This month, we’re talking about collecting the things you love, and using them to decorate your space (have you entered our Collect Create Decorate competition yet?) To kick off the conversation, Editorial Director Karen McCartney shares her passion for timber stools…

I collect: It is really a joint collection with my husband David Harrison, of timber stools – vintage, new, design classics, crafted, modernist, cheap and expensive. We are drawn to them because there is a great deal of discipline in the design of a stool as it is such a fundamental form and yet within it there is such inventiveness.

The ‘Bucket’ stool (left) is made with a real bucket handle and broom handle legs. It was designed by Carl Clerkin in 1999 and made by Details. On the right, three stools including the Isokon stool (on left), designed in 1933 and reissued around 2000; a teak Mushroom Stool (centre) designed by the Yamanaka Group in 1961 and made by Tendo Mokko Japan; and a hand-made French country stool (right) found in a vintage store in Sydney.

The collecting bug bit me when: The first designer stool we bought, about 15 years ago, was a Yanagi Butterfly Stool. It is a beautiful sculptural object which is surprising comfortable to sit on.

The collection evolved with: The Tendo Mokko ‘Mushroom’ stool with its remarkable sinuous form (we were on a bit of a Japanese theme) and shortly after it was joined by the Isokon stool, from Isokon Britain’s first modernist furniture company. It was designed in 1933 and is remarkably light (1 kilo) but strong. Many of the stools have been gifts – I even brought one back from the UK on the plane

The Yanagi Butterfly Stool (left) is a sculptural classic, designed in 1954 using a method of shaping plywood to create a delicate ‘wing’ like form. The Mushroom Stool (right) was designed by the Yamanaka Group in 1961 and made by Tendo Mokko Japan

My current obsession is: I love the ML42 stool by Mogens Lassen (Danish from 1942) but in modern stools I really like the ‘Ipsilon’ stool by Rodrigo Torres for Poliform from a few years ago and the ‘Affi’ stool by Giulio Iacchetti for his brand Internoitaliano. You can see I am a sucker for wooden stools and in particular those three leg varieties. I also have a longstanding yearning for the Poul Kjaerholm PK33 steel stool with a slim circular leather  seat pad.

The Ulrik stool (left) in ash is by British designer Alex Hellum for SCPThese generic Danish moulded plywood stools stack simply and beautifully, and we use them as additional seating and little side tables.

The thing I most regret missing out on is: A set of vintage Charlotte Perriand stools at auction. These were originally designed by Perriand for an alpine resort in 1949 but were later sold by Steph Simon Gallery in Paris in the 50 and 60’s and are a combination of a country milking stool and modernist simplicity. They have recently been reissued by Cassina so we may end up getting one of these as vintage ones fetch a tremendous amount these days.

My favourite find is:  There are such characterful pieces forming a little family of siblings – the same but different –  some are more beautiful and some more useful but all are equally loved and so I would feel bad singling one out as a favourite!

Share your own collection on Instagram or Facebook or send a picture by email to editor@templeandwebster.com.au. Use the hashtag #collectcreatedecorate for your chance to win a weekly prize. Full details are here, and you can see many entries on our Collect Create Decorate Pinterest board

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At Temple & Webster, we’re all about creating beautiful homes, and we think the best way to do it is to collect your favourite things and decorate your interior over time. Now, we want to see how you do it – and we’re offering a $100 T&W store credit every week for our favourite pics!

Image by @five67ate

It’s easy – just take a picture

With Winter in full swing, it’s the perfect time to stay at home and spend some time with the things you love. The next step – share your style with us. If you’re a collector, show us your treasures. If you’ve arranged the perfect vignette, take a snap. If you’ve finally ‘finished’ decorating a room – show us how it looks. It goes without saying that we’d love to see your Temple & Webster purchases included in your picture, but that’s not essential. You can enter as many times as you like, and entries close on 29 August 2014.

Image by @carlyvdm

Enter via Instagram

If you’re on Instagram, upload your picture. Make sure you hashtag #collectcreatedecorate so we see your picture, and tag us @templeandwebster. Remember, if your profile is set to private, we won’t be able to see your picture. Explore the hashtag to see the homes of other T&W members.

Image by @emma_e_flint

Enter via Facebook

Post your picture to our page on Facebook, and include the hashtag #collectcreatedecorate in your caption.

Image by @kirsty_lush

Enter via email.

Email your photo to editor@templeandwebster.com.au with your full name and mobile number and the subject line #collectcreatedecorate. We’ll upload your image to our Collect Create Decorate Pinterest (check it out now for lots of members pics). Follow us on Pinterest to see the entries and choose your favourites.

Image by @wildbean29

WIN $100 to spend at Temple & Webster

Every week, we’ll choose our favourite picture. We’ll announce the winning picture on Instagram and Facebook each Friday and the winning picture will feature in our Great 8 email over the weekend. Each winner will receive $100 to spend at Temple & Webster. We’ll also feature our favourites here on the blog and on social media. (See our Terms page for full terms and conditions).

Get involved! Follow us on Instagram @templeandwebster, Pinterest and Facebook, and start snapping.

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Thanks to eatlove, we’re sharing this super quick and warming recipe by Nino Zoccali, chef and restaurateur of La Rosa and Pendolino restaurants, from his book Pasta Artigiana

Ingredients (serves 6)

350 ml (12 fl oz) neapolitan tomato sauce
6 sweet basil leaves
fine sea salt
600 g (1 lb 5 oz) potato gnocchi
200 g (7 oz) fresh buffalo mozzarella cheese
100 g (3½ oz/1 cup) grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese

Preparation

Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F/Gas 4).

Heat the sauce with the basil leaves in a saucepan and season with the sea salt and black pepper, to taste. In abundant salted boiling water, cook the gnocchi until they rise to the surface.

Strain the gnocchi, mix with the sauce and place in a large, greased baking dish, or individual baking dishes, and top with the buffalo mozzarella and Parmigiano Reggiano cheese. Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until the cheese is golden brown.

See more at eatlove.com.au where you can follow your favourite chefs, share their recipes and order their books.

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Karen McCartney introduces Blu Dot’s Real Good Chair, our newest Object of Desire.

It is hard not to be charmed by Blu Dot the brand because of the pleasingly idiosyncratic design and marketing philosophy that emanates from their HQ in the USA. In fact their mantra is ‘Designing stuff we love. Every day, here in Minneapolis’. The business is unusual in its set up in that the founders are designers, manufacturers, marketers, retailers and distributors. They control the whole shebang, which means they can have some fun and exercise truly independent thought around the brand.

You see it at every turn – the cleverness of the catalogues, the cheekiness of the website and the ability to deliver interesting social experiments. Check out ‘The Real Good Chair Experiment’, a study in ‘curb-mining’ (when people collect unwanted furniture from the side of the road).

The Sydney home of Arran Russell and Jacqui Lewis, via Design Sponge.

Which leads me nicely to the latest Object of Desire – the Real Good Chair in copper. It is fast becoming something of a cult design with its sculptural form, which it marries with surprising comfort. It ‘ages gracefully’ as handling and time give it a pleasing patina that adds to its character.

Image by Blu Dot

While this version is copper plate over steel, its Real Good Chair siblings in powder-coated steel come in a range of 5 colours from a glossy black through to a summery aqua. Each colour takes on a different personality and their distinctive form means they work equally as a well-positioned single chair or as a setting around a dining table.

The chair comes flat-packed (‘As skinny as a super model, yet far more sturdy’ reads the blurb) and you can see how easy the assembly is by watching their video ‘Mr Squirrel Assembles a Real Good Chair.’ The implication being if a squirrel can do it….

Shop for your own Real Good Chair.

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Together, writer Meghan McTavish and photographer Dominic Loneragan are Citizens of the World, blogging about ‘people and their places’ and making a range of soy candles. We caught up with Meghan to find out more about the interiors they shoot, and their favourite destination.  

The home of Heidi Carter, blogger at Paddo to Palmy.

What inspired you to start blogging?

Wherever we go, Dom takes photos non-stop. He’s relentless. The sad thing is that most of those shots would just end up on his computer. We figured blogging was a great creative outlet and finally give him a place to put his images.

Life can’t all be about work. You’d be amazed at how enriching it is to just corner off a little section of the web that’s just your own, completely for your own fancies and interests.

What do you look for in the spaces you feature?

We actually care a lot more about the person than how their house looks. Often though, their personality transcends into their space and you end up with a great insider peek at their personality through what they choose to put in their place.

Meghan and Dominic recently featured T&W HQ, the workspace of our Creative Director Chris Deal and Head of Styling Jessica Bellef.

What do you think are the key elements of an inspiring interior?

To make a house a home? Artifacts and treasures from your travels make the grade BUT to make a home beautiful you need to really strip back to the special ones that are important.

It’s about being able to traverse the thin line between hoarder and cleaning lady.

The beachside home of Luke Stedman and Kym Ellery.

How would you describe your own personal style? What are your influences?

Like most people, we’re a bit of a mix rather than a single aesthetic. We have  giant prints of Dom’s on the walls, giant elephant heads from Bali, old 60s movie posters we love and very vintage American flags covering some of the tears in our old chesterfield couches.

So you could say we’re eclectic (such a great word).

Travel posts include shots from a recent trip to Africa.

You’ve covered some amazing destinations around the world. What has been your favourite so far?

When you’ve been in one place so long it’s easy to just focus on the microcosm of your personal life. That’s why it’s so important to travel.

We just got back from Africa and there aren’t enough words to explain how much that place affected us on a spiritual and emotional level; the nature, the people, the long expanses of wilderness, the wild elephants roaming around. It’ll give you perspective like nothing else.

The home of Sydney-based typographer and illustrator Gemma O’Brien.

What’s next for Citizens of the World?

At the moment we are just trying to balance our blog content with the production of our Citizens of the World candles, which are our major passion. Not many people know we produce them but we are across that side of the business every day. It’s a true labour of love!

Visit the Citizens of the World blog or follow them on Instagram via @citizensoftheworld

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We talk to founder Belinda Everingham (pictured above in a portrait by Lauren Bamford) about the philosophy behind her Bondi Wash range, available in today’s sale event.

What inspired you to start Bondi Wash?

The inspiration came from many directions. Firstly, a love of fragrance. Smell is the strongest of all the senses and can draw you into the moment so sublimely or transport you back to a time or place from your past.

I was also trying to find good quality natural alternatives for washing products, having been disappointed with what was on the market at the time.

Then on holiday in far north Queensland a few years ago we came across all sorts of unusual native plants. It struck me how little awareness we in Australia, let alone the rest of the world, have of our native flora. On the same holiday I was reading the novel Perfume by Patrick Susskind which is all about the power of scent. The novel is set in France, which is so well-known for creating fragrance and cosmetics from their botanicals.

With all this in mind, and plenty of time for reflection, it struck me what an opportunity we have here to create fragrant and beautiful products using our Australian native flora that add a little pleasure to daily life.

Bondi is a vibrant, creative community. How important are local connections to your business?

Bondi is quite a special place to live. The community here is really strong and supportive. It is also incredibly diverse with lots of wonderful characters. What I really love about it is the low-key nature of many of the talented, creative and accomplished people who live here.

From the day we started creating we have had the most incredible help from many wonderful people. They have helped – and continue to help – with so many aspects from fragrance testing through to label design and deciding on a name. I feel so fortunate to be part of it.

Why did you choose to use Australian bush oils in your products?

Australian natives are really tough plants – and many of them have anti-microbial and anti-fungal properties.  They are such a perfect addition to washing products for the home when people would prefer a natural alternative.

People talk about how our products work so well – which I think they don’t expect as they smell so good. The bush oils are definitely a factor in their effectiveness.

You consciously leave a lot of things out of Bondi Wash products. Why is this?

Once I started researching ingredients, I realised just how many are out there that are not ideal for us or for the planet. And it is not easy to work out what’s what as their names are long and confusing. What makes it even harder for the consumer is the lack of regulation about labeling or claims.  The words eco, organic or natural are no indication of the integrity of the ingredients.

‘Fragrance’ or ‘parfum’ is one example of an ingredient that isn’t great but is used everywhere. It can mask a range of nasty synthetic ingredients that can cause irritation and immune system reactions and do not need to be listed on the product.

We wanted to create a brand that always selects the best quality, most natural ingredients to make them both a pleasure to use and better for us and the environment. The real natural ingredients are often new and more expensive. To help make our products a more affordable luxury we have designed the products to last longer – they are concentrated and the triggers and pumps give you less.

Are your fragrances complementary, or do you recommend sticking to just one?

I keep trying to develop theories on fragrance preference – and I keep being proven wrong.  I designed our Sydney Peppermint & Rosemary scent with men in mind for example, but it is just as popular with women.  I thought our Lemon Tea Tree & Mandarin would be the least popular, but it is selling just as well as the other two.

Because fragrance is so personal and unpredictable – I never like to recommend. At home we have a mix of different ones all over the house. I also love to rotate fragrances especially when you are using them everyday. We have 3 new fragrances that we also use at home one of which is my absolute favourite (number 4) so can’t wait to introduce it.

Quickfire questions:

Favourite fragrance: Gardenia
Local secret: A little known rockpool that’s often deserted when the beaches are crowded
Pet hate: Dishonesty
Dream holiday: Lord Howe Island – it is like stepping back in time
Current obsession: Vintage 80s sunglasses

Follow Bondi Wash on Instagram @bondiwash

Shop the Bondi Wash collection today, and take advantage of our free shipping offer.

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To celebrate Bastille Day, we’re giving away over 400 tickets to The Hundred-Foot Journey (in cinemas August 14), a new film celebrating French cuisine and culture. Find out more…

Set in the quaint village of Saint-Antonin-Noble-Val, “The Hundred-Foot Journey” explores the story of Hassan Kadam (played by Manish Dayal), who settles with his family in the south of France and opens an Indian restaurant, much to the displeasure of Madame Mallory (Academy Award®-winner Helen Mirren), the chilly chef proprietress of Le Saule Pleureur, a Michelin starred, classical French restaurant. Based on the novel “The Hundred-Foot Journey” by Richard C. Morais, it is directed by Academy Award®-nominee Lasse Hallström, and both Steven Spielberg and Oprah Winfrey are on board as producers. See the trailer here.

To win a double pass to see the film, simple be one of the first to email thehundredfootjourneyaus@gmail.com with your name and state and Temple & Webster in the subject line. If you are successful, you will receive an Eventbrite ticket by email for admission to a preview or an in-season ticket, depending on your location.

Details of the preview screenings and tickets to be won are as follows:

Melbourne – Village Rivoli (Camberwell) – July 30 at 6.30pm (100 double passes
Sydney  - Event Cinemas George St (Sydney) – August 4 – at 6.30pm (100 double passes)
Brisbane  - Event Cinemas (Clarindale) – July 30 at 6.30pm (50 double passes)
Adelaide  - Wallis Piccadilly (North Adelaide) – August 4 at 6.30pm (50 double passes)
Perth  - Event Cinemas (Innaloo) – July 30 at 6.30pm (50 double passes)
Regional areas, Tasmania, ACT and NT winners will receive an in-season ticket to the film (100 double passes)

If the French countryside is your happy place, you might be a lover of French Provincial style. Take the test with writer Verity Magdalino. 

Know your boudoir from your armoire, swoon at the scent of lavender and the ornate swirl of a Louis XV chair? You mon chéri, may just be a bon vivant of the finer things in French style.

How to know if your style is Francophile:

You’re a natural born romantic

For you a home is all about heart and history. You love the time worn elegance of antique white linen, canopy beds, wooden shutters and the flicker of candlelight against stone. You dream about living in a farmhouse in Provence and painting en plein air with a view of the neighbouring vineyards.

Image – decordeprovence.blogspot.com

You drink hot chocolate from a bowl

You love the sweet life; macaroons, croissants, liquid chocolate in a bowl as big as your head… but most of all you enjoy consuming these delights in the comfort of your timber kitchen with its family-sized pine table (specially chosen for long lazy lunches), straw-seat chairs and freestanding sideboard, artfully piled with blue and white porcelain and vintage enamelware.

You love decaying grandeur… in other people’s homes

You’re ok with the soft patina of an aged pewter jug, slightly worn flagstone floors or a pair of salvaged French doors but you draw the line at peeling paint. In your version of French style the antique walnut chairs are polished and the walls freshly lime-washed. Parisian flea market finds are fine, as long as there are no fleas.

You always choose the elegant seat

You know your Louis XV from your Louis XVI and are not averse to mixing styles to create just the right balance of elegance and comfort. Quality repros are ok too. If a rustic version of the real thing was good enough for the average 18th century Frenchman, then it’s good enough for you.

You love a drape

Ruches, drapes, swathes of voluminous curtains puddling on the floor… in your world too much fabric is never enough. But you also know the secret to mastering this devastatingly romantic look is to keep materials natural – unbleached linen is as perfect as it gets – and colours clean and simple. The occasional tasseled curtain tie is fine but overdoing the flounce is a definite faux pas.

Your favourite colours are as soft as chalk

You’re naturally drawn to the subtle dawn hues of grey, blue, sage and soft chalky white. It’s a palette that reminds you of your favourite Monet paintings and your holidays in the South of France.

Your favourite print is Toile de Jouy

You love a pastoral print and pride yourself on your encyclopedic knowledge of the most French of fabrics, Toile de Jouy. Despite your growing collection, you show amazing restraint when it comes to actually using it in your own home. A cushion here, a small feature wall there… for you the joy of Jouy is all in the editing.

Image – Sam McAdam-Cooper via Homelife.

You know your zinc from your iron

Classic French iron beds are the bomb in your boudoir. And while shiny metals are a no-go in your world of lime-washed timber the cool patina of zinc is right up your boulevard. You love a zinc-topped table and can never have enough antique zinc watering cans. They are the only way to show off your armfuls of homegrown lavender.

You know how to French hang

Back in the day, when impoverished French artists had to earn a baguette, they’d trade their art for a meal at a café. The artworks were then hung ad hoc on the restaurant walls in what became known as a French hang. In another life you were one of those café owners and have inherited the expert gene when it comes to displaying a mélange of multi-media artworks. Van Gogh, Manet, Cézanne, your ultimate dream is to own just one of these original works… and live a year in Provence, every year.

Happy Bastille Day!

All images are from our Pinterest board – French Provincial Style.  

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The creator of the beautiful, hand-drawn Great 8 in today’s email is Christina Banos, who posts a steady stream of covetable furniture pieces and homeware finds on her Instagram account @homedrawn. Karen McCartney talked to Christina about her inspirations and her favourites. 

What made you set up Homedrawn?

I was going through my mother’s old glory box filled with decorating items and pieces that were handmade by various relatives which she kept to remember people by. This initially started my thinking about what I would love to have in my future home, whether it is décor items or anything interiors. My childhood was full of drawing and illustrating my dream floor plan for my house.

 

Aura’s Grande Quilt Cover (left) and the Darcy Table Lamp (right).

What materials do you use?

I work with a variety of mediums. I started illustrating with Artline pens in different sizes and then adding watercolours to my illustrations. This created the basis of my drawings. My main preference is watercolour.

How did you train?

Most of it is self-taught. I did a lot of drawing and typography while at college, and I work with a team that allows me to explore my creative side and provides me with some expert advice, for which I am grateful.

The Ash Easel Cabinet (left) and Marina Dining Chair (right).

How do you select objects to illustrate?

I find pieces online as well as in shop front windows. I also like to flick through magazines for the latest products and objects. These items then translate into the posts on my IG account. I also like to illustrate pieces made by other Instagram followers.

Aura’s Staggered Square Cushion (left) and Crosses Square Cushion (right).

What makes a great object to draw?

I like to draw items that are structured and also have intricate detail. Colour is also a main factor in my decision, depending on seasons and colour trends in the industry. If there is an event I try to illustrate something of that event or show something that depicts it.

The Paulistano armchair, available through Hub Furniture.

Do you have an all-time favourite?

This is tricky! They are all my favourites, however if I have to pick I would have to say the Paulistano Armchair designed by Paulo Mendes da Rocha. This chair is simple and elegant. I think it works well with any interior

 

A Muuto Oslo Pouf and Moroso Chubby Chic armchair.

What is the Instagram favourite?

So far the Confetti Credenza by Moving Mountains ft Ceramic Sculptures by Keiko Narahashi. A beautiful piece on its own and fairly new as well.

What is your day job?

I work as a Graphic Designer at Real Living Magazine. I collate a lot of the still life styling for house features, illustrate throughout the magazine (including floor plans and products), and I freelance in my spare time – mainly in the evenings and on weekends.

A Matthew Hilton cabinet. 

Do your two worlds ever collide?

Yes and no. I find myself on the weekends planning on what to draw for the next week or so – it’s an ever-changing industry; you have to be on the lookout for cool ideas and constantly be inspired. I love what I do and try not to let both work and my passion collide too much, although at times it cannot be avoided!

Where do you hope Homedrawn could take you?

I would love for Homedrawn to work as a platform for future design and illustration work. At the moment I am enjoying illustrating objects that I would one day like to have to decorate my own space.

Find out more at Christina’s website or follow her on Instagram @homedrawn. 

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From eatlove.com.au, a great basic muffin recipe from Anneka Manning’s Mastering the Art of Baking (published by Murdoch Books). Enjoy!

This is a good, reliable recipe from which to build your muffin repertoire. Once you’ve mastered this recipe, try out variations and let them inspire you to create other flavour combinations.

Ingredients (makes 12)

300 g (10½ oz/2 cups) self-raising flour
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon or nutmeg
110 g (3¾ oz/½ cup, firmly packed) light brown sugar
125 ml (4 fl oz/½ cup) milk
2 eggs
1 teaspoon natural vanilla extract
300 g (10½ oz/1¼ cups) mashed very ripe banana
125 g (4½ oz) butter
60 g (2¼ oz/½ cup) pecan or walnut halves

Preparation

Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F/Gas 4). Lightly brush twelve 80 ml (2½ fl oz/⅓ cup) muffin holes with melted butter to grease.

Sift the flour and cinnamon or nutmeg together into a large bowl. Stir in the sugar, then make a well in the centre.

Whisk the milk, egg and vanilla together in a jug, then pour into the well. Add the mashed banana and melted butter. Use a large metal spoon to fold together until just combined but not smooth. (Do not overmix or the muffins will be tough — the batter should still be a little lumpy.)

Divide the mixture evenly among the muffin holes and sprinkle with the nuts. Bake for 20–25 minutes, or until the muffins are golden and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Leave in the tin for 3 minutes, then use a palette knife to release each muffin from the tin and lift out. Cool on a wire rack and serve at room temperature.

See more at eatlove.com.au where you can follow your favourite chefs, share their recipes and order their books. 

 

http://www.eatlove.com.au/recipes/banana-muffins/7537/

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Twins Alisa and Lysandra Fraser have moved into the style world full time after their win on The Block Sky High, launching an interior design business and a homewares range. They’ve curated an art collection just for us, so we caught up to chat about what they learned on The Block, and why art is important.

Congratulations on winning The Block Sky High!  What are the top 3 things The Block taught you about decorating?

Alisa: Thank you. We learnt so much about renovating and styling on The Block.

1.  Find something that you love and draw inspiration from it. If it is a particular piece of artwork or cushion, then draw the colours or textures from that item to help create the mood in your room.

2.  Don’t be afraid to experiment with layering and using different textures. The more textures you use, the more interesting and dynamic a room can be. The trick is to work out what goes with what, and for a lot of people that can be the hardest part. Take plenty of photos along the way and remember you don’t always have to make purchases right on the spot. With your photos, create your own ‘mood board’ of all the things you love and want to incorporate into your room. Visually seeing the products all the products together will help you decide if they are the right choices.

3.  Invest in a statement piece. Lysandra and I have never been ones to spend big money when it comes to decorating. Decorating on a budget can be challenging, but it really does pay to spend money on that one “statement” piece, whether it’s a hard covered coffee book, designer cushion, or artwork for the all. You can then build around that piece with less expensive items and let your statement piece do most of the talking.

The Exchange, Alisa’s favourite piece from the collection.

How do your personal styles differ?  Is there anything you can never agree on?

Alisa: We definitely have similar styles but this doesn’t mean we don’t disagree, as anyone who watched The Block would know. We call this “the process” and do not settle on anything until we both agree.

How would you describe your style?  Do you have any design heroes?

Alisa: If we had to narrow it down I would describe our style as contemporary, sexy and sophisticated. We aim for our work to have an ‘Alisa and Lysandra’ touch and pride ourselves on originality. Lysandra and I have drawn a lot of inspiration from Darren Palmer and have received a lot of advice from him over the past couple of years.

Alisa & Lysandra’s style as seen on The Block. Image by Dominique Cherry.

What were your criteria when curating this art collection?

Lysandra: Alisa and I are very visual people. When selecting this collection we were inspired by the colours and mood of each piece. Another criteria was how versatile each piece would be and whether it would work in a variety of different settings and spaces.

How important do you think art is to a home?

Lysandra: Now more than ever, Alisa and I know the importance of art. I feel a room without some form of art is a room that lacks emotion. Art can come in so many different forms, from sculptures and statues to lighting and beautiful hand painted pieces. I believe that artwork is the most influential design piece that can create a point of interest.

Alisa & Lysandra’s style as seen on The Block. Image by Dominique Cherry.

What do you think are the most important things to consider when buying art?

Lysandra: Artwork has to create an emotion. It has to speak to you in some way.

Alisa: You also need to think about the proportion and colours of the artwork to make sure it will work in the intended space.

Do you have a failsafe styling tip for art?

Lysandra: If you choose artwork that you love, you can’t go too wrong. Artwork is very subjective, so most people will have an opinion on it. Here are a couple of failsafe tips I can give when selecting artwork.  Make sure the proportion of the artwork is right and select artwork that matches colours portrayed in your room. Pick out one or two of the boldest colours in your room and draw inspiration from that. Be confident in your choice, because art can bring a lot of joy.

Chrysalis, Lysandra’s pick from the collection

Which is your favourite artwork in the collection, and why?

Alisa: My favourite piece is The Exchange. I love the boldness, warmth and excitement of the colour and the depth and drama of the aubergine.

Lysandra – My favourite piece is Chrysalis. I am drawn to the soft colours which have an instant calming effect. The muted tones and colours remind me of the calming ocean and soft clouds. It just goes to prove that not all art pieces have to be bright and colourful to catch one’s attention.

Follow Alisa and Lysandra on Facebook, Instagram @alisa_lysandra and twitter @alisa_lysandra.

Inspired? Shop the Alisa and Lysandra collection today.

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