Late to the Pantone Party

I have finally learned to like a little pink. I have never been a fan, even when I was small and as I grew, my strong opinions regarding gender equality kicked in and I found it even more offensive. When Pantone announced 2016’s colours of the year I grimaced and decided there was no way that they could be incorporated into an interior that I personally, would find attractive.

I was wrong. Design is funny like that, there is always a way if you just step outside your comfort zone and consider something new…

Blue and Blush in an Industrial Setting

Pantone's 2016 Colours of the year introduced to classic design.

Pantones blush and blue decorate a rustic space.

I was super surprised to discover that blush and blue sit equally well amongst classic and industrial design and beautifully in a rustic setting. My immediate assumption had been that these pastels would only work in a very feminine or bright white scenario.

And whats more the combination of colour in these settings introduce a serene and soothing effect just as Pantone suggested they would. The combination of both a warm and cool colour in such soft tones brings a comfortable, peaceful quality to a space.

I can now completely embrace this super soft pair when introduced via furniture, soft furnishings and artwork. The jury is still out on painting the walls although I could definitely consider making a feature of the the front door!

Use blush to make a feature of your front door.

I do hate being wrong but seriously love to learn so thank you Pantone for opening my mind to new possibilities. Cant wait to see what you have in store for us next year…

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Move, Change, Rearrange!

I don’t know about you, but I am easily bored. For this reason, I love change. Not pack up and move to Africa change, but shake up my surroundings kind of change. Spring has sprung here in Australia and change is in the air! Time to shake things up as we head toward longer days and warmer weather…

Now as I have previously mentioned, I don’t particularly subscribe to ‘themes’ when styling my home. But I do love a room that tells a story. A story inspires your purchases, creates boundaries for your choices and makes sure your room reflects you! A story can be subtle or bold, carefree or cautious, elegant or relaxed. This is the beauty of it, everyones interpretation is different. With our family Christmas dinner being held at my place this year I really want to change it up the decor and I need to start soon….

I’m gonna go a little bit Native American Indian because I am a lover of pine trees, texture, tribal pattern, timber, wicker and rattan, feather headdresses, arrows and at the moment, images of horses. (And they are popping up everywhere!) Think green, brown and black and geometric pattern. Rough finishes combined with soft feathers, height and natural beauty…..

Create a Moodboard

Change up your decor for Spring and get inspired for Christmas.

Change up your decor for Spring and get inspired for Christmas!

Add the Details

Its easy to style your story into an existing room with just the details;

Textures: The easiest way to bring texture to an existing space is via soft furnishings. Use cushions, throws and rugs to add instant character. Get creative if you can sew, knit or paint.

Artwork: Display photography, paintings, tapestries, posters and fabric or get out the paint brushes if your budget is tight.

Plants: I very rarely style a space without plants or flowers. Bring the outside in wherever possible.

Lighting: Floor and table lamps are a must for a beautifully functional space. Reinvent an old shade or splurge on something new.

Reflective accents: A room is incomplete without some shine, sparkle or reflected light. Use mirrors, metallics or even jewellery for introducing a little bling.

Vignettes: Fun and interesting, a small arrangement will complete your story. Be creative and collect items from home or outside. If your in the mood, spoil yourself with a little retail therapy. Your story will lead you in the right direction.

Write a list, consider what you already have, research the rest.

Introduce your style gradually or set aside a day to pare back, clean and install a makeover.

Most importantly have fun, get creative, be proud and enjoy the process!!

Should you want or require help to create some change, don’t hesitate to contact me, no job or question is too small 😉

 

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The Secret to Decorating an Open Plan Living Space

The popularity of open plan living has made my job as a designer that bit harder. Small rooms with purpose have boundaries and constraints that ironically make styling decisions easier. Open plan living whilst being spacious and social, can be difficult to decorate just right. Large open areas can end up looking a little chaotic, feeling busy and noisy and while this may sound crazy, the secret to open plan living is to divide the large communal space into smaller more intimate zones.

The very best spaces unfold gently, beckoning the eye and leaving something to the imagination. Introducing a little bit of mystery creates an inviting curiosity that welcomes you in and urges you onward…

So how does one accomplish this in an open plan living space you ask? I have a couple of ideas…

Use Division and Make your Space Appear Larger.

Ironically there’s an increased sense of space when the eye is taken on a journey so if at all possible, introduce something to partially hinder your ability to view the entire room at once.

Introduce something to partially hinder your ability to view the entire room at once.

Introduce something to partially hinder your ability to view the entire room at once.

Introduce beautiful fabric as curtains with a clever track system.

Introduce beautiful fabric as curtains with a clever track system.

See through furniture interrupts your view and provides storage. Win, win!

See through furniture interrupts your view and provides storage. Win, win!

A double sided fireplace will divide and heat your open plan living space!

A double sided fireplace will divide and heat your open plan living space!

Glass walls allow natural light through whilst still creating division.

Glass walls allow natural light through whilst still creating division.

Now if you are like me and your space is really too small for any of these options, there are still some designer tricks that can help divide and distinguish different areas within an open plan living zone.

Create a Sense of Enclosure and Define the Purpose of each Space.

A large pendant draws the eye and defines the dining space.

A large pendant draws the eye and defines the dining space.

Use a rug and coffee table to say 'Put your feet up here!'

Use a rug and coffee table to say ‘Put your feet up here!’

Use furniture placement to define your spaces.

Furniture placement can help to create corners and define your spaces.

Use paint or timber as a ceiling treatment to define a zone within an open plan space.

Consider a ceiling treatment to create boundaries and define the edges of a zone.

Often, there are heaps of different ways an open plan space can be arranged, and its fun to move stuff around and restyle depending on the season, occasion or just your mood at the time!  So if you like to keep your options open, stick to free standing furniture and clever styling so you can shake it up whenever you feel the need…

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Modern Meets Farmhouse Vibe of Jenni Kayne

Jenni Kayne is a young American designer and mother whose decorating ideas inspire me. I love the way she describes her style as comfortable yet chic, simple yet refined and sophisticated yet liveable and her airy Californian home is so beautiful, I had to show it to you.

Soaring glass windows and beautiful beams of reclaimed barn wood create a grand entrance and it just gets better from there…

Rustic beams frame the grand entrance of the home of Jenni Kayne

Rustic beams frame the grand entrance of the home of Jenni Kayne

Neutral furnishings beneath a pop of colour

Neutral furnishings beneath a pop of colour

Stone, timber, leather and linen

Stone, timber, leather and linen

Imagine the dinner parties...

Imagine the dinner parties…!

Simple white, timber, brass, glass and a splash of green

Simple white, timber, brass, glass and a splash of green

Everything you need to serve a meal behind floor to ceiling glass doors

Everything you need to serve a meal behind floor to ceiling glass doors

And the playroom is so real, not precious and cleverly creative

I can feel the joy in this room!

All images via onekingslane.com

This home is so real, not precious and I can feel the modern meets farmhouse vibe. I can imagine sitting fireside, cosy and warm or picture friends and family collecting their own plates and glasses from the cupboards ready to wine and dine late into the evening around the enormous dining table. Such a timeless and inviting home, I can almost here the music and the laughter from here…

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