This morning HRH The Princess Royal, Chairman of the UK Fashion & Textiles Association, visited Britain’s leading silk specialist James Hare Ltd to celebrate the firm’s 150th Anniversary (1865 – 2015).

HRH toured James Hare’s Leeds HQ, met employees and unveiled a plaque commemorating the anniversary. She received a gift of James Hare dress fabric, a wool/silk mix in a dark turquoise green - members of the Royal Family are regularly photographed wearing James Hare fabrics.

HRH was accompanied by Tim Hare, current Managing Director of James Hare and Great- Grandson of the founder.  Tim Hare is Vice Lord-Lieutenant of West Yorkshire. Also present were Directors Saffron Hare and Charlie Hare, the fifth generation of their family to work within the company.

Founded in 1865 in Clare Street, Leeds by woollen merchant James Hare, the company is still family run.  It has grown into one of Britain’s leading fabric houses, specialising in silk textiles for fashion & interiors.  The company sells to over 40 countries worldwide and even exports its silk to China, where it has showrooms in Shanghai, Beijing and other major cities. 

Shown below (from left to right): Charlie Hare, Saffron Hare, HRH The Princess Royal.
Martin Moore’s handmade kitchens include luxurious materials for worktops, floors and walls.
From marble and timber to mirror and tiles, their bespoke splashbacks are not just about kitchen practicalities… They are focus points in themselves, designed to create impressive backdrops for beautiful cabinetry and appliances.
Images show (above) book matched lavender marble. Below from left: sculptured walnut, antiqued mirror glass, metro tiles. All by Martin Moore. Kitchens from Martin Moore start from £35,000.
Every La Cornue stove is handmade to order in Paris as a complete one off; sized, equipped and finished to commission. It can be ordered as a standalone or incorporated into a complete kitchen scheme with matching cabinets, worktops, plinths and integrated elements including sinks, refrigeration and wine storage. This allows you to take the look through the whole kitchen; an elegant concept which La Cornue calls "culinary architecture”.

Shown here is a La Cornue Château 120 range cooker in brushed stainless steel with polished chrome trim. It forms the centrepiece of a run of La Cornue Château cabinets in white enamel with dark walnut spice drawers. The chrome trim is matched throughout, as is the brushed stainless steel plinth and worktop with integral sink. Above the stove, the powerful made-to-measure La Cornue extraction system is also finished in white enamel and brushed steel.
Luxury bathroom maker Drummonds has launched a new online gallery. Designed to inspire and inform the process of creating the perfect bathroom, it brings together over 250 images of real houses featuring Drummonds’ products.
Behind the case study images lies a wealth of user-friendly functions, with filters enabling searches by style of house, type of bathroom, product and even colour. Every shot has a ‘Products Shown’ click-through as well as the chance to save inspirations to a personal Wish List and share them via social media.
Intuitively easy to navigate, the online gallery adds a whole new dimension to enjoying Drummonds’ classic bathroom style.
This rustic kitchen was created by Bath Bespoke, a joinery and cabinet making company based in the South West of England. The client’s quirky brief for the project was "I want it to look like we found it in a skip in Paris”. The project features several colours from Edward Bulmer Pots of Paint. 
The finished design has an authentically vintage aesthetic, featuring mixed materials – French pippy oak, iron, box steel and birch ply, together with reclaimed pieces including brass taps and a Belfast sink. The central island is set on vintage castor wheels, creating a flexible cooking space.
Edward Bulmer Pots of Paint’s Ethereal Blue is shown on the walls, with Mouse Grey skirting and windows, Flaxen Grey cornices and Plain White on the ceiling. Ethereal Blue, like all of Edward’s paints, has a distinctive chalky finish which here provides a wonderful backdrop to the natural wood tones. Edward notes that the colour "hovers between blue, green and grey. It is a grown up shade that provides a great background.”
Lapicida’s Marble Refectory Table unites a weathered English Oak base with a sleek Italian Carrara marble top. Handmade in Yorkshire, the table is authentically rustic with a modern edge, shown against a chic black Belgian Mix limestone floor.
James Hare is celebrating its remarkable history and 150th anniversary with a distinctive new Evolution collection, fusing heritage inspirations with contemporary style.  One of the most outstanding designs is Diamond Bouquet inspired by the diamond brooch given by the founder James Hare to his wife Mary Ellen when the business grew prosperous following the death of Queen Victoria. The monarch’s death plunged the entire country into mourning clothes; the black fabric had been stock piled by the canny James when he learnt that Victoria was ill. Selling over 250,000 yards of mourning cloth in just a few weeks, the company grew swiftly from a regional business into a national name.  That brooch is now a family heirloom.
Fittingly, Diamond Bouquet is a sumptuous fabric, so densely embroidered that it takes a whole day to produce just 3 metres. Sprays of flowers are picked out in lavish metallic embroidery on a satin ground, with brilliant pinpoints of silver thread mimicking the sparkle of the original diamonds in Mary Ellen’s brooch.
To find out more about the history of the 'House of Hare' visit the James Hare website
Last month Urban Retreat at Harrods opened their new Moroccan Hammam for women. The hammam, a steam room, has been an important part of Moroccan culture for centuries. Morrocans traditionally visit their local hammam at least once a week to cleanse, socialise and unwind. Urban Retreat brings these purifying rituals to Harrods for a luxurious spa experience. 
Urban Retreat’s Moroccan Hammam includes a heat room and 7 private marble treatment areas, where guests can enjoy cleansing, exfoliating and massaging treatments. Benefits to skin, body and mind are numerous.  Seven of Drummonds’ own Dalby thermostatic shower controls feature in the hammam, each twinned with one of their Classic wall-mounted bath fillers. Both elements are finished in a bespoke ‘bronzed’ finish to look authentically vintage.
James Lentaigne, Sales & Marketing Director of Drummonds says: "Urban Retreat approached us because they were designing a hammam within their luxury Harrods spa. They were looking for brassware to fit the specific needs of the traditional hammam and make a great visual statement. Answering this brief, we specially adapted our Dalby thermostatic shower control and twinned it with a Classic bath filler, creating a custom set-up which allows the hammam attendants to quickly fill their buckets and bowls with water at the perfect temperature for the client.  Every piece was made to order in our own factory and custom-bronzed to achieve the vintage finish which Urban Retreat had specified.”

Click here for a short film showing how Drummonds manufacture their brassware.
A well designed bathroom can be a sanctuary. Designed for a busy couple who struggle to find quality time together, this master bathroom takes that idea to the max - featuring two of Drummonds’ magnificent freestanding Humber baths.

Set side by side, the two splendid cast iron baths give them the ultimate bathing experience; a chance to catch up and relax, stretched out and luxuriating, each in their own capacious Humber bath.
When it comes to interiors, grey is here to stay. Far from drab, this wonderfully versatile colour is the perfect neutral: calm, sophisticated and a beautiful backdrop to brighter pops of colour.
Colour expert Edward Bulmer notes that "Grey is a lovely colour with so many nuances, from soft pinky ‘dove greys’ to deep charcoal tones.  Some are very warm colours, others have cooler, more steely qualities.” In decorating terms Edward recommends: "Don’t feel that you have to paint all the walls in your sitting room in the same colour.  It could work really well to just paint one wall in your chosen grey and use it as a backdrop to a focus piece of furniture such as a sofa or sideboard.”
We’ve selected our favourite looks from across our clients for some grey inspiration:
The newest colours from Edward Bulmer Pots of Paint include Clay, Edward’s take on a classic, earthy shade.
The name Clay evokes the natural world and Edward’s shade is a beautifully tonal neutral. Edward notes that "Many traditional colour names refer to natural materials and of course these materials varied from place to place. Ours is a grey/yellow clay which is a very adaptable shade. It’s a good colour for halls, but is also sophisticated enough for a contemporary living room”.
Felt’s latest shipment includes several vintage rugs. These have all seen active service on the walls and floors of nomadic yurts, though they remain in excellent condition. These rugs represent the opportunity to own a unique piece of history, bringing real character to a home.

This Sunday is Burns Night, a celebration of the life and works of the poet Robert Burns, held on his birthday. Traditionally an excuse to eat haggis, read poems about haggis, drink Scotch whisky and perhaps enjoy a ceilidh, Burns night is a tribute to Scottish culture.

Burns saw himself as ‘Scotia’s bard’ and undertook several tours of Scotland, taking in the landscape and the people. Many of Drummonds’ products are also inspired by the rivers and lakes of Scotland. The classic Kinloch vanity basin is named after the river Kinloch whilst the petite Morar bath is named for the river Morar, the shortest river in the UK at just 100 metres long. Other namesakes include the Tay bath, named after the river Tay – the longest river in Scotland, renowned for its Atlantic salmon fishing.

Traditionally associated with Scottish clans or specific regions, Tartan is the unofficial national fabric. Closely entwined with Scottish history, tartan was even banned in 1756 for its association in the Highlands with the Jacobite cause, although this was eventually repealed. James Hare boasts a large collection of authentic Scottish tartans, all 100% silk, adding character and depth to your home.


Images show: 

Drummonds Kinloch basin shown in a Scottish shooting lodge.

Drummonds Tay bath hand painted in ‘Beach Hut’.

A selection of James Hare Tartan silks.

New at Alternative Bathrooms, the Nebbia Bath is a modern re-work of the traditional ‘slipper’ bath. Its deep, curvaceous form supports and cocoons, bringing a new relaxation to bathing.

Made from a hand-polished luxury stone composite, Nebbia has a beautiful matt and velvety finish which is easy to maintain.

The centrepiece of the uber-glamorous kitchen shown here is a La Cornue Grand Palais 180 stove. Finished in Aquamarine enamel with a brushed nickel and stainless steel trim, it forms part of a total La Cornue kitchen, sitting within the vast Château central island with custom extraction above. Matching Château cabinetry on the back wall (see below) includes a warming cupboard. Additional elements integrated within the side walls include La Cornue’s powerful Flamberge rotisserie (with matched enamel trim) and the high-tech refrigerator and wine cellar units. 

With finishes and trims matching right across the entire kitchen, a concept La Cornue calls ‘Culinary Architecture’, nothing could better combine absolute function with sheer luxury.

Everything you could want in a contemporary design statement, Lapicida’s Modern Basin is simple, refined and highly architectural.

Hand carved in limestone, it comes in two natural colours; grey and white. A matt, honed finish enhances the absolute purity of its lines.

Standing 200mm high x 545mm diameter, from a wide selection of classical and contemporary basins available at Lapicida. Bespoke basins can also be made to special commission in stone and semi-precious materials.
Martin Moore Stone sources quality natural stone from all over the world, to suit anywhere from country cottages to contemporary townhouses. They offer a huge range of stone, suitable for any room in the house, as well as a stone design service for bespoke projects.

Every Martin Moore showroom has its own stone studio, showing stone floors ranging from reclaimed antique materials and handmade terracottas to the purest white limestones for architectural interiors. They also supply exterior stone paving and fireplaces in both natural stone and marble.

Shown below from left: Aged Jervaulx, Aged Bernac, Aged Muscat.

Pantone has announced its Colour of the Year 2015: Marsala – a rich, earthy red-brown, named after the fortified Sicilian wine.  

Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director at the Pantone Color Institute, comments: "Marsala is a subtly seductive shade, one that draws us into its embracing warmth… This hearty, yet stylish tone is universally appealing and translates easily to fashion, beauty, industrial design, home furnishings and interiors.”  

Wine colours have been trending in fashion for a while and now is definitely the time to bring this shade into your home. Consider a feature piece such as a hand painted freestanding bath from Drummonds or a custom coloured La Cornue cooker. A cosy Shyrdak rug from Felt can introduce the colour into your living room or bedroom whilst a small space such as a cloakroom painted in Edward Bulmer Pots of Paint’s Red Ochre makes for a dramatic statement. James Hare’s Orissa Silk in ‘Mars’, handwoven 100% silk dupion, is perfect for curtains, blinds, wallcoverings, lampshades and other decorative elements.

Inspired by period pieces and made using traditional manufacturing techniques, Drummonds epitomises classic English bathroom style, creating luxurious pieces that are made to last. It takes Drummonds several weeks to make a single bath and brassware is precision-cast using the lost wax process.

Two’s company in this en-suite master bathroom in a Georgian farmhouse in the Cotswolds. Featuring a pair of Drummonds’ Dalby showers in a nickel finish, this spacious walk-in shower is a sociable way to avoid a race for the bathroom. Tiled in limestone, the enclosure has a half wall for added privacy.

Drummonds’ cast iron Spey bath in a hand painted finish completes the look, positioned by the window to make the most of the garden views.
Images show:
Dalby shower with 300mm rose in a nickel finish.
Hand painted Spey bath.
Classic bath mixer with Mull heads in nickel + H stand.
Taking a cue from the catwalk, pinks are hot in 2015. Shown here is Edward Bulmer Pots of Paint’s new ‘Rose Pink’, a vibrant pink that shows natural pigments can create wonderfully vivid hues.
Edward Bulmer notes, "Pink is back - but not pastel; we are talking sunset in Jaipur, luxuriant colours that give zing to a room and looks great with art and furnishings. Earthy tones work best, from the almost imperceptible pink of our Lilac Pink to the heady, joyous shade of our new Rose Pink.”
Shown here is La Cornue’s Château 120 in matt black enamel with brushed stainless steel trim in a contemporary kitchen. Handmade to order in the Saint-Ouen l’Aumône workshops just outside Paris, every Château is a complete one off, equipped and finished to commission. 
Kenwood House has won best ‘Restoration of a Georgian Interior’ in the Georgian Group Architectural Awards 2014. The awards, now in their twelfth year, recognise British restoration and conservation projects and celebrate the dedication and vision of those committed to restoring Georgian buildings and landscapes.
Kenwood House, one of Robert Adam’s most famous works, was closed for 18 months of work to repair the fabric of the building and refresh the interiors. Working with English Heritage’s Curators, the architectural historian, interior designer and natural paint expert Edward Bulmer was asked to advise on updating the presentation of the Iveagh Bequest, an important collection of pictures gifted by the 1st Earl of Iveagh, Edward Cecil Guinness. Edward’s experience in the furnishing of such houses was invaluable in working with the Curators to create a scheme which both evokes a Georgian home and shows pieces of Iveagh’s own furniture for the first time. 
Many colours from Edward Bulmer Pots of Paint’s range were used in the Kenwood project, including Cerullian Blue, Granite Green and Brick.  
Martin Moore have opened a new London flagship showroom in Notting Hill, London’s latest design district. Perfectly in tune with this, their handmade English cabinetry is sleek and sophisticated: A palette of warm contemporary neutrals plays beautifully against contrasts in white ceramic, stainless steel, nickel, mirror glass, copper and brass. Textures too range from the highly polished to honed, tumbled and antiqued.

This is a journey in real furniture; custom designed, custom made, custom finished. Four collections of Martin Moore’s bespoke cabinetry are on display, showing a range of designs which blend and flow into one another. This reflects how most customers’ kitchens grow from a variety of furniture inspirations and incorporate a range of different materials and finishes. This is easy to accomplish because every Martin Moore kitchen is an individual design response, built entirely to order.

Left: Martin Moore’s New Classic kitchen is hand painted in warm shades of blue and lavender toning with the natural marble and granite tops and antiqued stone floor by Martin Moore Stone. The large island, complete with its knee-hole desk, is both a social space and a high-function working zone, forming the central feature of a kitchen which is minutely planned in every detail. Design accents include the spectacular book-matched marble wall panel, handmade glass lights and rose gold taps picking up on the new trend for warm metals.

Below: Martin Moore’s English kitchen combines fitted and freestanding pieces to create a calm and ordered space. Evident in every detail of the furniture, its very English aesthetic is brilliantly applied to modern living. Elements include the imposing freestanding dresser combining storage and display with bi-fold doors concealing a sink, microwave and coffee machine.

Throughout Martin Moore’s work, the sheer quality of the cabinetry underlines the vibrancy of English craftsmanship today. Their kitchens incorporate virtuoso furniture-making techniques, with innovative cooking technologies seamlessly integrated into the traditional timber construction. There is much to admire in the gleaming, high performance appliances from names such as Wolf, Gaggenau and Sub Zero… and even more to admire in the way that every kitchen offers so many brilliant ideas. Martin Moore’s signature style combines fitted and freestanding furniture, allowing the architecture of the room to take centre stage.

Even the largest kitchen needs the best possible use of space and expert zoning: Behind every door and drawer, the smallest detail of form and function is fully considered; whether it be a capacious pantry cupboard or a purpose-designed drinks zone with fridge, warming drawers and coffee maker, utterly dedicated to the perfect cup of coffee.

Right: Martin Moore’s New Architectural kitchen combines natural oiled oakwithcontemporary painted elements in white. The oak is given new urban edge by the addition of gleaming chrome slips. The display features one of Martin Moore’s signature Cook’s Tables acting as a magnificent freestanding centrepiece. Seen left, a compact cookzone is cleverly planned to offer utmost practicality, with a state of the art zoneless induction hob, teppanyaki and gas burners. The boiling water tap with its own shallow sink offers the busy cook another must-have facility.


Left: Martin Moore’s Modernist kitchen is inspired by the work of Frank Lloyd Wright. Intensely glamorous, it combines the rich warmth of solid walnut with hand painted cabinetry. Testament to the company’s exceptional cabinetry skills, the design has a strong focus on curves; defining the central island, the ends of the fitted runs and the corners of the cabinets themselves. A large freestanding bow fronted cabinet creates the perfect larder. The clever use of concealed lighting behind the cabinets underlines this kitchen’s luxurious contemporary feel.

Celebrating their 40th anniversary in 2015, Martin Moore were one of the very first handmade kitchen companies. In the early days, they built their kitchens from reclaimed timbers, but soon began to develop their own hallmark style of classic, timeless, English furniture, designed and made to order with a quality which transcends fashion. Still family run, Martin Moore now have seven showrooms and work across the UK, designing and building bespoke wooden kitchens, utility rooms, bedrooms, dressing rooms and freestanding furniture.

Everything is solidly, traditionally, custom-built in Martin Moore’s Yorkshire workshops and they undertake the entire installation, including fitting, painting and worktops. They have their own stone company, Martin Moore Stone, and mix their own paints. This end-to-end approach allows Martin Moore to install rapidly and efficiently… and to give a true lifetime guarantee: Uniquely, this transfers to the new owners of a kitchen when a property is sold. 
Britain’s leading silk specialist, James Hare celebrates its 150th Anniversary in 2015. The company is marking its remarkable history with two distinctive new collections. Launching at Maison & Objet, these fuse heritage inspirations with contemporary style.
With the perfect combination of classic and fashion-forward looks, James Hare always offers the widest choice of plain, patterned, textured and embroidered fabrics for curtains, headboards, cushions, lampshades and wallcoverings and more. Competitive prices make James Hare’s luxury fabrics accessible and affordable
Drawing inspiration from a range of eras in James Hare’s history, this decorative collection celebrates the company’s evolution from Yorkshire wool merchant to internationally renowned silk specialist.
Victorian: Diamond Bouquet
Lavishly embroidered (it takes a whole day to produce just 3 metres of this fabric) this supremely luxurious fabric is based on a diamond brooch given by the firm’s founder James Hare to his wife Mary Ellen when the business grew prosperous in the 1890’s. Sprays of flowers are picked out in dense metallic embroidery on a satin ground, with brilliant pinpoints of silver thread mimicking the sparkle of the original diamonds. Available in three colourways: 140cm wide, 65% cotton, 35% silk. 
Art Deco: Crystal
Art Deco heritage translated into classic contemporary style. Inspired by cracked ice, the geometric pattern is woven in metallic thread on a sateen ground, with an intriguingly shadowed 3-D effect. Crystal comes in four contrast colourways. 143cm wide, 40% polyester, 35% viscose, 25% silk. 
Mid Century Modern: Brilliance 
Brilliance takes the collection’s diamond theme into a large scale contemporary design with a nod to mid-century modern in its strong colours and high linen content which adds weight and texture to a lustrous satin weave. Brilliance comes in five colourways. 142cm wide, 42% polyester, 25% linen, 18% silk, 15% viscose. 
Op Art: Infinity Braid
A new and refined take on the 1960’s op art movement. The bold, curvaceous design is defined in a textured silk braid on a luxurious silk wool ground. Four colourways in a palette of modern neutrals. 137cm wide, 56% silk, 44% wool. A matching Infinity Braid Sheer is also available: 137 cm wide, 100% silk. Price for Infinity Braid: £98 per metre RRP. Infinity Sheer: 
1970's: Evolution Stripe 
Bold stripes, a classic fashion story from the 1970’s, are given new decorative potential for interiors. Modern colours, varying stripe widths and exciting weave contrasts add up to a must-have in contemporary living. The range co-ordinates, with the three colourways working alone and together. 141cm wide, 52% viscose, 48% bemberg. 
Richmond Velvet 
From the Victorian era which saw James Hare’s beginning right through into the modern day, velvet has always defined comfort and luxury. Celebrating this sumptuous fabric, the new Richmond Velvet collection offers silk velvet plains in a timeless palette ranging from classic to contemporary; from soft, subtle hues of grey and pearl to vibrant shades of hot pink, turquoise and orange. Super soft, yet with a rub test of 34,000, it is hardwearing enough to be used for severe domestic/general contract upholstery. A perfect partner to other silk fabrics, Richmond is also ideal for curtains, bedheads, cushions and other accents. 16 colours. 140cm wide, 40% viscose, 25% polyester, 18% cotton, 10% linen, 7% silk.
One of the joys of natural stone is its infinite variety of tone and texture, so that black becomes a subtle, living shade rather than a flat colour.

This organic quality makes black stone easy to live with; a chic look which can play up into super-contemporary or down into relaxed country living. Lapicida see black as one of the biggest emerging trends for walls and floors and offer an inspirational choice of new and reclaimed black stones - from limestone to slate and granite - in countless different shapes, sizes and finishes.


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