Friday 29 November 2013

Friday Inspiration

After days of rain, and even thunder and lightning, the sun is out, it's going to be a beautiful day. I hope you all have a fabulous Friday and an even better weekend. I'm going to leave you with some beautiful images that inspire me and make me happy - gorgeous colour and pattern, all a little bit boho. Enjoy!

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Thursday 28 November 2013

Rust & Stardust

I remember about a year and a half ago discovering the work of graphic designer and artist, Evie Kemp, and falling in love with her fun, quirky style. I've been a huge fan ever since, stocking her cushions and artwork in my shop, and interviewing her in her gorgeous home for Homestyle magazine. Now I'm really excited to be sharing with you Evie's latest collaborative venture, Rust & Stardust.

Evie has teamed up with fashion designer, Amy Clarke, to bring us a range of unique, innovative homewares, combining geometric pattern, hand-drawn images, unexpected colour, and lasting quality. The products are all amazing in their own right, but they also work beautifully when you mix and match them together.

As indie designers it's really important to Evie and Amy to maintain authenticity, create great designs, produce high-quality work, and have a hand in every step of the process. They want to produce all their work themselves in their own studio. There will be no out-sourcing, especially overseas. But unfortunately there are not a lot of funding options for small businesses in New Zealand, so this is where we all come in...

The girls have started up a Pledge Me campaign. Pledge Me is a platform for creative crowd funding. Rewards are offered in return for donations, and Evie and Amy will only get the funds if they reach their target. I've made donations to a couple of Pledge Me campaigns in the past, and it's fast becoming a popular way to get a small business venture off the ground. You can read more about the process here.

They already have a fabulous workshop and studio, now Evie and Amy need to raise costs to become a large format textile studio. With the right equipment they'll be able to produce all their own fabric, as well as run classes and workshops to share their skills and knowledge with you and me.

So let's all help make that happen. Go on, hop over to the Rust & Stardust Pledge Me page and choose your favourite reward. When the target has been met, you'll be sent the item you've chosen. Evie and Amy have timed this campaign so they can deliver all rewards by Christmas, but that means time is of the essence.

I love this collection, let me know your favourite items, as I will be stocking some in my online shop. Is it the 3D cushions, the cute wee dog tent, the giant floor cushion that can also be a dog bed...? Scroll down through the Rust & Stardust blog to see all the fabulous products, then go and make it yours!

Wednesday 27 November 2013

Beautiful Beauty Therapist Space

Talk about a dream job for me... design a waiting area for a beauty therapist. Only a tiny space, it needed to be feminine, fun, pretty, light-hearted - my kind of brief. Perfect timing, Big Save Furniture had just sent me images of some of their new stock, and I knew their Tokyo chair would be perfect for this space.

Atop the Tokyo chairs I used cushions from my Cush & Nooks online shop and Collected. A gorgeous side table* is a glamorous addition. And it's all grounded by an Armadillo Casablanca rug*. A beautiful gold & white wallpaper is a pretty backdrop to the Catherine print and the amazing hot pink & yellow wall sconce light. And a surf spray vase and sky planter are both unique way of introducing flowers to the space. VoilĂ !

*(email me for purchasing info on this piece)

Tuesday 26 November 2013

Art Above the Bed

The bed is the main focal point in a bedroom, but I love artwork over the bed to anchor it's position. A single, large piece of art can act as a headboard.

You don't always have to have everything symmetrical, sometimes asymmetrical can be more interesting. The smaller print in the image below has the lamp, and the stronger blue pillowcase, to help balance it against the larger one.

Some wallpaper can work as artwork in it's own right. This beautiful Piet Hein Eek wood design is quite a feature. Having the typographical print off-set means the wallpaper remains the hero, and the simple, graphic nature of the print doesn't fight with the business of the wood panelling.

Instead of a single large piece of art, you can opt for lots of smaller ones.

If you're a lover of colour, then embrace it!

And if not, then choose the opposite and keep it simple and monochromatic. Having a simple shelf above the bed means you can swap your artwork whenever the mood takes you.

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So, which is your favourite?

Monday 25 November 2013

Asaki Kajima Exhibition - 'Escape'

On Friday evening, my brother and sister and I attended the most amazing art exhibition by Asaki Kajima. Asaki is married to my brother's best friend, so I'd heard about her work but had never had a chance to see it. It surpassed all my expectations, I was enthralled with the beautiful form and detail of her pieces, and the incredible shadows they cast.

Originally from Japan, Asaki is influenced by the art form ikebana, where nature and humanity are brought together. Rather than focussing on the blooms, ikebana often emphasises other areas of the plant, such as it's stem and leaves, and draws emphasis toward shape, line, and form. All of Asaki's pieces have enormous personal meaning to her and I loved hearing her stories behind them. Although it's nice to interpret art in your own way, Asaki's work meant more to me, becoming quite clear, after listening to her explanations.

This piece 'Circulation' won Asaki an award at the No. 8 Wire National Art Award

Copy writer, Lizzie Russell, wrote a beautiful description of Asaki's first solo exhibition, 'Escape'. And because I couldn't say it any better, I've borrowed a few excerpts to share with you (I've condensed her words slightly)...

Asaki's work gently pulls us into a natural but dreamlike world, where organic shapes, and a mixture of found materials, merge seamlessly to form a collection of ethereal sculptures. It addresses growth, loss, the mingling of her two environments, and the idea of home and belonging in these works.

The combination of natural and man-made, hard and soft materials, allows Asaki to explore complex emotional ideas, and a wider concept of what it is to escape. Most of the natural material used in this collection - seedpods, sticks, ferns and other vegetation - were found and collected here in Hawke's Bay. By using these found elements, Asaki grounds her work here in her beloved adopted place, and suggests that escape can also be a kind of homecoming.

My favourite piece 'Purification' - you can clearly see the turmoil in the black cloud, and the rain (or tears) that are the purification that wash the heaviness away

If you're in Hawke's Bay I highly recommend you go and see the exhibition for yourself. It runs until 1st December 2013, and is in Asaki's studio, 118 Hastings Street, Napier (above McClurg Jewellers). If you want to get hold of Asaki, drop me an email, and I'll pass on her contact details.

Asaki was too shy to have her picture taken, but I managed to snap this one with her in the background. With three of her Japanese friends, Asaki is in the middle facing us (and that's my gorgeous sis in the green)

And on a quick, final note... it took me a while, but I have finally joined Instagram! Yes, I know, where have I been?! Well, I'm here now and am fully embracing it - I absolutely love it. Differing from this blog and my Facebook and Twitter pages (which are all about interior inspriration), my Instagram page will be behind the scenes, and a sneak peek into my life.

Friday 22 November 2013

Eclectic Heaven

I recently posted an article about Rachel Bilson's home in the latest Lonny Magazine. Well, Rachel's wasn't the only home that I fell in love with in that issue. The following quirky Connecticut home belongs to Samantha Knapp, and her brave, eclectic style won me over!

A former TV news reporter, Samantha is now the youthful force behind her parent's interior design studio, Tiger Lily's Greenwich. She got to showcase her vibrant and playful style in her Connecticut cottage. Samantha has a talent for taking traditional design and tweaking it for maximum impact. Not shy of mixing patterns, she manages to team a leopard rug quite happily with an Bohemian covered antique sofa - quite beautiful!

In fact her home is filled with juxtapositions that help to create a fun, inviting, and warm environment.

One of my favourite quotes in the article is when Samantha talks about her use of bold colours... "A lot of people tend to go safe with grays - they think if it's neutral it can last for 15 to 20 years. I don't agree. When you tire of something, you tire of it". In other words, be adventurous!

Samantha's bedroom is one of her favourite spots, and I can see why. Ultra feminine with some edge touches, it's a beautiful space.

Another unique feature in the bedroom is this curvaceous glass cocktail table topped with a faux clamshell that Samantha planted with cacti and moss. Such gorgeous form and texture, it's quite stunning.

And one of my favourite pieces is the stone birdbath in the bathroom, which has had a painted terra-cotta bowl fitted inside and is home to Bugsy the fish. Not something everyone would think to do, but it looks amazing!

Make sure you pop over to Lonny and read the full story, there is so much more and you'll love it.

Thursday 21 November 2013

Flutter Design

The first official day of summer is less than two weeks away, and being blessed with some beautiful spring weather, we've already had quite a few BBQ's with friends and family. It's now that we start spending more time outside, and for that we need the right outside furniture. Well, I have the perfect range for you, check out this fabulous online store...

Flutter Design has remodeled the iconic 1950's 'Butterfly' chair to suit our New Zealand environment and lifestyle. Their Flutter chairs come in three styles and the frames and covers are all NZ designed and made. The all-weather Flutter frames are hand-made, zinc sealed with a black matt powder coat. And the UV safe fabric covers are removable and interchangeable.

The 'Classic' comes in a range of colours and can be custom made with either a matching or contrasting trim. The 'Artist' is a white acrylic canvas cover with a charcoal, originally designed print by artist, Philippa Bentley. And the 'Leather' chairs are made using Argentinean raw saddle leather.

To complete your outdoor look there is a fabulous range of indoor/outdoor cushions and ottomans.

The newest arrival to Flutter Design is the brilliantly designed Fermob French Bistro range. Sustainability and respect for the environment is of the utmost importance to Fermob. Made in France, all their materials, and the production process, are top quality and safe for the environment.

The bistro folding chairs, chaise loungues, and folding tables are available in 24 vibrant colours. A lacquered steel frame with galvanised steel curved slats, they can be easily folded and stacked away neatly when necessary.

Mix and match the colours to create a delightful outdoor room at your place this summer.
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