Loulou’s of london … a peek into the latest members only nightclub

/images/loulou%27s_1.jpg

Loulou’s night spot is located inside Mark Birley’s 5 Hertford Street …the very exclusive membership club in Mayfair. Opening in the second half of 2012, the wild and wonderful interiors are by the acclaimed fashion designer Rifat Ozbek … with a budget of 30 million pounds !!

/images/loulou%27s_3.jpg

Robin Birley is not new to the aristocratic world of the private club, his late father Mark created Annabel’s, Harry’s Bar and Mark’s for the previous generation. Robin named his club ‘Loulou’s’ after his aunt Loulou de la Falaise, the fashion designer.

/images/loulou%27s_4.jpg

Spaces for wining, dining, sitting, dancing or just quietly contemplating. The interiors are a celebration of colour and pattern, rich and exotic, vibrant … and always so elegant.

/images/loulou%27s_5.jpg

It is this understated elegance that underpins all great design and never more so than at Loulou’s. The combinations of beautiful fabrics, stylish lighting, glamorous wallpapers and extremely interesting painted finishes … and we all thought painted finishes had had their day.

/images/loulou%27s_6.jpg

The one colour that seems to add that touch of glitter and wit throughout is ‘lipstick pink’ … it just works. And there is plenty of wit … a bar made of shells, stuffed giraffe’s head and illuminated peacocks !!

/images/loulou%27s_2.jpg

A.A. Gill observed of the founder members and carefully invited on opening night “These are the people who are famous to one another – legends of their own clubs – and that has always been enough.”

/images/loulou%27s_7.jpg

images: jonathan becker

5 ways with the warmth of wood

/images/hotel_wiesergut_austria_2.jpg

1.  Timber floors, walls and ceiling create a warm palette, all complimented by the stone clad wall in similar hues.

2.  The balance between the texture of timber and stone, and the crispness of the minimal white wall, porcelain freestanding bath and bedlinen, is perfect.  Note the contrasting timber shades of the furniture.

/images/hotel_wiesergut_austria_3.jpg

3.  Beautifully designed timber furniture provides the warmth, texture and perfect scale in this otherwise simple white interior.

4.  The contrast between the smoothness of the timber floor and the rustic nature of the timber furniture gives this room another dimension.

/images/hotel_wiesergut_austria_6.jpg

5.  If you can be bold enough to follow the warm tones of the timber and stone with soft furnishings (rather than contrast with additional colour) the end result will be extremely elegant.

/images/hotel_wiesergut_austria_1.jpg

Images: wiesergut hotel, hinterglemm, austria

5 ways with vintage style

/images/vintage_style_1.jpg

The trend toward minimalist interiors is I hope on the wane, with the pendulum swinging back to that of warmth and comfort … rooms that are inviting, lived in and have real character. Let your possessions provide the detail.

/images/vintage_style_2.jpg

1.  Display and use on a daily basis inherited pieces such as pretty porcelain or silver.  Don’t just store it in the attic or at the back of a cupboard.

2.  Visit antique shops and markets to keep your eye out for vintage finds … baskets, picture frames or collections of glass bottles to use as vases.

/images/vintage_style_3.jpg

3.  Collections of new or old books add character to any interior …  either in bookshelves or piles on coffee tables.  You can go a step further by displaying them by colour.

4.  Antique timber furniture of any period will always add warmth and texture. Often only one or two pieces are needed to make the difference in a very modern interior.

/images/vintage_style_4.jpg

5.  Choose a classic piece of antique furniture and recover it in a modern fabric.

It is the combination of old and new that gives character … and it should be constantly evolving not created in a few weeks.

10 favourites from ‘design and decoration 2013’ sydney

/images/dd_1.jpg

I was daunted at the thought of visiting Design and Decoration at Darling Harbour this week.  This is the trade only exhibition which showcases the latest and greatest in design.  One is usually confronted with a lot of not so good, to be sieved through in the hope of finding the gems.  Not so this year … not nearly as many exhibitors but lots of new and fabulous.  I have to say my favourite stand was the one above .. well done Crowley and Grouch.

/images/dd_2.jpg

I fell upon this fabric supplier who exhibited the most beautiful range of linen fabrics, both printed and plains … from Sth. Africa.

/images/dd_3.jpg

This furniture was extremely stylish, the designs just that little bit different … such generous proportions.  I do love stud trim on any piece of furniture !!

/images/dd_4.jpg

Excuse the out of focus images, however I was really on the run.  Love both the ikat cushions, colours and the metal furniture very different to anything I have seen.

/images/dd_5.jpg

I first saw and loved similar lamps at Blakes Hotel in London in the late 80’s. I have been trying to source or have made, this style for years … very difficult to get the proportion just right, but here they are.

/images/dd_6.jpg

Yes, new industrial style furniture is here to stay … and I am dying to use it somewhere.

/images/dd_61.jpg

Loved these lights.  In fact the lighting was the standout of the event this year.

/images/dd_7.jpg

This very glamorous African tribal look was rather inspirational !!

/images/dd_8.jpg

Have wanted groupings of this classic wicker on our verandah (to be moved out into the garden for autumn lunches) for years but never time to make it happen !!  This was so reasonably priced that I wondered why I hadn’t just got on with it.

/images/dd_9.jpg

For those of you who read my blog on peacock bedheads, you will be amused to see that I have found another supplier.  This colourfully painted (to order) cane furniture was divine .. particularly the oriental style bookshelves. I do have a soft spot for the classic cane armchair and ottoman in the foreground.

5 ways with texture … adding a whole new dimension to your interior

/images/wallpaper_texture_1.jpg

Texture is a very important element in any interior however it is even more relevant when working with a neutral colour palette. The texture becomes the focal point.

/images/wallpaper_texture_2.jpg

When glancing at Wallpaper magazines 2013 High Altitude, the latest in ski resorts, I was struck by the impact of fabulous texture in varying forms. This was the key element in all these interiors … timber, stone, rustic furnishings and fabric in contrast with the icy surround.

/images/wallpaper_texture_3.jpg

There is unlimited scope for the introduction of texture … wall finishes, floor and ceiling finishes, furniture, floor coverings and of course fabrics.

/images/wallpaper_texture_4.jpg

The use of texture or the juxtaposition of different textures will bring a balance to the visual appeal and comfort of an interior … more often than not it brings warmth and sense of wellbeing.

/images/wallpaper_texture_5.jpg

Introducing texture into your rooms can be as simple as:

1.  Roughly textured jute or sisal rugs on smooth polished floors

2.  Velvet and silk cushions on a linen sofa

3.  Cashmere throw rugs draped over crisp cotton bedlinen

4.  A collection of beautiful shells or pebbles in an all white bathroom

5.  Rustic limestone floors with stainless steel slickness in kitchens

and on it goes …

5 ways with cane this summer

/images/stuart_membery_2.jpg

1.  White cane is a beautiful contrast in any tropical garden setting.  What could be smarter than navy and white cushions. I imagine frangipani or hibiscus for that splash of exotic colour.

/images/stuart_membery_1.jpg

2.  Wide verandahs lend themselves to both casual lounge and dining settings depending on your style of entertaining.  This reminds me very much of the house my mother grew up in Brisbane, where the verandahs were used extensively as an escape from the summer heat. The groupings of both white and natural cane work so well with the painted white timberwork and cane blinds. Blue and white cushions and chinoiserie lamp bases create an air of elegance.

/images/stuart_membery_5.jpg

3.  Natural lacquered cane contrasts with all white lattice and painted furniture.  Bowls of shells with navy and white chinoiserie and fabrics complete the picture. This colour palette is a signature look for Stuart Membery and also rather ‘Hamptons’.

/images/stuart_membery_4.jpg

4.  Explore your options with cane … this drinks trolley is a fabulous addition to any entertainment area in summer.  Wonderful storage as well as display for your prettiest glasses, decanters, bowls of lemons and limes and silver ice bucket.

/images/stuart_membery_3.jpg

5.  All white with accents of sea foam green … simply stunning. Collections of shells and coral for warmth. Elegantly framed coral prints, bronze lamp and mirror frame add a certain formality… so chic !!  The versatility of cane….

images: stuart membery

5 design tips for turning your small spaces into grand spaces

/images/pied_a_terre_1%5B1%5D.jpg

1.  Using the same floor material or shade of flooring throughout will unify your spaces and create the illusion of space.

2.  Keep your colour scheme simple and calm.  Again, use of the same colours throughout will unify and magnify the space.

/images/pied_a_terre_2%5B2%5D.jpg

3.  Storage is critical in small apartments/rooms. Create additional storage and bookshelves where possible by boxing out recesses. Clutter makes a room appear smaller.  Disguise doors to storage cupboards where you can. Split a door into a pair of doors which intrude less into the space.

4. Choose furniture which is both moveable and multi-functional.   Combine a couple of feature pieces with other furniture that recedes or blends with the wall colour. Avoid too many contrasts and patterns in a small room. Surprisingly, an oversized picture or piece of furniture can create impact along with the feeling of grandeur.

/images/pied_a_terre_7%5B1%5D.jpg

5.  The tried and true use of mirrors and even better mirrored walls, always works a treat in small spaces.  Try mirrored splashbacks in the kitchen to introduce light and expand the space. Allow for maximum flexibility with your lighting.  Dimmers on all switches will allow for that ever important change of mood and focus.

images: victoriameale

Marimekko … all the fun and colour of summer

/images/marimekko_1.jpg

I have such fond memories of my marimekko curtains and bedspread, back in the day … it was the 70’s of course.  They were fabulous shades of bright green with large orange tulips.  The look extended  to green heart sheets and a gorgeous white peacock bedhead … all put together by my very stylish mother.

/images/marimekko_2.jpg

Brisbane was all the richer for Joy de Gruchy and The Craftsman’s Market, a design studio that stocked Marimekko and put Brisbane on the map. I have adored Marimekko in a nostalgic sort of way ever since.

/images/marimekko_4.jpg

How exciting to have our own Marimekko in Sydney … looking resplendent in the wonderful store in King Street. The colour is breathtaking and the space full of light !! Bolts of signature marimekko fabric, fashion and homewares.

/images/marimekko_5.jpg

I couldn’t help but pass on my source for peacock bedheads to complete the picture … The Family Love Tree.

Most Popular Topics

Editor Picks