Living it up

Having an inviting escape from the hustle and bustle is essential these days. Follow our stylists’ lead to create your own South Pacific hideaway at home.

We demand a lot of our living rooms these days – they’ve become the great multitaskers for life at home. Whether you’re socialising, working or Netflix bingeing, it’s a space that needs to work effortlessly. Here’s how we recommend you lay the foundations to fulfil your household’s every need:
Pick your pieces. The largest item in the room, your couch should be well-considered. We’re big fans of modular sofas, as you can move the elements around to suit the occasion. We used two modular pieces from Città’s Eve sofa range to create a large L – an ideal composition for delineating a living area in an open-plan space.
Plan your palette. Inject a little of that breezy island feel into your home with cushions and textiles in natural hues and textures. Keep the look refined by selecting two to three key colours, then mixing and matching fabric types, weaves and prints to bring personality to the scheme. Incorporating cushions of different sizes will also help to keep things visually interesting.
3 Be flexible. Teaming fixed-place furniture with moveable pieces is the key to tailoring the space to your needs. Bring an occasional chair and a side table together when you want some alone time, or use them as part of a larger setting for a social gathering.
Layer, layer, layer. Decorate from the ground up. Try pairing a large jute mat with a smaller rug for a graphic look. A double-layer coffee table makes way for books and objects underneath, so the top can become home to creative vignettes. Or try using trays as stages for groupings of favourite objects.

MAIN IMAGE, ON SOFA, FROM LEFT Eve sofa, from $4490; Moss Stitch Cotton throw, $139; Suave Fringed cushion cover, $79.90; Segment tray, $79.90; Deacon jug, $54.90; Deacon tumblers, $69.90/set of 4; Breeze Hand Woven Linen throw, $159; Silky cushion cover, $89.90; Hand Woven Linen cushion cover, $64.90; Coral Tufted cushion cover, $99.90; Tifaifai cushion cover, $44.90; Hand Woven Stripe Linen cushion cover, $49.90, MIDDLE, FROM LEFT Plaited rug, from $590; Net Hand Woven Cotton rug, from $259; Linear Two Tier coffee table, $990; Oku Storage Box trays, from $39.90 each; Gava planter (used as vase), from $47.90; Cork Round tray, $29.90; Monroe Cork coasters, $12.90/set of 4, RIGHT, FROM REAR Compound sideboard, from $2890; Alexander vase, $129; Riihitie plant pots by Artek, from $90 each; Iringa Woven basket, from $119, Terracotta vases, from $15 each, Floral arrangements (throughout), All other items stylists’ own. TOP, FRONT RIGHT Rice Weave floor cushion cover, $149, All other items, see top of page. ABOVE, FROM LEFT Fable Oak armchair, $890; Hand Woven Linen cushion cover, $59.90; Weight side table, $659; Deacon tumbler, $69.90/set of 4; Donna tray, $109; Deacon jug (used as vase), $54.90, All other items stylists’ own.

When putting the final flourish on your living room look, well-placed plants and floral arrangements can dramatically change the vibe. More than optional extras, add them to your list of must-haves for bringing your interior to life.
Aim high – and low. Step one: assess the available space. Tables are a nobrainer, but don’t forget shelves, the floor and the ceiling; hanging plants will add an extra dimension to even the most uninteresting area. The key to creating a lush sanctuary is mixing the sizes, shapes and tones of your greenery. A cluster of three structural, tropical-style specimens of various heights will work well in the corner of the room, and may eliminate the need to place a piece of furniture there, while a pair of soft, feathery ferns will sit beautifully on a sideboard. Try an asymmetrical arrangement with several pots grouped together, or if symmetry’s your thing, position pots separately to bookend a decorative vignette.
Bet on baskets. Not sure what to house your new investments in? Baskets are the stylist’s go-to solution, as you can hide both the plastic pot and the tray inside – which makes for easy watering too. Explore your options with chunky raw jute for a natural look, or black and white in a finer weave for a more elegant aesthetic.
3 Leaf through it. Plants make a more permanent design element, but you can’t beat a fresh floral arrangement to conjure notions of the tropics. Use vessels made from mismatched materials (metal, glass, clay) and go heavy on the foliage, adding just a few statement flowers. You’re aiming for that artfully thrown-together look.

ABOVE, CENTRE FRONT Hand Woven Linen Blend tea towel, $29.90, Shoes stylists’ own. All other items, see top of page.

Words & styling Alice Lines & Sam van Kan
Simon Wilson

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