Exciting new Interior trends on show.

It's been a while since our last post. Sometimes life comes at us full throttle and the pressures of work, family, health become a little overwhelming. But I'm back now and so excited to share with you the trends that were on show this weekend at the yearly Decorex exhibition in Cape town, South Africa - a huge exhibition of interior and exterior trends - a homemakers meca and a design bloggers dream. Great stuff to see at this one and some really exciting trends. A lot of black. Screen Shot 2017-05-02 at 5.06.20 PM


Black walls, furniture, shelving. Matt black, gloss black. Black marble, black kitchens, sinks, bathtubs!! While it sounds a bit harsh it works so well with the other major trend which is Green. Interior plants, hanging moss balls as well as magnificent emerald green chairs and sofas adorned many a stand. Going hand in hand with this is another major trend for 2017 - the Urban Jungle. A desire to reconnect with the natural world, is seeing elements of nature seeping into the 2017 designs, with dark shades of green set against tan leathers, brass lamps and natural linen. . A real rustic element has also crept into design in the form of weathered wood, metal and woven baskets which is a welcome diversion from the generic hum drummery of many an upmarket home. Along with this is the concept of embracing imperfection as a design aesthetic. Those of us who dont have 24 hour house keepers will breathe a collective sigh of relief here.

In sharp contrast to this is the use of luxurious fabrics like velvet. Copper is still everywhere in cutlery, light fittings, baskets, tables, kitchenware as are other metallics namely brass and gold. Of course the large filamented naked bulb is EVERYWHERE. Loving this look and combining it with old school industrial copper pipes is such a huge trend and one of my favourites.
What I realy liked about this years's show was that there seemed to be more examples of individuality and quirkiness. More art, more nature. Yes there was the hard sell - people with headsets trying to sell you mattresses, kitchen appliances and all manner of items that inevitably get lost in the bottom draw never to be used again - but that is part of what a trade show involves.

I havent gone into the cooking but there was a lot of that too. Chef as alchemist continues to be a big trend. Garden specialists were a huge drawcard too with great ideas on using what you have in your garden in clever and inivative ways.
I'm inspired and I'm also so excited about sharing my upcoming blogs with you. dont want to give too much away but they are controversial, glamorous, minamalist in turn. Hope this has been of interest - got you thinking - inspired. Let me know with your comments and see you next week!
Jeanne
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The Romance and Nostalgia of days gone by.

We have seen so much interest in the 1920's, 1940's, 1950's and 1970's this season. Stills, TV Commercials, feature films. You'll find it informing furniture design, Clothing, interiors, architecture and of course advertising.Everyone seems to be looking toward bygone eras for inspiration. There is nothing new in this of course but this season it seems to be intensified as if we are looking back at a simpler, less complicated lifestyle where life doesn't move at a million beats a second. Shoot My House have made it our mission to go in search of such locations in the form of both homes, gardens, stores and public spaces as well as moving locations which we will be launching very soon.
in the meanwhile and in line with this nostalgia for all things vintage I thought I'd share this wonderful article on Barbara Streisand's Malibu guest house with you. A long time fan of all things Barbara - I've always admired her style and her absolute insistence that everything is exactly as she wants it to be. There is no room for can't, too hard, impossible with this lady. She is exacting and she tackles everything in her life with the same fierce determination and insistence on perfection.
Barbra Streisand’s Malibu House
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Barbra Streisand has been a collector her entire adult life, and then some. When the sixteen-year-old honors student graduated from Brooklyn's Erasmus Hall High School and (against the advice of her teachers and her mother) decided to forgo college in favor of acting and singing, she moved to Manhattan and set up housekeeping. Back then, she says, “I had no money to buy art, so I would buy old picture frames and put them on white walls, just framing space, which I thought was beautiful.”
But that was then. Two Academy Awards, two Emmys, a special Tony, eleven Golden Globes, eight Grammys, thirty-seven gold albums, and twenty-one platinum albums (including her latest, Back to Broadway) later, this singer-actress-writer-producer-director-composer can collect anything she wants. And she has amassed enough art, furniture and decorative arts to fill a New York apartment, a house in Beverly Hills, and a compound of five houses in Malibu.screen-shot-2017-02-01-at-6-57-42-am
Such is the case with Streisand's collection of Art Deco, which is to be auctioned in March at Christie's in New York. The collection, which includes a good deal of Lalique glass, an inlaid-ivory desk by Emile-Jacques Ruhlmann, Tamara de Lempicka's painting Adam et Eve, and clocks by Lalique, Cartier and Cheuret, has been lovingly showcased since the mid-1970s in a guesthouse/poolhouse on the Malibu property, which she meticulously remodeled in the Art Deco style, down to the doorknobs and drawer pulls. She even bought period cars—a 1926 Rolls-Royce and a 1933 Dodge—for its garage.
Streisand is a collector with wide-ranging tastes. At the time she designed the Deco house, she was also buying, among other things, Art Nouveau pieces (stellar examples of which, such as a Tiffany spiderweb lamp and two rare Majorelle corner cupboards, are also included in the Christie's sale), and the various rooms in her residences reflected this diversity. But for the Deco guesthouse, the challenge was one of “not being eclectic,” she explains. “I thought it would be a really interesting exercise to have one theme.”screen-shot-2017-02-01-at-6-58-34-am
So she studied the many books and portfolios that she had gathered on the period, such as Le Luminaire, a portfolio of lighting designs that was published to coincide with the watershed Exposition Internationale des Arts Décoratifs et Industriels Modernes, held in Paris in 1925. She pored over illustrations of decorative motifs, eventually designing several for the house's architectural details—doors, friezes, and stair rails, ceramic tile patterns, rugs, and even a shower curtain in one of the baths.screen-shot-2017-02-01-at-7-00-09-am
The living room fireplace is embellished with a Mondrian-like arrangement of stainless-steel decorative panels that were part of the landmark Art Deco Richfield Building in downtown Los Angeles. The bedroom carpeting was copied from a 1930s Bigelow original that Streisand recalled seeing in the Huntington Hotel in San Francisco. Where original furnishings weren't used, she had reproductions or interpretations made.
Given that she designed a necklace to harmonize with the house, it's no wonder that she admires architects like Frank Lloyd Wright, whose approach to design often stretched beyond the house and the furniture in it to dresses for his women clients to wear at home. “If you were an architect,” Streisand argues, “wouldn't you want to design the bronze handles? Wouldn't you want to design the floors? Wouldn't you want to design the furniture that goes into the house you built? That's the way I see things—as a complete vision.”
Another area in which Streisand set strict limits for herself was that of color. Unable to decide between gray and burgundy for the house's exterior, she used both—the house is gray on two sides, burgundy on two sides. These colors formed the basis for the interiors, which consist of only two color ranges: black to gray, and burgundy to pale rose. Each room in the house is decorated in a different combination of these two spectrums, and no deviation is allowed: “I don't put a black vase in the gray-and-burgundy room,” says Streisand. Nor does she put burgundy flowers in the rose bed-room, or pink flowers in the burgundy-and-gray living room. Even the wrappers on the candy in the candy dishes are color-coordinated.screen-shot-2017-02-01-at-7-02-24-am
Streisand doesn't find this narrow range of colors at all confining; in fact, she says, “I like monochromatic rooms, and I like black-and-white movies.” The family photos atop the piano in the living room are black and white—color photos would disturb the harmony. “I like to wear one color; I never wear prints,” Streisand continues. “I think a person sort of fades away in prints.” Still, that didn't stop her from doing a couple of rooms in prints. She calls the study off the living room her 'Art Deco Matisse room," in deference to the artist who so magically juxtaposed pattern on pattern in his paintings. In the room is a Deco sideboard that a previous owner had left out in the rain. Streisand rescued and restored it, and when she decided to use it as a stereo cabinet, she had a pair of speaker cases made. Their carving matches that of the sideboard exactly, and she takes pains to point out how beautifully they are made.screen-shot-2017-02-01-at-7-01-49-am
But then craftsmanship is something that Streisand feels passionately about. The house, she says, took nearly five years to complete. “Doing this took me almost a year,” she sighs, pointing to one of a pair of elegant gray silk tassels that hang from the silk-rope handrail in the stairway. Craftsmanship is also the main reason she loves old things. “Where could you buy shoes like this?” she asks, reaching for a pair of 1920s pink satin evening slippers, part of the wardrobe of vintage clothing that fills the house's closets (color-coordinated with each room, of course).
Barbra Streisand began to collect vintage clothes as an aspiring actress because she couldn't afford new ones, but she never stopped appreciating their quality. In another closet, Streisand pulls out an ancient, honey-colored coat of karakul with fox trim, for which she paid ten dollars at a thrift shop. “I went to audition for I Can Get It for You Wholesale in that,” she remembers. (The rest is history, and Streisand later had the coat copied exactly, but in white, for her role in Funny Girl on Broadway.) “Look at that embroidery,” she says, showing off the lining. “It's a wonderful metaphor for life, isn't it? That something should be as beautiful on the inside as it is on the outside—maybe even more beautiful.”
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But, as this tireless collector is fond of saying, “I like the idea of evolution and change.” Having focused on American Arts and Crafts furniture, folk art, Pairpoint lamps, and paintings by Thomas Hart Benton and Edward Hopper, Streisand now says, “This time I'm moving back in history—I'm fascinated by eighteenth-century America.” Between study trips to places like Winterthur and Monticello (which inspired her to repaint her Beverly Hills dining room a deep, rich ivory), Streisand is buying everything from primitive paintings and furniture to eighteenth-century American interpretations of Chippendale and Queen Anne.
To make her vision of Americana complete, Streisand would love to build a new house, “with a lot of porches” and perhaps a grand stair hall, inspired by the historic Colonial and southern houses that she has seen in her travels. However, on top of her new contract with Sony to record six albums and make new films, including an adaptation of Larry Kramer's play The Normal Heart, building a new house may be too much for one person to handle. Then again, Barbra Streisand has only to recall the tagline of her film Yentl (one of the few movies that a woman co-wrote, produced, directed, and starred in): “Nothing's impossible.”

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Imagining a Better Future Through Architecture - Greg Truen of SAOTA chats to us.

There is nothing more exciting than getting into the mind of an artist even for a little bit and getting a glimpse of how the world looks through their eyes.

And so I was delighted when SAOTA's Greg Truen agreed to give me some insight into what makes the architects at SAOTA tick. Anyone who has been to Cape Town would have seen examples of the SAOTA homes in the poshest of Atlandtic seaboard addresses. Nettleton road is a living show room for some of the most extraordinary  SAOTA creations in the Cape. With its roots in South Africa, SAOTA now has an international footprint with projects on five continents. Their work extends from residential to Hotels and resorts, commercial and retail, public and cultural. Despite the vast scope of their projects there is a thread that runs through all their design. Their work is informed by a rich tradition of regional modernism and is inspired by architects such as Oscar Niemeyer in Brazil, Luis Barragan in Mexico, The Case Study Houses in California, Paul Rudolphe in the NY and Gawie Fagan in Cape Town.

What is the SAOTA design aesthetic?
"We try to create simple layered spaces that engage with their environments and celebrate human life."
What role do you see a home fulfilling for its occupants? As in what ingredients create a successful living space?
"People are interested in quality, excellence and an architecture that has a personality and identity. These are universal concepts that are understood by everyone regardless of where they live in the world. We live in buildings for most of our lives, building relationships and families, learning and playing and living. The quality of these buildings has a profound effect on our ability to imagine a better future, to grow and to make a success of what we do with our lives. It’s a key building block for a healthy society."

 

You are front runners in your field with properties the world over. What is the secret To your ongoing success ?
"At SAOTA we understand our clients and their aspirations, lifestyles and needs. From this emerges design that connects built space to external space, the landscape and the view; powerful buildings that delight yet are firmly grounded. Our projects exhibit sophisticated use of materials, precise attention to detail and a refined interpretation of contemporary global luxury, which translates into edgy, yet livable buildings that are without artifice and are, essentially, timeless."

What do you see as the future of architecture ? What will it look like?
"Good design right now is not about trend or style but about a design approach that fully analyses the context of a project and encompasses a design that optimises all aspects of the site, views, climate, brief, budget and lifestyle. There is an approach of using more tactile and natural elements. I really like the current trend to integrate nature into buildings and to make more use of natural light. We want the earth to touch our architecture and this is reflected in the raw elements and finishes being used."

Its difficult to say too much about these astonishing works of architecture as they essentially speak for themselves. To me they speak of beauty, of power, aspiration and synergy. They look like the dwellings of Masters of the Universe - And often they are.

One of SAOTA'S great architectural inspirations is Oscar Niemeyer who says it so perfectly and its so applicable to the work of SAOTA; " My Architecture is easy to understand and enjoy, I hope it is also hard to forget."
For me the interest in architecture and design is how it informs our lives. A building - be it a home or a public space creates a stage on which  we act out the dramas and the comedies of our lives. It is an essential component in our story, creating a context and an ambiance that can set the scene for anything from Iron Man to Death of a Salesman. These buildings set the scene for an optomistic and beautiful future.

Remember if you have a beautiful property - be it a home, office, garden, store and would like to offer it as a film or stills location or for short term accommodation or events please get hold of us. We would love to work with you on creating extra value in your property.

All the Best from the girls at Shoot My House - Jeanne, Sharleen and Liz


Dying for A Drink

Its hot in Africa. Everyone knows that. Even if you still wrongly assume that Lions roam the streets, pretty much everyone knows it gets hot here. Well its summer and not only is it hot but it is dry in South Africa. Sadly for us we are now in a drought cycle. Our dams are very very low and water restrictions are very strict. In Cape Town we're on level 3 water restrictions. For those of us with gardens - That means you are allowed to water your garden 3 days a week by hand. That means with buckets or watering cans ONLY - no irigation systems, hosepipes, sprinklers or any other devise that doesnt involve some seriously heavy lifting, and of course you get penalised with very high bills should your water consumption be above a certain amount of kilolitres.

what it has done, which can only be a positive thing, (and i guess we need to learn the lessons and see the positives in what adversities throw at us) is that it has conscientised us to how much water we "waste" on a daily basis and how we can better utilise our resources and maximise them.  For a while now I have thought about the idea of replumbing so that bath, shower, washing machine water can be collected and used to irrigate plants and lawn. Suddenly its a necessity and so going forward it will become the norm - drought or no drought. Whole industries have sprung up to cater for this reality / necessity. What it also necessitates is changing the products that we use so that they are eco friendly and plant friendly. Harsh detergents are going to be a bit of a no no on the roses right?  Nothing wrong with that tweak either. And so nature guides us to rethink and to green up - she's a clever lady!!screen-shot-2016-11-22-at-6-04-13-am

We also need to look at water wise planting as an alternative to the English country garden and look to the wonderous indigenous plants on offer locally that are spectacular. Lawn is a real undisputed standard in south african gardens but the point is it was brought by the British who have year round rain in abundance whereas we have well less than half their rainfall and its seasonal. Grass is great for kids and animals to play on but its worth considering smaller, more highly structured areas of lawn perhaps that becomes a strong design feature. Keith Kirsten suggests replacing areas of lawn with meadow type gardens.

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Another important consideration is the use of waterwise plants such as grey leafed plants. Plants with hairs on leaves and stems, waxy cuticles, bulbs and tubers, dormancy at certain times of the year, smaller leaves. reduced plant size, plants with fleshy leaves like aloes, ground covers and plants with very volatile oils (like lavender). The choices here are immense and actually very exciting.

There is so much that can aid in water retention in a garden. Mulching, the process of covering soil and roots of plants with broken down bark and garden trimmings in order to protect from excessive evaporation, is a great way to protect gardens from harsh environments. Feeding with manure is another excellent way of giving plants the boost they need to strengthen in tough conditions. just remember that if you fertilise your lawn you will need to water it deeply immediately or it will burn.

Adversity strengthens us, teaches us, makes us more resilient ultimately and so it is for our gardens. Drought is not fun but perhaps we can make the lessons it teaches us and the obstacles we have to overcome fun and exciting by being open to new ideas and new ways of thinking about our green spaces.

We would LOVE to hear what you have done to make your garden more efficient and any great tips you have and plants you'd recommend. We would love it if you would send this on to any friends that you think would enjoy the article and could benefit from it.

If you or a friend has a home, garden, office, restaurant, farm or any other interesting space that you would like to offer for stills, tv commercials, events or accommodation please don't hesistae to get hold of us or fill in a form under NEW LOCATION LISTING on our blog and we will get right back to you.

All the Best

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Interior Fashionista - Trends We're Loving

There are such exciting things going on in the world of interiors and such amazing new trends that we thought we would share some of our favourites right here this week!!

  1. Wallpaper. Everywhere you look there are examples of extraordinary wallpapers. Long gone are the safe wallpapers of yesteryear. Wall paper now has become an expression of individuality and personal style or is being used to mimic other surfaces such as marble, brick - you name it. Another trend is the notion of the wallpaper mural - which is in turn a more painterly take on wallpapers.New printing techniques mean that smaller runs of wallpapers are now possible to run and are affordable to the man on the street. You can take your own design down to a specialist printer and design your very own work of art to adorn your walls. 

  2. "More is More and Less is Boring!" To quote from the marvelous Ms Apfel, whom we featured last week. We loved the Scandinavian interior movement but I for one am a little over it. The backlash is so much more sensual - with rich textures and fabrics like velvets making a strong come back, layering of materials and bold strong colour and a nod to eastern tapestries and pattern.Pattern on pattern is continued in Bold geometric screens which add interest and drama to big open plan living areas. This more is more trend extends to everything from Modern Tudor which incorporates rich fabrics, deep colours and dramatic finishes to the Miami look which is all about jungle prints, flamingos, hot pinks and shaggy rugs. Whichever way you lean there is inspiration aplenty.

     

  3. Metallics - Copper, Rose Gold, Silver, Gold and Bronze is popping up in everything from fabrics to fittings, costume jewellery, baths to wallcoverings. Used to such extraordinary effect by the likes of Tom Dixon, metallics are everywhere and as glamorous as ever. Think Great Gatsby, French copper pots, Paris salons.
  4. Parisian apartment - Wall mouldings and Herringbone floors - make me feel like I've died and gone to heaven. All I want for Christmas is a Parisian apartment in my own little corner of the world! The wide board white washed wooden floor has been elbowed by her posher more elegant cousin - the Herringbone floor. Whats not to love apart from the price tag? The look is not complete without wall mouldings to glam up the space. Anything from ultra fussy and ornate to more simple geometric lines.screen-shot-2016-11-03-at-2-38-24-pm

Sources: LivingEtc, Pinterest.

LOVE OUR BLOG? WE'D LOVE TO SEE YOUR HOME AND MAKE IT FAMOUS!! Mail us at red@shootmyhouse.tv or call us on 081 711 5922 and of course please share the love with your friends!

 

 

 

 


10 Creative Ways to Declutter your Home

It's officially spring in the Southern Hemisphere, which means lots of light, lots of friends and opportunities for entertaining. In our home that also means time to look at all the junk we've managed to pile up in the dark corners. But decluttering is not only aesthetic but also talks to a way more fundamental need we have to create space in our immediate environment in order to think and function effectively. Always eager for tips we've compiled some we think are rather clever.

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1. Give yourself 5 minutes on a Timer. Leo Babauta at Zen Habits recommends 18 different 5-minute decluttering tips. Pick one a day. Anyone can commit to just 5 minutes a day, right?

2. Give away one item a day. That will have the horders amongst us seeking therapy.

3. See how fast you can fill a rubbish bag full of stuff to throw out and one for goodwill. the trick here is to do it as fast as possible so you don't have time to over think it.

4. Try the Oprah Winfrey Closet Hanger Experiment. hang all your clothes with the hangers in the reverse direction. After you wear an item, return it to the closet with the hanger facing the correct direction. After six months, you’ll have a clear picture of which clothes you can easily discard.

5. Make a list of the places in each room that need decluttering. Begin with the easiest and work from there. Give yourself a reward once you've finished a room - try not to make it edible though or you may have trouble fitting through the door to get to the next room...just saying.

6. Take the 12-12-12 Challenge. Find 12 items to throw away, 12 items to donate, and 12 items to be returned to their proper place. Make it a fun competition within the family  - just don't throw out the baby with the bathwater in the race to win.

7. Change your perspective. There is nothing like organising a get together with the gals to help you notice clutter you have become blind to. Having a toddler over will do a similar thing. Arbitrary ornaments beware!!  Imagine that your favourite interiors magazine is coming to photograph your home for a spread in the next edition. How would you feel about the way your home looked then? still not working for you - take some photos with a camera or even your phone and look at them. You'll be surprised how what you thought looked tidy looks well umm - not that tidy. With all of the examples, the hope is to cause you to see your home in a new light.

8. Finish what you started...immediately!  Nicole Anzia decluttering guru says Of course you will need to sort things into categories (e.g., toss, recycle, donate, give to friend, put in deep storage). But here's the crucial part: Once you have decided where something is going to go — take it there. Never keep bags for charity or boxes for friends in your home to deliver later. Do it now. Finish the process. Take the bags and boxes out to the trash or recycling immediately. If you're donating something or giving something to a friend or family member, put the items in your car or make arrangements for dropping them off. You've done so much work getting this stuff ready to take out, complete the deal!

9. Good Enough is Enough. Very few people have closets and drawers that resemble those in catalogues. Even after we've totally reorganized a space, it doesn't necessarily look like an ad for House and Garden. It looks great and works properly, but it is a space that is used by an actual human being, not one that has been carefully staged by a team of stylists and marketers for a non-existent resident. You will ultimately be disappointed if perfection is your goal. The goal is to set up a space that works well for your needs. That is success.

10. Do You Love it? Look at all the furniture and collectables each in turn. Do you love them? Do they express the people you are or are they more about the people you were, or do they express the people someone else thinks you are, or are they hand me downs that don't speak to you at all. If so, get rid of them. You can't let new things into your life without getting rid of the old things that are cluttering your space and your mind.

So there it is folks. Sounds simple. I'm off to do my 5 minutes. x

 

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Thanks to Joshua Becker author of The More of Less and, Nicole Anzia owner of Neatnik.

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A Natural Concept of Beauty at Home

One of the great things about working with locations is the extraordinarily creative people that you meet. I met Evi many years ago when we signed her magnificent home in Somerset West. Evi and her husband have a company called Home Concept. They are architectural and interior designers.They came to South Africa from Germany in 2002 with little money, big dreams and a lot of determination. They bought a small house in Somerset west and started to renovate it. After some trial and error they found and put together a great team to work with. Having completed their own home they took on their first client project. That was a great success and since then they have been constantly busy just through word of mouth. What started as small alterations soon became complete home makeovers focusing on designing, building and furnishing new houses.

But it was not always so. Evi was a dental technician for many years before she decided to embrace her love of design. A friend in Germany gave her the first break when she asked Evi to decorate the interior of her new home,as she had the money but neither the time or inclination. And so her interior design company in Germany was born.

Evi's top tips for updating ones house

  • "Start by drawing up a budget" she says, "then make a list of things you want to change, in order of importance. Consider the whole house. If you're not sure what you want use helpful tools such as Pinterest in order to create moodboards. Make sure that you budget for every step. If you want to redo your whole kitchen, get quotes to give you an idea of how much you'll have left for decor and accessories.
  • Leave room for the unforeseen. Check what you have and whether it can be altered. A coat of paint can make a huge difference.
  • Declutter!!!
  • Try to stick to Neutral tones when it comes to big items like a couch. You can always add a splash of colour with feature walls and accessories, as its easier and cheaper to change once you get bored with it.
  • Give lighting a proper thought. Don't use ceiling lights in living rooms. Rather use different light sources in order to create a cozy feeling. If you can afford it - use a professional.

What is your style aesthetic?

Clean lines, calming colours, abundant texture and bold pieces. I love bringing nature into my home and giving new purpose to simple elements like a piece of driftwood.

Are there any particular interior stores that you love?

"I like Weylandts quite a bit, love just browsing around , but there are so many creative people in this country that you can often find amazing stuff in unexpected places."

Recently Evi and Jochem have made a change again moving to Yserfontein. They now concentrate on design. They also build one spec house per year with the emphasis on focused, considered design and beautiful unusual finishes. Their design work is done all over the Cape.

When i asked them what they love about South Africa the answer was really inspiring.

"Whats not to like? The most amazing aspect of living in this country is the fact that there are endless possibilities for those who are determined."

Drop us a line if you'd like to connect with Evi and Jochem of Home Concept and we can send you their details. Or check out their site at www.home-concept.cc

Please forward this to people you think would like this information and would enjoy our blog and remember if you have a great home, garden, office or any other space that you would like us to list as a location for stills, film, accommodation or events please contact us or complete a new listing form that you'll find on our blog.


Designers we're Loving - Tom Dixon

Slumped glass, metallic orbs, 1970's retro looking hanging lights, art deco inspired decor - this is the glorious world that Tom Dixon inhabits. He has come a long way from pottery and life study classes in the 70's to being honoured with a medal for service to design at Buckingham Palace.

Today Tom Dixon's creations are everywhere. you cannot open a design or interior publication without seeing his work from retro space age lights to furniture design to accessories, fragrances - the man seems set on taking over the world. What originally started in the UK has spread like wild fire to the US and the East.Screen Shot 2016-08-09 at 9.08.04 AM

A self taught talent, Mr D rose to prominence in the 80's with a line in welded salvage furniture. He talks about his fascination with welding and how without it he may never have become a designer. From there he went on to design the super famous S Chair for Cappellini. What followed was "Jack" a polythylene "sitting, stacking, lighting thing". In '98 he was appointed head of design by Habitat and later became creative director there.Screen Shot 2016-08-09 at 8.59.21 AM

2002 saw the birth of his own brand under the name "Tom Dixon"  - from there he has gone stratospheric. Creations for - Caeserstone, Adidas, McCann worldwide , Audi, Bombay Sapphire, Sony, Veuve Cliquot, restaurants and hotels around the world - always characterised by other worldly lighting installations along with genius furniture design. The most surprising collaboration may be that with St James Church in Clerkenwell Close where Dixon  working with a very enlightened vicar transformed the church for Clerkenwell Design week "to make it available to the daytime residents of Clerkenwell – the creative workforce, and a place for the residential community to use as a resource."Screen Shot 2016-08-09 at 8.56.09 AM

Locally, Tom Dixon ranges can be found at CREMA in Woodstock Cape Town. CREMA DESIGN

So Santa, if you're listening, All I want for Christmas is a Magnificent Metallic Masterpiece from Mr Dixon.(just saying)

And remember we are always looking for new locations so why not make additional income with your swanky home, garden, farm, restaurant so that Santa Claus can treat YOU with something extra special with Christmas!!

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A Conversation with Macio Miszewski

 

 

A few weeks ago i decided it would be wonderful to profile some of Cape town's most extraordinary architects and so i contacted VDMMA Architects as the first of the most influential architects working in South Africa today. Van der Merwe Miszewski are architectural royalty. I have for many years admired their residential designs - Bridge house, Tree House, Maison, Box House, Forest house (the list goes on)- but not until recently did I fully appreciate the scope of their work and their contribution to our urban landscape. The extraordinary list of their projects includes The CTICC, UCT School of economics, Maison, The Maison tasting Room, De Beers Headquarters, and in partnership with Heatherwick Studios and MDL - the Silo precinct at the V&A Waterfront,Cape town. VDMMA are the master planners for the precinct and resposible for The Precinct Urban Design of the Public Realm, as well as Buildings 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 . The Grain Silos– being the conversion of the Historic Silo within the Precinct to be converted into the Zeitz MOCAA Museum and Boutique Hotel – Heatherwick are the Design Architects and VDMMA, with RBA and JP are Executive Architects. The entire project will include a massive art gallery, residential spaces, commercial and retail spaces all working within the framework of the historical grain silos. The scope of their past, current and proposed projects is quite simply mindboggling.
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I was lucky enough to "chat" with Macio Miszewski of Van derMerwe Miszewski Architects about his design philosophy, influences and some thoughts on the future of architecture.

Macio Miszewski grew up in an architectural household, son of Maciek Miszewski (himself a highly respected architect). Consequently from the moment he could see he saw the masters of the 20th century and most of what had preceded the 20th century. "Until I was 20 I lived in 2 houses Maciek designed. Le Corbusier's "Oevre Complet" lay on the coffee table he designed. I grew up with grainy black and white images of Chandigarh, Ahmedabad, Villa Stein and many more. We talked a lot about theatre, film, literature and music at home. All these things, the sea the mountains, inspired me."

What is your design aesthetic?

"There isnt one. Every site, brief and client is different. I dont know what the next building will look like and I do not follow a prescribed style. However I do believe in acknowledging the past, "listening" closely to the site, thinking hard about the idea of the building and thereafter producing the work in a way which is consistent with this thought process." A passion  for "unpacking" the way buildings are made - how they stand, what they are made of, how they work and why is central to the way Mr Miszewski works and brings to mind the most central of modernist architecural decrees - Form must follow Function.

Who are your favourite architects either current or from the past?

I’ve mentioned Le Corbusier – but there are so many more it’s almost impossible to list. From Alberti to Zenghelis. In my mind’s eye, I see the ’body of Architectural thinking’ as being free of any time, place or political restraint. I find interest in all the ages, all the cultures of the World. I ‘read buildings’ all the time where ever I am and inevitably will find something – a detail, a material, a device, a layout, a shadow pattern – which I subconsciously commit to my rather lengthy list of ‘favourites’. I admire also – the many builders who are not called ‘Architects’ or ‘Designers’, who have throughout the ages, constructed and shaped the environments in which they live. (what Rudowski termed ‘the Prodigious Builders’)

What is the future of architecture? What will it look like? What function will it serve?

"Perhaps the most intersting outcomes have been - the management of energy (green thinking), development of materials (thinner, stronger, lighter), electronics (automation, power generation, the cloud etc) and I think that these shifts within our evolution will continue. Patterns of work and living are continuiing to shift - the poor are getting poorer and the rich do as they do - and they will all live in built environments which will have to rely on natural resourses, space and sane political thinking. But " Architecture is the art of the Possible" so whilst I dont know what our next project will look like and equally what the future of architecture will look like - I do believe that design is....needed."

What struck me most in conversation with Mr Miszewski was the extraordinary passion and wonder that he brings to his projects and how the work is informed by so many disciplines and art forms. Coupled with that a real sense of  humility and a constant hunger to know more, to be inspired and to grow.

Architecture has always seemed a most astonishing discipline to me as it requires in equal parts right and left brain thinking. The vision, creativity and sensitivity of an artist and the technical savvy of a mathematician and engineer.  Our buildings house our dreams, inform our realities and give structure and certainty to an uncertain world  - i believe that Mr Miszewski is right - design is needed to fully experience and explore our concepts of reality as well as what is possible for the future.

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Preparing Your Home for a Photo Shoot

We're in the business of beautiful spaces.Whether its gardens, homes, restaurants or offices - the photographs are one of the most important tools that we have to sell your property to Directors, producers, art directors etc who see beautiful things all day everyday.

that is why it is so important, and why we recommend that you have professional photos taken Of your home. Shoot my House has a stable of photographers that we can call on to take these photos once you have signed with us so talk to us about it and we can talk you through the cost and you'll see how fast you see a return on that investment.

There is a lot that you can do to ensure that the shots of your home are everything that they could be .

1.Sounds obvious but Clean, clean, clean! Now that you will have a professional photographer it does not mean that you do not have to clean your home. Dirt shows up in pictures! Especially now that you will have high quality photos.Make sure to get those nooks and crannies, dust the mantle, scrub at the discolored spots and if you need to, clean your carpets! Despite what some people may think a professional photographer cannot photoshop untidiness and disgarded clothing, laundry etc out of the photo.

2.Declutter. When you think you have decluttered…declutter some more. That cute ceramic collection may mean the world to you, but it will not help in photos of your home. You will want your home to convey a model-home feel. Photos translate well with the least amount of things possible in the shot.

3. Make sure the house looks great from the outside. Freshen up your pot plants, rake up leaves, clean windows, windowsills, make sure the lawn is neatly cut and clear of "landmines".

Lastly, always remember the little things! Is the toilet seat up? Put it down. Is the toilet paper down to one last sheet? Replace it. Pay attention to blinds, curtains, bedspreads, shower curtains and baseboards. All of these things can add up to create a vision of your home that you do not want. Put your best foot (and home) forward and watch how fast we make it famous!

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"Golly Mam - I dont think I have that version of Photoshop"