Wonderful Wall Clocks

When I recently stumbled upon the creative crafts of a study buddy of mine I was instantly inspired to do a quick post on another great obsession of mine – wall clocks. Just like with scatter cushions (my primary obsession), wall clocks are excellent feature items. I have a whole Pinterest board solely dedicated to wall clocks – I specially like unusual, funky and clever wall clock designs. I thought I’d share a handful of awesome wall clocks by local designers with you…

Amy McCallum, who studied Interior Design with me, has branded her crafted lovelies under the Amy Lauren Creations banner. She creates gorgeous rustic treasures from salvaged and reclaimed items. Her two upcycled wall clocks immediately grabbed my attention – they are made out of an old fan grid cover and a discarded bicycle wheel. The result is altogether unique and funky – I love its industrial feel!

I love these quirky and colourful pop cow clocks by Smink!

Love these whimsical clock designs by Durban-based creatives, the Shaw Sisters. They’re made from 6mm CNC-cut Birch ply wood – you can purchase these from Meekel.

This little elegant beauty, designed by Woltemade,  is called the “Free Range Clock” – it’s made from maple ply and has a leather and brass stud surround. Isn’t it just beautiful?!

Found these awesome vintage map clocks on Bombshell Belle‘s website – their quite big too… about 60cm in diameter. I especially love the one on the right with the rustic rope detail – it’s got a very definite nautical feel.

The Camo Clock by Capetonian design duo, jessejames  (Jesse Ede and James Bisset) is made from durable OSB wood. OSB (Oriented strand board) uses the wood from trees that grow quickly and sustainably, so this little wall clock is environmentally conscious as well. And I love that even the clock hands are made from OBS! You can purchase this online via 5rooms.com

Below is some of the gorgeous and interesting international wall clocks I pinned to my Pinterest board… be sure to check out the board (here) for some awesome clock inspiration!


Graphic Wallpaper – Bold and Individual!

Although any interior designer or decorator worth his or her salt knows the added value of wallpaper, the last two decades the public perception of wallpaper took a bit of a dive. However, in the past five years (thanks to current trends finally reaching Joe Public) wallpaper is back and back in a big way.

You see it everywhere; you know the wallpaper I’m talking about – bold, stylized, graphic and individual. The current wallpaper trends are all about the “wow” factor – no blending in, we want it to make a statement! The trend also incorporates beautiful whimsical and nostalgic designs, and we see many types of wallpaper with either a very definite illustrative, sketchy quality or otherwise realistic, photographic features.

Digital printing has enabled wallpaper designers to go in newer and bolder directions. Furthermore, with the introduction of custom wallpaper – the sky is the limit. You can have anything printed onto wallpaper … talk about the ultimate individual touch!

The truth is, wallpaper conveys an opulence, luxury, and interest that paint just can’t – it creates that added dimension or layer.

Wallpaper also has that unique ability to be “translated” into any design style or statement – gentle organic lines can have a calm, grounded effect, while bold geometrics add vibrancy and oomph to a drab space.

We often find that our friends and clients are all for the idea of wallpaper but are hesitant to commit to plastering a whole room with it. That is what makes the current graphic wallpaper trend all the more special – you only need to apply it to one focal wall and that’s statement enough! A guest loo is also a perfect spot for a bit of wallpaper, it guarantees “wow!”

South Africa has so many awesome trendy wallpaper designers and suppliers – here is some of our favourites…

All these lovely wallpapers can be order through us!

Just drop is a message!

{click on images to be directed to relevant websites}
Graphic designer Sean Crozier of Design Meets Life designed these adorable children’s wallpapers. Sean’s quirky illustrations are absolutely magical!
The talented ladies from Mitat designed this striking wallpaper for Robin Sprong. Simply gorgeous – I can just imagine it in a woman’s clothing boutique or a opulent boudoir.
Another gorgeous wallpaper available from Robin Sprong – this one designed by Michael of Chandler House. Antiques cutlery – doesn’t it just speak of Michael?!
Love this soft sketchy geo designed by Renee Rossouw – also for Robin Sprong.
Wallpaper by Cara Saven Photography │The Design Tabloid
Just two of our friend, Cara Saven’s new wallpaper designs. Don’t you just adore the Vintage postcards and quirky sceptical designs!
And some beautiful sketchy bicycle and heart designs from our sweethearts at Design Kist.

A bold black and white statement – Rickety House by Unwrapped.
Lovely peachy coloured duotone hearts by Handmade by Me. The design is called “Sweethearts” – cute!
Gorgeous leafy wallpaper from Scion!
Some vintage swimwear by Dupenny.
A bit of typography from Wall & Deco.
And of course we had to include some Design Team into the mix as they are the forerunners of this amazing trend!

Décor Dictionary: Demilune

A pretty contemporary 3-leg demilune table on the left and on the right a 4-leg demilune with a drop-leaf top. The drop-leaf rests on top of its half-moon counterpart and flips open to rest on hidden or swing-out legs to form a full circle table.

Demilune:   (or demi-lune) is a French term (meaning “half-moon”) referring to a semi-circular wall table in the console family. A typical demilune table has three to four legs. Some traditional demilune tables have a drop-leaf top and pull out legs that open the tabletop into a full circle – these are often used as card tables. 

[Images sources: 1 & 2]

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Plascon Colour Forecast 2013

Plascon launched their much anticipated 2013 Colour Forecast at Decorex Joburg last week. As per tradition, four designers / decorators were selected to interpret the new forecast colour palettes in individual room scenes. You can take a peak at the stands: here.


Anne Roselt, international colour expert and Plascon’s colour manager explains that each forecast aims to capture the feeling of what’s happening in society at that current time. In today’s quick paced, high stress, ever-changing environment we are often bombarded with continuous discord and a flurry of imagery quickly resulting in information overload.


“In times of uncertainty like this we crave stability and balance in our lives and for that very reason the theme for the Plascon 2013 Colour Forecast is called Balance. It explores how we use colour to bring harmony when everything around us is constantly changing. Whether it is the calm we find in whites and soft pastel colours, or the energy we seek in bright daring colours, we can always find balance in colour.”

“The 2013 Colour forecast is inspirational and a guide on what we have discovered in our travels, but there are no rules,” says Roselt. “Colour is something to be enjoyed and we hope everyone is able to find a palette that can help them find harmony and balance in their home.”

The forecast consist of  four colour themes or palettes – Simplicity, Contrast, Pause and Dare.

The Simplicity palette is inspired by light white tones, which appeal to our desire for peace and serenity. Also included in this theme are metallics, which add a bit of sparkle and optimism and green, which brings a sense of nature.

Contrast uses deep blues and greys together with high contrast brights like fuscia pink and bright yellow. The combination may be unexpected, but extremes of colour balance each other perfectly.

Pause is light and feminine, but still connected and mature. The overall effect hints at nostalgia, while retaining a very welcome sense of the contemporary. It incorporates the delicious Spring pastel colours that are currently trending international. I love this palette!

Lastly, the vibrant Dare colour theme. The overall feeling of this palette is energetic without being manic – bright optimistic colours to lift our spirits and keep us motivated.

The 8th issue of Plascon SPACES  – a magazine dedicated to showcasing and translating the latest décor, design and colour trends using colour and paint – also hit the shelves yesterday. The major focus of The Trends Issue is Plascon’s 2013 Colour Forecast. In celebration of the annual Forecast, readers will also receive a Forecast brochure and mini colour fan-deck for hands-on creative inspiration. Cool!

[Images & info via Plascon]

Gorgeous 60s Pop Art Scatters!

Lookie here, lookie here! Check out these super dooper retro-tastic scatter cushions from Halogen! By now you already know that beautiful or quirky scatter cushions makes me go weak at the knees and these novelty vintage Pop Art beauties are making my credit card hand a little itchy – I want!

Here’s the best part…

You can order these scatter cushions through The Design Tabloid! Yay!

Available while stock lasts!

They are R 399 each

(excluding delivery cost)

Just drop us a message: here 

Giant Women In South African Design

Growing up as part of the Baby Boomer Generation, I have seen the status of women change so radically. And like most change which is gradual, some things that are part of the fabric of daily life, almost go by unnoticed. Like in my case, the evolutionary change in the status of women. I still remember in my teens, being totally confused as to the reason that there was the (much publized) movement called ‘women’s lib‘. I was a teenager, coping with my own teenager stuff and the fact that women needed to be liberated was the last thing on my agenda. But it happened and today our younger generation of women can reap the benefits of the work achieved by the giant women leaders, that went before them.

I would imagine that in the current generation of young girls and ladies, there may be many who may not always appreciate what some of the giant women have done to raise the status of women in our country. And that is why, I for one revel in the month of August being dedicated as Women’s Month here in SA and more particularly, 9th of August being declared a national public holiday, to honour the women of our nation. Dr John DeMartini (my guru as I am known to call him) always encourages us to : “stand on the shoulders of giants“. Since that is a philosophy that I embrace, Marica and I feel we would want to feature some of those “giant women in the design field” with you today.

Jay Smith

My first encounter with Jay was many years ago, at the start of my decorating career. She was already an Interior Designer much in demand. However, Jay has become synonymous with textile design and manufacture for the Interiors market in the past 20-odd years. Her background in Fine Art made it possible for her to create textile designs with a different and unique angle – building her own brand and ‘handwriting’ (as we like to call it). But, more than that, she was able to keep it local in terms of manufacture – as Jay puts it “through thick and thin.” Being one of the forerunners in this field, she has paved the way for future South African textile designers to express & create their unique fabric designs. The Jay Smith Collection now exports fabrics to suppliers in Australia, UK, Mauritius and Japan. We just love the Jay Smith motto: “Call me obsessive if you must, I can no longer conceal my lust, it’s fabric that turns my iron will to dust!”

Andrea Graff

Love this gorgeous portrait of Andrea taken by Patrick Ryan (patrickryanimages.com). The interior images are via Andrea’s website.

“Renowned for her warm, sophisticated, sensual and beautiful approach, Andrea Graff is one of South Africa’s foremost interior designers. Her signature style layers antique finds with contemporary cutting-edge furniture, and combines objets d’art, luxurious fabrics, decorative patterns, textures and colours with a profound respect for architectural structure and detailing. Her projects range from urban family homes, apartments and holiday pied-à-terres to hotels, bars, lounges, clubs, restaurants and executive offices for clients in South Africa, the United Kingdom, USA, UAE, Africa & Australia.” (via Andrea Graff)

Carrol Boyes

[Images via thesecretbaobab.com]

Artist, designer, entrepreneur and successful business woman, Carrol Boyes is recognized as an icon in the South African Design Industry. Her beautiful upmarket homeware and tabletop items has made her a household South Africa name. Strong branding, a passion and commitment to South African design and ongoing investment in human resources ensures the continued success of the Company. She has been honoured with many a awards including the 2008 SA’s Most Influential Women in Business in the Arts & Culture category. (via Carrol Boyes)

Reney Otto

[Images via VISI Magazine, Issue: Winter 61 / Photographer: Dook]

Reney Otto, dubbed ‘the grand dame of South African interiors‘ has amongst her accalades a collaboration with some of South Africa’s top architectural teams on projects including FNB Bank City in Johannesburg. She says she is ever-inspired by the energy of the late Estee Lauder and another American icon, Carolina Herrera – both of whom have influenced her personal style. Reney’s fashion sensiblities are evident in much of her work.  For example, she has developed a signature paint colour, dubbed ‘Armani‘. A neutral ‘greige‘ tone. As an enthusiatic collector, her globetrotting excursions are a large part of her design inspiration. Her Mantra – ” perfection is  not impossible, merely probable”. (via Visi Magazine, Issue: Winter 61)

…and future great – Gemma Orkin

[Images via West Elm]

We though to include Cape Town ceramicist Gemma Orkin into our giant woman of South African design list because she embodies all characteristics that  make a Great. Even though she has not been in the industry as long as the ladies above (although 15 years is nothing to be shy about), she has a passion for South Africa, design and her medium – ceramics. Each piece, handmade and hand-painted, contains Gemma’s unique signature – a sunny, almost child-like illustration of indigenous South African fauna & flora. She has also recently collaborated with USA company West Elm, who is now selling her gorgeous designs to their American market. Watch this lady… she’s a future great!