Ren­o­vat­ing a con­verted lolly fac­tory in Melbourne was made easy with the right ar­chi­tect

A strik­ing el­e­ment and an em­pha­sis on mak­ing the most of ex­ist­ing el­e­ments has turned this old lolly fac­tory into a feel-good fam­ily home


Lit­tle Daisy is one lucky bub. Not only has she landed her­self a lov­ing fam­ily, but she’s set to grow up in a former lolly fac­tory with a sus­pended walk­way the colour of fairy flfloss over the liv­ing room. It’s safe to say, play­dates are a sure thing.

Her par­ents, Sarah and Michael, bought the former fac­tory fi­five years ago. While date-stamped to the 1990s, it of­fered an amaz­ing sense of space and the ideal open-plan set-up for a cou­ple that value shar­ing food with friends.

When the her­itage fa­cade de­manded at­ten­tion, the pair turned to ar­chi­tects Christie Petsinis and Tim Wil­son of Folk Ar­chi­tects for restora­tion works and to bring the in­te­ri­ors up to scratch. The ar­chi­tects added an ad­di­tional level – a dis­creet box that pops up be­hind the fa­cade – to house a mas­ter bed­room, but tried to tread as lightly as pos­si­ble with the rest of the up­date, ‘mak­ing good’ rather than rein­vent­ing. “We tried to re­use as much as we could and came up with quite min­i­mal changes that have made a dra­matic dif­fer­ence,” says Christie.

The most strik­ing el­e­ment is the candy-pink metal stair­case and walk­way, where the orig­i­nal struc­ture has been matched with per­fo­rated pow­der-coated steel treads. The play of light, move­ment and pat­tern is a beau­ti­ful re­ward. “It cre­ates a real sense of in­ter­est in the space and draws your eye up,” says Sarah.

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