Inspired Design

confessionsofapassionista

Lots of exciting things are happening these days in design, and as it turns out lots of exciting things are happening in the life of this Passionista! That is, I recently got the opportunity to interview one of my favorite Australian Interior Designers- David Hicks (A finalist in the Belle magazine Design Awards among a long list of many other impressive credentials)! The second exciting occurrence was my awe-inspiring trip to Barcelona, Spain! Hola gloriosa terra de diseno! That’s “hello, glorious land of design” in Spanish…if the translate app on my iPhone is correct… Yes, learning Spanish is next of my list of ‘to dos’.  It’d be good to be able to communicate with the locals on future trips…

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Now as it turns out, the interview with Mr Hicks took place a little while before I even knew that I was going to Barcelona but the occurrence of these two…

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Inspired Design

Lots of exciting things are happening these days in design, and as it turns out lots of exciting things are happening in the life of this Passionista! That is, I recently got the opportunity to interview one of my favorite Australian Interior Designers- David Hicks (A finalist in the Belle magazine Design Awards among a long list of many other impressive credentials)! The second exciting occurrence was my awe-inspiring trip to Barcelona, Spain! Hola gloriosa terra de diseno! That’s “hello, glorious land of design” in Spanish…if the translate app on my iPhone is correct… Yes, learning Spanish is next of my list of ‘to dos’.  It’d be good to be able to communicate with the locals on future trips…

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Now as it turns out, the interview with Mr Hicks took place a little while before I even knew that I was going to Barcelona but the occurrence of these two events couldn’t have been more timely coincidence…

I draw a lot of inspiration from David’s Interiors so I was interested to find out where David’s inspiration comes from. David’s inspiration is drawn from “books, music, art, fashion, colours, and places…” to “ Vintage Italian furniture”. He is also heavily influenced by some of the greats and takes his design cues from Architects and innovators such as “Tadao Ando, Richard Nuetra and Mies Van Der Rohe” – The famous Designer of the Barcelona chair for the German pavilion at the World Fair in 1929 (which took place at the end of the Art Deco Era).

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Imagine my joy when I realised that not only was I going to be visiting this amazing city (Barcelona) but that I would get to visit one of the places that  was designed by one of the great Architects that David mentioned in our interview as “inspiring”! hashtag:  jumpforjoy!

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Here’s me SITTING ON the Barcelona chair IN the Pavilion. Too bad I only noticed the ‘Do NOT sit” sign later, hopefully the design Gods will forgive me for that one!

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What’s amazing about the Pavilion in Barcelona is (and this is typical of modernist designs throughout the 20th Century) is that it looks as if it could have been designed yesterday!

It’s crisp, clean, modern but luxurious and I personally find that David’s designs are similar to it in that respect.

You can see- by looking at David’s Interiors how he uses his inspiration from the above mentioned and translates them into his own unique style.

When asked how he would describe his design style David answered “Modern Luxury” which in essence was what the Art Deco Era was all about! This is not to say that David’s style is specifically “Art Deco”; in fact he incorporates many different design references and I believe that is the mark of a great designer. David doesn’t simply choose one era and recreate it. He seamlessly combines styles from different eras mixing, matching and contrasting colours and textures and materials.

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Take this gorgeous kitchen as a beaming example, it has all the mod-cons of a 21st Century Kitchen with all the cues from the most luxurious Art Deco homes of the 20’s; the marble, the chrome and the mirrors and yet there are also a few retro references such as the black and white down lights. Further along in the lounge room you will find an Asian styled stool paired with some retro “Planter” chairs.

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Not to mention the beautiful pallets that David uses, which I totally adore! He mixes whites with creams, browns with greys, adds splashes of more saturated colour and comes out with something warm and inviting yet interesting- what more could you ask for when it comes to beautiful Interiors!

David’s ability to mix eras, styles, colours and textures and still walk away with a cohesive and interestingly contrasting interior is what  really fascinates me. It’s his ability to remedy the challenge of “designing a space (and) integrating all the requirements of the clients brief” while maintaining his beautifully thought-out aesthetic that I admire.

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Have a squiz at this Port Melbourne apartment, There’s a little African, some retro chairs and lighting, a dash of Art Deco influence and a hint of Louis XVI and yet the result is beautiful and cohesive and interesting. I LOVE it!

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Here’s are a few more of David’s beautiful Interiors for you to gauge at… always the perfect mix of modern minimalism with references from to other styles and eras to warm it up. Nothing is out of place.

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I asked David how he got into Interior Design and what he thought there was left for him to achieve (mainly because I think that all of his Interiors seriously tick the box- and If I can one day get to this of level of design, then I’m not sure what else I’ll have left to achieve!). David explained that he always wanted to do something that involved renovating houses- (I know the feeling! My earliest memory was building Lego houses with my Dad on the rug on Saturday afternoons!).

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This Lego house might need a slightly larger rug…

David explained that initially he wanted to study Architecture “but when I found out about Interior Design I knew this is what I wanted to do”. Now that he’s started to master the Interior side of design he has begun to “Delve back into architecture” and his studio now offers these services. “I have come full circle” explains Hicks and he feels as far as what’s left for him to achieve is related to this side of his business.

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Not only are David’s interiors a feast for the, eyes even David’s website is a work of art in its own right- check out these delightful screen-grabs from the opening credits! (They would make ever-so-lovely prints for your walls! Hmmm…). All in all this Designer is definitely one to watch out for- he’s even started his own product line of sofas rugs and accessories!

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Now I know that most of my blog post have some mention of my Husband (who was henceforth meant to be known as Jason) and I can’t end off without one-  but the only real correlation that I can draw between Jason and David Hicks is that Jason happens to love the elements in our home (that I recently designed) that were inspired by David’s style just as much as I do- namely the glorious marble that I used in our kitchen (which seems to be one of David’s favorite materials to use, as you can see in many of his designs) – so thank you David Hicks, for the couples counselling just as much as the design inspiration! 😉

Peace out xx

Tropical Trends

What is it about the tropics that makes everyone so happy? Perhaps the knowledge that all there is to do is sit on a beach, sip cocktails and eat pineapple? I’ll stick with that theory for a minute.

On a side note I must apologise for my lack of blogging of late but we just moved house which does tend to turn up the stress levels and in turn the time to indulge in ones passions is limited and everything takes a back seat to unpacking boxes, but hopefully we’re back on track now and I’ll be able to keep you entertained with new posts!

Now in keeping with tradition, this wouldn’t be a confessionsofapassionista blog post without mentioning my Husband (who was henceforth meant to be known as Jason). All that Jason has been talking about for the last few weeks isssss GOING ON HOLIDAY, a tropical holiday if you will. The idea of sitting on a beach sipping cocktails and eating pineapple is EXACTLY what the doctor ordered. In fact thinking back, perhaps the ‘Tropical Hawaiian luau’ party that we threw for our newly married friends last night had something to do with that – a little escapism never hurt anyone! We must thank Natan our buddy who really got INTO  the theme- by getting OUT OF his clothes. Well done to you!

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So back to the tropical trip- I was thinking that perhaps Jason might need a few new summer clothing items for the tropical weather so I started with the obligatory online searches. Living in Israel (for all those people who don’t understand my satire and think otherwise) is wonderful and this country has many redeeming features but fashion is not one of them – not just yet anyway. My philosophy is that if the store has to explain that it’s a “fashion store” on its window, thennnn it’s generally not. Yep, harsh but true, and there are many “Fashion stores” in Israel and so we turn to the good old internet for some apparel assistance.

While I was on my search I came across a t-shirt:

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It was this one- $49.95 AUD from http://www.countryroad.com.au AND it has a pineapple on it. “Funny” I thought to myself, I keep seeing this little pineapple motif popping up all over the place- on fabric on furniture, in home decor and in fashion on clothing.

What exactly is the gravitational pull of a pineapple you might ask? Why not the cherry, or some mangoes or even an avocado (which as far as I understand actually means “testicles” in Latin – here’s why if you’re interested: http://www.cracked.com/article_16539_8-everyday-words-with-x-rated-origins.html check out #4).

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My theory is that as a result of recent and rather difficult economic times all over the world people are looking for a little bit of escapism, even if they can’t physically escape OR maybe it’s our generations alleged mentality of instant gratification and lack of work ethic which makes us constantly desire vacations, anyway, unimportant exactly why but I guess wearing a pineapple on your t-shirt helps indulge in those tropical escapism feelings we so desire! Who would have thought…

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Admit it- your actually feeling more relaxed already just from looking at this pineapple, even just saying it pine-a-pplee– see?

So in keeping with those tropical desires here’s my short list of the best pineapple applications in both fashion and interiors to keep you dreaming of a tropical beach holiday! Enjoy!

1.You gotta love a colourful ceramic pineapple! Really what’s not to love-even the turquoise colour is great. It reminds me of a deep tropical ocean. This is a little bit of fun for the Home from http://www.thehome.com.au at $24.95 you can’t go wrong.

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2.Here are a few more delicious prints for the home for you to feast your eyes on. I really love this Any Warhol style neon print- as I’ve said before; throw cushions are a great way to follow trends as you can simply replace them when you want something a little more ‘now’.

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3. For some slightly less permanent fixtures in the form of fashion rather than interiors check out these great pineapple motifs for your wearing pleasures – some are a little more cheeky than others..

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4. Don’t’ forget to accessorize from head to toe with these goodies -no black i-phone covers for us thanks! I also really love these pineapple printed canvas shoes- they add a little pop to your wardrobe without being too audacious and don’t forget the top half with these delightfully sweet matt gold plated pineapple earrings- just hope that random strangers don’t attempt to nibble on your lobes when you’re donning these bad boys!

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However you choose to indulge is this oh-so-yum tropical trend be sure to have fun with it, there’s no sense in wearing a pineapple with a frown now!

beach out dudes! xx

Live and let DYE..

I LOVE tie-dye!

Most of us at some point in our lives have owned a tie-dyed Tee or two. Tie-dye was big in the 70’s 80’s and 90’s and took a short break in the naughties but guess what!?

ITS BACK with a vengeance although this time it’s just a little less hippie-rock n’ roll -grunge and a little more elegant-sophistiqué (that’s sophisticated in French) Speaking of which; Q: How does a Frenchman commit suicide? A: He shoots 15 cm above his head- straight into his superiority complex (sorry Eliana my little French friend, appologise vraiment, mais vous comprenez son au nom de la conception et de l’humour- GOD BLESS GOOGLE TRANSLATE)

Anyway- as I was saying DYED stuff is cool and very sophisticated too!

The colour of choice for tie-dye and dip-dye seems to be deep sea blue as it provides a rather tranquil and calming effect mimicking the ocean or however you’d like to psycho-analyse it…. However there are also some interesting neon colours in use on the dip-dye/ tie-dye spectrum so I’ve put together a few of my fave’ dip-dye/ tie-dye applications for your psychedelic viewing pleasures, enjoy!

As we know wallpaper is also back in in a big way- and what better than to combine two trends in one- I absolutely love this dip-dyed cobalt blue wallpaper from The Designers Guild collection- it also comes in six other dashing shades, this is serious ‘faint on the floor WOW’ factor!

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Of course fashion always comes into it and we can’t have our walls looking sexy and our buts missing out on the action- so here are my top dyed fashion picks for guys and chicks:

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There’s also some fantastic dip-dyed and tie-dyed furniture and accessories out there to satisfy your purchasing pleasures:

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So remember, as one very clever hippie once put it;

Live and let DYE..

Peace out dudes. xx

Follow the yellow brick road

Follow the yellow brick road, follow the yellow brick road, follow follow follow- ok you get the idea.

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Follow the yellow brick road to the 17-5641 city!

That’s right. No people- I haven’t gone crazy (specifically Jason- who’s giving me a look like I’ve lost my marbles). I’m talking about the EMERALD city.

What is the significance of the EMERALD city you ask? GREAT question!

 The Pantone colour of the year for 2013 is EMERALD! u-duhhh! (sorry I know it’s not actually that obvious but I’m in a sarcastic mood)

Type in the code 17-5641 to ‘Google’ and you’ll see..

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Pantone- for those that don’t know is an organisation that sets the standards for colour across a multitude of industries including, printing, fashion and interiors and this year they’ve chosen the charming hue of Emerald to be the Pantone colour of the year!

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According to the lovely people at Pantone Emerald is most often associated with precious gem stones and the perception of Emerald is sophisticated and luxurious- we like the sound of that!

(Loving these intense Emerald applications in fashion and design)

What’s great about Pantone is that they make so many funky products- perfect for the design savvy who want to add a little style into their lives!

Here are a few of the sexy products that are available:

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So go ahead and indulge and show their world you’re a major design snob- and proud!

Follow the yellow brick road, follow the yellow brick road, follow follow follow follow, follow the yellow brick road! 

ALL THE WAY TO THE EMERALD CITY – Pantone’s EMERALD city of course!/

Happy weekend all! ‘COLOR IS LIFE- LIVE IT’

Peace out xx

 

Dead ON – DEDON- the Outdoor Room that packs a punch!

As summer approaches (in the Northern hemisphere of the World) everyone starts to slowly move outside after months of being cooped up indoors. This is when people tend to get all philosopher-y… Being outside in nature triggers stupid questions like “If a tree falls in the woods and no one hears it, does it make a sound?” FIRSTLY: Who cares? But REALLY everyone, C’mon! Let’s focus on the important questions! What you really should be contemplating is “However shall you decorate your outdoor living room!?”

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In recent years the idea of the “outdoor room” has really taken off. People are starting to see their gardens as an extension of the home, another room if you will and living in Israel we have about eight months of good outdoor living weather- we should definitely be embracing this increasingly popular trend! (Just ask Jamie Durie with his show entitled “The Outdoor Room” http://www.hgtv.com/the-outdoor-room-with-jamie-durie/show/index.html)

First things first, if it’s a room, then it needs a RUG! That’s right- there are now waterproof outdoor rugs available and they are just as beautiful as their indoor counterparts! Have a look at this one from Eco Chic available on hardtofind.com.au- it’s made out of 100% recycled plastic bags so it’s beautiful to look at and friendly to the environment- #howgoodsthat!

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The next thing you’ll need for your outdoor room is a lovely outdoor sofa. UHU! There are outdoor couches (some just as sexy as an indoor couches) like this killer set from DEDON -one of my fave outdoor furniture companies. This set incorporates sleek lines and beautiful weatherproof fabric that leaves you wondering if it really is meant for outdoors! Oh how we’ve progressed! This is what human evolution is all about (how’s that for a philosoph-y-yyy!?)

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For those of us who don’t have the luxury of acres of space- have a squizz at this stack-able seating set! It comes in a range of delightful colours and is available in Israel from Tollmans in Herzliyah. (http://www.tollmans.co.il/en/) very futuristic indeed!

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DEDON also have many other creative outdoor seating styles to choose from, here are a few of my favorites:

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The floating Swingrest, the Leaf and the seriously innovative Ying Yang- very outdoor chic!

Now you’ll need to accessorise you outdoor room, and there’s hundreds if not thousands of accessories specifically designed for outdoors, here’s my shortlist:

–>The Sky Planter- This is serious innovation-plant your herbs or anything else upside-down, hang it from the pergola or ceiling and enjoy ‘herby’ goodness while decorating your space- Ah-mazeballs!

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–>Pantone Planters, they come in any colour you can imagine (pantone colours of course) and are a great way to inject vibrancy and a little designer sophistication to your outdoor room.

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–> Light up the night with these seriously sexy outdoor lamps from DEDON- talk about bringing the indoors out! I love the play on scale in the first image, designed by Philippe Starck what more could we ask for!

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–> Last but not least, take your outdoor room from day to night with these sleek and minimal fire pits by available at Materialicious.com, they’ll add a warm glow to your space and are sure to be the epitome of outdoor sophistication!

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However you decide to ‘deck out’ (do pardon the pun) your outdoor room be sure to treat it as an extension of your house and you’re guaranteed to get many enjoyable hours of outdoor living OUT of it.. 😉

Enjoy

xx

Ninety’s Nostalgia

Not so long ago the 80’s made a comeback in fashion and design- everyone used to joke about how daft the 80’s was stylistically, with all the spandex and it’s token neon colour palette…

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…nearly every era makes a comeback and the 80’s had its turn again in the early “naughties” (albeit in a toned DOWN version TG)- well guess what folks it’s the 90’s turn to make its debut comeback! And this time it looks like its back in full force! (dear lord help us!?)

But seriously CAN you believe that the start of the ninety’s was over TWENTY years ago… all you mid twenty something’s FREAKOUT! c’est chic! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EVZh4WcdC3s sorry, that is a direct late 70’s/ early 80’s throwback- back to the 90’s…or forward? Yes that’s right Forrest Gump is nearly twenty years old. Yikes!

My husband (who again was henceforth meant to be known as Jason) always teases me about how I claim everything is “so 90’s”, I usually use that description when something is a bit daggy looking “sooo nintey’s” is my way of saying passé’, but as it turns out passé seems to be back in and in fact the good folks at Internet Explorer (feel the nostalgia as you say the name) are in agreement, too bad Google Chrome is still a better browser… (please don’t sue me Explorer..) but check out the add anyway, it’s a bit of fun http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qkM6RJf15cg .

So – how do we feel about this 90’s comeback you ask? Good question- But there’s no simple answer. To demonstrate I’ve come up with a list of 90’s trends that have made a comeback, some of which are great, and some of which… aren’t so here goes (I’d love to hear what you think too!)

-The Reebok pumps (reedited to high heel sneakers) and the grunge boot: Verdict- LOVE!

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Pair these grungy ankle boots with a pair of leggings and a long shirt- Get height and comfort in one go plus they add a little interest to any outfit- dressing down is in again. fab!

 

– The backpack: Verdict- Split…

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This is an interesting one, in that you can now get some great looking backpacks, but then again some of them are a little OTT in their 90’s nostalgia. Buyer be wear, if it’s too short/ sits too high on your back it can make your butt look MASSIVE and even in the 90’s big butts weren’t that fashionable…unless you ask Sir Mix-a-lot…

 

– Boy Bands: Verdict…LOVE (but don’t tell anyone)

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OK I admit- I do secretly love one direction! As much as I adored Backstreet Boys and Five in my time the boys bands of today seem to take themselves slightly less seriously which I like, and that’s what 90’s revival is all about (true, its no Beatles but it’s a bit-a-fun) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T4cdfRohhcg

 

– Graffiti imagery: Verdict- LOVE!

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Check out this graffiti wall print from Dolla furniture store in Tel Aviv (taken a few weeks ago)- Uber cool! And what about this graffiti cushion? Totally 90’s nostalgia!

 

-Over-stuffed sofas

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JUST JOKING!!! This is one trend from the 90’s that has NOT come back and for good reason-let’s hope it NEVER does (how do you say “death by sofa” in Italian?) iiiiiiiikkkKK!!

 

-The denim shirt: Verdict: LOVE LOVE LOVE!

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Dress it up or down, or up this style plucked directly from 1990 is just too cool for school- we seriously, SERIOUSLY like this trend! Its just Da-Bomb! 😉

All in all, most of the comeback 90’s trends are great, just watch out that you don’t overdo it and end up looking you literally walked out of the year 1995 from head to toe, be sure to add a modern twist to your outfit or interior and your 90’s nostalgia is sure to impress!

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