Tuesday, March 30, 2010


This is rather nice, on Sydney's northern beaches. Love the little front gate... might do that (but with a stone wall) next time. I think the price tag is around $5 million.

Look, there's the sea! Lovely.
Happy Tuesday folks.
A-M xx

Images courtesy www.realestate.com.au.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Bribe Winner

The winner of these gorgeous Riviera Maison, whitewashed, wooden coasters in a vintage rattan holder, is Kerry, from A Tranquil Townhouse....(random org number 22). Please email me your address Kerry and ... enjoy! My last set!... they are no longer available in Australia.....devastation... you know my obsession with all things vintage rattan.....so don't get me started on the disappearance of the RM 'Cobbler's Wharf'' range... I could have single handedly kept them in business with that one range here in Oz. Aaaah furniture politics...a  harsh reality... great stuff comes and then goes... thank goodness for the new 'great stuff' that is popping up all the time!

Have a great day!

Saturday, March 27, 2010


Image Courtesy Pastiche of Cape Cod
Well, what a wonderful first week we have had here at CCD. Thank you for all your support, feedback, ideas, encouragement and for joining me for the ride. I even got my first CCD bloggy award from the lovely 'Melbourne Girl' over at 'Life At Number 10'. Thank you Lesley!
I will be back on Monday with the winner of my 'join me or else bribe' competition/giveaway!
Have a happy weekend.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Just Fabulous

 Image Courtesy Villa Maison

Now isn't this French locker cabinet just fabulous!? It is from the new 'Vintage Industrial Collection' from Villa Maison. French but coastal but French. Straight to the shop I say! Scheming continues.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Coastal Style?

... I'm sorry..... but no-one does it better than Karna. Karna lives in Norway. I have been stalking her bloggy blog for years now... years. Little does she know how her style has influenced so many of my design and decoration decisions over the years... window design, tablescapes, clocks, lamps, my love of Riviera Maison, rattan, red, white and blue colour schemes! Sigh! Love ya Karna. HERE. Say hi from me!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


 Image Courtesy Southern Living

Ok, well let’s start with my inspiration for Cape Cod Designs ...and...why ‘Cape Cod Designs Pty Ltd’ in sunny Brisbane, Australia?

Firstly..... big lesson I have learnt in my business life... your business name should sort of state what you do - give a hint of your business nature, focus, mission. The number of times I was asked (in my pink days with Armchair Trader) “do you sell armchairs?" I didn’t at first but then I sort of had to!

My inspirations? I love many architectural elements found in the early New England/Cape Cod style homes - steep roof with gables, timber covered in board or shingles, chimney, central hall and parlour, symmetrical in appearance, multi-paned, double hung windows (be still heart), shutters, timber floors.

A typical Queenslander Courtesy Flickr

I live in a city where our traditional homes were essentially timber. Pre war, our timber homes were built to suit our hot humid climate, to allow maximum air flow and minimize flood risk. They were built on timber stumps, had eaves, a central hall or breezeway, verandahs/porches around the whole house for living and sleeping (e.g., the characteristic sleepout). They had decorative gables and fretwork inside and out.

Over the years I have been mentally consolidating home designs that combine all the elements of what I love in both the Traditional Queenslander Home and the Cape Cod/New England Style Home.

Originally Cape Cod style homes were built by the English settlers in New England, America, in the late 17th century. They were modelled on the timbered houses of England and adapted to survive the stormy New England weather. Later in the late 1800’s, more ornate features were added, such as side porches, dormer windows, symmetrical front facades, accented doorways with overhead fanlights and evenly spaced windows either side (usually hung in adjacent pairs or in triple combinations (love these) rather than as single windows).

It’s these early New England/Cape Cod style architectural elements that I wish to combine with the traditional timber Queenslander home features -  panelled entrance doors with side lights, moulded frames, gable panels, ornate architraving and skirting, wall panelling, timber batons, porches, tin roofs... when designing a home. Some Queenslander architectural features I am not so fussed on?..... ornate hallway and ceiling arches, window hoods, the done to death 5 light casement windows, ornate finials, overly ornate turnery/balustrades, external cross braced exposed framing..... so I wish to take what I love from both the New England style home and the Queensland Colonial and create a ‘sympathetic merger’ of the two!

Image Courtesy Verandah

Interior wise, I am drawn to neutrals and whites, maybe a touch of blue or a sliver of gold.....lots of space, simple floor plans with a mix of separate cosy living areas and also open plan living areas, bedrooms upstairs, living downstairs, a mixture of textures with casual coastal accents. Throw in a little bit of rustic ‘French country’, a beautiful chandelier here and there, pewter, silver, white cabinetry, timber floors, natural fibre rugs, a light, bright timber staircase, and a bit of stone and that pretty much sums up my 'look' in a nutshell.

I am going to take you on a little tour soon, of my inner city neighbourhood, to show you some of the Queensland Style homes (around where I live and where I wish to build more homes) from the Colonial Victorians, Federation Style, Inter-War period and then the Post War styles (that’s where they lost me with Queensland residential architecture. I’m trapped between 1850 – 1918 with what I love about colonial architecture here in Queensland and then drawn to the New England style from the late 1800’s in the US).

I am also considering a Wednesday post titled, ‘WWYDW', i.e., 'What Would You Do Wednesday’? ... where I will post a picture of a house in my local area and you can comment on what would be the one thing you would change to improve the external aesthetic, street appeal of the home. I do this mentally every day on my morning walks so why not share our ideas!

Goodness, I have waffled. So that’s the design aesthetic of Cape Cod Designs. Haven’t started on the the shop side of things yet.... that's  another post entirely! Must let you get on with your day! Have a great one.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Setting Up

Image Courtesy Coastal Living

Well thank you all for joining me and for your encouraging comments. Please bear with me while I set everything up. How about we get comfy here on this gorgeous porch and I will tell you some of my plans. Don't forget my giveaway... you have all week to enter. Be back tomorrow to share some of my ideas.

Have a great day!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Let's Start With A Giveaway

 Pottery Barn Blue
Well hello!... something pretty for you now that you are over here... coastal, whitewashed, serene blue...to help you settle into the Cape Cod Designs aesthetic. Now, this place is not much different to the old site... everything has been imported from my old blog (just couldn't let it go to the big internet heaven in the sky)... just needed to change the URL...argh, don't you just loathe housekeeping, moving stuff, tidying up!

Ok, so the Cape Cod Designs blogspot.... thinking of keeping the Monday Bed, what do you think? What else would you like to see here? I'll rattle on about my projects, my building design study and of course my impending new online store but it would be nice to tailor this here blog to my reader's tastes as well.

Hit me with some ideas and I will reward one of you with this beautiful, very coastal ('Cape Codish') set of  wooden coasters, in a vintage rattan holder, from Riviera Maison.

All you have to do is:
1. Join my Followers List up there on the right
2. Add 'Cape Cod Designs' blog to your bloggy blog roll (if you have one)
3. Remove the old Armchair Trader blog from your blogroll (I'm such a neat freak...always tidying up)
4. ... and tell me what will keep your interest here at CCD!

Will draw the winner next Monday 29th March, 2010.

Thanks for coming over. It's going to be great fun here!