Category: Design fever

Design from Down Under

I’ve been increasingly drawn to Australian interior design over the last few months, after having a good oogle at a couple of their design mags on a flight back home.  Literally almost every single space I see makes my eyes pop out of my noggin, so I thought I’d do a little round up this week of a few of my faves.

Incorporating more light, bright, natural finishes than you can shake a stick at, a large smattering of Balinese/general Indonesian decor and a focus on indoor/outdoor spaces, these are guaranteed to make your day – I recommend you go make yourself a cuppa and take some time over them.


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Chic in Cape Town

I was looking at some old design mags the other day and came across this cracking Cape Town pad featured in Living Etc a while back.  I remember at the time I took note of it as I’ve done something similar-ish on a smaller scale with the pendant lighting in our home (below left) and it made me regret not adding about 17 more of the blighters to our fixture.

I usually go for more light and bright spaces, but the moody masculine palette and diverse texture range really speak to me here.  Plus the botanicals situation.  Plus the reclaimed wood wall cladding.  Plus she looks like a nice lady.

living etc cape town home www.caribbeanlivingblog.com1

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Friday fun {again}

Happy weekend loves!  What’s on the cards for the next couple of days?  Hope you have a good one whatever you’re up to.  We have quite a chilled one planned – just a couple of dinners with amigos and some climbing on Sunday (oh yes, there is real life climbing in Singers, it is oh-so exciting).

But not as exciting as my impending fabric delivery tomorrow – the final few bits and pieces are coming together in our home and I cannot wait to add some fun accents with this new fabric.

Can you guess what it is?

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How about now?

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Still not got a scooby?

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BAM!  Chevron-tastic baby, I cannot wait to see it!

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Have a happy weekend darls xx

Luscious leopard – part 1

So we’ve only been in scorching Singapore for three days but it has very quickly become apparent that my Cayman beach dresses and old knackered flippy floppies just do not cut the mustard in the big smoke.  I need to upgrade the wardrobe pronto, and what easier way to up the ante than with a hefty dose of lep lep leopard…?

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I know, thought you’d like that.

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Quelle surprise but it started me on a bit of a pinterest hunt for some luscious leopard interiors.  Here are my long time faves (soooo envious of Mary McDonald’s fabulous office):

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But let’s start off with a few small doses, for anyone up for a little dabble:

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Next step up is some lavish upholstery:

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Absolutely BONKERS good on the RHS here paired with traditional panelling and chandy:

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Or how about splatting it all over the walls:

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Incredible in a fun bold powder room and can you spot it on the RHS?!

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Underfoot is, I think, my preferred look, especially when a Hermes blanket is involved, yikes!

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And all of these stair runners can hotfoot it over to our new pad – come to mama!

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Check out my previous animal prints posts here and here for more goodies, and make sure you head on over tomorrow for le shopping guide!

The best of Rue…

I get alot of design-related junk mail in my inbox these days, but there’s one message that never fails in its quest to make me click through to its website: ‘the new issue of Rue Magazine is available now!’

My heart always skips a little beat as I impatiently wait for the magazine to load up on my screen.  And it never ever fails to deliver.  Seriously, I love this mag.  So today I thought I’d post up my fave pics from this month’s edition, just wair until you see these corkers.

First up, event planner Jung Lee’s studio in NYC – do you seeeee all of those incredible props??!  I bet they’ve planned some pretty amazing shindigs with these items on hand, and I love that inspiration board:

Next up, some gorgeous dark and moody schemes by Tamara Honey.  The sombre colourings are balanced by a few whimsical touches (porcelain doggy, quirky wallpaper) and the overall effect is spot on I think.  I am slightly obsessing over that daybed too…

And I’m totally enamoured with every single thing about this dining room.  I don’t normally go for this style so much but there’s something about this scheme that’s got me – think it might be the lucite.  Or that insane chandie.

And probably also that bar cart…hello blingerama!

And last up is the home of one of Rue’s contributors, Cassandra Lavalle.  I love Love LOVE interior design that challenges established ideas and pushes boundaries, but I also have a huge soft spot for interesting-and-beautiful-yet-not-too-crazy homes – I mean at the end of the day, you have to live there right?!  This is a great example of one of the latter in my opinion – well designed but not too ‘out there’:

LOVING this mini gallery wall!  And the black piping around the lampshades, gorgeous.

(all credits: Rue Magazine)

So there you go folks, that’s my round up.  Which design magazines are your faves?

Chic, Colourful and Chinese – part 1

So I guess it’s a kinda obvious link, but I’ve found myself pondering Chinese lacquered cabinets today.  Sleek and black or crazy and colourful, a pair of these are guaranteed to give a boost to any room.

Add some to a chinoiseire or exposed brick backdrop for a look that’s respectively chic and classy, or rough and edgy:

Go for monochrome glamour with white painted floorboards or a knock-your-socks-off colour punch!

LOVE LOVE LOOOOOVE them paired here with the ceiling beams and canopy bed:

And my jaw may or may not have just hit the floor upon seeing this tangerine beaut.  The ‘shabby Chinese chic’ washstand is pretty bananas too.

And I’m not 100% convinced about the white leather sofa/stools, but these mile high kitchen cabinets are pretty much le bee’s knees:

(credits: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 )

So what do you reckon folks?

Make sure you stop by for my shopping guide tomorrow!

Cayman inspiration: colourful kiting

So I’ve recently taken up kitesurfing here in Cayman and am totally kicking myself for not doing it 2 years ago (Alistair:  ‘I told you so’ – yep, you did…).  It’s bloody brilliant and I haven’t even started the board work yet, I can’t wait to start whizzing. 

Anyway so for my lessons this week I’ve been using a bright red kite and keep getting completely distracted by what a fanstastic colour combo it is wth the bright turquoise of the sky behind it (‘Elly, FOCUS ON THE KITE’ keeps ringing throught my earpiece as I’m pondering turquoise accent furnishings while the kite plunges into the ocean…oops).  Looks a little like this, except much more incompetent:

(credit: 20 Days)

Anyhoo, so I think I’ve mentioned before that I’ve always had an innate aversion to the combination of le blue and le red, but given my level of distraction I thought I’d give it another chance.  And it turns out it can actually provide a fantastic colour jolt or more of a soft pastelly accent.

LOVE it here combined with graphic stripes: 

Or how about a vintage-style kitchen?

My eyes are popping out of my head…

Also gorgeous in other contexts, no?

Couple of fabulous poppy red accents:

Or introduce a softer colour for a more peaceful scheme:

And I’m loving this festive take on the palette!

(credits: Pinterest, Apartment Therapy, Elle, House Beautiful, Design*Sponge)

So what do you think friends??

Feeling sheepish…

So I’ve been hearing that the weather back home’s taken a turn for the worse recently.  It sounds like everyone is buttoned up in winter coats and knee high booties already (ahhhh, knee high booties, how I miss thee…) so I thought I’d have a think about some more interior design ideas suitable for autumn weather.  Since writing about the most incredible ski lodge in the world last week, I’ve been thinking about these cute and cosy sheepskin-upholstered chairs…

…and thought today that I’d round up a few images of gorgeous designs incorporating sheepskin rugs/throws/furnishings/general fleeciness.

I’d never really seen them used with seating before, but LOVE how they instantly add texture and interest to these schemes:

Sheepskin rugs seem to be hugely popular in nurseries – these ones are le bee’s knees:

It looks fantastic as an accent:

Or as a more integral part of a scheme (gorgeous fireplace!):


Oooh, and here it’s used in more of a shabby chic vibe:

Loks good even in a bathroom setting – who’d have thought?!

Cosy cosy cosy!

And this throw is fantastic!  I’m also loving the seagrass wall panels – might have to lock that away for future reference…

Hellllo lucite!

And yet more stunners:

(credits: Apartment Therapy, Houzz, Pinterest, Domino, Elle Decor, Metropolitan Home)

And to source these beauts, try IKEA for a classic rug or a quirky armchair – I think the ‘rug’ can also be used draped over a chair or stool:

Room & Board have a bunch of rugs and throw cushions:

Or head to Heal’s for the perfect nursery accessory!

Fun, huh?

Ladders ladders everywhere

I’m not quite sure why I love library ladders so much.  I think it may be to do with the fact that I was a total bookworm when I was a kid, but there’s something so quirky yet elegant about them, I feel as if I want to put one in practically every single room I design (and in fact, have pretty much done just that). 

‘My Design Chic’ did a fabulous post a while back on the use of library ladders in kitchens, which got me thinking about incorporating one into the loft I’m currently designing.  The clients are seemingly obsessed with storage space and have insanely high ceilings, so I’m thinking of having one entire wall (12m x 3.5m) of built in cupboards, half kitchen/half living room, and a rolling ladder across the whole lot.  I actually spent about an hour yesterday afternoon puzzling over the intricacies of trigonometry (SOH CAH TOA – remember the rules?! It’s tricky!) to work out how much floor space I’d need for the ladder – I used to be pretty good at maths but my brain seems to be slowing down living here in Cayman, ha. 

Anyhoo……….I digress, but I thought I’d share a few library ladder images with you folks this morning.

How’s this for an opening pic?!  Insane!

I LOOOOOOOOVE the white floorboards/light wood beams and ladder combo here:

Couple of dramatic black options: 

And here’s Diane von Furstenberg’s living room (apols for the scraggy image) – perfection!

I’m actually more drawn to the barrel armchairs here than the ladder…

And I love how ladders work so well in contemporary minimalist spaces…

…as well as more elaborate traditional ones:

How about adding one to the kitchen to make the most of your storage?  I think this would only work in a large kitchen though, I see plenty of scope for disaster otherwise (me + pot of boiling water + ladder in unexpected spot = error).

LOVE the marble splashbacks here:

Le bee’s knees? Yep, I agree:

And I’m going GAGAAAAA over these two more utilitarian spaces:

They’re also so cute used for kiddies’ bunks: 

Or how about your bathroom storage?!  Genius.

(credits: Pinterest, Tracery Design, The Enchanted Home, Francois Bollack Architect, Delight By Design)


And when it comes to populating the shelves, I’ve found the perfect solution: Penguin Hardcover Classics.

What could be better than a classic tale combined with an aesthetically-pleasing cover?  Not much, if you ask me.  Did you see the parrot and flamingoes above?!


Exposed to the elements

I have been having a love affair with all things exposed brick for a loooong time now, first prompted by this insane shot from Coastal Living:

Whether you play up the contrast using glam chandies and high end silks and cashmeres, or go down the rough and ready furnishings route with rustic tree stump stools and vintage farmhouse tables, the end result is guaranteed to make me go a smidgey smidge gaga.

Here are some beauts, which one’s your fave?



(credits: Coastal Living, SF Girl by Bay, Loftenberg, Design*Sponge, Marie Claire, Salon)