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Elegant interiors and rental apartments

Can elegant interiors and rental apartments coexist? Contributing real living stylist Kirsten Bookallil proves it’s possible. People know about her for her great styling aesthetic which doesn’t forgo comfort or function. It follows, then, that the apartment where she lives, in Sydney’s eastern suburbs, is at once a functional family home while retaining Kirsten’s refined decorating sensibilities.

Living stylist and housing furniture

Living stylist and housing furniture

“We love the hacienda style of the building, and internally, it’s like a house but has the character of an apartment,” says Kirsten, who rents the space with her partner Nik and daughters Stella and Bronte. The spacious home features charming quirks such as pretty Laura Ashley wallpaper papered over a bathroom wall, low-lying windowsills, elegant tables and chairs with colorful sofas and several tiny rooms – perfect for extra storage.

Stylish magic and Transform spaces in the house

Painted throughout in Dulux “Whisper White”, the apartment’s neutral palette and clean lines prove an ideal canvas upon which to weave some stylish magic. Although restricted in making major changes, Kirsten has employed a few tricks to transform the space into her home. Clusters of photographs and paintings lean on shelves above the fireplace in the living room, which avoids the need to make unnecessary nail holes in the walls; set it up with sofas and recliners. Many of them are by Kirsten’s uncle, acclaimed South African artist William Kentridge, which brings a highly personal touch to the space. “Artwork to us is emotive rather than just there for the aesthetic; they’re gifts from friends and family,” Kirsten says.

Sylist building interior

Sylist building interior

But it’s the home office/dining room that proves the piece de resistance. It successfully shows that one room can be used for two different activities. For example,  Kirsten bought several best recliners after referring recliner reviews from the online site like Cuddly Home Advisors , which can be used as working chairs, or for doing excercise, for relaxing purpose, or even sleeping.  Large, work-oriented moodboards easily morph into wall art when the room is used for dining, and the desk doubles as the dining table that it is!

Knife geeks

by antimedia on

Knife geeks will agree with me that there is no such thing as ‘too many’ paring knives. A paring knife is normally 3 to 4 inches long, and used for a variety of kitchen tasks.

I know that’s strange because you could actually do all those with just one paring knife, but I just can’t decide which the ultimate best paring knife is, and so I simply choose the best paring knife for the job.



I like a good heft when I’m mincing or chopping onions and the like, so the Wusthof Classic forged blade is perfect for this. I have collected quite a few paring knives, and I tend to reach for different ones for different jobs. One for mincing and chopping, one for slicing, one for peeling and so on.

This paring knife feels like a mini version of its 8-inch brother; it has great balance with its full tang extending to the end of the handle, so that when you hold it it’s like part of your own hand. This means that you will have full control of the knife and makes it very good for filleting too.

best paring knife

The blade is hand-forged, high quality German steel, which says it all about the knife’s durability. What’s more, the lifetime guarantee by Wusthof assures that you will be passing this knife to your children. The classic triple riveted handle is beautiful and comfortable too.

I prefer Wusthof Kitchen Knives than Global knifes because of the quality and they are still in great shape after all these years of daily use.

I bought three Wusthof Classic knives some 6 months ago. Without any doubt they are the worst knives I have ever had in my 52 years of married life. I sent an e mail to the manufacturer in Germany complaining of their poor performance. I wrote to them simply because where I bought them ceased to trade. I stress that I did not receive a reply to my e mail and the performance of the company matches the performance of their product. I am not a professional cook, just a housewife, but I am Pusthof with Wusthof!

best paring knivesI am a big fan of Wusthof knives. I have had my pieces for over twenty years and love them. Periodically I have them professionally sharpened but I also have a stone and oil for home sharpening. The balance of these knives is exceptional. There are certainly more expensive knives on the market but that should not be your first criteria. Buy the pieces you need individually and add as needed. I was a fine dining chef for many years and think you have to buy what is utile and comfortable. Cook on!

Industrial Vintage Charming

by antimedia on

Furniture Industrial Vintage

Furniture Industrial Vintage


Industrial history of the building

Adriane enlisted the help of her good friend and building designer Bohdan Kuzyk because he understood what she was trying to create. “I wanted the second storey to reflect the industrial history of the building while still being clearly a new addition,” Adriane explains. She incorporated recycled timber and building materials, rusted iron and black corrugated iron to achieve this result. “From the outside the upper storey looks a bit like a shipping container dropped on the roof,” she laughs. As well as saving money, second-hand materials come with their own history. Using recycled products also reduces the impact on the environment, which Adriane has kept in mind throughout the renovations.

Kitchen Facilities in house

Kitchen Facilities in house

General feeling of space and light of the building

Adriane has created a relaxing, calm space using a soft palette of neutrals in chalky textures. “I like using a limited palette of natural colours with just an occasional small area of strong colour, such as table and chair set, reclining chairs, the blackboard wall off the kitchen. I wanted to keep the general feeling of space and light,” she explains. Adriane loves to use limewash on the walls. “It looks a bit more aged and gives a sense of depth to the colour and space. A solid colour would look wrong in this building,” she says.
Adriane is currently collecting a mix of recycled floorboards for the bathroom and Lucy’s bedroom. She also found some rusty perforated metal sheets, originally used for drying hops in an old brewery nearby. “I’m going to use them as balustrades on the balconies,” she says. “I imagine the guys that once worked here in the coathanger factory would have got their beer from that brewery.”
The space is constantly evolving and Adriane still has plenty of jobs on her to-do list. “I expect by the time the renovation is finished I’ll either be ready to do more with it or start another one,” she says. “Maybe it’s just another creative outlet for me – I don’t think you really clock off as a painter, builder or cook. I’m always creating something.”

Clever furniture solutions and creative space with best recliners and sofas, an tables on wheels


FRIENDS often drop in to architect Sara Giese Camre’s apartment. So much so that she’s redesigned and furnished the place to accommodate the constant flow of people, as well as her ever-changing decorating schemes. The home features open-plan living spaces and clever furniture solutions, such as tables on wheels, recliner chairs, and sleeper sofas, so she can rearrange zones on a whim to suit the occasion or mood.

Redesign her apartment with open space

She wants to redesign her apartment with open space by exploiting new design of tables on wheels, sleeper sofas and recliners for saving spaces

Her apartment

Sara rented this 150-sq-m apartment for two years until she bought it with the intention of giving it a major makeover. “The apartment included a long corridor with six small, dark bedrooms,” Sara says.

But she could see the potential. After sketching for almost a year, she came up with the design for a spacious apartment with a huge living room, three bedrooms, two bathrooms, plus open-plan kitchen-dining area with a luxious dining table.

Open plan kitchen at her apartment

Open plan kitchen at her apartment