular, seems to play host to some of London's trendiest restaurants and cafés: from liquid nitrogen ice cream bars to Nikkei cuisine (Japanese-Peruvian cuisine); from grilled Greek skewers and stuffed pittas to French fine dining - Soho has it all.

The Test Kitchen, a pop-up by twice Michelin-awarded Chef Adam Simmonds, opened a few weeks ago and has taken up residency at 54 Frith Street in Soho until March 2018. I went with my friend Alex to try it last week for lunch and, well, our minds were blown.


The premise is this: in preparation for Chef Simmonds' first permanent restaurant in London next year, the menu at The Test Kitchen (as the name suggests) changes weekly - dishes are swapped out for others, according to diners' feedback.

"What's some of the more unusual feedback you've ever received?" I asked. "You won't believe the number of requests we get for fried chicken," came the response, drily. I laughed. I also couldn't see how fried chicken could possibly compete with 80-day aged sirloin of beef, topped with bone marrow, white onion and jus, for example.

We ordered from the a la carte menu: 6 sharing plates grouped by "veg", "fish", and "meat".


The pearl barley, cauliflower Romanesque, truffle and heritage tomatoes, burrata, olive and courgette were the first to arrive. For some reason, we had expected the pearl barley to be served cold, but instead, we dipped our forks in some of the creamiest, most heavenly fragrant risotto I'd ever tried. "WOW," escaped our lips more than once after that first bite. "I could eat this all day!" Alex exclaimed. And I agreed.

The heritage tomatoes, sweet and plump, tasted like a summer's day when we scooped bitefuls onto our forks, along with the burrata and slivers of courgette.

Next, we ordered scallop ceviche with green asparagus, avocado and almonds and cured red mullet with green tomatoes, rocket, and fresh almonds for the "fish" course.



The cured red mullet had a similar texture to sashimi - subtle, yet sweet, it reminded me of walking past fishmongers on the Cornish coast, when the shock of the icy granita touched the tip of my tongue.

Alex described the scallop ceviche as "melt-in-the-mouth" - and it was! These are two gorgeous, fresh dishes for summer (I'd highly recommend sitting outside, if the weather's good, like we did, and washing it all down with a glass of white, if you drink!).

But, the piece de résistance was the 80-day aged sirloin of beef, topped with tiny cubes of bone marrow and soft white onion and drizzled with jus. Although the lamb we ordered was also delicious, we couldn't stop gushing about the beef.


It tasted as sublime as it looks. Unbelievably tender and rich, it was the kind of plate that made me want to throw down my napkin and tell the world about (I texted John right then and there - he answered grumpily, as he was at work and not enjoying a fancy four-course meal like me in the middle of the day).

Now, about the desserts ... I'll admit that my eye skipped straight to the dessert options as soon as we sat down because I caught sight of the matcha tea custard with poached English cherries and red wine syrup.



Chef Simmonds emerged from the restaurant and presented these beautiful plates to us himself, which was such an honor! I think I devoured my matcha custard in a record 3 minutes or so ... I tried to savour it, but to no avail. It was just too delicious: the sharpness of the poached cherries cutting through the slight, familiar bitterness of the matcha, and the sweetness of the red wine syrup balancing it all out on the palate.

I reached over and took spoonfuls of Alex's delicately arranged lemon posset as well. Thick, creamy, and sweet, it lingered on the tongue long after the mouthful disappeared.

The restaurant has 23 covers, but you can book in advance, online! (I'm only excited for this because there's nothing more I hate than showing up to a restaurant I really, really want to try, hangry, and having to wait in line.) There's a 4-course set menu for £29.50, if you'd like, and - if you book online - this is reduced to £27.50, including a complimentary glass of wine. Amazing value for the quality of food you're getting (I've already urged John to take clients there) and the experience of sitting at the open kitchen, watching Chef Simmonds and his team work their magic.


I have to say, I always feel like a bit of a jerk reviewing restaurants as a "blogger" - especially restaurants of The Test Kitchen's calibre. Who am I to give my opinion on what's being placed in front of me by someone with the expertise and talent of chefs like Adam Simmonds? I'm not a trained food critic or restaurant reviewer or food journalist or a "foodie", even. I eat something I like, go "MMMM!", take a picture of it, slap a filter on it, and post it here for you to read and say, "There."

So, I suppose what I loved most about The Test Kitchen was the earnest - truly earnest - emphasis on the customer's (that's regular ol' Joe like me) experience of the food, and placing this at the forefront of the restaurant. "I want you to be part of the development process - something that's usually hidden away behind closed doors - and make your mark on the menu," Chef Simmonds urges in a note attached to the menu, that begins, "Welcome!"

At The Test Kitchen, I ate, I thought a lot about what I was eating, and I gushed with Alex over what we liked (the creamy burrata), what we loved (the velvety pearl barley), and what we could have passed on (the intense black garlic and anchovy) and, you know, as I filled out my feedback form at the end of the meal, I thought, "Oh! It does matter what I think." And I left with a spring in my step because here (for the first time in a long while) was a restaurant that wasn't saying, "Aren't you lucky to eat here!" but instead, made me feel wanted. And that's always a good feeling.

Thank you to The Test Kitchen and to Chef Adam Simmonds for hosting us! Our lunch was complimentary but all opinions are my own.

The Test Kitchen, 54 Frith Street, London, W1D 4SL, +(44) 020 7734 8487

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Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Siblings



I have a brother named Justin - a little brother, named Justin. We're four and a half years apart, and today's his birthday.

But most people don't know that because I don't talk about him a lot - both in person, or on this blog. Friends will ask, "How's Justin?" And I'll go, "He's good!" Vaguely.

That's not to say that we're not close - quite the opposite. We're four and a half years apart, but from the moment he was born, I loved him. I was also jealous of the attention he received as the youngest (check!) boy (check!) of a Chinese family (check!); attention that was lavished on him when we went to visit our relatives in Hong Kong - the fawning, the cooing, the adoration , which would make me shrink into myself a little bit.

But, I adored him. I always have. 



We're very different. Justin is laid back, introspective, logical, but wildly creative (he still draws Mother's Day cards for my mom). I'm fiery, high-strung, over-achieving, and a constant worrier.

Even so, my parents had unwittingly created the perfect set of cohorts: a sibling duo snickering at inside jokes; sharing music stands in summer orchestra and snacks in the back seat of the car on long road trips; bringing the other up when one was down. 

Well, I went home a few weeks ago and found my brother had turned into a little adult. Actually, a full-grown adult. And it threw me a bit. A lot. It made me misty-eyed and proud and sad and nostalgic all at the same time. I thought of this tiny 6 year-old who would quietly push open my bedroom door in the morning and climb into my bed for cuddles; who would hear me practicing Vivaldi's 'Spring' on the violin in my room and listen for me to stop, only to play it in the minor key on his violin in his room; who grew out his bangs so that they covered his eyes in junior high and who once played guitar in a band.

So, anyway, there we were: sitting on the sofa watching the new season of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt on Netflix. I looked over at his ridiculously wide, flipper feet and a kind of sob caught in my chest because I just realized just how much I loved him.

And, along with that, the guilt. The guilt of leaving him behind when I went off to the East Coast for college, right when he was navigating the final years of high school - years that had been brutal even for me, with my Type A personality. Then I went further: to England. While he worked through finding his place in college, I was too busy being distracted by my new life and career in London to be there for him when he needed me.


As a result, I never felt like I've been there for my little brother. Not truly.

But he's always been there for me, counselling me through some of the hardest moments of my life, always knowing what to say, offering a shining beacon of perspective when the walls of my world feel like they're closing in on me. Saying, "Don't worry, Jaime - everything's going to be okay" or, more importantly, "I love you, sister!"

And now, with our parents getting older, he's stepped up in ways I couldn't have imagined him doing before as a scrappy little 6 year-old. Now, I find myself calling him for advice on matters concerning their health and well-being: me, 5,000 miles away and hysterical on WhatsApp audio and him, calm, reasoned, yet decisive on the other end of the line.

It's an incredible feeling, being on the same team.

One of the hardest things about living abroad is the inability to be physically present when you feel that you are needed. I owe it to my brother for looking out for (and after) our parents, and for never, ever making me feel guilty for not "being there".

So, Justin, if you're reading this, I love you, and I'm so proud of you. Forever and always.

Happy birthday. 
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Tuesday, July 25, 2017

The Big Reveal: Our Master Bathroom Before and After


Our decision to remodel the two bathrooms in our house had been a long-time coming: the upstairs shower was virtually unusable due to leaks and poor shower pressure (read: we never used it); the pedestal sink had no room to store items, and I'd inevitably knock my contact lens case and/or face wash into the sink every morning and swear under my breath as I did it; and the whole build (from the tiles to the choice of toilet unit) had just been done very, very cheaply and - needless to say - not to our taste.

Before:


But we had prioritised redesigning the garden last year (and I'm so glad we ignored the naysayers and went for it - we've enjoyed every minute of eating and lounging outside since we've had it), so the bathrooms fell to the wayside until about February of this year, when I first started reaching out to plumbers, tilers, and builders about taking on our projects.

Just for fun, we decided to embark on a "design challenge", with John taking responsibility for designing the loft master shower room, and me putting my skills to the test with the first floor guest bathroom.

I was pretty confident in my "vision" ... until everything went wrong with my design (which I'll cover in a separate post about the guest bathroom makeover).

Now that the two projects are finished, I'm okay to admit that John might have a second calling as an interior designer (who knew?!).

After:


The result is a bright and airy space that evokes feelings of calmness and tranquility - vital for our busy lives (especially as John's up at 5:30 a.m. every morning for work).

For this room, John started with the floor tiles, and designed the room from there. These terrazzo tiles are from Terrazzo Tiles in Belsize Park. These thick cement tiles feature precast recycled marble chipping blasted into a white base and have a lead time of 4-6 weeks for delivery, if you're thinking of ordering. We looked at several terrazzo samples in store, but this one - with its magnificent cool blues and greys - looked most interesting and pretty.

Underneath this, WarmUp underfloor heating was installed, with a thermostat just outside the door to control the warmth - I am so looking forward to having this in the winter!

For the walls, John opted for a bevelled, XL white metro tile from Tons of Tiles with gunmetal (a very pale grey) grout. Our builders were able to color match the paint in our bedroom to the walls, which creates a sense of unity throughout this top floor.

John wanted a shower tray that would be flush to the floor, and we looked at a few options before settling for the Bette tray, with a shower screen from Crosswater. Although it looks flat to the eye, the tray is slightly angled towards the waste, leaving it bone dry after even the longest showers. (Also: I never thought I'd be one of those people who neurotically squeegeed her shower screen post-shower, but now I do it every time. It's so satisfying!)


The shower itself is a digital shower from Crosswater. It blinks as it's reaching your desired temperature, and when the color reaches a solid white, then you'll know it's ready for you to get in. Having the controls on the wall opposite to the shower head has been a game-changer. No need to get unnecessarily cold and wet now before stepping in!


Because we never used the towel rail in the room, we replaced it with this modern radiator from Victoria Plum.

John was also adamant that he have an antique chest of drawers for his vanity unit, so we emailed our favorite local antique dealer, Maison & Mirrors, and asked if they had anything suitable. Sure enough, they had this set of drawers in storage, the "sister" unit which another customer had purchased and turned into a vanity unit, and we bought it for a bargain price. I spent a day or so applying an oil wax to all the surfaces, to make it as waterproof as possible, and our builder cut holes in the top and first drawer to accommodate the waste pipes.


The sink proved to be a little more difficult to source, as we needed a counter-top basin, but in the right dimensions for the unit. We finally decided on the Bauhaus Bolonia counter-top basin and a Crosswater tap.

John decided to keep things modern with the Mode Fairbanks close-coupled toilet from Victoria Plum. Unfortunately, we didn't have the wall space behind to mount a wall-hung toilet (I mean, prior to taking on this project, I just thought these types of toilets magically hovered above the floor, but no ...), so this was the second best option.

John also ordered a made-to-measure, wall-to-wall mirror, which works well in reflecting the light from the window. It's relatively easy to mount with adhesive (I mean, not that I did it myself or even saw how our builders did it, but they didn't complain, so I'm assuming it was fine), but getting the exact measurements right can be tricky. I'd definitely advise you check with your builder before purchasing something like this, as the wall can be sloped or uneven, which would affect your measurements.


For the final, finishing touches, John turned to C.P. Hart for his towel hooks; I ordered a print from Juniqe, and a set of white lacquer trays and a tissue box from The White Company. John also installed a Google Home in this bathroom so we can play music/ask about the weather/turn on the radio while we're showering!

The transformation has been unbelievable. We now have a bathroom we enjoy using and taking a shower when the light's just coming in through the windows feels like a spa-like experience. We are so lucky!

What do you think of our new bathroom? Are you currently remodelling or thinking of remodelling your bathroom? I'd love to hear your success/horror stories! If you're renting, what would your dream bathroom look like? Let me know in the comments below!
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