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Homestyle Sneaky Peek


If you like awesome things and great stuff, you should most definitely get a copy of the latest Homestyle magazine - the annual colour issue. Here's a tasty entree to whet your appetite...

Photographs by Larnie Nicolson, Production by Leeann Yare

It's a dream of mine to live in a converted church, like Andrew Reinholds and his three-legged cat. Nestled in a sleepy Grey Lynn Auckland street, with an open mezzanine bedroom (one of my favourite words - mezzanine), big archway doors and a blue SMEG. Lucky three-legged cat.

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There's also a nosey around Leeann Yare's house - she's just re-decorated it... here's her lounge before and after, with a super cool new blush pink wall...

Styling by Leeann Yare, Photos by Larnie Nicolson

Haha, Bosco seems a little unsure. 

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Images from the Homestyle colour story, 
with heck-yes styling by Alice Lines & Amber Armitage, photos by Wendy Fenwick

Lots and lots more to see in the mag - get yerself one.

Show & Tell - an interview with Homebase Collections designer, Leanne Culy


Leanne Culy is the artist and designer behind Homebase Collections - a constantly evolving collection of New Zealand homeware created at home for your home.  Leanne (and her husband, noted NZ photographer Brian Buly) live in Napier in a take-your-breath-away homestead. Their home has been the inspiration behind Leanne's range of textiles, lighting and homeware, and the beautiful things she's hand picked to complement the Homebase range.

What's your background Leanne?
I'm from an advertising and graphic design back ground, I freelanced for years in Wellington during the 80's, before opening a little homewear shop in Cuba Street called Ace Interiors, up-cycling alot which was new in those days.

Brian had a film company called Airdate in those days, so I was a little involved on the props side of that, then I married and had children but kept my hand in by doing regular styling features for  Home and Building magazine, now HOME mag. Brian took the photos even back then. This was in the early nineties so my interest has always been in interiors as a creative outlet. I was asked to do a book for Penguin at the time which would have been great but I didn't quite get it off the ground.

Being a mum was my top priority and it was then I decided the organic and natural way was the only way, and I carry this value through to this day.

Nature inspires Leanne and features heavily in her styling and her design

What is your favourite part of the design process?
I guess my favorite part of the design process is the brain storming, coming up with the idea. Then the hard work is the doing. I think my strenngth is coming up with ideas, sometime I have too many ideas and don't know where to start my day and which idea to start on first, whether its an oar to paint, or a piece of furniture to design.

Like Leanne, I too love pegboard, so I really want some of her newly-launched 'pegboard' fabric. 

Leanne in her cutting room (guys! She has a cutting room!) 
I spy that awesome Brian Culy orange bird print on the wall... 
and there's my favourite new fabric again.

Who are your design heroes?
Some of the designers and architects from the 50's - textile designers like Lucienne Day, and the textiles of Avis Higgs, Stig Lindberg. I'm also a big fan of architects from the 50's like Albert Frey, where nature is incorporated into every project, also Frank Lloyd Wright and the husband and wife team, Charles and Ray Eames.  More recent heroes are architects like Glenn Murcutt whose passion and commitment for the environment is a feature of their work.

Another couple whose aesthetic inspires me is my husband's Mum and Dad, Jacobina and David Culy. 'Bina as she was called, went to art school and took up sculpting later in life, which she was naturally talented at. She had a warm, comfortable and organic way of arranging her house, understated but stylish and artistic, she liked moving things around and rearranging her nick nacks which I also tend to do quite often.  David was a craftsman and cabinet maker, he was an apprentice at the Aeronautical Technology school and in 1944 worked at the Rongitai Aerodrome, building Tiger moths. He went deaf at an early age so taught at the correspondence school, while also publishing a series of books on cabinet making, and producing and selling furniture to the likes of Kirkcaldies and Stains.

Brian and I often laugh that somehow we got to this with Homebase collections, it almost feels as though we are continuing the legacy.

Leanne in her studio with cute-face Lola! 

What's on your wishlist?
On my wish list is to find balance. The challenge is to make good art, design things and to make a living... without compromising the things that are important to me.  

What's been a favourite recent project?
My favourite project recently is creating the new Pinhole light, I designed it about 15 years ago for my own home and now that Homebase has its own showroom and online store, alot of the ideas like this that have layed dormant for years can be put into production.

Leanne in her sunny little dining space, checkin' our her white pinhole light. 

In my spare time, I...
I like to cook and Garden, or change my house around.
I dont really stop, I'm usually creating something!

The Culys are keen collectors of vintage

What advice would you give someone wanting to become a product designer?
I'd never be so bold as to give advice but maybe the one thing would be, not to be afraid of learning as you go along. I have never studied and this could have been seen as something that could hold you back, but you can be your own apprentice, if you have an idea, just do it and learn as you go along. Mistakes are OK.

The Culy family kitchen - Leanne loves to re-arrange things in her home. 
You and me both, homie.

Give us a recommendation - something we should do, or see...
I recommend having a holiday, it awakens or reignites your creative mind. A little like spending time in a gallery. I recently went to an amazing exhibition at the Wellington city gallery, it was a photography exhibition by Gregory Crewdson.

Peeks at Leanne and Brian's home and store. 

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Want to see more photos from the Homebase Collections studio, store and home? 

All photos on this page are thanks to Leanne's husband -  celebrated NZ photographer Brian Culy.

Faaaaancy SPACES!! (It's a well-known Jingle)

Budget-looking brilliance.

These two sweet spaces (and Lennie, that mini daschie) belong to a homestead called Tuppenny Farm. Tuppenny Farm! How I long to live in a home with a storybook name. You can see the whole place here.

Bosco the dog chillin' like a villain on (NZ stylist) Leeann Yare's bed - love the clashytastic Kip & Co bed linen, and those round Leeann Yare for General Eclectic cushions.

What's not to love?

Rocking chair rocking my tiny mind

Needs a huge art print on the kitchen bench wall...

This space makes me feel all relaxed and sleepy (honk-shnoo, honk-shnoooo... that's me, drifted off to snoreland)

Ooh, you know me.
CUTEST nursery - and ooh, hello, I spotted my very own Golden Days print (available to buy here)

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Design Pick n Mix yo


Dollar mixture time!

Time to buy some new teatowels I think.

Ah, M-town, why so cool? 
Love this identity for a Melbourne bar/restaurant, by Melbourne design co. A Friend of Mine

I like a good grid.
Tablecloth and mug from Kate Spade Saturday.

The new metallic trend shows no sign of dying out like bubble skirts.
These very sexy specimens - Handle pendants and Range tables - are by new graduate designer Josie Morris

One of my design heroes is Beci Orpin. She's an illustrator... but also a book author, product and textile designer, stylist (for INSIDE OUT magazine amongst other clients)... the list goes on. She recently spoke at the Melbourne chapter of international creative 'breakfast lecture' series, CreativeMornings. Here, she talks about happiness in her life and work. An inspiring little watch...

I'd like a couple of these with herbs in, for my kitchen. Diamond hanging planters (with leather cord), get 'em here.
Take all dem panties off! 
Blush & tan leather September Chair by OX

Leaving you with this: Fly a little closer to the sun...

Who's the BEST? (Part I)


POUR YO'SELF A BUBBLAH It's time for NZ's Best Design Awards!

Fisher & Paykel client Christmas gift

Continually impressed by all the work Alt Group do for Fisher & Paykel. 
Do great designers get great clients? Or do great clients get great designers?

A new brand for MetService! Plus, 24 hours in the life of MetService - solid concept for this annual report by Designworks. (PS: Also love that they went for the big A3 size.)

Ahem. And that's how you do brand guidelines. (Kudos, Designworks.) 

I'm hungry, Alt Group.

One of my fave shopping destinations - identity and wayfinding by Supply.

Rare and interesting. By Coffee Supreme's in-house designer, Al Keating.

More best picks to come later this week...

Inside Out makes it a gold-star day


Arrghh (happy scream) - I love that bedside light!

Spare Change - styled by Julia Green and photographed by Armelle Habib - shows how to make a spare room work double-duty, as an office and a bedroom.

Handmade Heart, Inside Out's story of Megan Perkins, who moved back in with her parents so she could pursue her jewellery design dreams.  Styled by Natalie Walton and photographed by Chris Warnes

Today is a gold star and smiley-face sticker day. The sun's been shining, I've been working with music TURNED UP REALLY LOUD and the postie delivered my copy of the September issue of Inside Out.  I'd like to take to it with scissors and a glue stick, chopping out interiors and cool homeware products to make a dream board. Luckily, I sort of think of this blog as one great big dream board. 

NZ Illustrator Toby Morris...


Next Thursday 22nd, Beatnik are hosting a little launch party for NZ illustrator Toby Morris' book, Don't Puke On Your Dad.  And you are totally invited. 

Toby put together a little video invite/process vid, showing how he gets his illustrations from a pencil sketch to a digital artwork. Thought you might enjoy!

Saving my Rutherfords & Ngatas for...


I'm saving my Rutherfords and Ngatas for a few choice pieces, and these just made the list. 
Designed by one-of-my-fave designers Daniel Emma, for the awesomely-curated www.theo-theo.com. I can't take my eyes off that coral one... BEST thing I've seen in ages. Discovered thanks to the latest Inside Out magazine.

FAAAAAAAAAANCY Spaces. (Clears throat)


Chairs! Lights! Pillows on the floor! (Pillows on the floor?)

All I can think of is slipping around in socks on that floor. Oh, but I would.

Love the black wooden floors, and that graphic print on the wall. EyesEyesEyes.
Also, MASSIVE couch/devan!

I'm sorry (not sorry) that these pictures are a little fuzzy. That ACE rug makes up for it though.

Paint one small wall a cool colour. Then step back and marvel at your awesomeness. 

I pretty much just want to live inside the Weekday Carnival home.

This lady has seriously good taste in mixy-matchy cushions.

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Haaaaawnk eeeeeep. That's the sound of me doing a Swan mating call, in the hopes that the new Kate Sylvester X Douglas and Bec swan, in limited-edish dusky pink, will swimmy-wimm over to my house. 

Design Kitchen


Fisher & Paykel has been a loved, iconic New Zealand brand for evah. Unsurprising, considering all of the awesome brand experiences they keep cooking up. Here are two I just discovered...

First up, there's the Our Kitchen blog. Behind this very cool cooking blog are a few keen foodie friends who work at Fisher & Paykel. And it's been going three years now, meaning so, so, so many YUM recipes to try... all styled and shot in a way that makes you want to eat your screen. 

Sometimes I leave... and I wanna go back there...

Fisher & Paykel have also just launched a website especially for architects and designers, 
The Kitchen Tools.  For all you professionals (hands up in the back), it'll be the place to find technical product info, drawings and downloads...  but there's also a blog filled with images of kitchens from Amazingtown.

The studio kitchen at Alt. Group (Being Fisher & Paykel's graphic design team comes with its perks)

The Guest House


That thoughtful Father Rabbit, he's opened a little Guest House at his place, and I want to stay there and roll around on the sheets. While Father Rabbit prefers clean and classic, the current visitor at the Guest House is a colour lover. I'll take the Feliz bed linen, Pony Rider X cushions and... okI'lltakeallofitpleasekaythanks.

Oh, and Pastel Pegboard is the new pegboard.

We live in a beautiful world, yeah we do yeah we do


About this time last year, Melbourne-based photographer Brooke Holm - and friends - did a road trip around the South Island. They slept in a campervan and cooked on a little gas burner and wore lots of layers. And... woah. The images she recorded are a humbling reminder of how epic our little country is, how much glory and beauty there is to see here. Who wants to come on a Spring roady with me?

See the helicopter? Woah.

Are you for reeeeal?

May I encourage you to clickyclick on over and look at the entire New Zealand trip on Brooke's website, because they're all quite a bit bigger over there. There are so many more to see from her New Zealand trip, and Brooke's also amazing with interiors and food.

Pick n Mix time! (Sadly no longer sponsored by D.E.K.A)


New Pick & Mix title image. Ooeee, aren't we the grown up blog now?

Hannah Konola is a little weird and I like it.

Sliding blonde wood extensions that hide within a steel table top. And little wooden legs! 
The Judd Table is my highschool sweetheart. 

Photographer Carl Kleiner has updated his site with alot more work, including this set of shots for furniture brand Discipline

And did you spot this sneaky sneakerson in Picture 1?
You cannot escape my hawkish eye, amazing leather Pocket chair.

There's a fine line between craft cool and dried-pasta-and-glitter-picture-frame, but these wall hangings are on the right side of the fight. Learn how to make one here.

Meet Marsha Golemac. She's a paper artist, stylist and visual merchandiser from Melbourne and I wish we were penpals. Imagine the cool letters you'd get.

Round wall shelf with leather cord > everything else. 

I really (really) liked Hard Graft. Then I saw the packaging they put their beautiful leather goods in and I really, really, really liked them. Hold on to the good.

Show & Tell - Angela Keoghan, Illustrator


Angela Keoghan is becoming an international in-demand illustrator, represented in the UK by Eastwing agency and being commissioned here and overseas for everything from magazine editorials to product packaging. From her home studio on the outskirts of Hamilton, she creates the sweetest sketches, turning them into complete little artworks that look as though they may have come from an old storybook.

Last year, she won the Best Album Cover award at the Vodafone NZ Music Awards. This year, her work was chosen for Frankie magazine's Issue 53 lift-out poster.

She's also recently opened her own online store August Avenue, selling gift cards and art prints.

What was your journey to becoming a career illustrator?
I always knew I wanted to do something creative with my life and art has always been a passion. I studied a Media Arts Degree which covered painting, graphic design and photography and by the time I finished my Honours year I realised what really interested me was image and text, and my passion for illustration grew from there. There weren't that many illustration papers or degrees around so I did as many papers available and then gained the rest of my experience and knowledge from books and the internet, not to mention lots of experimentation and practice.

After many years of freelancing as a photographer & illustrator I made the move to full time illustration last year which is like a dream come true!

Tell us about August Avenue! 
August Avenue is run by Jayden and one of our talented friends. It resulted from a desire to create and sell my work in a variety of forms but is growing into something a lot bigger. It's still in its early stages but the future is very exciting and will hopefully expand to showcase the work of other illustrators too!

Was there a point in your life where you decided to take a big risk to move forward? 
Making the move to freelance life wasn't altogether easy, I spent many years working as a school photographer at first before starting a company with a good friend. We worked together for a few years before she went on her OE and I decided to go out on my own and make illustration more of a focus.

Freelance life takes a lot of motivation and self belief but I find it really rewarding and now days I'm quite used to the wayward nature and spontaneity required to work for myself. It also helps that in recent years my husband Jayden has come on board to drive more of the business side of things, which leaves me to concentrate on producing work. We work on a global scale too which means the end of our working day is the start of someone else's, so learning to be a night owl has been quite a shift.

Who are your creative heroes?
I have many creative heroes who have influenced me over the years. Storytellers in many medias. I especially enjoy children's books and my earliest influences where Richard Scarry and Quentin Blake. A few more contemporary influences are Oliver Jeffers, Jon Klassen and Blexbolex.

Tell us about a couple of up-and-coming illustrators we should go and google right now! 
Here are a couple of recent finds:  David Doran and Melissa Castrillon.

What are you looking forward to? 
I find there are so many exciting opportunities out there and each one that comes along I feel incredibly grateful for! The main things which are always on my wishlist are to travel more and keep making illustration.  I'd love to illustrate children's books, create textiles, design wallpaper and create more murals that explore how illustration can be used in public/private spaces.

What advice could you pass on to a budding career illustrator? 
One thing is the importance of time for practice and experimentation. The 10,000 hour concept - the difference between someone successful in their practice compared to others is 10,000 hours of time & energy poured into that one thing and for me that continues to be drawing… drawing and more drawing…

Also when building a career as a freelancer, it's important to get a handle on the business side of things, time management and motivation. Because you are your own boss you determine the parameters of your time and effort which can be a good or a bad thing. It means you may have to give up your weekends, or your friday nights or holidays to get your work done, but you also determine when and where you work.

I would recommend that a budding illustrator do some sort of study and think globally about their practice. NZ is a great place despite being rather small and I think we have a lot to offer the world.

What do you love to do in your spare time? 
I love to go for a walk, play with Mr Woods (our dog), sketch in a cafe or perhaps do some gardening.

Need to start a blog about people and their awesome dogs

What's your favourite part of a working day?
The beginning - it feels like the day is so full of opportunity!

What is your most favourite thing in your studio? 
Aside from my husband, it would have to be my collection of children's drawings. I have some lovely friends who's children like to draw me pictures for my walls, I often get to draw with them too which is fun. I love the freedom and imagination as they discover how or what to draw.

See more of Angela's work at her website The Picture Garden 
/ Buy prints and cards at August Avenue / Follow Angela on Twitter

Fancy Spaces! Let's make believe we live here...


So, that's a great clothes rack and everything, but putting it right in front of the wardrobe door is a bit silly.

Morning sunshine is a dining room's best accessory.

Well, H E L L O, beautiful.

I don't know about you but glass-topped coffee tables just freak me out. Aside from that, this one's a lifetime member of the Amazing Rooms Society.

I just love a room that doesn't try too hard, know what I mean?

(This is Marsha Golemac's place, photographed by Brooke Holm)

This is the sort of home where the Eames' are real.

[Insert your own comment here]

This isn't a home, it's the Fritz Hansen flagship store. Or as I like to call it, Alanaville.

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David Trubridge Book & TEDX Talk


P'raps New Zealand's most successful product designer and design ambassador is one Mr. David Trubridge. His range of lighting has captured the international design community's attention and respect, and over the past years they've won award after award, been shown at every major design exhibition or event you could name and been bought by notable museums across the world. David himself is in demand as a speaker, teacher,  critical voice, design judge and consultant, and he runs what is an international design business from his 

So Far, David's new book, is the story of both his fascinating life, and of his development as a designer. 

David also gave this talk - Our Need to Create - at the recent TEDX Auckland.

Interiors | It's in the details...

LeeAnn Yare's new book, NZ Interior Style

Matchbox Studios (and WIN $100 worth of goodies)

Wellington's Matchbox is a gallery, a photography studio and a design shop - a cool, creative space for local artists, designers and makers to exhibit and sell their work. The business baby of Cherry Holahan and Lauren Whalley, it opened its doors in May last year, but just a couple of weeks ago moved to a bigger and better space at 166 Cuba Street.

The exhibitions in the gallery space usually change out every couple of weeks, so there's always something new to see. And in the weekends, Matchbox also runs craft workshops in the gallery space - think geometric origami, leather necklaces, rubber stamp making...

Pegboard and pencil = magazine rack = yes!

Matchbox are always keen to hear submissions for both solo shows and artist-curated group exhibitions. As part of their mission to represent the New Zealand creative community, the Matchbox team (including their awesome interns and volunteers) take care of every aspect of an exhibition - from promoting it to hanging the work.

Matchbox's design shop (you can shop online too) features products by over 50 different Welly-based, NZ and international makers.

I'm giving away a little pick n' mix of (my favourite) products from the Matchbox online store - valued at just over $100! To enter, use those photos up there to have a guess at one of the products in the prize package. Leave your answer in the comments, with your name and email address.