This is not an easy thing for me. I don't do winter well. And I don't even live in a cold area - I would not survive a European winter (or a US polar vortexy one). But, walking into what I thought was a run-down dilapidated terrace house* in Woollhara on Tuesday for the Freedom launch had me thinking it just might not be so bad on those curl-up-on-the-couch-it's-so-cold days. I guess that's what makes a good homewares collection - the ability to see yourself in your space with THEIR things. And that's exactly what the new Autumn/Winter collection does for me - makes me want to buy everything and totally make my home a coppery, inky-blue and prettily-patterned space. Except, of course, that this all costs money. But if money were not a slight stumbling block? I'd totally do this using these fave new pieces from Freedom...
Couch: Copenhagen 3-seat sofa in Lido Teal, $1499
Side tables l-r: Mr Johnson side table in antique copper, $229 (introductory price - it will be $279 from March 15); Palisade side table in natural, $199; The Professor Square side table in copper, $289 (introductory price - it will be $349 from March 15)
Cushions l-r: Tulia Allover cushion in ink, $34.95; Quest cushion in almond, $49.95; Tulia cushion in ink, $29.95; Avi cushion in natural, $34.95
Accessories l-r: Hathor Deco Bowl in metallic copper, $54.95; Acclimate Vessel in squid ink, $34.95; Fete 2 handle basket in white, from $49.95; Magnium Hourglass in charcoal, $29.95; Tre table lamp (limited edition, $179
But with tens of thousands of dollars poured into my renovation recently (oh and no, we're still not finished the kitchen - there are windows but no walls. Plasterer coming on Tuesday. Apparently.), I only have a small furniture and homewares budget so have to be careful. So no gorgeous teal couch for me. BUT on my definites list is the hourglass timer above (it reminds me of my diamond light bulb), a copper table lamp (my fave hasn't been shot yet, but it's the Metro Table Lamp and is $149) and at least two of the above cushions. I'd love a copper side table, but there is a rule I have for trends and that's not to buy them big or bulky or expensive - little doses is more me and I can always spraypaint a lamp (it wouldn't be the first time. Or third).
Saying that, my absolute favourite pieces in the new Freedom collection were the trend ones - the gorgeous copper everything (there is a BED!), the limited edition overdyed rug and the shibori textiles. Next, the limited edition timeless heroes - a teal button-backed sofa, a leather butterfly chair, a spectacularly patterned round rug... But a quick way to add some warmth, colour, pattern and style to a space and make it cosier and Pinterest-worthy is the littler things - really beautifully patterned vessels and bowls, tall glass hourglasses, touch-me cushions and throws, a glam copper lamp with huge round Eddison bulb. And a new rug, below. These rugs are beautiful - neutral enough to last the test of time, but so on-trend now - two-birds people. And this is the last time I am mentioning the word trend...
Small and not-forevers they may be (save the rugs), these pieces ARE worthy investments because they're little bits of happy that instantly update a space when you might not be able to spend over a grand on a couch. And double-duty items are the best kind - all of these are not limited to one room like, say, a bed! Cushions and throws work in the living room, on a bed, outside in the teepee for picnics, on a bench seat at the dining table - heck, on a cold metal chair at the dining table or desk; throws are for rugging up in on couch, for dressing up a bed or an occasional chair and for CREATING teepees in the backyard for picnics (just ask my kids - anything bigger than a face washer gets dragged outside for impromptu cubbies. Even in the rain.) Vases and bowls can be moved into any room for a fresh new vignette - as can lamps. See? And just like when you break down the cost of a piece of clothing by how many times you wear it, the same can be done for homewares!
So to rave just a little more, I'm very impressed with Freedom's autumn/winter - well done buyers! I did mention to them I've noticed a slight change in their most recent ranges - I believe they've upped their game significantly since West Elm and Pottery Barn opened up in Australia. In fact, I believe a fair few of Australia's homewares stores have gone out of their way to make their latest ranges fresh, current and more competitive. And good on them - many people would prefer to support local rather than global giants.
To finish, here is a sneak peek at the launch through the lens of my very, very cracked iPhone and Instagram - where stylist Jason Grant put all the pretties together to come up with this...
See anything you like?
PS: you can follow me on Instagram here or at @belindagraham
*The house was actually NOT dilapidated, but very cooly refurbished and decorated with the most amazing chandelier made from crystal decanters. It's called Bite Club House and is available to hire for events or can be booked for a very awesome dinner party. Check out the website and the before and after pics here.
Image credits: 1. Collage by Belinda Graham for The Happy Home; 2. and 3. courtesy Freedom; 4. collage by Belinda Graham for The Happy Home using Instagram and phone images.