Modern contemporary interior design

Joburg townhouse overflow with blue and white dinner services and other collectables, antique platters are displayed on the walls with her numerous paintings and ornaments jostle on shelves. Ive bought plenty over the years and I also inherited a number of pieces from my mother. My beautiful Spode dinner service was a gift from a dear friend. Every piece has a story and means something to me, she says.

When she entertains, Deborah loves to set the table with items from her collection. Shes not precious about mixing the valuables with chain-store buys. Here, Ive combined antiques with terrines from Wetherlys. The more there is, the more fabulous it looks.

Her favourite is the vase shown here. My mother bought it at a country fair in Ermelo when she was seven. It was a choice between sweets or the vase, and she just had to have it. She treasured it over the years and its now my prized possession. scheme or lifts a dark, heavy piece of furniture.

Maria likes to combine traditional blue and white china such as Willow Pattern with modern pieces featuring geometric and linear designs. I also like to mix it with items in natural colours and textures like these bone inlay frames (pictured), she says. My favourite blue and white designs are those found on Imari. In fact, acquiring blue and white Imari at auctions and antique stores is how I started collecting seriously.

Shutters are a timeless addition to a homes decor and complement any style of interior. One of their main advantages is that they offer a practical, all-season solution: protection from the suns heat and glare in summer and insulation in winter. By adjusting the louvres you can control light, air flow and privacy according to your preference, and the rigid structure means theres no rattling in the breeze, says Lisa Watts, managing director of Plantation Shutters.

Theyre also versatile and can be custom made to fit any window or door opening. If there is a unique architectural feature you want to enhance, or an opening thats awkward to dress, you cant go wrong with shutters, explains Karina Palmer, marketing director of American Shutters.

One of the disadvantages, however, is that an unobstructed view is only possible when the panels are fully open, which can take up space. Depending on the finish and the design, shutters can also work out to be a costly option.

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