Friday, November 28, 2008

More Maggie Magic

Ok, so a couple of days ago I showed you Maggie Tabberer's house from 18 years ago. Well this is her house she lives in today. All pictures are from the Australian Women's Weekly. Maggie's lived in at least one other home since the one I showed you (I wish I had kept photos of that one too - it was equally good). Her latest home is a stunning three storey white timber home, built around a courtyard which is dominated by a 100 year old frangipani tree.

Here's the white galley kitchen, complete with chunky white marble benchtops. I'm loving those dark floors.

Here's that marvellous frangipani tree - can you imagine it in full bloom? You can see Maggie's bedroom opens right on to this courtyard - so you could step from the bed straight into the pool should you wish. And doesn't Maggie look fabulous - I hope I look as good slinking around in my caftan as Maggie at 71!

A view of the living room...

If you look carefully at this other view of Maggie's living room, you might notice some objects from her former home - the trunk, chair and the massive spiked swordfish bill were all in her other home I featured. This proves again the old adage that while fashion might fade, style lasts forever.

The serene bedroom has a tropical feel. The feature wall is glazed grey.

Maggie picked up these cutwork embroidery curtains in a market in Italy.

This picture does this bathroom no justice. I adore the cool, serene white marble, funky cutwork lightfitting and the antique chinese chest fashioned into a bathroom vanity. Maggie I'm moving in, I'll just sleep in here thanks.

Asian touches abound....mixed with other bold, earthy treasures picked up on Maggie's travels around the globe.

So, you might be asking yourself by now what is the connection between Maggie Tabberer and artist Marcella Kaspar who I featured's this house. Maggie's home was built by Marcella and her builder/designer husband Mark Cooper. So not only is Marcella a talented artist, she also has some incredible taste in homes (or at least, incredible taste in men who have incredible taste in homes).

These pictures appeared in Australia's Vogue Living. Unfortunately these pictures aren't complete and don't do the place justice.
Same bathroom...same lightfighting, different mirrors. I think I actually prefer these mother of pearl twin mirrors, which they picked up in India.

If you look verrry carefully, it appears that behind the tree is one of Marcella's magnificent huge paintings.

So there you have it - two equally fabulous and stylish women. I hope Marcella Kaspar's current home pops up in a magazine somewhere.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Marcella Magic

Marcella Kaspar is a Prague-born artist who lives in Australia. She uses 17th century 'old masters' techniques of opaque layering and transparent glazing to create works of great beauty, conveying a play of light and dark.

She has a whole flower series, but I posted this magnolia painting because I love Magnolias - they are a real favourite of mine as I love their simple, elegant beauty (and the colour pink!).

....As are peonies. Isn't this painting just stunning in it's beauty?

If I had to describe Marcella Kaspar's artwork in a single word, that word would be 'luscious'.

You can see more of Marcella's work at her website
I would love one of her paintings - an absolutely huge one - dominating one entire wall.
Now, there's a reason why I posted about Marcella Kaspar directly after yesterday's post about Maggie Tabberer. I'll tell you about it later - stay tuned!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Maggie Magic

Almost everyone in Australia would know Maggie Tabberer. She is an Australian fashion icon - a former model and Helmut Newton muse turned fashion editor of the Australian Women's Weekly Magazine. She's also a former Adelaide girl done good. Maggie is 71 and the picture above is recent - how fabulous does she look?

Today I'm hauling out some pictures from my style file of a home Maggie shared with former love Richard Zachariah (who turned out to be a bit of a cad, unfortunately). I think these pictures first appeared in Mode (now long gone) back in 1990.
The trunk, the white couches, sisal flooring, the huge candlestick - what's not to love here?

Whilst these pictures aren't of the best quality, and have yellowed somewhat, I think they demonstrate that Maggie's style is rather timeless.

I love Maggie's liberal use of white, her bold accessories, her lack of clutter and the earthiness of things like shells and cane. Remember this was at a time when most houses were full of the cottage look - think lots of pattern, knick knacks everywhere, lots of little ducks on placemats, fridge magnets, tea towells, floral wallpaper borders part way up the wall...shall I go on?. Yet Maggie stood above that all. Just check out these gorgeous chairs.

In 1991 Maggie wrote "A long time ago I made up my mind about what I really like. And in terms of interior decoration I see it being very similar to building a fashion wardrobe that makes an immediate statement about who you are. When you do buy something and you're confident it's what you like, that you're not being swayed by fashion whim or your best friend or some colour spread in a magazine, then you are being true to your own sense of style. Being true to your personal tastes, you will steadily develop an enduring inner confidence". Well said.
Another day I will post pictures of Maggie's stunning current home.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Christmas present ideas

Arnaud is an Australian company that makes bath and body products. I'm not affiliated to them in any way - I just love their products and want to share the love. What really appeals to me is their packaging - it is simple, yet stunning. I love the neutral colours, the gorgeous curved bottles with their waxed corks, the luscious soaps encased in script paper. There are four ranges - chamomile and lavender, frangipani, lime and white grapefruit, brazillian vanilla and tangerine and moroccan rose and palma rosa.

I have a bottle of their bath salts and a bottle of their body lotion in my bathroom, and I can't bring myself to open them because I'll ruin the beautiful packaging!

I would love a whole bowl full of these beautiful soaps. Can you imagine them piled up in a gorgeous unpolished marble bowl? You can find out more details, including stockists at I'm not sure if they stock outside Australia.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Red accents in my home

Not that long ago I posted about touches of red, and said I'd put up some pictures of red accents in my own home, so here they are - there's just a few small touches.

This is my kitchen. It's all very beige (I've comtempated painting my kitchen cupboards white or black, but not anytime soon) so I've added a little red for zing - I have a variety of red tea towells I swap around, there's a vintage style set of scales (being used here to hold some tomatoes) and if you look carefully there's a red spatula and a bottle of organic tomato sauce (ok, I'm clutching at straws now).

This is my rusty iron loveseat in my teeny tiny backyard. Occasionally I will read out here in which case I take these cushions with me (they're not really made for the outdoors). I bought these in Sydney last time I was there. They don't really suit the style of my house (a little too feminine) but they look fine outside I think. Eventually my ugly colourbond fencing will be covered in star jasmine, but because of the severe water restrictions it is taking an age to grow. But still, when I bought my house the backyard was nothing but a mass of weeds and bare earth, so I'm quite happy with what I've been able to do with it so far, considering I'm a hopeless gardener. I wish I had taken a before picture.

And lastly, here's a picture of one of my white couches, with a red cushion tossed into the mix. I like the look of red against neutrals, including this neutral linen cushion. Beside this couch is a huge red vase-type thing I also bought in Sydney on another business trip. I spied it in the front window of a shop so I went inside for a better look. I told the lady I would love it but that it would be too difficult to cart back home to Adelaide. That's when she told me that it is made from bamboo and is as light as a feather. So I took it on the plane as hand luggage. The air hosties just about had a conniption, but I got it through so I was happy! I think almost everyone who loves decorating has a story about lugging things back on a place, and now you know mine! Got any stories of your own to share with me?

Friday, November 21, 2008

I'm so excited!

I've just got home from a night out at the movies, it's 10pm, I turn on my computer (when I really should be going to bed) to find out that I've won the Mondo Cherry prize I'd been hoping I would win. Look! Kindly given away by the talented and very creative team - see

This is going to look fabulous in my study!

What makes it even more special is that Anne from City Sage ( won it but wanted to give it to me! She either has a sixth sense or she picked up on the desperation in my comment I left on Mondo Cherry.

So thank you to ALL you lovely ladies for your kindness and generosity. I'm finding the world of blogging to be a wonderful place, full of lots of positive, like minded people.

Now, on to my night out at the movies. I am a huge movie buff, and will see almost anything and everything, from art house independent movies to kids animated movies and everything in between. But I must say the James Bond movie Quantum of Solace left me a little, well.... bored. Lots of bang bang smash em up, not enough story line or lingering shots of Daniel Craig's bare chest.

HOWEVER, I did sit up and take notice when Bond checks in to the Grand Hotel Bolivia with agent Strawberry Fields. Not for the obligatory bedding of this lovely lady, but for the interiors of the hotel suite. All gorgeous black and white, quite masculine but very chic. I even spied a silver free standing bath and a gorgeous vintage style basin backed against marble walls. I've tried searching for some pictures, but the only one I could find is this one below in the lobby. If you manage to find some more pictures, please let me know.

Have a great weekend. I'm off to see if Ikea has any shelves in stock so I have something to prop my prize on.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Lamp love

I have a real thing for industrial style, metal lamps. I constantly see them popping up in pictures of rooms I love. So here are some selections.

Now this first one is available in Adelaide - I have seen this actual lamp! My heart skipped a beat when I made the discovery, as I had admired it in a magazine. I had the perfect spot for it. But then I saw the price.....If you have a cool $1000 you can pop into Outdoors on Parade and it can be yours! Picture from Australian Belle.

I love this entire picture - the monochromatic scheme consisting of the black antique desk, the drawings, the lamp of course and the touch of greenery. This is picture perfection! Picture from Australian Home Beautiful.

This whole room is divine with the double mirrors and the soaring ceiling, but the lamp just caps it off for me. Picture from Martha Stewart.

A gorgeous brass one this time, which fits well with the earthy tones of the wall, the basket and the quilt. Picture from Australian Notebook.

I'm not sure where I found this picture of this little gem, but I love its gorgeous curves.

And for something a bit different, how about a black lamp? Love all the interesting bits and bobs in the bookshelf too. This whole little corner is put together beautifully.

But I've saved the best for last. This one would have to be a genuine antique, surely. I want this exact one on my desk - if I ever spot one, I'm getting it! Picture from Real Living.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Filling that blank wall

Recently I posted on 'big sky' paintings. All were superb, but way out of my price range. But that doesn't mean I have to compromise....I found this exquisite photography whilst skipping through blogs one day. Unfortunately I can't remember which blog (it wasn't one of my regulars) but whoever you are thank you thank you thank you for introducing me to Canadian photographer Irene Suchocki, whose work is available through Etsy. Her photos are works of art, and have a wonderful painterly, vintage quality to them. They also capture the moody sky and sea in all their glory.

Whilst I really want a black and white wall of photos, I may need to throw one of two of these into the mix I think!

Irene doesn't just sand and sea - go to to see her full range. I love these ones too - they have a dreamlike quality to them. Aren't they stunning?

My study wall will also be filled with pictures of friends and family. I am going to chose one or two of these of my little man for starters. All converted to black and white of course.

Here's one I'm NOT going to have framed. This is my son, tongue sticking out, after he'd simply had enough of being a model for the morning. He's a typical fiery red head my boy!