Bali Inspired Design

Our Updated House Plans

Mr Big & I both have a love of traveling and Bali is definitely one of our favorite places to visit, we try to escape there at least twice a year to stay at one of the various luxury Villa’s we have come across.

Several of the design ideas for our new home has been inspired by our travels there and I thought it would be nice to pay tribute to these beautiful places by sharing them with you.

A love of natural light. 

One of our favorite Villa’s to stay at is the Disini Luxury Spa Villas in Seminyak, price from $320 AU per night. The styled 1 bedroom villas have a private infinity pool, spacious living/dining area & european kitchen enclosed within a beautifully manicured garden. The kingsize bedroom adjoints an In-room spa ensuite with marble bath & separate shower room.

Taking inspiration from this villa is our beautiful ensuite with freestanding deep soaking tub and hobless shower surrounded by clear glass and lush bamboo tropical style garden.

Seamless Lines

The Equilibria Hotel Seminyak signature villa is the ultimate example of the “waterfall concept” where the infinity pool overflows to become a waterfall that flows into a pond in the bedroom below. surrounded by bamboos, this villa is split over 2 floors with the living room and kitchen above, and master bedroom below with an outdoor bathtub, starting from $300+ AU per night.

The seamless lines of the infinity pool has definitely inspired the design for our pool area. The pool will be a feature from the full length glass window panels in the living and dining room giving a seamless flow effect.

A Relaxing Sanctuary

The Bali Island Villa’s and Spa in Seminyak has a spacious master bedroom bathed in natural sunlight that filters through full-length glass panelled doors. There is a walk-in wardrobe and spa-inspired en-suite bathroom in cool grey tones with a sunken tub for two.Each villa incorporates a private swimming pool and timber sundeck. A well concealed set of stairs leads to reveal a beautiful rooftop terrace with traditional Balinese lounging pavilion. Starting from $400 AU per night.

We love the natural light, privacy and modern minimalist decor of this Villa, the master suite is grand in size and is a beautiful place to relax and switch off. We are hoping to create a luxurious yet relaxing feel to our master suite.

Images are from our private pictures & villa website galleries


Now back to reality,  sigh! 


2017 Instyle Trends. Black is the new Chrome

Forget about orange being the new black. The instyle trend for 2017, black is the new chrome when choosing your tapware.

Chrome has long reigned as the go to Queen for kitchen and bathroom tapware but now this popular choice is being challenged by the sleek and sophisticated style of black.

Of course, while Chrome will never go out of fashion, the very stylish Matt Black tapware has recently enjoyed a sharp surge in popularity and is at the forefront of interior trends, as seen in Channel 9 latest season of The Block, and it looks like it is here to stay.

The top 5 reasons why black tapware is a great choice.

  1. It suits any style or era of design.

Black tapware is both glamorous and stylish, working well in contemporary, modern or traditional spaces.

  1. It resists fingerprints and watermarks.

This is a no brainer to save us busy people the hassle of extra cleaning and polishing.

  1. It looks beautiful with marble.

Partnering black tapware with a backdrop of white marble with veining, like the very popular Carrara, creates a show stopping elegant and cohesive look.

  1. It is perfectly suited to a wide range of elements.

Black tapware works perfectly with timber, subway tiles, copper, concrete and tarnished metals.

  1. It looks sleek and stylish.

Black tapware definitely has an air of sophistication, it creates a stunning feature that looks sleek and refined without outshining the other elements of your space.

Dorf Tapware

Caroma & Dorf have a great range of stylish black tapware to suit most budgets.

Caroma Tapware

I am definitely a convert to the trend, now all I need to do is decide what style to choose!

What are your thoughts? Do you love or loathe the Black Tapware movement? 

Renovating, Resin Art & Rocky Relationships

Ouch, the claws are out on the final week of Channel 9’s The Block. Maybe it’s time for the two school teachers, Ben & Andy, to send some of the contestants to the Principal’s office for a stern talking too. Obviously, these feuds are great for TV ratings but as an avid viewer of the show may I say………enough already! Can’t we all just get along.

Sunday night’s room reveals certainly didn’t disappoint, I loved Kim & Chris’s terrace especially the beautiful resin artwork. I searched online and came across Art by Rii on Instagram @artbyrhii , her work in gorgeous and I highly recommend you take a look, now I just need to decide on the size and colours I want to order.

I also loved the feature lights that were used in the terrace, Mr Big on the other hand thought they looked like crumpled up toilet paper!


What do you think? 

Pictures – @artbyrhii and @TheBlock


Staging to Sell, the how to guide to getting your property sold!

After much discussion Mr Big and I have decided to sell our current home, we were thinking of keeping it as an investment property when we move into our new house but when we weighed up the options we felt selling it would be more beneficial, especially to our hip pocket.

So now to turn our home into a perfectly staged house ready for sale.

What is Home Staging? 

Home staging is preparing a residence for sale in the real estate marketplace. The goal of staging is to make a home appealing to the highest number of potential buyers, thereby selling a property quicker and for more money.

DIY Staging

As a qualified property stylist, yes I do have qualifications other than master shopper / spender, here is my Must Do List for anyone planning to sell their property.

  1. Depersonalise the property – have you ever gone to a home open and not really noticed the beautiful features of the property because you were to distracted by all of the family photos on the wall and the kids finger paintings on the fridge? It is extremely difficult for someone to imagine living in a place when they are surrounded by things that scream get out, this is our family home not yours!
  • Take down and pack away all personal pictures, your childrens school artwork, family albums, personal mementos.
  • Remove everything from the shower, bath and vanities that says we live here! Shampoos, kids toys, toothbrushes, makeup etc all need to be put away in the cupboard when a viewing is scheduled.
  • Put away pet bowls, toys and if you can take your pet with you when you have a home open on.

2. Declutter & Clean- this is a must do! Pack away and store excess “stuff” like toys, books, knick knacks, trinkets even remove some pieces of furniture if they are too big and bulky for the space. You want your house to feel similar to a display home.

  • Make sure your house is sparkling clean
  • Clean windows inside and out
  • Remove any cobwebs
  • Make sure clothes are put away, beds are made and no dishes are in the sink for viewings
  • Clear any clutter from the kitchen bench

3. Finish those little jobs you have been putting off for years – simple things like patching up that old picture hook or fixing the broken piece of decking on the patio will make your house more appealing.

4. Street appeal – a little fact for you, buyers will have made their mind up about your house within 3 – 5 seconds of seeing the front of your property. If your place looks unkept or unloved, I guarentee people will either drive on by or they have already dropped a few thousand off their offering price.

  • Mow lawns
  • Weed any gardens
  • Give the exterior a lick of fresh paint if it needs it
  • Add a stylish pot plant near the front door

5. Neutral, Neutral, Neutral – if you have alot of bright colours or to many different coloured walls in your home I would highly recommend you paint all interior walls the same colour in a neutral, light colour. You are wanting to appeal to as many potential buyers as possible, not everyone likes bright orange walls and even though you may think “they can just paint over it themselves!” alot of people will not consider your property a contender when they see it online because of this. Believe me when I say a coat or two of paint can make the world of difference when selling your house.

6. Furniture – if your property is empty, hire or borrow some nice pieces of furniture and stylish accessories, even if you only stage the living area and master bedroom it will make your house more appealing and will help buyers visualise themselves living there.


…..and remember if the whole staging process is a little overwhelming, you can always call in the experts and hire a professional property stylist or home stager.




The Colour Wheel, Choosing the Perfect Palette

I’m sure that 95% of us that have built, renovated or are currently building would agree that choosing the perfect colour palette for the exterior and interior of the house was up their as one of the hardest decisions to make.

Did you know that there are over 16 million different colour options to choose from? yes 16 million! So where on earth do we start?

The Colour Wheel

Warm Colours are made with orange, red, yellow and combinations of them all. Warm colours look as though they come closer, or advance (as do dark colours), which is why they’re often used to make large rooms look cozier.

Colour Wheel

Cool Colours such as blue, green and light purple have the ability to calm and soothe. Where warm colours remind us of heat and sunshine, cool colours remind us of water and sky. Unlike warm colours, cool colours look as though they recede, giving the illusion of more space.

Create Balance
An important thing to remember when dealing with warm and cool colours is to create a balance. If you want your room to be cozy have warm colours as the dominant and then add a few elements that incorporate cool colours (and vice versa).

Decide what type of mood you want to achieve in each room. 

Colour    images

What is your colour style? Do you like bright or soft tones? Do you prefer darker or lighter shades? Visit Solver & Wattyl’s Colour Designer or Dulux to view colour selections, schemes and to order samples.

Create mood boards using downloaded sample cards and pictures


Once you have narrowed your choices down purchase a few sample pots and paint each colour on a A4 sheet of white card, then tape each sample to your wall, don’t forget to move the samples into different rooms of the house as the colour will vary depending on the amount of natural light that is present.

Remember, if all else fails and you still can’t decide you can always call in the experts and hire a colour consultant. Most painting companies do offer this service.

My Colour Style 

I definitely prefer the cooler colours in white and grey tones. I love Solvers Kitty Grey & Feather Dawn as well as Dulux Lexicon Half.

Helpful Articles –

How to get the perfect paint finish by Darren Palmer

How to pick the right white & choosing the right shade of white 

Colour Psychology –  paint colour affects mood


Hmmmm……… now onto trims, doors and the exterior, stay tuned!


My Top 10 Online Sites for Inspiration

Building, renovating or in need of some styling advice? 

Check out my top 10 online favorite sites for some great inspiration, information & of course shopping.


Houzz is the new way to design your home. Browse 11 million interior design photos, home decor, decorating ideas and home professionals online.


Australia’s home building community featuring local contractors directory and renovation forum. View popular bathroom photos, kitchen design brochures, DIY videos, interior decorating articles, or discuss topics. This site is a must for anyone thinking of building or renovating.


One of the top shopping sites for Huffington Post, Cosmopolitan, Harper’s Bazaar and Refinery29, Polyvore helps you shop & style the latest fashion trends.


Instagram is a simple way to capture, share moments and find inspiring pictures.


Want to own a piece of the block? The Block Shop has a fantastic selection of furniture, artwork, decor and much more at a very reasonable price.


A great site loaded with advice on real estate,  building, styling, renovating.


A great site to buy beautiful homewares. The shop is located in Mandurah WA. Bonus – they serve devine cake & coffee as well.


Interiors without snobbery.


A great collection of must read blogs


Stunning artwork, statement pieces and gorgeous cushions to name just a few. Highly recommend you take a look.


Please comment below to add your favorite sites. 



The Designer Replica

via Daily Prompt: Artificial

To fake or not to fake, that is the question?

We’ve all been there, faced with the ugly reality of staring a fake designer bag in the eye and pondering, hmmm I wonder would anyone know it’s a knock off?

The stiching on the bag looks perfect, the leather quality is good and the lining is almost identical to the real deal. You think to yourself “I could get away with this”.

Ok, I’ll admit it, I did what no true lover of the Divine Designer Label Elite should do, I brought a fake, an artificial long distant third cousin to the real deal. I justified my wicked purchase by telling myself “I’m in a foreign country, I’m assisting their economy, it’s what everyone does here, right?” I handed over the money, grabbed my new Handbag, now safely contained in a white plastic bag, put my head down and briskly walked back to my hotel.

That bag never saw the light of day again, it sat at the back of my wardrobe for more than a year, still in the white plastic bag, before ending up at the local rubbish tip. I knew the rules and I broke them, a moment of weakness, a lapse in judgment. Lesson Learnt!

But what are the rules when it comes to purchasing furniture? Is a replica piece still considered to be a cheap, artificial piece of crap? Do the same commandments of designer etiquette still apply, Thou shall not buy knock offs? Is a replica Barcelona Italian leather sofa from a reputable showroom considered a no no? I have no bloody idea!


The Replica – Friend or Foe

Retail Therapy – My Ultimate Addiction


Yes Marc Jacobs let’s……………. I love to shop. I love the rush of endorphins I get when I buy something fabulous. I love bringing home my new purchase and unwrapping it, staring at it, giving it a new pride of place in my wardrobe or home. The problem is that the rush wears off to quick and I need more, more, more!

I have an addiction to shopping!


I blame genetics for my problem, my Mum has it, her Mum had it and now it seems I have passed it on to my daughter, 8 year old Ms Have’a’chat.

I’m not ready to get help and like any addict I can always find an excuse to indulge in my weakness. My latest reason, we are building a house, it won’t furnish itself, I have no choice, I owe it to my family to buy beautiful pieces for our new home. Shop away Ms Prez, Shop away!!!!

My Shopping List





Pic 1 – I love the marble hall table, this will go on the entry wall in our Master Suite.

Pic 2 – beautiful art and lighting

Pic 3 – Ms Have’a’chat’s room

Pic 4 – Pool lounge

Art by John Martono

Coco & Creme Living

Go Lights

Beacon Lighting

The Block Shop

2017 Interior Design Trends Forecast

With design trends constantly changing, it is certainly hard to keep up with the “in” thing. I’m a firm believer in following your own personal style in both fashion and interior design, let’s face it renovating your house every year to suit the forecasted trends would be impractical and ridiculously expensive. What was in last year, like waterfall edges to the kitchen island bench, will be deemed ‘so five minutes ago’ next year, to then make a come back in say 2020.

What’s in for 2017?
• Terracotta
• Cork
• Dark Green
• Upholstered bedheads
• Escapism
• Jewel tones

What’s out for 2017?
• Copper
• Marble
• Quote Artwork
• Fiddle leaf figs
• Open plan living
• Subway tiles

Read more at –


What’s trending in Kitchen Design –

Personally, I will be giving the whole Terracotta trend a big miss!

Every Girl’s Dream


I have always had a love affair with shoes, my motto “the higher the better”, even my casual collection of Guess flip flops and Zanotti hi top sneakers have a wedge heel.
Like most girly girls I have dreamt of one day being the proud owner of a perfectly designed, ultimate dressing room to house my treasured possessions. Well ladies & gentleman that dream is about to come to life!
My Our dressing room, Mr Big will be given an appropriate allowance of space I promise, is a glorious 4m x 3.2m in size. We will be doing our own fit out after handover through Lifestyle Wardrobes


I have decided on a monochromatic colour palette of classic black & white, taking inspiration from the devine Coco Chanel and Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffanys. There will be a middle bench seat, a feature wall of striped black & white wall paper, a modern chandelier over the bench seat, an array of custom designed storage for shoes, handbags, jewelry, clothing etc etc with built in lighting.There will also be a designated makeup / hair station with in as well.


I am leaning towards having doors installed on the areas storing clothing especially hanging clothes, no matter what my best intentions are I know over time my love for grouping clothing by colour, length, style and type will fade and reality will kick in.

Your thoughts, would you suggest adding doors?
What would you include in your dressing room?