Hello Autumn!

In the past few days the change in the season has been really apparent to me with the browning of the leaves, the darker mornings and also that little nip in the air! I have to say that Autumn is one of my favourite seasons and October one of my favourite months, I can’t give you any one reason but it just feels special!

As summer is such a busy time for Mr S and I we normally take a bit of time off work and try to go away in the early part of September when it starts to get a little quieter, this year we went to Rhodes, a Greek Island  located in the Southeast of the Aegean sea.

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Fast forward 4 weeks and the sun, sea and sand are a distant memory and now I am ready to swiftly adapt to the incoming Autumnal weather…

I did the necessary seasonal raid of my ‘other wardrobe’ (or room as it actually is) which I am ashamed and impressed at in equal measure. *note to self: time for a wardrobe clearout, you are not Carrie Bradshaw from SATC* I dusted off my boots, roll necks, cardigans and coats from last winter. The only thing that I really need to buy is new boots so the search is on for those!

When the season changes I commit wholeheartedly with my wardrobe choices, meal planning and also my home decor. I recently bought some knitted white pumpkins to update my home decor and also a real one from the local garden centre. The blues and greens have been put away awaiting Springs arrival and the nudes, greys and faux fur have come out to play.

October has already been an exciting month for me. Just yesterday I had the pleasure of hosting a Stella and Dot Trunk Show (jewellery/accessories and all thing nice if you aren’t so familiar) at my home this weekend with some of my favourite ladies. My wish list is overflowing and if you fancy a look at what is on offer you can do so here!

There is also some exciting new things planned for French Grey Lifestyle…I’ll be sure to update you all very soon!! Eek!!

Much love,

Judy xo

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Emma Bridgewater Collectors Day July 2016

Rewinding back to the beginning of 2016 I put my name in the hat for the July Collectors Day at Emma Bridgewater. I have done this for the last few years but never have been successful but you’ve got to be in it to win it, right?!

Being a massive fan this is what you would consider the ‘Holy Grail’, a day at the factory in Stoke, various activities, sneak peaks as well as a chance to buy special limited edition pieces. I often looked longingly at other collectors special pieces on Instagram and really wanted to have some of my own 😦 *cue worlds smallest violin*.

So imagine the sheer joy when an email confirming that I had got tickets pinged into my inbox on a rainy April afternoon, I was actually going, yaaaayy! You can imagine the excitement as the days got closer, I literally skipped out of work last week in anticipation of Tuesday the 19th!

We arrived on the Tuesday morning after a leisurely drive from Rookery Hall in Cheshire where we were staying (I will cover this  in another post. Spoiler alert: It was amazing) to be greeted by lovely smiling faces who ushered ‘FiFi’ our little red Fiat 500 hire car into its parking space.

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Waiting for the day to start, we helped ourselves to tea and toast set out in the Cafe.  Mr S and I also enjoyed a little bit of sun and background music provided by a brass band.

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We started the day off with a tour of the factory which is a must if you decide to visit. Our tour guide was really friendly and explained every part of the pottery making process. It made me appreciate the time, effort and many hands that touch each piece before it becomes the finished product.

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Can you spot one of the new Christmas patterns?

I even got to try my hand at throwing a plate. Not to brag or anything *ahem* but it was good enough to go into production! So if you receive a 6.5 plate in the next while it could of been made by me!

Don’t worry I think this man’s job is safe 😀

On a bit of a high after becoming a master potter, we decided to go do one of the activities. As part of the Collectors Day, everyone got to paint 2 little fluted bowls in the Decorating Studio.

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The real star of the show was Mr S though. He found his painting zen and created two beauties which received oodles of praise from onlookers.

If you were keeping score it would be 1-1 right now.

The likelihood of me starting a pottery business was getting more realistic by the minute (I joke obviously).

Next on the agenda was some ice cream before we went and picked our special pieces!

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Everyone was split into groups to go view and buy their special pieces. So the dealio with special items is that there is a limited number and are only for collectors and not the general public. Group 4 was up and it was time.

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As I was group 4, a lot was already sold, if you want to see what I purchased you can spot them on my Instagram!

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After buying some special pieces we had worked up a bit of an appetite. Lunch was served (on EB of course…) Our tummies were ready for it, breakfast seemed a long time ago. We were presented a beautiful veggie quiche, salad and warm potato salad. Pudding was a delicious chocolate brownie with clotted cream..yum!

We chatted to our fellow guests at the table, had some hearty laughs, then it was time to finish the rest of our day.IMG_5372

After consulting our itinerary,  we decided to do some tea towel printing.

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Some of the other collectors beautiful attempts.

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Needless to say this didn’t win any prizes for beauty, as for Simon’s…well…he tried!

Laughing at our lack of skill, we went to the seconds shop for a browse while we waited for our “masterpieces” to dry.

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Restricted to hand luggage, I felt like weeping. If only we lived a little closer…

Last stop of the day, the garden!

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Bags in hand and smiles on our faces, we bid fair well to the factory and made our way back to our little Fiat which at this point had reached 1 million degrees (how lucky we were to have such amazing weather!?).

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Until next time EB…

Much Love,

Judy xo

Grey for days…

I find myself trying to be drawn to different colours in the hope of sparking a new love but I always come back to grey. I am in the midst of planning the decor for a second living room (which has been happening for the past year) so I have been immersing myself in Pinterest, my ever trusty source of inspiration and frustration.

The second living room in my house is currently sporting a concrete floor, bare walls, dust bunnies and some washing piled into the corner which will get ironed during the week (or so I keep telling myself). Where some might see a mammoth task, I see 110 possibilities. I’m not great at explaining to others what I envisage but I can see it very clearly in my own head!

I hope to make this living room into a ‘snug’ and use the one we currently inhabit as a more formal space where we can entertain guests and maybe use on other special occasions such as Christmas.

I’ve had carried out extensive research on Pinterest and above is some of my sources of inspiration for the new living room. I am really loving the different layers of grey and white in these rooms from the deep brooding charcoal to the chalky barely there grey. I am forever torn between Contemporary, French and Georgian style/design and I hope that my new room has a little bit of all 3.

If you are undertaking a project of your own, be it little or large, I would love to know what your plans or what your inspiration is. Otherwise watch this space to keep up to date on my progress!

P.s If you have any ideas I would love to hear them!

Much love,

Judy xo

Chic Summer Dining

With summer well and truly here making the most of the long, balmy evenings with a super stylish alfresco soiree with friends is a must.

To get a classic sophisticated look follow these simple styling tips below.

Step One- Linen

Simplicity is key, vintage washed linens or anything with a french feel is a must.

Henley Linen Napkins| The White Company

Natural Stipe Table Runner| Not On The High Street

Nautical Rope Knot Napkin Rings| Marks and Spencer

Step Two- Tableware

If you have a matching dinner set, great; mix and match? Even better.

Serve food on different sized wooden boards for a rustic feel.

 

French Blue Faustine Plates | Dibor

Jamie Oliver Serving Board | Dunelm

Step Three- Lighting 

Fairy lights, lanterns and candles for when the light fades but the party is only beginning.

Rope Handle Hurricane Lanterns | Laura Ashley

Pure Pillar Candle | The White Company

White Cotton Ball String Lights | Cotton Ball Lights 

Much Love,

Judy xo

May: The Best Of.

Hello everyone!

It’s so hard to believe that May is over. What a month! It’s been so busy hence the lack of blog posts however behind the scenes I have been busy working on some lovely blogs that I will be sharing with you all super duper soon! I’ve been working full time in my day job which obviously takes up most (if not all) of my time. I have also started back to personal training after my year off, I won’t go into detail as but if you are interested I am going to the lovely Shannon Reynolds at Scott McGarry Health and Fitness in Ahoghill.

So enough of the chat, on to the good stuff.

Best of the Noms

Okay, it’s no lie… I like my food! This month there were some eats that I just have to mention.

Our local coffee shop (Middletown) holds craft beer and supper night every so often and we were so incredibly lucky to bag some tickets for the latest one.

This time round it was a Thai themed cuisine with local craft beers paired with each course. Take a lookie at this for a menu!

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It reads well, but tasted even better.

Keep an eye out if you are from the local area for the next supper night… I might even see you there!

I had another lovely dinner on an evening out with our good friends Alison and Aidan (who have set a date for their wedding, all of the yays!). We went to The Barking Dog for dinner which was lovely but it was dessert and cocktails at Miel et Moi that really was the highlight of the evening!

Miel et Moi is a little licensed Patisserie on the Lisburn Road in Belfast that do yummy cocktails and even yummier patisserie. We got a little selection of goodies to share paired with a French Martini for me with everyone else opting for a G&T.

To be perfectly honest, I feel this the kind of place you would go with your girlfriends for a catch up and cake but the boys enjoyed it too (I think!).

Best of the Outfits

It hasn’t really been a month of dressing up really but I did love Alison’s and I’s outfits when we went out for dinner.

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Skirt: Miss Selfridge

Top: Topshop

Shoes Similar here

Bag: Christian Louboutin

Best of The Day Trips

Every May brings Balmoral Show and for those who aren’t familiar with Balmoral, it’s a huge agricultural show. I always look forward to it as I have been going to it with my Mum and Dad for as long as I can remember. When I was younger I participated in a number of Young Farmers competitions, mainly for floral art which is where my love of flowers sprung from I suppose!

It’s not all tractors and welly boots as I sense you drifting off… It’s jam packed full of local food, crafts, gardening ideas, entertainment and then some! In true noob form I didn’t take any photos, but take my word for it, it’s a great day out!

Best of the Pretty Things

As some of you may know I’m a brand rep for La De Da Living and I just cant get enough of their stuff. My favourite items this month are the hand stamped star and salad servers. You can get 15% off  on the La De Da Living website website with code ‘brandrep2’. Keep an eye out on my Instagram for more exciting pieces to come!

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I got a pretty print from Bill & Coo a while back but never got around to putting it into a frame. I did a little bit of shuffling about of prints and pictures this month and so here it is in all it’s glory! If you fancy a peep at Bill & Coo’s work work you can find it here!

Best of the Rest

I’m only going to mention this briefly as I spoken about it before but magazine in which my home was featured (eekkkk!) was published this month. If you fancy a look for yourself, it’s called Northern Ireland Homes and Lifestyle.

Thank you to everyone who tagged me in photos or sent me a snapchat with the mag and for all of the lovely comments I have received about it! Interiors are my passion so it was just lovely and humbling to be featured!

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That was May and so what has June in store I hear you ask? So far lots of plans with friends, hopefully some down time and no doubt a few surprises thrown in for good measure!

Have a great one you guys!

Much Love,

Judy xo

Copper Accents For Your Home Under £20

Copper home accessories have been about for the last few seasons and are set to be a big thing for Spring/ Summer 2016 too. What appeals to me about copper is that it almost has a pink undertone meaning it’s just not as bright and obvious as gold. I particularly love it paired with grey and pink for a modern, chic contrast.

See below for some inspiration from Pinterest on how to integrate it into your home. Just remember, not all that glitters is gold.

 

I have set myself a task of finding 5 updates for your home under £20! I hope you enjoy.

Copper Mirror HM

Copper Mirror// H&M £12.99

Copper Basket Matalan

Copper Basket// Matalan £4.00

Copper light Dunelm

Copper Light Pendant// Dunelm £14.99

Copper Cockatil Mug

Copper Cocktail Mug// Oliver Bonas £15

Copper Picture NOTHS

Copper Foil Poster// Not on the High Street £13.50

Much Love,

Judy xo

February Round Up!

I thought it would be a good idea to start a new blogging tradition of reflecting on the month past! I’m pretty sure this will evolve and change over time but I am super excited to share with you all the things that didn’t make it’s way onto my instagram or blog this month.

What I ate:

Ok, a serious amount of avo on sourdough was eaten courtesy of Middle Town Coffee, a new coffee shop that opened in our town just before Christmas. Ballymena has been crying out for a decent coffee shop for a long time and now it’s here, me and my fam are keeping it in business singlehandedly, as if we are letting this little gem go! If you are in the area, pop into Middletown for the tastiest flat white you will ever experience.

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On top of the avo eating, there was a serious amount of brunching happening with friends and of course a Ramore Wine Bar date for good measure! I feel like I am still recovering from that food coma!

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Of course, how could I forget Valentines Day! Again, showing our age, we opted for a brunch date at Bert’s Jazz Bar. Eggs Benedict, Bucks Fizz and smooth jazz. I couldn’t imagine a better way to have spent the day with Mr French Grey Lifestyle.

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What I did:

In between the manic days of the office we squeezed in a few dates. On Valentine’s Day after the aforementioned brunch, we went for a short walk and to see the Rembrandt Self Portrait in the Ulster Museum. The exhibition is on until the 13th of March. Great free day out and as an added bonus there are tasty tray bakes in the cafe!

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A big part of my life is promoting good Mental Health. It is of course part of the day job and one of my passions. I was very honoured to be asked to talk at a local Young Farmers Club to a group of young adults about Mental Illness and maintaining good Mental Health. As with everything to do with the YFC it was fantastic craic as well as informative. I had a blast.

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With regards to my home, I have started to add touches of Spring! It of course helps spur you on when an NI Home Magazine comes to take photos of your home (stressed.com) I will let you all know when it is published, have to say I feel equally excited/nervous about it!

What I wore:

Apart from my work clothes, I have been living in my jumpers, sneakers and leather coated trousers! I am becoming a creature of comfort as I head rather swiftly into my 27th year and I have to say I am loving it 🙂

The only outfit of note this month was what I wore to the NorLisa Fashion show (which I will tell you all about later) on Sunday past. I have never wore a pencil skirt in my life, I usually favour the fit and flare, but I did love this one from Primark, only £10 too, perfect.

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What I won:

Yes you actually did read that correctly… I won two things this month. One being my fab phone cover from Theodore Grey. It’s also in my favourite colour, what are the chances! It’s Crocodile leather with gold monograming. Pretty swish eh?

The other rather luxurious item was a breakfast in bed hamper from House and Hamper (of whom, I am now a huge fangirl). I just loved everything in it and it has opened up lots of new brands to me, especially the HOBO candle.

Whats happening in March?

Ah March, how can it be March already?? So it’s Hubby’s Birthday, NYC!!!! and probably a lot more coffee and avo dates with hubby and my sis.

Much Love,

Judy xo