The warmth of wood … now winter is here

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Cold, wind and rain abound and we are thinking warm and cosy interiors and all that go with it.

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The glow of candles, bamboo lamp light and the warmth of timber.

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Earthy tones and rustic settings.

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Exposed timber new or old, makes an architectural statement and creates its own warm colour palette.

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The appeal of wool and cashmere fabrics no matter what colour palette.

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The warmth of rustic materials, fabulous design and clever lighting .. so simple !!

images: tumblr, browndresswithwhitedots

Balmoral boatshed … casual sydney cafe style at its best

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As they suggest, pop in with sand between your toes or slip into your Gucci loafers, it doesn’t get much more chilled than this.  The setting … divine, and the venue … oh so stylish.  This is Sydney living at its best.

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Not sure how one would describe the design concept … nautical … beach club with a touch of the luscious tropics … it just works !!

For a similar treat a little further afield visit The Boathouse Palm Beach … same cute concept, same clever operators.

How to do black and white … softly

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it is all in the detail …. a predominantly neutral palette with a hint black or charcoal …

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or a hint of buttoning, antique stud trim or cushion detail

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or a smart contrast … just one

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a distinct contrast in style, line and materials … this works

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black, white and stone to soften

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the detail softens what would otherwise be … just black and white

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black, white and shades of grey … always !!

Beautiful bookshelves … working with colour

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Since my last post I am noticing bookshelves and bookcases everywhere and the ones that work really leap out.  The bookshelves above are my idea of perfection.  Such an interesting combination of colours, both books and decorative items.

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One could call this styling … the ability to put together bits and pieces that work … and it is all about having an eye for colour.  It is the combination of colours that pull it all together … or to be quite specific, always work with a complimentary palette of colours.

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Apply this principle to any collection whether it be bookshelves or dressing table. There is nothing as elegant as white or cream with a hint of soft metallic. Have a play and see what you can achieve.

Neutral palette with a splash of colour

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Any neutral palette will come alive with the introduction of a little colour !

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It could be anything from muted dusty shades to vibrant colour !

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A black and white scheme looks sensational with a splash of … well, any colour really … hot pink, soft pink, bright orange, brilliant yellow or cobalt blue …

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Refer to previous posts for tips on how to introduce colour into a neutral palette but it can be as simple as fresh flowers or a bookcase full of books.

Hotel guestrooms with a difference… the siam, bangkok

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Without doubt it is the individuality of The Siam that sets it apart.  Renowned hotel designer Bill Bensley has incorporated the old with the new and created a unique 5 star hotel, full of charm.

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This is not your typical hotel guestroom … with Thai Colonial influences, lamps hanging on black silk ribbons, travel collections … all so very personal.

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The elegance of suites with sumptuous furnishings, exquisite detailing and such interesting memorabilia.

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Memorabilia that has been collected and sourced for each of the individually themed suites.

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Always glimpses to the exotic orchid filled gardens …

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Black and white and distinctly Art Deco.  Such attention to detail.

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I ask the question again, why can’t your average hotel guestroom, or even just the expensive ones, be that little bit more exciting or individual.  It isn’t only about the finishes and furnishings … it is about creating spaces that make patrons feel at home or somewhere better than home.

Milan furniture fair meets fashion week australia

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I was spoilt for choice this week not knowing which to look at first … the Vogue blog covering Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Australia or the Vogue Living report each day from the Milan Furniture Fair.

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I was definitely more interested in Fashion Week’s Street Style than endless images from the catwalk !

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Meanwhile in Milan, my favourites included Missoni (top photo) combining daisies and its traditional zigzag (only seen on the ottoman on the left) and above, the fabulous brights from designer Paola Lenti.

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It was all happening at Carriageworks in Sydney … what a fabulous venue for Fashion Week (yes, with the exception of the parking).

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More of Paola Lenti’s collection ‘In the Key of Colour‘. The furniture is available through Dedece, Sydney. 

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Paola Lenti chose this fabulous Franciscan Monastery, complete with orchard and gardens, for the showing of their collection in Milan. 

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images:vogue

 

 

A hint of gold …

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A touch of gold or gilt adds an element of warmth and style to any interior.  It looks best I believe, where the palette of colours used is minimal or neutral.

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There are no hard and fast rules for the placement of gilt mirrors except to say, the larger the better.

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This palette of colours and textures works like a dream.  Gilt … furniture or mirrors, adds a touch of elegance … or even faded glory !!

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For all your restoration requirements … whether it be regilding mirrors and picture frames or conserving your Old Masters, it is worth speaking to International Conservation Services who have a very impressive portfolio.

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Images: tumblr

How to do white well …

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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

5 favourite upholstered furniture pieces … and finding interesting homes for them

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1.  the footstool … the perfect addition to any seating group but extremely practical in a bathroom … as big as will fit the space without cluttering it.

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2.  this buttoned armchair works well anywhere … lovely in the bedroom or as a pair in a quiet corner of a sitting room or study.  I do love the idea of a pair of these (or one plus ottoman) in the corner of a large country kitchen … for that quick cup of tea.

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3.  a buttoned chesterfield or even chaise is the ultimate … anywhere, anytime.  Looks fabulous in anything from an exquisite velvet to a vintage linen.

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4.  the rolled back armchair is a classic design that can be positioned in a classic or contemporary setting, depending on fabric … I love the slightly higher version around a dining table.

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5.  these squishy daybeds as a pair, are perfect for that covered verandah with view of the garden … just curl up with a book and throw rug.

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