Cork Homes

Our changeable weather means Irish gardeners have to be crafty when it comes to choosing their plants. As it’s so unpredictable we must allow for wind, rain and sun, making landscaping and planting a challenge.

Hanleys Garden Centre has a lovely range of Nonstop Begonias, an aptly titled sturdy bloomer that will add bright sparks of colour even in partial shade and low levels of...

Geometric prints are a summer hit in fashion, but why limit them to your wardrobe? Browse the extensive fabric library at The Drapery Shop, Emmet Place, Cork for fun patterns and colourways or email them a picture of a pattern or colour you like ( and their expert team will suggest some fabric options...

Ice-cream colours are taking over dining tables for summer 2013. Indulge yourself without putting on a pound by treating yourself to the Carolyn Donnelly Eclectic Fleur Mug, €4, dinner plate, €6, bowl €5 and four-pack of teaspoons, €10, Dunnes.

Hydrangeas need much more water than you'd think. To make sure your garden blooms are as big as possible come summer, give them a good drenching twice a week.

If hunting for hidden treasures and vintage finds sounds like your kind of Saturday morning, head for the Mother Jones Flea Market off MacCurtain Street. This 'Oliver' typewriter, in great working condition and with a brand new ribbon, is €90 from Luxuria Vintage.

Invited to dinner? Skip the petrol-station flowers and spoil your host with Avoca's luxurious soaps instead. €4.95 from Meadows & Byrne.

The fuchsia has been enthusiastically adopted by Corkonians; grasped to our collective bosom. It reminds many people of heading to the beach, as the roads near the sea are lined with the instantly recognisable flowers.

Even though the plant grows wild in its exotic home -locations like the mountains of South America and New Zealand- we know it so well from our coastal roads that West...

Turn your dodgy deck or balcony into a dreamy summer retreat: Carolyn Donnelly Eclectic Hammock €65, Geo-weave Cushion, €35, Cowhide Rug €200, Side Table €120, Tribal Baskets from €5 and Bird House from  €12, Dunnes.

Crafters have been snapping up these gorgeous bargain fabrics from The Drapery Shop on Emmet Place to reupholster chairs.

They work perfectly with the brilliant Annie Sloan Chalk Paints available at The Paint Pot on Anglesea Street, where you can take a workshop and learn how to turn an old piece of furniture into something really beautiful in just one morning!

These two fabrics...

This handsome nickel Anglepoise lamp is so versatile it can be used everywhere from the study to the bedroom, making it a clever investment. €65 from Boulevard Interiors, Donnybrook Douglas. Call 021 489 8268 for details.

Don't throw away those banana skins, chip them up and plant them under your garden roses; the potassium makes for bigger, brighter blooms.

This upcycled folding cane chair is the ideal addition to a small space or apartment. Simply unfold to seat company. Check it out in-store at Style25, Drawbridge St. Cork.

Gardening is fraught with peril. Soft-bodied gastropod molluscs and aphids clandestinely plot the ultimate demise of your leafy prodigy while you sleep-and sometimes in broad daylight. Have they no shame?

Well, no- they’re slugs, snails and flies. They’re the bane of every gardener’s life, but you can keep them at bay using organic, environmentally friendly products...

Sanderson's Maycott range of prints and wallpapers have a fresh floral theme, drawing their inspirations from flowers, woodlands and hedgerows. Choose your favourites from the range available at The Drapery Shop, Emmet Place. Call 021 4271877, visit or find them on Facebook for details.

This New Gate Putney Wall Clock (€120, Brown Thomas) ticks all the boxes.

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