How do I decide and sign off on a design scheme?

Making final decisions and signing off on designs can be difficult. When you have a designer keen to move forward, but you think there are a multiplicity of choices still to be researched and evaluated, how do you draw a line in the sand and say yes? Here are the questions I would be asking:…

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Decluttering, without regrets

Do you feel overwhelmed with stuff that you and your family have accumulated over the years, but at the same time very reluctant to make a start on getting rid of things? I believe the minimalist trend can go too far. If you are too radical you can throw away possessions which connect you to…

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My picture passed in at auction – what do I do now?

Auctioneer about to bring the hammer down

If you have ever tried to sell something in a specialist art auction you will know that there is a long build up and the process can be very stressful. Once you have made a decision to sell, a failure can be very frustrating not to mention inconvenient. My first tip is – never pre-commit…

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Are antiques due for a revival?

Antiques – that is to say furniture and objects over 100 years old – are a little off the radar of many home decorators at the moment. Here are some reasons why you might not have considered them:- You associate them with your grandparents or great-grandparents Yes, but they probably favoured Queen Anne or Victorian…

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What are the best antiques for today?

Photograph of Wolston Farmhouse Sitting Room

There is no better way in my opinion to add some flair to your home than to add a few selectively chosen antiques or vintage pieces. If you are hunting around antique shops, which are the pieces you should be on the lookout for and which pieces should you avoid even if they look temptingly…

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How to use the 60/30/10 rule in decorating

Victorian Terrace House, East Melbourne

Would you like to be more adventurous with colour in your home but you aren’t sure how to start? One tried and tested approach is the ‘three colour rule” also called the 60-30-10 rule after the approximate percentages of each colour. In this scheme, one base colour dominates – let’s call it your hero colour.…

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How to trend-proof your home

Arco Led Floor Lamp

Just like the fashion industry, the interiors industry packages styles and trends for the home which inevitably start to look dated after a few years. If you want to cultivate a more distinctive style that might even see you through multiple homes, here are some suggestions to guide you: Modern Classics Certain designs become classics…

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Can you over-restore a home?

Victorian Terrace House, East Melbourne

If you are renovating an older home it is important to remember what attracted it to you in the first place. It’s definitely possible to ‘over-restore’ a home just as a conservator can make a painting look too new by overpainting and varnishing to remove all signs of age. Ideally you retain the best features,…

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How to commission a portrait

Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841-1919) Portrait of a Young Girl 1879 pastel on paper

The winner of the wildly popular Archibald prize was recently announced, and that has set me thinking about how to commission a portrait for your own collection, or as a gift. The Archibald might be the most famous, but it’s not the only prize for portraiture in this country. To name but two others there…

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