Archive for September, 2010

September 30, 2010

Styling Idea # 37 Window Seats

INSPIRATION FOR THIS POST

A friend of mine has recently purchased a new apartment and I am going to be helping her with some styling ideas. In true “modern couple” style they are giving up the large master bedroom to create an entertainment den, getting rid of the laundry to create a bar and sacrificing a second living area for a large dinner table for hosting dinner parties. It is amazing how we we look at spaces now not as what the floor plan dictates but rather how the floor plan will meet our lives. If you are currently living out your space in it’s traditional way I would encourage to think about your options. Do you really need a second bedroom or would a dedicated home library meet your lifestyle? Do you need that cupboard for storage or could it be transformed into an office behind doors?

One way to create a whole new ‘activity area’ in an empty space is create a window seat. Often a window is dead space- it is used as a window to create light and left to it, but with this idea you can create a new living corner, a reading hub, a quiet space or a retreat.

Apartment Dreams

Apartment Dreams

House of Turquiose

Apartment Dreams

Apartment Dreams

From the Right Bank

TRANSLATION: TRY THIS AT HOME

Now, this is not a revolutionary styling idea but here are some assumptions dispelled (there is a bit here because I think everyone should be inspired to give this a go).

  • You don’t need a large space- as long as it is wide enough to sit comfortably you have a possible window seat.
  • You don’t need this to be a built in structure- place a settee in front of a window- voila- window seat! Add some depth around it with bookcases, side tables, stacks of cushions or floor lamps- you don’t need to build a bay window and permanent seat.
  • You don’t need this to be pretty and floral- rustic leather lounges, over sized black cushions, masculine wooden details, decked by a mini bar and your in business.
  • This can work in a clean modern space- the second last image is a good example of a minimal window seat.
  • You don’t need a small room – large open plan spaces can be redefined by developing a second seating area in front of the window in addition to the main couches in the space.

Here is what you do need

  • A window – most of us have one.
  • Cushions- you want to seat here, you want it to be comfortable.
  • Good lighting- have you got some way of managing the say light and softly lighting at night.
  • Some reading material- even if you don’t use it- it looks good.
  • To check out this beautiful site- where I found some of the amazing images above “Apartment Dreams
  • A window seat.
September 29, 2010

Styling Idea # 36 Mirrored Cabinets

INSPIRATION FOR THIS POST

Mirrors are always a friend when styling- they reflect light, look amazing, can be all sorts of styles depending on the frame and they functional at the same time. I have recently spent hours trying to get a mirror to my mum for your birthday (sorry mum if you are reading this) only to find out that it is hard work transporting the large variety of these from Sydney to Wagga- that means you are not getting a mirror this weekend mum- oops. If I could have, I would have found you some yummy mirrored cabinets- like these.

Pal and Smith

Civility Design

TRANSLATION: TRY THIS AT HOME

  • All sorts, all styles, all space- make everything look brighter, cooler, and more interesting with a mirrored surface.
  • Think about what is going to reflect- patterned carpets are a good one.
  • I love how these are broken up with patterns, panels and prints- not stock standard formal mirrored cabinets.
  • If you want to make an impression turn one these into a drinks cabinet.
  • Don’t stick these to the bedroom- think about hallways, living, dining and entertaining areas.
  • DO keep them sparkling and clean.
September 28, 2010

Styling Idea # 35 Whites and Brights

INSPIRATION FOR THIS POST

ohhh the sunshine, the sunshine! For those of us in Sydney this morning is truly glorious! The sun is shining through my window and making the day seem so exciting already, funny the power of light. I spent the wee hours last night reading about feng shui for a client and that started me thinking more about bright colours. There seems to be a strong trend around white interiors, however the next step of that trend is creating bright accents around the room- check it out.

Elle Decor

Freshome

Freshome

Freshome

TRANSLATION: TRY THIS AT HOME

  • This is all about accessories! Think about everything and imagine in a popping colour. Start with the obvious- rugs, cushions, lamps, flowers, indoor plants, throws, artwork and side tables.
  • To create your second layer of colour think about smaller items in bright palettes that will bounce against the white and add an extra dimension- teapots, vases, pot plants pots, glasses, cookie jars or tea towels- anything you can add a bright colour to will work.
  • DON’T panic about picking the right colours- this is inspired by nature at it’s best- yellow, lilac, grass green, sky blue, pinks, raspberries, orange, lime, aqua, teal or citrusย  – so perfectly spring.
  • HERE’S the main tip- don’t get stuck with primary colours- add something outside the primary colour range to make sure it doesn’t look like a school classroom. In the above examples the a 1st image uses lime, aqua and pink, the 2nd uses powder blue, the bathroom image uses a neon green- anything outside the primary family will throw the eye off and let all the colours exist together.
  • I have included the Elle Decor reference as an example of adding brights to a more classic space- the flowers, the lamp, the chairs, the puppy dog on the mantle- these are all unexpected in this classic setting but they make it so much more interesting don’t you think!

Have a sunny and colourful day.

September 27, 2010

Styling Idea # 34 Open Kitchen Shelves

INSPIRATION FOR THIS POST

When Lewis Carroll sent Alice down the rabbit hole do you think he ever understood that that feeling would one day become a reality through technology. That rabbit hole is now called Google and if you allow it, it will suck you down so far that you literally cannot return home the same, ever. Some days when I am researching online for inspiration, clever people and interiors that knock the wind of you (hard to find, very very rare occurrence) I am left lost. My mind is altered and the way I look at things changes- irreparably. That is the thing about visual stimulation- when you digest it you can never unsee an image, unsee a style or unsee and inspiration.

It is my goal with this blog to edit sharply and bring you ideas. Ideas that inspire. Ideas that you can actually imagine living with. Ultimately I want to deliver images and ideas that are beautiful.

Here is today’s idea…..

Apartment Dreams

One Hour

One Hour

Desire to Inspire

Apartment Dreams

TRANSLATION: TRY THIS AT HOME

  • For me, the brilliance of this idea is that can be a structural change to put into your next reno or an immediate kitchen up lift- today! Just take of the door and get creative.
  • My absolute favourite is the top image. Imagine if you had a collection of incredible vintage glasses in different colours and imagine if you had cute little tea sets and jugs and imagine if you had a kitchen window and you put up some shelves! Genius. Styling at it’s best.
  • If you can do structural elements think about overhead lighting inside the cupboards, painting the back of the cupboard in a different colour or wallpapering it or playing around with shelves lengths and widths.
  • If you don’t want to cover your window you have two main options to consider – be clean and white or clever and bright. Keep your items in neat rows for either options and always replace in the same order after you have done the washing up- I have lived with this styling idea and it easier to keep in tack than you may think (although I don’t live with children or teenage boys- they may be optional)

I have made some changes and you can now share the post easier with the links below- I am also tweeting ALOT of images that I find on the trot so follow me on twitter for products that I would buy….there are more updates to come but for today unscrew the hinges on your kitchen cupboards!

Have a good one ๐Ÿ˜‰

September 24, 2010

Styling Idea # 33 Pretend Photo Frames

INSPIRATION FOR THIS POST

When you personalise a space it is amazing how many things you have held onto for different reasons. Photos, trinkets, jewellery, tickets, cuttings from magazines- lots of little “I will keep that for later”. I am about to do a vision board in my room- something that I have wanted for a long time. This board will host images of what I hope to achieve, what is important to me and things that inspire. Rather than do a cork board “mum in the kitchen” style I might hunt down some old frames and get creative with something like this.

Emmas Blog

Desire to Inspire

TRANSLATION: TRY THIS AT HOME

  • I love how these frames allow un related and different shape and size images be grouped together.
  • It is easy to find frames at second hand stores- look for different textures, colours and styles
  • Think about your layout before committing to the wall- lay them out on a piece of butchers paper and when you are happy trace your pattern- that way you can stick the butchers paper up and make whole where you want the nails or hooks to be.
  • Take inspiration from the second picture and place your objects inside the frame at different alignments.
  • DO use frames inside of frames for a quirky effect.
  • DO look for objects that are a different shapes to create a break in the angles.
  • DO remember that colour rules apply- the colours of images are important too in creating harmony!
  • If you are not confident working with negative space keep the frames connected to each other like the second image.
  • DON’T use just photos in this- gather a variety of pieces that are personal but most importantly beautiful.
  • DON’T forget about the space below- you want to create a casual but not cluttered area around this wall so keep you styling eyes on until you have completed the wall.
September 23, 2010

Styling Idea # 32 Ice Blue and Mustard

INSPIRATION FOR THIS POST

Ok, not only am I late today I am not posting on the launch from last night (just yet). I was on sale table duty for a huge part of the night and beer drinking duty for the rest so I unfortunately didn’t get to grab all the photos I wanted of the night. Today is the kids launch so I will snap some more and pull together the images for tomorrow- sorry.

To make up for it I thought I would share a really gorgeous image that I found on FFFOUND

FFFOUND

TRANSLATION: TRY THIS AT HOME

  • Apart from the gorgeous chair, table and linen the colours in the room are amazing- ice ice blue with mustard offset with grey and teak- does it get any better?
  • DON’T be afraid to mix prints – this rug and bedspread at diametrically opposed and yet work wonderfully.
  • Look for murky dirty mustard’s not American mustard yellow.
  • Keep your blue icy and cold with a grey base not baby blue.
  • Don’t over accessorize – small pieces, neutral colours, retro shapes, clean lines. Done

PS On the day I was planning to post on a cardboard city the incredible Dana at Yellowtrace Blog has done a post on the coolest cardboard camera’s you have ever seen- you should check it out for sure!

September 22, 2010

Styling Idea # 31 Velvet Lounges

INSPIRATION FOR THIS POST

I’m in Melbourne at the moment and I spent all day yesterday setting up the most amazing cardboard city EVER! My clever little sis has written a kids book and the launch is tonight! I will certainly be posting about the outcome…..so look out for tomorrow’s post.

The venue that the gallery is attached to is the trendy little spot owned by Jerome (of Laneway Festival fame) called 1000 Pound Bend – this wonderful Melbourne venue, of course, uses a plethora of velvet lounges to create the retro laid back feeling. Like my “Mixing Lounges” idea earlier this styling idea is easy to do – however this time stick to velvet and one colour blocks.

1000 Pound Bend

Here’s my pick of colours and shapes

Burnt Orange from Vintage Cabin

Ruby Red

TRANSLATION: TRY THIS AT HOME

  • Look for colours in traditional retro palette- ruby red, burnt orange, turquoise, ice blue, mustard, moss green.
  • Look for pieces that are in good condition- cafe’s can do torn furniture but to use these everyday you want it in good nick.
  • Look for different shapes – shape lines, Queen Anne, modular- anything goes.
  • I love a styling idea that straddles different styles- make this feminine or retro at your peril.
  • Use a velvet piece in a bedroom, a formal living, an outdoor room (under cover) – where ever!
  • Do use rugs to pull bold together in a seating area.
  • Do you lamps- lots and lots of them in vintage fabric shades and tassels and ceramic bases.
  • Don’t use modern cushions on these couches- bold contemporary prints would look out of place- think crochet, retro florals, fringed cushions in nanna fabrics only.
September 21, 2010

Styling Idea # 30 White Bricks

INSPIRATION FOR THIS POST

My parents used to have an exposed brick wall in our house- I am sure many of you have lived with one at some stage. By the time we left that house 10 years on I was completely convinced that exposed brick walls were a terrible idea and they must be rendered or covered at any cost! If I was still living there now I would be in love with the brick wall again but perhaps to freshen it up we could paint it white- it adds a wonderful retro vibe.

Source Unknown Sorry

Source Unknown Sorry

Source Unknown

TRANSLATION: TRY THIS AT HOME

  • Look for retro inspired lighting – Sputniks, Artichoke lights, or Castiglioni Flos light.
  • Shag pile carpet? Yes please.
  • Paint directly over pipes, radiators, plumbing whatever- industrial white is cool.
  • Whilst the top two images are more relaxed the bottom two demonstrate that the space can be more formal if you require.
  • Think about this idea for bedrooms and kitchens also.
  • Keep windows clean and undressed- we don’t want to clutter this.
September 20, 2010

Styling Idea # 29 Black Lace Curtains

INSPIRATION FOR THIS POST

I’m bringing back lace curtains.

If you were to see my list of things to bring back you would be horrified at my ambition yet hopefully optimistic that the contents is all worthy of a revival. Some of the best inspirations from fashion are in fact pure rehash and interiors are no different- we just need to remember that they never repeat they just rhyme. Think of lace curtains as the new double denim- you can’t believe you are doing it again but it is so good.

Rachel Whiting

TRANSLATION: TRY THIS AT HOME

  • DO look for plain flat lace that can be drapped without pleats- this will show off the pattern of the lace nicely
  • DO think about how you are going to drape this – it is best if you do not need to tie them back- let them hang casually.
  • DO look for the lace in different places- table cloths for example often have a nice see through pattern that when draped can look amazing.
  • DO think of other colours- yellow, pink or green would work well.
  • DO look for furniture that highlights the retro inspiration.
September 17, 2010

Styling Idea # 28 Shower Seat

INSPIRATION FOR THIS POST

Everyone has a shower right?

And there are certain things that need to achieved while we are in there? And yet we are always balancing the containers and implements and the limbs precociously while the water gets in the way. And we like the water because it is keeping us warm, but it is getting in the way. Why don’t you just sit down and position everything nicely.

Source Unknown Sorry

TRANSLATION: TRY THIS AT HOME

  • This gorgeous example is inspired by the Butterfly chair originally designed by Sori Yanagi in 1954 and is actually a design that is in the MoMA’s permanent collection. Look it up- you should know this.
  • DO pick something in a colour!! What a way to add colour to your bathroom don’t forget your towels.
  • DO pick something that is waterproof- plastic is a good place to start.
  • DON’T worry if it is not in the “shower seat” aisle of your local homeware store- be inventive and find something that looks good that you can sit on that won’t rot or melt in the shower. Done.
  • DO buy new shampoo and conditioner in bottle colours that match the stool – now your thinking like a stylist ๐Ÿ™‚
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