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Studio Tour: Dear Colleen

I love a good studio tour and this one in New Zealand doesn’t disappoint! It was submitted by Colleen who runs her own design firm called Dear Colleen who specializes in hand lettering, fashion and homeware design. It hasn’t been shown yet online so I wanted to give you a first peek!

Studio tour

Colleen’s studio sits on the second floor of an old shared building for artists and creatives. The building is nearly 100 years old and has amazing features like large metal framed window and wooden floors. Colleen is based in Dunedin which is in the south island of New Zealand. Here is her studio from start to finish in a video shot by Scott Savage.

About her space Colleen says, “I did the studio up in a week with a lot of help from my boyfriend and a budget of around $300. I bought filing cabinets from op shops and gave some of them a new lease of life by having them powder coated in a bright green. The wood desk was dirty and abandoned in the room so I sanded it, added casters that I had saved from another piece and added new handles.” Being on such a small budget forced Colleen to get creative!

Studio tour

Studio tour

Studio tour

Studio tour

Studio tour

“I painted large wall graphics to add interest to the space, which took time but pretty much cost me nothing. All the furniture in my studio is second hand or salvaged. I love rescuing pieces that are destined for the dump and giving them a second chance.” Well done, Colleen!

(photos: Emily Hlavac Green.)

Posted in Home Tours on June 20, 2012

Living Room Decorating Ideas Under $100!

I love how changing 3 things in a room can make such a big difference – yeah, just THREE. An American friend of mine, Tina Fussell from the Traveling Mama blog, is now living up in Denmark and loves to do DIY projects and to decorate on a budget. Recently she wrote in with three quick changes that she made to her living room that I think made a pretty big impact — all for under $100!
Decorating Ideas

BEFORE (below)

Decorating Ideas

AFTER (below)

Decorating Ideas

“This cabinet was just washed out and too country for our home here in Denmark. This was one of the few pieces I brought from the States, so I was in a near panic about painting it because it was going to be hard to replace a solid wood piece, but I love the result! I’m so glad I didn’t let fear stand in the way!”

Decorating Ideas

Before (above)
Tina also decided to change up something else in the space, “I didn’t like all the little things on the side tables in our living room and it just didn’t feel pulled together.” So this is what she did…

Decorating Ideas

After (below), “By pulling the tables to the center, we have a place to prop up our feet, but also somewhere my little guys can race their cars!” But that’s not all, Tina decided to change another element in the room…

Decorating Ideas

Before (below),”This wall just felt a bit blank and out of place. The chair was too big for this room and couldn’t recline the way it was suppose to. The table was full of too many little messy things…”

Decorating Ideas

After (below),”I created a new piece of art and exchanged the chair for one that was a better scale. Shopping in my own home, buying a can of paint and a canvas, and moving things about gave me a mini room makeover for less than $100!”

Decorating Ideas

What a great job Tina, thank you for sharing this! What a difference shopping at home and a fresh can of paint can make!

(images: tina fussell)

Posted in Decorating Tips, diy on June 19, 2012

South African Design at West Elm

I love that West Elm has partnered with Elle Décor magazine to bring South African design to America with sixteen lovely collaborations with artists and designers who live and work there. I love this! You can catch a peek here of the collection – everything is simply divine.

West Elm

west elm

I particularly love the elephant lamp by Shirley Fintz and the ceramics from Gemma Orkin who describes her style as, “Happy and uncomplicated.” So, so pretty, right???

West Elm

west elm

West Elm

west elm

west elm

west elm

What do you think of these gorgeous, colorful designs? I am smitten!

(images: west elm)

Posted in shopping on June 07, 2012

Ombre DIY: Dresser From IKEA

Hello friends! In February I talked about the ombre trend (here) and now in June I still find myself really loving it. That is why when this image arrived in my inbox I couldn’t resist posting it.

IKEA

I love this! And the best part about this look is that all you need is a dresser and some paint – pretty easy to come by and in most cases, this can be an affordable DIY project. IKEA Livet Hemma in Sweden recently painted TARVA, their new dresser, in tones of apricot and I love it. The color scale from powdery pink to saturated coral makes it an instant eye-catcher!

The easiest way to get the colors right is to simply work off of a paint card at the home store and buy the shades on it in the color that you like the most and paint them in the exact order on your dresser drawers as they appear on the card, from lightest (on the top) to darkest (on the bottom). If the colors seem too light from one shade to the next, skip and paint every other shade on the card instead for more intensity.

Would you try this at home? I would in a red hot second!

(photo: Patric Johansson)

Posted in diy on June 07, 2012

Books:

Some of my books...

Further editions available: Decorate published by Murdoch Books for AU/NZ, Decorar BR, Alt om indretning DK, Inspirace pro váš byt CZ, Dekorácie SK, La décoration FR, Lust auf Wohnen DE, Sisusta tyylillä FI and Sztuka aranżacji wnętrz PL.

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