Monday, June 29, 2009

A Home in the Valley

One of my closest friends bought a beautiful home in the Mudgeeraba Valley on the Gold Coast a fews years ago and has been slowly renovating it room by room. She sent me photos of her latest room makeover and I love this little area she has created in her family room. The last time I saw this room the walls were this awful pale green colour that the previous owners had painted the entire house in.

My favourite thing is the canvas which she has covered in fabric she ordered through Anna Spiro's store Black & Spiro. I'm looking forward to seeing more pictures as the house progresses.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Tiny Dancer

                             Edgar Degas 'Yellow Ballerina'

                               Edgar Degas 'The Green Dress'

                              Edgar Degas 'Two Dancers'

                          Edgar Degas ' Dance Class'

                             Edgar Degas 'Ballet Dancers'

                       Edgar Degas 'Dancers in Pink'

               Jean Louis Forain 'Le foyer le l'opera'

                       My favourite Forain painting 'The Tightrope Walker'

I'm finishing this week on a very pretty note featuring some of my favourite paintings from French impressionists Edgar Degas (1834 - 1917) and Jean Louis Forain (1852 - 1931). Both artists  featured dancers regularly in their painting. Degas was known for depicting dancers in a flattering, delicate light whereas Forain's paintings had a darker more sinister edge, sometimes depicting the dancers as vulnerable to predatory wealthy men. I love both artists but the winner for me is Degas for his gorgeous use of colour.

Thursday, June 25, 2009


I've just ordered the Doriane print for my lounge room. I have been coveting this print for ages but wasn't quite sure how to frame it. I was thinking of putting it in an old ornate gold frame that I have at home but I'm still not 100% sold on the idea. Does anyone have any other suggestions?

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Somewhere Over the Rainbow

Last night just on dusk (as we were playing our daily game of after school and work bocce) this gorgeous rainbow appeared. I love rainbows, so much so, that when I was six mum painted a giant rainbow across one of my bedroom walls which I absolutely adored.

I'm also loving this rainbow coloured hair bow that just came into the shop. The hair bows are from Australian brand, Pink Theodore and you see more of their very cute range online here.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Obedient Sons and Daughters

I'm loving this apartment of design duo, Christina and Swaim Hutson, the couple behind the label Obedient Sons and Daughters. It is so very New York, eclectic, colourful and just a little bit cluttered. My favourite thing: the tulle skirts hanging from the roof in their daughter, Lowe's, bedroom.

All images: via The Selby

Friday, June 19, 2009

Friday On My Mind

We've had a pretty busy week getting the new Enchanted Closet website ready. You can take a sneak peek now at Tomorrow I will be posting a giveaway in conjunction with the website launch, so make sure to check it out and enter the competition.

I just ducked out to grab some fresh flowers for a party I'm having at home tomorrow night. I bought some gorgeous roses and lillies to decorate the house. I am so looking forward to catching up with friends over a few red wines and great food. Hope everyone has a fantastic weekend too!

Image: Rubie Green

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Swap Cards

My favourite thing in the world when I was eight years old was my collection of swap cards. At the end of each week I was given my pocket money and after school I would walk to the local milk bar where I would pick out, with great deliberation, new cards. 
On the eve of opening the shop last year I came across my swap cards at home, packed away in a box for the last 28 years. I was thinking about what to do with them and I thought of sticking them onto a canvas to hang in our kid's section in the Enchanted Closet.
I had no idea how popular my pretty old swap cards would be. We've had customers try to buy the canvas and many people come back and tell us they have done the same thing for their little girl's room. But the best thing about the swap card canvas is the response we get from women of all ages. You can hear them as they walk in to our kid's section and gasp in amazement, most saying "I remember these, I wonder what happened to mine". And then they proceed to pick out their favourites when they were kids. So let me know, did you collect swap cards too?

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The Dream Home by the Sea

For me, this home by American designer Jane Coslick, is pretty much perfection. It's light, white and airy with the liberal use of blues and turquoise and the location is amazing. Imagine sitting on that verandah having an early evening drink.

All images: Coastal Living

Monday, June 15, 2009

The Domestic Goddess!?!

                                Nigella's finished product....

                         and our end result.

              The cake mix which we could have eaten as is.....

I have been watching a staggering amount of Master Chef Australia lately with the side effect being that at 8pm most nights I am inspired to get the cook books out and attempt dishes I've never cooked before. Couple that with our chickens supplying more eggs than we can eat at the moment and a nine year old child who is more inspired by Master Chef than me, means there has been some serious baking going on in our home.
Which leads me to share with you the dessert we made last night. The recipe is 'Molten Chocolate Babycakes' from Nigella's 'How to Be a Domestic Goddess'. This recipe had come with great reviews (my sister in-law baked it for a family gathering a few weeks ago and they couldn't stop talking about how good they were). So last night we set out out to see if they were worth the hype and I can tell you, they absolutely are. So here's the recipe. Enjoy!

Nigella's Molten Choclate Babycakes
50 g soft unsalted butter, plus more for greasing
350 g (12 oz) best dark chocolate
150 g (1/2 cup) caster sugar
4 large eggs, beaten with a pinch of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
50 g (1/3 cup) plain flour
6 individual pudding moulds, buttered(I used cupcake patties)
Baking paper

Preheat oven to 200 C; put baking sheet in. Draw around pudding mould on baking parchment and cut out six circles; line bottom of tin with baking parchment (or cook them in a muffin tray).

Melt chocolate and let it cool slightly. Cream together the butter and sugar, and gradually beat in the eggs and salt, then the vanilla. Now add the flour and when all is smoothly combined, scrape in the cooled chocolate, blending it to a smooth batter. Divide the batter between the 6 moulds, quickly whip the baking sheet out of the oven, arrange the little tins on it and replace in the oven. Cook for 10-12 minutes (the extra 2 minutes will be needed if the puddings are fridge-cold when you start). As soon as you take them out of the oven, tip the babycakes onto a small plate or shallow bowl. Serve with whipped cream or ice- cream. 

Thursday, June 11, 2009

The Little Book Shop Around the Corner - New Leaves

                                       New Leaves Book Shop

The bright and beautiful children's section, where kids are welcome to sit and read.

                                   The cooking corner.

                   Inspired Styles - my new favourite book.

                    Pages from Inspired Styles

                          The gardening section.

              New Leaves stocks a fantastic range of kid's book.

A cosy place to sit and read, this spot gets all the afternoon Winter sun...

                        Gorgeous books from Japan.

My sister and I were in Melbourne last Sunday checking out new sites for the second Enchanted Closet store (which will open September/October 2009). We were in Albert Park and dropped into the Avenue Bookstore, which most people in Melbourne quote as their favourite bookshop in town. 
My sister and I got to talking as to what makes a truly great store that people come from far and wide to visit, and recommend to all and sundry. There are so many elements such as location, atmosphere, stock and the customer service. All of these things are done extremely well by Claire who opened New Leaves Book Shop around the corner from Enchanted Closet last year. I love dropping into her shop just to flick through her amazing range of reference books.
So if you're anywhere near Woodend in the Macedon Ranges, make sure you drop into New Leaves or visit Claire's Blog here.
New Leaves
35c Anslow Street
Woodend VIC 3442
03 5427 3772

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Plum Pretty Sugar

I was visiting Made by Girl yesterday and saw Jen's post on this beautiful loungewear  and bedding brand she discovered on Etsy. They're called Plum Pretty Sugar and they ship to Australia. The fabrics they use are stunning, I want the the 'Beckoning Creatures' doona cover.....

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Pretty Vignettes

A craft inspired vignette from Tracey Leigh Interiors via Made By Girl.

             Michelle Adams' home, the creator of Rubie Green Fabrics.

               French themed vignettes from Amanda at Swish and Swanky.

Elizabeth's home from Peacock Feathers - The Queen of the Vignette.

I love the fairy lights and touches of silver and gold. Image via Interior Divine

A shabby chic vignette from Tracey Leigh Interiors - image via Made By Girl.

We all love a pretty vignette. They are the perfect way to showcase your most beautiful and favourite things which otherwise may end up languishing in a draw or cupboard instead.