“Being surrounded by an awe-inspiring natural environment is paramount to me for longevity, inspiration, and for sustaining our existence”
Please allow us to introduce you to Mardi Borrack from Style Agenda, one of Byron Bay’s leading interior designers and stylists.
With a career spanning over two decades, Mardi shares with us the importance of building trusting relationships with her clients to ensure that she reveals the innate characters of the people who inhabit the spaces she designs, the juggle for creative expression and family commitments and the fundamental need for immersion in nature and quiet reflection for inspiration.
Please enjoy this purposeful and considerate account of a very grounded life, lived by Mardi Borrack.
1. Where do you call home?
I was born and raised in Victoria for the majority of my life but headed North to the Northern Rivers Region of NSW, to a town called Bangalow. For the last seven years my husband, daughter and I have made this beautiful part of the world our home. We have travelled far and wide throughout the years and nowhere has ever supported us more than here. We are lucky to call this place 'home.'
2. What does ‘home’ mean to you?
"Home" is a place that encompasses our entire family dynamic, allowing us to each express our creativity, values, and opinions whilst providing a safe haven for our emotional and physical needs. The surrounding nature has not only been an inspiration, but its natural beauty has been paramount to our health and longevity together.
3. What are the elements that help you transform a house into your home?
Our home is perched in the most serene landscape amongst a canopy of birds, lush foliage and distant valley views. Living in a semi-tropical zone where the sun is shining and there is an abundance of natural light, we spend a vast majority of our lives outdoors and entertaining. We found that integrating the natural surroundings within our living space has helped us create a sense of space. By using large windows, bi-folding doors, natural fibres and bold art, our home has truly transformed, but at the heart of our home is our family and friends that indulge in the food, laughter, creativity and love we have to share.
4. What creative projects find you most excited and energised?
The most exciting projects to embark on are the ones in which there is a symbiotic relationship between myself and the client. Building complete trust is vital throughout the process to achieve the ultimate aesthetic within a space. The ability to conceptualise and execute a vision to its completion, has empowered me to unlock the most creative aspects of myself. The combination of my professional expertise and personal creative expression has taken me to the greatest heights of doing what I love and loving what I do.
5. Which life and/or work projects are you most proud of?
Perhaps my greatest life project which began twenty-six years ago and is still ongoing is my family beginning with meeting my life partner and a decade on having our beautiful daughter. Our family is passionately supportive of one another and the driving force within each other's lives. We have all sacrificed a lot to be where we are at today, but our creative endeavours have been the motivating force behind everything we do. My family is my greatest inspiration and encourages me to keep following my own professional dreams. Throughout the past two decades my career has grown exponentially all leading me to this definitive point in my life. Working in the Film and Television industry as a Buyer and Decorator for 20 years was so challenging at times but yet so rewarding and I will forever look back at those times as some of the proudest moments in my career. Starting my own business 'Style Agenda', over the last seven years have proven to be humbling yet exhilarating. Working for myself as an Interior Designer, Stylist and Creative Director has proven to have its hurdles but learning to overcome the odds has been my truest success.
6. Could you share with us some personal insights into a challenging time in your life?
Obviously, some days are more life altering and sporadic than others, but in saying that like many others, I always find it difficult to harmonise my creative endeavours with my personal obligation to my own family. As a business owner finding the balance between life and work, friends and family. I try to overcome these struggles by looking at the aspects of my life that are bringing me the most happiness.
7. What did you learn about yourself throughout this challenge?
I find that those challenges ultimately become the structure that supports my dynamism, inevitably propelling me to the best version of myself both personally and professionally. What I learned about myself is that I am capable of absolutely anything and everything. Without any challenging life lessons, I would not be a fraction of the person I am today. My family and loved ones are vital to my life and I couldn't have done it without the support of my husband Matt and daughter Eva.
8. What type of activities or rituals do you instil to help you remain Grounded?
With so much chaos in the world, the only way to ground myself is to connect with mother nature, friends and family and the centred space within myself. With such a busy life with so many moving parts, I seek solace in quiet spaces that allow my mind to generate new ideas and thoughts. Nature usually steals most of my heart and spending my time outdoors marvelling at the world around us puts everything into perspective.
9. What is the best life advice you have been given?
As a family over the years, we have lost influential family members that were integral in our life. This has taught me the importance of living the most fulfilling life YOU possibly can. Make choices that are right for YOU and be completely unapologetic. Follow your dreams and surround yourself with the most positive and supportive people that believe in YOU!! Take big risks and live with zero regrets.
10. Favourite travel destination for Grounding yourself:
My favourite travel destination for grounding myself at the moment is literally anywhere I can find a quiet beach! I also enjoy my daily walks around the Bangalow natural environment with our beautiful Kelpie Greyhound ‘Gracie’.
11. One city must-do travel tip:
New York is such an incredible vibrant city. Wander down streets and pathways and you are bound to find a hidden gem. I would encourage doing a house swap anywhere in the world to experience life in another place/culture.