Celebrity, Interiors

Inside Ellen DeGeneres’s ridiculously cool horse ranch home

So it turns out that as well as doing the odd bit of voice-over work, killing it on her TV show, having a clothing line and just being a generally awesome person, Ellen DeGeneres is a super talented interior designer…

The comedian had her own  26-acre horse ranch in Los Angeles that she shared with wife Portia but has now sold.

It’s pretty cool. It was built by William Powell in the 1920s as an estate, then it became a monastery, then a rehab centre, and then the horses moved in.

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Ellen writes about it in her book Home, and said how she fell in love with it as soon as she saw it.

She wrote: “The whole place looked like it belonged on another planet.

“It was a professional horse facility, and the outbuildings that were occupied were really just basic offices.

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“It was an incredible piece of property, with eight individual cabins, several barns, and of course, horse stables.

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“I approached it like I was designing and decorating ten different homes, giving every cabin and space its own unique identity—had I not, I think it would have started to feel a bit like a hotel.

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“But that was a unique challenge, too, because while I wasn’t fixated on making a whole ‘house’ that hangs together as one, I also wanted it all to feel like home. The only real theme that stuck was comfort. We lived in every cabin, as we decorated and restored them one by one.

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“When we finished one, we’d move in and begin work on the next. The first cabin we lived in didn’t have a kitchen, a bathtub, or any other amenities to speak of. But it was fun. Number 8 was the biggest cabin. For no particular reason, we spent most of our nights in Number 5, which had a screened porch and a view of an epic rock (it really was epic).

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“Eventually, I redid the Art Barn, which we used as a dining room for bigger parties. There was the Romantic Barn, where Portia and I celebrated our first wedding anniversary (I surprised her with some factory lights from the early 1900s that she had seen and loved), hence the name.

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“The last thing I tackled was Portia’s Barn, which I learned should not be decorated at all. Barns are dirty. Nobody wants to dust sixteen ornately framed paintings every week.

“But there were so many cool sculptures and art pieces that I loved in those barns and cabins; I’ve since moved a lot of them to other houses and even to my office and dressing room at work. My staff isn’t allowed to touch anything, but they are free to admire from afar.

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“While we lived on the ranch, we tried to make use of the entire property so we could enjoy the outdoors. We put in a tennis court and put up a badminton net. It was really fun, especially when I won.

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“And if we didn’t have guests over we could always play doubles with the coyotes and skunks that roamed the property. They were a joy. That is one thing I really loved about the ranch—we were so close to Los Angeles but able to feel secluded in a natural wonderland.

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“Portia and I would bring out big picnic blankets and just lay around, surrounded by wild flowers and huge oak trees.

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“When we were there instead of in the city, this really felt like our home away from home. I have to say, the ranch has been one of my favourite projects to date.”

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Who knew Ellen was such an interior guru?! We can’t get enough of this place…

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Celebrity

Millie Mackintosh gets body shamed for hairy legs

When Millie Mackintosh posted a photo from her holiday in a French ski resort we weren’t expecting to see an argument about body shaming and feminism.

But that’s exactly what happened when the reality star posted a photo of her legs on Instagram.

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One user wrote: “How hairy are her thighs?”

Another, named Kelah O’Neil, wrote: “She didn’t shave her legs uh oh she’s losing my brownie points.”

Lorna Barlow simply posted: “Hairy dog legs.”

Millie Mackintosh arriving at the Julien MacDonald show taking place during London Fashion Week SS16/
(Edward Smith/PA)

Most of the posts supported Millie, with many women saying they didn’t shave their thighs either.

One wrote: “Seriously, some of you need to take a long, hard, serious look in the mirror and sort yourselves out!!!! Women tearing down other women. Gross.”

Comments from Instagram users.
(instagram.com)

Don’t worry Millie, we don’t shave that high either…

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Celebrity, Fashion

The fashion fails and trendy triumphs of Emilia Clarke aka Daenerys Targaryen

Game of Thrones and Me Before You star Emilia Clarke is no stranger to bold looks and experimental fashion.

The pint-sized actress – usually sporting bleach blonde hair as our hero Daenerys Targaryen – is a huge fan of top designers, but that doesn’t always mean she gets in right in the fashion stakes.

We’ve collated 21 of her most important fashion moments and ranked them from worst to best.

21. Romantic comedy Me Before You may be a hit but this Chloe dress that she wore to the New York premiere looks like a pair of old curtains. 

Emilia Clarke attends the world premiere of "Me Before You" at AMC Loews Lincoln Square on Monday (Evan Agostini/AP)
(Evan Agostini/AP)

20. Don’t stare at the print (are they creepy faces?) of this dress for too long or you’ll go cross-eyed.

Emilia Clarke arriving at the 2016 MTV Movie Awards at Warner Bros Studios in Burbank, Los Angeles. (PA)
(PA)

19. We fear the bottom half of this dress is still alive…

(Chris Pizzello/AP) Emilia Clarke arrives at the 18th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards
(Chris Pizzello/AP)

18. When an expensive designer dress just looks… well, not expensive. Sorry Oscar de la Renta.

GQ Men of the Year Awards 2015 (Jonathan Short/AP)
(Jonathan Short/AP)

17. Mixing textures and print clashing is big right now but this monochrome Giambattista Valli dress is all wrong.

(Ian West/PA) Emilia Clarke arriving at the Lanc™me British Academy Film Awards Nominees Party at Kensington Palace, London.
(Ian West/PA)

16. These colours. Just no.

Emilia Clarke arrives at the Film Independent Spirit Awards on Saturday, Feb. 27, 2016 (Jordan Strauss/AP)
(Jordan Strauss/AP)

15. The jury is out on this Valentino gown.  The cape trend emerged in 2015 and while the embroidery is pretty, it’s a tad Morticia Addams. 

(Jordan Strauss/AP) Emilia Clarke arrives at the 73rd annual Golden Globe Awards on Sunday, Jan. 10, 2016, at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, Calif.
(Jordan Strauss/AP)

14. Bonus points for rocking a suit on the red carpet, and an orange one isn’t easy to pull off. We like this Stella McCartney number.

(Chris Pizzello/AP) Emilia Clarke arrives at the Warner Bros. presentation at CinemaCon 2016, the official convention of the National Association of Theatre Owners
(Chris Pizzello/AP)

13. Ladylike and timeless, there’s a touch of Kate Winslet about Emilia in this Dolce & Gabbana dress.

Golden Globes After Party (Daniel Torok/AP)
(Daniel Torok/AP)

12. The blazer-dress, or maybe just a blazer, is the perfect length for 5ft 2″ Emilia. She teamed this Dior number beautifully with striking heels, a strong centre parting and a red lip.

Paris Fashion Christian Dior (Thibault Camus/AP)
(Thibault Camus/AP)

11. Gorgeous red wine colour and an oversize bow, the shape of this Zac Posen gown suits Emilia perfectly.

(CLINT SPAULDING/AP) Emilia Clarke== amfAR New York Gala 2013
(CLINT SPAULDING/AP)

10. A pretty Prada gown was the perfect fit for this year’s Vanity Fair Oscars party – balancing feminine and demure with a deep-v.

Emilia Clarke arrives at the Vanity Fair Oscar Party in Beverly Hills (PA)
(PA)

9. The actress demonstrating exactly how to do head to toe in white, with fashion forward lines.

Actress Emilia Clarke poses with a model of a robot during a press conference to promote her latest film "Terminator Genisys" at the Ritz Carlton hotel in Seoul (Ahn Young-joon/AP)
(Ahn Young-joon/AP)

8. Well, you can’t go wrong with a fitted Victoria Beckham dress.

Emilia Clarke attending the EE British Academy Film Awards at the Royal Opera House, Bow Street, London. (Yui Mok/PA)
(Yui Mok/PA)

7. Getting it so right in a custom Proenza Schouler gown at the Golden Globes 2014.

milia Clarke arrives at the 71st annual Golden Globe Awards at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on Sunday (Jorden Strauss/AP)
(Jordan Strauss/AP)

6. Cool mint tones, mixed textures, intricate beading and metallic accessories… absolutely stunning.

British actress Emilia Clarke arrives for the Game Of Thrones (Jonathan Short/AP)
(Jonathan Short/AP)

5. Emilie’s love of quirky styles paid off when she donned Ulyana Sergeenko lace couture. The corset top and dramatic peplum skirt made her every inch the English rose at the European Me Before You premiere.

Me Before You European Premiere - London (Ian West/PA)
(Ian West/PA)

4. To help promote Terminator Genisys last year, her first big blockbuster, Emilia wore this beautiful ensemble.

 Emilia Clarke poses for a portrait during press day for "Terminator Genisys" (Casey Curry/AP)
(Casey Curry/AP)

3. Hold the phone. Has anyone ever looked more perfect in a fuchsia ball gown?

(Jordan Strauss/AP) Emilia Clarke arrives at the 22nd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at the Shrine Auditorium & Expo Hall
(Jordan Strauss/AP)

2. We’re IN LOVE with this dress. Geometric, kite-inspired and cut-out, perfectly accessorised with an eye-catching emerald ring.

Emilia Clarke== Los Angeles Premiere of TERMINATOR GENISYS (Andreas Branch/AP)
(Andreas Branch/AP)

1. But for the winner, we must hark back to the Emmy’s of 2012. The Chanel gown helped put Emilia on best dressed lists and reminded people that she wasn’t going anywhere. The unusual but seriously elegant white and purple dress was one to remember.

Emilia Clarke== 64th Primetime Emmy Awards (AP)
(AP)

BABE.

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Celebrity, Fashion

Witness the fitness! Queen Beyoncé launches sportswear collection

Your gym attire is about to get FLAWLESS. Beyoncé has launched her own line of workout wear called Ivy Park, and from the collection’s first ever promotional video, it looks almost too good to work up a sweat in.

In a voiceover, Beyoncé remembers early morning jogs with her father and how exercise helped keep her on track as a young girl with big dreams.

She says: “I would wake up in the morning and my dad would come knocking on my door to tell me it’s time to go running. I remember wanting to stop, but I would push myself to keep going.

Beyonce
(WeAreIvyPark/YouTube)

“It taught me discipline, and I would think about my dreams. I would think about the sacrifices my parents made for me. I would think about my little sister, and how I was her hero. I would look at the beauty around me, the sunshine through the trees. I would keep breathing.

“There are things I’m still afraid of, when I have to conquer those things I still go back to that park. Before I hit the stage, I go back to that park. When it was time for me to give birth, I went back to that park.”

Beyonce
(WeAreIvyPark/YouTube)

“The park became a state of mind, the park became my strength. The park is what made me who I am. Where’s your park?”

Beyoncé’s very covetable 200-piece collection will launch on April 14 2016 and will be stocked at Topshop, Selfridges, Net a Porter and JD Sports.

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Celebrity, Fashion

All hail Queen B

This woman though…*jaw drops*

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Celebrity, Interiors, Interview

Interview: Maddy at Billy Heckenberg

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The insanely talented Sydney-based designer Maddy Duggan is a genius in the soft furnishings world in my eyes. The business is named after her Great-Grandfather, William Heckenberg, and was shortened to Billy making it sound modern, perfectly reflecting her mixed style of old and new. Her passion and eye for art, design and photography  have merged into something rather marvellous.  A degree in Fine Art led her down this creative path. Spending a few years travelling around Europe after university also gave her the inspiration to start her own business (AND start her own family as she met her husband there too). That, combined with a love of architecture and industrial landscape seems like a recipe for success to me…

 

How long have you had your company up and running?

Billy Heckenberg has been up and running since December 2012, but it was quite a long time in the making. I had always dreamt of having my own company and for a long time thought it would be a leather accessories brand. It wasn’t until I decided to make a few cushions to sell at the markets that I found my true calling.

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Can you remember the feeling you got when you got your first order?

I was completely overwhelmed. There’s nothing more satisfying than poring you heart and soul into something, let alone putting it out there and having it be accepted. The order came from my incredibly supportive brother and his wife, who told me that they wanted to be the first customers I ever had, and I have never forgotten that.

What goals are you setting for the Billy Heckenberg brand at the moment? Could you see yourself expanding into bedding and other household items?

I have huge plans for the brand and I am so excited that I am only just at the beginning. Currently working on samples for bedding as we speak, and planning to expand into table wares, wall hangings and more bags. There is no limit really and I just love the feeling I get when I think about the possibility of new prints and products.

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How do you manage working on your own?

It can be hard at times to work on your own as there is no one else that can lighten the load, and if I don’t do it, it wont get done. On the other hand I love being my own boss and being free to make all the decisions about the business. I do have plans to start employing people soon and hopefully that will free up the time needed to spend on designing and making new samples, my favourite part.

It can be difficult to find new ideas. Where do you seek inspiration?

I have to say I’m quite lucky when it comes to creativity, I am always inspired and see inspiration everywhere. I never stop thinking about new ideas, prints, designs and ways to construct them. I am quite decisive and listen to my gut instinct and have learnt to cut things early if they don’t seem like they are going to work.

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Photography plays a huge part in your designs and you also studied Fine Arts which included painting, drawing and textiles. Which would you say you get the most enjoyment out of?

I do absolutely love photography. I took a huge break from it when I finished University, due to the fact that I was so burnt out, and only found my love for it again when taking the product images for my brand. I still love the whole process of having my photos printed onto fabric, designing and making that product, and then photographing it again.

What room in your house is your favourite?

I have to say I love our open kitchen living area. We only recently moved into this new place and I love the huge open area. The kitchen is sun-drenched all day and just has such a great feel to it.

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This might be an obvious one, but what colour combination do you love the most?

Of course this would be black and white. What can I say, I love contrast!

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Which brands / shops / designers do you love the most?

There are just so many incredible and talented designers out there at the moment, but my favourites would have to be Balmain and Sass & Bide. The intricate detail in their work is so spectacular.

So what do you have in store for next season?

I have just sent off my latest designs to be sample printed and fingers crossed they turn out the way I have visioned. Without giving too much away I have to say there are quite bold and will make amazing statement pieces.

Quickfire

If you could be anyone in the world for a day, who would you be?

I know I’m probably meant to say some sort of celebrity, but I have to say I would love to be my daughter Erin. She’s 3 and a half and it’s just such an amazing age and I would love to see the world through her eyes.

Favourite animal?

This would have to be dog. I have 3 staffies and they mean the world to me.

Which beauty item could you not live without?

Most definitely moisturiser, could not live without it.


I, for one, cannot wait to see her new designs!

Jx

 

 

 

 

 

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Celebrity, Music

Listen: Jessie Ware: Tough Love

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