Thursday, August 29, 2013

And the winner of the giveaway is ..........

Announcing the winner of the recent giveaway brought to you by NOVICA

As usual, I have used to draw a lucky winner and here it is! The winner who will be receiving a $50 NOVICA gift certificate is

Madeline B.

Congratulations, Madeline! I will send you an email soon. Thank you so much to everyone who entered. I have another fabulous giveaway planned next Monday, so don't forget to stop by. Enjoy your day, my lovelies!

Guest post- Style vs. Function – Achieving The Perfect Balance For Your Kitchen!

It is a never-ending, all-encompassing dilemma – style or practicality? But when it comes to your kitchen, who says you can not have both? More and more people in the UK today are embracing home cooking, so we want our kitchens to be both stylish, enjoyable and functional.

Whether your kitchen is a traditional, rustic or a modern, contemporary affair, you want to ensure that your kitchen walks the fine line between style and function. Here are a few things to consider when planning your kitchen design.


Your kitchen has to store a lot of stuff. In order for your kitchen to function, you will need storage for food supplies, cutlery, crockery, utensils and appliances but if you have not considered your space and storage thoroughly, you could end up with a cluttered cooking area.

Cupboards are key for storage, and do not just limit them to ground level. Incorporate wall cupboards, tall cupboards and overhead cabinets to really make the most of your space and having them all the way up to the ceiling give you the added bonus of not having to clean the tops! Try to break up the cupboards with shelves to make the area look more varied. If you do not have enough wall space, you could alternatively consider adding free standing open shelving, which ensures that everything you need is at hand. As a bonus, it can also be used as a room divider if you have a large kitchen which you wish to split up.

Do not forget your appliances too – if you always have a kettle, toaster, blender and coffee maker lying around the place it can end up looking messy and cluttered, and takes up unnecessary space on the work surface. Try installing covered spaces or boxes which slide open to store these appliances in, so that you only have them out on the surface when you need them.

You could even use your storage as a display area – if you have fine china or ornate crockery that you want to show off, install some cabinets with glass doors or have some smart open shelves.


Also crucial when creating a livable kitchen space are surfaces to prepare and cook food on. Even if all you ever do in the kitchen is prepare yourself packed lunches, you will probably find that you will be grateful for all the space you can get.

Incorporate a kitchen island or breakfast bar. They can break up a kitchen's design and add extra preparation and storage space. They are multifunctional as well because it also serves as a place to have your meals.

When considering what material to use for your kitchen worktops, functionality should be at the forefront of your mind. You want a material which is easy to maintain, as this overall will look better than one which gets grimy and damaged easily over the years. If you are on a budget, laminate may be your best bet and if you have a bigger budget, invest in quartz worktops, which balance the natural beauty of stone with durability and easy maintenance. Avoid tiles, as the grout between them requires a lot of maintenance and steel because it will dent and scratch easily.


There are so many things you can do with light to ensure it is both stylish and functional. Try “task lighting” - using your light to highlight areas which you use during your cooking tasks, for example installing LEDs under your cabinets to beam down on the work surface below or fix lights so that they illuminate from behind shelves light up your equipment. To add a little panache to your kitchen lighting, hang a fixture over your kitchen island – if you are feeling flush you could hang a chandelier, but if not a quirky lampshade can work just as well.

Your main aim, however, should be to incorporate as much natural light as possible, as this is much better for your eyes than artificial lighting. Your kitchen should have plenty of windows; if this is not possible, consider a sun roof. Many people even have patio doors in their kitchen, which really allow the light to flood into the kitchen.


Choosing a color scheme for your kitchen space is your chance to put your stamp on it. If you do want to use a bold color  we would recommend mixing it with a more demure shade. For example, if you go for bright blue walls in your kitchen, keep your cupboards and surfaces a neutral grey color, to avoid the room looking too garish.

You can use color to highlight certain areas, and color blocks to break up the space. If you spend a lot of time in your kitchen, use a warm color such as a red or orange, to create a welcoming, cozy environment. Glass cooker splashbacks are a great way to add a spot of color to a dull looking kitchen. You can usually select from a wide range of colors and they are extremely easy to maintain and can handle the pressures of everyday cooking.

This guest post was written by Emma Williams, who recently renovated her kitchen, with the help of K100 Kitchens. K100 Kitchens specialise in creating beautiful, functional kitchens and offer free, no obligation quotes.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Guest post- Weird and wonderful ways to use artificial grass!

These days, more and more people are choosing to install artificial lawns over real lawns because its low-maintenance, eco-friendly, cost effective and very realistic. Fake grass was unheard of many years ago but now the trend has taken off all over the world so it is not uncommon to see a fake grass lawn in your neighbors back garden or the garden across the road nowadays. But you may be surprised at some of the other places were artificial lawns are cropping up.

Rooftop Garden

If you do not have the luxury of owning a garden then do not fear, create a rooftop garden by installing a grass surface and decorating with potted plants and garden accessories. You will never tell the difference.

Balcony or Terrace

If you live in a flat or apartment and miss the look and feel of grass, install it onto your balcony or terrace, that way you can have the best of both worlds.

Private Putting Areas

Calling all golfers how would you like to own your very own putting green? Use artificial grass to create a small private putting green for golf practice, you can do this in your garden or even indoors if you have the space, it will make a great place for you and your mates to practice a few drives.

Indoor Gym

If you are a bit of a gym buddy but like the outdoors, then artificial grass can create the feel of an outdoor workout whilst using state of the art equipment indoors.

Animal Play Area

Pets can have devastating effects on your lawn and carpet, so why not give your dog its very own play area. Fake grass is safer for pets and can be and is a lot more hygienic to clean.

Children’s Bedroom

If you have a child in your family who is a football fan then fake grass is great option for a children’s bedroom or a themed playroom. You can create a football pitch or a jungle by simply putting animal prints on the walls for boys and flowers and countryside rainbows for girls.

Chicken Coop

If you are a chicken lover but are fed up of them running your lawn then give them a fake grass to run. That way they are happy and the mess can simply be hosed down.

Play Area

Artificial grass is perfect for a children’s play area. It is a much safer option to put underneath climbing frames, slides and swings. You can relax in peace whilst the children play safely.

Swimming Pools

Artificial grass is water permeable and anti-slip so it is a great idea for putting around your garden pool. It is pretty, slip- free and you will have no more muddy wet patches on your lawn.

Business Marketing

When you look at photo shoots based on a lovely scenic background or on a greener than greener football pitch? Well it is fake grass. Believe it or not, fake grass is often used at promotional events, in TV commercial and photo-shoots.

Commercial Décor

Fake grass is just fantastic for market stalls and creating themed areas and window displays to showcase outdoor products such as bikes, BBQ equipment, outdoor play area and camping equipment.

Thanks to artificial grass’s low-cost, versatility and eco-friendly attributes, artificial grass is making a big splash in many unusual places.  Once thought to just be for sporting venues and the occasional front lawn, the uses for fake grass are endless!

This post was written by Amy Bennett who has recently invested in high quality artificial grass from Namgrass

Monday, August 19, 2013

A product review and a giveaway- NOVICA!

I am happy to collaborate with NOVICA again for another product review today. You can check out my previous review here

NOVICA is one of the leading fair trade artisan websites, working with National Geographic to give talented artisans around the world a place to express their artistic talents and provide access to the world market. You will find thousands of top fair trade corporate gifts, accessories, jewelry, apparel and home decor items on their website.

Now, let's take a look at some of my favorite NOVICA products, shall we?

Which item is your favorite? By the way, NOVICA is featuring these products so don't forget to check them out when you get a chance!

For this review, I was given a $50 gift certificate to spend on a product of my choice. After browsing their website for a while, I decided on this item for today's review.

My box came beautifully wrapped which is a great surprise to me!

The lovely doll gift topper is a great touch (I am definitely keeping it!).

A post card is included with my box as well.

Ta-dah, here is my gorgeous box!

The delightful details.

The box's interior.

I was immediately drawn to this gorgeous handcrafted box for its vibrant colors and beautiful, simple cubist style design. Painted by hand, the color combination is very charming and I like how the bright colors created a wonderful contrast against the dark wood. Made of pine wood, this box is solid and well-made. The box is also bigger than what I expected (which is a big plus!) and the lovely presentation brings a smile to my face. Needless to say, I am totally in love with my new decorative box! 

You can check out other fabulous products created by the same artist here. 

*I received this product to review for free but the views and opinions expressed are entirely my own.

If you are like me and love beautifully handcrafted items, you will love this giveaway because NOVICA is giving away a $50 gift certificate to one lucky Mix And Chic reader!
This giveaway is open to readers worldwide.*
*International winner will have to pay for taxes and duties.
To enter:
1. Be a follower of Mix And Chic via Google Friend Connect (click on the button located under 'Followers' on the right sidebar) and let me know your favorite item from NOVICA (with a link included). After you have done both, please leave a comment followed by your email so I can contact you if you win. 
 For example: I am now a follower of Mix And Chic via GFC and I love this item: 

(enter your email here)
(one basic entry)

For additional entries (an extra entry for each of the following):

2. 'Like' NOVICA on Facebook and leave a separate comment.
3. 'Like' Mix And Chic on Facebook and leave a separate comment. (If you are already following, please leave a separate comment to let me know as well.)

4. 'Follow' NOVICA on Twitter and leave a separate comment.

5. 'Follow' Mix And Chic on Twitter and leave a separate comment. (If you are already following, please leave a separate comment to let me know as well.)

6. 'Follow' NOVICA on Pinterest and leave a separate comment.

7. 'Follow' Mix And Chic on Pinterest and leave a separate comment. (If you are already following, please leave a separate comment to let me know as well.)

8. Mention this giveaway on your Facebook status (include a link back to this post and leave a separate comment.)

9. Tweet about this giveaway (include a link back to this post and leave a separate comment.)

You have a maximum of 9 entries.

The last day for entries is August 28, 2013. The winner will be chosen by and announced on Thursday, August 29, 2013. Good luck!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Guest post- Design ideas for compact bedrooms!

This article is provided by Simmone Vickers.

Since we spend around a third of our lives sleeping, it is understandable that we want our bedrooms to look good. From triple door wardrobes to beautiful laminate flooring; from elegant vanity tables to handy beside tables, a bedroom provides plenty of scope for great designs.

But what if you have a bedroom where space is at a premium? Luckily, there are some clever bedroom furnishings out there that are very effective at maximising the space in more compact rooms, so read our guide and create a stylish bedroom, regardless of its size!

Savvy Storage Solutions

Opt for a select few storage solutions that are as chic as they are useful. Keep an eye out for the foldable, stackable, roll-able and flexible and you can transform your room into a trendy space that has more than enough space for your belongings.

Go for sliding doors on wardrobes to eliminate space issues with doors that open out. Make the bed the central feature of the room and place bedside tables either side but be sure to leave space between the tables and bed to create the illusion of space.

You can also get bookshelves which you attach to the walls to stack books upwards as opposed to buying a separate unit. These make great stand out design features and give your bedroom a unique twist.

Beds with Storage

If space is limited in your room, it is worth investing in a bed with storage facilities. Multi-functional divan storage beds are perfect for smaller rooms, are available in a wealth of sizes and shapes and come with a diverse range of storage options.

Usually, divan beds come with storage drawers at the base of the bed, which are designed to be durable; meaning you can store heavier items such as shoes and books without a problem. They can also be used to store spare bed linen and children’s toys, helping you keep your rooms tidy and minimise clutter.

There is a vast array of divan beds on the market, so there is plenty of choice available. Top notch divan beds are crafted with high quality materials, have plenty of pocket springs (look for four figures for ultimate comfort) and combine practicality with style.

Walls and Floor

Since there is not much floor space, it is worth focusing on the walls, which can be decorated to really open up the room. Choose a bright, fresh colour scheme for the walls so that they make the most of the natural light – a natural base works well with a cool, light blue for example and will create a trendy, shabby chic bedroom.

Painting the walls with vertical stripes creates the illusion of space or you can break up the space by creating a feature wall using wallpaper, which will fool the eye into thinking the room is bigger than it actually is.

Using mirrors to create the illusion of space in a small room is a long-standing trick that really works so be sure to invest in a decent sized mirror that will immediately get to work, which will bounce the light around your room, making it feel spacious and airy. Use the light streaming in through the window to its full advantage by investing in curtain tiebacks too and let more light in.

Alternatively, try floor to ceiling curtains to give the illusion of height. For an additional light source, hang bedside lamps from the ceiling to maximise space or opt for freestanding light units with thin branches that distribute light throughout the room without taking up much floor space.

With the right furnishings and a bit of creative flair, a small bedroom can be both functional and stylish.

Disclaimer: I have received compensation in return for publishing this article.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Product review- Native Union iPhone 5 case!

Recently, I was contacted by a representative from Native Union for an iPhone 5 case review.

For this review, I get to pick a CLIC Wooden iPhone 5 case in a color of my choice. The collection comes in 5 stylish colors.

From left to right: Soft touch black, soft touch green, soft touch orange, soft touch aquamarine, high gloss white.

Very chic phone cases, don't you think? Which color is your favorite? I picked the high gloss white case for this review (although I also have a crush on the green! *wink*). 

My CLIC Wooden iPhone 5 case in its original packaging!

The back of the case.

The phone inside my new case.

A close up of the case.

This is a really unique phone case. I have seen a lot of wooden phone cases on the market but rarely one that combines natural materials with an accent color. I love this case for its simple design and stylish good looks. I like that it is handmade from solid cherry wood and provides a unique wood grain, a lovely contrast against the white accent color. The case is really easy to use and the quality is excellent. Highly recommended!

 *I received this product to review for free but the views and opinions expressed are entirely my own.

This fabulous iPhone 5 case retails for $39.99. You can get yours here. Happy shopping!

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Fabulous finds- Modern White Desks (In Every Price Range)!

I have been thinking about getting a glossy, modern white desk for the longest time. I have delayed my desk purchase because I really wanted to have a 'proper' home office before getting the 'perfect' desk. 

After many years of waiting, I have decided to get a desk pronto whether I am getting a designated room of my own or not! Since our home is short on space, I decided to move some furniture (with hubby's help, of course) to make way for a spot in our house to call my home office. 

I have been checking out a lot of white desks, from the super affordable to those that are out of my price range just to see what is on the market. If you are looking for a modern white desk with a sleek design as well, I hope you find today's post helpful. Below are my favorites:




Personally, I am gravitating towards white modern desks with interesting legs particularly those with x-bases, trestle legs or chrome bases and gorgeous hardware details. In a fantasy world, I would be getting one of the desks from the 'pricey' range. However, in reality, I will probably get a desk in the "affordable" range. 

The super chic and elegant 'Polished Brass & Lacquered Campaign Desk', is my most favorite! Every single detail on that desk makes me swoon. What about you? Which desk are you drawn to?