Shop inspiration: Anthropologie Bluewater







Recently I visited the newly opened Anthropologie in Bluewater. For me personally the location is so much better than going to London to get my dose of inspiration. I was speaking to a designer about lifestyle stores and Anthropologie in particular. They really have a great concept and it shows big time. I kept thinking about what is it this store/brand is doing that others don’t? What are they so good at? After the conversation, by the way it was an interview for High In Style..stay tuned, it hit me. Not only they curate beautiful products, they also create this amazing vibe in their stores. It’s the decor, the layout, the way how you move through the store, the music, the products that catch your eyes. You not only buy one of their products, you’re also buying a piece of their lifestyle. A little bit free-spirited, slightly bohemian and very colourful…lifestyle. There is so much on offer that probably anyone can resonate at least with one or two pieces, being a colourful bowl or simple and elegant white shirt. I’m not going to go in details here, I could write a very long blog post about “my favourite finds” but that’s not the point. You need to really experience it for yourself.

Previously only done by big department stores, this concept is still relatively new. Yes, there is The White Company and Laura Ashley that have been doing it for some time but they are so different. I think Laura Ashley really needs to get a grip and update their stores to catch the essence of their brand because whatever they’re doing, it’s not good enough. And the The White Company? They are definitely creating an amazing vibe but it’s not for everyone or all the time. Now and then when you look for something calming and white, yes definitely. But sometimes we all crave for something more, don’t we?  At least I do!!

Next time if you need some inspiration for your project, or are already working with a designer sourcing products, get your (and their) backside in your nearest Anthropologie store. You’ll be buzzing with ideas once you leave and maybe you have few products in your bag to start you off / or set you on the right path. xkb


ATD 01: The basic principle of choosing the right colour scheme

As High In Style is growing each day and demands more and more of my attention, I’ve struggled recently with finding time to keep Inside KB Studio on tract and updated. However, I’ve been getting more and more help with the mag, which is great. We are all on the same journey, totally believing in the mag’s mission. In return, I mentor and give guidance to the team, which is so much fun to do. I’m passing on everything I’ve learnt on my own life journey  so far and it’s truly rewarding to see the progress we are all making. With a fraction of my time spared, I can now, hopefully, refocus on creating great articles for here.

So I’ve decided to revive the “Ask The Designer” section of this blog first and really structure it better so it’s easier to follow. So today, I’m kicking this series off with one of the most confusing processes of a design project- choosing colours for your space. Now, while researching this, I found advice on how to paint swatches/paint samples on large pieces of paper, or painting directly on walls but I was quite surprised that not even one article mentioned the techniques I use. You get all the advice about how to paint large pieces of paper placing them on each wall, or to paint directly on walls, but what about the steps before that? Those vital steps that could safe you time and money, and help you to avoid mistakes? Where do you actually start?


I normally start with inspiration. And the best, and the easiest, source of inspiration,  I found with my clients, is art. Yes, there are other sources which I’m going to cover soon but for now, art always works for me. Art is so personal, it should be an expression of yourself. You should be able to see some of yourself in it. It should be “totally you”. There are 3 ways of obtaining such art: either you paint your own, find a piece that is already on the market, or hire an artist that fits your style to commission your own piece. Some artists like to know who you are before they start. They visit you in your home and talk to you about your lifestyle, your personality, travel and life experiences. They try their best to inject some of the key events / or influences of your life into the piece. Once you find it, use this ONE piece of art as your personal source of colours.


Yes, that many. Why? Because the next step is “the filtering”. But before that you need to pick at least 4 colours from different colour groups. Go by instinct. Don’t get confused and overthink every option. Your gut will do all the work for you. Don’t include any shades or tones. So if my piece of art has – purple, pink, green and navy that speaks to me the most, then these are my colours for now. When choosing the colours, consider which one would work well as a neutral and which one would be great as an accent colour.


Now the big one. The filtering system. You need to decide which one to put on walls and which one will be best as the accent colour. You need to be open-minded and not to limit yourself. Step outside of your comfort zone, if necessary. You might even surprise yourself with the result. If you really don’t know where to start, put all 4 on the walls to see how they would turn out in the space. You need to see and visualise how they would work in the room and what kind of vibe they create. If they are all strong, dark, or are primary or secondary colours, you have two options here: one – find a neutral colour as a base / for walls and floors and use these as accents only; two – go down few shades to get tones or tints depending on whether you want more warmer or cooler canvas. When it comes to working with shades and tones, don’t get yourself confused by getting too many swatches. Our brain can handle only few at times. I’d say 3 max. and eliminate as required. You are already on the right tract so you don’t need to get anymore and get yourself really confused even more.


Colour is very intuitive and very personal. Don’t consume or listen to other people’s advice. If you need help, you should seek guidance instead. For example, many are preaching about north-facing spaces are too cold and south-facing are too warm etc. You may be advised to use specific tones or shades for your room. Ditch that! Nobody can feel what you feel. You need to see how the colours work for YOU. If you follow these “rules”,  you are already limiting yourself subconsciously. You really need to feel the vibe yourself to find out if that applies to your space. What I do when I work with my clients is giving them guidance rather then rules.

Choosing your colour scheme can be a very confusing and stressful process. Hopefully, if you follow these techniques you will choose the right colour scheme for you and your home. Take your time and remember: be open-minded, try our various colour groups before you pick the right one for your walls and the rest, and most of all listen to your gut. xkb


Why I deleted over 300 blog posts

This blog post is for any blogger who just started out or has been writing and creating content for a little while already. I must admit that I’ve been thinking about this blog post for over a year now since it isn’t exactly a typical post from me. It’s one of these “should I or shouldn’t I write about this” posts. If you are one of my clients, please feel free to skip this one. I have some amazingly useful series for you coming up very shortly.

With the encouragement from a lawyer I met last week at one of the networking events I go to with my magazine, here it goes..

If you don’t know me or my story, I got into blogging almost 3 years ago. I wanted to write about my interior’s  inspiration, my style, projects and my business experiences from running 2 previous businesses. Because I didn’t know any better,  I took some of the formats of my blog posts from other bloggers out there, who have been doing it for much longer than me. I created, what I thought, inspirational digital moodboards, collages and wrote case studies. And to do that I used images which I found on the net. Over time my blog posts accumulated to over 500 posts, since I was blogging everyday. I wanted to get experienced in creating various content formats. To become faster and more creative. I was learning tons about the industry and particularly about myself.

Until one day, some 18 months later, I received an email. I was accused of copyright infringement on an image which I credited properly through a source I found online. Even though I got very suspicious of it, since they couldn’t and didn’t provide their UK trading details, I decided to remove every post with an image or images that didn’t belong to me. Yes, it was over 300 of them!! So much thought, work, time and energy went into them and they are gone. Off the website. Since then I’ve decided to only use my own images and photographs.

And so, if you ever receive such email, make sure that you check the legal aspect of the business. The things you should be looking for are: registered address, registered number, VAT number, business bank account in the UK, not abroad. Then go on the Companies House and verify that those details are correct and that they match up. Through this I found out that they didn’t match up at all. Plus, the only payment method they accepted was through a link, which was generated by Paypal. Red flags all over. Too many red flags actually.

After speaking to my accountant and a short telephone discussion with a lawyer I was advised not to respond. However, last week when I met the other lawyer who specialises specifically in copyrights and intellectual property, I was sharing my experience with her and found out that many people are so scared of the emails and letters that they pay out. I was told that there are many fraudsters using this aggressive method to get money out of bloggers and content creators knowing that they are not correctly informed. They target you specifically for this reason. They use website crawlers to identify images on their databases and identify them even if you screenprint, crop, alter or rename the image.

I see many blogs out there that use images credited as “source: Pinterest” or specific publication titles. As I’m now working on my own magazine I learnt this: The magazines don’t always necessarily own the images, the photographers are the main copyright holders. The images may have been used with permission from the photographer, but this doesn’t mean that they can be used with crediting the publication only. From this experience my advice to you is simple. Never use images which you don’t have copyrights on. If you really want to use a particular image, contact its owner and buy the copyrights, if necessary. Use it only on agreed platforms and in the correct format. Altering and renaming images may be prohibited by its owner, so have a clear understanding of what you can and can’t do with the images in question.

If you know that your blog has some images (lifestyle, editorials, situ and retail) which you don’t have copyrights to, remove them. Make it a priority and do it asap, so you avoid these emails landing in your inbox because they probably will catch up with you, even if you don’t have your email address or contact details publicly displayed on your website. From now on, create your own!

Hope you find this helpful. Please share this information, if you know someone who might benefit from it. xkb