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Sunday, November 28, 2010

Ho Ho Ho! And a bottle of rum..

Well it's almost that time of year again - and I have to say, it's become a whole lot more fun with the addition of the small person to our household, who is currently (and so my wallet would agree, a little too soon!) obsessed with Santa Claus - or 'Sen-tors', as she calls him.

I can put this fascination down to one day a few weeks ago, when my Mum took her out to the mall for a morning play/shop. When I came home from work that day she was going on and on about something called 'Sen-tors, Mama!'. It took me a while, but finally I clicked as to what she meant!! Mum must've really gone to town explaining who this Sen-tors was, because from that day on - there has been little mention of anyone else, bar the Wiggles. But that's a whole other level of obsession.

Last year was the first time we had a 'real' christmas tree. I'd been putting it off because both myself and Mr DD suffer from horrid hayfever at this time of year - but I actually think it was worth it. The smell is like nothing else, don't you think! So earthy and warming. I cannot go back now. Plus, our Small Person will be truely enchanted this year, by the decorations and lights (if her reaction to in store Xmas Lights displays are anything to go by). We might even have a go at making some of our own decorations to hang from the branches!

I still have a few days to get the household adornments together, but as a start I was inspired by a friend to have a go at making my own advent calendar.
I started with some bankers envelopes, some paint, a few scraps of felt, a gold marker, some glitter and of course, glue. Pop in some sneaky treats and a lolly or two, peg to some twine or ribbon on a wall or board, and voila!

Hung on a very ugly old wall, they still manage to look lovely and festive, and i'm sure our Small Person will take much pleasure in destroying each lovingly put together package to dig out its treasure each day of December. And we will have the camera ready to capture the look on that wee face as she does so.. *melt*.

Sure, advent calendars aren't the most expensive things in the world to buy - but it's so much cooler to make your own! This is pretty cheaply done - the treats inside probably cost $4 altogether (hair clips, stickers and a lolly here and there), and you can use anything you have lying around the place to decorate the envelopes. The more creative the better! And what fun to have with your kids too!

Happy Festive Season everyone!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Big Cheat.

This HAS to be my Destitute find of the year. I can't believe I'm sharing this - because now i'm actually going to have to kill you. Jokes! But just be careful with who you tell..

As you know i've been eyeing up Eames replica chairs for a while now. You'll pay upwards of $250 for these beautiful babies (just the replicas!), but today the budget Gods were smiling down on me. Oh yes!

Because where did I find one just like this - for an downright stupid, nay CRAZY, amount?!

And don't even try and tell me you're not surprised! I was looking for something entirely different and just about fell off my chair when I saw it. Even if the quality isn't as good when we get it - I DON'T GIVE A RATS AT THAT PRICE!! Talk about cheap and cheerful - this is bloody cheap and ECSTATIC!!

Saturday, November 20, 2010


Attention Aucklanders:

Last weekend I popped along to the MoAD (Ministry of Art and Design) exhibition in Newmarket - and came away equal parts impressed and veeeery peeved that I couldn't splash out on something deliciously naughty and frivolous while I was there.

The article in last week's Viva featured their Alice in Wonderland range of gorgeous powder-coated (i think) silverware, in the most divine colours. Seriously, don't you think they look like glorious giant lollipops - good enough to eat! I do!!! I WANT!

It's the last day tomorrow, so get down to 110-116 Carlton Gore Rd in Newmarket and if you can afford one of my latest design crushes - those wire light shades by Workroom, think about your old mate, the DD, and get me one too. LOVE YOU LONG TIME!

Oh and that floor lamp looks like it could happily take pride of place in my real life dining room - seeing as i'll never get my hands on this one.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Let the sunshine in!

Sun seekers rejoice! Not only is the warm weather upon us (apart from the last couple of days -but then the Sun has been very busy lately so he probably does need a rest), but our enthusiasm for life and 'doing stuff' is returning! And to top it off, the colour trend making it's way back into our hearts and homes: bright mouth-watering yellows and beachy keen turquoise and aqua blues. It's enough to make one feel positively re-born!

And while I can't quite bring myself to go back to that stunning 90s colour combination of bright yellow and colbalt blue (such kitchens make my eyes bleed); soften them a bit, bring in some mustard tones and add bit of edge to the hue of your blues, and I am IN LOVE.

Surprisingly though (only to some who know me well) - bright yellow on it's own? That's another story. OBSESSED.

Abstract feature walls, wall art, accessories, and furnishings overhauled from muted browns to crisp, perky aquas and every colour of sorbet imaginable! Who says you can't bring the sunshine inside?

Chair and lampshade - Anthropologie.

Bamileke Feather Ju-Ju hat used as wall decoaration from Table Tonic.

Table from Jonathan Alder's Lacquer collection. Room also by Jonathan Alder, for Liz Lange.


Thursday, November 18, 2010


I've been completely engrossed in this new online application 'Olioboard', in which you can create mood boards by dragging and dropping your favourite homewares (available for purchase, mostly in the States unfortunately), to make up your perfect room scenario. It's AWESOME. The best fun you can have without spending a dime! It sucked me in for a good few hours yesterday.. but I emerged with a 'guestimate' of how I imagine my finished dining room to look (in 20 years time when I have money again... aaahhh dreams are free!).

It's a bit of a work in progress.. I keep tutuing with it and adding things. Also, I've used the Feathers wallpaper in the background, which is the only Ferm Living wallpaper I could find in their catalogue, so I put that in as the colour palette is very similar. Hopefully they beef up their selection soon!

Here it is anyway:

In real life, I have a few of these things.. or a plan to have them, at least. And I promise you, I don't plan on spending a fortune on getting the rest either!

On saturday I bought this dining suite off Trade Me for an absolute steal:

It's not a classic Jon Jansen or Fler, but it's rather cute. I immediately loved the chairs, but they do need a little TLC. I spent an hour the other day scrubbing about a quarter of a century's worth of nicotine and grime off them. Yeah, doesn't really show up in the photo, huh ;)
They also need a nice rub down with some white vinegar to get the smoke stench off them - but once that's done they'll be sweet! They're covered in vinyl... and though I know how i'd recover the seats (they come off really easily), i'm not quite sure how to do the backs.. I'm not really adept in taking chairs apart, you see! Might have to pay a visit to someone 'in the know' for that one.
As for the table? Well it's formica, so i've been googling how to deal with that, and most people say either replace it altogether or get a piece of glass cut for it and put some paper/fabric underneath to freshen it up. That's probably the easiest and cheapest option, to be honest. But I'll have a think about it. Anyone out there - if you have any tips for me, feel free to let me know! Apparently formica does NOT like paint very much, no matter how well you prep the bugger.. hmph.

I have (well, not in my possession, but in my mind) the wallpaper, as you may recall I had a few options and settled on this one:

This will be a feature wall and the adjoining walls will all be white.

The rugs you can see there are inspiration for me. I bought a large cream natural cotton rug from the Warehouse last week - $100 down from $170 (thanks Republic Revolution!), and I plan to paint it! I'm tossing up between a black and white pattern or a mustardy yellow one. I LOVE the muted yellow and blue tones together, as per an earlier post.
Once I get around to doing it (note to self: must ship daughter off to Grandparents so I can get things done!), i'll let you all know.
Here are some more rugs i'm using as inspiration:

Fingers crossed my painting attempt doesn't go belly up!! You better send me some positive vibes, peeps.

I'm genuinely gutted I'll never have the tripod lamp - which I LOVE. I think more people should ship to little old NZ!!! I'll have to try and find a similar one somewhere.... hmm. And the new Ferm Living wall art calendar is absolutely going on my wish list! You can write on it! It's practical AND a work of art. I am smitten! It also comes with coloured post-its to further customise it. You can get yours locally from paperroom.co.nz, along with lots of other adorable Ferm Living must-haves.

The armchair I found is lovely, don't you think? Wonder if I'll ever find that here?
The wee side table though, I'm pretty sure I saw one just like it at the Salvation Army store up the road the other day! Must pop up and double check tomorrow.

Lighting is the other big feature of the room. Has to be pendant lighting and has to make a statement. I found some amazing ones by Seppo Koho. Aren't they fantastic!

But there are many more TO DIE FOR here.

Unfortunately, this is another who do not currently ship to NZ. Booooo!!! BUT, there are always ways around that, aren't there.. friends :)

Anyway, so I urge you all to go and login to Olioboard and have a go at being a real life Interior Designer yourselves! It's so much fun and it won't cost you a cent. Yet. :D

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