This issue marks the 1st anniversary of the At Home in Bali column. What an interesting year it has been! We’ve given ideas on refreshing short-lease rentals and speedy home makeovers on a budget. We’ve taken a look at wall treatments, table dressings, casual seating and creating gallery walls. And we’ve explored decluttering, making design decisions with integrity, and bringing wellbeing into the home. Gratitude to the architects, resort owners and renovation addicts who have generously shared their tips, tricks and contacts over the year — what gifts their insights have been!
December is the gifting month – a tradition that has spread across the world, no longer defined by faith. So we thought we’d close our first year by asking the year’s wonderful contributors to At Home in Bali what’s on their Christmas wish list.
All things round
Our inaugural column in November 2018 was an interview with architect/interior designer Alejandra Cisneros, author of Seen Unseen: Embracing Natural Design in Bali, who shared her “little design survival kit to make your beautiful life on Bali even more beautiful.” Who better to ask first what she’d like to find under the tree. “Santa came early while I was finishing up the Tiny Tall House and brought a bunch of goodies that I’m just crazy about,” Alej enthuses. “Water hyacinth is the new rage! Santa brought me not one but two round water hyacinth area rugs – I’m into all things round lately, so Santa got it right. Santa brought me two super-comfortable water hyacinth pouffes as well. A word of caution though, these are really meant for indoors.”
Cushions and throws
Decorative items appear high up on Kano Sari creator Karen’s wish list – specifically cushions from Cloth on Jalan Raya Andong. “Their beautiful hand-woven, hand-printed and hand-embellished cushions and throws are an instant pick-me-up for bedroom or lounge,” says Karen, who shared her tips on shopping for homewares and lifestyle treasures in October. Karen likes to coordinate pieces to create a look that is fresh and individual, both for her home and for her boutique hotel.
On the subject of instant pick-me-ups for the home, the divine new interiors boutique Tao Collection on Jalan Raya Sanggingan, hand-stitched from old saris in stunning colour combinations would make welcome gifts. Just imagine the impact on a room when these Indian jewels are draped over a sofa or bed…. or wrapped around your shoulders on a chilly evening. They would make wonderful wall hangings too, complemented by an elaborately carved wood ikat hanger.
Not surprisingly, fabric also features on the wish list of décor obsessive and renovation addict, Janet Molloy. Back in February, she shared tips on lifting lack-lustre places into luscious homes, drawing on her experience of designing homes, boutiques and restaurants island-wide. Remember the chandelier gracing the upstairs section of Café Havana? On a recent trip to Lucca in Italy she fell in love with a Murano glass floral chandelier in the walled city’s famed antiques market. She’s now in pursuit of of a plush furnishing fabric from Alta Moda to complement her Venetian treasure. “My heart is beating at the thought of seeing them together.” Seems like a match made in heaven!
From chandeliers to cleaning
Just imagine the task of cleaning those delicate glass orbs! It’s a practical issue that might appeal to Birgit, the architect sound healer behind the fabulous Balila Beach Resort in Amed. In June she shared her thoughts on creating a home with integrity; six months later that same preoccupation with principled living is evident in her own Christmas list. “I try now to get more and more zero waste products such as make-up remover or face washing sponge. So I’ll be happy to find in my Christmas stocking a natural zero waste soap block from IbuBumi.” There are lots of gift ideas on their website, from bamboo straws and beeswax bunkus bags to shampoo and body bars … and Shampooch dog shampoo bars. Birgit admits to yearning for “a nice big fridge – Electrolux, with two doors and a big freezer” …. somewhere to store her plentiful garden produce.
Gifts for the garden
What would long-term Bali Advertiser contributor Ibu Cat, whose stealth home makeover put her in the At Home spotlight in last December’s column, like to find wrapped up under the festive tree? It will come as no surprise to fans of her Greenspeak column that her thoughts immediately turned to the outdoors. “Christmas always comes after a long dry season, so gardens are important…taking out the rotting tomato plants and putting in greens. I am always happy to receive gardening gloves, plant markers and good quality hand tools.” This passionate gardener is still using secateurs brought to Bali with her from Singapore 25 years ago. Much as she’d love to rely only on locally produced tools, they don’t have the strength and lasting power of her favourite, Lee Valley in Canada. Mine is not the only garden to benefit from Cat’s green-fingered generosity….Heliconia, Antigonon, Markisa among them. So I hope Santa is listening.
Gifts that help an entire community
“What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store? What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more.” Dr Seuss, through the character of the Grinch, reminds us that Christmas is a time of giving and sharing with those around us – not just those at the centre of our lives, or the periphery, but people we have never met, those who are not so fortunate. Let the final words be from Daniel Elber, Bali’s ‘walking angel’ whose tireless efforts and social enterprise initiatives continue to create extraordinary change for Bali’s poorest communities. “My wishes for Christmas is that a growing number of Bali Advertiser readers are purchasing for Christmas presents the wonderful products from Muntigunung, be they hammocks, cashews, rosella items or any other products. By doing so, you not only create joy and happiness for the gift recipients, but also for the women producing each item.” As Daniel said in the March article on Muntigunung hammocks, with every purchase “you are creating work for someone who previously may have never worked, never had water, was never registered, or had to beg for a living.” Isn’t that a compelling reason for give Muntigunung gifts?
You can buy Muntigunung products at the Muntigunung shop in Sanur (Jl Danau Poso 57), or at Above the Clouds, Nyuh Kuning. Or get in direct contact with Ngurah and order through firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you would like to share some interesting home design products, services and ideas, please get in touch.
Copyright © 2019 Ibu Jenny
By Ibu Jenny
Copyright © 2019 At Home in Bali
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