All A Flutter

Many years ago, when we lived in Hong Kong, one of the places I liked taking guests to visit, was the Bird Market. It is a park in the middle of Hong Kong with stall holders selling birds and all the accessories including boxes of live crickets!

Hong Kong Bird Market

Apart from tourists, the park was full of men taking their birds for a “walk”.They would bring their charges in their cages and hang them on branches next to other birds in cages for their social outing. A bit like us taking our dogs to the dog park.

Bird Walking In Hong Kong

The timber cages are very elaborate and many of the expats would buy a cage or two as a souvenir. One lady I knew had about 10 cages hanging from the ceiling in her kitchen. I bought a cage and cute little ceramic feeders.

Bought in Hong Kong

I have it sitting on the shelf in my kitchen and it reminds me, each of day, of our time in Hong Kong.

My Kitchen

Lately I have been noticing many interiors with bird cages used in the decor.

via Design Shimmer

Comma, a holiday home in Daylesford,Victoria has used bird cages as light fittings.

Comma in Daylesford via The Design Files

I visited a client the other day and noticed she had two cages on the top of her book cases.

Birdcages belonging to a client

And at the Gift Fair last week, they were everywhere. They were used in displays for cosmetics and also as decor items at a number of suppliers.

Trade Display by Perfect Pieces

Bird Cages from DWBH Homewares

I think they make an interesting feature in a room, even without a bird to sing to you.

Photographer Gentl & Hyers

Or outdoors above a beautifully set table.

via Weddings on the French Riviera

Or just sitting on the sideboard.

Meg Adams via House of Turquoise

Wherever you put them, I think they look tweet!

If you would like assistance, creating your harmonious environment, contact us for an online or in person consultation.

Do Your Duty

I seem to have been noticing a sudden influx of Copper, lately.

London Bobby via Flickr

No not that one, the metal one.

via Axolotl

It seems weird to me that for the past eight years or so, we’ve been putting shades of brown on our walls, sofas and floors yet all of our metals have been stainless steel. Think refrigerators, range hoods, dishwashers etc.

via House and Garden Photographer Phillip Castelton

Now we are moving into a grey era and the metals turn to Copper.

I have lived with a copper range hood for the past seven years. I vowed and declared the day I moved in, that that range hood HAD to go. Alas, my new kitchen is still coming and now I’m wondering if I should be keeping the range hood and working the kitchen around it.

My kitchen range hood

These are some of the copper items I’ve spied of late.

Tom Dixon's Copper Shades

Boyd Copper Side Table

Bandhini Copper Coin Cushion

What do you think, is it a fad or is Copper here to stay?

Wall colours selected by Inside Out Colour & Design

We can help you create a harmonious environment in your home, whether you like copper or steel. Contact us to arrange an appointment.

Luxury Living at PYD

Did you have a nice weekend?

I visited the first day of 30 days of home and entertaining on Saturday at the PYD Building in Waterloo.

The PYD Building was opened about 2 years ago and is a designer’s supacentre. Flanking Philip, Young and Danks (PYD) Streets in Waterloo it is the home to a number of unique home decorating and furniture stores. The man behind the building, Geoff Clark, felt Sydney was lacking a Design Hub. New York has the D&D Building and now Sydney has PYD!

On Saturday all the showrooms were buzzing with displays from outside suppliers as well as food and wine merchants. It was certainly the place to go.

I caught Patisse chef, Vincent Gadan demonstrate how to make a Croquembouche. I could’ve sat there for hours listening to that wonderful French accent!

Supplier of exquisite door handles, Mother of Pearl and Sons hosted a display by Sweet Art Cakes which was just delectable.

With electricity prices about to skyrocket in New South Wales, I was intrigued to see the new energy saving lighting by Koda Lighting. Another really ugly energy efficient solution, I thought. Boy was I wrong.

These new light fittings can be retro-fitted to spaces that once housed halogen downlights and will provide a much stronger more evenly dispersed light.

Whilst the fittings are expensive at the outset, their 20 year life expectancy with no maintenance and little electricity consumption really make the choice a no-brainer. The fittings also come in swivel options for lighting artwork, recessed wall lights for stairwells and hanging bars for over benches and tables.

All in all, it was a great start to the festival. Have you booked to attend any events?

Keep them in the air

juggler I feel like this woman, this week. There are so many things going on I just hope I keep everything up in the air.

I do love the diversity of this job and the many and varied projects I get to tackle.

I started the week choosing a colour scheme for clients who have recently bought a beautiful Federation Home. Each room is painted a different colour and all windows have very fussy curtains. Whilst my clients like the traditional look, they also like the more relaxed feel of neutral walls and more simple window coverings. So after the colour selection I had fun choosing a selection of Sanderson fabrics to show them next week.

Country Linens by Sanderson

Country Linens by Sanderson

Borocay by Sanderson

Borocay by Sanderson

I have also been tile shopping looking for a hard wearing, easily maintained, travertine look-alike for an entry and hall. This particular home has a Tuscan influence and the clients here love colour. We are considering a metallic paint for the walls of the dining room and black and sage green upholstery on the chairs. It will be very dramatic.

Maybe something like this for the entry but travertine look not marble

Maybe something like this for the entry but travertine look not marble

Then I had a step back in time to a lovely home in an amazing location but very 80’s. Did you read Millie’s post a while back on the 80’s? Boy that brought back memories. This house has some of those features and the clients would like to make it a comfortable, family entertainer. First to go is the swags and tails and the busy bathrooms…oh and the massive chandelier at the entry.

1980's Style Lightfitting

1980's Style Lightfitting

And today I’m off to advise a client on a new kitchen. She wants contemporary, handleless white cupboards with Ceasarstone benchtops and a red splashback. Red is a great colour for the kitchen as it increases gastronomic juices. Not so good if you are perpetually on a diet, though!

Maybe something like this except red, not orange. Photo from Australian House and Garden

Maybe something like this except red, not orange. Photo from Australian House and Garden

Throw into this mix a daughter who wants to go to a Halloween Disco tonight as a “Dead Diva” and it’s been one hectic week. My head is spinning so I’m off to have a coffee and get cracking to have all these things sorted before 5pm.

Have a wonderful weekend and Happy Halloween.


I have a confession to make, I heart Bling.


The term originated in the late 90’s by Rap artists B.G and Cash Money Millionaires and over the last decade we have seen bling in every possible application.

Bandhini Sapphire3

It gives a Luxe or Glamorous bent on all manner of items. With the onslaught of the GFC, I was sure the shiny, glossy look would disappear.

Ammon Side Talbe from Cafe Lighting

So you can imagine my excitement when I spotted these new shoes for summer beach fun today.



There’s just something about a bit of bling that lifts your spirits and makes you happy. So I can continue to put chandeliers in homes and use metallic paint on walls.

Charlize Pendant Cafe Lighting

Not everywhere, mind you, just here and there as needed.

Picture 7

Dining rooms and Master (or teenage girl’s) Bedrooms look great with a bit of bling.

Pictures from Open Salon, Bandhini, Cafe Lighting, Holster, Cafe Lighting, Bandhini.

Re Decorate

I called in to this delightful little shop today to see what was in store.


Re Decorate at Cammeray, Sydney stocks recycled quality home furnishings and accessories which are there on consignment. As most of the stock is pre-loved, the prices are excellent. Their guide to accepting your items is that they must want to put it in their own homes. So that ensures the quality and condition of all pieces is excellent.


At the moment they are offering 20% discount on all lamps and bases. They have a great range.

DSC01077 DSC01075

I loved this white wicker cabinet with the chicken wire doors.


Another item which caught my eye was the steel side table.


With summer just around the corner, this cane suite would be perfect on a verandah or in a sunroom. There are two single chairs as well.


It’s one of those places you need to keep on visiting as stock changes quickly.


If you are looking to Re Decorate on a budget, I suggest you add this little gem to your list of places to visit.

Re Decorate of Cammeray, 284 West Street, Cammeray NSW

Re Decorate of Cammeray, 284 West Street, Cammeray NSW

Riddle Me This?

What do you get when you add a white console table


to a pony skin chair and stool

EllSliCh_MED EllSliStl_MED

throw in a standard lamp


and a butler’s tray.


Lay it all down on a woollen rug

19668_1 and sprinkle it with bespoke cushions?

Red and Stone Cushions

Mooloolaba Cushions

Glitz Granite Cushion

A trade display site at a local shopping centre’s Home Bazaar!


This is where I will be for the next five days, talking to people about colour, decor and design.

Hope you have a good week, too.

Ke-zu and Chairbiz at Saturday in Design

Lunch time, and although we’ve munched our way through the morning, we were hoping to grab some Sushi at Ke-zu. We were too late so we had to make do with an organic chocolate frog.

Ke-zu tunnel of light

Ke-zu tunnel of light

Ke-zu in Surry Hills is well known for it’s stable of imported modern furniture. Brands like Andreu World, Emu, Luzifer and Kenneth Cobonpue. Luzifer had an installation “tunnel of Light” which showcased their beautiful light fittings. Landscape design firm Good Manors had transformed the entry from the carpark into a tunnel of greenery with little break out areas. A vast improvement.

More fabulous light fittings

More fabulous light fittings

I want these over my casual dining room table

I want these over my casual dining room table

Downstairs in the same building as Ke-zu is Chairbiz. They had the chocolate frogs. They also had a whole showroom full of new chairs. I photographed my favourites.

What a pretty way to stack chairs

What a pretty way to stack chairs

I like the clear one and my friend liked the white one

I like the clear one and my friend liked the white one

The chocolate fix gave us the energy to walk a kilometre to the next spot. By this stage the traffic had built up and it was quicker to walk than sit in a bus. We girls still had lots to see.

Saturday In Design

Only one more sleep.

On the hustings - Saturday in Design

On the hustings - Saturday in Design

It’s been two years since we’ve had a Saturday In Design here in Sydney and I must say, I’m quite excited. It’s a day (or this year, two) where a number furniture, fabric and design studios open their doors to the design community. Little shuttle buses ferry participants from one location to another, showrooms are buzzing with people and releasing new products and many of them have entertainment. It is such a fun day and so much to see and do.

Picture 1

I’m starting my day at Reece who are serving breakfast and showcasing The Nikles Quatre inset showerhead.


A Sense of Depth by Sheargold/Sally Hieatt

From there I’ll stroll down to Interfaceflor which is hosting the Representations Gallery. Five design firms are fighting it out to give their interpretation of The 5th Wall.

Alex Perry and his designs

Alex Perry and his designs

Then I’m hoping to catch a SAAB Limo out to Electrolux to hear Alex Perry discuss the latest colour trends and concepts that translate from the runway to interior design. Tetsuya is holding cooking demonstrations on the Electrolux induction cooktops too so maybe a bite of lunch there or will I trek across town to Mico Design where masterchefs from Bills are dishing up an all day breakfast? The new Kohler bathroom range will be on display there.

I need a break

I need a break

Then where? Maybe the temporary Warehouse 625 which will be housing Bathe, Ilve, Interstudio, Porters Paints and Warwick Fabrics to name a few. Then I think it will be time for a rest. The Habitus Lounge in the Gelosa showroom looks just the place.

Refreshed I’ll head over to Kezu for Sushi By Design. They have gathered 10 design firms to create designs for sushi that will be made by the chefs from The Ivy’s Sushi Choo.

What else will I see?

What else will I see?

But there’s still so much more to see, I hope I fit it all in. I must get to bed early. I want to be ready for a full day of design and food and laughter. Check back next week to see what I accomplished.

Night, nigth

Night, night

Sydney Design 09

With less than a week to go until the launch of this year’s Sydney Design, I thought I might tantalise your taste buds and suggest a few events that sound interesting.

Body Raft by David Trubridge

Body Raft by David Trubridge

The first is a talk given by New Zealand furntiure designer David Trubridge next Saturday 1 August. David Trubridge graduated from Newcastle University in Northern England in 1972 with a degree in Naval Architecture (boat design). For the next ten years he lived and worked in rural Northumberland. He taught himself furniture making while working part-time as a forester on a private estate. He went on to develop his own designs which were exhibited around Britain. Now residing and designing in New Zealand David likes to bring cultural nourishment into people’s lives without using up precious resources and energy.

Danks Street Depot

Danks Street Depot

On 3 August, you may care to enjoy breakfast with Jared Ingersoll, the chef and Director of Danks Street Depot and others as they explore sustainability issues including environmental responsibility in design and architecture, cradle-to-cradle design and rematerialisation and how the current trends in food consumption (localisation, sustainable consumption, organic foods) translate to the design industry.

Sydney High Rise Walk

Sydney High Rise Walk

Maybe getting up and about is more your style. On the 1st, 8th and 15th you can enjoy a 2hour walk around Sydney’s CBD taking in the High Rise buildings. Have you ever wondered why Australia Square is round? Where is the highest garden? or Who designed the tallest tower? These questions will be answered as you pound the pavement and enjoy the sunshine.

Everything from talks to tours to workshops to exhibitions will be happening between the 1 and 16 August. Don’t miss out on this exciting event. The Young Blood Designers Market will be held on Friday 14th and Saturday 15th as well. This is a great place to check out our up and coming talent in furniture, fashion, jewellery, lighting and more. Some of the talks and tours are already booked out so make sure you get onboard and reserve your place now.

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