Thursday, September 6, 2012

Designer Spotlight: Rose Cumming

Recently, I was contacted by the wonderful people at Rizzoli New York to do a review of this book
Of course, I jumped at the chance having a huge admiration for Rose and her work.
Not only is Rose Cumming a name well known in the design circles, but she was one of the most influential
designers of her time...and still to this day influences designers and creatives all around the world....and Rose was originally from Sydney. Ah, an Aussie talent to boot!

The book details Roses' beginnings from a strong willed and independent young Lady that set about to move to Paris and get Married, but ended up alone and in New York where she fast became one of the favourites about town. Her first store on the upper East side was filled with looming windows and a place to be able to get decorating services as well as the pieces to do it...and she was also the first to keep the store lights on at night. Something that most decorating stores do now.

This book is magnificent and is filled with stunning images of Roses' work, including her early work and well known rooms, letters, images of her original hand block prints, sample boards, sketches and my favourite
 - a look book of sorts in the center of the book, filled with pictures of Roses' rooms, just like it would have been given to clients way back in the 1920's & 30's.
Rose loved everything Chinoiserie and chintz and against the grain added these to informal rooms.

Rose added colour to her chintz and used it in abundance.
Her most famous Chintz prints- "Delphinium" was filled with her signature colours- lilacs, mauves , grape and    
orchid and printed on black stripes on a taupe background.
The part that amazes me still is her design of metallic wallpaper that she added gorgeous designs of birds an flowers and amazing patterns.
Roses' interiors were anything but drab. She filled the space with colour, texture and form and her famous NY store lured the likes of celebrated personalities such as the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, Andy Warhol, Rudolf Nureyev, and Jacqueline Onassis and become one of the inventors and leaders in Interior Decorating....and we should thank Rose for that.
Not only was Rose a mover and shaker in decorating circles, but her personal style was also ahead of its time. She often sported purple hair, wore plunging necklines with cleavage on display and was very outspoken...what's not to love about this Woman? Rose would have fit right in in this time.
One thing is for certain, this book
will be taking pride of place with my other decorating books.
It makes for a wonderful read.
The book can be purchased here
Put this one on your must read list for sure!

The business is still family owned, and Roses' Great Niece, Sarah Cumming Cecil is now the President and Principal at Rose Cumming.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Join in for a Secret Santa - handmade style!

Well, well, what have we here?
A little 'secret Santa' handmade type thing!!
Registrations have just opened for ANYONE in 
Australia & New Zealand 
to participate in the 

The Give & Take is the brain child of Ange, who is the 
tell-it-how-it-is Mother/blogger from the delightful blog
Ange has made this whole Kris Kringle thing to inject money into the 
handmade community and I think it is a brilliant idea.
Here is a little more about how it works, straight from Ange. ...

a secret santa styled gift swap open to absolutely anyone (in Australia or New Zealand) but dedicated 100% to handmade!

THE OBJECTIVE ... To inject cash flow into the handmade community that would not have normally been spent.


1:  You MUST buy your 'Give' from a handmade designer based in either NZ or Australia
2:  You MUST spend at least $50 (in your local currency) including trackable postage
3:  You MUST ensure your gift is delivered to your 'Taker' before December 14, 2012 
4:  If you are a handmade designer yourself you are welcome to include some of your own wares (in fact I encourage you to take advantage of the opportunity to do so) but your spend MUST be with another designer.
5:  Open to New Zealand and Australian residents ONLY.


See the image below ... click on it ... print it off ... think about it ... research the likes of MadeItFelt and NZ Handmade and get excited about what amazing gifts you could be given ... email me your responses BEFORE midnight September 14, 2012.

Remember that your three most coveted items are ONLY a guide so that your Giver has an idea of your tastes.  With that info and your style description they will then scour the handmade community to match a gift to the same.  They MAY buy a product you have suggested.  They also MAY NOT ... all part of the fun of receiving a gift from someone you don't know.

If you have any questions you are welcome to join the facebook group ... Yes Dear's Give & Take ... 
A place for 'Givers' to discreetly find out details about 'Takers' and for 'Takers' to offer up hints of their handmade loves to their 'Givers'. Currently this is an open group but as of September 14 it will be restricted to registered Givers ONLY.  Throughout the three months there are going to be secret giveaways available to this group only.

Thank you to everyone who is taking part .... I am so excited about this initiative ... not to mention all of the giveaways that will be taking place ... 

Right! On that note I need a tall G & T of the liquid variety ... feel free to join me.

Angela xxx

Ange is so funny! 
If you would like to register, please head on over to The Lady That Blogs (aka Ange)
and sign up to get lots of handmade loveliness in your mailbox.
Marley & Lockyer and I will be there with Christmas bells on!!!
Ness xx

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Creatively Made Home

As you know, making a home a beautiful place to be is a passion
for me. Each day, I go about arranging and re-arranging, finding new pieces and
making new things to make our Old Lady 'home'.

These amazing Women above, have joined together to share their expertise and experiences
in decorating and styling to develop the wonderful e-course,
When I was recently asked by the lovely Tracey, who you will all know from the gorgeous blog
to be a part of this e-course, I jumped at the chance!
Each of these Women have a wonderful sense of is a peek and a little more about

* Each week you will have amazing truthful videos from not only the five teachers but other creative women.
* Each week we will take a room from one of YOU and all five women will give their suggestions telling you how they would transform the room with their style.
* There will be 50+ project videos.

* There will be written tips from each woman telling you how she starts a room, picks paint, fabrics, etc.  You will learn where to start when putting your own home together.
* Tons of beautiful house photos from each of the five women.
* Videos that truly reflect what life is like in each of their homes.  The stuff that life is really about. 

* Each woman will share their own truthful journey about how they started making their home a reflection of their hearts.
* Each person registered will get an easy entertaining e-book to download.
It will contain go to recipes for beautiful and easy entertaining (they do go together), photos of table settings that take the stress out of having people over, favorite drinks and so much more (and their funniest entertaining story). 

* There will be a private Facebook group to connect with other class members.
* There will be a once a week live discussion with one of the teachers!
* You will get printables and pdfs to keep and use again and again. 
The course is open to anyone, world-wide who wants to find out how to make a beautiful home.

This five week online course is hosted by 5 friends who want to help you to define your decorating style so that it is a true reflection of your heart. 

For more information on the e-course and to sign up
head on over to any of the lovely Ladies blogs, or visit 
I am really looking forward to it!!
Ness xx