We find out more about the multi-talented Australian who has done it all – from creating beautiful nature-inspired furniture to hosting reality TV shows.
You are one of Australia’s leading designers and a popular television personality, did you ever envision yourself reaching this height of success?
Never. As a child I wanted to be a marine biologist or to simply work in a job that cares for the environment, it’s why I studied horticulture for four years. I had no idea that I would be doing what I am doing now, but I love it and I push myself to do better daily.
How would you describe your own design process?
Nature is a very big part of my design process and it has always been my biggest teacher. And so what I bring to furniture I guess, is a natural connection. I call it raw luxury. My depiction of luxury now is design that nurtures the soul and in most cases, it is nature that nurtures the soul. I believe that if we nurture nature, it will nurture us.
Singapore is often called a “Garden City”. Based on your observations, how true is this statement?
Singapore has incredible gardens and I impressed by the work done at Sentosa and Gardens by the Bay. It’s wonderful how there are so many beautiful landscapes in a small space. The Peranakan Museum is one of my favourite spots too, I like how the exhibits convey the role that nature influences furniture design.
Tell us more about your own interior design style.
I am a big fan of textured surfaces and biomimicry, which is design that is influenced by nature. My homes also has, what I like to call, a transterior environment that brings the outside in and the inside out by breaking down the barriers in between them. The art and sculptures that I chose for the rooms also closely relate to nature.
What is one piece of advice that you would give to new homeowners?
One piece of advice that I would give is to invest in your home. It’s a gift that you give to the people that you love, and it’s the best impression that you give of yourself to others.
This was adapted from an article originally published in the May 2017 issue of SquareRooms.