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Tara Dennis Paisley Collection - Teacup

Tara Dennis on her New Homewares Collection (that you can win!)

I have a crush on Tara Dennis. There, I said it!

I’m going to be that person at Reed Gift Fair this year that her people ask to back away from the stage lol. She has that sort of effect on craft lovers like me. In fact, she tells me that she does get approached on the street by people quite often, asking her for interior design hints and tips.

“I’m flattered and humbled when people say they love my ideas and the show,” Tara explains. “It’s such a gift to be part of Better Homes & Gardens, it’s a really friendly show and a wonderful vehicle to inspire people”.

Of course, there are two exciting things going down for Tara right now: her ambassadorship with Reed Gift Fair and her brand new Paisley collection, which you can win further down.

Reed Gift Fair 

When I ask Tara about her role with Reed and what we can expect from this year’s fair, she’s cautious not to give too much away.

“During the fair you’ll find me on the trade floor meeting exhibitors and visitors as well as conducting practical stage presentations on trends and concepts. Without giving away too much, there will be a particular focus on Scandi Design. My demonstrations will be presented as mini workshops with tons of practical advice”.

Tara is also working with the Reed team to make this year’s event better than ever before. She describes the team as “wonderful…with such a can-do attitude”, so I cannot wait to see what’s in store for us attendees!

Reed Gift Fair kicks off in Brissy this year: 4-6 July, then Melbourne and Sydney in August and September. Find out more by clicking here.

Tara Dennis Paisley Collection

Teacup from the Tara Dennis Paisley Collection Tara Dennis Paisley Collection - Kitchenware Tara Dennis Paisley Collection - Teacups

I covered Tara’s Waterdrop collection on the blog last year and am delighted to see that this new range has taken things in a different direction. Though Tara tells me that this collection started out in much the same way as the last one; subliminally.

“Early on I usually know the ‘feel’ I want, rather than the ‘what’. I do spend quite a lot of time gathering ideas, some in my head, some are more tactile elements which I’ll group and photograph. I spend time sketching with textas and coloured pencils until I establish a direction and once I’m happy I’ll start painting”.

From there, Tara spends a lot of time honing in on the exact look and feel that she’s after, working with the team from Albi to produce the range you see here. It’s wonderfully soft and feminine, giving a fresh take on a traditional style.

“Paisley is a classic design, one I have always loved, but it can be seen as a little conservative,” Tara tells me. “I wanted to bend the rules a little and present it in my own fun way with pretty colours and unexpected patterns. I think the result has a sweet appeal for young and old”.

You can find out more about the Paisley collection by clicking here.

Tara Dennis Paisley Collection - Cake Stand

5 Fun Facts with Tara Dennis

Her one design must-have:
My paint box – all of my ideas start there”.

How she describes her style:
“Casual, relaxed, coastal. I like to live with soft colours and natural accents”.

Her best project to date:
My husband and I build and renovate houses together and our latest build is where we’re currently living. It’s on the Hawkesbury River just north of Sydney and is coming together nicely”.

Worst trend she’s ever executed at home:
You name it, I’ve done it. In 1982, I did a wall of bronze, bevelled edge mirror tiles along with a hand painted a rainforest mural on the adjoining wall. Centre of attention was my single waterbed which was upholstered in beige velvet, so attractive! I loved it”.

Her fave designers:
For big design – Patricia Urquiola, Kelly Wearstler, Missoni and Ralph Lauren. I also love Thomas O’Brien, John Derian, Jonathon Adler, Nate Berkus and Sarah Richardson”.

WIN a Paisley Collection Cake Stand!

To go in the draw to win the cake stand you see in this post:

– Simply drop a comment below telling me what you love about the Paisley Collection

Open to Aus residents only. Competition closes 11.59pm, Weds June 3


Chris Carroll

Outside of writing this blog, Chris is an interior designer, presenter and author. He’s also spent time on TV, on Channel 10’s Changing Rooms, as well presenting segments on Channel 7’s Sunrise and The Morning Show. If you’d like to book a design consult with Chris, you can find out more here

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16 Responses

  1. Love the modern take on vintage elegance. The gold trim really creates the link to the vintage style while the paisley pattern brings a fun to a classic colour palette; It’s sure to make a beautiful focal point for any high tea or table setting.

  2. All of the colours and paisley patterns are so girlie, delicate and feminine. In fact it’s just so darn PRETTY!!!!!!!

  3. I love the story of the creative process behind the collection. Paisley is more than just a pretty colour palette. It is a combination of classic pattern, form and function. THAT mug is definitely the expression of all three. Love it Tara.

  4. Tara’s collection is just so delicate and feminine. It is perfect for dainty afternoon teas with friends that are reminiscent of afternoons with grandma!

  5. The “wonderful team with the can-do attitude” here at Reed Gift Fairs love working with Tara too!

    Her presentations at the Retail Hub at Reed Gift Fairs Melbourne August (1 -5 August) promise to be very exciting! Practical, achievable inspiration 🙂

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I’m interior designer Chris Carroll, and at TLC Interiors we’re all about helping you create an amazing home without breaking the bank. It’s affordable designer style at its best, and we make the whole process easy and fun for clients & readers alike!

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