Thursday, December 13, 2012

Busy Little Bee

Living Area

Outdoor Area (LHS) and Dining Area (RHS)

Master Bedroom (LHS) and Study/Guest Bedroom (RHS)

Floor plan

If you have laid in your bed at night wondering where on earth I have been and why I have not been posting so much, there is no need to lose another wink of sleep as I'm back!  I have been juggling working, kids and a very intense term of school.  Apologies for my cyber absence, but I seriously doubt that anyone lost any sleep or even spent a second pondering my activities.  Nevertheless, I'm still going to share with you the fruits of my labour as it gives me pleasure (however misplaced) to think that, perhaps, others will see my work (other than my teacher, who is paid to and my husband who has no choice).
This semester's unit was Furniture and Accessories.  I entered this subject with glee, thinking how fabulous it was going to be to fluff around with my favourite things.  Whilst it was fun, it was also a lot of work (they don't just give out passes because you like cushions - what the?!).  This was our final assignment where we had to to a floor plan for an apartment and create boards for furniture and accessories for the whole apartment.  They also had to be costed (boo hoo) with a budget of $80,000 for furniture and accessories and $30,000 for artwork.  It sounds like a decent budget, but how quickly the dollars dwindle when you are fantasy furniture shopping!
On top of that, you had to choose a style that influenced your decorating.  I choose Scandinavian as this is very much outside my comfort zone.  I thought that it would be good to challenge myself and my decorating abilities.  What I came up with is my version of Scandinavian style.  It's still underpinned by the Scandinavian principles with a light colour scheme, multi functional furniture and lots of organic shapes, yet I've added my signature with sophisticated glamour and pops of delicious colours.  I've kept to my favourite blue and green tones in the lounge to keep the room calming and relaxing and soft lilacs and pinks in the Master with soft, tactile fabrics.  The study is energised with a vibrant orange and red scheme which I loved doing.  My favourite items would have to be the fabulous feather ball pendant in the the dining room and the sensational rugs from Designer Rugs used throughout the apartment.
Hope you like it, I would love to hear your thoughts xx

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

My Latest Styling Job



These are some photos that I took of my latest styling job.  I will post the real estate agents photos when they are online.  This house was a complete blank canvas as it was empty. All the furniture, accessories and artwork had to be brought in.  In addition, the owners were on an extremely tight budget.  The house is a 1950's red brick and I have styled this house with a nod to its heritage, whilst injecting some modern day style.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Sarah Richardson - Master of Neutrals

All images are via Sarah Richardson Design

How do you use a neutral pallet and still create interest?  Let's take a look at how the master of neutral, Sarah Richardson, achieves such stunning rooms with muted colours.  I think that there is a misconception amongst many that neutral means beige or brown only.  Sarah uses beiges, whites and browns but she combines them with other neutrals such as grey, blue, rose and green.  She layers her rooms with pattern and texture to achieve a neutral scheme with interest.  I love how neutral schemes will stay relevant over the years whereas choosing an "in colour" such as bright yellow will date a house.  I still recommend playing with colours, but if you want to do it, keep your base very neutral - say white and grey and then inject bright yellow highlights that can easily be updated when the trend passes (or when you get sick of it!).  I think where Sarah excels is her attention to the details.  She creates interest through a creative tile pattern, a mixture of fabric patterns, beautiful lighting fixtures and mirrors which look like artwork.  Whatever she touches exudes sheer luxury - yes please! She's been around for a long time and there is a reason why Sarah reigns supreme - the girl knows her stuff.  I definitely have a design crush on her.  I would join the stampede of people who would love to work with her.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Lovely Lamps

From top left:
Minerva, Robert Abbey; Seagrass Giclee Kiss, Lamps Plus; Euro Design Asymmetry, Possini;
Reena Blue Glass, Uttermost; Lucy, Robert Abbey

Work has been exciting and hectic with the start of June clearance today, so I have had to multi task to get things done, hence I'm doing a post about lamps in my lighting class tonight!  I have been so looking forward to this subject as lighting is a subject very close to my heart.  I have said it before, and I'll say it again - lighting can make or break a room.  It affects the colour, the ambiance and the mood.  It can make a design statement or be inconspicuous.  These are some lamps that caught my eye whilst cruising the net tonight.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Come Dine With Me

Whimsical Dinner Party

Classic Dinner Party

Whimsical from top left: Royal Albert Zandra Rhodes Dinner Plates, Swarovski Champagne Flutes, Anna Weatherley Ceramic Butterfly Cardholders, Villeroy & Boch Blacksmith Cutlery, Kim Seybert Coral Napkin, Kim Seybert Lace Capiz Shell Placemats, Alessi Cactus Fruit Bowl

Classic from top left: Wedgewood Renaissance Dinner Plate, Wedgewood and Bentley Dinner Plate, L'Object Pave Sphere Salt & Pepper Shakers, Royal Doulton Crystal Saturn Noveau Flute, Vera Wang Cutlery, Kim Seybert Lattice Blue Napkin, Tiffany & Co. Plaid Cut Crystal Bowl, Kim Seybert Crystal Dome Sky & Gold Napkin Ring, Agraria Votive, Smythson Stationery
I have always had a thing for a beautifully laid out dinner table.  When I invite people around for lunch or dinner, I go to a lot of effort thinking of a theme and plotting colour schemes, floral arrangements and place cards.  When I was 25, I won a minor prize of gift vouchers for the local shopping centre and I spent every cent of it on a dizzying array of various dinner plates, napkins, servingware, candles and placemats.  Now that I think back to it, I guess that most 25 year olds would have bought clothes with the money!  It was my first foray into decorating and I have not been able to uncurl my fingers from the colour wheel ever since.

Decorating a table is a great introduction to decorating a room.  It's on a much smaller scale and it's less expensive, but the same design rules still apply.  First decide what style you want to achieve.  I have created a mood board for a what I call a whimsical scheme (think outdoor luncheon or perhaps an engagement party) and a classic scheme.  Choose a feature colour and use it as a focal point on the table.  Think about layering your table and balancing the objects.  For example, if you have large high backed dinning chairs, use a large centrepiece to balance the table.  Remember to keep items low to allow conversation around the table.  I'm not a great cook (I have a few old favourite recipes), but with a beautifully laid table, great company and a nice bottle of wine, we have some great nights at our house.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Colour Me Happy

From top left to right:
Missoni Cushion, Stray Dog Designs Lamp, Three Hands Studded Moroccan Table, Trina Turk Cushion, Aphrochic Wallpaper, Cristina Re Teacups, Trina Turk Cushion, Three Hands Scalloped Yellow Frame, Jonathan Adler Stool, Three Hands Bamboo Bowls, Bond NYC perfume, Kristy Lee Interiors Elephant Picture
It's been grey and cold here in Melbourne for the past few days and I can't think of anything better to lift your mood than some bright and happy colours.  Interiors have definitely gone through a beige/grey (or greige) stage of late - just visit any display home in Melbourne and be assaulted by the blandness.  Why not inject some personality and happiness to a neutral base with some fun and colourful accents?  They can easily be changed and you will be surprised at how they will lift a room and affect your mood.  If you really are unsure, start with simple easy things such as bath towels.  Be brave and go for that extra bright colour.  Trust me, you will be addicted before you know it!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Swanky Style

All images are via Elle Decor
It's nice to see how those with bucketloads of cash fit out their homes.  Hilary Swank's New York apartment is a light filled, sleek and stylish abode.  Fitted with lots of Calvin Klein Home furniture pieces, it refrains from being ordinary by the delicate and special touches.  A silk lined wall in the bedroom, travertine tiles in the bathroom and rustic, reclaimed wood planks in the living room are all features that make this home stand out.  I love how they have created arched window treatments in the lounge - something you don't see that often and no doubt a result of custom furnishings (thanks to the bucketloads of cash mentioned earlier!).  Ahhh, one day it will be me but for now I'm happy to lust over these pictures.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

What's Cooking In Kitchen Design

Bear Hill Interiors

Dunlin Home Australia

Marco Meneguzzi

Orrick and Company

Via Traditional Home

Via Traditional Home

Via Cote de Texas

Lucinda Loya Interiors

Via Traditional Home
The heart of any home is undoubtedly the kitchen.  When selling your home, it's a critical element of what buyers will base their decision on.  When considering your renovation or building budget, the kitchen should be given the lion's share and the most thorough planning.  If you are a regular reader of this blog, you will know that my style is definitely traditional so most of the pictures I have featured here are that style.  I've thrown in a picture of a Lucinda Loya kitchen just because I love the creativity of the chain link bar stools. 

Although not totally traditional, I'm totally, crazy in love with the Dunlin Stanley kitchen with copper pendants.  It's just simply stunning and a fantastic example of how you can mix styles effectively.  The Bear Hill interiors kitchen is a wonderful illustration of how using an interior designer for your kitchen can give you a unique kitchen that will definitely improve the value of your home.  The bold use of colour and contrast with the wood is so effective and not something that you will find in any display home kitchen.  I'm a sucker for a banquette and I will have to find a way to incorporate one into my next home.  Tell me who doesn't want to sit in one when you go to a restaurant? 

Another trend in kitchens and bathrooms is to use antiques pieces of furniture repurposed as a kitchen sink, island bench or vanity.  The character bought buy using these pieces means that your kitchen is going to ooze with character and designer style.  I love the picture of the kitchen I have posted via Traditional Home where they have used an antique buffet as an island bench and sink.  This kitchen is divine and the amazing skylight roof and antique lighting finish off this spectacular design.

Let's talk splashbacks!  Marble has always been a favourite and the Marco Meneguzzi kitchen certainly shows why so many people love it.  I also love the circular tile design on the last Traditional Home kitchen I have featured.  Simple and stunning.

I hope that you enjoyed this instalment of my love affair with kitchens!  I'm sure to post some more pictures soon.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Today's Crush

One Kings Lane
With life being so busy right now, I thought I'd introduce quick little bites of what I'm loving which will be called Today's Crush.  This metal chevron stripe waste bucket from One Kings Lane is just divine and a great way to incorporate a trend with out breaking the bank.  It's stylish elegant and on my shopping list!  Have a great day xx

Monday, February 27, 2012

Chalet Chic

From top left: Hexagonal Mirror, One King's Lane; Dandelion Wallpaper in Cocoa, Porter's Paints; Kenroy Boothbay Steel Pendant, Design Craft; Square Ribbed Metal Mirror, One King's Lane; Nairobi Dusk Wallpaper in Granite, Porter's Paints; Winter Houses Book by Charlotte Moss; Qualitas New York Beeswax Candles in Lavender; Vintage Lund F.I.S skis, Genessee River Trading Co.; Palmer Ottoman, Safaveih; Basketweave Leather Log Holder, Olive & King; Plaid & Canvas Leather Trunk, One King's Lane; Helen Black Velvet Lamp, Safaveih; Metal Globe on Wood Tripod, One King's Lane; Lynx Throw in Camel, Tourance 

Image via One Kings Lane

Zermatt Peak via Luxury Chalet Collection

Tivoli Lodge, Davos via Luxury Chalet Collection

White Pearl, Val D'Isere via Luxury Chalet Collection

Des Drus, Chamonix via Luxury Chalet Collection
Well it's been blistering hot here for the past couple of days and I can't think of a better way of cooling down than looking at some serious chalet chic.  In addition, my friend Louise and I were chatting today and began our planning for a New Zealand skiing holiday this year.  I love a great winter holiday - in fact my husband and I went to Whistler Blackcomb in Canada for our honeymoon and it was the most magical, romantic place I have ever been to.  I must confess that where we usually stay at Mt Hotham looks nothing like these places, but every time I'm there I find myself daydreaming of what I could do with the place!  I love the warmth, texture and rustic nature of chalet chic.  I also find it a bit of fun.  Sheridan have launched some faux animal fur accessories with their Autumn Winter 2012 collection, so if you feel like some chalet chic at your place this winter, take a leaf out of these seriously stylish places and mix up wood, metal and faux animal fur for a sophisticated chalet look.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Bathroom Beauties

Cath Kidston

Nina Campbell

Kelly Hoppen

All images are via House to Home
It's been a while since I've posted some bathroom inspiration so enjoy these fabulous designs.  I'm loving the Cath Kidston one with the bronze freestanding bath and amazing wallpaper.  All of these bathroom designs are very different but what I like about all of them is how they have wow factor.  The clever use of colour, fabric, shapes, lighting and material finishes mean that these bathrooms are far from average.  When designing your new bathroom, take some inspiration from these and don't be afraid to add some impact.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Birthday Celebrations

Ikea Napkins, glass, serving tray and fabric, Pitcher from Michael Aram
I got a facebook message from a friend yesterday about our annual birthday celebration get together.  February is a crazy time in my life with three family birthdays and two friend's birthdays all in the same week!  So although it's only half way through January, it's time to start thinking about February festivities as I have to be organised.  I was strolling the aisles of Ikea yesterday and was inspired by the purple and white striped napkins and voila, I had a jumping off point (as Sarah Richardson would say) for the scheme for my birthday lunch.  The purple glasses were an easy addition, especially at $1.95 each, and I couldn't go past the cute purple serving trays.  I loved the black and white striped fabric that I found in the fabric area which I am going to use for table cloths.  Throw in some gorgeous hydrangea flowers, matching seating and an elegant Michael Aram pitcher and the table is set for a lovely afternoon tea with my girlfriends where we will drink pink champagne and eat sandwiches and cakes while we have a long overdue laugh and catch up.