This was not my first trip to Pure and General, however as it turned out, it was their first birthday. The store looked as fabulous as I had remembered …. I think it just keeps getting better and better !! These shelves are constantly changing.
It truly is a visual delight …. however, what sets this store apart is not just the totally unique product but the merchandising !! I was on a mission to find the perfect wedding present …. the choice was endless (and I kept getting distracted by what I personally just couldn’t live without).
It was terrific to cross paths with the owner, Linda Gregoriou who can tell you the source, the story behind each piece …. and of her travels !! We are talking Cypress, Turkey, Greece, Denmark, Spain, Morocco, Belgium, France, Finland, Japan and the list goes on ……
There is such joy in discovering something new and something totally unique …. ‘homewares with enduring quality, physically sourced’. (There does seem to be a sameness amongst homeware stores where product is sourced from Gift Fairs.) When Pure and General have sold out of a product, it won’t be replaced …. something even better will probably arrive instead !!
Pure and General is a favourite with Interior Designers and Architects who are always on the lookout for different and one-off pieces of furniture, lighting or rugs for projects. The secret is to pop in regularly to keep an eye on the latest in store. By the way …. their very smart little cafe is very close to opening ….think Victoria Room delicacies !!
I literally stumbled across this exquisite little jewel box …. aptly named ….
antiques – art – design
Nestled at the bottom of William Street, Paddington this shop (comprising three rooms) is a visual feast …. glass fronted cabinets filled with pretty and precious antique pieces to tempt !!
Open only a matter of weeks, owners Ian Hadlow and Christopher Becker have a passion for the intrinsically beautiful and the handmade.
Their vision …. to educate the next generation about true craftsmanship.
Their carefully chosen location …. in a street renowned for unique, glamorous and quirky fashion …. ‘fashion is art’ I am told.
With many years experience in antiques, visual merchandising and fashion between them, this, I have no doubt will be the showcase for all things beautiful !!!
As I stood on the street admiring the most beautiful pink necklace in the window, I found myself surrounded by a team from Vogue …. nothing less than a fashion shoot with a girl in a black velvet Celine cocktail frock …. elegantly draped in the doorway.
three rooms is both stylish …. and elegant and is already on the map !!!
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.
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.
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…..
As I glanced at my Habitus Living magazine March edition (online) I was particularly interested in the interview with interior stylist and author Sibella Court.
Sibella’s design favourites included the Sydney artist Anna-Wili Highfield, making wonderful paper sculptures of all manner of animals but predominantly birds and horses. Her impressive client list includes no other than Hermes who commissioned a series of majestic horse masks.
It is worth also looking at her sculptures made with copper piping….quite amazing the movement she captures.
Without doubt my favourite of her paper birds is the owl in flight. This may have something to do with the fact that we have a beautiful large white owl that visits our Southern Highlands garden at a certain time of the year …..sadly not every year.
For those of you that don’t know Sibella Court….she has a very interesting shop in Paddington and can be best described as being all about collecting and styling…..positively everything in sight.
Her books Etcetera and Nomad showcase her talent beautifully….showing how to display your very own possessions and collections with style. In the case of Nomad she works with the treasures and memories you have acquired while travelling…..so much better than poking them into a cupboard somewhere….the memories gone with them.
It is worth a trip to London to stock up on Emma Bridgewater hand made pottery ……I spend hours in her shops in London. Her glass is also particularly beautiful so very difficult to choose.
My friend Annabel in London has absolutely loads of it all which we admire……gorgeous when mixed and matched. Somehow all the designs and colours do work together.
The clever thing is that the Emma Bridgewater mugs are not too big and still seem elegant…maybe that is an English thing…..all those tea parties etc.
On it goes with bedlinen, fabulous coated fabric, stationary, cutlery and tin…..
and her sales and seconds are amazing !!!
Our only problem is that the cost of freight is prohibitive……so do what I do and load up friends and family on their return to Australia.
I had the pleasure of meeting Joe Vinks and browsing amongst his beautiful pieces some time ago…..in a rustic tin shed in the Southern Highlands…..much to my surprise…..a very stylish setting as I recall. I have since seen his pieces looking magnificent in a number of different interiors…..some rustic others rather more formal.
These pieces seem to work anywhere …. in edgy inner city apartments, English country house interiors or beachhouses !!!
I think what makes this furniture so versatile is that it can be stained, waxed or painted to achieve the desired look or fit in with the overall feel of the interior.
I love the silhouette of the twigs against a backdrop when painted white or black but equally there is something just so soft about the aged patina of the natural wood…..some of it the bleached colour of driftwood.