Sunday, 27 July 2014

Animal kingdom

There’s a little voyeur in all of us and here at The Apartment, we love a good sneak peek inside a celebrity home. So this week, we were thrilled to be invited into the digs of social media star and uber photogenic pooch Oskar (that’s @theoskardaily), oh, and his owners Angie and Graeme. The miniature dachshund, who boasts nearly 2000 Instagram followers and is a bit of a famous face on the streets, took us on a tour of his sunny Potts Point apartment, a personality-filled haven that truly reflects the family who call it home.

Oskar's position as top dog was written in the stars: twelve months ago, Angie and Graeme moved into their apartment - a spacious, light-filled Art Deco one-bedder - to make room especially for him. But while this pup may rule the roost, the apartment's interiors are defined by his owners' passions. "It's quite clear when you walk in the door that one of us is a cyclist, and the other loves plants, that's if you can get past our 'vicious' guard dog," says Angie with a laugh. "He loves cuddles and attention, but only from the ladies."

Serious cyclist Graeme's bikes double as an art installation, seemingly "pole dancing" on the wall, while every bay window - and there are three of them, which capture sweeping city views - are stocked with flowers and greenery. "I pretty much shove random things in our little window bays," says Angie. "As we don't have a balcony, I'm always dreaming of one and love having plants everywhere!"

Angie's penchant for plants is clear, but can you spot the cyclists too?

Thanks to the large windows, high ceilings and crisp white walls - one of Angie's obsessions - the space has that light, fresh and airy feel that apartment-hunters the world over yearn for. The couple have kept the scheme minimal, punctuating the abundance of white with pops of red and orange, not to mention some cool and quirky style finds.

Designed for leisurely Sunday brunches, the dining space hosts replica Eames 'Side' chairs, plus a red 'Rocker', from Matt Blatt.

Too good to dry the dishes with, Angie's favourite tea towel is casually taped to the wall. Find it at Able & Game.

A Page Thirty Three oil burner sits alongside more beautiful blooms, bringing with it a dash of apothecary style.

We found ourselves playing a game of 'spot the dachshund'! The adorable figurines were the couple's wedding cake toppers.

If you've noticed an abundance of designer candles (many of them upcycled as plant pots), it's because Angie is a make-up artist. (We spent a good twenty minutes tapping into her beauty expertise, and we only got as far as primer.) As such, her bathroom is filled with an envy-inducing collection of products, with an on-trend hexagonal tile splashback forming the backdrop.

 We've been coveting this copper lamp from Freedom, which makes a shining statement in the bedroom.

Sitting in this home that's been decorated with a focus on sentiment rather than stuff, the conversation turns to what the couple would save in a house fire. "Funnily enough, Oskar and I regularly experience fire drills within the building," says Angie. "While he's running up and down the hallway urging me to hurry up, I'm grabbing my handbag and the essentials. Most importantly, I grab Oskar's lead and treat pouch - otherwise he'd leave me for another woman!" Never, we say, despite his ever-growing list of admirers... "And as for Graeme," she adds. "He'd probably be stuck on which bike to bring."

dream home: White walls, floorboards and marble and copper bathrooms (with heated floors!) Loads of natural light is a must and space to grow heaps of plants.
style icons: I would love to be as cool and stylish as Rei Kawakubo when I'm her age. Susie Bubble's quirkiness and colour is always refreshing, and I love the simplicity of Yasmin Sewell.
favourite flower: Magnolias and pure white phalaenopsis orchids.
best scent: Green, fresh and leafy and/or sandalwood-y warm scents.
colour palette: Navy, cobalt and pastel blue, concrete/slate grey, mint green and white.
music: The Fugees, Frankie Valli, Chet Faker, The Bamboos. And old school RnB/hip hop.
ideal holiday: Somewhere sunny near the beach (or a pool) with lots of good food. 
era of choice: 1920s and/or 1950s.
perfect Sunday: Sunshine, good food, Oskar and maybe a movie.

Friday, 25 July 2014

Friday find: The Adventures Of

If you haven’t already, bookmark The Minimalist – one of our all-time favourite online stores, we suspected it was something special when it launched back in 2011 – and they’ve continued to excite with their unusual collection of thoughtfully crafted products – mostly limited edition, and all completely covetable – ever since.  The Minimalist is the work of creative couple Leah and Darius Taylor, who live above their bricks-and-mortar store in Sydney’s Surry Hills.

Our latest look at their website was rewarded with these coppery typographic prints by another Sydney-based husband and wife team, Amanda and Benjamin of stationery line The Adventures Of. We love how they’ve taken an iconic label (Yves Saint Laurent, no less) and turned it into a whimsical turn of phrase. As they say on their website, “…we make art prints to invite happiness into a room.” After all, isn’t that what interior decorating is all about?
The print with the white background is $79 - order it here. For the black, $99 - click here to buy online.  Both are limited editions of just 100, so get in quick! 

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Behind the lens

Photography by Dave Wheeler.

In this snap-happy Instagram age, some of us might like to think of ourselves as budding photographers – until we see the work of a professional and realise that actually, an Amaro filter and some quick work with a contrast tool can only do so much.

The work of Australian photographer Dave Wheeler takes our breath away – edgy, glamorous and irresistibly appealing, each shot is the kind we’d like to see framed and on display on our walls. You might actually have some of Dave’s work up on your moodboards or tucked away in inspiration folders already – he shoots to-die-for fashion and beauty editorials for magazines like Elle, Cosmopolitan and Fashion Journal, and breathtakingly beautiful interiors for Belle.   

We asked Dave to divulge his inspiration, his deskside style and for all you instagram addicts (us included!), his top tips for taking that perfect shot.  

A glimpse of Dave's desk. Photography by Dave Wheeler.

Dave studied industrial design before deciding to pursue a life behind the camera. “I love being a part of the whole process, and seeing something being created in front of me translate to this single material image that I can take pride in having helped create,” he explains. His career highlight so far? “I would have to say shooting in New York. I’m hooked on that city, so to spend a couple of days scouting and shooting around was an experience I’ll never forget – even in their super hot summer weather.”

Photography by Dave Wheeler.

Photography by Dave Wheeler.

Interiors, fashion and art are all influences, so we’re not surprised to find an iconic Kate Moss fashion photograph propped up on Dave’s desk (pictured above), along with two of his own captivating shots. A macbook, a moleskine and a stack of Belle magazines hint at his sense of style. “I’m very much a fan of all things clean and minimal,” Dave says. “I love simplicity with attention to minor details. That said, some of my favourite shoots have been busy and extravagant shots with rich colours and plenty going on!” Take this utterly mesmerising editorial for Belle as an example – couldn’t you just dive right in?

Photography by Dave Wheeler.

On instagram, Dave admits to being as snap happy as the rest of us. “I was hesitant at first, but a client set it up for me years ago on a shoot and now I’m hooked,” he says. His top tip? “It’s all about experimenting – have fun with it! It’s digital so you can take a tonne of snaps with no real downside, unlike film.”

STYLE NOTES {dave wheeler}
dream home: it’s a tie between the Kaufmann house (Palm Springs) and the Stahl house (Los Angeles)
best scent: Bleu de Chanel
colour palette: slate/neutral greys and clean white
music of choice: 50s rock and roll!
film that inspires: Moonrise Kingdom and most other Wes Anderson films.
go-to outfit: Jeans, tan boots and basic tees
era of choice: the 50s
ideal holiday: an East to West coast road trip through the USA
perfect Sunday: Catching up on sleep, bacon and (weather permitting) soaking up the sun by the sea

Photography by Dave Wheeler.

See more of Dave Wheeler's work here or for a daily dose of his ultra-sophisticated style, follow him on instagram: @dave_wheeler.

Friday, 18 July 2014

Friday find: Boxwoodtree terrariums

“Swathe your home in greenery” and “bring back the houseplant” are some of the hottest catchphrases in the design world of late. But if, like us, you have an uncanny aptitude for killing plants, these ideas are easier said than executed. So while we work (really hard) on our plant-rearing skills, we’re turning to low-maintenance terrariums for a foolproof shot of green in our apartments. There’s something magical about these pint-sized indoor gardens, especially when planted in a quirky container. Our pick? A wonderfully whimsical vessel by Boxwoodtree on Etsy.

'House' glass terrarium, $98.

Each handmade, the glass boxes are available with black or copper edging in fabulous faceted shapes that will seriously test your geometry. We're not exactly sure what an icosahedron is, but we sure like its form...

'Icosahedron' glass terrarium, $110.

'Icosidodecahedron' glass terrarium, $142.

As these pieces are only sold online (and shipped from Russia, no less!), they don't come complete with plants and soil, but part of the fun is building your own little garden. If you’d like some guidance, one of our favourite Sydney homewares haunts, Dear September, is running a terrarium workshop later this month with 'terraring' master Lyndall Stewart of Happy Place Terrariums. Read about it here. Until then, we're off to nurture our green thumbs...