Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Cool Tarragindi house

Well, this is the final house on the mid-century interiors tour of Brisbane.

This last house was absolutely lovely and had such a great family feel to it. It was actually a house I had admired when it was on the market earlier this year. I liked it so much that I saved one of the images on Pinterest. I had no idea that it was one of the tour houses.

It is located in the southside suburb of Tarragindi, which is about seven kilometres from the CBD. The four bedroom house was designed by Ron Petersen between 1968 to 1970. It is in a cul-de-sac which backs onto Toohey Forest. You can't see the house from the street as it is set back into its bush setting; you must negotiate a green leafy path before you reach the home. The swimming pool is one of the first things you notice as you reach the front door.

I didn't take any photos of this house - too sick with envy to even get my camera out of its bag! Chris from Brisbane Modern Magazine kindly sent me some photos and I took a few from a real estate website for your viewing pleasure.

This is the dining and living area. The dining room is slightly elevated from the sitting room.

A closer look at the living area
This is the photo of the interior when it was on the market. One that I had saved on Pinterest.
You can see that this area flows out into a courtyard
The house had a number of different levels which delineated the spaces. For example, the bedrooms were found in a separate wing of the home, slightly elevated from the main part of the house. It was incredibly cosy for a mid-century house.

This shot was taken from where the bedrooms are located.
Notice the high louvre windows which allow the cool breezes to flow through the house.

This is the afternoon tea that the lovely owners provided to their house tourists.
You can't see it, but to the left of this shot there is a glass roofed courtyard - an amazing outdoor room indoors!
To the right of this shot is a very functional galley kitchen.

This exterior shot of the house was taken from a real estate website
It shows the tiered roof line and also the court yards.
The one at the front flow from the kitchen, the one on the back left flows from the living room
 I hope you enjoyed the tour! 

Monday, 28 November 2011

Visiting Jacobi House

Jacobi House in Indooroopilly is what could be considered the modernist take on the typical Queenslander house. It was designed by Hayes and Scott Architects in 1957.

We visited this home when we did the mid-century interiors tour of Brisbane. The home is built on stumps, has a pyramid roof structure and wrap-around verandahs are used on three sides to capture the breezes. 

Jacobi House 1957

This is the original colour scheme of the house.
It is just a very simple box-like structure, set in amongst the trees near Mt Cootha. The land drops suddenly and when you are standing on the verandah, it is like being cocooned in your own private native forest.

Chatting on the verandah

louvre windows are used to capture cool breezes
There is one main dividing wall which separates the one bedroom and separate study from the main living area. The fireplace structure forms part of that dividing wall and marks the centre of the home.

Central fireplace and notice the VJ ceiling
It is a small home which is owned by a lovely couple who are relishing the challenge of restoring this piece of Brisbane modernism. 

The kitchen is located in one corner of the box

It was such a privilege to view this home. It is really something quite special.

If you are interested, you can see more images and read about the history and construction of Jacobi House here. edit: the old link no longer works but I managed to find the information via this link here.

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Run of bad luck

The chandelier is okay, if that was your initial thought when you read the title. This post is about Jason's run of bad luck.

Firstly, Jason deleted all of my emails when I was out one night. I am so cross with him because he deleted quite a few important work ones which I had not yet archived, printed or saved to file.

He saw a dodgy spam email  - you know the ones - which said we had exceeded our email limit. His response to that was to delete all our emails. Jason, Jason, Jason. I am hoping he's never responded to those British lottery or Nigerian emails...

Jason also had his wallet stolen when he was being wined and dined at a Christmas function held at The Villager in the City. Hmmm...and he was still sober when it happened...Money, credit cards and ID gone in a flash. It makes me feel ill just thinking about it...

So, it's been a tough couple of days.

And to top if off, reading the newspapers this morning we found out he was NOT even mentioned in Queensland's Top 50 Stylish people...The injustice. Tough days indeed!

Lucky he knows how to paint and has redeemed himself.

Jason is painting the back railings near the back deck

The garage door has had a repair job and a few tubes of no more gaps to improve its overall appearance.
Much better.

Thursday, 24 November 2011

For Anonymous Natalie

Anonymous Natalie is wavering about her dislike for our this post is for her.

Our chandelier is not classically beautiful like many other chandeliers - it is very much a light of its era which is from the late 60s to early 80s. Obviously, I picked our chandelier up on the cheap because someone decided it was no longer to their taste...which is very understandable as mid-century Italian is not everyone's thing.

After I bought our chandelier from eBay, I began noticing them in salubrious settings such as advertisements for Designers Guild. They are quite pretty and make a striking statement in the right setting.

Above images from Designers Guild

There is a sophisticated contemporary take on the same theme from Ochre
image from Here
Even the Lindt Cafe in Martin Place, Sydney is on board.

Image by Nat Duncan
I also have a reader from the Mornington Peninsula who sent me a photo of her chandelier which she bought for a mere $5. Jealous.

Then I stumbled on a website from the US and saw a similar chandelier to my ugly one.

Image from here
I nearly choked when I saw how much they're selling this chandelier. Click on here so you can choke too.

Woo hoo! Yep, my ugly chandy makes me very happy. Let's hope it doesn't fall...

mid-century Italian Murano tear drop chandelier

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Murano chandelier...third time lucky?

Okay, deep breath. Typing this blog post has probably just jinxed the newly installed Murano chandelier in the dining room...

You see, this chandelier installation caper has been plagued with issues for the past 12 months. If you are new to this blog, you may not know that the first attempt was aborted because Carlo the electrician said there were no earth wires and the metal chandelier could become live if it was installed. Read about it here. I suppose, it was probably a good thing to find out.

The second attempt was a few months later after we had the lights earthed (this was a biggish job which meant taking the flat roof off the sunroom). Wazza the electrician, Carlo's colleague, was in charge that day and he installed the chandelier. It was just gorgeous. However, within 36 hours the chandelier crashed down with spectacular effect while I was seated at the dining table. WAZZA!!

You can read about it here. It is actually one of the funniest posts with the funniest comments. Fortunately I have a sense of humour. Jason, not so much.

Carlo and Wazza were utterly mortified when they heard what had happened and were extremely apologetic, offering to reinstall the light and pay for the broken crystals. I really didn't have the heart to be a bitch about the whole thing - it wasn't like they wanted it to fall. They have always done a good job for us with all our other electrical jobs at the Sow's Ear too. All I can say is accidents do happen.

Anyway, the chandelier had me completely spooked and I was debating (with my inner self) to abandon the whole chandelier business and find a less complicated light or something Danish. I let it rest for a few months until my courage returned.

And return it did (sorry to Anonymous Natalie who thinks this light is fugly). Carlo came back yesterday to hook up the chandelier. He was determined to make this attempt a success. I asked him if he was sure it would definitely hold this time around.

 "She'll be right," Carlo said confidently.

I retorted: "That's what Wazza said!"

Retro chandelier with Murano dragon's tears crystals

Look at the lovely shadow it casts on the ceiling.

The chandelier has been up for over 24 hours and so far, so good, as I cross myself.  Every so often, I glance at it tentatively; it makes me so nervous. If it falls, there won't be a fourth attempt.

Monday, 21 November 2011

Mid-century homes in Bardon

Our next stop on the Brisbane mid-century interiors house tour led us to a quiet cul-de-sac in Bardon, a suburb which is located five kilometres west of the CBD.

We were able to visit two neighbouring homes in the same street. Both homes are being slowly renovated by their owners with the intention of preserving the integrity of the modernist design.

The first home we saw on this street was perhaps one of my favourites. It was designed by architect Brian Hackett in 1965 and is a light-filled three bedroom home. The soaring cathedral-like ceilings were impressive and made the space quite grand.

A talented Brisbane architect, Robyn Booth has been working with the young owners on the staged renovations. The main bathroom and ensuite renovations are the next big projects planned for this 1960s home.

Here are some snapshots of this wonderful piece of mid-century goodness:

Spacious lounge room.
The Parker lounge suite was a recent acquisition. The teal fabric is completely original.

This photo is taken from the lounge room to the dining room. The kitchen on the left is not original to the house. It will be reconfigured  at a later date

I liked this detail above the bedroom doors - a nod to the traditional Queenslander's breeze way.

This shot is taken from the side garden area.

Front view of the house with a patio dress-wearing house tour member!
The next house we visited in the street was a Donald Spencer home designed in 1966. It is to the left of the house above. There was an article written about it in Brisbane Modern Magazine Issue II and a photo of the home also made the front cover. Check out the cover here.

We only had a fleeting visit to this home as the couple who own it recently had twins. Yikes! Hands definitely full there. We did not want to intrude for too long.

It was still amazing to see and a joy to know that there are people out there who so obviously love their home.

Here are some images of this cutting-edge, in 1966, Brisbane home:

Sunken lounge area with polished concrete floors.
Shag pile carpet was the original floor covering used in this area. 

entry with large sliding front door with oversized hand-beaten copper door handle

This shot is taken from the kitchen which is elevated from the main living and dining area.
Amazing sunken bath tub. There is a large shower rose attached to the ceiling which you can't see in this shot.
This is not the most flattering image but I felt that I should include it as the owners intend to restore it when time and money allows.  
I hope you are enjoying this mid-century tour of Brisbane.

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Mid-century interiors tour Brisbane

I was lucky enough to attend another mid-century house tour on the weekend, which was kindly organised by Chris from Brisbane Modern Magazine. He has organised tours before, mainly to view modernist exteriors but this time we were invited inside all the homes for the ultimate sticky beak!

There were about 20 of us car-pooling to several modernist homes from suburbs as disparate as Wavell Heights to Tarragindi.  As a frustrated mid-century lover who happens to own a traditional Queenslander house, to say I was green with envy would be an understatement - all the homes were incredible examples of Brisbane mid-century architectural design. Love.

The owners of the homes were extremely generous to open their homes so willingly to a bunch of house geeks, so many thanks to them for their hospitality.

The first port of call was a home in the northside suburb of Wavell Heights, which is about nine kilometres from the CBD. The circa 1965 home had just undergone an extensive but tasteful contemporary renovation which involved another storey being added to the original house. The interior was just spectacular, with the owners Amra and Salih embracing wholeheartedly the modernist style of the home.

Here are some shots of the interior. The shots seriously do no justice to this amazing home.

Close-up of the lounge room.
Eames elliptical coffee table, the two chairs are by Charles Wilson (I think, I may be wrong though..)

Longer view of the lounge room. The fireplace had an amazing copper flue.

This is the front entry which had an incredibly cool back lit textured wall.

Elegant sideboard with Georg Jensen Cobra candlesticks

They have good taste! Amra & Salih bought this Anstey leather recliner at the same time as me. The pendant light is Murano which is original to the house but was relocated from another part of the house for this spot. Gorgeous!

Amra made pizza for her guests

The pizza was cooked in their outdoor pizza oven in the outdoor swimming pool area. OMG! It was delicious.

Striking exterior of the home
So that was part one of the tour. I will show you more of the other homes we visited over the next few posts. Stay tuned!

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Fun and VJs: The year of painting

This clip is to celebrate the Sow's Ear's year of painting (what a mouth full!).

What else can one do with all the photographs I've taken of this house?

P.S I'm getting on the bandwagon, blatantly ripping off this idea from Mrs Woog who posted her clip today. Thanks.

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Carport painting

This is just a quickie up-date about what's happening at the Sow's Ear.

It's all about painting the carport roof trusses at the moment. Dull tedious job that it is. I'm projecting Jason as I type this, as he's the one painting them...unlucky him.

The trusses are, of course, becoming gloss white.

white carport
 They used to be heritage green.

We have two carports. This is the other one which needs to be painted...later down the track. What a nightmare job! 
It is such a lot of work.

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Textured bark glass

I've been having a bit of an op-shop bonanza lately. 

I found a set of retro bark/textured drinking glasses from two different op-shops within a week or so of each other. It must be a sign...that some people don't like textured glass! Lucky me, because I love it.

Sadly, the glasses are no name el cheapo drinking glasses but this is okay by me, as the boys will be able to use them with no stress from me.

The new (old) glasses look so good on our kitchen shelf next to the more precious Finnish glassware. With the hot summer days creeping up on us, textured glassware is very appealing. Anything that looks remotely icy is welcome.

retro textured glassware
Look at the dusty shelf, I'll have to sack my imaginary cleaner Raoul! 

Monday, 14 November 2011

Goodies from ES Traders, Op-shops and Jo

Ipswich is the place to go for vintage shopping. It really is. Brisbane Street is just a treasure trove for thrifty op-shop-aholics.

Last week, Katherine, Jo and I just had a blast ferreting around the best vintage Ipswich had to offer. Obviously, I search for the retro 60s stuff but there are things from all eras if retro doesn't take your fancy.

Beswick Zorba coffee set  from the late 60s in olive green. This will go to a friend if she likes it.
A very brown retro pottery vase to add to my collection
I also bought a nice flammable frock, as I like a bit of Nana chic. I must be mindful not wear it near any naked flames just in case I combust. Pfooph!

It was found at The Vintage Advantage which is an excellent second-hand shop which sells vintage hats and clothes, art glass, kitchenalia and knick knacks from every conceivable era. The perfect shop to browse in with a couple of friends.

Retro Osti dress from The Vintage Advantage shop
It has an easy-access front zip feature that met with Jason's approval!
I also bought an horrendous 80s bridesmaid dress for an ugly bridesmaids get-together we are having soon for a friend who was recently married. Glen at The Vintage Advantage discounted it for me because it was extra ugly. I didn't take a photo of it as it would spoil the surprise for my other ugly bridesmaids.

Our coffee break was taken at the Bon Laneway Cafe in Ellenborough Street. Seriously good coffee in a "I can't believe this is in Ipswich" kind of way.

Single bulb light installation at Bon

Coffees on our milk crate tables
We also paid Kerrie a visit at ES Traders which is also on Ellenborough Street. She's just started her own blog about the shop and I spied some fantastic Japanese doll's heads among many other things. She has a fantastic selection of vintage and new which she has sourced from overseas and locally. It is worth a visit to Ipswich, just to see her shop.

Japanese doll's head and a sublime scented Gascoigne & King candle.
I should've bought another head to keep the other one company, so I will have to go back!
After our trip to the shops, Jo emptied out her cupboards in an effort to declutter and she fobbed off her goodies to Katherine and I. OMG! She is the best. She really is.

Some of the vintage goodies. Danish candle stick holders, Arabia, Midwinter coffee pot, Bing & Grondahl xmas plate, tribal tiki, faux Bitossi made in Japan! and an old church collection plate.
And there was much more which I haven't photographed.

So that was the fun day out in Ipswich!! 
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