I love plants - and gardening - for me there is nothing more meditative than hanging out in the garden, digging the dirt and connecting with the earth. I admit that I don't have the greenest thumb of all, but nonetheless the process of trying to find and connect with natures rhythm is one of life's challenges that I truly enjoy. If I had to choose just one plant (god forbid!) that would be my very favourite, I would have to say 'bougainvillea'. It is just such a bold and plentiful plant - hardy enough to cope with my rather renegade gardening style - and generous enough to offer up bountiful life and colour for months and months on end. My home in Sydney was full to the brim with bouganvillea in an array of bright and beautiful colours - pink, orange and ruby red - and I'm in the process of trying to encourage a few up here on the farm as well. This beautiful photograph - from a very old issue of Inside Out - reminded me of just how beautiful this plant truly is. Hope it inspires you too....
Saturday, 31 January 2009
Tuesday, 27 January 2009
I'm always so inspired by the amazing people who live in and around Byron Bay - and Andrea Duff and Robert Schwamberg from groovy interior's store 'Strangetrader' are no exception. When it comes to style pedigree you just don't get better than this - fashion stylist Andrea is an ex-fashion director at Instyle Magazine and Robert was a part of the duo (with ex-wife Terry) from Contemporary Hotels responsible for the creation of boutique hotels such as The Medusa, Kirketon Hotel and Rockridge in Palm Beach to name a few. Strangetrader is an eclectic collection of furnishings, homewares and jewellery unlike anything you've seen before - bold, colourful with a slight eccentricity. I just love these pics taken at the couple's home in the Byron Bay Hinterland - a perfect reflection of their aesthetic.
Monday, 26 January 2009
Sunday, 25 January 2009
I really do love the minty tone of this feature wall in Danielle and Kieren Perrow's home in Suffolk Park near Byron Bay. I styled this feature for the lovely Country Style magazine and was struck by the combination of tones in this room - mint with chocolate and beige - with snippets of colour through the detailing. It's a very simple space but has real character through the colour and textures used. Very inspiring....
pics by Jared Fowler for Country Style
Speaking of colour, for the bold and eccentric kind, you can go past Todd Oldham's creations, in all of their various forms (fashion, interiors, graphics). I've been completely wowed by Oldham for years now and love that he's hosting Top Design (of which I am completely addicted!). Here are a few shots profiling Todd's work. Hope they make your day...
Thursday, 22 January 2009
I'm just completely in love with this gorgeous Balinese villa that I found here. It's so bright and colourful which is quite a departure from what you normally find in Balinese interiors - which tend to be decorated in softer, more serene palettes. Hope you like this one...
Tuesday, 20 January 2009
That the year has begun!!!!
Happy New Year everybody.... How are you all???
I hope that the holidays gave you all an opportunity to rest and revive and to prepare yourselves for all of the good things that I know 2009 will have in store...
I have been having a lovely time celebrating Christmas and the holidays. The weather has just been heavenly and I've been spending loads of time at the beach swimming and hanging out with friends. This week though it's back to reality - although in a good way - as my old friend, photographer Prue Ruscoe is in the region and we are spending the week photographing some lovely houses that will eventually make their way into the magazines. And my off-sider Nicky is back to work so the old gang is all together.
There's loads of good things in store for this year - in particular I'm turning 40 - and as Oprah says 40 is the new 30 (or was that 50 is the new 40!!!), so I'm looking forward to kicking up my heels and enjoying life to the full. Most excitingly - I'm heading to Paris in a few months to celebrate my birthday - a lovely way to herald in the next decade!
So welcome back all - I can't wait to share the love and laughs that 2009 has in store for us all...
Thursday, 8 January 2009
'You can't be at the pole and at the equator at the same time - you must choose your line, as I hope to do - and it will probably be colour.' Vincent Van Gogh
When I was a very little girl, I lived with my parents in a tiny, timber workers cottage in inner city Sydney - an industrial part of town mostly made up of factories and warehouses with a few little cottages dotted around the place filled with immigrant workers and their families who came to Australia with the hope of finding a better life.
It was a very humble, kind of run down first abode - comprising two bedrooms, living room, kitchen, bathroom with the loo outside in the garden - but it was all that my parents could afford at the time and they were happy to have a roof over their head and a place to call their own. My mother, with little means but always the avid decorator, set about putting her own stamp on the interior. She chose a warm palette of caramels, rustic reds and oranges for the lounge room and kitchen and pinks for the bathroom. It was a blue and green striped, woolly bedspread that would set the palette for my bedroom.
My room was simply furnished - with a single bed, chair and dresser - but that didn't stop my mother infusing a sense of excitement into the space with colour and texture. I remember well watching her transform the old, inexpensive pine dresser and chair from dull to electrifying with a tin of cobalt blue paint and a paintbrush. Glossy blue paint was all that she used to turn my simple room into an exciting space, full of colour and energy. A space that made me feel alive and filled me with a sense of pride and excitement about who I was, where I lived and my place in the world.
Watching my mother be creative in this way taught me a valuable lesson about the power of transformation. That with a little thought, time and love - you can turn a room (or your life) into something more than it was before. It doesn't matter who you are, where you live or how much money you have - we all have it in us to make things better.
That's my hope for this year ahead - that we find it within ourselves to transform what was into something that better reflects who we are and how we want to live. All that it takes is time, thought and love - and maybe a tin of glossy blue paint - but the results will be electrifying. That much I'm sure of....
pic by Prue Ruscoe from sense of style: colour