Rove Concepts

The water tower house

Take a disused water tower on an old manor house's estate, a local council who had no need for it, a landscape designer who had a vision and an architect who made it happen. 6 storeys of bachelor pad now rises from the grounds surrounded by woodlands and encroaching suburbia. To complete the unlikely dream a meandering brook runs by the foot of the tower. A switcheroo on the Rapuntzel fairytale, the landscape architect now sits in his tower perhaps waiting for his princess? The Water Tower at Brasschaat, just outside Antwerp by Crepain Binst Architecture.

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Book review

There is a new book coming out August 28th called The First Apartment Book that I received a rcopy of recently, and I wanted to share it with you all because it's fantastic, especially for folks who are about to move into their first apartment, or for those living in a small space. The author of the book, Kyle Schuneman (whom we featured back here) provides small-budget ideas for big-style decor projects. The book features 10 homes across the U.S. where Kyle cleverly worked with residents to translate their visions into real life. Kyle shows you how can seamlessly blend the things you love into a sophisticated design scheme, and some of his projects are really brilliant I have to say. To note: there are about thirty do-it-yourself projects included in the book that allow you to customize your space, especially when you refuse to let rental regulations or limited budgets stand in the way of your dream pad.Before I get into some of these projects, I was excited to find out the stunning photos in this book are the work of one of our favourite photographers here on DTI - Joe Schmelzer. We have featured Joe's work several times in the past, including here, here and here. (This means 2 cutie patooties were responsible for creating this book - I couldn't help but add that). You can pre-order the book on Amazon here. So how about a little sneak peek, including a few of my favourite DIY ideas? And after the jump, there is some news from Joe as well.

Above are 2 of my favourite projects included in the book - dip-dye curtains (which I have been wanting to try for years) and the faded-paint technique. COOL!!

Love these yarn frames (everybody has frames that are less than cute that could use a makeover) and the chalkboard kitchen with an oilcloth-covered island.

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Designers and their blogs ... and their pop up shops

You will remember Steve and Helena Trupp from this post featuring their Sydney apartment. Things have moved on in the last few years. Steve (runner up on Australia's Top Design) and Helena have moved to Melbourne, decorated a whole new home, grown their online business Empirical Style (their cage lights are to die for) and ... "ta-da" ... opened a pop up shop within The Industrial Revolution, 1114 High St, Armadale. Their retro, "can never have too much, too bright, really quirky, life's too short for beige" aesthetic is a favourite of many DTI readers and you can follow their design journey and inspirations on the Empirical Style blog.

When Helena emailed me to torture me with the news let me know of the pop up retail space I was salivating. (I'm 2000 km away. What I wouldn't give to stand transfixed by all those vintage maps and science posters in the flesh. I'd love the wall map of Queensland but my husband just quipped that he'd have the map of Tasmania .... bad boy!) I begged Helena for shots of the shop and their new home as the secondbest thing to being there. You know I could easily move into the Trupp's spare room and stay forever but failing that maybe I could live in the shop ... or at least follow their adventures on their blog.

More shots of the Trupp home and their pop up shop after the jump.Thanks Helena!

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Inga Powilleit

Happy Friday everyone! Isn't the first week back from holidays the LONGEST EVER?! I need something to get me through the day, so I have a little treat to share in the form of gorgeous eye candy at the hands of Dutch photographer Inga Powilleit. Her photos are absolutely stunning, and I especially love her portraits in fabulous spaces. She brings a room to life, and I want to hang out with these folks and enjoy a coffee, some conversation and their decor. P.S. Inga has had the honour of photographing the home of super stylist Emily Chalmers (pics 4 & 5). 

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House within a house

The Lawns, Highgate Village, London. Owned by leading British designers John and Frances Sorrell, designed by Eldridge Smerin, link via WSJ and Savills via Raina. Cool new house wrapping around existing historical house for a not so cool £8 million. Think I need to see more before I commit my hard earned cash.Unless you're paying.