Monthly Archives: May 2013

San Diego to San Fran – Out of the Birdcage on the road!



Just flying on a jet plane after a road trip on California’s Highway 1 – looking forward to sharing all my stories from my colourful adventure…….


Posted by on May 31, 2013 in Travel, United States


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A floored obsession – Sonya Marish


Sometimes we become a little bit obsessed with decorating our walls and dressing windows and kind of forget about the floor.  Maybe we will throw down a rug, but rarely is there as much excitement about the flooring as the walls or a piece of furniture. A few years ago I stumbled upon an article about a store which has evolved from the passion of Byron Bay based designer Sonya Marish.

Sonya has the most amazing range of antique and reproduction tiles which have been sourced from her travels around the globe.

“Forever searching for those rarities, I was over the moon when I stumbled across some beautiful antique tiles that I had to have. Their history, beauty and imperfections were exactly what I was looking for.” Sonya Marish, Jatana Interiors.

Sonya began her hunt for the perfect tiles when she commenced styling her own bathroom.  From here an obsession started which grew into her business in Byron Bay Jatana Interiors….So if there is such a thing as tile porn then this is a good place to get your fix and who says that you have to stick to tiling the floor….. Let me know your thoughts.

austr home

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My favourite has to be when they are all mixed up to create a colourful festival…who says you have to stick to conformity.


Which is your favourite?….. Meanwhile on with the colourful adventure…..


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Taming Wild Strawberries – Happy Friday


“Are wild strawberries really wild? Will they scratch an adult, will they snap at a child? Should you pet them, or let them run free where they roam? Could they ever relax in a steam-heated home? Can they be trained to not growl at the guests? Will a litterbox work or would they make a mess? Can we make them a Cowberry, herding the cows, or maybe a Muleberry pulling the plows, or maybe a Huntberry chasing the grouse, or maybe a Watchberry guarding the house, and though they may curl up at your feet oh so sweetly can you ever feel that you trust them completely? Or should we make a pet out of something less scary, like the Domestic Prune or the Imported Cherry, Anyhow, you’ve been warned and I will not be blamed if your Wild Strawberries cannot be tamed.” – Shel Silverstein – “Where the Sidewalk ends”

In an attempt to hold on to the summer months in OZ, I thought I would share my attempt to tame the strawberries..introducing the white chocolate and strawberry tart….


1.5 cups plain flour
Half cup icing sugar
125g chilled butter
6 egg yolks- chilled
200 g white chocolate
Two punnets of strawberries hulled and cut in half
375ml thickened cream
Teaspoon vanilla extract

  • First step is to make the pastry case, pre heat the oven to 180 degrees.
  • In a food processor blitz the flour, sugar and cubed butter until it resembles bread crumbs.
  • Add 3 of the egg yolks and about a tablespoon of iced water. Blitz until forms a dough.  As there is so much butter it will be soft so turn out and put into a ball and place in the fridge to cool for 10mins.
  • Roll to a disc to fit a 23cm round loose base tin. It is best to roll out between two sheets of baking paper. It will probably be soft again so you may want to place in fridge for 10 mins. Then place into the greased dish. Prick base all over with a fork
  • Cover base with some baking paper and pastry weights (or rice) and place in oven for 15 mins. Then remove paper and weights and cook for another ten mins….
  • While this is baking, heat the cream and white chocolate until the chocolate melts, this should be in a pan on a low heat.
  • Remove from heat and add the vanilla extract and whisk in the remaining three egg yolks.
  • Pour mixture into case, I normally place the case on a lined baking tray incase it leaks a little!
  • Reduce the oven to 140 degrees and then bake for around 35 mins( or until just set when you touch the top).
  • When almost cool, place the strawberries as per the picture! Voila enjoy!

Have a fantastic weekend, meanwhile on with the colourful adventure………


Posted by on May 10, 2013 in Cookery


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Stumble Upon – Nicole Porter’s Neon Style


I love these handmade bowls by New York designer Nicole Porter.  They are the perfect way to add a little colour to your table whatever season you are entering.  Using a mixture of graphic prints, and bold bright and fun colours, they are a simple way to add a little colour to your garden salad.


I also love the quirky tongue in cheek napery, after all who said the dinner table could not be fun! Whether you love your Citrus fruits…..


…you are appearing on Beauty or the Geek…..


….or you love your American home state…..and there is practically every state to choose from…


..just have some fun…meanwhile on with the colourful adventure…..


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Simple perspective – Giosetta Fioroni


One thing I love, but probably do not do enough of is sketch.  I get this from my mother who was never without a sketch pad and her little tin of watercolours.  Every holiday my mother would disappear for hours and come back with a book of drawings and mini watercolours.  I just loved the simplicity of the sketches, whether they were to be filed away, or  they became the inspiration for something else.  I loved the rough sketches more than the finished piece as they showed the raw skill and thought leading to the final piece.

I think this was why I was drawn to the work of Italian artist Giosetta Fioroni. I love the fact that although the works are complete, they  still have the construction and perspective lines which show the process placed into the creation.


Giosetta Fioroni – Source NY times

Rome based Fioroni primarily produces her works using silver enamel paint and graphite.  Her work, dating from the 1960’s, has a pop art influence, featuring figures taken from the Italian cinema, magazines and her own family albums of the era.

LaSpiaggia - private collection

La Spiaggia – Private collection – Source independent Collectors




For anyone reading this who happens to be in New York, her work is currently being exhibited in New York’s “The Drawing Centre” until the 7th June…… if you go please could you send me a couple of postcards xxx

Meanwhile on with the colourful adventure………..

(all pictures sourced from unless otherwise stated)

Posted by on May 6, 2013 in Art, Italian Designers, Travel


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Day dream kind of day

Dream boat

Every now and again (well probably more often than not) my mind sets in to daydream mode….. and today is just one of those many days.  So I thought I would honour the occasion with the best dreamy hanging beds to put my daydreaming into its full state of usefulness.

Which one is your favourite?


I am loving the added inspiration wall, boxes and books……creativity heaven!

hanging bed

I am half expecting a cloaked prince to come out of the mist…. but I am not quite sure how you would turn the lamp on, maybe he could help!


All white……..Maybe a little too bright for a relaxing daydream….Not to mention the stress of keeping everything so whitey white!! Now grey on the other hand I could do grey….


Or you could do dual purpose, below would double up as the perfect outdoor dining table ( and you would not even need a separate table cloth!)


Have a great weekend….. happy daydreaming….. meanwhile on with the colourful adventure x

(all images sourced from Pinterest)


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Distorting the Masters – An Interior Collaboration


I am feeling a little bit like a stalker at the moment of the British designers Young and Battaglia.  I recently posted on their faux cowhide rugs which I love, they have now taken this to a new dimension, working together with American conceptual artist and designer Chad Wys, to create their classics revisited collection.


The collection includes the Pastoral cow hide rug (Below), which is taken from Chad’s “American Tapestry” collection, and a series of cushions which take inspiration from Chad’s “Nocturnes” Portfolio collection.

Pastoral 008

I love how the artist and designers have taken something from the past and bought it into the present, or is it perhaps taking the present into the past?  Let me know your thoughts.

Below are Chad’s prints followed by the Cushions with the Y&B touch…. oh and a little bit of influence from Cluedo me thinks…….

Nocturne 109

Nocturne 109 – Chad Wys


General Mustard Cushion

Nocturne 64

Nocturne 64 – Chad Wys


Lord White – Cushion


Tom Green Cushion


Lady Peacock Cushion


On with the colourful adventure…………..


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