I loved your text about homes in 2012. We should really think about how we spend our money and honestly I can't see a way to spend it better than on my home, travelling and books. And I don't really need to buy a new laptop:) Thank you for making me to think about it. Sarah from Switzerland
Being from Switzerland I guess you should invest on a really good blanket right now;)
Thank you! *Wish you great readings and nice travel destinations in 2012*
The world is facing a crisis on many levels but the economic one tends to be what you see and hear on the news on a daily basis. Unemployment is growing in most developed countries used to comfort and prosperity, priorities are being reviewed and how we live our life and spend our money is - probably for the first time since the 80’s - being questioned.
Crisis can be an opportunity for renewal, to let the superfluous and unimportant outside and focus on what’s really essential to each one of us.
I’ve read a newspaper article telling how people will live more on the inside and spend less time outside in 2012. Think about dinners, parties, weekends away and holidays. Think about how many times you felt frustrated because not only you spent too much money on it but also how unfulfilled you felt after that. Think about the social side of these experiences and how sometimes you didn’t feel that close to the ones you socialize with. And how sad that is. Think about the gadgets you have in your house for entertainment and how barely you use some of them after the first week you bought it…
I believe that in 2012 our houses will also be Homes because investing in our nests will feel right in a financial and emotional perspective. We never had such comfortable houses or the potential to have them before, but even though we drool when looking to homeware related images we choose to spend on things we don’t really need or want beyond the impulse of the acquisition. We tend to buy so much stuff in an aspirational point of view that in the end we don’t really try to be what we want and end up just buying what represents that like having an amazing camera because we would like to take amazing photos but then we barely use it ‘cause “it’s too complicated”. We have been living in an expansive – and expensive - way and in my opinion 2012 will change that: some will have to, others will choose to.
This is a blog about interiors, about what’s behind windows, doors, what’s inside many houses and not about brands. Some of it is as I write above, is aspirational because we want what represents what we would like to be. But there’s no harm in that if it helps us to shape our choices, to question them. And it’s not always about the money as some people easily tend to judge.
Some will read this and think “oh but my house is rented and I can’t do much with it”, “oh but I live in a shared house” or “I’m living in a dorm” or even “I live with my parents and I can’t change anything”. All very valuable reasons why it’s difficult to build an oasis where you live but that doesn’t mean you can’t try. If you can’t drill holes on walls glue posters, if you can’t change the floor buy a nice rug, if you can’t renovate the house change your bedroom, if you can’t change your bedroom buy nice linen, a duvet cover and a nigh-stand lamp that makes you happy. Build your own sanctuary even if it’s little, make your space feels like your home, your place. But this means that maybe you can’t also buy the latest iphone or that amazing dress you saw on sale. Instead buy some new shelves, glue some posters on the walls – there’s some really nice adhesive tape out there – pick a cool rug, buy a plant, some candles or incense and a cozy and warm blanket. If you do these things I promise you’ll feel better inside, your friends will want to hang out more at your place and maybe you’ll even want to cook more too – microwave meals don’t count. But this only works if you really invest on your place, using lines like “I wish I had more money, more time, more knowledge…” cannot be used has an excuse. If it matters you’ll try it.
I wish you all an inspired 2012 with good surprises and great moments living inside your nests shared with the ones you love:)
From what I know there’s a great variety of stores in Australia and as someone told me is a growing market and I would also add a special market because of its uniqueness, but this is my perception based on the Australian houses I know and the way the geographical situation influences designers there. So remember that each city must have different and special stores.
To start I recomend going to The Design Files blog; it is totally focused on Australian design and architecture (they are going to have have a shopping guide list on the blog soon). Another good blog is the famous Desire to Inspire.
Magazines: Inside Out, Vogue Interiors Australia, and Frankie.
Stores: Ikea, Freedom, Ozdesign, (these first three were mentioned many times so they are probably a must see), vintage shops in Sydney (specially in the blacktown area), Shelano and Oxpham fair trade initiatives and Harvey Norman (no so cheap), Hunter+ Collector (in Fremantle, Western Australia).
*Thank you for sending messages with all these suggestions:)*
Hey - I really loved your 'nice shops in US' feature!! I am looking to re-locate from England to Australia next year and am worried about finding good home/furniture shops there, especially after having such a good choice here!!. Have you any suggestions? Help much appreciated! Thanks.
No, but I can ask my lovely Australian followers if they have suggestions too:) But there’s an australian interior design magazine that I love called “Inside Out” that could help you because they have lists of recommended shops in each issue. I’ve seen it in London and Lisbon, so I guess It won’t be that hard to find.
Tell me dear followers, where can someone shop nice and affordable homeware in Australia?
According to ❤interiors porn readers these are a few places you should go when looking for reasonable priced homeware in the United States: CB2, Pottery Barn, thisisnotikea.com, Target, Cost Plus World Market, Ikea, West Elm, Z Gallerie, Room&Board, Crate and Barrel and Container Store.
I’ve never visited most of these stores and obvisously you’ll have pricey and not so interesting items in terms of quality in all of these stores. Like in any store you need to have your eyes open and sometimes think out of the box. But don’t expect miracles, most of the times you get what you pay for and occasionally there’s a bargain - I say this because everybody wants cheap cheap cheap but then become really angry because a table just lasted half a year ^_^
This is a very common question because there’s a lot of confusion about what interior designers and decorators do. And it seems to me that professionals don’t help clarifying it either.
An interior designer has the knowledge to work on the structural side of a renovation. He can read blueprints and see which walls can be demolished, he knows about structure, electricity and plumbing. This means that when he designs a place he is prepared to hire professionals and ask exactly for what he wants technically speaking. This doesn’t mean he knows everything (one of the most valuable resources are the contacts of the professionals of each area because they can help an interior designer by sharing suggestions, explaining new ways of doing and new materials), the main idea is that the interior designer is technically prepared to make decisions on a deeper level when designing a place. He is more focused on thinking about the functional aspects of a building.
On the other hand decorators are more limited in terms of what they can do. They are better suited to choose furniture, fabrics, paint colors. They add the decor, not always that functional but what makes a house feels like a home.
Interior designers do it all: the structural and the decor part. So, if you need someone to help you renovate your house you should hire an interior designer but if you don’t want to do anything so radical and need a professional to work with what you have - your “house bones” - choose a decorator.
This doesn’t mean decorators can’t do it all too, actually some have lots of experience and are very capable and knowledgeable about construction too, but nowadays where academic education is a standard for most starting professionals you need to choose a proper education that will give you the right tools.
The differences are mainly technical but this is a theoretical explanation because in the real world architects also decorate and do interior design, decorators do interior design and interior designers sometimes (with help) build houses. And that’s why there’s so much competition and issues between these professionals.
Another important aspect to consider is that in different countries there are different regulations. In some countries decorators cannot legally do what interior designers do no mater how much experience they have.
I hope this clarifies your doubts. Feel free to add your views on this matter:)
Hi! First and foremost wanted to tell you your blog has become a highlight of my daily routine... I simply love it! Many thanks :) Was also wondering if you could help... moved in to my apartment not so long ago and am having a hard time making something cozy out of my sitting room. Would you have any advice? :) Thanks!!!
Thank you very much!:D
I would say that essencial elements that transform a “blah” room into a cozy one are:
A nice rug - see if it feels good when you are barefoot; soft pillows - if it’s good to lay your head on it you have found a good one; different points of light (do not use ceiling light that much, instead choose lamps like table and reading ones. In terms of wall decoration having photos that mean something to you, posters or art really adds a home feeling vibe:)
Where does your passion for interior design come from, was it always something you were interested in? ps. I love your blog :)
I was influenced by my mother who always bought interior design and decoration magazines. We even have a few ones older than me:) We also changed the furniture layout around the house very often and liked to do DIY projects like painting furniture, walls, floor… So I guess I grew up aware of how interiors could be changed and how those changes influenced how I felt about spaces.