Monday, September 28, 2009

inspired by the everyday


As I mentioned in my last “discoveries” post (next one is also late; coming today), Julie has been finding extraordinary in the ordinary. And yesterday, so did I. What’s more, I was totally inspired by it.


For ages I’d been planning to cover my nana’s Danish-style* chairs (above & top) in white fabric. But I’ve noticed Zak and Layla have taken a shining to these chairs and sit, climb and eat in them constantly. So white might soon become “food-coloured” and I don’t know about that look… And so I was going to ask those of you who live with white couches and children: is it REALLY not a problem if you scotchguard etc? You know, like every single person who has a pristine white home will tell you in a magazine? I wonder, surely you LIE? Surely there are accidents and strategically-placed cushions to hide stains and possibly a throw to catch food? Surely it’s not happily ever after?
Anyway, I was going to ask this and then I had a brainwave: what if I used outdoor fabric? Outdoor fabric that didn’t look or feel like outdoor fabric but that resisted nasties and lasted longer? So I went window shopping last night at Fab Outdoor Fabrics. I wrote about them for theReal Living website a while back and was impressed with their funky range of designs. While scrolling through them again last night I remembered why when I found this pattern:


Which I LOVE and want to use on everything. In fact, I had plans to stencil something like it on Layla’s dresser. But what’s more… it is very similar to the pattern on the base of my nana’s chair (below) which I noticed properly last week. I’ve seen this base everyday for the last month since Layla has found it fun to remove the cushion every single day but never really “noticed” it before. But there I was sanding back the chair thinking “oh that’s a great pattern. I think I need some in my life.” An extraordinary ordinary.


And so, my plans to go white suddenly and unexpectedly changed in a nanosecond. I’m going to order a sample and am hoping and praying it feels as nice as it looks and is the same colour as it appears here. I’m slightly worried about it being brown – AGAIN – but I think it’ll work. I hope it’ll work.  But more importantly, what do YOU think? How helpful having a blog to help me make decisions**


Back on the fabric place - they really have some great designs. I’ve selected a few samples above: stripes to rival Ici et la, Matisse-inspired prints (the black and white one above), designer fabrics like Ralph Lauren, Sunbrella and Schumacher, and are really affordable. The Moorish one I want is $40 a metre. Great for your outdoor furniture and if all goes according to plan, hopefully great for infoor furniture too!
* Don’t you love how any chairs that remotely resemble those famous Danish armchairs are automatically tagged “Danish” or Danish-style”. So guilty of it myself – gives them instant cred even if they’re old, mouldy pieces of crap (which some might say these are. Not me, though. They are the comfiest things ever and I’ve loved their shape and the memories of my late granddad – who loved one so much he had it converted to a rocker - that come with them)
**Oh, um, I also need to run this by Steve. He still thinks I’m going white. But I also think he’d be happy with lime green because he hates them so much as they at the moment…

12 Responses to “inspired by the everyday”

  1. miss mellie says:
    where do u get that white leather ottoman? i keep seeing it in mags and i desperatly want one!!!!
  2. Jane says:
    I think they’ll look great as the white design will lift the brown and then coordinate with the ottoman and white walls and be much more practical!
  3. Belinda says:
    miss mellie, mine is from a UK eBay store. they have the best price i’ve seen – all up (inc deliver) mine cost about $150. Here is the link, they don’t sell them all the time though so maybe shoot them an email or keep checking back for stock: i have two – LOVE them!
  4. Belinda says:
    jane – i agree! fingers crossed the fabric is nice enough for indoor use!
  5. miss mellie says:
    thanks so so much!! and for the outdoor fabic link!
    btw, love your blog!
  6. Julie says:
    Belinda! I love how that fabric mirrors the pattern on the chair, very cool. And it is a little moorish inspired too, which will go great with your ottomans. I have an old Fler armchair in my garage that I am just dying to find the right fabric for…still on the hunt though. At the moment it is my cats favourite sleeping spot. Maybe I will check the base of it for inspiration, hee hee. Make sure you post an ‘after’ photo so we can see the finished product.
  7. Lynda says:
    Belinda I love the moorish brown design, and I’m sure the pale colour will be accented by your white walls and other white items. I do love the white print with black flowers, but think it is very ‘now’ and even by next year you may have moved on. This brown design will also take a wider variety of cushions, and as you and others have said, it will certainly be more kid friendly than anyhting that’s white, even outdoor fabric.
    As always, love what you’re doing!
  8. Belinda says:
    thanks guys! lynda, yep i love the black and white matisse too but it was never in the running – too bold for me! i just wanted to show a few other examples of their fabrics. i think they all could have walked out of the pages of domino mag which is a good thing in my book. i found it hard to find that “domino” look here for a good price. x
  9. Lanne says:
    I have a super pale latte coloured sofa. It is so pale it might as well be white. I bought it for the family/play room as we had a formal room for the main furniture. It then became the sofa for the studio..We moved to a smaller house and it was the only sofa we could fit in.. and now it is back to being the studio sofa. It has washable covers. I have washed them twice? and not because there marked etc but because i wanted them fresh and clean. ie when they came back in the studio for this house etc.
    I don’t get how people have dirty sofas? I don’t understand how they get marked and stained? (i know lots are so it certainly happens but i dont understand HOW it happens). You eat, you get cleaned up.. you go play. You play outside.. I clean you. You play inside. LOL I would cover something in white if I wanted it white. So no.. no hiding stains and scothguard (but i hear it is good).
    The brown is pretty cool tho too. If you think it will be ruined.. go that. If you want something white you can keep white.. make slip covers you can wash?
  10. Jules says:
    I have used fabric from Fab Outdoor Fabrics as they were the only decent range out of outdoor fabric with great funky designs. I have made cushions for my back verandah which gets all the elements, & though I have only had them for 6months, they have lasted quite well. And they wiped up quite well after the dust storm we had too. They are really easy to sew with, I just use upholstery thread which is easy to get. I would highly recommend to either using pinking shears or zigzag the edges as the fabric frays really badly. I’m even thinking of getting some more fabric to cover canvas for wall art. The pattern you chose would work really well with the chairs, & I think you will be more than happy with the fabric. Good luck & can’t wait to see the results.
  11. I cannot wait to see what you do with the chairs! And I love your pouf! I keep buying them because I love them so much! My kids love them too- it’s the perfect place to sit!
  12. Megan says:
    I am totally in love with a pottery barn moorish rug but sadly cant get it here in Aus. Maybe a few moorish fabric cushions will help though. Nice fabric find!

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