Wednesday 31 July 2013

Make it Pop

One of the most effective ways to make colours "pop" is to layer them over black. Choose pure, vivid colours to contrast with black, charcoal, or deep blue - it will look amazing!

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Tuesday 30 July 2013

Birds on the Wall

I posted an image on Facebook recently featuring a beautiful big photo of a budgie, which received a lot of favorable attention. I love birds, they feature a lot in our home, and there's something about the drama of a large scale photograph that draws me in every time.


The photo is the work of talented Sydney photographer, Leila Jeffreys. I've seen her work in numerous publications, and they are all incredible - the colours, the detail, and the beauty of the birds. With a fascinating childhood, living in India, Papua New Guinea, and Australia, Leila spent a lot of time surrounded by animals. Her love of wildlife still remains, and with so many amazing birds in Australia, she has plenty of enchanting models.


I love how Leila captures the character of the birds through their expression and poses. Some, apparently, are a dream to work with, sitting very still while they listen to Leila - she talks to them throughout the shoot. Budgies can be challenging as they are constantly on the move, and cockatoos are the ultimate show off.

I think my favourite is Neville the Cockatoo - so cute, he makes me smile! Check out
Olsen Irwin Gallery if you're interested in buying any of Leila's work.

We have our own talented artists here in New Zealand. Hawke's Bay photographer,
Brian Culy, has a trio of gorgeous bird photographs.

And Margaret Petchell paints exquisite detail in her large acrylic bird portraits.

Mother nature is remarkable, and these works of art are all brilliant reminders of that.

Monday 29 July 2013

New at Tea Pea

One of my favourite online shops, Tea Pea, has an abundance of gorgeous new products
in-store. Meg & Scott do a fantastic job at keeping Tea Pea fresh and vibrant by regularly introducing new pieces for our children and homes, as well as maintaining all their faithful favourites.

These beautiful rugs are made from felt with the floral pattern cleverly woven into the felt. Not only do they make great floor rugs, but they can also be used as a throw on your bed or sofa.

One of my favourite new additions are the adorable round crochet rugs. Available in aqua & pink, and blue & grey, they're 100% cotton, and, like the floral felt rugs, can be used as a throw or a floor rug. I love adding circles into rooms - they soften all the angles that you find in our furniture, doors and windows.

Kids love bean bags, and you're going to love the range stocked at Tea Pea. 100% cotton knit, they're soft and cosy for your little ones to snuggle into, and come in four cute designs.

What about these cool cloud coathangers?! They are super popular, and have been flying out the door, so be in quick for yours. Too precious to hide away in the wardrobe you should use them to display a favourite outfit, or simply as a piece of art. Hang jewellery or scarves over them, or attach little toys and use as a mobile.

Something else you can display on your cloud coathanger is this delightful 3m white felt garland. You may have seen the coloured felt garland already, but this white version is beautiful, like tiny snowballs.

Let's finish with these brightly coloured powder coated wire baskets. So cool, and so many uses. I'd like a large one to store my girls' collection of soft toys; and I'm wondering if I could turn one into a fun light shade(?) I don't know if that could work, but it sure would look great with a bright coloured cord.

I love Tea Pea's unique product range, and this is just a small selection I've chosen to show you. Make sure you go and see their full range for yourself.

Friday 26 July 2013

So Vintage

I'm really excited to be able to share with you all an amazing new shop based in Hawke's Bay called So Vintage. I can't tell you how happy I am that this shop is in my backyard, but never fear, their online shop and Facebook page means that they can reach much further than our beautiful sunny shores.

The brain child of Korreen and Mehdi, So Vintage is a shop full of wonderful vintage and industrial treasures brought back from France, including vintage leather armchairs; original Jielde industrial floor lamps; Parisian bistro tables and 1900's farm tables with incredible history; and much much more.

After living in Mehdi's home country, France, for some time, the couple made the move back to Korreen's home, New Zealand, in 2009. They share a passion for vintage and industrial objects, and were able to spend a lot of time exploring the local brocantes while they were living in France.

They brought a lot of their finds with them to New Zealand, but it wasn't long before Korreen and Mehdi began to miss their treasure hunts. The idea for So Vintage began to formulate - they could use their knowledge of France and it's vintage shops, fill a container with interesting pieces and bring them back to share with others in New Zealand.

We're a very young country here in New Zealand, and we don't have the same history as the European countries. To have access to the original vintage pieces that Korren and Mehdi have discovered for us is so exciting. They will be going back to France regularly and would love to hear from you if there is anything in particular you'd like them to hunt down. They can also supply bulk items for shop fittings and commercial purposes.

And just in time for all my lovely readers, So Vintage is having a sale on their website this weekend - Saturday 27th and Sunday 28th July - 10 to 30% OFF EVERYTHING! So go and have a look now and make sure you pop back over this weekend for the chance to grab a very special bargain. To keep up to date with all their new arrivals follow So Vintage on Facebook, and if you're ever in Te Awanga give Mehdi and Korreen a ring, I'm sure they'd be happy to show you around.

Thursday 25 July 2013

Beauty in Brazil

There are so many cool and quirky things happening in this tiny home in São Paulo, Brazil,
I just had to share it with you. It may be small in size, only 98m², but it's big in personality.

Where to start?!... the round shelving unit is pretty cool - I do have a thing for circles, and objects that are both practical and aesthetically pleasing. Hanging your bike on the wall is also practical in a small home, and again, looks cool, as long as it's a nice looking bike.

I'd quite like a drum full of Chanel No. 5 as my side table. The matt black surface looks great against the white wall and chartreuse lamp.

Piled up magazines find a second use as a coffee table.

I love the black wall. It's so striking, and also means that the television subtly blends into it when it's not on, rather than becoming a feature of the room.

A pair of black Muuto pendant lights hang over a pair of black stools. The black fridge and cabinetry behind also look stunning against the polished concrete.

Pops of bold colour are playful and fun in amongst the otherwise muted colour scheme found in the bedroom. Love that low hung light.

The brilliant thing is, this is a rented home. Remove all the furniture and accessories and you have a small, mostly grey and white home. It just goes to show you how you can bring a place to life with your belongings.

Wednesday 24 July 2013

Toby Scott Photography

Brisbane based photographer, Toby Scott, has worked for some of my favourite publications, including Real Living and Est magazines, and The Design Files. He's lucky enough to have had some amazing homes and interior spaces to shoot, but that's because his philosophy is to only take jobs that he loves. His passion for his work is evident in his portfolio, from which I've chosen some of my favourites to share with you.

Tuesday 23 July 2013

Paper Room

With my well-known love of colour and pattern, it goes without saying that I'm a massive fan of wallpaper. There are so many amazing designs available to us these days, and they truly are works of art. Paper Room, with a retail store in Auckland and an online store, is the most brilliant source of designer wallpaper. Here are some of my current favourites.

Penguin Library by Osborne & Little features a collage of front covers of the iconic Penguin paperback books. Bright and fun, a study is an obvious place to hang this paper, but don't you think it'd be fun in a bathroom?!

Anyone who watched The Block will remember Dale & Sophie using the very cool Scrapwood wallpaper by Piet Hein Eek. His range of incredibly true to life old wood wallpaper shows that products that aren't perfect can still be aesthetically beautiful.


A new range to Paper Room is the seriously cool Brooklyn Tin Tile wallpaper by Merci. Tin ceilings were originally introduced to America as an affordable alternative to the exquisite plaster work found in European homes. These wallpapers are, again, so life-like, and are perfect for residential and commercial use. Just imagine wallpapering your ceiling in one of these designs!

This gorgeous and graphic Tennis Natural wallpaper by Turner Pocock Cazalet is so fun.
A favourite colour of mine, the green is fresh and vibrant, and it's only on closer inspection that you realise it's a series of tiny tennis racquets.

I've only scratched the surface of the wallpapers available at Paper Room. Pop over to their website to explore more. And if you live in, or are visiting Auckland, you can get up close and personal with all the designs at 25 Jervois Road.
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