METAL AS ANYTHING

From industrial chic to shiny luxe, metals are having quite an interior moment. With so many ways to incorporate, style and mix the material, there’s no sign of this illustrious trend disappearing from design any time soon.

Don’t be put off by the stark and cold elements normally associated with industrial-style interiors. Metals can bring an elegance and sophistication into your home, and warmer tones such as brass, rose gold and - of course - our favourite copper can add warmth to any room.

Cooler metals such as steel and chrome can be paired with deep colours and rich, luxurious fabrics to balance two contrasting styles. Soft furnishings and added details can likewise counteract the starkness common to more industrial shades of metal, and rounded shapes can soften an otherwise sharp edge. For a distinct and eclectic look, different metals can be mixed and layered in the same room to make a home feel unique.

Here are four ways to incorporate the trend into your home:

IN ARCHITECTURAL DETAIL

A metal balustrade can transform a typically functional element of your home into a piece of art unto itself.

For our Hunters Hill House project, we incorporated a gold handrail and balustrade to create a beautiful feature that frames the home. The gold tone perfectly captures the light, brightening the space whilst adding a touch of luxury.

IN JOINERY

For a more subtle nod to the metallic trend, metal can be used in joinery to bring a beautiful accent to woodwork.

Gold or brass can add a pleasing contrast to woodwork, whether that be inlayed, as handles, trims, shelves or a decorative feature. Subtle, yet eye-catching, and ultimately luxe.

IN ACCESSORIES AND FURNITURE

Metal accessories and furniture bring a bright and bold accent to any room, and can be cleverly used to play with the surrounding light, making the material a perfect antidote to dark rooms.

Gold-legged stools, brass pots and picture frames create a sense of timeless chic, especially in combination with contrasting fabrics and colours.

Lighting lends itself well to the metal trend. Warm bulbs cast a soft light that, when paired with cooler metals such as iron, brings a high-end finish to a room.

Brass and copper look at home paired with wood bring warmth to cooler textures, such as the concrete-clad walls in our Mosman House project. Sculptural forms can provide focal points, framing areas such as dining settings and hallways.

In an all-white bathroom, metal detailing adds an elegant finesse, as seen in our Victoria Street project.

IN TAPWARE

Metal in tapware has become increasingly popular and, as a result, is now a lot of fun with dozens of different metal finishes. A brushed gold finish is an understated alternative to high-shine gold. A muted gold trim stands out as a feature in our Raglan Street project (stay tuned for the full project album reveal!)

All images via ©Alexandra Kidd Design

Q&A WITH ARTIST ANTONIA MRLIJAK

We were first introduced to Antonia a little over two years ago whilst scouring for accessories to finish our Victoria Street project.

MHP_6940.jpg

During one particular visit to our favourite Becker Minty store, we fell in love with one of Antonia’s bold, abstract pieces. It was as if she had painted those vibrant colours with our Victoria Street project in mind, and so our love affair with her work began.

It has been an effortless partnership since then, with Antonia’s diverse style being the perfect companion for the unique spaces we tailor to each client.

Antonia’s work is in one collection epitomised by punchy palettes and unexpected colour combinations, and in another collection moody and monochrome. But whether she’s brightening her canvases or exploring a darker emotion, Antonia is certainly not afraid to colour outside of the lines.

Here, we find out about her life lessons, dreams and inspirations.

WHICH THREE WORDS BEST DESCRIBE YOU?

Optimistic, excited and kind.

WHAT DID YOU WANT TO BE GROWING UP? 

I could never place myself in any particular field. All I knew was that I wanted to create. I was active and unruly and my imagination and creativity supplemented that. I didn't care what I was doing, as long as I felt like I was having an experience.

HOW DID YOU EARN YOUR FIRST PAY PACKET? 

My first job was for my parents when I was 9. I spent my summers at Flemington Markets serving gelato from a van and then hanging out with my cousin after work.

MHP_7105.jpg

WHAT IS THE BEST LIFE LESSON YOU HAVE LEARNT ALONG THE WAY?  

Work hard and take care of yourself along the way. Your self care is vital to being able to fulfil your needs and reach your potential – they go hand in hand. You have to work on your Self, your passions, your family and your work simultaneously to ensure that your energy is optimised and your creativity is fresh. 

WHAT'S YOUR PROUDEST ACHIEVEMENT?

Completing a Bachelor of Fine Arts at Sydney College of the Arts with first class honours. School and education wasn't a strong point for me and I grew up with the self imposed and limiting belief that I wasn't smart enough or capable of learning or studying. It was an incredible effort and overwhelming achievement to receive that degree and quashed that belief I carried with me through most of my life.

WHO INSPIRES YOU? 

My children and family are so important to me and a constant source of inspiration. And I admire every parent who strives to achieve that delicate balance between work and family. 

WHAT IS YOUR BIGGEST VICE?

Staying up too late too often. I am a fantastic procrastinator and work really well under pressure. It's easy for me to put things off until the last minute then work really hard right on deadlines which sees me crawling into bed in the early hours of the morning – often still covered in paint. It's a terrible habit I'd like to change but my self-talk game on this topic isn't very strong. 

DO YOU FOLLOW TRENDS OR ARE YOU A TRENDSETTER?

I am a dreamer. So I just make things up as I go along. I am always intrigued by what people are interested in but I tend to follow my heart and do what feels good in the moment. It's never conditioned by anything anyone else is doing . . . Not that I'm consciously aware of it anyway!  

MHP_7114.jpg

WHAT DREAM DO YOU STILL WANT TO FULFILL? 

I want to travel to Europe again. As a mother of four children I haven’t travelled much since my honeymoon. I would love to return to my roots in Italy – I miss it dearly. 

WHAT DO YOU LOVE MOST ABOUT WORKING WITH AKD?

I’ve always had a crush on AKD and their designs. Alex’s residential design is particularly inspiring, I love seeing a home transformed into something special and so personal. Alex’s studio has always been so kind and welcoming to me. I really value that they have always given me full creative trust and it's an absolute pleasure working with them.

Images 1, 4 and 6 courtesy of the artist (credits below) / Images 2, 3 and 5 via ©Alexandra Kidd Design

Curator Jason Minty / Curator Sophie Vander / Photography Maree Homer / Acessories Beautiful Things

PANTONE COLOUR OF THE YEAR 2019 : LIVING CORAL

The PANTONE® Colour of the Year announcement has become something of a colour carnival within our studio. Come December, whispers of ‘which tone will triumph?’ lead to lengthy discussions on the merit (or not) of the selected shade.

Last year’s Ultra Violet divided the design team’s opinions, but 2019’s winner ‘Living Coral’ (aka Pantone 16-1546) is a certified crowd-pleaser.  

Described as ‘buoyant, vibrant and effervescent’, the marine shade is as much of a timely cultural observation as it is a unifying vibrant pigment. PANTONE’s selection is rooted in both the disastrous fate of our coral reefs and said to be representative of our ‘innate need for optimism.’

But bold and playful as it is, Living Coral is surprisingly easy to incorporate into your interior. Clashing tints and tonal-blocking, or subtle accents and subdued casts provide endless options on how to embrace 2019’s shade with the grand accolade. 

Here’s how . . .

Pretty in Pattern 

Floral patterns are an accessible way to incorporate PANTONE’s vivid heroine, offering opportunity to include as much or as little of the shade as you choose.

If you’re after a subtle take on the trend, be inspired by this moody and dramatic de Gournay wallpaper highlighted with pops of the shade, or go all out with an intensely coral background such as this custom wall covering by Zoe Design.

de Gournay wallpaper via    Pinterest

de Gournay wallpaper via Pinterest

Zoe Design wallpaper via    Pinterest

Zoe Design wallpaper via Pinterest

Tonal Blocking

Professional coral converts can try layering different shades of Living Coral to create a single bold look. A daring mix of coral paint, upholstery and flooring will inject a room with playful personality.

Pastel and paler versions of the shade sit nicely alongside the more vivid Living Coral, and prevent the colour from becoming too overbearing.

Photography by Jason Frank Rothenberg, via    domino

Photography by Jason Frank Rothenberg, via domino

Kemble Interiors via    Pinterest

Kemble Interiors via Pinterest

Painted Playfulness

Painting your walls is an easy and affordable way to make a coral-themed impact in your home. Our designers suggest pairing the shade with wood tones, or creating a subdued effect with furniture and accessories in darker shades.

You can also use paint on a smaller scale, by opting for a peach-toned featured wall, or sparse hits of coral on doors and skirting boards for punchy playfulness.

Image via    Pinterest

Image via Pinterest

Home office rendered in    Sherwin Williams Coral Reef SW 6606   .

Home office rendered in Sherwin Williams Coral Reef SW 6606.

AKD ACCENTS

Our favourite way to use PANTONE’s coral shade is as an accent. It sparks a burst of interest in any monochromatic or neutral-themed interior, as well as acting as a complimentary colour to blue or green hues.

In the girl’s bedroom of our Wentworth Street project, we achieved a pink palette that wasn’t too saccharine sweet. A vivid coral colour for the soft furnishings added a whimsy yet daring feel perfect for this feminine space.

Our    Wentworth Street    project photographed by Pablo Veiga and styled by Megan Morton

Our Wentworth Street project photographed by Pablo Veiga and styled by Megan Morton

Artwork by    Kerry Armstrong Art

We also picked up the shade downstairs in the open-plan living area with commissioned artwork by Australian artist Kerry Armstrong. Sitting alongside complementary blues and greens, the coral colour really punctuates the otherwise white oasis, defining the dining room area within the open-plan space.