My Design Tips

winter whites .. the warmth of white interiors

Deirdre Brennan - Wednesday, June 10, 2015
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Winter is officially here, the ski season has commenced and we have had our first fall of snow ... much to the relief of all.

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I may have said this before but ... white does work in winter. We have all heard the expression in the fashion world ... winter whites !! Well the same can be applied to the world of interiors.

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There is nothing quite as warming as white on white with the accent being on texture, line and self pattern. Mixing shades of white and cream adds a richness to the palette.

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A white scheme is enhanced by incorporating neutrals such as sisal rugs, hints of gold or other metallics and timber furniture and flooring.

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Bedrooms allow you to build upon a predominantly white/cream scheme with layers of bedlinen as we move from Summer to Winter. Don't feel the need to add colour for warmth.  There is nothing quite as cosy as cream mohair blankets, a cream silk eiderdown, cream velvet or quilted scatter cushions or a rich cream flannel bedhead.

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The elegance of white is transseasonal !!
images: gabriel flores, this is glamorous


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stylish storage in all forms

Deirdre Brennan - Sunday, November 23, 2014

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Industrial display ... like with like

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Faux and fabulous

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Making the most of every usable space ...

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So simple .. so elegant.





Images: thisisglamorous
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Stylish Inner City Living with a Smart Studio Apartment Makeover

Deirdre Brennan - Saturday, August 02, 2014

THE APARTMENT
A 30 square metre studio apartment on the top floor of one of Potts Point, Sydney's finest Deco buildings.

THE NEIGHBOURHOOD
Potts Point, Sydney has the best of both worlds ... proximity to the city and the buzz of the best restaurants, bars and cafes on your doorstep combined with the Botanical Gardens and Rushcutters Bay for a breathe of fresh air.

THE INSPIRATION
To transform a tired, cluttered space into a stylish, functional apartment on a shoestring budget and in a limited timeframe. Inspiration for owners wishing to spruce up prior to selling or buyers looking at an investment property with potential. 

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WHAT I DID
I wanted to create the illusion of space and maximise storage.
This was achieved by choosing a colour scheme of simple black and white. Crisp white walls to lighten and brighten, contrasted with a smart black floor of painted floorboards. 
Fortunately, the sliding wardrobe doors were mirrored, reflecting both light and the view. An additional wall was mirrored to further enhance the reflection of light.
To maximise storage and create a decorative element, bookshelves were built in on the wall surrounding the bed.
A range of lighting options and dimmers were installed, allowing for
a change of mood and focus depending on the time of day.
 
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MY ADVICE
Create as much hidden storage as possible.  
Disguise doors to storage cupboards where you can and split a door into a pair, so as to limit intrusion into the space.
Apartments in Deco buildings usually still have the wonderful original bathrooms.  These can be added to but do not necessarily have to be replaced.

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FUTURE PLANS
Unfortunately the tight timeframe did not permit a new kitchen at the time of the original makeover.  Three years down the track the next step is to install a new all white kitchen. A simple and stylish design, with mirrored splashback will add even more light and further expand the space. 
To provide more flexibility when entertaining, a customised wall bed is an exciting option under consideration.

With a small space, good design does not have to cost a lot of money. 





how to do white well ...

Deirdre Brennan - Tuesday, March 26, 2013

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Crisp, stark white is not for the faint hearted.  In fact most clients I work with shy away from white, on the basis that it is cold and uninviting !!  I beg to differ ...

It is all about using it effectively and achieving the right balance.

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A white interior looks its absolute best where there are timber floors ... of any shade or colour.  It is the perfect balance, with the timber providing the warmth.

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White on white is the ultimate in elegance ... and it is all about the texture.  Try layering  rough and smooth.  I love the combinations of smooth white bedlinen and the texture of an antique marcella quilt or white linen loose covers on a sofa with silk velvet cushions.

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Of course you can always weaken and do white with a hint of ...

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And for something really luxe ... white with that touch of gilt.  Oh so elegant !!

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Working with white and its varying textures and tones will allow you to create a very sophisticated interior ... not always achievable with colour. 

 

images via thisisglamorous

 

 

grain sack fabrics both rustic and elegant

Deirdre Brennan - Wednesday, April 11, 2012

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I first stumbled across these fabrics at the iconic Peppergreen antique emporium in the Southern Highlands.....sadly no longer.  Shelves and even bolts of this vintage linen, cotton and flax grain sack fabric. I think what draws me to it is the subtlety in colour variation.  All very neutral, really only varying in texture from the soft scrubbed finish to a much coarser, almost hessianlike fabric.

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The faded imprint of the logo or manufacturer only adds to the appeal....almost like works of art.

 Also falling into this category of fabrics I feel are the gorgeous antique european mangle cloths.  These are a softer colour palette and finer texture....fabulous for tablecloths and serviettes. I love the subtle stripe to the edge.....always faded red or navy.   

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images: homelife

Being so neutral these fabrics combine well with pattern.....however with their subtle shades of cream, putty or taupe are at their most elegant when incorporated into a cream or white interior.   Have fun with scatter cushions and interesting trimming....and think about loose covers !!

The most exciting part is searching for these fabrics at your favourite antique market.....

 

 


 

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