Have you noticed a profusion of African inspired decor lately?
I know, it’s always been around but of late there seems to be a bit more of it and in all sorts of items. I don’t think we’re heading down the path of decorating a complete room in African style but more touches here and there. What do you think?
Perhaps it’s our climate and love of the outdoors that resonates so well with the African Safari Style which is then translated into our decor. There’s also a big push back to handmade items which any ethnic culture has valued for years. And African style is more simplistic which balances our love of technology and helps create a soothing, relaxing space.
Much of the strength of African Style emerges through texture. Natural fibres of Jute, sisal and seagrass are used for flooring while banana fibre and papyrus are used in woven baskets.
Rapee have recently released a range of cushions in bright colours and rich textures which would give an African lift to your room.
Lighting is warm and golden, utilizing rustic iron candelabra and wall sconces. Table lamps incorporate palm or pineapple motifs in their bases, whilst unique shades made from feathers or quills convey the safari ambiance.
Furniture features rich timbers with stylised accents or folding furniture which would be used on Safari.
These gorgeous pieces are based on the campaign furniture used on Safari and are available from one of our suppliers here in Australia.
Comfort is foremost in an African decor, with an overall effect of effortless luxury, a sense of adventure, but always relaxed and in harmony with nature.
I recently attended the launch of the new collection from Casa Mia. I have been specifying Casa Mia products for years and love their elegant shapes.
It is a family owned business and has been operating for over 30 years. The furniture is imported from Italy in it’s raw state and then stained and upholstered in the factory here in Sydney. Originally the furniture was classic but in recent times there has been a shift to a more contemporary look.
With loads of colour options including custom colours and numerous choices in handles and other decorative elements, there is a piece of furniture for everyone.
The furniture is on display in Paddington and the showroom was looking sensational for the launch.
Even the dog was excited!
If you would like new furniture for your home, contact us and we will source the perfect items for you.
I keep on seeing it over and over again – the X factor for interiors.
X factor is a variable that could have most significant outcome, a special talent or quality or something unexplainable that adds value.
You can add some X factor to your home by incorporating the X shape in your furniture or cabinetry.
It’s a strong statement, that little X. Two lines intersecting in perfect symmetry adding strength and detail to an otherwise very ordinary item.
All images can be found on my Pinterest boards.
If you would like assistance adding the X Factor to your home, contact us for an online or in-person consultation or send us your furniture sourcing requests.
Last week I visited Decoration and Design here in Sydney. It is held each year in conjunction with the Australian International Furniture Fair and is more up my alley. All the pretty bits that make a house a home are featured in this area of the show. Things like artworks, rugs, fabrics and homewares. So I am keen to wander up and down the aisles looking for something new or different.
This year I found a number of things. Firstly it was The Wallpaper Company. Not just any old wallpaper but REMOVABLE wallpaper. How cool is that? Fantastic for a feature wall in a colour or pattern you may be worried about. Or for teenagers’ rooms who want to assert their individuality but the parents aren’t keen to do something too permanent. And exceptionally great for those who are renting their home.
The paper is good quality and comes off without leaving any residue so can easily be cleaned or painted over. And another big benefit is that it can be installed yourself!
Next up was a new supplier of colonial style furniture and homewares, Colonial Franz. It’s always so exciting finding a new supplier and seeing what they have that’s different from everyone else. Colonial Franz has a lovely range of rattan and timber furniture as well as glass and ceramic homewares suitable for a Hamptons or Colonial style home or room.
Timber chairs with rattan backs, hurricane lights and ceramic jugs are just a few of their extensive collection. I’m sure we will be able to use their products in some of our designs as they have clean lines yet a comfortable and inviting look to them.
Then it was cane. Now I’m not usually a cane lover. Think I spent too many holidays in poorly furnished apartments on the Gold Coast. However, it is having a revival. And when there’s a revival it usually means it has been tweaked and twisted a little to suit current times.
Lincoln Brooks has a wide range of cane, rattan and wicker furniture pieces ranging from exotic lyrebird bedheads to asian inspired occasional chairs and french bistro chairs any of which I’d be pleased to see in my own home. Many of them come in a variety of colours which ticks all the boxes for me too.
So they were my three new finds at this year’s Decoration and Design.
If you would like assistance using any or all of these items in your home, contact us for a consultation.
I don’t believe so! I love a dedicated dining room especially in older homes.
Back in the mid 1980′s I bought my first home in an outer Brisbane suburb. It had a combined dining and lounge room and for a few years I had a pine round table with 4 rattan and metal cantilevered chairs as the dining table. Then one day, one of my colleagues at work asked out loud if anyone was interested in a Rosenstengel dining suite. He had been appointed Executor of a Monseigneur’s Estate and apparently there was a silky oak dining table and 6 chairs to offload. The asking price was $200. With all my income going in to my house repayments I said, “No”. Besides I didn’t want some old table and what was Rosenstengel anyway?
I was telling my Mum about it a few days later and she said, “Grab it.” She knew all about Ed Rosenstengel and his furniture making and knew it would be a great buy as well as owning a piece of Queensland history. So I purchased the table and it is still serving me to this day. Although right now it’s in storage as we renovate our home.
When I moved to the Gold Coast in the ’90′s I decided to have the dining suite refurbished. A furniture restorer cleaned down the table and applied a new coat of shellac which gave it a rich glow. I had the chairs reupholstered in a plain pink fabric to co-ordinate with the curtains and sofa.
When I moved back to Brisbane we renovated a little Workers Cottage on the northside and we created a formal dining room in the old sleep-out.
This time the upholstery on the chairs dictated what colour the walls would be.
When we moved to Sydney and bought our Californian Bungalow the dining suite suited the period of the house and the existing curtains.
However, after a few years, I was ready to ditch the curtains and I replaced them with gold silk and repainted the walls in the warm earthy tones of the time.
Now we are renovating, I have decided to keep the formal dining room. We’ve closed off two of the three doorways into the room and I’ve decided to be a little bit adventurous in choosing the paint colour.
I’m a firm believer that the formal lounge room is mainly used at night time so why not make it dramatic? But alas the existing upholstery will not suit the new look room. The question is, will I keep the suite and have it reupholstered, or is it time for a complete new dining suite?
Do you have a formal dining room or a dining suite with provenance?
No, not quite, but I have been rather consumed by everything that’s going on, so the poor old blog has been neglected. Sorry for being AWOL for a while.
Our house renovations are getting to the pointy end. It’s looking so good and I just want to wiggle my nose and be in.
My father-in-law (aka The Painter) has been here for two and half weeks and has been working non stop to get the interior of the house painted. My husband is helping on the weekends and does some prep work for him in the evenings. The colours all look great. (The one above and the one below are not the same, it just looks that way on the screen. Well it does on mine.)
The tilers have been and tiled the bathrooms and laundry as well as the outside rear stairs and landing.
And the floor has been put down in my new studio.
The logistical nightmare is now upon us as we juggle all the tradies for the final two weeks. The cabinetmaker is still to bring in the laundry, kitchen and bathroom cabinets. The electrician is to return to install all the light fittings. The plumber needs to come after the tilers to plumb in the toilets and then will return after the cabinetry to do the taps and basins. Shower screens and bathroom mirrors have been measured and will be installed also after the tilers. Then when they’ve all finished we can have the floors sanded, stained and polished (I’m going for a dark floor) and finally the carpet and curtains.
Then we can bring back the furniture and household items we packed away in storage 10 months ago and move in and enjoy Christmas in our new old home.
Besides all that I’m trying to ensure all the jobs that are in the system for clients get completed and delivered prior to 24 December.
A new dining table was delivered for one client today and we are still waiting on a new sofa.
We’re awaiting shutters for another client and curtains and blinds for two clients.
A bathroom is having a makeover for another client and I’m still doing colour consultations for clients about to paint over the Christmas period or have painters coming in the New Year.
The wallpaper hanger is booked for yet another client and a sofa is being carted off today to be reupholstered.
Fingers crossed everything goes to plan and we are all enjoying our “new” homes for the holidays.
If you would like assistance with colour and design for your home, contact us for an online or in-person consultation.