Thursday, May 2, 2013

Pottery Barn and Friends Come to Town

Apparently, Australia is a great place to invest.  A stable and vibrant economy, in the quickest growing region in the world, Asia.  I am reliably informed, it is no longer a maybe, but a must for companies when considering global growth.  When Pottery Barn started shipping to Australia during the Global Financial Crisis, we Aussies bit.  We bit big time, causing the powers that be to take notice and accordingly, decide to set up shop Down Under.  All I can say is a big big thank you to the retail Gods, for choosing Sydney to throw open the doors to these amazing lifestyle stores.  

Barn Doors are a signature accent in Pottery Barn stores

And so it was, that Sydney's media glitterati (and although I was there, I consider myself more of a people watcher than media glitterati) gathered for dinner and a pre view tour  of the Williams Sonoma suite of stores,  Pottery Barn, Pottery Barn Kids, West Elm and Williams Sonoma, prior to their official opening today.

I have to say Pottery Barn was my absolute favourite and it was very hard to choose between the four.  The Yanks invented retail and they do it  like no body else on the planet, with such style and finesse.  Going into each and every one of the stores was absolute sensory overload for me.   I couldn't get enough of it.   Looking back now, I will have to go again and again to really take it all in.

Service is absolutely paramount and as evidence of that, the Pottery Barn designers will travel within an hours radius of Sydney to do a design consult in your home free of charge.  Now that is service!!!! Yes????

It was like shopping in America and I am so glad we no longer need to fly across the Pacific Ocean for 14 hours to have that experience anymore.  All you need to do is front up to the corner of Oxford Street Mall and Grosvenor Street Bondi Junction.  Park in Westfield and walk across the road and you are there in homewares heaven.

I need a mentor like this man
Our gorgeous guide Tom was one of the visual stylists.  They had worked very hard to pull it all together.  So hard in fact that although the stores are in Bondi Junction, poor Tom had not yet been to Bondi Beach, just five minutes down the hill.  He promised me at the end of the night, after several glasses of fabulous red, that he would go there, just for me, sweet and lovely man that he was. 

I particularly loved this blue and white table for its coastal vibe.

and I think those little lanterns on the table in the back of this shot were only $15 each

Customers will be treated to refreshments whilst they shop.  My question was whether it included vodka.  'No' was the answer. But this is just another touch, which makes the whole experience add up to such a pleasurable one.

I think this was where the A list Media editors were going to be shmoozed for dinner by the WS execs.  It was a beautifully laid table, complete with magnolia leaf centrepiece.  Although this was set up in in the West Elm store, those chairs are PB and apparently come in many colours.

Our dinner affair was a fabulously casual one, where we got to rub shoulders with peeps like the lovely Maggie Beer and some big name designers, who are apparently the ants pants, but whom I had never heard of.  I had better do some homework there.

 There was subtle music.

The most exquisite cheese platter I've ever encountered

And this incredible polenta and mushroom dish.  What a way to serve a crowd.  Unfortunately I was too into it to shoot dessert, but that was a stunning creamy, boozy, berry affair, the likes of which I had never tasted either.  And that to me sums up the whole experience last was different, it was cutting edge and it was fabulous.  I left wanting more, which I guess was the whole idea.  The magic worked on me and I bet it will work on you too.

Next up my take on the three other stores



Oh and if you haven't yet entered my Jamie Oliver Phillips  Home Cooker giveaway you can do so here.

Today I am linked up here


  1. I heard about Pottery Barn coming to Sydney, my daughter told me last night. She was so excited about it. I will be showing her this post. Thank you Carolyn.



    1. My school bestie hadn't heard of PB before. When I was telling her about it she thought I'd lost the plot over a pottery shop.

  2. I am, I'm just very very jealous!

    Lucky thing!!! Can't wait for next posts!

    Have I said I am very jealous!!!

    Best wishes,
    Natasha in Oz

  3. Wish I lived closer- think I need a shopping trip to Sydney! maybe when my bank balance recovers from my last shopping trip north!

  4. Oh this sounds like the most incredible evening ever. Good for you, so nice to see what all they treated you to. Can't wait for more. Hugs, Marty

  5. that must have been exciting! thanks for the tour, i love the table where you had dinner.
    i look forward to going very soon.

  6. Oh, I am so envious of your invite. Spectacular photo's and yes, you made me want to visit.
    I am actually a little scared to get the free consult as I want to buy the entire shop already!!!
    Becc @ Take Charge Now

  7. Looks amazing.I cant wait to read more and I am planning a trip there soon-love dee x

  8. I cannot wait to get in there to look around - thanks for all the detailed pictures

  9. Wow it looked magical at night.

  10. What a fabulous pre-opening gala! I love Pottery Barn and have several items in my house from there, most of which were ordered via their catalog. However, nothing compares to shopping in the store with the eye-catching arrangements, especially during the Christmas holiday season.

    This is my first time visiting your blog (via French Country Cottage), and I enjoy your writing style! I am becoming your latest follower and invite you to visit my blog.


  11. Just beautiful! I am looking forward to visiting Pottery Barn. I am also looking forward to the day my kids stop destroying my precious items.

  12. Looks beautiful! I look forward to visiting Pottery Barn. I also look forward to my kids getting to the age where they stop destroying my precious stuff!

  13. What a wonderful evening! I am so looking forward to making the trip across town to check it out. x

  14. Pottery Barn is my favorite homeware store, how lucky you got a preview! Can't wait to visit it next week!

  15. It's a great store and I actually just ordered a few things for the beach house from them yesterday. What a fun night!!

  16. Your Pottery Barn looks nicer than the one that is nearest to me in South Coast Plaza.
    Loved the visit. Thanks for bringing it up close and personal.

  17. Oh, I love that glas drinks thinggy... please god can they change the name though... it's too 70's...

  18. The polenta looks delicious and is actually really easy to make. Thanks for sharing! Glad you had so much fun.

  19. Thanks so much for the details. Just seeing the photos makes me excited to purchase one of those curtains and wine glasses. I am planning a total makeover around the house and thank God I was able to view your blog site. The products are absolutely amazing and one of a kind. I wonder if they could entertain online purchases.

  20. So sorry to hear about Pottery Barn's opening in your town! All of your discretionary income will now go to them :) Seriously, it's about the best store out there for home decor. I love them!
    Heather from Friendship, Life and Style (Scottsdale, AZ)

  21. Oh, one of my favorite places to get ideas and then shop their outlet. So awesome that you have one down under now.

  22. I love those lanterns! Pottery Barn is one of my favorite stores! I am new from southern charm! I would love for you to check out my blog and follow me back! Have a great day,Nicole


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