Connect with us

Current

Keep summer alive! Draw inspiration from the desert’s warming tones 

Summer may be over but that is no reason to turn your back on its calming colour palette. 

Autumn officially begins today and there is a noticeable shift to more full-bodied desert and sandy shades which draw inspiration from a scorching sun and velvety sand.

‘We’re noticing that our customers are becoming much bolder with colour and although paler neutrals are still very popular, you can really lift a room by introducing warming sand, rust and clay tones,’ says Charlie Marshall, founder of Loaf.

Bold neutrals: Yellow bed linen and natural textiles create a relaxing room and inject a subtle richness into the home

Bold neutrals: Yellow bed linen and natural textiles create a relaxing room and inject a subtle richness into the home

Adam Daghorn, head of design at Made.com is also an advocate of these more robust neutrals. 

‘Calming sandy shades, earthy olives and spiced terracotta hues are being dubbed as the ‘new neutrals’ as they inject a subtle richness into the home, helping to create a seamless transition of any space from summer to autumn.

‘These toned-down shades complement a variety of aesthetics, from retro 1970s pads, to minimalist Scandi homes or relaxed bohemian abodes.’

The power of these bolder neutrals is in their versatility and, luckily, they can be introduced in many forms, materials and textures.

Go big on sofas

These desert shades work brilliantly on big pieces such as sofas and armchairs and create a comforting, easy-to-live-with look, while still giving impact.

Loaf’s Easy-Peasy sofa in Broken Pot, Tea Bag or Elbow Patch would be a great focal point in a room (£2,085 for clever velvet, £2,185 for clever linen, loaf.com). 

Neptune’s Matilda Armchair in Clara Mocha cotton linen, meanwhile, will blend into any colour scheme and can be spruced up with a colourful cushion (£1,190, neptune.com).

Wooden furniture complements the sandy aesthetic. Cox & Cox’s Southwold side table is the epitome of rustic chic and adds some heft to a room, (£295, coxandcox.co.uk).

Softly softly

Fabrics, curtains, cushions and throws are a great way to adopt the trend. Bernie de Le Cuona, founder of Le Cuona, makes linens inspired by nature.

‘In our Overland collection we have a linen fabric called Dahna that resembles the moving desert. Warm sand goes well with off-whites and dusty pink. For drama add a touch of colour such as teal to make it come alive.’ (Dahna, £355 per m, delecuona.com).

Sandy colours are an easy way to give an impression of age to a scheme. ‘When trying to recreate a lived-in look, use fabrics that have backcloths in sandy colours, rather than fresh whites, says interior designer Octavia Dickinson, whose upholstery fabric Otis in yolk has a warm sandy tone that injects instant sunshine, (£170 per m, octaviadickinson.com).

A scattering of cushions is a great way to introduce these colours in smaller doses and will add texture and layering. Experiment with square and rectangular cushions in complementary shades.

Loaf’s Easy Squish Scatter in Terracotta Linen, Cocoa Linen or Cinnamon Velvet should do the trick (£39, loaf.com).

Fancy upping the ante? Add patterned cushions such as Made’s Xanthe cushion, which is a fun abstract patchwork and an ideal statement piece to throw on a sofa (£45, made.com).

Habitat’s Jute Mono Check Cushion, meanwhile, has a tasteful, artisanal feel and adds texture (£16, habitat.co.uk).

Hit the floor

Work with desert shades from the ground up to echo nature. Birdie Fortescue’s Ghapla Jute Rug will instantly introduce warmth to a kitchen, bathroom or corridor (£350, birdiefortescue.co.uk).

Shine on: Penny Morrison’s pleated, brown and white-spotted silk lampshade (£151.80, pennymorrison.com)

Shine on: Penny Morrison’s pleated, brown and white-spotted silk lampshade (£151.80, pennymorrison.com)

Matilda Goad & Co’s quirky Tufted Jute Rug, meanwhile, will add texture and interest to a scheme. The rug is embellished with wool and features pretty scalloped edges and would work well with warmer terracotta hues (from £198, anthropologie.com).

Warm accessories

As with all colour-based trends, you can choose to pick up these warm tones in big pieces or in details such vases or lampshades. Graham & Green’s Bamboo Cane Shelves come in a circular or tall octagonal shape and will bring a Scandinavian element to an interior.

Add house plants for a pop of green (from £75, grahamandgreen.co.uk).

The architectural curves and ribbed details on Made’s Zayl vase in cinnamon are modern and eye-catching.

Daghorn suggests filling it with ‘a dried pampas grass and eucalyptus bouquet’ to chime with the trend, (£54, made.com).

Penny Morrison’s pleated, brown and white-spotted silk lampshade with red trim is a lampshade Dickinson returns to repeatedly as it ‘gives such a wonderful warm light’ (£151.80, pennymorrison.com).

With the nights drawing in, it has never been so necessary to cocoon yourself in these warm, comforting desert shades.

Savings of the week! Ottoman

 By ANNE ASHWORTH

The Malia ottoman comes in shades including grey, mustard, pink and teal,£103.99 (wayfair.co.uk)

The Malia ottoman comes in shades including grey, mustard, pink and teal,£103.99 (wayfair.co.uk)

In the 15th and 16th century, the powerful people of the Ottoman Empire kicked back from their machinations on a type of low couch that today we call the ottoman.

This piece of padded furniture is not only handy for relaxing. Many styles also incorporate storage.

You should be able to put your feet up, with the sense of satisfaction that you have saved money.

For example, the smart grey velvet-covered Julian Bowen ottoman from Robert Dyas has been reduced from £164.99 to £139.99 (robertdyas.co.uk). The price of the Argos Bennett green velvet storage ottoman has been cut from £35 to £25 (argos.co.uk).

At B&M, you will find a black mid-century style storage ottoman with wooden legs reduced by £30 from £100 to £70 (bmstores.co.uk). 

The Malia ottoman from Wayfair comes in shades including grey, mustard, pink and teal and a palm print. It was £199.99, but is now £103.99 (wayfair.co.uk).

Source link

Current

Our council tried to force us to sell our £200,000 home to make room for asylum seekers: Elderly couple’s horror after strongly-worded letter lands on their doorstep

An elderly couple who had just moved into their £200,000 house were horrified to receive a letter from their council suggesting the property could be subject to compulsory purchase and used to house asylum seekers.

Jose and Ted Saunders said they were ‘insulted and shocked’ when the strongly-worded letter from North Northamptonshire Council – which has never balanced its own books – dropped on their mat last month.

It said their neat mid-terraced house in Rushden, near Wellingborough, was deemed to be an empty property, or was ‘derelict’ and the council could even force them to sell it.

‘I couldn’t believe it,’ said retired carer Jose, 76. ‘We moved to Rushden to help provide childcare for my grand-daughter and found this nice little place to live.

‘The idea of forcing us to sell it to make room for refugees and asylum seekers seems totally wrong.’

Jose and Ted Saunders, the couple who received a letter from the council suggesting their property could be subject to a compulsory purchase order and used to house asylum seekers

The letter that Jose and Ted received from North Northamptonshire Council last month

The letter, headed ‘Empty Properties and sites initiative’ had their exact address in bold and stated: ‘We are writing as we have reason to believe that the above-named premises… is empty or unused.

‘The Government has identified empty privately-owned properties as a potential cause of blight within communities, and as a wasted resource at time of high housing need.’

The letter continued that the council was seeing a ‘considerable increase’ in positive immigration decisions being made in favour of asylum seekers, mainly single men, and the authority was ‘struggling’ to source suitable accommodation for them.

It added: ‘The ideal long-term solution would be to provide accommodation by using empty properties which would benefit owners and the project.’

It said the council could make a compulsory purchase order on the property.

The couple thought the they were going to lose their home worth £200,000 (above)

The couple thought the they were going to lose their home worth £200,000 (above)

North Northamptonshire Council has never managed to balance its budget since its inception in 2021. The council has said increased pressures from demand-led services have driven up costs.

Added Jose: ‘It was all the more worrying as we’d only moved in last November, so we still hadn’t received the deeds for the house.’

Retired driving instructor Ted, 78, and his wife called the council and asked what was going on.

Three days later they received an apology, saying their staff had mistakenly ear-marked the house for possible compulsory purchase, but the Saunders were still baffled by the policy itself.

‘What on earth is the council doing forcing people to sell their houses – and even an empty house is owned by someone – so that asylum seekers can live in them?’ asked Jose.

‘The answer to this is to stop them coming in the first place, not to force people out of their homes.’

The incident was seized upon by the Reform UK Party, whose candidate in Thursday’s (Feb 15) Wellingborough by-election, Ben Habib, heard about the couple.

Mr Habib, who is also the party’s co-deputy leader, told MailOnline: ‘I was horrified to hear the plight of Mr. & Mrs. Saunders, but my horror could not compare to what they experienced last month.

‘They were served with a letter from North Northamptonshire District Council seeking to possess their home. The accusation made was their home was derelict and the Council intended to use it to house single young men seeking asylum. Known to the rest of us as illegal migrants.

‘ I can confirm their home is most certainly not derelict. It was well appointed and cared for. They were distraught by the threat made by the Council. They feared not having title deeds and being incapable of defending their position. It was not until they visited the Council and after much pleading they managed to get the Council to desist.

The Saunders had just moved in to their new home when they received a letter from the council suggesting that could be the subject of a compulsory purchase order by the council

The Saunders had just moved in to their new home when they received a letter from the council suggesting that could be the subject of a compulsory purchase order by the council

A spokesman North Northamptonshire Council apologised to the couple for suggesting that their home could be sold top house asylum seekers - and said it had been sent in error

A spokesman North Northamptonshire Council apologised to the couple for suggesting that their home could be sold top house asylum seekers – and said it had been sent in error  

‘It is utterly shocking that the Council would fire off a letter like that to two elderly people. And do so with the aim of buying a £200,000 house for asylum seekers. This from a Council that is as good as bust and has never filed consolidated accounts since it was established in 2021.

‘The local charity for homeless people, the Daylight Centre, spends £650 per head per homeless person per year. Think what that charity could do with £200,000! It would be able to provide care for over 300 British citizens. There are also veterans’ charities in the constituency struggling to care of soldiers who risked life and limb for the country. Instead of the money going to them, the Council was prepared to blow it on housing maybe 4 migrants, after forcing out of their home two elderly British citizens. Disgraceful.’

The Council is run by the Tories – for all their chat about championing local issues both the Tories and Labour are asleep about the damage being wrought on Wellingborough by a failed council and a complete failure to police our territorial waters. Heads should roll and the Saunders should be compensated!

‘The only party capable of preventing the dystopia into which our country is sinking is Reform UK – the Tories and Labour have lost the plot.’

Jason Smithers, Leader of North Northamptonshire Council, told MailOnline in a statement: ‘North Northamptonshire Council (NNC) is working with owners of long-term empty properties to bring their property back into use. Compulsory Purchase Orders (CPO) are not utilised to “oust” current owners from their properties, they are a tool used as a very last resort to bring empty properties, which are a valuable and much need housing resource, back into use.

‘The “empty property initiative letters” were sent out in a bid to assist empty property owners to bring their property back into use, and on the whole, the support from NNC was gratefully received. Since NNC formed in 2021, no properties have been purchased by CPO. This is a mechanism of last resort to bring problematic, long term empty properties back into use.

‘Unfortunately, in this case, records held by NNC were outdated, and the letter was incorrectly sent to a property which was occupied. For this I am very sorry for causing any undue distress and worry.’

Source link

Continue Reading

Culture

“Dune: Part Two” Strikes A Balance Of Solemnity And Excitement, Amplifying The Saga’s Epic Journey

Dune: Part Two

‘Dune: Part Two’

Director: Denis Villeneuve

Cast: Timothée Chalamet, Zendaya, Rebeca Fergusson, Javier Bardem

Genre: Science fiction. USA, 2024

Runtime: 166 minutes

Release date: March 1

Frank Herbert’s original novel presents a formidable challenge for readers, not due to its literary style, but rather the intricate web of names, languages, planets, dynasties, and character relationships it entails. Denis Villeneuve’s cinematic adaptation of the first half of the book, while visually stunning, maintained the solemnity and gravity of the source material, making it a demanding viewing experience with its 155-minute runtime dominated by browns, grays, and a lack of liveliness.

Despite the complexities, Herbert’s book has garnered a dedicated following spanning multiple generations, and Villeneuve’s adaptation, surpassing previous attempts, resonated with audiences, critics, and the Academy, grossing over $400 million worldwide and earning six Oscars out of 10 nominations. Against this backdrop, “Dune: Part Two” emerges, maintaining the cinematic flavor and sumptuous tone of its predecessor.

Adult science fiction often exudes grandeur and gravitas, and “Dune: Part Two” is no exception, with its nearly three-hour runtime sustained by the visual mastery of director Denis Villeneuve, known for his work on acclaimed films like “Sicario,” “Prisoners,” and “Enemy.” The stellar cast exudes charisma, complemented by Hans Zimmer’s evocative soundtrack, which fills the theater with palpable intensity. Amidst the weighty political and religious themes, occasional moments of levity, notably from Javier Bardem’s character, offer brief respites from the film’s otherwise serious tone.

Timothée Chalamet, in 'Dune: Part Two.'
Timothée Chalamet, in ‘Dune: Part Two.’

Despite Villeneuve’s technical and artistic prowess, “Dune” falls short of creating enduring cinematic images, reminiscent of his previous works like “Arrival” and “Blade Runner 2049.” While some sequences lack memorable shots due to pacing issues in editing, others are hindered by digital effects, such as the overcrowded coliseum scene featuring Austin Butler’s character. However, the film still captures the essence of Herbert’s writing, with powerful quotes like “The mystery of life isn’t a problem to solve, but a reality to experience.”

Timothée Chalamet’s portrayal of Paul Atreides draws intriguing parallels to Jesus, particularly in his journey through the desert trials, echoing Christ’s temptation by the Devil. The depiction of the Fremen and their struggle on Arrakis evokes comparisons to oppressed peoples throughout history, resonating with contemporary conflicts like Gaza.

Despite being somewhat austere, “Dune: Part Two” remains a compelling and engaging sequel, signaling Villeneuve’s commitment to adapting Herbert’s novels for future generations. As the series progresses, exploring themes of power dynamics, it mirrors present-day geopolitical tensions in the Middle East.


Continue Reading

Culture

Discovering The Top Destinations In Europe For 2024

The Top Destinations To Visit In Europe 2024

The Voice Of EU | Welcome to our comprehensive guide to the most exciting European destinations to visit in 2024. Delve into a curated selection of countries, regions, cities, and neighborhoods that promise unique experiences, curated by our expert editors at Condé Nast Traveller UK and Spain.

From hidden gems to emerging hotspots, here’s where to focus your travel plans for the year ahead:

Antwerp, Belgium

Discover intriguing new architecture and a collection of chic hotel openings in Antwerp. Experience the vibrant culinary scene with a visit to renowned Michelin-starred restaurants like The Jane, while enjoying rustic dishes at the sleek new bar, Untitled. Afterward, unwind at August or Hotel Julien for a serene retreat in the heart of the city.

Asturias, Spain

Immerse yourself in eco-focused luxury tourism amidst the breathtaking landscapes of Asturias. Explore UNESCO Biosphere Reserves and rejuvenated routes like the Camino Primitivo, followed by a stay at unique properties such as Solo Palacio and PuebloAstur Eco-Resort. Indulge in the region’s “landscape cuisine” and emerging culinary movement while experiencing cultural events in Oviedo, the gastronomic capital.

Biarritz, France

Experience the revival of the surf town of Biarritz, nestled in the French Basque Country. Stay at artfully restored Belle Époque hotels like Regina Biarritz and Hôtel du Palais, and savor the vibrant Basque culinary scene. Explore sun-soaked beaches, chic boutiques, and cultural hotspots, making Biarritz a must-visit destination for sophisticated travelers.

Bodø, Norway

Embark on a journey of stargazing and natural wonders in Bodø, Norway. As the European Capital of Culture for 2024, Bodø offers a diverse arts program and spectacular landscapes, including the ethereal Lofoten Islands. Stay at luxurious accommodations like The Wood Hotel or embrace nature with GlampNord, all while experiencing the region’s burgeoning food scene.

Budapest, Hungary

Celebrate the 150th anniversary of Budapest with a blend of old-world charm and modern innovation. Explore the city’s architectural wonders, vibrant nightlife, and historic attractions like the Chain Bridge. Stay at iconic properties such as W Budapest and Dorothea Hotel, and experience the city’s cultural renaissance with musical events and new builds like the House of Music Hungary.

Carlsberg City District, Denmark

Immerse yourself in creative newness at the Carlsberg City District in Copenhagen. Explore a vibrant hub of restaurants, shops, and design houses amid repurposed brewery buildings. Indulge in culinary delights at establishments like Coffee Collective and Aamanns, while experiencing the district’s cultural revival with interactive attractions and summer parties.

Costa de Prata, Portugal

Escape to the bohemian charm of Costa de Prata, Portugal’s Silver Coast. Experience the quiet coastal beauty of Ericeira and Nazaré, with new luxury hotels like Aethos and Ohai Nazaré. Explore historic towns like Obidos and Aveiro, indulging in local delicacies and cultural experiences, making Costa de Prata a hidden gem for discerning travelers.

Cyclades, Greece

Embark on a salty-air island-hopping adventure in the Cyclades, Greece’s dazzling blue archipelago. With new flights and smart stays like Santo Pure and Kalesma Mykonos, explore iconic destinations like Mykonos, Santorini, and Paros with unparalleled luxury. Experience the region’s vibrant atmosphere, thrilling beach clubs, and world-class hospitality, creating unforgettable memories in the Greek islands.

Kosovo

Discover pristine countryside and adventurous trails in Kosovo, Europe’s newest country. Explore hiking and biking routes like the Trans Dinarica cycling route, and experience the region’s unique Sámi heritage and outdoor activities. Stay at charming accommodations like Ujëvara e Drinit Resort and Ariu, indulging in traditional Kosovar cuisine and warm hospitality.

Mallorca, Spain

Experience the unrivaled luxury of Mallorca with an array of exciting new hotels across the island. Stay at exclusive properties like Son Bunyola and Ikos Porto Petro, indulging in low-key luxury and exceptional service.

READ: The True Cost Of Living In Madrid, Spain: A Comprehensive Guide & Neighborhoods

Explore the island’s natural beauty, cultural attractions, and culinary delights, making Mallorca, Spain a timeless destination for discerning travelers.

Northern Italy

Embark on next-level cycling adventures and motorsports experiences in Northern Italy. Witness the historic stages of the Tour de France in Florence, Rimini, and Turin, while exploring gastronomic heritage and scenic landscapes. Stay at luxury accommodations like Middleton Lodge and experience slow travel with new railway routes and cultural events, making Northern Italy a paradise for sports enthusiasts and culture seekers.

Yorkshire, UK

Indulge in a foodie revolution amidst the enchanting landscapes of Yorkshire, UK. Experience star chefs and Michelin-starred restaurants like The Abbey Inn and Mýse, offering creative culinary experiences and luxurious accommodations. Explore Yorkshire’s natural wonders, cultural events, and emerging culinary scene, creating a bewitching travel experience in 2024.

Destinations & Experience

With an array of exciting destinations and experiences to explore, Europe beckons travelers with its rich history, vibrant culture, and breathtaking landscapes. Whether you seek adventure, luxury, or cultural immersion, the best places to go in Europe in 2024 promise unforgettable memories and endless discovery. Start planning your European adventure today and embark on a journey of a lifetime.


We Can’t Thank You Enough For Your Support!

— By Elisa Ferragni | Team VoiceOfEU.com Digital

— Contact Us: Info@VoiceOfEU.com

— Anonymous News Submissions: Press@VoiceOfEU.com

Continue Reading

Trending

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates 
directly on your inbox.

You have Successfully Subscribed!