Meet Yael Grinham the artist, stylist and designer behind our ruffle-tastic bespoke Christmas decorations.
If you’ve been in store recently, it’s hard to miss the incredible creations of Yael Grinham of The Laneway Studio.
Her handmade wreaths and decorations form the heart and soul of our Christmas decorating with the bespoke paper decorations created exclusively for us!
Yael is truly multi-talented and The Laneway Studio is just one of the projects she is involved in.
We know Yael as a client (we have a lot of talented clients!) but couldn’t wait to find out more about her creative pursuits and career.
The Laneway Studio is brand new and obviously close to your heart, how did the business begin?
The Laneway Studio is where my passions for art, photography, sculpture, handcrafts and styling have combined. I started this business to test and grow the many ideas which evolve from a career in styling and being creative.
Some of Yael’s styling and photography work featuring one of her handmade wreaths.
Producing small runs of hand crafted sculptural paper works, and taking on special commissions I can continue to create new things, evolve creatively, while tailoring things for special clients.
This business will be where I can collaborate with many talented crafts and trades people, sculptures and photographers to create beautiful saleable things. I have always been drawn to working with natural things and found objects, repurposing them into artworks.
Where do you draw your inspiration for the collections from? You seem to have a really strong inclination towards the natural and textural.
Being a collector, I’m obsessed with sticks, blocks, old wire, pebbles, shells and the feel of paper. Textures, nature, offcuts, rubbish, a pile of garden sticks. Everything can be redesigned and recycled.
I have a love of the Australian landscape, dried brown grass, rocky areas, the dark charcoal shadows of bushfire burnt timber colours against a neutral sun-bleached colour palette.
These decorations were handmade from recycled materials and are $30.00 each.
Where do you see the collection going? What’s next?
I am keen to remain a small business, producing quality rather than quantity.
I’ll continue to work with paper, sticks or wood. At the moment in my quiet time, I am working on a series of framed works. They’ll be ready for next year.
I have some private commissions on the go which I am very excited about.
My sculptural work with sticks has generated some interest on a commercial level so these will remain in the collection for a while.
My eyes are always open to random groups of objects that inspire another relief sculpture, or delicate creation.
We have this colourway in GIANT sizes too. They are pretty dramatic!
Can you tell us a little bit about how your career has unfolded?
I feel very lucky to have experience across a number of skills and careers, but I have always needed to work creatively.
I’ve worked with food, interiors, art, gardens, renovation projects and as a stylist for photography. I am passionate about every project that comes along. I’m looking forward to more interiors projects and commissions, and will continue working as a stylist alongside running The Laneway Studio and its projects.
Some words to live by?
Observe and appreciate the little things and the big things will take care of themselves.
Find Yael’s amazing paper creations exclusively in-store or online at The Design Hunter!Tweet
Ever thought about utilising the services of designer? Have some decorating or design dilemma’s that need solving? Planning a project in the new year but just need some inspiration or questions answered to get you started? Need some styling help for that holiday entertaining? Well, now is the time.
We are excited to announce a fantastic offer this holiday season!
The Design Hunter’s design studio team will be offering their services in store for Mini Design Consultations free of charge for 3 days only!
From Friday 4th December to Sunday 6th December you will be able to book in a 45 minute consultation for design or decorating services with one of our four designers. Our studio team normally charge $350 for an in-home initial consultation – but for one weekend only you’ll be able to spend time with them working through your project absolutely free of charge!
PLUS you’ll get to act like a design client for the whole weekend shopping in store at 10% discount and sharing in our trade discounts for any other items ordered or purchased on the day.
We’ll work with you to understand your project and give you some ideas, solutions and even a plan for the path ahead if needed.
Bring your inspirations, floor plans or measurements, photos of the space, ideas, magazine cutouts – you name it, anything that will help you get the most out of your FREE time!
But you’ll have to be quick as there are limited spots available. Starting at 10am and running through to 4pm, we will be holding 45 minute sessions on the hour every hour 3 days only.
Email email@example.com with your preferred time and day, your full name, address and best contact number and we’ll lock you in. Our client service team will be in touch to confirm your booking (or find a suitable alternative if it’s not available) and let you know everything you need to bring along.Tweet
The team from The Design Hunter studio, along with B2 Construction, have been hard at work pulling together some clever ideas for a new client in Philip Bay who want to push the boundaries and build “lightly”. But what does that really mean? We all know about solar power, LED lights and water tanks, but how far can you really go when trying to tread lightly on our land.
The answer of course is only as far as your imagination, ingenuity – and budget – will allow! Building in an environmentally friendly or sustainable way can be costly. New technologies, untested ideas and the additional work required to really find the right solutions often stops clients from even considering some of the available options. But it needn’t be that complicated. A little research and a commitment to trying to do even a few things just slightly different can still have a positive impact on our environmental footprint when building your dream home.
We’re combining quite a few ideas to bring this project together in a way that meets the clients brief for a budget friendly and environmentally friendly home for their young family. A very passionate and socially conscious client, they’re focused on the ideals of connectedness – connectedness with their home, their family unit and their community so we have kept this at the forefront when bringing the plans and concepts to life.
Ideas being melded together through great debates and brainstorming sessions include ..
– a much smaller physical footprint on the land than a traditional renovation,
– the creation of multi use areas and zones in the form of pods – both internal and external.
– green roofs and walls; not just for their looks but for the benefit to naturally cool the house and improving air quality.
– cost effective rudimentary building materials requiring little to no finishing processes and maintenance.
– re-thinking the use of all areas of the block including extending their living areas to the front yard with vegetable planters partially private but inviting to the neighbourhood as well.
– And of course all of the usual suspects are on the agenda as well – solar power, cleverly positioned water tanks under decks, grey water systems, LED lighting, low-e glass, clever insulation, and passive solar design with living areas utilising morning and afternoon sun and sunken pods allowing light in to internal spaces.
But it wouldn’t be a fun project without some cool ideas like plywood clad kids rooms the size of a bed, glass enclosed reading nooks, pivoting full height doors, an indoor ensuite opening to reveal an outdoor bath, concrete walls, and feature gardens cascading from a front timber façade. Check out our initial concept ideas and stay tuned for more to come!
Gracing the walls of The Design Hunter store this week is a striking and moody image from the well-regarded photographer, Brett Stevens. Part of a recent body of work that evokes a “Dirty Urban” vibe, Brett is releasing his stunning works for sale and we’re thrilled he’s allowed us to be part of that journey.
We’ve been watching you on Social Media for a while now and enjoying your eye for detail and interesting perspectives. Can you tell us about your latest series of images from a vintage pool? Intriguing!
Yes, I had been commissioned for an assignment in South Australia’s Barossa Valley during winter and we had some down time one afternoon. My assistant and I decided to go for a walk around town (in different directions) and I came across this local swimming centre where the pool had almost completely been drained. The remaining water was an iridescent green from algae and the juxtaposition of that colour against the ageing, pale, blue of the pool walls and floor was electric. What I found most interesting was the fading black lane markers, depth indicators and signage still remaining as a reminder of more frequented times.
Where do you draw your inspiration for the collections from?
I have coined the term ‘Dirty Urban’, I am interested in the void, the gap between crowded and vacant, often the environment created by humans but without their presence in my images. Most of my projects are of man made environments that have been left to ruin or vacated many years ago – these scenarios challenge me to create a visual story of once what was.
You travel a lot for work and pleasure, do you have a favourite place to visit when it comes to taking time out for yourself?
Travelling is a taxing element of my work life – so much equipment, time pressures, location changes so when I travel for pleasure I feel like I am still working but for myself. My fascination with the Americas continues on after my first trip to Los Angeles 25 years ago and I still love returning to cities on both West and East coasts and discovering new areas or visiting old haunts. The high desserts of the South West are a particularly special place.
What does a typical day for Brett Stevens look like?
Currently my diary is loaded with commercial work for Editorial, Advertising and Digital Clients so working closely with Art Directors, Stylists, Food Editors and Creative Directors on a daily basis is the norm. I am hoping to continue on with some personal endeavours early in the New Year with journeys to the Middle East, the Americas and some national destinations on the planning board.
Tell us what’s next?
Continuing work on my on-going series’ titled ‘Underpass’, ‘Empty As A Vacant Lot’, and, ‘Missing Persons’ At any one time my project ‘to-do’ list is growing with concepts and ideas for image stories – facilitating them is often not as easy!
We have an ongoing love affair with the Pampa brand, and caught up with them last weekend to go through their gorgeous new collection of rugs, all of which are lovingly handmade in Argentina. For some of the team it was the first time we were exposed to the inimitable charms of Vicky and Carl who are the masterminds behind the business. We were all swept away by the stories from their recent trip to Argentina, so we interviewed them and asked them all about this collection, the trip to the mountains and all that their brand means to them.
Tell us where your most recent travels took you to?
Our last trip was to Argentina to meet with the lovely weavers that we work with. These weavers live in all different regions of Northern Argentina, so we spend a lot of time on the road. We were fortunate enough to have a 4X4 on this last trip, so we got to see some of the most amazing landscapes and meet new groups of weavers in some of the most remote places in the country.
What was the most inspiring experience on this particular trip …
Meeting again with a family that we work with at over 4000m high up in the Andes Mountains. Speaking to the children and seeing how much they want to continue with their traditional ways of life. They are well aware that they can find work in the city after finishing school, but that is not their dream, their dream is to live a traditional life just as their parents and grandparents have and are still doing. The cultural pride and respect for the skills of their elders is something very inspiring.
How does travel shape your products?
Every Pampa rugs is inspired and connected to their place of creation. Sometimes a colour palette can be taken from the landscape that surrounds that community, and sometimes even a pattern or design is inspired from a mountain, a twisty trail, the flower of the dry forest, their crops, their old legends and stories, so many things are connected to the process of our rugs. This year we’ve started working closer with certain communities in terms of designs and colour ways. These are not just what is on trend, but mainly what inspires us while exploring Argentina. We take so many photos during our travels, and in doing this it ingrains certain colour combinations and patterns into our minds, this really influences us in the design process when putting together a collection. We see our pieces as far more than just wool woven into a rug. The more we travel around these communities, the more we believe that these creations are an essential part of our artisan’s lives that must be celebrated. Each Pampa rug is interwoven with tradition and a deeply rooted sense of place.
Tell us about the different communities that drive your collection …
Every community we work with differs greatly. Some communities are located up in the chilly highlands, and then others in the lower hotter regions. Some of the larger communities work as cooperatives sharing materials, techniques and workloads. Weaving is often taught to the children during school hours, just like Australian children would take art classes. This is very important to preserve this part of their culture, as once these skills skip a generation they could be lost forever. Some of these communities are more traditional in their ways than others, some are very passionate about preserving the old ways without the influence of the modern world, while others are accepting the ways of the new world and are now able to afford cars or motorcycles and even sending their children to university. We respect both ways and we are happy knowing we provide a fair trade income that leads to a better life. The sad part of the story is that this weaving techniques are in extinction in Argentina, that is why we push so hard with the preserving and empowering side of Pampa. If there is no demand there is less to weave, and the less there is to weave the closer their craft gets to extinction.
How does Pampa encourage and foster local and traditional jobs within these communities?
Because we travel directly to the weavers themselves and pay them a fair and honest price for their pieces, we know the money is going to the people who deserve it most. This reduces the need for them to travel long and expensive distances to try and sell their works in the nearest town or city. This allows more weavers to continue with their traditional ways of providing for their families, instead working away on farms or in cities for weeks or even months at a time.
And finish by telling us why you began …
Pampa was born out of an appreciation for traditional ways and wanting to help preserve what is slowly but surely disappearing. Photography and the thirst for exploring plays a big part of Pampa, these factors took us to amazing places where we’ve meet communities that needed to find easier ways to sell their products. And also the fact that Vicky was constantly home sick and missing her homeland in Argentina played a part. We feel blessed that we are in a position where we can be helping these communities, and at the same time bringing amazing rugs to people in Australia and other parts of the world. We really see it as a labour of love.
For us at The Design Hunter, it really is such a privilege to be able to stock ranges from companies such as We are Pampa which are truly about getting back to the root of communities and saving traditional skills that would otherwise disappear. Make sure you come in-store and see the beautiful rugs we picked for you, they won’t last long.
Pip Norris, our Assistant Decorator, shares with us her wealth of experience and knowledge from around the globe on decorating with neutrals.
Decorating with neutrals has a mixed reputation – we see everyone head that way when they are selling their houses – scared to push any envelopes in case they miss a sale. Decorating with neutrals when done badly can be so truly dull and lacking in depth. This is why it is important to understand the nuances of the neutral schemes in order to pull them off successfully.
Depth of Neutral Tones
One way to make a neutral space sing has a lot to do with not being scared to use depth in your neutrals. Oliver Gustav in Copenhagen does this very successfully. His tone-on-tone spaces are sublime and strong and tend to have gravitas added by inserting another key piece of tonal colour into the mix. The example below shows a strong bone neutral being used with the addition of a rust colour in the same depth of tone – it really works.
Adding a layer of neutral with textures
Another genius of using neutrals to great effect is Vincent Van Duysen, a Belgium Architect. His great use of textures to make a neutral scheme sing is his calling card. In the image below, we have an undoubtedly neutral scheme made special by its use of texture in several strong elements – the bricks, the stone bench and the (real) wooden joinery. Make no mistake – real wood will always enhance a neutral scheme, its tone, texture and elemental nature is always a worthwhile addition. As neutrals are ultimately derived from the colours of nature they all have a natural ability to work together. Note that in both of these schemes mixtures of greys and beiges are being used – don’t feel that you have to be all grey or all beige – mix ‘em up – but for easy success keep tones (depth of colour) similar.
Note in this Vincent Van Duysen space the tones are light and fresh. In the previous Studio Oliver Gustav image the tones are deeper and a bit moodier.
In a similar vein the Sydney based Tribe Studio has used this same technique in the Maher House. Light neutrals encompassing white in the scheme will ultimately be far more successful if you add in texture. As neutrals are ultimately derived from the colours of nature they all have a natural ability to work together. Here neutral colours have been added into this scheme with natural materials rather than paint colour – so the bricks and the chandelier and the wooden floor and even the timber dining chairs are combining as a palette and work hard in bringing this space together.
In the Beaconsfield Residence by Whiting Architects we see a clever use of neutrals. Bringing in the natural elements and textures of the wood and the rattan lampshade along with the textural interest of the tile splashback has taken this neutral scheme and made it layered and interesting and above all warm. They have also used to great success here black as their contrast accent which I am about to discuss below.
Another way to decorate with neutrals is to add colour accents for interest – here’s a great example of that by Mim Studio here in Australia in their REL residence. You can see that they have used blue in the cushions and the artwork to add a layer of interest to this neutral scheme. Strongly contrasting in both colour and tone it works in a different way to the addition of a tonal contrast such as in Oliver Gustav’s space. Both successful.
Kerford Place – a house by the Melbourne based Whiting Architects is a masterclass in neutrals – here is a detail image showing how a small pop of colour and some texture in the walls and soft furnishings lift the neutral into something special.
Layering textures, tones and materials within decorating is so essential when working with the neutral palette. Think natural materials such as linens, timber, cotton, and leather as well as a handmade or ethnic element to add depth and a point of interest. Linen companies in particular in the current marketplace are creating beautiful palettes and are a great place to look for neutrals inspiration. Try our Bemboka linen and blanket range for an instant neutral palette.Tweet
From South Hampton to Amagansett, The Design Hunter team reveal their favourite Hampton’s homes and the elements that keep them inspired when working with this classic look.
Melissa Bonney – Director
Dan Scotti’s East Hampton Home
“I love this modern take on the traditional Hamptons style created by Interior Designer Dan Scotti for his home in East Hampton. Dianne Keaton famously rented the beach house last year and loved every minute of her time there. Personally I’m a sucker for all of the traditional “Hamptons” elements like the wall paneling, shaker style joinery doors, combinations of greys and whites – plus all that gorgeous laid back styling for easy family living. But I love it even more with these more current tones and materials – note those swoon-worthy brass wall lights in the library!”
Victoria Preiss – Designer
Kate and Andy Spade’s Southampton Home
“Quite fittingly, Kate and Andy’s Southampton House once served as the boardinghouse for William Merrit Chase’s Shinnecock Hills Summer School of Art. This nine-hundred square metre residence is understandably stylishly packed with incredible artwork, bold patterns, layered textures and in the true Spade fashion – colour! I love the consistent mix of antique style furniture brought to life with pops of colour and mixed mediums such as the simple yet effective black and white stripe wallpaper and hepsi and persian style floor coverings throughout. A motorbike parked in the entry/living space establishes an effortlessly cool persona within this home, which transcends through all internal spaces. I think the eclectic mix of pre loved furniture wonderfully compliments the existing structural elements that are the painted exposed beams and rich timber flooring. I love how this house brings about a feeling of charm and homeliness without becoming too overwhelming as you might expect through such a diverse range of bright colour palettes, rather they offset one another perfectly. When can I visit!?”
Larissa Raywood – Designer
Celebrity Chef Katie Lee’s Southampton Home
Owned by celebrity chef Katie Lee, this bright and airy abode has a bold aesthetic which was created through a complete transformation ably assisted by close friend and Designer, Nate Berkus. It’s a unique estate with its distinctive Hampton’s architecture and gorgeous grounds but a charming sensibility. It was important to Kate that both the interiors and outdoors possess a relaxed carefree quality – especially aligning with her need to entertain. I love the fact that a lot of her furniture was re-purposed for this home, coming from different spaces Katie has owned over the years and creatively put together and placed in their new context. She made some bold colour choices like re-painting her once black entry table a kelly green colour and re-upholstering some x-base stools in a vibrant fabric from Sri-Lanka, pulling it all together with a vintage rug pictured below. She introduced her own personal touch with little elements like finding a vintage sari and turning it into a wallpaper. I’m completely taken with her ability to re-purpose the decor and create a story through different design choices. It makes it overall a comfortable and inviting palette that one feels drawn to when needing a rest from the big city – which is what the Hampton’s is all about!
Stephanie Waterman – Head of Operations
White House à la Aerin Lauder’s East Hampton Estate
My new favourite Hampton’s house is the ever stylish home of Aerin Lauder. Aerin is the Image Director for Estee Lauder and has her own line of furniture named AERIN. She is effortless chic and pulls together the most inviting space with her edited luxe collection of furniture and decor. This Hampton’s home embraces the outdoors and really shows off the spectacular lush gardens and pool area. It’s white on white perfection, unlike her famously colour splashed Manhattan apartment.
Pip Norris – Assistant Interior Decorator
Gwyenth Paltrow’s Amangansett Home
Hamptons style – it is always been the shingles for me. Roof, walls I don’t mind which…I like both. Sometimes I think the Hampton’s style can be a bit “twee” but when its on a more modest scale I really love it. It has great soul with the wooden elements and I particularly like it when the external shingles are left raw making it even more elemental. The home can really evolve and sink into its environment with ease when this weathering takes place. Gwyneth and Chris’s pool house is an example of that for me.
One feature I really love in Gwyneth’s holiday home is the kitchen. Its clean lines and black accents aren’t necessarily considered a Hamptons look but it still references the tradition of the style in the joinery and layout. It is a contemporary spin on the traditional Hampton’s style. It reminds me of the way the company Plain English in the UK do a modern take on scullery kitchens – clever and contemporary yet respectful.
Hampton’s is the word on everyones lips at the moment, and large scale projects are on trend as well. We’re busy in the design studio at the moment putting the finishing touches on the interior selections and finishes for an exciting new multi-residential project in Oatley.
It’s a family affair, with our clients, three sisters and their husbands, having a strong sense of what they want to achieve with their development project. The brief was simple and clear – Hamptons! With a modern building structure to deal with we’ve had to work hard with texture, colours and materials to bring this vision to life for them. The answer?
Layers of warm greys and natural tones, lime washed timber floors, brick pattern subway tiles, hardwearing porcelain with the look of stone, plus a Kitchen complete with shaker panels, marble look Quantum Quartz and feature pendant lighting.
Our internships here at The Design Hunter are always hotly contested, which is great news for us as it means we get to work with some fabulous up and coming designers! Aimie Keech is no exception and never have the words “can do attitude” rung more true. We asked Aimie to give us a full run down of possibly her busiest day with us so far!
9:00am. I arrive at The Design Hunter and start my day by finding out how everyone’s projects have been going, what new and exciting things are happening this week, and chat about what I’m going to be doing for the day!
9:30am. Leave The Design Hunter as I am heading off to assist with some project sourcing, gathering of materials, and visits to new suppliers.
9:32am Get coffee (essential) from the best local barista at Bellagio Café.
9:45 First stop is to a bathroom-fitting supplier in Edgecliff to gather options for our Bronte project. I gather some technical specs and brochures that appeal to the project brief and some additional ones that I think might be good for some other projects in the office. I also laid eyes on a really great new collaboration product between MODA and Axolotyl – brass and copper on the exterior of the bath or basin! Amazing!
10:10 Head to Porter’s Paints in Waterloo to grab some paint swatches needed for a handful of projects and timber flooring options too. While I’m here I noticed a fantastic wallpaper that would work perfectly for an assignment I’m doing in class – I wrote down the details so I can look at it in more detail when I’m back at my desk!
11:00 My next stop is to Camperdown – I am headed to a natural floor-covering supplier to gather some new and exciting samples for a project. I introduced myself to the team there and got to learn a lot about their product. I grabbed a HUGE box of samples as The Design Hunter didn’t have these particular ones in their materials library – just added to the growing collection already stashed in my car!
12:30 Marrickville is next on the list to pick up some Oak Flooring samples for b2 Construction. Had the opportunity to look around the showroom, familiarise myself with the product they had available – there was a lot – and get the necessary samples and some business cards for my own knowledge.
1:00 My last stop is a tile supplier in Alexandria where I am on the hunt for some feature tiles for a kitchen splashback and pool. Found all kinds of interesting product and asked for their recommended, unique mosaics as well. The showroom staff were amazing and introduced me to what was on trend, new and suitable for the projects I’m working on. I spotted a brochure for Japanese tiles, which suits the concept of another assignment I am doing for school, so I grabbed a copy for homework tonight!
1:15pm Head back to TDH, with my car completely full of random boxes filled with samples, books, tiles, and brochures!
2:30pm Product shoot for the website, I help the photographer organise the new stock, take photos and have a look at how everything is organised behind the scenes – super interesting!
4:00 I’m now in charge of doing my very first flat lay – pressure is on! I pick some items and Mel and the others help organise it with me. I find out some helpful tips for styling for photography and creating a well laid out vignette.
5:00 Home for a well needed rest! Oh and then homework of course…Tweet
Head Designer Margo Reed recently returned from a fabulous holiday overseas in Bali, where inspirations ran wild and she is now integrating Balinese design influences into her current projects. We caught up with her to see how she is incorporating these ideas into the design …
Whilst Bali is the ultimate playground of relaxation and entertainment my latest holiday was also the perfect source of inspiration for a clients home renovation.
Sitting by the suburb of Clovelly, this family home is having a complete ground floor overhaul to suit their young family and growing needs.
With existing architecture nodding towards a beach house look and tropical gardens at the front, the project is set to play on these features along with adding a carport over the existing driveway and closing in the garage. The new configuration of the ground level internal spaces will include a study, guest bedroom, powder room/ensuite, laundry, entry mudroom plus relocated kitchen, dining and living room.
Designing the living areas to open onto the back yard and pool, the landscaping is to be softened with timber decking, textural stone walls, a timber slatted pergola and meandering stairs to the pool. The garden will be filled with colourful tropical plants mimicking the banana trees, frangipanis and birds of paradise that surrounded my villas pool at Sitara Villa Bali. The inspiration for the timber pergola originates from the timber branches used to shade the walkways along the stone walled pool of the luxury Semara Villa Resort before descending for a day at Finn’s Beach Club.
The overall internal look and feel is to be kept minimal in style similar to a modern resort playing with texture through patterned stone tiles, warm timbers and pops of colour through styling.
A white and concrete kitchen will be lifted with the window splashback filled with colour from the tropical garden outlook.
Margo’s Destination Guide:
If your looking for something more relaxed than Seminyak Canggu is the perfect location. Villa Empat is located amongst rice paddys and caters to your every need with the perfect
Finn’s Beach Club
Organise a driver to pick you up early and drive the hour away to Ulawatu. Take in the spectacular view while the trolley brings you down to the beach where you can laze under umbrellas and swim and eat to your heaters content. Either stay until the sunsets and bonfires light up or get your driver to take you El Kabron for a magical sunset over the cliff whilst you lay in the infinity pool.
A truly sensory feast. Sarong offers guests two dining pavilions to enjoy a leisurely dinner, an outdoor lounge and an informal dining area adjacent to the bar, which is a great meeting place to taste superb cocktails and world-class wines.Tweet