Sunday, July 25, 2010

A little vintage, a little French, a little yellow

When it comes to decorating, I believe in the old adage that the look will come together if you stick to what you love. It is no secret that a few are my loves are all things yellow, French or vintage. Or maybe all three? So, when it came to finding inspiration to fill the big, white space above the bed in our spare bedroom, it's no surprise that I came up with these images above. They've been saved in my decorating inspiration file for so long now that I've forgotten where I found them. Galerie Montmartre would be my guess.

Having a connection to the objects in your home is important, so I got to thinking that I could use one of my favourite Vogue covers next to the vintage posters. To celebrate 50 years, Vogue Australia had illustrator David Downton draw Cate Blanchett and the result was four different covers for the September 2009 issue.

As it happens in the surfing world, one thing leads to another and soon I was looking at other David Downton works, like this:

Heart sings. LOVE this! Assumingly unattainable. Grizzle.

With so many ideas, perhaps a photo frame wall is the ticket. It's been done a million times, but I love them. We have one in our dining area, Carrie had one in her old apartment...

Other ideas for the spare bedroom wall include a floor to ceiling drop of delicious wallpaper, one huge frame filled with said wallpaper, a beautiful bedhead or even some old shutters (art and a bedhead).
Photo by Geoff Dendle

Sadly, this blank wall is not so high on the priority list right now so I'll keep these images here to mull over and let you know of any updates. Ya gotta have dreams.

Monday, July 19, 2010

A visual feast of design publications

My heart sings on days like this as I can do some serious eating with my eyes. For the last month I've put a stop to indulging on taste and am exploring gluttony through my other perfectly capable senses. I inhale the smell of morsels roasted in fat while consuming steamed vegetable delights. I touch the window of the cake shop and attempt to feast my eyes on something other than the candy confections calling my name. Indulging in my non-edible loves is much more satisfying than constantly teasing my tastebuds (even if it sometimes feels more like I'm depriving than teasing). 

Today, the August issue of Real Living (pictured above) hits the newstands and is a welcome beast that I'm planning to devour with my eyes. I wouldn't want to destroy the delightful pages in any other way. I can only guess that it looks and smells (in that new book way) better than it tastes. Louise over at Table Tonic is going to be doing cartwheels over the pretty cover featuring one of her Moroccan pouffes and piles of Ikat cushions. So gorgeous. 

Real Living is, as its name suggests, a magazine full of real homes and ideas that are within its readers reach. The interiors are still inspiring but they are accompanied by practical tips on how the look can be achieved in a home where people live and breathe. Its appeal lies in its fresh, young take on sophistication and the uplifting use of colour.

It is for the same reasons that I practically inhaled and devoured Domino: The Book Of Decorating - A Room-By-Room Guide To Creating A Home That Makes You Happy.  


The book's sub-title really sums it up. There is no stuffiness or display home style in sight. It's all about creating spaces with personality for you and your family, surrounding yourself with objects that you love and trusting that style will follow. It is written by the editors of the former US magazine of the same name. Its origin is its only downfall, and only in th sense that we Aussies don't have access to all of the brands mentioned. However, it wins points in spades for its pretty hardcover and a timelessness that is difficult for a monthly mag to achieve. It also helps my secret desire for a pile of coffee tables books a la Scottie and Kevin of Brothers and Sisters fame. Here's a peek inside if you haven't seen already...

Such a post would be incomplete without mentioning Lonny, the online gem of the decorating world. If this were an interior design feast, Lonny would be a dessert worthy of much lip-licking, even after an entree of Real Living and a main of Domino. It is hard to believe something so beautiful is free to view online. You can thank your god for the existence of advertisers right about now, and while we're at it, perhaps we should give thanks to Lonny's creators for going paperless and saving the planet. 

Admittedly, I would love to touch and feel this publication, but it seems the use of visual senses is de rigeur in publishing, not just in my diet. Let the feast begin. 

Sunday, July 18, 2010

I love this city

It is a truth universally acknowledged that this little blogger prefers staying up to waking up. There are few exceptions to this, and by few I mean next to none. An early flight to a holiday destination is just bearable if the sun rises mid-flight or a bird's eye view of that hopeful, misty and mystical time of the world awakening is visible. About the only other time I like getting up early is for similar reasons when camping. Perhaps it's the country girl in me, but I love the calm silence and beauty of the bush as everything starts to wake.

Today, we were in the city by 7am to get the Mister to the Run Melbourne half marathon starting line. As thousands of runners ran off into the darkness, I watched the city come alive and remembered how much I love this city. Although far from the bush of my childhood, the view through my phone's camera lens at this wee hour was enough to make my heart sing. For a night owl, that is saying something.

Running 21.1km is not on my list of things to do in life, but I'm very happy and proud of my Mister Running Boy, and the many other admirable half marathoners, for putting one foot in front of the other, over and over and over, until the end is in sight.

Whatever your dream, the will to achieve and the devotion to making it happen will propel you forward, way past the finish line.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Curvaceous love - a universal tale of overcoming stocking woes

It's near impossible to invent things anymore. Whatever you dream up and concoct in your head has probably been thought of and brought to fruition by a like-minded being. Google and you shall find.

As a teen, I wanted to have a clothing company for women and girls who found it hard to find their size, whether they were very short or very tall. I would call it 'Tall and Tiny' or 'Beyond Average'. Nowadays there are shoe shops that cater for larger sizes (Rosenberg's, Diana Ferrari), clothing stores (High and Mighty, City Chic, Maggi T), petite ranges in department stores and most excitingly, a whole world of sizes available in online stores. Sadly, most of the stores mentioned are pretty dull and often expensive for what they are. Perhaps there is still room for my idea. Call me Albert.

I'm yet to find leather gloves for women that are long enough to reach my wrist without looking as though I need to chop a centimetre off my fingers (and no, I would not like a men's pair, thank you). Speaking of wrists, many jackets have sleeves that don't reach mine. Shoe shopping is still incredibly uninspiring and age-appropriate footwear is hard to come by for us big foots without grandchildren and dates at the local bowls club.

An item that I've been enjoying the hunt for with mixed results is the perfect tights. I've been asking women, large and small, about this for many winters now. A crotch that doesn't sit on your crotch seems to be the universal complaint. Drooping or rolling waists and muffin tops are high on the complaints list too. Poor durability - or a tendency to tear - also makes the ratings, but that's another topic entirely. The crotch problem is my bug bear and when I feel that horrible, familiar droop as the crotch of my stockings edges down my leg toward my thigh, I sign inwardly, send annoyed vibes to the manufacturer, mentally strike that brand off all future shopping lists and make my way to the nearest toilet to pull them up.

To save you re-inventing the wheel, I will tell you for nothing that Curvaceous tights by Razzamatazz are really worth a try. I've waisted many a minute in Myer, Target and the supermarket shelf searching for tights that don't torture. I picked up some Curvaceous pantyhose last winter at Coles and said good-bye to the dreaded droop. This winter I decided that my Curvaceous pantyhose were not opaque enough - I needed tights - so I decided to try other brands in the largest size I could find.

The first pair were Levante Extra fuller figure opaques. They weren't very opaque at 50 denier but they had a lovely silky feeling. It felt quite luxurious until I realised that silky also means slippery and in the tight department we all know that things slip in a southerly direction. One strike, you're out Levante, even if you are made in Italy. Next up is the Kayser Plus opaque tights for the fuller figure. Daggy packaging but let's not hold that against them. Pull 'em on, give 'em a go. Err, umm, the packet says that these will fit a women of my height (179cm) up to 122kg, and yet as soon as I pull them on, I know they are not long enough. They don't quite come up at the crotch and I promise I am still under 122kg. You're out Kayser Plus.

That weekend I was back at Coles stocking up on all manner of winter warmers for the home and our stomachs. I did the routine scan of the stocking aisle and discovered that the Razzamatazz Curvaceous range comes in more than just the pantyhose I had enjoyed. Was I just blind before? Is this a new line for my local Coles? Or has the range recently expanded? Stop with the questions, just grab a pair and be off. Enjoy the choice of diamond opaques, 70 and 120 denier opaques and even a herringbone net tight. Don't waste a second not wanting to wear something for the "fuller figure", as much as that phrase may have you wanting to run the other way. Never mind thinking you're going to invent bigger and better things, be glad someone has beat you to it. Do squats in all your tighted fabulousness without fear of a tear, or run in the right direction and enjoy not having to pause regularly for a not-so-subtle hitch on your waistband or thigh . Run I say, and don't look back.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

A study in whitewashing

A serene, fresh and uncluttered desk only seems possible if done in white, and so began my long hunt for a nicer surface to plonk a laptop and blog away. The criteria included: drawers along the top rather than down the side, less than $500, sleek but not space age to blend into an older home and, most importantly, white. Not one new desk was found that met all this criteria so the ebay search began. As is usually the case with auctions, items came, love blossomed and items were lost. Hope remained. If you're willing to pick up a paintbrush, there are greater options to be had, so the final criteria on colour was momentarily dropped in favour of a desk able to be painted (ie. wooden rather melamine). Eventually, the desk below was 'won'...
Then sanded... (thanks to the Mister and willing B-I-L, Quentin)
and a first coat applied...
and a second...
and finally, the third coat. Et voila!
Ever so slightly smaller than hoped, but so right in other ways. On the same weekend, the yellow chair got a third coat and the little chair got the full sand and paint treatment (see previous post for their before shots). It's starting to come together, no?

The final cost for the desk came in at around $90, including paint for just under $30 and the other necessary bits and pieces like sandpaper, brush and drop sheet. It's history and journey to whiteness cannot be priced :) Nor can the sound of my heart singing as I spy it from the doorway. So tell me, could I have got a better desk for my buck?



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...