In the leafy sub­urbs of Mel­bourne, Lucy and James found a newly ren­o­vated rental that be­came the per­fect can­vas for their fam­ily.

Homes+ (Australia) - - CONTENTS -

Bright, colour­ful and sur­pris­ing, Lucy’s fun dec­o­rat­ing style makes this ren­o­vated Mel­bourne rental a prized fam­ily home.

“WHEN YOU’RE RENT­ING a home you know in the back of your mind that cir­cum­stances can change in the blink of an eye and there’s not al­ways much you can do about it. That was cer­tainly the case for us two years ago. The girls were seven and five years old, and all of a sud­den we had ex­actly 10 days to move out of our home, find a new house to rent and move in – it was ac­tion sta­tions to say the least! Luck was very much on our side though, as we im­me­di­ately stum­bled across a gor­geous lit­tle house that had just been com­pletely ren­o­vated. Within a week we had moved in and have called this place home ever since.


The lo­ca­tion of the house was the first ‘tick’ in what we were look­ing for.

I grew up in the area, in Mel­bourne’s in­ner east, and have al­ways loved the leafy streets and the mix­ture of old and new houses. Be­ing so close to so many of our friends and fam­ily was also im­por­tant to us. We can walk to our favourite cafes and shops and I can even hear the girls’ school lunch bell from my kitchen, which is a re­ally nice feel­ing. It’s a lovely and quiet street as well, un­like the nearby ma­jor roads, so that was an­other big plus.


The house is a sin­gle-fronted Vic­to­rian weath­er­board. In­side, the only pe­riod fea­tures that re­main are the ceil­ing roses in the front two rooms. Every­thing else has had a com­plete over­haul, trans­form­ing it into an open, spa­cious and light-filled modern fam­ily home.

We were lucky enough to be the first ten­ants in the house af­ter the ren­o­va­tion had been com­pleted.

I’d never lived in what was ef­fec­tively a brand new house be­fore, so I put a lot of thought into how it had been de­signed and where every­thing should go to make best use of the avail­able space while also keep­ing it in­ter­est­ing.

I like to think that we use this house just as it was in­tended. The main liv­ing space is a huge area that we all love. We can all be do­ing some­thing dif­fer­ent – cook­ing, home­work or re­lax­ing on the couch – and still have a chat.


The main liv­ing area is home to a few of my favourite things. First, the black cock­a­too art­work by Ge­of­frey Car­ran; it has so much de­tail and colour, and I never get tired of look­ing at it. Sec­ond, my con­stantly ex­pand­ing col­lec­tion of cof­fee ta­ble books; I love adding to my col­lec­tion but I must ad­mit it’s not very of­ten I get the chance to sit down and flick through them. Last but not least, my mix-and-match as­sort­ment of plates and bowls; they bring a sense of fun to the din­ing ta­ble and are al­ways a fea­ture any time we’re en­ter­tain­ing or hav­ing break­fast as a fam­ily at the week­end. It’s no sur­prise that all of these things pack a punch of colour

– I can lit­er­ally throw some colour into any­thing and every­thing!

I stud­ied vis­ual mer­chan­dis­ing and have spent much of my ca­reer as a home­wares buyer, so I love to see all the trends come and go and pick and choose what I like. Along the way I’ve de­vel­oped my own style.

I do ad­mit to hav­ing a few favourite go-to on­line stores like Jum­bled and An­thro­polo­gie, but noth­ing beats ac­tu­ally brows­ing around a store where you can touch and feel the things you’re look­ing at.


At this point in our lives this house works per­fectly for us. It re­ally is built for bring­ing the fam­ily to­gether in the main liv­ing area but at the same time, as the girls grow older, there is am­ple space for ev­ery­one to do their own thing and branch out as well.

Our lit­tle court­yard out the back is a zero-main­te­nance space – the bam­boo hedg­ing is well-con­tained and flour­ishes all on its own giv­ing us pri­vacy with­out block­ing any sun­light. En­ter­tain­ing out there in sum­mer with the doors pulled wide open is one of our favourite things to do.

Liv­ing in this house has also fur­ther in­spired my dream of hav­ing some­thing my­self one day. I would love to take on a lit­tle, old house of my own and re­ally put my stamp on it.”

Touch-to-open cup­boards give an un­clut­tered look.

Tough love The front gar­den is home to hardy Aus­tralian na­tives that re­quire next to no at­ten­tion.

Pretty bird “Joseph Banksii” by Ge­of­frey Car­ran is one of Lucy’s favourite art­works in the home.

Bring­ing in blues The multi-tonal blue rug and art­works de­fine the din­ing zone.

Fam­ily friendly Sheer cur­tains let in light but cre­ate pri­vacy in the main liv­ing area. The pat­terned rug is from Eb&Ive. BLUE HUES Folk Pad printed serv­ing bowl in Flow­ers, $20, from West Elm. Trans­par­ent stools bal­ance out the colour­ful palette.

LOVE POM­POMS Coco throw in Blue, $129.95, from KAS Aus­tralia.

PRETTY PAT­TERN Boho bowl in Shi­bori, 12.5cm, $5.95, from Maxwell & Wil­liams.

TAS­SEL FLAIR Tribe throw, in Nat­u­ral/Blue, $69.99, from Ez­ibuy.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.