Subscribe to Queensland Homes Magazine here: http://www.queenslandhomes.com.au/get-the-mag/
They say time flies when you’re having fun, so I suppose I really shouldn’t be surprised that we’ve passed the halfway mark for 2017 because my team and I have been here, there and everywhere and having a blast! Without trying to make you too jealous, I want to share with you what we’ve been up to for the last couple of months and the great things we’ve learnt in our travels.
An island adventure
With three clients owning properties on the prestigious Hamilton Island, I flew up to assess the impact of Cyclone Debbie that tore through this beautiful island getaway in March. I had an idea of what to expect, but I was shocked at the extent of the damage and the power of Mother Nature. In one apartment the glass windows had been sucked in and became embedded in the walls at the far end of the hallway and I even found shards of glass in the mattresses – luckily no one was staying there at the time. After a trip back to Melbourne to discuss the damage and restoration plans with the three owners, we’re now working on replacing, renovating and restoring these glamorous homes.
International inspiration… destination USA
In my last newsletter I briefly hinted at an interior design tour of LA and NYC that I was to co-host. From 9-18 May this trip saw a group of 10 Australian designers explore the best in residential design across the East and West Coasts of America. We stopped in at Hollywood, Pasadena, Palm Springs, Kips Bay House, Manhattan, Brooklyn and more.
We visited internationally renowned furniture and textile showrooms, met world-class designers and absorbed the latest U.S. trends. I soaked in all the design, culture and inspirational atmosphere to bring home to share a whole host of new ideas.
One standout of the trip was visiting Palm Springs in California. I was transported, not only into the desert, but into a time that seems to have stood still. Somewhere between 1950 and 1970. No other city in the whole of the United States represents mid-century architecture as well or as prolifically as does Palm Springs.
The introduction of several steel framed houses in the sixties, by renowned architect, Donald Wexler, cemented the tone for the desert-style, low pitched bungalows that now are the icon of this beautiful, quirky city and a must-see for all architecture devotees that come flocking to see the simple, yet perfectly formed, tiny houses. Drinking in the atmosphere (and the Pina Coladas) and meeting the most wonderful, generous-spirited locals, I immediately regained the sense that life is a colourful, wonderful, diverse journey, filled with extraordinary experiences, one of them being PALM SPRINGS.
Back in the Land of Oz…
I have such a fantastic team and to thank them for their tireless work and further develop our team cohesion, we set off on a trip together to the Hunter Valley for 3 nights. Picture this – 8 people, 2 two-storey homes, 2 golf buggies, delectable food and plenty of wine… as I’m sure you can imagine, we had a great time. Perhaps even a little too much fun… let’s just say we may not be allowed back to the golf course. The Hunter Valley is an incredible place, and in just 3 days we experienced as much of it as possible including vineyard tours, wine and cheese tastings, yoga, bike riding, international cuisine at award-winning restaurants and golf cart races (the golf course didn’t like this as much as we did!).
Then we were off again, homeward bound for some, but for Jaye and I it was straight on to New Zealand for a huge installation.
Across the ditch to the land of the long white cloud…
Although the Queenstown weather gave us single digit cold days, we hardly noticed as we were running around, heaving and lifting for a 7-day intensive install. We unpacked an entire house, washed every single item, brought in a 4m long dining table, 150kg outdoor coffee table and many other large furniture items including a bedhead that had to be craned in by a HiAb lift. Getting us to this 7-day install required almost a year of planning, designing, selections and trips to NZ to get it just right. The end result is a very happy client and a very proud team.
Wow, I’m almost puffed just writing about the last few months, but I’m also really excited about what’s in store for us. More design trips, team days, trade shows and I’ve been asked to judge the upcoming HIA Women In Building & Construction awards this year.
Make sure you follow the Di Henshall Interior Design Facebook page so you can see all the shots from our adventures, our design insights and updates to inspire you.www.facebook.com/dihenshallinteriordesign
Until next time,
Di Henshall FDIA MBIID
Accredited Designer DIA
Is it autumn already, judging by the heat it still feels like summer. We’re very lucky to live in such a beautiful part of the world.
There are so many exciting things going on this year… where do I start? I guess you could say we are ‘officially’ open, our signage is finally complete. All passers-by now know who is inside that big concrete building on Gateway Drive and what we do, thanks to Chris and his cherry picker. Stay tuned for our new look website due to be launched very shortly.
I think I will need to book a holiday at home to fit in with all the travel this year both internationally and up and down the east coast of Australia. I recently visited the Trade Fairs in Sydney which were fantastic, it is essential to check out new products, so Jaye and I had a whirlwind trip to see some of our most trusted suppliers, plus a few new ones that have popped up.
Miele, one of our favourite brands, has invited me to an exclusive luncheon in Melbourne in April prepared by the fabulous Shannon Bennett of Vue de Monde. I’ve had the pleasure of his outstanding cooking before so I’m pretty excited to be included in this brilliant event to launch a new series of Miele products.
I also ventured down to Melbourne re our winery project and had a fabulous helicopter ride with some lovely friends to Levantine Hill in the Yarra Valley for lunch – great way to travel.
In April three of us have another big install in beautiful Queenstown, I’ll definitely get away from the heat there. In May I am co-hosting a small interior design tour of LA and NYC – too much to say about that, so I’ll let you know how that goes after the event. I have another couple of really interesting trips abroad later in the year, which I’ll also tell you about closer to the time.
We have a new team member, Claudia Poch, originally from South America, Claudia is a very experienced, savvy designer, who has moved her family from Sydney to be with us. Pretty cool.
I am currently working on a project that we actually did some years ago, but it goes without saying that after years of abuse (did I say that? I meant USE) by holidaymakers, we are going back in to revitalize some apartments to make sure they stay current and vibrant. Australians are very discerning travellers and they expect to see energized spaces when they return to their favourite holiday places. I regard refurbishment as advertising for a business, without advertising, a business will never reach its full potential, and so it is with holiday investment properties. It is easy for us to see what needs to be done, often just reupholstering a sofa can breathe new life into an otherwise ordinary place. I remember the chair that some clients gave me, that was sitting in their attic for years, and when they saw how we had reupholstered it they wanted it back!
All the best to you and I do hope, if I don’t speak to you before Easter, that you have a good break.
Di Henshall FDIA MBIID
Accredited Designer DIA