All posts filed under: Design

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Interview: Kelly White | Vintage Collector

Meet Kelly White, who collects everything from vintage handmade to vintage homespun with battery rescue hens in between. Words by Meryl Hancock, photographs by Ken Brass. You could be forgiven for thinking it’s a blonde Shirley Temple who answers the front door of a brick cottage in the Sydney suburb of Kyeemagh. Bold ringlets, a vintage print dress with a delicately scalloped neckline, perfectly coordinated clogs and an adorable smile greet Australian Country. Oh, and the exuberance of youth. I’m waiting for the improvised tap dance. Instead Kelly White motions us into her hallway and my eyeballs start to swivel. The show begins with a wall of vintage plates to the left, a vivid shower of retro skirts to the right and two sociable chooks that keep bobbing in and out of the frame. It is captivating and we’ve only seen a snippet. Growing up surrounded by treasures, such as her great grandfather’s paintings and her mother’s antique and contemporary quilts, Kelly has continued a collecting tradition. The house is brimming with history as it was …

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Interview: NZ designers | George and Willy

We love a feel-good story of childhood friends who end up working together because they share the same passions. New Zealand designers and makers George Wilkins and Will McCallum have done just that and judging by their after-hours fishing and rafting trips and the helicopter spotting game they created, their friendship certainly doesn’t seem to have suffered. The founders of George and Willy design, make and produce quality handmade goods – all things they wanted or needed themselves. It’s the process of making and creating that spurs them on. As they say on their blog: ‘We love making stuff … it is our passion and it continues well after the working day is done. Many after-work hours are spent here in the workshop, creating and bringing to life personal projects we all get excited about.’ And here at Who’d Have Thought, we’re thrilled to be featuring one of their products, the Studio Roller in the store! The idea for it came from a roll of kraft paper, which developed into a simple wall-mounted bracket to hold the paper so that it …

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Interview: Craig Robson | Carousel Collector

Meet the modern day Scarlet Pimpernel – Craig Robson, who has been riding a carousel of adventure across many decades. Words by Meryl Hancock, photography by Ken Brass. Behind a simple door to an unobtrusive warehouse in the Sydney suburb of Mascot lurks a giant fairground masterfully disguised. Dance hall organs of unfathomable proportion sit poised to perform, Grecian busts grace dark corners, fairy lights wink, and a raucous chorus of, How much is that doggy in the window? bursts from a spinning carousel. The rendition is bold and jaunty and conjures memories of riding in circles, waving gaily at parents and onlookers, and not wanting to get off. The fun facilitator appears, waistcoated showman Craig Robson. “I collect three things – mechanical musical instruments, a bit of steam and a lot of dust,” he announces, a humble introduction to what is a grand-scale collection showcasing fine music production, musical arrangement, carving and engineering from the 1850s through to the 1950s. “I started off playing the piano, then realised that mechanical music sounded so much better,” …

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Mia Penn’s “The Raisin Did It”

Over the past eight years while freelancing as a journalist for Australian Country Magazine, I have interviewed some fascinating characters while photographer Ken Brass snapped our perspective. I’d love you to meet some of them starting with Mia Penn, who blames everything on her imaginary friend, the Raisin. Words by Meryl Hancock. Repurposing and reinventing seem only natural to self-confessed opportunist Mia Penn, who has revitalised a tired cottage in Sydney’s Marrickville.  Bubbly chatter and belly laughs greet my arrival at a shiny red front door. It’s ajar so I pop my head into the hallway to a story-book vignette — an artfully arranged succulent, an antique map of Australia hung on vintage wallpaper and a cute cane chair awaiting Goldilocks. It’s tempting to sit down but there’s work to be done. A flash of floral fabric appears and with it a large grin and it’s quickly apparent I’ve found the true source of the feng shui. With a collector mother and a father who is both an abstract artist and a musician, Mia Penn admits to being the product of their creative influence …