Now more than ever, with so many of us spending more time in our homes during COVID-induced lockdown, people are craving the outdoors. It’s well documented that connection to nature is so beneficial for our mental, emotional and physical health. So if it’s not possible to go out into nature, how about you try bringing nature to you?

In recent years, indoor plants have had a huge surge in popularity. Not only do they improve air quality, increase creativity and decrease stress, they also just look so amazing. Plants have this incredible gift of making any room look and feel better but sometimes it’s difficult to know what to put where. If you’re anything like the green-thumb-less Rebeka, there’s still hope for you!

In this episode, Rebeka speaks to powerhouse plant-loving besties, Jacqui and Alana from Ivy Muse in Melbourne. Ivy Muse started as an online store after Jacqui and Alana, each with their own unique set of design and styling skills, started noticing the indoor plant craze. From there, Ivy Muse went through an incredible evolution and expanded into everything from personal plant styling, commercial design and launching their own collections.

Jacqui and Alana share their business journey and how the transition to plant styling grew organically from a simple request from an in-store customer. In recent months, their online store has flourished and they also provide e-plant styling for interstate clients which has become very popular during lockdown.

Rebeka picks Jacqui and Alana’s brains for their top tips on how to incorporate amazing plants into her space. They even provide numerous arguments to convince her husband that she definitely needs more plants! The rule of thumb is that if the plant is calling to you, you should take it home. Even if there is a chorus of plants calling your way at the nursery, the 20 new plants are definitely justified.

We also take a dive into biophilic design, what it is and how it is used to improve our direct and indirect connection to nature.  Whether it be from the design planning stages, throughout construction or after your house has been fully furnished, there is always an opportunity to incorporate plants into your home to establish a closer connection to the outside world. One can never have too many plants!

If you have a topic or question you’d like us to cover, contact us here.


  • [1:53]: How Jacqui and Alana met and how their urge to work together evolved into where they are today
  • [3:45]: How much fun it is working with your best friend
  • [5:00]: What their current day-to-day looks like during lockdown and how both Jacqui and Alana are finding the silver lining and relishing the time with their children
  • [6:15]: How the online store exploded during lockdown, even though other parts of their business has suffered
  • [8:30]: How the plant styling side of Ivy Muse grew organically from an in-store customer request
  • [10:00]: Rebeka’s experience using Ivy Muse’s plant styling services for a house she worked on
  • [11:35]: Tips for incorporating amazing plants into your space:
    • Tip 1. Assess your home and look at the environmental factors (orientation, temperature, draught)
    • Tip 2. Look at the spacial features (large, small, unique areas of the space)
    • Tip 3. Find inspiration online to discover what type of plants you like
  • [15:05]: How plant styling is like second nature for Jacqui and Alana and their client’s receive the benefit of their years of experience in the industry
  • [16:30]: How they take into account the existing style of each individual house and provide plants and accessories that complement what’s already there
  • [17:30]: The many arguments for having more plants in the house.  They clean the air, teach kids responsibilities, stimulate productivity and creativity, decrease stress
  • [19:30]: The e-styling service they provide for interstate clients and now for locals during lockdown.
  • [21:25]: How certain plant features need to be thought about during the design and building phase but other aspects are better done once the house is furnished
  • [22:15]: What biophilia is and how it has been incorporated into biophilic design to improve our direct and indirect connection to nature
  • [24:47]: How having a layered biophilic design approach is important and that indoor plants are an awesome way to incorporate it into your home
  • [26:30]: You don’t have to go with a theme, just go with what you love.  If it’s calling your name, take it home!
  • [28:30]: How Ivy Muse is very multifaceted with so many areas that interconnect


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Anyone is more than welcome to join our Women who Design, Decorate, Renovate & Build group. You will note that it’s a closed group but ask to join and if you’re into building and renovating, this is such an amazing and supportive FREE community, so come on and join in the building goodness!