Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Interior Inspiration: 3 Ways To Use Glass Accents In Your Home

I was so inspired by our stay in this beautiful timber house in Iceland, I came home and wanted to change everything in our house to look just like it. (Seriously, I now go from store to store, lifting up random objects and asking John, "Timber house? Or not?")

But then I remembered that we didn't live in a cozy timber house overlooking a bay with a cluster of Icelandic ponies at the top of a driveway perched at the foot of an impressive, snow-capped mountain. No, we're in a terraced, 1930s house in a London suburb with an aquatic-scene toilet seat left by the previous owners (more on that later) and our garden overlooks ... our neighbors' gardens.

Still, I scrutinized my photos of the timber house to try to identify what elements made it look so incredibly pulled together. There was the blue-grey palette that made the rooms deliciously dark and moody; the sheepskin rugs and pile of neatly stacked logs in the bedroom that screamed hygge; and the chandeliers that set it all off and stopped the whole look from being too matchy-matchy.

But ultimately, it was the use of natural materials and fibres that really gave the house its sophisticated, yet cozy vibe: linen bedsheets, a rustic wooden dinner table, and marble countertops were all sympathetic to Iceland's stunning, natural landscape.

Glass was one item that featured heavily in the timber house. From the antique glass cabinet in the bathroom (and the emtpy vintage glass perfume bottles that sat within it) to the glass lamp shade we slept under at night, this material allowed natural light to permeate the house, creating a sense of lightness, fluidity, and clarity.

Here are three ways you can use glass accents in your space that will make it look pretty, bright, and - dare I say - vaguely Icelandic:

1. As a lampshade.

The first item of glass we bought this year was this lampshade from Heal's for our living room. The previous owners had installed a trio of spotlight-style lights on a track, which we immediately removed when we got keys to the house - we hated it that much!

For a year, we lived with a gaping hole over our heads before heading to the furniture stores on Tottenham Court Road to find the perfect replacement. After hours in Habitat, John Lewis, and Heal's (and after bringing home another lampshade that just didn't work), we returned to Heal's with a clear vision of what we wanted: a bell-like glass shade that would allow the eye to travel from one room to another, without the eyeline being disrupted.

Our amazing electrician fitted it for us (something to do with the brass fitting it came with and the size of the hole in the ceiling created by the previous light installation made it a little tricky) and I was so, so happy with the result.

2. As an XXL vase.

Recycled glass is a very affordable way to add glass to your homeware collection. I typically look for recycled glass jugs (for serving water at the dinner table) and vases which allow bouquets to truly stand out in a room.

This extra-large, 'Elegant Recycled Glass Vase' is from Cox & Cox, a homeware and furniture that I love. Admittedly, I wasn't really paying attention when I ordered it because I thought it'd be about half this size, but as soon as I said to myself, "What am I going to do with this?", I spied our giant monstera plant (that's going all sorts of crazy despite me forgetting to water it for about a month at a time) and clipped one of the stems to display in the vase.

And, you know, it just kind of worked.

By "worked", I mean John came home and said, "Oh! That's nice," which is basically the equivalent of being presented with an interior design award.

Cox & Cox has no shortage of beautiful glass (and non-glass) vases, including this one and this one, but I also get distracted whenever I'm on their site with the gorgeous array of mirrors and textiles.

I've been dying to fill a glass vase or two with eucalyptus stems, which I've been seeing in numerous Instagram posts. I lugged a bunch home with me yesterday after hesitating over the price (£6.95, if you must know) and felt like a huge yuppie with a load of overpriced leaves in my arms.

But it was worth it, as they look beautiful in the Cox & Cox vase, and I'm hoping they'll last a long time too!

3. As a centerpiece.

Yeah, so I'm getting my money's worth from these eucalyptus stems - I stuck the ones that were too short for my Cox & Cox vase into these smaller vases (the tall one is actually a carafe for water, but no matter) and placed them in the center of our (glass!) dinner table. It's a nice change from having colorful flowers on the table and I'm kind of embracing this minimal look for spring!

Do glass accents feature in your home? What would you do with an XXL vase like the one we just got from Cox & Cox? A friend of mine sells long branches of cotton, which I think would look great in it too.

Elegant Recycled Glass Vase provided courtesy of Cox & Cox. All opinions my own. Shop Cox & Cox vases here.

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