Thursday, December 27, 2012

Bedroom Makeover

During & After....forgot to take a Before!

Use your imagnation and think burgundy walls & yellow trim
Walls are painted in Quarry with 1/4 strength Hogs bristle trim
original vinyl floral wallpaper stripped, timber doors undercoated
James Dunlop wallpaper 'Shade', colour: Eau de nil
Doors & trim painted
Bedside detail with Angus & Celeste vase(from santa)

fyi: the bedroom pendant light is going, going..almost gone

Hope you like it
Jo x

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Painting a weatherboard house

Bless me,
It's been months since my last blog session, I accuse myself of...

1. Forsaking play for an unseasonally heavy workload.

2. Blind devotion to the Red & White, especially guernsey no.37...woo hoo!
3. Failure to understand or solve teenage angst.
4. Oh and a slight addiction to house paint?

The transfiguration of Somerton

 Burgundy begone, hello Brimstone grey, natural white and black accents.

Still to paint that guttering...professionals methinks?

 A black door...finally.

 I love our wild strawberries, absolutley rampent in the hills and so pretty.

 My favourite new purchase..the nursery display table right 
outside our Kitchen doors
  13 standard black pots filled with alyssum around a large tub of lettuce.

Stay posted for more transformations.


Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Cafe Design

Metric or Imperial...Oasis or Blur?
Coffee Rules. Stumbled across this sweet new cafe in Brunswick West whilst on a shoot for Home Beautiful. Too good not to snap and post every little inch. $ensational coffee and a great design concept have kept it hummingbird along since it opened a few weeks ago. Ruler wainscotting, fantastic. 

Just don't tell the Sisters of No Mercy or there'll be some serious knuckle wrapping!

ttfn Jox

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Ruby red decor accents + living the dream

At the laptop in high waisted shorts and backless halter top, my nine inch,
fire engine red nails are clacking and qwertying away furiously while the
ice slowly melts in my Gn't highball ....I reach over to the crystal art ashtray 
to stub out the smouldering ruby ringed cigarette and my bauble laden
charm bracelet catches the light and I'm momentarily blinded...
I open my eyes and I'm shocked, utterly shocked to see that my high 
waisted shorts have morphed into tracky pants and the halter top suddenly 
feels cloying and suspiciously like polar fleece?

One day, oh day I will be Dorothy Lamour and swan about 
this divine house in a ruby red lipstick that perfectly matches 
my cushions, fingernails and ciggie stubs.

Enjoy the Lamour tour, courtesy of the talented Lorna Wallace  

classic white indoor | outdoor dining

awwgh pretty + clever indoor, outdoor visual

 lippy cushions | vintage rug | garden backdrop

 vintage trunk side table + atlas, in case you get lost

celadon green + musk pink with ruby red accent

Anyone for a bike ride?

ttfn Jo 

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Beautiful Bedlinen | Expert Advice

The Bedspread Shop's Kerry Whitaker reveals 
her Trade Secrets in the bedroom and why 
she still courts the trusted, ever faithful valance.

What can't you live without on YOUR bed?
C o m f o r t . . .
Electric blanket: My side of the bed only, cold nights only, switched off once there.  
Gorgeous goosedown mattress topper:  This princess has looked for the pea but can't find it under this sumptuous layer.
Egyptian cotton sheets: The REAL deal not the copies that fly in over Egypt on their way from China. Crisp fresh soft delicious, white.
My German batiste quilt: In super size king, no fighting in the bed. Beautiful quality light weight covers from Turkey, India, Egypt or Portugal.
Goose down pillows: Different fill heights for if I need to raise my spinning head. 

Where in the world do you like to source bedding?
Europe. In two weeks I leave for the textiles fair in Paris and then go on to Spain.
We usually also go to Portugal. They are all such horrible destinations
that sometimes I feel sorry for myself...(So do we Kerry, really)

Favourite product ever sourced?
The German batiste quilt. These quilts are amazingly light. When I make my bed in the morning I lift my huge super king quilt with a flick of my wrists and the quilt lifts, hovers in the air and then floats down on the bed like a beautiful cloud. Love it.

Styling tip for a sensational looking bed
Get the valance right. A bed is going to be poorly dressed wearing the wrong shoes!

Advice for anyone wanting to get into the industry?  
Find a niche that you love. Get the detail right and then make sure that you know how to market to your market. This is a very friendly industry. Many people will want you to succeed and will be very prepared to share their experience  and expertise with you.

If you are looking for gorgeous bedlinen and you live in Melbourne you must visit 
The Bedspread Shop or simply order online.

Ask Kerry about Bianca Lorenne (image above) a beautiful range of NZ fine linens available at her Malvern shop.

Enjoy Europe, Kerry
Jo x

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Doily Spoiler

  Doily 101
I have a stash of lacey tablecloths and doilies courtesy of
St VdeP and I love finding new ways to put them anywhere but under a vase 
in the Good Room(affectionately referred to as 'The Delta' by a friend)
The sweet Doily balloon is from The Shady Fig, a heavenly florist shop in 
my favourite place in the world...the Fibro town, the not-quite-a-city, 
the end of the railway line and my beautiful south- 
you'll have to ask Allison Tait she loves the place too!

When is a doily not a doily?
 When it's a beautiful balloon.
When it's an almost finished, handmade vest. (sorry, Aisie)
When it's dipped in paint and used for printing on canvas.
When the little lace work is cut up to make pictures..aawwgghh

enjoy, ttfn Jo

Monday, August 20, 2012

Kids + Family homes


 Relaxed living on the Bellarine

 Mr D and I shot and styled this comfortable family home, on the
Bellarine peninsula for the Spring edition of Home Beautiful 
loving the...
 Layback decor | open living areas.
Pastel + ochres | liberty prints + textured fabrics.
Space for all creatures great and small.
Garden, a great place to run, jump, skip....
or cuddle a guinea pig and a golden retriever

For more great houses + spring decor  
Pick up the latest copy or check out the facebook page Home Beautiful
 ttfn Jo

Photography : Derek Swalwell

Winter gardens


Winterfelt,  baby its cold outside
Recently I have been engrossed in the HBO series Game of Thrones. I have ploughed my way through the first chilly season and according to Lord Snow, "the winter is coming". I'm no weather professor but if a walking furry mound of bearskin is proclaiming the onset of winter...I'm thinking Winterfelt makes Olinda look like the Sunshine coast and I'm never complaining about the cold again!

Winter gardens are majestic and graphic, I love the sleek surfaces, the naked twisting vines and the seasonal block colours. I like it even better when I'm on the inside looking out with a mug of Irish tea...but mostly I'm beating a brisk, weary path around the neighbourhood. I was walking very briskly last week, camera in hand as we had our first snowfall. A decent fluttering, not quite enough to get out the waffle walkers but it was very pretty and white...aawwwggh


I'm happy to proclaim "the spring is coming" and the garden in Olinda is covered in translucent little green soldiers, eager to bloom into Daffs and Jonquils while platoons of purple bulbs spring up underfoot like a David Attenborough time-lapse sequence. Can't wait to turn off the central heating and get out into the garden.

Vale Winter, Hail Spring

Jo ttfn

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Cabin Fervour

Tiffaney's style secrets
Who is Tiffaney Bishop ?
I am a mother of two young boys and a photographer.  I began studying photography part time 20 years ago whilst working in my former PR and Marketing career.  I have exhibited work over the years, the highlights being:
    A 3 month show at The Shrine of Remembrance Melbourne
    Inclusion in the 2010 Toyota Emerging Art Award
    Added to American Artist William Kelly's International Humanist art Collection

Art & the community Four years ago I established an art collective that engages with the local community in and around the Dandenong Ranges, in particular young artists and activists.  Together we have developed a formal collaborative art practice that is attracting national and even international interest.  We have recently opened a studio/gallery in Belgrave which is proving to be a very interesting enterprise with many more young people engaging with us because of our increased public presence. We have several local art projects on the go and one in development that will see us working with a New York based artist/group similar to our own and building a body of work that will be exhibited at the National Gallery in Canberra next year.

What's your decorating style at home?
Our home is quite humble on the exterior, but has quite a 'handsome' interior, which has a very rustic appearance with exposed rafters, rough hewn oregon lined walls and stained original hardwood floors. The small areas of plaster are painted in antique white throughout which creates a wonderful balance and foil for some of the rustic features. Large red persian-style rugs inject a warmth and boldness without competing with the striking interior. We have resisted painting much of the wooden features in the house as we feel that its character and integrity is wrapped up in its original envelope. Whilst our soft furnishings are fairly neutral, I have developed an interest in texture and begun to understand the wonderful effects you can achieve by blending different versions of neutral fabrics, textures and self patterning.

Styling tips or tricks for when you have guests?
We have an open plan kitchen/dining/lounge area (very American Cabin-like). We restored the original Rayburn oven in the kitchen and it makes great roasts and cakes! Although we often have formal sit-down dinners we also often prepare big casual but sumptuous spreads on the coffee table in front of the massive stone fireplace and sit back in the leather chesterfields and graze for hours.  I usually rely on the garden for flowers and foliage for floral arrangements.  My favourite arrangements are large displays of 'about to burst' magnolia branches which the hydronic heating in the house encourages a painterly show from within a few hours of arranging.  I also love to arrange large fern fronds with wild strawberry vines and although the fern fronds don't last very long once cut, they look amazing for a day or two.  Equally, I love just dotting little vases of jonquils or daphne around the place.  

Cushion fiend or phobic?
I love cushions, but don't have enough good ones at the moment.  As I mentioned before I am discovering the charm of textured fabrics and self-embellishments and am focusing more on this important room detail.

Where do you source/buy your furnishings ?
I tend to use the internet- recently I bought some Florence Broadhurst cushions online.

For more cabin decor ideas have a peek at Country Kitchens and stay posted for living areas and childrens rooms

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Country kitchens


soups on

aaahhh...rustic country kitchens make my heart skip a beat - this authentic weatherboard, Ferny Creek cabin is tucked away in the beautiful Dandenong Ranges with killer views to Swanston Street Melbourne! Home Beautiful commissioned a shoot a few months ago and it was a wintery, aubergine dream to style. Normally I search for flowers & cushions...this was all about root vegetables and chunky breadsticks.
The owner, Tiffaney Bishop is an artist and quell suprese a stylist, with a twist. Stay posted for more of Tiffaney's beautiful home and an exclusive interview with some of her insider tips on country decorating and maybe a good soup recipe or two.
Meanwhile pick up a copy of the latest Home Beautiful...out now!

enjoy, ttfn Jo

Stunning pix by Mr Derek Swalwell