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.


Learn more


Taste of Sydney

Now in its 3rd year, Taste of Sydney is back again in 2011 bringing Sydney and New South Wales’ best-known restaurants and wines together in one place for the foodie’s fantasy.

This year’s event will bring together restaurants from previous years including Assiette, Berowra Waters Inn, Retaurant Balzac, Becasse and Danks Street Depot, and well as newcomers L’Etoile, Bilson’s and Otto Ristorante (and more).



Over the 4 days of the festival there’ll be 50 signature dishes on offer from the different restaurants – prepared by the executive chefs from each. The chefs will also “dish out invaluable culinary advice” (excerpt from the press release, just had to include it for its punny goodness) in the Australian Gourmet Traveller Taste Kitchen.

You’ll also get to hear from wine experts, sommeliers and producers at Taste Wine and visit the Producers Market for the best produce from boutique suppliers.

As usual the currency of the festival will be ‘Crowns’ (1 crown = $1) and sample dishes will be 8, 10 and 12 crowns, with drinks 6 crowns.

Taste of Sydney will run from 10 – 13 March 2011 at the Centennial Parklands.


Taste of Sydney 2011


The Paddington x2 House

It seems we’ve had the opportunity to review a number of renovations of existing inner-city homes lately – thinking of last week’s Haines House in Newtown, the Cerise House and the Surry Hills Terrace. Well, this week we’ve got a house that struggled to evolve into a 21st Century home, re-imagining the meaning of ‘heritage’.



“The house sits within a row of Paddington terraces in probably one of the strictest heritage conservation areas in Australia,” explains MCK Architects’ Mark Cashman.

In a transformation of 2 existing terraces the architects have used some clever techniques to bring light and space to these traditionally narrow, dark houses.


“Through research and investigation we arrived at a concept of retaining and refurbishing the terraces, maintaining all characteristics and features to the external skin while hollowing out the inside to allow the new program of contemporary family home,” Mark says.


The original rear façade of the home has been retained while new inside/outside spaces have been created beyond the wall line, with a large amount of glazing floods these living areas with light. Floor space was sacrificed in places to allow for double-height volumes in the new family area as well as the existing terraces.

Where the 2 terraces part at the rear of the 1st floor, glass has been used to maintain them as two separate buildings when viewed externally, but inside usable space is created for a light-filled study.


“The brief was to refurbish two terraces into one home for a family of five, to provide a courtyard with a pool and some rear lane garaging,” Mark says. “The owners are intelligent people who wished to create something worthwhile... It was important to them to build with good intention and honesty and they fought to achieve it, which I found very inspiring.”


“Being a heritage conservation area, the design is respectful and sympathetic with its context, while still engaging and challenging in some ways our understanding and perceptions of what heritage actually is, and how we are to move forward as architects and 21st century people living in a city, and within a culture, that is complex and multi-layered, with a need to act responsibly and sustainably for the environment.”


MCK Architects

Photography by Willem Rethmeier

Around The World

W Retreat and Spa Bali-Seminyak

When it opens its doors in March, W Retreat & Spa Bali-Seminyak in Indonesia will be the third and latest W incarnation in Asia Pacific with, in their own words, “insider access to the world of 'Wow'”.

Jet-setting folks already familiar with W Hotels and their 24-hour Whatever/Whenever concierge service will know that this is no empty promise. A bathtub filled with chocolate? Check. A rainforest birthday party? Check again.



It is toe-curling pleasure on command and the multi-sensory experience of light, music and visual theatrics begins the minute you step in.

Like all W developments, W Bali is designed to reflect the historical and cultural heritage of the land and its natural beauty, with a playful twist on bold designs and textures that stimulate the senses.


From the architecture by SCDA Architects to the interiors by Poole Associates and AB Concept, W Bali is an inventive contemporary take on traditional Balinese design.


In the lobby, silver leaf-shaped sculptures double as seating; a feature wall of handblown glass jars, each with a capiz shell inside, ‘sings’ in the wind.

The villa arrival area is also inspired by Wayang Kulit (leather shadow puppet play) and is decked in black with dramatic backlighting.

In the guestrooms, the local seascape is expressed through beaded pendant lamps inspired by local fishing nets and synthetic leather headboards embossed in stingray skin; W Bali has 158 retreats and suites, most with Indian ocean views, and 79 villas.


Guests can choose to party at WooBar or satisfy their gastronomic urges at W’s two signature restaurants. And of course, no W experience is complete without a visit to the AWAY Spa for a massage or body treatments that, in keeping with W tradition, incorporate Asian influences in a cool and playful way.


W Retreat & Spa Bali-Seminyak

Design Hunters

Tithi Kutchamuch

Thai designer Tithi Kutchamuch takes the idea of 'carrying a piece of home with you' to beautiful, surprising – and in some cases, extreme – conclusions.

Under her bold vision, antlers from deer figurines transform into edgy necklaces; decorative tops on vases can be used as uber-chunky rings.




For Kutchamuch, who continued to live in London after receiving her MA in Design Products at UK's Royal College of Art in 2007, it was a way to bring a little bit of home with her wherever she went.

“I wanted to be able to have symbols of home with me all the time, and jewellery certainly has got a function for that. But to make my concept complete, the home ornaments needed to be incomplete until I returned home with the missing parts,” she explains.



Winner of the 'Best Newcomer' award at Crafts Council UK's Origin show in 2008, Kutchamuch's preoccupation with animal-inspired functional art objects began when her dog back in Bangkok passed away.

“Every piece of work starts from my personal experience. Writers use a pen to express their thoughts, I using my products,” says Kutchamuch.


As far as Kutchamuch can remember, her parents' home has always had animals in residence and at one point, it even housed peacocks, hedgehogs and a gibbon.

Some of her jewellery tells a darker tale, like the life-size Companion Parrot that looks innocent enough – until you pull out the head that is linked to the bird's entrails to form a funky necklace.



In a significant move, Kutchamuch recently returned to Bangkok and is currently busy setting up her studio/gallery/cafe there. “It was time to go back 'home',” she admits.

The details will have to remain a “secret” for now, she says, but it is a project on a much bigger scale, from ceramics to furniture to interior design.

In truth, we cannot wait!


Tithi Kutchamuch


The Gladesvillie House

When Eva-Marie Prineas of Architects Prineas visited the owners of this 1930s house in Gladesville, she quickly realised it had good bones. To keep costs trimmed, she retained its basic layout but liberated its pokey rooms, opening the rear to a deck, transforming the house with light and outlook.

“It was really dark and cold,” she recalls. “So we essentially left it as the interwar bungalow at the front and reinvented it internally and at the rear elevation, the part of the house where they wanted to live.”


When the owners first bought the house, its deep rear garden had been a jungle. Part of their brief was to transform it into a place to unwind and entertain friends and family.



Prineas’ design removed the home’s dated entry foyer, introduced a pod of cabinetry that incorporated floor storage, a pantry and an updated kitchen opening via a bench to the rear deck. Adjoining this, she made the most significant structural change, linking the existing living space via steel framed multi-fold doors with a new covered deck.


The old mismatched timber floor was replaced with a new one finished in Japan black and a palette of white and dark stained cabinetry was used to visually streamline and marry living spaces. Old doors were replaced by full height pivot doors to modernise and better connect spaces.




The rear deck, which has a roof lifting to the north, is the couple’s new living space. It has a barbecue, a dining table where they usually eat breakfast, and off-white timber battens serving as privacy screens. Also here, concealed under the planters, are dog houses for the owners two Dobermans.


Because Prineas was also changed with reinventing the backyard – tweaking the lie of the land and adding a pizza oven and pool – she opted to give the house a face-lift from this vantage too.

She carried the timber batons down as screens enclosing the home’s undercroft, delivering the clients a defacto shed and vastly improving the look of the house from the place where the owners do now spend most of their time.


Architect Prineas

Photography: Steve Back


Primavera Exhibition

A new art exhibition at Brisbane’s Queensland University of Technology (QUT) Art Museum explores the artistic and design-related “visual languages” of Australia’s most acclaimed up-and-coming young artists in a bid to showcase the breadth of the nation’s contemporary art practice.

Primavera 2010, a collaborative effort between the QUT Art Museum and Sydney’s Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA), is the MCA’s annual exhibition.

It brings together the works of 7 artists 35 years and younger including Akira Akira, Julie Fragar, Agatha Gothe-Snape, Alasdair McLuckie, James Newitt, Jackson Slattery and Emma White.



Emma White, Copy, 2008, polymer clay, dimensions variable (object to scale), installation view, BREENSPACE, Sydney, 2009. Private collection. Image courtesy the artist and
BREENSPACE, Sydney © the artist



Julie Fragar, Lie to Me 2008, oil on board, 60 x 40cm, Image courtesy the artist and Sarah
Cottier Gallery, Sydney © the artist

Julie Fragar, Knocked Off Her Feet, 2008, Oil on board, 40 x 60cm, Image courtesy the artist and Sarah Cottier Gallery, Sydney © the artist


National Art School guest curator Katie Dyer says the artists provide a “criss-crossing” in-and-out of modes to find the best visual language for art expression and cites Akira Akira’s work as also effectively applying characteristics of design.

“[The artist’s] work borrows Modernist and Utopian concepts of design… [and is based around] the idea of objects circulating in the world,” Dyer says.

Akira Akira’s Spillberg sculptures, which give the impression of paint that never dries, are meticulously constructed in layers to create something that appears accidental and yet simultaneously poses a paradox.


Akira Akira, Spillberg (black) No.1 (detail) 2008 automotive paint on polyurethane, resin, and IKEA INGO table, 88 x 37 x 4 cm, approx. sculpture size; 120 x 75 x 73 cm, table size, installation view, Utopian Slumps, Melbourne, 2009 Image courtesy and © the artist Photography by Louis Porter

Alternatively, Sydney-based Agatha Gothe-Snape’s pieces draw on aspects of art, design and communication with an eclectic approach to art-making, spearheading the notion that modes of communication can and must take many forms; as evidenced in her interactive performances and Powerpoint presentations.


Agatha Gothe-Snape, Wrong Solo 1 and 2, 2010, image preparation for silk-screen print, Image courtesy and © the artist

According to Dyer, rather than being limited by a theme summarising movements or trends, the exhibition instead aims to concentrate on the artists’ individual array of disciplines.

“[The show] reflects a broad variety of styles and approaches while highlighting innovative work by emerging artists who are contributing to new interpretations of contemporary art practice.”

Primavera 2010, now until 3 April, is organised and toured by the MCA.

QUT Art Museum, 2 George Street, Brisbane.


QUT Art Museum


Collected Patterns

We brought you one of KT Doyle’s wallpaper designs in last week’s ‘Habitus Loves’, well this week we thought we’d tell you about her upcoming exhibition in Brisbane.

Collected Patterns: the botany of Walter Hill is an exploration of the contribution of the Colonial Botanist to Queensland. The new paper and textile works are based on plants from the Brisbane City Botanic Gardens, cultivated by Walter Hill between 1855 and 1881.



The works take the form of emroidered textiles, digital prints and letterpress – created on location at Myrtle Street Studio using an original Heidelberg letterpress.


“Being able to work closely with MSS director and printmaker, Jay Dee Dearness, on the letterpress artworks was really exciting,” explains KT. “Using a printing press that was around at the same time as Walter Hill, adds to the layers of detail in this exhibition and defined the highly graphic quality of all the artwork.”




KT’s beautiful work features iconic plants such as sugarcane and clover all in black and white.

“I’m actually surprised myself that the entire exhibition is in black and white,” KT says. “When I think of plants, I naturally think in colour. But, it was important for the work in this show to focus on pattern, form and precise detail, and I believe colour would have been distracting.”


“Walter Hill was a meticulous professional who recorded his work in painstaking detail through annual reports and collection documents. Researching these records was invaluable in determining the overall visual aesthetic for the exhibition,” she says.

The exhibition of prints will be shown alongside the letterpress at the Myrtle Street Studio Gallery, 39 Myrtle Street, The Grange, 4051 from 5 – 12 March 2011. The exhibition would not be possible without the support of  SignatureBrisbane and Janet Holmes à Court Artists' Grant.


Myrtle Street Studio

KT Doyle

Photography taken and generously supplied by Troy Hansen



Ritual Collection

For many, coffee is much more than just a drink; it can be a way of life or a cultural marker, but however you have it, coffee is a ritual experience. So it’s gratifying to see a range of accompaniments that places equal importance on all elements of the experience, from the spoon, to the cup and glass of post-coffee water.

The Nespresso Ritual Collection is designed by Andrée and Olivia Putman – grand dames of French design – and features all of these things as well as serving trays and recipe spoons.




Each of the cup and saucer pairings is tailored to a different type of coffee. For instance, the Cappuccino cup is finer and more open at the top for the best drinking experience.

The cups are inspired by the shape of the Nespresso Grand Cru capsules and offer a “signature Putman” design detail on the bottom of the cup and inside the saucer that indicates the strength of the coffee.


You can buy the Ritual Collection items online in the Nespresso Club section of the Nespresso website here.

We’re sure these accompaniments would work just as well with a traditional coffee-making experience for those semi-pro baristas out there.






The Adjutant Table

Flat-pack furniture. It doesn’t have great connotations and probably conjures up memories of your first piece of furniture in your first University share house that survived until the first party. But New Zealand designer Nathan Goldsworthy delved into history to discover the much more appealing origins of flat-pack.

“The first flat packed furniture was designed to be used on the field of battle,” Goldsworthy explains. In fact, he found out that Napoleon utilised the original flat-pack to take along his entire office set-up (including shelves).




So Goldsworthy’s approach was to build a simple table of 10 pieces that requires no Allen key and no screws to put together – all out of beautiful solid white oak. And so we have the ‘Adjutant’ table; adjutant being a military rank for someone supporting a senior officer (gold! We love it!).



There may not be an immediate need to rush to battle with this particular table, but you can assemble and disassemble it as many times as you like.

You have to love the way the table has been photographed, like sublime assembly instructions. We’re told the reversible table-top comes in wenge, sycamore, white ash, walnut, rock maple and white oak veneers with the PVC edge coming in 12 colours.




The table is currently available in New Zealand from Corporate Culture in Auckland and Backhouse Furniture in Wellington, with a shipment on its way to Australia (for Corporate Culture) as we speak!


Conscious Design



ARTcycle 2011

As part of the second annual Art Month Sydney you’ll have the chance to check out the precincts by pedal power in 2011.

ARTcycle is offers a free, guided bicycle tour taking in all that Art Month has on offer, including art galleries, studios and public and street artworks.



The program is a collaboration between BikeSydney and Newtown-based artist-run At The Vanishing Point and will feature tour guides Mickie Quick, Annie Laerkesen, Saskia Howard, Brendan Penzer and Nell Schofield.


Art Month Sydney is all about getting the public to engage with the galleries dotted around the city, many right on our doorsteps.

You can download the Art Month program here or visit the website for more information. The event runs throughout the month of March.


Art Month Sydney


(Thanks @lianerossler for the tipoff!)


Images courtesy Art Month


Fixed & Fitted


Designed by: Luxaflex Window Fashions brand





LUXAFLEX® PIROUETTE® Shadings, the newest addition to the Soft Shades range, features soft, horizontal fabric vanes attached to a single sheer backing, allowing enhanced views to the outside and a beautiful fabric appearance on the inside.

They combine the personality of two sophisticated fabrics – linen and satin with the ability to control light and privacy in a unique new way.

Luxaflex Pirouette Shadings join DUETTE® Shades, LUMINETTE® Privacy Sheers and SILHOUETTE® Shadings in the innovative Luxaflex Soft Shades range.

Available via Luxaflex Window Fashion Galleries and David Jones stores nationwide, Pirouette Shadings feature the revolutionary Invisi-Lift System. This allows you to flatten the vanes for a smooth and modern contemporary finish, slightly raise the vanes for a gentle contoured look, or fully open the vanes to provide a clear view to the outside.

The sheer backing of Pirouette Shadings reduces glare and filters harmful UV rays.

Luxaflex Pirouette Shadings can be operated with the EasyRise Operating System, a continuous cord loop with a correctly mounted child safe tensioning device, or the ULTRAGLIDE® Operating System which has a retractable cord, to keep it out of reach of children.



Pirouette Shadings come in a stylish palette of 24 colours in translucent or room-darkening opacities. All accessories – such as hardware, cords and the headrail come in matching colours. Select from Linen or Satin Fabric ranges as well as a 100mm or 120mm vane size.

13 LUXAFLEX (13 58 92)

Fixed & Fitted


I am: Cutting-edge taps with spray rinse technology


Designed by: Perrin & Rowe


About me:

From luxury English brand Perrin & Rowe, comes a new range of kitchen taps with spray rinse technology. These classical kitchen taps – with patented pull out side-rinse – offer hot, cold or mixed water diverted from the main tap. This provides indispensible convenience when washing dishes or rinsing the sink, filling pots or vases, and during vegetable preparation.

The spray can be positioned on the left or right side of the sink, to the owner’s preference, and sits discreetly in the bench mount. The retractable 1.2m long hose provides unrestricted use around large work areas. 

The choice of finish - Chrome, Nickel, Pewter, Gold or English Bronze - ensures this tap is an outstanding feature of the kitchen, scullery or laundry.   

Perrin & Rowe spray rinse taps released 14th Feb 2011.  From $1,222 incl. GST. 

For further information please visit englishtapware.com.au or phone 1300 01 61 81.






Provence Levers