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Blueprint For Living - Separate stories

ABC (Australia)

Blueprint For Living is a weekly rummage through the essential cultural ingredients — design, food, travel, gardens, fashion — for a good life. Separate stories for bite size listening.


Melbourne, VIC


Blueprint For Living is a weekly rummage through the essential cultural ingredients — design, food, travel, gardens, fashion — for a good life. Separate stories for bite size listening.




Colin Bisset’s Iconic Designs: The Rotary Clothes Hoist

For many of us, the rotary clothes hoist is as Australian as a kookaburra, even given a starring role in the Sydney Olympics closing ceremony, and so it is natural to assume that it's an Australian invention. In fact, it's difficult to pinpoint exactly who created it. Blueprint's resident architecture and design commentator Colin Bisset explores its many variations.


Bundian Way

We take a hike through Bundian Way, an ancient Aboriginal track that runs between Mt Kosciuszko and the NSW town of Eden. Stretching 365 kilometres, it has been used by Aboriginal people for thousands of years. Chair of Eden Local Aboriginal Land Council BJ Cruse shares stories from the ancient pathway that runs from the sea to the mountains and was almost lost to history.


A winter walk with Tim Entwisle

A change in season means it's time to explore the array of colours the cooler months have to offer. Jonathan joins Tim Entwisle, director of the Royal Botanic Gardens of Victoria, as they take a moment for reflection and appreciate the different perspectives the rainy garden has to offer. Even the sun-loving succulents thrive in the wetter months. Plus, some bird watching across the lake.


Blak Hand Collective

If you were paying close attention to Vivid Sydney just now you might have caught mention of something called the Blak Hand Collective. A forming idea that connects indigenous architects, interior designers, landscape designers and beyond. Award-winning architect and a man of Wailwan and Kamilaroi country Jefa Greenaway is one of the people behind the idea along with Wiradjuri architect Craig Kerslake. It's a wonderful and rich set of possibilities for connecting ideas of design, identity,...


Colin Bisset's Design Icons: The Great Bed of Ware

The Great Bed of Ware was intended to wow. And who among us doesn’t feel excited by the prospect of sleeping in any four-poster bed, even one that is half the width? Blueprint's resident design expert Colin Bisset explores their influence as symbols of romance and intimacy, majesty, and class.


Annie Smithers' Kitchen Rudimental

One chef, one cook, one home kitchen. This week on Kitchen Rudimental, Annie gives Jonathan a puff pastry masterclass. Layers of dough and butter – butter and dough - form a gorgeous silky texture – if you can get it just right! It’s a beautiful process that’s perfect for a Saturday afternoon.


Reception this way: Motels – a sentimental journey

Regular listeners might remember a conversation Jonathan had with Blueprint friend Annie Smithers on the controversial subject of his preference for cold toast. For him, it all goes back to the motels of the mid-sixties and little wax paper envelopes of white toast delivered through the breakfast hatch. If you're an Australian of a certain age or perhaps even a mid-century obsessed hipster, you'll love the country's motels. Author, broadcaster, and architecture nerd Tim Ross sure does. He's...


A History of British Dandies

For the dandy, looking swell is a way of life! He prides himself on wit and dress, but their influence reaches beyond fashion and intellect, as Dominic Janes discovers in his latest book British Dandies: Engendering Scandal and Fashioning a Nation. It tells a scandalous story of fashionable men and the role they played in the cultural and political life of Britain.


Colin Bisset Iconic Designs: Charlotte Perriand

Mies van der Rohe and Le Corbusier are considered titans of the modern movement but in this week's Iconic Designs, Colin Bisset examines the contribution that women made to some of their most famous designs. It’s only been recently acknowledged that Lilly Reich was behind much of Mies’s furniture, and Charlotte Perriand behind all of Le Corbusier’s.


Paul Bangay's Garden Rudimental: Natives and Exotics

In this week's Garden Rudimental, Paul and Jonathan stroll through Stonefields, one of Victoria's most beautiful country gardens where exotics and native plants merge to create a definitive style of Australian garden..


The Barossa Cookery Book Project

Cookbooks aren't just a bunch of recipes. They often contain insights into the political and cultural contexts of their time. Never was there a better example of this than Australia's oldest continuous community cookbook, The Barossa Cookery Book. Initially released in 1917 as a war fundraiser it's now in its 33rd edition. Sheralee Menz and Marieka Ashmore, also known as Those Barossa Girls, have begun a companion venture with The Barossa Cookery Book Project.


Bill Bensley's World of Escapism

Hotel designer Bill Bensley lives by the motto, if it’s worth doing, it’s worth overdoing. The California-born designer has studios in Bangkok and Bali, and his latest book More Escapism: Hotels, Resorts and Gardens features some of the region’s most extravagant resorts. His inspiration comes from treasures around the globe, including a 1930s Vietnamese bamboo hat, covered in pink polka dots, that provided the design spark for his Hotel de la Coupole in Vietnam. It tells a story of how the...


Kitchen Rudimental: The perfect potato cake (or scallop)

One chef, one cook, one home kitchen. There's nothing that quite beats the decadent crunch and taste of a freshly deep-fried potato cake (or scallop).


The new National Archives of Australia

How do you design a building to house a nation's cultural and social history? The new home of the Australian National Archives has been purpose built for this extremely demanding role. With enough shelving to stretch from Canberra to Cooma the purpose-built facility is environmentally controlled, environmentally friendly and energy-efficient. Jonathan Green takes a stroll through its corridors with Sean Debenham, Assistant Director Storage and Lending to check out what’s in there.


Copying nature to design living spaces

Nature-based design is becoming imperative as we search for ways to reduce our carbon emissions. Claire Beale, Executive Manager at LCI Melbourne, takes us through the Three Bs of organic design; biomorphic, biomimetic and biophilic.


Colin Bisset's Iconic Design: The Public Toilet

Toilet, loo, powder room, the toot; no matter what you call it you use it everyday. In this week's Iconic Designs Colin Bisset casts his eye over the design evolution of the public toilet.


If these walls could talk. Genealogy for your home

Ever traced your family history? Now you can do the same with your home. Dr Christine Whybrew of Heritage NZ has started giving How to Research Your House seminars so folks can uncover the history of their house.


Anna Wintour: The biography

In the fashion industry and the corporate world, you’d be hard-pressed to find as influential a figure as Anna Wintour.Journalist Amy Odell discusses her biography of the fashion industry's most powerful influencer.


Designers solving the world's intractable problems

Via their Instagram page Design.Emergency Alice Rawsthorn and Paola Antonelli have brought designers together to tackle some of the worlds intractable problems.


Colin Bisset's Iconic Designs: Tower House

Imagine the architect of your new house insisting that you build it in a style that was fashionable six hundred years ago. That's precisely what was happening in nineteenth-century Britain in what was called the Battle of the Styles. It's hard to imagine that anyone who walked past Tower House in London's Holland Park ever thought it was entirely normal, even in the 1870s when it was built. It's the work of William Burges, an architect whose output was small but significant, and it...