Too Much Timber

For the past two years I have been corresponding with a client in Airlie Beach, Queensland. As I explained when we first started exchanging emails, it’s been over 30 years since I was in Airlie Beach so she figured I wasn’t going to pop in for a consultation any time soon, no matter how much I would have liked.

Airlie Beach and The Whitsundays

Airlie Beach and The Whitsundays

Mel has a house on acreage which is all timber inside and her query was the same as I am often asked, “Will I paint the timber?” She had timber panelled walls and timber panelled ceilings. A number of skylights were allowing some light to enter but she was also wondering if she should instal more skylights.



Before installing more skylights, I suggested she paint the ceiling but leave the beams in timber, as the timber on the ceiling AND the walls was sucking up any light that was getting in to the room. I was conscious of the fact that the timber panelling was part of the style and architecture of the home and I always believe that the architecture should be maintained or acknowledged. I wasn’t sure if Mel was open to painting the walls as well.

Timber panelling on ceiling AND walls

Kitchen Before

Mel came back to me very quickly saying, Yes, she was open to painting the walls. She had just completed painting her son’s bedroom and realised that paint doesn’t detract from the charisma of the timber. She agreed that the paint modernised the space and took away that dated look.

Son's Room Before Paint

Son’s Room Before Paint

Son's Room After Paint

Son’s Room After Paint

Just as we had completed the emails, I spotted this image which I sent through to her. From then on it was a done deal.

Perfect example of leaving some timber

Perfect example of leaving some timber

So last month she sent through images of the living area all painted. Hasn’t she done a wonderful job?





There is never a right or wrong way to treat timber. Just keep in mind what you want to achieve. In this case, Mel wanted light, bright and modern. I think she got it.

Look at that stained glass detailing. You couldn't see it with all that dark timber.

Look at that stained glass detailing. You couldn’t see it with all that dark timber.

Painting the ceiling

Painting the ceiling

Kitchen After

Kitchen After

If you would like assistance with your interior design dilemma, contact me for a consultation.


Laundry Love

Laundries have come along way and are no longer that dark, dank room under the house or out the back where the washing gets done. We have so many more reasons today to have a beautiful laundry.

Mud Room and Laundry

Dogs are washed here, an extra fridge is stored here, there may be an extra bathroom attached or included in the laundry servicing the outdoor entertaining area or it might be the “tradesmen’s” entry to the home. With such beautiful fixtures and fittings available why not make it somewhere you want to be?

Pet Washing Station

There’s plenty of inspiration over on Pinterest or have a look at this fabulous line up from Inside Out Magazine.

Bathroom Laundry

If you would like assistance in recreating your laundry, contact me for a consultation.

New App for Renovators

There are literally thousands of apps to help make renovating easier for the home renovator. But now there’s a new one available for those of us who want to incorporate timber in our homes. And let’s face it, timber floor boards are the one element nearly every home owner desires at the moment.


Intergrain have created a great little app to assist you visualise what the floor will look like stained or treated with their range of colours and finishes. You can take a snap of the flooring and then choose from their colours to get an idea of what the end result will look like.

Screen Shot 2015-07-22 at 4.44.32 pm

Maybe you’re half way through a job and need some advice? You can just click on the Solutions tab. Not sure how much stain you’ll need? Click on the Calculator. Ready to roll but don’t know where to buy the product? Click on the Store Locator.

Screen Shot 2015-07-22 at 4.44.48 pm

I can see this will be a very handy app for me to use as well, when I’m trying to assist clients with their flooring needs. It works for both inside and out, flooring, decking, fencing, doors, windows, panelling, stairs, garage doors and furniture. You can download it right now, for free!

Pool Deck

If you would like assistance with choosing timber species and colours for your home, contact us for an appointment.



When white is not white enough

I was at the Caesarstone showroom last week when a lady came in to look at the white slabs. She was commenting to the showroom assistant that the Pure White and the Snow didn’t really look white. Her house was all black and white and she thought these colours looked too cream.

Caesarstone Whites

Caesarstone Whites

Choosing white is probably the hardest colour of all. When a “white” is put next to another “white” it suddenly doesn’t look “white” after all.

All white kitchen with Caesarstone Snow benchtops

All white kitchen with Caesarstone Snow benchtops

So how do you create a white kitchen (lets face it, everyone wants a white kitchen at the moment)? Firstly, choose your benchtop white. Caesarstone Snow, Pure White or Organic White are all very white but they each have a dash of another colour – yellow, grey, brown. But the trick is to match that white with the right white cabinets. If the benchtop has a touch of grey and the cabinets are stark white, then that’s the look you will end up with – grey benchtop and white cabinets. There’s nothing wrong with that if that’s what you want. But to get an all white kitchen then you need to have a touch of grey in your cabinet white.

All white kitchen with Caesarstone Organic White benchtops

All white kitchen with Caesarstone Organic White benchtops

Marrying the right white with the white benchtop will give you a seamless look. The same rule applies to tiles and other surfaces. It’s always best to choose them first and then the paint as paint can always be matched to the surface but it’s a bit harder to choose the paint colour and then find the right surface to match that.

All white kitchen with Caesarstone Pure White benchtops

All white kitchen with Caesarstone Pure White benchtops

And always look at samples of the paint and surface in your own home not in the showroom under harsh lighting or when the slabs are vertical but in your kitchen the benchtop will be horizontal. That will have a big impact on the perception of the colour.

Matching the right white paint to the white tiles will give you that seamless white interior.

Matching the right white paint to the white tiles will give you that seamless white interior.

If you would like assistance choosing the right white for your kitchen, contact us for an appointment.


Upcycled Furniture

Time is ticking for you to own a unique piece of furniture lovingly restored and remodelled by some amazing Australian design aficionados and help charity at the same time!

Before Single Beds

The Feast Watson Re-Love Project is live on eBay and taking bids right now. You have until 5pm (Eastern Standard Time) tomorrow to make a bid and secure one of these pieces for your home. There’s a beautiful sideboard by Steve Cordony, a funky set of side tables from Tara Dennis and not one but TWO timber single beds from Mark Tuckey. There’s alot more as well so why don’t you click on over and check out all the amazing work and do your bit for charity.

Single Beds

The Feast Watson Re-Love Project is now in it’s third year and has raised thousands of dollars for Salvo Stores. “Salvos Stores are delighted to once again benefit from the outstanding efforts of Feast Watson and the Re-Love project. We’re incredibly grateful to the eight talented designers who have generously donated their time and talents to the project. We can’t wait to see the auction outcome,” CEO, Allen Dewhirst said.

Before Sideboard
While upcycling continues to lead as one of the more popular craft trends, it seems it hasn’t quite extended to medium and large furniture pieces, with people still inclined to throw them away rather than consider their potential. The Re-Love Project shows just how a little TLC can inject personality into second hand furniture to give it a new lease on life.

Black SideboardFeast Watson’s Brand Manager, James Fisher, says the designs showcase how timber furniture items of all sizes can be transformed into something truly special and unexpected.

Side Tables

So have a look and make a bid or maybe head out to your nearest Salvos Store and purchase a piece to remodel yourself. We’d love to see the end result.


A Round Tuit

You have no idea how happy I am to have finally found this.



I’ve been searching high and low and seemed to have lost it about 10 weeks ago when we received an offer on our house which wasn’t even on the market! Life has been a bit chaotic since then but now that I have my Round Tuit we can get back to normal.

round entry

Image from Pinterest

Speaking of “round”, have you noticed the profusion of round at the moment? It seems every image I look at on Pinterest, Houzz or in magazines seems to have a round something in it.

Round Door Handle

Image from Pinterest

Round just takes off the edges and works well in any situation, especially if there’s lots of angles and corners in the room like a bathroom.

round bathroom mirror

Image from Pinterest

So do you have a round something in your house?

round lights

If you would like to assistance with colour and design to your home, contact me for an appointment.


Upcycling for a Cause

For the third consecutive year Feast Watson has just launched the Re-love Project.

Feast Watson Re-love Project

If you remember, I was involved with the inaugural Re-Love Project and had a lot of fun finding a suitable piece of furniture from a Goodwill store and then deciding how I would upcycle it and then doing the work. The great part is that the items are auctioned off on eBay at the end of the project and all proceeds are given to the Salvos Stores.

Chairs Before and After

This year the designers include interior and event Stylist, Steve Cordony, iconic furniture maker, Mark Tuckey, Editor -in-Chief at Real Living, Deb Bibby with dedicated craftsman David Moses, TV DIY personality, Tara Dennis, Interiors Addict staff writer, Olivia Shead, Kristine Franklin from one of my favourite blogs, The Painted Hive, as well as Simone Barter returning for a third year and Helen Edwards from Recycled Interiors.

Chest of drawers before and after

You can follow the progress of the pieces on Instagram and Pinterest and don’t forget to make a bid on eBay from 8 July.

Lamp Before and After

I can’t wait to see what the creatives come up with this year.

Warmer Colours Sighting

Have you noticed that brown is back? I’ve been noticing the plethora of tan, camel and chestnut when I’ve been out at the shopping malls. I started to wonder if we are seeing the “brown” trend come back again or is it just the warmer months we are wanting warmer colours?

essastone Vesuvius

Essastone Vesuvius

Sure enough Essastone have sent me some information on their new colours – Vesuvius  and Marscapone. Vesuvius is a light to medium taupe while Marscapone is a more subtle and creamy based neutral. Essastone includes 28 designs and advise that the warmer tones are becoming increasingly popular.

Essastone Marscapone

Essastone Marscapone

I think the warm tones especially in the earthy spectrum will remain timeless for indoors and outdoors. Let’s hope we don’t go back to the lattes, chocolates and cappucinos of the noughties. A neutral with just a hint of brown is enough for me.


Meanwhile I hope you spend this weekend surrounded by chocolate. Happy Easter!

Chocolate-Easter-Egg-easter-eggs-30423577-2560-2302If you would like assistance adding the right shade of brown to your home, contact me for an appointment.

Dulux Colour Award Winners Announced

A big Congratulations to Mim Design for receiving the Grand Prix award with their Lexus Design Pavillion. Judges awarded the prize based on the use of subtle ombre colour appearing to ‘come off the wall’, which flat colour alone cannot achieve. With a stunning alignment to a French Impressionist feel the project was a great example of colour expression. This entry fell into the “Installation and Events” category which was a new category for the Dulux Colour Awards this year. The judges said this project was a clear standout. Rebalancing the harsh metallic of a Lexus car, the gentle palette helps visitors understand the softness within. The subtle ombre Dulux Leek and Coral Atoll was used to great effect, providing a dimensional impact which flat colour alone couldn’t achieve. The sage green gives the illusion of a floating sea with the floral ceiling display a beautiful upside down “Monet’s Garden”. Truly angelic, the space would be lovely to enjoy a champagne trackside.

Dulux Colour Awards 2015 Installation & Events Winner - Lexus Pavilion by Mim Design_Image Credits Shannon McGrath

Lexus Pavilion by Mim Design Photography by Sean Fennessy


If you follow my blog, you would know that I was a finalist in the Commercial Exterior category with my Warringah Creative Space project. Unfortunately I didn’t win (not that I was expecting to). Craig Tan Architects won this category with their Brompton Pavilion. Judges comments included the Brompton Pavilion created a dynamic display of colour within a sparse landscape. The 3D outer framing provided a sneak preview of vibrant colour. The structure balanced external, internal and in-between spaces through thoughtful use of colour. The palette combines both muted and bright shades highlighting the unusual structural aspects, including bright oranges and reds in Dulux Circus and Red Clown.

Brompton Pavilion by Craig Tan Architects Photography by Jaime

Brompton Pavilion by Craig Tan Architects Photography by Jaime

Congratulations to all the category winners and Highly Commended, it’s certainly a colourful read.

If you would like assistance choosing colours for you project, contact us for a consulation.

An Aged Care Makeover

Time for an update on the Aged Care Facility I have been working on for the past 12 months. These places can be so depressing and I am sure it’s because of the colours used some 10-20 years ago when the facilities were last updated or built. This is the second facility I have been called in to refresh. You can read about the first one here.

New Paint Colour in Hallway

New Paint Colour in Hallway

Hallway Before

Hallway Before

Initially I was asked to help out with paint colours. The rooms and hallways were quite dark and depressing painted in mauves and mustards. (Who decided mauve was an older person’s colour?) There were dashes of bright blues and yellow but in the main the place was dark. So working with the existing carpet, I chose a palette of fresher colours and instead of painting everything the one colour, I did what we would do in a home, and chose a white for the skirting boards and doors. This just lifts the whole space and adds some contrast and therefore interest.

Sitting Room Before

Sitting Room Before

After the painting was completed we installed shutters in the sitting rooms to make the rooms more streamlined.

Sitting Room After

Sitting Room After

Nurse's Station Before

Nurse’s Station Before


Nurse's Station After

Nurse’s Station After

I have also been sourcing new fabrics to co-ordinate with the new colour scheme and reupholster selected furniture pieces in the hallways and foyer. It will all come together once the painter moves into these areas and we get rid of those mustard walls.

Arm chairs before

Arm chairs before

Arm Chairs After

Arm Chairs After

Now I’m having fun finding new furniture for one of the dining rooms in the facility. New upholstered chairs, new dining tables, a sideboard and outdoor terrace setting to make the place look like a club is my mission. Let’s get rid of the institution feeling and make it a more friendly atmosphere. I’ll let you see when it’s all done.

If you would like assistance co-ordinating furniture, fabrics and paint colours in your home, contact me for an appointment.


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