9 reasons you should follow Kara Rosenlund

I am obsessed with Kara Rosenlund's work and determined to do one of her vignette styling classes one day.
Missed them the last time Kara was in town.  Her blog and instagram is a sure fire way to find inspiration and generally have your hair blown back by incredible photography and styling.

And another nine just to make sure you go and have a look at Kara's site.

{All photographs by Kara Rosenlund}  Pretty amazing....have a fab inspired weekend!

Pop up beach party!

We love a beach picnic!  Toasted sandwiches or egg and bacon rolls, wrapped in tin foil to keep warm for winter, or cold snacks and cool drinks for summer.  Nobody is ever quite ready to go home as the sun goes down.  Take a few pillows, a blanket, these diy beach lanterns and you don't have to rush home at the end of the day.

I will share how to make your own lanterns in a few weeks time, super easy and inexpensive, its a diy you are going to love.

One of the great things about living in Sydney is that winter is still beach weather.  You might not swim but it's perfect for walking or picnics.  

Pop back soon for the lantern tutorial, it will be up in a few weeks.  
Hope this inspires you to head for the beach if you are lucky enough to be near one, a local park is just as lovely, and enjoy the gorgeous outdoors.

pretty dark storage

I love the high contrast of these black storage units against the white walls, and particularly how they are inset into the walls.  Just gorgeous!

If you have time check out the rest of that Piet Boon villa.  
Have a lovely day...

Seasonal styling with Emma from Nest Designs: Winter Wonderland

It appears that despite how hard we’ve tried with the weather the last few weeks, we can’t ignore that Winter is finally here in Sydney. There’s no going back now! So I thought it would be the perfect time to share some of my tips and tricks for winter seasonal styling.

Winter is my favourite season and I often choose to travel to the Northern Hemisphere in winter on purpose as Australian winters aren’t really a proper winter! Snow falling outside a cabin window, a log fire crackling and a cup of hot chocolate are a recipe for the perfect holiday for me.

So, how do we recreate this in our homes? Here are the elements I tend to rely on to create that cozy Winter feel. 

{1. Texture}
Think knitted throw rugs, velvet feather stuffed scatter cushions, a deep sofa wide enough for you and a loved one to snuggle on, don’t forget wood is mother natures best texture so adding some textured timber statements to the room will do wonders for the winter theme you’re going for.
{2. Layering}
It’s important when using different textures in a space to layer them through out the room, so a woollen loop pile rug layered with a linen slipcover sofa covered in rich jewel coloured cushions in soft textured fabrics topped off with a floor lamp with a textured timber base and round linen drum shade throwing beautiful warm white light across the room. 
{3. Greenery}
One of my golden rules of decorating is always add greenery, it doesn’t matter the season, there’s always a plant or flower in bloom in winter time that adds a beautiful and life filled element to the space. 
{4. Lighting}
Often overlooked when planning a room but one of the most important elements is the light in the space, in winter to create the comfy cozy feel floor lamps, wall scones and candle light ooze cosiness where as harsh bright white down lights feel stark and lifeless. Always go for a warm white light globe rather than a cool white light globe, warm white light is much more flattering. 

Now, what should you swap out for winter vs summer styling?
 Start with the soft furnishings, this doesn’t need to be an expensive exercise, you can update these elements for less than $1,000. Switch out your sisal summery rug for a longer pile woollen rug in a similar colour tone, swap your hessian and linen cushions for velvets or knitted wool, pop some heavier weight curtains over the windows (this also keeps the warmth in - bonus!), add some pinecones collected in the streets to your fireplace mantel, a beautiful floral display of red berry flowers and a tray on your coffee table for 3-4 candles to burn subtly at night. 

Wintery throws by west elm, yellow chevron knitted pillow, native arrangement by Adam's Garden Florist

Voila! Instant winter makeover for your living space. 

This wonderful blog post was written for us by Emma from Nest Designs.

building the fireplace...finally its going in

This is getting very exciting!  Our fireplace is finally going in!  The design is blue taped to the wall and my fantastic husband is doing his best piece of timber work yet. Its going to have a low faux floating shelf in a cement finish, a gorgeous gas fireplace, and a still to be decided feature to cover the firebox.  Can you tell I am a little bit excited?

You can read about my dilemma over gas or wood burning here, at the end of the day we decided we would use a gas fireplace more.  I also rather fell in love with the Pure Vision from Real Flame with its glass sides and crisp black fire plates.

Mr B came up with a great solution for the floating shelf.  It had to be strong enough for somebody to sit on, and we didn't want to put a new beam into the walls. As you can see below this was a piece of Kreg jig magic.  He attached a solid piece of timber horizontally into the struts, then created a thick shelf by adding a two planks above and below the timber.  To make it extra strong another series of uprights has been added a few inches in front of the wall (bottom left).  The shelf appears to float but actually sits on this bottom structure. 

We have left the power points where they are, but will make a pull out panel to go in front of them.  Keeping the access, not paying for new points, and hiding the cables all in one.  Fab idea by Mr B!

The framework has been covered with blue board (see above), ready for its cement finish, and the base will be closed with plaster board like any ordinary wall.   It's looking great and has totally changed the feel of the room already.  I have never felt that this space worked well and the shelf makes total sense of it all.  Can't believe it took us so long to come up with this plan it, it looks like it should always have been this way.

Will we be toasting marshmallows over it soon?  Watch this space and I will let you know.

gas fireplace plans for the living room

So very exciting news.  We are putting in a fireplace finally.  We had always planned one for the living room wall, but when the time came to put it in during the build we were fresh out of both ideas and energy.  But when I wrote this post about gas fireplaces we fell love with the Pure Vision from Real Flame.  Pages and pages of sketches later and we have decided to put one in ourselves.   I blue taped the final design right onto the wall so we could test drive it and its amazing how it resolves the space.  

I have never been very happy with the way this room feels, it always feels a little pushed up against the wall, and it has been amazing how just the blue tape has corrected the balance of the room.  I can't wait to see the effect of the three dimensional structure!!
I also can't wait to have a shelf for flowers, vignettes, paintings, so exciting.

So this is what we are planning (see above), a long low shelf running the full width of the back wall.  The fireplace is off centre so we can accommodate a gorgeous modular sofa (see it here) at the left.  The square is a chimney breast feature, not quite sure how that is going to be finished yet.  And a really cool feature of the Pure Vision is that the sides are glass so when we are sitting on the sofa we will be able to see right into the fire.  Can't wait!!!

To save costs we (by we I mean he) will be doing the framing out.  Watch this space and see how we get it done.  I can't wait to see it myself!