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Festive Feeling

Whether you’re a stickler for tradition or like to embrace contemporary interpretations of festivity – Christmas 2020 is offering up many a take on a time-old holiday aesthetic.


Set a modern scene with pastel. CITTA


A pared back festive feel. Lights4fun Mixed Foliage Christmas Wreath


Brighten up your Christmas Day meal. Lovely Linen Napkins in Real Red


A modern yet rustic summer Christmas. Pillow Talk


Festive shapes, lit up or not. Amsterdam House Candles, Citta


Festive ambience on demand. Wallace Cotton Xmas Pud Candle


A decoration to keep for generations. Ferm Living Winterland Brass Tree Outline


Adorn your Christmas tree with a Christmas tree! Citta Hand-Painted Christmas Tree Bauble


Tradition lives on in darker hues with classic decorations. Annie Sloan


Practical and jovial. Wallace Cotton Gingham Double Oven Glove


THE Nutcracker. Ferm Living Nutcracker in Brass


Natural instinct

It’s not hard to see why one might be yearning for a more laid-back, relaxing vibe when it comes to our post-2020 homes. In fact, many of the trends creeping into our spaces are related by virtue of their soft and earthy nature.



Natural elements such as timber and stone not only support the creation of warm, comforting spaces, but they also work well with any number of chosen aesthetics.

Whether its darker wood and ceramics for your modern mid-century moods, or light woods and stone for coastal, Nordic or Japandi looks – incorporating natural textures and colours is an instant room-booster.

Nodi Looped Jute rug

We’re also using our natural instinct to select colours, with those such as olive and sage greens playing starring roles in 2021 abodes.

Incorporating natural materials into your space can be as simple as refreshing your soft furnishings and decorative knickknacks:

James Lane Nova Mirror

Think linen cushion covers, an artistic wooden bowl coffee table ornament or wall hanging.

Linen House Marble Pink Set

Or, it can be part of a larger scale renovation or build: Think wooden flooring and wall paneling, or stone bench tops and tiles.

Mocka Asta Luxe Armchair

Whatever you do, just choose what feels natural.


Having a ball with Alexa

While having constantly-listening smart devices at home may instil a certain sense of paranoia in some, there are many benefits to be had from such technology for those prepared to embrace it.



With two third generation Echoes, an Echo Dot and an Echo Auto in our household, my family have more than embraced the convenience of the Alexa AI.

From checking the weather forecast, setting cooking timers and wake-up alarms to playing music, dimming lights, telling jokes, reading audio books, dishing out endless knowledge to monitoring home security and much more, Alexa brings a little piece of what was once the realm of science fiction into our daily lives.

With the release of the Gen 4 Echo models just in time for Christmas, there has never been a better, or more affordable time to take advantage of how smart devices can enhance your lifestyle.

The new Echoes present a stark difference in styling to the previous generation, which may not appeal to everyone.

Gone are the cylindrical and hockey-puck aesthetics of the Gen 3 Echo and Echo Dot respectively, for a more prominent spherical style that is sure to quickly capture attention in any room.

Physical appearance aside, the new and older models are essentially identical in functionality, although the ball shape does promote slightly better sound from the speaker.

With the Gen 3 models now going at a cheaper price, I’d be rushing to snap one up before they sell out, but if the shape of the new Echo models holds some appeal, then they’re still excellent value for money.


70s roar in: RESENE

Mellow mustards, bitter oranges, toasted terracotta and spicy browns – the tell-tale tones of 1970s design aesthetic – have recently made a roaring comeback in the world of decorating and are among some of the most desirable shades to include in a trend-forward interior.

Styling by Melle Van Sambeek | Photography by Bryce Carleton


Wall in Resene Gold Coast
Floor in Resene Pendragon and Resene Hairy Heath
Hall table in Resene Noir
Nesting tables in
Resene Hairy Heath (large)
Resene Pendragon (medium)
Resene Gold Coast (small) with legs in Resene Noir
Vase (with twigs) in Resene Hairy Heath
Candlesticks in Resene Noir

This retro lounge, inspired by the best elements of 1970s’ design, is the ideal place to put up your feet and enjoy a beverage among the company of family and friends.

Walls in Resene Gold Coast set the stage for dark and moody details, including the artwork, pendant lamps, art objects and console table painted Resene Nero to pull you in, while the saffron shades of the velvet chair and ottoman invite you to sit and stay awhile.

The bold pattern of the scalloped floor was created using a stencil, evoking a parquet or tiled floor, with alternating shapes painted in Resene Pendragon and Resene Hairy Heath.

For something different, pale tans like Resene Gold Coast look lovely with a soft ochre like Resene Smooth Operator or a reserved wine red like Resene Vanquish.

A rich redwood brown like Resene Hairy Heath, on the other hand, is a great fit for a clean blue green like Resene Deep Teal, a dungeon grey blue Resene Bastille or an oxidised green olive like Resene Planter.

When it comes to a crusty ciabatta tan like Resene Pendragon, a chalky, calm cream beige like Resene Blank Canvas, a creamy yellow like Resene Melting Moment and an authentic blue like Resene True Blue are ideal pairings for a country-chic bedroom or dining space.

Stencilled ‘tile’ background in Resene Pendragon and Resene Hairy Heath with A4 drawdown paint swatches (from top to bottom) in Resene Nero, Resene Hairy Heath, Resene Pendragon and Resene Gold Coast, candle stick in Resene Nero and vase in Resene Hairy Heath.

Get inspired at your local Resene ColorShop,


Gifting Trenz: Trenzseater

Personalise your living spaces with the covetable range of furniture, furnishing and fixtures from Trenzseater. Shop the range of international and local designs perfect for the gifting season in-store or online.


Model behaviour. Kate Moss, Life is a Joke print, $1023


Ornamental elegance. Mr Pinchy & Co Brutus the Bull in Large, $1134 or Small, $298


Seek out inspiration with an apt coffee table tome. Louis Vuitton Catwalk, $196


Glow up your outdoor areas. Derby Lantern Marine Grade Antique Black Small, $513


Everlasting florals are always in season. Magnolia and Budding Branch, $609


Race up your walls. Roaring Bullet Large – Q262, $1078


Mull the day over while swilling in style. Brady Decanter Set, $599


Natural fibres are tending indoors and out. No.1 Wooden Bread Board – Small, $125


Ambience on demand. Côte Noire Diffuser Set in French Morning Tea Gold, $57


Design all over: Inside-Out Design

Their clever name sums up their focus – on the inside and the outside of a home. Boutique company Inside-Out Design delivers a personalised design service across a range of design fields, but with an emphasis on landscape and interior design.



It’s a family business with brother and sister, Ben McMaster and Jane Rennie. Ben’s speciality is landscape design while Jane’s is in enhancing interiors.

Each of them leads a small team dedicated to creating sophisticated environments for the modern lifestyle.

Having several design fields under one roof makes for a very creative environment that enhances the design process between house and garden.

Homeowners all over the country have benefitted from the expertise of Inside-Out Design, including here in Christchurch.

A recent design and build project by Inside-Out Design of a large property in Bristol Street (above) entailed a total remodelling of an existing garden.

The contemporary house is now complemented by a modern, functional garden with a classical essence that Inside-Out Design is renowned for.

It caters for all seasonal interests throughout the year while maintaining structural elements which anchor the garden with the house.

Moving towards the coast Jane and Ben have loved working closely with the residents of an inspiring Godley Drive.

Balancing bolder hues and natural tones found within the coastal environment was all part of the design philosophy.

The stunning handmade wallpaper carefully hung by Apollo Painters in the entrance really set the stage.

The guest bathroom (right) gave the opportunity to play with contemporary forms and materials with the beautiful natural travertine stone laid by Terra Nova Tiling providing the perfect backdrop and compliment to the warmth of the bespoke timber cabinetry and stone basin. Statement pendants were carefully selected to add a unique design element.

Contact Inside Out Design on (03) 355 3120 or


Awards pile up for Millbrook kitchen: Mal Corboy Design

The awards cabinet is full to bursting for Mal Corboy, Director of Mal Corboy design whose Millbrook kitchen and bathroom featured in our October 15 issue showcasing its inclusion in the finalists of the Society of British Interior Designers (SBID) international competition.



Mal has now added the National Kitchen and Bathroom Association (NKBA) to his trove, taking home the Certified Designers Society (CDS) Kitchen Design Award (open to qualified designers only), for his striking and clever Millbrook kitchen.

Mal’s client frequently entertains guests in the home built by K M Smith Builders.

So in addition to the generous kitchen, Mal created a spectacular scullery behind the kitchen accessed through electric doors, which houses a preparation area, twin sinks, dishwasher, oven and steam oven, and two wine fridges.

The kitchen itself is refined and elegant with a masculine accent. Corian in the specialty colourway Sorrel, is combined with American Walnut veneer and glass cabinetry, black lacquer, and black copper.

The result is an inspiring dramatic scene which also retains an effortless simplicity.


Making an entrance: Canterbury Office Furniture

When it comes to first impressions, appearance is everything. Canterbury Office Furniture has been creating inviting, attractive and functional work environments for 20 years.


A reception counter and furniture that is visually arresting brings assurance to the visitor, while a collaborative space, meeting room, board-room, or cafeteria designed by an inhouse designer seeking the optimum for human interaction makes for a harmonious, productive work environment.

And that’s exactly what Canterbury Office Furniture has been doing for the last 20 years, while parent company, Douglas Furniture, has been manufacturing furniture here for nearly 70 years.

During these two decades, it has withstood the tide of cheap imports by focussing on the company ethic – to produce furniture, both standard and bespoke, that is locally made, aesthetically pleasing and durable.

This is a company that also recognises the gains mined from the collaborative process, and will readily work alongside end users, architects and specifiers to ensure client needs are met at every level.

Its vast range of commercial and residential projects includes storage, filing, screens and partitions, wardrobes and kitchens, and myriad outfitting accessories.

Visit the showroom at 80 Hayton Road, Wigram.


Embrace your curves

Take the edge off 2020 with soft, curved upholstered furniture. Cocoon-esque chairs, couches and ottomans are not only a nod to 1960’s style, it’s exactly what we need right now; something soft and cushy to melt into at the end of another inevitably weird 2020 day.




Homely comforts have taken on new meaning this year as consumers are spending their money in the same places they’ve been spending their time – at home.

David Trubridge Navicula Pendant

And those purchases are reflecting all the things we want from our safe places; comfort and aesthetic appeal.


Oz Furniture Benny Irregular Mirror


Curved, puffy seating has been making an appearance in interior design schemes of note; with jelly bean shaped couches and round, padded chairs becoming lounge centerpieces.

Trenzseater Brice Chair

Designs by Australian furniture maker Sarah Ellison, as featured in our October 1 issue, have acquired a particularly strong following, as have those curvaceous options by BoConcept, Trenzseater, and David Trubridge.

Mocka Oslo Bar Stool

The pull of circular motifs does not end there, as we see the shapes occur in mirrors, tables, light fittings, rugs, banquets, paintings, coffee tables, vases and ornaments, too.

Marken Large Round Ottoman in Rose

Curves offer a departure from the straight lines our abodes often feature, providing both balance and interest in well-rounded measures.


An exotic aesthetic

You may not be able to indulge in any globetrotting right now, but even more reason to bring the exotic aesthetic into your home.


Art, lighting, rugs, cushions and beaded decorative accessories are some of the key tools in your decorating arsenal when it comes to achieving a luxurious exotic look.



Think vibrant colours, mother of pearl inlay, ornately carved wood, richly hued upholstery, and intricate mosaic or terra cotta tile details.



Perhaps it’s time to pull out your own travel photos and ornaments? Here’s some Metropol inspiration for how to exotify your space.