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January 03, 2017

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Sydney, Brisbane & Melbourne Furniture Showrooms : The Winning Trifecta

furniture stores sydney

The culmination of years of planning & industry passion, combined with frequent global sourcing expeditions: I’m pleased to be able to say I have achieved the showroom trifecta. With residences in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, my signature aesthetic is now as accessible as ever.

In my experience, each city offers it’s own distinct design nuances, aesthetical tastes and styles - varied though they may be – with each of my galleries offering a slightly different experience...

Melbourne Showroom  

melbourne furniture

My Melbourne showroom at Church Street Richmond, the newest to my real estate collection, couldn’t have been more of a success after nearly two months of showcasing my luxury collections. Featuring a show-stopping street frontage, passers-by slowing to steal a longer look at my prized ranges is certainly not a rare sight from my perch at the illustrious Carnaby Dining Table

Securing my enviable position on one of Melbourne’s most prestigious strips is still a cause for celebration, and as the one of the fastest growing Australian cities for apartment dwellings, I’d say my arrival here is right on time. 

Brisbane Showroom 

brisbane furniture store

Fortitude Valley is the middle-sibling of the three, but there’s certainly no love lost here. It seems nearly an age since I opened my doors for the first time in the River City, but each day sees my Fortitude Valley showroom blossom.

Queenslanders have a style all their own, and it’s certainly a burgeoning one. Blessed with an amiable climate year round, Brisbane interiors are light, fresh, and not overly dramatic, perhaps a reflection on their relaxed inhabitants. A casual and inviting vibe defines the Queensland interior, although interior indulgence isn’t in short supply, which makes my Fortitude Valley showroom the ideal stop for those with an affinity for the best; my luxurious linens, raw timbers and sophisticated silhouettes don’t fail to impress time and time again.

With an envied proximity to the design mecca Coco Republic (we share a building!), my Brisbane showroom location ensures I constantly have my finger on the pulse of globally inspired interiors and design, while the luxury retailers within the James Street stretch provide hours of window shopping and merchandising inspiration.

Sydney Showroom 

sydney furniture showroom

It’s said that we never forget our firsts, and how could I, when my first showroom still demands the same affection as the day I first threw open the doors. Both my Sydney showroom and I have progressed quite a way since then, so it’s humbling to look back on a time when the spaces to follow in Brisbane and Melbourne were still an uncertainty. 

During 2016, however, I made the move to the Supa Centa Moore Park - a dedicated destination for homemakers. I’m pleased to be offering a point of difference to the space; my signature luxury aesthetic is certainly unrivalled, and complements the sterling selection already based in the specialised centre.

I've been a resident at the Supa Centa Moore Park for nearly 6 months now, and I must say, it's been smooth sailing so far! My Design Kiosk has proved more than useful and my products can now be viewed in perfect detail, all the way to each individual upholstery fibre. 

My penchant for an interior refresh dictates that each of my showrooms are constantly updated with new arrivals and the latest in Max Sparrow furniture and homewares designs, so no two visits are ever the same!

3 designer showrooms in 3 years: quite an achievement some would say... But allow me to implore - I'm not done yet! 

December 29, 2016

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The Formal Dining Room | A Revival

gold dining table

Looking back, the formal dining room has traditionally been a place of lavish hosting, both visually and palatably, so to see this trend revitalised not only delights the interior aficionado within me, but the entertainer too. Who needs further excuse to host friends and family in a luxurious dining room & to indulge in that bottle you’ve been saving for a special occasion… 

I mentioned in a Journal post last year, outlining the Interior Trends for 2016 and Beyond, that the formal dining room was set to make a comeback, and I’ve not yet been proved wrong. I’ve noted more and more clients of my Design Service clients requesting a dining room aesthetic reminiscent of the luxury and grandeur of an old-world high society that recent interior trends have seemingly disregarded.

That’s not to say that modern dining furniture should be shunned in favour of a traditional aesthetic though; a contemporary dining atmosphere can be achieved with no compromise on the opulence the classic formal dining room typically possesses. Opt for indulgent materialities, and regardless of furniture profiles, the curation of these deluxe materials & textures will not fail in the creation of an enviable formal dining space.

formal dining room ideas  formal dining room style

Velvets remain unrivalled for luxury, so it makes sense that dining chairs upholstered in the most regal of textures will undoubtedly provide that coveted luxe allure to any space, the formal dining room included. Look to my Marie Dining Chairs featuring gold-leaf frames and deep black velvet upholstery for the ultimate in French flair and élite styling panache. Similarly, my Eiffel Accent Chairs effortlessly combine stylistic elements with both contemporary and classic influences, the ghost legs allowing the seat to seemingly float, while at the same time, harnessing the on-trend aesthetic of Lucite.

formal dining room style

Stylish formal hosting relies on the centrepiece to any dining room, the dining table. Metallics are my go-to, whether the selection focuses on graphite, soft gold, or a pearlised finish, metallics in interiors ooze opulence with a touch of glamour. My Dalton Extension Dining Table pairs curvaceous gold legs with a robust timber surface for unsurpassed mature sophistication, while my Carter Stainless Steel Dining Table captures the quintessential contemporary aesthetic of minimalistic clean lines and a chic, slender profile. Meanwhile, a highly polished timber dining table offers grand appeal unlike any other.  

Might I add that stylish hosting doesn’t start & end with the dining table and chairs; the creation of an overall deluxe atmosphere requires a holistic approach, of course the dining furniture is paramount, however the influencers less considered also play major roles; think lighting, flooring and accent furniture pieces…

formal dining room ideas

No formal dining room is complete without overhead lighting in the form of a pendant (contemplate a row for that matter) or chandelier. Use less wattage, and hang this interior statement low, very low, for an intimate and wholly well-appointed dining room aesthetic.

 black and gold formal dining room

My next point is one of personal preference, however, I for one enjoy the chic opulence of a rug underfoot in a formal dining space, if not only for the aesthetics, for the acoustics also. An artsilk rug with a subtle sheen & lustre is one for the grown-up formal dining room (a red wine jus accident here could lead to tears), however a tufted wool rug, with a subtle print or pattern, offers only a fraction less luxury than artsilk, along with all the low-maintenance, easy-to-clean qualities wool provides.

 buffets online

If no formal dining room is complete without tasteful overhead lighting, the same can be said for the buffet or sideboard. One is spoilt for choice - no matter the style - in traditional and contemporary dining furniture alike, so it should come as no surprise that the buffet and sideboard have not been forgotten. My pick for the contemporary conscious dining room? My new Cooper Agate Accent Chest, featuring a sleek bronze casing and of-the-moment Agate printed doors, while the classic timber and custom hardware of my Seville Sideboard won’t fail to enhance the traditional formal dining room.

 bar carts online bar carts

My penchant for hosting is rivalled only by my predilection toward design, and no other furniture piece embodies this more than the bar cart. Obliging and oh-so stylish, the bar cart exemplifies both etiquette and luxury, making the ideal accent piece to a formal dining room.

Case in point: my Antibes Beverage Cart features an antiqued mirror surface, soft pastel finish and metallic accents to ensure it remains an impeccable contender for best dressed at any dinner party. Add to that a courteous disposition, and the Antibes promises both a functional and luxurious addition to the modern formal dining room.

The epitome of the debonair interior, a revival of the formal dining room is long overdue in my books, wouldn’t you agree?

December 27, 2016

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Wall Mirrors:  An Instant Interior Update

oval mirror with gold fram

Long used to create the optical illusion of expansiveness in small spaces, wall mirrors can be an instant – and affordable - interior update to an entryway or rooms throughout the home. Keeping this in mind, look to my collection of unique mirrored pieces to find a wall mirror that reflects and amplifies your interior décor. 

Antique Allure

A study in soft, sophisticated luxury, antiqued mirror combines old and new design principles through an aged effect that reflects modern-day glamour all the while showcasing a distressed aesthetic that is both an appreciation of the past and a nod to a style that is very new and now.

Antiqued mirror also features natural variances that ensure no two pieces are entirely the same, allowing the finish a fascinating uniqueness that encourages passersby to take a closer look again and again. Indeed, the unique mottled façade of antiqued mirror suggests a mystery that will never be completely solved, no matter how many times you study the clues.

antiqued mirror wall mirror

Take, for example, my Sherwood Mirror, it's characteristics bridging the gap between furnishing and art. With its elongated oval sectioning setting off distinctively distressed and uniquely patterned antiqued mirror pieces, it provides an accent that is stunning, yet subtle enough to suit almost any setting. Try it above a sideboard in the dining room to provide a one-of-a-kind conversation starter for dinner guests or above a console table in your entryway to set a sophisticated tone for your entire home.

square wall mirror

A mirror within mirrors, the Datt Mirror frames a central bevelled reflective surface with a classic Greek key pattern and antiqued mirror detailing. Visually fascinating layers make it the perfect piece for breaking up the monotony of a long hallway wall or as an unconventional, infinitely interesting, option above a bedroom dresser.  

Likewise, the antiqued mirror effect surrounding the Antique Octagon Mirror creates a layered luxe look that makes it equally at home in a modern bedroom as a traditional accent in a dining room or living room. Defined angles also create a perfect contrast when perched above shapely pieces such as those similar to my Nottingham Timber Dresser.  

Maximise Light and Space with Mirrors

timber framed mirror

It's no secret, mirrors are an obvious way to create the illusion of space in small settings. Try a floor-length mirror like the Manhattan Shell Mirror to make any ceiling feel higher. Placed behind a cluster of furniture or on its own, the long profile of a rectangular mirror draws the eye up and carries it around the room, making any area feel lighter and brighter. Turn a rectangular mirror like the Bromham Tall Mirror on its side, hanging it between the celling and a door frame (or in another slender and unexpected spot), to make the most of every inch within a room.

For rooms that don’t have an abundance of windows or other sources of natural light, a mirror can also act as an ideal technique in accentuating interior light. Large mirrors, either mounted on a wall or leaning in a considered place offer a solution when interior design is hindered by dark and empty corners. Take cues from my Madison Mirror to reflect lamplight and natural illumination within a room, all the while creating an interior atmosphere of both space and lights. Not to mention, my Madison Mirror offers the best of romantic elegance in an antiqued mirror border...

Setting the Stage

Entryways and foyers are a natural setting for mirrors. In a large foyer, use one to anchor a sitting area while signalling the style for the rest of your rooms. In a smaller entryway, it becomes both pretty and practical as a stopping spot for both you and your guests to sneak a vanity glance before venturing to the paparazzi outside.

round mirror white and gold frame

In close quarters, consider pairing a wall mirror with a piece of furniture that also features reflective surfaces, such as the mirrored table top of the Antibes Console. The distinctively curvy profile of the Antibes provides an interesting contrast to the delicate intersecting metal square border of the Chapman Mirror.

Beyond Basics in the Bedroom

floor mirror in living room

Above a dresser isn’t the only spot to mount a mirror in the bedroom, floor mirrors are just as adept at providing on bedroom style. Use a mirror to instantly expand a small sitting area into a roomy place to relax, read, and unwind. Achieve the effect, which can also enhance a living room, by pairing a delicate table like the Chelsea Square Side Table with a comfortable chair that features fresh, light upholstery, such as the Kelsey High Back Chair. To complete the scene, add a large mirror, like the Payerne Mirror, mounted or leaned against a wall nearby.

Enhancing Dining Room Décor

Balance the bulk of a bold buffet with the seemingly delicate nature of a wall mirror. The dark and moody design of the Vittoria Buffet pairs perfectly with the interlocking circles and the minimalist metallic frame of the Vittoria Metal Luna Mirror, which ensures the dark timber of the buffet won't weigh down a dining room atmosphere.

 gold framed mirror in luxury dining room

Favour the modern luxe look? Continue the theme of gold and glass glam throughout the dining room; start with Carnaby Round Dining Table, which tops a base built of interlocking circles with a round glass table top, flank it with gold-leaf framed Forthside Chairs & finally, finish the look with the Patras Storage Unit, which features a classic Greek key design drawn on gold-finished drawers and a stunning Demilune profile that pairs perfectly with the sophisticated shape and the deco-inspired gold bullion detailing of the Gracie Oval Mirror.

Antiqued or bevellled - round, rectangular, or even octagonal - try these suggestions to find a mirror that reflects your style sensibilities. No matter which shape, size or design you choose, a well-placed mirror can instantly update and accent any space in your home.


Where is your favourite place for a mirror in your home? Share your design inspiration with my by leaving a note below:   

6 Style Tips for an Elegant Christmas Home

christmas home decor

Holiday season is well and truly upon us; I know I’ve certainly participated in a plethora of family gatherings, cocktail soirees and indulgent end-of-year celebrations. In amongst the chaos of all the festivities, it can be hard to find both the time to style your home and accrue non-clichéd holiday decorating ideas that not only provide for a memorable affair, but also tailor to a unique and personal aesthetic. Fear not, I’ve compiled a short list of essential holiday niches to help you make the most of your time, delight your guests and relish your time at home this festive break.

  1. The Entrance

entrance hall styling christmas home styling

Create a lasting first impression by styling your entry with a welcoming festive touch. Gone are the days of unoriginal green and red Christmas wreaths, replaced with the contemporary stylings of floral arrangements depicting Australia’s take on a merry Christmas. If you’re seeking a creative outlet, be sure to check out Vogue Living’s tutorial on creating your own Christmas wreath. For a subtle nod toward a Christmas theme, without an expiry date, style your entrance hall with luxury décor with hints of metallics; a curated selection of your favourite ceramics atop a unique hall table promise an enduring look suitable for both the festive period and beyond.

  1. Lighting

Undoubtedly a determining factor in any space, lighting has the potential to dramatically alter atmosphere. Considered lighting, used effectively, evokes mood and sets the scene for sophisticated elegance or dramatic and intriguing allure. From candles to table lamps, pendants and floor lamps, a warm glow promises a home both inviting and charming. 

bedroom lighting outdoor dining style

  1. Dining Tables

Christmas luncheons and festive hosting often call for a courteous centre point, while also demanding extra space for a large collective of friends and relatives to congregate: enter the humble dining table. Style the tabletop with floral arrangements for fresh appeal, or create an assembly of candles for the ultimate in moody ambience. Mixing and matching doesn’t always suggest a lack of resources to accommodate a full guest list – a collection of complementary, yet differentiating pieces can create an artful and eclectic look that is at once vibrant and harmonious. The same could be said for dining chairs, creating a dining set of coordinated disarray, with no shortage of fun and casual allure. Of course, the organised host prepares with the incorporation of an extendable dining table, for a refined and structured dining room aesthetic.

christmas dining table ideas christmas dining room

 

  1. Accents

beverage cart  bar cart

Including, but not limited to side tables, coffee tables, beverage carts, and consoles, an accent piece provides the perfect pace to perch a drink or create a gathering point. At the end of a long day, or night for that matter, a gathering place for those left over is paramount. Partake in the sharing of anecdotes in comfort (and style) with a considered selection of glamorous accents, lifting your home with stylish appeal, proving your design panache and creating a welcoming atmosphere for both you and your guests. I’m doubtful the beverage cart will be one to go unnoticed….

max sparrow side tables

  1. Décor

Personal and unique touches are all too easy with a careful collection of homewares, for a welcome embellishment to existing furnishings and home décor. Innovative flourishes tailored to the season, with fresh takes on time-honoured traditions enhance a sense of distinction and interior flair. Update surfaces with vignettes of your favourite ceramics or glassware to express individuality and style, or curate a selection of cushions to breath a new lease of life into any living room or bedroom

cushions onlinehome decorcushions online

  1. Guest bedroom

Provide a sanctuary encouraging restful repose with soft hues, opulent textures and practical necessities for your guests and guarantee their appreciation. Storage should go without saying, while a relaxing atmosphere is certainly one we all aim for in the bedroom… and it’s all found in the details. Unexpected expressions of thought and care won’t go amiss, while practicality and functionality reinforce the hostess-with-the-mostest trophy. Consider your bedside tables, lighting and linen, and a personal touch to finish it off – fresh floral, or a perhaps christmas treat…

guest bedroom styling guest bedroom style

If you’re wondering where I found my home decoration ideas and interior inspiration images, look no further than my website… and of course, my Pinterest boards. What are your tips for a welcoming abode over the holiday season?

Interior Design: The Secret To Success

interior design

What does it take to launch a successful Interior Design Service? In my case, plenty of passion, many years of working alongside stunning furniture pieces and a unique aesthetic all my own. Understanding various styles and optimising space for functionality as well as visual appeal certainly rank highly on my list, combined with a globetrotting habit, in order to stay abreast of the hottest trends… And last but not least, a specialised team I personally select, sharing my obsession with interiors, styling and design.

My position in the furnishing and home decoration industry undoubtedly provides me with an advantage in the creation of stylish and timeless interiors; I’ve already done the leg work sourcing unique furniture design and décor, all that remains is refining my ever expanding range to exclusively enhance an individual interior.

interior design sydney

This process is not a modest one, as simple as I may make it appear... There are four key steps (with plenty more secondary!) in the creation of a remarkable and distinctive home interior:

 

  1. The initial step in the process involves a home visit from two of my expert team, where personal aesthetics and key spaces are determined. Measurements will be taken and photographs snapped, all in the name of producing a space that is practical as well as breath taking.         

 

  1. I understand innately that each home is just as unique as its occupant, so sit back and relax as my team convenes, building a scheme based on individual considerations to produce a finessed interior design, complete with floor plan, mood board, product selection and styling suggestions.

 

  1. Encompassing a presentation from the dedicated team, welcoming feedback and drawing up the quote, the third step in the process before awaiting the installed result concludes the design process.

 

  1. Don’t worry, time awaiting the arrival of an order shipment for imminent install will pass faster than expected. A freshly styled luxury interior is the result, with this step involving more photos for my team to document their work, and of course share with me.

 

Each step of my Interior Design Service process is considered closely to create an exceptional and individual home interior, with a healthy dose of my finessed design panache. 

Looking to learn more about my Design Service? Leave a comment below, Click HERE, or contact me:

max@maxsparrow.com
1300 818 558

The Bar Cart : Luxury Home Entertaining at it's Best

bar cart

The pinnacle of the entertaining season is once again upon us, and one that I personally welcome. My love for hosting is rivalled only by my love for design, and in this case they meet in perfect harmony. My number one accessory for the party season? The answer is unequivocally the Bar Cart. Two parts glamour and one part refinement, the Bart Cart of today takes cues from it’s historical past in high society and adds a contemporary element to remain relevant in both classic and modern urban interiors.

 beverage cart 

Nothing says glamour quite like a bar cart – connotations of fun, albeit in the most sophisticated manner, come to mind, along with suggestions of luxury and elegant indulgence. Etiquette and courtesy go without saying; a bar cart embodies the character of the perfect host.

 bart cart style at home

Featuring an antiqued mirror surface, soft pastel finish and metallic accents, my Antibes Beverage Cart is an impeccable contender for best dressed at any party. Add to that an obliging disposition, and the Antibes creates both a functional and luxurious vignette.

 jonathan adler bar cart coco republic bar cart

For a touch of vintage charm, with unexpected details, the Jonathan Adler Cheval Bar Cart from Coco Republic doesn’t disappoint. Featuring horse head finials with both nickel and Lucite accents, the Cheval Bart Cart combines contemporary elements with vintage charm seamlessly.

styled drinks tray drinks tray 

Glamour certainly doesn’t go amiss in my Chablis Trays, featuring mirror surface and gold accents, and they also provide for an ideal (or temporary) bar cart alternative. Style a tray with your favourite crystal glassware and beverage bottles on your sideboard or console for a makeshift beverage cart of the upmost style, providing the same etiquette and opulence the bar cart so courteously offers.

There’s no denying the debonair aesthetic a bar cart provides, do be sure to share with me in the comments below your advice for hosting in style at home!

November 11, 2016

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Manhattan: A Lesson in Contemporary Furniture Design

Notable for a loft living style all its own, Manhattan has provided unbound interior inspiration globally, its unique aesthetic promoting streamlined profiles with bold dispositions and just a hint of sculptural significance; an apt description for my Manhattan range, if I say so myself. 

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