8 Design Storey favourites

It’s too hot for shopping but in case you haven’t dropped by recently here are a few of my Design Storey favourites from the last month.


This, as far as I am concerned, is the best garden set out there. I own it in grey (wish it was this natural colour) and it has a) been outside for nearly five years and is still in mint condition and b) revolutionised our use of the garden as it’s so comfortable it has turned the patio into an outdoor living room that we use almost as much as the indoor one in summer. Garden furniture is often square, boxy and ugly and that’s before we get to uncomfortable. The key to this is that it’s an outdoor version of an existing indoor model so you know it’s going to work. And now you can buy it as a complete set which makes it a very good deal.


Yes you’ve got to be brave to tangle with a cream sofa but if you have no cats and your children have reached the age where they only come into the sitting room to ask for your Amazon password then you might be at the point of considering this. It’s a very pretty shape – curves are in but this shape started in the art deco movement of the 1920s so it’s hardly a fad and the cushion – if that helps is removeable and washable. You might have to introduce a “no jeans” policy however.


I’m slightly obsessed with watering cans, I’ve no idea why. Maybe because I always fall in love with ridiculously over-designed ones that cost a fortune. This, however, doesn’t. It’s £16 and has a pleasing long spout so you can poke it in amongst the foliage to reach the earth rather than it sliding down the leaves and onto your feet. And it’s a pleasing shade of green.


Every now and then you find one of those pieces that will cause jaws to drop when you tell people where it’s from. This grey concrete and blue glaze bench is one of those pieces. This could easily be a £900 piece from one of the snazzy garden companies. The sculptural legs will add interest to your view for the eight months of the year when you barely open the back door and you can decorate with planters as well as bottoms depending on how you use your outdoor space.


It’s a small thing but sometimes that small thing makes all the difference. I have found the perfect dosing spoon for my morning coffee but when the jar is full of coffee the spoon doesn’t fit. And then it gets lost. And I have to use another and the coffee (the first one of which, I think you will agree, is crucial) isn’t right. So a set of jars with dedicated spoons and places to keep them is perfect. I’m in. You can buy them singly too.

Boster table lamp, POOKY

This has the look of something vintage – that you could have picked up while strolling around a French brocante on holiday. It also loves that raffia shade and while raffia is a massive trend at the moment there is a tendency to stick in on everything and it doesn’t always work. This does. As does green in almost any colour scheme whether it’s playing a tonal role or disrupting things a little.


Just a gorgeous piece that will work beautifully inside as well as out. Garden furniture can suffer from all looking the same and it’s refreshing to find a piece that can move in and out as you do. The glossy exterior is particularly pleasing and means it will be a brilliant addition to a dark interior as it will catch the light and reflect it back. There’s also a smaller, taller side table too. And if you prefer a pale olive green there is that option.


Small accent chairs are incredibly useful as they don’t take up much room in a corner so you can use them in bedrooms as chairdrobes, on landings or tucking into the sitting room for occasional seating – admittedly you might not want to sit on one like this with no arms for an entire evening of TV. Bobbin woodwork is currently fashionable but, again, it’s a classic so this chair will be around long after the fashion wagon has moved on and you can, of course, always change the cushions to suit your décor.

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Maria Masri

The author Maria Masri


  1. Great Post

    I especially adore that coffee table. It’s unlike any I think I’ve seen for an outdoor setting. I often find those like wicker type materials which seem always just awful or at least quickly become so. That feels solid, stylish, and really does still fit into a good outdoor patio area.

  2. I know, I’ve said it before, but that Jonah garden set is great because there are only two cushions to put away in case of rain. I would love that simply elegant Benlo concrete bench. Hmm, but then it would probably cost an arm and leg to ship across the pond. Cheers from Canada!

  3. Dear Kate,
    I am completely with you in your obsession with watering cans. I like the plain old galvanized ones and although the big ones can be a bit heavy they just look good and make the garden look very bucolic.
    Greetings from Germany

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