Busy city, quiet spaces – The other side of Singapore

ImageSingapore – if there’s anywhere in the world that gets me thinking of apartment living, this place has to be it.  Every time I go there the city is alive with cranes, drills, towering metal frameworks and little trucks full of builders.  It feels like a whole city’s worth of apartment blocks are built and re-built there, every day.  I actually love the excitement of it and how ordered it still manages to be.

Last time I visited I noticed for the first time those quiet little spaces that people have created for themselves in the middle of this BIG, noisy city.

The following photos are all very different but the feeling these places evoked was the same, of reflection, of peace and calm, of a little oasis. From the colourful opulent space for prayer, to the smooth carving of the statue, to the bright little flowers in a quiet patch outside a busy market place, these areas created a big change in pace and feeling.  

It’s easy to do this in your little space too, by choosing beautiful pieces of furniture and decoration, as opulent or as simple as you like, that evoke a reaction of calm when you see it.  And the outcome, as you can see below, is a really special and personalised space…

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The little porch – a festival of colours

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How can you inject some springtime colour to your outdoor space?  Here’s a tiny place I happened upon in Capri, proving just how much life can be packed into one little porch.  The tiles, flowers, and even the name plate are all fantastic excuses for a festival of colours!

This has been my weekend inspiration for potting up some beautiful flowers in coloured pots for my own little space.  Enjoy!

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The Fab Weekend Entertainer’s Courtyard

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It’s the weekend, and the weather in Melbourne is gorgeous!  I am super inspired to come out of hiding and start entertaining again.

So what to do if you don’t have a big backyard for a barbecue?  You can still make your small outdoor (or indoor) space completely stylish!  My fabulous friend recently invited a group of us for a simple and glamourous Sunday brunch in her small courtyard.  Apart from being a brilliant cook, she made the day special using these touches:

  • Create a theme – here the green and white was fresh, and enhanced the lush outdoor feel.  Even if you are indoors, you can add some flowers for an outdoor feel.
  • Small touches count – my friend had grown her own rosemary, and as well as using it in her cooking, she made little displays in small glasses.  It didn’t take up too much space on the table, but having real herbs with beautiful fragrances really made it feel like spring.
  • Fresh food can be the best ornament of all – it may sound boringly functional, but where space is tight, using your meal as a centrepiece can actually be very exciting!  Think beautiful fresh fruits, lime in glasses, and great, colourful salads
  • Keep it simple – you don’t need to overcrowd with big floral arrangements that people can’t see over!  Keep the hero of the day as the food you serve and the fabulouscompany you keep!

Happy weekend everyone!Image

London colour inspiration

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Some people say London is a bit grey.  But I think Londoners just get it.  They put colour wherever they can and they live a BIG life in little spaces.  I recently stayed with a lovely friend in her place in Notting Hill above a pizza shop.  I entered through a tiny little door and up a teeny stairwell and found my way up to a gorgeous BIG loftspace, beautifully decked out with couches, flowers in vases, and bookshelves with favourite books and collectibles.  Who would have thought I’d have found something so beautiful in such an obscure location?

Above are some of the flowers I found outside a London apartment window.  See the pictures for more colour inspiration in the form of flowers and bunting in and around London, which could be used inside or outside.  Also check out my previous post on bringing outside, inside!

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A holiday mindset, a city backdrop

A holiday mindset, a city backdrop

I found this little guy on a stable lock in a different life months ago when enjoying the small things was a luxury I could afford and corporate city life was the furthest thing from my mind. I remembered how … Continue reading

BIG spaces for little people

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Growing cities, shrinking spaces…. and kids.

Some of my inner suburban friends have recently found themselves with a growing family in a small apartment space.  So how do you make sure your kids are still connected to the BIG world around them?

Thankfully, there are some great shared spaces where our kids can still run free, fall over, climb fences, and get muddy, all while learning about the world around them! The brilliant volunteers at Collingwood Childrens Farm in Abbotsford provide education in a very fun environment.  My little friends love the chickens, goats, pigs, cows and horses, and can learn everything from how their jumpers are made (thanks to some lovely ladies spinning wool), to where milk comes from (and even have a go at milking the cows).

Even better for Mums, Dads, and grown up friends, the Farm Cafe is full of freshly made, healthy food and brilliant coffee.

So even though your space may be little, don’t forget to use the world around you – parks, trails, rivers, and other shared spaces can be a great way to broaden your little space and connect you to your local community.

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