Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Melbourne Homes!

A collection of 200 shell necklaces line the walls of Victoria's gorgeous apartment in Elwood.

The lounge area - featuring mainly retro furniture finds, including that stunning bamboo coffee table which came from the set of Australian TV series MDA.

Soooo I decided that The Design Files could do with a 'Melbourne Homes' section. I would love your feedback on this dear readers! What do you think? You see, photographing people's houses takes quite a lot of organising and time etc, so you have to convince me that you would love to see more Melbourne homes, so that I muster up enough time and energy to keep it up!

Anyway, without further ado, read on for a peek into The Design Files' inaugural 'Melbourne home' - the gorgeous apartment of my friend and fellow props buyer Victoria McKenzie!

A 1950's apartment with art deco detailing, Victoria's place truly sets the standard for rental decorating! Set in a beautiful leafy st in Melbourne's bayside suburb of Elwood, this large 2-bedroom apartment has great bones - high ceilings, timber floors, huge windows, and a fantastic layout in which both the loungeroom and the master bedroom both open out onto the garden. Lovely!

Vic's unique sense of style and meticulous attention to detail shines through in every aspect of her beautiful home - from the incredible collection of shell necklaces hanging side-by-side along the dining room walls, to the colour co-ordinated kitchen implements(!), and of course that beautiful lush garden which Vic looks after so well!

Originally from New Zealand, Victoria describes her style as 'Pacificana' - that is, influenced by the aesthetic of the Pacific Islands surrounding NZ (such as Samoa and Rarotonga). This is where the shell necklaces, handwoven basket collection and hula girls come in! She also loves her collection of vintage / retro furniture - many pieces were snaffled from TV productions and films she's worked on. (I've got to get better at that!)

Oh and she loves orange. Can you tell?

Loungeroom and balcony. Victoria's cute collection of hear-shaped pebbles!

View out to the garden

Dining area - framed by that incredible collection of shell necklaces

V for Victoria!

Isn't the kitchen beautiful!? Love the mix of new and vintage kitchen cabinets and furniture. Also love Victoria's policy when it comes to kitchen implements - only orange will do!

Washing up would be so much more fun if everyone had a beautiful big window like this above their sink! Also love those little glass jars... Industria, I think?

Victoria's little tiki man on the wall protects the kitchen.... love the turquoise blue front door and vintage map in the hallway (just visible).

More of the lovely sink area. Vic's tropical plants outside the window make such a difference!

A little Australiana just to balance things out!

Victoria's bedroom, adjoining the balcony and garden - love the deep red walls and soft green bedlinen... what a great combo!

The Pacificana room - aka second bedroom! The handwoven basket collection is so beautifully displayed.... and how about those hula girls...? Cute!

The bathroom - beautiful mint green / black deco tiling... more shell/seed-pod necklaces, and more tropical plants outside the window for that real 'island living' feel! Also love Victoria's collection of green glass containers on the window ledge. Perfect.

Victoria's balcony looks into the shared garden. Look at that lovely colourful vintage bench!

A HUGE thanks to Vic for sharing her home with us! - and for feeding me fresh Lemon Verbena tea and Tim Tams during the photoshoot ;)

ps) Victoria has just started her own photo blog (with a friend) entitled Light and Victory - still early days, but I'm sure she would love you to visit!


  1. I love it!! MORE HOMES!! more, i tell you:)..please.

  2. I would love to see more Melbourne homes profiled! This was such a great example of what one can do with a rented space. Keep 'em coming please! xx

  3. a big YES YES YES to melbourne homes. Saves me walking around early evening trying to see into peoples homes before they shut their curtains!!

    In saying that I sound the right old stalker....

  4. I think this is a wonderful idea! My appetite for peeks into real homes is insatiable, and knowing they are local makes it much more exciting.

    I love her beautiful collection of green glass in the bathroom, that is a gorgeous detail. And the way the house opens out onto the garden is divine. What a lovely house! Thanks for sharing this with us :)

  5. I love the idea of peoples homes.
    Makes for a nice personalized change from all the design stuff.
    You need to get better at 'aquiring' props my dear!
    Stevie T's missus.

  6. What a gorgeous home! Would love to see more Melbourne homes!!

  7. Yes - more Melbourne houses please! What a gorgeous flat and Elwood is a lovely suburb (my brother used to live around there). Sigh...'good bones' make such a difference but the styling is fantastic regardless. Great post - thanks!

  8. Fantastic photos of a real home. I love that so much of it has been retained. The cupboards in the kitchen and bedroom, the tiles - so many would see it all as "out of date" and knock it out. I love it. Especially the shells and baskets as wall art.

  9. Ooh, meant to ask. Can I please post pics on my blog, pointing of course,, to this post?

  10. More please Lucy! Her appartment is soooo beautiful - make me excited about collecting more stuff. i want her couch!

  11. I love the necklaces!
    You are already such a busy lady... but I think the idea of featuring Melbourne homes a great one. x

  12. Hey there! so cool to check out Vic's apartment from afar, and of course it's looking as stylee as one would expect of Victoria. Nice to see your collections! And a nice distraction for me today too. :) - R

  13. Hi Lucy, I love this idea! Especially great to see how creative people style rental houses (with all those limitations). Really enjoy your blog, gives me a little bit of Melbourne while I'm OS. xxx

  14. Victoria - I love orange too and since visiting your home my green glass collection has started to grow. Thanks for all your inspiration. Lucy Bella

  15. Ah! Perfect home! Amazing colour palette, and so beautiful, personal and comfy!

  16. Victoria has created a lovely home - cool - friendly and spacious. congratulations.


  17. Thanks for a peek into a very gorgeous and very eclectic Melbourne home. Please, please continue your Melbourne Homes Series. If the first in this series is anything to go by it's going to be fantastic. As a fellow Melbournian I absolutely love this post and adore the blog.

  18. What a gorgeous and eclectic home; totally packed with style. Please, please continue your Melbourne Home series. As a fellow Melbournian I absolutely adore your daily dose of design and decor style. You lead me see, hear and think about things in my own city that I've never even knew about.

  19. What a STUNNING home! I love everything about it. Please do more Melbourne home series - I have a very scary love for checkin out other people's houses! Hehe. Me and my partner are soon moving house...we have a bit of a quirky collection of furniture and art (my dad made my solid wood bed by hand following my design)...So if we find a really gorgeous rental and set up the place real nice when we move in (I can't wait to consolidate both our flats - I know it will look cool) then I'll happily offer our place up for a shoot.
    Jonny is a photographer and I work for a printing company. Please check out my blog and his website (in my links as Jonathanvb Photography). :-D

  20. OH MY goodness! I was away from my laptop all day and came home to NINETEEN wonderful comments! Thanks so much for all your encouragement ladies! I really appreciate it :)

    You have definitely motivated me to get some more Melbourne Homes happening! Aggh! Thankyou!

    I'm sure Victoria will also be very chuffed to see so many lovely comments about her home! Hooray! ;) xxx

    ps) so sorry I don't have time to respond to everyone individually tonight.... but just a few quick ones :

    Toohey - The couch is Ikea and is quite reasonably priced I think!

    KatieCrackerNuts - yes please post and point! Thanks so much for asking :)

    Stevie T's Missus! (Gaby?!) - Thanks for reading! And commenting :) Yes must get better at the prop acquisition... must get into practice!

    Thankyou thankyou!! x

  21. Love it. Love the idea. More please!

  22. also big yes to this idea! and this house is an amazing start. total decorating jealously! can't wait for more.

  23. What an awesome place! Love the Melbourne Homes idea - a big yes from me!!

  24. Wow! Love it! What a beautiful home.
    More home profiles please!! It's such a wonderful idea - they are so inspiring.

  25. Thanks again for all the comments everyone! :) I feel so lucky to have all your encouragement and support!

    Also Victoria was so excited to see all your lovely compliments about her home :)

    Stay tuned for more Melbourne homes... agghh better get researching!

    Lucy x

  26. I vote YES please! Gimme more!
    What a perfect Elwood-ian home! The seashell necklaces are a brilliant and such a clever addition!

  27. We lived almost 3 years in Melbourne but are back in Belgium now... It's only been three months since we moved back but I really miss Melbourne ... So please, love to see some more of these lovely homes as it is a sweet medicine for my melancholy (or not, but well :)
    x linde

  28. Excellent post. Just wanted to say thanks for taking the time to write it! :)