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ON FRIDAY - Good-looking, minimalist 2017 planners (Plus, we're giving some away)


On Friday's A5 Diary

Day to a Page because we've gotta lotta stuff on

On Friday's new Monthly Desk Planner. Love this.

Get your paper bag out and breathe slowly into it, because... it's ALMOST 2017! What the? How?
I've had Netflix sessions that have lasted longer than this year.

It's OK, it's totally fine (smiles awkwardly)... don't think about all the things you said you'd do this year... think about next year. A new year is a sparkly blank page for you to write on, where all your handwriting is the best handwriting you've ever done, written in a black ink pen with no twink. 

Nothing makes me feel more excited for a new year than a fresh new diary. And On Friday diaries are some of my faves. This little New Zealand brand understands our diary needs. A cover that doesn't turn into a taco after a few weeks of use (hard cover, but fabric so it feels nice), a day to a page because we've got lists to make and lots of stuff to do, minimalist monochrome design, and a little classic Helvetica for the type nerds. And if you brought one last year, you might also like to know they improved on their inaugural design with 120gsm, uncoated pages this year. Details matter.

On Friday make an A5 Diary and big Coffee Table Diary, a Wall Planner, notebooks and sketchbooks and a new, very cool Monthly Desk Planner which has a top tear-off. 

We have A5 Diaries and Monthly Desk Planners to give away. 
Enter on our Facebook Page, or Instagram, whichever one is your jam.

You'll win an A5 Diary and a Monthly Desk Planner for yourself,
and one of each to gift a friend/your partner, so you can have matching organisational tools
(which wouldn't be weird, it would be awesome. Like when you accidentally wear basically the same outfit but neither of you get changed, because you secretly kinda like matching.)

NZ Modernist Furniture Collection


Mid Century specialists and long-time friends of Fancy Mr Bigglesworthy hunt the world over for the best-of-the-authentic-vintage best, restore it respectfully and offer it up to the classic-design-appreciating crowd from their Ponsonby showroom (and online, here).

Recently, Dan and Emma have been keeping their hunt local, scouring the length of our country for genuine Mid Century furniture by NZ designers. Sure, California had Eames and the Danes had Arne Jacobsen, but we had a few pretty amazing Modernists of our own here at home. 

The pieces they discovered and restored are now presented together as the NZ Modern Collection (over 60 rare finds, including Mid Century ceramics, artwork and homeware) are available to see and to snap up at Mr Bigglesworthy in Ponsonby, or online. 

Bold statements of NZ design deserve to be displayed in iconic interiors, so to Emma and Dan found two architecturally significant New Zealand homes to photograph the collection in - Thom House, designed in 1954 by the highly celebrated Mid Century NZ architectural firm Group Architects, and McClew House, designed in 1966 by Kenneth Albert.

(Love that sideboard, and the huge aerial photograph of Wellington, circa 60's)

Rare Mid Century NZ Contour Chair (1950's)

'Council Meeting Table' by one of NZ's most significant Modernist architects, Tibor Donner

Airest's Sofarest settee and scissor chairs brought back to 50's showroom condition

Some of my fave pieces from the NZ Modern collection, now exhibiting at Mr Bigglesworthy

Studio Visit - We visit designer Will Worsp's Raglan workshop & Auckland showroom


NZ designer and maker Will Worsp at his Raglan workshop

Right hand (crafts)man, Faustin Duprat

Heading from the workshop to the studio & showroom

Words to design by - 'Stay Simple, Stay True'

Sideboard Appreciation Society

Will uses recycled timber wherever poss - and celebrates the 'imperfections' of its history

At one time in our not-that-distant past, you chose a job and bore it. For decades. Fulfilment or no fulfilment. Some people still believe this is what they're supposed to do, that being in a position where they don't love their job somehow makes them fickle, or a failure. But me and Will are here to tell you that changing career paths through your life is totally acceptable. No - actually - it's more than acceptable. If a new path moves you in the direction of what you love to do, what makes your heart sing, it's necessary! Will Worsp graduated a Fines Art degree, then went on to work in the film industry, then went travelling. But as he worked in London, and on super yachts in some of the world's most beautiful destinations, he kept dreaming of New Zealand, of our beaches and countryside, and of using his hands to bring to life the designs he constantly imagined.

Finally, he decided it was time to come home, and see if he could turn his dream into a full-time business. That was 5 years ago.

Today, you'll find Will (34) in Raglan, making furniture in his dusty workshop, or designing new pieces from his showroom/studio - a converted surfboard factory on a small peninsula of Raglan farmland - accessible only from an historic causeway (that's completely underwater for 2 hours either side of high tide!) At his side is Faustin Duprat (or Frenchie, as he's known), who came to NZ on a surfing trip, discovered Raglan, and decided he was never going home. He and Will make the perfect team - Frenchie just so happens to be a Paris-trained cabinet maker and gifted draughtsman.

Together, under the brand WRW & Co, they design and craft solid timber furniture for New Zealand homes and commercial interiors (Will recently completed a full fit-out for Queenstown bar Little Blackwood, and an interior re-fit of Mr Toms eatery in Ponsonby).

When he's not in Raglan, Will is in Auckland with his fiance Imogen. Will splits his week between city and surf, and has just opened a pop-up WRW & Co showroom in Grey Lynn.

The new Auckland space showcases everything WRW & Co have created over the past year - elegant beds and bedsides, desks you'd imagine the next great novel to be written on, big solid dining tables, contemporary sideboards, lighting and shelving... and lots more. Will's aesthetic is classic with a modern masculine edge; the style always simple, yet substantive.

The WRW & Co Auckland Showroom is open until December 23 at 1 Grosvenor Street, Grey Lynn
Hours: Wed – Sun from 10 till 4 

WRW & Co website  /   Instagram

Photography by Queenstown-based (will travel!) Jason Kelly
Jason's Instagram is definitely worth a follow, too

New Opening: Culprit, by Walker Mitchell Interior Architects


Truss love.

I want one of these black trolleys (spot the pink wheel hub) at my place
Photography by Josh Griggs

So I've decided that the inaugural meeting of the NZ Design Appreciation Society (NZDAS) will be held at this new joint, Culprit - a big brick loft, tucked up a stairwell on Auckland's Wyndham St.

The fit-out was designed by Auckland interior architect Kirsty Mitchell of Walker Mitchell (she's responsible for some of the best-looking eateries in Auckland) with the brief of capturing the energy of Culprit's young chefs and the food they create.

Those young chefs are Kyle Street and Jordan Macdonald (alumni of Al Brown and his eateries Depot and Federal Deli), and the food they create is described as seasonal tastes and bites, served yum-cha style. At each of the two sittings (6pm and 8pm), different dishes circulate around (that's where those cool black trolleys with the pink wheels come in), all plated on imperfect white ceramics handmade by Morgan Haines, and you can say yay or nay to each one. I think Kyle and Jordan are way pavers - watch this concept grow in New Zealand from here...

Back to that fit-out... Walker Mitchell's design celebrates and emphasises features of the old building, while contrasting it's history with sharp contemporary details like the strip lighting and steel work. The kitchen was positioned in the middle of the dining area - the focus here is on the art of cooking and being able to watch the chefs prepare your food.

Culprit's brand identity is by Studio South.

(Also, Melbourne, watch yo front. We're coming for you...)

Photography by Fancy contributor Josh Griggs.
Definitely also go follow Josh on Instagram.

Other features on Fancy by Josh Griggs:

New Zealand gets an Aesop Store - Designed by NZ architects Pattersons


New Zealand, we've officially unlocked a new Bonus level. We finally have our own Aesop concept store!

Around the world, Aesop collaborates with the best local architects to bring each store to life. For the New Zealand (Auckland) store, it was leading practice Patterson Associates who got the call.

Pattersons have designed something that is totally true to the worldwide Aesop brand, yet also feels like it could have grown up here in New Zealand. They've used materials - native rimu boarding, weathered galvanised steel, big trough-style wash tubs - reminiscent of the classic 'washhouse' out the back of the shed (who else had one of these at their place growing up - so many of us, right?) or at the quintessential kiwi bach. It's uncomplicated and utilitarian and a little nostalgic, on purpose. I look at those taps and that big concrete sink and I can hear my mum yelling out to me and my sisters to "wash your hands before you come inside". 

The shelving was designed to be somewhat reminiscent oven trays - a way to pay homage to the building's original use as a commercial bakery.

To see more of the inspiring Aesop stores (there are 150 of them!), check out their new Taxonomy of Design website - dedicated to documenting their international fit-outs.

The New Zealand Aesop store is at 2-4 Osbourne Lane, Newmarket and carries the brand's full range of skin, body and hair care products.

Homestyle Summer Edition - We take a preview perve...


Photography by Prue Ruscoe, Styling Karen Cotton

The summer issue of Homestyle is out this week! Love this home from the new issue - natural materials, restrained design and a pared-back palette in Bondi Beach...

Photography by Prue Ruscoe, Styling Karen Cotton

Photography by Alice Veysey

aaaaaaand there's also this great big feature on the home of local Mount Maunganui pals Stacey and Jake Pyne (Jake is the founder of several NZ apparel brands including Lower clothing, and the Thanks online and physical stores). As well as being one of the most lovely people you'd probably ever meet, Stacey's also a expert finder-keeper, and has a real gift for decorating - bringing her huge, fun family of handmade and vintage treasures together with contemporary design. Recommendation: get this issue for this feature alone.

Styling Juliette Wanty, Photography Wendy Fenwick

They've packed loads of inspo into this Holiday issue of Homestyle - as well as several big home tours (mainly New Zealand homes), there's a future trends feature, a how-to for a contemporary Christmas wreath (no tinsel allowed, guys), recipes to take your summer BBQs up a notch, a big gift guide for him, for her, and for home... and more.

Minimalist Infinity Calendar by The Urban Hunter (plus, we have some to WIN)


The Urban Infinity Calendarby NZ lifestyle blogger and designer Shelley Down (The Urban Hunter) ticks a bunch of boxes. First, minimalist good looks; second, it tells you what day it is (don't pretend that's not helpful some days, guys); third, it's a little bit of typographic art for your space; and fourth, you can either hang it on the wall or stand it up on your desk/shelf/you choose. Oh, and it comes in either can't-go-wrong black and white, or nude-is-the new-black (a peachy beige). I brought one!

Available to purchase here

or you can ~ W I N ~ one! 
We have three Urban Infinity Calendars to give away

Head to our Facebook Page or our Instagram (whichever's your jam),
find the latest post (with these calendars on it)
and leave a comment saying which colour you'd choose for your place - black and white, or nude?

If you hate social media or just want to email me (love you bb), you can also enter by emailing enter@newzealanddesignblog.com - just tell me in your email which colour you'd choose.

New Hutch / Father Rabbit opens a Flagship in a heritage warehouse - LESSSS GO SHOPPING!


Floor to ceiling windows, huge black steel roller door. I could live here.
Look, there's even a bed for me

A place for everything, and everything in its place

A flagship store for Father Rabbit has just opened! Lesssss go shopping!!! You'll find the new hutch in a high-ceilinged heritage warehouse ("Say no more. You had me at heritage warehouse." - you) in Auckland's Orakei Bay Village. 

As well as everything you expect in Father Rabbit's curated homeware and lifestyle collection, the space showcases their growing furniture collection. The Botanist, Brother's Brewery, and the largest ever Farro store will be joining Father Rabbit soon.

Fottutamente bello. It's Italian for fucking BEAUTIFUL. We look inside the new Amano eatery:


Just... woah.

I've been so busy opening a store that I haven't made it to Auckland in months. And goddamn, so much good stuff has opened since I last visited! I'm going to need at least a few days next time, because one entire day of the itinerary is already booked out with breakfast, lunch and then also dinner at the newly expanded Amano. They're still doing their crazy-good handcrafted breads and pastries from the Amano Bakery by day, and now they've opened a gob-stopping adjoining bar and restaurant. (Or, because the food is Italy-influenced, let's say forno, bistro and aperitivo.)

Side Note: Guys, I could go on and on (and on) about the cool stuff they're doing here. Here's one example - they make their own flour. Yip, all their daily breads and pastas are crafted from flour they've milled themselves, here on-site, grinding down South Island grain. It takes Amano around 20 hours to make a loaf of bread. This is actually massively important and special, because industrial flour and 'regular' bread is actually awful for your body. So, yeah, you now have even more reason to indulge, and feel not one bit guilty while you're here. Another example? The menu is created and printed daily, depending on what's in season and readily available locally. Freshness and provenance is everything. OK, back to the design...

First, a deep, genuflecting curtsy to architect Jack McKinney (McKinney + Windeatt), who is responsible for the design. Phrase of the day is Sexy Freaking Textures. Textures from the exposed bones of the former factory's long history (pitted, paint-layered walls, huge old pillars and those beautiful big beams), alongside textures from modern features like the terrazzo floors with those big marble off-cuts, and thousands of mother of pearl tiles made from oyster shells.

And oh (oh, oh) those dried flowers installations. Created by Xanthe White.
Can we just have another look at those dried flowers?

I have not seen them with my own eyes, but our amazing contributor - interiors photographer Michelle Weir - tells me that as you walk through the space, the types of flowers and colours change, from neutral to colourful. In the bakery, it's bushels of wheat that are suspended from the ceiling.

Amano also has its own own mini-market, selling flowers, handmade cheeses and fresh-daily pastas. 

Um, Hip Group, I just have one question. How in the hell are you going to top this one? 

Photography by Auckland photographer Michelle Weir of Studio:Weir
Michelle is one of our Fancy NZ Design Blog contributors - we are
so grateful for and in debt to our group of photographers.

 If you enjoyed this feature, p
lease follow Michelle over on Instagram
- and if you need some outstanding 
imagery, get in touch with her.

~ W I N ! $150 of designer journals + planners from MiGoals to Get. Shit. Done. in 2017


I'm sort of an international expert (self-rated, but it counts) on Journals, Diaries and Planners. I have letters after my name. (I don't). So you can trust me to recognise a really, really good one when I see it. And MiGoals' range is right up there.

First and most important of all, MiGoalslook good. Don't go spending hundreds on your shoes and bags, you guys, and then show up around here writing in a 1B5. You can't plan an awesome life with an ugly planner. That's just a rule. 

Second, MiGoals differ from other diaries and journals in that the entire brand was founded around a focus on helping people who want to chase their dreams and take action. All MiGoals stationery is designed to help you get really clear on and inspired by your goals and projects, and then help you Get That Shit Done. Depending on how deep you want to go with your planning and reflection, there are 2017 Diaries, Progress Journals (a very cool pocket-size pal with a hard cover), Bucket List books, Goals Books, a range of Desk Pads, and the MiGoals iconic Get Shit Done notebooks - for ticking off To Do's like a boss. If list-making and turning your dreams into reality is your jam, you'll love MiGoals products.

So - thanks to Smitten (New Zealand sales agent) and MiGoals...

we have $150 of MiGoals goodness
(of your choice!) to give away to one of you!

(I like to do competitions where you get to choose the prize, because I assume you are discerning (or fussy) like me, and you're also so lovely that you deserve to win the things that you like best. Kay?)

To go in the draw, just tell me what you'd spend your $150 on.
Go have a look through the MiGoals collection,
then email me here: enter@newzealanddesignblog.com

This competition is open to both New Zealand and Australian readers. 

One winner will be drawn on Wednesday 7th December and notified by email. 

Terrace Kitchen brand identity and interior design, by NZ designer Ryan Romanes


Spotted - the Terrace Kitchen brand identity by NZ designer Ryan Romanes. Named after the now-extinct Eighth Wonder of the World, the Pink and White terraces, Terrace Kitchen is a new all-day eatery in Rotorua. 

Ryan has turned aerial photography of the local geothermal landscape into a very contemporary visual direction for the brand, using a series of these mini artworks on the dining and bar menus, takeaway cups and more. LOVE this.

Ryan was also largely responsible for the interior. It's fresh and modern but with a few subtle nods to Rotorua's rich history (colonial-era spindle back chairs, albeit in bold black, and native timber features as two examples).

Sleepwear for grown-ups


Laing founder Anna Murray

Your new sleepwear comes in its own cotton bag - love that.

We love a good follow yo' dreams story as much as we love quality goods, which makes today's post a double decker.

What you're looking at up there is the very very beautifully made New Zealand sleepwear brand, Laing.

Laing was launched just a few weeks ago, the new business baby of ex-Ad Industry 'suit' Anna Murray. Anna had been juggling 60+ hour weeks for years and weeks away from a milestone birthday found herself asking: "Is this it?" She'd done some reading on inspirational women who'd started a whole new career in middle age, so decided to take a leap of faith herself. She set about designing and producing what she couldn't find herself - the perfect (super-comfy, classic, top quality) sleepwear. She'd looked, and found that the only real sleepwear options were pieces that made her feel like a teenager or a nanna. She wasn't embarrassed to be still in her PJs at noon on a Sunday, she was more embarrassed by the PJS she was in - she wanted a sleepwear wardrobe to reflect who she is as a woman who dresses with care outside the home.

Anna describes Laing pieces as an investment in a stylish night's sleep. Each piece is crafted from fine cotton - and she's selected extra long staple cotton because it washes, wears and looks beautiful for much longer. The Laing launch collection includes flattering PJs and night shirts in various pretty but pared-back styles, designed to be worn right in and loved for years and years, not one season. The PJ pants have deep pockets, because it's just comfortable putting your hands in your pockets as you're standing at the sink waiting for the kettle to boil, right? The pants are also tapered ever so slightly, so there's no riding up around your knees as you sleep. Thank you. And they Design is in the little details...

Anna will also be introducing new products (soft cashmere tees) and colour palettes in the coming months.

Everything is available in the Laing online store, or from a select few retailers (including friends of Fancy, Wellington's LetLiv and Auckland's Tessuti).

Laing website  /   Instagram   

Sunday, everyday


Style and substance - we stock the complete Sans [ceuticals] body collection
( from New Zealand, but world class)

Sphaera soaps, handmade in Wellington. (Sweet Orange and Calendula, yum)

We're super proud to have the best of New Zealand designed and made skincare
Grid trays from Scandinavian brand Fine Little Day

Depths by Jenna Smith, and Palm by interior designer Coco Lapine - from our collection of prints

Lots of things for the table - including #softminimalism ceramic plates and bowls
It is imperative that we have ALL the diaries and journals. All. of. them.
(This one is my fave)

Our black and brass wall hooks with the black Sunday Bench bench seat

We've created our own Sunday room spray, for your place. Inspired by our favourite day, it smells of sweet orange and spring jasmine with a little kick of fresh ginger. 

We have a biiiiig selection of ceramics, all from New Zealand makers.

In all the excitement of opening a shop, I forgot to actually post here that we opened a shop. So... yeah... we opened a shop! A little design + life store - called Sunday - out at Waihi Beach. 

But if you're not anywhere close to Waihi Beach, and you can't pop out here for a swim, and a gelato, and a visit (you totally should) you can still visit us online - because as of tonight, our online store is now also open!

Sunday is also on Instagram ~ @sundayhomestore

I find it very hard to talk about myself or big up what I'm doing (I'm forcing myself not to re-type this 14,546 times)... but I am proud to say I'm finally focusing 100% on what I love. And what I love is to curate and share the very best of New Zealand design with you. (And international design. But mainly New Zealand.) 

This blog (which will continue, and elevate itself even further in the new year) - and now Sunday - are both ways for me to do that.  

I have so much cool, lovely stuff around the corner! - both here, on the blog for you, and at Sunday. For Sunday things, come join me over on Instagram @sundayhomestore - I'll be keeping the blog and Sunday quite separate, generally. 

Huge thanks to Rachel Dobbs (Swift & Click) for these photos of Sunday. 
You're the actual, actual best.

One Lovely Day - a beautiful new NZ book, just in time for summer daydreams...


Photography by Fresh & Chips

New Zealand Event Stylist Claire Donaldson was asked to share some of her experiences creating and styling beautiful occasions. 

The result is One Lovely Day - a journey around New Zealand, sharing event styling inspiration, ideas and tips, a bunch of simple but impressive recipes, and the adventures of Claire's little caravan (One Little Wagon), a travelling bar.

I'd describe One Lovely Day as a mook. It has the easy readability and beautiful photography of a high-end magazine, with the art-quality paper and substance (192 pages and over 300 photographs) of a coffee table book. It's packed with inspiring events - of all kinds, and in all sorts of locations - that Claire and her little One Little Wagon have created, documented by some of New Zealand's best photographers. Perfect little bit of summer reading, or a gift for anyone planning a party!

One Lovely Day is available to buy from Bateman Publishers here

Back again! Let's begin with some Fancy SPACES...


Happy New Year, lovers! I hope you had a good looooooong break, ate all the things, filled yourself up with Vitamin D, and are ready for 2017 to come thru! I thought you might appreciate us leaning into a new year with a few fancy Spaces. Right? Good? On we go! 

In my dream house, there are arched windows.

Storybook master bedroom. And I can't not show you these shelves in more detail...

*Faints* (The rest of this home is like something out of a Scandi folk-tale come to life. See it here.)

Soft grey for the sophisticate win.

(If you've wondered, that super adorable plant with the circular leaves is a chinese money plant - starting to see these around a lot more.)

Love the weathered-so-much-they've-lost-their-polish floorboards, the mist grey cabinetry with black handles, and always (always) a goose neck faucet. I also love how they obviously couldn't knock down the entire wall... gives it character to just be effectively a hole in the wall.

Thanks to Melbourne designers Sisalla, this old home got not just a renovation, but a new barn-style addition. That pitched-roof, inky blue, tongue and groove wall though!

Totally under-rated bonus room of a home - the entranceway.

Yes to new, old and handmade all subsisting together.

Arches again. I think they're lucky. Digging the use of the glass globes here - anything else would crowd out the hallway and take the shine away from the architecture.

Oh hi, little laundry nook.

One for my members of the Scandi Sleep-ins Club.

A corner of the Pop & Scott showroom. That couch is the Pop & Scott Dreamer (in size: 'Lovers') in midnight blue velvet. 

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Real World


Imagery by one of my #girlcrushcombos -
Stylist Gem Adams (Blackbird) and Photographer Heather Liddell

Kicking us off this year with a golden trifecta - a story about a very good-looking new brand, a product that's also good for you, and a brand created by an average New Zealander who decided to dream and to do. Triple threat. These are my fave kind of features, and I hope they inspire you in some way - either to finally start that thing (you know, that thing) you've been thinking of starting, or even just to choose and use design-lead brands that don't only just look better, but are better.

Hawke's bay-based Nicola Mossman is a mum of four - that means a lot of time spent in the kitchen, and a lot of time cleaning. Suffering super dry, damaged hands that were getting worse and worse and sorer and sorer thanks to crappy Supermarket cleaning products, Nicola decided to create her own. No chemicals, all natural, and tested on real people's hands (not on animals).

The RealWorld range includes an all-natural lemongrass and citrus Dishwashing Liquid - available in a plastic pump bottle or a big 1 litre glass bottle (my fave), with refills also available. Of course, being a shallow aesthete, I'm about the fact that it looks stylish on your benchtop. Yaaaaaaas. But I also appreciate that, like all RealWorld prods, it has no sulphates, silicons, parabens, toxins, petrochemicals, artificial dyes or colours. Seriously, guys, the shit we've been putting on our hands and on the dishes we eat off?! What the actual.

Along with the Dishwashing Liquid, Nicola has developed hand and body wash, hand and body soak (with magnesium - hunty, we are getting old and sometimes we just need a long soak in a magnesium bath), and hand creams. I use the coconut and lemongrass hand cream daily - it's stupidly thick and creamy, smells in.cred.i.ble and is like a big drink of coconut water for your skin. Yes, I am very passionate about this little brand. Like I said, it's a golden trifecta and that's magical, ok?

RealWorld has an online store, or is also available atFather Rabbit, S U N D A Y, Blackbird Goods and other nice spots.

Studio Visit - NZ Illustrator Loryn Engelsman


Loryn fills sketchbook after sketchbook with everyday-weirdo characters and observations on life.

One of many editorial illos Loryn has created for NZ's Metro magazine

Loryn's workspace is an old Victorian-era commercial building
that she shares with a group of other Waikato creatives

Do Your Work. Don't Be Stupid.  (How did you know, Loryn?)
You can buy sticker packs of these motivational ladies and dudes on Loryn's Etsy store.

Photography by Dan Hilson for Fancy

Guys, meet Loryn Engelsman. Loryn is 24, and a full-time illustrator. From a old Victorian-era commercial building in Hamilton (a studio she shares with a crew of other young freelance creatives), she creates hand-drawn type and character illos for brands, organisations and NZ magazines. Let's just hand the rest over to Loryn, shall we?

What's been your journey to becoming a full-time illustrator?
I am lucky enough to be able to say that drawing has always been a passion of mine - from a really young age I was an avid sketchbooker. Inspired by the illustrations of Quentin Blake, particularly his illustrations for Roald Dahl’s - The Twits, I only wanted to draw hideous people because they were so interesting to draw! This passion filtered throughout my schooling and I loved the way that I could draw something and get a laugh out of people or get an ‘ah-ha I can relate to that’ response.

I applied to The School of Media Arts at Wintec, not quite knowing what direction I would go - just knowing that I wanted to be a visual artist of some description. I ended up majoring in painting and throughout my studies I focused all my assignments on illustration.

During this time I was following other artists from all over the world, and I came to realise that most illustrators were freelancers and that this was the creative career I wanted to pursue.

I was lucky enough to receive a few design and illustration commissions while I was studying. Just before I graduated, I took a part time job to supplement my income while I started in the freelance game. I then spent the next few years working part time and taking on whatever freelance illustration and design jobs I could get.

In the early days I had massive doubts about whether or not this illustration career would ever work out. I then came to know Angela and Jayden Keoghan from illustration studio The Picture Garden. They helped me so much in these early years with advice, encouragement and answering the million questions I had about freelancing. I have been so lucky over time to have met more and more illustrators working as freelancers to get advice from, be inspired by and now call good friends.

Now, over time (with a lot of hard work) I have entered the realms of being a full-time creative.

Loryn is illustrating a free desktop/iPhone wallpaper every month for this year. Here's January's - go here to get one for your computer, laptop or iPhone

What challenges have you pushed through on this career journey? 
Working hard, but not overdoing it. I would send myself into burn out all too often because I didn’t know when to stop working and take a break.

Learning how to organise myself and use my time working efficiently so that I could have a life outside of work was a great lesson to learn. For me, using some apps (mostly free) apps online such as Toggl, Trello, Xero and Slack to keep track of my work and finances has helped so much in achieving the elusive work/life balance.

What have been some of the working highlights of the last year in terms of projects?
Early 2016 I was in Wellington visiting some friends and I had an afternoon to myself so I ended up filling a whole page in my sketchbook on how I saw Wellington city and posted it on Instagram, and it proved to be hugely popular. I then carried on making these based on different situations, topics or things that I have seen and putting them on the gram. A happy discovery that has opened up some new doors in my work already. I hope to make many more of these in the year to come!

Super cute wordmark for Waihi Beach cafe, Oliffe & Franks

What are you working on at the moment/what's coming up for you in 2017? 

First off this year I will be carrying on with my collaboration with the Live For Tomorrow project with Zeal where I will be creating a whole lot of illustrated content to increase awareness, encourage and inform young people of mental health issues.

Also, I am wanting to set aside more time to develop a range of products such a tees, patches, prints for my online store. And I have started working with some very talented design friends on some super exciting branding projects that I can’t wait to share with everyone!

So much to look forward to already this year!

Love this little piece Loryn did for the Live for Tomorrow project

What does a typical working day look like for you? 
Up early, coffee, cycle into my shared studio space in town, set up for the day, check the news, prioritise tasks for the day, send emails and do some suuuper fun admin work, more coffee, get hyped from second coffee and get distracted by memes, distract studio mates with memes I have found, then launch into working on projects for the day, stop for lunch with studio mates, work all afternoon and into the evening on projects before a cycle home and spend the evening cooking and browsing the interweb.

What helps you be at your best creatively? 
For me it’s all about keeping my eyes open to find inspiration everywhere. Sometimes brilliant ideas seem to just seem to strike as I am just watching the world happens, so carry a sketchbook and pencil case with me everywhere I go. I also try to regularly set aside some time where I can experiment, this involves having a slightly cynical attitude, my sketchbook, all my drawing tools close at hand and no pressure of coming up with any necessarily ‘good’ ideas.

What advice would you give to any one dreaming of becoming a career illustrator? 
The way that you communicate ideas is totally unique to you so figure out early on exactly what your voice is and own it. For a long time when I started out I would try approaching briefs in the way I imagined some of my favourite other illustrators would. I would start sketching out all these super serious illustrations that would look fine, and do the job, but was not authentically my voice. Once I had identified and owned my voice as an artist I could approach new projects with confidence. For me figuring this out was a matter of getting some portfolio critique from peoples whose opinion I trusted and taking on board their advice.

Also, keep reminding yourself how lucky you are to be drawing what you love for a living! It's amazing.

Finally, some quickies - what are you currently...

Listening to: 
My Spotify mix of top songs from 2016, it’s mostly a tasty mix of D’Angelo, Tame Impala, James Blake, Last Shadow Puppets and Kendrick. Also, the new Leon Bridges, Coming Home album is really good!

Clicking on:
ItsNiceThat.com - everrryday.

Reading or watching:
Reading - The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton.  Watching - Brooklyn Nine Nine and Last Man On Earth.

Sriracha sauce on everything, always.

Stretching more, sweating in the summer sun, getting sunburnt, watering plants, swimming, creating unrealistic wish lists on The Book Depository, trying to stay off Pinterest.

Daydreaming about:
A trip to America this year. Also, being irresponsible with my finances and purchasing the unnecessary amount of books on my book depository list.

Loryn's website / portfolio  ~  Loryn's Instagram

Photography by Hamilton-based Dan Hilson for Fancy - we're big fans, Dan

Get out there...


Steve and Mark of Hatchet on a weekend hike.

A double happy today - some super nice graphic design, and a new NZ brand started by two mates who're chasing their dream.

Hatchet is Steve Cornwall and Mark Heginbotham. Since graduating from Uni and getting 'real jobs', they've been escaping their desks and screens as often as possible, to explore NZ and the world. On every one of these adventures they've had, though, there was some part of their kit that failed them in some way. The idea of Hatchet was born - a place for likeminded people to find the best (best looking, but more importantly best quality) products - the sort of stuff that could tell a hundred good yarns in years to come; stuff that's tough but humble; tools and kit built to be handed down to your kids and grandkids. Steve and Mark want Hatchet to inspire you to go on that day-hike or escape to the coast to catch a wave, to connect you with nature and with craft, and give you the kit to accompany you.

Hatchet's logo and graphic identity was designed by NZ's Kindly Studio with help from illustrator Logan Smith, and the brand photography is thanks to one of our NZ photography faves, Josh Griggs.

There's still plenty of summer left to plan some adventures... 

A few Fancy Spaces:


Whaaaaaaat is this! Who did this!

Love: the built-in bedsides and built-in low window sill, bay-leaf-green linen throw, and framed prints that don't have to go up on a wall...
I have to admit, I've never been a fan of that poofy style of light shade - so that's gotta go. But everything else can stay right where it is... Love the speckled duvet cover, especially in a room that is otherwise very classic and grown-up. (Also, black-framed, moody photographic prints for the win.)
Inside London's Merrydown, a minimalist home by architects McLaren Excell. (See the rest of it here)
Black, steel-framed, glass, internal doors are definitely becoming a thing and I'm not mad at it one bit.

Steal this idea - huge long sink, with moveable shelves/ledges. I love this!
Love this! Square tiles are having a moment, but going anywhere anytime soon.
Photography by Dean Bradley
OK this is beautiful. It's a dedicated photography studio space for hire (Rye London), with floods of natural light, super-high ceilings, white exposed brick walls, white flooring... STOP IT. The founders wanted to create a space for local makers to be able to create and collaborate (and style and shoot). Can someone open one of these in NZ please?

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Being sort of a shallow aesthete, I admit Ārepa first caught my eye because I thought their packaging design and imagery looked super nice. But the brand - cool as it is - actually pales in comparison to the real design story going on here...

Ārepa is New Zealand's first mental clarity drink - created by neuroscience, and sourced purely from nature. It's taken over four years of research and clinical testing to develop, and is the brain child (come on, I had no choice) of young New Zealand entrepreneur Angus Brown, in partnership with world renowned neuroscientist Dr. Andrew Scholey.

Together, Angus and Andrew have come up with a unique, clinically-backed formula that targets alpha brain waves (alpha waves are the ones associated with 'flow' - a state of being relaxed yet mentally alert). The duo designed Ārepa - the Maori word for Alpha - to support concentration and mood, and to reduce brain fog, tension and fatigue.

One of the heavy-hitters in the line up is an extract from the bark of New Zealand Pine. Clinical trials are showing Enzogenol, as it's now known, to be pretty freakin' amazing at improving cognitive function. It's also a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, many, many times more powerful than Vitamin C or E. Another key ingredient in the formulation is L-Theanine, a rare amino acid found in green team, that in trials has been shown to reduce stress without drowsiness, improve sleep, heighten mental clarity and reduce the negative effects of caffeine.

Ārepa is 100% plant-based, made in New Zealand, caffeine free, and is packed with polyphenols and antioxidants. It also tastes good, thanks a base of organic Hawke's Bay apples and Canterbury blackcurrants.

Studies have shown that, on average, people notice an effect 20-30 minutes after drinking Ārepa, and the effects last up to four hours.

Ārepa is available at Farro Fresh stores (and no doubt more stores to come this year) or you can buy it online at drinkarepa.com