FUN AND FUNCTION GO HAND IN HAND IN THIS DESIGNER’S COLOURFUL ABODE
Rachel Castle’s antiminimalist home sparks joy.
ARTIST AND DESIGNER RACHEL CASTLE
equates her cheerful four-bedroom, three-bathroom Northbridge property to a comfortable pair of jeans – “it’s big, baggy and easy to live in”.
Castle and her husband, Daz, first fell in love with the 1930s residence for its neat, level backyard (a rarity on Sydney’s hilly lower North Shore) complete with a sizeable frangipani tree. It’s an area that retained prominence when the couple decided to renovate the downstairs space several years ago, adding floor-to-ceiling black steel-framed windows and doors that open out onto the renewed outdoor decking.
The inside was also transformed into a flowing living, dining and kitchen space that the family – including teenagers Cleo and Lucas and beloved sausage dog Sydney – spend the most time in.
“It’s like a comfortable pair of jeans… big, baggy and easy to live in”
The custom Ben Sibley dining table, which has been with the family through several different houses, acts as the centrepiece that gathers the household each day. “It has been witness to the good, the bad, and all of my husband’s amazing food,” says Castle. “I work long hours so our one house rule is family dinner together from Sunday to Thursday, no exceptions.”
An easy palette of wood, white and black provides a go-with-anything base that allows Castle’s fervent love of colour to flourish. Like her whimsical namesake homewares brand, Castle, the creative favours eclectic, bright decor to add life to any room – and doesn’t discriminate when it comes to selecting new treasures. “If I fall in love with it, it can come home with me,” she explains. “Whether I am drawn to the colour, craft or texture, it all fits together because they’re things that I love.”
“A go-with-anything base allows Castle’s love of colour to flourish”
Each corner showcases Castle’s imaginative flair, with books stacked alongside sprawling plants, “way too many” cushions and her latest interiors obsession, hand-thrown pottery. The walls display eye-catching artworks that are entirely unique, yet uniform in their appeal to the designer. “I obviously gravitate towards colour, but I also appreciate form and simple shapes,” she explains. “I was worried the vintage Bernard Villemot poster would be too brown with the wooden floors, but the minute that handsome man was on the living room wall, I fell in love instantly and he had to live with us.”
With a more-is-more mentality, Castle shuns the ever-pervasive minimalist trend. “Nothing is too precious in our home – lots of stuff everywhere means nothing ever feels out of place, even when it’s a pigsty!” she says with a laugh.
“Nothing is too precious in our home – lots of stuff everywhere means nothing ever feels out of place”
Pops of pink brighten Castle’s home, from her artworks (below left) to a pretty door in her studio
Castle’s acrylic artworks and paper sculptures are scattered in nooks throughout her home
Cute round velvet Castle cushions add texture to the sleek Ben Sibley dining table