An old Vic­to­rian home gets a com­plete over­haul with easy dec­o­rat­ing ideas that don’t break the bank.

Homes+ (Australia) - - CONTENTS -

Greg Mal­lyon’s ren­o­vated Vic­to­rian home re­tains many orig­i­nal fea­tures and makes the most of its bush lo­ca­tion.

“Liv­ing ar­eas pro­vide an el­e­ment of sur­prise with white, bright open spa­ces.”


100-year-old weath­er­board home known by the lo­cal real es­tate agent as ‘The Rathouse’ in ac­knowl­edge­ment of the pre­vi­ous oc­cu­pants. Even so, the block had beau­ti­ful bush views and lots of po­ten­tial – Joseph and I bought the prop­erty a few years ago and, while it would have been cheaper to bull­doze and start afresh, we de­cided we wanted to keep the orig­i­nal house and what­ever fea­tures that could be re­tained. To that end, the in­te­rior was com­pletely gut­ted and the two sur­round­ing acres cleared of over­grown black­berry bushes and weeds.

Most of the ren­o­va­tion was a DIY job with in­put from lo­cal tradies. The house is orig­i­nal Vic­to­rian with a ’70s ad­di­tion at the rear of the house and we ren­o­vated so that the front rooms and hall are in dark and moody tones and the liv­ing ar­eas pro­vide an el­e­ment of sur­prise with white, bright open spa­ces look­ing out onto ex­pan­sive bush views.


Dec­o­rat­ing the house is a joint col­lab­o­ra­tion, with on­site su­per­vi­sion by Dingo. The main bed­room and guest bed­room were fin­ished first so we could have at least two rooms that were com­fort­able and at­trac­tive – the rest of the house was a work in progress with months of the bath­room dou­bling as an im­promptu kitchen. We had a con­cept that the house in­side and out would fol­low a smart and sim­ple black

and white scheme – the house was painted pink for decades so it was a con­tro­ver­sial choice for the neigh­bours!

My stu­dio used to be an old rat­in­fested garage and has had a to­tal makeover. The en­tire in­te­rior, in­clud­ing ceil­ing and walls, was lined with pine planks and re­cy­cled tim­ber for in­su­la­tion and weath­er­proof­ing and re­cy­cled win­dows were cut into the cor­ru­gated iron walls to add light to what was a very dark space.


Our din­ing area opens on to the back deck, which has it’s own din­ing and lounge space with bush views. It also dou­bles as a herb gar­den so we have easy ac­cess to fresh in­gre­di­ents. As for the gar­den, we started from scratch af­ter we cleared all the weeds. It’s been two years of in­tense ac­tiv­ity, with some out­side ar­eas and gar­den land­scap­ing still in progress, but we’ve planted hun­dreds of shrubs, suc­cu­lents, trees and an­nu­als over that time. I’m look­ing for­ward to even­tu­ally ex­pand­ing my stu­dio to be big­ger and bet­ter!”

Third time’s a charm Greg painted the floor in the liv­ing area black, then light grey, but he didn’t like ei­ther colour and fi­nally re­painted in a dark grey Porter’s Paint shade – Min­eral.

Mas­ter of colour A fuzzy yel­low throw from Free­dom and per­fectly colour­co­or­di­nated cush­ions bring warmth to the liv­ing room. LIV­ING ROOM

KITCHEN Good move

The kitchen was orig­i­nally the toi­let and laun­dry but was con­fig­ured to take ad­van­tage of the amaz­ing views.

LIV­ING ROOM Di­vide & con­quer A screen sep­a­rates the study from the liv­ing area and al­lows for air flow be­tween the two rooms. Out­side, the same screens are used for pri­vacy.

DIN­ING Bright idea Greg clev­erly com­bined light fit­tings from Bea­con Light­ing and Free­dom to get the look he wanted.

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