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20 November 2017
By portermathewsblog


If there’s one thing that gets a bad rap in design, it’s the studio apartment. Often a rental with very little in the way of space, studios must do it all without room to spare. While it is a tall order, we found a place that does it just right. Tucked away in the Upper West Side of Manhattan, this studio is just as relaxing as it is energising. Keeping rental restrictions and their client Jamie’s laid-back style in mind, designers Lindsay Boswell and Ali Levin of LABLstudio created an urban oasis filled with ideas that anyone would sacrifice square metres for.Mixing earthy and glamorous touches, this “hidden gem” evolved into a room suitable for sleeping, living, and entertaining. Getting creative with the space, Boswell and Levin incorporated unexpected pops of colour using removable wallpaper and made sure every piece served a variety of purposes. The result proves that size isn’t everything! Keep reading for a full studio tour and Lindsay and Ali’s favourite tricks for decking out a small space.

Photo by Matthew Williams via LABLstudio

POPSUGAR Home: How do you create a space for both living and entertaining, especially in a studio? LABLstudio: In studio apartments, it's really important to make sure that you carve out distinct areas for sleeping, living, and entertaining, even if they're all in the same room. Whenever possible we like to make sure there is a proper living area (i.e., a sofa, side table, coffee table), as well as a place where you can sit, eat, or work. Sometimes this means sacrificing some of the "bedroom" to make for a larger "living and entertaining" area.  Photo by  Matthew Williams via LABLstudio

POPSUGAR Home: How do you create a space for both living and entertaining, especially in a studio?

LABLstudio: In studio apartments, it’s really important to make sure that you carve out distinct areas for sleeping, living, and entertaining, even if they’re all in the same room. Whenever possible we like to make sure there is a proper living area (i.e., a sofa, side table, coffee table), as well as a place where you can sit, eat, or work. Sometimes this means sacrificing some of the “bedroom” to make for a larger “living and entertaining” area.

Photo by Matthew Williams via LABLstudio
PS: How do you make a studio livable without looking cluttered? LS: Make sure that all of your main pieces serve multiple purposes. For example, the console that we placed between the windows doubles as a place where two people can comfortably dine, a place where Jamie can sit with her laptop, and a place where she can put her makeup on in the morning.  Photo by  Matthew Williams via LABLstudio
PS: How do you make a studio livable without looking cluttered?


LS
: Make sure that all of your main pieces serve multiple purposes. For example, the console that we placed between the windows doubles as a place where two people can comfortably dine, a place where Jamie can sit with her laptop, and a place where she can put her makeup on in the morning.

Photo by Matthew Williams via LABLstudio
Similar to the living space, the bathroom uses pops of colour to reflect the apartment's earthy, glam vibe. For a personal touch, the designers even switched out the vanity knobs.  Photo by  Matthew Williams via LABLstudio

Similar to the living space, the bathroom uses pops of colour to reflect the apartment’s earthy, glam vibe. For a personal touch, the designers even switched out the vanity knobs.

Photo by Matthew Williams via LABLstudio

PS: We love the wall art. How did you do that? It is from your Femme and Gem collection? LS: The one wall (next to the bed) is wallpapered in our "Gemma" print (in Sapphire) from our "Femme and Gem" collection. It's removable, and you can hang it yourself! For the other walls, we hand painted watercolour pinstripes to add personality and to tie everything together. Photo by  Matthew Williams via LABLstudio

PS: We love the wall art. How did you do that? It is from your Femme and Gem collection?

LS: The one wall (next to the bed) is wallpapered in our “Gemma” print (in Sapphire) from our “Femme and Gem” collection. It’s removable, and you can hang it yourself! For the other walls, we hand painted watercolour pinstripes to add personality and to tie everything together.

Photo by Matthew Williams via LABLstudio
The entryway is proof rental lighting doesn't have to be boring. For an industrial touch, you can find a similar light fixture here.  Photo by  Matthew Williams via LABLstudio

The entryway is proof rental lighting doesn’t have to be boring. For an industrial touch, you can find a similar light fixture here.

Photo by Matthew Williams via LABLstudio

LS: The goal was to give Jamie a cool place to call home — a space that was relaxing yet energizing and a space that reflected her personality. We tried to make the apartment feel as large as possible and use fun and unexpected pops of magenta and purple throughout.  Photo by  Matthew Williams via LABLstudio LS: The goal was to give Jamie a cool place to call home — a space that was relaxing yet energizing and a space that reflected her personality. We tried to make the apartment feel as large as possible and use fun and unexpected pops of magenta and purple throughout.

Photo by Matthew Williams via LABLstudio
LS: In this apartment, we opted to place the bed in the corner and mount a shelf on the wall rather than a bedside table. This allowed for a larger living and entertaining space. If you make the bed the priority, the apartment ends up feeling like a bedroom rather than a real place where you can hang out with friends and entertain. Photo by  Matthew Williams via LABLstudio LS: In this apartment, we opted to place the bed in the corner and mount a shelf on the wall rather than a bedside table. This allowed for a larger living and entertaining space. If you make the bed the priority, the apartment ends up feeling like a bedroom rather than a real place where you can hang out with friends and entertain.
Photo by Matthew Williams via LABLstudio
To maximise space, Ali and Lindsay choose side and coffee tables that double as stools for additional seating. To add personality, they hung a magenta juju (African feather headdress) above the sofa. Photo by  Matthew Williams via LABLstudio

To maximise space, Ali and Lindsay choose side and coffee tables that double as stools for additional seating. To add personality, they hung a magenta juju (African feather headdress) above the sofa.

Photo by Matthew Williams via LABLstudio
PS: Any tips for renters looking to add a personal touch? LS: Do not be afraid to paint your walls or hang some wallpaper! So many people who rent end up leaving their walls bright white. If you keep all of your walls this colour, your place will look like a rental and not like a home. There are so many removable wallpaper options out there to personalise your space. Get your hands dirty and paint or hang the paper yourself — make a day of it, invite a friend or two over to help, and open a bottle of wine! Photo by  Matthew Williams via LABLstudio

PS: Any tips for renters looking to add a personal touch?

LS: Do not be afraid to paint your walls or hang some wallpaper! So many people who rent end up leaving their walls bright white. If you keep all of your walls this colour, your place will look like a rental and not like a home. There are so many removable wallpaper options out there to personalise your space. Get your hands dirty and paint or hang the paper yourself — make a day of it, invite a friend or two over to help, and open a bottle of wine!

Photo by Matthew Williams via LABLstudio
PS: What is one piece of advice you could give city dwellers? LS: Living in a big city can be hectic and overwhelming at times, and it’s important to make your apartment feel like a real home, especially if you rent. Good design doesn’t have to cost you a lot of money or take up a lot of your time. These days, there are a lot of affordable design options out there. Photo by  Matthew Williams via LABLstudio

PS: What is one piece of advice you could give city dwellers?

LS: Living in a big city can be hectic and overwhelming at times, and it’s important to make your apartment feel like a real home, especially if you rent. Good design doesn’t have to cost you a lot of money or take up a lot of your time. These days, there are a lot of affordable design options out there.

Photo by Matthew Williams via LABLstudio
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20 November 2017
By portermathewsblog


Jane Hone via domain.com.au

If there’s one room in your house that needs to be functional, surely it’s the kitchen. So what’s the secret to ensuring that your kitchen works in the most functional way?

Architects and designers agree that if there were one magic ingredient to kitchen design, it would be the “kitchen work triangle”.

For the uninitiated, the work triangle is a design principle in which the three most utilised components of a kitchen—usually the fridge, stovetop and sink—are within easy reach of each other, traditionally in the shape of a triangle. The idea is that you only need to take minimal steps to move between each point.

Ema House. Architect: Evelyn McNamara Architects.Ema House. Architect: Evelyn McNamara Architects. Photo: Jeremy Toth

“The maximum steps are two to three,” says interior designer Fiona Lynch, who has designed hundreds of kitchens, all with some form of work triangle. “Any more than that and you’re going to get a workout while cooking – but it’s probably not good if you’re trying not to burn something!”

Interior designer Pascale Gomes-McNabb agrees. “Kitchens that are planned with the sink, stove and fridge in a triangular formation are generally more efficient and ergonomic to use”.

“You definitely work faster in a well-planned kitchen.”

Hahei House. Architect: Studio2 Architects.Hahei House. Architect: Studio2 Architects. Photo: Simon Wilson

It’s a concept that was first developed in the 1940s by design researchers from the University of Illinois, who gave very specific guidelines on how the work triangle was to function.

There should be between four and seven feet (1.22 and 2.13 metres) between the refrigerator and sink, they said, four to six feet between the sink and stovetop, and four to nine feet between the stove and fridge. There was also to be as little foot traffic crossing the triangle as possible.

Of course, kitchens today are not the same as the standard kitchen of the 1940s. We are seeing more open-plan designs, for example, rather than a separate kitchen, which actually makes the work triangle even more important.

Seddon House. Designers: Red Door Project Photographer.Seddon House. Designers: Red Door Project Photographer. Photo: Shannon McGrath

“People are wanting very large kitchens,” says Lynch. “Often the most functional kitchens are quite small. Some houses seem to be getting bigger, but [you need to make sure] that the triangle still works.”

On the other hand, there are more people living in small inner-city apartments. Gomes-McNabb says that in these spaces, the components might be arranged in a linear style. However, the basic idea of these three points remains.

Architect Brad Swartz suggests making sure the spice rack is within easy reach of the stovetop, and refers to a decent amount of bench space as the “fourth element” of good kitchen design.

Imo's Modular Kitchen. Designers: IMO KXN.Imo’s Modular Kitchen. Designers: IMO KXN. Photo: Toaki Okano

“I’ll typically push the cooktop to one side and the sink to the other side so you can then have a good space between for preparing food,” he says. “Also, a slightly deeper-than-standard bench top is really nice. A standard bench top is 600mm deep, but if you do one that is 650 or 700, you can do two sets of plates, front and back.”

Nick James of Architecture Architecture adds that the bench height should be tailored to homeowners for maximum cooking efficiency and that using island benches in work triangles isn’t for everyone.

“People either love it or hate it because the dishes end up piling up on the island bench,” he says.

Sayes Stock House. Architect: Sayes Studio.Architect Chloe Naughton points out that there should be ample space on which to place hot or heavy dishes and that kitchen designers should be careful when it comes to galley-style kitchens.

“The distance between either side of the kitchen is key to the triangle working successfully,” she says. “If the space between is too large, it seems to interrupt the flow of the kitchen.”

The good news is that once you’ve got the flow of the kitchen down pat, you can set about making the place look beautiful.

“If you get the kitchen design right, you can go to town on the aesthetics,” says James.

Sayes Stock House. Architect: Sayes Studio. Photo: Simon Wilson

 

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20 November 2017
By portermathewsblog


Modified via domain.com.au

As the holiday season approaches, one more thing to worry about on the ever-increasing list is how to create a multi-purpose guest room for the family and friends who come to stay once a year, without tying up precious space in your home.

But, according to interior designer Meredith Lee, it can happen quite easily.

“Multi-use rooms are the key to doubling the feel of a home,” says Lee. “Whether it’s sectioning off spaces to create study nooks with creative uses of bookshelves as room dividers or adapting a living space into a guest bedroom at short notice.”

The King Living Felix Studio bed works well in guest rooms that double as a study when not occupied.The King Living Felix Studio bed works well in guest rooms that double as a study when not occupied. Photo: King Living

She says the easiest thing to do is start with an idea of the main purpose of the room – for example, understanding whether you have a lot of guests coming to stay or just a few every now and then.

Likewise, if you only use the space as a study from time to time, cabinetry that hides away the workspace will help you relax in the room when there’s no work to be done.

Furniture designers are also helping in the trend towards more efficient storage options for living rooms and guest bedrooms, such as King Living, an Australian furniture manufacturer that has specialised in innovation, quality and design, superior comfort and enduring performance for the past 40 years.

Furniture with multiple functions is the key to saving on space and money.Furniture with multiple functions is the key to saving on space and money. Photo: King Living

David Hardwick, global buying manager for King Living, says functional furniture such as the brand’s award-winning Delta sofa and multi-award-winning Jasper provide a place to sit as well as storage, making them perfect for multi-use rooms, especially as their modular designs can be reconfigured and have backs and arms that can be repositioned.

King Living has recently released The Reo Grand sofa bed, blending contemporary design, functionality and comfort. It also features Smart pockets on the arms to accommodate side tables that swivel, as well as phone charging, adjustable lights and wireless speakers to make small spaces extremely functional.

“Most customers will be surprised when you reveal this sofa bed as the form helps to mask the function hidden within,” says Hardwick. “A 15-stage adjustable headrest complemented by the streamlined aesthetic and deep-seated comfort create what we believe is the most comfortable sofa bed on the market.”

Make sure the room works well with the rest of your house, but has a few unique style choices. Bedroom by designer Meredith Lee.Make sure the room works well with the rest of your house, but has a few unique style choices. Bedroom by designer Meredith Lee. Photo: Elizabeth Schiavello

King Living’s Felix Studio bed is another innovative option, with a quick conversion that only requires the push of a button as it’s fully automated. The armless model is also perfect for small spaces without compromising on seating space and King Living products come with a 25-year steel frame warranty.

“When choosing one, it’s best to try and operate the sofa bed yourself when browsing various options, and have a good lie on the mattress or press down firmly to see where the lumps might be. Also consider the full size when opened to ensure there is still enough space within the room to move around the bed.”

Lighting is another important consideration when multi-purposing a room, and it can be tricky – such as having a bedside reading lamp rather than a floor lamp to provide the flexibility to turn a bedroom design into a living room area with minimal effort.

“It’s also about clever use of colour – in bedroom environments blues and greens are more calming and cooler colours make spaces seem larger,” says Lee. “You want to keep the guest room in synch with the rest of the house so any patterns, colours and textures are consistent. A guest room should feel different, but not completely different, to the others.”

And while it’s important to live in the moment, also consider adapting to life stages when you’re designing your guest bedroom and what the room could be used for in the future. Just don’t make your guest rooms too comfortable. As Benjamin Franklin said: “Guests, like fish, begin to smell after three days…”

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20 November 2017
By portermathewsblog


Kate Shaw via houzz.com.au

When it comes to dream kitchens, there are two elements that feature highly on Australians’ must-have lists – a generous island bench, and bi-fold windows to connect the kitchen space with a family-friendly outdoor area. Why not take the concept one step further and install a kitchen servery – combining a kitchen island and alfresco dining in one? Take a look at these great spaces and be inspired to add some cafe-style cool to your home. Even better, if you’ve got the window, the benchtop is weekend-DIY friendly.

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20 November 2017
By portermathewsblog


Lucy Feagins via domain.com.au

Who: Milliner Carla Murley, her husband Troy, and their young children Ruby and Oscar

Where: Beaumaris, Victoria

What: Sympathetically updated mid-century home

The Beaumaris home of the Murleys encapsulates many of the best attributes of mid-century design.The Beaumaris home of the Murleys encapsulates many of the best attributes of mid-century design. Photo: Eve Wilson

The Beaumaris home of Carla Murley, her husband Troy, and their children Ruby and Oscar perfectly exemplifies the hallmarks of classic late 1950s Australian architecture. It’s a relaxed, robust home, honest in its materiality, with a strong connection to the outdoors.

The Murley family moved here in November 2013. At the time, it was a small 1950s house on a corner block, slightly run down but full of potential. “The bones of this little mid-century house were perfect. The existing house only needed minimal updating to bring it up to scratch,” Carla Murley says.

The original house was built in 1958 using a “small homes service” plan published in The Age and modified slightly by a local builder.

Milliner Carla Murley and her young kids Ruby and Oscar.Milliner Carla Murley and her young kids Ruby and Oscar. Photo: Eve Wilson

In the early 1960s, it was extended to include a studio for the original owner, who was a graphic designer. “It was the owner’s studio that sold the house to us, the brick floor sealed the deal,” Murley says.

The couple was keen to preserve the mid-century character of the house, while adding a few extra rooms to accommodate their young family.

A year after moving in, they extended either end of the existing house, creating a central courtyard. This gave them an extra bedroom and bathroom, and a home studio for Carla Murley’s millinery business, Murley & Co.

The home perfectly exemplifies the hallmarks of classic late 1950s Australian architecture.The home perfectly exemplifies the hallmarks of classic late 1950s Australian architecture. Photo: Eve Wilson

Having created a courtyard visible from almost every room, landscaping became a top priority for the Murleys once the renovations were complete. Luckily, the family inherited a treasure trove of mid-century plants from a local development site.

“I rang the developer initially and asked if he had any plans to keep the many mature agave americanas on his development block, which was just up the road from us – some were over 50 years old!” Murley recalls. “He just laughed at me and said, ‘take what you want’.” The couple spent three weekends removing and replanting the lot.

Furnished with an eclectic mix of mid-century treasures and vintage finds in every room, there’s a lot to love about this bright and breezy, relaxed family home.

The couple added a few extra rooms to accommodate their young family.The couple added a few extra rooms to accommodate their young family. Photo: Eve Wilson

With its original red brick floor, optimal orientation for sunlight and airflow, and strong connection to the garden, it’s a home that perfectly encapsulates so many of the best attributes of mid-century design, thoughtfully updated for contemporary family living.

The Design Files guide to brick

Wait long enough and every design trend comes around for a second (and third, and fourth) moment in the spotlight. Now, the humble brick is having a renaissance.

  • Bricks are a robust, low-maintenance material that requires no sealing or finishing for most applications.
  • Anywhere you might typically consider tiles, bricks are an option.
  • Bricks retain heat in winter and keep the house cool in summer.
  • If you’re not sure about the colour of a brick wall, consider painting it a neutral colour (we’re loving white painted brick). Be sure to prime bricks before painting.
  • Mortar can have a big impact on the look. A safe option is a colour as close as possible to the bricks (mortar can be colour-matched).
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20 November 2017
By portermathewsblog


Emily Blatchford

It’s time to get crafty.

We know, we know. It’s still only October. But you’d be surprised how quickly this end of the year seems to slip away.

October turns into November and then all of a sudden it’s Christmas Eve and you’re at K-Mart playing tug-o-war with another shopper for the last set of fairy lights.

So to save you the hassle of trying to decorate last minute (and having to resort to the leftover red and green tinsel), HuffPost Australia spoke to Deb Bibby, editor-in-chief of JONES Magazine for a sneak-peek into the must-have Christmas trends of 2017.

But wait. Before we start, we have to ask. Do Christmas trends actually exist? Or is it pretty much also Santa and Rudolph every year?

“Yes, I think they do,” Bibby said. “And I think they are kind of dictated a little bit by fashion. This year we are seeing trends such as all white… just beautiful layers of crisp white all in different textures.

“And you can do that beautifully on a tree. It can be really elegant and chic. Though I would say if you are going for all white look, make sure you get baubles that are different textures to create some interest.”

As for other trends to watch out for, Bibby said organics, crystals and even underwater, beachy themes will be appearing in stores, as well as more traditional fare.

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“There is a lovely trend for all the organics and more natural decorations. So for instance in the upcoming issue we have this gorgeous tree with earthy colours and gold baubles.

“This style really lends itself to home-made decorations as well. That natural thing is very on trend. You could pick a dull gold bauble and then make some things with the kids using cardboard or brown paper, such as little origami pieces tied with a bit of gold thread. You’d be surprised how much fun the kids have making these things. They just love the process.”

For those wanting something less earthy, Bibby said filling the tree with crystals can make for an eye-catching look.

“Then there is slick crystal, and you can use real crystal or a more affordable crystal style decoration, depending on your budget. Mass decoration looks beautiful if you can do it. You know, really filling the tree.”

While a crystal-covered tree may be stretching the budget for some, Bibby maintained Christmas decorations don’t have to be expensive.

“I mentioned before the earthy organic tree, with all those beautiful homemade pieces. Or if you wanted to invest in one thing a year, David Jones does beautiful limited edition hand blown baubles. I think that’s a really lovely thing for a young family to do, to start a tradition. Every year you could buy one of those to add to your tree.

“If all else fails, resort to fairy lights. Even if you took a branch — like a white branch — if you took a branch out of the garden and hung a simple selection of baubles on it, or threaded some fairy lights through the tree, even simple touches like that can look magical. Especially for kids, too. If you can’t afford lots of baubles, my advice would be to go for fairy lights.”

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If in doubt, use fairy lights.

Given Christmas falls in the Australian summer, Bibby also said it can be fun to play around with beachy themes.

“I think underwater themes are really fun. You can get little decorative characters and little fish — it’s just beautiful for kids,” she said.

“You can have a lot of fun with little fish, little mermaids, starfish, beautiful blues… I think there’s something to be said for just having fun with the tree and not taking it too seriously. Let the kids contribute by decorating the tree with you.”

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For those with more traditional tastes, Bibby said it’s fine to embrace the old red, green and gold but warns not to overdo it.

“If you are more for a traditionalist going for the greens and the reds, tone it back a little bit,” she said. “I wouldn’t go full on green and red. Perhaps the odd red through a green tree but not a full on multi-colour extravaganza.”

She also notes there are other ways to embrace Christmas traditions such as getting into candles, wreaths and pine cones.

“Candles are a beautiful thing at Christmas time, as well as being massive gifts at Christmas. They are just not dying… a candle is still a beautiful, beautiful gift,” she said.

“Even the scent of a particular candle at Christmas can really be special. Pick a particular ‘Christmas scent’ so that’s a memory for your children.

“Speaking of scents, using pine somehow on the table is lovely if you don’t have an authentic tree. And I love a good wreath. It’s a really nice welcome to Christmas.

“If you are having people over to your house, you want to make it feel special, and having something on the door to announce Christmas is a great way to do that.”

As for Christmas decoration no-nos?

“I think tinsel… if you were stuck with tinsel, stick to one colour you might be able to get away with it,” Bibby said. “I wouldn’t add different colours of tinsel. Look, it’s not my favourite decoration.”

For more Christmas decoration inspiration, see our favourite pins below.

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10 November 2017
By portermathewsblog


Why This Controversial Organising Method Is Exactly What You NeedImage Source: Flickr user Emma Story

Letting go of clutter is hard to do. Anyone who has encountered the teachings of Japanese cleaning guru Marie Kondo knows that minimalism is currently all the rage; her housekeeping manual, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, has inspired legions of readers to throw away their unneeded belongings. We love all things related to organisation and have to admit to clearing out our drawers and closets in a fit of aspirational tidying ourselves.

Not everyone, though, is on board with KonMari, the nickname Kondo gave her techniques. As with any good trend, there’s a corresponding backlash. In The New York Times this month, a contributing writer extolled the virtues of living a life surrounded by things in an article called “Let’s Celebrate the Art of Clutter.”

Whether you’re pro- or anti-clutter, you must admit there’s a certain calmness to be found in a well-organised drawer. And that’s why we’re big fans of KonMari, even if her work is becoming a tad controversial. Read through to see 25 examples of Marie’s method at work, and see if you aren’t a little inspired to take a turn at organising your own home.

1. Reduce the Number of Clothes You Have

Reduce the Number of Clothes You HaveImage Source: Instagram user edenlighthipe

Kondo believes aspiring KonMari adherents should begin with their clothes, going through belongings and keeping only those things which “spark joy.”

 

One Instagram user posted a photo showing her newly tidied closet, with all the shirts facing the same direction with space between the hangers. 
Image Source: Instagram user 21sunshineave

One Instagram user posted a photo showing her newly tidied closet, with all the shirts facing the same direction with space between the hangers.

 

According to Kondo, a well-organised closet should be able to hold many belongings. 
Image Source: Instagram user AfterGravity

According to Kondo, a well-organised closet should be able to hold many belongings.

 

There should be enough room in a closet for two people's belongings, and more. 
Image Source: Instagram user justagirl_abby

There should be enough room in a closet for two people’s belongings, and more.

A well-tidied closet will soon be able to store other belongings besides clothes.
Image Source: Instagram user gammonje

A well-tidied closet will soon be able to store other belongings besides clothes.

2. Get Rid of Papers in the Office

Get Rid of Papers in the Office
Image Source: Instagram user marijneline

Kondo believes that people keep too many old papers they simply don’t need. Keeping office space tidy will make life a lot easier!

 

The method works especially well in small offices.
Image Source: Instagram user naominevitt

The method works especially well in small offices.

3. Store Belongings Vertically

Store Belongings VerticallyImage Source: Instagram user GoingZeroWaste

Not a fan of piles, Kondo urges storing belongings vertically. One reader employed the advice with tea towels.

 

The vertical stacking method is good for drawers, too. That way, you can see everything!
Image Source: Instagram user Beck_Morgan

The vertical stacking method is good for drawers, too. That way, you can see everything!

 

Kondo also likes when things are organised by colour. 
Image Source: Instagram user janerichmond

Kondo also likes when things are organised by colour.

 

The vertical stacking method should also be used in closets. 
Image Source: Instagram user susanneschipper2

The vertical stacking method should also be used in closets.

 

Vertical stacking in drawers makes organising a child's clothes simple.
Image Source: Instagram user tresarandanos

Vertical stacking in drawers makes organising a child’s clothes simple.

 

4. Rethink How to Store Small Items

Rethink How to Store Small ItemsImage Source: Instagram user StacyWalkerMyers

Kondo is a big proponent of folding small items, including socks and stockings.

 

She also believes in rolling socks, which helps preserve the elastic.
Image Source: Instagram user pinkandbling

She also believes in rolling socks, which helps preserve the elastic.

 

5. Use Small Containers

Use Small ContainersImage Source: Instagram user clarkie.chick

Kondo is a big proponent of using boxes of all sizes and shapes for organising small items, like jewellery.

 

She thinks it's best to keep small boxes on hand for future storage solutions. 
Image Source: Instagram user LuckyMaya

She thinks it’s best to keep small boxes on hand for future storage solutions.

6. Say Bye to Your Books

Say Bye to Your BooksImage Source: Instagram user stacywalkermyers

Kondo believes people keep books for far longer than necessary.

 

Kondo urges her readers to get rid of most of their books, only keeping the ones that "spark joy."
Image Source: Instagram user dani.catastrophe

Kondo urges her readers to get rid of most of their books, only keeping the ones that “spark joy.”

 

Reducing the number of books in one's home will free up a great deal of space. 
Image Source: Instagram user madebyfeixi

Reducing the number of books in one’s home will free up a great deal of space.

 

7. Attack the Bathroom Too

Attack the Bathroom TooImage Source: Instagram user mikedickson

Kondo urges paring down bathroom items and keeping what’s left in small containers.

 

She believes in wiping down products after use, and then keeping them out of sight until the next time.   
Image Source: Instagram user konmari_lifeproject

She believes in wiping down products after use, and then keeping them out of sight until the next time.

 

8. The Kitchen Should Be Orderly

The Kitchen Should Be OrderlyImage Source: Instagram user noz__ie

Kondo’s methods extend to the kitchen, where even containers can be stored in containers.

 

Kondo urges keeping counters clear and most items out of sight. 
Image Source: Instagram user wijeisenijs

Kondo urges keeping counters clear and most items out of sight.

 

9. Make Your Entryway Tidy

Make Your Entryway TidyImage Source: Instagram user sarahfought

Kondo personally uses a cabinet by her entryway to hold everyday belongings and shoes.

 

Kondo believes cabinets, even when used as storage, should be orderly behind closed doors.
Image Source: Instagram user midwestwannabe

Kondo believes cabinets, even when used as storage, should be orderly behind closed doors.

 

 

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09 November 2017
By portermathewsblog


If you’re still using budget furniture and a duvet from your university days, despite the fact you’ve been working for years, it may be time for a bedroom upgrade. Even if you only have a limited budget, quick upgrades to your bedroom can make all the difference. Paint the walls a fresh new hue; invest in new bed linen, throws, and cushions; or go the whole hog with a statement bed frame or dressing table for an instant revamp. These inspirational bedrooms from Instagram show you just how many options there are for a bedroom overhaul, whether you prefer minimalist Scandinavian design or all-out bohemian excess. Scroll on through these chic sleeping spaces, then start planning the next steps for your room.

1. Blush and Grey
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2. Statement Bed Frame
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3. Golden Wonder
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4. Buttercup and Grey
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5. Jungle Hues

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6. Golden Accents
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7. Feature Wall

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8. Chunky Knit on White

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9. Peacock Bedspread
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10. Shades of Beige
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11. Muted Layers

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12. Into the Blue
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13. Pink Brickwork
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14. Bohemian Swirls
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15. Greyscale Glamour
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16. Pinwheel Boho
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17. Green and Navy
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18. Cubes and Cushions
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19. Dark Wood
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20.Curvy Symmetry
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21. Purple Reign
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22. Midcentury Modern

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23. Teal Touches
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02 November 2017
By portermathewsblog


How 1 Small-Space Dweller Scored Her Dream Bathroom
When Brooklyn-based radio producer Miki decided to treat herself to her dream bathroom, she called on Homepolish, an interior design start-up that only charges a flat hourly fee, to take her to the promise land. Let’s just say that Homepolish delivered.
To modernise Miki’s outdated bathroom without losing its pre-war charm, Homepolish interior designer Sandie Tsai chose a black, white, and grey palette accented with pops of brass. While it’s not the largest bathroom, you hardly notice thanks to the luxe materials and strategic design decisions.

Keep reading for the full tour and Sandy’s smart renovation tips!

Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish

While brass details pair well with black and white, Sandie was careful not to over-do it. To keep it tasteful, she balanced the flashy brass with more subdued oil-rubbed fixtures on the sink.  
Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish

While brass details pair well with black and white, Sandie was careful not to over-do it. To keep it tasteful, she balanced the flashy brass with more subdued oil-rubbed fixtures on the sink.

Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish
Limiting the palette to two or three colours and playing with texture helped make the small bathroom appear to be much larger. Marble subway tiles on the wall and black tiles with light grouting on the floor add subtle pattern and richness. 
Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish
Limiting the palette to two or three colours and playing with texture helped make the small bathroom appear to be much larger. Marble subway tiles on the wall and black tiles with light grouting on the floor add subtle pattern and richness.

Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish

Hot tip: using elevating pieces like the clawfoot tub also gives the illusion of added space. 
Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish
Hot tip: using elevating pieces like the clawfoot tub also gives the illusion of added space.
Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish
The glamorous brass hardware allows for the best of both worlds — a soaking tub that can also work for quick showers.
Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish

The glamorous brass hardware allows for the best of both worlds — a soaking tub that can also work for quick showers.

Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish

Painting the small window frame black also helps draw the eye up toward the ceiling. 
Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish
Painting the small window frame black also helps draw the eye up toward the ceiling.
Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish

A bath tray makes it easy to keep products (or even a good read) dry and at the ready during bath time. 
Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish

A bath tray makes it easy to keep products (or even a good read) dry and at the ready during bath time.

Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish
Another perk of a small bathroom? It's much more affordable to indulge in luxurious materials, like marble subway tile for the walls! 
Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish
Another perk of a small bathroom? It’s much more affordable to indulge in luxurious materials, like marble subway tile for the walls!

Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish

 

A small floating shelf makes it easy to create beautiful and meaningful vignettes, something that can add loads of personality to a bathroom space. 
Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish
A small floating shelf makes it easy to create beautiful and meaningful vignettes, something that can add loads of personality to a bathroom space.

Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish
We can't help but gush over these nautical-inspired sconces. 
Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish
We can’t help but gush over these nautical-inspired sconces.

Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish
A bud vase on the sink kicks the glam factor up a notch. 
Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish
A bud vase on the sink kicks the glam factor up a notch.

Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish
Two whimsical art prints hang above the tiled portion of the wall. 
Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish
Two whimsical art prints hang above the tiled portion of the wall.

Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish

Why not take advantage of the space above the toilet? Sandie styled it with jars filled with Q-tips and cotton pads, bath products, a reading book, and a chic trinket box.
Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish
Why not take advantage of the space above the toilet? Sandie styled it with jars filled with Q-tips and cotton pads, bath products, a reading book, and a chic trinket box.

Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish

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26 October 2017
By portermathewsblog


via domain.com.au

When you’re in decorating doubt there are some steadfast rules to live by.

“Always have some form of contrast in a room,” says Victoria Bibby of Bibby and Brady.

Whether it’s with opposing colours like black and white, warm wood tones balanced with cool blues, contrasting textures or all of the above, it’s a rule to follow if you’re wanting to avoid a monotonous look.

Blue and yellow are complementary colours, they appear on opposite sides of the colour wheel.
Blue and yellow are complementary colours, they appear on opposite sides of the colour wheel. Photo: Jane Ussher

The idea is that 60 per cent of the room should be made up of wall space and large key pieces, 30 per cent of the room is comprised of medium scale accent pieces, smaller bits of furniture and area rugs; and the final 10 per cent is smaller accent pieces such as art and decor items.

When you think about it in colour terms, 60 per cent of a room’s hue should be achieved through the walls and anchor furniture. This is the main colour in your palette.

Thirty per cent of the colour in your room will come through furniture, textiles and lighting. These pieces should be shades in the same colour family as the dominant hue on the walls and key pieces.

There are some guidelines that lead you to the path of interior genius, but you don't always have to play by the rule book.There are some guidelines that lead you to the path of interior genius, but you don’t always have to play by the rule book. Photo: Jane Ussher

The final 10 per cent is the option to introduce different colours, patterns and textures that complement the dominant colour.

“We recommend three to four main colours in a room,” says Bibby.

Basic colour theory suggests colours on opposites sides of the colour wheel are complementary (opposites attract). Colours in the same temperature will also work well together.

Mixing metals adds visual interest into a space. Here brass accents work with chrome finishings on the ceiling fan and curtain rods.Mixing metals adds visual interest into a space. Here brass accents work with chrome finishings on the ceiling fan and curtain rods. Photo: Jane Ussher

With patterns, Bibby says, “keep them within your colour palette of three to four colours. Always mix small patterns with a large pattern for contrast.”

And make sure your rug is large enough. “They are such a key piece in a room for defining the zone and adding warmth and texture,” she says. “It’s our number one pet peeve to see one that’s too small for a room.”

A rug should ground all the furniture, not just the coffee table. “Always have at least two legs of your chairs and sofas on the rug,” Bibby says.

Mixing prints shouldn't be a taboo topic. Here a combination of animal and tribal print make for a cosy and interesting window seat.Mixing prints shouldn’t be a taboo topic. Here a combination of animal and tribal print make for a cosy and interesting window seat. Photo: Jane Ussher

Odd numbers have been interior decor’s best friend forever, and there’s a reason why. Even numbers create symmetry, but odd numbers are engaging – often why three it is considered interior design’s golden number. When thinking about grouping furniture, hanging photos on a wall or arranging objects on a table, think odd.

The last design rule Bibby swears by is always hanging curtains as high as possible, and always to the floor.

“Hanging them high will create a sense of space and elegance in a room,” she says. Always drop them to the floor unless there is furniture in the way or the window is too high or too small then use a blind instead.

But what about the rules you can break?

Forget the rule that all your metals must match. Or your woods, says Bibby.

Combining gold, copper, silver or iron is not a taboo but in fact a great way to add interest into the decor.

“Don’t be afraid to have brass cabinet handles and a chrome tap, it’s way more interesting!”

Small furniture for a small room? Forget it, says Bibby.

“It’s easy to see why this is the immediate option, but you’re in danger of making the room feel cluttered and a bit like a doll’s house.”

She suggests large furniture can actually make a small space feel bigger and create a sense of comfort.

Mixing patterns used to be a no-go zone. Jarring prints and clashing colours were to be feared.

But, as it turns out, stripes and florals, or polka dots and checks work effortlessly together to inject some personality into a space.

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19 October 2017
By portermathewsblog


 Make It Weather Appropriate
Image Source: Coco Republic

As far as 21st-century design conundrums go, small-space living is up there as a lingering problem. Because of this, we’ve become highly skilled in the art of creating stylish living areas with less floorspace — from decorating small bedrooms and kitchens, to choosing the best pieces to suit a smaller room.

With so much focus on making every square metre of the inside of our home count, it’s easy for our outdoor spaces to become an afterthought, or not be considered at all. “It’s way too small to matter, anyway” you’ll hear yourself say. But as with any other area in a home (and life, really), size is no object as long as you know how to make it work. We enlisted the help of Coco Republic interior designer, Amanda Pocock, to give us her best tips on how to make any small outdoor space sing. Keep reading to find out what she had to say.

Consider Your Purpose

Consider Your Purpose
Image Source: Coco Republic

If space is limited, think about what purpose your outdoor space serves and this will guide your decorating options. “Is dining your priority, or is a space to relax and stretch out going to be the main event?” Amanda asks. “Ultimately, try not to over-furnish your outdoor area and instead fine-tune your atmosphere with the use of styling and plants.”

Choose the Style of Furniture Wisely
Choose the Style of Furniture Wisely
Image Source: Coco Republic

Since you’re working with a small space, it pays to be strategic about the style of pieces you choose. According to Amanda, resist the urge to fill up the entire area with furniture, and instead focus on the essential pieces, like one occasional chair and a side table. “The open space is just as important as your furniture in creating a relaxing, calming space,” she says. “Outdoor furniture that has thin lines, open weaves and appears light and airy are fantastic pieces when you have a scenic view or limited natural light in the area.”

Pay Attention to Finishes
Pay Attention to Finishes
Image Source: Coco Republic

Unlike that prized designer mid-century sofa in your lounge, outdoor furniture has to be able to withstand the elements — the more durable, the better. “One of the best outdoor finishes to look out for is powder-coated aluminium,” Amanda says. “This is a fantastic finish that repels water, doesn’t rust and looks great for years even after being outside in full sun and rain.” Teak is another durable material that will thrive outside, all it needs is a little occasional love by way of a stain or varnish.

Layer Up
Layer Up
Image Source: Coco Republic

“Layering is the key to creating an inviting and comfortable outdoor space,” Amanda says. You can try this with:

  • Plants: “Potted plants are the easiest and most affordable way of layering your space and adding that extra touch of nature and colour,” suggests Amanda.
  • Cushions: Scatter softer decor items in a variety of fabrics throughout your space. “Introducing that indoor feeling of comfort will transform your balcony or courtyard into an extended living room that you’ll never want to leave,” Amanda says.
  • Side tables and stools: Ceramic and stone side tables are your best friends when it comes to layering. “Add a feature piece with a dynamic shape to inject some subtle character while being super practical,” says Amanda.
  • Rugs: “Your rug will create invisible walls for your outdoor setting,” Amanda says. They’re also great for tying all your pieces together.
  • Lighting: Outdoor lighting can work wonders for transforming an outdoor space and add to its ambience. For example, consider introducing candles or a few statement pendant lights to your dining setting.

Make It Weather Appropriate

Make It Weather Appropriate

Image Source: Coco Republic

Optimise the space for Summer and Winter by introducing some simple decor tweaks. During the warmer months, Amanda recommends adding greenery or flowers with a nice scent, and as the weather cools, considering a moveable fire-pit for ample cosiness.

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13 October 2017
By portermathewsblog


Perth is well known for its sunshine and hot summer months, and while we are in the transitional spring season it’s the perfect opportunity to prepare your home for the warmer weather ahead.

Although the beach becomes a second home for many West Aussies during summer, it’s also a great time of year to spend at home with family and friends enjoying the long summer days. So we have put together five tips to help you prepare your home and make the most of it this summer.

1. De-clutter

Start with a clean home and head space by decluttering each room of the house.

Get rid of anything you don’t use by giving it to charity, friends and family, or throwing out broken and unusable items. Pack away winter specific items as well, such as blankets and heaters, in vacuum sealed bags or boxes and stow away in the shed.

2. Spring clean

Once you have de-cluttered your home, the next step is to do a thorough spring clean to freshen up your space and ensure it’s ready for your guests and summer BBQs. This can include:

  • Washing your walls and windows.
  • Thoroughly cleaning carpets, rugs and floors.
  • Cleaning out cupboards and throwing away expired food.
  • Removing mould, dust and cobwebs.
  • Defrosting your freezer (and creating space for your favourite ice cream).

 

3. Make sure your summer appliances are in working order

Whilst performing your spring clean, it’s also a good idea to ensure your most used appliances during the summer months are in working order, such as:

  • Air conditioners and fans – Perth summers pack a lot of heat, so it’s important you have good ventilation to cool your home. Double check the settings work on your fan or air conditioner units, and the blades/vents are clean to ensure you don’t circulate dust and allergens around the room.
  • BBQ – an essential part of any summer dinner party is the Aussie BBQ. Now is a good time to deep clean your hotplates, check the gas and ensure the all the fittings are safely working.
  • Pool and spa – if you’re lucky enough to have your own private oasis in your backyard, be sure to get your pool and/or spa ready for use during the hotter months. Get out the pool cleaner, check the jets and ensure your safety gate/fences are in tip top condition.

 

4. Prepare your outdoor area

It’s a safe bet you will be spending many nights and lazy days during December through to March outside on the deck or under the pergola. In this case, don’t forget your outdoor area in your spring clean.

Small but effective measures can be taken to ensure you backyard is summer ready, including:

  • Mowing the lawn, cutting back hedges and trees, and removing any weeds.
  • Hosing down pavement and/or oiling the deck.
  • Cleaning your outdoor furniture to remove any dust and cobwebs.
  • Fixing shade sails, purchasing an umbrella or replacing missing roof panels in your outdoor area to ensure you have appropriate shade from the harsh summer sun.

 

5. Decorate for summer

Just as winter brings out the richly scented candles and heavy fleece linens, in summer you may want to lighten up your décor.

Swap out heavy linens for lighter, cotton blends in the bedroom, and replace your fluffy blankets for a light throw in your living room. You can even introduce some greenery to your kitchen and living areas, such as a low-maintenance succulent plant, to create a more summery ambiance – some plants can even purify the stuffy summer air.

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05 October 2017
By portermathewsblog


Capture

Why wait until 29. Oct to create the set of Stranger Things in your living room? For those truly dedicated to the Halloween holiday, clusters of skulls, pumpkin patches, and that perfectly positioned crow are already taking pride of place. Once you see how these creeps have decked out their pads, it will spook you into following suit. And if you really mean business, decorate yourself a Halloween tree, too. Then you’ll be decked out until the new year.
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28 September 2017
By portermathewsblog


September is the month for shaking off the Winter blues and your walls deserve a bit of love, too. If you’re sick of blank space and monochrome rooms, it’s time you find a cheery print or painting that will lift your whole space.

Selecting art for your home is one of the building blocks of home decor, even if you’re in a rental (remember, 3M strips mean you don’t have to worry about putting holes in the wall). If your space is feeling a bit bland — a repercussion from taking your mum’s “beige goes with everything” advice — then look for something bright and colourful. It doesn’t have to tie into a colour you already have in the room, it’s actually best to look for something opposing with impact that you can build on with other decor.

Below is our pick of the best new batch of framed wonders to cure your boring walls.

Dean Martindale The Floating Pineapple Art Print ($23 — $500)

Urban Road Immerse ($34 — $149)
Urban Road Immerse ($34 — $149)

Rachel Castle Ace of Hearts Screen Print ($170)
Rachel Castle Ace of Hearts Screen Print
 ($170)

Sarah Johanna Eick White Chair ($529).
 Urban Dreams Photography Palm Springs Dino Art Print ($23 — $500)
Erik Chmil Lago di Como ($1,149).
Rachel Castle Big Garden 5 Screen Print ($540)
Amy Lincoln Jungle Waterfall Art Print ($23 — $500)
Sven Fennema Lightless ($1,259).
A Dozen Dynamic Donuts by April Walters ($24 — $1,200)
Sarina Diakos Awakenings #4 ($400)
Urban Road Hidden Fields Blue ($34 — $149).
Grand Canyon National Park by Vintage Editions ($24 — $800)
Shellie Cleaver Still Life 3 ($550)
Urban Road Surf ($34 — $149).
Urban Road Surf ($34 — $149).
Sarah Johanna Eick Gas Station ($769).
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22 September 2017
By portermathewsblog


Author: Emma Bolger via domain.com.au

“If you can create something time cannot erode, something that ignores the eccentricities of particular eras or moments, something truly timeless… this is ultimate victory.” – Dr Ferry Porsche.

When attempting to create a timeless interior, it’s important to be clear about your interior decorating style, while also considering past, present and future trends.  Here are five key elements that will enable you to create a timeless foundation that you can develop – or easily reinvent – over time.

1. Choose open-plan design
Open-plan living provides a seamless transition through different areas of the home and allows a unified approach to interior design.

Particularly notable is the relationship between the kitchen, dining and living areas. To create a seamless relationship between zones, consider carrying your flooring, colour scheme, any motifs or lighting styles through both spaces.

rachel-lewis-small-living-room


2. Go for white walls and ceilings

White walls and ceilings create continuity in open-plan spaces, while providing a blank canvas to evolve your decor at any time.

With so many variations of white paint available, it’s important to select the white that best suits your interior style and the feeling you want to create in your home.

Cool whites: Ideal for neutralising bright light in spaces abundant with natural light, the crispness of cool whites also makes them a popular choice for modern and minimalist decorating styles. With a black or blue base, start your search with Dulux “Vivid White” or Porter’s Paints “Milk”.

Warm whites: If you want to make a room feel more inviting or have a lot of natural textures in your home, then warm whites are for you. With yellow, brown or red bases, my favourite is Dulux “Antique White USA”, but other popular warm whites include Taubmans “Plain Vanilla” and Porter’s Paints “Long Grain”.

As you start to investigate whites you may also be drawn to greys. Cool greys are ideal for glamorous spaces, whereas warm greys set a more relaxed tone.

noxon-giffen-white-walls


3. Think about your flooring

We’ve moved past the days where carpet dominated flooring choices at home. As hard flooring takes its place, texture is moving to the forefront. Here are some good textural options:

Timber: Oak is a popular timber choice as its grain adds just the right amount of texture to suit any interior style. From the blonde oaks that are seen in Scandinavian decorating styles to dark chocolate tones that amp up the glamour, the variation of tints make oak easy to team with your style. Spotted gum, blackbutt and other Australian species are growing in popularity, and their distinctive grains and colours make them a good match for timeless interiors.

lsa-architects-wood-floor

Polished concrete, stone or tiles: These look classic in various shades of grey. Selected in this instance as an alternative to timber, they are also useful in wet areas of the home, such as laundries and bathrooms, where timber flooring is not as suitable.

Carpet: Carpet provides a luxurious foundation to sink your feet into and works particularly well in bedrooms or other secluded areas of the home that aren’t high in traffic and suit softness underfoot. With timelessness in mind, it’s hard go to past twist or textured carpet designs. While both styles are easy to maintain and work well with all interior styles, a twist carpet is ideal if you have pets, as their claws are less likely to get stuck in the fibres.

Rugs: Rugs enable you to enhance your interior style, while softening the sound, and defining zones within a larger area. When it comes to rug fibres and textures, it’s best to be guided by the look and feel you want to create – keeping in mind that timelessness is about quality not quantity.

Tip: Selecting the right size rug for your space is key and one of the best ways to determine this is by using a sheet. Simply place a sheet down in the area you want to place a rug in and play with the size of the sheet and placement of your furniture until you find a balance you’re happy with.

4. Move to metals
From stainless steel and chrome, to copper and rose gold, metallic finishes have a lifelong appeal. Ideal for lamps, fixtures, vases and other smaller accessories, keeping metallics as accents within your interior scheme will allow it to remain timeless while adding character to your home.

arent-pyke-kitchen-design
Although it’s important to stay true to your interior style, don’t be afraid to challenge conventional thinking by mixing different metallic finishes in the same space.  This kitchen provides a good example as the stainless-steel appliances and fittings recede into the background while the copper light fittings take centre stage.

5. Select clean, simple lines
Choosing streamlined fixtures, fittings and appliances allows them to seamlessly tie into your interior. You can either:

Make your fixtures fit in with your wall colour: If you prefer a minimalistic approach or have selected statement pieces throughout your space, then consider following the lead of this interior, which ties the tones and textures of the kitchen cupboards and stainless steel appliances into the hue on the walls.

austin-associates-wood-kitchen

Or mix it up: If your decorating style embraces different textures, or you’re looking to do something a little different to the norm, then select a different material, colour and/or texture (timber, metallic, glass or statement colour) for cupboards, splashbacks, benches, or fixtures and other fittings.
This kitchen is a good example, utilising American oak veneer (un-stained with a sprayed clear coat) for the cupboards and extended ceiling in addition to a black veneer bench, the streamlined design creates a statement within the home while not overpowering the rest of the interior. It is this balance, between statement and a complementary streamlined design – that makes it timeless.

bower-architecture-wood-living

As you combine these five key elements with your interior style, you’ll find you’ve created a timeless home to sit back and enjoy.

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14 September 2017
By portermathewsblog


The Paint Colours You'll be Seeing in Homes Everywhere in 2018Image Sources: Styling by Bree Leech and Photography by Lisa Cohen

When it comes to interiors, colour is a huge, if not the most important, player. It sets the mood of the entire room, and in turn, influences the kind of decor you have to work with. Pick the wrong hue, and everything will be thrown off-guard, whereas the right one can have an enormous transformative effect. But, as evidenced by the weight of global announcements, such as Pantone’s Colour of the Year, gone are the days of picking a traditional neutral (those varying shades of cream or white). Instead, there’s an increasing open-mindedness when it comes to hues of the home, and 2018 will be no different.

According to Dulux, 2018’s colour palettes fulfil one thing: balance. Whether it’s between work and play, giving back and taking the time for self-care, or mixing the old and the new, the new shades will prioritise personalisation over prescription — paving the way for individual expression and customisation. “Natural, earthy colours and textures will be coming to the fore and there will be even more of an appreciation for the splendour of imperfection” says Dulux Colour Expert Andrea Lucena-Orr. “At the same time, we’ll also see an inspiring travel palette emerging.” Ahead, you’ll find the 12 biggest emerging paint trends, along with some tricks to get the look in your home.

Rich Shades Derived From Nature

Rich Shades Derived From NatureImage Sources: Styling by Bree Leech and Photography by Lisa Cohen

Rich colours inspired by nature are on the rise. According to Andrea, greens like Dulux Herbalist (pictured), are a flexible way to create a nurturing and relaxing atmosphere. “[It’s] a peaceful green around mid-tone in depth, so will create some light reflectance,” she says. “You could scheme Herbalist beautifully with terracotta, blue, yellow, orange and red.”

Mixing Subtle Neutrals and Bold Hues

Image Sources: Styling by Bree Leech and Photography by Lisa Cohen

For some eclectic flair, pair a neutral with a bold, earthy shade, such as this mid-grey and brown-based red. “Using a stronger colour at the end wall creates a focal point in the space and can help the perceived space feel larger,” Andrea says.

Red-Based Palettes

Red-Based PalettesImage Sources: Styling by Bree Leech and Photography by Lisa Cohen

“Reds and oranges are such amazing colours to rejuvenate your home with,” says Andrea. “They’re warm, inviting and add a sense of sophistication, particularly in formal living areas and bedrooms.” Balance this fiery palette by incorporating natural materials in your decor, such as wood or stone.

The Paint Colours You'll be Seeing in Homes Everywhere in 2018Image Sources: Styling by Bree Leech and Photography by Lisa Cohen

Soft, Nordic Influences

Soft, Nordic InfluencesImage Sources: Styling by Bree Leech and Photography by Lisa Cohen

The minimalist movement shows no signs of slowing down, with warm shades of leather, putty and cool green-greys forming a largely muted palette. “Scheming with subtle pastel greys and neutral pinks is very soothing and easy to live with,” says Andrea. “These colours harmonise well together and are flexible with many other colours.”

Natural Textures

Natural TexturesImage Sources: Styling by Bree Leech and Photography by Lisa Cohen

Let go of your inner perfectionist and emphasise the rustic finishes of a room — particularly if the space you’re working with has little character. “Highlighting a brick wall with Dulux Suede Effect in Century Mist gives this space another dimension and really creates a beautiful focal point for this room as you enter,” Andrea says.

Pink as a Neutral

Pink as a NeutralImage Sources: Styling by Bree Leech and Photography by Lisa Cohen

It’s time to expand your vocabulary of neutrals with a new addition: Pink. According to Andrea, softer tones like Dulux’s Mornington Half are becoming a popular way to add a little elegance to a space, and look particularly great when paired with soft greys or crisp whites.

The Paint Colours You'll be Seeing in Homes Everywhere in 2018Image Sources: Styling by Bree Leech and Photography by Lisa Cohen

Saturated, Contrasting Colours

Saturated, Contrasting ColoursImage Sources: Styling by Bree Leech and Photography by Lisa Cohen

As the global lust for travel grows, so too is this increasingly reflected in decorating styles. Saturated, summery tones such as pale mint will create a playful retreat for your home. “To ensure your space is not too overwhelmed with clashes of colour, consider the proportion and balance of the colours used,” says Andrea. As pictured, you can use shelving to break up the colour or darker furniture to offset the brightness.

Bright and Playful Exteriors

Bright and Playful ExteriorsImage Sources: Styling by Bree Leech and Photography by Lisa Cohen

Who says the fun is just reserved for the inside? Make like a luxury boutique hotel and opt for a bright exterior. Andrea’s tip: Make sure the space lends itself to a bright hue, and that the natural light won’t wash it out too much.

Playing With Geometry and Different Colour Tones

Playing With Geometry and Different Colour TonesImage Sources: Styling by Bree Leech and Photography by Lisa Cohen

The simple additions of geometrical shapes and diagonal lines can really take a feature wall up a notch, and you can experiment with colour for added effect. “Stay within one colour family so you don’t overwhelm the room,” Andrea says. “Here, you see the undertones for these colours are all from the red colour group. They work well together and dramatise the geometric pattern without creating a kaleidoscope of colours, which would impact the feel of the space.”

The Paint Colours You'll be Seeing in Homes Everywhere in 2018Image Sources: Styling by Bree Leech and Photography by Lisa Cohen

Retro Glamour

Retro GlamourImage Sources: Styling by Bree Leech and Photography by Lisa Cohen

Take cues from the glamour of the ’70s and swagger of the ’90s to invoke some old-school elegance. Shades of plums and mauves like Dulux’s Chainmail will imbue any room with an air of nostalgia, while a decorative line along the ceilings (as pictured) will give the room a more contemporary spin.

Moody, Dramatic Rooms

Moody, Dramatic RoomsImage Sources: Styling by Bree Leech and Photography by Lisa Cohen

Moody schemes consisting of rich green, grey-purples and burnt rose can instantly lift a room’s decadence levels and add just the right hint of drama. To prevent the room for appearing to dark, Andrea advises to use a mid-based colour like the Dulux Goyder Green. Pair it with white for the perfect contrasting balance.

The Paint Colours You'll be Seeing in Homes Everywhere in 2018Image Sources: Styling by Bree Leech and Photography by Lisa Cohen

Rich, Opulent Velvet Hues

Rich, Opulent Velvet HuesImage Sources: Styling by Bree Leech and Photography by Lisa Cohen

We saw velvet take over the fashion scene, and it’s not going anywhere on the decor front, either. Draw on the splendour of jewel tones — think warm shades of pink, deep blues and burgundy — to create an opulent and tastefully elegant palette, and don’t be afraid to use contrasting furniture and accessories. To ensure the look is kept fresh and modern, Andrea says to use grey-based hues.

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05 September 2017
By portermathewsblog


The Spring-Perfect Buys Your Home Needs This Season
Being the sun-favoured country we are, it’s Spring rather than Summer that blesses us with the biggest shift in weather and style. And oh boy, are we ready for a style shake-up — maybe it’s all The Block we’ve been watching.We’re feeling black rather than white to pair with the strong olives greens and blues that started popping up in stores last month, and those velvety finishings are looking fine with bamboos and linen. This is also prime time to start investing in objets d’art (French for arty objects). No matter what your budget, there’s a gorgeous vase, tray, bottle or trinket with your name on it that will be the perfect finishing touch to any room.

West Elm Carlo Mid-Century Chair, $899

Stockists: West Elm

Dinosaur Designs Art Sand Medium Vase, $195

Dinosaur Designs Art Sand Medium Vase, $195

Stockists: Jardan
Ikea Stockholm 2017 Cabinet, $499
Ikea Stockholm 2017 Cabinet, $499

Zara Home Multi-Coloured Paisley Print Linen Curtain, $139

Zara Home Multi-Coloured Paisley Print Linen Curtain, $139

Stockists: Zara Home

Bed Thread Charcoal 100% Flax Linen Bedding Set, From $230

Bed Thread Charcoal 100% Flax Linen Bedding Set, From $230


Stockists: 
Bed Threads
Urban Outfitters No Bad Days Woven Throw Blanket, $124.31
Urban Outfitters No Bad Days Woven Throw Blanket, $124.31

Stockists: Urban Outfitters

Zara Home Irregular Decorative Bone Tray, $39.95

Zara Home Irregular Decorative Bone Tray, $39.95

Stockists: Zara Home

H&M Textured-Weave Cushion Cover, $39.99

H&M Textured-Weave Cushion Cover, $39.99
Stockists: H&M
Freedom Nook Console Table, $799
Freedom Nook Console Table, $799
Stockists: Freedom
Country Road Malvi Tea Towel Pack, $ 34.95
Country Road Malvi Tea Towel Pack, $ 34.95
Stockists: Country Road
Cotton On Home Kapel Print, $59.40
Cotton On Home Kapel Print, $59.40
Stockists: Cotton On Home
Kip & Co. Electric Blue Velvet Beanbag, $129
Kip & Co. Electric Blue Velvet Beanbag, $129
Stockists: Kip & Co.
Maison Balzac 2067AD, $69
Maison Balzac 2067AD, $69Stockists: Candle Library
West Elm Linden Mid-Century Wide Shelf Unit, $1,099
West Elm Linden Mid-Century Wide Shelf Unit, $1,099
Stockists: West Elm
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31 August 2017
By portermathewsblog


Many a pet parent out there can point to their furry friend and say, “This is why we can’t have nice things.” Living with animals in a Pinterest-worthy home is a hard thing to pull off, but not impossible.

We chatted to two interiors experts who share their tips for creating pet-friendly and polished interiors.

  1. Be positive: “Focus on the cuddles and devotion, not the hair/droppings/puddles/inevitable round-the-clock wake-up calls. Cuddles, kisses and those eyes you get when you’ve been out all day are worth any amount of vacuuming!” says stylist and writer, Heather Nette King. And she should know, her housemates are Dougal the golden retriever, and Sugar, her cat.
  2. Make it easy for yourself: “Invest in a vacuum with a pet hair attachment — particularly if you have a deep-pile rug or carpet. Having said that, I’ve already blown one up, but I bought quality the next time and now all those little blonde ‘puppies’ as I like to call Dougal’s coat sheddings, are easily vanquished!” says Heather.
  3. Put in the effort: “Teach them early if there is a no-go zone in your home. Doogs stands at our bedroom door and knows he can not place even a paw through the doorway. No matter how sad his eyes are! It’s my husband’s rule — he’s a bit allergic, and I get it, so create boundaries that please everyone, and your fur-babies will co-exist happily with you, hopefully for the longest, happiest time,” says Heather.
  4. Opt for leather: “You can’t be too precious about your home. It’s a living, breathing space that’s meant to be comfortable. As soon as you walk through that door at night and drop your bags — you want to relax, not be worrying about your pet climbing on furniture. I always recommend leather for pet-loving homes. It’s pretty simple to keep clean, it’s hard-wearing and I like to think any scratches or marks add to the patina of the leather — telling a story of your family,” says Jodi Hall, National Field Visual Manager at West Elm.
  5. Don’t hide it: “Sharing your home with a pet is a simple joy! Don’t try and hide their presence — choose a pet bed that you’re happy to show off. I always suggest a great floor cushion that goes with your decor, then you don’t have to hide it — who has time for that! And let’s be real, cats and dogs like clocking up sleep (living the dream!) so make it something you love,” says Jodi.
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28 August 2017
By portermathewsblog


via houzz.com.au

“We are loving this idea so much, and our front office is also decorated up with some beautiful orchids.”

image1

Moth orchids can produce up to 30 flowers at a time, which is how these popular orchids earned their common name. When seen en masse, their exotic flowers do somehow evoke images of moths or butterflies in flight. According to some plant suppliers, moth orchids are now the number one plant sold throughout the world, and along with that demand has come a rapid increase in the variety of shapes, sizes and colours available.

Some people may find them tricky to grow, but if you remember that moth orchids are from warm, tropical regions with high humidity and try to replicate those conditions at your place, your plant will be sure to thrive. Our checklist below will give you a good start.

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18 August 2017
By portermathewsblog


How to Decorate a Designer-Worthy Nursery on a Budget
 Image Source: Sara Boulter Photography

Welcoming a new baby into your home is one of the most exciting, joyous, and expensive life milestones, and nursery preparation is proof. So when we stumbled upon interior designer Autumn Clemons’s chic, budget-friendly nursery, we knew we had to share. Filled with thoughtful details and brilliant design hacks, this space proves that you don’t have to overspend to create the nursery of your dreams!
To leverage the room's plush carpeting, Autumn chose to envelope the space in soothing neutrals. For the walls, she chose Benjamin Moore's Grey Mist. By laying a smaller rug with soft textures at a diagonal, Autumn was able to create a strong focal point.

Image Source: Sara Boulter Photography

To leverage the room’s plush carpeting, Autumn chose to envelope the space in soothing neutrals. For the walls, she chose Benjamin Moore’s Grey Mist. By laying a smaller rug with soft textures at a diagonal, Autumn was able to create a strong focal point.

The crib (an Ikea score!) is accessorised with an adorable owl pillow. How cute is the little animal hook that works perfectly for displaying a special outfit?
Image Source: Sara Boulter Photography

The crib (an Ikea score!) is accessorised with an adorable owl pillow. How cute is the little animal hook that works perfectly for displaying a special outfit?

Instead of taking up space with a clunky bookshelf, Autumn chose to hang floating shelves to keep books handy while also displaying the covers.
Image Source: Sara Boulter Photography

Instead of taking up space with a clunky bookshelf, Autumn chose to hang floating shelves to keep books handy while also displaying the covers.

For the curtains, Autumn picked up an Urban Outfitters tapestry, cut it in half, and added blackout lining.
Image Source: Sara Boulter Photography

For the curtains, Autumn picked up an Urban Outfitters tapestry, cut it in half, and added blackout lining.

For the pendant, she added a DIY touch to this inexpensive light from Home Depot. What looks like wood planks on the ceiling is actually wallpaper from eBay.
Image Source: Sara Boulter Photography

For the pendant, she added a DIY touch to this inexpensive light from Home Depot. What looks like wood planks on the ceiling is actually wallpaper from eBay.

A low, vintage dresser becomes the ideal changing table with the addition of painted drawers and new hardware. Also, can we talk about this cute changing pad cover?
Image Source: Sara Boulter Photography

A low, vintage dresser becomes the ideal changing table with the addition of painted drawers and new hardware. Also, can we talk about this cute changing pad cover?

Floating acrylic shelves make switching up art and accessories a breeze.
Image Source: Sara Boulter Photography

Floating acrylic shelves make switching up art and accessories a breeze.

Cushioned rockers don't come cheap, so Autumn decided to add rocking chair legs to an Ikea chair to create her own affordable version.
Image Source: Sara Boulter Photography

Cushioned rockers don’t come cheap, so Autumn decided to add rocking chair legs to an Ikea chair to create her own affordable version.

What looks like a spendy sconce is actually another crafty DIY project.
Check out the full tour with links to all the DIYs on her blog!
Image Source: Sara Boulter Photography

What looks like a spendy sconce is actually another crafty DIY project.

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