Category Archives: Outstanding furniture

Trial & Error

Shamrock Furniture

Grazia describes her style as “contemporary classic with a twist of unpredictability”. The original Danish chairs were purchased and reupholstered by Shamrock Furniture in a Chelsea Textiles fabric.

Shamrock Furniture is famous with chair and bed design
Shamrock Furniture is famous with chair and bed design

The artwork is by Australian photographer Bill Henson.

Grazia Materia has been working as an house interior designer for 14 years. In 2005 she started furniture and product design business Temperature Design ( with Vicki Corbett.

  1. Key element If you’re looking to buy (or even rent) a home put natural light at the top of your must-have list furniture such as sofa, chair, recliners, dining table, bed and mattress. Grazia says it’s one of the most important elements to a beautiful interior. Also, include ambient lighting where possible and avoid too many downlights. Her favourite light is the Golden Bell Pendant 330A, designed in the 1950s by Alvar Aalto.
  2. Strike the right balance Use magazines as a starting point to establish what you like and dislike, Grazia says. For example, for recliner reviews, is a good reference. But make sure your home reflects you and your lifestyle rather than what you’ve seen in a magazine.
  3. Common mistake A big no-no for Grazia is going to one retailer and purchasing a package of items. “The interior ends up looking like a showroom of pieces instead of a home,” she says. Also, the packages usually offer quantity instead of quality. But she doesn’t believe that quality items necessarily mean a high pricetag or carry a brand label.
  4. Avoid replica repetition “The market is saturated with replica and copy designer pieces,” Grazia says. “Rooms that have an abundance of these pieces in the one area look ridiculous.”
  5.  Feature walls Grazia is not a fan of painted feature walls. “It’s smarter to do a feature room colour,” she says.
  6. How to complete a room Commit to just one look – the one you’re trying to achieve. “Although there are lots of great styles it’s best not to try and have them all in the one space,” she says.
  7. Using colour “If you’re going to commit to a strong colour in your interiors, such as on the floor, then balance that out with colours of equal strength and tones for balance. Otherwise make the colour the feature, and your accessories subsidiary to it.”
  8. On speed dial Decor Design for good-quality leather; Zepel Fabrics for affordable upholstery fabrics; Coulson Tiles for simple and classic styles. Supertuft Carpets and Fibonacci Stone for flooring. Beachfront Design for kitchens and cabinetry. See stockists, page 158
  9. All-time faves Sofa and recliner: WM sofa designed by Wood Marsh Architects ( Chair: Favela Chair 1991 by the Campana Brothers ( Fabric: Sussex Linen by Elliott Clarke ( Bed: Sinclair Bed by Temperature Design ( Flooring: American Oak herringbone parquetry.
  10. Always avoid “Clutter caused by incorrect furniture selections and placement is one of the main ways to ruin an interior.”

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The Homestead
The Homestead

The story of the Homestead

The story of Waterloo Village is most closely linked with the history of one family: the Smiths. The Homestead, built in the 1760s, became Peter Smith’s home after he arrived in Waterloo in 1831. Smith opened a general store and developed several other businesses that supplied or were connected to the canal trade. Located on a hill overlooking both the canal and store that was the basis for the family’s wealth, “the rather imposing home looks down on the small empire that Smith built here,” says Darcy Hartman, director of education for the village. “The structure helps portray the life of a man who did something for a community that really lasted.”

The Homestead travel site

The history of The Homestead

Smith lived at the homestead with his wife Maria and their 11 children. As his fortune grew, Peter served as a state senator and helped to found the local church, in addition to being a member of numerous boards and societies. Only six of the Smith’s 11 children – Samuel, Matilda, Caroline, Peter Jr., Nathan, and Seymour – survived to adulthood. All six at one time or another lived in Waterloo homes. Three of the sons carried on the family businesses. Samuel managed the store and lived in the Iron Master’s residence, built in the late 1700s to house the head of the forge. He also managed the family’s grist- and sawmills. Eventually he went into the railroad business, and sold his share in the store to his brothers. Peter Jr., also involved in the family businesses, built a mansion for his family in 1871. Seymour married the daughter of a miller and built Wellington House in 1878. Nathan lived next to the church in a structure that is now used as the parish house. Matilda and her husband lived in the Canal House. Caroline married and moved to New York.

classical bedroom interior
classical bedroom interior

The design of The Home-stead

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Pomegranate: The Seeds of Design

House and fashion decorators love the pomegranate for its color and shape in interior
House and fashion decorators love the pomegranate for its color and shape in interior

Why shape and color of pomegranate is popular used in interior?

Fashion and House Decorators love the pomegranate for its color and shape. Chefs are drawn to its sweet juice and jewel-like crimson seeds. But in addition to these modern uses, the pomegranate has been a popular motif in the decorative arts since ancient times. As a religious symbol, its significance spans the Christian, Jewish, and Buddhist faiths.

The history of pomegranate

The fruit is from a tree native to Iran. After 2,000 B.C., the cultivation of this fruit spread through the Arabian Peninsula and Mediterranean countries. Today, pomegranates also are available in other places, including California.

pomegranate style house interior
pomegranate style house interior

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Woodland Wonder

Neutral-coloured crockery, napery and placemat. Black-handled cutlery. Decorative sprig and polished stone placecard. This place setting offers a lunch-in-the-forest vibe, with the placemat cutouts reminiscent of a bird-pecked treetrunk. And the placemat was once a tree, too

Place-card setting just like a SET THE TABLE

set of table
set of table design and organizaing just likes how to design a place-card

6 pretty place setting ideas

From pebble placecards and ribbon-tied cutlery to fresh and funky placemats, delight your guests this Christmas


This elegant monochromatic setting has a stately nautical feel – think captain’s table on a 1930s ocean liner. The placecard adds a friendly element and a touch of green. Lines of wide ribbon create a table-runner with a difference, and contrast with the plates’ circular. This style is really good for luxury table and chair set of big parties.

elegant style place card setting on luxury table and chair set
elegant style place card setting on luxury table and chair set

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Real Homes

A modern two storey house with open space
A modern two storey house with open space

Fabulous feature

A custom-made plywood entertainment unit adds warmth to the crisp colour palette of concrete floors and white walls, as do the vertical slats that form the stairs’ balustrade. “It’s one of our favourite features,” Jan says.

bondi, NSW, with its relaxed, laidback and beachy charm, has been the suburb of choice for Jan Edwards and Cameron Hearne for many years – but their address has not always been the same.

A few years ago, when out on one of their regular morning walks, they spotted this semi for sale – and were hooked. Although the location was close to perfect – a few minutes walk from the beach – they decided a renovation would be in order to optimise the space on the small building block. So once the house was theirs, they consulted with an architect. The result? The front facade and two front rooms were retained, but the remainder of the property was knocked down to create in its place an open-plan, four-bedroom, two-storey modern family home with all modern furnitures such as luxury tables and sofa chairs, leather recliners, and wonderful bed interior. The open-plan living, dining and kitchen area, which flows to the back garden, has proven a great hit. Not only is it a wonderful space to live in, homeowner Jan says, but perfect for entertaining family and friends. “We love to cook for them so the kitchen and dining area are an integral part of our home.” However, it was necessary to keep the couple’s home office separate – and create a peaceful retreat for uninterrupted work. “Sometimes it’s important to be able to escape what’s happening in the rest of the house,” Jan says.

Colour for the interior and exterior of the home

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