Sep 30, 2011

Weekend Thoughts: Time for Glamour...

After a very busy week, 
so thrilled that the weekend beckons.
And a little reminder that there is always time for 
a spot of glamour on these precious days off.
Perhaps a chance to wear a pretty gown,
for sipping cocktails or a cosy dinner for two.
Or a an early morning jaunt on an elegant black steed,
trotting through old gardens.
A few moments of utter luxury...
...breakfast in bed on Sunday morning,
the sun streaming through pretty windows, 
with freshly made coffee,
buttery croissants & dollops of strawberry jam.
Supper in the garden,
with chilled Champagne,
and time to linger.
Chatting at interval time with girlfriends,
during a fabulous new theatre production.
Feeling virtuous watching all that fresh healthy exercise,
while still looking glamourous.
Or simply kicking back at home with a fun cocktail,
vintage bar accessories
and some treasured friends.
So even if you are just walking the dog, 
I hope you have a lovely weekend,
with a little time out just for glamour! 

images: 1/2/3/4/5/6/7/8/9

Sep 29, 2011

A Walk in My Garden...

 Come for a walk in the garden with me, 
to see what has come into flower in the spring sunshine...
 One of the things I love most about this garden
is that there is always something in flower, 
so I can gather armfuls of botanical goodness to decorate the house.

But at the moment, 
it has outdone itself with picking options! 

images: blue fruit

Sep 28, 2011

One room: two looks...Villa + Villa's own home

Quite amazing how you can achieve 
a dramatically different look
in the same room,
simply by switching up the decorative elements.
 In the top image,
crisp white walls, floorboards stained in charcoal,
a sisal rug, & colourful artworks + flowers 
make the room snappy and exciting.
While the bottom image 
{the before version} 
doesn't have quite the same vibrancy.
It's still a beautiful room,
but a quieter one.
Again, here is a before version of a space, 
used as a sitting room.
Same room: different function & style. 
Now it is a child's bedroom,
and the dark walls & floor have created a sanctuary.
These images are all from the Sydney home 
of the design & architecture
duo of Maria & Eduardo Villa,
who run the studio of Villa + Villa.
It's a dramatically gorgeous way to illustrate
how a little contrast of colour & texture
can make a room come to life.

Images: 1/4: The Design Files
2/3/5/6: Villa + Villa 

Sep 27, 2011

Designer to Watch: Amy Boers: Dresses of Romance

Flowing vanilla-ivory chiffon, gathered & draped,
fringed cream ostrich feathers
& black satin bows. 
The RTW collection from young Sydney designer Amy Boers
has the romance of the 1930s & 40s as inspiration.
A black satin trench,
with over scaled jet black buttons,
perfect over cream pants,
for work or for dinner.
Amy Boers is a couture designer, 
but has launched her RTW collection this year
under the label Amee Lou.
Exquisitely feminine, 
in glamourous fabrics & cuts,
these are clothes that celebrate the beauty 
of the female form
with style & grace.

Amee Lou by Amy Boers

Sep 26, 2011

On the Market: Painted Ceilings, Ballrooms & a Slice of History

  Oh, let's imagine how grand a ball 
may have been had in the 1870s,
at this lovely mansion for sale
just outside Melbourne.
Mt Rothwell was built in 1873
in the Victorian Italianate style.
The exquisitely painted original ceilings in this drawing room
were done by the American artist Clay Beeler.
Clay Beeler had recently finished his extraordinary murals 
in the Royal Exhibition Building,
built for the International Exhibition of 1880,
at a time of great prosperity and enthusiasm for 
the future in the new Industrial Age.
Themes of mythology, Empire & the Modern Age 
were represented in murals painted on the ceilings & walls,
like this "Night" sylph.
Beeler's bill for painting the interior and exterior of 
the Exhibition Building was £18,195.
In 1873! Yikes, that was a HUGE cost!
(Puts a modern painting bill in perspective.)
Ah, such elegant times the 1880s were for the wealthy folk.
Do you think these gentlemen may care for a quick game 
of billiards in our Mt Rothwell mansion?
It's ready and waiting for them.
In fact, I would rather like to play a shot or two in this lovely room.
Will you join me?
The homestead has been recently renovated by the current owners,
who have brought it back to its former glory.
Let's take a peek at what they have done...
A Victorian clawfoot bath sits regally 
amongst marble floor tiles & floral patterned wall tiles,
contrasted with plain white walls & simple joinery
in the newly renovated bathroom.
I love the idea of a walk in linen press. 
And certainly love the prospect of a ladies' withdrawing room.
Some elements, such as the wonderful cream-enamelled wood stove,
have been left to sit gently next to a more modern kitchen fitout.
And the opulence of the original mansion
lives on in this glamourous bathroom with sparkling white 
mosaic tiles & a chandelier over the bath.
Built for an age of grand entertaining,
the homestead of 24 rooms
sits on land of 124 hectares,
and yet it is a 35 minute drive to Melbourne.

So if you have a spare $4 million, 
would you like to live here?

Property: Mt Rothwell Estate, 985 Little River-Ripley Rd, Little River, Victoria
Agents & property images: RT Edgar
1880s Victorian fashion: The Black Tie Guide

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