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Avian inspiration


In a nation where the majority of the endemic wildlife is made up of birds, it’s no surprise that our feathered friends are so popular here.

In particular, we have a great reverence and pride for the avian species which can only be found in New Zealand, such as the kiwi, tui, piwakawaka, kea, kereru, weka, pukeko and bellbird. Many New Zealand artists are also fans of this native fauna, so it’s easy to find a wide range of appealing artworks that you can use to decorate your home – and even inspire an entire colour scheme.

An avian inspired teen room

An avian inspired mood board

An avian inspired mood board

An avian inspired teen room

Moodboard: Background in Resene Ravine with Resene A4 drawdown paint swatches in (from right to left) Resene Travertine, Resene Middle Earth, Resene Half Chill Out, Resene Half Melting Moment, Resene Rock Spray and Resene Blackout, bird ornaments in Resene Rock Spray and Resene Half Melting Moment, fluted vase in Resene Quarter Drought, lidded dish in Resene Half Chill Out, book and vase in Resene Middle Earth and plant pot in Resene Black White. Throw from Nood and linen pillowcase from Citta.

We were drawn to this Tieke artwork by renowned artist Glenn Jones, who is famous for his bold illustrations of Kiwiana, and used it to inspire accent colours for an airy teen bedroom. Using the free online Resene Colour Palette Generator, we uploaded a digital image of the artwork to help determine the closest Resene paint colour matches to the hues Glenn used and found Resene Blackout, Resene Rock Spray and Resene Half Melting Moment to be our ideal accents. After combing through op shops and popular home décor stores, we came across plenty of cute bird-related (and birdhouse-related) ornaments and accessories. We painted these with Resene testpots in our statement hues to decorate the space so that it would not only tie in with our theme but also the colours in our artwork.

But we also wanted the bedroom to have strong ties to the forests that our birds call home so we choose a selection of earthy Resene greens to build out the base of the space. Resene Middle Earth, Resene Half Chill Out, Resene Ravine and Resene Travertine not only blend beautifully with one another, these slightly dusted colours tie in with the slightly greyed tones of the hero hues, balance the bolder ones and provide a range of depths that could be layered in the space to create contrast and interest.

Teen room inspired by NZ birds

Teen bedroom - inspired by NZ birds and forest

Paint: Wall in Resene Travertine. Floor in Resene Ravine. Bedside table in Resene Blackout. Hanging ‘birdhouses’ in Resene Middle Earth with edges in Resene Ravine. Plant pot in Resene Rock Spray. Bird ornaments in Resene Rock Spray and Resene Half Melting Moment. Picture frame in Resene Blackout. Lidded Dish in Resene Half Chill Out. Fluted bud vase in Resene Quarter Drought. House clock roof in Resene Blackout. Books in Resene Middle Earth and Resene Ravine. Tall skinny vase in Resene Half Melting Moment. Dresser drawers in Resene Middle Earth with frame in Resene Ravine. Branch hanging rack in Resene Middle Earth.

To give the bedroom a sense of lofty levity, we opted to use lighter Resene Travertine for the walls and ceiling and slightly deeper Resene Ravine for the floor. To tie our upcycled furniture together into a cohesive collection, including our chest of drawers, ‘birdhouse’ shelves, bedside table and coat rack, we relied on the more saturated Resene Middle Earth. But instead of painting them in a single solid colour, we used Resene Ravine to highlight the edges of the boxier items, adding interest and helping to connect these pieces to the floor colour.

Another cute teen-friendly idea to solidify the theme is to create a unique coatrack from a tree branch painted in Resene Middle Earth to coordinate with the colour scheme. You could either attach your branch to a base to that it stands vertically like a typical coat rack. Or, you can use picture hanging wire or rope to create a horizontal hanging rack that’s suspended from the ceiling. A third option is to use shorter but solid pieces of branches and create peg-style coat hooks that protrude from the wall by drilling holes into the cut side of the branch and attaching them to the wall double-ended screws and wall anchors.

Whichever coat rack design you choose, this project works best with either a freshly cut branch from a tree that has smooth, firmly attached bark or fully dried driftwood. Simply cut it to your desired length, trim or saw off any unwanted connecting branches, new growth and leaves, then give the surface a quick wash to remove any dirt, moss or loose debris. Once your branch has dried, paint it with two coats of Resene Lustacryl semi-gloss waterborne enamel or Resene Enamacryl gloss waterborne enamel tinted to your colour of choice, allowing the first coat of paint to dry fully before applying the second. These durable paints stand up better to the contact from hanger hooks, so that your painted finish will continue to look great for years to come.

Accessories: Tieke Art Print by Glenn Jones. Sove Linen Duvet Covet in Pepper from Citta. Sove Linen Pillowcase Pair in Pepper from Citta. Laclie Floor Rug in Natural (200cm x 300cm) from Freedom Furniture. Aurelia Cushion in Paprika from Freedom Furniture. Velvet Cushion in Vintage Brown from Contempa. Mellow Weave Throw in Terracotta from Nood. Babette Chair in Copper Velvet from Nood. Replica Eames Bird in Old Gold from Nood. Nod Desk Lamp in Sierra from Nood. House clock from Nood (with roof painted Resene Blackout). Flocked bird cushion from H&M Home. Black linen blouse from Assembly Label. Orange suede strappy heeled sandals from Gorman.

Paint project

Not enough closet space for your teen’s clothing collection? Make a suspended coat rack that hangs down from the ceiling – no additional walls or doors required!

In keeping with the theme of the room, we decided to use a tree branch for our hanging bar. This project works best with either a freshly cut branch from a tree that has smooth, firmly attached bark or fully dried driftwood. Simply cut it to your desired length, trim or saw off any unwanted connecting branches, new growth and leaves, then give the surface a quick wash to remove any dirt, moss or loose debris.

Once your branch has dried, paint it with two coats of Resene Lustacryl semi-gloss waterborne enamel or Resene Enamacryl gloss waterborne enamel tinted to your colour of choice, allowing the first coat of paint to dry fully before applying the second. We chose to paint our branch in Resene Middle Earth to match the rest of our furniture.

Measure the length of your tree branch then, depending on the substrate of your ceiling, use the right bit to drill two holes approximately 5-10cm less than the length of your branch apart from one another. For best results, place these holes at least 30 cm away from the wall so that there will be enough space for the hangers. Be sure to use the correct anchors for your ceiling type and for the anticipated weight of what will be hung on the rack before screwing an eye hook into each hole. Use two equal lengths of thick picture hanging wire, attaching one end of each to the eye hook and loop the other end around each side of the branch. Twist the ends of each wire around itself to secure it or use crimping sleeves and pliers for a firmer hold.

Project by Laura Lynn Johnston. Photography by Bryce Carleton. 2022


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