September 2014

Page 1



Who are the Designer Chicks The Designer Chicks are a team of professional women from all Design genres. We design, create and collaborate on projects for you, your home and your business.


the designer Architecture Colour Consulting Commercial Design Decluttering Downsizing Events Styling Event Strategy Floral Art Furniture Design Graphic Design Image Consulting Interior Design Lampshades Landscape Design Original Art Photography Project Management Property Styling Public Relations Soft Furnishings Storage Design Tile Design Visual Merchandising Web Design Window Coverings






eDITOR’S LETTER We are well and truly into the second half of the year, and what a year it’s been! We have recently launched our fifth Designer Chicks group, this time in the Penrith/Mountains area. This new group will be led by another original chick, Sharon Newman (you can read all about her in the magazine). We continue to mentor and create wonderful women leaders in design from our members…one of the great outcomes of being a member. The Designer Chicks were once again finalists in a prestigious business award (WSABES), however we didn’t get the final gong but will of course try again next year! As you read through this interesting issue, you will find many perspectives on the topic of Sustainability; a buzzword of recent times, and something that all the chicks feel passionate about. Within each Design genre, we show you the products and ideas available to help you contribute to a greener planet, as well as offering some terrific tips to reducing your carbon footprint. This is our final issue for 2014; but 2015 will bring some new activities and opportunities to engage our followers through new magazines and live events. Stay tuned!

Lucia van Gerwen Creative Director of DC

I cannot believe how fast this year has gone and how busy the design industry is. It is great to see that people are now understanding the importance of design whether it is in the built environment or in a business context. This issue on sustainability highlights how innovative design can help reduce the impact of our footprint on our planet and how reusing, re-inventing and rejuvenating can make something old, new again Make yourself a coffee, find a cosy spot and enjoy reading and viewing the expertise of our members.

Robyn Hawke Assistant Creative Director of DC



editor’s letter Lucia van Gerwen Robyn Hawke guest contributors Angela van Boxtel contributors Lucia van Gerwen Dianne Engesser Bettina Deda Sharon Newman Fi Thomas Andrea Long Elise Harper Jenny Williams Judith Briggs Sally Gardner Nadia Pomare Veronica Tasnadi Margie Tweedie Ruth Newman Jo Gillies Maria Bellissimo-Magrin Veronica Strachen front cover image: Dianne Engesser Narrative Post cover font: Eveleth Dot project manager Bettina Deda Bettina Deda Colour Design art direction & production Veronica Tasnadi Veronica Graphhic Design

2014 Copyright All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part without prior permission is strictly forbidden. Every care has been taken when compiling The Designer Chicks Magazine to ensure that all the content is correct at the time of production.The Designer Chicks assume no responsibility for any effects from errors or ormissions.






editor’s letter Lucia van Gerwen ~ More Than Curtains Robyn Hawke ~ Inspired Spaces

8 10

designer chicks leaders new designer chicks feature articles

12 Dirty Old Town

Dianne Engesser ~ Narrative Post

16 How sustainability promotes wellness Jo Gillies ~ Archisoul 18 The Gracewood Community Bettina Deda ~ Bettina Deda Colour Design 20 Does your home love you too? Ruth Newman ~ Ruth Newman 22 Environmentally acceptable window coverings Lucia van Gerwen ~ More Than Curtains 24 Wood and Pellet Heaters: An eco-friendly way to a warm and stylish home

Maria Bellissimo-Magrin ~ Belgrin PR

42 ‘The Meadows Trufferie’ Andrea Long ~ A Hint of Tint 44 Smart strategies to achieve a sustainable garden Nadia Pomare ~ Stylish Gardens 46 Sustainability in the work place is a challenging goal! Fi Thomas ~ Partnering In Design 48 Eco-friendly paint - it’s all about education Bettina Deda ~ Bettina Deda Colour Design 50 Green - oh so natural Judith Briggs ~ Colour Consultants Australia P/L

guest writer

26 Historical hotel reinvents itself Sharon Newman ~ SN Photography

40 Sustainable art from plastic bags Angela van Boxtel

28 Sustainable renovating Sally Gardner ~ Feature Pieces

30 How to save up to 40 per cent on your energy bills with the right window coverings Veronica Strachan ~ Curtain Connections 32 For the love of timber! Fi Thomas ~ Partnering In Design 34 Sustainability in the garden Margie Tweedie ~ Margan Tile Design 36 Once upon an op shop Jenny Williams ~ Creative Style Interiors Elise Harper ~ yELLE Styling

history of the chair

55 The early 1900s chairs Bettina Deda ~ Bettina Deda Colour Design

out and about

52 DesignEx 2014 Bettina Deda ~ Bettina Deda Colour Design 54 Reverse Garbage Lucia van Gerwen ~ More Than Curtains 56 Story of the creative Sharon Newman ~ SN Photography

38 Paper - Sustainability Veronica Tasnadi ~ Veronica Graphic Design

57 Downsize with style Bettina Deda ~ Bettina Deda Colour Design

58 Calendar of Design Events 59 Trade Directory



designer chicks

Meet our fearless Designer Chicks Leaders… Ever wondered who runs the show at The Designer Chicks? Well, here is a brief introduction to the leadership team.



Lucia van Gerwen More Than Curtains The Designer Chicks ~ Creative Director M 0412 225 437

AT THE HELM The Designer Chicks is the brainchild of Lucia van Gerwen of More Than Curtains. As an avid networker and a veteran designer in the window covering industry, Lucia devised a way of encouraging successful collaborations between designers of all genres, whilst simultaneously mentoring women in business. Lucia is tireless in her efforts to constantly expand the team, improve service and skills…she lives and breathes The Designer Chicks!! Lucia’s broad experience and naturally outgoing and witty manner, make her the celebrated leader of the pack.

Robyn Hawke Inspired Spaces The Designer Chicks ~ Assist Creative Director M 0401 068 670


Robyn Hawke of Inspired Spaces was the logical choice to assist Lucia with the necessary documentation and details needed to keep the Designer Chicks’ wheels turning. As a qualified Interior Designer, including almost two decades teaching Design, Robyn has forged some amazing alliances for the Designer Chicks that give them a professional edge over competitors. In short, Robyn’s job description is to make Lucia’s vision a reality: no easy task!

Fi Thomas Partnering in Design M 0421 320 393

Ruth Newman Ruth Newman Architect P 02 9540 9959

Sally Gardner Feature Pieces M 0411 441 969

THE INNER WEST Having previously

THE SOUTH It was a no-brainer that Ruth


formed a professional alliance with the Designer Chicks, Fi Thomas of Partnering in Design made it clear that she wanted to be part of the team. From the outset it was apparent that Fi’s long standing design career, her professionalism and her commitment, would hold her in good stead as a team facilitator. Fi has very quickly created a strong group in Sydney’s Inner West and continues to promote the culture and ethos of The Designer Chicks in her usual proactive style.

Newman of Ruth Newman Architect was selected to lead a Designer Chicks team in Sydney’s South. As a high profile business women in the Shire with almost celebrity status, Ruth demonstrates unsurpassed leadership, wonderful people skills, as well as being sought after as an expert in the field of Architecture. Ruth is currently putting together a skilled and diverse Designer Chicks team in her region in between meetings, awards presentations, client briefs, interviews and the joys of Motherhood: a true multi-tasker!

One of the original Designer Chicks, Sally Gardner of Feature Pieces, has formed a break away group in The Northern Beaches. Although still a young Interior Designer, Sally has demonstrated leadership skills which are amplified as she takes the helm of this new team. Always on the lookout for interesting avenues to promote the Designer Chicks, and certainly not afraid to roll up her sleeves, Sally brings her youthful exuberance to the group. Never let it be said that we don’t give opportunities to the younger generation!



❏Sharon Newman ❏SN Photography M 0424 166 430 ❏

MOUNTAINS/PENRITH Another one of our original chicks, Sharon Newman of SN Photography, has put up her hand to lead our newest group in the Blue Mountains/Penrith area. As an award winning photographer, Sharon displays excellent organisational and leadership skills, made obvious by the awesome and elaborate photo shoots she has undertaken, which will ensure the success of her team. As a local in the Mountains, Sharon will be strengthening her network and collating a brilliant creative force that will broaden the Designer Chicks’ reach beyond the Greater Sydney area.


Do you want to become a Designer Chick We are constantly on the lookout for female design professionals to join our exclusive teams. If you are a sole trader and have at least 3 years industry experience and are fully qualified in your chosen design field, please email for an application. Currently we are recruiting in Sydney only, but we would certainly be interested in designers willing to start their own Designer Chicks group elsewhere in Australia. EMAIL for an application



❏Joanne Johnson ❏Home Dressing Pty Ltd M 0405 566 351

Jacqueline McMahon Twist Lifestyle M 0434 091 828

❏Terry Bridgwood ❏Astute Interiors M 0407 032 900 ❏

With her passion for Real Estate and experience in preparing her own properties for market, Joanne founded Home Dressing in 2008. With 1,000+ stylings to her name, Joanne has a natural talent for showcasing a property in its best possible light. Joanne’s clients speak highly of her consultative approach and ability to identify the critical attributes most important to achieving a great financial result.

Jacquie specializes in the design and production of high quality Australian made furniture for her clients and the retail market.

Terry has had a long career in branding, communications and event management. In 2010, after following her passion and gaining qualifications in Interior Design & Decoration, and Advanced Colour she departed the corporate world and formed Astute Interiors.

Joanne can work with your existing items, using selected pieces from her extensive inventory to enhance the appeal of your property, or she can simply style the entire place from scratch!! Joanne is a leader in the Inner West and Eastern Suburbs at maximising your return on investment when selling your property.

Jacquie was instrumental in the launch of the Domayne furniture concept in the late 90’s. From its inception Jacquie went to a full time design role focusing on development and design of exclusive products both locally and internationally.

With 20 years experience across the fashion and interiors industry, Jacquie has a diverse international base opening large format furniture & bedding businesses for the Harvey Norman group in New Zealand, Slovenia, Singapore and Australia.

After 10 years of bringing functional fashionable furniture to the Australian market through major retail, Jacquie has gone on to more targeted passion and interests in the Australian Furniture Industry by working closely with fabric houses, manufacturers, decorators and retailers to create truly unique fashion furniture for the Australian consumer.

Her objective is to provide personalised and costeffective interior and exterior design, decorating and colour solutions to home owners, renovators and builders located primarily in Western Sydney and the Blue Mountains. She works with both new and existing residential builds. Project Management is also something Terry enjoys and is an additional offering for clients. She maintains an environmental focus on all jobs, working towards ‘green housing’ - efficiency in space and function, low energy lighting solutions and products which have little or no VOC’s.






We are the Champions… The Australian Small Business Championships is a platform that rewards outstanding Australian businesses as judged by industry professionals and entrepreneurs. The Designer Chicks have been selected as finalists in both 2013 and 2014 – an achievement that we are all really proud of. This is an Australia-wide award and acknowledges our dedication to value, quality and exemplary service. Although we haven’t yet won the final gong, The Designer Chicks will continue to reach for the stars… STOP PRESS: The Designer Chicks were awarded finalists in the Western Sydney Awards for Business Excellence in Innovation in 2014.



DIRTY OLD TOWN If walls and floors could talk then Dirty Old Town furniture have a wealth of stories to tell. WORDS :: DIANNE ENGESSER

ased in the idyllic landscape amongst the rolling green hills of Eureka in Northern NSW, Dirty Old Town is an up-cycled, reused timber and steel furniture and wares business. Johnny and Helene Thompson are the Dirty Old Town (DOT) creators and artists. Their love of the old sees them breathing new life into the discarded. Taking the old, rustic, industrial and dirty – and creating something new and beautiful they have a style of their own with an extensive range including Fine Rustic, Industrial Edge, Steam Punk, Shabby Chic, Vintage Edge, & Distressed. All pieces are handcrafted with acombination of ready-made designs by Johnny & commissioned bespoke pieces. When we stepped inside the world of the duo behind Dirty Old Town, we were mesmerised by the beauty of their furniture and art, that radiated through their showroom, workshop as well as their home and lifestyle. Not only do they produce furniture, but they also produce artwork, wall sculptures, lighting pieces, and a collection of trinkets and sell the works of like-minded local artists in the area.


“We have a very loyal client base. Some of them have mentioned they have a DOT addiction, which is really cool. So they’ll buy one piece and a couple of months later they’ll be looking for the next,” says Helene. DOT’s clients are scattered throughout the East coast of Australia, from corporate companies to small businesses, architects and interior designers to everyday people that appreciate the beauty and quality of hand made furniture and the value in its uniqueness. They work only with Australian made timbers and materials and produce an endless array of furniture including dining tables, trestle tables, stools, bench seats, shelving, shadow boxes, kitchens, shop counters, bedroom furniture, wall sculptures the list goes on. Sustainability to Johnny & Helene is the underlying ethos behind their work. As Johnny told us “I hate waste. I was always really fond of the thoughts behind alchemy – turning **it into gold. Turning raw materials into something that can be use productively. I wanted to take something that is filthy and dirty and really turn it into something beautiful”.


They also believe that the history behind the materials used in their work, attributes to the beauty and uniqueness of the pieces. “We choose to work with salvaged materials not only because we believe in recycling and reusing, but also because they hold a lot more character. A lot of timbers that we use have been used in old homes and factories that have had a lot of history created in them. We feel the timber retains a lot of that life and it gives the piece a new beginning” says Helene. “It’s like giving them a new life. People say walls can talk, a lot of our dining tables use to be walls. And floors can talk, and a lot of our dining tables used to be floors. And there’s so much that goes on around a dining table: celebrations, grievances, arguments, happy times, and the timber then gets to soak up that new history, and have a new life”. There is also the element of quality that comes with using recycled timbers.






Most of the timbers DOT uses have been grown in the area 100 to 150 years ago. As Johnny tells us, “Timber doesn’t grow the same way it did years ago. Timbers grow so much faster now, especially with mass-produced furniture. And I like slow grown timbers, and I can only get that grain from recycled timber.”

“Every piece does have its own story to tell I think. And that is because of the imperfections and the patina, the age. It’s become itself. Like an old tattooed sailor, the stories that his body tells. For me the timber lends itself to that.”

For more information & direct orders PH: 02 6688 4708 Visit the showroom by appointment: 143 Whian Rd Eureka, NSW 2480

For Dirty Old Town, every piece is made to last through the ages. It’s a thoughtful process; carefully restored and handcrafted “I want something that will definitely be an heirloom to be passed on. Something real that’s made by hand,” says Johnny.

It’s well worth the trip to the not so dirty town of Eureka to soak up the beautiful rustic warm experience of the Dirty Old Town showroom, meet the makers, take home a ready made piece, or commission your very own specialty piece for your home or business. Otherwise you can order through their website, or contact Helene for the new creations in waiting.

Photography & Video Matthias & Dianne Engesser



Click here to watch the story of Dirty Old Town.


HOW SUSTAINABILITY PROMOTES WELLNESS Revealing the well-used term “sustainability” appears as a marketing label for promotion. But what does it really mean and how can we use it intelligently to create great design and wellness for the end users? Jo Gillies from Archisoul promotes sustainable design to engineer well-being. The definition of sustainability in ecology is how biological systems remain diverse and productive. Long-lived and healthy wetlands and forests are examples of sustainable biological systems. In more general terms, sustainability is the endurance of systems and processes. Therefore it is far deeper and more complex than most people realise. The organising principal for sustainability is sustainable development, which includes the four interconnected domains: ecology, economics, politics and culture. Well-being is a general term for the condition of an individual or group, for example their social, economic, psychological, spiritual or medical state. High well-being means that, in some sense, the individual or group’s experience is positive, while low well-being is associated with negative happenings. To be in a state of well-being is to also have it reflected in sustainable architectural design - as nature already provides this platform for our well being and enjoyment. There is “subjective well-being” and “objective well-being”. Part of the journey is creating a space that heightens and engineers well-being; but the other part of successful well-being is becoming still; calm and quiet within. A well-designed sustainable space can help but the


willingness of the end user is as impacting as any good sustainable design. Open to New Approaches There’s a newer approach that a few consultants are now using based around intuitive land readings where the land itself speaks to how it wants to be understood. Akin to the old Aboriginal song lines – an ancient system of earth connection, which has been sustainable for thousands of years this ancient way of understanding a site can determine outcomes akin to the rhythms in our soul once listened to and understood. The mind and the body are then supported and nourished once the language of the site has been revealed and interpreted. When true sustainability is used in our approach to architecture and design it will engender wellness of the mind/ body and soul. As architects and designers there is a responsibility to create this within all our approaches and not just latch onto the latest marketing catch-cry. It is a far deeper and far more sustaining approach to our lives. Jo Gillies


So how do we create sustainable design to engineer well-being? The factors to be considered include the following: • The site and its unique features • The end users lifestyle. What makes their heart sing? • Are the people inclusive or exclusive in their approach to connection to others? • Consideration of material selection • Natural materials have no harmful off-gassing are high vibrationally and therefore are tactile and pleasing to the eye. • People are generally drawn to and feel a connection to natural materials. • Designing to minimise site excavation • Smaller and well-designed places that minimise our energy consumption. • Utilising the surrounding environment/ landscape to allow permaculture, vegetable and herb gardens provides us with healthier approach. • Earth-based approach to design layouts • Generally less consumerism • Harvesting the energy of the sun by applying passive/ solar design and solar panels. • Capturing prevailing breezes and cross ventilation lifts the spirits, purges stale air and therefore helps maintains a healthy body. The above approaches to architectural design expose and reveal how we may promote wellness in our built and natural environment.




THE GRACEWOOD COMMUNITY How sustainable design enhances high-quality living for senior Australians WORDS :: BETTINA DEDA

Interior stylist Bettina Deda was invited to speak at an exclusive downsizing event at The Gracewood Community, Kellyville, earlier this year. When doing a tour through this new community, developed and owned by BaptistCare, she learned that it is an example for an innovative approach to providing high-quality living for seniors in an environmentally responsible manner. From the earliest concept stage sustainability principles were included into the Building Design and External Fabric as well as the Building Services. The apartments at The Gracewood Community are designed to incorporate as much solar access as possible in order to optimise light and heating from the sun. External walls are reverse brick veneer, which means the heavy thermal mass brickwork is on the inside and high levels of insulation are on the outside. In winter the thermal mass of the walls and concrete floor absorb heat from the sun during the day, store it and then release it back in to the room at night. The windows installed


are double glazed with a high Solar Heat Gain Coefficient, which means in winter the sun’s radiant heat is allowed to enter through the glass but then is contained at nighttime. All windows have weather seals to contain air leakages. Heating and Ventilation. The air conditioning HEATING mode has been set so that when the internal temperatures reach 21° C it will cut out to save energy use and costs. The air conditioning COOLING mode has been set so that when the internal temperatures reach 26° C it will cut out to save energy use and costs. As ceiling fans cost much less than air conditioning to run, residents are encouraged to use them in winter mode to circulate heated air around the home. All apartments are designed to be double sided to allow cross ventilation breezes to run through the whole unit. In summer the heavy thermal mass external walls and concrete slabs will help absorb daytime heat from the air. In the evening, when the heat is released, cross ventilation breezes carry the heat out of the building. The sealed air gap in the double glazed windows provides a barrier that prevents WWW.THEDESIGNERCHICKS.COM.AU

heat transfer in summer as well as winter. If the outside air temperature is hot the double-glazing helps to prevent that heat being transferred through the glass and into your home. North facing window shading is horizontal to block high summer sun but allow low winter sun. East and west facing window shading is both horizontal and vertical to block low altitude early morning and late afternoon summer.


Air Quality. To maintain good Indoor Air Quality in the apartment all paints have been specified as low VOC (Volatile Organic Compound). VOC’s are found in some paints, vinyls, plastics and adhesives used in laminates. They are the source of “that new paint smell”. They can be dangerous to humans or can cause harm to the environment. Laundry/Bathroom. The cold-water tap over the washing machine has been connected to the rainwater tank. The recycled water runs through a UV filter, which kills germs ensuring a clean sustainable recycled water supply. A folding drying rack has been supplied to every apartment. The Living area has been located to maximise the most amount of the sunlight and heat during winter. The Living area is connected to the balcony through large sliding back doors opening the inside to the outside space. Nature Preservation. The Master plan of the site has been designed to preserve the Cumberland Plain Woodland Forest thereby creating a natural landscape including a naturalised pond. The pond is topped up by rainwater collected from the roofs to maintain a natural and clean body of water at all times. The site location at Kellyville takes advantage of the Rouse Hill recycled water system.


Facts & Figures • All

toilets suites are 4 star dual flushes.

• All

mixer taps are 4 stars 7.5-l/min WELS rated. • All

showerheads are 4 stars 7.5-l/min WELS rated. • Rainwater

tanks on the site have the capacity to store 130,000 kilolitres of collected rainwater when all the stages have been built. • The

water is used for landscape irrigation, toilet flushing, cold water supply to the washing machine as well as topping up the pond. There is a purple recycled water tap on each balcony for watering of plants and cleaning.

• The

rainwater tank is also connected to the Rouse Hill recycled water system for topping up when the storage is low. • Hot

water supply is from a central gas fired hot water plant with a 16 panel solar pre-heat system. • Each

apartment has been supplied with a Fisher & Paykel Dishwasher with a 3 Star rating.



DOES YOUR HOME LOVE YOU TOO? As we continue to see a rise in the cost of living, changes to housing affordability and unpredictable climate conditions, long-term sustainable designs for homes are increasingly desirable. Whether it is a new home or an extension to an existing building, some components of sustainable or environmentally friendly design can always be incorporated – as Ruth Newman suggests. The design needs to take advantage of the existing sources of heating and cooling, such as the sun and cooling breezes. Windows should be positioned and selected to take advantage of the prevailing breezes and provide cross ventilation to the home. Window sill heights and awning and eaves can be designed to suit the path of the sun on your property to attract the winter sun whilst minimising the impact of the harsh summer sun.

Whether you choose a traditional roofing system or a composite system such as ‘Ritek’ roofing the insulation properties need to be designed to suit the location of your home.

• Minimising

the environmental impacts of developments • Reducing

Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions • Allowing

developers to capitalise on environmental benefits, and receiving recognition for more environmentally sustainable design

Taking Advantage of Your Property’s Orientation Where possible the rooms should be positioned to take advantage of the orientation of the home. Ideally your living spaces should be on the northern side of the house to take advantage of the ingress of winter sun, with bedrooms and bathrooms on the southern side of the building. If possible rooms such as garages or storage rooms should be positioned on the western side so the impact of the harsh summer sun on the living areas of the house is minimised. If this is not possible appropriate shade structures or deciduous trees can be used to reduce the impact of the western sun. Careful design of the roof, walls, windows and floor of a home can minimise heat gain and loss and therefore reduce the energy consumption from heating and cooling the home. The roofing system needs to have the right insulation to prevent heat flow and keep your home warm in winter and cool in summer.


types of buildings and owners and developers receive certification of their buildings. At this stage there are measurements for Multi Unit Residential Projects that are focused on:

Seal Your Home Against Air Leaks During the design process consideration should be given to sealing the home against air leaks to minimise winter heat loss in buildings. However careful consideration is also needed to minimise condensation and the consequent mould problems associated with excessive condensation build up. There are many products available that comply with Building Code requirements with regards to heat loss whilst addressing the condensation issues.

• Delivering

health benefits and financial savings for building occupants. Whilst there are no rating tools as such for stand alone residential homes, the theory and processes of the design system promoted by the Green Building Council can be applied the design of any home. A sustainable home can save you money, reduce your impact on the environment and with careful selection of materials can have positive health benefits for your family.

Rating Tools To Assess Sustainability The Green Building Council of Australia is a national, not-for-profit organisation that is committed to developing a sustainable property industry for Australia by encouraging the adoption of green building practices. They have developed rating tools to assess the sustainability of various


Ruth Newman





ENVIRONMENTALLY ACCEPTABLE WINDOW COVERINGS Lucia van Gerwen from More Than Curtains shows us how technology has created a response to sustainable design in window treatments for your home. Recycling,



FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) is a

terms have been bandied around in recent

certification for special timbers. These timbers

years, but how has the Window Furnishing

come from renewable conservation practices

industry responded? This article aims to

and are milled in an environmentally sound

explore both shutters and fabrics to clearly

manner, using the least amount of energy

point you in the right direction when making

and waste possible. Added benefits include:

your selections, so that you can feel confident that you are “doing your bit” for the environment.

• Protection • Protection

safety of workers

• Increased

respect of native communities






Polyresins, Aluminium, Basswood, Cedar, etc., have their good and bad points but since this is about the environmental impact, I will showcase the most suitable materials in this article. Wood





biodegradable. I don’t have to explain any of those terms, as they have all become household words in recent times. Similarly, there’s no surprises that timber, being a natural product, fits these three criteria





are for high performance upholstery. This is

many materials, and there is undoubtedly


weird bottom plastic bottles! Although not

roman blinds would be great), these fabrics

is pesticides


from recyclable PET bottles – yes – those

of forests

• Increased


Encore is a totally new fibre recently released by Warwick Fabrics that is made

of native species of flora & fauna

• Reduction


may not have heard of.

(although I would suggest pelmets and

Currently shutters are being offered in


However, there’s a new kid in town that you


Firstly, let’s look at plantation shutters.


still in hot demand in window furnishings.

of waterways

• Preservation

huge confusion in the marketplace with


What is FSC Certified?

awareness, and carbon footprint: all these

So when you plan to choose shutters for your windows, think carefully about the impact they may have on the environment and choose responsibly. Not all timbers fit into this category, so do your research or speak to an expert (NOT just a shutter salesperson). Also remember that cheaper is not better when it comes to shutters… you may pay more for your purchase, but you will be reducing the cost to the environment; which is money well spent on

the new generation in textiles, totally Australian made, and tested to the highest performance standards. Each metre of fabric contains no less than four plastic PET bottles. What a way for your Coke bottle to end up! The fabrics are colourfast, inherently stain resistant, abrasion resistant up to 70,000 rubs and free of the toxin formaldehyde. They are also resistant to pilling, mould mildew, silverfish and moths – I would love my clothes to be made out of this stuff. Virtually indestructible!

our planet’s future. What’s new for sustainable fabrics?

(unlike plastics obviously!) Furthermore,

We all know about pure fibres such as

wood requires less energy to produce so

cotton, silk, linen and hemps. They have

this costs less to the environment.

been around since ancient times and are WWW.THEDESIGNERCHICKS.COM.AU

Lucia van Gerwen





WOOD AND PELLET HEATERS: AN ECO-FRIENDLY WAY TO A WARM AND STYLISH HOME When so much importance is placed on protecting our environment, it’s reassuring to know that wood and pellet heaters are an eco-friendly way of heating the home. There is lots of choice when it comes to selecting a heater for your home: gas or wood-fired, inbuilt or freestanding, different styles and designs - it can be quite confusing. Our member Maria Bellissimo-Magrin of Belgrin PR looks at some options to maximise on the benefits on behalf of Sydney Heaters and Pizza Ovens. Reduced emissions Wood burning stoves have been the trusted ‘green’ alternative to electric and gas heaters for many years. When maintained in accordance to manufacturer instructions, wood and pellet heaters have extremely low emissions. For example, both pellet and wood heaters can produce an output of less than 1gm of emissions, with efficiency levels has high as 60% and upwards. Sustainability Reducing your carbon footprint requires dedication on your part, and giving back to our planet what you’ve taken from it. When gathering wood for your fire, you have the option of ensuring that the wood is always taken from the parts of the tree that you intend to use.


Burning wood is the most sustainable and traditional form of energy available. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean it’s environmentally acceptable. Do your research and ensure that your wood supplier is environmentally aware and involved in replanting and replacing what they’ve taken from the Earth? If you’re cutting your own wood, search for sources that require less processing, such as a scrap yard, as this will create a sustainable source of renewable energy. Budget Budget-wise, oil-based heating is not sustainable and the costs are generally higher than wood heating sources. Oil and gas heating prices usually rise on an annual basis, and this always takes a toll on the family budget. Wood and pellet heaters are definitely easier on the family budget and a worthwhile option to consider.


Aesthetic appeal Aside from the environmental and financial aspects we’ve noted above, wood and pellet heaters are also wonderful lifestyle products, with an extensive product range and a wide variety of colours to choose from too. Choose one that fits in with your home environment – and your lifestyle too.

For more information, check out Sydney Heaters & Wood Fire Ovens

Maria Bellissimo-Magrin




HISTORICAL HOTEL REINVENTS ITSELF The Carrington Hotel Katoomba works towards environmental, economic & community sustainability. WORDS AND PHOTOGRAPHY :: SHARON NEWMAN

Historical Relic Morphs into Modern and Progressive Elegance The Carrington Hotel has had a long history as a tourist destination for the past 128 years. Opening its doors in 1886 the hotel passed through Australian history as the place to go to in the New South Wales Blue Mountains. After a decline in the 70’s, the hotel was closed and left vacant and almost lost to us between the years 1985 and 1991. This fine hotel went through a metamorphosis in an eight-year restoration and reopened its doors in 1998 to a new life of change. The ideals have changed from catering to the rich tourist, to becoming an active participant in the community, e.g. working closely with local produce food and wine, recycling, free range eggs and provision of meeting places for public forums and dinners. Spanning over a century The Carrington has watched its surrounding community grow and change. Now it is itself changing from within.


Change from Within

New Brewery

The high consumption of energy, using the old systems to run this beautiful establishment, has evolved to incorporate cutting edge developments of energy sustainability. Introducing a Co-Generation Plant The Carrington has saved money and helped the environment.

There will also soon be opening a brewery that utilises the excess energy from the heaters. The products to be used to make the beer will be sourced locally and the bi-products will be sent to farms. The water to be used will come from underground water tanks. The brewery itself is based in the first building that housed the original electrical plant for the surrounding area.

The hotel moves between accessing the electrical grid during off peak times and the cogeneration plant during high peak periods. There are two rooms housing cylinders that have thermostatically controlled heating coils. These cylinders lose less than one per cent of heat each day; this makes them much more energy efficient, and leaves a smaller environmental footprint. It takes days for these goliaths to cool down, preventing any inconvenience to the public if anything happens to the source of energy. Because there are two rooms housing these plants, if one plant goes offline the other can still look after the hotel.


The Carrington also supports the arts in the area: Providing the backdrop to creative ventures.





The Manly House Features: •

Radial Sawn timber

Recycled timber

Photovoltaic panels

Rainwater harvesting

Non toxic material and finishes IMAGE :: ARCHISOUL

SUSTAINABLE RENOVATING 12 great ideas to apply to your next renovation... On a budget… 1. Install better seals to external windows and doors Air leakage can account for significant loss of heat in winter and cool in summer. Fixing or upgrading your seals is one of the simplest improvements you can perform around your home and will have a significant effect on your energy consumption. Less artificial heating/ cooling will not only reduce greenhouse gas emissions but also lower your energy bill. 2. Use sustainable materials Whether you are upgrading your flooring or building a new deck there are plenty of sustainable materials on the market. Recycled timbers are a great option, but if that’s not your look, then try an eco product made from a renewable or recycled source such as bamboo timber flooring. The key to selecting a sustainable material is using one that does not negatively impact the environment. Consider its effect on non-renewable resources, human health and the natural environment throughout the materials entire life cycle. Referring to Ecospecifier will help you make an informed decision.


3. Install energy efficient lighting The first step to decreasing your energy usage is designing your home to maximise natural lighting along with clever use of energy saving artificial lighting. This is best applied when building a new home but the techniques can still be used when renovating. If you live on the east coast of Australia then utilise the orientation of your building by placing bedrooms in the south and living spaces in the north. Some simple ideas include placing a desk next to a window, or using mirrors, reflective surfaces and light colours to bounce more natural light around the space. The next step is to ensure you have both ambient and task artificial lighting in place to maximise your energy efficiency. Finally, upgrade your halogen fittings with the new LED fittings. This will not only save you constantly replacing bulbs, but you will see savings on your annual electricity bill. 4. Choose appliances with a high energy star rating It is believed that about one third of the average households energy consumption comes from the use of appliances. Thankfully there has been a shift in buying energy efficient products to not only lower electricity bills but


also reduce environmental impact. However unfortunately there has also been growth in the number of appliances around the home. There has been an increase in the use of TV and IT products, space heaters/coolers and luxury items such as dishwashers and dryers. So think how about many TV’s you actually need, check the Energy & Water ratings and consider the ongoing operation and maintenance. 5. Use water efficient taps and showerheads Typically showers are the biggest water user, followed by the toilet and laundry. You can make a big difference on your water and electricity bill by choosing efficient taps and appliances. For example a 3-star WELS-rated showerhead will save 50L every time you shower, and a dual flush toilet uses approximately 60% less water than a single flush. The WELS guide will help you select the best dishwasher, washing machine, taps and fixtures to maximise your water efficiency. But you can do even more by changing some of your behaviours such as rinsing food in a half filled sink instead of under a running tap. Refer to www.environment.nsw. for some more great tips.


6. Low VOC and eco-friendly finishes There is an increasing variety of low VOC finishes on the market, particularly paints and carpets. Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) are harmful chemicals that are linked to a whole range of health issues and you wouldn’t want to be exposed to these chemicals in either your home or workplace. We can credit the development of low VOC products to the commercial sector, due to Australian Standards and other building authorities. Fortunately the residential sector can benefit hugely from these advancements in technologies. All paint companies now offer water-based paints with low VOC, while some offer zero VOC such as Porters Paints and Resene. When it comes to buying any product do some research first, check the product specification and ask the sales consultant for advice.


systems need to work harder. Typically glazing doesn’t have high thermal properties, so to make your home more efficient you should consider installing better performing glass. Premium glass such as double-glazing uses an air gap between the two layers of glass to capture the heat. The thicker the glass and the wider the air gap the higher the performance value of it.

Aiming higher… Insulation acts as a barrier to heat loss and heat gain and is the most practical and economical way to improve the energy efficiency of a home. It can also reduce condensation therefore minimising the prevalence of mould, which is an added health benefit. With the right insulation you can cut your electricity bill in half. It is most economical to install insulation when initially building a home but it can be added while renovating and still improve your thermal comfort and electricity bills. The two main types are Bulk or Reflective insulation and your climate will influence the most suitable choice. 8. Add a skylight

10. Install solar photovoltaic panels

Skylights are an affordable alteration for adding more natural light into your home. The benefit is two-fold as it will not only reduce your need for artificial lighting but also create a more attractive and inviting home. A skylight can add significant amounts of light into dark corners, hallways or bathrooms where a traditional vertical window isn’t an option. In addition, a skylight can emit up to three times more ambient light than a vertical window. The only negative factor is the extra heat gain can sometimes be unwanted, so ensure you consider size and placement carefully before installing one.

If you want to reduce your carbon footprint then installing solar photovoltaic systems is possibly the most effective contribution you can make, as they supply zero greenhouse gas emission energy. Further benefits include protection from rising electricity costs and an increase in the value of your home (approx 4%). The payback cost is comparable to purchasing off the grid over the lifetime of the product, however there are many factors that alter the cost benefit of installing solar panels: Such as location (amount of sun), how much energy produced versus number of occupants and energy output, whether the energy is consumed during the day or night and variable government rebates. Ensure you go through a reputable supplier to maximise the long-term benefit.

Lovely large glass windows and doors are wonderful for bringing in natural light, creating a view and connecting users to the outside environment. However they can be responsible for significant heat loss in winter and heat gain in summer, which means our heating/cooling

External shading is more effective than internal as it blocks heat transferring through the glazing. However you must be careful not to block the winter sun as it provides natural warmth for the home. Therefore good design that considers orientation, climate and angles of the sun is crucial. External shading devices can be permanent or semi-permanent and include eaves, awnings, pergolas and external shutters. When external shading isn’t an option, but the space needs heat or light control internal shading is still recommended. It will minimise heat loss during the cooler months and reduce the heat entering during the warmer months. Depending on your intention and preferences, an interior designer or curtain consultant can help advise you on the best option to maximise both function and aesthetics. 12. Install a rainwater tank and grey water system

7. Install insulation

9. Install double glazing

11. Add internal/external shading devices

Using either or both rainwater and grey water around your home can reduce your water bills, keep your gardens alive during water restrictions and conserve water resources. Depending on how you want to use the water will determine which operating system you will need. For example the garden, toilet flushing and clothes washing only require some treatment but will have a huge impact on overall water consumption as they typically consume a lot of water. Whilst drinking water requires the highest level of treatment and may be best sourced from the mains supply. Water storage options have come a long way and vary from freestanding tanks to large ‘bladder’ bags/tanks that can be buried under decks or building structures. So you can shop around and find something streamlined and unobtrusive to your environment.

Sally Gardner



HOW TO SAVE UP TO 40 PER CENT ON YOUR ENERGY BILLS WITH THE RIGHT WINDOW COVERINGS How will you be heating your home this winter? Will it be in an environmentally responsible manner or will you be burning fossil fuels or racking up the kW on your meter? You can save a considerable sum of money on your energy bills. Recent New Zealand studies have shown that we spend up to 40 per cent of our energy bills on heating and cooling the home. That is money literally going out the window as Veronica Strachan from Curtain Connections explains. So here is where curtains do their best work. You can literally trap the air between the glass window and the back of a curtain to prevent it escaping into the room. The curtain by all accounts and purposes should be fully lined in a block out, on a sturdy track with returns back to the wall and ideally with a pelmet across the top to stop the air from escaping upwards. An experiment proved how window coverings could help reduce your energy bill. The outside temperature was 30 degrees. Immediately inside the window the temperature registered was 38 degrees, but on the other side of the curtain – that is in the room – the temperature was a lovely 25 degrees! Consider Fully Lined Curtains with Sustainable Material Once you purchase the correct draperies for your home and see it as an investment, they pay for themselves in less than five years. It is important to mention here that you need to be installing the correct window coverings to obtain such great results. Roller blinds, venetians and verticals don’t go anywhere near this result due


to inherent gaps that allow heat or cold to penetrate or creep around the edges. Many people are told about ‘block out’ qualities of blinds, but are not made aware of these gaps that are simply inherent in the design. Plantation shutters are considerably better as they sit within a frame, but they still have horizontal gaps. Fully lined curtains are without question the best option to significantly reduce your energy consumption. How does all this fit into sustainability? Simple really. The operation of window coverings generally requires no energy (except for motorisation). This in itself reduces your carbon footprint. Air conditioning and other heating devices do not have to go flat out to maintain the ambient temperature of the room – another significant reduction in your carbon footprint. Team this idea with environmentally responsible fabrics and materials and you have a perfect sustainable solution to heating and cooling your home with minimum impact on the environment.


Veronica Strachan



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FOR THE LOVE OF TIMBER! At a recent visit to Design Ex interior designer Fi Thomas came across a beautiful and innovative interior product. Wood Melbourne is a humble enterprise that is Australia’s very first producer of reclaimed timber spouts for the home. WORDS :: FI THOMAS IMAGES :: WOOD MELBOURNE

Oliver MacLatchy, a builder by trade, set up Wood Melbourne in 2013 when he unsuccessfully tried sourcing timber spouts for his own home. Combining his love of timber, recycling, experimentation and the gap in the market place he began creating. The timber spouts are hand made in Wood Melbourne’s West Brunswick workshop and provide an alternative to the traditional standard spouts. “The result is a unique, sustainable and a fantastic addition to a bathroom. Wood Melbourne was created to share my love of timber with others and with the launch of this range I feel that I have accomplished that. Our timber spouts are of the highest quality, yet are low maintenance and incredibly durable, making them suitable for a huge variety of commercial and residential installations” says Oliver MacLatchy, founder and maker at Wood Melbourne.





RECYCLING AND REUSING OUR PRECIOUS RESOURCES The range contains two timber spout designs: Kiri and Isla. Both are hand made from reclaimed black butt timber that is 80 years old. Each piece of timber is put through a 12-step process including de-nailing, sanding and waxing to produce an individual timber spout, ensuring each finished timber spout is unique in aesthetic and character but uniform in levels of exceptional craftsmanship and quality. Simple to install and even simpler to maintain.

WOOD MELBOURNE E: P: Oliver Maclatchy 0401 630 558 W: Fi Thomas

What I love about this product is, it is handcrafted from recycled timber and it showcases timber in all its beauty. With more tinkering and experimenting occurring in the workshop, plans are already in place to expand the product range further in the near future.

For more innovations from DesignEx check out our Out&About column on page 52.


SUSTAINABILITY IN THE GARDEN The garden is a great place to recycle and repurpose all sorts of items that could otherwise end up as landfill.Recycling and reusing materials is an important part of sustainability because it reduces the negative impact on the environment - every little bit helps, no matter how unimportant it may seem. With people becoming more conscious and focused on sustainability and thinking “green” these days, there are many ways you can start to make a difference. One way of achieving this is to reduce the amount of waste you produce.

and in turn, ultimately save you money on your water bill. This water can be used for watering your gardens and lawns (handy for when water restrictions are imposed), washing the car, topping up pools and flushing toilets. These tanks come in many shapes and sizes to suit all homes.

Composting Using a compost bin is an easy and simple way to start making a positive impact on the environment. Composting contributes to a sustainable lifestyle by converting household organic waste into a rich soil that is beneficial to your garden, adding nutrients and improving soil structure. A considerable amount of household garbage is made up of food or garden waste. By composting you will immediately notice a significant reduction of rubbish in your bin which results in less waste for you and less rubbish in landfill sites. It also reduces the methane levels. Composted matter retains moisture better than most soils therefore helping to maintain healthier plant life and decrease evaporation. It also nourishes our soil enabling us to get more use from it in the future. WORM FARMS are also a great way to dispose of your leftover kitchen scraps making them quickly turn into a rich fertiliser for your garden. They are simple, easy and fun for the kids.

Solar lighting Adding solar lighting to your garden and outdoor area will lessen your home’s carbon footprint and help conserve the environment. Solar lights are easy to install and create a nice ambience in your garden. They also make your access areas and paths safer for family and visitors, plus you will be saving money on your electricity bill.

Water tanks Using a water tank is a great and practical way to help the environment. The tank will capture and hold rain and storm water and reduce run-off. By using this water it will help to ease our water supply and promote water conservation


Pallets Timber pallets are an environmentally sustainable way of transporting goods for businesses but they are also reusable and recyclable and with a bit of imagination and creativity many clever garden projects can be achieved by using them. Here are some practical ideas for garden projects: • A

raised vegetable or herb garden

• A

vertical herb garden

• Garden

furniture, a garden potting bench, decking, screening • Compost • Garden

bin, planter box, bird house

or tool shed

• Stand

a pallet upright against a wall as great garden tool holder. With a bit of sanding and a coat of paint if needed, a recycled pallet can become a functional and practical addition to your garden.

WWW.THEDESIGNERCHICKS.COM.AU IMAGE CREDIT : : FAB chair Brown Leather-Photography :: Alexander Lagergren

Tyres The number of used tyres dumped every year is enormous and presents a serious problem to the environment. Think about how you can reuse your old car tyres to save it ending up in landfill. Here are some practical tips: • Create

a swing for the children or fill with sand for a sandpit. • Planters:

make a feature on the fence with painted planted tyres or use as planters scattered around the yard. Different sized tyres can be made into a tiered planter.

• 2

or 3 tyres painted with a glass top to make an outdoor coffee table. • Garden


Tiles You can use your artistic mind to create a unique piece of art from recycled tiles or pieces of old china or ceramics. Don’t dump those extra left over tiles after tiling the bathroom or kitchen. Get creative and paint a feature on the tiles for your balcony, courtyard or garden. Use old china and ceramics to make a mosaic feature, mosaic an old terracotta pot, create a unique outdoor coffee table, birdbath or stepping stone in your garden. Whether you create a unique garden art form from recycled materials or simply reuse some old objects for practical purposes, it is always beneficial to our environment. Margie Tweedie




ONCE UPON AN OP SHOP Do you always hear about people finding amazing pieces at op-shops and charity stores, but when you actually visit one of those shops you’re overwhelmed by the amount of stock and end up finding nothing? Too many choices can be confusing, and it’s hard to know where to begin when there are so many unique options. Elise from yELLE Styling and Jenny from Creative Style Interior Design give us their top tips for op shopping for you and your home. Recycling is one of the best ways to keep our world sustainable. Why not add charity and humanitarianism into the mix? Op-shops can be a goldmine of unique fashions, furniture, decorative accessories, books and other treasures. All you need for a successful day of thrift store shopping is a little perseverance and some insider know-how, which is why we have compiled this list of tips to help you on your next shopping expedition. 1. Preparation What are the items you need most to complete your outfit or your home? Once you’ve pinpointed the items you’re missing, you can plan your expedition. By taking this step you’ll be sure to target the stores most likely to cater to your needs, making it easier to stick to your action plan and not over spend on impulse purchases. If you’re shopping for furniture, have pictures of the room you’re shopping for, a tape measure, as well as measurements of your existing space. This way, you will never be stuck with a piece that doesn’t match or fit.


2. Location

• Vintage/retro

When planning an op shop trip, keep in mind that most charity stores are usually stocked by local donations. This means that the stock will reflect and be targeted towards people living and shopping within that area.

Noticed a lot of elderly citizens in your area? You’re guaranteed to find some awesome pieces with a history behind them. A lot of deceased estates will bequeath clothing, furniture and other treasures to their local charity store. On Sydney’s North Shore we have seen furs from 1956, Oroton purses from 1982, flared pants from 1974 and so many more icons of their time. A store in South Sydney yielded a spectacular Victorian lounge setting in perfect condition. Jenny says it’s usually the larger warehouse stores that stock furniture because they have much more space in store than smaller ‘boutique’ op-shops.

• Designer/high quality pieces

Best found in areas with a large concentration of high-end boutiques and stores or a high socio-economic climate. Someone buys the designer dress, wears it to an event... but now everyone has seen it! Into the charity bin it goes. Elise has seen $5000 handbags, $1500 cashmere coats, even a $1000 miniskirt all in one store in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs. • Unique/unusual/trend but at op

shop prices! Stores in close proximity to design colleges, as well as areas with a large alternative culture or known for being trend-savvy are ideal. Think ‘hipster’ style. These are places that people shop when chain stores are ‘too mainstream’. You’ll be likely to find home made items as well as a few student and start-up designer creations. WWW.THEDESIGNERCHICKS.COM.AU

3. Time No, you can’t just ‘pop in’ to a thrift store if you want to find a gem. Allow a few spare hours so you won’t be in a rush. The key is to take your time to absorb the store and pay attention. If you try to rush your experience, the sheer volume of stock will overwhelm you and leave you disappointed and uninspired.


4. Value Know the (approximate) value of the items you have selected. On average, most items will be priced at approximately 10-30per cent of its original value. If you understand the going rate for chain stores, you will know that paying $100 for a second-hand Ikea console is excessive. On the other hand, a pair of Manolo Blahnik shoes for $100 is a bargain! You may find the occasional flaw such as a frayed seam, a small stain, a chip or scratch, etc. (they are predominantly second-hand after all). Often the staff is already aware of the flaw and the item has been priced accordingly... but it doesn’t hurt to say something; you could end up with a couple of dollars off! 5. Open-Mind Elise can’t stress enough the importance of ignoring the size label when it comes to clothing! It is just a number after all. With huge size variations between stores, and


decades of these variations to contend with, you just can’t trust a label. A lot of the time the tags are cut out anyway. If you like it, give it a go! If you’re shopping for furniture, be aware that pieces may need some TLC such as reupholstering or painting to get them into a condition that will have your friends and family amazed at its origin. 6. Etiquette Treat the stock with respect. Just because the items are second-hand does not mean that they deserve to be thrown unceremoniously on the floor and trampled. Hang garments back up after trying them and hand them to a sales assistant. It’s much nicer than hearing the sales assistants curse you under their breath as you leave. Also, be mindful of delicate items such as glassware and china… As with all stores, if you break it, you buy it!

Bonus Tip Don’t forget to check the store’s refund policy before buying. Most thrift stores will not refund donated items regardless of their condition since, after all, they are heavily discounted and are raising funds for charity. Your local op shop could have that one item you’ve been dreaming about. Now that you’ve got our tips, you’re ready to take on the world of thrift store shopping, helping the wider community in the process. For our Australian readers, check out for a full listing of op-shops and thrift stores in your local area.

Jenny Williams

Elise Harper



PAPER – SUSTAINABILITY Veronica Tasnadi continues the design process by presenting us with another creative tool – PAPER – from the perspective of ‘Sustainability’ and how thinking green completes the creative result and helps protect the environment. Green statistics Times have changed, and the Paper Industry is no longer the target of not being sustainable. “Paper is one of the few truly sustainable products around” – it starts life as tree — a 100% renewable natural resource which is purposely grown and harvested for paper. In Europe, recycling rates for paper reached 72 per cent in 2012 — the highest ever recorded. Currently, 49 per cent of all paper in Australia and 70 per cent in New Zealand are recovered to be re-used. Environmental Advances in actual paper manufacturing industry:

…38 tonnes of carbon dioxide per hectare per year, trapping the carbon in the wood and releasing the oxygen back into our atmosphere. You can breathe easier”

• The print industry is using mineral

Energy used at manufacturing papermaking is energy-intensive using low energy operating platforms; this includes energy collected from wind and methane farms. Yes that is poo. A mill in US Mohawk use state-of-the-art stream plants installed reducing the amount of air pollutants.

• Around the world planted forests now

• The commercial print industry

position is at the lowest eco footprint of any industry thus far

cover 264 million hectares. Since 1950, forests in Western Europe have actually increased by 30 per cent, whilst in EU countries forests continue to grow and now cover 42 per cent of the total land area.

• As of the end of 2013, extensive

replanting programs in China have seen forest areas in that country grow to cover 22 per cent.

• Print media is still an important

element in our lives from magazines to family photos to packaging food. The print industry has taken huge steps to reduce the amount of waste and energy it produces. Over the last 20 years, the printing industry has reduced the carbon footprint by 97 per cent. There are very few industries which have achieved anything like this.

based inks to vegetable or soy-based inks. The Development of Computer To Plate (CTP) technology has eliminated the need for film and its associated chemicals from the print process. Changing over to water-based systems has also greatly reduced the reliance on solvents. Remote digital proofing has also helped reducing the amount of waste.

Sustainability “Sustainability means far more than the basic notion of ‘things persisting’ or being ‘green’. Sustainability encompasses environmental stewardship, conversation, and the balance of economic, environmental and social outcomes of human activity. It seeks to meet the economic, environmental and social needs of present and future generations. Addressing sustainability is of pressing importance that requires us to rethink our approach for our media related needs”.

Designers take on the role to be informed and to educate clients on the use of using sustainable ‘paper’. – full range of papers


38 – the new 50 shades of colour (download colour palette) – ecoStar calculator – 100% recycled post-consumer waste FSC certified Carbon Neutral! They also distribute a range of substrates for interior design. Mactac is a brand of fabulous wall covering stock including over laminates to provide unique finishes.You can see a few of these on




Print green As designers we have a responsibility to ensure that our print media is as environmentally friendly as possible. Here are a number of things to consider:

Recycled paper Turning wood into pulp creates paper. Pulp is a cellulose fibrous substance that – when pressed together and dried — creates paper. The paper that results from the first batch of pulped wood is called virgin paper. Manufacturing recycled paper uses either post- or pre-consumer waste paper. Pre-consumer means pulp waste or by-product from paper manufacturing like off-cuts that have not been made into a consumable paper product. Post-consumer means the paper we put into our recycling bins. When recycled paper is made, this waste paper is reintroduced back into the pulping process. On average paper can be recycled 3-5 times before its fibres are exhausted. This happens because fibres in the pulp that holds the paper together break down and become too short to knit and bond together. The paper has no strength and will simply fall apart. To increase the life span of recycled paper, often virgin pulp or other materials (such as cotton waste) are added in to the recycled pulp. This helps strengthen the resulting recycled paper. Paper that started life as a high white writing pad will likely end as a low quality product such as an egg carton. There are innovative uses for exhausted waste paper — such as conversion to insulation materials. When it comes to paper for commercial printing the rule of thumb is, the higher the virgin pulp component, the better the stock. But recycled papers have come a long way in the last 20 years. There are some superb recycled stocks available today that are high white and have excellent printability.

Print coating and laminates are not always the most friendly. Spot UV coating — is a synthetic product and does not easily break down. As an alternative, consider aqueous coating — water based so is much more environmentally sound. If you are thinking about embellishment think instead of embossing or die cutting, great for adding dimension to a design without chemicals or inks. Choose Green Paper Look at environmental credentials of paper stock. Is the paper stock chain of custody certified (FSC® or PEFC), sourced from legally harvested Well Managed Forests or does it contain recycled material? Choose Green Print The economic cut off point between digital and offset varies from job to job. Digital ‘on-demand printing’ allows us to print in small quantities and to employ technological advances such as variable data capabilities, saving in prepress, paper and ink wastage as well as storage and transit costs. However, for larger print runs (usually in excess of 1000) — efficiency is the name of the game and offset printing is definitely the better option.

Recycle, recycle, recycle…when it comes to printing a few simple choices can make a big difference to our planet. SOURCE :: BJ BALLS PAPER


The Junction Works Limited

PROJECT eAnnual Report 2011 / 2012 / 2013 STOCK

Digital - 100% Recycled Post consumer Waste Carbon Neutral


A4 / 18 pages including cover


wiro binding


pdf for upload to website

For years the client has produced a full printed version of his Annual Report. The board requested a more economic and sustainable option. The brief was to produce a condensed report, showcasing events, activities of the Centre and including the financial report. The final Report was saved as pdf file which was then uploaded to their website. Printed versions can be done on demand.

Inks — old style petroleum-based and not renewable. Whereas soy based inks are both renewable and naturally low in VOCs, protecting the air and yet gives the same result as petroleum -based inks. Vegetable oil-based inks are also an effective alternative as they are biodegradable and made with renewable resources such as linseed, cottonseed, Tung, or china wood oil. Green Binding When it comes to the environment and binding methods, saddle stitching (metal staples) is a good green option. Wire rolls (wiro binding) and plastic combs (comb binding) are also recyclable once they have been separated from the printed paper.


Veronica Tasnadi


SUSTAINABLE ART FROM PLASTIC BAGS WASTE TO DESIGN — There are many creative ways of reusing waste. Bettina Deda asked Northern Beaches-based Eco Artist & Designer Angela van Boxtel to share her story and motivation to transform waste into art projects. What is the story behind Eco Art & Design? Educating & inspiring people about how to be more resourceful and creative with ‘waste’. I’m really annoyed about how much of a consumer society we have become and how people throw away stuff so easily. Most people don’t have any connection with the objects they buy and that is why it’s so easy to dispose of them. People do not have the skills anymore to repair things or make things. Many of my workshops involve practical skills and I teach lots of young people too. For example, lately I did the SWAP – Youth Recycle Art Factory in Ryde. Most teenagers never held a hammer before in their life! I like to teach people basic skills about how you can create beautiful things out of waste, such as the stool project described below. Once you put so much time in rescuing an object you will look after it and I am sure you don’t throw it out ‘easily’. Change is as simple as that! When did you decide to become an eco artist? I’ve always been resourceful and many of my art & design projects included recycling. Living in Manly and being involved with local environmental groups inspired me to get the message out there through my art and teach people that less is more. I


often use waste materials from the beach in my art pieces such as plastic bags. I was commissioned by Lane Cove Council to create a recycled reindeer. For this project I recycled 2000 plastic shopping bags by crocheting them into the sculpture. I also crocheted the well known ‘teeny greeny plastic bag bikini’ which was modelled by well known plus size model Laura Wells and has been featured in many exhibitions and the media.

that you can’t put this out with the general waste. Paint is toxic for the environment and has to be disposed of in an environmentally friendly way. Before buying new paint, ask friends and family members if they have some leftovers. Let your self be surprised by unusual covers and create your textile cover accordingly. I usually avoid buying anything new when working on recycling projects. I try to be as creative as possible in acquiring supplies needed for my projects.

How does a typical waste to art project look like?

Once the stool is done, I created my cover with jeans fabric.

I don’t call it waste as to me what others throw away I see as resources. I love picking up old pieces of furniture from the council clean up. Most of them are easy to fix. With recycling furniture you have the option of combining textiles with wood. Once done, the pieces you create are very durable. For example, I transformed an old broken stool into a funky piece of furniture. All you need is an old stool. If the top is broken you just fill the hole with some scraps of fabric. Sand the stool with some medium grain sandpaper. Clean the stool and make it dust free. Finally, cover it with two coats of paint. I suggest using white as it makes your stool cover stand out. In my case, I also picked up the paint from the council clean up. Many people throw out paint during pick up time, as they are not aware WWW.THEDESIGNERCHICKS.COM.AU

After cutting out the seams I ended up with four rectangular pieces of fabric. I then cut around the fabric in a circular way and rolled the fabric in a ball to start crocheting. Crocheting with recycled textiles is a bit more tough then normal crochet and you will need a large strong crochet hook. For my stool I worked in a circular pattern until I reached the size of the stool seating. I finally attached the cover – done! Could you tell us more about the projects you won an award for? I have won many awards over the years. I care more about the heArt that’s in a person not a piece of paper. It’s meaningless to me! Though yes, I have been nominated many times for the Manly Eco Award for environmental hero.



This year I was nominated with my business for the Northern Beaches Business Awards and also was a nominee with my blog Green with Envy Ideas for the Voices of Australia. In the end you are only as good as your last project, for me that is currently the wrapping of the columns of the Manly Art Gallery & Museum with a plastic bag crochet pattern for the Manly Arts Festival in September. It will be exciting! Everyone can be involved too, by giving up their LAST plastic shopping bag and donate it to me for the project. Where can our readers learn more about your work? You can visit my blog Green with Envy Ideas, which has daily updates about the projects I am working on and my website Eco Art & Design for more inspiration on how to live more in harmony with your environment. I also run workshops for local Councils and ‘Crochet with Waste’ courses in and around Sydney at many arts festivals and cultural events. There’s always something happening somewhere with a project I am involved in! Angela van Boxtel



‘THE MEADOWS TRUFFERIE’ A STORY ABOUT CREATING AN ECO-FRIENDLY HOME — Andrea Long, Colour Consultant and Founder of A Hint of Tint, shares her story about transforming two old sheds into an eco-friendly home in the Tarana Valley.

Five years ago now, we purchased a beautiful block of land in Oberon. Fifty amazing acres, 1165 ft above sea level. The land overlooked the whole of the Tarana valley, and all the way to Bathurst. I had been keen to buy something in the Southern Highlands, but my father-in-law found this block and said if you don’t buy it I will. My husband convinced me that Oberon would provide me with the four seasons I was seeking, and particularly the cooler climate, and so the decision was made, the land was purchased, and we named it ‘Longview’ Long, being our surname, and the view, well it just went for ever… Our block has three paddocks and three spring fed dams. It sloped gently downwards. There are several large boulders huddled in clusters, the boulders give the terrain an interesting jagged skyline. We are very high up and exposed, with little protection against the elements, but we knew the land had several positions to locate a house, a home that would nestle comfortably into the hillside. Neither of us wanted to be city slickers with a country property they visited on weekends. The thought that the land would remain redundant did not appeal to either of us, and was not an option. As I had no


desire to farm animals, we had to come up with a use for our new block of land. My husband came up with the idea of farming truffles. Truffles love the cool harsher climate that Oberon has to offer. More research, attendance at truffle conferences, and excursions to other truffle farms increased our knowledge of this growing industry. My job was to research and understand the selection and training of a truffle dog. My two beautiful aging poodles were not showing the slightest interest in putting their paws up for the job at hand! Having chatted to several other truffle farmers, it became evident to me that you just needed a dog with a great sense of smell. The best advice I was given, and the advice that appealed to me the most, was to go to the pound with a handful of treats in my pocket. Take the dog that finds the treats first I was told. I am bearing this advice in mind for when the time is right to purchase the new addition to our family! The truffle trees, either English oaks or hazelnut trees will be purchased with the spores, and after having our soil tested by the CSRIO, we were confident that we had the right ingredients to potentially produce truffles. It can take around four years to produce your first crop, and there are no guarantees of success when growing WWW.THEDESIGNERCHICKS.COM.AU

truffles. We decided we were prepared to take that gamble, and our first batch of trees will now be planted in the next couple of months. ‘The Meadows Trufferie’ was born, the sign was firmly attached to front gate, The ‘Longs’ were about to embark on their latest business venture. We dug for bore water in the bottom paddock; we needed to water our truffles. The truffles would be planted in the top paddock, exposed to all the elements. For growing truffles, we had learned, the tougher the climate, and the more distressed the trees were, the more likely we were to succeed with a crop. My father in law had a couple of very run down old site sheds in Sydney. He showed them to me and asked if I wanted to use them. Recycling was appealing to my husband and I, we both thought this was an


excellent idea. After closer inspection of our newly found sheds, my husband designed a small house joining the two site sheds together, connecting them with a small mudroom at the front entrance. A snow roof with a steel frame would cover the entire structure. This would allow us to build a verandah at the front, overlooking the stunning view. There was no power on our land, and we wanted to create an eco-friendly home, it was important to us both. The site sheds would have solar power and tank water. The oven and fridge were powered by gas. We were setting ourselves up with some temporary accommodation, a place to stay, whilst we embarked on our project as truffle farmers. We put in a new kitchen, very simple with a mirrored splash back. The reflection of the view is sensational, and brings the outside in. The bathroom, which consists of a small vanity, toilet and a shower, is neat, tidy and big enough for the two of us. A small potbelly stove nestles into one corner of the room. The potbelly stove will generate enough heat into our small space, and cook a fabulous casserole on the top if ever needed. Fuel for the fire was available on the land in abundance – someone just needed to do the chopping!


We managed to fit a new Queen-size bed in comfortably, as well as a sofa bed in the lounge room. Both of us are guilty of rescuing chairs off the streets during council clean ups. In fact we’ve had to draw a hold to this decadent pastime, as we can’t keep up with the restoration process. My office is becoming more and more cluttered with the furniture collection. The table and chairs in our newly furnished home were both rescued off the streets. Slowly but surely progress is being made on the interior. Although this is a project in the making and the photographic evidence of our achievements thus far appear to be minimal, It should be mentioned that this has never been, nor will it ever be a full time venture – but a work in progress. We have always been two very busy people, city people. We wanted to do what we considered to be the right thing by the land, respect the environment, and contribute in some way to the local farming community. I think it would be fair to say we are on the pathway to succeeding in our endeavours.

Andrea Long



SMART STRATEGIES TO ACHIEVE A SUSTAINABLE GARDEN The selection of materials for your new garden is difficult and time consuming. There are so many products out there to choose from. And what do we do with the existing materials? Nadia Pomare from Stylish Gardens shares her tips for purchasing new materials and products for your garden, and offers solutions for recycling existing materials. What to Avoid

• Bricks and Pavers: These can be

Choices towards a more Sustainable Garden

reclaimed from elsewhere.

• Choose local products from a controlled

• Concrete, Bricks, and other

source, which have travelled minimal distance and therefore have less impact on greenhouse gas emissions.

imported from overseas or have travelled long distances.

Recycle what you already have

aggregates: These can be crushed and used as back fill on the same site, or for drainage purposes. They can also be sent to a recycler and turned into crushed rock to make an interesting mulch or pathway.

• Tiles and Glass: Both can be crushed

into smooth pieces for interesting garden mulch or broken into pieces to create artistic mosaic landscape elements, including pathways.

• Topsoil: So often this is lifted along

with the rubble when clearing the site, and disposed of. A common mistake. This should be piled up onsite ready for reuse. Treat it like gold, as there is nothing you can buy which will be as good for your plants as natural topsoil.

• Soil: Using the original soil found

beneath your topsoil will assist when selecting suitable plants for this environment. Improving the soil with organic matter and sand can be a more sustainable option than simply replacing all the soil.

grown timbers (from local plantations). • Aged and recycled timbers are a good

have been removed from natural living landscapes such as rivers and natural bush land. This can result in unnecessary erosion and loss of habitat.

• Petroleum-based products.

• Large Rocks and Stone should be

• Using high processed materials.

sourced locally from licensed quarries. Sometimes a surplus results as a by product of the quarrying process. • Rocks are often removed in

redevelopment and road construction. A good use of the land development by-product. • Products (such as furniture), which are

transported over minimal distances and are made from local products. • Item existing on-site, and are being

• Toxic materials and products.

This usually means high-energy consumption during the manufacture of the product. • Using rainforest timber, or timber

from old trees. • Processed, chemically treated timber

or kiln-dried boards. Choose air-dried, rough sawn instead. • Over ordering of materials as this

results in excess waste.

re-used or transformed and recycled. • Composite products that incorporate recycled plastic waste. • Reclaiming re-cycled materials. • Made artificially but from recycled

materials such as plastics or tires.

features, retaining soil on slopes, building retaining walls.

• Use durable materials.

Re-use in drainage, water features, as mulch for garden beds and pots, and in paving details.

• Using stones and pebbles, which

choice as carbon is stored for a longer period of time.

• Large rocks: Re-use as seating,

• Gravels and small stones:


• Timbers should be local and purpose

• Choosing products that have been

• Act energy-wise. • Act water-wise. • Use materials that are not toxic

or harmful to the environment.


Nadia Pomare





SUSTAINABILITY IN THE WORK PLACE IS A CHALLENGING GOAL! Interior Designer Fi Thomas discusses steps for businesses towards an eco-friendly practice “‘Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs’. (United Nations, 1987)” Can sustainability be achieved in work spaces with base building regulations and processes, office fit outs to match work requirements, tight budgets and staff who may or may not care about sustainability? The topic is huge with multiple accredited green organisations involved each with their own set of codes. Therefore this article will provide a brief overview only and showcase activities we can participate in to help a business work towards a better and ecofriendly practice.

Work Place Practice Interior Designers when creating new fit outs already adopt a sustainable approach when they utilise activity based and hot deskwork practises. In the past all staff whether part time or full time might be allocated a desk, now there might be 250 staff but 220 desks. Another common work style is to rent a chair or space within a shared office. This sustainable approach to space, systems, processes and resources means that overall less energy and paper are used.

The Built Environment Many architects and designers are encouraged to create sustainable buildings for the future. They seek to obtain a higher Green Star rating. “Green Star is a comprehensive, national, voluntary environmental rating system that evaluates the environmental design and construction of buildings and communities.” REFERENCE :: FROM GREEN BUILDING COUNCIL AUSTRALIA WEBSITE




Interior Design Sustainability in the work place is definitely something that we all have a responsibility to work towards. A designer can encourage clients along a particular direction.Floor plans and spatial layouts can be orientated to increase the amount of natural light and ventilation, reducing energy expenditure. I can also specify low VOC workstations, furniture, carpets and paints can also be specified. A vertical green wall not only looks striking it serves a purpose of filtering the air quality. Wall panelling can be a noise absorber, assist in climate control as well as a decoration element of a fit out. This sustainable culture has been demonstrated in fit outs such as Commonwealth Bank, ANZ Centre and Google.



Instyle Life Sustainable Textile Collection on a screen system Workplace Furniture and Workstations Traditionally office fit outs and renovations create a huge amount of landfill when furniture and workstations are discarded. There are some companies that resell workstations or reupholster seating to minimise the environmental impact. Responsible manufacturers like Workspace will offer stewardship agreements, where products will be accepted back at the end of their life for refurbishment and reuse, or any disassembly and recycling, to dramatically reduce landfill problems. Workstations A workstation constitutes a large proportion of the furniture within a work place. Workspace Commercial Furniture has a sustainability policy in place. During the development of the Track workstation system, all materials and processes to be used in its manufacture have been assessed for their environmental sustainability. “We source our flat panel materials, including low emission E0 and E1 rated products, from certified suppliers and we can supply many certified screen fabrics from Australian sources. “Therefore, the Track system meets the stringent requirements of certification programs such as GECA, Eco label and AFRDI Green Tick, assisting building companies to work towards Green Star building accreditation. The good news is some fabrics for workstation screens are sustainable products. GEO Screen on workstations from Instyle is made from 100% Tencel cellulose and is part of their LIFE Sustainable Textiles collection.

Furniture Part of the Green Star rating program previously mentioned, is that the furniture should be environmentally certified. AFRDI Green Tick Certification confirms to specifiers, architects and designers that a piece of furniture meets a robust yet realistic level of sustainability requirements.

fabric for upholstery in eco-friendly fabrics such as GLIDE. The upholstery shown in the task chair below is made from 100 per cent EthEco wool (low pesticide wool from non-mulesed sheep raised on holistically managed farms) and is part of the LIFE Textiles collection from Instyle.

Unfortunately there are not many pieces of furniture that have this provision at this stage. Task chairs such as the Tempo Chair from Workspace have opted for the Green Tick certification. Designers can specify

Conclusion Sustainability or eco-friendly work places are becoming more and more common with governments and large corporations having expectations that they need to deliver on this. Architects and designers are introducing the concept and the products to clients for their fit outs. Sustainability is a hard goal to achieve in the work place but not impossible and not without benefits.

Improved Animal Welfare No Mulesing and Reduced Pesticide Use: EthEco® wool is sourced from farms that have ceased mulesing, which is the practice of removing skin from a sheep’s hindquarters. Most Merino sheep in Australia are mulesed and without it, these sheep are highly susceptible to flystrike. INSTYLE sources from specialised Merino sheep that, unlike traditional merinos, are free of skin wrinkling and naturally resistant to flystrike, therefore mulesing and insecticidal treatments are generally not required. The absence of skin wrinkles means that the sheep can be easily shorn without inflicting shearing wounds. EthEco® wool is sourced from sheep that are naturally resistant to pests, reducing or eliminating the need for pesticides. EthEco® wool contains zero or negligible pesticide residues and meets the EU Flower ecolabel requirements.


Fi Thomas



ECO-FRIENDLY PAINT – IT’S ALL ABOUT EDUCATION When it comes to building or renovating more and more customers are considering sustainable products and eco-friendly solutions. From the mainstream paint companies to the boutique paint suppliers – all have low VOC or low-tox paint finishes in their product range. Many paints have now been evaluated for environmental performance over their life cycle. Interior Stylist and Colour Consultant Bettina Deda spoke with Christine McCoy, Interior Designer and Colourist at The Paint Place in Collaroy, to find out what role eco-friendly paint plays in their huge range of paint colours. How important is eco-friendly Paint within your product range? Eco-friendly products represent a large part of our product range. All paint companies comply with VOC guidelines, but especially the boutique companies stand out with a holistic approach and are much closer to sustainability standards. We offer a wide range of paint products, deck finishes, natural oils and waxes to finish decks, furniture, walls and floors. The products are used by landscapers and painters but also flooring businesses. We actually have a diverse range of clients in the trade industry. What eco-friendly paint products are you offering? We offer the complete range of Porters and Murobond who demonstrate an overall sustainability strategy – as does Wattyl, which we stock as well. On top of the standard Wattyl range we additionally offer New Look, Wattyl’s exclusive paint range for The Paint Place. Then we have, of course, all the Dulux products available. Additionally, we import SafePaint and MilkPaint from the US – products based on natural ingredients and mostly used for furniture and decor.


How many of your customers are asking for eco-friendly paint products? Usually, our customers from the Northern Beaches are quite conscious about sustainable products. A lot of customers come in the store and ask for low-odour paint. If we then explain more about the holistic approach of some of our suppliers, people are generally interested to learn more about the overall approach of the paint supplier, how the paint is made, and what the ingredients are. Customer are usually quite impressed when they experience that the colour and finish are not compromised by using eco-friendly paint products. Where do customers find‚ “green” painters? Customers can search the new website of Greenpainters, a sustainability initiative of the National Institute of Painting and Decorating. Another source of information is An Enviropainter® is a registered member of the Master Painters Australia who has undertaken an accredited training course on 22002VIC Sustainable Painting Practices. We also recommend to contact the boutique paint companies, who regularly update a list of recommended painters – used to working with eco-friendly products and according to sustainability standards.


How do you incorporate eco-friendly paint in your showroom? We are very fortunate to have: an additional showroom – adjacent to our store. Our aim is to create a visual and tactile experience with our products. We have floorboards, big timber samples, hand-painted colour swatches, fan decks, booklets, magazines, brochures, and paint brushes available for our customers to experience the touch and feel of our products. Customers are invited to sit down at our big recycled timber table in the middle of the showroom to browse information material and samples. You mentioned that the customers are genuinely interested in ecofriendly paint products. Your outlook for the future? I think it is all about education. Young painters should have a special courses on sustainable products to be able to do better understand the holistic approach of the paint companies. There are still a lot of painters from „the old school“ around. As the paint companies develop their sustainability strategies further, the painters need to be educated as well in order to better understand the products and their advantages. I particularly like to work with a young painter who shows ongoing interest in the background of products and regularly attends our workshops. I believe this is the way forward: education and cooperation.


Where To Recycle Old Paint and Paint Cans?


What are sustainable paint related products? •

Tools and equipment made from natural materials

Products based on renewable or highly abundant resources

Ingredients which reduce the possibility of chemical sensitivity

Low Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) products and content

Heat-reflective nano-ceramics and pigments

For more sources to recycle paint and paint cans and to watch a video about how to do it visit Greenpainters

Energy Star graphs illustrate that by improving the energy efficiency,

Greenpainters – A sustainability initiative of the National Institute of Painting and Decorating

You can keep your leftover paint for up to ten years if the can is properly sealed. Keep the paint in a dry place and you will always be able to do some touch-ups if needed. Also consider donating leftover paint to local community organisations.

the building requires less energy to keep cool, thereby, reducing its environmental footprint Solventless two-pack epoxy coatings


This national initiative provides an ecocertification program for painters, including training, consumer information and skills to promote environmentally preferable coatings technology. Customers can check on the national register of painting contractors to see if their chosen painter is registered.

For more information about The Paint Place, visit their website, or – even better – their gorgeous showroom in Collaroy.

Bettina Deda




GREEN – OH SO NATURAL Judith Briggs of Colour Consultants Australia invites us to explore the personality of the colour green and its eco associations. Who doesn’t enjoy being in the garden or taking a walk in the bush or a park? There is something quite peaceful, refreshing and restorative about it. When I ask clients about their colour preferences, they often say that they don’t like green. This is usually because they are holding one particular shade of green in their head that relates to some unpleasant experience locked in their memory. They may not even remember the experience, but they have an aversion to this particular type of green. When you close your eyes and think of green, what green do you see? What green is that? There are many different shades of green and we find many of these just in the garden alone. From yellow green new shoots, to bright green blades of grass and grey green or blue green leafy bushes. Greens can be tinged with yellow like a citrus green such as bright lime. On the flipside, it can be a pale grey green that we call sage. There’s vibrant emerald green, so loved by the Irish. And then there are the blue greens like petrol blue and teal and the more gentle greens like mint and aqua. At the other end of the green scale, there are greens like racing car green, forest, olive and khaki to name just a few.


Green as a neutral Ten years ago, green was ‘The Neutral’, with a lot of neutrals having a greenish undertone. This was a result of our emerging ecoconsciousness. There were many homes that were specified with these new neutrals, where the owners said they didn’t like green – but they weren’t thinking this kind of green! The personality of green Green is for “Go”, but not fast – instead with care and consideration. The personality of green is poised, with self-controlled feelings of superiority - unlike impulsive red or reclusive blue. Green is authentic, dependable, conscientious, patient, efficient and determined. It expresses tenacity, accuracy and logical consistency. At the center of the spectrum, green represents peace, harmony and balance. It soothes and relaxes us, so it is a reassuring and healing colour. One of the most relaxing things you can do is sit in a peaceful garden surrounded by lush greenery or wander through a beautiful park or rainforest. It’s no wonder that green is the colour of nature and the outdoors. We associate green with eco-friendliness and stability. Fresh bright, yellow greens like you see in Spring signify new growth and renewal. The true greens we see in Summer (neither yellow greens nor blue greens) are the most peaceful. As green goes more to blue-greens,


the more spiritual aspects of it are felt. These colours represent maturity of physical and mental capabilities. We also associate green with envy and jealousy. Green’s not so attractive shades are associated with bitterness, illness (‘green around the gills’), infection, stagnation and decay. For some people, like the Irish, green is considered lucky. There are others who consider green bad luck. The effects of green Green represents a withdrawal from stimuli. It reduces nervous and muscular tension. When you are in a green environment, you are able to concentrate inwardly more easily. As opposed to red, which encourages us to be active and come up with new ideas, green supports us in developing our ideas. Where yellow stimulates us for constant change, often causing tasks to be left uncompleted, green gives us a more mature approach where order and balance is desirable. Ideas are grounded and become a reality. Where yellow seeks change, green fears it. Green provides security, tradition and balance through building solid foundations. The downside of green is that it can bring on boredom. “Absolute green is the most restful color, lacking any undertone of joy, grief, or passion. On exhausted men this restfulness has a beneficial effect, but after a time it becomes tedious.” — Wassily Kandinsky



Green is the most restful colour that exists. Wassily Kandinsky Where to use green Green is friendly and easy on the eye. As the colour that the human eye absorbs most easily, green is an ideal colour for walls behind computer screens. Because green is relaxing, it is a great colour for the bedroom or living rooms. Also, green is a great colour for rooms where concentration is required and where sedentary tasks are performed. However, refrain from using green in an area where analytical thinking is required. What works with green Blue and green should never be seen? Of course not! They can work very well together. As neighbours on the colour wheel, blue and green are related colours. Try lime green with turquoise, navy and white for a lively combination. Pinks and reds complement green perfectly. Forest green with rust and cream are an ideal classic trio. Or try a quirky combination of lime, pink, orange and purple. What green says about you If green is your favourite colour, you are likely to be civilized, conventional and a welladjusted, ethical and social person. Others may see you as a bit fixed in your ways and ideas and rather predictable. TIP :: Add some green to your life if you need more stability and predictability. You can do this by wearing green clothing, eating green foods, bringing plants or flowers into your home or decorating with green. If you need some help decorating with green, call a Designer Chick with colour expertise. Judith Briggs



OUT AND ABOUT DesignEx 2014 Some of the Chicks visited DesignEx in May where sustainability seemed to be the major topic on every second stand. We discovered a few fancy products like a decorative fabric from CrÊation Baumann with interwoven dimmable LED light dots that create a geometric pattern in the bottom third of the fabric. Nomi presented stylish and functional apartment furniture which customers can design online and have it delivered in flat packs to assemble at home. Wood Melbourne showed a timber covered bath tub - as seen in Brad and Dale’s apartment on The Block - and the first reclaimed timber spouts for residential use. Enjoy our snapshots!







OUT AND ABOUT One man’s trash is another man’s treasure. The Designer Chicks visited Reverse Garbage to learn more about how to repurpose items destined for the rubbish bin. In June, The Designer Chicks spent a very enlightening morning at the Reverse Garbage Depot in Marrickville. Originally set up in the1980’s as a resource for teachers, Reverse Garbage has established itself as the hub for unwanted goods that are destined for greatness… We kicked off our visit with a workshop ‘Paper Bizarre’: that really challenged us to create something inspiring from scraps of paper from magazines, maps, tickets, cellophane, etc. It was very interesting to see the completed items and some in particular really emphasized how unusual our creative thoughts can be! Following the workshop, we had a private tour of the facility. Unbelievably people had made ottomans, gloves, and dolls out of public banners! Old school desks had been spray painted with lace overlays to produce a spectacular lace effect. The place was massive and absolutely jam packed with all sorts of stationery, fabrics, furniture, china, costumes, dolls, too many things to mention. Our recommendation is to visit Reverse Garbage and challenge you to repurpose something. What a great place for kids to use their imagination! Lucia van Gerwen






Charles Rennie Mackintosh (1868 – 1928), Scotland, Koloman Moser (1868 - 1918) and Josef Hoffmann (1870 – 1956), both from Austria, were some of the most innovative designers and architects of the Art Nouveau period. Their chair designs showed geometric forms and monochrome colour palettes. Made by hand in small quantities the chairs were only affordable for wealthy bohemians. Exceptions were special commissions such as for the Glasgow tearooms and Viennese coffee houses. Armchair for the Purkersdorf Sanatorium, 1902 Furniture and graphic designer Koloman Moser was one of the founders of the Wiener Werkstätte, the influential craft workshop founded in Vienna in 1903. His armchair reflected the geometrical motifs and monochrome palette typical for the Wiener Werkstätte. The armchair – considered as audacious in style by the Austrians – was designed for the foyer of the Purkersdorf Sanatorium of which Josef Hoffmann was the architect. Moser’s armchairs were arranged in pairs around elegant octagonal tables.

High-backed Chair for Ingram Street Tea Rooms, 1900 In his late 20s Charles Rennie Mackintosh met a woman who enormously influenced his professional life: Miss Catherine Cranston. She was a local Glasgow businesswoman, who came up with the idea of ‘art tearooms’. She asked Mackintosh to assist her architect on her new premises in Buchanan Street in Glasgow town centre. The success of this new venture created a long-lasting relationship between the client and designer. In 1900 he did the interior of the white dining room for the Ingram Street tearoom and designed the High-backed Chair to contrast with the white walls of this space. In 1903 he was commissioned to design all interior fittings and the external layout for the Willow Tearooms in Sauchiehall Street, another premise of Catherine Cranston. Cabaret Fledermaus Chair, 1905 -1906 While visiting England in 1902, Josef Hoffmann got to know Charles Rennie Mackintosh and was impressed by the expressive, geometric style of his furniture. A year later, together with Koloman Moser and industrialist Fritz Wärndorfer, he established the Wiener Werkstätte (Vienna Workshop), a progressive alliance of artists and designers. Hoffmann produced a large number of designs for the Vienna Workshop, for example the Sitzmaschine whose geometric lines and cubic form has become a prototype for contemporary designer chairs.


Bettina Deda



OUT AND ABOUT We are very proud to announce that the work one of our professional photographers Sharon Newman was displayed with a collection of selected international talents in a New York exhibition called ‘The Story of the Creative’ from July to September 2013. Sharon took the image during an excursion with the Designer Chicks to the New South Wales State Library last year. It shows their guide Zoe in the library’s Shakespeare Room.


Featured Artist Sharon Newman

Opening Party was held at the Angel Orensanz Foundation in NYC on July 25th, 2013. Gallery show was presented at the See.Me Gallery in NYC from July 25th to September 10th, 2013. Work was on display at both locations.





OUT AND ABOUT Interior Stylist and author of Downsize With Style, Bettina Deda, was invited to speak at a downsizing event about property styling and how to best dress your home for success when selling at The Gracewood Community in Kellyville. Over 150 people attended this information session with Andrew Winter from Selling Houses Australia. After the presentations Andrew Winter led a panel session with Linda Coskerie, Seniors Real Estate Specialist, Bettina Deda and three residents of The Gracewood Community. Visitors asked lots of questions about de-cluttering, preparing their home for sale and how to get started with downsizing toa smaller home. They also had the chance to hear first-hand how it feels like to live in a brand new retirement village like Gracewood.



For all design aficionados and passionate home decorators we put together an event calendar with a selection of worldwide design events throughout the year. JANUARY Heimtextil 14 – 17 JANUARY 2015 WHAT :: Leading international trade fair for contract and residential textiles spread over 20 exhibition halls. WHERE :: Frankfurt, Germany WEB :: Domotex 11 – 14 JANUARY 2014 WHAT :: Leading international trade fair for floor coverings WHERE :: Hannover, Germany WEB :: imm Cologne 13 – 19 JANUARY 2014 WHAT :: International Furniture Fair WHERE :: Cologne, Germany WEB :: Formex 5 – 18 January 2014 WHAT :: Trade Fair for Nordic Interior Design WHERE :: Stockholm, Sweden WEB :: Maison & Objet 24 - 28 JANUARY 2015 WHAT :: International Trade Fair for Interior Design and Decorating WHERE :: Paris, France WEB :: Formland UP/GRADED 30 JANUARY – 2 FEBRUARY 2014 WHAT :: Trade fair divided in design communities with a focus on inspiration, trade, networking and experiences WHERE :: Herning, Denmark WEB ::

FEBRUARY Stockholm Furniture Fair + Northern Light Fair 4 – 8 FEBRUARY 2014 WHAT :: Sweden’s largest furniture fair + trade show for lighting design WHERE :: Stockholm, Sweden WEB :: Australian International Furniture Fair + Decoration + Design 5 - 7 FEBRUARY 2014 WHAT :: Trade Show for Interior Design and Decorating WHERE :: Sydney, Australia WEB ::

58 58

Ambiente 7 – 11 FEBRUARY 2014 WHAT :: Germany’s largest consumer goods trade fair, showing a global range of products for dining, giving and living. WHERE :: Frankfurt, Germany WEB :: Habitat 11 – 14 February 2014 WHAT :: International event for interior designers, decorators and architects WHERE :: Valencia, Spain WEB ::

MARCH Wohnen & Interieur 8 – 16 MARCH 2014 WHAT :: Austria’s largest show for interior and garden design, showing furniture, decor and home entertainment. WHERE :: Vienna, Austria WEB :: Design Bloggers Conference 2 – 4 MARCH 2014 WHAT :: The event of the year for interior design bloggers WHERE :: Buckhead, Atlanta, Georgia, USA WEB ::

APRIL Salone Internazionale de Mobile 8 – 13 APRIL 2014 WHAT ::Global benchmark for the home furnishing sector with more than 20 exhibition halls WHERE :: Milan, Italy WEB ::

MAY ICFF International Contemporary Furniture Fair 17 – 20 MAY 2014 WHAT :: International furniture fair WHERE :: New York, USA WEB :: contemporary-furniture-fair/ DMY International Design Festival Berlin 28 MAY – 1 JUNE 2014 WHAT :: International platform for architecture, interior and product design WHERE :: Berlin, Germany WEB :: DesignEx 28 – 30 MAY 2014 WHAT :: Australian design and architecture event WHERE :: Sydney, Australia WEB ::

JUNE Mostra Internazionale di Architettura 7 JUNE – 23 NOVEMBER 2014 WHAT :: Leading international architecture show organised from the Venice Biennale. WHERE :: Venice, Italy WEB ::

SEPTEMBER Helsinki Design Week 4 – 14 SEPTEMBER 2014 WHAT :: Meeting point of the Finnish design scene with a focus on furniture design, fashion and architecture. WEB :: London Design Festival 13 – 21 SEPTEMBER 2014 WHAT :: Annual design event to promote London as a worldwide design capital and a gateway to the international creative community. WHERE :: London, UK WEB :: 100% Design 17 – 20 SEPTEMBER 2014 WHAT :: UK’s leading event for interior design, innovative furniture, lighting, and textiles WHERE :: London, UK WEB :: Vienna Design Week 26 SEPTEMBER – 5 OCTOBER 2014 WHAT :: In cooperation with international designers Viennese museums and companies show different approaches to design. WHERE :: Vienna, Austria WEB ::

OCTOBER Biennale Interieur 17 – 26 OCTOBER 2014 WHAT :: Bi-annual interior design event WHERE :: Kortrijk, Belgium WEB :: Grand Designs Live 17 - 19 October 2014 WHAT :: Grand Designs Home Show WHERE :: Melbourne, Australia WEB :: melbourne/ Grand Designs Live 24 - 26 October 2014 WHAT :: Grand Designs Home Show WHERE :: Sydney, Australia WEB :: Orgatec 21 – 25 OCTOBER 2014 WHAT :: Trade show for the work environment and innovations for flexible work forms WHERE :: Cologne, Germany WEB ::





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