Home for Now London Launch

1. Launch Party Opening Shots Home for Now book by Joanna Thornhill, as seen on Stylist's Own blog

Last week (well, a little longer than that now – where did that time go?!) saw the culmination of a year’s blood, sweat and tears, as I wet my book-baby’s head at my very own launch party! As mentioned in my last post, I held it at the gorgeous Thornback & Peel shop, in a tucked-away corner of charming Bloomsbury. I was blown away by the great turnout and reception it received – it’s impossible to be objective about a project you’re so close to, but the reaction (and sales) have left me assured that I’ve created something that will hopefully help inspire many home-for-now’ers throughout the land! For those who couldn’t attend, here’s how it all went down:

I wanted to bring elements of the book to life for the launch; in particular the back wall, where I was keen to create a ‘living book cover’. I opted to paint the back wall of the shop in a hue that matched the book cover itself, to create a focal point, eventually settling on Dulux‘s Amazon Beat 3. A gorgeous light blue/grey, it changes its tone with the light and perfectly represented my cover photography. The cardboard and rusty metal letters spelling out the book title, all from REfound Objects, speak for themselves, and the rest of the wall was decorated using elements that also feature within the book (more on that further down).

2. The Windows opener Launch Party Opening Shots Home for Now book by Joanna Thornhill, as seen on Stylist's Own blog

Thornback & Peel kindly let me take over their windows as well as their back wall (well, and their entire shop, really). I wanted to use this as another platform to showcase three ideas that feature in the book (plus shove up a gazebo and bunting for extra prettiness/to provide shelter from the threatened rain, which luckily never showed). This is what happened in each window…

3. The Windows Suitcase Stact Launch Party Opening Shots Home for Now book by Joanna Thornhill, as seen on Stylist's Own blog

Suitcase Stack – inspired by several shots in the book that show the virtues of using vintage suitcases as storage (including this gorgeous snap above right, used for our launch event invite), I stacked up three cases from my own stash and added my own little tin teapot (which I usually use as garden decor) to house some pretty blooms. Each window had a custom-made caption, offering styling or DIY advice, in the same way that it appears throughout the book.

4. Decoupage Cabinet Launch Party Opening Shots Home for Now book by Joanna Thornhill, as seen on Stylist's Own blog

Decoupage Cabinet – a real-life example of home-for-now’ing: Thornback & Peel let me use one of their old display cabinets in the window, which I wanted to decorate in a home-for-now-friendly manner, without doing anything irreversible to it as it wasn’t my own piece. The solution? I took several sheets of Thornback & Peel giftwrap, chopped them into various sizes and created a patchwork pattern on the top and sides, held on with double-sided tape, making it easy to remove again afterwards. This is a technique I discuss in the book, which works equally well with leftover wallpaper samples.

5. Wallpaper Drop Launch Party Opening Shots Home for Now book by Joanna Thornhill, as seen on Stylist's Own blog

Wallpaper Drop – another technique discussed in the book: if you’re not able to wallpaper, as you’re renting or simply don’t want the commitment, try hanging a single drop from a smart trouser hanger for a hit of pattern. The image on the right (taken from the book) was recreated in the third window using one of Thornback & Peel’s stunning designs.

6. Details1 Launch Party Opening Shots Home for Now book by Joanna Thornhill, as seen on Stylist's Own blog

Never one to turn down an opportunity to add in a bit of styling, the decor throughout was peppered with home-for-now related details. Here’s a few of the things I did:

1. My Kusmi tea tin makes a perfect (and free!) plant pot holder, and this little spider plant was actually given to me as a cutting from contributor Anna Alicia (you can see its ‘Mummy’ on p49 of the book). It usually sits in pride of place in my office.

2. I couldn’t resist getting some extra business cards printed (by Moo) featuring some of my favourite images from the book.

3. This barber board (kindly loaned by Rose & Grey) recreates the one featured in the tiny studio flat of Clare Nicolson, and also made the perfect spot to spell out my social media accounts on the night! The newspaper stars (REfound Objects) and washi tape stripes (extra-wide MT Casa tape and thinner stripe, from a selection at Molly Meg) were both used as bedroom decor at Hannah Ricci’s rented flat – the washi tape adds a flash of pattern and can be removed without a trace, and the paper stars are lightweight enough to act as fun ceiling decor without causing damage.

4. This ribbon-wrapped light fitting is perfect for getting a vintage-fabric-cord look without requiring an electrician – simply wrap it round a wire shade (this one is from Rockett St George, with the ribbon from REfound Objects) and continue all the way along the flex. This project originally appeared in the bedroom of Saija Starr.

5. My faithful vintage crate was used in the book as a makeshift bedside table at Dion Salvador Lloyd‘s flat, though crates feature throughout the book as a handy home-for-now freestanding storage item in many of the homes we photographed. Here, it was put to good use housing my books for the night. The three bottles on top were a little nod to Karin Lindroos‘s coffee table, where she displays single flowers in old lab bottles for an inexpensive yet striking display (the one on the left was actually used to prop Maria Meder‘s dining table in Finland and was such a cool design, I snuck it all the way home with me in my suitcase!)

7. Details2 Launch Party Opening Shots Home for Now book by Joanna Thornhill, as seen on Stylist's Own blog

6. My vintage drawer display shelves, as featured in the book as one of the step-by-step illustrated projects. These now live in my study at home and offer really handy storage for all the little trinkets I am obsessed with collecting (I think it’s in a stylist’s DNA). I stuck some printouts of the relevant book pages on the side, using my trusty washi tape.

7. Moth wall stickers, as featured in Tom Chalet‘s kitchen and balcony – these are by designer Lou Rota but are sadly being discontinued, though luckily similar designs still adorn her quirky ceramics. This cute bunting washi tape is from another of my event sponsors, Hobbycraft (the pic it’s holding up shows how the stickers were used to add a touch of personality to Tom’s white kitchen units in the book).

8. With a product range that’s SO perfect for both renters and anyone not wishing to put holes in their walls, I was lucky enough to get Command onboard as an event sponsor, too. We used several items from their range of picture and poster hanging strips plus some of their hooks (these are their clear utensil hooks holding up the ‘for’), which worked perfectly as we didn’t want to damage Thornback & Peels’ walls either!

9. Using an offcut from an old map I had at home (I had previously used the bulk of it to cover my filing cabinet, which you can see here), I copied this cute mini bunting that originally hung in Karin Lindroos’s dining room, using the Make Your Own instructions I’d written up for it in the book. It was great to practice what I preach and make a project from the book for fun- there are still several other projects in there I want to make for myself, too.

Joanna Thornhill at Home for Now Book Launch as featured on Stylist's Own blog

So there we have it. One happy author, and another big tick off the bucket list. I didn’t actually get round to making any speeches on the night, and I won’t go all Oscars on you, but I’d just like to take the opportunity to thank my publishers, Cico Books, for having the faith in me to publish this book and for their generous supply of fizzy plonk on the night, all of the amazing home-for-now’ers who let us shoot their properties and share their amazing homes with the world, my photographers, Emma Mitchell and James Gardiner and everyone else who helped with the production, Thornback & Peel for being such gracious hosts, everyone who has supported the book through sales, blog posts, press coverage and tweets (believe me, it all helps!), and my wonderful friends, family and ever-loyal partner Paul for all the encouragement this past year.

And as a special thank-you to my blog readers, I’m going to be offering a goodie bag with a signed copy of the book, plus a selection of fantastic gifts from my launch sponsors – the competition opens this Friday so do come back then for details of what’s on offer and how to enter. And now, quite aptly, I’m off to Ikea-hack my new Billy bookcase…

{Can’t wait for the competition? Buy the book now – click here for stockist details worldwide}

{Image credits: I must confess to nicking a few Instagrams of the night to intersperse in with my own snaps, so big thanks to Amy Silvester (top left opening crowd shot, decoupage cabinet detail shots and details 1-3), Laura Markwardt (right hand opening crowd shot and gazebo shot on left), Natalie Blenford (bottom opening crowd shot), Vicky Harrison (gazebo shot on right) and Kate Baxter for taking the only shot of me where I don’t look dishevelled}



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About Joanna Thornhill

Freelance Interior Stylist, Author, Writer and Crafter working for a range of magazine titles and commercial clients. Author of Home for Now (CICO Books 2014)

3 responses to “Home for Now London Launch”

  1. secretgardenhome says :

    The launch party looked as so much fun. Such a shame I couldn’t be there. Looking forward to the competition. Bests Mon

Trackbacks / Pingbacks

  1. Competition: Home for Now Book + Goodie Bag | - May 9, 2014
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