In between scrolling aimlessly for holiday inspiration, you can find me browsing through interior blogs and homeware store sites. While we can’t fit a new sofa in our rented apartment and although we can’t redecorate, surely that doesn’t mean I can’t create an interior scrapbook with paint and fabric samples for our one-day-hope-to-be first home? So when the opportunity came up to visit John Lewis in Trafford, Manchester for a behind the scenes tour and to hear all about the latest spring/summer collection, I simply couldn’t resist.
John Lewis has always been a favourite store of mine and I have lots of vivid memories of visiting the Liverpool store when I was younger with my Mum and Nana. I remember walking through the store and being amazed at scent of the beauty counters, the hustle and bustle of the fashion sections and pretty struck back by the homeware department – even at a tender young age!
One of my most poignant memories was being with my Mum while she was trying to find a new rug for her house. I guess it wasn’t necessarily the rug I was particularly interested in, but the whole decoration was just so memorable. Huge clocks hung from the walls and crystal chandeliers dangled from the ceiling – back then I wasn’t even interested in homeware (unless it was for my Barbie house) but I found it so interesting watching people shop for these items for their own homes.
And while it was the early 90s, things have moved on quite a bit since then. In recent times, John Lewis have almost reinvented their homeware offering with affordable, yet luxury items to help make a house a home. But it’s not just for the super wealthy or indeed famous (although a few footballers have been known to shop there), it caters for people like you and me. Those who have either achieved their dream of creating a beautiful home or are in the process of taking the plunge with the first step to do so and wish to decorate it with high-quality furnishings and home accessories.
Back to our evening at John Lewis, we were warmly welcomed behind the scenes by the lovely Moira. She took us back down to the shop floor where we met Gemma and Susie who offered us a delicious selection of sandwiches and bubbles. After chatting about our love of Liverpool, Manchester and interiors, we were welcomed by other bloggers including Donna and Anca.
As the bubbles were flowing, Susie talked us through the ethos of John Lewis and how the Trafford store is different to others. At this point, we were stood in the design consultation suite which was full of fabric books showcasing various designs. Gemma explained John Lewis offers two interior style consultations which was complete news to me – but more on that later.
Next up, we headed out onto the shop floor for a tour of their latest spring/summer homeware collection. The shop floor was beautifully laid out between the different styles and themes. Each section showcased the beautiful furniture and was tastefully decorated with accessories to help enhance the spaces. Some of the most eye-catching and beautiful styles included the ‘Modern Restoration‘ and the ‘Croft Collection‘, to the ever popular ‘Scandi‘ and ‘Fusion‘ lines. But for now, I thought I’d share my favourite collections which inspire me with decor goals and yet another wishlist for our own home one day.
Modern Restoration is an authentic and very ‘Manchester’ look with heritage details, industrial accents that creates a confident yet eclectic style. I loved the heritage features that were teamed with a modern twist – whether it was the dark frames or sleek materials used. I loved how the dark furnishings and wall colouring, complimented the set with soft pastel hues and rich metallic accents.
The Croft Collection
Out of all the ranges, I feel the Croft Collection really appealed to my taste. While I do love the idea of deep blues and industrial vibes in our main living space, I feel the Croft Collection is the perfect retreat for bedrooms and the kitchen. It has a relaxed feeling about it and one which is pretty timeless too. The colour palette combines warm neutrals with soft green and muted blue hues, whilst playing with a mixture of textiles.
The Scandi collection at John Lewis was one of the smaller sections, but it is one of the best sellers. At the heart of the Scandi theme, soft lines are teamed with decorative accessories and bold colours which blend together to create a balanced mix of retro and modernism. I can imagine the Scandi collection working well in small spaces like in our apartment, as I think the soft tones help to give it more of a spacious feel.
The Design Services
Hearing that John Lewis offer two Design Services was news to me and one which I can imagine my Mum would be happy to hear – especially as she’s currently on the hunt for the perfect blinds for her kitchen!
The style advice service is free and is perfect should you be looking to refresh a room and want to upgrade some key pieces. The team will work through your ideas and help you to find a look suitable to your ideal style and budget. The stylist will then devise a new look for your room and collate a list of all the items selected – they can then source samples and place any orders. I think this service would be perfect for those who may have an interest in interior style, but may need some support in pulling realistic and affordable ideas together – basically someone like me!
The design consultation is slightly different whereby a stylist visits your home and creates a complete design scheme. It’s perfect for those looking to update multiple rooms or those which require more than just a refresh. The consultation costs £250 and is redeemable when £1,500 is spent through the Home Design Service.
While it may be slightly pricey, the service delves deeper into the design process as in addition to the creation of a design scheme, a personalised moodboard and shopping list is also produced and the team will manage any services required as well as collate deliveries. After watching so many interior design shows and seeing how easily things could go wrong or how stress-levels can just erupt, I think this service would be worth it to have a little extra support by your side.
You may have gathered by now, that I am a bit of an interior decor lover. Especially as this blog has now reached over 1,000 views and I’m just itching to dive into my John Lewis Spring 2018 catalogue. But I guess there’s just something about making a house, a home that I simply love. In fact, I love the idea so much that I would quite happily shop for a home than clothes now – maybe it’s just the whole turning 27 thing which is perhaps getting to me.
Or maybe, I’ve just always had a love for it even at much younger age when I was browsing John Lewis with my Mum and Nana – but I guess, nothing much has changed now apart from the fact their homeware range it’s getting better and bolder every year.
What’s your favourite collection of the Spring/Summer 2018 range at John Lewis?
Thank you to John Lewis, Trafford for this invitation.