More praise for our new site...
‘This is a great place to find a specialist restorer, an upholsterer, a house clearance service or items that can add those all-important final touches to your design scheme…the online service is free and very easy to use…’ says Design News in The Evening Standard’s Homes & Property.
The Sunday Telegraph magazine invites its readers to log on ‘ for access to more than 3,500 companies and services dedicated to making your home a better place.’
...for the garden

'Two strong trends have emerged this year: big use of foliage in varying shades of green - from the light greens of Caryopteris clandonensis (known as "Worcester Gold") to the rich and almost dense shades of foliage such as Euonymus “Green Spider”.  This creates a very calming, very earthy environment. Grasses like Pennisetum setaceum rubrum provide a wonderful, red-ish and green foliage. Libertia goldfinger is another gold option with it yellow and green blades.
The other trends is in topiary which has had a complete 21st century makeover, with strong sculptural shapes, very different from the classics one would expect'. Jack Belisario, Head of Design, Clifton Nurseries

Clifton Nurseries’ monthly Wednesday evening events are a great way to while away a summer’s evening. Their next one (23 July 6-8pm) will be particularly therapeutic: it’s on ‘Stress Free Living’, in conjunction with Daylesford Organic. There will be health tonics, massage treatments and gardening talks and workshops. For cost and to book call 020 7266 1932 or email:

This month don't miss

Exhibitions, sales, fairs, courses and events you should know about.

New Designers 2008 (3-6 July and 10-13 July), Business Design Centre, 52 Upper Street, Islington, London N1 . A showcase for this year’s brightest graduate talent. Part 1 features Contemporary Applied Arts, Ceramics & Glass, Textiles, Fashion & Accessories, Jewellery & Precious Metalwork. Part 2 includes Product Design, Furniture Design, Illustration and Animation, Graphic Design & Interactive Media, Photography, Spatial Design. For tickets log on to

Macmillan Dog Day (8 July, 3-9pm), Royal Hospital Grounds, London SW3
The House Directory is proud to be supporting one of the high points in the canine calendar. And of course we remind everyone that we can help source anything from day beds to dog beds ! We even cover every style - from the contemporary moulded polyethylene ‘Magis’ kennel from, to the pretty embroidered dog house from via the stylish one-stop ‘dog & cat outfitters’ For more info on the event, which raises money for Macmillan Cancer Research, go to

401 1/2 Studios Summer Open Weekend (10 July 6.30-9; 12-13 July 12-4), 401 Wandsworth Bridge Road, London SW8. Meet jewellers, silversmiths, painters, textile and ceramic artists in their own studios and buy or commission from them directly.

Hampton Court Palace Flower Show (8-13 July), This year’s attractions include the UK’s first Thai floating market (15 boats filled with Thai goods, from spices to silks); the RHS’ first scarecrow-making competition plus advice for growing your own fruit and vegetables. For tickets and more info go to

Memory Lane (13 July), Chelsea Town Hall, London SW3. A new event from the people who bring you the Frock Me! vintage fashion . There will be around 50 exhibitors selling vintage fashion & accessories, to classic retro furniture, radios, posters, lighting and all sorts of nostalgia as well as vintage-inspired modern designs.

Vilhelm Hammershøi: The Poetry of Silence (28 June-7 Sept), Royal Academy of Arts, London W1. The first Vilhelm Hammershøi (1864-1916) retrospective in the UK. Over 60 paintings (lots of his quiet, haunting interiors) spanning the career of this captivating Danish artist (whose top cheer-leader is Michael Palin).

Summer 2008 Antiques for Everyone (24-27 July), the NEC, Birmingham. 400 specialist dealers at the UK’s largest indoor, datelined event with more than 50,000 antiques on sale. Prices range from more than £100,000 for top-drawer art to less than £10 for Victorian novelties.

Sales Round-up on now; up to 15% discount on new orders and up to 50% off ex-display and clearance items. starts 14 July; up to 50% off selected table linen, linen curtains and clothing. starts 10 July for 3 days at BAC, Battersea Town Hall, London SW11; fabrics, wallpapers, furniture, accessories and ex-display items from Osborne & Little, Nina Campbell, Liberty Furnishing, Lorca and Michael Reeves Furniture. 28 June – 31 July; promotions on new orders and great savings on clearance pieces from top designers. to 30 July; up to 50% off ex-display and up to 25% off made to order upholstery. on now; 10% off all retail prices on selected items. 16 June – 31 Aug; up to 50% off on selected items; extra 10% off on Aug bank holiday weekend. until mid Aug; ex-showroom stock, returns, discontinued items and imperfect or damaged lights at a considerable discount. on now; 10% off all furniture and 20% off all lighting. 8, 9, 10 July at 38 Buckingham Palace Road SW1, 10:30am- 5pm selected cushions, quilts, rugs, fabric and embroidery materials from £10. to 28 July; up to 50% off on bed linen; towelling, bedspreads and accessories 30% off on selected items. from 1 July; up to 60% off on designer accessories for home and garden. 5-26 July; special opening 6 July Belgravia shop 11am– 4pm up to 40% off selected shop floor furniture; up to 50% off selected sofas and chairs, gifts and home accessories. now-19 July; cabinet handles & knobs from 99p; discount on ex-play items from Samuel Heath.
1-30 Aug. Huge savings on a complete range of products. until 12 July.15% off antique bedsteads and up to 25% off mattresses and linen. New and ex-display furniture and lighting at 30-50% discount
until 27 July. 50% off discountinued tiles, 40% off Shaker kitchens, 20% off selected wall & floor tiles

Sources of the month

Drummonds’ Chelsea showroom has been completely redesigned by Sophie Conran. As well as displays of their brassware and reclaimed stone and timber flooring, there are two floors of inspirational roomsets which combine Drummonds’ chic classicism with Sophie’s funky style (see the ‘girly heaven’ bathroom shown here). They are at 78 Royal Hospital Road, SW3. Their Caribbean bathroom features crisp white louvre shutters from another member company - Plantation Shutters, who also supply shutters for doors, Velux windows, screens, shaped windows and conservatories. The company also offer a brilliant affordable MDF product which is an alternative to wood if your budget is tight.