Eclectic Medicine Blog: A few changes around here!

25 Jun

Hello long lost readers. I have been a terrible blogger, but there are a few excuses I can use. I’ve been working hard on my creative direction, turning my talents into work and an income and it has been a rewarding couple of months. I have undergone an intensive Business course which helped me form my Business plan, leading me to make a few branding decisions. I have come to find my strengths have always led me to be a good teacher, a good listener and someone who is good at visualizing a creative outcome. My background in Graphic and Interior Design have taught me so much and I absolutely love assisting people in creative direction, visual Styling and Design; whether it be for their small business or personal brand. Having a bit of a soul search of late and taking a ‘well what the hell’ approach, I have since launched The Eclectic Creative Studio with my brand new website currently being worked on here which means this humble little blog will find itself over on a self-hosted platform – yippee!

My aim and overall mission is The Eclectic Creative Studio strives to provide an approachable and friendly journey of creative inspiration, and to design functional interiors with personality. I have always stated that I want to be the ‘People’s Designer’ – to bridge that gap – I want to bring good, functional and honest design to the many – and in a way that is a journey for both myself, and the client. I want to create a ‘Journey of inspiration’. I’ve preached this on my blog – Eclectic Medicine many a times.

Here is my new logo for The Eclectic Creative Studio, with many thanks to a patient and supportive colleague, Erin. I loved bouncing off ideas – I’m sure at times she was thinking… this is why I’ll never work with another Designer again, why didn’t she just do it herself? Haha, but all jokes aside, thats why I love the Design Industry – to collaborate is half the fun, and indeed the journey. If you don’t like to work with other people and want to be a Designer….get out now! A designer’s role is to, quite literally, communicate.

ImageSo currently I am assisting a fabulous bunch of local designers and creative small businesses, here in Melbourne, with their creative journey – and I’m ready to take on more clients to help create homes that you adore!

I am a regular over at Instagram – you can find me here and I also have a Facebook page here if you’d like to keep in touch and see what I am up too. The blog remains! But in the next few weeks it will be moved to my new domain www.eclecticcreative.com.au

I’d love for you to continue to come say hi and engage.

And, yes I’m sorry I haven’t made much of an appearance, hopefully now you may let me off.

Until next time,

Jess x

 

 

 

 

 

 

Australian cosmetic brand: révilo cosmetics

27 May

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I admit, when it comes to Design, I do judge a book by its cover; so when I see impressive packaging with an equally beautiful product at an affordable price, I get a little bit excited. révilo cosmetics is an Australian brand offering a range of high quality products that include skincare, bath & body care, fragrance, travel accessories and luxury soy candles. The range of luxury products are made using the finest ingredients, from pure essential oils in the bath and body line, additive free pure soy candles, alcohol derived from Australian sugar cane and 100% recyclable PET bottles manufactured right here in Melbourne, Australia.

Exclusive to Eclectic Medicine readers, révilo cosmetics is offering 25% off the total value of an online purchase. Promotional Code and website details below. Hurry, valid until 18/6/14

révilo cosmetics Founder, Gary Sandford has previously worked with luxury brands Cartier and Louis Vuitton so understands the importance of creating a strong, credible brand and offering exceptional quality and a superior product. révilo cosmetics was founded in 2010, with one product the “Citron – Hand & Body Wash” after a quest to find a gentle product that could be used for his son, Oliver, who was suffering from eczema. (and yes révilo is Oliver spelt backwards!)

The best seller, according to Gary, is the Séville Orange Blossom that comes in a Wash or Lotion. (I have the lotion, this smells divine and isn’t greasy or sticky, just wonderfully moisturizing.) I too suffer from sensitive skin and battled eczema as a child, so I  was interested to see how my skin would go with The Citron Body Wash, révilo cosmetics launch product, and I am thrilled to report it was divine! It works up a really good lather in the shower, and smells so zesty and refreshing it instantly energises you leaving a subtle, citrus scent. It is gentle enough too, that I have not had any reactions or allergies to this product after using for several months. Yippee!

 

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Séville Orange Blossom – Séville Fleur d’Oranger $39

 

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Vendome – Bergamot Men’s Cologne / Vendome – Bergamote Eau de Cologne $69 100ml

The 100% Soy Candles come in classic white or black glass containers and can fit within any interior style, thanks to their minimal and contemporary design. I  have the La Pierre – White Magnolia candle and with a burn time of around 50 hours I’m delighted to know that white magnolia bouquet notes and fresh orange blossom scents will be with me for a while longer. My next pick on the list is to try the French Pear!

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Anjou – French Pear / Française De Poire 100% Soy Candle $39

 

With Free shipping up to 20kg within Australia, and all products arriving luxuriously wrapped, in classic black boxes and finished with révilo signature ribbon why wouldn’t you treat yourself or your loved ones to a little something?

Head over to www.revilocosmetics.com and check out the full range of products on offer. Enter promotional code EMB01 to receive 25% off at the checkout and take advantage of the exclusive offer for Eclectic Medicine readers. Hurry ends 18/6/14.

 

E: info@revilocosmetics.com 

P: +61 412 142 382

Do you know of a local small business with an exceptional product? Let me know and contact me here

Jess x

 

 

 

 

Furniture Store Love: Angelucci 20th Century Smith St Collingwood

25 May

Angelucci 20th Century on Smith Street, Collingwood is a furniture store that celebrates, as the name suggests, all things Mid-Century and has a wonderful range of local and internationally sourced home-wares, furniture and accessories. I was particularly impressed by the extensive range of lighting options (all originals here people!) and the affordable price-tags. It was like stepping back in time, into my own Nana and Grandad’s lounge-room. My Grandad, Jack Christensen was born in Copenhagen, Denmark and was a very proud Dane. The lounge-room had armchairs and 3 tiered side tables, much likes these below, a tiled top coffee table and many accessories and plates from Royal Copenhagen. ( I treasure my Royal Copenhagen polar bears that were handed down to me and protect them with my life! )

 

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It was a dreary, rainy day in Melbourne and I was doing what I love best, furniture shopping and sourcing items for clients. I was attracted to the colourful Marimekko display near the front window. For those of you unfamiliar with Marimekko, it is a Scandinavian textile company, with Finnish origins and founded by Armi Ratia in 1951. Marimekko is known for its bright and colourful patterns and mid-century modernist aesthetic. The appeal with such designs is they truly are timeless, and can be used in many interior styles. I think this is why the Mid-Century Modern movement is so popular, the clean classic lines of the furniture, the rich timbers teamed with your versatile hues such as chocolate browns and charcoals, teals and burnt oranges, olive to muted lime greens and mustards.  Mid-century design is so versatile and functional, and more importantly looks incredible, people are still wanting it in their homes in the 21st century. Skål! to all those clever Scandinavians!

 

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Thankyou for the eye-candy Angelucci. You’ll be seeing me often, thankfully I’m a local.

Jess x

 

Angelucci 20th Century is located at 113 Smith St, Collingwood 3065

T: (03) 9415 8001

W: www.angelucci.net.au

E: fitzroy@angelucci.net.au

 

Have you got a store in Melbourne I need to know about? Email me here

 

 

 

Creative and Colourful Workshops in Melbourne: Von Haus Design Studio

23 May

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I am fortunate to have attended some pretty cool creative workshops that have happened in Melbourne of late, ranging from Eco-Friendly, DIY, Craft and just recently, a Colour Your Home workshop led by Fiona from Von Haus Design Studio. A common question with regards to Interior Design projects is knowing where to begin – all that choice can leave you feeling a little overwhelmed. Fiona’s workshops helps you work out many of the answers in just a few hours,  as you are personally guided through the process with one-on-one professional interior and colour advice. I was also really excited to attend this workshop as I love working with colour and I’m always on the search for extra tips on how to use varying colour palettes within an interior design scheme; and most importantly see how others interact and use colour.

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Fiona is a colour expert and enthusiast, having worked for Nylex as the Senior Colour Designer, as well as working as a Freelance Colour consultant in the Commercial and Residential sector.  Fiona’s love and knack for combining  her extensive colour and textile knowledge and passion for Interior Design led to Fiona opening Von Haus Design Studio which offers a range of interior design, colour and interior styling services.

The Colour Your Home Workshops aim at helping you find your own personal colour and theme style for your home, helping you discover the colours you love and how to apply them through simple design techniques. The class was very interactive which I loved and we got to create our own personal Moodboard of ideas, which helped us to take the next step in the decorating process.

We were asked to bring pictures of a room in our house needing some extra help, or a problem area that we could concentrate on during the workshop. I like the idea of breaking your home or space into separate areas or sections to work on, it makes the process seem more achievable and less overwhelming. I decided to concentrate on the Master Bedroom as it is an area that was becoming a neglected space, needing refinement, especially in the colour department.

 

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The workshop took place at Form Function Style Studio in Fitzroy

 

The workshop was held at Form Function Style showroom on Gertrude Street in Fitzroy and provided an inspiring light-filled studio space, creating a relaxed and casual atmosphere, perfect for a Saturday morning. Lots of delicious goodies and chocolates were on hand for hungry and enthusiastic tums’ and the work-table was set for us with a folder of information, a blank mood board ready to design and some little goodies from Fiona.

 

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In case you’re wondering, this gorgeous Desk is by Tide Design and is the Tuki range available at Form Function Style.

 

 

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A wide choice of Fabric and Paint samples for our Mood Boards

 

In case your wondering, this gorgeous Desk is by Tide Design and is the Tuki range available at Form Function Style.

Time to choose samples for our mood boards. So much choice!

The workshops offer great value for money as you can have one-on-one expert colour and design advice from Fiona. The workshops are planned so that it is never more than 10 people at one time; so you can be sure to have your design questions answered and walk away with a clear direction for your home style and design. Fiona immediately puts you at ease and leads you in the right direction for choosing a style for your home and how to effectively incorporate colour.

 

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An example of a Creative Mood Board designed by a workshop participant.

 

A huge thank you to Fiona for a wonderful morning filled with colour and inspiration and helping me to get back on track with my very own bedroom. After the workshop I was so inspired I went home, rearranged my bedroom (using what I already owned, “shopping” my home) and using colour and design tips from Fiona and this was the final product!

 

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Q+A Time with Fiona from Von Haus Design Studio

1. What led you to choosing a career within Interior Design and Colour Consulting?

F: I was made redundant from my role as senior designer and colourist at Nylex. I couldn’t find work in the industry so I just started my own colour consultations locally until one day it clicked and I found my true passion for interior design and colour and turned it into a business.

2. What is the main aim of your Colour Workshops?

F: The main aim is to give people a kick start with their decorating projects by teaching some basic rules and tricks on how to use colour in the home. The workshops allow people to be creative and find out what they love and how they can then bring those ideas together with a visual mood board. The mood board helps you take the step in your project and gives you a colour scheme ready to be used.  The next workshop will be hosted June 28th in Prahran.

3. What is your favourite colour and why?
F: Well I have many favourite colours, so I can’t pin down one. I mostly love orange and aqua blues with charcoal greys and black.

4. In your opinion, what is the most difficult colour or colours to work with within an interior space, and do you have any tips?

F: Whites and neutrals are the hardest colours to work with as they can often fight each other if not picked correctly. When it comes to neutrals, the key is in selecting what shade of paint works best for you and your surroundings. Besides cool and warm whites, there are also deeper neutrals to consider, such as biscuits and greys, that can bring depth and atmosphere to a room.

5. What are some colour trends within Interior Design you are loving at the moment?

F: I am loving the combination of metallics with pastel hues in homewares, cushions and lighting at the moment. It’s a sophisticated and modern trend and works for most interior styles. I am also a big fan of anything painted such as chair legs being dipped and pots painted in fun patterns. I love the craze of up cycling with colour.

6. What is your take on Pantone Colour of the Year – Orchid? Love it or Loathe it and any tips on how to work with this colour?

F: The Pantone colour of year is important as far as researching what is happening around the globe and making predictions based on that for the fashion, home and design industry. We need a source to look to for key trends and patterns that influence what people buy. However it is also important not to stick to colour trends too religiously when decorating. To me its more important you find your own style with colours you love and make that work for you and your home. I am not a huge fan of purple but used in small quantities it looks great especially with green and gold.

Von Haus Design Studio

+61 410 191 054

info@von-haus.com.au

Visit Von Haus Design Studio Here

 

A collection of the Images courtesy of Bobby and Tide Here

Do you host a creative workshop in Melbourne that I need to know about? Get in touch via the blog or email me here

Jess x

Top 5 Tips: Beating the winter dis-organisation blues with Starting FRESH

22 May

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I am thrilled to have Tanya Kobzeff from Starting FRESH on the blog today to talk to you all about home organization and tips for you to help beat those winter organisation blues. Tanya and her team specialise in home organisation and de-cluttering so people can streamline their lives and surroundings so they can become more productive and less stressed.

Or for my Northern Hemisphere readers, and all you lucky ducks enjoying the warmer months, these are easy-to-follow tips you can do in your own home, and are sure to help you keep organised throughout the year, no matter the weather! Also, for Eclectic Medicine readers, Tanya is offering a FREE 30 minute consult when you book for a 3 hour Organisation and De-cluttering session for your home. Or if you are not in Adelaide, South Australia, Starting FRESH also offers e-consult solutions. Details below. 

For us southern hemisphere dwellers, It’s that time of year again, and you know what’s coming? Kiddies stuck in the house all day because they’re sick or it’s bucketing with rain. This means toys being scattered everywhere, being stepped on and broken, kicked down the passageway… and why can’t you just get the laundry finished and put away?!

Starting FRESH is here to help! We will share with you some of our tips to help make it through the next few months with your sanity in place. Let’s get started!

Top 5 Tips for Beating the Winter Dis-Organisation Blues

1: Celebrate the season! Let’s put the summer gear in storage and bring the winter gear out.

2: As for toys, kids need change. Put some toys and games away, yes, hide these! When they come to you and say, “I’M BORED,” that’s the time to pull out the toys and games you hid away. Rotation is key.

3: And then there are chores… It doesn’t hurt to get the kids involved, HONEST! In fact, it’s a good thing! Turn it into a fun and interactive game, “let’s see who can fold the most towels in 5 minutes” and that child gets to pick the next movie to watch or the next game to play. Remember that completing chores is teaching a life skill and we are hoping to raise responsible and productive adults.

4: Baskets (we love baskets!) are a great way to store toys and games, and if your children need to be in bed or in a particular room, the basket can be carried to them. When they are done, everything goes back in the basket and it gets put away.

5: Now, what about laundry? During the Winter months it is especially hard to keep up and when kids get sick,  this becomes even harder.

Here is what we recommend:

  • No matter what 2 loads a day! This is at a minimum.
  • Clothes dryers can get expensive, so we recommend buying Air dryers (Mrs Peggs is brilliant here).
  • If you have a patio area, covered pergola, unused room or space in the garage or carport, hang them there and put a fan on them (it works!) It may take a bit longer, but it’s cheaper than a dryer.

Winter is looking brighter already! And if you have any questions, you can find us at –

Tanya Kobzeff, Starting FRESH, Adelaide SA

W: Starting Fresh

P: 0433 922 205

E: tanya_startingfresh@hotmail.com

I would like to thank Tanya for offering her Top tips for organising the home during the Winter months, I love her tip about getting the younger ones in the home involved, as this helps form responsible and productive adults. There is nothing better than a clean, organised, functional and beautiful home.  I couldn’t agree more Tanya.

 

Now for a few simple ways of taking Tanya’s tips to the next styling level! Styling Tips with Jess from Eclectic Medicine.

Kid’s room can be cool too! Instead of opting for the generic primary colours, found in most children’s bedrooms, try starting off with a monochromatic scheme (black and white) and choose a pop of colour, be it through artworks, toys or a floor rug. This example below sourced from Scandinavian Deko is a perfect example through showing a little restraint with the use of colour,  a timeless scheme can be created. The other positive is this scheme can be used for both boys and girls room and take you from really the young toddler and early childhood stage, right through to them growing up. Of course, rotating toys and accessories which are age appropriate and adding favourite colours of your little dude or little lass!

 

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Image source here

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Baskets Galore! When one thinks of baskets for house-hold storage – we generally visualise an IKEA style EXPEDIT bookcase with baskets that fit in the little square hollows. Although there is nothing wrong with this and it is a fantastic storage idea, personalise the space and add some rustic baskets of varying shapes and sizes on open style shelves. This gets everything up off the floor and doesn’t take up as much space as book-case would, as you are using the wall space to organise!

ImageWhen investing or purchasing new furniture items for your home, always consider the storage potential. If it is going to take up floor space (and for many of us this is highly sought-after when living in small-space living!) then make sure it is functional and helping you to declutter and organise your home, not just take up valuable space. I love these vintage style drawers, I am on the search for one similar.

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Are you on instagram? I would love to see your home or office at the #pocketofmyhome tag – you can follow me jess_eclecticmedicine here

Jess x

Interior Style and Design by Jess Viscarde of Eclectic Medicine

23 Apr

I am constantly rearranging my home, updating and changing accessories to refresh the space and I have realised I need to start documenting these changes through taking photographs.(Duh?)  With my strong presence on the social media app, Instagram username: jess_eclecticmedicine ( follow me here )  it has encouraged me to share and document my life and interior design work through a visual and creative platform and has opened up many doors and opportunities, where I have met (some personally) a fantastic network of like-minded creatives.

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Eclectic Bedroom Design & Styling

On Instagram, there are various hashtags being used – yes one can suffer from a certain “hash tag exhaustion‘ but they do encourage to share particular images and create quite a community. I have started one called #pocketofmyhome a little while ago and I simply ask you to share little pockets of your home and office to share with us all. I have made some incredible connections through the tag and the ability to see everyone’s individual style and personalities shining through is really something. I am all about ‘creating homes with personality‘ and delivering ‘approachable and affordable interior style.’

Some other hash tags that I have just discovered are #shopyourhome and #shopyourhouse which basically means ‘use what you have’ within your home and rearrange to create a fresh new look. I do this often, as like most of us, I can’t afford to go out and purchase the latest on-trend item or homewares. Very tempting for anyone, especially an Interior Designer and homewares addict like me. But It just becomes too darn’ expensive!

I have written a great post here with tips on how to refine your interior style – a great idea if you’re wanting to work out what look you want within your home, this also helps you to save money as you’re not just buying anything and everything for your home and then realising it doesn’t actually suit the interior.

Here is my living area of my home, my style is very eclectic but I have concentrated on a refined colour palette to ensure I achieve a sense of harmony and an interior that is aesthetically pleasing. I have reds, oranges and yellows running through my home, that are grounded by timber, steel and a monochromatic (black and white) base. These throw cushions (picked up from IKEA and H&M) introduce warm mustards, browns and monochromatics and importantly texture is used – the plain cushion is crushed velvet. Perfect for a cold evening!

 

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I would strongly recommend starting an Instagram account, if you haven’t already, and follow me here

I would love to connect through images of your home or office through the #pocketofmyhome tag and you could be featured on my page, or on the Eclectic Medicine blog.

Jess x

An Easter Reflection

19 Apr

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Easter entertaining

Easter time is here and I am still coming to terms with the fact that it is indeed already April of 2014.  Here are some photographs taken at our Easter celebration last year in Melbourne, which we shared with some of my wonderful friends. I am fortunate as many of my friends share the same enthusiasm for the holidays or festivities, so we really go all out – there was even Easter egg painting (and no it wasn’t for the children, as it was only adults!)

We each contributed something yummy (I really think this style of entertaining is the best way, you get a hand in the kitchen, share the costs when on a budget and you get an amazing variety) – I made the Pina Colada’s and brought along chocolate eggs and Dan made the Hot Cross Buns and Apple Pie from scratch. What a chef!

 

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Our Easter spread of home-made Hot Cross Buns, Applie Pie, Cupcakes, fruit salad and Pina Colada’s

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Dan, the Chef-Bunny

 

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 Easter this year is a little different, as my family is in Perth and most of us are working through the weekend or away. So I’m off to the football on Easter Monday with my partner. How very Melbourne. (Go Hawks!)

How are you spending Easter this year?

Jess x

 

 

The Creative Journal workshops: The Creative Labs with Pretty Poms

11 Apr

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I was lucky enough to be of the first attendees to take part in The Creative Journal’s new venture; The Creative Labs, a series of workshops, that bring together local artisans to share their skill and craft with others. The lovely Sam from Dunne With Style hosted The Pretty Poms Workshop; and we were taught how to master the ‘Lola Pom’ and given tips and tricks on how to turn these cute and colourful little poms into wreaths, chandeliers or floral crowns. You can read more about the brains behind The Creative Journal, that is Amanda and Carly later in the post.

The workshop took place in a beautiful light-filled studio, in the heart of Melbourne, just off Little Bourke St. The studio had been so thoughtfully styled and decorated, I couldn’t wait to find a spot and get started on the Pom-Pom fiesta! I was well and truly in my element, surrounded by colour, creativity and wonderfully warm people. It didn’t take long for us all to start chattering away, enjoying a laugh and getting to know everyone; isn’t that what you want from a creative workshop? A relaxed, supportive environment, where you can just be yourself and create your own little masterpiece to take home (and show off!).

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So to get things kicked off, Sam asked us to choose our colour palette for our Poms – and what a difficult decision, with so many beautiful colours to choose from. I of course gravitated toward one of my all time favourite colours – the teal and then chose a few naturals, mint and a contrasting yellow and orange to make the colours pop. I do love this colour combo at the moment.The colour selection was one of  the highlights of the day; watching everyone go such different directions within their creative process. Some made their choice, then changed their minds a few minutes later, others went for variegated colours within the same pom and then as for me, I chose my favourite colour and then others that worked with the teal.

 

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In no time, under Sam’s supportive and watchful eye, we were all pomming up a storm! It was quite therapeutic once you started the process and I soon built up a rhythm. As if weren’t spoilt enough, Carly ( who is the master maker-baker) made all the mouth-watering desserts that we were grazing on all day  (take a look at the pics!) and the mid-break catering was from Rosa’s Table here  and was out of this world.

I was so impressed at the high level of detail and quality that went into the workshop. Everything from the space, to the delivery of the workshop, to the food; it was top-notch and I honestly would recommend that you jump on board and book yourself in for a day of fun, creativity and laughter. These women have set the bar high for creative workshops and I cannot wait to see what they have in store next, I still can’t believe this was their first ever workshop. Did someone say PROFESSIONALS!

You can visit The Creative Journal here and click-through to The Creative Labs to see what is happening next.

 

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And Ta-Da! My finished masterpiece! I decided to create a wall hanging with all my little poms and I have it hanging in my office, and the leaves and rosemary have dried beautifully. If you are on instagram you can check out more pictures of the day at hash-tag #prettypoms – and The Creative Journal (here) and Dunne With Style (here) are on instagram so follow them to keep up to date with exciting news and events.

 

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A huge thanks to Carly and Amanda from The Creative Journal and Sam from Dunne With Style for a creative, fun-filled day. I honestly left buzzing and filled with inspiration. I cannot wait to follow their journey, what a clever and gorgeous bunch of women.

Here is a little more about Carly and Amanda’s story and their reasons for starting The Creative Labs. Stay tuned as I will be interviewing Sam from Dunne With Style in a later post. I couldn’t let her get away that easily!

 

So tell me a little bit about yourselves and your backgrounds.

A: My passion is all things with a thread and a needle.  I could knit at 6, sewed my prom dress at 15 (think Kermit green in a nylon!) and my fabric stash takes up more room than my clothes.  Although banking and finance is my day job I have always spent my free time ‘making things’.  That often leads to my friends and family receiving multiple handmade gifts each year as I test out new techniques and designs!  Carly and I met at ANZ when I first moved to Melbourne, and we compliment each other really well.  Carly is a styling and baking queen (oh the sweet treats I have eaten!), and I love textiles and coming up with DIY tutorials.  I couldn’t imagine going on The Creative Journal adventure with anyone else.

C:  My background is actually banking & finance… love me a good spreadsheet!  I’ve worked for ANZ since I was a graduate and only stumbled upon my creative side when I did a cake decorating course a few years ago. I can’t draw (I think I failed year 8 art!), can sort of sew… but I love playing in the kitchen and styling. I’m also partial to a can of spray paint and have a few more tutorials lined up with my ever-growing stash in mind! (All very legal!) My daughters birthday parties have become a major creative outlet & with the help of Amanda and Sam I’m slowly getting better at threading a needle!

What made you want to start The Creative Journal and now The Creative Labs?

Amanda and I had talked about what makes us happy and what life might look like outside of an office. We knew we wanted to run workshops eventually but decided to start the blog first to sort of test the waters. Plus it looked like a hell of a lot of fun and a good excuse to try different projects! We also had the thought that there were probably others out there wanting to start a creative business and that if we documented our journey it might help others. That’s not to say we get it right all the time, but there is sooo much too learn it is nice to read about what others have found works or doesn’t work for them. That’s why we started The Creative Marketplace section of the blog… I kept finding useful articles or references and would then lose them so the blog has become a tool to document them!

What is the core message of The Creative Labs?
The absolute core message for us is fun! Of course we want people to learn a new skill or refine something they have tried before… but mostly we want them to take 4 hours for themselves and do something just for the sake of doing it. Something that makes them smile or makes them stop thinking about the everyday. Something you can share with friends or just enjoy a time out by yourself. I kind of feel that these days we have to justify why we do things – and The Creative Labs are really an indulgence just to have fun and create. Nothing more. And who cares if you walk away and your Lola Poms are a little flat (like mine!) or your cupcake topper isn’t straight? As long as you had fun then that is the main thing from our point of view.  (But if you really want phuffy poms or straight toppers we will of course make sure that happens!)

What do you look for in creatives that are hoping to be a part of The Creative Labs and to host an upcoming workshop?

Energy is the word that springs to mind for me. Sam was an easy choice to start with because she is just so positive. It didn’t matter what the logistics threw at us she just kept smiling! And someone who is willing to really be a part of the class and not just teach if that makes sense. Our next two teachers Danielle (from Sweetcheeks Cookies & Cake here) and Eliska (from Ruffles & Bells here) are similar in that respect also – both have boundless energy for their creative talents and love the excuse to indulge their passions with others! We’d love to hear from anyone if they are interested… we have some plans we are working on for 2015 and we are definitely going to need to be talking to lots of creatives!

And lastly, what are your upcoming workshops, please tell us more!

We have two!  Hey There Cupcake is on Sunday May 4th and I personally am a little excited about it!  Danielle will be taking the class through how to create a party perfect cupcake with a buttercream swirl and fondant topper and matching sugar cookies and I will be showing how to make chocolate covered oreos.  It is perfect for beginners or anyone who needs something a little more hands on than a You Tube tutorial. It is also being held in a studio at Abbotsford which is just so gorgeous I want to live there! Tickets are on sale now here

And then we have Garlands & Glitter with Eliska from Ruffles & Bells!  Sam might even make a guest appearance at this one too. We are still finalising the details but this would be perfect for anyone wanting to style their own party or even a hens afternoon out.  We will definitely be covering how to make a tassel garland and we are working on a couple of other extras to throw into the mix.

Contacts:

The Creative Journal click here

Dunne With Style click here

 

Do you have a workshop I need to know about? Contact me here

Jess x

Creating a strong brand: Eclectic Medicine

7 Apr

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I am in the midst of re-branding for Eclectic Medicine, (yay exciting!) not just for my blog platform but for my Interior Design small business. It takes a lot of thought and time and is a great opportunity to focus on who you are, who you want to be and really, where you want to go.  To be completely honest, I have gone back and forth in my mind whether to re-brand Eclectic Medicine completely, starting with a brand new name and direction.

Questions I have asked myself: Is the name, Eclectic Medicine too obscure for an Interior Design based business and creative blog, or is that what people like about it? I understand the name itself is intriguing and leaves you asking well, whats all this about, but is it too odd that people mistake it for natural therapies or medicine even. What is Eclectic Medicine missing? What does Eclectic Medicine mean? Who is the target market for Eclectic Medicine?

What’s in a brand?

I don’t want my brand to be just another XYZ interiors , XYZ interior design or XYZ Creative, not that there is anything wrong with that, just for me and my personal brand I wanted something that aligned with my creativity, my story and my direction. Eclectic Medicine stems from my personal aesthetic, that is loving most interior styles and combining the old with the new. I also went through a stage in my life where I considered switching careers and becoming a Naturopath as natural medicine played a big part in helping me overcome an illness, Bells Palsy, that literally stopped me in my tracks and caused me to reevaluate my life and the direction I was heading both professionally and personally. So my blog and business name is a play on words and combination of personal growth and creativity.

I have done hours and hours of research of existing brands, what I like about them, what I don’t like and scrolled the internet in search of tutorials, e-books, books and articles about the subject. I have recently read a great blog post from Sycamore Street Press here about Eva’s journey of re-branding or rebuilding a strong brand. This post also put me on to Danielle LaPorte here and her Fire Starter Sessions: A soulful and practical guide to creating success on your own terms. I have ordered the book and I patiently await it to arrive at my door from my home-country the US of A. It sounds like it is my cup of tea, and I cannot wait to read.

My personal belief is there is enough room for us all, yes, in what is known as a competitive and (hate to say it) cut throat industry: Design, there is enough space for us all. If we all stay true to ourselves and authentic it creates such a diverse mix of creative energy that only encourages and uplifts us all. I have met so many people of late, from all walks of lives and in different stages of their careers and it just proves to me that everyone is on their own creative journey and there is most definitely room for us all. The key is to find your niche, your little pocket of where you can fit in or bridge the gap of what is lacking within the industry and most importantly, to learn how to hustle.

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Hustle like a New Yorker

One of my favourite sayings is “Hustle like a New Yorker,” and boy I know how to do so. (Picture walking down 5th Avenue in peak hour in the pouring rain, heads down with an umbrella and realising you have walked 25 blocks (no exaggeration there) in the wrong direction after asking a New Yorker where the hell you were ; in that gorgeous  accent of theirs “whaaatd ya mean, you’ve waaalked the wrong way, you gotta go down thatta’ way”… All we wanted to do was head to Tiffany & co. Haha! Put it this way, we learnt very quickly how to hustle like a New Yorker!)

My Father has most definitely taught me the meaning of how to hustle, and ironically he was born in Yonkers, New York. He now proudly refers to himself as a Texan (where I was born) but he most definitely still has the inner New Yorker pulsating through his veins. I never really truly appreciated his gregarious, outgoing personality until a few years ago and realised it is why he was the only one out of 9 brothers and sisters to get up the courage to leave America, travel the world work his butt off, hustling with every step he went. If his passport could only talk… the amount of stamps and visa’s still amazes me.

 

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Challenge yourself

So back to hustling, in this big expansive world of ours, unless you’re the 1% of the “fortunate” population, nothing is going to just land in your lap without hard work and determination. I have learnt since graduating that you really have to make your own work and see opportunities in all avenues and jump at them. I have an expansive background, with a Design degree, graphic design certificates and now a qualification in Interior Design where I graduated with the major award from the Design Institute of Australia, but really that means little in the scheme of things. After applying for that allusive full-time interior design job and having knock back after knock back, or being told things such as I had too much experience, or not enough I needed to change my game plan. And that I have, boy it has been much harder work than simply applying for existing jobs, it has challenged and taken me places which were out of my comfort zone, but I feel like the hustle is beginning to pay off and if anything I am learning so much and meeting amazing people at the same time. I am currently working as a Freelancer with creative small businesses assisting them with areas of their business in what ever way I can. My strengths are that I am a go-getter, I am organised, I am a people’s person and I never stop thinking of ideas. (Yes, I need to take up meditation to give my poor brain a rest.)

I am just about to start a small business course that will help clue me in to the other side of my brain, yes the right side of my brain has been in overdrive of late – typical creative Pisces! This will help me draw up a business and marketing plan and allow me to begin my journey on the right foot as they say. I am excited to put all my skills, knowledge and personal traits together and form my personal brand – Eclectic Medicine. I will soon have some new branding material, including a logo to show you and I can explain my thoughts and how my lovely Graphic Designer, Erin and I arrived at the final solution.

 

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Thank you to everyone who has been a part of my journey of inspiration, and over the past year of blogging it has been the best decision I have ever made it has helped me to keep accountable for research, networking and to gain further knowledge. I can’t wait to share more information with you all.

 

Jess x

 

 

 

 

Instagram: #pocketofmyhome

6 Apr

 

My reasons for beginning the hashtag #pocketofmyhome through the social app, Instagram was to bring creative people together through sharing photos of your home and office.

 

#Pocketofmyhome is a simple idea, an idea with no rules as such, except to have fun and be kind and supportive.

 

People have invited us all into their homes or little “pockets” and I would like to thank each and every one of you who has taken part in the journey. From humble beginnings and no prizes to attract participation I am blown away by the almost 1200 posts and counting! The hashtag is a place I would love to see grow and connect people through creativity and our love for our homes. I have many ideas of where I would like to see this hashtag progress and to continue to support people in their creative journey.

I love seeing how different everyone’s pockets are and are filled with such personality. That is what I am all about – Interior’s with Personality – my job as an Interior designer is to work with you to highlight you and your family’s needs and personality through your home. I foresee our relationship as a journey of inspiration and a real chance to enjoy the ride and work out who you are, what you need and where you want to go with your interior.

Here are a few collages of everyone’s entries. If you have instagram I would love if you would follow me here and add your photos of your home or office to #pocketofmyhome It is a fantastic way of keeping in touch through a visual community.

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(Top to Bottom – Left to Right)

Special mention to @beachyhousevibe @emma_e_flint @kelsbe @dimapleson

 

ImageSpecial mention to @happylittlequeenslander @theroomilluminated @bowerbirdjo @affordablestylefiles

 

ImageSpecial mention to @zandalpha @shaunstar @mimconcepts @maisonetteliving

 

I would love to see you join in the fun, leave me a comment, I’d love to connect!

 

Jess x

 

 

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