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Posts from the ‘Fabric’ Category

Country Manor

Just wanted to share some photos of this lovely country property we recently shot for Country Collections – the full story is in this month’s issue (along with a story on Rachel Ashwell’s new B&B, it has these cool deep dirty blue walls – much cooler than her usual pretty whitewashed style)…the bunting and vintage patchwork cushions (above) are from Moose and Bird (Melinda’s based on the Sunshine Coast and has a gorgeous blog for those, who like me, love a great vintage find and appreciate things made by hand – which reminds me, I stumbled across a very cool, sort of retro sewing lounge right here in Brisbane. Piece Together is situated upstairs in the Woolloongabba antiques precinct – it is adorable and you can learn to sew a cushion or just join a ‘Stitch ‘n’ Bitch’ session – I’m so doing it!).

Photos by the gorgeous Anastasia K 

Window dressing

I was just looking at this gorgeous image (top) from stylist Atlanta Bartlett’s website (I think “The Relaxed Home” was one of the first decorating books I bought) – and I love how the curtains puddle on the floor – however, not hugely practical when sweeping or mopping! I’m also a huge fan of roman blinds, so classic  – and unlined sheer white curtains, when you don’t need the privacy but just want to diffuse the light or hide a view (both images from Silent Gliss) – anyway, if you’re contemplating which window treatments to use, here are a few thoughts…

Curtains

Though they were considered dated at one stage, curtains have recently made a huge comeback – this is partly due to the ever-increasing range of gorgeous fabrics available. From hand dyed organic hemp to synthetics created by the latest technology – the choice is enormous.

I still prefer the natural fibres – linen/cotton blends for a relaxed style – and copious metres of pure silk pooling onto the floor for opulence. The downside in using natural fibres is they will eventually disintegrate in the sun – so protect them well with a good lining.

Curtains are perfect in the bedroom, as they not only create a lush, cocooning ambience, but they also provide the best window coverage and are capable of blocking out all external light (very important in summer with our lack of daylight saving!).

Shutters

We often think of wooden shutters as very French – but in actual fact, shutters have a long history of use in Queensland homes. Originally they were used externally on verandas but now are more commonly used internally.

Fresh, white shutters look just superb – especially against a deeper wall colour – and they can be manipulated to provide excellent shade whilst still allowing cross breezes through and the view in (the bigger the blade the better the view).

The downside to shutters is they can be expensive – blinds may be a more affordable option.

Rollers and Romans

In a contemporary home with clean lines, roller blinds work well as the tracks can be matched to the wall or architrave colour, or even recessed into the wall or ceiling cavity, so as the window treatment is as unobtrusive as possible.

The fabrics available range from translucent to block-out – so you can choose the appropriate amount of privacy and light required. Rollers are not suitable for bedrooms, (unless layered with a curtain), as slithers of light always come through.

Romans particularly suit a more traditional home and look fabulously elegant but relaxed in linen or cotton. All blinds should be custom made for a clean fit.

Petit Trianon

Just realised how much I love this fabric – and have probably over-used it in my house! It’s been around for a few years and I still love it – just goes to show, sometimes it’s worth splashing out on an expensive designer fabric – it’s like splashing out on a piece of designer clothing that you’ll wear for years, well worth it in the long run – and like teaming a designer ballerina skirt with a Bond’s singlet – it makes your other pieces look more expensive by association!

These are all different colourways of Mokum’s ‘Petit Trianon’ – the Chartreuse I used as a tablecloth for my daughter’s thirteenth birthday party on the weekend, very decadent I know but it looked so gorgeous set with vintage china; the Night cushion was made up for my sister’s bedroom; and the Coral cushions were made up for my book but I now use them in my living room – I was told Mokum flew it’s fabric designers to France to visit Marie Antoinette’s palace as the inspiration behind this collection – this particular design is a modern take on a French Baroque wall ornamentation – the design is embroidered on a linen base cloth.

Before & After – Vintage Chair

These are my favourite chairs, I found them at a local garage sale for only $300 each – a few people were shocked that I’d paid that much at a garage sale – but they were the real deal, so trust me, it was a bargain. I had one of them professionally re-covered for my book (by Parry & William’s Upholsterers – they’re the best, been around for a long time). Played it safe fabric-wise with a gorgeous thick linen from Mokum (‘Mica’ in Cigar) – and now I’m ready to have the other one re-covered – and I want to be a little more daring – I want to do a pattern but because of the deep buttoning detail, will have to choose a small patterned fabric – I’m liking this one from Schumacher, ‘Chiang Mai Dragon’ in Mocha…let you know how it goes!

Photos of vintage chair by Anastasia K – from our book, ‘New Vintage’

In Love with Liberty

I’m having a little love affair with Liberty at the moment – especially their lovely small floral prints, from the 1930s, which they are most famous for.

I’ve bought their latest book, “The Liberty Book of Home Sewing” and it’s divine – and so is their web site, on which you can download some very cute patterns and watch step-by-step sewing tutorials.

Perhaps I’m not the only one who adores Liberty because I recently found this Sheridan bed linen for my daughter’s room – which reminds me of Liberty!

I’ve also attached some very pretty small floral prints from www.liberty.co.uk. (They also have a very good on-line store, which I wish I’d discovered in time for Christmas!).