People and Places

10 creative Kiwi women who are smashing it in the home and interior world

Article by Homes to Love

To celebrate International Women’s Day, we’ve rounded up a few of our favourite New Zealand females who are currently crushing it in the home and interior sphere right now

Holly Tong and Runa Kuru Kristjónsdóttir, Holly + Runa

What happens when a talented Gisborne florist meets an artistic Icelandic photographer? Pure magic, that’s what.

The duo have been friends for years, but it wasn’t until wedding season 2017 when the idea of a collaboration between the two came about. Holly was in the thick of preparing bouquets for brides and Runa captured some photos of the flowers before they were delivered. Needless to say the result was beautiful and their partnership grew from there.

Their moody, floral photographs have quickly captured the love and attention of many and have even take the pair to Venice, where they were finalists for the prestigious Arte Laguna Prize.

Beck Wadworth, An Organised Life

Before starting her stationery line An Organised Life, Beck Wadworth studied graphic design in Auckland, then did a stint in fashion, followed by five years across e-commerce, social media, marketing, graphic design and PR. She started An Organised Life when she was just 24, as a hobby, now five years on, it’s a full-time business.

She told Fashion Quarterly, “I really had to push myself out of my comfort zone to learn all areas of my business including sales, production, dispatch, accounting and business in general.” What motivates her? Her love of organising, and her customers.

Charlotte Burt, The Goods We Found

Op-shopper extraordinaire Charlotte Burt is both the brains behind online vintage store The Goods We Found and the designer of an ethical clothing range for kids. It’s hard to believe it was only a year ago that Charlotte Burt started a little Instagram account called The Goods We Found – it feels like we’ve been following her feed of stylish vintage finds forever.

Underlying everything Charlotte does is a drive to make the world a better place, whether by helping her followers find beautiful, pre-loved items that don’t break the bank, or partnering with Ibu-Ibu (aka The Bali Street Mums Project) to gift an item of clothing to a Balinese child for each one sold. 

Victoria Bibby and Dael Brady, Bibby and Brady

Hawke’s Bay-based interior designers Vic Bibby and Dael Brady’s golden touch is scattered all throughout Homes to Love, where most of their clients homes have featured. They have gone from careers in graphic design and event management to running a successful interior design firm that transforms homes and businesses; Bibby + Brady.

Their style is colourful, full of life and unique to each project. “We’re loving the drama and luxe details coming through in furniture and accessories,” they told Your Home & Garden, “also, fringing on the bottom of velvet ottomans, contrasting trims on cushions, beautiful rich colours and patterned wallpapers.”

Antonia de Vere, Mark Antonia 

Antonia de Vere is the quirky, colourful half of floristry and design business Mark Antonia. Antonia started out in fashion, then moved to jewellery, then to floral design and aromatherapy; “this is where I found I could channel all these artistic avenues into something which suited me,” she told Your Home & Garden.

She works with dried flowers, but doesn’t categorise herself as a florist. “I see myself more as a maker/artist,” she says. On her own style, she simply describes as ‘chameleon-like’. “I dress and style my home via my emotions. While art and architecture are very serious, my personality is not and that comes out in the way I dress and how I love. I like to have fun with my appearance.”

Kate Rogan and Eva Nash, Rogan Nash Architects

Architects Kate Rogan and Eva Nash are New Zealand architecture’s female force. They formed their own practice in 2012 and in the five years since, they’ve won several awards and developed a thriving business, all whilst having kids and balancing work and family time.

Their design is modern, striking and clean. Eva told Architecture Now, “we are very honest with each other. We listen intently to what the client has to say and we often hear different things. One might be listening to the husband and one to the wife. We meld that with what we think and come up with a strong design because not only is it our client’s point of view that we’ve tried to interpret, but also, our own – we are very strong-minded women.”

Sam Michelle, artist

Browse the homes featured on Homes to Love and you’ll begin to see Sam’s beautiful oil paintings everywhere. They’re obviously popular, and we can see why.

After moving from Wellington to Melbourne at the age of 17, Sam Michelle embarked on a 13-year career in banking. She continued her beloved painting practice in her downtime until five years ago, when she took the plunge and went full time. Unsurprisingly, the beautiful paintings Sam creates, of seasonal floral arrangements styled with her unique collection of ceramics and textiles, have been a hit.

Compiled by: Bea Taylor

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