LOOK SMART

Australian House & Garden - - Editor's Letter -

We all have that one friend or as­so­ciate who is al­ways im­mac­u­lately turned out, with beau­ti­fully co­or­di­nated shoes and hand­bag, man­i­cured nails and per­fect hair. As some­one who might tick off a cou­ple of the above over the course of a week, but rarely all in one mo­ment, my first thought on en­coun­ter­ing Ms Im­mac­u­late is gen­er­ally ‘Where do you find the time?’. The sec­ond is: ‘I won­der if your home is styled in a sim­i­lar vein?’

This is­sue has a dec­o­rat­ing fo­cus, as war­ranted by the sea­sonal urge to layer up our homes. It goes some way to­wards sup­port­ing the wardrobe-in­te­ri­ors link.

Brett Mickan, a Syd­ney in­te­rior de­signer with an eye-pop­ping col­lec­tion of suits and blaz­ers in beau­ti­ful shades, walks us through the ware­house con­ver­sion he and his part­ner Nick English call home (p40). “I strive to make my in­te­ri­ors about the in­hab­i­tants,” says Brett, “as though you have gath­ered all your favourite things, put them to­gether and some­how they all sit com­fort­ably.” In Brett and Nick’s case, colour and pat­tern are a big part of the pic­ture. “Be­gin with a bal­ance of large blocks of sim­i­lar colour tones,” says Brett. “You can then in­tro­duce any ac­cent you like as long as you bal­ance the colour and tex­ture around the space.”

In tran­si­tion­ing an ’80s Syd­ney project home to a com­fort­able and per­son­al­ity-filled fam­ily home, Lisa Bur­dus set about lay­er­ing old and new, brave paint hues and brightly pat­terned fab­rics, thrilling the own­ers in the process. “This room is a bit like good make-up,” says owner So­phie, de­scrib­ing her dra­matic yet dig­ni­fied study (p87). “It’s com­plex but so well done that it looks ef­fort­less.”

The wardrobe of Bris­bane in­te­rior de­signer Rowena Corn­well’s client,

Leanne, was a big driver when it came to in­flu­enc­ing the style of her home ren­o­va­tion and in­te­ri­ors makeover (p96). “Leanne’s style is ev­i­dent in the clothes she wears – clas­sic and tai­lored, of­ten with a twist,” says Rowena. “To re­flect that same aes­thetic in her home we chose an el­e­gant, tonal pal­ette of neu­trals, char­coal and navy, with pops of aqua­ma­rine. The fab­rics are finely woven and soft to the touch, and they layer up beau­ti­fully.”

Sim­ple tweaks can still bring bril­liant re­sults. Re­uphol­ster a chair, change up some cush­ions; hang a daz­zling art­work (read about the stun­ning paint­ing on our cover p194); carve out a per­sonal nook within an open-plan room (p175); or as­sem­ble favourite ob­jects on a shelf or table, to en­joy ev­ery time you pass by. “Cre­at­ing spa­ces that show cu­rated col­lec­tions ex­presses in­di­vid­u­al­ity and slows down the age­ing process be­cause the mix blurs the date of in­stal­la­tion,” ad­vises Brett Mickan. We’re all ears!

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