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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.

 

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New Year, New Home: Design Products to Renew and Refresh in 2021

There’s nothing like the calendar ticking over to a new year to take stock, refresh and create a clean slate. With this in mind, we round-up a curated selection of the best furniture, materials and lighting to make your home the backdrop for a fulfilling year.   Fill your home with furniture A design icon in its own right, the Series 7 dining chair, designed by Arne Jacobsen for Fritz Hansen, has undergone its own revival with a suite of new colour options. We particularly love the dusty pink, deep green and burnt orange. Available at Cult.   Bringing a sophisticated leisurely touch to your home, the new Five to Nine day bed by Tacchini features playful rolls through its cylindrical forms. Designed by Italian darlings Studiopepe, there is an undeniable quirk to this day bed. Available at StylecraftHOME.   Part and parcel with a refresh is finding storage. For a statement piece, the Bastone Sideboard for Poiat Studio is truly special. Delicate timber dowels create a partly open texture, allowing glimpses of the items inside to show through. Available at Great Dane Furniture.   Elevated elegance that can create the perfect spot to curl up with a book, or simply relax, the Gentleman Armchair, part of the Gentleman Collection, has been designed by Marcel Wanders for Poliform. And it would make for a sophisticated addition to the home, putting comfort front and centre. Available at Poliform Australia.   Bring some greenery and freshness into your home (or outdoor space) with the Drum Planter by Tait. Clean lines and striking colourways make the plants pop, while its design makes it easy to use with built-in drainage. Available at Tait.   If you want to go all-out, the Monument Shelves by La Chance are a dramatic statement. Combining marble and wood, these shelves stand strong and proud. The custom nature of the piece allows a mix of marbles to be used, to be truly unique. Available at Living Edge.   If more storage is what you need, Frame by Kett offers an organisational system that seamlessly integrates technology and storage for a complete furniture set-up. Designed and made in Australia, with customisable elements, it will have all the clutter cleared away for a fresh year ahead. Available at Cosh Living.   As our work lives were upended in 2020, many are still working from home, at least a few days a week. A new desk that is both functional and beautiful, is perfect for the new world we find ourselves in. The Cocoon Desk by Cattelan Italia comes in a range of luxurious finishes including natural stone, leather and ceramic. Compact in shape, it can easily fit into small spaces such as apartments.   Renowned for its classics, B&B Italia has released a range of new pieces, including the Cutter Dining Chair, designed by Mario Bellini. Classic with a twist, the backrest features a slash in the leather, adding a touch of drama. Available at Space Furniture.   Up the ante with new appliances If you’re not up for a full refurb of the kitchen but are still looking for something to add, explore Wine Fridges by Sub-Zero. They make an easier addition to the kitchen, while being no less practical.   Another appliance that can be added to the kitchen without a full redesign, is a Combi-Steam Oven, and V-ZUG’s is world-class. An unsung hero of the kitchen, a Combi-Steam Oven can transform the way you cook and eat – saving time, reducing food waste and allowing for versatility in the way you make meals.   Your wine needs to be stored, protected, showcased and prepared for enjoyment. Designed to complement the living space, not only as a functional kitchen appliance but as a product designed to blend in with the very architecture of the home. Enhance the prestige of your kitchen with the 400 series wine climate cabinet by Gaggenau.   A fitting refresh with fixtures and fittings What better way to set off the year with a healthy start than fitting a Zip HydroTap All-In-One. Have instant filtered boiling, chilled and sparkling water, which will encourage a healthier way to drink throughout the day. And you can match it to your existing fittings with 12 finishes available via Zip.   Known the world over for its extraordinary bathroom products, Gessi has released the Rilievo Bathroom Collection, designed with elegance. Focusing on wellbeing and harmony, make your bathroom space a place to relax and unwind. Available at Abey.   Making your bathroom an everyday oasis, the Luna Bathroom Collection from Caroma offers durability and reliability, but more importantly high-end design. Featuring a range of colours and finishes, you can update your bathroom for the ultimate sanctuary.     If drama and creativity is your language, the O24 free-standing sink is an incredible piece of design that will completely transform your bathroom. Made with 24 segments of marble, and glued together with a contrasting resin, O24 is designed by Gumdesign for Antonio Lupi. A bold, adventurous statement for your bathroom.   The finishing touches Rather than a full overhaul, a new kitchen bench or splashback is one way to completely enliven a space. Silestone Loft by Cosentino is the latest in the Spanish brand’s high-performance surfaces. The Loft Collection has been inspired by the conversion of warehouses and loft spaces in famous cities the world over. Bringing a more sophisticated industrial aesthetic, bring a concrete-style finish into your interior.   To really elevate a space with a luxurious finish, CDK Stone’s Lorde White is a breathtaking marble. Light and pure with natural swirls of green, beige, grey and white, Lorde White is a minimalist’s dream finish. Available at CDK Stone.   A new addition to the Laminex line-up is PureGrain, which is a textured surface featuring subtle graining just like a timber. Add a touch of organic detailing to your cabinets. PureGrain uses advanced technology to create a high-performance product that combines the realism of a woodgrain texture. abc
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Café Lafayette Was Designed To Catch You Off Guard

A historic 150-year-old converted townhouse sits in Niagara Lane, one of the oldest laneways in Melbourne’s city centre. This heritage-listed site has been transformed into a feat of innovative and daring design, blending theatre, creativity and contemporary flavours. Run by co-owners Solar Liang and Monique Wu, Café Lafayette is not your typical café. When the world shut its doors earlier last year, we never expected the simple joys of celebrating and eating out to disappear so quickly. It is in these months of lockdown that we have recognised that a restaurant is much more than its food offering; it is the culinary spectacle of intoxicating aromas, plated artistry and an energy in the atmosphere that delves deep into all five senses. The result is an experience far more memorable than anything we can take home. Melbourne’s crowded café scene demanded something that would shake it up. Influenced by the presence of the ‘Instagram Generation’, Liang and Wu engaged architecture firm Hassell to create a space that provided an entirely unexpected café experience, unlike anything else in the city. “Through working so closely with the owners, we’ve come to know and understand their experimental Japanese-inspired menu and the creative thinking behind it,” co-lead designer Prue Pascoe says. “The Melbourne food scene is very established and there are a lot of spaces occupying that ‘white and light’ aesthetic, so it was very exciting to see them be so brave and determined to challenge that.”  

Influenced by the presence of the ‘Instagram Generation’, Liang and Wu engaged Hassell to create a space that provided an entirely unexpected café experience.

  This prompted the design team to strip out the idea of a conventional café. However, the historic significance of the site meant that the original structural features and internal and external brickwork had to remain untouched. Additionally, the compact rectilinear space did not allow for much natural light aside from mere glimpses through a small, street-facing window. At the start of the process, this was a challenge that the designers identified.  

Reminiscent more of a nightclub than your typical urban café, Hassell inserted a black vessel into the site, creating a backdrop for an immersive journey of artful food.

  In collaboration with Melbourne-based Studio Round, an authentic brand experience was established through an experiential, sensory narrative that surpassed any restrictions within the site. The revitalised space pays homage to its past while remaining an evolving destination that ties together its heritage and an exciting, future-forward design story. A dichroic glass tunnel leads the experience. As the only feature visible to the street, it creates a sense of intrigue for the visitor from the point of arrival. “The way you enter is the start of the whole experience,” adds co-lead designer, Di Ritter. “You go through this psychedelic structure that changes colour as you move through and it catches you off-guard, momentarily displacing you in this transitional point between the street and café. Then you arrive at Café Lafayette and you’re transported to this whole new world.”  

“Solar and Monique inspired us to reimagine the way we dine.”

  Reminiscent more of a nightclub than your typical urban café, Hassell inserted a black vessel into the site, concealing the existing brickwork underneath and providing a backdrop for an immersive journey of artful food. At the heart of the restaurant sits the Japanese-style sushi bar that takes the form of a striking, stainless steel box. Evocative of a theatrical show, it offers a communal dining space that immerses the diner in a gustatory experience that feeds the eyes and the stomach at the same time. The cantilevered dining counter is covered in dichroic film, reflecting hues of purple, pink, blue and green, splashed across the countertop as you eat. Sitting on the wall above is a custom hand-shaped neon light, which forms the letters letters C and L and further amplifies the vibrant, youthful tone. This is one of the perfect, Instagrammable moments that Liang and Wu envisioned. The clean, futuristic elements of dichroic surfaces and steel create a kaleidoscopic wonderland in the ‘black bowl’ of Café Lafayette. To soften the space, furnishings such as the Artek Chair 66, the Artek Stool from Artek and the iconic Sanaa Rabbit chair bring a sense of comfort and warmth for the diners. Café Lafayette required a specific atmosphere and a material palette that broke down the stereotype and familiarity of a light-filled eatery. The end result is a colourful, textural concept that was surprising and unpredictable; one that championed the culinary brilliance of the menu. “You look at the menu of Café Lafayette and you instantly become engrossed with these explosive Australian-Japanese flavour combinations. You just have to free yourself of anything you thought you knew about café dining,” says Ritter. “Solar and Monique inspired us to reimagine the way we dine.” Café Lafayette is the antithesis of a conventional Melbourne eatery. Hassell and Studio Round look to challenge the architectural landscape of trendy café dining with an experience that is dramatic, disruptive and wholeheartedly embraces the leap into the digital generation. The experience at Café Lafayette pushes visitors out of their comfort zone while slowly inviting them to uncover its culinary layers and discover the magic within the walls. Liang and Wu wanted to create a new narrative of theatrics in café hospitality; an experience that you need and want to be immersed in,” expresses Pascoe. “Hospitality will always weave itself into everyday life because people crave the whole experience of a restaurant. And here, you’re getting all that plus a sense of dichroic magic.” Photography by Peter Bennetts abc
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Inside The Architects’ Apartment, Living Divani Edition

Ask architects about the kind of space they would like to live in and the answers would probably be varied, traversing the realms of emotion, manner and of course, aesthetic. It is an ambitious endeavour to fashion spaces for the people who design for a living, but that’s exactly what Living Divani has done through its presentation of the Architects Apartment. The furniture brand applies its intrinsically elegant perspective to such a space, approaching it as more of a proposal than prescription. Occupying a loft-like glass-encased space at the top of Space Furniture’s showroom in Singapore, the Architects Apartment is an evolving display of both iconic and new furniture pieces from Living Divani. It is a fitting presentation with Living Divani being a new addition to Space Furniture’s suite of brands in Singapore. The apartment imagines a calming architect’s retreat set amidst a curated ensemble of art and design. In addition to the latest and bestselling pieces from the brand’s collection, handpicked selections from ClassiCon and Glas Italia are also featured in this spatial proposal. Before entering the space, the translucent textured glass panels of Glas Italia’s Sherazade door tease visitors with only hints of shapes and tones. The doors slide open to reveal a stunning greeting area where Living Divani’s groundbreaking Extrasoft sofa holds court in an airy atmosphere of light and space. From here, a journey through four other equally elegant spaces ensues. Like the greeting area, the living area, dining area, bedroom and outdoor terrace paint the imagined architect as one who values subtlety, timelessness and comfort. The point of view presented is crystal clear and consistent with how Living Divani’s creative director Piero Lissoni (himself also an architect) has shaped the brand. Throughout the apartment, familiar pieces like the Greene sofa, Sailor bookcase and Frog chair are complemented by icons like ClassiCon’s Bibendum armchair by Eileen Gray. Paying tribute to the brand’s presence in Singapore, pieces that were created in collaboration with Singaporean designers are celebrated in the showroom as well. Nathan Yong’s Off Cut bookcase and Lanzavecchia+Wai’s Pebble and Studio Juju’s Rabbit and the Tortoise tables vanity table naturally evoke a sense of local pride. The Architects Apartment is designed to evolve over time, with each new presentation offering fresh perspectives and opportunities for visual dialogue. As they say, watch this space. Living Divani livingdivani.it Space Furniture, Singapore spacefurniture.com.sg Photography courtesy of Living Divani and Space Furniture Singapore abc
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This Perth Urban Infill Project Puts The Arch In Architecture

Oftentimes it is the restrictions imposed on a design project that turn out to be its utmost sources of inspiration. North Perth House,  by local architect Nic Brunsdon is one such project. Located in a densely developed residential area of innermost Perth, this urban infill project answered first and foremost to a constrained site — totalling at 230-square-meters — and a budget that was decidedly tight. The brief called for a modest urban residence that makes the most of its site, with the clients citing Japanese urban infill houses as something of a design precedent for their future home. Yet another definitive factor for Nic in his design response for North Perth House was the project’s materiality. “They [the clients] were set on a concrete house,” says the architect. While initial investigations revealed that an in-situ concrete build would cost above and beyond what the budget could afford, a suitably economic solution presented itself in the form of precast concrete panels — provided a restricted type and number of them were featured in the design. Composed in an architectural latticework, eight precast concrete panels — two types; four of each — are deployed as both the building structure and the house’s finishing material. Running east-west, parallel to the street, four uniform concrete panels provide the framework for the ground floor while doubling as the supporting structure for the four north-south running panels that comprise the first floor. On the ground floor, the precast panels demarcate layers of privacy from the street front back towards the rear of the property, each signifying a threshold leading deeper into the private life of the house — garage; gallery; vestibule; kitchen; living; and garden. On the first floor, the panels have been rotated 90 degrees, giving long views back to Perth city on the south side while auspiciously bathing the bedrooms in the northern sun.  

The material palette is deliberately restrained to three treatments: raw concrete for the heavy, hardworking elements; timber for the more intimate moments; and translucent sheeting to mediate and diffuse natural light.

  Each panel is punctuated with one of two types of arch: a grand arch, and a pedestrian arch. The grand arch is provided for the more significant gestures in the house, such as the prospect from the kitchen; the gallery window; and the bookshelf on the first floor landing, to name a few. On a more perfunctory note, the pedestrian arch acts as a silent guide for both the line of sight and the flow of movement throughout the internal volumes of the house. Having been precast according to one of two moulds, the odd panel inevitably features an archway that is practically redundant. Such superfluous cut-outs are filled in with a timber inlay or insulated translucent polycarbonate sheet, keeping the opening legible. “The material palette is deliberately restrained to three treatments,” says Nic: “raw concrete for the heavy and hard-working elements like the structural panels and the floor; timber for the intimate moments like furniture, kitchen joinery, balustrades and bedheads; and translucent sheeting to mediate the hard east and west sun and provide soft light to the height of the interior spaces.” Although conceived in restrictive circumstance, North Perth House by Nic Brunsdon responds to the uncompromising demands of executing an urban infill project on a tight budget with profound resolve. Nic Brunsdon nicbrunsdon.com Photography by Ben Hosking We think you might also like Bewboc House by Fabian Tan Architects   abc
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Design Invites You To Live In The Art of The Everyday

Their task is a tough one: to consistently reinvent the wheel (if the wheel were a couch or table), to predict and create trends, and to inspire those who choose their pieces to make a home. Designing for residential spaces, then, goes hand in hand with the philosophy of exceeding the needs and desires of consumers, and indeed predicting these needs and desires before we know them ourselves. Across the world, designers have been taking inspiration from culture, history and place to create pieces that truly reimagine the everyday. From the ways we lounge to the ways we travel through our spaces, and from deeply considered activities like putting food on the table to the simplest flick of a light switch, great design finds ways to inspire and surprise us. Here, we’ve collected a number of our favourite designs that will inspire your everyday. Hug Lamp by Mark Mitchell Design [caption id="attachment_108231" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Photography credits to Mark Mitchell Design.[/caption] Inspired by the warmth of human contact and the value of social interaction, Mark Mitchell Design has introduced the hug lamp. A unique and playful take on lighting, two furry forms resembling open-armed friends embrace to illuminate the globe atop each piece. The Hug Lamp is a creative take on the way that we have all realised the importance of connection over the last year, and it will certainly be remembered for its reflection of these times. Zola Ottoman & Coffee Table by Anaca Studio Soft, sculptural and synergistic, the  Zola Ottoman and Coffee Table by Anaca Studio elevate the living room. This collection offers more than meets the eye: while the subtle curves of the Zola Ottoman blend seamless into any interior and can quickly be transformed into a coffee table by adding a stable plywood layer. Available in a variety of colours and finishes, and with options to customise the level of cushioning, this collection by Anaca Studio is here to complement any living space. Pam Side Table by Savage Design featuring Dekton Say hello to Pam – the new architectural side table featuring Dekton. The team at Savage Design expands its furniture collection with a structural side table, which showcases meticulous attention to detail and ingenious craftsmanship all in an unexpectedly thin frame. In collaboration with Dekton, the minimal profile features a 4mm thick Dekton top, creating a scratch and heat resistant top surface for daily use. This surface is also cleverly raised and recessed within the frame, allowing another Pam to be locked in and secured when stacked. With expert engineering, Pam is designed with extreme adaptability to everyday living; where its a table, bookshelf or room divider, Pam brings a little excitement to any space. “It was one day looking at the material rack in our factory that the idea for Pam came together,” Joel Savage, designer and director of Savage Design, adds. “The rack is essentially the pigeon holes that take a cut length of metal. It’s simple, almost brutalist form, sparked the idea of a cube side table that could be assembled to make a shelving unit.” Opus Allegro by Artedomus [caption id="attachment_108235" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Photography credits to Artedomus.[/caption] Artedomus is renowned for elevating the everyday and adding splashes of unexpected beauty. The Opus Allegro tile embodies this aspiration: geometric coloured marble shapes  are surrounded by traditional white Italian marble segments, combining eclectic styling with the sophisticated tradition. A must-see for tile styling, Artedomus offers exceptional quality and design. ‘Dawn’ Light Series by Sabine Marcelis [caption id="attachment_108236" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Photography credits to Sabine Marcelis.[/caption] The ‘Dawn’ Light Series by Sabine Marcelis explores the complex relationship between light, colour and the time in the day where the sun, clouds and sky join to create an ephemeral display of hues. The Rotterdam-based designer pushes the boundaries of everyday object design to deliver pockets of unexpected moments within mundane routines. [caption id="attachment_108237" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Photography credits to Sabine Marcelis.[/caption] Her ability to create special, magical moments within materiality is showcased within ‘Dawn,’ a unique series of light sculptures, which utilizes a single white neon tube embedded in cast resin that create a subtle manipulation of colour and intersection with light. Artful and beyond enchanting, each piece redefines the relationship between transparency and saturation in a series of colour-backed illuminations. Pinion Project by HATTERN and LAB.CRETE [caption id="attachment_108243" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Photography credits to HATTERN.[/caption] Hattern and Lab.crete collaborated to find harmony in contrasting materials. The Seoul-based studios sought to explore how the deeply different acrylic and concrete textures could complement each other, and come together to create innovative design products. The studios describe their process as adding ‘colour, pattern and shape to the concrete to be penetrated by acrylic fragments’, then filling the spaces cut from the acrylic in with concrete. The result is a new material, where the strengths and unique look of each component are preserved while a new aesthetic is created. Comprising stools and tables, this project truly reflects modern ingenuity and unique materiality. Kubus Sofa by Wittmann for DOMO DOMO’s Kubus Sofa is a playful take on the sofa form. Geometric lines and a strong frame is softened by cubic upholstery and a variety of soft finishes. This piece is the perfect embodiment of refined simplicity making a bold statement - reminiscent of the luxury of the art deco age, with modernist influences and truly modern finishes, the Kubus Sofa by DOMO is a standout design. Paris Apartment by Daniel Boddam [caption id="attachment_108247" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Photography credits to Daniel Boddam.[/caption] Australian designer, Daniel Boddam, designed an entirely imagined project – one that is driven by nostalgia, wanderlust and the inimitable Parisian spirit. As we closed our doors to the rest of the world with international border closure in every corner of the globe, Boddam embraced this opportunity with open arms and created the Paris Apartment. Influenced by Matisse’s proclamation, “I’ll make my own pool,” the Paris Apartment guides the individual through an exquisite portrayal of connection, history and our desires to travel through creativity. Paris holds a special place in Boddam’s heart – a destination deeply rooted in his childhood and growth. In this virtual experience, Boddam shows a restraint in materiality and palette, presenting an apartment bathed in natural light with a selection of sculptural furniture pieces from his past collections. [caption id="attachment_108244" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Photography credits to Daniel Boddam.[/caption] The peaceful environment showcases the collections in their purest form as we move from one space to the next. Re-interpreted in his own modern way, the Paris Apartment is designed to be taken in slowly and steadily – embodying a sense of calm simplicity and repose. Table With Four Blocks by Wonmin Park [caption id="attachment_108248" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Photography credits to Wonmin Park.[/caption] Wonmin Park’s limited edition ‘table with four blocks’ is a sculptural and unique piece. The contrasts inherent in it reflect Park’s unique style, with a combination of South Korean and Dutch influences. Crafted from resin, the grand table exudes luxury, but is approachable and adaptable to the interior it inhabits. The textures and materiality are reminiscent of a pastel cloudscape, which contrast spectacularly with the rigid geometry of the table’s form. This table would be the focal point of any dining space, with soft colours and an unconventional leg design that encourages connection in unexpected ways. Frieze by Marcante-Testa for EX.t [caption id="attachment_108250" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Photography credits to Marcante-Testa.[/caption] Designed by Marcante-Testa for EX.t, FRIEZE is the new bathroom collection created to bring a touch of excitement into the everyday routine. This colourful collection draws inspiration from Roy LIchtenstein’s ‘Entablatures’ series and the early 20th century styles of art nouveau and art deco. Displayed in a series of geometrical structures, designers Andrea Marcante and Adelaide Testa instilled muted colourways and strong forms in a unique range of basins. [caption id="attachment_108251" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Photography credits to Marcante-Testa.[/caption] Mercante Testa designed Frieze as the central element in the bathroom. By considering the entire spatial dimension of the bathroom and its accessories, the position of the sink is thoughtfully defined by a central wall strip. The upper and lower parts of the wall can be designed in contrasting materials, creating space for the mirror, shelves, furniture and other essential items. Outdoor Collection by Paola Lenti for Dedece This year, Paola Lenti introduces her latest outdoor furniture range, encapsulating the real expression of a contemporary and conscious design philosophy. Focused on bringing vibrant colours into the home, Lenti was driven by the growing need for greater comfort, elegant design and a deep connection to the outdoors. Featuring rugs, outdoor seating and poolside essentials such as sun lounges and hammocks, every product has been meticulously crafted with a captivating textural appearance that has become a hallmark of Lenti’s past work. Designed from exclusive and forward-thinking recyclable mono-materials such as Twiggy and Diade, each piece has been thoughtfully curated and woven to ensure the utmost comfort with distinct style. Each piece is entirely recyclable, waterproof, washable and extremely durable to withstand even the most extreme outdoor conditions. Tim Engelen, founder of dedece, expressess, “With beautiful materials and colours, the collection is an expression of art and elegant design capability, encapsulating both comfort and statement.”   [caption id="attachment_108245" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Photography credits to Daniel Boddam.[/caption] Explore some of these brands and more on The Habitus Collection.abc
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Andy Carson Imagines Local Produce Markets à la Garage Sale

The invention of the internet marked the comeuppance of many things now preserved in nostalgic memory — the garage sale is one of them. This design concept, however, stands to change that. Designed by Atelier Andy Carson and extrapolating on the increasingly momentous movement of buying local, the fourth instalment in HouseLab’s Concept Spaces initiative transforms the urban residential rear laneway into a powerful utility for home grown businesses and local produce start-ups. An exemplar of adaptive reuse considered at the most quotidian scale, the design reimagines the garage space of an urban terrace house as a kitchen and serving space enabling entrepreneurial home cooks to prepare and sell local produce from home. “With the recent COVID-19 pandemic we have seen a swelling of local daytime populations and the importance of local community coming to the fore,” explain Andy Carson and Shaghig Nalbandian, who culminated the brains behind the Concept Space. “Meanwhile local and state authorities have loosened regulations for registering home kitchens and venues serving alcohol.” Riffing off of these evident COVID-driven shifts in behaviour, Andy and Shaghig put two and two together to propose a unique amalgamation of hospitality and residential design. A projecting central bench forms the anchor of the design concept — both literally and figuratively speaking. Serving dual factions, the rolling central bench operates in a multi-functional capacity. With one side providing ample space for the preparation, storage and serving of produce, the other is dedicated to customers from the local neighbourhood. Creating a destination with simple amenities becomes a key part of the offering. “We initially alter ‘path’ to ‘destination’ by slowing the flow of pedestrian traffic and providing a dock for people to meet and interact,” explain the designers. Public interactions can range from a quick pick up when moving through the lane, to counter meals, team meetings, presentations, and functions. Private interactions mean the household can close off the space after hours for family meals, guest dinners or family events. At every turn this space is infinitely adaptable and open to interpretation and use. Sitting adjacent, the primary kitchen workspace and customer interface is thoughtfully fixed and fitted. A full range of premium residential kitchen appliances by Miele comprises a highly effective and productive working kitchen. The XXL version Miele oven and steam oven combination equip the former garage space with the means to create a wide range of high-quality produce and cater for high quantities. Specifying an induction cooktop was key to ensuring flexibility in the roofing department, as it means that no rangehood is required. A Miele dishwasher and wine cabinet provide further essential functionality to the reimagined space. Last but not least, a Zip Hydro Tap ARC offers chilled still and sparkling drinking water as a hospitable gesture for customers and guests to refresh themselves. Toward the rear, moveable amphitheatre style seating offers various configurations, accommodating face to face seating, L shape audience space or other casual seating for functions, presentations, dining, or lounging. Loose furniture stools and bar tables can also gather or separate throughout the space or in the laneway where needed. Materials used in the elegantly finished space vary from the tough and crude to the fine and well finished. A roughhewn monolithic stone block houses the sink, with the working kitchen surfaces all in hardy stainless steel. Finished with a lick of dusty green paint, the fine plate steel of the central bench complements the loose furniture in colourful yet subdued tones. An altogether un-fussy and welcoming grass paver floor runs throughout, immediately softening the hard laneway and demarcating the space. Grey timber slats offer a lightness and softness to touch and the fresh white of the slatted solar pergola with glass over offers rain protection and the play of dappled light passing and marking the time of day. Deciduous vines and plantings also accentuate the passing seasons and provide a varying colour palette. After hours, a horizontally bi-folding gate closes down with its dark grey steelwork embracing the tough/gritty rear laneway. Responding to genuine shifts pertinent to urban lifestyles of today, Atelier Andy Carson and HouseLab have produced an innovative concept for a residential-hospitality design hybrid that supports the development of homegrown businesses and buying local produce. More fortuitously, the result presents an intriguing business case for a contemporary renaissance of the garage sale. Atelier Andy Carson atelier-andycarson.com HouseLab houselab.com.au We think you might also like this ConceptSpace by HouseLab x Bijl Architectureabc
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The Transformative Power Of Threshold Drains

The open plan living trend has teamed up with Australia’s long-standing love affair with outdoor living to do something special. It has changed – and improved – our backyards. Across the nation, walls have come down, barbeque areas have morphed into outdoor kitchens, and the barriers between indoor and outdoor have blurred. Good-bye back doors, small kitchen windows and step downs. Hello bi-fold doors, sunlight, and warm air! And hello threshold drains. Originally developed by Stormtech to improve access for the ageing and those with disabilities, threshold drains are part of a seamless level access solution in the age of the open plan. Stormtech threshold drains feature the company’s signature linear stainless steel drainage system and concealed channel section for door tracks and thresholds. With integrated subsills, they collect water flows and condensation from around the doorways and quickly convey it outside. But their brilliance lies in their discreet, low-profile design. Incorporating an external linear grate that sits flush beside the doortrack (in line with the ground) and a concealed channel section for door tracks, homeowners can virtually forget they are there. Of course, care needs to be taken with innovation of this type. After all, the Australian weather can change suddenly and is quite capable of destroying this new-found indoor-outdoor ‘harmony’. Considerations like draft suppression and water damage need to be taken seriously. [gallery size="large" type="rectangular" ids="108089,108091"] Stormtech threshold drains do just this. Made in Australia with 316 marine grade stainless steel and manufactured in accordance with AS4654.2.2012, they incorporate draft suppression techniques that do not involve touching the drain or the door tracks. On top of that, they feature a drain that sits about 30mm lower than the subsill and are therefore capable of handling a once a century event! An industry leader, and winners of a Design Mark at the Australian Design Awards for drainage design. The company is a long-time member of the Standards Australia Committee and has played an important role in the formulation of regulations concerning several plumbing products, including linear drainage, all of Stormtech products are WaterMark and GreenTag certified. Effective, discreet, and efficient, its threshold drains are an integral part of the move to ‘Bring the Outside in’! Stormtech stormtech.com.au [gallery type="rectangular" size="large" ids="108085,108087"]abc
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Lush Is The New Luxe In Bangkok

Set within a lush garden site in Bangkok, Archimontage Design Fields Sophisticated has designed a home for a gardener that maintains a strong connection to the land. The new dwelling takes up just 230-square-metres of the 620-square-metre site, positioned abutted up to the road to make the most of the garden. The back of the house faces a large garden, a green area where the homeowner plants fruits and vegetables. The house itself is discrete, with the boxy one-storey design featuring a distinct flat roof, so it can be utilised as a rooftop garden. The form of the rooftop is an expression of the ceiling heights within the home. The bedroom spaces have 3-metre floor-to-ceiling heights, jutting up to 3.5-metres in the living and dining spaces, while the prayer room allows even more height – a jump that carries up to the flat roofline. The different levels evoke their own sense of landscape, while reflecting the sequence of interior spaces beneath. Access to the rooftop garden is via a stair on the side of the home. Hanging over the home is a large tree, which provides ample shade and further promotes the connection between the greenery and the dwelling. It creates an open dialogue with the branches delicately touching the rooftop garden – from one plane to another. The exterior of the building has been clad in grey granite-patterned porcelain tiles, with a few randomised blocks popping out to form small voids, allowing light to shine into the home. A timber-battened awning wraps the home, further encouraging the connection to the garden and its relationship to nature. Despite the angular forms, the orientation and materiality have been carefully chosen as part of the brief to connect the owner with their passion for gardening. Archimontage Photography by Beer Singnoi We think you might also like Screen House by Archimontage abc
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Is your Bathroom a Technology Hub?

When we think of home technology, we think of state-of-the-art ovens and futuristic sound systems, doors that unlock at a touch and televisions that morph into hyper-realistic and multi-dimensional screens. In these spaces, technology is driven by the experiential, it’s the visuals you see, hear, touch and smell that elevate homes into hubs on innovation. And yet, it’s the bathroom where technological innovations are truly making strides, with showers, toilets and tapware evolving to offer maximum performance, cleanliness and longevity. This year – perhaps more than ever – these features have come into their own, with consumers and specifiers looking to create bathrooms that have sanitation at their core. Leading the charge is Caroma, Australia’s leading name in bathrooms. With over 78 years of experience in creating dream bathrooms, Caroma have long been pioneering the latest developments in the bathroom space, informing the way Australian design and use their residential wet spaces. Now, with the release of the Urbane II and Liano II ranges, Caroma are offering an exclusive selection of design-led bathroom solutions that combine modern aesthetics with the latest innovations to ensure bathrooms can become technology-powered sanctuaries. Vjet® Technology Whether you enjoy relaxing under a gentle shower or unwinding with jets of water massaging your back, Caroma’s Vjet® technology gives you the ultimate power in curating your shower experience. Vjet® showers are made with a slider function on the shower head, where a simple slide changes your water pressure from rain shower to waterfall and everything in between. For the first time, one family can have their own showers their way, with variable spray options meaning you have multiple shower experiences in one do-it-all fixture. Cleanflush® With Caroma’s latest evolution in toilets, hygiene and cleanliness reaches new heights. Cleanflush® toilets offer a rimless bowl, removing the general hiding spots for germs and bacteria. This is elevated by patented flush and flow water patterns, which ensure flushes are more powerful and controlled; equalling a cleaner bowl every time. As we try to keep bacteria and unwanted microcosms to a minimum, Cleanflush® offers unparalleled power in keeping the bathroom clean and sanitised, which also ensures longevity for your toilet like never before. GermGard® Adding to the Cleanflush® feature is GermGard®, a unique antimicrobial formula which is another weapon in the fight against harmful bacteria. Killing 99% of a toilet’s bacteria, GermGard® also helps to make cleaning a breeze, working with Cleanflush® to keep the time spent cleaning the toilet to a minimum. Its these features that set Caroma apart, ensuring that beautiful design can be backed up with industry-leading technology. Find out more at Caroma Vogue.abc
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Interiors

A Design Evolution

If the kitchen is the heart of the home, then the bathroom is its soul. Where kitchens spill into living rooms and out onto backyards, bathrooms retreat in – a sanctuary for solitude, privacy and rituals of self-care. Because of this, the bathroom is an expression of self, a narrative of shape, texture and materiality that speaks to who we are when there’s no one watching. Despite this, the everyday bathroom is one that has largely been governed by practicality. We choose toilets that save water and fittings that are steam resistant, selecting function over form and dressing up our pragmatisms with French candles and hand loomed towels. Now, form and function can finally co-exist, with the release of a new collection from one of Australia’s most iconic bathroom brands. Building on 75 years of excellence, Caroma has brought Urbane II and Liano II to the market, ranges that combine innovation and design to create bathrooms that look as good as they work. Infusing contemporary Australian aesthetics with pioneering technology and sustainable excellence, the Urbane II and Liano II have raised the bar in luxury bathroom offerings. Perfect for energising mornings and relaxing nights, this curated range of products make aspirational bathrooms achievable, encouraging true creative expression by way of an inspired colour palette. For the first time, each of the collections offerings are available in five luxe finishes, starting from timeless chrome and evolving to the more modern tones of matt black and brushed brass. When it comes to the collection itself, think sleek mixer taps and oversized rain showers, sophisticated shapes in rich hues. As always, Caroma offers a collection that looks beyond statement pieces, creating a holistic design narrative with coordinating flush plates, robe hooks and towel rails. What’s more, PVD finishes, common in-wall bodies, orbital technology and adjustable flush pipes ensure installation is kept simple and that products and fittings can be interchanged later without changing plumbing. Investigate further and it’s evident this is a collection that is just as much about performance as it is about design. Showers are revolutionised with V-Jet Technology, giving an unprecedented level of control over water pressure, while toilets feature GermGard and Cleanflush – patented innovations that help protect against harmful bacteria and create a cleaner, more hygienic and water efficient toilet. In a space that can be difficult to fit out, this range breaks the mould. It provides the products, finishes and vision we need to create bathrooms that are driven by design, all while maintaining the outstanding performance and function that is at the core of the wider Caroma brand. Indeed, with a focus on personalisation and creative self-expression, the Urbane II and Liano II bring bespoke Australian styling to the Vogue range, allowing for wet spaces that are not just bathrooms but sanctuaries. For more, head to Caroma.abc
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Will Vegan Interior Design Be The Next Big Thing?

Vegan Interior Design, the debut publication of Aline Dürr, an award-winning interior architect, coach and animal welfare advocate, comes at a time in which conscious consumerism is becoming recognised globally as an issue of increasing gravity. No longer presumed just a radical diet followed exclusively by impassioned animal rights activists and the hyper-healthy, veganism has flourished in recent years. Corralling the interests of anyone remotely concerned with the environment, sustainability, animal welfare, and/or personal health and wellbeing, the concept is now set to become a prevailing philosophy of the new age. Oriented toward those who are intrigued as opposed to astute on the matter, Vegan Interior Design by Aline Dürr is decidedly more of an introductory handbook than an exemplar of academic literature. Written in clear and simple language, the book's contents are pragmatically presented, culminating in a practical and highly accessible resource for design enthusiasts and professionals alike who are looking to bring a more conscious and informed perspective to their interior endeavours. “I am writing this book without claiming to explain everything exhaustively,” writes Aline. “My aim is to give a good overview and summarise the main points of a very complex subject in an easy-to-digest way.” Aline deciphers veganism in the context of interior design first in terms of materials and finishes, then according to the programme or typology of space. Through the lens of materiality the designer presents facts, busts myths, highlights health risks and introduces vegan-friendly alternatives for materials such as leather, paint, hard surface solutions and a variety of textiles. Vegan or not, as designers and inhabitants of space conscious consumerism is an emerging issue with mounting significance. In her book, Vegan Interior Design, Aline Dürr offers enlightened practitioners and consumers of design services a rudimentary and practical toolkit for applying vegan principles in the context of interior design. The title makes light reading out of a high-minded concept. As an introductory guide to practicing conscious design for interiors, Vegan Interior Design by Aline Dürr is a highly accessible and informative read. However, readers be warned: it only begins to scratch the surface of this emergent topic — here’s hoping there’s more where that came from. Vegan Interior Design veganinteriordesign.com We think you might also like Mims Radford and what she's doing with her digital boutique, Good Thingsabc
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Made in Australia: Innovation, Ingenuity, and Quality spell success for Stormtech

Faced with pressures like high local labour costs, a strong Australian dollar, and fluctuating commodity prices, a lot of Australian businesses have decided to move their manufacturing operations overseas in recent years. While the short-term financial gains associated with such moves are clear, so are their negatives consequences. For instance, those attractive ‘low labour costs’ offshore equate to low wages for workers in developing nations. Lacking the protection of the type of strong industrial relations laws we take for granted in Australia, these workers often face exploitation or worse.   The problems go beyond labour relations. Lack of regulation can extend to areas like environmental standards, quality assurance, and product compliance. So, while the financial incentive to manufacture overseas is clear, the possible consequences of using poor-quality products is also well-known, particularly in the construction sector.

Aussie-made Ethos

At the end of the day, of course, it’s up to each individual business to make the call – stay and manufacture in Australia or move offshore? Some businesses, like specialist drainage supplier Stormtech are taking the first option. The inventor of linear drainage, Stormtech is an exemplar of the Aussie-made ethos; the philosophy that ranks things like ingenuity, innovation, and product quality as its highest goals; and asserts that, in the long run, these priorities will serve it better than short-term financial gain. [gallery type="rectangular" size="large" ids="108120,108124"]

Knowing the market

Local knowledge is another key to Stormtech’s success. Through years of experience, the company has not only developed an intimate understanding of the local regulatory landscape but come to know the architects, specifiers, and builders it serves. Industry professionals want a supplier who speaks their language and is there to help them - offering products made with materials like marine-grade 316 stainless steel and vinyl council approved uPVC, furthermore they need products that are WaterMark and GreenTag certified, Stormtech is such a supplier. With a range of drainage solutions that are made-to-length and easy to customise, Stormtech works closely with its clients to find the right solution for each project. And, to top it off, its commitment to the local industry is matched by the aesthetic appeal of its state-of-the-art drainage solutions. A family-owned business with over 35 years of local experience, Stormtech is proof positive that there is life yet in the Australian manufacturing sector. Stormtech stormtech.com.au abc