Monday, 25 July 2016
Creating a home can be at once a lifelong process and something that can happen in an instant. Especially if you subscribe to the theory that home is where the heart is. But nothing is really that simple.
Turning a space into a functioning place for yourself or your family requires thought and an ability to edit what you own, and continue that process in perpetuity.
There are some lessons I've learnt over the years due to my job and also from personal experience. For five years I worked at one of Australia's leading interiors magazines, Real Living. During this time I interviewed experts, talked to homeowners, analysed images and read reader's letters on what worked and what didn't.
Since then I have spent several years working as a freelance interior stylist. My work has focussed on scouting homes for interior magazines to feature on their pages. This has involved requesting submissions from homeowners and selecting places to photograph. When possible I visit homes before a photo shoot to assess if they will work as a feature. Other times, especially when I travel interstate or long distances, I have had to trust my instincts that the place will be suitable. There's lots of assessing and evaluating in this process. Over the past decade I have probably visited more than 100 homes in relation to my work.
And then there are my own homes. I have moved more than 20 times during my lifetime so far. In the past five years alone I have lived next to the beach (Bondi), in the city (inner-city Sydney) and in the country (the hinterland of the Central Coast). Not only have I got moving down to a fine art, but I have also learnt some valuable lessons about editing the contents of my home. I have noticed some patterns among the items that I've held onto for many years, and those that I have passed on to charity shops.
It seems obvious, but simple shapes, natural materials and neutral colours are the key threads that sustain our home collection. Yes, I have been seduced over the years by on-trend cushions, patterned rugs and brightly coloured accent pieces but these have invariably ended up in someone else's home. They are not the keepers.
What has sustained us through several homes - and locations - are the basics. And these are the items that I also regularly take along to photo shoots. A linen tea towel, a white multipurpose towel, a lightweight throw, a sheepskin or reindeer hide (often both), a neutral cushion cover, a cylinder-shaped simple glass vase and a jug that I can use in the kitchen, bathroom or on a bedside table. And I usually carry them in a market basket as that can double as a prop if the need arises too. En-route to every shoot I stop at a florist because flowers always add beautiful texture and detail to any space.
As a result of the patterns I've noticed through my work, and my own experience at home, I have launched an online shop, Imprint House. It brings to life the design blog Daily Imprint, which I have been producing for more than nine years, that has brought me into contact with many local designers and artisanal producers. And the shop embodies the philosophy that we strive for in our home - living simply, living better. It is about paring back to the pieces that bring us joy every time we use them. And enjoying our home for the place it is today.
If you're interested to learn more about my career path, you can read the interview on Daily Imprint today. And if you'd like to get discounts and exclusive offers subscribe to the Imprint House newsletter. Also, follow Imprint House on Instagram for giveaways and interior ideas and inspiration.
Imprint House ships internationally too!
images imprint house