Mumford & Sons, dingoes, & design

So on Halloween I went to a Mumford & Sons concert at the Riviera in Uptown (& for the record, I LOVE LOVE LOVE their music).

I was first introduced to the West London born quartet at Lollapalooza this past summer and instantly became hooked on their romantic tunes, which are a combination of bluegrass, folk, rock and country. While they are starting to get more recognition in the U.S., their album ‘Sigh No More’ reached #1 in Australia and became certified double platinum there. I have never actually been to Australia, and it is possibly one of the farthest places I could ever travel, but I’m starting to think it feels like I could fit right in. Not only do we appreciate similar music, but we also live among similar creatures. Dingoes, primitive canines native to the Australian outback, look eerily similar to my little pup (and Shiba Inu) Sumo…

Can you guess which is which?!? I’m wondering if my little pup (although she is Japanese) may have ancestors who migrated to Australia?? Okay, okay, I know that is a bit of a stretch. BUT, another connection is that one of my winter shoe staples was designed by an Australian company, UGG.

These Aussies know a thing or two about good, solid construction. Without these boots, Sumo would never be able to enjoy long walks in the cold Chicago winter. So anyways, I’ll be honest, I don’t know too much about Australia, BUT! I’m thinking with Australians being ahead of the curve in the music department and being pretty handy in the construction department, that Australians certainly must have great design too…don’t you think?? Well, I did some RESEARCH, and I came across some beautiful results…

One great blog I often like to peruse is desire to inspire. And go figure, half of it is written by Jo, an Australian born, retired interior designer (no wonder I like their blog!). I took a cue from Jo and decided what better way to find out about the design style than to start searching the real estate!…First though, I have to share a property that Jo found on desire to inspire, check it out:
(I love the exquisitely dramatic and intricate detailing in the architecture of this home).

You know how you wash a pair of jeans over and over again to get that perfect worn-in look and comfortable feel? That is what this home feels like to me, perfectly lived-in (but not so much that you see peeling paint, mold or cobwebs, eewww). Combine that with the perfect amount of modern details, and this home truly looks like a cozy retreat.

This kitchen utilizes a great, inexpensive solution to a full-blown island with drawers and cupboards. If you don’t need the extra storage and would like to save a few $$$, then stain a table to match the rest of the your cabinetry, like they did here, so that it feels like it belongs. This table doubles as both additional work surface as well as kitchen seating, providing both a functional and flexible space. Bravo!

I know we’re supposed to be looking at the beautiful kitchen detailing in this shot, but my eye is drawn to the ornate detailing in these arches (nice carpentry!)…

And then the kitchen opens into the large living space. Open floor plans provide a sense of more space and create opportunities for a better flow of traffic. Although be careful when space planning, I’m not sure I would have put that chi-blocker, I mean console table there disrupting the flow of traffic in the large arch…

The dining room has a serene neutral palette with blue-grays, natural woods, and warm tans and the two red chairs create a subtle yet distinct POP! of color…

The photographer did an amazing job in this shot; the viewer can almost feel the breeze floating through this space, aahhhh. I am thinking it’s a nice time for a nap…

And last but not least, the back courtyard. It leaves you with that same cozy, comfortable, livable feeling…

After seeing this home from desire to inspire, I had to wonder if more wonderfully executed homes like this existed in the Australian market today. And I found one more while searching their real estate that I wanted to share. This property is a little bit more modern with less traditional design elements in the interior finishes than the previous home, but has similar architecture (which I am still loving! The dramatic detailing lends itself to such interesting plays on shadows and light!)

A close up of the door. (Did I mention I love researching doors?)

Okay, enough talk from this chatterbox. I’ll let the slideshow do the rest of the talking, enjoy!

This research only piqued my curiosity, so there is definitely more to be had in my future, but with the daylight savings only a few days in place, it has been dark for hours, so, until next time…g’day (I mean g’night) to ya mate!

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