Art House Tour

I really liked this home featured in April’s Issue of Home & Decor. It’s a fine example of how art can make a home. Without the paintings this home could have been any other home on the street.


International Furniture Fair Singapore 2011

International Furniture Fair Singapore 2011 was held from 9 to 12 March at the Singapore Expo at Changi. Featuring 534 exhibitors from 24 countries, the event showcased a diverse mix of design styles and concepts. Highlights included D’Space and Platform showcasing designs from budding young talents under the theme ‘No Boundaries’; as well as discussions at the Furniture Design Forum led by award-winning designer Naoto Fukasawa, Belgian architect and ‘total designer’, Vincent Van Duysen and sales head for Italian furniture brand Moroso, Marco Cappellin.

Above: 1. Eclectic secret friend designs by Tithi Kutchamuch; 2. More from secret friend family; 3. A Part From Eagle by Anon Pairot.

Above: 1. Pendant and Juno Lamp by Anurak Suchat of Aesthetic Studio 2. Paperfold by P.C. Ee of Exit Studio; 3. Hi Ho Rocking Horse by Jarrod Lim.

Also on exhibit were designs produced in a 3-day design workshop ‘Design Inevitable’. Held prior to the event, the workshop conducted by Mr Fukasawa offered 20 Singapore-based designers the rare chance to work with the master and develop minimalist interpretations of their own. Some of the designs produced included:

Above: 1. Bed by Ang Xinwei; 2. Tiptoe Dining Chair by Yang Tah Ching; 3. Twins by Len Lim.

Shortlisted finalists of Furniture Design DNA‘s design competition 2011 also had their work on display. Winners were announced on Wednesday.

Above: In the Designer Category 1. WIND Screen/Shelf by Jerry Low (Grand prize); 2. Igloo Stool by Page Tan (Merit); 3. Sprout Table by Sharina Bi Abdul Rashid (Merit).

Above: In the Student Category 1. Sheep Chair by Tzu-Chi (Grand prize); Liseta Bookcase by Samir Wadekar (Merit); 3. You’ve Got Mail by Nur Sabeela Binte Abdul Karim (Honorable Mention). Images via TodayOnline.

Walking around the exhibits, stands featuring eco-friendly products and furnishings using recycled/reclaimed materials really stood out. One which gained a lot of attention was D-Bodhi‘s Street Art concept (which incidentally also won Best Stand for Category C – stands of 200sqm and above). Expanding on its range of eco-friendly furnishings using materials such as reclaimed teak wood and brushed iron, the brand launched its new d-Blue collection of recycled jeans fabric furniture that included everything from poufs and lounge chairs to coffee tables. A personal favourite of mine was Sharda Exports which featured hand-tufted and woven carpets, rugs and pouf coverings. I especially love their sock carpet featured below.

Other interesting exhibits included moods for wood featuring an assortment of metal framed silhouette furniture; lendaiyan and an air-filtering air lamp by wa francis chu from dream lab one as featured on DesignBoom; and cascade light by Ango.

Find out more about the IFFS here.

Dreamy Four Poster Beds

As it opens onto a balcony overlooking the waterway, we foresee our bedroom becoming an extension of our living room. In order to delineate the space between bed and living room, I thought it might be interesting to explore the four-poster bed option.

Below: A whimsical take on the traditional four poster bed, hand-forged by sculptor, Shawn Lovell.

Below: A another version by Turkish designer, Asli Tunca.

Below: A cosy fairytale bed at Jolly Days Luxury Camping.

Below: Tree of life motif veil four poster bed via Apartment Therapy.

Below: A simple yet effective four poster bed featured on Apartment Therapy.

Below: A luxurious tent bed fit for a king at a Botswana Safari house.

Below: A beautiful Indonesian dark wood bed via house to home.

Creating a Mood Board

It’s easy to go overboard with things you like.

Making a mood board is a good exercise especially when testing out ideas for a hypothetical space (or wedding/event/product/website/whatever you’re designing). Even if you don’t like to be overly controlled, a mood board enables you to find, collect and edit your thoughts; adding better clarity and context to your decorating decisions. The last thing you want is to come home to disagreeing furniture staging their own gun fight at the O.K. Corral.

Some general practices for building a mood board include:

1. Make it Editable – if you’re making a physical board, using pin-boards or masking tape – that way you can add, remove or rearrange things as you progress. Electronic mood boards are a good option as they’re easy to edit and great for saving online inspirations.

2. Maintain some Proportion – not an absolute rule but if it’s going to look large in your room it should be larger on your mood board.

3. Arrange the Space – try to arrange your mood board as you would place them in your room i.e. ceiling fans appear at the top of your mood board, carpets below, curtains next to window fixtures etc.

4. Layer – layering textures such as wood grains for tables and furniture fabrics over wall paint swatches can help add depth and a better feel for how these items will look in your home.

5. Keep an Eye on it – put your mood board within easy reach – you want to keep checking back to see if you’re still hot about that fuchsia wall or if you’ve new ideas that would look great in the space  – it could be at your desk, or if it’s an e-mood board, your computer desktop, screen saver or blog.     

6. Keep Collecting – whenever you come across something you like whether it’s a colour swatch, fabric sample, magazine cut out, online image or a sketch you’ve done – keep it. If it doesn’t already fit in, you can keep it in a clear folder for future reference or reuse if you change your mind. Take note of shop names/locations if you think you might need to go back there and buy the items.

Here are a few great resources to help you get started (plus a few extras):

Olioboard – specially for interior design; strong community and some retail links

Mydeco – specially for interior design; great access to unique furniture, good community and retail links

Flickr – the defacto place for pictorial inspiration and great for collecting images

Pinterest – another great source of images and ideas

And here are just a few awesome boards created by some very talented people.

Below: The inspiration board in Drew Barrymore’s office which was designed by Ruthie Sommers as featured in Domino Mag.

Below: Stylish mummy, Nicole Balch from Making it Lovely frequently features inspiration boards on her gorgeous blog. Here’s one she uses as an electronic work of art.

Below: A beautiful colour story board created by interior design student, Kylie Sarley, on her blog Bandelle.

Below: An attic office mood board by bmoreguy using olioboard.

Sliding Barn Doors

These have been around for awhile, but the moment I really fell in love with them was when I saw them in Elle Decor’s feature on Meg Ryan’s Beach House.

Since then I’ve been noticing them everywhere – houses and apartments alike.

Below: Apartment Therapy kindly featured this instructional post from House Tweaking.

Below: This salvaged door propped in front of the pantry adds a lot of character and adds an interesting focal point for the kitchen. Image via myhomeideas.

Below: A heart-stopping bright red sliding door by architect Barbara Bestor.

Below: A country kitchen by Hutker Architects via Attic Mag.

Bucket Stools & More by Pedersen + Lennard

Along with indoor greenery and plants that won’t kill the cat, I’ve been on the look out for items to create that indoor greenhouse feel or an ‘indoor outdoor’ room. Outdoor bike stands, wrought iron moldings, concrete floors, industrial furniture, steel lockers were just a few of the things I’ve been considering.

Pedersen + Lennard are a South African design duo whose functional yet witty Scandinavian-esq designs have attracted much international attention and labeled them as young emerging designers to watch.

I’m a big fan of found-object furniture and these bucket stools are no exception. I especially like the humorous cow-hide version (even though.. it does evoke horrors of what might one day… be found.. villainously… deposited in them…)

Shades off white

The little white room could be the home decorating equivalent of the little black dress. It’s a classic that goes well with everything and is hard to get very wrong. Nevertheless, a little bit of thought into the different shades of white, and the accents within it, can make all the difference between wah and blah.

For more inspiration, check out