Liv­ing Neale Whi­taker marks his first year with Stel­lar.

The re­cent trends that have passed through this page might one day be clas­sics

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - Stellar - - Contents -

Happy birth­day, Stel­lar! It’s crazy to think a whole year has gone by since my dogs, Ol­lie and Otis, and I fea­tured – along with Rachael Finch, Matt Pre­ston and Mi­randa Kerr – in the launch cam­paign. And a year since my first Stel­lar Liv­ing col­umn dis­cussed in­te­rior de­sign’s on­go­ing love af­fair with Art Deco. And while you could ar­gue that 2016’s an­nus hor­ri­bilis has segued into an equally un­cer­tain 2017, there’s al­ways good news on the de­sign front. Good­ness knows we need it.

It’s been a busy 12 months, style­wise. Who­ever said home trends move more slowly than fash­ion? I think I did. But these col­umns prove me wrong. We’ve cov­ered ev­ery­thing from Moroc­can rugs to gallery-style art and the prickly sub­ject of cacti; met con­tes­tants from The Block and style icons like Italy’s Pa­trizia Moroso, Bri­tish de­signer Matthew Wil­liamson and lo­cal hero Greg Natale. There’s been ro­bust de­bate on just how un­made an un­made bed should be and which small rooms should al­ways re­main be­hind closed doors. We’ve dis­cussed Scandi-style dog beds, our love af­fair with mono­grams, the warm fuzzi­ness of hygge and a Ja­panese per­spec­tive on de­clut­ter­ing. Col­lect 10 points if you re­mem­ber that was called Kon­mari. And through­out this I’ve told you what’s on trend while also ad­vis­ing that what mat­ters most is what you love.

Re­cently I hosted a styling mas­ter­class on be­half of Vogue Liv­ing and fur­ni­ture re­tailer King Liv­ing. Vogue Liv­ing stylist Joseph Gardner had cre­ated a coolly el­e­gant con­tem­po­rary room around King Liv­ing’s new­est sofa de­sign. It ticked many style boxes that have been dis­cussed on this page. The Zaza sofa (de­signed by Charles Wil­son) and cush­ions were uphol­stered in con­trast­ing shades of mil­len­nial pink; there were ro­man­tic, fig­u­ra­tive prints by Aus­tralian Robert Mal­herbe, sculp­ture by Di­nosaur De­signs’s Stephen Or­mandy and moody ab­stract works by Mel­bourne artist Caro­line Walls. Un­der­pinned by a gen­er­ous Ar­madillo & Co rug was an an­gu­lar black floor lamp echo­ing the Deco pro­files that con­tinue to in­flu­ence us, and a mono­chrome ce­ramic vase de­signed in the 1960s by Ital­ian mae­stro Et­tore Sottsass.

It oc­curred to me that at some point in the fu­ture – maybe 20 or even 50 years from now – his­tory might con­sider the Zaza room as a quin­tes­sen­tial late-teen Aus­tralian in­te­rior. And what will define that mo­ment in time is our cur­rent abil­ity to cherry-pick the de­tail of past decades (colours, shapes, fab­rics) to cre­ate a look that is in­dis­putably now. Neale Whi­taker is edi­tor-at-large of Vogue Liv­ing.

“Who­ever said home trends move more slowly than fash­ion? I think I did”

FRONT SEAT (from top) Vogue Liv­ing stylist Joseph Gardner’s box-tick­ing room for King Liv­ing; the brand’s soon-to-be-iconic Zaza sofa which the room was cre­ated around; an ex­am­ple of hygge, the Dan­ish con­cept of cosi­ness, which was trend­ing this year.

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