RSS Feed

Tag Archives: Australia

Halloween Decorating Ideas

Posted on

Halloween in Australia is getting bigger every year. Plan early this year with some of these easy ideas.

Check out some of the great inspiration below from Martha Stewart for some really easy craft ideas for Halloween. The kids are sure to love it.

I haven’t included the instructions because all of these are quite easy to make and further details can be found on marthastewart.com

pumpkin balloons

pumpkin balloons

Witch cupcakes

Witch cupcakes

Balloon-skeletons

Balloon-skeletons

pumpkin drinks cooler

pumpkin drinks cooler

paper bats

paper bats

Outdoor Furniture – No need to spend big bucks

Posted on
blue painted folding chairs

blue painted folding chairs

We are just getting ready for Spring here in Australia and once again our thoughts are turned to outdoor living and entertaining. It wont be long before we have to dust off the outdoor furniture for the warmer weather or perhaps you are looking at buying some new furniture?

Outdoor stores are filled to the brim with beautiful options to choose from but you don’t have to spend big dollars to jazz up your outdoor area.

There are so many options for upcycling and giving a new lease of life to some existing or second hand furniture even indoor pieces can be used to liven up the space. Even a cote of colourful paint will cost a lot less than a new suite and have loads more character.

Check out some of the following pics for some inspiration….

side table upcycled for outdoor use

side table upcycled for outdoor use

powder blue adirondack chairs

powder blue adirondack chairs

wine barrel side tables

wine barrel side tables

red painted cane outdoor

red painted cane outdoor furniture

Coastal Homewares

Posted on
Ralph Luaren design

Ralph Lauren Design

As I sit here and write this post, outside is torrential rain and wind so not the most inspirational weather to be talking about coastal homewares but why not?

Whitewashed wicker lantern

Whitewashed wicker lantern

A beach or coastal theme is extremely popular in Australia because of our huge stretches of coast line and our love of living outdoors in the warmer weather.

You don’t need to over do it on beachy accessories, just a few different pieces around your home can give it a coastal feel.

white punched metal urn

White punched metal candle holder

Blues and pale greens and white can also be used anywhere to lighten up the room to make it more airy, if you have children and are cringing at the thought of white furniture, use it in accessories like cushions, curtains and decor.

Monterey melamine dinner setting

Monterey melamine dinner set

Your table is also an easy way to bring a coastal element to a room. Table runners and dinner settings can both be used to great effect.

Coastal twig table runner

Coastal twig table runner

Using white in accessories is one way of bringing the beach inside, a white lantern or a grouping of white candles.

l_shaynna blaze classic ivory trilogy

Shaynna Blaze flameless candles

 

 

Pottery Barn, West Elm and Williams Sonoma Open in Australia

Posted on

Pottery Barn Lighting

You may have read my excited post months ago on Pottery Barn opening up in Sydney on May 2 this year.

As a huge fan of the store and being in the midst of building a house my wish list was long and varied and had items ranging from furniture to pendant lighting as well as a multitude of other lovelies, so I held off buying many things thinking I would save the overseas freight charges and purchase it from the online Australian store once it opened.

Imagine my disappointment when the Australian website launched and the offering was well…small to put it mildly. The Australian Pottery Barn and West Elm range available online is significantly pared down compared to what is still on offer to many other countries, but not to worry I told myself, the things that aren’t available through the Australian website here I will just order from the U.S. site… WRONG.  The ability to order from the U.S. sites have already been disabled for Australian shoppers.

pottery barn bathroom

Now I am not one to usually vent in this fashion on the blog but after many years in high volume retail before starting my own online business I cant help but see the missed opportunity here and that Australian consumers that have awaited these brands opening here will be bitterly disappointed at the online offering.

There may be a physical store that has a much larger range but that is no use to the thousands of potential customers that don’t reside in the Sydney metro area and with more stores due to open in other cities by the end of the year all I can hope is that they significantly increase their  online offering.

This is only my two cents worth and should probably come under the heading ‘First World Problems’ but I am writing this from the point of view of a customer who does most of my shopping online. So for now until I will have to make a new wish list, insert sigh.

The Owner Builder Process Begins

Posted on

Image

I mentioned in an earlier post that my husband and I were about to embark on building a new home. This is not our first build but it will be the first build that we have undertaken as owner builders.

I admit that the ‘owner builder’ title fills me with dread and with it comes visions of forgetting some crucial element that holds up the building process or worse ends up costing us money to fix.

Having previously used building companies in the past if something wasn’t done by a certain time or not done to standard it was easy to refer to the site supervisor and say “we need to get this sorted out” now of course the person that sorts that out will be me or the hubby. It is these thoughts that are already keeping me awake at night and we haven’t even broken ground.

We will next week undertake our owner builders course and license and things will move fairly quickly from there. This is not something I would recommend to anyone who hasn’t at least built one house before and know what they are in for, building is one of the most stressful things that you can do in your life (more so than moving house) so you need to have a bit more than a basic understanding of home building.

It is also important to be aware warranty issues, this will vary state by state but just as you get a new home warranty with a building company the same also applies to owner builders who then become responsible for the home warranty for a period of time even after the house is sold, but again this is something that varies state by state but you need to be aware of it.

To make life even more interesting we are using a new product from FBM Corp that has great thermal properties,is a new green technology product and has a very fast construction time. These prefabricated panels will allow construction of the house to lock up stage to happen very quickly.

We have previously built twice using double brick construction that is favoured here in Western Australia but this product ticked all the boxes for us in terms of build time, environmental impact and cost (around 30% less than normal brick construction) so that part I am particularly excited about.

So as we go on I will keep you all posted and try not to bore you all with the details, as soon as there is the opportunity for photos I will post them for you to see.

Would love to hear about anyone else’s building experiences good or bad so feel free to have a chat or vent depending on your how your building venture went.

Madge

The Outdoor Chandelier

Posted on

outdoor lightingoutdoor umbrella chandelier

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We still have a couple of months of warmer weather here in Australia and this idea for an outdoor chandelier is perfectly suited to our love of outdoor living. All that is required is an outdoor umbrella and a table setting with a hole in the table top to hold the umbrella upright. This idea could also be easily adapted to hang around the perimeter of  an alfresco area, large tree or from a balcony, just make sure you properly secure them to whatever they are hanging from.

There are now real wax flameless candles that are available in Australia that are perfect for this type of outdoor setting and the fact that cant be blown out by a breeze and are completely safe makes them a great option. But if you are using real candles as shown in the pictures please use caution.

D.I.Y. Lanterns

marthastewart.comCollect a dozen glass jars or votive holders in different sizes, each with a wide top or a rim (as on jelly jars). Wrap wire around each top, and twist to secure. Bend another piece of wire into a loop, and attach as a handle. Cut varying lengths of chain, and attach a small S hook to the top of each. Slip hook over a spoke of your patio umbrella, and secure hook with adhesive putty. Attach another S hook to the bottom of each chain, and use it to hang the lantern.

TIP – Make it truly unique by using coloured glass jars or votive holders. If you cant fins any paint some regular glass jars with some coloured glass paint.

Sources- marthastewart.com, Pinterest

Pottery Barn Coming to Australia

Posted on

Image

I must admit I have long been a Pottery Barn tragic and was thrilled a couple of years ago when they started shipping to Australia. You can imagine my joy when I found that they are actually opening a store later this year in Sydney’s Bondi Junction Exchange building.

Hopefully this will mean that furniture will now be available for shipping around Australia because at present they don’t ship any larger items to Australia because of the obvious high cost involved.

Along with Williams Sonoma another American retailer of high quality kitchenware the Bondi Junction  location will be the only Australian retail outlet so here’s hoping that everything will be available online as living in Perth I wont get a chance to often visit (insert frowny face) the store.

If you aren’t yet familiar with Pottery Barn you should really check out their website http://www.potterybarn.com/ , but be prepared to waste a good couple of hours doing so.

Madge

Image