WA a-blaze with design talent

Interiors expert Shaynna Blaze is a big fan of Perth's design scene. Known for her role as a judge on The Block and as co-host of Selling Houses Australia, the 48-year-old believes local creatives are at the forefront of the design industry.

"I see Perth taking the lead in the area of sustaining Australian design in their own backyard, which is brilliant," Blaze told AAA on a trip to WA this week.

"What I love about Perth is that it's very boutique and very bespoke because you are so very far away, which is a great thing. What I can see is an industry of manufacturing in lighting and bespoke furniture which is very much like the back streets of Melbourne and Fitzroy.

"There's a lot of warehouses, a lot of group industry and designers sharing spaces together and creating pieces that are marketable so that we have original Australian designs which people are always looking out for."

A force to be reckoned with on The Block: Glasshouse alongside fellow judges Neale Whitaker and Darren Palmer, Blaze was overwhelmed to discover the challenging site this year's Blockheads faced.

"This is the hardest Block because it's so vast," she said.

"It's so big, it's so unique and some apartments are actually twice the size as in the last series, which is incredible.

"It's been a great season. They've been able to do things that are completely different because the building is so different - it's so large and it is expensive. When you have a very expensive apartment you have to find elements that make it unique and make it different.

"I think the highlights for me have been the standard of quality and finishes has been really amazing and the use of different types of materials."

When asked if she thought there were any frontrunners for auction day, the TV veteran said it was anyone's guess as to which couple would come out on top.

"I think this is the hardest one ever to pick because they're all different sizes and have different aspects from north to south," Blaze said.

"It's really going to come down to the reserve and to their place in the auction. It's going to be neck and neck."

The West Australian

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