My Trip To India



Trip 1

Travelling companions
Mitzie & Aaron

Trip 2
Thar Desert

Travelling companions
Sally Campbell

My India
My wonderful, beautiful, intelligent mother, Dee, died in 2008 in a desert camp in Rajasthan. This is my own personal pilgrimage to the Thar Desert to the place where her spirit rests and I look forward to celebrating her life.

I carry her longitude & latitude with me for the time when I will have it as a tattoo: N 26˚40’35” E 72˚19’26

Manvar desert camp is made up of a scattering of beautiful fabric Raj tents. Set in a semi-circle, the tents each have a verandah sided in bamboo blinds & campaign-style chairs.

Mum's Textiles - The Society inc. by Sibella Court

Origin & history of textile names
I have always been interested in the origins of names – visiting craft museums in Delhi, I came across some extracts from a Levi-Strauss book explaining some Indian ones related textiles. (Surely jodhpurs stem from Jodhpur!) So many textiles and motifs we use today, like cashmere, paisley, calico and muslin, originated in India, and that was part of the reason I wanted to go there. Not only are the natural woven textiles so familiar, but so too (even if you don’t know all the names) are woodblock prints, beading, metallic threading & weaving, kantha stitching, airiness of khadi, phulkari and aribharat embroidery and so much more. Once you become fascinated & enticed by this, you will end up with a large collection of textiles, which I will show you what to do with.

16 Nails- The Society inc. by Sibella Court

Hardware range & trades
I work closely with the US store Anthropologie and they asked me to design some decorative hardware pieces for them. As an avid longtime collector of vintage hardware, this was a super-exciting project. I met with fabulous craftspeople in Delhi to make this happen. The collection includes many of my fave things – ephemera clips, curious label pulls for your entomological collections, hand-forged nails, rope sconces, wire cage lamps that clamp, all forms of rope drawer pulls, heavy-duty wire coathangers, cane-handled scissors and, of course, a canvas & leather toolbag with everything a person needs to style their home.

Sally Campbell
Every year when I was living in NYC, I would fly home for a it of summery Christmas spirit & family catch-up. I met Sally Campbell at her bi-annual textile sale at Shapiro Gallery in Woollahra on one of my jaunts. We instantly fell for one another when I wrapped a tablecloth around myself and declared it my new scarf! Sally is fabulous and is usually swathed head to toe in layers of indigos & reds. She designs beautiful quilts & cushions and works directly with natural dyers, weavers, embroiders & woodblock printers in Delhi, Rajastan & Calcutta.

I jumped at the chance to gallivant & explore Jaipur with her as my unofficial guide & companion.


Driving the short distance to the hotel, I’m already eagle eyed at the decorated and painted trucks – shouldn’t all trucks look like this to brighten up the most dismal scape?


As we arrived at the factory, we were showered with rose petal and presented with chrysanthemum leis.

Modes of transport
Steam train
Camel (&/or cart)
Rickshaw: auto, cycle & human in Calcutta
Tractor & trucks
Hot air balloon
1950s Ambassador with curtains
Donkeys with carts
Vintage cars

All my senses are piqued in India, and the colour is just incredible! Tune in next week as I detail my colour palette.




The Stylist Alphabet: V is for…

V is for…


It appears that I just cannot get enough of skewiff handmade, often hand-thrown plates, bowls, cups and other vessels in natural colours. On return from my travels, my luggage always contains at least one new vessel. It is more often than not made by a local artist, in an indigenous material: wood, bone, clay, stone, wire, vine, glass, shell. They’re for everyday use.


Vintage hardware
I’ve had the pleasure of going through the floors of foundry & decorative hardware P.E. Guerin est. 1857: drawers spilling over with moulds, casts, one-offs, discontinued drawer pulls and tapware. Many people would not take a second look at forgotten or superseded hardware, but for me it holds as much wonder as a treasure chest. I have used inspiration from my own collection of aging wood and tarnished metal to create my functional hardware range. The expertise of old tradesmen – forgers and inkers and smiths – has been lost as handmade became machine made and mass-produced. I want to bring back the time when the pieces you bought felt as if someone had whittled them or sharpened them to imperfection with their own hands, The goods they made were so lovely – hardware that should be displayed, not hidden. If you can’t afford to renovate, or don’t want to, these most simple of things will transform a space.


The Stylist Alphabet:
A is for…      B is for…
C is for…      D is for…
E is for…      F is for…
G is for…     H is for…
I is for…      J is for…
K is for…     L is for…
M is for…    N is for…
O is for…     P is for…
Q is for…     R is for…
S is for…      T is for…
U is for…


Happy New Year


We welcome you all to 2016 & look forward to an amazing year of new adventures & carpet rides.

The Society inc warehouse has opened its charred barn doors once again from Monday-Saturday 10am-4pm.

We invite you to visit us at warehouse 3.02, 75 Mary Street, St Peters SYDNEY or visit us online www.shop.thesocietyinc.com.au

Our fabulous blogs start again as of Monday 22nd January with some Gypsy inspiration of travel & interiors from India. We reminisce from previous trips as we research our upcoming one in February to gather content for The Stylist’s Guide to the Globe

If you have any favourite haunts, secret gardens, faded palaces, tinkers&smiths or other extraordinary places & people to visit please email us on hello@thesocietyinc.com.au


Goodbye for Now


The Society Inc. is closed from the 21st of December to the 11th of January. Thank you all for a great year and we look forward to foraging & creating magic with you all in 2016. From us all, Happy Holidays!



Styling Your Christmas – The Added Extras

Styling- Sibella Court Photography- Chris CourtEtcetera0018

End-of-year events call for a little bit of magic. However you like to tackle these events is entirely personal – some like to go all out, and others prefer a more relaxed approach. I think, no matter where you stand, you can still stay true to your own style to create a unique celebration. Why not decorate your home in keeping with your own 10-colour palette? Here, my ‘Paperwhites’ palette holds a hint of sparkle without shouting about it.


Natural tones are an easy touch point if you prefer a softer festive scheme. Here, a star made from driftwood echoes the familiar forms of the season, with bamboo-handled cutlery adding another warm tone. Serene blues and soft fabrics add to this setting’s relaxed feel.

Styling- Sibella Court Photography- Chris CourtEtcetera0017

Tissue paper, a glimmer of silver and delicate glass ornaments – styling perfection!


Mix & match glasses and styles. I love this setting because it celebrates colour & fun. Choose pieces for their interesting shapes, handmade elements and because you love them – this will make your arrangement totally your own!


When out shopping, pick up the one-off anniversary plate but please don’t display it. Add it to your pile of tableware and use it at your next dinner party. Embrace the kitsch and use it for the everyday.


A mix of paper & fabrics make a generous layered table covering. I adore the well-loved patina of this cutlery, as well as the mismatched quality. Precious pieces have their time to shine at end-of-year events, so enjoy the thrill of the occasion.


Simplicity can be the loudest of statements. Here, it’s about timber-handled cutlery, linen napkins and an elegant plate. The zinc place setting is the perfect finishing touch. Feel free to apply whatever degree of decoration to your feel necessary – sometimes, less is more.


Other times, more is more! If you’ve found yourself a bit disorganised in the lead up to Christmas, pull together whatever fun frivolities you have on hand to set the scene for a party. I’m not one to feel restricted by “rules” of styling, and I love to think out of the box. Here, a vintage chandelier stands tall as a centrepiece that mirrors the silhouette of a Christmas tree. Fabric and paper offer a vibrant table runner, that cares not for the stereotypical festive palette. Have fun!


However you choose to decorate or celebrate, I hope it is fabulous & marvelous! I’m taking a break over the holiday season, but don’t go too far – I’ll be back in 2016. The shop will be open until late December for all your present shopping.


From the Library: TRUCK Nest


This book is an intimate, raw & honest insight into the beautiful world of TRUCK Furniture with tales from both Tokuhiko Kise and Hiromi Karatsu, the couple behind the designs. In quiet nostalgia, this book traces the nine-year journey of Tokuhiko and Hiromi, as they set out to create a place of their own. Requesting to live “surrounded by trees”, in a nest all their own – where they could live and work comfortably with their large family of one daughter, five dogs and eight cats.

The book chronicles the planning & construction of their house, store, workshop and café called Bird by celebrity chef Kentaro. It is quirky, intimate and sublimely portrays the couple’s sensibilities and unique way of life. Written by the couple themselves and lavishly illustrated with their own photographs, this is a book & a journey we hope you’ll want to keep in your home and return to many times.

You can buy your copy of TRUCK Nest here. We’re sure it will be cherished.