About Habitusliving


Habitus is a movement for living in design. We’re an intelligent community of original thinkers in constant search of native uniqueness in our region.


From our base in Australia, we strive to capture the best edit, curating the stories behind the stories for authentic and expressive living.


Habitusliving.com explores the best residential architecture and design in Australia and Asia Pacific.


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Design Accessories

Deus Canggu

If you’ve ever wandered into the Camperdown store of Deus ex Machina in Sydney, you’ll know that there’s more to it than just motorbikes, with everything from surfboards to bicycles, great food and amazing artwork. Well, the creative crew behind Deus Sydney have hopped on the plane to Bali and built an amazing Deus compound in the middle of and Indonesian rice field.     The Deus Temple of Enthusiasm includes a retail space, motorcycle store and custom-build workshop, surfboard making facilities, an art gallery and studio and a restaurant.   “The whole idea for Deus is to combine various elements, motorbikes – customising motorbikes – surfing, art, bicycles, and Indonesia is the place where you find all those things happening very enthusiastically,” explains founder Dare Jennings (also the creator of clothing brand Mambo).   “Indonesians, like most third-world countries, fabricate motorbikes continually,” Dare says, “there’s a huge surfing community, with Bali now becoming the centre of surfing in the world, there’s 4 million tourists that go there every year, there are a lot of artists and a whole lot of things that were relevant to what I was trying to achieve with Deus.” The new Deus store is quite remote, with only houses in the surrounding area but, just 500 metres from the beach, it’s perfectly placed to take advantage of the surf culture, with a good selection of boards made on site. A spacious courtyard is made for entertainment and – although it’s not an official music venue – the guys from Australian band Wolfmother have already dropped by. The interiors – by Carby Tuckwell – and buildings echo the local architecture, in fact, they’re made from it. Recycled timber and materials were gathered from the surrounding area and went into the new structures. “It’s very cost-effective – you can do something quite spectacular there for probably a tenth of what your costs would be anywhere else,” dare says. “It was a chance for us to build a building and have it be exactly what we wanted it to be.”   Dare’s vision for Deus is one of acceptance, that everything is okay, that a surfer need not be just a surfer and a motorbike enthusiast can also be an art lover. “I’d like to think that we’ve come to the end of this era of mono-cultures and there’s a whole generation of people who just want to participate and enjoy and learn things.”   Deus ex Machina deus.com.au   To celebrate the opening of their new Bali store Deus ex Machina are giving habitusliving.com readers the chance to win their beautiful book as well as a $100 gift voucher to spend at any Deus store.  


The Smokeytown House

When architect Jesse Judd was approached by an older couple to design a house for their retirement at Smokeytown, in Victoria’s Goldfields district, he aimed to blend their different sensibilities.

“The owners wanted the house to represent bringing their lives and different characters together,” Judd says. “She wanted ‘nuts and berries’, and he wanted something a bit more stark: this represents a bit of both.”


Using weathering steel to clad the four cubes that interlock to form a series of zones – garage, owners retreat, living spaces and guest accommodation – helped Judd to embed the building in its context.




“The oxidised steel façade, which is contemporary and sharp, felt rural to the owners,” he explains. “While we were building, they collected rusty items they found on the site – like drums and farm implements – and created a garden with a junk-yard, rustic aesthetic.”




Sadly, one of Judd’s clients died before the house was completed, but his wife enjoys living in the home they created together. According to Judd, she particularly enjoys working in the triangular-shaped kitchen with its orange cabinetry and bench top.

It points into cleared farmland beyond the adjacent forest, where a solitary tree anchors the view. The study – with its green carpet and custom joinery – was intended to be her husband’s domain, and is angled to enjoy views across a nearby dam.



The use of bold colours inspired by the nature – earthy orange tones and bright greens from the tree canopy – helps to root the house in its setting, as do the many openings that allow one to step outside directly from most rooms.

“The colours blend the four zones together, to create an interior that is not as stark and cubic as the exterior,” Judd says. “From the outside, the house appears singular, bold and strong, but inside, it’s more serendipitous, where changes in colour, volume and finish don’t necessarily serve to denote spaces, they just add character.”


JLM Architects

Photography: Shannon McGrath

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Design Accessories

Bellroy’s ‘Carryology’

It might not be something you think about all that much, or it might drive you crazy, but your wallett is something you most likely take everywhere with you. We take a few minutes to talk to Bellroy's Andy Fallshaw about the things that carry our things...


How did Bellroy come to be? What's your story?

We're a group of friends that want to improve the way we carry. It's crazy to think how prehistoric most wallets and bags are; the way they bulge and gape and frequently fail us.

So we figured we should start from first principles, and rethink how our daily things are best carried.




Who are you?

I guess Hadrien and I seeded the idea, having designed bags and wallets together for a major surf company. We both have a long design history in the carry area, and yet have never worked for the sort of brand that suited what we really want to design.

We also have some crazy talented friends, so pretty soon we were recruiting all sorts of crew to help with the vision. There's no agencies or design houses, just a group of friends that hate bulging pockets.


You seem to believe in more than just wallets, what's your philosophy?

Haha, that's a trick question… how can we not sound silly and full of ourselves? I guess the root of it is that we want to carry better. We want to be able to mix work and play, remain impulsive, and yet always have the right things by our sides.


(These wallets have the same contents!)


We want to wear skinny jeans or suit pants without our wallet bulging, and we want to get home from a surf trip without sand all through our things. So that's what we call 'carrying better', and I guess you could call it a philosophy.



What inspires you?

Human creativeness… but that's a cheat answer.

Great craft inspires me, and I don't mean the 'craft look'. I mean the objects that have had real thought and understanding put into them, that are meant to be used by humans and form a connection with that use. I guess great craftsfolk were the original geeks, dedicating themselves to deep understanding in a particular area. That's kinda inspiring to me.




Are you a Design Hunter™?

If 234 blog subscriptions (is it that many?!), 32 podcast subscriptions, frequent design travel and a house full of things I love qualifies me, then yeah, I'm a Design Hunter™. For me, it's about insights.

I love when someone has seen the world in a way that others never saw, and then managed to capture that in an object or picture or story or business. It helps you feel stoke for humankind, knowing that there are great minds still pushing our potential.


Can you tell us a bit about the materials you use?

We're suckers for leather, because for wallets, there's still nothing that performs so well for so long. We then make life harder for ourselves by only using vegetable tanned leathers, which have a lower impact on both the planet and the people tanning the hides.





While for us these leathers are both harder to work with and more expensive, for the customer they show more character with age, developing a rich patina unique to the owner. There's also recycled polyester linings and paper packaging, but it's the leather that matters most with a wallet.


What next for Bellroy?

We have a couple of new wallets we are in the final stages of refining, and then you might see a bag or two if all goes well. However we're not rushing. We really want to make sure that every single product we release is interesting, well thought through, and brings something new to the carry world. And that takes time!

One of the things we have been most delighted by is how strongly the Carry community is growing. We spend a lot of time exploring ideas with carryology.com, and the crew that are finding it are incredible. All sorts of bag and wallets lovers are sharing ideas, giving feedback to thoughts and theories, and even contributing articles. If you're looking for ideas to slim down your wallet, find a new backpack, or learn about leather care, it's well worth a check.



Design Hunters

A Conversation with Easton Pearson

Their award-winning fashion label has brought them international success, but Lydia Pearson and Pamela Easton remain inspired by their home town. Easton Pearson are inviting Habitus readers to join them in a conversation about their label, collaborations and the inspiration they continually discover on their doorstep. The pair will discuss their unique approach to designing – one that can be as much about art as it is about a garment and one that is a collaborative process. “Our way of working is inseparable from our design ethos. We work in partnership through all passages of our process – planning, designing, finishing, travelling and selling,” the pair explains. “Personal connections are at the heart of our process and are essential to the way we work. We know our customers, our buyers and our store-owners. We find ourselves often designing for people we know and admire.” With over 20 years in the fashion industry, Easton Pearson have developed a large collection of “intricate” and “flamboyant” designs, many of which were chosen for a recent exhibition at the Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane.         Join Pamela, Lydia and Habitus Editor Paul McGillick for the next instalment of our Conversation Series on Wednesday 1 December at the Designer Rugs Showroom in Fortitude Valley. Tickets: $15 including light refreshments and a copy of Habitus Issue 10. There will also be fantastic door prizes to be won on the night.   The event is now sold out. Stay tuned for our next Conversation in 2011.   Read the story from Habitus issue 08 below:

Deka’s Trans-Form-It

The way we live is shifting, as urban centres grow and more importantly the metropolitan lifestyle becomes increasingly desirable, apartment living and downsizing are likewise increasing.

Deka Furniture have responded to this shift, and the changing expectations of functionality and aesthetics, with their new range of living, dining, study and bedroom furniture.




The collection is produced locally in Queensland using ‘low technology’ and requiring minimal resources. Each design is self-contained within a box – almost like childhood transforming toys – which serves as protection during transport as well as storage.


Hoop pine, plywood and vibrant textiles have been used as a minimal palette, complimenting “sub-tropical architecture and a sustainable way of life”.

You don’t need any special tools to transform these pieces, yet they don’t feel at all like temporary furniture whether they’re packed away or left assembled.

It’s so rewarding to see beautiful, functional and appropriate furniture being made locally with local resources and addressing our changing way of life.

If you’re in Brisbane you can see the range in person at the Deka pop-up shop 168 Grey Street, South Bank (next to Artisan's (m)art).


Deka Furniture


Workshopped Opening Party

Sydney Design Hunters™ gathered in Surry Hills last Tuesday to toast the next exciting chapter in the Workshopped story – their retail store.

The evening was helped along with a little Bombay Sapphire as Tim Fleming of Flatland OK also launched his first full exhibition in NSW.

Read more about the store here

8 Hill St, Surry Hills, Sydney
(61 2) 9146 4353
Opening Hours: Mon - Fri 9.30 - 5.30 Sat. 9.30 - 4.00


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REAL store launch party

The R.E.A.L Store was officially opened on 3 November 2010 in Sydney's Darlinghurst. The Bourke St store aims to foster ethical and socially-aware products and initiatives.

“For us, humanity is our platform, we’re interested in developing social enterprise businesses that pay it forward, that have a positive impact," explains founder Virginia Bruce. "We’re looking to promote and create a platform for designers and brands that will do the same.”

Read more about the R.E.A.L Store here.


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Erik Buch Bar Stool

Designed by: Erik Buch


I am: a bar stool


About me:

The OD-61 bar stool designed by Erik Buch, is manufactured in Denmark today with the highest of manufacturing standards.

The design is perfectly balanced with its simple clean lines and beautiful curved seat.

The Eric Buch barstool is a perfect addition to any modern kitchen.



•    Timber: solid European oak, teak or American walnut
•    Leather Upholstery: Gelato Pistachio, Boysenberry, and Liquorice


Bar and Counter heights available

Great Dane Furniture
(03) 9510 6111 or (02) 9669 7677







Habitus Loves

Habitus Loves… Dining Chairs



  Designed by: Hanspeter Steiger for Röthlisberger Kollektion Why we love it: This chair is made from just two pieces of moulded ply. A simple elegant form that would work just about anywhere. Where you can get it: Anibou  

CH24 (Wishbone)

title    Designed by: Hans J. Wegner for Carl Hansen + Son Why we love it: This is a classic design, so comfortable to sit in made the way it always was with hardwood and hand-woven paper cord. A visual and physical pleasure. Where you can get it: Corporate Culture  

Slick Slick Chair

title    Designed by: Philippe Starck Why we love it: It’s light, strong and oh-so Starck! The playful colours and ‘wavey’ form takes something that can be quite serious and makes it fun. Where you can get it: Classique


title  Designed by: Monica Graffeo and Ruggero Magrini Why we love it: This chair is so young and very, very cute. The ‘button’ on the back looks like a smartie and the simple legs and bubble-like form screams playtime. Where you can get it: Fanuli


Designed by: Studio Tecnico Why we love it: This dining chair is very sure of itself. Its square form is softened by the slight angle of the backrest. This is definitely a grown-up chair and comes with leather seat and backrest. Where you can get it: fy2k


title    Designed by: Ross Didier Why we love it: This is new Australian design at its best. This upholstered dining chair features a solid oak frame with comfy rounded seat and backrest in one form. Where you can get it: Interstudio


title    Designed by: N Garnham/ R Carlson Why we love it: Simplicity. The Barri represents everything we love about Jardan’s furniture. It’s raw, simple, yet full of character – the rounded backrest with tapered supports and sculpted seat make it a comfortable choice as well. Where you can get it: Jardan


title  Designed by: Thonet Why we love it: Now this one is a bit left field. Like a lot of Thonet’s chairs, this one was made for cafés and restaurants, but would be at home in any 1950s or 60s interior. For those of who don’t have ultra-modern or love the world of the 50s, the Otto will satisfy your craving. Where you can get it: Thonet
Around The World

Wanderlust Singapore

“Sometimes, amazing things and original experiences get lost in the fog of our worldliness. With Wanderlust, it is my attempt at making that adult world into a fun playground once again.” – Loh Lik Peng, New Majestic Group.

The Wanderlust hotel has carved out a home for itself at 2 Dickson Road in the heart of Little India. The second Singapore offering from the New Majestic Group, Wanderlust is the brainchild of hotelier Loh Lik Peng (of New Majestic fame).

Rather than hiring one design firm to create a character for the entire hotel, Loh enlisted the expertise of 4 Singaporean design agencies to develop unique worlds for each level.

After slipping past the original 1920s façade you enter the lobby at ground floor. Described as ‘Industrial Glam’ this floor is the design inspiration of Chris Lee and Cara Ang of Asylum. The space explores the new-meets-old nature of the new hotel in the building’s historic skin – a Frank Gehry sofa juxtaposed with a montage of vintage print ads for example.



On the first floor William Chan and Jackson Tan of Phunk Studio have got colourful with 11 “capsule-like” rooms each in their own single colours. This ‘Eccentricity’ level also has neon references to colour-related song titles.


Up a level you’ll discover the stylings of DP Architects’ ‘Is it just Black and White?’ – the work of Tai Lee Siang and Chua Soo Hoon. The black corridor on this floor leads to contrasting white rooms – 5 ‘Origami’ rooms and 4 ‘Pop-Art’ rooms.


The Origami rooms feature ‘folded’ and ‘creased’ ceilings, suggesting folded paper. Guests can then choose how to ‘paint’ their room with different coloured lighting. The Pop-Art rooms are just the coolest thing ever, with backlit cartoon-like stencils of common hotel room objects popping from the walls and ceiling.


Finally the top floor, ‘Creature Comforts’ has been created by the team of fFurious designers. This is like entering a child’s imagination with 9 loft rooms. From being in a giant typewriter to rocketing into space or climbing a magical tree, there’s always time to regress into childhood.




If you decide it’s time to grow up, then you could always head downstairs to the French Cocotte restaurant (also designed by Chris Lee), enjoy the beautiful outdoor spaces or explore the amazing treats on offer in the Little India precinct.



“Visitors or guests to Wanderlust and Cocotte will reconnect with a small part of their childhood,” Loh says, “and once again, be enchanted with what made them want to explore the world.”



Design Hotels


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Design Accessories

The Grill’d Airstream

Fast food has become a controversial topic of late, but we thought we should divert from our usual path and bring you a little bit of what our mothers called ‘sometimes food’.

We weren’t sure where to put this story at first, because it’s food, but it’s on wheels – we thought that Move was the best place, because it’s the way these burgers are delivered that has a very Design Hunter™ feel to it.

Australian company, Grill’d, have taken an American icon, the Airstream trailer, and converted it into a mobile kitchen, travelling the country to serve up their “old fashioned” fare on the road.


This ‘burger van’ really feels like a slice of America mixed with good old Australian ingenuity and good quality food made the way they used to be (while you wait).

Imported as a shell from the US and fitted out with in Australia, the aluminium exterior is matched by the stainless steel interior of the kitchen while a touch of timber veneer on the ceiling hints at the Airstream’s camper trailer heritage.


This portable burger joint was launched recently with the ‘Burger Love Tour’ where Grill’d gave away free burgers and the Secret Wars live art experience saw 2 artists battle it out for 90 minutes to create a unique artwork using the limited palette of black paint and markers on a white canvas.



The Airstream will be travelling Australia to serve up Grill’d ‘sometimes food’ at a number of events, so keep your eyes peeled.