6 reasons how having an interior designer can save you money

According to trend expert Li Edelkoort, our homes and the way we live in them are becoming increasingly important. The idea of the home as a haven away from the daily onslaught of modern life is more prominent than ever. We are more prone to entertaining at home and spending time at home than before. Most people feel that they are not able to afford a professional to help them make the most of their home. But what if I told you that a having a designer can save you money while creating a beautiful home environment?

All the pressures of beautiful homes in magazines, home tours on blogs and makeover shows on TV can make you feel that you lack in some way. Everyone has their strengths, and for an interior designer, that is being able to visualise a space and bring it to its full potential. Even if you do know how to put a colour scheme and textiles together and have a natural feel for the right layout, you can still benefit from having a trained eye assess your home.

tiny kitchen

Before we go into how an interior designer can save you money, let’s first look at how a designer charges you for their services.


Let me start by saying that there are no hard and fast rules on this. While every country’s interior design governing body gives guidelines on reasonable rates, it doesn’t mean that designers have to apply them. Some celebrity designers may charge a fortune only to go to a client’s house and give a few ideas, but not all designers have quite reached that level of fame yet.



Most designers will work in one of four ways:

  • Hourly rate

If the project is quite small and requires a few minor adjustments and some technical drawings, your designer might charge you an hourly rate. This can range from R400ph – R1,200ph or more, depending on their level of skill and availability.

  • Project fee

When there is little or no procurement involved in a project, your designer might suggest a project fee related to a fixed scope. This might be something like layout and services drawings and specs for your kitchen and bathroom, and overseeing the installation or project management. The designer will then quote a flat rate for the work to be done. There is no real guideline on how much this should be, but it is usually related to how much time they think they will need to spend on getting it done.

  • Percentage of Project Cost

If the project involves a lot of procurement, then your designer will likely propose a percentage fee for purchases. There can be a lot of back-and-forths when it comes to choosing curtains and upholstery fabrics, paint and finishes, which means a lot of time spent. The designer gets a discount on most purchases (see notes below) and will charge you either the retail price plus a handling fee or the discounted price plus a handling fee. The exact details of this can be discussed on appointment.

  • A Smorgas Board of all of these

As I said, there are no hard and fast rules! Many designers prefer a combination of all of these: an initial fee for concept and design, a project cost fee for procurement and project management, and an hourly rate for anything that falls outside of the original scope. It is best to be very clear with your designer when you start the project, and also to have a clear contract that stipulates everything that forms part of the project. A clearly defined scope and fee structure will help to protect you both.


So now that you know how a designer will charge, let’s look at how they can save you money!



1) A designer can help you to avoid costly mistakes

You know that sinking feeling when that GORGEOUS sofa in the showroom arrives at home, and it can’t fit through the door? Or that imported carpet is laid down in the living room and what you thought is soft coral is actually bright orange? There you go. Designers will help you to avoid that sinking feeling.

2) The Technical Details Get Taken Care of

A designer’s value is not only relevant to the furniture and its placement in a room. The correct electrical layout and plumbing positioning is also crucial in getting the most out of your home. A trained designer understands the technical jargon of the contractors on a job site. This makes them a valuable asset on your project. They will help you to think through the uses of the room to create the optimal layout for all components involved. That way you won’t have an extension cord to power a table lamp from the other side of the room!

grey paint

3) Discounted services and materials

Designers get what is called a designer’s discount. This is a special rate that most specialist retailers of homeware, fabric, and related services offer to designers as an incentive to specify them on their projects. The discounts can range from 5 – 50%, depending on the retailer. Some designers do open invoicing. This is where they charge the client their discounted rate, plus a handling fee of between 8 – 13%. I go into more detail on that below. Designers can also be registered as contractors with hardware stores, enabling them to purchase building materials at a reduced rate.

So, by paying someone to help you source goods for your home, you actually save money. Clever, isn’t it?!


room makeover


4) The Latest and the Greatest

This might not seem like a cost-saving, but designers are regularly invited to trade-only product launches and events. This allows them to be at the forefront of new advances and technology in their field. You will therefore not have something installed only to find a better version is about to render yours obsolete next month.

providence cottage

5) Time is – TOTALLY – money

Everyone wants more time and more money. The amount of time a designer can spend on a project is staggering. It can take days to put together a concept and a layout and do the detail design and technical drawings. Then they still have to find that perfect sofa, get the right fabrics, and try out different paint swatches. They also communicate with contractors and suppliers and spend their time with you to bring your vision to life. They are saving you the time that you would have spent doing all of that.


6) Pre-Qualified Contractors

A designer is only as good as their last project, so it is in their best interest to only use contractors, tradesmen, and artisans that they trust. By allowing them to use and manage their own list of professionals you are set up for a beautiful result.

summer christmas tree

I hope that this has shed some light on the myth that interior designers are expensive. Your home is an investment, and the right designer can help you create both a financial and lifestyle asset. Contact me here to find out more about our interior design services, whether for a single room or an entire home!


PS: the gorgeous feature image was taken at  Woodbender‘s new showroom in Strand. Just one of the many suppliers we LOVE to work with! g

Spring Sweet Potato Bread Buns

Since Spring is in full swing, I thought of making something for a lazy warm weekend. However, it doesn’t look like the weather’s letting up! So, while it’s still feeling a bit like winter, the bready goodness of these sweet potato bread buns is comforting enough. Especially with a little bit of cheese and loads of butter!

Home Baked Bread with Herbs and Edible Flowers - Homeology

Light and Fluffy Sweet Potato Bread Buns with Herby Toppers

Makes 12 buns


  • 3 cups Bread Flour
  • ¾ cup Sweet Potato (cooked & mashed)
  • ½ cup Coconut Flour *
  • 1 Egg
  • ½ cup Warm Water (not too hot)
  • 1 tbsp Sugar
  • 2 tbsp Coconut Sugar**
  • 10g Yeast Sachet (active or instant)
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • Extra Flour for kneading (I used 1/2 cup)
  • Olive Oil for coating
  • Toppers:
  • Fresh herbs like organum, thyme and parsley
  • Sea Salt
  • Butter, always butter

* You can substitute the coconut flour with more bread flour and add another egg. Coconut flour gives a fluffiness to the bread.
** You can also use brown sugar. Coconut sugar has a lovely treacly taste that I like.


  1. Combine the white sugar, yeast and warm water and leave until bubbly (about 5 minutes).***
  2. Blend in mashed sweet potato, coconut sugar, and egg.
  3. Add in the coconut flour, bread flour, and salt. Mix slowly until it just comes together. You can use an electric mixer or spoon. The dough shouldn’t be too sticky, so add more flour if you need to. I added about half a cup extra.
  4. Dust a clean surface with flour, flour your hands and place the dough in the centre.
  5. Knead the dough for roughly 5 minutes. Yay for elbow grease!
  6. Lightly oil a bowl, put the ball of dough inside and cover it with a damp cloth.
  7. Leave to proof for 1 hour. In the meanwhile, butter a baking tray.
  8. Set the oven at 180°C.
  9. Give the dough a last quick knead and roll into small balls and place onto the baking tray.
  10. Arrange a variety of herbs on top of the rolls and sprinkle with coarse sea salt.
  11. Place in the oven and bake for 20 – 30 minutes until a knife comes out clean.

*** If you’re using instant yeast you can just mix all the ingredients together as the yeast will activate during the kneading process.

Snack Buns with Edible Flowers

Serve with cranberry cheese (I love Fairview’s cheese!), mixed leaves and julienne cucumber.

Happy eating!



How to Do The Tropical Trend for Grown-Ups

I love botanical prints and leafy greens – both on my plate and in my home. The tropical trend has been going for a while now, but I am a bit over the pink flamingoes, and banana-leaf scatters. That’s not all that this trend is about, however! Here’s my take on the Tropical Trend for Grown Ups, with a get-the-look shopping list and all!

Oversized with Velvety Coral

Kim Macumber Interiors via Cottage & Bungalow

This image screams gorgeous beaches and pina coladas! The large-scale wallpaper print is the hero of this room, with everything else carefully selected around it. The gold furniture and accents add a sophisticated touch to an otherwise light-hearted look, and the soft coral accessories contrast beautifully with the lush greenery.

PRO TIP: keep your floor finish in mind as well: sisal, coir and seagrass rugs add the perfect final touch to your tropical vibe.

Take It Literally

large leaves in vase on table

Turbulences Deco

Even if you have an otherwise minimalist or Scandi interior, add some large green leaves to celebrate the trend. Large banana and delicious monster leaves, as well as strelitzias, are on sale at most large retailers and florists now. So, even if you are not lucky enough to have them in the garden, you can still have them on the table. The amazing thing about leaves like these is that they last for months! Just make sure that you give them fresh water every week.

SIDE NOTE: see how the theme is subtly emphasised in the print on the wall? Clever, isn’t it!?

Go Blue


It may sound counterintuitive when you think of tropical green, but topaz offsets green stunningly! Use rich topaz paint on walls to support green prints, or in upholstery pieces and furniture. Topaz pops especially when set against white, so trim architectural features in white to get the most out of this colour.


Another colour that gently mutes the deep green of the tropics is pale teal. This works especially well in a bedroom, creating a calming atmosphere conducive to rest and relaxation. Add subtle tropical touches with prints and plants, and keep the rest of the palette neutral with grey, olive and sandy colours.

Accessorize Boldly

Fashion for lunch

A tropical look is not only in printed flora; it is also represented by colour. Brilliant emerald green embodies the look, and should be used with reckless abandon! Create a statement with lush accessories in rich fabrics like velvet, set against a blank canvass. Choose gold accent pieces and keep the rest of the colours in the room to a minimum for maximum effect.

Get The Tropical Look With Some Local Shopping




If you’re still unsure about how to put this look together for yourself, try our design service and let us do it for you!

10 Female Artists making Waves at the State of The ART Gallery

Whether it’s time to rally a community or motivate solitary meditation, art can evoke engagement and excite society. In a country where we’re only now beginning to understand one another, art can be a helpful tool to bridge the gap.

10 Emerging Female Artists have been shortlisted for the State of The ART Gallery Award 2018, and we feel privileged to gush about our South African talent. These artists work across a variety of mediums and have creative narratives unique to their style. The finalists explore themes of identity, the physical body, our shared South African history, and the wonder of the natural world. Find out more about the State of the ART Gallery Award here.

State of the Art Gallery

Here are the 10 finalists and a peek of their artwork on exhibit at the State of the Art Gallery this September!

Jo Roets

Jo Roets Ndebele inspired clay sculpture - Homeology

Delicate and precise – this is the essence of Jo Roets’ work. She is interested in the perfect geometric patterns of nature and symbols derived from traditional South African cultures. The selected artworks on exhibit are part of her paper-thin light relief sculptures inspired by historical shapes like crocheted doilies and Ndebele designs. To Jo Roets, botanical elements can instil calmness in its viewer. Roets is driven to create a connection between culturally different people in her work.

Janna Prinsloo

Janna Prinsloo mixed media artwork - Homeology

Fascinated with the inner world of individuals, Janna Prinsloo aims to “represent hidden truths and personal, internal realities”. Inspired by walks in nature, Janna believes that art can speak, and she hopes to be a positive and uplifting voice.

Anna-Carien Goosen

Anna Carien Goosen Art

Moving between realism and abstraction, the work of Anna-Carien Goosen has a sublime surrealistic point of view. Through the habit of people-watching, Goosen is inspired to create artwork that captures the complexity and constant movement of the world.

Nadine Hansen

Nadine Hansen - Homeology

Motivated by emotion and philosophy, the work of Nadine Hansen is influenced by meaningful encounters in her studio. The human existence and its situational essence make up the core of her work, with conceptual self-portraits being frequently featured. Nature’s brilliance often complements Hansen’s primary subject as she has “discovered many natural wildlife traits which reflect the human psyche”.

Lezanne Kotze

Lezanne Kotze - Homeology Art

Forever exploring her creative boundaries, Lezanne Kotze aims to gain insight into her artistic narrative while creating art that is engaging. Kotze plays with the juxtaposition of organic and geometric forms in her work with the indigenous flora of the Western Cape as her muse. Oil paint is her favourite medium; its long drying time allows her the freedom to evolve her paintings.

Adele van Heerden

South African Artists

Described as a “confrontation with the past”, the work of Adele van Heerden is a highly personal response to social, political and historical events. Soft florals and light-hearted toy-soldiers are contrasted to controversial South African monuments. Van Heerden hopes to encourage thought and discussion through her work.

Anina Deetlefs

Anina Deetlefs - Homeology

Moving from a fashion and interior design background, Anina Deetlefs finds inspiration in her loved ones. Deconstructed in aesthetic, Deetlefs’ Skin-series represents a stage in her own life; that of home renovation and uncovering the true essence of self.

Lebogang Mabusela

Lebogang Mabusela

Sculptor and paper artist, Lebogang Mabusela, works to reclaim and re-imagine South Africa’s traditional visual culture and heritage. Aiming to challenge conceptions around womanhood and femininity, Mabusela creates thought-evoking pieces by using doilies. Doilies as the symbol of femininity in Mabusela’s art tell the story of African feminism.

Tina Teles

Tina Teles

Women’s struggles and the human mind are what motivate Tina Teles to create. Sonder is a word that drives Teles; it relates to the “realisation that every passer-by lives life as vivid and complex as your own”. This principle makes her work intrinsically individual. Teles places emphasis on women that are in South Africa due to the African Diaspora.

Chloe Obermeyer

Chloe Obermeyer

A lover of the natural world, Chloe Obermeyer combines her fascination of cyanotype with other mediums to create oceanic scenes. Southern African oceans and coastlines make up her subject matter as Obermeyer circumnavigates scientific discovery and concern.

Read more about these ten fascinating ladies on the State of the Art Gallery website and follow their journey to the Award.

Join the event online and visit the Gallery this September!

When: 6 – 22 September 2018.
Where: 50 Buitenkant Street, Cnr Roeland & Buitenkant Street, Cape Town.
Gallery hours: 10 – 5 Mon to Friday, 10 – 2 Saturdays or by appointment

Cheesy Flourless Fajitas with Guacamole & Salsa

You know those evenings when you realise that you forgot to take something out of the freezer to cook for supper, and then you remember that the microwave is broken so you can’t quickly defrost something? On nights like these, eggs are usually my go-to. But not all my boys enjoy this most versatile of foods as much as I do. So huge was my surprise when there were only empty plates left after this experiment! Avos are in season, and we had a lot of tomatoes in the fridge. So I decided to make cheesy egg tortillas with guacamole and fresh salsa. Quick, easy and packed with flavour! And it’s vegetarian without losing those all-important proteins!

flourless egg tortillas

Cheesy egg tortillas with guacamole and a fresh salsa


To serve 5, you will need for the tortillas

  • 10 eggs
  • 1 cup of grated cheddar cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste


For the Guacamole (this is my own recipe, I can’t vouch for its authenticity!)

  • 2 ripe avos
  • a garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • a small green chilli, chopped (optional)
  • milk*


For the salsa

  • 2 large ripe tomatoes
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 small onion
  • A handful of fresh coriander
  • 1 red apple
  • Half a cucumber
  • 1 small green chilli, chopped (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider or balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

egg tortilla with cheese

To Cook the Tortillas:

Turn on the grill and prepare a baking tray.

The tortillas have to be made one by one. Whisk two of the eggs together, and season with salt and pepper. Heat a dash of oil in a pan, and add the egg mixture. Swirl the mixture in the pan like you would a pancake. Cook until you can easily lift the pancake, and then gently flip it over. Cook on the other side until golden brown. Once cooked, remove from the heat. Put a generous portion of cheese on the tortilla and fold in half, then in half again and place on the baking tray. Repeat until you have 5 or 6 folded, cheesy tortillas. Once you have finished making all the tortillas, place them under the grill until the cheese is oozing out.


To Make the Guacamole:

Place all the ingredients for the guacamole into a food processor and blend until smooth. *If it is very thick, I add a little bit of milk. That’s it!

For the Salsa:

Finely chop all the ingredients, and place in a bowl. Dress with the vinegar and oil. Taste your salsa! If it is very tart, you can break the acidity with half a teaspoon of sugar. If your tomatoes and apples are very ripe and sweet, this shouldn’t be necessary.

flourless tortilla, quacamole and salsa

Serve each tortilla with a dollop of guacamole and a spoonful of fresh salsa.

NOTE: this is the child-friendly-low-chilli version. To spice things up, add some more chillis to the salsa, and flavour the guacamole with Tabasco! 🔥🔥🔥

Happy Cooking!



Pretty Playroom Makeover for Playful Young Minds

It’s finally here – the playroom we’ve been tweaking over this past month. Thanks to Builders Warehouse we made a couple of handy additions to the playroom all by ourselves! We absolutely love going to Builders Warehouse, the BIGGER, the BETTER! They have everything from paint and hardware, to home-ware, gardening goodies and even décor.


playroom overall view

We started off with the most prominent part of the playroom: the media console. The TV-stand took one full day to complete, and it was a bit of a challenge due to nearly-defeating flu-season. Unfortunately, no one I know proved immune this year (holding thumbs for next year). The full tutorial will follow next week, so keep an eye out for it!

The cute little denim storage baskets were the perfect thing to complete the TV stand. You can honestly never have too much storage in a playroom. Or any room for that matter!

With the TV-stand all set-up, our belt-shelf could finally take its place with pride. This is one of the most cost-effective storage solutions we’ve created to date. It’s perfect to store items out of reach from curious little fingertips. See the hanging shelf tutorial here.



Two of our favourite items on the hanging shelves are the Anthropologie-inspired Boho baskets. I love how the pompoms add a soft touch to the boys’ playroom, and it was so easy to make! If you feel like updating your own tired baskets, see the Boho Basket How-To here.

wallpapered wall with hanging shelving

We thought the wallpaper was a bit much when we saw it in Builders Warehouse, but as soon as we started with the installation, we realised that it was perfect! We know: lucky us, right? Doing your own wallpaper installation can be tricky, which is why you need a little guidance. It was my first installation, but fortunately, Germarie has quite a bit of wallpapering experience. Get expert tips and wallpaper installation advice here, – we even made a video!

We love the result! The wallpaper looks so impressive next to the kids’ teal lockers!




An absolute must-have in any home is a fluffy carpet! Red is the perfect colour with a vibrancy that will launch the kids into play heaven. Plush fibers are so inviting that everyone just ends up spending time on the ruby rug instead of the sofa. Which is a sofa bed, by the way. You can also never have too many beds for sleep-overs! I put a denim cover on the seat of this one to protect the fabric from little monsters 😉


Tassels and pompoms are what dreams are made of! Well, mine are. Home Fabrics was kind enough to give us this pretty pompom fabric (Bambino Chouchou in Sky) for an Ideas project we did recently (soon to be published in Ideas Junior!). Luckily, we had some left over for cushions for the playroom. I love the brightness these scatter cushions add to the room like little clouds of delight!

Germarie recently received a cute little cushion from Mary Interior Decorator and, by sheer serendipity, it matched our colour scheme! Lucky again! So, naturally, it had to form part of the playful space. We love it!


The playroom is nearly complete, with only an enormous world map and photo gallery still missing. We’ll be sure to post those as soon as they arrive! For now, the canvas (made from a shower curtain!) is hanging on the world map’s place. It’s enormous and has a colourful geometric print – perfect for this huge wall! To make your own oversized wall art, just follow the canvas DIY here.

Kids Study Corner

Speaking about art, kids should have an area where they can explore their creative side. Often a floor will suffice, but with eager little artists, organising is key. The study corner doubles as a young artist’s refuge. A small polka-dot mat makes the corner feel special and a touch unique. See the quick tutorial here.

industrial tap hold-backs


Oh, and of course these darling little curtains hold-backs are the easiest thing! Made by fixing an industrial tap to a u-bracket, they look great in this fun room!

That’s it! We are super happy with the playroom – but of course, more importantly, so are the kids. The ample storage makes it easier for them to keep their things off the floor and mom happy. Bonus!

Happy Playing!

All materials for this project were generously sponsored by Builders Warehouse.

A Quick Guide To DIY Wallpaper Installation

Wallpaper is not that big in South Africa, so when I first moved to England and saw it installed everywhere, I fell in love! Back home, however, supply and demand cause wallpaper to be super expensive, with most of the designs being imported. But on a recent trip to Builders Warehouse, I found a very cool geo pattern that I knew would transform our playroom! Installing wallpaper is actually very easy, you just have to have a bit of patience, and make sure that you measure carefully. Here’s our step-by-step guide to DIY wallpaper installation!

Click the video below to see how we did it in less than 1 minute! 😉


You will need:

  • Wallpaper (see below calculation for the quantity)
  • Wallpaper paste
  • Large brush
  • Cloth
  • Craft knife
  • You will also need:
  • Bucket and spoon
  • Large flat surface to prepare the paper

Wallpaper quantity calculation:

Take the width of the wall, and divide it by the width of the wallpaper. Round up to get the number of drops.

For the length of each drop, take the height of the wall and add the pattern repeat onto it. This will be the length of each drop.

Now, take the length of the roll of wallpaper and divide it by the length that you got in the previous calculation – round down the answer! This will give you the number of drops per roll.

Now go back to the number of drops that you need and divide that by the drops per roll to get the number of rolls.


My wall is 3650mm width x 2800mm height. My wallpaper is 540mm wide x 10m long, with a pattern repeat of 460mm.

2550 ÷ 540 = 4.7, so I will need 5 drops.

2800mm (height) + 460mm (pattern repeat) = 3260mm length per drop.

10m (roll length) ÷ 3260mm (length per drop) = 3.06, so I can get 3 drops out of each roll.  

5 drops needed ÷ 3 drops per roll = 1.66, so 2 rolls


Prepare the wall surface by removing any nails and brushing to remove dust.



cut wallpaper

Cut the wallpaper to size, according to your calculations above.



spirit level

Use a measuring tape and spirit level to create a line 500mm away from the wall or edge. Walls are not necessarily straight, so you always start with the second drop, never with the first!



wallpaper paste

Prepare the wallpaper paste according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Then use the large brush to apply the paste to the back of the cut wallpaper drops, making sure that you get all the edges of the paper as well.

PRO TIP: fold the paper over on itself as you go. It won’t get stuck, promise! Fold the right edge all the way to the middle, and then fold the left edge all the way to the middle. Fold the sides toward the middle two more times, and then fold the 2 heaps with their backs against each other. This will make it really easy to just grab the top edge of the paper when you’re ready to install!

Let the paper soak for a while – this will help to prevent air bubbles from forming. Then paste 2 or 3 more drops before you start to install.



wallpaper installation

To install the paper, take the whole folded stack and climb onto your ladder (get someone to stabilise the ladder for you!). Once you’re in place, grab the top edge of the paper and let the rest drop. Then press the paper against the wall in line with the pencil line you drew in step 3. Give yourself some excess at the top; this will make lining up the next drop easier. Once this drop is in place, you can install the drop to the edge in the same manner.



lining up wallpaper pattern

Keep installing the subsequent drops, taking care to line up patterns and keeping everything straight.


wallpaper trim

Trip the top, bottom and sides with a craft knife. Be careful not to tear the paper – it is easier to do when the paper is not so wet!

wallpaper wipe down

Wipe away any excess glue with a damp cloth.

Happy Wallpapering!


Crème Brulee with Creamy Coconut

I’ve had an obsession with crème brulee since the first mouthful. The creaminess, the sweetness and the crunch! But now, all the creaminess and sugary goodness leaves me feeling not all that great. So, to soothe my addiction craving I’m making a healthier alternative. But my, oh my! This coconut hybrid might be better than the original – dare I say it! I doubt life can get any better than this.

Coconut Cream - Homeology

Here is my Crème Brulee with a Tropical Touch:

  • 5 Egg yolks
  • 1 can Coconut cream (400ml)
  • 3 tbsp honey
  • Salt
  • 3 tsp vanilla

The great thing about making your own cream custard base is that you can use it as you would a normal custard, or make a crème caramel or crème brulee.



For the top:

  • Strawberry
  • Passion fruit
  • 2 Ginger Cookies
  • 1 tbsp Castor sugar

Coconut Creme Brulee with Ginger Cookie Crumble and Passion Fruit - Homeology



To Make:

  1. Preheat the oven to 160°C.
  2. Separate the eggs. (Keep the egg whites to make something meringue-y or a to make a fluffy Frittata)
  3. Beat the egg yolks and honey until creamy.
  4. Heat up the coconut cream, vanilla and salt on a low heat. Once it starts to simmer remove from heat.
  5. Slowly (teaspoon by teaspoon) blend ½ cup of the warm cream into the egg mixture.
  6. Slowly add the rest of the cream to the egg. Don’t blend it too vigorously because it will cause bubbles that you don’t want.
  7. Boil the kettle.
  8. Pour the custard into clean ramekins.
  9. Place the ramekins on a deep oven dish.
  10. Add enough hot water until it covers the ramekins up to half way.
  11. Put in the oven for 40 – 60 minutes. Or until the custard is just set – still wobbly. (Mine took 55min).
  12. Once they’re done, refrigerate for 1 hour minimum.


The Crunchy Top:

  1. Finely crumble ginger cookies and mix with castor sugar.
  2. Give the custards a light dusting.
  3. Use a blow torch to caramelize the sugar top or place the ramekins underneath a broiler for 5 minutes.

Coconut Cream Creme Brulee with Ginger Cookie Crumble - Homeology

Serve with fresh strawberry, passion fruit or as it is!


Happy Eating!


How to make a colour-dipped beaded chandelier

We have done many lights on the blog that by now, we don’t know where to put them anymore! This one that Margaux did for our book a few years ago has always been a favourite though. The Beaded Chandelier-trend, inspired by the Mud Chandelier, is still going strong and this beauty is suitable for both a formal and informal setting. Play around with the colours to suit your interior, and remember to enjoy the process! g x

This post was originally written by Margaux Tait and published in October 2015.

How to make a colour-dipped beaded chandelier

I simply love re-purposing items in a clever and unexpected way! This chandelier is a perfect example of how you can put an old, outdated lamp shade to good use. All it needed was a little magic with colour dipped fabric and marbles – yes, marbles!


It’s one of the featured projects from our book, so go on and get your copy packed with 75 DIY projects! There are some more awesome colour dipping projects in there!


Firstly I have used strips of inexpensive fabric lining and rolled marbles up in them secured by a knot. This knotting technique makes beautiful strings of fabric covered beads to decorate the structure of the chandelier.


With the structure done it was now onto giving it some colour. I did the colour dipping by diluting Chalk Paint with water. I used Henrietta mixed with Provence to create an ombre effect that has a contemporary feel.


To finish off the chandelier, I did colour dipping on strings of paper clips. I used Antoinette for the top pink part and Duck Egg Blue for the bottom. Then I created an elongated tail of paper clips at the bottom dipped in Paris Grey, finishing off the piece beautifully.


This is the perfect show stopper for my home and was lots of fun to do!


Happy styling,


Create the Cutest PolkaDot Doormat Ever

Doormats don’t have to be boring. I believe that a doormat is essentially the first glimpse a guest will have of your home. So, why not make it as inviting and fun as possible? We were so inspired by Anthropologie’s doormat that we decided to make it ourselves. This little polka dot doormat is the sweetest little thing – perfect to add a welcoming touch to your front door.

polkadot rug playroom

If you fall in love with your new mat as we did, you can use this darling little rug anywhere in your home!


Here’s how to make the Cutest Polka Dot Mat

Difficulty: easy

Time: 20 minutes


You need:

  • Sisal or coir mat
  • Scissors
  • Permanent marker
  • Twine
  • Pencil, or a pointy object (a large drill bit can also work)
  • White paint
  • Small roller sponge
  • Tape measure



The Cutest Polka Dot Doormat

Lay the mat face down on the floor and measure the mat’s width (the shorter length). Divide this measurement by two to establish the radius of your circle. Find the middle of the circle by marking the radius from the width and the length of the mat.


Cut a piece of twine slightly longer than the radius. Make a loop on one end and tie the other end to the marker.


Press your pencil or pointy object on the middle of the mat and place the looped twine over the pencil. Move the marker around the centre point to form a circle. Once you feel confident that the circle won’t be cut-off at one end, draw the circle.

Pro Tip: Avoid a wonky mat by keeping the pointy object and marker upright while drawing the circle.


The Most Welcoming Polka Dot Doormat

Cut out the circle.

The Cutest Polka Dot Doormat DIY

Fold the mat in half to ensure that there are no odd edges. If there are, just snip them away with the scissors.


Create a Beautiful Polkadot Mat

Use the edge of a small roller for the polka dots. Dip the edge of the sponge into white paint (not too much paint) and do a few tester dots on paper to determine how saturated your sponge needs to be.

Lightly press the edge of the sponge to the carpet and quickly, but carefully lift the sponge. Work your way around the mat in a grid until the dots are complete. Let the paint dry.

polkadot rug with dog

That’s it; you are ready to show off your new Polka Dot Doormat! Now head to the kitchen and bake a lot of cookies because guests will be streaming in 😅


Happy DIYing!



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