Wednesday, May 30, 2012

White kitchens...White appliances?

I know the current trend is for stainless steel appliances all the way. Generally, in a modern kitchen, I agree.

However, stainless steel does tend to be more modern in look, and more expensive in price. For my kitchen I want white cupboards, and you know what? I love white appliances in an all white kitchen. They don't clash and why draw attention to the functional part of a kitchen - I want to focus on the pretty parts!

Ok, so a Smeg fridge and this beautiful freestanding oven aren't exactly budget-friendly, but my focus is more on the way they blend in with the cabinets.

Better Homes & Gardens

This kitchen just wouldn't have the same serene white feel if the dishwasher and oven were in stainless steel.

Style at Home April 2010 issue; photography by Stacey van Berkel-Haines.
A fridge is such a large piece in a kitchen, and in an all white space, a stainless steel fridge can dominate a space. This white one blends in beautifully with the traditional white cabinetry.

Style at Home. Photography by Donna Griffith

So what do you think? Would you embrace white appliances, or do you think stainless steel is here to stay?

Monday, May 28, 2012

Join me on a networking blog hop!

I just wanted to let you all know that I am co-hosting a networking blog hop with Live Laugh Rowe in a few weeks. What is a networking blog hop? It's simply a networking event via blogs - a great chance to add some amazing bloggers to your regular reading list, and get some new traffic to your blog as well!

You'll see this button on my sidebar for the next month and please make sure you join in on the day of the blog hop. It's a great way to expose your blog to a whole new group of people!


See you then!

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Classic in Black and White

I am loving these elegant, classic spaces dressed to the nines in black and white. It's a colour scheme that will never date, isn't it?

Uploaded to Pinterest by Viera Tischljar.

Stylist Rosy Strazzeri-Fridman. Found on Sanctuary. 

Designed by Greg Natale. Found on Arianna Belle.
Designed by Windsor Smith.
Timeless and beautiful, no?

Friday, May 25, 2012

Their Design Ethos: Sarah from Pewter+Sage!

The 'Their Design Ethos' feature is a chance to meet some other bloggers from around the world and find out what their style is and what's inspiring them at the moment! Last month you met another Sarah from Monaco Interiors.

Well I must like "Sarahs" because this month we get to meet another Sarah from one of my favourite American blogs, Pewter+Sage. You might have seen me link up to Sarah's fun Monday Moodboards like this one.


Thank you so much for having me, Anna! I'm so honored to be a part of your new series. And if you don't mind, I'm kinda going to live vicariously through you...its always been an obsessive dream of mine to get to Australia someday!

This is such a hard question for me!! Please, Anna, can I have like six words?! I actually really struggle with what my "style" is because I feel like I'm all over the place...I like too many different things and I change my mind often.

So, I'm going to go with Classic, Casual and Organic.

 I do think I'm a bit traditional...I tend to go safe with furniture selection and neutral with color choices, adding pops of color and trends in smaller, easier to change ways like accessories (and I love a bit of black in every room!). I'm also using classic here to incorporate my recent love of antique and vintage finds.

None of our rooms are very "formal" (even the dining room);  I want them to be inviting, cozy and personal. In this case, casual to me also includes the bits of cottage, coastal and country that we have in our home. Lastly, I love natural elements and texture, organic patterns, botanical prints, pretty much anything related to nature.

Blogs, Pinterest, magazines. I still watch some HGTV. I love flipping through the big box catalogs I get in the mail and of course, visiting their actual brick and mortar stores (I love small home decor boutiques and shops too!). I am definitely always inspired by nature, especially for seasonal decorating.

I kinda have a thing for decorative throw pillows! And I haven't bought any in awhile, so I think I'm due. I would really love a hutch or sideboard for our dining room..I'd like to find something say on Craigslist and repaint it. I'm finding myself lately drawn to large scale charts, maps and botanicals...I'd love to splurge on some huge vintage ones hanging from dowels.  

I've talked about this before, but my favorite room in our home is still my daughter Maura's nursery (she's 20 months).

For a few reasons...the most important being that we spend so much great family time here. It's also the room that I've "completed" most recently, so its probably one of the best examples of my design ethos! I love that this space is full of gifts from all the special people in Maura's life and it contains personal things of mine and my husband's from when we were little that we've saved over the years.

Its' got more sophisticated antique finds (like the 19th century hand-colored botanical lithographs above the dresser) as well as fun, whimsical things like the old school paper chains that we made for Maura's first birthday party and decided to hang from her ceiling afterwards.

I'd love this entryway by Amy D. Morris Interiors (that I recently pinned) as a back mudroom! It's beautiful and functional! So much storage, that cool black Dutch door, the brick floors that I wouldn't mind leaving snowy and dripping outerwear on, a second set of steps to the upstairs! I love the white plank walls, the old bench and the contemporary black framed photo gallery wall.

Designed by Amy D. Morris.

Thanks for joining us on My Design Ethos, Sarah! I love Maura's nursery - it looks like such a cheerful space with so many personal features and that brick floor is definately calling my name!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Grey, mint and green bedroom ideas!

I have a new display home opening in just a few weeks (well, it's not mine exactly  but I'm designing it for a builder!). It's a mix of contemporary, vintage and retro inspired pieces with some bright accent colours and fun details.

The master bedroom is a long, narrow room with two tall thin windows on each end wall. The carpets are a warm charcoal tone, with walls in Dulux Natural White.

I knew I wanted an aqua or mint tone as an accent colour and when I found an amazing mint green and white tufted armchair (very Kelly Wearstler!) at a local store I knew I had the right scheme! The rest of the room has involved with lots of white and just touches of emerald.

These aren't the exact furniture pieces I will be using as it is just the initial moodboard which I use to guide me when shopping. You'll see things will evolve as I find the right pieces and put everything together. I do love the green on green scheme though! What do you think?

Monday, May 21, 2012

White washed floors

Only one day left to enter the giveaway to win an AMAZING painting from SomethingDebussy. Who wouldn't want to win their very own piece of original art from an Australian artist?

I have always been a fan of beautiful dark timber floors. My dream home (the one I'm slowly building in my mind!) has always had walnut coloured, satin finish, wide planked timber floors (yes, I go into detail!).

Recently however, I've been feeling a growing desire for light floors. Suddenly, anything white washed, limed washed or just plain white is grabbing my attention, especially when combined with vintage furniture and coloured walls.

Kenneth Brown Design

I really love this dining room above. To me, it has the perfect mix of pure glamour (look at those chairs!) and rustic finishes. What I really love about the light floors is the way it makes dark, vintage pieces look more contemporary. They kind of float in the room.

A light floor also lets you bring some deep, bold colours into a space without making it too dark. How incredible is this floor below? Love those branch style consoles too!

Ralph Lauren Design. Found at Interiorly.

See how that very traditional table (below) suddenly seems so modern and interesting? The gorgeous Ghost chairs help as well!

The pendants are great but the chrome one reminds me a little too much of a tin can (DIY paint can project, anyone?)

House and Home blog.

This room is exactly what I'm talking about. I love the fresh take on traditional furniture and the amazing contrast achieved between the floor, the console and the black door. Stunning!

Jonathan Adler.

A more country alternative. Loving the natural table and those pretty bud vases. Of course, you don't need much in a room with a view like that!

Designed by Susan Fredman.

Look at the way the dining room is floating in the room! Love how it modernises a traditional Persian rug as well. I can just see my Moroccan orange rug floating on a white floor!

Sixx Design. Found on Cococozy.

I'll have this floor and those chairs please!

Bountiful Design. Found on Houzz.

I'm not sure I'm converted enough to try it in my next place, but I'm definately considering it! Has anyone tried white washed floors before? Comments on cleaning? They would have to show less dust than my current dark floors!

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Fashionable Feature: Winter Outfit

Well I felt just the first touch of chill in the air the other day and it made me start dreaming of winter jackets! You have to understand they are quite a novelty here with about two weeks of the year we can actually wear them.

One of my favourite winter outfits is a tailored jacket and a pretty skirt, and here are some looks that have caught my eye recently...

Images via Pinterest

As a result, I'm loving the look of these gorgeous pieces...

1. Forever New
3. Target
4. Betts (only $27!)

Any fabulous stores for winter clothes you can suggest for me? What are you looking forward to this Winter?

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Giveaway Painting

Don't forget to enter the AMAZING giveaway offered by J.Masaki from Etsy store SOMETHINGDEBUSSY. Her simply beautiful purple and gray abstract painting will look right at home in any room, traditional or modern.

Read this post to enter!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Creative bathrooms on a budget

Recently, I've been tossing around ideas about building a home next year. This is certainly not a definate plan but I have been mulling over ideas on how to make a budget builder's home look original and interesting. It would be a bit like Sarah's House where you don't have a few hundred thousand for decorating!

First step, bathrooms. How do you create an interesting out-of-the-box bathroom on a budget?

1. Consider a pedestal sink

Pedestals are much more affordable than a standard vanity, look pretty and keep a bathroom feeling open and airy, but I know - no storage! The key here is to create storage elsewhere, such a cabinet with a mirror or shelving elsewhere in the bathroom. The advantage? These items are much cheaper than putting in a standard vanity unit. You can even use them as a pair to create a double "vanity".

Better Homes and Gardens

Better Homes and Gardens

Home of Emma Reddington. Featured on Design Sponge.

2. Shelving is a budget storage option.Not everyone can afford beautiful built-in cabinetry and custom storage solutions. Open shelving is affordable and can be beautiful with a touch of creativity.

Via 320 Sycamore blog.

Better Homes and Gardens

3. Get away with budget-friendly plain tiles by dressing up the walls with bold paint or wallpaper.I really love this idea. You can get away with a very simple white tile on the floor and walls if you go bold elsewhere. Why not try some wallpaper, stencil or just a bold paint job?

Featured in Canadian House and Home.

Cape Cod Summer House by Traditional Home.

4. Use creative grout to dress up basic tiles.

You've probably seen this idea everywhere with the dark grout on subway tiles, but it can work for all tiles. I love the idea of a dark 300x600mm tile in a brick pattern, with white grout lines.

Designed by Tommy Smythe.

Home of Nina Gotlieb. Featured on Design Sponge.

5. Use shower curtains rather than screens.

I know we all love the easy cleaning ability and open feeling of a good glass shower screen, but shower curtains are much more budget friendly and allow you to change the look the bathroom quickly and easily. Don't buy a white plastic one - let your imagination run wild!

By blogger Chez Larsson.

By Faiella Design.

6. Add a fabulous mirror.

Builder grade mirrors are square and let's be honest, a bit boring. Why not save the cash while you're building and put the money toward an interesting mirror which will add a bit of style and personality to your bathroom?

Designed by Stacey Brandford. Featured in Country Living.

 Designed by Muriel & Marion.

What do you think? Do you have any other great budget ideas for me?


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