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Wednesday, August 1, 2012


We've had some very chilly winter weather in Sydney but soon it will start to warm up.  The wattle is flowering and blossoms and magnolias are looking lovely already.  So it's time to start thinking of summer which is just around the corner.  If your outdoor furniture is in need of a lift there are some very attractive fabrics to choose from.  Here is some inspiration for you and some summertime holiday photos:


Photo is my own:  Summer time, Lake Malacoota, Victoria

Photo is my own:  fishing at Lake Malacoota

Hyams Beach, NSW

Photo my own:  Malacoota, Victoria

Please contact me if you'd like to view any of these fabrics.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Bolshoi Ballet Theatre refurbishment

The reconstruction and refurbishment of the Bolshoi Theatre Main stage was a colossal project. The Theatre building has long been seen as one of Russia’s symbols but unfortunately decades of neglect had left the theatre in a desperate condition, with more than 75% unstable and making its restoration a matter of urgency.
The Italian fabric house, Rubelli, was commissioned in 2007 to provide all the textiles for its restoration.  These included damask for the boxes, the rooms behind the boxes and pelmets, and a brocatelle for the drapes and walls, both in red, as well as two types of flame-retardant velvet.
A close look at the gold damask

The grand centrepiece of Rubelli’s contribution is the three curtains for the main Bolshoi stage which required two years to research, design and produce.  The original curtain’s main design was retained but communistic iconography was replaced with the double-headed Tsarist Imperial eagle, Saint George and the Dragon and the word “Russia” in Cyrillic letters.
A man is dwarfed by the stage curtains

Here are some amazing statistics about the stage curtains: 
12,000 metres fabric
1,200 metres gold fabric
500kg of pure gold yarn
900kg is the total weight of the main stage curtain

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Art: paintings and the purely decorative

We've been very fortunate in Sydney and Canberra to be recently treated to two very different but wonderful exhibitions.

In Sydney at the AGNSW the masterpieces from the Musée National Picasso, Paris has given us a wonderful opportunity to view a broad representation of the artist's works.

At the NGA in Canberra the exquisite and luminous paintings from the Renaissance period and lent by the Accademia Carrara in Bergamo, Italy give us a rare chance to study paintings from artists never before seen in Australia.

Raffaello: San Sebastiano

Unfortunately most of us can't afford to hang paintings of that quality on our own walls but we can decorate and enhance our surroundings in an interesting way.  

Photographs grouped together in black frames with white mounts create a photo gallery full of wonderful memories.  Small framed photos or pictures are uninteresting and lonely looking if they're on their own on a big wall space.

If you have a wide enough hallway or passage you can create a gallery of your favourite paintings such as the one below.

You don't have to even hang your art works, just lean them against the wall

And if your collection is of interesting frames they too can create a decorative wall

In my photo below taken at a local yacht club, walls are covered with photos and memorabilia.  It's a charming space where the original club has not be spoiled by modernisation.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Florence Broadhurst

Florence Broadhurst wallpaper and fabric have been reproduced by Signature Prints for some time, and now Materialised has developed a contract range. This range is aimed at the hospitality and healthcare industries, or anywhere that demands high performance furnishings, including flame retardancy, waterproof upholstery, high abrasion resistance, stability and launder ability.

This range could be used domestically in high traffic areas such as family rooms or verandas.

Please contact me if you'd like to see the full range of designs and base fabrics.

A brief Florence Broadhurst bio:
In 1959 Broadhurst had established a revolutionary wallpaper business.  With a small staff, she designed, manufactured and marketed locally produced, high-quality, handcrafted wallpapers in luxurious, oversized patterns with vivid combinations of colours, inspired by an eclectic range of sources.  Brightly coloured peacocks were a feature, as were bold geometrical, striped and floral designs.

Moving to Paddington in July 1969, the company became known as Florence Broadhurst Wallpapers Pty Ltd, advertised as 'the only studio of its kind in the world' and exporting to North America, England, Hawaii, Kuwait, Peru, Norway and Paris.

By 1972 her wallpapers reportedly contained around 800 designs in eighty different colour ways.

A striking-looking woman, Broadhurst was renowned for her flamboyant clothes, antique jewellery and coiffed, hennaed hair.

Sydney's stylish set of the '60s and '70s will remember Broadhurst as the larger-than-life socialite who could be found mixing with high society when she wasn't at her Paddington factory. With her outre fashion sense and audacious personality, she was hard to miss.

She continued to work actively until her tragic death in 1977 at the age of 78.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Containers, jars and baskets

Pots, jars and containers add a decorative touch to interiors or patios; they can also have a practical use such as for wet umbrellas near the front door or storing things like golf balls or knitting wool depending on your particular interest.  Some can be used as a striking flower vase for large arrangements. They can also be converted into attractive lamp bases.
A grouping of similar jars makes an interesting feature on a mantle piece or hall table.

All the jars, baskets and containers featured here are for sale so please contact me for pricing.

Orange and white square vase

The Red lacquer lunch box on the left and the Burmese offering vessel on the right both have a warm soft red patina and are interesting and beautiful decorative objects.

I love blue and white ceramics and a grouping of various shapes in a white space creates a decorative cool and fresh look.

In the interior below Axel Vervoordt has displayed his client’s collection of blue and white pottery in a decorative wall display and carried the colours through to other elements in the room.

Here is a pretty collection of blue and white pottery imported from China; they are copies of antique pots.





Here is a very pretty and colourful ginger jar


The lacquered boxes below could be used as to hide all sorts of little things

The wooden basket below is designed to carry rice

This decorative container below is to store rice

Here is a collection of decorative and beautiful baskets.




And finally, while not strictly a container, here are Balinese baby carriers which I had to include because they are so beautiful.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Black & White

Happy New Year!  I hope you've had a restful holiday break.

After a lovely beach holiday with family I'm on deck again and already becoming busy.  

For my blog today I've borrowed from another blog I follow from the US called Elements of Style ( the reason I've done this is that I also really love a black and white theme.  It's so fresh and smart.  

I hope you too enjoy the Elements of Style selection: