A Stylist's Parkside Oasis
Images by Nic Gossage
Stylists by nature are born collectors, bowerbirds of beauty. Food & still life stylist, Imogene Roache is no exception. Her home, hidden away in the diminutive suburb of Centennial Park, Sydney serves as a gallery for cherished objects, as well as telling a tale of firsts; a first investment and the place her & husband Hugh became first-time parents to son, Forbes. At IN BED we've had the pleasure of working with Imogene on many occasions, seeing her artistry bring photoshoots to life - with a perfect alchemy of layers, depth, movement and finesse. Visiting her richly textured space also invited the opportunity to capture a first-look at our IN BED children's collection, arriving later this month. We spoke with Imogene about the ever-evolving nature of her career, becoming a mother, and what the future holds - each topic woven with the same wisdom: go with the flow.
“We purchased our apartment during the 2021 lockdown period. By chance, we came across a few places in the small pocket of Centennial Park, and loved the feel of the area. It's a tiny space but it felt like a good first home investment, and we saw a lot of potential in it. I fell pregnant shortly after moving in, so renovation plans got put on hold for a while, and the office quickly shifted to a baby room.”
“It took a while for me to settle into the space, being pregnant and sick for most of our first year here I spent a lot of time in bed, and didn't really give the rest of our home the love it needed, but since having Forbes in the Winter of 22, I can appreciate how happy the space makes me feel. The sun pours in throughout the whole day, which creates a warmth we can bask in until the late afternoon. We’re also up quite high which gives a sense of calmness from the busy streets below. On lazy days when we’re listening to music, burning incense & playing with Forbes in the sun, I’m so grateful for our little oasis in the city.”
The sun pours in throughout the whole day, which creates a warmth we can bask in until the late afternoon.
“They say nothing can prepare you for parenthood, and these are honestly the truest words ever told. It's beyond hard, unforgiving and exhausting, but the love you develop as a parent, instantaneously, is immeasurable. At the beginning it's a whole bunch of fumbling your way through each day with no idea what you’re doing, but as with everything that evolves, you find your flow and things even out.”
“Adjusting mentally has been the hardest part, so I’ve learnt even more so now, the importance of taking time out for myself when I can. Our days now are more ‘go with the flow’ and ‘see how we feel’ rather than too many plans and tight schedules. These first few years are all about Forbes growing & experiencing things for the first time, so letting go of regimented routines, taking each day as it comes and not taking on too much has all been key.”
“We were gifted a Shimekazari from our Japanese winemaker friends when we got married a few years ago. Made from straw, it's a symbol of luck for closeness & connection, and really takes me back to a moment in time. Some ceramic and woven pieces mum bought back for me from a trip to Alice Springs- I love how imperfect and wobbly they are. Two very dear friends bought Forbes a hanging timber sun sculpture before our Leo baby was born. It's by Walk in the Park, who’s work I have adored for years. We also bought a Mabel Juli artwork last year- to own one of her pieces in our home that we can admire everyday feels very special.”
Two very dear friends bought Forbes a hanging timber sun sculpture before our Leo baby was born. It's by Walk in the Park, who’s work I have adored for years.
“We painted the bedroom a deep, earthy green before we even moved into the apartment. Living in rentals all our lives I felt restricted by stark white walls that could never be touched, so I needed to do something dramatic. We painted every inch of the room, including the ceiling, so you feel completely, calmly immersed in it. It’s a compact room, with the majority of the space as built-in storage, so there isn't really room for other furniture, which we love, it’s purely for relaxing & sleeping! A framed piece of vintage Indonesian batik from when my mum lived there hangs above our bed, and our Kanji names hang either side.”
We painted every inch of the room, including the ceiling, so you feel completely, calmly immersed in it.
“At night, the sparkly city lights shine through the window and in the morning we can watch the weather while drinking our coffees in bed- we’re both city people and like to feel connected to whatever’s going on around us, so a bit of street noise doesn’t bother us.”
Baby Forbes' cot is draped with IN BED Quilted Cot Blanket in Chestnut & Mist (arriving in August).
“I started in magazines when I was really young at 19, and as I grew and evolved personally, so did my career. I went from Fashion styling to interiors, then shifted more into food and still-life when I went freelance nearly 10 years ago, which is where I’ve enjoyed it most. I love the fuss over small scale set-ups where objects are moved millimeters to capture the perfect angle. Styling scenarios that feel natural, effortless and layering to give depth and movement is a craft in itself- the final finesse is what true styling is to me.”
Styling scenarios that feel natural, effortless and layering to give depth and movement is a craft in itself- the final finesse is what true styling is to me.
The table is layered with Imogene's thoughtful collection of ceramics and IN BED Embroidered Linen Napkin Set in Pickle.
“A shoot for Vogue really sticks with me, where I collaborated alongside a dear friend of mine. As stylists we usually have to wear multiple hats, styling the set, tabletop, food, all at once, but for this project I was booked purely to finesse the food element. Being able to really hone in on one craft rather than doing too many things at once was a nice change of pace, and really felt like a collaborative project.”
“Centennial Park is a bit of an ‘in-between’ suburb, so we’re spoiled for choice with access to things. On weekends we like to stroll into surrounding suburbs, and anything else we feel like doing is only a short drive away. Onigiri and a matcha at Parami, Simply Native Japan, Maillot & Blank Space Gallery, drinks at Paski, Fineworks Paddington, Saint Cloche, Fish Butchery empanadas, dinner at Sang by Mabasa, and Cambridge markets for our early morning produce shop.”
“I feel like I’m in a transition period this year, where this takes me I don’t know yet, but I’m open and excited for what's to come; the beginning of Spring, warmer weather, longer days, getting in the festive spirit, and being open to change.”