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Posts from the ‘Lifestyle’ Category

space /spās/

1. A continuous area or expanse that is free, available or unoccupied

2. The dimension of height, depth and width in which all things exist and move

When we moved to New York a couple of years ago; fresh from Sydney shores all sun kissed and dreamy, newly married and searching for the epitome of NY living, we moved into a two floor brownstone.  I remember writing about what it felt like to finally settle in and be at home somewhere, and also to belong. Our home was equipped with stunning hardwood floors, period shutters, fireplaces, claw foot tubs and the most incredible afternoon sunlight. I don’t know if I will ever find such a luxury again. Although the place was bursting at the seams with character, I still couldn’t wait to get my sticky stylist mitts on it and change the wall colours, carpets, light fittings and so on.. until it was mine. It took almost the full two years of living there to get it how I really liked it. And then…..we moved. Leaving our mark. old house

Two years on, we find ourselves in a space that is the polar opposite of a brownstone with all its exquisite detail and homeliness. Now, we find ourselves in a space that doesn’t even have a simple set of walls, or even the odd door. An open industrial loft. Sure, a few eyebrows were raised when I told people… open loft, dog, 6 month old baby, both work from home.. yeah NO problem!

And now I’m sitting here, five weeks after the event with no interior walls, doors, storage and wondering where on earth to begin and what on earth I was thinking? My husband, a childhood fan of the film, Big, loves it in all its lofty glory. But then he doesn’t have to make it a home. I do. I’m going to start at the beginning.  Im going to create a wonderful, stylish, urban home.. in a huge empty space. For the first time in my life I have a completely blank canvas. Modern kitchen, modern bathroom… and 3 white walls.   Wish me luck.

wall of windows spaceunpacking

nurs·er·y ˈnərs(ə)rē/

A room in a house for the special use of young children

I feel like I am constantly apologising for my lack of frequent blogging… ‘life kind of gets in the way’ excuses spring to mind.. busy NY stylist.. blah blah.. had a baby, moved house… All pretty good reasons not to be sitting at my computer, but NO excuse is good enough.. It’s time to make this arrangement a little more frequent. So we will keep this short, sweet and visual.

The glorious brownstone is no longer and we are onto different things. As a final hurrah to a space where we shot many a beautiful image, I thought it would be so nice to show a small space not yet revealed. A space for the newest addition to our family, now rapidly growing and crawling all over the place. Her space. My taste. Her room. My baby.

Shot with with the talented and beautiful Tara Striano in Brooklyn, NY. 2013.



No longer in her own room now as we tackle open plan living with a small child. I will create something for her in the coming weeks. Watch this space.

Meanwhile, keep an eye on Appleketchup as I post an interior vignette each week throughout the winter months.

per·cep·tion /pərˈsepSHən/

The ability to see, hear, or become aware of something through the senses.

The state of being or process of becoming aware of something in such a way.

A few weeks ago, I found myself walking the dog in Prospect Park during a cold snap of minus six degrees Celsius, whilst getting over food poisoning, battling the flu, dealing with entering my seventh month of pregnancy and all the while… trying to dodge the rangers who might ticket me for having the dog off the lead after 9am.

Words to the effect of ‘What the hell am I doing in this godforsaken place anyway?’ ran through my then negative mind at a rapid pace, and didn’t subside. This stayed with me for several days. I was ready to pack up and leave for warmer, more friendly shores. I miss you Australia.

Then….some magical things began to happen.

A friend sent me an article they thought I may find interesting, and it was as though someone had turned on a light.
It was an interview with Sharon Beesley, writer and author of blog NYC Taught Me, and had been published on SayDaily. Her wonderful point of view of a city offering many challenges was an inspiration to me, especially as I  had arrived as a newby to NY, just like her.

Her interview covers some of NYC’s many highlights that I had begun to overlook in my bleakness. You can get anything and everything delivered, there is always something to do in one of the many museums, galleries and creative spaces all over the five boroughs. Pretty much everywhere is child friendly. It made me open my eyes and my mind.

A few days later, I was in Kentucky working on a job, and I unexpectedly passed an HSBC ad campaign that has always caught my eye in the airports in London. I was so surprised to see it in Louisville; it was another little moment of synchronicity and I lapped it up. It demonstrates in many of its images; one person’s pain may be another’s pleasure… for example things like marmite, chilli… or skydiving… or, if it were my household.. ballet… and The Vicar of Dibley.

Once my husband came back from his overseas trip, and I finally managed to fight all the illness… I started to see a little more clearly. The sun began to poke through the clouds, I realised that my previous negativity wasn’t all about where I was or what I was doing, but it was the way I was looking at it.

I needed to embrace the cold, the snow and all the things I had missed about the Northern Hemisphere for so many years.

My daily work as a stylist is all about creating an image that I hope will be pleasing to the eye; but whose eye? What I believe to be simply gorgeous may be really hideous to someone else. This is what I love about art, photography and the image – it’s all subjective.

How we perceive something may depend very much upon the mood we are in, the way we are looking at it, and many other uncontrollable things about the environment around us.

We are now in another cold snap and I’m trying to enjoy it for what it is – crisp white snow.. kids sledding, warm cosy cups of hot tea and Tim Tams whilst grabbing the slivers of afternoon sunlight through the shutters. Bliss.


AK thought for the day, keep an open mind, an open heart and next time you feel in an awfully glum mood like I did… see if you can look at it with brand new eyes. If that fails.. eat some chocolate.


Occurring Once Every Year

Summer is here… once a year… in most places. This month is has been so terribly humid, I’ve had to break a life long habit of having fresh flowers in the house, for fear that they will just wilt and die and the first opportunity.

Today, for the first time in a LONG time… a little style snippet from Appleketchup HQ.

How to make your home look pretty, with things that you can get your mitts on …… ALL year round. 

Whilst perusing the local farmers market last Saturday with my darling husband, dear little dog.. and newest member of our family, my shopping trolley bag, I decided to grab a big bunch of dried French lavender. At the time I though it would be a great prop for an up and coming shoot and I could also artfully place it around our home to make it smell nice. Today it’s Friday. Almost a week since the lovely bunch of lavender arrived, and unfortunately it has been there un-openend, all useless and feeling sad; until today, when I had a brainwave.

Year round, I thought, you can pick up beautiful dried flowers, mix them with fresh or dried herbs, grab yourself a few jam jars, glass bottles, and throw in a couple of shells…… Done!

Vignettes of sun and sea….. ALL year round.


Sea urchins with bunches of dried lavender, rosemary.

Recycled vintage milk bottles, french lavender

An old candle votive, turned vase… with fresh rosemary and dried lavender. Makes your bathroom smell delicious!

Shells and herbs, herbs and shells…. utterly non seasonal!

Some old faves of mine… remind me of my wonderful Bondi days and Caravan Interiors…..

Dried lavender from the farmers markets coupled with a bit of old broken barnacle. Barnacle pieces can double up as a vase… or a toothbrush holder!

When my friends arrive later for a champers and a ‘Go on Great Britain’ for the 2012 Opening Ceremony, I expect they will be blown away by how fresh and beachy our home feels, despite the Brooklyn humidity!