In our Homes and People That Inspire Us series, we’ll be talking to creators who embody the same values we celebrate at LinenBarn: slow living, environmental consciousness, and respect for the planet.
Today we’re talking to the slow living enthusiast and nature lover Niki Kalupahana from @wild____daisy. As you might have guessed from her Instagram account name, Niki draws inspiration from nature. She is a full-time mum who likes to spend her time cultivating her strong connection to the world she lives in.
There’s something so relaxing about her posts, many of which transport you to Australia’s beautiful Yarra Valley. Everything is captured in gorgeous shots with neutral tones and a great eye for detail. It’s such a soothing sight for anyone who is stuck at a desk working all day. You’ll see lots of gorgeous wildflower arrangements and Niki enjoying the great outdoors while rocking pieces from her impressive repertoire of linen – it doesn’t get much more natural than that!
Hi Nikki, tell us about yourself.
I love being outdoors and spending my free time wandering around and observing nature, listening to the birds and watching bees collect nectar from the flowers in our garden. Humans are so reliant on nature’s benefits, but so many are disconnected from it, especially those who live in big cities. I feel so lucky to live on a large property close to the beautiful bush and the lake. I love having the opportunity to grow vegetables and flowers and use them not only for putting on the table, but also for making chemical-free home cleaning products.
Nature! I live in Yarra Valley, one of the most beautiful locations in Australia. I feel blessed every morning waking up to the sound of birds and experiencing nature not as a place to visit, but as my home!
My Australian home in Yarra Valley. I was born in Sri Lanka, one of the most beautiful islands in the Indian Ocean, but I have found my true home here in Australia, a country that is highly developed yet still has the most unique natural wonders and wildlife.
Home for me is the place where I feel free and where I can be myself. It is a place for my family, and where we’ve built our most precious memories – where we hope and dream together.
I love the location of my home and its peaceful, quiet charm. We live in a country-style cottage, which I absolutely adore!
The possession that I cherish the most is intangible. It is the time that is given to us to spend on this beautiful Earth; it is every single moment in our lives. I strongly believe that life is a gift, so I try to appreciate every moment with those I love at every stage of my journey.
I love collecting French-style dinnerware and linen. I have a beautiful collection of French country-style dinnerware that really complements the look of my country cottage. I’m a big lover of LinenBarn, too. Their linens are something you can keep forever!
Spread more love and kindness. This can be done through simple acts like saying thank you, smiling at others to spark positivity, being helpful, offering generous compliments, and letting people you care about know how much you love them.
I use eco-friendly and homemade products whenever possible. I make most of my cleaning products at home to ensure they are free of chemicals, and I embrace the philosophy of ‘reuse and recycle’.
10. Do you mind sharing at least one recipe for homemade cleaners?
Of course, I can share a few!
1 cup cleaning vinegar
1 cup water
10 drops lavender essential oil
10 drops tea tree essential oil
500 ml spray bottle
Use a funnel to add the vinegar and water to your spray bottle. Add the essential oil drops. Shake to combine. Experiment with different essential oils until you find your favourite mix. Cedarwood, eucalyptus, peppermint and citrus oil are other very effective oils for household cleaning.
1/4 cup bicarb soda
2 cups water
1.5 cups cleaning vinegar
6 drops lavender essential oil (optional)
Measure the bicarb soda into a large jug of bowl. Add 1 cup water to the jug and stir to dissolve the bicarb soda. Then add the remaining cup of water. Slowly add the vinegar - don't pour it in quickly, or the bicarb soda and vinegar may react and fizz out of the jug. If you like, add your favourite essential oil for fragrance. Add the mixture directly to the washer's fabric softener dispenser or manually to the final rise cycle. Use about 1/2 cup per load.
11. Do you have any family traditions?
We make charitable donations for each of our birthdays. Sri Lanka is a developing country with a lot of poverty, so we donate educational materials to schools and food to homes for the disabled. One year, we donated non-perishable groceries and newborn baby gift packs to 50 pregnant women. It’s such a great feeling to help people who are in need!
Don’t forget to check out Niki’s Instagram page at @wild____daisy. We were thrilled to see her feature our Oatmeal Linen Tablecloth and Beige Gingham Linen Napkin Set as part of a relaxing outdoor tablescape she created that fits in so seamlessly with her natural surroundings. And we love the gorgeous contrast of her favourite flowers – daisies, of course! – tucked into our Moss Green Linen Bib Apron.
After just a few minutes browsing her posts, we think you’ll agree that no one can pull off wearing a big range of linen garments quite like Niki!