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THE BEST DESIGN FROM NEW ZEALAND. AND AROUND THE WORLD. AND NEW ZEALAND! Homewares, Furniture, Interiors, Graphic Design... and lots of other awesome design.

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  • 06/22/16--14:22: Talking to: Blink Boys



  • Blink Boys' studio signage - inspired by the latest Kayne album

    Blink Boys share their studio space with jewellery label Walter Crow


    A place of work isn't really a place of work until you have old school lockers.

    I'm jealous of your exposed beams, guys


    Look at these fresh faces with their fresh whips. Good mates since school, and now running their own marketing agency in Auckland. For a change of blog scenery, I thought I'd ask some questions and let the Blink Boys tell their story for themselves...  


    Who are the Blink Boys?
    At its core the Blink Boys are Andrew Slane (26), Tim Slane (25) and Asher Walker (27). We went to Dilworth School together and have been in each other's pockets ever since. Bigger than the Blink Boys is Blink Ltd, our 'official' company. We're lucky to have some awesome people who work with us and a network of experts that we can call on. 

    How did Blink Boys come about? 
    The Blink Boys came about after a tropical holiday in the Perhentian Islands. Having always had a desire to do our own thing and over one too many piña coladas Andrew and I decided to leave our work and go out on our own. Andrew had been the general manager of a print company and I had been working in advertising. When we returned, we teamed up with our good friend Harrison Burt who was a freelance web and graphic designer and Blink was born.

    Originally we focused on building websites, design and running social media campaigns. Nine months later, Tim who had been working at a print and signage company joined us to start the signage side of the business and as they say the rest is history. Harrison's moved on to some other projects but we've been lucky to nab designer Gabi Lardies to fill his shoes! 

    What do you offer as Blink Boys?
    We focus on creating value through a range of digital and signage solutions. We work on a broad range of projects, from brand architecture and strategy to signage design, print management and installation. We're fortunate to have a great set of clients and be able to work on some really fun briefs. 

    What are some of the projects you've done recently?
    We’ve recently finished up doing all of the signage for this year's Art Fair, paper cuts for Trelise Cooper’s latest lookbook and reception (printed wallpaper and vinyl) and have been working closely with South Studio on a few of their client’s signage requirements. Branding wise we’ve been working on a new Rum brand which has been super fun and we’re looking to launch the new Public Library website in the next month or so.

    Tell us about your space - where is it, who do you share it witf?
    The 'Blink Factory', as we've nicknamed it, is tucked away on Exmouth Street in Eden Terrace. After spending a year working above the Golden Dawn on Ponsonby Road, in a small corner office that overlooked the busy street, we plucked up enough courage to take on a bigger space. The space was formerly a dance studio so we lucked out with the polished wooden floors and high ceilings. Up until recently, artist Henry Christian Slane rented a room from us. He's moved out so we're currently converting the front area into a space where anyone with great ideas can hot desk and a smaller area into a photography studio. It's exciting being in a place that has so much potential. 

    And two of you also run the jewellery brand Walter Crow?
    Andrew and Asher run Walter Crow with another friend we went to school with. Part of our studio has been converted to a showroom for Walter, we're looking forward to using the space for more activations for the brand. Watch this space.

    What was the scariest part of going out on your own and did that fear turn out to be founded? 
    The scariest part of starting Blink was venturing into the unknown. We started with one small client and had no idea whether we were going to make enough money to even pay the rent. When starting something new, there’s always going to be the fear of failure but you’ve just got to keep moving and push on. It definitely wasn’t all smooth sailing to begin with but we’re not bogged down with too many commitments so our lifestyle adapted! 

    What other NZ brands or creatives (individuals) inspire you?
    We’re inspired by the young people around us doing rad stuff in Auckland, no matter what the field - people like Connor and Charles from Ceremony/Homestead, the guys at I Love Ugly, Angus from Angus Muir Design and the team at Think and Shift

    What's some of the best and worst parts about being in business with good friends? The line is definitely blurry between on and off the clock. It can be hard to switch between the work and friend zone, we’ll be out for dinner with our partners talking about projects that we’re working on. Safe to say we’ve been given the hard word that Blink work doesn’t happen over pad Thai on a Friday anymore. The big bonus is we don’t see our best mates once a week, we get to hang out everyday! 

    What's one golden piece of advice you would give to someone wanting to start their own thing?
    There’s no time like the present. Just stay focused and remember that people are the most important thing. 


    Blink Boys  website  /   signage microsite  /  Instagram





    Photography by Josh Griggs for Fancy

    Check Josh's work out on Instagram.





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  • 06/23/16--16:32: Just a l'il something...














  • Hieeee! I'm blogging from the beach this morning. WHAT A TIME TO BE ALIVE!
    Just something small and sweet for you today - new handmade ceramics by New Zealand's
    George Sand Studio, available from our friends at MEKKA.

    (Also, the bowls with a pouring lip are called Pancake Bowls, and that makes me happy.)



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    Let's pack bags and go stay at this summer house, right on the beach, on Sweden's island of Gotland.


    Is couchie a thing? Selfie > shelfie > couchie... yeah, it's a thing.

    Beautiful simple styling from Australia's The Bedroom Society.

    This rather grand home in Stockholm has plenty of little details to love. Exhibit A: heritage floors, and double doors opening from lounge to kitchen.

    A bunch of design classics hanging out around the table (white Wishbone CH24 chairs) and brass Tom Dixon trio above, made a little more casual with that awesome rug.

    Brass handles and tapware, and favourite matching kitchenware on display.

    The cabinet looks a bit clunky there, don't you think? Otherwise this is almost a perfect 10.

    Someone get some Autosol on those brass taps.

    Love that crazy folksy wallpaper, the 'naked' pine flooring, iconic string shelving... and deep inky blue, always. (Can anyone tell me what that great plant is?)





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    Old fashioned wrapping for your butchery buys

    You know my favourite thing is good people doing and making awesome things, together. So I couldn't go past sharing Good Grocer and their brand identity with you.

    Good Grocer (founded by Hip Group, who are responsible for some of New Zealand's coolest, contemporary eateries) is a totally old-fashioned yet totally progressive concept - a neighbourhood grocery store where provenance is everything, and seasonal, local, organic and free-range are default standards. I read somewhere that they sell a dozen free-range eggs for $5. The staff can tell you where your beef came from, who caught your fish. It's just like being back in 1970's New Zealand - except you couldn't get artisan gelato back then. 

    The brand nicely articulates all Good Grocer's values - honest, simple, made by hand. Love the brown paper packaging. Good Grocer's identity was designed by Georgia Yates of Kindly Studio (whose work we've featured before, here) in collaboration with Logan Smith (Smiddy's Studio).


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    You'll probably remember this brass incense holder from our recent feature on Bodha - the boutique home brand centred around ritual and rest, and founded by New Zealander Emily L'Ami.

    Well, Emily has just launched two very special new Ritual incense holders to join the family - blackened brass and golden brass. 

    Each holder is stoned, polished and then bathed in a traditional Japanese compound, using an ancient method passed down from the days of the Samurai. Bodha is working with a father and son team in Japan, who hand-treat each holder to bring out the metal's natural patina. 

    Ritual Incense Holders have two wells, so they fit both Japanese and Indian style incense. 

    The simple brass sphere was already one of my favourite products of this year, so I'm very in love with the two new versions. #wishlisted.

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    Analogue Digital

    Can someone start a blog that consists solely of sharing people's inspo/mood boards? I'd read that.

    (That little mustard and black plant print is a Sly & Co cutie - get yours here)

    Screenprinting frames for hand-pulled Sly & Co prints

    X does all her own sewing for Sly & Co

    Lou and Rob say they're hoarders and collectors, and a little bit crazy about art. 

    Part of the architect's block set, Block Haus

    This gallery wall makes me happy - Sly & Co prints hanging in a little fam.
    Jump for Joy print available here, Alphabet print here.

    We love Sly & Co's hand-painted Block Friends

    (And how 'bout these guys? They look a little startled. It's OK, guys.)

    Music and art, always

    Lou paints a new series of blocks (love that muddy pink, Lou)


    These lovely faces are owned by Louise and Robert Sly of Sly & Co - a very cool little NZ craft-meets-design brand that you need to know about. 

    Sly & Co is like a little gang of friendly, graphic goodies - hand-pulled art prints, cushions, building blocks (block friends, horse blocks and an 'architect set' called Block Haus) and more. Sly & Co has an aesthetic that's all theirs, and we love that. Not a Scandi-minimalist-marble-copper-thing to be seen for miles. (Just. Do. You.) 

    Also, every item is made by hand, by Louise - whose background is in spatial and fashion design - and Robert - a graphic designer - at their home in South Auckland. 

    You can buy Sly & Co online, or from one of their stockists in Auckland or Australia - or go and meet them in-person at one of the many markets they run a stall at (Auckland Fair, Crafternoon Tea, General Collective, amongst others). 






    Imagery captured by Fancy contributor,
    wedding & lifestyle photographer Samantha Donaldson
    (also @samanthadonaldsonphotography on Insta)




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    Been hunting for plant potting options this week, and I'm digging The Northern Market's rope baskets. (By American indie maker Lindsey Zinno). Would also be good for items and things and sundries.






    I hate clutter. Clutter. See, the word even sounds messy. So I pretty much have storage baskets for my storage baskets. The Muuto Restore basket, which has been around a couple of years now, is an international fave in the storage stakes. Well they've now extended the Restore range with a lower tray (soft rectangle) style, but even better - a new round Restore basket. Give me all the circular things! There's also new colours, including a sage green.









    You know we love a minimalist black exterior, don't we - but it's actually the interior of this renovated 1920's worker's cottage that's stealing the show here for me. Seriously, why would you ever stay in a city hotel (even the 'premiere' ones have shampoo that snaps your hair off, coffee that tastes like burnt dreams, and decor designed in 1996) when you have options like the beautiful Durham House, in West End Brisbane. As well as being a boutique accommodation, it's available for location shoots and events.



    Minimalist studio supplies! Rolu paper roller (available here, only US$50), by Japanese designer Chiaki Murata. I believe this is actually blackened brass, too - so... bonus points for that. There are perforated edges (love a good perf) along the length of paper every 10cm. Your grocery list never looked so good.



    Yeah, yeah, I get it - another candle. But this really might be the best one I've seen - with a simplicity of form designed for ambiance and aesthetics. Oh, and the ceramic vessel is reusable. 
    It's a product by Benjamin Edgars, the founder of Boxed Water (read: this guy is awesome).






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  • 07/03/16--16:21: Duett Duet:









  • Our friends at Duett design have just launched a new collection of prints, a collaboration with New Zealand photographer Nic Staveley. We love photographic prints like these for their ability to immediately evoke a mood - the bliss of summer,  something more introspective and inspiring, or calming and meditative. All the feels...


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    New Zealand designer Phil Cuttance is at it again with his new collection, the Herringbone vase, a three-sided vessel (each face shows a different pleated, folded pattern). The Herringbone vase comes in some very-now colours, including sage green, electric blue and my favourite, granite - a mottled off-white. Ooh, and custom colours are possible too. Each one is made to order, and Phil hand finishes and etches the final product to reveal the fine, cement-like texture. Available direct from the designer himself, here.


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    New Zealand design studio Fuman created the Major Sprout brand,
    along with all the cafe's signage and collateral. 

    The patterning actually comes from imagery of a rice paddy field
    - a nod to the subtle Korean influence through the menu



    V Wall Light (in brass) by NZ design collective, Resident


    Also by Resident, the Hex 750 brass light

    Beautiful imagery thanks to NZ photographer Jason Kelly

    Had to share this l'il extra - Major Sprout's new coffee cups are MADE FROM PLANTS
    and are compostable - created by NZ's Innocent Packaging.



    Have been meaning to share this spot with you for months!...

    David Lee's Auckland eateries (he doesn't just own them, he designs them) are always beautiful.  But where his first two - Little King andDear Jervois - have a vintage and industrial aesthetic, Major Sprout embraces a different design direction. This third David Lee joint is all clean and contemporary, with loads of glass, white and light, and modern furniture and lighting. The warm timber and plenty o' plants keeps it soft and inviting (as do the staff - David Lee eateries are notable for their completely unpretentious, super attentive service).

    AAA++. Would trade again.

    (Follow Major Sprout on Instagram if having daily lunch envy is something you're into, masochist.)

    Hat tip to NZ photographer Jason Kelly for the stunner images.

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    French doors through to your bedroom - yaaaaaas. Also love that linen grid throw and that rug.

    The Scandi's know comfort - love how they put day beds at one end of the kitchen.
    (Hidden storage gets bonus points, too)

    Fabric/textile lighting is definitely super on-trend, and I'm digging the camel colour of this pair. Also love the powder grey spindle-back chairs, and you know I'm a fan of a good bench seat.

    I love matte black tapware as much as the next girl (for real, I have it in my bathroom) - but I love individuality even more. How rad is that custom concrete sink?


    Instructions on how to make a crap-stain couch lovely again. Also, white and white is never a bad idea, provided there's plenty of texture at the party too.


    #SoftMinimalism 



    This loft home is so cool - you should head on over to DesignSponge to look through the whole thing.

    More #SoftMinimalism, my fave (I'd change the drawer pulls though, they're a little cold.)

    I love everything about this bedroom/lounge combo...






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    Stop it.

     'the woods' blankies

    No, I love you most, Noah and Bowie. 


    This itty bitty New Zealand brand, Noah and Bowie - founded by young mum Mandy Price - has the most darling things for nurseries. I also just wanna mention that (with our economy, fair trade and quality in mind) Noah and Bowie recently decided to move all production from China to New Zealand. So everything is made right here at home.  


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    If I had to pick a go-to aesthetic it would be the new Minimalism, Soft Minimalism. While it's still clean, contemporary and clutter-free, it's warmer and more welcoming than trad. minimalism.
    You start with a neutral canvas (off white, soft grey or beige-is-the-new-black), pare back on both the number and style of the items in your space (less is more), but then soften the look with texture, texture, texture, muted colours, and natural materials. It's been aaaaaaages bro since we've done a Five Faves - so here's my current Five Faves from NZ stores, to style a Soft Minimal space.


    K  I  T  C  H  E  N






    Corner shelf for your shelfies in Nude from LETLIV   /   Brass candle by Scent of Home, from Father Rabbit   /   Small ceramic dish from Paper Plane's Mist collection collab with J S Ceramics   /
    Kip & Co linen duvet cover in earthy Clay from LETLIV   /   Check throw, from Superette's in-house home brand   /   Also, a little blob of inky indigo (maybe some navy linen or velvet cushions, from Paper Plane) would be dope in this palette. 



    D  I  N  I  N  G

    These Merchant dinner plates from Father Rabbit also look good used as a tray, in the centre of the dining table   /   Love the iconic Menu grinders, which now come in sage and bottle green, from Paper Plane   /   Porcelain is delicate and imperfect - perfect for #softminimalism - and this spoon just has a very cool shape to it, don't you think? (From Nest, who have a collection of these spoons)   /   A crinkly, thick, stonewash linen tablecloth is on my wishlist - love this khaki babe from Father Rabbit   /   Your favourite tea or coffee belongs in something this special - and an injection of black (softened with the texture of timber) ups the modernity. Wooden Bowl/Vessel by Menu, from LETLIV.


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    As the poet Mase once said: Now give me the catalogue, I'll show you how daddy ball...





    Those clever Canadians, aye. Mister, an ice cream joint in Vancouver, where they make your ice cream from scratch, right in front of you, using liquid nitrogen. Interior design by Scott and Scott Architects







    The word for someone who loves and collects pens is a apparently Penophile. Um... can we please vote to change that word? Surely as a group of people who love to write and/or design, we can write and/or design a better word than that. Anywhoodle... I do love a good pen, and the Ajoto pen is maybe the goodest I've seen; an exercise in beautiful simplicity. While there aren't too many details (because, minimalism); at the same time there are loads of details - and every last one has been considered. The packaging is pretty amazing just on its own; package-ophiles (guys, we need better words) would probably be happy just to have the experience of opening this up and not even need to find an amazing pen inside.  Yes, it's somewhat 'spency, but this is a tool that would last a lifetime, and would make a seriously special gift. *clears throat*. Ahem. An amaaaaazing gift for a designer and writer, who would be so grateful. Asking for a friend. 

    Personally love the matte black and the spun brass, but it also comes in spun silver, rose gold, 14ct gold, and more.






    Cinqpoints makes playful, graphic objects for lovers of contemporary architecture. We love their Bauhaus Archiblocks and the Home set (shown below). 





    File this in your Really Nice Looking Cafe folder - Passenger Coffee, Pennsylvania



    Eeeee! Tiny Houses! That. are. Cushions! From super cute Nursery brand, Camomile London.




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    I keep thinking I'd like to get into weaving. I imagine it would be suuuuper relaxing and almost meditative. I'd have a fave Spotify playlist or podcast playing, just weave-weave-weaving the afternoon away. Unfortunately, I am also lazy, so instead, I'm might just purchase one of these tapestries from Wellington maker Poppy Dodge. 

    Poppy Dodge wall hangings are available to buy online from The Bread & Butter Letter (they have a bunch of neutral-toned tapestries in stock at the moment) or you can contact Poppy directly - check her out on Instagram - @poppydodgeart




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    Citta designer Dave Moreland, continues to grow the brand's furniture range
    with modular, modern pieces - like this very cool outdoor setting



    I'd like to lay a complaint. 

    When New Zealand's preeminent design co., Citta, launch a new season of homeware and furniture, they provide so many lookbook photos to choose from - and they're all killer, no filler - so it takes me freakin' ages to decide which ones to share with you. 

    Regards, Alana

    Here's our first look at Citta's Summer '16 collection, Postcards from Palm Springs. 
    They've extended their growing catalogue of seriously decent lighting and furniture (including the launch of a new modular outdoor sofa), and there are all-new cushions, a new range of bedding and throws, kitchenware and bathroomware and more. The colour palette and design style is very light and fresh, with a definite youthful, fun feel and hints of the Californian Modernist architecture and design that Palm Springs is famous for. All this goodness will be landing in the Citta online store (and your local Citta stockists) over the coming months. 

    Also - can we just give a little cred to NZ stylist Sara Black for her work on this shoot? Nice, Sarah.

    There's all-new stow bins and planters in this new collection (we heart storage, and Citta know this)




    ... and a whole new range of bedding, pillows and throws that are fresh and light in design.
    This pattern above is my personal fave.

    Also - did you spot those new side tables? Love the all-black.

    The bathroom catalogue now extends to kids' towels

    My tea towel collection is about to get outa hand

    Just when you thought there was no other way to design a cool circular mirror... THIS.

    ...and they've also designed a range of table trays with the same three-quarter rim

    Citta's in-house lighting range gets an injection of Palm Springs summer colours

    And there's scores of new cushions. That textured, pompom babe above is coming to my place


    Love these three together...

    The Summer '16 range includes a family of new, generously-sized floor rugs.
    Oh, and that side table? They're also doing a large n' low coffee table version (see very top pic)

    The summer collection includes a full wardrobe of clean, caj wear



    Citta Design online store  /   Facebook  /   Instagram


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    Lighting by NZ's Douglas and Bec






    aaaaand another shot of that ladder, because why wouldn't we



    Is this not the best looking florists you ever did see? I know

    It's BLUSH, in Auckland's Parnell, and was designed top to toe by Blush owner and creative director, Kelly Karam. Yes, it was Kelly's idea to make use of that lovely high stud by creating stacked troughs to house the flowers. And her idea to have Powersurge make her a solid brass library ladder (at the risk of sounding like I'm 18, I am obsessed with that ladder) to reach the highest troughs. And her idea to have a massive brass counter custom-made, with handleless drawers in the back. Kelly has an impeccable eye, for interiors as much as for the floral styling she's known for, for weddings, events, and lucky flower-receiving people. Also - special mention to Think Pack who (in collaboration with Kelly), designed the flower carrier and luxe packaging.  Who wouldn't love flowers delivered in one of those long pink and gold foil boxes?


    Blush   website   /   Instagram






    Imagery as impressive as this interior by
    Michelle Weir of Studio:Weir
    for Fancy NZ Design Blog







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  • 07/21/16--13:58: Pick n Mix


  • Your Friday Five...



    Australian designer and craftsman Mark Tuckey has just released matte black versions of two of his most famous pieces, the eggcup stool and oxo coffee table. We love.






    This brand communication project has been deservedly getting a lotta love in the design fraternity. It was designed by LA-based Kati Forner (who's entire portfolio is ridiculously good) and is for a photography and directing team, We Are The Rhoads





    Ones to watch - Josh and Jenna Densten (twice contestants of The Block Australia), have established their own interior practise Bicker Design - and their work is seriously good. This is one of their recent projects for a young Melbourne family, Highett House.




    You know we keep one beady eye on designer Caroline Gomez at all times. Stuff like this - her new handmade ceramic pitcher - is the reason. #insertglancyglancysidewayseyeemojihere





    So very very into the IC family of lights by designer Michael Anastassiades for Flos. Polished brass, mouth blown sphere, and available in a floor lamp, hanging pendant light, table lamp, and ceiling/wall mounted lights. (These are available in New Zealand through ECC)





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    You know endemicworld (NZ's art print specialists), right? Well endemic's founder, Elliot Alexander, has just opened his own pet portrait studio - Furry Stills

    The four leggedy models shown here are, from top: Cash (Elliot's best mate), Taco, and Cashew the Bunny. I'm booking in to get a contemporary portrait of my fur babe, Company.

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    Ooh, lookee here - we've got a preview perve at the new Homestyle Magazine
    (Aug/Sep issue, on shelves this week)...

    The new Citta 'Summer 16 collection on show in a modernist Auckland home.
    Styled by Alice Lines and Citta Senior Designer Imogen Tunnicliffe; Photography by Simon Wilson


    One of my fave bits of content in this issue is a feature they ran this time last year too, taking new SS16/17 fashion collections from New Zealand labels, and using those as colour and pattern cues for interior looks.

    One of the Best Dressed looks (styled by Juliette Wanty, photographed by Melanie Jenkins)
    - this one based on Kowtow's new Case Study collection


    There's also a nice big bunch of aspirational homes, as per - including a tour of this reno'
    by Auckland couple Hayley and Darryl French...

    Photography by Larnie Nicolson



    Can't not mention my Sunday Bench at the end of Hayley's bed (available via The Sunday Kind)


    Homestyle Aug/Sep issue is on sale now, or subscribe here and get a third off the cover price.

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