Dec 19

Another busy day


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How are your preparations for Christmas coming along? With less than a week to go I am definitely feeling that the countdown has begun! All my presents are wrapped and ready but I haven’t thought much about food yet and I have a mountain of washing to get through. In an attempt to stay a couple of days ahead of the pack I stopped by Costco today to do the Christmas shopping; it was crazy! I can only imagine that the weekend will be much worse, so my advice would be to get there early or steer clear altogether people!

 

But my main focus this week is finishing up with clients so that I can take a bit of a holiday in January. I took a carload of cushions, rugs and mirrors to a client’s beautiful home this morning, where the floors have been stripped of carpet and sanded, and the painters have just finished painting in a warm light neutral with crisp white trims.

The old wingback armchairs were scored by my client at auction and were recovered in a grey/blue and green stripe. We still have a chandelier to hang and a chaise that’s getting recovered in the floral fabric from my last post – my upholsterer tells me it will be done by Monday – talk about cutting it close to the Christmas Day deadline!

I took this pic because I was struck by how festive our blue Madeline Weinrib runner looks paired with the newly-painted red front door (though I know you can’t really see the red here). Two big arched multi-paned mirrors are going above the chunky rustic table to the left, echoing the shape of the arched front doorway.

This week is a little bit mad, but it’s great to see long-planned schemes come together and bits and pieces finally going into clients’ homes.¬† Seeing clients happy at the completion of a job really is the best part.

Naomi xx

Oct 23

A before and after e-project


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One of my interstate clients sent me some photos today of the progress we have made in her bedroom redecoration, and I thought you might enjoy a look at the changes. I used to do quite a bit of work for e-clients, where all the work was done via email and photos sent back and forth. It was a great way to pick up work when I first started my own business and most of my clients found me via this blog.

 

These days my Melbourne and in-person work keeps me very busy, and I don’t really do email work anymore, but this bedroom shows that it is possible to make cosmetic changes solely via email- without ever meeting the client!

 

When this client contacted me she had a bland bedroom that she didn’t love. Baby number 2′s arrival was imminent and she wanted the bedroom to be more colourful, more cosy and more welcoming. She wanted colour and pattern against a base of black and white, with some Asian and ethnic influences. Here are the ‘before’ shots:

There was a lot of pine, in the floor, the bed and the bedside lamps. The client had already recently painted the room, and wanted to keep the black Louis chair, the Chinese screen above the bed and the Indian gown, but was happy for everything else to go!

We opted to keep costs down by retaining the existing white bedside tables, but added some colour with accessories and lamps. Here is how it looks now:

It made sense to stick with the original layout with the bed against the old fireplace. We covered a lot of the pine floorboards with a bright green Madeline Weinrib rug, and switched the old pine bed for a custom-made black upholstered headboard, behind a white bed from Ikea that also provides some under-bed storage.

 

We got rid of the old mannequin and instead hung the Indian gown on a white Chinese ladder. The wooden lamps were replaced with yellow ginger jar bases and shades made with a Florence Broadhurst fabric. We added a bone inlay stool and suzani, ikat and trellis fabrics for the cushions to bring in an ‘ethnic’ influence.

 

The chevron yellow and green storage baskets for the shelves in the bedsides are still on the way, and we need some more artwork for the wall, but overall much more cheerful!

Naomi xx

 

 

 

Jun 5

Luxury fabrics and Ralph Lauren store interiors


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Recently I bought a bolt of Ralph Lauren silk damask fabric in a creamy oyster colour for a client’s bedroom. I found it on ebay and it was an absolute steal, which meant I could buy a lot of it – enough for curtains as well as some of the upholstery. There are a few silk damasks across the Ralph Lauren fabric collections, but this particular one is from a collection called The Heiress:

One of the things that the Ralph Lauren fabric collections do so well is mix different compositions and textures. A more formal (and expensive!) fabric like a pure silk doesn’t need to look overly fussy or feminine when it’s paired with wools, linens¬† and cottons. In terms of pattern, checks and tweeds look great with chintzes and other florals and make them a bit more casual.

I like the hint of silk here in the cushion on the armchair, but the white walls, wicker baskets and plain rug keep it fairly informal.

This is a more formal room (above), with a silk damask used for the chair upholstery. I think this is a beautiful apartment (love all the lamp-light), but I’m not a fan of those floral needlepoint rugs, and can’t help but think how much nicer a big sisal would look for my taste.

 

As a sidenote, while I’m thinking of silk damasks, there’s a great summary of the French interiors in the movie Bel Ami on Cote De Texas here.

 

But on the topic of Ralph Lauren, I know I’m not the only one who takes inspiration from the interiors of the boutiques. The menswear stores usually feature a lot of dark wall colours and leather chairs (I love!), and the Madison Avenue store in the famous Rhinelander Mansion is particularly known for its masculine- themed interiors:

via djhuppatz blog

These are from the David Jones store in Sydney:

These are some of dressing rooms at different stores:

The womenswear store in New York has a lighter palette but the same warm traditional feel. I love all the detailed white joinery!

All gorgeous!

Naomi xx

 

 

May 8

A little shopping and florals


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Today we have a pupil-free day at our school, so I took Mum and the kids to the local shopping centre for a rare treat (it’s actually a treat for me as I rarely brave the malls on weekends and never have all three children with me during the week). It was really nice to not be on a rushed shopping mission, and to be able to have a good look through the shops. At Target (our Target, unlike the one in the U.S., is usually bereft of great homewares) I was pleasantly surprised to see these side tables:

They had a great shape and a hexagonal top. These could actually look fantastic in the right room- I could picture the larger one as a bedside table for a kids room.

 

I’ve also had a chance to do some ebay shopping, and also a chance to get myself organised enough to list some of my ‘extra’ pieces of furniture, fabric and lamps.

I keep holding on to so many things for ‘the next house’, but sometimes I have to do a bit of a cull to make room for new pieces. Ebay is also a great source for pieces for clients- old chairs for recovering and the occasional antique in particular.

 

A couple of weeks ago I was showing fabrics to some clients for one of their rooms, one of which was this colourful floral:

We ended up going with another fabric, also in bright gorgeous colours, but I do like the green geometric against the floral upholstery here. This is a great example of what you can do with an old armchair bought on ebay!

And speaking of greens and florals, here are a few others that have caught my eye this week:

Again, we can see how great a subtle geometric pattern (here, the wallpaper) can look with a floral (the green toile pattern on the chairs). I like the freshness of this office area.

This is such a gorgeous feminine, French-style bedroom! I love the shape of the floral bedhead.

I like the simplicity of this scheme, with the use of just the one tropical leaf-patterned fabric. That banquette seating for the dining area is fantastic!

Naomi x

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