Friday, March 26, 2010

Cocktail Friday...Cats Ouzo-Tini!...and Jericho, here we come!

Happy Friday....Cats 'Ouzo'Tini'
Readers, we find our cocktail Friday is becoming quite a hit....which is great, because it gives us an excuse to research extensively a new sexy little concoction every week.  Keeping to the Greek theme, we have discovered our new 'fave'.....Cath in particular just loves this we have named it Cats 'Ouzo-Tini'.....meeeeeeyowwwww!

Ingredients - serves two.


  1. In a martini shaker, combine all ingredients with 1/2 cup of ice.
  2. Shake and strain into 2 chilled martini glasses.
  3. Serve in a sugar rimmed martini glass and Garnish with a slice of lime.

Jericho Bound!.....Today we farewelled one of our oldest tables on the floor...a table worthy of royalty.  It was a 3 man job just to move the table top!  It is now on its way to an outback station 600 kilometres west of Emerald....a little place called 'Jericho'.  We love that our table has gone to a good home....a grand family who appreciate its beauty and history.....

 Thanks as always to our wonderful delivery team of Phil and Michael.  It took them 2 hours just to wrap the table for transportation.  They have one very long trip ahead of them, but we like to know that our furniture arrives safely.....and these guys are wonderful not only to us, but the customers too!  Check out the pic on the left....the 'Rose' between the two thorns!  Thanks again guys....Jen, Cathie and Colette....

And last.....but not our own little Greek God....'Ouzo'...the latest addition to the Charcoal Family.....until next week!....Antio sas! (goodbye) from the Charcoal Girls!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Kali Mera!...our Greek Experience...Haloumi, Kardamyli and more....


The celebrated travel writer Sir Patrick Leigh Fermor has led an eventful life...a traveler and during world War II, a highly distinguised solder...he walked across Europe at the age of nineteen and saw himself portrayed on screen in 1957 by Dirk Bogarde, who enacted his part in the abduction of a Nazi general in occupied Crete.  And so, it seems only natural, that Leigh Fermor would have desired a peaceful respite.  In the early 1960's he moved to what was then a largely untouched area of Greece...seduced by a painterly vista of scrubby green islands and glittering aquamarine sea.  His wife Joan, then designed this magnificent rambling peasant home.
An unpretentious hodgepodge of furniture old and new is arranged on gray stone floors.

Proscuitto Wrapped Haloumi.....Nostimos!
OK....we DID promise it...and here it is..our fave Greek haloumi recipe!  AND..its just so...soooo..simple.  Recently my partner Pete and I were finalists in the My Kitchen Rules TV show on channel 7 here in Australia.  This dish clinched our finalist took just minutes to prepare, but boy is it delicious and impressive.
Firstly, cut a slice of Haloumi from the block...around 3cms in width.  Wrap it with some quality proscuitto and then secure with a toothpick.  You can pop a basi leaf in between the haloumi and proscuitto...or mint works too!  We prefer to cook ours on the bbq....just a few minutes either side, until the proscuitto and haloumi start browning slightly.  Plate it up with a squeeze of lemon....a drizzle of quality olive oil (my brother produces his own from an olive grove in Sth Australia...but thats for another blog heee hee....) and a toss of cracked the greeks would say....Nostimos!! (delicious!)...  We would just love to hear of your success with this dish...until Friday....Cocktail Friday!....yours in design, creativity and style....Colette, Cathie and Jen!

Charcoal Interiors - Style in the City: Charcoal Interiors - Style in the City: Romance, Relaxation and Serenity...In Blue and White!/pages/Brisbane-Australia/Charcoal-Interiors/187824771885?ref=ts

Charcoal Interiors - Style in the City: Romance, Relaxation and Serenity...In Blue and White

Charcoal Interiors - Style in the City: Romance, Relaxation and Serenity...In Blue and White

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Romance, Relaxation and Serenity...In Blue and White

We had a design client in the showroom today, who has just renovated and is fortunate to enough to have a blank canvas on which to start creating a beautiful space of her own.  She loved the ideas Cathie and Colette put to her, and we have decided to share with you this week what inspires us about the amazing combination of blue and white.  Personally when I think of blue and white, it immediately transports me to the Greek Island of Santorini, where I spent a dream week with my boyfriend, and unbeknownst to me...soon to be 'fiancee'.  We stayed in the gorgeous Blue Angel Villa, where the interior design was just an extension of the outside surroundings...serene, peaceful and soooo very relaxing. Pictured today is the bedroom and living/dining area of our villa, and a little holiday snap of Pete and I outside one of the many stunning churches on the island.  It was such an indulgent stay, with the mediterranean at our doorstep, incredible eateries and local produce that was sent fresh to our doorstep every day.  It was simply a dream come true. 


Tomorrow, we look at some absolutely beautiful examples of combinations of blue and white....and we dont mean grannies china plates either!....Plus!  Our favourite haloumi recipe..perfect for the bbq.  And stay tuned for our Friday Cocktail recipe....  Until then!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Our Window Display

This week has been a busy one with lots of interesting pieces arriving.  Cathie and Colette got stuck into creating an outstanding window display...and by the way...check out those amazing Moroccan doors at the back!....girl power moved those gems
We are loving the old chinese chest filled with beautiful treasures....our gorgeous bali planters, moroccan water urn and hand carved goddess bust.
 An eclectic mix of superb fabrics, furniture styles and divine accessories for the home.  Our Interior Design Team is here to take the headache out of your home design dilemmas...with over 35 years experience, the Team creates sumptuous, yet livable spaces for our clients.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Maiocchi Fashion Shoot

On the weekend, we were fortunate enough to host a fashion shoot for popular Brisbane Fashion Label Maiocchi.  The fashion looked beautiful, shot against the backdrop of our warehouse showroom.  Thank you Deanne Maiocchi and the gorgeous models too...and big snaps to Mark Turner Photography!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

There's Just Something About Paris.....

Colette  & Cathie at the Arc de Triomphe
Ever had one of those moments where you just had to pinch yourself to make sure that you weren't dreaming?  When I asked the girls today, to divulge their 'pinch yourself moment'....they both came up with a one word answer....'Paris'.  Aahhh...the city of love, romance and magic.

The girls at the Village Square in Montmarte
I love this pic of Colette and Cathie taken in the village square of Montmarte.  Colette says that as she walked the cobblestone streets she was in awe at the thought of those who had walked them before her.... 

Relaxing in a cafe in Paris after an exhausting day....someone's gotta do it...
For Colette and Cathie, the visit to Paris was a complete immersion in the history, beauty and style of this gorgeous city.  The experience for these two designers was immeasurable, and has inspired them to many beautiful creative projects since.....

Breaking News...Archibald Prize!

We are fortunate to work with Dean Reilly, a wonderful artist, here at Charcoal Interiors who has just been named a finalist in this years prestigious Archibald Prize.  The Archibald Prize is regarded as the most important portraiture prize in Australia. It was first awarded in 1921 after a bequest from J.F Archibald, the editor of 'The Bulletin' who died in 1919.

Deans work, 'I Wake Up With Today' is an ultra-modern portrait of 'Today Show' weather man and all round good guy Steve Jacobs.

Stay tuned...winner is announced on Wednesday 26th of March.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

If a table could talk.....??

Our dining table is the nucleus of the family home. We make a point of eating together as a family every night without the television. The family gather around and its a great way to catch up on the days news, not to mention the various dinner parties we have hosted, christmas gatherings...the sharing of good food and wine..the discussion site of triumphs, tragedies, landmark decisions the homework (or feigning of...!).

A table that is able to last through the years has aesthetic appeal and balance plus the sturdiness and quality of structure to be able to withstand decades of family festivities and memories.

Today we are sharing with you one of our latest completed projects for a large Brisbane family. They absolutely fell in love with this dining table (pictured), which worked in perfectly with the French Classic Interior Design space that we created for them.

At Charcoal Interiors we feel that the dining table is probably one of the most important pieces of furniture that you can buy. We are proud to stock superbly hand crafted tables, designed to last a lifetime of memories.........

Friday, March 12, 2010

Happy Friday! Our Martini Recipe for you......

Photo courtesy wiki commons - Ken30684


Martinis!...our best yet recipe....and trust me...we have perfected this one...'hic'
Warning: This drink has magical powers...if consumed in high doses it will turn all grey skies into blue!....and also ugly guys into cute ones.....which could bring some form of regret in the morning...we did warn you...

2 and half ounces of gin
Half and ounce of dry vermouth
2 green olives
Orange or Angostura Bitters...just a dash

Pour the ingredients into a mixing glass filled with ice cubes.....stir....for 30 seconds.
Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and if desired add a dash of the orange or Angostura Bitters, then garnish with olives.....Enjoy and Happy Weekend! From the Charcoal girls....Colette, Cathie and Jen!

Grey Expectations


I asked the girls today, to give their interpretation of the word....grey....cos lets face it...its just sooo 'grey'? for something a bit more inspirational, we like: Oyster....Elephant Grey....Smoky...Pearly....Silvery.....Cloudy....Ashen....Every Cloud Has a Silver Lining...Pewter....Dusky.....Battleship.....Slate...Granite. The girls have been furiously working on a design project this week...and its shaping up to be something marvellous! We all got inspired by moody tones. Moody tones on walls can enhance and lift a room. Beautiful mood lighting can just set the tone perfectly. Accent a favourite chair in a deep 'elephant grey' velvet fabric to give an elegant, classic look with edge. Now, that's anything BUT dull!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Colette Venardos

Our Senior Designer Colette Venardos was interviewed recently for her opinion on home renovation. Colette has over 35 years experience in the trade and is one of Brisbanes most respected designers.