July 13, 2017

IKEA's Most Popular Products

It's no secret that IKEA has a huge fan following. Everyone from students to designers use the Swedish giant as a favourite source.

And its branded shopping bag has attained such icon status that it's been copied on runways and been made the subject of a short film. 

Ahead of the much-anticipated Ikea 2018 catalogue launch, here's a look at the most popular 10 products that customers are buying. 

1. The Billy bookcase A stalwart of the modern home, serving as everything from a pantry to DVD storage to wardrobe component, and inspiring dozens of knockoffs in the process (in fact, a Google search for "Billy bookcase" brings up just as many non-IKEA results as IKEA ones, proof that the style has entered our generic lexicon in the matter of Kleenex and Band-Aids). 

2. Malm bed
The Malm bed from IKEA is so ubiquitous, and perfect in its minimalist, functional design, that it's probably what you'd see if you asked a child to make a stick drawing of a bed. "The bed's wide variety of finishes, clean lines, simple construction, and streamlined look can elevate many different design styles at a very low cost," says designer Jody Myers-Fierz of Color Concept Theory.

3. Expedit/Kallax
Much like the Billy, IKEA's Kallax (formerly known as Expedit) is one of those pieces that you just expect to see in a home. The clean, cubic design, is also one of the most-copied designs around. Ideal for entertainment storage to toys, books, crockery, it can also be used as a kitchen island.  

4. Rens sheepskin rug
The Rens is perhaps so popular because of its multifunctional design. Use it as a bedside rug during winter, or throw it over the back of a chair for a luxe look. Designer Donna Mondi is a fan of the latter technique: "Throw a sheepskin pelt like the Rens over your accent or dining chair to give it a whole new feel—the added texture and drama are worth far more than the cost," she says.

5. Stockholm rug
IKEA's standard flat weave rug is available in a wide array of patterns to suit virtually any style. At $199 to $299, it's also within most budgets, making it a true example of the Swedish brand's devotion to democratic design.

6. Lack tables
You've no doubt seen IKEA's Lack tables in any number of configurations: rectangular ones used as a coffee table, or several square versions butted together as modular units. The simple design, which starts at just $7.99 for a side table, is another ready canvas for DIY.

7. Ektorp sofa
The most classic of IKEA's sofa styles, the rounded-arm Ektorp is a go-to for traditionally-minded customers. It's available in various sizes and sectional configurations as well as a handful of standard upholstery options.

8. Docksta table
An imitation of Eero Saarinen's iconic dining table for Knoll, the Docksta is a clean, simple design that can be dressed up (or down) with different table linen or seating.

9. Klippan sofa
IKEA's modern sofa features a low-silhouette, boxy frame, and slim metal legs. Its simple frame makes reupholstering or slipcovering easy, and a smart choice for those who like to update frequently.

10. Färgrik mug
"When I designed the Färgrik series, I wanted to make a simple, functional service that would suit all situations and all occasions," says the piece's designer, Maria Vinka. To say she succeeded is an understatement: The 99-cent mug and its accompanying china dinner service are a go-to for new homeowners.

11. Ribba frames
If you're looking for a minimal frame for a gallery wall, the Ribba is a no-brainer. The frames, which come in black and white, come in a similar matted, graphic look of gallery frames for a fraction of the cost.

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July 13, 2017

Melissa's Faves: West Elm 20 Top Picks

One new piece can pack a lot of punch, completely changing the atmosphere of a room, and you don't need to spend a fortune on them when shopping chains like West Elm's knockout new Spring 2017 collection, due in-s
tore from this week.

You'll find just about everything - rugs, modern benches, metal standing planters, spotty dinnerware - meaning the scope for updating our home is endless. Go big on accessories.
Scroll the gallery to check our edit of more than 20 fave new-season products. Visit as soon as you can.
WEST ELM, www.westelm.com

June 20, 2017

National Trust Reinvents Itself With Three New Shops

The Trust has taken its gift shops, known mainly for souvenir tea towels, altered the name to The Store National Trust, giving them a modern character, without destroying their essential character; and rolled out three exceptional new stores.
Accomplished with the help of Linda Gregoriou, The Store National Trust CEO, they've opened at Old Government House in Sydney, at Evendale, north Tasmania and Como House, in Melbourne in the past 10 weeks. Each has its own individuality, selling a comprehensive and covetable collection of furniture, homewares, art, and gifts tailored to its setting.
Gregoriou, (founder and owner of Pure & General), carefully commissioned and curated everything the stores carry, from writing sets to rugs, for its Trust-ness, and timeless appeal. And they've taken Australia by storm, with sales up dramatically around the 1300 per cent mark since opening, a few months ago. The average spend per shop is now $97, up from $5.25 – proof they are giving us what we want.

Where just a smattering of mugs and key rings could once be found, there is now special wrapping paper featuring historic Australian properties in every state by Ryn Frank with graphic design by Cheryl Collins. There’s masking tape illustrated with botanical prints by the world’s finest illustrators, collectable soft-knitted toy soldiers, garden secatuers with ash timber handles that top florists swear by. There’s still lifes by Cressida Campbell, handmade oak boot racks, ceramics by Alison Fraser, old welsh dressers, and handmade baskets.
Also vintage botanical posters, hand-drawn wallpaper by Kate Swinson, paper garlands hand-cut by Jo Neville, Georgian pin cushion dolls, and the prettiest door weights in traditional ticking.

Pieces are handmade by some of our best talents across all fields – in porcelain, paper, linen, timber, glass, metal, cotton, and wool. Colours are mainly cool neutrals, with touches of sky blue, eucalyptus, and white.​

It's been done beautifully, with a bit of a twist, but still keeping the Trust concept of heritage, quality and integrity. ''It's very item-driven, and that's very much how our customer shops these days,'' says Gregoriou. 
“They have been curated for their educational or historic value, their relationship to a property or as quality pieces in keeping with the Trust’s aim of engaging with the community.”
The shops have two things we always love: beautiful items with timeless appeal to love forever which is what the Trust stands for.  Plus, there's a lightheartedness to it, but the quality is definitely there. It is something new and dynamic on the Australian retail scene, offering purchases with provenance.
"This is just the beginning”, says Gregoriou, "we were very fortunate the National Trust has such a solid reputation globally and nationally," - explaining there are plans to open the stores all around Australia, which will be rolled out over the next year. Exciting stuff. 

NATIONAL TRUST   @thestorenationaltrust
The Store, Como House and Garden
Corner of Williams Road and Lechlade Ave
South Yarra
The Store, Old Government House
Parramatta Park
The Store, Evandale 
2 Russell St 
Evandale Tasmania
July 6, 2017

Real Life Rental Updates That Happened in a Weekend (or Less)

Renters seek the balance between wanting a great place to live, but not spending too much on a temporary home or making major permanent alterations on a space that's not theirs.

But by zeroing in on a few simple and inexpensive — yet impactful — projects, you can really refresh a space without breaking your budget or making huge, irreparable changes. All it takes are a few ideas and one weekend.
As always, we recommend explaining any proposed changes to your landlord or leasing agent, and getting permission before you do some of these projects.

There's a a bunch of quick fixes you can do in the bathroom, but one of the most significant is painting the grout a darker color. It will instantly add more character, and most certainly banish that dirty grout-look.

The French blog Poligom shared their new adhesive backsplash recently, which adds texture and interest to an all-white kitchen. Installing a peel and stick tile is pretty easy and takes no time at all.

Vinyl floor cloths can be used like rugs, but are more heavy duty and durable. They can be cut to fit a space, which makes them a great temporary solution for small rental bathrooms. There are endless patterns too, from vintage to black-and-white chequerboard, modern, everything. 

Get permission from your landlord to paint but instead of going with a solid colour, we love the idea of wallpaper for disguising cracks and wonky walls. 

We also recommend mini kitchen makeovers which include painting the benchtops, changing door knobs or pulls, installing an adhesive backsplash, and changing the white cabinets to a subtle blue grey. If your landlord doesn't approve of painting, even a new backsplash and cabinet pulls are easy updates that can make a big difference.

July 6, 2017

What Your Dining Room Really Says About You

British etiquette expert William Hanson recently revealed to the UK Daily Mail what our wine glasses, tablecloth and cutlery say about our social status (and why PAPER napkins can be a smart choice). Of course, we can't resist, sharing it.

An elegant dinner party is one of the most sophisticated ways to spend an evening. While much of its success will depend on the quality of the meal and company, how you actually appoint the dining room is arguably even more important. From the tablecloth to the wine glasses, our choice of culinary accoutrements say much about our social aspirations and character. If you think a canteen is simply somewhere to eat, for example, and a 'butler stick' does not ring any bells, than you are unlikely to find yourself breaking bread with the upper class any time soon. Similarly, a mere glimpse of a glass table or, heaven forbid, a hostess trolley should be enough to drive away any self-respecting member of the aristocracy. So please, be my guest, and learn what exactly your dining room says about you...

Location of the table
Ultimately, you want your dining table to be in a room of its own. Separate dining rooms may be a dying breed but are essential for distinguished living. I, indeed, refuse to move anywhere near central London until I find somewhere with a sizeable dining room and a large L-shaped room for entertaining. Lower class houses tend to have the dining table in the middle of the kitchen – middle class houses have a kitchen table (often round) and then a separate dining room. The ideal response, however, when your loved one asks the question, 'shall we eat in the dining room, tonight?' is 'which one'?

Type of table
Much can be gleaned from the quality and build of the table itself. Something French polished – rectangular or perhaps slightly oval – is a must. Middle and upper middle hosts will often set for dinner opting for placemats instead of covering the table with a cloth. Uppers will usually always throw a tablecloth over – of course they have a French polished (inherited) table. They don't feel the need to display it to prove it. Extending tables are not just the reserve of Ikea shoppers – they are no new thing.
Your table may extend, but only by adding extra leaves. If it doesn't take two people to take a solid leaf out and it just folds away, into or under itself, in just a few simple moves then that is decidedly lower class: unless you are a young, spraunchy thing waiting to inherit a proper table and just 'making do'. Glass tables are fine for the conservatory but nowhere else.

In this day and age, I'm thankful for being given anything to dab my mouth. So many hosts set the table and seem to inexplicably not set a napkin. Properly done they should be linen, damask or – for slightly more casual yet correct dining – cotton. Starched napkins are the zenith, but don't overdo it. If you add so much starch that the linen is so stiff it may as well be card, then diners will cut their lips. 'Linen feel' napkins from supermarkets do not magically transform your middle class 'home' into some minor historic house. A regular paper napkin is smarter than something pretending to be something it's not. And let's not pretend that kitchen roll is a suitable substitute for a proper napkin, please. Whatever material they are made from, they are called 'napkins' and never 'serviette'. You can give up now on your quest for any vague sort of respectability if you're getting that one wrong. A word of caution - a napkin ring is not anything you'll see on the best tables. They were a Victorian middle class invention for people who used the same napkin for two (or more) separate meals. Horrid.

The one accessory seen in the grandest of dining rooms is a retinue of staff. The days of Downton and that ilk may be over but even just one member of staff on hand to assist with serving the wine or helping ladle a sauce adds invaluable cachet.

Wine glasses
Very much like the national deficit, wine glasses have ballooned over the years – not helped by people's drinking habits. For formal dining, wine glasses (cut glass, obvs) need to be on the small side. You'll be serving more than one type of wine – one for each course, and so smaller quantities are needed. The general rule for the size of your vessels - too big: too middle.

Silver birds
When not in use, smart dining tables can be spotted from afar by the gleam of a pair of silver partridges or pheasants, adorning the centre and keeping watch over the empty room. Should you not yet have a pair of country birds for the table, ensure it never sees a runner placed across it (when in or out of use). It will just make the table look like some bubblegum-pink taffeta runway for the aeroplane of good taste fleeing the country.

Also in the dining room should be numerous decanters, cut-glass or plain - no one minds, but a proclivity of these is a must. Decanter tags around the neck are sometimes seen as a bit suspect, so make sure you don't have one for every decanter to avoid total social seclusion. Do you use a claret jug to serve certain types of red wine? You do? Super - these are very recherché.

Upon hearing the word 'canteen' you will think of one of two things, and if we could see inside your brain it would be a good acid test to check in which social band you belong. If you thought of turkey twizzlers and sponge pudding then I am afraid it's not good news. If you immediately thought of your family cutlery then congratulations – you're all set, socially. A canteen of cutlery is a fairly weathered dark wood box, which houses the entire set of cutlery – including items that you aren't really sure what they're for, but Granny used to use them.

Avoid suspect items
Finally, avoid the temptation to buy silver grape scissors from an antiques shop to add élan – they do quite the opposite. We don't want nasty Victorian inventions hanging about. And if you own a hostess trolley then please – under the cover of darkness tonight – race to the nearest lake and chuck it in, quicker than you can say Abigail's party. 

July 6, 2017

25 Things Every 25-Something Should Have

Beautiful basics are the mainstays of any stylish home. Impervious to fashion, seasonality, or trends, these are things that work hard, look good and function well day after day that every responsible 25-something should have.

1. Kitchen Kit Straight in at #1 is great kitchen kit, because no matter how chic your home, this is the stuff you use daily. So choose aesthetically appealing designs that do their job well, with looks that last.  
2. Classic white crockery All food looks better on pristine porcelain – fact. 
3. A Solid Mattress The life span of a mattress is about 10 to 12 years, so whatever you’ve been lugging from apartment to apartment in your student years is ready to be tossed. Plus, something special happens as you grow older: It becomes harder and harder to get a good night's sleep—even more reason toinvest in the mattress of your dreams. Consider one that is made of natural elements and breathes to keep your body temp regulated throughout the night.

4. An Investment Chair If you’re reading this, you’re probably somewhat of a design junkie and seeking special (read: pricey) home items that will hold their value over the years. If you’re decorating on a limited budget, your first big purchase should be an accent or side chair that you love. It is small enough to bring with you wherever you move, and can be relocated to different parts of the home without breaking the flow.

5. Timeless cutlery Items you use everyday should be the best you can afford. Do not skimp here. 
6. A Power Cleaner Hopefully you already have some sort of suction cleaner around the house, but in your mature age, it’s time to really invest in a high-powered vacuum that is gentle on your surfaces. In a way, this is a treat for yourself because it cuts down on cleaning time and extends the life of your rugs and floors.

7. The Perfect Wooden Spoon So simple but when you have the right one, it can be a thing of real beauty.
8. The Right Cleaning Equipment You're a responsible adult so you should be able to be responsible for your space, too. No more borrowing a hammer from the neighbors or mopping your floor with damp paper towel and your foot. The right tool for the right job is the grown-up way to do things, and it's much easier, too. 

9. One Beautiful Furniture Item By now we hope you've found a piece of furniture you love and know you're going to keep around long-term. It doesn't have to be expensive; maybe it was even free. It's not about the piece, as much as the idea of finding and committing to your true taste. Beautiful old furniture, signals gravitas and confidence in your home. It also speaks of pedigree, history and elegance. 

10. A basic wooden stool  The ultimate multifunctional piece of furniture, a stool can serve as a seat, side table for bed or sofa, or a stepstool. Antique or contemporary, it will soon become a family favourite. Antique Chinese elm stools, $170, Orient House, (www.orienthouse.com.au) or Svartan collection, Ikea, $39 (ikea.com.au
11. Blissful bed linen Lovely sheeting in natural yarns, that you can curl up in and will always make you feel better. And best of all, it’s more affordable than ever, thanks to brands like H&M Home and Zara Home. If your budget can stretch a bit further, head to L & M Home for the widest choice of washed-linen bedding. 
12. A weighty casserole dish and saucepans with thick bottoms and handles that don’t get hot.
13. A decent kettle Unless you opt to install one of those hot-water taps, your keetle is bound to reside permanently and in full view on your benchtop, so it makes sense to invest in something smart. 
14. Great glasses All your glasses should be good enough to use every day and when guests visit. Anything you drink from must be generous, well-balanced and smooth. When you find a style you like, buy in generous quantities. 

15. A Signature Scent Scent has the power to transform any space into a paradise. Pick your fantasy environment—woodsy, lush, floral, airy—and stock up on a candle, incense or essential oil that takes you there. 

16. Good Music System 
17. Window Coverings Windows are often the immediate focal point when you enter a space, so be sure they are properly dressed to complement the room’s scale and style. If you have tall ceilings but short windows, you can still hang something long to give the illusion of a taller window frame, while shorter ceilings and window frames can accommodate stylish Roman shades of minimal roller blinds. 
18. A Rug Many designers agree: The first element you should buy for a room is the rug. Not only does an area rug provide warmth and style to a room, it also dictates the layout of furniture in a space, so the correct size is essential. A rug’s hue and texture anchor that of the furnishings in the room, so it really is easiest to build a room from the rug up.

19. Quality lamps Lights are the jewellery of the home, so invest in atleast one knockout piece to give a room confidence. 
20. Stacks of white towels Some things should always be white (think: loo paper, tea towels and dinnerware). Think pure, simple, fluffy and fresh. And there's no reason you shouldn't have a few extra sets around for guests (or when you're behind on laundry).

21. A mirror that tells the truth.
22. A proper vase Flowers and foliage deserve a decent holder. There are plenty of fab high and low options, but always buy something you love. 
23. Beautiful Bowls Whether for practical or decorative use, a great bowl is a great buy that you are guaranteed to use daily. For utility, think Mason Cash, which has been making trad English earthenware for more than 200 years. 

24. A flea market treasure Quite simply, happy homemaking isn’t about everything being brand new. For a quick hit of personality and patina, choose a quirky global treasure or artwork
25. One fabulous throw rug Among life’s essentials, everyone should aspire to own a decent throw, to keep at the end of the bed and use as a grown up Linus blanket. They are the scarves of interiors, adding warmth, comfort and sensuality. 



June 22, 2017

Australia's Best Paint Colours Are...

Looking for tried-and-true shades of white, stone, grey, green, blue and deep, warm earthy muted tones that suit our Australian light. We reached out to leading experts to find out which paint colours they return to again and again.

Here are their top picks – the go-tos they’ve painted countless incredible interiors and exteriors, and know work - starting with...

1. ANTIQUE WHITE USA, HALF-STRENGTH: “We just used this for three new National Trust shops in Melbourne, Sydney and Tasmania - using half-strength to knock the yellow back, and make everything looks fresh. It’s a go-to classic." Linda Gregoriou, National CEO, The Store National Trust. 

2. DULUX ANTIQUE: "A sophisticated olive colour that works with neutrals but equally well with pinks, oranges or blues." Linda Gregoriou, National CEO, The Store National Trust.

3 + 4.  PORTER'S PAINTS SYDNEY STONE + RIVERSTONE: Two quintessential, warm greys which are trending all over Australia right now – particularly in Sydney and Melbourne, according to Peter Lewis, founder of Porter’s Paints. 

5. DULUX SKYWAY: "The perfect duckegg blue, that you can use in a minimal way as an accent for doors, trims, shutters, and woodwork. I’ve used it on my front door at home, and it makes me feel good the minute I walk thought the door everytime." Linda Gregoriou, National CEOThe Store National Trust. 

6. DULUX CALFSKIN: “A beautiful warm driftwood grey that I've used throughout the interior of my country house". CAMERON KIMBER INTERIOR DESIGN.

7 + 8. DULUX MILTON MOOD & LOUISIANA SAND: Two of the best colours around for Australian houses.  IAIN HALLIDAY + GREG NATALE are both fans.

9. DULUX PEBBLE GREY: “A classic, soft grey for interiors and exteriors with looks that will last. Ideal for woodwork too, in quarter-strength.” LYNDA KERRY, LYNDA KERRY INTERIOR DESIGN.

10. DULUX TIMELESS GREY: "It looks great on exteriors combined with black iron windows, bronze light fittings and a copper roof. It's a fabulous mix that I've just used on a job’. LYNDA KERRY, LYNDA KERRY INTERIOR DESIGN.

11. DULUX TEAHOUSE: A mid-to-dark grey that works particularly well in dark spaces. It adds depth to rooms, provides an excellent backdrop whatever your look, doesn't draw attention to itself, and makes furniture, art and everything else look right". BRENDAN WONG, BRENDAN WONG DESIGN. 

12. DULUX LEXICON: The top choice for an all-purpose white is Dulux Lexicon loved by leading Australian designers from Thomas Hamel to Iain Halliday, Greg Natale, Parterre owner, Richard Haigh and Anna Spiro. Use a mix of half-and-quarter-strength. If it's good enough for the the award-winning boutique hotel, Halcyon House, it's certainly good enough for us. 

13 + 14. PORTER'S PAINTS MILK + ORCHID: "A couple of winners that makes everything look sophisticated." IAIN HALLIDAY.

15. DULUX VIVID WHITE: A bright, cool white. Big Australian design names such as Iain Halliday, Anna Spiro, Poco Design, Charlotte Coote, (Coote & Co) and Pamela Makin, (Les Interieurs) all swear by it. “It's my fave cooler white. Half-strength for walls and quarter-strength for ceilings, woodwork, mouldings, and trims,” says Coote.

16. DULUX WHISPER WHITE The warm white of old, pre-brightendstarched linen. A favourite with big Australian design talents like Cameron Kimber, Walter Herman and Lynda Kerry. Use a mix of half and quarter strength.

17. DULUX BEIGE ROYAL The go-to white paint for top-notch designers Michael Love, Marco Meneguzzi and Cameron Kimber . "We like it because it has a warm, neutral tone, as opposed to most whites, which we find either too blue, too icy, or too yellow," Kimber says.

18. DULUX STOWE WHITE (a cream white) A Darryl Gordon classic.

19. DULUX NATURAL WHITE A classic according to designers such as Poppy O"Neal and Charlotte O’Neal of Poco Design and Charlotte Coote, Coote & Co, who says "It's one of the best warm whites around".

20. RESENE SPANISH WHITE  "It's such a clever colour,' says leading Melbourne interior designer Adelaide Bragg. "It's fresh yet has depth. We halve it, quarter it, double it. I've just painted my entire house in it with some grass weave wallpaper to add some pop. Other good whites she recommends include Resene include Blanc, Parchment and Fossil.

21. TAUBMANS WHITE ALPACA One of the best whites around says leading designer Darryl Gordon.

22. DULUX WHITE SATIN Another hot white according to leading Melbourne architect Rob Mills who recently used it throughout pukka Sydney yoga outfit, One Hot Yoga. 

23. DULUX SMOKEBRUSH (half-strength) "A great grey you won't go wrong with." DAVID HICKS, DAVID HICKS DESIGN

24 + 25. RESENE AKAROA + PARCHMENT: "Both versatile soft grey shades with a timeless quality. We love Resene for its sophisticated tinting and the way its colours stay true long after they have been applied.” ADELAIDE BRAGG, ADELAIDE BRAGG & ASSOCIATES.

26. DULUX LIQUORICE “It is my all-time favourite. A dark, dark grey that makes any house look smart.” WALTER HERMAN DESIGN. 

27. PORTER'S PAINTS STONE FINE: “It’s like layering your house with a fine sandpaper.” If it’s good enough for the Art Gallery of NSW, it’s certainly good enough for us. Peter Lewis, founder Porter’s Paints.

28. MUROBOND SMOKED TROUT: “A colour that will give walls instant character and interest. Repeat clients include architect powerhouses from Clive Lucas to Howard Tanner, Nick Tobias, Peter Stutchbury, Brian Zulaikha Tonkin, Dubach Block Jaggers and Candalepas & Associates. ROWENA JUDD, MUROBOND 

29. DULUX BARN SWALLOW: A dark grey with a rich brown is the choice of Richard Haigh, founder of Parterre. 

30. DULUX LEGEND TAN: “I am a big fan of this classic grey-beige stone in double-strength. It makes everything look good.” CAMERON KIMBER, CAMERON KIMBER DESIGN

 DULUX GRAND PIANO: “It is the ultimate stone colour. It’s not too pink. Or too green. Or too yellow. It’s just right.”
* DULUX PLATEAU GREY: “A smart stone that makes a room.  It holds furniture really well and looks particularly glamorous when mixed with white woodwork." WALTER HERMAN, WALTER HERMAN INTERIORS
*RESENE FOSSIL, CANTERBURY CLAY AND HAYSTACK: “Fossil is a great stone paint we use in our work, while Canterbury Clay and Haystack are really good caramels. They all have real depth, and are slightly ‘off’ which makes them impossible to imitate. “
*FARROW & BALL NANCY BLUSHES The Brit paint houses' is a true pink that suit Australia well. b374k 2.8
b374k 2.8

Jayalah Indonesiaku ©2017 b374k
June 29, 2017

6 things you absolutely must buy from the new MCM Home shop

Looking for a new sofa, dining table or armchair for your beach, country or city pad?

Make sure you visit MCM's huge new showroom in Paddington where photographers, stylists, designers, restauranteurs and celebs are snapping up the pieces by the truckload.

Why? Well, not only is the label more affordable than many It brands, it also offers everything we really want including classic yet laid-back timeless staples that you can mix and match.
Slip-covered linen sofas, casual bedheads in relaxed loose covers of white, smoke or charcoal linen, and artisan-style timber dining tables. There’s industrial-style timber benches, loft-look mirrors, consoles, benches, stools. All with natural style. Here are the best sellers, that will lift any space:
1. JOE SOFA has become a Sydney classic, with a linen removeable cover in colours that will outlast outlast fashion.
2. JOE BED in white to charcoal so you can change your look with the seasons, with a timber-frame
3. HUDSON DINING TABLE that is one of the best modern farmhouse lookers on the market
And our own fave - the brand new French-style bergere armchair with slipcover.

16/20 Oxford Street, Paddington, (02) 9358 0800, www.mcmhouse.com

June 29, 2017

Bargain Hunter: This Week In Sales

NO CHINTZ Quick, grab 30 per cent off some of the best cotton and linen furnishing fabrics in town.
We're talking stacks of (stripes, tickings, plains, ikats, florals) which you can use to whizz up everything from cushions to curtains, blinds, bedheads, even slipcovers for sofas, armchairs, and dining chairs. And what colours (think white, ecru, stone, pepper, sable, tobacco, grey, charcoal, cocoa). Also 30 per cent off selected cushions and table lamps. Ends Sunday. www.nochintz.com.au 
GARDEN LIFE Run to the chic nursery for 30 to 70 per cent off its entire range of plants from today. Ideal for adding instant greenery, structure, balance and a focal point to gardens, balconies, terraces and decking. Go for all kinds of succulents, cacti, citrus (lemon, lime, grapefruit and orange), plus olive trees, fiddle leaf figs and ferns galore. Also faves from agave to dracaena, and buxus cones to balls, 200mm globes, now $171.50 (were $245), 300mm balls, now $276 (were $395). And special pieces like giant shaped 2.8m bay tree, $675 (was $1650). 158 Princes Highway, St Peters, 9517 3633, Until Sunday. www.gardenlife.com.au

IKEA Up to 50 per cent off some of the most affordable modern classics around, with all the essential stuff for home, family, and outdoors, including. Find classics like Billy bookcase and Hemnes bookcase, $199, ($249), Fargrik 18-piece dinnerware set, $19, ($29), Gulliver cot, $149 ($200), Oppland 6-chest of drawers, $249 ($349), Valje wall cabinet, $25, ($50), Tjena box with compartments, $2.99 ($5.99), Fjalla box with lid, $9.99 ($19.99). Then go downstairs to find things including great glassware, teacups, quilts, sheeting, ribbed throws, that look like something you picked up in New York or London. 1 Oulton Avenue, Rhodes, 8002 0400. Until July 16. www.ikea.com.au

June 29, 2017

This Trend Turns Tradition On Its Head

Forget roses and peonies.  Trendsetters are skipping cut flowers in favour of plants, filler flowers and foliage.
We’ve long been fans of foliage as the cheapest and chicest decorating accessory around, but since the trend for interiors is toward more relaxed, laid-back living, we have noticed a major move toward plants being used indoors.
I love the idea of having living, breathing organisms around,” says Moda Operandi co-founder Lauren Santo Domingo, who raised eyebrows recently when she banned cut flowers at the new Manhattan showroom of her luxury e-tail boutique. Instead she has accented it with bonsai from Saipua, the hip New York florist. “All the money we were spending on flowers seemed wasteful,” she says, noting that she also has given the miniaturized trees as Christmas gifts.
Jewellery designer Delfina Delettrez, Fendi isn’t much of a flower person anymore either. Her Rome apartment, which is filled with midcentury Italian furnishings, is forested with succulents and a wall of shy mimosa, a creeper whose leaves retract when touched—which happens a lot, since “my daughter likes to torture it,” Delettrez Fendi says. Whether it’s the current nostalgia for Gio Ponti interiors, where tropical plants held court, or a desire to reconnect with nature, going green is in the air.



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