Australian House & Garden
“Enjoy the new freedoms and SEASON’S GREETINGS from the H&G team.”
If the events of the last two years have taught us anything, it is to be resilient, flexible, and in the words of Crosby, Stills and Nash, to love the one (or ones) you’re with. At the end of last year, I was ready to hop on a plane and join my family for the festive season when the Queensland border suddenly closed and all plans were thwarted. In the end, I stayed in Sydney, declined generous invitations for Christmas lunch and spent one of my more unusual, but enjoyable, Christmases painting a lattice garden fence white while listening to an assortment of the ABC’s finest from Classic FM to Triple J to Double J. How’s that for commitment to house and garden beautification? Christmas lunch was a little selection of pas tries and some non-alcoholic tipples (it’s important to remain upright if you want precision brushstrokes). I felt a somewhat guilty pleasure spending the day solo. I know many people spend the day alone. Divorce and estrangement can lead to unusual and sometimes lonely Christmas arrangements – I have had a few of those too. Hopefully, the pandemic, while restricting us in one way, has given us the freedom to celebrate how and when we want to–together or not–and experience gratitude for the unexpected pleasures borne from downtime and self-rejuvenation.
In this issue, we profile a super-talented group of creative personalities – including stellar chef Neil Perry – who all talk about the importance of slowing down and giving back (page 65). Neil wants to spend more time on his Hope Delivery charity next year and in the spirit of the season has shared two of his signature recipes with us.
All the houses in this issue have been thoughtfully designed to play host to whatever the season brings. My favourite anecdote is about Corinne and Tony Maluccio’s inner-Sydney terrace on page 112. While Corinne enjoyed her hen’s day, Tony was secretly buying what has become their stylishly renovated home for their small family. Another home that has adapted to family needs belongs to architect Georgina Wilson’ s parents–see 152. The home has been sympathetic ally refreshed for lots of grandchildren to enjoy.
Our gorgeous line-up of gifts, page 47, will inspire and stream line your shopping. Whether you are setting the table for one or 10, stylist Sophie Wilson’s floral infused looks will finesse your festive vision – see page 33. And if you feel a surge of seasonal gardening coming on, turn to 175 for some magical motivation.
Whatever you’re planning, take care, enjoy the new freedoms and season’s greetings from the Australian House & Garden team. I am determined to make it to sunny Queensland this year!