The Daily Telegraph (Sydney) - Home - - FRONT PAGE - With editor Robyn Wil­lis robyn.wil­lis@news.com.au

As far as good taste would al­low

There’s such a fine line be­tween good taste and bad, whether you’re talk­ing about fash­ion or in­te­rior de­sign.

I mean, how many times have you looked back on old pho­tos and had a bit of a gig­gle about what you were wear­ing 10 or 20 years ago?

In the end, most of it comes down to con­fi­dence — and safety in num­bers. That is, if ev­ery­one is paint­ing their walls Tus­can yel­low and dis­tress­ing their tim­ber fur­ni­ture (early ‘90s in­te­rior dec­o­rat­ing, any­one?) then it sud­denly seems like the most stylish choice.

So I al­ways ad­mire those who are pre­pared to step out on their own, whether the crowd fol­lows them or not.

I can’t imag­ine what Syd­neysiders must have made of some­one like Florence Broad­hurst when she launched her ranges of in­cred­i­bly colour­ful and heav­ily pat­terned wall­pa­pers in the 1970s. Ad­mit­tedly, she was rid­ing the wave of de­sign ex­u­ber­ance that char­ac­terised this pe­riod but it was a risk all the same.

But it takes more than a unique point of view to be anointed with the crown of good taste. It re­quires some­one with that kind of per­sonal charisma to step for­ward with such bold con­fi­dence that it’s hard not to be swept up in it or deny its claim to be at the cen­tre of style.

Not ev­ery­one with an eye for well-de­signed in­te­rior spa­ces is in­ter­ested in cap­tur­ing the at­ten­tion of the wider pub­lic, or even their wider cir­cle of friends. A friend I shared a house with once has main­tained his life­long love of kitsch, from OTT re­li­gious iconog­ra­phy to bub­blegum pop icons. Frankly, it’s not my cup of tea but the way he puts it to­gether, there’s def­i­nitely a cer­tain style about it.

So let’s set aside good taste and instead boldly go in our own de­sign direc­tions to see what lies be­yond the ev­ery day. What is there to lose?

There’s a lovely ‘60s Euro­pean vibe about the Pi­etro ottoman that works just as well as a cof­fee ta­ble when the sit­u­a­tion de­mands, $419.95, from West Elm, west­elm.com.au

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