Friday, September 21, 2012

Renovation Don'ts - Part II

Every time I open a property paper lately, I see this beautiful house for sale in Coorparoo and it reminds me of, what I believe, to be a very important 'Renovation Don't'.
You don't need to race in and change everything about a house immediately for the sake of change. Think people.  Once features are ripped out, they're gone for good, and there's some things that can't be faked, like the patina of age and time that gives a house its charm and character. If you don't want charm and character, if you want everything to be shiny and perfect, maybe an old house is not for you?
Every time I see a picture of the kitchen in this house, I automatically think of that saying; 'Fools rush in'.
How beautiful and gracious is this kitchen? I can just imagine the lady of the house clicking around in it in her kitten heels when it was brand new, making sandwiches for her girlfriends and a tray of g & ts on a hot day. Call me a pessimist, but I just know some doody head is going to make it their mission to rip this pretty girl out and install some sleek pre-fab eye sore.
This is how I would have loved our kitchen to look, but the existing 'kitchen' in our house was more just a room with a sink and a recess where the wood burner had been.
Just look at this beautiful house. It's at 251 Chatworth Road, Coorparoo.

If you're about to renovate, may I suggest living in your house as is for six or twelve months. The plans that we had in mind when we first moved in changed completely after living in our house for 12 months.
You probably don't remember it, but when Alex Baldwin's character was made the head of CNN in 30 Rock, he say's 'Well, the first thing I'll do is redecorate my office, even though it's perfectly fine the way it is'.
It's human nature to go into a new place and mark our territory. Remodelling or redecorating is the more civilized equivalent of peeing around the boundaries.
Just keep in mind, it's not always necessary. Old houses are gracious and romantic, two qualities that are being wrung out of the world on a daily basis. You may find it very refreshing to forgo fashion in the name of something more classic and nostalgic.
Say no to remodelling and redesigning more, and embrace the practice of restoring and preserving, at least that way, you can always change your mind.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Who's a pretty boy?

Look at this beautiful cockatoo I have been babysitting. He's about to go into the shop, but I'm going to miss him like the deserts miss the rain (to quote Ace of Base). He's not only gorgeous but so darn versatile, you can read by him, look at him and sit next to him as I have been doing for the past 24 hours. He looks great during the day....
and at night...
If you're interested in him (shameless advertising I know), click here.
In other news, I'm concerned Peaches may grow up to join the army. This is how I found her bed this morning when I got up.
She's five you know, and I could bounce a coin on this thing.
Hands up if you voted for Campbell Newman? Hmm, I thought so, no one seems to be owning up to that.
Talk about civil unrest. It's interesting times.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

A new era

Forever the tardy bloggist, at least now I have a good excuse.
I've opened a shop. That's right. And again. I've opened a shop.
I've opened a shop with my friend Liz, and it's at the Woolloongabba Antiques Centre, which is a happier place than Disneyland if you ask me.
It's called.
It's a gut-wrenching, heart-wrenching, exciting, yet nauseating roller coaster ride opening your own 'store'. At the moment, now open for business, we're in the eye of the storm. Will anyone love our things? So far, yes. That pair of white chairs pictured below sold in the first few hours.
We've kicked off with a Spring time theme, complete with lawn, and the focus on verandah style furniture.
Who wouldn't love this - three pieces chock-full of fabulousness.

 This gorgeous two seater is one of my favourite pieces.
We have a blog which you can look at here, where we show what's in-store and preview bits and pieces that are on their way. If you are looking for anything in particular, no matter how obscure, let us know. Since we're scouring, fossicking and trawling anyway, we may just find what you're looking for.
If you find yourself in Woolloongabba, drop in and have a look. You can see Woolloongabba Antiques Centre's website here.
Until next time.....

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Trigger happy

My husband recently taught me to spray paint, and what a Pandora's Box he's opened. I keep dragging furniture out of the house and painting it white. Soon I intend to venture out into some more exciting colour schemes, but for now, this is the seagrass setting I've been intending to paint for the past three years.
Let me tell you, when you've got your hands on a spray gun, a compressor and a tin of paint the world's your oyster.
I love painted furniture, particularly painted cane, and it's so beautiful and appropriate for our balmy climate.
Some people think it's terrible to paint timber furniture, but a lot of it is just 'drab and brown'.
I love a pop of colour.
Have a look at these beauties.
Til next time....

Monday, September 3, 2012

Well, hello there Spring time!

Technically, I haven't done a post since Winter. It's now undoubtedly Spring time - and the favourite time of year for 99% of the world - based on my personal research.
My own swimming season extends for only one week of the year, between Christmas and New Year's, however, other's are happy to swim year round, even in August. I found these two de-frosting in the sun after a dip in the pool.

The giant jacaranda trees on our front footpath are about to wreak their annual havoc by dropping every single one of their 10 trillion tiny leaves over the next few weeks. I'm already finding leaves in the bathroom sink and down the hallway- luckily, they redeem themselves by bursting into brilliant purple in October.
Correct me if I'm wrong, and who doesn't love being corrected, but I believe they were planted around Queensland University so their flowers would remind students of when to hit the books for the end of year exams.
These four tonnes of blue stones have been sorted into various piles according to their size and shape. No, it's not the work of a mad man, but my husband, on the cusp of a new landscaping project - stone walls at the bottom of our front stairs.
He's already made a start. It's tedious, time consuming work, and not for the faint hearted.

I had the base cushions recovered on my Eiffel Tower chairs. Basic beige with black piping for every day....
... and on the flipside, a Tommy Bahama style tropicale print for when we're feeling a little more festive.

Speaking of Eiffel Tower/spun fibreglass furniture, I happened upon the mother load recently.

About twelve pieces over two different settings, including a plant stand, two seater settee and carver chairs. A touch of marine grade white paint and they'll come up a treat. If you'd like to get your hands on some, watch this space!
Does anyone know about this building? It's on the grounds of the mental health facility at Wacol. We found it when we were looking at the hundreds of kangaroos on the Gailes Golf Course late one afternoon. It's a sandstone building with timber verandahs, right on the Brisbane River. It's fenced off and in very bad shape.
It's a stunning building, I'm not sure what the plans are. I can't imagine Campbell spending any money to restore it at the moment.
Hoping everyone enjoyed their Father's Day. I ate half a lamb for lunch and spent the remainder of the day digesting, like a boa constrictor that'd swallowed a goat. It was like Christmas in September?