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Annette English

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Perhaps you've heard of interior designer Annette English. She is an Australian currently based in Los Angeles designing homes for some Hollywood folks (ok, and some ordinary folk too) - and has even designed a 34,000 sq. ft. French château (!!!). When she emailed us saying she's an avid reader of the blog and thought we might like to blog some of her work she had to twist my arm to agree...not really. :-) Many of her projects are fairly traditional but she has designed some more contemporary spaces that I am a big fan of.  And I am a REALLY big fan of that huge moose photograph (after the jump).

Blog favourites of the week

Bates Corkern Studio

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We dwell in our homes and our homes dwell in us. It lingers when we leave. Beckons when we’re weary. It is the place that gives us comfort and ease. Home is the one place where we can simply be. Where we can find our way in the dark. Where we can identify the sounds of our children’s bare feet on the floorboards, trace the same path of sunlight across the dining room wall—from spring through the coming winter. A place that evolves with us in our journey, burnished with the patina of memories. It’s a place that we create to suit ourselves. To envelope ourselves in the artifacts of our lives and dreams. To share ourselves with family and friends. To cherish the past while it resides along the present. It’s a spot from which to look out upon the world. A place to return to. Where all our roads eventually lead. Home. - Bates Corkern Studio

Beautiful words. Equally beautiful spaces.

  

Monday's pets on furniture - part 1

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If you'd like to send us photos to include in next week's "pets on furniture" post, please ensure your photos follow our basic rules: First, the pet must be on a piece of furniture. And said piece of furniture must be clearly visible in the photo, so it takes center stage rather than your pet. Think of it more of a photo of a great piece of furniture that you want to show off...and your pet happens to be sitting on it. And second, the photo must be of decent quality. If it's dark or fuzzy (from a camera phone) then it may not make the cut. Thanks! (Photos, your name, location and a brief description can be sent to  desiretoinspirekim@hotmail.com and PLEASE don't send closeups of your pet!)

I am sending you some photos from an interior design job I did in Santa Monica, CA.  I brought my dog George along for the photo shoot and my photographer, (who I wanted to focus on the room!) just could not get enough of him!!  He actually took a whole slew of pictures of just my dog (of which I have spared you!)
- Emily

I don't have a pet of my own (yet - a grey staffy is on the wishlist!) but couldn't resist sending in this photo of Ruby, the house cat at the amazing Araucaria house in Byron Bay, NSW. The owners operate the house as a B&B, my partner and I stayed there over the Easter break and fell in love with Ruby who went to sleep at the foot of the bed each night. The house was pretty spectacular as well!
- Kim (Sydney, Australia)

This is Lollipop lounging on a beautiful LA day. I picked up this piece at a flea market in Austin, Texas. The seller, a woman in her 50s had retrieved it from her parents' belongings. She took off the original green upholstery (ouch, I always wished I had it with the original cover). At first I didn't like the print but I've worked it into my belongings.
- Leslie

Monday's pets on furniture - part 2

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If you'd like to send us photos to include in next week's "pets on furniture" post, please ensure your photos follow our basic rules: First, the pet must be on a piece of furniture. And said piece of furniture must be clearly visible in the photo, so it takes center stage rather than your pet. Think of it more of a photo of a great piece of furniture that you want to show off...and your pet happens to be sitting on it. And second, the photo must be of decent quality. If it's dark or fuzzy (from a camera phone) then it may not make the cut. Thanks! (Photos, your name, location and a brief description can be sent to  desiretoinspirekim@hotmail.com and PLEASE don't send closeups of your pet!)

This is Queso, laying on an ikea chair in our cozy New York city apartment
- Nicole

Here's "Kittie" on our guest bed.  The minute I put that orange pillow on there she made it her new sleeping spot.
- Stacey (Beaumont, TX)

Hope these might work!!  All in Birmingham Alabama, with the Boston Terriers from a house in Alys Beach Florida!
- Jean

  

Must love dogs

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It's amazing what is hiding behind the most conservative of exteriors. That's why I love real estate stalking. A house full of art is close to my heart. A house with sculpture makes my pulse race even faster. But this house? The owner must love dogs! Walls are hung with doggy portraits, larger than life 3D dogs bound and bow (with ice-cream?) and it is all the more fun because of it. The doghouse of a canophilist! Perched in Bellevue Hill with a killer view of Sydney Harbour, you can find the link here while it lasts.

Sabrina Raffi

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My husband and I just finished a meeting with our architect and builder for our huge house project and I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed - it's finally all coming together and costs are starting to come to light. SCARY SH*T. Needless to say, a meeting with someone at the bank is definitively in order. :) Thus, I am a bit at a loss for words for an intro to this post. Let me just say I was taken by the beauty of the following interior photos by French photographer Sabrina Raffi when I came across her portfolio. And I am fairly certain this is the first time I've seen suits of armour used to decorate a kitchen.

  
  
  

Black and Poole

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Please pardon me if you find me fixated on dark hued rooms in the next few weeks. My sample pots are on their way and the painter starts in a few weeks. Excited? Maybe. No really am I excited? Maybe. Really? OK I can't wait! I'm turning to the dark side in a very big way. And this lovely home? Look at those black walls. So warm when teamed with the creams and off whites. Lovely textures, splash of colour here or there, cute window treatment ideas (stealing that simple button top roll up blind idea). Interiors by Gretchen Kubiak of Black and Poole.

  

  

  

nemaworkshop

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nemaworkshop is a group of architects and designers based in New York that have created many fabulously modern commercial spaces and a few residential ones. Here are 2 of them:

This first dwelling was originally 2 separate apartments. It has become the NY crash-pad for a rock star located in a landmarked building on Bond Street. The concept was to create an environment which was luxurious in materials yet informal in layout. I think it's HOT. With some personal touches and quirky artwork this would be the ultimate party palace. (And I'm loving that view - it's like art in itself!)

  

Quickie 1

Quickie 2

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I warned you! More from the dark side. The Milan loft of furniture designer Rodolfo Dordoni via AT Casa. This is more me. Still undecided on the oversized humanoid sculpture (this coming from a woman with a life size Mary and Jesus statue, a 3m Papua New Guinea spirit post and a Tiwi burial pole) but the rest is perfect. Soon I too shall be welcomed home each day by a darkling den.

Jessica's miraculous renovation

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Jessica emailed the other day with a photo of her dog for pets on furniture. Alot of the room was visible in the photo and I nearly passed out. Turns out Jessica lives in the most incredible Brooklyn brownstone I think I've ever seen. I begged her to let me blog her home - and to my relief she agreed. She sent along some info, along with before and after photos.

The home was built in 1887 and Jessica purchased it in 2007. When we purchased the house, all of the original details were intact however everything was in need of attention. Although the house had never been multi-family, there were kitchens on several floors. The façade was badly decayed. All of the mechanicals were outdated.

Work started about a year after we purchased the house and is just now nearly completed. The garden is our next project. Basically, almost everything has been “touched”. There are all new bathrooms, a new kitchen, a restored copper skylight, new mechanicals . . . In terms of new construction, we built a copper-roofed room to replace an unattractive records room that had been built in 1925 on the foundation of the demolished conservatory for the Brooklyn Public Library offices. We followed the lines of the conservatory, using the existing curved base and the original plans that we found at the DOB.  Two of the parlor parquet floors were damaged beyond repair and have been replaced. The heavily patterned parquet of the front parlor was discovered under carpet and linoleum tile and has been restored. A new curved iron stair has been added under the skylight to replace a narrow servant’s stair to the basement.

The details of this home are jaw-dropping. What I would give to have 1/8 of the spectacular architecture of this home in my own. Jessica has done an awesome job decorating her home I might add. In her own words: I want to mention that I am not "really" an interior designer. I did design and furnish this house. I am a life-long thrifter and a junk store junkie and much of my furniture was acquired this way. I have even been known to pull a few things from the neighborhood trash. My friends have been encouraging me to do this professionally. Well, YOU GO GIRL!!! (Many more photos after the jump)

A South African penthouse

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It's about energy and mood. A black and white palette with exotic colour accents. Artwork, sculpture, glassware and ceramics add soul, depth and character. Luxury is layered with practicality but above all it's about living in the centre of the city in an apartment that blends the inside and out seamlessly, the view being paramount. This three-level on top the Sandhurst Towers, Sandton, Johannesburg penthouse is the creation of  Greg Truen and Ina Fourie of SAOTA (Stefan Antoni Olmesdahl Truen Architects) with interiors by Adam Court of OKHA Interiors.

"In effect, we created a wall-less 900m² penthouse, with a garden, that gives the impression of levitating above the city mass. We created a continual flow from zone to zone, utilising materials that emphasised the sense of space, transparency and reflection.  We introduced organic textural/tactile elements through the use of timber and flamed granite to soften and add a counterpoint to the contemporary drama."

Monday's pets on furniture

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If you'd like to send us photos to include in next week's "pets on furniture" post, please ensure your photos follow our basic rules: First, the pet must be on a piece of furniture. And said piece of furniture must be clearly visible in the photo, so it takes center stage rather than your pet. Think of it more of a photo of a great piece of furniture that you want to show off...and your pet happens to be sitting on it. And second, the photo must be of decent quality. If it's dark or fuzzy (from a camera phone) then it may not make the cut. Thanks! (Photos, your name, location and a brief description can be sent to  desiretoinspirekim@hotmail.com and PLEASE don't send closeups of your pet!)

this is a recent picture of our new home and our cat, cookie, on our bed... The background print is a taste of a new product we are working on to follow the success of our sticker...
- Fabien (France)

Iman loves lounging on this sofa.
- Adrian (Antipolo City, Philippines)

Here are my dogs in my Brooklyn brownstone. The boxer is Mugsy and the puggle is Klaus. Mugsy is on the sofa and Klaus is looking down a very dramatic stair. (Photos: Peter Margonelli)
- Jessica

The images show our kitchen in Oslo, Norway. Our cat, Ferdinand loves the kitchen table! *smile*
- Lidyll
  

Attached is my rescue pup. Her name is Little and she loves to snuggle up and nap on the bed.
- Jen (Scottsdale, AZ)

Brie Williams

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Soft light like honey. Colours blossoming from each shot. Real beauty and hazy dreams. Gorgeous rooms exotic and everyday captured through the lens of über talented photographer Brie Williams. Take me away Brie. Pull me into the dream your photos weave. Here and now and steeped in history. Far away yet strangely close to home.

Reader's home - a renovated apartment in Sarajevo

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Belma Mujezinovic-Pribilovic is the owner and editor-in-chief of Enterijer.ba, a popular online interior design based in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. The site provides free of charge expert advice on interior design with 20 architects and interior designers oin staff. Belma wanted to share her site as well as her home with us.

It was designed by the architect of Enterijer.ba magazine - Arijana Suvak, but my husband and I were involved in choosing decoration and giving it the final touch.
Completely renovated - some walls were removed to create an open space - it is a home that we have always wanted to live in. It has 80 square meters and two balconies - enough room for us and our cats Tigra and Zorro :)
We are great fans of red (as you can see in the pics) therefore each room had to have at least a splash of that color.
Living room has a lot souvenirs from our trips. There is a wall decoration made of our pictures from honeymoon and renewal of our vows in Cuba (i personally created the photo montage of those pictures). We brought the sand from Cuban beaches and placed it under the glass of commode.

All furniture was custom made.

Here is a before photo of the living room:

And after what appears to be ALOT of work, her newly renovated apartment is modern yet homey, bright with bold additions of colour and features a killer view. I think it's fabulous. (P.S. Photos of her cats will be featured in next Monday's pets on furniture post).

Dark darling

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Want. Need. Covet. Dark and moody elegance meets bright light and pool glints. It's harsh outside but oh so cool in here. Cool but warm. Hip yet luxurious. I'm drawn to the dark side and this Coogee Beach, Sydney home is sucking me in with its siren song. Hello my deep dark darling. I'm coming home. See what happens when you real estate stalk?! You want to buy a house that you can never afford but you'd sell your soul for.  Need better pictures. Need to get to an open for inspection. Here while the link lasts.

(I swear this is Maggie Tabberer's old house that was then recreated by ?? and featured here on DTI. I'm having a senior moment and just can't remember who it was and I'm slowly making my way back through the archives to find it in its white incarnation. It's the frangapani tree by the pool. It echoes in my design psyche.)

Update: The house is that of Marcella Kaspar and builder/designer Mark Cooper (all expained in the comments below). Photos by Simon Kelly.

My new flor carpet tiles

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Ever since I first heard about the carpet company Flor I was floored. LOL Such a genius idea - to sell carpet by the tile instead of a whole rug. This means you can create a rug of whatever size you want and arrange the patterns/colours however you wish - and have the ability to change it up over time when you become bored with it. Not only that I have 7 cats who love to barf on carpets so this way if a particularly nasty incident arises I can replace a ruined tile with a new one instead of having to replace an entire rug. I had been wanting to get my hands on some Flor tiles for quite some time and was super excited to have the chance to pick out a sample of 12 tiles. I chose the Askania tiles in grey from their new Floresse line, which is made of 100% natural wool. OMG the wool is incredible...it's so comfortable and will be nice and warm in the winter months. The pattern turned out to be really cool and I opted to make a 5'x7' rug in my living room while alternating the pattern. LOVE!!

Some other points to note: Flor ships to Canada (YAY!!), the backing is rubbery so they stay pretty much in place (you get some stickers that help with that too, although I opted not to use them because my floors are painted wood ***UPDATE: my bad - I assumed the stickers were double-sided) and you don't need those annoying carpet pads. Oh - and when you're done with your tiles you can send them back to Flor and they will guarantee they won't end up in a landfill. (P.S. I plan to use these tiles or buy others to cut and line shelving I want to install for the cats to hang out on).

A reno and deco in Perth

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Nelly of Twinkle & Whistle just completed the renovation and decoration of a typical 80s brick house in Perth, Australia (meaning it lacked character and had small pokey rooms), and wanted to share it with our readers. Here is a bit about the project from Nelly:
The owners - the beautiful photographer Jasmin Castillo of Lush Photography and her husband-to-be Mark - were craving for a house that will be as vibrant and funky and colourful as themselves. They had a billion ideas and didn't know where to start or what would really work for them and for their space. They were also on a tiny tiny budget. So they called me to the rescue. We discussed their requirements and lifestyle and wishes, I prepared a few moodboards to share my vision of the place, they loved it and off we went!
The renos were made very gradually, with Mark tackling lots of the work himself on his days off (sometimes with the assistance of a few handy friends too). This left me enough time to source most furniture and accessories, in Australia and abroad, and to make quite a few bargains. During this process, Mark and Jasmin also welcomed a gorgeous little girl, Matilda, into their home... and I was asked to turn their packed storage room into a practical nursery.
I think Nelly did a fabulous job with this little home on an even littler budget. It is warm and inviting, contemporary and comfortable, and completely liveable. I love it all - from the dark walls of the entrance and office for a bit of drama, the calming neutrals of the living room, the modern bathroom with a glass partition instead of a typical shower curtain and the lime green kitchen backsplash. You rock Nelly!
(Photos by Heather Robbins of Red Images Fine Photography)

  

Jarlath Mellett

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Fresh, modern and fun. Beautiful rooms to unwind in, dine in, chat with friends, curl up with a book, entertain and live large in. Relaxed yet casually elegant. From city pads to family homes ... wonderful interiors by Jarlath Mellett.