Short-listed for national IDEA awards 2021

This week was an exciting one for our team, being short-listed for the national Interior Design Excellence Awards (IDEA), which celebrates the best of Australian interior and product design.

A single vision, to enmesh art and design into the client’s daily lives. A concept, larger than life and a place for reveries where moments are mused away.

Working with Simon Ancher for pieces that twist and turn. A torched table resembling a guitar plectrum, a spinal wall sculpture and a vertical blackwood leaf form, allowing light to dance through the central void.

Maria Gigney’s metal, grid-like architecture is at once unobtrusive and yet strong. Our interior pays tribute to her considered style, weaving, interlocking, and creating moments of pause. Black with rich, saturated ochre embracing the unicity of forms.

Natural light teems through the space, expanding the landscape while heightening the differing lines. Trust and desire are fused together in the most arresting way.

Interior design / Valentine Interiors
Photography / Anjie Blair



Patrick Hall Talk for ADFAS

We are constantly inspired by the many amazing artists and makers that Tasmania is now so well known for.

It’s not too much to say that a love of Patrick Hall’s work is a little secret that both Sarah & Jane each held closely for years, unbeknown to each other.

Needless to say, meeting Patrick and Di Allison (Patrick’s equally talented partner) at the ADFAS Hobart event a little while ago was a thrill!




“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can”​ Arthur Ashe

It’s an elephant, and it’s in the room – climate change.

Is it the ‘bigness’ of these two words that cause us to stall, to pull up short again and again in our efforts to make a difference, to have an impact? 

Are you caught between the desire to do something and the reality of getting it done? Could it be we are collectively overwhelmed into inaction?

What if, instead of seeking to change the world, we sought to change something today?

In 2004 Ronnie Kahn, frustrated by the huge volume of food waste in her events company, began hand-delivering the untouched food to homeless shelters. Today, Oz Harvest, the company she founded, delivers the equivalent of 25 million meals a year that would otherwise be wasted. (1)

In the same year, British cycling coach David Brailsford committed to a strategy of the aggregation of marginal gains. A philosophy of searching for a tiny margin of improvement in everything you do. After nearly one hundred years of mediocrity, during the ten years from 2007 to 2017, British cyclists won 178 world championships and 66 Olympic or Paralympic gold medals and captured 5 Tour de France victories in what is widely regarded as the most successful run in cycling history. (2)

While Ronnie may have altered forever the way food waste is managed in events (and otherwise), one-off events have remained characterised by their wastefulness. Their transience a blessing and a curse. But small gestures, much like David Brailsford’s marginal gains, can have an impact much more significant than their cost. Take, for example, the florist, witnessed returning at the end of events to collect the salvageable florals to distribute to local retirement villages. Zero-waste, little to no real cost, and an undoubtedly positive impact on the residents lucky enough to have their day brightened by fresh flowers. We can only hope that village management continued the good work and insisted that the flowers were composted on-site at the end of their life. Or the groundsmen who took the time to separate waste materials at events end, to ensure that still useful building materials were made available to local animal shelters.

These examples, and the many others that now occur every day in the world of temporary events, break down the stereotype of wastefulness by actually repurposing, reusing, and providing immediate charitable outcomes. Rather than holding out for the elusive moonshot that we seem to expect will somehow magically solve the problem of climate change.  

Will these small gestures change the world? Not today, but as Ronnie and David would surely attest, they stand a solid chance of completely altering our collective tomorrow. 

On a larger yet still approachable scale is the remarkable Sarah & Sebastian jewellery store by the award-winning Russell and George studio in Melbourne. It demonstrates how permanent structures can use temporal and adaptable modes of transformation to facilitate their ever-changing function. Their meticulous considerations don’t just extend across the lifetime of the space itself but also to the materials used. Ensuring they can be recycled and reused after the life of the design. Another example of how small accumulative actions can change the tide on how we deal with waste.

Much closer to home, we have recently been heartened by the number of Tasmanian signatories to the Architects Declare network. It was through our engagement with this platform that we recently decided to become a carbon-neutral studio. In the grand scheme of things, we know this is a marginal gain, but as we’ve seen, when taken together, marginal gains are not marginal at all. 

 As James Clear says in his book Atomic Habits, ‘In the beginning, there is basically no difference between making a choice that is 1 percent better or 1 percent worse. (In other words, it won’t impact you very much today.) But as time goes on, these small improvements or declines compound, and you suddenly find a very big gap between people who make slightly better decisions on a daily basis and those who don’t.’ (3)

The question is, will you do what you can, and will your choice tomorrow be 1 percent better or 1 percent worse. Or rather, how will we eat the elephant together?

(1) Ronnie Kahn and Jessica Chapnik Kahn (2020), A Repurposed Life. Murdoch Books, Sydney.

(2) James Clear (2018), Atomic Habits. Avery, New York.

(3) James Clear (2018), Atomic Habits. Avery, New York.


Article written / Valentine Interiors & Design
Illustration / Tony Flowers

Simon Ancher Studio Visit

Visiting Simon Ancher’s studio in Launceston would be a guilty pleasure if it wasn’t so utterly beneficial to our clients, our projects, and our practice. There is nothing quite like a studio visit, being able to experience the incredible craftsmanship of Simon and also to be able to experience the tactile qualities of his workspace and work. We leave the studio drenched with the smell of freshly cut timbers, a deeper understanding of his processes, and with our brains spiralled awake, yearning for more, ready to create.
Simon’s authentic process and appetite for design make working with him a seamless experience. He shares his knowledge, invests in our projects, and complements our practice by allowing us to work with him to create truly compelling pieces.
We can’t think of a better way to spend our afternoon when passing through Launceston, a visit to the studio to reconnect and share the exciting projects we are working on, but most of all to be inspired.
Because sharing creativity and having conversations is what helps us and our work grow.

New Norfolk Rowing Club

“In order to find the set and create swing, everyone must work together to balance the boat and have exact timing. Your hands must be at exactly the right height as you slide up to the catch. Every oar has to drop into the water at the exact same time. Everyone needs to pull at equal pressure. All the blades need to come out of the water and release in unison. Any deviation disrupts the boat.” – Bruce Eckfeldt, Business Insider
A sense of place exists within the heart of the New Norfolk Rowing Club.
Our considered design reflects the techniques and discipline required through the sport of rowing. The angled handles of the trophy cabinet simulate the propulsion of oars, steering you in the direction of the memorabilia above. The grain in the cabinetry is a nod to the traditional craftsmanship of rowing vessels. Slim, vertical panels of veneer on the edge of the glass doors are strategically placed to signify the path of travel in a rowing course. The crew in the next lane are edging away, gathering momentum and working together in perfect unison.
Client / New Norfolk Rowing Club
Interior Design / Valentine interiors + design
Photography / Loic Le Guilly

Naomi provides tips to graduating students

Our Naomi giving a talk to the interior design students at Foundry about life after graduating.
Naomi discussed her work in commercial event spaces, creating temporary installations, and preparing a folio to enter the interior design industry.
Naomi is a First Class Honours graduate from the RMIT Bachelor of Interior Design and had some fabulous tips and advice for the students.
Naomi spoke with confidence, engaging the students who are aspiring to be interior designers. Her thought-provoking folio was a perfect example to show as the students were preparing their own folios for assessment.