in Interiors

Cristina Celestino for Fornace Brioni

Italy is famous all over the world for its exquisite craftsmanship passed on from one generation to another, as well as its creativity and ability to design timeless pieces. In Italy there are a lot of family businesses that manage to reach across the world. Versace, Brunello Cucinelli, Trussardi, Natuzzi are only a few of the family run brands in our country: everyone knows that Italians are family people.
These companies have managed to succeed, survive and make a name for themselves because they managed to preserve the quality of what they produce but also to embrace the future and identify and collaborate with the right talented professionals.

Fornace Brioni was created in 1920 by the Brioni family and since then it has produced terracotta floors. The factory is near Mantova, in Gonzaga and is still run by the fourth generation of the family (Alessio and Alberto Brioni).
Fornace Brioni is having a period of extreme popularity thanks to its history in making terracotta floors and its partnership with Italian architect Cristina Celestino, creative director of the brand since 2007.
Cristina Celestino has designed some special collections for Brioni: Scenografica that takes its inspiration from the work of the set designers during the Baroque period; Giardino delle Delizie inspired by the grottoes in the Reinassance gardens; Giardino all’Italiana based on the idea of drawing nature.
Here are a few images of Fornace Brioni collections designed by her.
No wonder they are everywhere on Instagram.

in Arts+ Crafts, Color Inspiration, Furniture, Interiors, Ispiration

Look into my eyes

plates, artefacto madrid, plusdeco blog, +DECO blog, interior blog, decorative plates, artefacto plates, eyes, +deco blog

Poor my eyes: most of the time indoor and in front of a screen for hours every day. They fell so dry, I feel so sorry for them that publishing Lover’s Eye collection by Artefacto Madrid seems to me an original and fun way to apologize.

The Argentinian Santi Carbonari and Franco Donati source antique and vintage porcelain, restore it and “and stamp with (the) new designs through a careful process of high temperature vitrified. They have many collections of plates with different subjects but they are all fun and pop and original.

The decorations of the support of the antique or vintage porcelain complement and create a funky contrast with the fantastic and detailed prints representing tropical worlds, lunar places, collage beings, cartoon heroes and much more.

I wanted to publish at least other twenty plates!

Artefacto Madrid sells also prints, lights, t-shirts and glass objects.

The level of detail of the antique porcelain together with the quality and complexity of the prints makes these decorative plates pop and captivating.

For more porcelain on +DECO, use the search on the website or click here.

images courtesy of Artefacto Madrid.

in Furniture, Interiors, Outdoor

Add some fun with a cactus

Cactus has always been perceived as a fun plant. It must be their shape (and I am not going into that) or the fact that they so resilient and primitive looking or just because of their peculiar name.

As a matter of fact,  I have noticed that only fun people decide to decorate with cactus shaped objects or textiles represented cacti.

So if you also want to join the clan and you are looking for some inspiration, here is a selection of ideas to make your life a bit more…pricky!

If you like the tropical trend in general, check out my post with some advice or discover some amazing wallpapers here.

A 170 cm high cactus by Gufram.

White porceilan set of cactai from I Love Retro.

Cactus juicer from Red Candy

Cuilko textile by Pierre Frey

Serving dish by Hallmark.

Cactai candles from Not On The High Street


A colourful pencil holder from Red Candy

Cactus framed art by Houzz.










in Furniture, Interiors, Outdoor

About Chilly’s bottles and about blogging

The best thing about having a blog is that people write to you to present their products, their art-facts or simply to signal cool stuff. That is exactly what happened a few days ago when my stylish cousin Piero sent me a message with the link to Chilly’s bottles, saying that it might be good material for my blog and here I am, presenting these beautiful objects!

In the last few years, quite a few people have asked me information about writing a blog.

I believe it is difficult for a lot of people to understand just how much work is involved in keeping a blog until you do it. First of all you need to have something to present and something to say, you need interesting content.

Sometimes you struggle to find a variety of subjects to write about and sometimes you find a couple of great ideas in one day.

Then you need to source the photos or take the photos yourself. Often the images need to be post-produced a bit or at least cut. Of course you always have to acknowledge the author of the photos or at the least the source because sharing is caring if it is done in a fair way.

The next step is the text. I write in English and Italian which is a bit tricky because I have to be careful to not lazily translate from English to Italian or vice-versa but try to deliver what I want to say in the best possible way in both languages.

The quality of my writing depends on when I write a post as well, on how tired I am or how much time I have.

I get work through my blogging but I work as well for a production studio and as a freelance interior designer and personal shopper (even if all these things are really entangled).

When you have finished with the content, you need to put in all the key words otherwise nobody will find your post.

When the post is published, you enter the social media world and honestly it feels you need a full time staff just to do that properly.

Being significantly present on the social media requires a lot of time that often I don’t have so I do what I can.

So, in brief, blogging is time consuming. So before starting a blog, make yourself sure you really want to do it otherwise you will be discontinuous.

From this analysis, it is also clear it is easier to have a successful blog, when you have money to invest in the project and people working for you.  Still if your content is not captivating, you will never get there.

Me, I love doing it and I wish I had more time and funds to invest in it but so far I can say I have had a lot of satisfaction blogging, I have learnt a lot and I am proud of what I have done.

Obviously it has taken hundreds of hours and tons of determination but that is for everything I suppose.


in Color Inspiration, Interiors, Ispiration

Easy chic

Hello everyone, things are good these days, no news to report which I suppose is good news.

Work is progressing slowly but progressing and I have finally managed to achieve a good quality of life. I even started practicing yoga again which I love. Because of my timetable, I can’t go to my usual Ashtanga Yoga school but I found a place near my house where I can practice Hatha Yoga at 7.30 in the morning and I really enjoy it unexpectedly! Sometimes you need to adjust your wishes to your needs and learn to adapt to the circumstances.

The house I want to show you today reflects my state of mind: calm and happy.

This apartment was published on the Entrance website, a estate buying/selling mediator (via Planete Deco) and the photos are by Anders Bergstedt.

As you can see the shell is pretty simple: white walls, white windows frames, no architectural frills. It re-proposes a recipe that always works: a white shell, some black elements, eye catching trendy details, light grey soft furnishings and few wooden vintage pieces. The atmosphere is very serene and the place is fled with light. Updating a space like this is very easy and unexpensive, you just need to change the artwork, some details and the cushions.

Sometimes the simple things are the ones that work best for our daily life.

in Furniture, Interiors

Proper Copper Design

Haven’t you satisfied your whim for copper yet, the big trend of the moment? Get an handle on then…!

Proper Copper Design has a wide selection of all sorts of copper objects for furnishing including handles and knobs.

Changing handles or knobs on cabinets or wardrobes is one of the easy and inexpensive ways to update your house.

Copper has a lovely warm color and copper handles and knobs will surely add interest to your storage areas. Statement knobs and handles drift the attention away from the actual piece of furniture, changing them into something more sophisticated or original is a good trick when the cabinet or wardrobe is nothing special.

I really like the ones in the second photo from the bottom in Fine Matt -Lightly Brushed finishing.

Apart from handles and knobs, Proper Copper Design proposes taps, light pulls, tablet holders, candlesticks and various other accessories.

Moreover the name of the company is a wicked title for a post.

Images from Proper Copper Design website
in Ispiration, People

Italy vs Great Britain

I must say, even if I don’t have any British blood in me and I was made and brought up in Italy, I feel partly Brit. It might be because I lived in London for a while, it might be because, my husband, a lot of my best friends and my adopted family are English or because for so many years I have lived both lifestyles, anyway I feel in tune with the British culture almost as much as my own native one (sometimes even more!) and even if he approaches are often really diverse.

For instance, the ways of decorating houses in the two countries are very different because of the climate, the spaces, the habits.

I have asked three Brits leaving in Italy what they think the differences are between Italy and Great Britain in decorating their spaces and the results are extremely interesting and food for thought.

Read my interviews with Ashley, Michelle and Stephanie and a few lines about who they are below:


After many years living in London and working in the media industry as a presenter, author and producer and almost one year in Naples, Ashley Hames decided that happiness could be in Palermo.

He is a very cunning writer and an extremely direct, honest person.

You can buy or download his latest book “Seven Days To Say I Love You” from Amazon and read some of his articles in The Huffington Post here.

Since you have now probably seen a number of Italian houses, we are curious to know what’s the difference in the approach of decorating houses between Britain and Italy. 

Home for the English is a place to watch TV, order takeaways and to sleep. For the Italians it’s a place to cook and to cement the family unit.
The Italian centrepiece will be the dining room table, for the English, it’s a swanky surround-sound television.
The home – in England – is where you invest and spend big, while in Italy you prefer to wear your money.
Both nationalities are showing off, just in different ways.
From from what I’ve seen, Italians tend to decorate their homes with lots of little things – numerous trinkets and heirlooms, heaps of framed photos, wall-mounted masks and fridge magnets. It’s a world of bits and bobs.
That suggests the Italians are messy, yet they are obsessively tidy in their personal space – a rejection of the chaos that lies outside their front door.
British homes have moved towards minimalist decluttering, but sparkling cleanliness still remains less of a concern than it is for Italians.
For the English, the public and the private – the outside and the inside – have a similar vibe. In Italy, home is about care and comfort, outside is struggle and survival.

What is your dream house like and where would it be?
My dream home would be small and simple, something like a beachfront bungalow, no neighbours, space for dogs to run, a nearby bar and cafe. But I think I’d also need a penthouse flat in town – just for weekends – to let my hair down. Everything’s about balance.


The incredible (and busy) studio of Italian designer Piero Fornasetti.


Michelle Grant is a talented photographer, graphic designer and webmaster, able to create the image of a product or brand from scratch to delivery. Born in Australia but an adopted Brit after so many years in London, she now lives in the picturesque Tuscan countryside with her two kids who speak an impeccable English and Italian with a Tuscan accent. To see her work, visit her beautiful website www.michellegrant.com.

Since you have now probably seen a number of Italian houses, we are curious to know what’s the difference in the approach of decorating houses between Britain and Italy. 

Carpet!! I miss a good wall-to-wall carpet sometimes 😀 also I think here, in the countryside where I am, there’s a definite emphasis on showing natural materials, especially with earthy painted colours, and larger grander pieces of standalone furniture. In Australia where I lived the emphasis was on cool airy spaces that let you live outside, while in the UK maximising light was important.

What is your dream house like and where would it be?

A light, bright space in stone and wood high up over the sea… somewhere like Gaeta would be ideal!!


Wall to wall sisal for this British interior


Born in Greece, Stephanie studied in London and pursued a career as senior analyst and internal auditor in Scotland.  Tired of the demanding style of life working in the field of finance, she decided to move to Rome where she has been living for the last year (and she already speaks fluent Italian!) where she works as a language consultant for big companies. She is passionately, intelligently and successfully devoting herself to getting to know our culture.

Since you have now probably seen a number of Italian houses, we are curious to know what’s the difference in the approach of decorating houses between Britain and Italy. 

I can say that there is a vast amount of differences between your traditional British home and an authentic Italian household. First thing that comes to mind in a typical British household are fitted carpets which you may also find in the bathroom and the number of small individual rooms. The heavy dark coloured curtains and glass cabinets filled with China and small ornaments. The likes of an Italian home, you would find it being quite large open spaces filled with family picture frames and a television in every room not to mention the terrace, with a number of plants, which is used most of the year. The other thing that struck me the most is that the kitchen is the heart of the home filled to brim with a variety of pots and pans, colourful tiles and families congregate together for dinners whereby in a British home, quite the contrary, dinner is served on trays whilst sitting in the living room couch watching television. To sum up, British homes appear cosy as it’s nicely decorated minimally and Italian homes is spacious enough filled with memorable furnishings and picture  frames which leaves you feeling quite comfortable.

What is your dream house like and where would it be?

My dream house is two fold; Firstly an apartment in the city with the hustle and bustle on your doorstep. The apartment would be relatively modern with high ceilings and with pendant lamps hanging. Italian characteristics such as a big kitchen inundated with every type of kitchen utensils and a large table with at least ten chairs. Not to mention the outdoor terrace which would be covered with a variety of flowers and plants with a spectacular skyline of Rome. Venetian blinds covering the direct sunlight with colourful shutters which would be left wide open at all times. The living room would consist of a large corner sofa and large bookshelves with every imaginable art, fashion and cultural books. My second home would of course be out in the country near a lake, ideally in the regions of Abruzzo or Puglia. The house would have a wood burning fireplace in the living room which would have furniture made of wood. Cosy sofas and also a benches under the window so you can overlook the lake and the forest. The kitchen would have a double oven which would have to be green as the house would have only earthy colours. Again, a large kitchen table although this time with two long benches on either side. The master bedroom would be nicely decorated with wooden floors, rugs, dressing table and a large bed with a big wooden headboard. The bathroom would have a large bath tub and also a large open shower. The garden would be filled with hazelnut and almond trees and bushes of different types of berries and a little greenhouse for my vegetable patch. This would inexplicably be my dream house which I would tame pleasure to share with family and friends in my lifetime.


An example of big kitchen in Palazzo Orlandi, Italy.

in Furniture, Ispiration

KnIndustrie cool pots and pans

Pots and pans are a predominant part of a kitchen’s decor, we use them almost every day and if they are quality objects, we have them forever.

Unfortunately we don’t often think it is necessary investing in pots and pans when actually it is, because if you buy the right ones you will only buy them once and if they look good you won’t rush to tidy them up but you will be happy to leave them around.

KnIndustrie is an Italian brand established in 2011 and created with the intention of building solid, good looking, eco friendly handmade  kitchen instruments and utensils.

The glass see-through pasta pot is the most exciting piece visually but the Beyond Basic line (second image from top) with walnut handles that you can use for many other KnIndustrie casseroles is also a must have.

I find the chopping boards made of  steel, ceramic and wood very beautiful as well, they remind me of the amazing tiles Déchirer designed by Patricia Urquiola for Mutina.

Just to give you an idea of prices, the transparent pasta pot costs around 200 dollars. An Ikea standard pot costs around 40 dollars but it is just not a lasting kitchen item you will want to show off, is it?



deco_kn_industrie_transparent_pot deco_kn_industrie_foodwear deco_kn_industrie_white_deco_kn-industrie-chopping_boardsa01deco_kn_industrie_art-collection-01 deco_kn_industrie_art-collection-02

in DIY, Furniture

Ikea kitchens hacked by Reform architects

Over the last 3 years I have bought 5 Ikea Faktum kitchens for my clients. 
As a matter of fact, Ikea kitchens are a valid option for people who don’t want to invest much in a kitchen because they are on a budget or because they are furnishing a holiday house. In my opinion, you either go for a very beautiful product or you buy an Ikea kitchen; the options in between often don’t work and you end up spending more but still not having a customized quality kitchen. 
I always purchase the same model in Ikea, the white lacquered Faktum, now replaced with the Metod range. It is linear, it reflects the light, it looks good and it doesn’t show dirt as much; of course it lacks the details that make it personal.
Reform solves the problem. The company has collaborated with some Danish architects to offer personalized options to the Ikea Metod panels and tabletops. 
It is very easy, as  it states on the website  “send us your IKEA order confirmation and work drawings along with your choice of Reform kitchen and tabletop style and colour. Shortly after, we will send you an order confirmation and as soon as you accept it, your kitchen fronts will arrive within 3–4 weeks.” 
It is definitely worth giving it a go, what do you think?  
(photos from the Reform website)