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Refurbished & ready: Seatons

In a world of flat pack furniture, investing in pieces which will last generations can seem daunting. But with quality refurbishes like those by Seaton’s French Polishing & Furniture Repair in Christchurch, heirlooms can be restored and given a new lease on life – and new real estate in your home.



Restoring high calibre furniture made of beautiful woods, by revered designers and which can save owners thousands instead of buying new is what Mike Fullen has been doing for more than 30 years.

“It’s all about craftmanship,” he says. “We can bring something back to life and restore it to its original quality, or alter it to suit your modern needs.”

Recent examples include a buffet sideboard resized and its exquisite walnut brought back to life; as well as an antique dining table and six chairs – the restoration saving the owners $10,000 on what it would cost to buy the same set new.

He began returning furniture to its original glory – or reinventing it – at the business in 1987, and bought it himself in 1991.

The refurbishment gurus moved from an original Addington site to St Asaph Street last year, where it now resides next to McDonald & Hartshorne expert upholsterers.

Together, the businesses can turn weathered furniture into modern masterpieces.

Visit Seaton’s at 430 St Asaph Street, or phone 027 558 1477 to discuss your furniture repair requirements.

Recently refurbished



Cheers to that!


Ferm Living Ripple Glass


As interior styles evolve beyond the Scandi-simplicity which dominated for the last decade, there is a resurgence of vintage-inspired decor, and Japanese wabi-sabi aesthetics.


Abigail Ahern Karli Glass

These trends extend into the kitchen cupboards, where glassware is getting a nostalgic revamp and ceramic mugs look straight from a kiln in Okayama.


Pillow Talk Malibu Tumbler


Abigail Ahern Asola Espresso Cup in Cream

Here are Metropol’s picks of inspiring drinkware to quench your thirst for impeccable homeware.


Ferm Living Sekki Cup


Citta Rib Tumbler in Olive



On trend

The fast-moving field of interior design is always awash with new ideas and inspiration to pluck from for your own homely spaces. And for all the irregularities of recent times – this fact remains unchanged, so Metropol has scoured the mood boards of the world’s most style-minded to discover what’s trending in interior design for 2021.




A collective obsession with houseplants looks set to keep skyrocketing as fans of biophilic design continue to embrace bringing the natural environment indoors. Being in nature is scientifically-proven to boost our mental health, and when combined with the visual appeal of greenery and flowers – it’s an interior win-win.

If you’ve noticed architectural and artistic vases around the place, it’s probably because these furnishings are among the most covetable furnishings of modern aesthetics. Not just perfect for holding fresh and dried (also trending) blooms, these receptacles are sculptural artworks on their own.

A hit on the home circuit last year, appeal is not waning for furniture that makes you feel as if you should be in a bungalow overlooking the Hollywood Hills. Argued by some as timeless, there is little doubt these low slung lines, natural woods and retro vibes are everywhere right now. And don’t pair too badly with a houseplant (or seven) either.


Reinventing spaces: Douglas Furniture

In the world of business, it’s an irrefutable fact that longevity is everything. Longevity knows what it’s doing; longevity earns trust and confidence. Douglas Furniture have a proud and long history here in Christchurch – nearly 65 years in fact.



For a little under seven decades, this business has been producing commercial joinery, and more recently has expanded into domestic design and joinery.

The timing couldn’t be better, for Cantabrians are now recognising there’s much potential to be mined from their living spaces and are making the most of the heat in the property market to transform their homes into their castles.

Dated kitchens, unworkable wardrobes and laundries, and cramped or non-existent storage areas are being revisited and recreated into fresh, modern and exciting spaces.

Douglas Furniture recognises that home improvements aren’t just about the house.

The garage, too long relegated as mere shelter for the car, the kids’ bikes and a few tools, also gets reconfigured to become the ultimate utility area with the kind of
storage space you’ve spent half your life dreaming of.

There’s no better way to kickstart 2021 than by making your home into the functional, blissful space you always knew it could be. Douglas Furniture can’t wait to help you achieve that.

Visit the showroom at 80 Hayton Road, Wigram, or check out the website below.


Lawn in order

A luscious lawn is the pride of many gardeners; an ongoing challenge of which the results signify habitual care, attention, and expertise. If you’re a green thumb who thrives off having a thriving lawn, Metropol has compiled some lesser-known tips to help you on your quest.



Short lawns are popular for an appealing, manicured appearance. But, the shorter your grass the more susceptible those green stalks become to disease and pests, as well as to dryness and dead patches. Instead, consider letting things go a little (to between 5 and 7cm) and only trimming by a third. This should leave you with a soft, carpet-like look – perfect those late summer picnics and games
of BYC.

Your hairdresser sharpens their scissors regularly for a reason: Blunt blades make messy cuts. When it is grass being cut, a blunt cut can also open up the chance
for disease to set in. For push mowers,
you can purchase drill attachments
which sharpen blades (so you don’t have to remove them from the mower).
Have a ride on? Talk to your dealer or
refer to the manual for sharpening instructions.

Freshly mowed grass not only smells delicious, but is entirely reusable. Before you chuck it in your green bin, why not consider…nothing? Leaving grass clipping where they land as mulch feeds the lawn and helps retain moisture. Or, pop it in the compost (turning often) and use it as mulch for other plants.


Reconnecting with home: Dream Doors

The great thing about Cantabrians is our ability to turn a minus into a plus – be it earthquakes or pandemics, we know what to do; we roll up our sleeves and keep ourselves busy with home improvement projects.



Adrian Kay of Dream Doors Christchurch can attest to that, as the demand for kitchen and laundry renovations, replacements and new build kitchens is on the rise.

“As overseas travel is curtailed, people are reconnecting with their homes like they never have before; they want their home space to feel like it’s the best place to be,” says Adrian.

Dream Doors ensures the process of creating that transformation is as seamless as possible, from the first consultation to establish client requirements – be it a few cosmetic touches, a major overhaul or a completely new build – right through to the installation, which Adrian and his team strive to keep to the minimum amount of disruption to family life.

With a wide range of quality Aotearoa product choices in benchtops, doors and cabinetry, Dream Doors not only upholds the ethos of locally made, but connects us that much more closely to home as we face these interesting times ahead.


Coastal cool: Jessop Architects

Rising out of the farmland and up from the idyllic beach, this sophisticated holiday home overlooking Waipu Cove, north of Auckland was masterminded by Jessop Architects and incorporates the warmth and uniqueness of natural timber throughout.



Architect Darren Jessop says the project arose after he and his team renovated the owner’s Auckland villa. The resulting modern coastal holiday home on the generous elevated site fulfils the brief for a simple, low-maintenance getaway which capitalises on sweeping views and maximises indoor-outdoor entertaining areas.

The L-shaped form of the house points east out to the Hen and Chicken Islands along the bedroom wing, and north up the coast to Marsden Point and Whangarei Heads along the living wing.

Extensive 3.2m joinery can be opened or closed to cater for wind direction, without compromising on panoramic views.

The team delivered a dream holiday home in a restrained material palette of concrete, cedar and aluminium: both unpretentious and durable against the marine environment.

The stunning home separates living and sleeping to take advantage of the sweeping coastal views, and free-flowing outdoor entertainment spaces are protected from onshore and prevailing winds.

Multiple options for opening and closing the indoor spaces, together with a covered outdoor room, complete with kitchen and fireplace off the north side of the living wing, create possibilities for all weather conditions.

Inside, the home reflects the simplicity of the exterior, with materials enhancing the indoor-outdoor flow.

Cedar sarking on the ceilings carries through uninterrupted to the soffits, and is matched with wide-planked oak on the floors.


The Western Red Cedar interior sarking and exterior soffits were sourced and machined by JSC Timber.

“We were lucky enough to be involved, and for us it’s wonderful to deliver high quality products and see it used like this,” says JSC Timber’s Johnny Dobbyn.

“The chosen species of timbers used will help ensure longevity or sustainability and look of the build with minimal maintenance.”

Likewise, the ethically sourced Iroko hardwood decking is non-leeching and stable, making it ideal for withstanding the seaside environment, says Johnny.


Designing wellbeing

Creating homes which are sanctuaries from the uncertainties of current life is top of mind for many, and the driving force behind a movement named, “wellbeing design”. Which is, as the name suggests, curating spaces to promote wellbeing. Metropol looks at ways you can incorporate some well-designed wellbeing in your own spaces.



Home habitats should be a full sensory experience. And while attention has long focused on colour and shape (sight), delicious aromatic candles and diffusers (scent) with atmospheric music playing (sound) – incorporating touch into lived spaces is trending. Textured wall papers, plush upholstery and raw woods are being celebrated for invoking the comfort of touch.

Make the most of the healing powers of vitamin D by boosting the natural light in your home, especially ahead of winter. If you have a remodel or new build on the cards, consider installing additional windows or a skylight to maximise those health-boosting rays. Or, if such a dramatic change is not on the horizon, use a clever mirror system to reflect the natural light and make the sunlight, quite literally, go further.

The non-negotiable working from home enforced by lockdown resulted in many employers more than happy for staff to continue working away from the office. With less distractions, many are seeing a rise in productivity and wellbeing. However, it’s important to ensure work and home zones are kept separate – if you can’t close a door to keep the home office hidden, use plants and furniture to zone it off.

We touch on biophilic design on page 49 as an interior trend to watch in 2021. This act of incorporating elements of the outdoors, in, is so popular in part because of the positive effect nature has on our wellbeing. Plants help calm and relax us, as well as reduce anxiety and increase focus – so incorporating stunning greenery into interior design is a wellbeing no-brainer.


Immaculately authentic: DJ Hewitt

A modern barn-style build with a village lifestyle was the dream for a Scotsman and his Kiwi family. By
enlisting DJ Hewitt Builders to do it once and do it right, their complete wishlist was granted.


Immaculately built to look  authentically imperfect, the board and batten exterior plays with different widths, under a sizeable single-pitch roof. Designer Darren
O’Neil’s concept of a 310sqm barn on the 726sqm Tai Tapu section perfectly soaks in views and sunlight.

The grand roof space created a full-height second story, where one lucky son is in his element in the 86sqm studio/bedroom and ensuite, which would someday make a perfect space for a home business.

Choosing open entrances, the master bedroom’s walk-through ‘robe lies behind a duck-egg blue floating wall.

Similarly, the kitchen opens to the scullery with display shelves, and adjoining laundry, which can be closed off.

Down the hallway, you are guided to the powder room by the illumination of the back-lit mirror, which leads to the bathroom and separate toilet.

Detailed inlays on draws and cupboards in the kitchen and living area adds a classic vibe to neutral tones, including the sunny window-seat nook.

The base provides extra storage, as does other clever cavity spaces throughout the house.

An ode to the bonnie isles, is the whisky lounge. A dark navy feature wall, and board and batten backdrop for the gas fire, sets the scene for a wee dram or two.

The clients were glad they engaged interior consultant Tara Hewitt for her keen eye for additional details and stylish suggestions in every room of the home.

Of note, was Daryl Hewitt’s weekly critical path explaining how the project was tracking, as was peace of mind during lockdown with extra security on the site – which was always left immaculate. Everything was made easy for what the owners say is, “our happy  place.”

Phone: (03) 384 7470


Portable outdoor comforts

A day at the beach, picnic in the garden or weekend at the bach can be made ever more enjoyable with some simple comforts. Here are Metropol’s picks of portable outdoor furniture to help you chase the last of the summer days.

Read, socialise and sunbathe on a cosy bean bag. Citta Bean Bag in Moss


Serve up picturesque cuisine and libations on an outdoor ottoman. OZ Design Furniture Water Hyacinth Ottoman


A snuggly rug for picnics, and when the temperature drops. Tolly McRae Merino Wool Throw


An umbrella to shield those sunny rays. Mocka Classic Black Beach Umbrella