Pigeon Pair or Toucan Triplet

As I walk around my neighbourhood I get a little thrill of excitement when I see a house receiving some tender loving care. And if this love is being slapped on from a paint can I can’t wait to see the finished result. I wonder which colour they will paint it? Will they paint the Barge Boards in the same colour as the gutters or will they paint them the same as the eaves?

So I was quite excited when I walked past a gracious large home with scaffolding all around and the painters working madly.

This house was receiving some TLC

This house was receiving some TLC

But soooo disappointed when a few days later I walked past again and noticed the home was being painted the same colour as it’s neighbour. As if that wasn’t bad enough it was the same colour as the neighbour next to the neighbour too! Three houses in a row all the same colour. Well Ok, I didn’t have my fan deck with me and I wasn’t about to jump the fences and go up to the houses to see if they were infact the exact same colour. But in the early morning light they were pretty darned close for this trained colour consultant’s eye.

Painting the same colour

Painting the same colour

There really is no excuse for this. I understand people drive past a house and admire it’s colour but to paint exactly the same as your neighbour is downright unadventurous. You just have to look at the number of colours available from any of the big paint companies here in Australia to realise there is plenty of choice. Dulux, Taubmans, Wattyl, Resene, Bristol, Haymes, Porters, Murobond, the list is endless. And if you have trouble making a decision, call in an expert. You really don’t need to copy the house next door and the one next door to that no matter how much you like their choice. Besides you want your house to stand out, not tell your visitors we’re the third green house from the top! Check out my other considerations when Choosing an External Colour Scheme for some more ideas.

First house Second House Third House

If you would like assistance choosing colours for your home, contact us for a consultation.

 

The Perfect Solution

If you’ve ever decided to change the paint colour of your home, inside or out, you’ve probably trotted off to the paint or hardware store and stood for hours infront of the colour walls.

Dulux Colour Wall

Dulux Colour Wall

You’ve probably carefully selected a handful of 3cm x 3cm chips, taken them home and stuck them on your wall. Then you’ve tried to imagine what your whole room or even whole house would look like painted in that colour. You may have come up with a short list of anywhere between 3 and 10 colours and headed back to the store for sample pots. Your house then looks like it is diseased while you ponder the colour yet again.

via Apartment Therapy

via Apartment Therapy

Well at long last there is now an easier, less messy way. Brush-Out Boards.

Brush-Out Boards complete with Blu-Tack

Brush-Out Boards complete with Blu-Tack

Brush-Out Boards are 40cm x 40cm boards painted with real paint and come complete with Blu-Tack ready for you to stick up on your wall. The beauty of these boards is that they can be moved around the home so you can easily see what the colour will look like on the bright northern side of the house and the darker southern side.

Inspirations Brush-Out Boards

Inspirations Brush-Out Boards

The boards are $4 each (half the price of a sample pot) for the top 20 colours and $8 for the remainder and delivered straight to your door. Hold the phone!!!! I’ve just heard that if you spend more than $50 in one order on these boards, shipping is FREE!!!!! Just use the code FREESHIP14 at checkout.

Brush-Out Boards make choosing paint colours easier and less messy.

Brush-Out Boards make choosing paint colours easier and less messy.

These brush-out boards are available from Inspirations Paint in Dulux or Berger paint colours.

And don’t forget if it all gets too confusing and too expensive, a Colour Consultation will make life so much easier in under 2 hours. A full specification sheet will be issued for you to hand to your painter so everyone knows which colour goes where. Contact us for an appoinment.

 

Colour for Spring and Summer

I’ve mentioned on numerous occasions I am definitely a Spring/Summer person rather than an Autumn/Winter person. I hate the cold and if the mercury drops below 25C then I’m pulling on layers.

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So this time of year I’m in my element as the shops start stocking the new season ranges. The added colour is a welcome sight after months of dark, dismal colours.

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Last week I had a sneak peek at the new range of cushions from Rapee. They will be available later this month. Nothing says warmer months more than blues, yellows and greens and Rapee have a great range in these colourways.

Santorini 50cm Zest

Florals are not going anywhere soon either with a gorgeous selection of cushions which look like they’ve been handpainted with floral blooms.

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And I couldn’t resist this cute camera cushion. Perfect for all those Instagram fanatics.

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Rapee also has a selection of table placemats and runners and don’t forget the Florence Broadhurst range. There’s soft furnishings to suit every home.

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If you would like assistance choosing soft furnishings for your home or would like to place an order for any of these cushions, contact us.

Predicting future trends

I’ve just spent a week away in Victoria. It’s always great to get away and see something different and have time to think about something different.

First stop was Kyneton in the Macedon Ranges. We stayed at a very cute apartment above the Macedon Ranges Interiors. The apartment dates back to the 1860’s and has been fully and tastefully renovated. We loved sitting in front of the fire each evening.

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Then it was on to Melbourne for the trade fair – Decor and Design along with Furnitex. The highlight for me was attending a seminar on the first day given by Victoria Redshaw who is lead futurist at Scarlet Opus and she was soooo interesting.

Victoria Redshaw

I remember studying styles and trends at design school and knew it was more involved than smoke and mirrors or a dart board. But I was unaware of the full extent of research and consideration that goes in to predicting future trends for colour and design. And they work so far in advance! Victoria explained that they are currently working on northern hemisphere Autumn/Winter 2016/17. That’s in 2 and half years time!

I ended up taking 9 pages of notes and will try to give you a quick overview of them here.

So, the process for predicting a trend involves Review, Establish, Research and Identify. It’s hard to predict the future without looking at the past, so the previous season’s trends (that’s the season previous to the one they are forecasting so it hasn’t actually happened yet) are reviewed. The current situation is established. That’s done by looking at the news and twitter. Something could happen today which could have long lasting effects and change the requirements of the future. Think GFC and 9/11.

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When it comes to research, it’s looking at planned events for the period being predicted. This is the bit that I found interesting. They look at galleries, museums, exhibitions, catwalk events, environmental issues, architectural projects, TV and film, centennials and any other major event that may have a major impact on the world at large.

The futurists and researchers then sit down and analyse all their findings. Does it effect, drive or deepen existing trends? They visit the latest shows, keep an eye on what’s trending around the world on twitter and instagram and look for common denominators.

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From our position of hindsight, it’s now easy to see that 9/11 had a major impact on the colours of the world. Prior to that event, the world was saturated in colour but we turned to browns and greys creating new neutrals for clothing and paint. These colours are now considered classics. Similarly the GFC, sent us all looking for familiar colours so we could feel safe – colours from our youth and more contented times. However, in 2011 the neons emerged to cheer us up, make us spend money and buy something colourful to feel good about ourselves. If you remember at the end of the year, Pantone released its colour for 2012 as Tangerine Tango.

So what will the future bring to colour and design? Sign up for my newsletter which will be sent out next week. I’m dedicating this month’s issue to the trends Victoria predicts.

 

It’s a small world after all

It’s been a hectic couple of weeks with absolutely no time for blogging, sorry. And here we are at the first day of July!!!!

I have been working on a number of projects all with colour – paint, fabrics, benchtops, tiles. It’s no secret I am happiest when I’m immersed in colour.

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So I was delighted to attend two fabric launches recently from different fabric houses who both said, “Colour is BACK!” Yippee!!!!

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But what really hit home was the fact that inspiration for these collections has come from across the globe – North African Berber Rugs, Persian Kilims and Aztec motifs from South America. There is also a nod to Art Nouveau and to the Baroque periods.

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And where would we be without stripes? I’ve mentioned previously I much prefer stripes to spots so was delighted to see ticking stripes, wide stripes and multi-width stripes in the collections.

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And no longer are we a year or two behind our northern hemisphere counterparts. We have access to exactly the same colours, textures and fabrics as they do, at the same time.

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It really is a small world after all.

If you would like assistance with fabrics for your home, contact us for an online or in-person consultation.

 

 

A Picture Paints A Thousand Words

The beauty of dealing with design professionals is that they are visual people and can easily picture in their mind’s eye what things will look like following changes.

Fro my "Blue and White" Pinterest Board

Fro my “Blue and White” Pinterest Board

One of the best ways to convey your choices to design professionals is through imagery. When I first started in the design business some ten years ago, I tore out images from magazines and pasted them into scrapbooks. I would cart around books for lounge rooms, bedrooms, home offices, kitchens, bathrooms, courtyards, window coverings, etc.

From my "Entry and Hallways" Pinterest Board

From my “Entry and Hallways” Pinterest Board

My clients would flick through the books and point out rooms they liked and explain to me why. That way, I could get a good feel for the types of things they liked (and hated) so I could start sourcing and designing.

From my "Look Up" Pinterest board

From my “Look Up” Pinterest board

But these days, I’m finding my clients are whipping out their tablets or smart phones and showing me images they’ve pinned to their Pinterest boards. It’s just perfect for people renovating or decorating as they can start collecting images they like of items or colours for their own home. I love Pinterest and am constantly adding images to my boards.

Pinterest Boards

Pinterest Boards

Do you have Pinterest?

If you would like assistance recreating an image you have found on Pinterest, contact us for an online or in-person consultation.

 

Spring/Summer at Target

It’s cold and wet here today in Sydney. Maybe a sign that Winter is finally on it’s way? So what better time to take a look at the new Spring/Summer homewares soon to be released at Target.

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A couple of weeks ago I was invited to view the new collection which I must say is alot of fun.

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As you know I’m a big colour fan so I was thrilled to see a great selection of colours.

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There is a strong emphasis on Nautical for the coming warmer months. Perfect for Sydney with all that water around.

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There were liberal smatterings of red, white and blue and a touch of yellow too.

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Of course white tableware never goes out of style and can be dressed up for the special occasion dinner or looks equally at home outdoors around the barbie.

Watercolour Cushion $20 Watercolour Bird Cushion $20

And the watercolour effect looks like it’s here for a bit longer too.

The collection will be in stores in July so make sure you hurry in and grab the items you like, ready to give your home a Spring makeover come September.

If you would like assistance finding the right homewares for your home, contact us for an appointment.

Paint makes all the difference

Often when I am assisting clients with colour for their homes, they become very cautious about painting different parts of the room with bright and bold colours. My view is that it is only paint and if you really don’t like it you can paint over it with something more sedate. But take a look at these images I have found and placed on my Pinterest board, Paint Makes All The Difference.

Scared of colour? Try adding it to just the chimney breast instead of an entire wall.

Scared of colour? Try adding it to just the chimney breast instead of an entire wall.

 

Paint the backs of open bookcases or shelving for a simple injection of colour.

Paint the backs of open bookcases or shelving for a simple injection of colour.

 

Try a feature door by painting it a bright colour.

Try a feature door by painting it a bright colour.

 

And if the entire door is too much, what about the edge?

And if the entire door is too much, what about just the edge?

 

Paint a shape on the wall to create a focal point and to anchor furniture.

Paint a shape on the wall to create a focal point and to anchor furniture.

 

This would be fun in a child's room. Paint an oversized initial on a wall.

This would be fun in a child’s room. Paint an oversized initial on a wall.

 

If you would like assistance with the application of paint and colour in your home, contact us for an online or in-person consultation.

Before and After Colour

About 12 months ago I was asked to advise on exterior colour for a friend of a past client. I love word of mouth client’s, they are just as nice as the client who referred them!

Before

Before

The house sat on the lower side of the road and the client wanted the house to look bigger. After I blu tac-ed a few colours onto the wall we settled for Dulux Barnfloor. The gutters, barge boards and fascias were going to be Colorbond Woodland Grey and the window frames would be Dulux Whisper White.

Colorbond Woodland Grey

Colorbond Woodland Grey

Dulux Barnfloor

Dulux Barnfloor

Dulux Whisper White

Dulux Whisper White

To make the house appear bigger, I chose to use the Whisper White on the Gable End Batons and the Verandah Beams and Brackets and Awning. I suggested the verandah posts be painted the dark Woodland Grey as in my mind the dark colour gives strength to the timber. However the client preferred to paint the posts white to lighten up the facade of the house.

New Exterior Colour

New Exterior Colour

Either way, the paint looks great and lifts the house into the current era.

If you would like assistance choosing paint colours for the exterior of your home, contact us for an online or in-person consultation.

 

Creative Colours

A few weeks ago a staff member from the Warringah Council phoned to ask if I could help with a colour scheme for a new building. Of course I said yes and made a time to visit the site and discuss the requirements. Council were remodelling a disused Scout Hall and turning it into a Creative Space.

Front view of new Art Space before

Front view of new Art Space before

View of front door after

Front view of after

The feature of the build was, that apart from the roof, every product was recycled. The materials which were in the building that would not be required were being sent away to be used elsewhere and any new materials were sourced from Kimbriki.

Rear of building before

Rear of building before

Rear of building after

Rear of building after

The council had fairly recently updated their image and brand and had new corporate colours which they hoped to use on the building.

Council Corporate Colours

Council Corporate Colours

The building was set on the edge of playing fields and opposite a residential area. The council needed the building to stand out so it could be seen on approach yet didn’t want it garish and offensive to the neighbours. They also wanted the integrity of the building and the recycled materials to remain a feature yet not look like a shack.

Side view of building before

Side view of building before

Side building after

Side building after

The building opened last month and it looks great. The building sits amongst she-oaks and so the building didn’t stand out too much I chose a grey for the body of the building. Using the orange and purple from the Council’s corporate colours, I selected different areas to highlight and give the building life. It will be used as a creative space and these two colours ooze creativity.

Open studio before

Open studio before

Open studio after

Open studio after

I chose to leave some of the timber beams unpainted as well as the recycled colorbond sheeting which forms the subfloor walls. The side area which will form a breakout or semi open studio had beautiful rusty walls. I wanted to leave them unpainted but painted the recycled pool fence and ladders to tie this area in with the main building.

Back verandah before

Back verandah before

Back verandah after

Back verandah after

I think it looks great and will breathe new life into what could have been just another abandoned building.

Signage If you would like assistance choosing colours for the exterior of your building, contact us for an online or in-person consultation.

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