A mid-cen­tury Syd­ney home set around a leafy atrium gets some stylish TLC.

Homestyle New Zealand - - CONTENTS - WORDS & ST YLING Ker­rie-Ann Jones PHOTOGR APHY Chris Warnes


re­late to the say­ing “Good things come to those who wait”. It took them 18 months to find their dream home, but they fi­nally hit the jack­pot with an un­touched mid-cen­tury gem in New­port, on Syd­ney’s North­ern Beaches. The cou­ple in­stantly adored its abun­dance of light and the laid-back life­style the lo­ca­tion had to offer their young fam­ily.

Orig­i­nally con­structed in 1967, the home was in­spired by the late Amer­i­can real-es­tate devel­oper Joseph Eich­ler, whose dis­tinc­tive, ar­chi­tec­turally de­signed Cal­i­for­nia homes were of­ten ar­ranged in a grid cen­tred around an atrium. “The the­ory be­hind the Eich­ler de­sign was that it al­lows sun­light to fil­ter through the house, which then gets trapped in the grid lay­out, cre­at­ing an en­vi­ron­ment of hap­pi­ness and health – and it re­ally does!” says Danielle. •

When the cou­ple bought the home in 2014, it was in good con­di­tion, but not en­tirely to their taste, so they wasted no time in be­gin­ning a ren­o­va­tion. To their sur­prise, when they raised the ceil­ing, they found un­touched tim­ber beams. Peter en­listed the help of friends to sand them back then stain them a rich wal­nut shade. Paired with new white ceil­ings and walls, the re­stored beau­ties cre­ate a grid ef­fect of their own.

Once the ren­o­va­tion was com­plete and the fam­ily had set­tled in, Danielle used her skills as an event stylist to dec­o­rate with unique retro pieces. “We’re like mag­pies when it comes to used items,” she says. “We pick up bar­gains and road­side finds, then re­store them.”

Danielle is also an artist and very aware of how colour makes spa­ces feel. In the kitchen she in­cluded hints of pale green •

Du­lux White Box for its sub­tle warmth and the vin­tage vibe in brings to the con­tem­po­rary space. Du­lux Misty Moore ap­pears in youngest daugh­ter Delilah’s bed­room and in the laun­dry. “I love the gen­tle strength of this colour,” says Danielle. “It re­minds me of eu­ca­lyp­tus.” At their ar­chi­tect’s sug­ges­tion, she and Peter painted the din­ing room’s rear wall black, and they couldn’t be hap­pier with the de­ci­sion, as it makes a fan­tas­tic back­drop for their vin­tage pen­dant light and mid-cen­tury din­ing suite.

The home’s de­sign al­lows for both sum­mer and win­ter liv­ing rooms. The sum­mer room has be­come the fam­ily’s favourite as it opens onto the back­yard, where the chil­dren can play while Danielle and Peter host af­ter­noon bar­be­cues for friends. Says Danielle: “When we bought it, the neigh­bours told us it used to be a big party house, so we feel we owe it to the house to keep the good times alive!”

LEFT The dark Du­lux Domino paint in the din­ing area is a gor­geous contrast to the oth­er­wise white walls and cre­ates a sense of in­ti­macy in this space. The Nova pen­dant light­was de­signed in the 60s by Jo Ham­mer­borg for Fog & Mørup. OP­PO­SITE In keep­ing...

OP­PO­SITE Danielle and Delilah at the beau­ti­ful blue front door – one of the home’s orig­i­nal fea­tures. In the neigh­bour­hood, the house is known as “the blue door house”. RIGHT The win­ter liv­ing room in­cludes a vin­tage side ta­ble, a 1960s leather...


RIGHT & OP­PO­SITE The ribbed glass in the repo­si­tioned kitchen draws light into the laun­dry be­hind it and is a high­light for Peter. “It’s our retro throw­back and we love it,” he says. New f loor­ing has been added through­out house. “The orig­i­nal con­crete...

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