One Kitchen - Three Ways

People often wonder why you would go to an Interior Designer when you could go straight to the Cabinetmaker. Designers look at the whole kitchen in context to the rest of the house and can often come up with design solutions to problems you didn't even know you had! And it's all about brainstorming and coming up with ideas. Here are three different options for one kitchen. Which one do you like best? #kitchendesign #interiordesign #designsolutions#kitchenrenovationmackay #mackayinteriordesigners #laurentaylordesign #kitchenrenovation

Before + After

Before + after of a raked ceiling which was previously clear finished pine and is now white. #laurentaylordesign #mackay #beforeandafter #interiordesign 

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A (hall)way to brighten your day

It is a lasting memory of the fun we had with friends and family on the day we were married. It is handmade by a local weaver in Mackay. It has wonderful bright colours and it is soft underfoot.

Hallway Runner

It is our hallway runner which we commissioned Pam Hutley to make with the money that was gifted to us on our wedding day. When we renovated our kitchen and bathroom, we also ripped up all the carpet in the bedrooms and had the timber floors polished. It has made a world of difference in regards to reducing dust and hayfever symptoms. But, it is nice to walk on the hallway runner with it's 100% wool. We chose the heavier duty version because it is in the main hallway of our home. Pam buys the woollen fleeces, dyes them and then spins it into yarn. She tries to use natural dyes where possible. All of the dyes in our runner are natural except for the black. The yarn is then woven on the loom into the finished product. We are so happy with it. It always brightens our day!

Hand woven Hallway Runner

Life as a working Mum

It's been a busy week. It always is when you're trying to work from home and look after a baby!

On Tuesday, we had an 'action-packed' day. We drove 'Daddy' to the airport at sunrise.

We had vegemite on toast for breakfast.

Then we made egg-free apple + almond muffins from Louise Fulton-Keats' fantastic cookbook, 'Thermomix Cooking for your Baby + Toddler'.  Baby M is allergic to eggs. 

Apple + Almond Muffins


M had a nap and I did some work (paid and housework!) 

Then lunchtime and another nap (it's a baby's life) 

While M was napping, I met with a local Mackay artist, Harvey Stone. Such wonderful pencil and ink drawings of unusual subjects such as fungi and pandanus seeds. He has a variety of styles, all very graphic. He gave me a lovely watercolour of Lawn Hill Gorge (one of my favourite places from family camping holidays).  He'll be at the Wintermoon Festival in Cameron's Pocket at the end of April and at the next Rock Paper Scissors Market at Mackay Artspace in July. 

Watercolour image by Harvey Stone

I started a weaving in the afternoon. I want to try another design from the gorgeous blog, A Beautiful Mess.

Pink Gold and Charcoal Woven Wall Hanging

We went for a walk and picked up some rubbish. I am trying to lead a more eco conscious life this year. Don't forget about Clean Up Australia Day on the 6th March. 

Dinner, bath and bed. 

Some more work and then it starts all over again tomorrow! 

Tropical Oasis

Living in North Queensland or in any other tropical or sub-tropical climate, the connection between the interior and garden is so important. In renovations to our 1950s worker's cottage over the past couple of years, we have strived to create a strong connection to the outdoors. We began with a new deck and then re-modelled the kitchen and bathroom. The main aspects of the brief were to improve functionality, aesthetics and to increase natural light, ventilation and access to the garden. 

We've been working on our garden to turn it into a tropical oasis. One of my favourite flowers is the Bird of Paradise. It is so sculptural and the colours are so bright and beautiful. 

Baby Shower Celebrations

My friend didn't want a baby shower so we cunningly planned one anyway! We hope that she enjoyed it. The icing on the cake was definitely a surprise visit from her Mum. It was a lovely morning with a small group of girls, lots of cake and conversation. We were planning on doing some stitchin' and bitchin' but we didn't quite get around to it.

I made this nappy cake to mark the occasion. I used over 50 nappies. Probably about 80 nappies in total. And I roughly followed the directions on Kidspot's blog. It's pretty easy and an effective centre piece and gift! I chose black and white embellishments because my friend's nursery has been styled in these colours. 

Weaving Magic

When my daughter was born, I momentarily turned into a domestic goddess. I was baking and making. I didn't feel that pregnancy glow that people sometimes speak about but I did feel a post birth glow. Until sleep deprivation kicked in. In the midst of my crafty storm, I decided to be swept along with the recent weaving trend. So I started a small wall hanging for my niece's 'big girl room'. I got inspiration from this amazing U.S. blog - A Beautiful Mess

My niece's birthday is in Spring and the arrival of her sister or brother is expected not long after so I thought that by starting a wall hanging in June, I was bound to complete it in time! It was lucky I allowed so much time. Especially when the grumpiness, procrastination and lack of motivation arrived along with the prolonged lack of sleep. 

My niece's big girl room was themed in pink, white and gold so I bought wool in those colours in lots of different sizes and textures. My handy father-in-law made the loom from an old picture frame and nails. And without further ado, I started weaving!

Re-opening of the former Pioneer Shire Council Chambers

The former Pioneer Shire Council Chambers on Wood Street, Mackay is a beautiful Art Deco building designed by Architect, Harold Brown. Originally built in 1935, it has been lovingly restored by the current Mackay Regional Council. It was officially re-opened on the 2nd August 2015. These are some 'before' photos including some pictures of our Wedding in November 2013 before the adjacent 1970s additions were removed in the restoration process. Wedding photos were taken by Candice Van Moolenbroek Photography. Lauren Taylor Design assisted the heritage Architect, Conrad Gargett and Mackay Regional Council with the design of the new kitchen (requested by the new tenant). Inspiration was taken from the design on the original doors throughout the building. 

Natural Beauty

Monday was just a perfect Winter's day in Mackay. Blue skies, a light breeze and a warm sun. We walked all the way around the city stopping in at the Botanical Gardens, Baby Bounce at the Mackay City Library, lunch at Caneland Central, and a walk on the Blue Water Trail with afternoon tea at Grandma's. Days like this help to reiterate why we love living in Mackay! 

Dining Chair Upholstery

One weekend, last year, Meg & I paid a visit to Mackay's dump shop and we transformed these old green vinyl chairs from old to new! 

Dyeing and Spinning the Yarn

We made the trip down to Pam Hutley's studio last week to see the beautiful colours of the yarn for my new hallway runner. Only natural dyes have been used. Pam dyes the fleece and then spins it into yarn. 

The rug will take about 2 weeks to weave so it should be ready next month. How exciting!

In the meantime, you can see some of Pam's other exquisite homewares at the Rock Paper Scissors Art & Design Market on Sunday 12th July 2015. It is part of the Mackay Festival of Arts