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Budget Apartment By Tim Neve

Hello! Okay so I know I’m not really supposed to be blogging as I’m on vacation but I have to bust in today to share a few hot tear sheets from the latest issue of Real Living magazine (my fix post Domino). I’m so happy I bought myself the gift of a subscription to their magazine from Mag Shop, it’s fabulous and I highly suggest getting a full year of decorating goodness for yourself. It wasn’t that expensive when you consider it’s coming all the way from Australia and the subscription rate includes shipping, which we all know to send anything from Europe or North America to the land down under is crazy expensive alone. You simply must see this apartment, decorated under $1,000 Australian dollars which is just incredible. The talent who pulled this cottage together is editorial stylist and publisher Tim Neve who happens to have a great blog too. Take a look at this neutral nest (view larger images here).

Tim Neve

Tim Neve

Tim Neve

First, I love the lamp. I didn’t see a source listed for it though, does anyone know where it is from? Next, the coffee table. Where is that beauty from? I also cannot find it listed in the article but it’s the best. The breakfast table where the model is so joyfully stacking dishes is an IKEA hack — it’s an IKEA tabletop updated with new Vika Oleby legs from IKEA. Clever! I’m always inspired by the creative minds out there who mix and match things from IKEA to create their own custom piece. I also like how Tim used various tones of white and dare-I-say the word, beige, in such a way that gives the room warmth and texture, it’s cozy. The variety of textures also helped the apartment from feeling sterile – the leather sofa, the wool, linen and cotton fabrics, the woven stool and rug, all this texture makes for an inviting space. Even the lampshade has texture, did you catch that? It’s subtle but it’s there. I’m guessing Tim is a tactile kind of guy. Same goes for the bedroom, from the bedspread to the pillows and the art over the bed. Texture! Texture! Tone! Tone! Another smart move Tim made was to remove the dated mirrored door in the bathroom of the wall cabinet to expose the shelves, leaving them open for practical purposes but also for decorative arrangements of toiletries and candles – things that will be used but also admired vs. hidden away behind some oddly placed mirror.

And all under $1,000! Eek! How inspiring. I bet the whole of Australia will want to hire Tim after reading this article, I think his approach is creative and fresh but in this economy, everyone is looking for creative solutions that won’t put them in debt. It feels better to sleep on a bed that you’ve already paid off. With a space like this, anything is possible when it comes to colors too. You can add new hues with each season and pull them out and bring in others later and so on. Why, you could go nuts! Nuts I tell ya! With a canvas like this to work with, a splash of red in the winter, lilac and sage green in the Summer, or pink and yellow, maybe some Orange and turquoise, see what I mean? Endless. This neutral palette is so versatile — you’re not stuck using certain colors – great for spontaneous decorators who can’t be pinned down.

(images: real living magazine)

Posted by decor8 in Books + Magazines, Decorating Tips on December 29, 2009

Your comments...

  1. Yvonne commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 4:44am

    Oh I love this neutral palette…it looks so comfortable and inviting! Oh yes, I love the coffee table!
    .-= Yvonne´s last blog ..2010 calendar =-.

  2. julie commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 4:47am

    Hi Holly,
    Real Living is pretty fab isn’t it, I get excited when mine comes in the mail too!

    I’d try MRD Home for the lamp, I think it is this one:

    Enjoy your holidays!
    .-= julie´s last blog ..this precious life =-.

  3. Skye commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 4:49am

    Real Living is a real treat for us Aussies who like budgeting!

  4. Iva commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 5:10am

    This is the perfect example of what I was trying to explain in the discussion in your flickr group. I love it! When you think about it it’s all white but when you take a second look, well, there is so much to discover! When you use lots of similar tones it is very clever to play with texture and adding natural colours, wood is a must. And on top of everything – for less than $1,000 – well, I just became a huge fan of Tim Neve! Thank you for sharing this lovely space even though you promised to stay away from blogging :) Hope you are having a lovely time! xo
    .-= Iva´s last blog ..Merry Christmas! =-.

  5. decor8 commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 5:21am

    Iva – what discussion? I think I missed that… I’ll go look!!!

  6. Franca commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 5:58am

    Dear Holly,

    I don’t know how you do it, but every time I visit your blog, I see something inspiring! Thank you so much for your dedication and I hope you will go on for a very long time. All the best for 2010. Franca
    .-= Franca´s last blog ..Kunstenaar Kevin Schmidt =-.

  7. Joana commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 6:14am

    So inspiring! I love it.
    .-= Joana´s last blog ..We found it! =-.

  8. Iva commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 6:19am

    Holly, I think it was in the Help section.. I was trying to explain that using only white in your home can make it a bit sterile and not very cozy, plus it’s so difficult to stick to only one colour because all of our stuff is always so colourful (book covers, clothes come to my mind). One of the easiest ways to get rid of that feeling is to add wood because wood can never be minimalistic – even if it is painted white it still has that specific texture that makes it so interesting. That is why I love the floors in this apartment so much! The place would look so much different if they were plain white..
    .-= Iva´s last blog ..Merry Christmas! =-.

  9. Helen commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 6:52am

    The bedside lamp is from Target here. I haven’t seen it in the stores in ages though.
    .-= Helen´s last blog ..Christmas 2009 =-.

  10. Fresh Design Blog commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 7:05am

    Love the white/neutral colour palette and great to see lots of affordable pieces that look great. I’ve got my eye on that bedcover in particular.
    .-= Fresh Design Blog´s last blog ..Vote for us in The Homies 2009 =-.

  11. megmanionsilliker commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 7:25am

    i am ready to paint right now! this is gorgeous. what a talent.
    .-= megmanionsilliker´s last blog ..[a lime slice] – xo =-.

  12. Gina commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 7:35am

    I am so drawn to color. The neutral shades of white are just not enough for me. Even a little color, such as a beautiful bouquet of country flowers would be so welcome in so much blandness.

    .-= Gina´s last blog ..Ware for the Noble Table =-.

  13. Victoria Klein commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 8:12am

    I adore articles like this!
    .-= Victoria Klein´s last blog ..Yoga Book Project: Sample Approved + Schedule Made! =-.

  14. Piper commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 9:01am

    I LOVE real living!! I came across it when we visited Australia this year for the first time…I was actually browsing through an airport newsstand while we were waiting for our connecting flight in brisbane when I came across it and it’s been my post domino fix as well. i love that they provide decorating ideas and inspiration that can actually be achieved without spending a fortune!
    .-= Piper´s last blog ..{cool stylish music accessories} =-.

  15. Johanna commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 9:23am

    How lovely! I find neutral beige-y color schemes so calming. I cannot believe this entire apartment was done for only $1,000. That takes a lot of talent, innovation, and genius!


  16. nichole commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 9:29am

    Oh MY! I love this palette. I wouldn’t change a thing (though the kids would reduce it to grime in a few weeks).

    So glad you took a break from vacation to post this.

    I love Real Living Mag as well!
    .-= nichole´s last blog ..Evan’s Turn to Make Me Squeal =-.

  17. Flavia commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 9:33am

    This is such a serene apartment! I’m normally drawn to more color but these days I would love to come home to a place like this. I wish I could get my hands on this magazine. I’ve been thinking about a subscription but decided to splurge on Canadian House & Home instead (my domino replacement). So thanks for sharing!
    .-= Flavia´s last blog ..Love Annette Tatum =-.

  18. Daniella commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 9:41am

    Gorgeous! Just my colour – white, lol. The coffee table looks like IKEA too maybe?

  19. diana strinati baur commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 9:52am

    your funny :) i’ll tell ya

    This gives me some great ideas for my new B&B room :) I keep going back and forth between colorful and neutral. That bed cover is gorgeous. hmmm. It all has got me thinking (not so easy to do some days).

    I enjoy seeing things through your eyes. It helps me. ALOT.
    .-= diana strinati baur´s last blog ..Baby Steps… =-.

  20. Patricia Torres commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 11:24am

    Neutrals are my type for sure.. This pallette truly inspires me.. Simple.. Pretty… clean..amazing..

  21. Nuit commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 11:27am

    So true, wood warms things up in a great way =D

    wow, I do love this room…. to me this is really warm and inviting….
    .-= Nuit´s last blog ..Make it new!!! =-.

  22. Virginie commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 11:43am

    Australia has some of the best decorating/shelter magazines. My favorites are Inside Out (which I buy at Barnes & Noble or Borders), Vogue Living (also from Barnes & Noble or Borders), Home Beautiful and Australian Country Style – I get the last 2 via subscription.

  23. Eliza commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 11:48am

    I love the funky shaped bookshelf thingy that the TV is on…is that from Ikea too? I’ve been having this strange fascination with interesting bookshelves lately. Probably because I would like one!
    .-= Eliza´s last blog .. =-.

  24. Julia commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 11:51am

    I LOVE that bedspread!

  25. Lindsay commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 11:53am

    I miss Domino so much too, I’ll have to check out Real Living. If this one article is any indication, it is just what I’ve been looking for. I really love that nubby rug in the living room. The texture is so sumptuous. I think I need that for my freshly painted dining room. Thanks for taking a break from your vacation time to share this great post.

  26. lindsey commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 12:00pm

    I would have never guessed that this was all done under $1000!
    Wow! I love how it is neutral without looking cold and sterile.
    Beautiful, beautiful find!

    { Lindsey }
    .-= lindsey´s last blog ..The Perfect NYE Dress =-.

  27. Asia commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 12:01pm

    i can’t believe how much detail there is on such a tight budget! i’m quite inspired. thanks for posting when you’re on vacation!

  28. Sam commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 12:05pm

    This is so helpful! And lovely of course.

    Samantha @PrettyLovely
    .-= Sam´s last blog ..Tub =-.

  29. Katherine aka. Urban Flea commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 12:26pm

    That’s so beautiful! Thanks so much for the introduction to his beautiful work. Hope you had a lovely holiday, and I look forward to what you post in the New Year!

    xo katherine aka. urban flea :)
    .-= Katherine aka. Urban Flea´s last blog ..king of the castle =-.

  30. nina commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 12:33pm

    I love it but I don’t think I can live in a space without color.
    .-= nina´s last blog ..Happy Birthday Miss troublemaker =-.

  31. Christina commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 12:43pm

    I really like Tim’s design. I think I’ve seen him featured in other design magazines before and this spread is great too. I really like the bedroom design (and if anyone can tell me the designer of the duvet cover I’d love to find one like it). It is simple and full of warmth. It is sometimes hard to find items that warm up the space you rent and can’t paint – but these textures are lovely and would make a huge difference. Thanks for sharing!
    .-= Christina´s last blog ..Christmas Cookies =-.

  32. Anjuli A. commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 1:09pm

    Lovely! I don’t think I would decorate my own apartment without some more color, but I totally agree with you on the absolute wonderfulness of the textures here! Mmm, my favorite. I especially love that bedspread. :)
    .-= Anjuli A.´s last blog ..Cabled Wrist Warmers, Anniversary Card, Ornament WIP =-.

  33. Interior Fashionista commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 1:30pm

    I have always been a fan of a neutral palette, but I get teased endlessly by my friends who think I’m afraid of color. I am going to show them! I’m forwarding your blog over to them to check out how amazing (an inexpensive) a neutral room can be. Gorgeous!
    .-= Interior Fashionista´s last blog ..2010 Big Girl List =-.

  34. leni commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 1:35pm

    i’m obsessed with all white rooms. i think they’re so peaceful.

    I have a great GIVEAWAY on my blog, so stop by if you’d like to win!

  35. alejandra commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 2:00pm

    I love the simple elegance of the colors and design. Light colors are so peaceful and relaxing (unless you have small boys like me).
    Very nice :)

  36. Dodi commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 2:42pm

    Thanks Holly for this post. Many bloggers are taking a well-deserved break, and I especially enjoyed having something interesting and beautiful to see. This magazine seems like a good read, but are the products really available in the US? I understand the Ikea table could be had here, but the lamp, for instance–would be hard to source. I’m wondering if I would be content with inspiration only. Happy New Year!

  37. designershay commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 3:01pm

    Love it! The layering of all of the neutrals is exquisite. The texture is so well executed. Hate to be a pessimist, but I find it very hard to believe they did all of this for under $1,000.00 I just looked at the photos. I haven’t read the actual article yet. I wonder what furniture pieces, etc they re-used??? It’s hard to find a good quality sofa for under $1,000.00. Then you add in paint, lamps, rugs, bedding, new toilet seat & lid, etc. Anyone else with me???

  38. Cheryl commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 3:01pm

    I just gave myself a year-long gift to Real Living!

    Wonderful post. Inspiring. Makes the sun shine brighter . . . .

  39. montague commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 3:20pm

    anyone know where that couch is from? I think in the photos it says it’s a vintage find, but i’m looking for something similar to it. ideas?
    .-= montague´s last blog ..back home… and a winner! =-.

  40. Vicki De Roeck commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 3:21pm

    This color palette is gorgeous! Clean but warm at the same time. The coffee table actually looks like it could just be light stained sofa legs with a painted wooden top. I don’t know if it was purchased or made on a budget. I love the bedspread, West Elm has either that one or one very similar. Thanks for sharing!

  41. decor8 commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 3:29pm

    Dodi – Hi and thanks for your comment and question! :) Yes I think you can take it for inspiration only purposes. Now that I think about it, I read Domino loyally since their launch issue and never purchased one thing I saw inside so I think it may not phase me that Real Living is an Australia publication for that purpose – I mostly look for inspiration not for products — products I find on blogs to be quite honest.

  42. Lydia, Clueless Crafter commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 4:43pm

    Yes, it’s those small things like removing a dated mirror from a medicine chest that can put a bathroom back in the present.

    Whenever I’m at a cocktail party, I always take pass by the powder room to check out the cabinet. I’m endlessly awed by the beauties or the real disasters that people keep hiding in there.
    .-= Lydia, Clueless Crafter´s last blog ..On Continuity =-.

  43. Jessica commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 4:46pm

    This was a breath of fresh air after all the Christmas color in my life lately. Thanks for busting in here with this Holly. :)
    .-= Jessica´s last blog ..Yoda and Boba Fett =-.

  44. Stacey commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 5:33pm

    I really like this apartment. For a long time I never got into the whole neutral palate for decorating, but I’m starting to come around to it. I’m one of those people who likes to change things up a lot, so a neutral palate really would be perfect for my spontaneous decorating switch-ups.
    .-= Stacey´s last blog ..Housewifey goodness =-.

  45. Jill Sorensen commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 6:13pm

    Yet another proof that great interiors don’t have to cost a fortune!
    .-= Jill Sorensen´s last blog ..Art deco vacation =-.

  46. michele commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 6:48pm

    I am so proud that we Aussies are getting recognition for being decoristas..

    love your site , Holly..even though i’m an ol bag of 53…

    my style is bohemian eclectic xx

  47. nikkieve commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 6:51pm

    Real living as an amazing magazine!
    The neutral colour scheme looks great and the fact that it’s on a budget is amazing!!
    .-= nikkieve´s last blog ..I love your Type… =-.

  48. Victoria commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 6:59pm

    Christina, the duvet cover is either from West Elm or looks like the one from West Elm. It is called Pin-Tuck Duvet

  49. Chelsea commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 7:04pm

    I HAVE to get this magazine!! Thanks for your amazing words and inspiration!

    .-= Chelsea´s last blog ..1930’s style revival =-.

  50. lojo commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 8:04pm

    this was lovely, thanks for sharing. I miss Domino so much…..

  51. Deana commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 8:11pm

    What a gorgeous neutral color scheme. It has a casual beachy feel to it. I just want to cuddle up with a blanket on that sofa!!
    .-= Deana´s last blog ..Hooked on Christmas Trees =-.

  52. Heather- Gathering Spriggs commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 8:28pm

    Thanks for this Holly. Hope you are feeling better now! Thank you for your kind words on The Homies! Congrats to you for being in the finals and congrats on the Times Online article! You are such an inspiration to so many! Thanks for all you do to keep us connected and up to date!
    .-= Heather- Gathering Spriggs´s last blog ..Photographer James Merrell =-.

  53. Tracey commented
    December 29th, 2009 at 8:46pm

    I love the all white rooms… when you want a pop of color, you can add it with no problem, either textiles or art.

    Real Living is a wonderful mag for sure!
    .-= Tracey´s last blog ..Photo of the Day- The Sunday Drive =-.

  54. michelle commented
    December 30th, 2009 at 12:29am

    i love this so much i could scream…..makes me want to start again from scratch !!! thanks so much for this post !!!!!!
    .-= michelle´s last blog ..December is going going gone…… =-.

  55. Nicole commented
    December 30th, 2009 at 12:40am

    SO so gorgeous! Simple clean, but well thought out!

  56. Rosie commented
    December 30th, 2009 at 12:40am

    Yay! RealLiving is such a great mag! My subscription is up, and I may need to budget for a new one I think!
    This makeover is so lovely – I love the use of texture to create impact…so clever!
    I think the coffee table is probably a standard table top from Ikea with some screw in legs from a hardware store!
    .-= Rosie´s last blog ..Lights ‘n’ Chairs =-.

  57. decor8 commented
    December 30th, 2009 at 6:36am
  58. Heather commented
    December 30th, 2009 at 10:27am

    Hi Hollya,
    I think that lovely duvet cover looks more like the one available at West Elm:

    Hope you’re having fun on your vacation!
    .-= Heather´s last blog ..Basement Chic =-.

  59. Debra commented
    December 30th, 2009 at 10:29am

    Hi! Any idea how the floor in the bathroom went from black to white? Haven’t read the article–did they paint the floor?

  60. anastasia commented
    December 30th, 2009 at 3:20pm

    im so glad you’re enjoying ‘Real Living’ its one of my favs too and Ive been subscribing since they first started publishing this great mag! – an inspiration every month!

  61. Melissa commented
    December 30th, 2009 at 3:26pm

    This is gorgeous. So fresh and clean and relaxing. I have been trying to come up with a neutral palette for a cabin and this may be the winner. Thanks for sharing the pointer about Real Living.

  62. Dee Adams commented
    December 30th, 2009 at 4:50pm

    It’s definitely one of the things I miss about my home in Sydney. We really do have some of the best shelter mags in the world down there and this is a perfect example of that. Thanks for sharing. Any word on the lamp in the living room on the shelf?
    .-= Dee Adams´s last blog ..Mid-Century Greats: Background Music For Home Movies =-.

  63. Budget Wise Home commented
    December 30th, 2009 at 10:02pm

    I love this apartment. I really love color, but when you get a neutral space to look like this with all the texture, it looks so warm and cozy. I would go crazy with throw pillows to add pops of color all over. Nice!

  64. Interior of your home - Dora commented
    January 2nd, 2010 at 3:52am

    hii..I am an Indian artist..I love the idea of the appartment..the white background looks superb. I loved the bedroom the most
    .-= Interior of your home – Dora´s last blog ..Kalighat pat – Art of rural Bengal in India =-.

  65. Emma commented
    January 3rd, 2010 at 2:42am

    Ah Holly – you discovered Tim Neve! He is amazing isn’t he? As soon as his post on his blog popped up, I did a post about his Real Living spread on my blog that nobody reads! Haha! Now here I see it on the megablog of decor8! Amazing. Tim must be stoked.
    Total neutral inspiration for me as we just got a oatmeal/barley coloured new couch, I was so scared our lounge room would be boring. Tim has inspired me!
    .-= Emma´s last blog ..{ Tim Neve in Real Living} =-.

  66. Emma commented
    January 3rd, 2010 at 2:44am

    Oh and I spoke to Tim re: duvet cover – he told me he got it for $30 (Australian) at Kmart (Australian store also).
    .-= Emma´s last blog ..{ Off to the beach… } =-.

  67. Emily commented
    January 3rd, 2010 at 6:20pm

    Thanks for sharing! I don’t get to read Real Simple on a regular basis so it was fun to see a sneak peek on your blog!

  68. Kerri commented
    January 3rd, 2010 at 11:22pm

    So beautiful. Sigh.

  69. Ashley commented
    January 4th, 2010 at 9:48pm

    i love this apartment! where is the beautiful comforter from???

  70. Johanna commented
    January 12th, 2010 at 9:15am

    This is such an inspiration to me. I love it! Thank you.
    .-= Johanna´s last blog ..Playing house. =-.

  71. Campanola Watches commented
    January 15th, 2010 at 12:30am

    The neutral palette was hard for me to get at first, because it looked so plain. But when someone described it to me as very “spa-like” it changed my view. This does look very “spa-like”, and I think your bathroom should be that way. I love that vase in there.. very special and clean. This looks fantastic.

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