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I love odd, unexpected little spaces...

... and doors painted black, with floors painted white (and bench seats inside. and festoon lights.)
and restaurants that look like a dream dining room...

...and light-filled industrial spaces where designers hold workshops...

... and showrooms you could live in (and floor to ceiling glass!)...

and making an entrance...

(I can't breathe.)
... and teeny attic offices
...and black (when done well).

and a bedroom big enough to have your own sofa in it.

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Win! GRACE & JAMES candles (they're awesome) -


Grace and James candles are my current faves. The brand was started by Melbourne babe Emma Davenport, who has collaborated with a bunch of Australian designers on the packaging. The candles are a soy and coconut oil mix, have a double wick (love a double wick) and they're nice and big - 80 hours burn time. You can buy them online at Grace and James, or in NZ from Republic Home.

I have a feeling this little brand is gunna do some awesome things - check them out on Instagram or Facebook.

I have a couple of designer series' candles to give away (valued at AU$50 each) - a Moroccan Mango & Honey (featuring a Hunting For George design), and a Creamy Vanilla (featuring an exclusive Laura Blythman illustration).

To go in the draw, just fill in the form below. Good luck, lucky-shoulders! 

Good Goods - new NZ artisan food


Sooooo many awesome artisan food brands popping up in New Zealand! eeeeeeeexciting! 

First up - Fix & Fogg, from Wellington husbo and wife Roman and Andrea Jewel. They thought they'd give making peanut butter from scratch a go... and fell in love with it. Rowan started spending every night in a kitchen down at the Hataitai Bowling Club, grinding nuts with a specially commissioned machine. They were making about 400 jars a week - selling peanut butter to order, and at craft fairs. about 400 jars a week. Roman eventually quit his high-paid job as a law lecturer to make Fix & Fogg fulltime... and as well as stocking some of NZ's best eateries, they make (and sell) Fix & Fogg from a teeny little space in one of Welly city's laneways. (Pics above!) 

Fix & Fogg  website   \   Facebook  \   Instagram

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Informal Tea Co. are from my neighbourhood (Mount Maunganui). Started by mates Tim and Chris, who look at tea as an art form. They source organic green and black tea from micro-producers, and then - back home in NZ - the boys blend the tea with real herbs, flowers and berries. No artificial anything, what you see is what you're drinking. And it is G-double-oh-dee GOOD.  I buy the Fresh Mint (organic spearmint and peppermint with rosemary and lavender) on the regular - and just put an order in for some of their new Chai blend. I swear I wasn't even a tea person before trying this stuff. 

Informal Tea   website   \   Facebook  \   Instagram

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Lucy Benetto used to get migraines after eating normal chocolate, so she taught herself how to make chocolate at home. A passion born, she set out to learn all she could about the art, science and history of chocolate making. Along the way, she learnt about the benefits of quality dark chocolate (see? it's good for you!) and all the really shitty ethical issues that surround the cocoa supply chain internationally.
Benetto chocolate uses all natural fair-trade certified and organic certified ingredients, and there's no white, refined sugar or dairy. The coolest thing is Lucy's Drinking Chocolate Bar, crafted especially to be dissolved in hot milk (comes in a solid bar, wrapped in gold foiled paper with sweet illustrations by Henrietta Harris). 

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Design Diary - Rose & Sarah of NZ new brand, Crushes

Rose Hope and Sarah Firmston are the very funny and lovely babes behind The Bread & Butter Letter boutique (specialising in NZ made homeware and goodies)... and now, they're also the designers and do-ers for their brand new in-house brand, Crushes - with products that are starting to get picked up by stores all 'round the country. I have a Crushes on Sarah's glasses, Rose's bob game and the fact they can't help quoting Zoolander. Cool Story, Hansel.

The first thing we did this morning was…
Start the day right; with a coffee, a buttery brioche for a terribly-unhealthy-but-equally-delicious breakfast, and with our handy weekly planners. We are always writing lists - even our lists have lists! It is the only way we can stay on top of all the projects that we do.

Woah. Best thing I've seen all month.

The highlight of our day was…
Sending off big orders to some new stores! It's so exciting to know that our creations are going to lovely new stores and homes around the country!

A challenge in our day was…
Completing the checklist we made this morning! Oh, to have it all ticked off. One day, one day.

One thing we learned today…
After meeting with a new local supplier, I was reminded about how great it is to be in a larger creative community - artists and designers, not too different to ourselves, are getting busy creating new and exciting products, and we (The Bread and Butter Letter) are lucky enough to be a part of their stories.
If we could, we would Design and dine - All day, err'day.
Making flower crowns for Crushes
Rose getting her SLR on for Crushes wholesale catalogue; Crushes mugs

A few of my faves from Crushes 

Crushes  new website (Crushes prods online here)   \  Facebook  \   Instagram

The Bread & Butter Letter   online shop   \   Facebook  \   Instagram

NZ Interiors in the reno edn of Your Home & Garden -


Styling by LeeAnn Yare, photography by Larnie Nicholson

The September Your Home & Garden is a Renovation issue (part one of a three part-er), and there's a BIG bunch of NZ home renos to inspire, including this beautiful old girl with solid bones and plenty of space and light to show off a contemporary re-do.

Ooh, and …there's also a visit to homeware and childrensware store The Family Co  AND a little tour of the home of The Family Co's owner, Chelsea. (As you can imagine, it's beeeautiful.)

Photography by Sarah Horn

Photography by Sarah Horn

Photography by Maree Holmer

Black is doing all kinds of good good things for me lately. Love this matt black Caroma bath paired with the black Tom Dixon light. And concrete-topped side table, hello to you.

Styling by Kendyl Middelbeek and Samantha Totty, photography by Melanie Jenkins at Flash Studios

The issue also has stacks of styled looks to inspire (shout out to that Caroline Hurley throw from Father Rabbit on the ladder), the best of The Block Australia rooms

For interior goodness through the week, you can hang with Your Home & Garden on Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest.

C U R R E N T L Y... with NZ's childrensware brand Pop Factory Shop


Sis and bro Bridget (Lee) and Christopher (Hope) work together on NZ's coolest little children's ware brand, Pop Factory Shop. Inspired by Bridget's littlies - 3.5 year old Harper and 1.5 year old Henry - Bridget and (Uncle) Chris are doing some very rad things with kids' clothing, plus kids' art prints and pillowcases... and even more rad things with the brand graphics and packaging. This is a brand for mums and dads with an eye for good design.

I asked them what they've been getting into and up to lately...

B: Working hard on our PF Winter '15 Range - it's a fun one and much bigger again! The sampling process is lots of fun, picking fabrics, colours, trims!

Working away on PF Winter 15 graphics after work hours at TCSS, my full time job.

B \ Playlists Chris has made for his nephews through Spotify. Our favourites to dance around the living room to are: The Wanderer - Dion & The Belmonts, Magic Dance - David Bowie, Chinese Children - Devendra Banhart, Bad Kids - Black Lips, I'm Gonna Mail Myself To You - The Bergerfolk

C \ Right now, Bad Girl by Lee Moses. But all year its been Popstrangers new album Fortuna.

B \  I don't find the time to read actual books, other than kids ones, but I always have time to flick through the favourite magazines though ... Homestyle, Your Home & Garden, Inside Out, Fashion Quarterly, Elle. 

C \ The new Monster Children copy which is a collaboration with Mike D from the Beastie Boys. I Recently finished Across The Great Divide - The Band & America. A biography that follows one of the most unrecognised bands in history. Top read.

B \ Haven't managed a trip back to Sydney yet, it was my home for 7 years before kids. I'd love to get back there real soon, Sydney has the best vibe and sweet weather. 

C \ Summer! & maybe a van I can sleep in for weekend coast get aways in Sydney.

B \ The sun, the warmth, the caravan, the lazing about! Summer at Whangamata. 

C \ Pretty pumped for the next All Blacks game. And a great mates' wedding at home come Christmas time.

B \ A couple of weeks ago my husband and I snuck away to Raglan for the weekend to celebrate his 30th birthday. We loved the little sea side town. All the locals are very friendly. We stayed at Bow St Studios, on the main street with a view over the harbour. Raglan even has a great little fashion boutique - Atamira - popped in there for a chat and some new jeans. The Shack is the place to eat in Raglan, the locals will tell you the same! Taco's, sliders, polenta chips ... It's all delicious. We'll be back! 

C \ Im playing pool more than I should. My girlfriend and I can't get enough of it. We're also both working on a bunch of drawings for an up coming project with friends called SameWave. This weekend we're going to see the band King Gizzard And The Lizard Wizard - mouthful... but they're pretty great.

B \ My new obsession is Polenta chips. 

C \ Recently went to Chiswick in Sydney for my birthday. The Pork belly made my day. But my go-to would have to be the Ban Mi rolls in Coogee. I get two a weekend. A Vietnamese style baguette with chilli and all the other good stuff. My friend just opened a bar in Chippendale, Sydney last month. Knox Street. That's my local now. Brewing their own cider since… last month.

B \ Instagram is so good for busy lives, a quick scroll a couple of times a day and I feel like I'm up to date again! Here's just a few of my favourite accounts to follow for the best mix of fashion, design and kids: @curated_by, @notsomumsy, @thedesignchaser, @blondeandbone@chloeberkid 

C \ I have a lot of these. My friends are really inspiring. Christa ThorburnBen YoungNanda OrmondMushama & Me

B \ Our customers, our stockists, everyone that gets behind our brand! We're just making stuff we like, it's really humbling see so many others enjoying it too. 

C \ The BBQ I just got for my birthday. Mum nailed it. Going in to summer I can't think of anything better than BBQs on the roof. Thanks Ma.

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Pop Factory Shop    website  \   Facebook  \   Instagram

Fancy S P A C E S


Woah, I LOVE THIS. Love the heavy use of black (still looks really fresh though, right?), the blonde bench seat, the over-sized vase with foliage. Foliage is the new flowers.

All black err'ting.

Can never go past mis-matched chairs and lots of natural light.

I've wanted to share this kitchen for aaaages but that cock's been stopping me. 

Also, if you have grey linen sheets you are allowed to never make your bed ever.

Dayum gurl I'm finding some nice spaces for you today! I'd update the tapware to gold and put some new gold handles on the cabinets.
(I'm undecided on those grey wood-look floors here though… kinda looks like one of those awful 'arty' photos where part of the photo gets made black and white and the rest is colour.)

Insert your own caption here.

And here too please. (hey, it's Sunday, I got sunny-outside stuff to do). 

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Nice work from NZ's Josh Thompson:


Reeeeeally digging the work of Christchurch-based design studio Thompson Co (Josh Thompson) for Neat Places' city guides.  Here's a little more Thompson Co. work...

This home/interior in Inside Out is giving me palpitations...

This is the cover shot - which is very sneaky/clever, because WHO is going to walk past THIS and not pick up the issue?

Hans Wegner rocker, will you be mine?
Styling by Marsha Golemac, photography by Brooke Holme for Inside Out
(Love those grey porcelain lights from Mud Australia)

Would you just L O O K at this house? I'm getting tachycardia! This blog is bad for my health!
It's an old edwardian worker's cottage (in Melbourne), with a big, bright contemporary extension, lots of iconic pieces of furniture and the best art collection ... Bonus points for the doggie (always bonus points for doggies). There's also loads more photos to furiously cut out and glue to your dream-board in the current issue of Inside Out.

The couple who live here stripped the paint from the floors to allow the timber to shine through. Well played, you guys.

Amazing home studio space. (Industrial plan drawers are a must.)
Styling by Marie Graunbol, photography by Martin Solyst/Living Inside for Inside Out

There's also this dreamy Copenhagen home of the woman behind the MisseMai brand (that's a MisseMai print up there in the kitchen)... plus ideas for doing a Spring re-arrange (cleaning optional) at your place, some tips and easy projects for floral styling, and an old railway carriage that a couple turned into a teeny beach bach. 

I'm also going to remind you that Inside Out is now a monthly magazine - which is really a public service announcement. (You are totally welcome.)

endemicworld have just moved into a new space, but they can move out again because I'm going to live there.


Ah, yeah... don't get too comfy in your new space, endemicworld.  I've decided I'm gunna live here.



This little beauty is OSLO, a new vegetarian restaurant in Valencia, Spain. 
I'm in love with the soft, simple modernity alongside crumbling old 1850's bones.

Black on bedroom walls is surprisingly relaxing. (PS: you just know that some really handsome, intelligent man lives here.)

Take one concrete wall, chairs that don't match, a row of Tom Dixon matt black lights and a giant letter lightbox. Mix until awesome.

I may or may not have picked this simply for the tight spindleback game. Don't judge me.

WOWAH, look at that black tapware!

Steal this idea: festoon lights hung over the corner of your mirror. Like it ain't no thing.
Hello, you Industrial honey. 
Especially digging that concrete slab table with the pick n mix of vintage and industrial chairs.

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Well played, SImon James


Yes, it's that sexy, you need to see it from alllll angles.  The new Passenger sofa by Simon James.

Happy Friday, here's a little Pick n Mix for you:


Happy Friday! Let's look at some things!

I'ma let you finish, but this is my new favourite chair of all time... the Saddle chair (in leather or wool), with pockets at the sides.  Designed by ones to watch, AWAA - three young Norwegian guys who recently graduated from the Oslo National Academy of the Arts and are putting out some seriously good stuff. 

Wicked art direction (and naming) by London-based design studio, Dot Dash. Fatties is a new bakery in London.

Make stuff at home - the inimitable Donna Wilson is now selling her awesome illustrations on fabric, available by the metre.

OK, ok - it's just a knife. But it's not just a knife. It's a matt gold, short and stubby, heavy, beautifully rounded knife called Jona. I shall purchase. From Country Road.
Dammit, this rad Swan sheet and pillowcase set only comes in toddler size.  (PS: the beaks are gold, oh yes)

Never not buying journals and notebooks and sketchbooks and planners and pads. 

Love these wire tables (also in a larger, lower style) by Atipico. A++++. Would trade again. 



I'm totally all for unique pieces and patina and not having a cookie-cutter show home, and I love this little dining space, but those candlesticks had to be hidden or your eyes would have jumped out of your head and hitchhiked to Whangarei.

That crinkled rug is freaking out my OCD (that's a trip hazard) and I'm not the biggest fan of that OTT light shade... but other than that, this is real dreamy.
Always enjoy a stack of mags acting as a side table/shelf.

Currently having an intense affair with black chairs.
see? told ya...

I just love double doors for bedrooms, they're like: tadaaaaa!
Cushions are for everyone. 

Fave bits - all black kitchen, bench seats for dining (get cosy, cousins)

So lovely... I can feel the Vitamin D from here...
warehouse spaces, oversized painterly prints, wildflowers and vintage school chairs for the win.
Captions are hard. Especially when you've sworn not to say swoon, covet or crush. 
That white and wood shelving unit (by Hay) is so nice, aye. 

Happy Sunday, lazy dreamers x

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The Oyster Inn... again (but if any piece of NZ design deserves a double banger, this does)


I first shared Waiheke Island's The Oyster Inn when the boutique hotel first opened. But it's been ages since, and these new images really wanted sharing.

Kudos for the identity goes to Special Group, with flawless interior environment by Katie Lockhart.

above two photos by Simon Wilson

Yes I said yes I will yes (good design makes me feel all James Joycey.)

Hey, Klay


I'm digging this new collection of handmade totes by emerging NZ brand, Klay. (Auckland designer Kirsty McLay). Especially that all white one with the fat drawstring closure. You can see the whole collection over at Klay's exclusive stockists, online store Bon Weekend.

Klay first debuted about a year ago with these awesome circular throws...

Beautifully handmade and they look just as good on the wall as they would on your bed.

Pick n Mix time!


Here comes some brand new flava in ya ear...

Online store (representing indie makers) Koromiko has a bunch of super nice, one-off, pretty-painterly ceramics. This confetti bowl needs to come hang out in my kitchen.

I've been on a months-long quest to find the ultimate keyring. These new brass ones from NYC-based Areaware are probably in my top five.

Ah, Hard Graft, you just keep on doin' it and doin' it and doin' it well
(shout out to LL Cool J circa '96).

I can't even handle these candlesticks.
A N D they're all individually handmade - and packaged - by this handsome nordic Smørbrød (open sandwich typically eaten at breakfast.)

Yessssss! Summerbird organic chocolate (FINE ASS packaging design by Copenhagen-based studio, Homework). 

Froh & Frau have some cute prints



This space has all I need in life. High ceilings and wooden floors, huge factory windows, a cosy bed, and a cuddly dog. I'm serious… that's all I've ever needed, right there. 

This is the bedroom equivalent of how it feels when you hop between clean sheets with freshly shaven legs. Ahhhh...

Lots to love. Concrete bench seat / low shelf for the win. Also, change IS good. 

Something something blonde timber something something.

Now that's a fireplace! (I'm imagining these people have only just moved in, and they haven't got around to adding most of their stuff)

My adult self sometimes misses the college-through-flatting days when your bedroom was your everything space - the place you worked and created, the place you lay on the floor for hours playing music, the place you could escape to. (WOAH SOMEONE'S FEELING EMOTIONS TODAY)

Dressed in yellow, she said hello, come sit next to me you fine fellow. 
Good god I love that glass light, mid-century dining set, black ledge shelf...

If you need me, I'll be in a cottage kitchen like this somewhere, making rosti.

Steal this idea: your fave books, opened so your fave pages are facing out. 

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AND - two nice NZ-designed things

APLUS design - Choice Taste...


Hand-painted sign by Ben Maitland / Fitch & Ferrule

Fortune coasters!

I always keep one little eyeball on what NZ design studio APLUS are up to. And what they're up to, generally, is creating killer identities for brands - including these two, for new (yeah, ok, ok, new-ish) Auckland eateries, Goodness Gracious and Burger Burger. 

The Burger Burger interior was designed by Mexico restaurants' Mimi Kilgour and the Goodness Gracious interior by owner Greg Cornes, with collabo from APLUS.  

One of my fave aspects of both premises is the hand-painted signage. What once was a dying craft is enjoying a revival, thanks in part to a new generation of young talent mastering the art - guys like Sureshot Sam (his letterforms adorn loads of cool spots around Auckland), and Ben Maitland of Fitch & Ferrule