This installment of 'objects of desire' is a two-parter as there was just so much to choose from! However, I'm not going to tell you which shop or range these are selected from until the end of the post. All of these items have been chosen for their excellent design and reasonable pricing. I hope it demonstrates that if 'designer' is not your thing, if you don't have lots of cash to spend on accessorising your home, or if you think its just obscene to pay £500 for a lamp, that there are other options for stylishly furnishing your home. As ever, these are my favourite pieces so yes, they tend to be neutral and mostly grey it seems, but things like the rug, mirror, sofa and dinner set all come in other colour options.
1. Living Retro Tripod Lamp (155cm) £29.99
2. Set of 3 Onion Vases (15cm) £9.99
3. Silk Touch Shaggy Rug (170x110cm) £69.99
4. Prestige Kettle £39.99
5. Tia Wall Art (60x60cm) £59.99
6. Living Maissance Leaning Mirror (160x72cm) £69.99
7. Milo Coffee Table (84x48cm) £12.99 (reduced from £39.99)
8. Felicity Large Sofa (80x181x92cm) £394.99
9. Max Grey 16 piece dinner set £29.99
So on to part two...
1. Grande Large Empire Shade (36x51cm) £80
2. Dani 2 Teir Cake Stand (26cm) £18
3. Onyx 4 piece Knife Set £25
4. Kilo Occasional Table (35x42x42cm) £25
5. Evelyn 100% cotton Cushion (45x45cm)
6. Deli Beaker in Spearmint £4.00
7. Garland Pendant Shade in Steel (60cm) £20
8. Oken Occasion Table/Tray (44x40x40 cm) £35
9. Syke 100% Egyptian Cotton Double Duvet Cover in Oatmeal £55.00 (pillow cases £11 each)
So where do all these gorgeous yet reasonably priced items come from? Are you sitting down because I think you're going to be VERY surprised. Argos. See, I told you you'd be surprised. The First selection is a straight made-for or regular bought in range and the second selection is from Habitat. Yep, you read that right too, Habitat now have a range of home accessories and furniture available through Argos. It's a brilliant piece of marketing for the previously struggling company. While physical stores have been reduced to just three outlets (all in London, Finchley, Kings Road and the flagship store on Tottenham Court Road) the range is now more widely available than ever. Argos might seem to be a bit of a low-brow choice, but I like to see it as democratic design for all. Why should good design be restriced to those in large cities, or with lots of cash? Habitat have selected partners (they have also teamed up with Homebase whose additional ranges include tiles, paint and wallpaper) that already have wide coverage in terms of outlets and Habitat items are now being seen by many more people that perhaps would have considered purchasing from them previously. Clever move, no?
Argos themselves do actually have some gems buried in the sea of chintz and kids toys and I throughly recommend a trawl through their extensive catalogue or website. Of course some of the Habitat items (furniture especially) will always be on the more expensive side but this is also reflected by higher quality, but put a £15 Habitat cushion next to a £12 Argos one and in some cases it's hard to tell the difference. So, hurrah for Habitat for taking the leap and hurrah for Argos and their hidden gems. And no, I never thought I'd say that either.
You can see the full Habitat range available in Argos here and you can explore the Argos site from here.