Laura Trott: The golden girl

Laura Trott: The golden girl

17th August 2016

We’re so proud to be sponsoring this superstar cyclist! Laura’s stunning track performances really are something spectacular, and her performance in Rio has been extra-ordinary. The Golden girl has become Britain's most successful female Olympian by winning four Olympic gold medals and retaining her omnium title.

"I can't believe it. I didn't expect that at all," said a tearful Trott, who matched her team pursuit and omnium victories from London 2012 in Rio.



Laura burst onto the cycling scene in 2010 when she became the junior world champion in the omnium.  By the time the 2012 London Olympics arrived she had added more world championship gold medals in the team pursuit and omnium. Sure enough, at the Olympics she won two gold meals for – you’ve guessed it – team pursuit and omnium.  But that was just for starters! Then she powered through the European and world cycling events to become the most successful rider (male or female) in the history of the European Track Championships.

At the World Championships in London earlier this year Laura was so dominant in the omnium – a mixture of six riding disciplines – that the crowd rose in an ovation as she finished her final lap to win a gold medal!

But Laura’s path to being an Olympian had difficult beginnings. She was born one month prematurely with a collapsed lung and was later diagnosed with asthma. She took up cycling with her mother to help her health and then discovered she had rather an aptitude for the sport!

crop DFS_Laura_Trott_ShootOne028

Laura has been described as having ‘an iron resolve’ and it’s clear that at 24 she is just at the beginning of an awesome career. So far she has won 22 gold medals in different competitions but her ambitions continue as she hopes to achieve and even beat Sir Chris Hoy’s haul of six Olympic golds in cycling which her fiance Jason Kenny has just equaled by winning the dramatic keirin. These two are a 'power couple' at it's best - the golden pair are unstoppable! 

Looking good, Laura, and there is further success to come. But one of the things we love most about you is your down-to-earth personality – here’s how Laura describes herself on Instagram: ‘I ride round in circles for fun…’.

Now that’s our kind of Olympic champion!

We joined Laura at her home to see how she trains – and relaxes!

Five things you may not know about Laura

  • Laura has a leisure centre named after her – the Grundy Park Leisure Centre was renamed the Laura Trott Leisure Centre in her honour in after it was redeveloped in 2014.
  • Laura is an OBE. She was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire in the 2013 New Year Honours for services to cycling.
  • Her dogs are sproodles – a cross between a poodle and an English springer spaniel – and are called Sprolo and Pringle. And she is going to miss them most when out in Rio.
  • She is engaged to Jason Kenny, another Olympic cyclist who won gold medals in the team sprint and individual sprint at the 2012 Olympics.
  • Laura is entitled to wear the Rainbow Jersey in competitions for a year as she is a World Champion in the team pursuit.

Laura swaps Lycra for a Stella McCartney gown on our Britannia shoot.

Laura ditches the Lycra for a Stella McCartney gown on our Britannia shoot.

Don't forget to follow us on the Road to Rio on YouTube, Twitter and Instagram.

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Adam Peaty: ‘He’s a warrior, a gladiator’

Adam Peaty: ‘He’s a warrior, a gladiator’

8th August 2016

Here at DFS we are so proud to be sponsoring Adam – he doesn’t just break world records, he smashes them! His fear of water is nowhere to be seen as his first Olympic appearance is one to go down in history. Adam is the first British man to win Olympic swimming gold since Adrian Moorhouse in 1988.


Last year he beat the World Breaststroke Record by a massive 0.54 seconds, the biggest margin for 42 years. Since then he has been knocking out the fast times and now has six of the ten quickest times in history. He began the Games as the world record holder with a time of 57.92 and has lowered it by 0.79, having also set a mark of 57.55 in his opening heat.

‘The pool is his arena,’ says his trainer Mel Marshall. ‘He comes alive in the competitive arena. He’s a warrior, he’s a gladiator. The bigger the arena, the bigger the fight, the stronger he stands.’ Mel knows what she is talking about, having won six medals herself at the 2006 Commonwealth Games. Now she guides his training at the team’s Derby base.



We aren't the only ones that our proud of Adam - his family keep him on track and pushing him through the toughest times. His number one fan Nan Mavis loves to wash his Team GB kit and we know she cannot wait to watch him bring home the GOLD and congratulate him! #OlympicNan

We joined Adam for a day and you can see how he trains, and the family that’s backing him all the way, here:

Five facts about Adam:

  • Adam has been nominated twice as BBC’s Sports Personality of the Year.
  • When swimming 50m breaststroke, Adam glides for 40% of the time.
  • If he weren’t a swimmer, Adam says that he would join the Navy or Army.
  • When training he gets up at 4.00am, swims from 5.00-7.00am and then visits the gym until 8.30am with further fitness sessions later in the day.
  • Adam was the first male swimmer to win three gold medals at the 2015 World Championships.

And a new one to add to the list:

  • Wins the first gold medal for Team GB in the Rio 2016 Olympics and smashed his own world records out of the water! (pun intended)



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Great Brits: Game On #FlipIt

Great Brits: Game On #flipit

Great Brits: Game On #FlipIt

2nd August 2016

It’s nearly time. The athletes have landed, and if you’ve been following our blog post series, your living room is sorted, your sofa celebrations are nailed, and you’ve got a range of culinary treats that will keep you and your guests satisfied.

It’s time we got into the spirit of the action. It’s time to get competitive. Team GB’s athletes are driven forward by their insatiable desire to win. That’s why they train so hard and push themselves to such limits.

We’re not suggesting you go to such lengths. But we can help you add a bit of friendly competition to your sofa while you’re enjoying this epic summer of sport.

Introducing: the DFS Great Brits: Game On #flipit challenge.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Get hold of a coaster. Any coaster will do, but probably best that it’s not too thick or too fragile. 
  2. Position your coaster on the edge of a table, with your fingers under the coaster
  3. Flick the coaster upwards with one action, allowing (TECHNICAL PART ALERT) at least 180o of turn
  4. Catch it!
  5. Do it again, and see how many you can successfully flip and catch in 60 seconds

Great Brits: Game On #flipit

We had lots of fun when we took our #FlipIt game to the Team GB Kitting Out and here is a flavour for you:

Think your flipping skills are flipping brilliant? We want you to show us. Upload your video of yourself in action (or an image from your flips) along with your score and the hashtag #FlipIt.

1st place will win a huge £1,000 to spend at dfs! Not forgetting Silver and Bronze places who will win a fantastic £50 dwell voucher! Full Terms and Conditions here.

Make sure you stay tuned to our social channels, as we are taking the #flipit challenge all the way to Rio: Twitter, Instagram & YouTube.

Watch this space!


Get your sofa ready for Rio

Get your sofa ready for Rio

13th July 2016

It's less than one month until the biggest festival of sports kicks off again in Brazil. We all remember enjoying those fantastic moments from London 2012, and we're all hoping for similar highs to celebrate this time around. In addition, these big sporting moments are the perfect opportunity to bring friends and family together, to experience the action in one place, sharing all the emotions. 

For most of us, that one place is going to be our living room. If you're looking at your living room right now and thinking 'How am I going to host a big group of people here?', DON'T WORRY. We've got you covered, with five top tips to get ready, get set and go when the action kicks off on August 5th. 

Sport and fun

1. Make sure you've got enough seats: pretty much the biggest factor. How many people are coming? How many can you squeeze on the sofa? What other chairs or objects can you make use of? Think bean bags, think cushions, think garden furniture, think footstools. If you need anything extra, check out our range of fast delivery products here. One of our favorites is the Zinc from our exclusive French Connection collection.

zinc express sofa

2. Make sure everyone is comfy: time to take a look at your team. Who is going to sit where? Who has special requirements? Who won't mind squeezing in and cuddling up? You want everyone in their right place. Those marginal gains helped Team GB in 2012, and they'll help you this year 

3. Test out the angles and perspectives: success in sports is all about practice. It's no good getting your seats sorted and getting everyone comfy if they can't see the TV and end up missing Adam Peaty crushing it in the pool. Get the team over for a warm up, try out different layouts, think about height differentials. Leave no stone unturned in your quest for sporting perfection


4. Analyse the most efficient routes to refuel: if you're packing people in, make sure your supply lines stay clear - and make sure you've got someone up to the job of keeping your team refueled. We don't want to see anyone nodding off as Laura Trott comes round the bend and into the final straight 

5. Make sure your re-hydration stations are well distributed and can be replenished: as with any high performance athlete, keeping properly hydrated while involved in sports is paramount. Even if you're only watching on the TV. Spread the drinks around, get those coasters laid out, and make sure the team's fluids point person is well trained and on it. Practice those tea rounds in advance if possible

Why not try a bar tray for your all party needs. We love this one from Honestly Yum!

Why not try a bar tray for your all party needs. We love this one from Honestly Yum!

There you go. Our ultimate guide to getting your sofa (and living room) up to scratch to enjoy the best of Brazil this summer. And of course, we're on hand to provide design inspiration throughout August if you need to freshen up your approach before the summer's out. 

Now's your chance to win £50 dwell vouchers with #GameOn - tweet us a picture to @dfs your of best 'sofa celebration' and include #GameOn. T&Cs:

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The DFS Culinary Heptathlon

The DFS Culinary Heptathlon

13th July 2016

Right, so you've got your sofa and your living room all sorted (if you haven't, you obviously didn't read our last blog post - Sofa Ready). Now it's time to focus on the catering. Making sure your guests are adequately refueled to keep their energy levels up is super important. With our simple, athletic-themed guide, you'll be guaranteed a gold medal, personal best reaction. 

  • Cheese and pineapple javelins: PLEASE DON'T ACTUALLY THROW THE STICKS. Just enjoy this heptathlon themed party classic. Any hard cheese will do; we go classic cheddar, nice and strong, but hey, it's your party!

Step up your cheese game with these Caprese Scewers from Iowa Girl Eats

Step up your cheese game with these Caprese Scewers from Iowa Girl Eats

  • 10cm dip 'n' chip freestyle: choose your dipping style - are you full loader, getting as much as you can on, dicing with the danger of dropping dip on the sofa? Or are you all about the chip, and it's only a tiny bit of dip to get you through? Or are you stickler for neatness - no crumbs left behind, no dip smeared up the sides? Whatever your style, you must obey the golden rule: NO DOUBLE DIPPING. And the silver rule: NO DIP ON THE SOFA


  • The last mini pizza dash: there's never enough to go around, and how brazen you are with your pizza consumption may depend on how well you know your guests. Close friends and family? Go all in. Winners take all. Second place (in this event) is nothing. Make sure your sofa position is as close as possible. Preparation is everything 
  • Cucumber and carrot baton relay: probably best to keep the baton passing restricted to passing the dip to your mouth. Much more sanitary that way
  • Mini sausage-put: again, how you tackle this event is up to you - you COULD throw mini sausages into each other's mouths. But that could end up wasting sausages. Or end up with sausages down the back of the sofa. Might be worth keeping it simple and classic and 'shot put' them in your own mouth 
  • Mini sausage forward rolls: instructions: move forward, pick up sausage roll, sit back on the sofa, relax, eat sausage roll. Repeat until all the sausage rolls are gone 


  • Hula hoop rings of win: take a trip down memory lane by adding as many Hula Hoops to your fingers as you can. Wave your crisp fingers in the air like you just don't care. You're a winner. Gold medal standard


Get that heptathlon of party food sorted, and everyone will be winner. Especially you. Bravo you!

Soundtrack Your Sporting Summer

OK, so we've got your living room sorted. We've got a smorgasboard of classic party food lined up for you to work your way through. 

What else do every good summer sports party need?

Music of course. 

For the Spotify users amongst you, check out our playlist here

Like a classic mixtape, we've split it into two parts. 

Side A gets you ready for Rio with some handpicked Brazilian classics. 

Side B takes you back four years to London 2012 and Danny Boyle's epic opening ceremony. 

It finishes off with a stone cold classic in Queen's Don't Stop Me Now. 


Get it cranked up and get yourself in the mood for Rio! 

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Spice it up with carnival-inspired brights

Spice it up with carnival-inspired brights

9th June 2016

It’s Olympic year and we’re all feeling a touch of Rio fever here at DFS towers, so we thought we’d kick it up, samba-style, with some tips on how to make the carnival colours that the city is so famous for work in your home.

Ok, so the Olympics don’t kick off until for another two months, but we’re already feeling the ripples of excitement surrounding the world’s biggest sporting event, especially as we’re the proud partners of Team GB!

Think Olympics, think Rio (well, for 2016 anyway; we’ll be Tokyo-bound in 2020)… and think Rio, and you can’t help but think of street carnivals, samba dancers festooned in feathers, and ‘scorchio’ colours bursting out all over the shop. Pair this with the fact that, when it comes to home decorating, exotic Brazilian themes, full of bright, vibrant shades, are bang on trend this year, and it’s a match made in heaven. All you have to do is choose which rainbow shade is right for your home…

Tickled pink

It was fashion designer Elsa Schiaparelli (Coco Chanel’s great rival) who introduced us to ‘shocking pink’ back in 1947, and its bold, intense shade still turns heads today. A hot pink statement sofa in an otherwise neutral living space looks stunning… accessorise with boldly patterned cushions in contrasting shades as anything more subtle will get overpowered.

We love

Quartz Chaise Sofa in Pink – a modern classic with deep seats and dark-wood legs.

Quartz Pink Corner Sofa

Perfect with

Cecile Scatter Cushion – with its Impressionist-style landscape design.

Cecile Cushion

Hello yellow

Psychologically speaking, yellow is the happiest colour in the spectrum, bringing to mind sunshine, optimism and creativity, so a yellow sofa could be the ideal way to brighten up both your living room and your mood. Play up the ‘wow’ factor by accessorizing with gold-toned cushions and brass or copper lighting, or really go for broke and stack it with throws and cushions in other neon-brights, such as hot pink or turquoise.

We love

Fling Sofa Bed in Citrus – a comfy 3-seater sofa bed that zing with style.

Tiana Citrus Sofa

Perfect with

Brass and Concrete Table Lamp from Dwell – the industrial look and copper tones will suit any modern space.

brass and concrete table lamp

Tangerine dreams

Orange is the Marmite of the colour wheel – it’s certainly not a ‘take it or leave it’ shade, but if it floats your boat then it can look marvelous in both classic and contemporary rooms. It evokes similar feelings to that of its close cousin red – warmth, energy and passion – and a striking orange sofa makes a perfect focal point. Dress it up with accessories in tonal shades of browns, russets and wood.

We love

Zapp sofa in Orange – elegant simplicity in an eye-catching colour.

orange zapp sofa

Perfect with

Doodle Rug in Orange from Dwell – the perfect retro-inspired rug.

dwell rug

Looking for more inspiration?

Check out our newest Style Sourcebook online now, full of style advice, latest looks and decorating inspiration, including loads more sofas in hot shades, perfect for the Rio Fever look!

Don't forget to follow dfs on our road to Rio 2016 on Twitter, Instagram & YouTube.

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