Firewall to Greenwall

Firewall to  Greenwall Have you noticed the growing obsession with Green? Yes, emerald was the Pantone colour of the year last year, but that’s not quite the direction I’m going with this one. More and more the idea of ‘Green’ living is taking over. As far as I understand it, the term basically refers to being environmentally mindful of how and what we consume…not necessarily living in the forest as some kind of dreadlock wearing Hippie off the grid- although more power to you if you are one of those…literally… It seems that our busy bustling lives are giving way to the idea of getting back to nature and this is one trend that takes form both in food and design. Green juice is all the rage. Throw a whole bunch of green fruit and veg into a blender, blend and drink. Super healthy and actually tastes pretty good. Try it!

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Consuming something GREEN is one way to be healthy in body, but how about in mind and spirit? I recently did a piece entitled ‘the outdoor room’ which was all about how to bring the indoors OUT. The idea however of surrounding ourselves with nature and bringing the outdoors IN is becoming increasingly popular in design as well.

In recent years numerous experimental studies have be done which suggest a direct link to being in a natural environment and an overall feeling of well-being. Certain studies even suggest that the mere presence of nature diminishes feelings of exhaustion, something I believe we could all attest to feeling when in a natural environment.

The idea of creating an oasis among the hustle and bustle of modern city life has always been a popular notion and now even more so in the computer obsessed, gadget controlled, Instagramming, Facebooking, Twittering, and uhhhh, blogging World that we have become accustomed to. Enveloping yourself in a green cocoon really isn’t a bad way to get away and have a break from all the technology and one of the latest ways to do this is with a system called ‘Greenwall’. I must admit I do have a particular obsession with this trend and I am just waiting for the right project to come across my desk which I can throw one of the babies into. Basically a Greenwall is just that, a wall lined with plants flowers or shrubs. The Greenwall system is essentially a pallet with rows of holes designed to nest the greenery in, with spaces for watering and drainage. Image

A Greenwall not only creates a beautiful looking piece of natural artwork but also has many other benefits like air purification and insulation amongst many, if used correctly. The idea that we can use nature in our built environments to affect our wellbeing and overall mood is a very attractive concept for me as an Interior Designer. After all, that is what we seek to do when we design a space for people to live, work, eat or shop in and the Greenwall concept has applications across all of these fields.

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The most recent example of a Greenwall implementation in Israel is visible at the Isrotels’s newest resort Cramim in the Jerusalem forest. A beaut……………… To keep reading please visit  http://blogs.timesofisrael.com/firewall-to-greenwall/

 

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It Don’t Matter If You’re Black or White (or both..)

It Don’t Matter If You’re Black or White (or both..)

Michael Jackon’s prophetic words in his 1991 song “Black or White” talk about a girl and her skin colour “it don’t matter if you’re black or white”. The thing thatI find amusing about the song is that Michael Jackon (‘allavah shalom’) was in fact black and white at one point or another in his life, quite literally (shame you gotta feel for the guy!).

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Now although Jackson died nearly 5 years ago The King of Pop has not yet and will probably never go out of fashion as a pop icon and It seems that of late he is rather in fashion, a kind of posthumous  prophetic fashion, when it comes to couture and design this season…

That’s right folks black AND white is in and I just can’t stop lovin…it!

Yes boys and girls that’s a line from an M.J. song- I’m sorry to have to spell it out- fans unite!

Now often times trends tend to take place simultaneously with other trends and the black and white trend seems to be coinciding with the animal print trend that we keep seeing over and over again for the past few seasons- in particular leopard and ZEBRA print which I am somewhat obsessed with at present.

Zebra pint is the most classic example of black and white in nature and its come creeping back into fashion of late both in clothing, art and home-wears.

Check out my i-phone cover which I’m loving atm: OK yes- it’s true I’m also in this pic- and yep it is a ‘selfie’ which I must admit I very rarely indulge in, probably bc like in this one, the mirror needs a bit of a clean! (but that’s for my next blog post…).

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Its funny actually, that these two trends (animal print and black and white) should coincide this season- especially in Israel , where two unsuspecting groups who have been wearing these trends for donkey’s years,  are actually suddenly in fashion… YES ok, some of you might call me borderline prejudicial for even saying this but here it is:

1. The “Frechot” plural of “Frecha” meaning a lower class woman of Sephardic descent who dresses provocatively but arguably without taste.

My favorite example is the “Frecha” over the age of 50 who believes its OK to wear thigh-hugging spandex, stud-encrusted shirts and too much animal print! That’s right people, “Frechot” have been wearing animal print sine nineteen-seventy something. Turns out that if you wear a trend long enough it will eventually come back into fashion! Mutton dressed as lamb, or maybe mutton dressed as ZEBRA!? OI G’valt!

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2. The second unsuspecting group of Fashionistas are the “Charedim”, meaning ultra orthodox Jews, many of whom reside in Jerusalem.

These guys have some affinity to black and white stripes. mainly- from what I understand, because it’s meant to be more modest and less fashion-forward way of dressing…oops! Now Alanis, isn’t THIS ironic..

Despite the fact that Black and white is ‘trendy’ it is also a very classic example that you can find over and over again throughout history. As a quick example, black and white checkerboard floors can be found in many of the paintings from 15th C Europe.. (YES- i took Art History at Uni, and NO I don’t remember much of it- TG for ‘google search’..)
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And in fashion too throughout the ages black and white keeps creeping up… Check out Twiggy in this editorial pic from the 60’s in her black and white striped ensemble, too cute!

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Today you can find this trend in many places as it translates through from wearable items to floor coverings…Here are my top black and white picks for this season and a few little animal print pops to get you going!

1. Sports jumpers and tops in black and white.
These ones are from ZARA woman and Seed Heritage- they cost around $50- easy to wear and bang on trend!

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2. Black and white home-wears. This rug is IKEA and when it comes to black and white-even from IKEA you cant really go wrong!

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Or how about a little bit more refined sophistication with these amazeballs cushions from http://www.lorenagaxiola.com/shop/index.php/collection/bedding

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3. Even the boys can get in on the action! These T-shirt are H & M for men. Chuck it on with a pair of black shorts- or even a pastel colour for a little interest and walk out the door!

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4. Check out this Outfit from Seedheritage.com.au it mixes black and white with animal print perfectly! Spots luxe is the name of the game. Image

Cumfy and good lookin’- what more could we ask for!

Whether you choose animal print, black and white or both be sure to do it with confidence!

And when all else fails and you end up feeling like a jail bird, remember they wear orange in jail, not black and white stooopid!

Happy Monochrome trending boys and girls!
Peace out xx

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

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

Be BOLD or Italic but never regular.

BOLD gRaPhiC prints!

Fashion and Interiors go hand-in-hand and bold graphic prints are no exception to the rule! (Bee Tee Double-U Coco Republic, a delicious high end furniture store in Melbourne happen to agree)

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First we saw bold graphic prints on the runways in fashion shows- From Vera Wang to Versaci, Josh Goot to Kenzo and then they started creeping into the wide world of Interiors.ImageImageImageImageImage

For a really STATEMENT look in your interior go for this Cole & Son palm tree wall paper- it creates the WOW factor in the room BUT wallpaper-ers be ware- this for the BOLD and the BRAVE.

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If the idea of bold wallpaper scares you, and you’re more of a ‘beige- it- safe’ kind, then go for the more subtle approach- A throw cushion (or two or three, or ten…you get the idea) and/or an area rug are two great ways to inject colour and graphics into a space without having to commit to anything permanent- this way you can always change them if and when you get sick of them (just a word of advice don’t tell that to the husband when you make the purchase- have every intention of keeping them long term!)

Here are some great rugs and cushions which can help you achieve you Bold Graphic look and they need not be expensive either.  These ones are from the Zara Home and hardtofind.com.au but most home wears stores stock them. ‘Fashion’ for the people IS the name of the game!

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