design

A real life castle in Brisbane. Wowsers.

Castle Rumble.

A mystical abode is hidden within the trees and surrounding homes of … Beenleigh, near Brisbane. It is for sale, and a friend and I couldn’t resist the adventure of visiting on an open house day. As did a bunch of other intrigued punters.

Mr Rumble started out living in a caravan on this block of land, (which is a huge 4 hectares btw) and built an entire castle himself. And then filled it with things that he made, himself.

What amazed me so much was the dedication and time that had so obviously been poured into every element of this place. A man built by hand, his own dream home. This, is impressive. He didn’t conform to conventions, he didn’t use any interior design rules, he probably didn’t even get council approval for most of it, but what he did was whatever he wanted. I admire this. He was on site on the day, and I don’t know what he was thinking or feeling, but he was hidden away. And it must have been strange for him to see all these people coming and being so nosy, and it must be somewhat difficult to be letting this lifetime of work go.

I’ll let the pictures show you what is truly an incredible property. Also, this video by the real estate agent is pretty cool.

Teneriffe Woolstore Apartment – A coveted address & humble home.

Repurposed and renovated buildings are some of my favourite streetscapes to look upon. To me, there is not much more exciting than giving new meaning and life to unexpected spaces around a city. In Brisbane, the Teneriffe Woolstore Apartments are a beautiful example of this. With due respect and highlight to history, blending modern architecture into the the authentic features of the buildings, Teneriffe is one of the most sought after areas to live in Brisbane.  (more…)

Chair Design Hot Seat of the Day – ‘Lady’ by Marco Zanuso

It has been a while, but I do have a beautiful piece for you to gaze upon today. ‘Lady’ was originally designed in 1951 for Italian furniture design company Arflex, but she seduced me with her peacock feather pattern from the Poliform website.

What I love about good design is that it never really dates. This could have been created in any decade since the 50’s but what I think gives it away as a ‘mid century modern‘ piece, is those telltale curves and angled legs. It is timeless, comforting, and potentially humble, depending on the finish you’d choose. That silky, almost iridescent green and blue peacock pattern is anything but humble, and would create an amazing statement chair in a mysterious room.

Be sure to have a look at more pictures and info on the spec sheet.

lady greenlady houndstoothlady peacock

Apartment Design Part 2 – Floor Plan

I introduced the brief and concept for my Deluxe Flux project over the semester in this post. Here is some more of the work I’ve done. We had 77sqm internal, and 11sqm balcony to work with. There were obviously some restrictions with positioning of services, block work, and windows. My main goal was to try and create as much storage and function as possible, and I feel good about what I’ve achieved in that regard. I don’t think I’m 100% satisfied, but you know, it’s my first go at designing an apartment, and I did end up with a Distinction for the subject, so it can’t be too bad! It got to a point where I had to just had to stop rearranging and tweaking, and be content with what I’d done. Not having real people to deal with, or budget constraints made it too easy to just keep working on it.

I loved this space planning and design. I was so meticulous about measuring everything, and checking it against anthropometric data and ergonomics. I really wanted to make sure I’d thought through as much as possible, from a construction and building point of view, and also standing in the shoes of my client.

Having a new baby, they will have a lot of new things that they need to keep somewhere, hence storage, and they will spend a lot of time in the kitchen, so it needs to be well integrated with living and play space. There are some details that aren’t specifically mentioned on this plan, like the custom seating in the kitchen nook features storage compartments, and some of the custom cabinetry like the shelving in the living room and bathroom. The nursery would also feature frosted glass louvre at the top of the walls to meet Building Code for ventilation and light. But to be honest I didn’t fully resolve this, because I’ve got cupboard space there. I have considered the construction implications of the position of the laundry, and have made a deliberate decision not to include an ensuite. The configuration of the toilet and bathroom next to the master bedroom was the next best thing, and created more space for a study nook and storage.

I made decisions based on my original concept, and goals. But I do realise after the process, that sometimes you just end up in a certain place because you went to another place first. And it might not have ended up the best solution. It’s a complex process.

Please find here the original shell of the floor plan, and just one drawing from my folio of drawings.

Hamilton Harbour Shell

My DELUXE FLUX APARTMENT DESIGN drawn in AutoCAD.

If you are interested in what Hamilton Harbour really did with the space, you can find the floor plan for this particular unit here. I can honestly say that I did not lay eyes on this floor plan until this very moment that I write this post.

Apartment Design Part 1 – Design Brief & Concept

It has been a while since I posted. It’s been a few crazy months! My project for this semester has been a full design and decoration of an apartment, and I want to share piece by piece what I’ve come up with. (more…)

Sideboard love. The mid century influence strikes again.

Sideboard love.

Oslo Buffet

Oslo Buffet

I asked my husband if he liked this, he said… “Yeah! I do. Except all the random colours. Why does it only have one blue door, and all that white. The wood would just look better.”

I can see his point, the timber is lovely. And it challenged me to look deeper as to why I liked it so much, just as it is.

To me it’s fresh, interesting, very mid century and scandinavian, styles that I find myself drawn to. The white and grey makes the timber look even more lovely, because it offers a clean crispness to contrast the warm and textured wood against. There is attention to detail in the rounded edges. It’s asymmetrical and imperfect. It’s fun, contemporary, but not too serious. It’s just cool.

Shanty Town Interiors – Hong Kong

If you’ve googled ‘interiors’ lately, you’d know that the images that fill the page are spacious rooms made up of a palette of neutrals and browns, fairly minimal in design, with fancy furniture and clean surfaces. Then google ‘slum interiors’ and see how vastly different it is. Cluttered and dirty, crowded and small, colourful and well lived in, it presents a very different picture.

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy perusing through Houzz as much as anyone, but I am also really intrigued and moved by the way that most of the world actually live, and the reasons why. Generally speaking, here in Australia, we are a fairly privileged society, where there is an economy and legislation that supports the provision of safe and habitable housing for all, although there are a number of people still without that, even here.

Hong Kong has a bit of a different story. There is a large influx of refugees into Hong Kong, mainly from Bangladesh. Many are victims of torture and kidnapping. When they escape their country, they can receive minimal support from the government if they register themselves as a refugee. They are allowed $1200 a month for rent, which although to some may seem generous, it goes directly to landlords. When you see the images of the homes they rent, you will realise this is not generous. (I could be wrong, but it looks to me like landlords are welcoming the government funding, and squashing as many people as they can into unmaintained buildings.) Refugees also get given a bag of food every 10 days, but they are not allowed to work. This has forced people with next to nothing into communities to try and survive together.

The Hong Kong government is not under any obligation to process refugee claims for visa, so people can be living for years, with no money, or ability to work, living in places that are not maintained to a habitable standard. Next time you think your house is too small, remember some of these images. There is no deliberate design here, although I am certain there are some tricks to using space well. They are intriguing and sad and beautiful all at once. Photo reference links are at the bottom of the post.

Rooftop Shanty Towns – dornob.com

Hong Kong’s Refugee Shame – timeout.co.uk

Exhibit on Hong Kong Micro Apartments Exposes Human Rights Issues – inhabitat.com

Aerial views of Hong Kong micro apartments – inhabitat.com

 

Mid Century Modern – A poster overview.

One of my assignments last semester was to do a poster on a particular era in interior design. Like Donald Draper to a blonde I gravitated to Mid Century Modern.  I love love love this part of design history for so many reasons. A couple of which I will discuss today. More will most likely come later. 

1. It was the incorporation of Scandinavian influences into Western industrialisation, and the progression of the Art Deco movement into a new thing.  I find the history of design so fascinating. 

2. It was a pivotal turning point for interior design as a profession. (Ah, that’s good. Now I get to do this!)

3. I love a good rounded corner.

4. Just watch a few seasons of Mad Men to see all it’s visual poetry in motion. 

This lovely poster I made really doesn’t do this magnificent era any justice, I just picked a few of my favourite bits about it and represented that in 2D. There is so much more in depth and interesting information about how these trends came about, the history and progression of design in this time, and the key designers that made it happen.  People like Charles and Ray Eames carved out an innovative path with their designs and other creative work, which continues to influence designers and interiors. 

This is in no way a full representation of my appreciation for Mid Century Modern and all it entails. But it is a token of my respect and love for a flippin’ amazing timeframe! 

 

Mid Century Modern Poster-01