It Has Been A While!
Hello to you –
It has been a long while since I have written, but this year seems to have accelerated more than any other year before. We have been flat-chat for the past few months finishing off our new factory and studio complex, whilst still working on several projects, some of them all-consuming for the whole team.
We still have to add to the rather sparse landscaping around the property, but I have managed to keep the flower garden on the roof deck alive (that’s a feat in itself). Having all three companies together (Resident Hero Custom Furniture, Kitchens by Resident Hero and Di Henshall Interior Design) is fantastic. The logistical nightmare of having three separate entities all in different locations was unsustainable, so this move, just for that result, has been worth it.
We’ve got a couple of new team members, Juliette Curry (graduate B.Int.Design QUT) and Tia Rowed, who is our new design team assistant. She runs non-stop all day, so at least she can say she’s not bored. Juliette, originally from the Gold Coast, has dived into Noosa life and has worked with me on some pretty major projects already, including a couple of medical practices, which I absolutely love doing. This is a phenomenon, because I can’t stand anything to do with medical “things”, but designing for doctors and dentists is a joy – they are so appreciative and adventurous, which is very refreshing!
I just got back from Europe. I was in Paris for a few days, where I represented the Design Institute of Australia, as the Australian delegate, at an international design symposium in Paris. Fifteen countries were represented and the idea is to join like-minded bodies/organisations from all over the world together to strengthen global relations furthering good design and design education. It was a huge thrill to be asked to represent Australia and for twenty minutes or so I felt like a VIP.
I also spent a few days in Italy, where I found an amazing second-hand shop in Tuscany that was more like a huge warehouse of everything you can possibly imagine – including light fittings and lamps. Many of you would know that I have an incurable obsession with collecting lamps and lights from all over the world, with never an idea of where I’m supposed to put them when I get back. So, I spotted, from a thousand paces, a pendant light from the 60s (love that decade) and bought it back with me, dissembled into five separate pieces and carried (very carefully!) back in my cabin luggage. I’m going to hang it in our new reception area, even though our electrician said it is impossible to get electricity to where I want to put it – but he’s always negative like that, so I just ignored him.
Many of the projects we are doing at the moment are major renovations, basically reinventions of houses/apartments that have good bones, but basically nothing else to redeem them. The framework is good, but the execution doesn’t suit the lifestyle or the personalities of our clients, so that’s where we step in. We have been working on a particular, huge house for a few months now and I would doubt anyone will recognise it when we’ve finished. The clients are totally delighted with the emerging transformation and I can’t wait to see them move back in and thoroughly enjoy what we’ve created for a long and happy future.
When I was in Paris I visited the Maison et Objets exposition, which I’ve been to many times before,and it is always good to see that we are not wildly different (or behind) in trends and technology. I saw a lot of what you could call BLING – shiny gold, shiny chrome and shiny copper in lighting, furniture and objets d’art. This would indicate that the design world thinks we are in an upward swing, because you definitely don’t see this trend when we’re in a recession, so here’s hoping the BLING continues! Digital printing has exploded into so many different applications now, it is mind-blowing to see some of the printing that is possible now, both in fabrics, laminates, porcelain and also wallcoverings. I’ve always been a huge fan of wallpaper and am totally excited and amazed at some of the printing that is available. Wallpaper (don’t cringe all you people over sixty!) is and always has been the best way to transform a room/space in less than a day that can literally turn a blank canvas into an art form – don’t dismiss the idea!
Until next time, please keep in touch – we’re always here.
Di Henshall FDIA MBIID
Accredited Designer DIA