Monday, July 30, 2007

Inspirational dining rooms

Perhaps the biggest trend in design for entertaining today is the return of the dining room. These are separate dining rooms, not the kitchen/all-purpose room that was common for many years. With getting together with friends and family at home becoming more popular than ever, architects and home designers increasingly find themselves designing for people who love to entertain with food.

Here are some design ideas taken from the dining rooms I like from LivingEtc...

(above) I love the way this dining room is anchored by the bold coloured carpet with a touch of green to soften the look of the room.
(above) The use of bright upholstery really gives a modern and glamorous touch to the period furniture. Wonderful eclectic mix of lighting.
(above) Wonderful contrast here.
(above) I like the way the outdoors is integrated with the interior space here. Beautiful backdrop!
(above) A homely relaxed feel is achieved by mixing and matching chairs to a simple pine table.
(above) A dining room(or any room for that matter) is never quite finished without fresh flowers.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Neat Recharge Station

Loose wires round the house always drive me crazy. Just thought that this Bedford Smart Recharge Station is a really neat idea to recharge all your gadgets in one place. And it doesn't look that difficult to DIY it yourself too! Here is one more project on my list! For those who want it NOW, it is available at Pottery Barn. (via Oh Happy Day)

The Home Rejuvenation

Many thanks to The Home Rejuvenation for recently highlighting Laissezfaire as a design blog to visit! Thought I will take this opportunity as well to introduce our readers to them.

Run by Stan and Kus of KNQ Associates, The Home Rejuvenation regularly provides inspiring ideas on interior design. They recently introduced a useful resource on their blog for home owners entitled "Shops to visit ". These guys really spent quite a considerable amount of time consolidating a comprehensive list of furniture and home accessory shops in Singapore under this new 'Shops To Visit' section. Do check them out as well as read their link to this blog post 'How to Give Your Home a Makeover - 8 Easy Steps'.

(image from


What a cool design for a chair! It is made from materials used in the building industry which are not very common in the furniture design. You can even change the look of it by changing the magazine you hang on the rail! Think this will be an excellent (but not that comfy) design for a bus-stop or carriage seat. By eosmexico. (via)

Friday, July 27, 2007

Keri Smith

I recently got to know of Keri Smith. Keri is an author/illustrator who does freelance illustration. She has worked for a wide variety of clients worldwide. Some recent big names include The Washington Post, The NewYork Times, Ford Motor Co., and Hallmark. I just love the colours she employs and the freedom she seems to allow herself in her collages.

What I also like about Keri is her openness and honesty in sharing about how challenging it is to be in a creative field sometimes. You should read her "How to feel miserable as an artist", "How to make a living doing what you love" and the heartfelt lecture she gave to high school students on "Letting yourself soar". You will probably be able to appreciate it better if you are in a creative field yourself, or pursuing something you truely love. Practical, humourous and inspiring!

Keri also gives many wonderful ideas on how to stimulate your creativity. Check out 'The Collage Experiment" and " 100 Ideas". I loved 100 ideas so much that I printed the pdf and cut the pieces up to put in a handmade envelope. Will be randomly picking one out to challenge myself when I feel my creativity juice running low!

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Fairground Studio

I did a post on the gorgeous patchwork-inspired lampshades by Karen of Fairground Studio some time back. Fairground Studio is currently offering a 10% on all lamps (with stands) to Laissezfaire blog readers. Just email them to order and mention Laissezfaire to get your discount. Thanks Karen!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Budget finds

I found out about this gorgeous mid century chairs from Floretro (via Decor8). Absolutely beautiful and timeless! I love it when old beautifully-made objects are given a new lease of life with just a fresh coat of paint. You can buy all four chairs newly upholstered for only $550, or start bidding at $450 on ebay! Quick!

For those of you out there who can't miss out of good budget finds, Holly of Decor8 will be posting a weekly summary of a few of her eBay picks for the week. Do check it out!

Le Petite Atelier de Paris

The next time you visit Paris, you have got to check out this pretty shop near the Pompidou Centre called Le Petite Atelier de Paris. Opened in 2005 by 2 designers, this boutique shop has a workshop inside where a series of beautiful items for daily use are conceived and handmade. I just love the raw, pastry-like, quality of the products. How imperfectly perfect!

(via Bloesem)

Friday, July 20, 2007

Takashi Iwasaki

Love these abstract hand embroidery by Takashi Iwasaki. So free and imaginative!
Also love this drawing (below) entitled "An Ideal Street". Speaking as an urban planner (I worked as one for a period of time), yes, this is an ideal street! I wish there were more streets like this in cities round the world!

Michelle Brand

Aren't these the most gorgeous things? Created by Michelle Brand, this fabric was produced by cutting, sanding and assembling the base of plastic bottles into the tapestry. (via sub-studio)

Beautiful Balconies

This housing block in Izola on the Slovenian coast was designed by Ofis Arhitekti. It was a winning entry for a national design competition calling for the design of two apartment buildings. While the units (ranging from studios to three-bedrooms) may be small, the unique trapezoidal-shaped balconies provide ample external space. Each balcony is also beautifully wrapped with colourful canvas awnings that provide both privacy and ventilation.
A visually pleasing building that is also responsive to Slovenia's Mediterranean climate. Really hope to see more of such projects, especially in tropical places like Singapore. (via the coolhunter)

Pink Prank Project

If you are obsessed with pink and wrapping paper, this is the project for you! It took 203m of paper and 5 people a cool 6 hours to wrap everything in this flat belonging to a messy friend. An immediate solution to clutter. Sure looks like an art gallery doesn't it? Click here to watch a video of how it was done!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Creative Business Cards

Aren't you tired of business cards that all look the same? Check out these creative cards that say more than just your name and designation. More creative inspirations at this flickr pool.

Scott Stulberg

I came across this website with the most amazing photography taken by Scott Stulberg. Some of his pictures really tug at the heart. You got to check out his website to see what I mean.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007


The chair is made by layering 15 bags of rags. It arrives ready made but the user has the option to recycle their own discarded clothers to be included in the design. Wonderful use for your old clothes! Available at greenergrassdesign

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Old paper

I found out about appleseed today. This Etsy store sells packets of old paper which includes wallpaper, sheet music, pages of text, poems, greeting cards, trading & playing cards, matchbox covers, children's illustrations and text, maps,used stamps, postcards, atlas pages,old patterns,recipes... Mostly vintage. Good for inspiration and making pretty much anything with paper. (via poppytalk)

Monday, July 16, 2007

Clever mailboxes

I saw these really clever mailboxes in the July/August 2007 edition of Dwell magazine. Created by Mark Naden of Pure Design, the barcode is actually perforated so you can take a peek inside to see if you've got mail! Available here, but it looks like they're sold out right now.

Deleted Images

Also known as 'The Junkyard of Art', DeletedImages brings an artistic perspective to unsharp, moved, blurry and unfocused pictures that would have been deleted otherwise.

I just submitted a blurry shot taken by a friend on my wedding day to them. Really like it a lot as it pretty much summarises what I felt, saw and remember of that day.

Some of my favourites below.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Ikea Hacker

I came across this great blog called the Ikea Hacker. It basically welcomes people to submit their own hacked creations from Ikea. Here you can find inspiration for de-IKEAfying IKEA stuff and turn your mass-produced pieces into something personal and unique.

Some wonderful ideas to share with everyone.

(above) ding3000 pimps up the world's no. 1 Billy shelving unit into a playful interim storage place for unsorted books, magazines and newspapers.

(above) An ikea poang table turned into a kid artist friendly furniture with just a bucket of studio finishes chalkboard paint. via.

(above) An ikea pillow case turned into a gorgeous skirt by Melissa of fehrtrade.
(above) "Designer" hack by AnAtomicFactory of an ikea stefan chair.

(above) Cheap ikea lamps spiced up with black lace.

"Lace" tape

Lace tape by Stella Bugbee . Available at mattermatters

Friday, July 13, 2007

Het grote Avontuur

I learnt about this great store in Amsterdam, Het grote Avontuur (The Big Adventure), via Bloesem. Most of the unique products they carry are handmade by small businesses all over the world. Here are some cool products plucked from their online store.

(above) Pattern roller. I have used roller stamps like this before for craft projects but never knew they had them for walls!
(above) Butterfly paper cuttings for the wall decal lovers.

(above) Sadle cover to cover your bike like they do in India. Brilliant! Makes me want to get a bike to use the sadle cover.