Thursday, 8 March 2012

INTERIORS - Indian Inspired Room for Blogger Challenge

So you may remember me telling you about a special blogger challenge I was taking part in, initiated by the lovely people at Cox and Kings (they organise the most amazing luxury holidays). My challenge was to decorate a room around the theme of a particular country chosen by the company which was India. India is important to Cox and Kings, they have a strong heritage there having been appointed travel organiser for the Foot Guards. 

The rules: I had £250 to spend and wasn't allowed to go over that amount or get anything given to me for free for the room. It needed to be completed by 9 March and then you'll be able to vote for your favourite room (mine hopefully) on the Cox and Kings Facebook page from 12-25 March. The winner will be announced on 26 March.

The prize: There are six bloggers and the entry with the most likes will win a weekend trip for two to Tallinn, Estonia. It sounds beautiful, described as 'a melting pot of history with medieval, soviet and modern influences!' I'd love to go... please do take a second to vote! 


My flat is very compact and it's rented so I hadn't paid much attention to decorating. I wasn't able to paint or wallpaper so my challenge was to create a new look with textiles and accessories alone. I also had an ugly fuse box on the wall and furniture which didn't really fit the 'India' theme. Unfortunately, £250 sounds like a lot of money but it's not enough to re-furnish a room so I have tried to work with what I have already. The High Street at the moment is filled with 'British' themed homeware due to the Olympics and Queen's Diamond Jubilee, so that provided another challenge. When it comes to my own personal style, India isn't somewhere that immediately springs to mind so I've taken lots of inspiration from the country - colours, fabrics and details - but avoided too much of a stereotype. It's still something that I can live with afterwards.

My shopping list:

Wooden elephant tea light holder, Camden Market: £15.99
Pink striped Indian throw, Camden Market: £9.99
Indian basket (bucket), Roberts Curios: £5
Indian Lute, Roberts Curios: £10
Indian decorative plate, Roberts Curios: £10
Indian sari fabric, Roberts Curios: £7
Pink beaded cushion, Marks and Spencer £29.50
2 cotton pillow cases in aqua, Marks and Spencer £8
2 cotton pillow cases in fuschia, Marks and Spencer £8
Cotton loop mat in fuchsia, Marks and Spencer £8
X2 Green printed mini vases, House of Fraser: £3.60
X2 scented candle votives, House of Fraser £12
Fjallsta picture frame, IKEA, £19.99
BILD poster, IKEA, £6
X4 faux flower stems, IKEA, £3.16
Wicker magazine rack, IKEA, £4.79
Scarf hanger, IKEA, £3.99
Bag to carry home my IKEA goods, 40p

Total spent: £249.90, 10p to spare!

More 'after' photos

The throw on the bed was a total bargain, it's super king size and can be used as a wall hanging, floor rug, throw or blanket. 

I had a set of perfume bottles already and the shape of them reminded me of the turrets in the Taj Mahal. This one is sitting on my desk by my lamp which is by Betty Jackson.Black at Debenhams, something else I already had. 

This bed linen is really luxurious but reasonably priced too. I just know the quality is going to be key in making it last and wash well.

A little elephant friend. This was pretty expensive for what it was, but it really caught my eye.

An Indian engraved bucket. I think I'll give this a polish and it should clean up nicely. 

A gorgeous, Indian sari fabric. The vibrant colours and shiny sequins make it a stand out fabric. It can also be worn as a skirt. 

Trinkets on display. I think I'll use the engraved bucket for a pot plant when I find a nice one. 


Time for tea... the caddy pictured isn't actually Indian (it's African) but the colours worked so well with my scheme.

A new picture from IKEA that proved somewhat difficult to get home on the tube! However, there are parts that look like peacock feathers and the peacock is the national bird of India.  

A pretty but battered decorative plate. This is going to need a bit of a clean-up, but I sort of love the rustic charm it has. It's a little bit bent and weathered but the design is lovely.

An Indian lute, which unfortunately doesn't carry a note these days.

Some faux blooms and soft lighting.

An explosion of colour in the form of pens and stationery. I'm obsessed with colouring pens... you'd think I was five years old!

My bargain throw, £10 in Camden Market!

The beaded cushion that started the 'pink' accents off. M&S had lots of lovely cushions to choose from.

I'm a Virgo and I love to be organised... even better when organisation is colourful and colour coded.

Inspired to go to India? Check out these fabulous India itineraries from Cox & Kings. Don't forget to vote for my room if you like it, visit and 'like' the Cox & Kings Facebook page from 12 - 25 March to vote.