Friday, 29 August 2008

cookie magazine

Cookie magazine is one of my favourites. I wish there was an Australian equivalent to this stylish American monthly. It's for women who don't aspire to wearing tracksuit pants every day and want to seamlessly blend their children into their life... and their interiors. I love this photo from Cookie's website. It's from the home of photographer Janet Moran.

Image courtesy of Cookie and Janet Moran

Thursday, 28 August 2008

signature print's helen lennie

Limited edition Florence Broadhurst artwork

Interior designer Greg Natale uses Florence Broadhurst prints in a Sydney home

Signature Prints uses traditional printing techniques

The Florence Broadhurst range includes fabrics and homewares

David and Helen Lennie

In years to come Florence Broadhurst wallpapers will be remembered as the look of the early 21st century, and that is due to the dedication, enthusiasm and skill of Helen and David Lennie, a husband and wife team who brought the designs back to life via their exclusive worldwide licence and traditional textile printing business Signature Prints. It's been quite a journey for Helen, who grew up in New Zealand and then went on to work at Chanel in Sydney. Here she reveals what she's learnt along the way...

What five words best describe you? Dynamic, stubborn, theatrical, assertive, generous.
What's your proudest achievement? Being asked to be a key note speaker to a room full of extremely successful business women! It’s that moment of realisation that a kid from a small rural town in New Zealand has made good. Being recognized both locally and internationally for our contribution to Australian design. Signature Prints – Home of the Florence Broadhurst library - is now considered to be a “National Treasure”. Our commitment to Florence Broadhurst continues to be identified as putting Australia on the map for international design. They are some of my proudest moments.
Who inspires you? Saskia Heaves of
Grandiflora and her partner Gary Heery; Saskia creates the most visually stunning floral work I have ever seen and her husband Gary Heery photographs them! They are an inspiring partnership. Gary is also the only photographer to successfully photograph my husband, who hates the camera.
What are you passionate about? Life/work balance.
What's the best lesson you've learnt? I am learning to sometimes remain silent... it can be more powerful than being reactive.
Which person, living or dead, would you most like to meet? Florence Broadhurst.
What's next? Verona and Venice closely followed by Christmas in Paris. We will be working but who cares when you are working and living in those cities.
What are you reading? Oh my goodness you have caught me out here... I have about five books on the go!

Images courtesy of Signature Prints

Wednesday, 27 August 2008

farmers' market

Apples growing wild near Peppermint Bay, Tasmania.

An apple orchard.

Blackberries are considered a pest in Tasmania - I thought they were delicious!

There really is no substitute for food in its most natural state. I will never forget the taste of apples from the side of the road in the Huon Valley, Tasmania, during a country drive a few years ago. Now farmers markets are popping up everywhere, and with good reason. Farm fresh food is delicious. So if you're in Sydney check out the Hawkesbury Harvest Farmers and Fine Food market in Cook + Phillip square. This weekly market will run from 10am to 2.30pm every Friday.

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

designer danielle sanders

Working as a textile designer for Country Road might seem like the ultimate dream job. And while it was in many regards, after several years Danielle Sanders was itching to start her own business. And just under a year ago she did just that, launching Ellka. Since then she's produced a winter range, which included gorgeous knits and cushions. And now she's just released her range for summer. I'm loving the dress and scarves, pictured above.

What five words best describe you? Tall, friendly, creative and a true Gemini.
What's your proudest achievement? Finally starting my own business after years of wondering about it!
Who inspires you? My best friend - always sees the positives in life no matter what the situation.
What are you passionate about? Australian design, the environment, food, fitness and my friends and family.
What's the best lesson you've learnt? Listen to yourself - your first feeling on something is often the right one.
Which person, living or dead, would you most like to meet? I'd love to meet my mum again for a quick chat and a cup of tea.
What's next? Working on my 2009 winter range using Australian yarns into knitted accessories and homewares. Expanding the range into kidswear sizes also!
What are you reading? Just finished
Eat, Pray, Love and now onto the E-myth for some further business reading - highly recommended!

Images courtesy of Ellka

Monday, 25 August 2008

the sartorialist

I know, I know, I know... I'm really late with this one. Perhaps I'm the only person who didn't know about this great site but in case you're just as slow as me I HAVE to share it. The Sartorialist features different stylish people every day. I love that they're not slaves to fashion and have confidence in their own style.

Images courtesy of The Sartorialist.

Friday, 22 August 2008

bholu's yellow cushions

My Bholu obsession is bordering on the ridiculous, but every time Jodie puts a new range out I fall in love with it all over again. So apologies for my drooling, but I just have to share these yellow cushions. How much would they brighten up any room! And Mavis the Monkey is so cute.

Images courtesy of Bholu

Thursday, 21 August 2008

designer sophie milne

There is a great online store called Moose which sells homewares and craft items among other objet d'art. One of my favourite finds are the works of Sophie Milne. Initially I thought her ceramics would make great presents, then I thought, "what about me!". The jug and cups are definitely going on my Christmas wish list (can't believe I'm thinking about that already).

What five words best describe you? On the verge of obsessive!
What's your proudest achievement? It’s cliche I know, but I will have to say my son Finn, everything else just pails in comparison.
Who inspires you? In a ‘ceramic sense’ I am inspired by the works of
Lucie Rie, Gwynn Hanssen Piggot and copious contemporary ceramic artists but in general I find inspiration in the people I cross paths with everyday.
What are you passionate about? Art, music, family, friends and food.
What's the best lesson you've learnt? That there are rarely mistakes that won’t be forgotten – remembering this makes me more confident to take risks and try things that have uncertain outcomes.
Which person, living or dead, would you most like to meet? I guess that would be Lucie Rie although I woudln't mind if George Clooney popped up in my cereal bowl.
What are you excited about? Curating shows at
Pan Gallery, emerging new works featuring power lines and an upcoming weekend away with the family.
What are you reading? The Divided Heart: Art and motherhood by Rachel Power

Images courtesy of Sophie Milne

Monday, 18 August 2008

artist chris stone

The first two images might seem quite disparate on first glance. But when you look again there is a keen eye for colour in both. That's because Chris Stone is not only a colour trend forecaster, after 35 years in interiors, but he's also a talented artist. After studying design at London's Royal College of Art, Chris worked as a fashion designer for Missoni and Versace. He then worked as head of textile design for Australia's bedlinen company, Sheridan. Now as a colour and trend consultant, Chris also produces the "Colourworks" guide. And in between forecasting and painting, Chris manages to squeeze in time to lecture at the University of Technology Sydney, the College of Fine Arts and at the Whitehouse Institute of Design. Phew! His latest exhibition "Into the light" is on at the Washhouse Gallery, 2-21 September.

What five words best describe you? Energetic, creative, involved, motivated, hard working.

What's your proudest achievement? Being in the right place at the right time and having had more than fifteen minutes of fame.

What was the starting point for this exhibition? Flowers are my passion, finding a new direction of lighter, brighter paintings to re-invent myself. My buyers who keep wanting more floral paintings.

What inspires you? Great colour, craftsmanship not only in design but also art.

What are you passionate about? Great conversation, good food and beautifully designed objects (the Art Deco exhibition in Melbourne was incredible).

What's the best lesson you've learnt? To be grateful for the talents you have. Be respectful of your health and never underestimate freedom.

Which person, living or dead, would you most like to meet? I would like to meet my mother again. The day the Olympics started was the 20th anniversary of her death

What are you reading? The Tenderness of Wolves by Stef Penney.

Images courtesy of Chris Stone

Friday, 15 August 2008

august fields by amy butler

I've long been an Amy Butler fan since she first appeared in real living and she was such a lovely person when I interviewed her for the magazine a few months ago. Amy is not only incredibly inspiring she's very talented too as her August Fields collection shows.

Images courtesy of Amy Butler Designs

Thursday, 14 August 2008

artist nana ohnesorge

It's one thing to visit Paris. It's another thing altogether to go there as an artist in residence. This is what happened to Nana Ohnesorge last year when she won the Reg Richardson Travel Scholarship at her National Art School graduation exhibition. Definitely an artist to watch, Nana also won the MCQ International Student Prize, got dux of her year and has won some major art prizes as well as being a finalist twice at the Sulman Prize. Last night her first solo exhibition was opened at the James Dorahy Project Space in Sydney's Potts Point. What a great year!

What five words best describe you? Imaginative, obsessive, dramatic, impatient, striving for balance.
What's your proudest achievement? To realize my dream of studying art at a mature age, and my family.
What was the starting point for this exhibition? A Paris residency in 2007, which I won as a prize at my graduation exhibition.
Who inspires you? Great women artists like
Louise Bourgeois, Fiona Hall, Karen Kilimnik, to name a few.
What are you passionate about? Fairness and justice, art and family.
What's the best lesson you've learnt? To grow slowly and steadily as an artist.
Which person, living or dead, would you most like to meet? Jeanne Moreau(French actress).
What are you reading? Kippenberger, a biography of the artist Martin Kippenberger by his sister Susanna.

Images courtesy of Nana Ohnesorge and James Dorahy Project Space

Tuesday, 12 August 2008

artist antonia pesenti

If I were an illustrator I'd want my works to look like those of Antonia Pesenti. She creates images which are beautiful, sophisticated and dreamy all at once. Since last time I interviewed Antonia she's been busy creating illos for UK magazine Waitrose Food Illustrated. Click here to see what inspires Antonia.

Image courtesy of Antonia Pesenti

Monday, 11 August 2008

artist katherine charlton

"Doing time"
"Spilt milk"
"Little birdy"

The woman with the magic pencil, Katherine Charlton.

There's a great little website called which showcases the handmade work of creative Australians. Great for gift ideas. One of my favourite artists is Katcharly - the work of Katherine Charlton who says she is "most happy with a pencil in my hand. When I'm drawing or painting I'm always miles away, which I think is what I love about it so much." The girl dragging a toaster came to her one day and she had to draw her, which was the beginning of this quirky character. "I wanted to illustrate the proverbs that we use in our everyday lives," she says. Katherine's work is also featured on Etsy.

What five words best describe you? Homebody, dramatic, hopeful, artistic, procrastinator.
What's your proudest achievement? Creating Katcharly.
Who inspires you? Morgan Freeman.
What are you passionate about? Family, art.
What's the best lesson you've learnt? Not to take anyone for granted.
Which person, living or dead, would you most like to meet? Anthony Kiedis from the Chilis.
What are you excited about? Growing Katcharly.
What are you reading? Lots of blogs from wonderful creative people.

Images courtesy of Katcharly

Thursday, 7 August 2008

teal blue

Image courtesy of Shannon Fricke and Prue Ruscoe

Paul Massey Photography



Okay, so I know it was only recently that I was showing off my Tiffany blue wall and pointing out the similarity to the colour used in Carrie's apartment in the Sex and the city movie. But while I still love the colour I think my allegiance is slowly shifting to the much richer teal blue colour. I don't know if it's because we're in the middle of winter in Sydney or if my palette is just changing, but I am itching to repaint. Would love to know your thoughts. Oh, and I've attached some of my favourite teal blue images that I've found from Shannon Fricke's blog (well, it's an image from her home) and the teal blue collection from the Desire to Inspire girls.

Tuesday, 5 August 2008

artist sebastian nash

The Mosman Art Prize is well known as a great marker of up and coming artists and so I am so proud to announce that my cousin, Sebastian Nash, has won the House of Phillips Fine Art Young Emerging Artists Award as part of the Mosman Art Prize. Congratulations! He's so incredibly talented and definitely an artist to watch.

Here is what he had to say about the artwork:

"Taking inspiration from classic Chinese and Japanese coloured pigment and ink painting on scrolls and screens, as well as European artists like Egon Schiele, the softer images by Gottfried Helnwein and young Australian artist Dane Lovett I have started to paint figurative animals in washes of watercolour. Animals are our connection with the most primitive and natural parts of ourselves. They are our opportunity to step out of our urban lives and reconnect. I try to paint in a meditative head space in only watercolour and paper and I see this as reflective, calm and elegant. I love using watercolour as every wash must have purpose and yet at the same time you are working with liquid with all its natural movement and the beautiful imperfections that result. I have used a very subtle, natural colour palette with a large amount of black. Made from charcoal, black being the first pigment used by man across the world, I love it’s unpretentious, uncomplicated mark making strength."

Image courtesy of Mosman Art Prize


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