Mini Grandi Artist

I am thrilled to introduce you to New Zealand based artist Sophie Melville of Mini Grandi Artist. Sophie, a painter, graphic designer and mother with a background in fine art and graphic design seeks inspiration from the small and precious moments of wonder that surround her children.

Her prints are all painted, scratched and hand drawn textures, digitally produced in simplistic forms.  Sophie,a lover of beautiful texture combined with sophisticated yet simplistic shapes especially targets the Scandinavian + monochrome enthusiasts.

Mini Grandi Artist is an ever growing avenue for Sophie to explore various artistic avenues that she has under utilised until now. These gorgeous images have been photographed by the lovely Nicola of Concrete and Honey who has styled each of the Mini Grandi Artist prints to absolute perfection showcasing the fact that Sophies prints can be used for both kids and adults spaces. 

Amy x

Living room swoon

Quick post today. It is my 30th birthday party this weekend so I am madly trying to get things done for that. Spotted this wicked living room on the fantastic blog that is My Unfinished Home. (Well worth a read)

What I love is the edginess and the masculine vibe that this room has got going on. I am also a big fan of this mixed sofas. I would love a mixed set of sofas in my own home one day.

Here I have put together a couple of moodboards to achieve a similar look. Clockwise from top left, Arohanui Print by Hannah Jensen from Endemic World. Master floor light from ECC. Looped Nodi Staples from Nodi Handmade Rugs. Boston Sofa in Black leather from Freedom Furniture and the Tilly Sofa from Freedom Furniture.

And above are some wicked cushions from the always cool Goods by Aroha.

Happy Tuesday. Hump day tomorrow. Hella flippen luja!
Amy x

Gift Guide for that hard to buy for Man in your life

Some people despise it, I love it. Christmas shopping for the husband. I usually give him a selection of smaller gifts rather than one big one. I love putting my thinking cap on and buying him prezzies that he would never buy for himself. Here I have put together a small gift guide for that hard to buy for husband... And yes I have a couple of these things wrapped and ready to be popped under the tree.
From left to right. SodaStream Maker in black, for stockist visit SodaStream NZ. The Ride from Paper Plane Store, a fantastic book for that speed demon hubby. The Horse Watch in black from Paper Plane Store. Male Huia printed Wire Tee from Aroha + Friends.
From left to right. Trivoli Model One blue tooth from Paper Plane Store. Wall Chart Map of New Zealand from Father Rabbit. Boards by Blank, Duffle day bag in army green from Father Rabbit. Digging Spade from Father Rabbit.
Happy Christmas shopping.
Amy x


Tis the season right? I love giving gifts. Love putting thought into buying for someone. Not so fond of the mad Christmas town rush though. I tend to stay clear of that. In fact I have nearly completed my Christmas shopping. All online. Makes it easy when you have fabulous online stores such as XO Home to shop at. We were lucky enough to have a chat with owner Sarah about behind the scenes at XO Home.

Tell us a little about XO Home.

The idea of owning my own business had been working away in my head for many years and after getting married in March I decided it was time to take the plunge!  The hour long commute each way from East Auckland to Ponsonby was wearing thin and the time felt right.

Having worked in the homeware industry for many years and in various positions from buyers assistant, working in home staging to retail and office manager I have gained a lot of knowledge and experience.
I wanted to provide something different to what was currently on the NZ market and made the decision to sell only products that are from independent suppliers.  Most of the business I work with only consist of themselves or a small team of 5 - 10 people.  Being a small business myself I wanted to support other small businesses.

Where does your inspiration come from?
My inspiration comes from magazines, blogs, Pinterest and the world around me. I am an avid magazine reader, my husband despairs at the pile of magazines around our house!  I regularly read Inside Out, Fete Press, Frankie, Your Home and Garden and Homestyle.

My current favorite blogs are Fancy! NZ Design Blog, The Design Chaser, Milo and Mitzy, Studio Home and The Design Files.

XO Home is always evolving and the constant hunt for new and interesting suppliers has lead to a slightly unhealthy addiction to Instagram. There are so many wonderful new businesses popping up on there.  I also love trawling Etsy and easily get lost, wondering an hour later what I was originally looking for!  Pinterest is also a great time waster, ahem business tool!    
I hear ya Sarah. Thanks so much for your time. How cool would the above products be as Christmas gifts? Im lusting after those salt and pepper dishes. Very rad indeed! Pop over here and get that Christmas shopping under way would ya?
Amy x

Cafe Love - Lloyds Kitchen

You should all know by now that I just adore cafes. Everything about them. The culture, the food, the people, the design, the décor- EVERYTHING. My dream one day is to travel around our beautiful country visiting the best of the best that we have on offer. Actually I dream of owning a café one day but that one, I shall just keep as a dream.

I think I just dream of owning a café purely so that I can decorate it. Im thinking huge big industrial lights, a cool bench top, baskets of bread, subway tiles, tolix chairs! You name it.

I am always admiring café pictures. Recently this café, Lloyds Kitchen, situated in Devon, England caught my eye. Designed by Woodford Architecture and Interior Design, the idea was to create, modern and atmospheric interior that doubled as a café and a restaurant at night. I think they have certainly achieved that.

On that note, I best hit the hay as I have sick kids, but please do drop me a line if you know of a cool café or eatery that I should check out.
Amy x

Shopkeeper Interview - Brooke of Saben

I have been a huge fan of New Zealands Saben by Roanna Jacobsen for a very long time now. My favourite bag in my wardrobe is none other than Saben. I follow them closely online. They look like a damn fun team of humans that's for sure. I am stoked that Brooke, Sabens brand manager (or resident trouble maker as some would say) agreed to come on board and answer some questions for us here at Milo and Mitzy.

Tell us the story behind Saben, how you started working with Saben?
Can you believe we are celebrating our 15th year?  Roanne started the business after living in New York, the start was very organic. The brand is dedicated to (and the namesake) of her late grandmother Sarah Saben, a sophisticated, elegant and inspirational women.
I came on board 4 years ago fresh out of a Fashion Design degree. Saben had an office role open which I threw myself at. I didn’t even own a handbag at the time. I remember going to my interview holding my diary and phone - Now I have a beautiful and varied collection that I am so proud of! Each piece is different and celebrates the varied design techniques and handbag silhouettes.
Since my first day I have thrived on every challenge and now I travel with Roanne to Bali twice a year and assist her with design and production. Back in the office I manage the brand, sales and marketing. It is a small team – so we all work really closely together to get things done.

Who or what inspires you?

Inspiration for Saben comes from everywhere. When in Bali, we are literally, waking, eating, sleeping, dreaming for the collection. Inspiration comes from the street and from international designers. I look a lot to street style photographers for trending shapes and how people are wearing there handbags (of that moment)
Personally I am inspired by surrealist artist Salvador Dali, the late Alexander McQueen, on an everyday scale I look to total babe (and winning at life) Lindy Klim as well as the amazing people I am blessed to be surrounded by.

Favourite blogs/books/magazines/recipes?
Local blogs that I am loving:

I think the major home/interior sway comes from the fact I am trying to redecorate my place…. While saving for my own home.
I also love the Lonely Girls project (I am obsessed with Lonely Lingerie)
International blog that I am loving: J. Crew have a great blog, as does Kate Spade. And how can you go past Humans of New York?
Shesssh – I actually had no idea, I read this many?!!! I could keep listing…
Recipies: I have just mastered the BEST(!!!!!!) pulled pork recipe from Sarah Wilson AND… Nadia Lim is always good for tasty (and relatively easy) meals, my favourite is the shitake beef stir fry
I could share with you nanas afghan recipie, but there is no point – no one can make them like Nana and Poppa. What is it about that, ‘made with love’. I could devour the entire batch in one go!!
If we were to visit your home town what would you suggest that we do to fill the day in? We want shopping/cafes/creative bits and bobs.
I would start with a power salad and soy latte from Shore Road café, then drive out to Piha find the waterfall, grab a pie from the local store (chicken mango and kumara) battle with the waves, climb lion rock then have some handcut chips and a milkshake on my way back to town. If you have any energy left go for dinner at Coco’s Cantina on K’rd and then mooch on down to the Wine Cellar and see who is playing OR dinner and drinks at Bedfords Soda at Ponsonby Central then more drinks and dancing along Ponsonby Road.
Shopping: Ponsonby Road: Miss Crabb and Sass and Bide.  Herne Bay: Tessuti (Dear Jervois has just opened there – great eat treats)Takapuna: Lana Boutique is great spot, right by The Commons and Mexico – another perfect partrner for drinks and eats. You also cant go past the Auckland night markets (different suburb each night) and La Cigele markets in Parnell on the weekend.
Whats next for you? Any secret projects you would like to tell us about?
We are in the throws of 15th birthday celebrations, (Have you seen the limited edition Miller birthday bag?)And I am planning the next production trip to sample SS15 in Bali. We do have a secret project in the pipeline. Two words: jewellery collaboration!
Personally: I have just come home from a holiday, so it is back to stashing pennies. (Booorrrrring!)
You are too funny Brooke! Thank you so much for joining us. I look forward to seeing whats next for the team at Saben.
Amy x

All images  via Saben Facebook Page with thanks.

The Clever: Design Store

New Zealanders have some serious talent. Honestly, there are some clever people out there. No need to head off shore. We have got it going on right here. 

One place that I visit regularly to check out the local talent and a few carefully selected products from aboard is our very own The Clever: Design Store. Full to the brim with leading design styles. With names such as Anna Church, Tim Webber, David Trubridge, Genevieve Packer, Penney + Bennett, Boskke, Shooting Sparrow and so so much more you would be foolish not to visit.  The Clever is your one stop market shop when it comes to the latest in what is trending.

Something for everyone, art lovers, kids, guys, gals, fashionistas, you name it. Would make Christmas shopping incredibly easy right? Pop over and see for yourself. 

All products selected by me from The Clever. And Yes, I am going to leave this page open for my husband to see because YES, it is my birthday soon!
Amy x

Logan and Mason - Timeless and Classic

Recently, I was lucky to be given the opportunity, again, to style some gorgeous bedding from Logan and Mason. This time...