I use the word ‘giddy’ a lot when I’m talking about decorating and things to decorate with. And that’s because I do, indeed, get extremely giddy when I find something that I truly love. Those who are with me, and get to witness the ‘moment’ in real life, will report strange high-pitched noises coming from my mouth and perhaps a little jigging type dance, accompanied by fluttering hands that are trying their best to contain the excitement coursing through my entire body. It’s a visceral reaction to something beautiful that gives me joy; and is supremely superior to its opposite reaction, the sound of me vomiting into my own mouth when I see something I hate (think 1980’s shiny grey leather sofas that should never still be in manufacture. But are. And tend to be advertised on the telly on a bank holiday Monday).
This excitement and giddiness is exactly what happened when I first clapped eyes on the exquisite rug designs of Wendy Morrison, and I can’t wait to share her amazing talent with you and show you the stunning rug I have of hers, that has slotted seamlessly into one of my room schemes for the Fungalow!
But first, let me share with you one of my long-term interior obsessions, and you’ll see why, personally, Wendy’s designs appeal to me so much. A long time ago I discovered antique Art Deco Chinese rugs made by a company called Nichols, back in the 1920’s and 30’s, and being a chinoiserie fan and a colour fiend, I fell in love, hard. Ever since that moment maybe ten years ago, I have spent an ungodly number of hours online searching for one I love, and more importantly, can afford. This is fruitless and will never happen. The ones in good nick are so expensive it’s eye watering, and the ones I could maybe afford if I sold a kidney just look a bit dishevelled. It’s a sad story.
So imagine how I felt when I was perusing The Pink House blog’s amazing Instagram feed, and saw one of Wendy’s rugs being featured in owner Emily’s beautiful kitchen?:
I looked like this:
It had the same oriental, chinoiserie colourful look of the antique ones I’d fallen in love with years ago. But here’s the critical difference. It’s one thing to fall head over in heels with the unattainable. But to get the same wonderful excitement about a product, and then find out that it’s actually accessible, well that’s where the fun begins. Because when I immediately hotfooted it over to Wendy’s website after seeing her design on Instagram, I saw that her rugs cost an incredibly affordable £895 and upwards, depending on the size. This, in the rug world, is such good value for money. Particularly when you consider just how beautiful they are.
A little bit of feverish stalking activity then ensued. I left a few comments on Pink House’s Instagram feed. I pinned my favourite designs on to my Pinterest boards when I started to think about the schemes I wanted to put together for the Fungalow. I saw one of her designs in John Lewis once, and I remember just stroking it, and staring at it for minutes like a weirdo, and taking a photograph of it, and then seeing the JL assistant watching me, so pretending to look at other rugs, but actually looking at Wendy’s rug out of the corner of my eye. And then I eventually I found her on Instagram and started following her avidly.
So imagine (yes, again) my excitement when Wendy offered me the opportunity to try one of her designs at home, and see how it fitted in with my decor? That she herself could see that our style aesthetics were similar? I’ll give you a hint. I was pretty much like how I was when I first saw her rugs. Just refer to Snoopy above. No real imagining necessary.
I was able to choose the rug I wanted to try, which was like giving a kid some pocket money and taking them to their favourite sweet shop, I was like oooooh and ahhhhhh, with big wide eyes of wonder. All of her designs are absolutely gorgeous! But by the time this wonderful opportunity came along I was pretty far in to the development of all my room schemes for the house, so I really had to take that into consideration. The rug I chose would have to fit in with my already fleshed out schemes. So I surprised myself. I didn’t pick the rug I initially thought I would.
Here are my two favourites, which I absolutely adore (my other favourite being Mount Orient already featured above; actually Chinese Deco is another favourite, also featured above; I have so many favourites!):
But these two (well, four really, if you count up all my favourites) decorative beauties weren’t just going to slip easily into existing developed schemes, schemes which already included equally decorative wallpapers and fabric patterns, and had their own colour palettes. These are the sort of rugs that deserve to be the centre of attention in the first place, the sort of feature piece that you START a room scheme with. And how much fun I’d have developing schemes around these…I might just pull some moodboards together in the future, and see what I come up with. But I digress.
I needed a rug that would slip effortlessly in, so instead of choosing one with a very definite stylised pattern, I ended up choosing one with an overall pattern that would be a great supporting actor, rather than the lead role. And the fact that it was in my favouritist colour of turquoise…? Well, Peacock rug was always going to come and live me wasn’t he? It was a no brainer.
It’s an amazing rug, and when it arrived I was so impressed with the quality of the wool, the manufacture and the colours; as I said, complete value for money, and for something so beautiful. It was now a case of me deciding in which room it would live. I determined it was either going to live in my mezzanine library (more on that another time) or my snug lounge. The mezzanine was going to have purple walls, and teal patterned House of Hackney fabric. The snug was going to have mulberry coloured walls, pink patterned House of Hackney fabric, with a feature wallpaper containing animalistic patterns including peacock feathers, and my taxidermy peacock. The peacock motif kept reoccurring and so I thought it would be a damn shame if Peacock didn’t live in my snug. I’m not one for overly themed Changing Rooms decor, but the odd nod of connection doesn’t go amiss in my book. So that was my decision made.
I will go into my scheme development in more depth next week or the week after, but for now, as you will have already seen at the beginning of the post, I think the rug slips seamlessly into the design for the snug. This is a moodboard only, to display the various patterns:
I’m so excited to see this become a reality, that I can barely talk!
If you love Wendy Morrison’s designs as much as me, then you HAVE to also stalk, ahem, follow her on Instagram, it’s a must, I insist! And if you’re not on Instagram, get on it, you’re missing such a wonderful trick. Not only do you get to see beautiful pictures of her existing designs, and pictures of her gorgeous dog Eddie curled up on the sofa, but you get to see exciting snippets of rugs that are in the making. This little sampler shows the design of a rug that will be arriving soon, and I just can not wait to see what it looks like, I’m already wracking my brain trying to fathom out just where in the house I could put it.
You’ll also be able to take advantage of any sales she has. In fact, if you sign up to her newsletter, not only will you receive emails informing you of any ex-display/photoshoot rugs that are up for grabs at a discounted price, you’ll also receive 10% discount off your first purchase! You’d be daft not to sign up, it’ll only take you a jiffy.
Anyway, I’ve waffled on for too long, time to skedaddle…Friday night looms and it’s time for drinkies. But next time I chat about my snug and my gorgeous Peacock rug, I’ll take you through the scheme with a bit more detail. Ta ta for now x
(Disclaimer: although I have received a beautiful rug from Wendy Morrison Designs, these are my genuine, honest thoughts and feelings. Although approached in the past by companies who want to collaborate, I have always said no. This is the first time I’ve worked on a collaboration, and I have done so because it was already a company I wanted to buy from!)
© Carnival Of Colour 2020