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Centre of Attention

Centre of Attention

The only way to dine this summer is alfresco so why not turn your outdoor area into a vibrant hub for family and friends to gather?


Centre of Attention


Outdoor spaces should really be thought of as an extension of your living room and that definitely applies to entertaining. Furnishings should be as comfortable and attractive as interior furnishings to really maximise the indoor/outdoor flow. Garden furniture has come a long way from cheap, plastic, flimsy furniture and the options to create the ultimate outdoor setting are extensive.



Centre of Attention
Centre of Attention


If you’re thinking of buying new furniture first consider the look you want to achieve. With the wide variety of styles available, consider choosing a style that harmonises with the architectural design of your home. Comfort is important, so shop where you can see the furniture on display. Sit in the chairs, relax in the lounges and check the height of tables to make sure they’re functional. Lastly, construction quality is important and you should buy from a reputable manufacturer willing to back products.


Centre of Attention
Centre of Attention





An essential item: Allwood

No garden should ever be complete without a shed, and with Allwood Products eco-friendly shed solutions, your shed will stand the test of time.




Whether you need a sleepout, studio, home office or even a traditional shed, Allwood Products should be your only choice. Utilising the family-owned service of Gibson Timber to all their products, every shed is constructed from locally sourced durable New Zealand timbers.
Allwood Products are more than happy to discuss your shed and timber needs and how simple Allwood Products sheds are to install.



For more information on Allwood Products range of sheds and to find a display site near you, visit or phone 03 547 7026.


Garden Goals

Garden Goals

The second half of the year is ramping up and it’s the time of the year where we start to appreciate our exterior spaces so much more. Creating the perfect area outside can make this experience all the more palatable.


Garden Goals


In the spirit of spring’s new beginnings, we have put together a 2018 to-do list of areas the professionals can help ensure you have a great 2019. First up when embarking on your landscaping journey, consider what you want from your space. This might be an area for entertaining where you can host BBQs and outdoor dinner parties, a space for the kids to play, a spot you can relax in over the weekend, or if your garden is on the micro side of size, it might simply be about maximising the space available.

Engage a quality landscaping company to get the gardens looking tip top and you may find there’s less maintenance and upkeep when things are done right the first time. Make a plan and create a budget to get there. Engage your landscaping experts early, as they will know what is achievable and be able to assist with the planning stage.


Consider what you want from your space


A new deck is an easy and affordable way to extend your living spaces that will last for years. Likewise, paving too is a quick and easy way to dress up a tired space. Whether you want to create a special focal point, extend your living space or even just add a small pathway, you can get creative with the shape, size and pattern.



Louvre Solutions

The height of sophistication: Louvre Solutions

Indulge in the height of sophistication, the freedom of outdoor entertaining and relaxing in style to your own schedule.


Louvre Solutions


Spring is upon us and with the promise of long summer evenings on the horizon, now is the perfect time to plan on creating an exterior space that will enhance your outdoor festivities. A louvered roof is an innovative patio/deck cover that, with just the touch of a button, transforms your environment and lets you extend your living space into the great outdoors.  Entertaining at home has never been easier and Canterbury-based Louvre Solutions, owned and operated by Craig Rogers, knows how to create the perfect outdoor space. Whether entertaining or relaxing, they complete your outdoor environment. The louvres move at your command to allow full sunshine, to filter shade or to provide solid rain protection.

Louvre Solutions’ louvre systems are manufactured with quality elements, precision engineering and aesthetic options to realise your vision of the ultimate outdoor space. The patio louvre system is strong and conforms to nearly all wind and snow load requirements. The louvres integrate flawlessly into any architectural style. Louvre Solutions manufactures its louvres from extruded aluminium which offers greater durability than traditional patio covers. Unlike plastic or fabric, these components will outperform in heat and rain.


“When we started out, these premium products were prohibitively expensive, reserved for the elite. While the quality of the products has never faltered, we have been able to make them accessible to a wider market and work with a number of clients ranging from entry level properties through to very high-spec homes,” Craig explains. The benefits of a louvre roof are many, ranging from aesthetic to practical. They are a brilliant addition to homes and can be proactively planned as part of the design/build process or can be retrofitted once the need is identified post construction.  “Following the earthquakes, there has been a significant shift to subdivisions where there is generally no established exterior cover. Houses are exposed and owners try to manage environmental conditions and the impact they have on their homes through other means, with often poor results. We collaborated with engineers to come up with the ideal system to mitigate these challenges and a louvre roof proved to be the ultimate solution.”

With more than ten years in the industry, Louvre Solutions’ reputation has been built on a solid foundation. Craig and his team pride themselves on their burgeoning portfolio of repeat and referred business generated through word of mouth, independent builders, architects, landscape architects and building companies, all of whom recommend the company to potential clients. Louvre Solutions manufactures its products at its Canterbury-based factory. A louvre roof can be ready for installation within four to six weeks, making today the perfect time to order yours to ensure maximum summer enjoyment.



Visit for more information or contact Craig on
0227 356 286.


Artworks Landscape

Covetable outdoor spaces: Artworks Landscape

When thinking about landscaping specialists, the team at Artworks Landscape Ltd should spring to mind. They have been creating in Canterbury for more than 30 years – the team knows their business, and they love what they do.


Artworks Landscape


“Being resourceful and adaptable is the key,” says Ross Marriott, who started the company. “Our clients’ needs all differ – and we work on small courtyard projects, that require intimacy and privacy, right through to the grand projects incorporating swimming pools, outside kitchens, lounging areas, large paved areas and technical planted areas.”
The outside of a home is an extension of who the homeowner is, and what they like to see and do. “The first and most important ingredient is good design; one that fits and functions well with your lifestyle, creates spaces that look amazing when you are in them and can be appreciated from inside the home as well.”

There are so many influences on today’s new designs, and people are investing in what complements their home and allows them to enjoy their outdoor space throughout the entire year. Artworks Landscapes’ lead designer, Luke Robertson, is a seasoned professional with extensive horticultural knowledge. He enjoys the challenge of creating small, intimate areas, through to the thrill of seeing a grand masterpiece come to fruition.


“We invite clients to come and visit our award winning show garden in Prestons Road during weekdays, or to check out and enquire about us working with you via our website,,” Ross says.
Artworks Landscape Ltd is Canterbury’s design and build landscaping expert.



Perfect plastering: Geocoat

Plastering is an art form – and a good plasterer is so highly skilled, they can make their craft look effortless. Geocoat Ltd owner Lewis Lester is testament to this. He has consistently been producing the highest quality work across the South Island for the past 15 years, establishing his own business in 2014.




Specialising in residential new builds, repairs and light commercial, Lewis leads a team of five qualified tradesmen, providing both exterior and custom interior plastering services, including marbled plaster and decorative finishes. Licensed under Resene Construction Systems, the Geocoat team is constantly upskilling and always keeps up-to-date with the latest products and techniques, such as the new range of interior products using natural minerals and breathable plasters. The skilled team can create anything from a standard service to a stunning, custom-made feature wall, to enhance any area of the home. “We are open to any project and have worked on everything from million dollar homes to the small, niggly jobs that no one wants to do – we always go the extra mile,” Lewis says.

“Using only the best products, we can find a solution to every problem, at a reasonable price.”
Lewis is passionate about the industry, enjoys building relationships with clients, and prides himself on ensuring everyone is happy. “Because I’m on-site and on the tools every day, I’m able to oversee every job to ensure only the highest quality.”
Call Lewis today to arrange a consultation and a free quote.


Visit for more information, or follow on Facebook to keep up to date with what’s going on.


Innovate Renovate

The reno duo: Innovate Renovate

Naturally if you intend to renovate your home or just need that back door fixed, you need a company you can rely on. Which is why, for the past five years, families and homeowners throughout Christchurch have been requesting the services of Ron and Adrian Bradley, the father and son team behind Innovate Renovate.


Innovate Renovate


“We do anything house related,” Adrian says.
“From something small like fixing a leaking tap, to building a new house.”
With father Ron starting his trade back in the sixties and son Adrian able to tackle jobs of any kind, you won’t find a better partnership in Christchurch. “After the earthquake we started to undertake household repairs for people and the business grew from there,” Adrian says.


We do anything house related


With Ron and Adrian, there is no middle man. They also offer a free no obligation quote and will guide you every step of the way to achieve exactly what you imagine your home to be.
From installing smoke alarms, to revamping your bathroom, or installing a new deck, Innovate Renovate is rapidly becoming everyone’s definitive go-to for home renovation and repairs, so why not make it yours?


For more information, visit or phone Adrian on 027 292 5999.


Terra Viva

The annual bout of spring fever: Terra Viva

It happens every year without fail! Looking out at the dismal garden on a grey July day I often wonder if we’ll summon the enthusiasm to ‘attack’ the garden once again. But sure enough, by mid-August we’re suddenly buzzing around like worker bees, dreaming of summer vegetables and flowering colour everywhere


Terra Viva


So how do we harness this ‘infectious enthusiasm’ to transform the dormant winter garden into a thing of beauty – and a source of nutritious deliciousness? Take a stroll round the garden, make a list of what needs doing, stick it on the fridge and tick the completed jobs – very satisfying! The Constant Gardener at home is always the first to catch ‘Spring Fever’, even before the weather warms. Already she’s created two new raised strawberry beds; strawberries love moist but well-drained soil however, the traditional ‘mounded’ rows can result in uneven watering.


Luckily, we love brussel sprouts – we’ve certainly eaten truckloads lately. “We have to finish them,” said The Constant Gardener, “I need the space for the blueberries”.
The key is eating them small, cut into quarters, cooked with olive oil, bacon and hazel nuts, and with a fried egg on top – the combo makes for a winning brunch dish. “The answer lies in the soil,” was the catchline in an old radio programme, and it still holds true. Preparation is everything, particularly for vegetables, so dig the soil over to a spade depth and mix in sheep pellets, compost, and Real Blood & Bone (double the strength of the regular product). During the season, use a side dressing of a general plant food like Nitrophoska Blue.

“Grow what you eat!” is a good guide for planting – no point in growing varieties you don’t like. Potatoes can be sprouted now; broccoli is easy and quick; lettuces handle cooler conditions; beetroot is happy from September on; spinach and silverbeet are reliable standbys; peas thrive in spring, and pak choi prefers the moderate temperatures of spring and autumn. All herbs can be planted now but keep basil and tomatoes in a warm sheltered spot like a glasshouse or the kitchen windowsill. Dividing the vege garden into a few smaller beds (raised is great) rather than one big area makes access much easier and less challenging to maintain.


Roses are often the most popular plant in the flower garden and rightly so with their six months of colour, their scent, and their long vase life. The key to success with roses is water, plus regular feeding, plus a good spray regime. Summer annuals are the best way to reinforce garden colour schemes and the choice is huge with petunias, lobelia, impatiens and antirrhinums in a huge range of colours.

Summer’s coming, so grow your own sanctuary!



Willow Landscapes

Creating exceptional exteriors: Willow Landscapes

Even on a gloomy, drizzly winter’s day, the view from Carl Gildea’s workplace is spectacular. Carl and his Willow Landscapes team are high on the hills above Halswell laying out a New Zealand-themed garden complete with a koru-shaped feature pathway and rocks of every shape and size.

Willow Landscapes

“We were given a basic concept plan drawn up some time ago by a landscape architect,” Carl says. “And we’ve refined it and developed it into a working design. Our job has been the hard landscaping – the paths, the paving, the koru and rock features and the stone chip tracks, as well as installing an irrigation system for the native plants that the homeowner has selected.”
The rocks for the garden came courtesy of the neighbouring farmer. “He told us to just help ourselves from his rock pile. That was a bit easier said than done. Getting the big ones down to the garden itself was something of a challenge!”

But for Carl, challenges and turning complex design ideas into reality are what make his job as a landscaper so interesting. Willow Landscapes has quickly become known for being able to handle all aspects of landscape design and construction, from paving, decking, fencing and building block or wooden retaining walls to laying new lawns and replanting garden beds.
“We really enjoy the variety of work we do and the different locations we get to go to – everything from private homes to schools and churches.”

For a free quote call Carl on
021 536 442.


Louvre Solutions

Luxurious Louvres: Louvre Solutions

Adding a louvre roof to your existing home or new build in the middle of winter is the perfect timing to protect you from the winter elements and to be ready for the summer months.

Louvre Solutions

“The weather may be considerably cooler at this time of year but a customised, automated louvre roof over a patio, spa pool, or deck, or as a freestanding feature anywhere on a property, provides a space sheltered from the elements,” says Craig Rogers, owner of Canterbury-based company, Louvre Solutions.
“There are often fine, crisp days in winter when it would be great to be outside and the protection of a louvre roof can make doing that so much more appealing, especially with our integrated heating and side screens.”
During the warmer months, louvre roofs are equally beneficial, making them structures for all seasons.
Craig has significant experience in the architectural louvre industry and knows the benefits of his company’s products. Quality is paramount too over the range of products, which, as well as motorised opening louvre roofs, also includes elliptical sun louvres, privacy and security screens, gates, fences, chimney cowls, cedar louvres and vertical sun shades – all the company’s louvre roofs come with a ten-year warranty.
With more than ten years in the industry, Louvre Solutions’ reputation has been built on a solid foundation. Testament to this is the positive feedback from clients and a robust network of contacts including independent builders, building companies, architects and landscape architects, all of whom recommend the company to potential clients.


Louvre SolutionsLouvre Solutions

“I work with our clients throughout the entire process for every project, from design to manufacturing and installation. This relationship is very important to Louvre Solutions. I know what works and what doesn’t, both from a practical and aesthetic perspective and attending to any adjustment needs that may follow is all part of our service,” says Craig.
The custom-made louvre roof product, with bespoke features like powder coated colouring tailored to the client’s needs, can be included in a new build and/or retrofitted to an existing home. Many louvre-roof installations are taking place now, not only to take advantage of the benefits they offer during winter months, but also to be well-prepared for summer.
While Louvre Solutions’ headquarters and factory are based in the heart of Canterbury, the company has agents throughout the South Island based in Timaru, Wanaka, Nelson, Marlborough and Queenstown.
Visit for more information, or phone 0275 356 286.