The doors to many of our favourite galleries and exhibitions are finally opening again. But the lockdown has opened our eyes to the curiosity of closed doors.
Whether it’s a glimpse through a Zoom call or bubble photos on social media, what creative people choose to surround themselves can prove an inspiration to others.
Our ‘House Visits’ series takes you into the homes and working spaces of people in the creative world, to see what they have collected on their travels, what it means to them
It’s amazing what a break away from the day to day can inspire.
I love to craft and cook and keep my mind busy which relaxes and rejuvenates. At the start of lockdown, I felt it would prove fatal for my business (specialist florists Vida Flores in Newmarket, Auckland) as I could not see a way forward through the calamity that was happening around us. But with a little time sitting in the sun and creating, my mind cleared, and I thought about ways to share my love of crafting and creating and even cooking.
So Studio Makers Club was created - a place for children to stretch their creative minds, play, learn and have fun. I cannot wait for our first workshops to get underway, alongside our Vida Flores Flower School.
I am lucky enough to live in a lovely villa that looks out across a park where there is constant action with families with their dogs, running, walking, playing, so my daughter Ava and I were never short of action and people around to watch.
I set myself up outside in the sun where I read and crafted and made samples for workshops of punch needling (my current favourite hobby), I made a ridiculous amount of bucket hats and knitted and wove little baskets, embroidered, it was endless and the best holiday I could dream of. The space to have time to create and teach myself new tricks was invaluable.
I’m not someone that likes a lot of ‘stuff’ around me and I tend to keep things simple but over recent years I have started a little collection of white ceramic vases that I love. The quirkiness of Dawn Clayden’s fantasy pieces built with little characters and flowers to the simplest of Rachel Carley’s classic shapes.
The white woven vase that Tiffany and Co gave me for Christmas last year I love (even if it hasn’t got diamonds on it) but my collection grows and sits in front of very early works by Mark Wooller that I have had for many years, the Gingko being one of my favourite trees.
The one clutter I do allow myself is my craft bits, there is a constant pile in my bedroom which lies in organised chaos amongst sewing machines with a backdrop of a painting by a great friend Virginia Leonard, which is bright, cheery and keeps me in touch with my first love - Flowers!
I also have another two of her works in place of a headboard above my bed.
One of the first little paintings I ever bought was from an Auckland Grammar art sale by a student Nick Ashby, which is painted onto bound National Geographic’s. It sits alongside a photo of one of my creations years ago and photographed by Louise Sweet. The vase is by Aaron Scythe.
When in New York a couple of years ago, I got this floral photograph by Belgium, Isabelle Menin mounted on glass. I spotted it in a shop that sits below the High Line. The one displayed was ginormous so I had to settle for something a little smaller.