Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Melbourne Home - Mandy Munro of Tractor Home

The incredible home of Mandy Munro and family! A Heath Nash light fitting made from recycled PVC plastic bottles sits on the mid-century sideboard (purchased from Dean Angelucci many moons ago!).

A photographic series by Mandy's daughter Phoebe hangs above the sideboard.

Knitted/porcelein vessels from South Africa - one of Tractor Home's unique finds!

Have you ever seen such a lovely Loungeroom? A museum of beautiful detail to discover! The sculpted timber bears are a new Tractor Home discovery.

Red wire lamp in the foreground from Tractor Home... artwork hanging above sideboard was picked up by Mandy's husband Michael many years ago - artist unknown.

I had the great pleasure of meeting Mandy Munro and her gorgeous family last weekend. Oh my. It was another one of those brilliant mornings where I was reminded just how lucky I am to write this blog and to meet such amazing local creative people! Truly! Mandy is SO lovely... her family is so creative and super talented... and just look how incredible her home is!? Aggh.

Mandy runs Tractor Home, a unique import business specialising in handmade homewares from South Africa. With two trips to Africa each year, it's no surprise Mandy's home is filled with a vibrant collection of African handcrafts.. but it's not all paper mache and traditional weaving! Over the last 10 years Mandy has uncovered an incredible group of young and emerging designers from across Africa, creating stunning contemporary designs, often with extremely limited resources. Most Tractor Home products are produced by crafters who literally turn old rubbish into beautiful, coveted objects - design doesn't get much more sustainable that that! By marketing these products in Australia, Tractor Home creates employment for disadvantaged communities in Africa, and also supports Woli Nani Embrace - a not for profit organisation which employs African people living with HIV/AIDS.

In addition to her eclectic collection of African design finds, Mandy's home is a treasure trove of mid century furniture and salvaged industrial pieces picked up by her handy husband Michael, and artwork by their three talented kids. Daughter Phoebe studied photography at uni, and has opened After, a homewares shop which stocks many of her Mum's precious finds, while Sons Fergus and Hamish both studied sculpture. These days, youngest son Hamish is better known for his incredible handmade jewellery, stocked at Fat, Alpha60 and Order & Progress. (...and he's only 21!?)

In Melbourne, Tractor Home products can be found at many shops including Safari Living in East Prahran, and Phoebe's shop After at 99 Therry Street, Melbourne (Vic Market).... In Sydney, try I ran the wrong way - Surry Hills, Papier D" Amour - Double Bay, Di Van Ooi - Newport Beach, Crave - Bellevue Hill, and the MCA store at the Rocks.

HUGE thanks to Mandy and the Munros for letting me share these shots of their gorgeous home! ALSO a big thankyou to the very lovely Felicity at Safari Living for the tip-off and introduction to Mandy! :)

Wider view of the loungeroom, with doorway through to Tractor Home HQ! Grafitti artwork on the stairs is by Melbourne artist Cam Gill. Colourful African masks, another Tractor Home find.

Top two artworks by Hamish Munro for year 12! The pieces were included in the Top Arts exhibition 2006. Woven stool in foreground - Tractor Home.

Tractor Home trinket box made from a plastic bottle base, carefully cut with fold-down lid, and coated in paper mache... INGENIOUS!

Tractor Home HQ!

Mandy's Tractor Home workshop is a treasure trove! Amongst Mandy's African souvenirs is a screenprint by Nick Young of Melbourne label Two Ruffians!

Beautiful Tractor Home hand-embroidered bears!

Tractor Home paper mache bowls and woven bracelets...

Lovely details in the garden... love the pink 'toadstools' in the lawn which bounce in the wind and chime!

Master bedroom details... LOVE the mid-century bed/bedside combo, retro bedside lamps, and Tractor Home's hand embroidered cushions on the bed...

Lovely details on Mandy's bedside table, and a very original handmade wire draw unit from Tractor Home sits happily alongside a restored Featherston chair. (One of many in Michael's collection...!)


  1. Oh man, I love that blue and yellow wire side table! Such good stuff from such a talented family.

  2. What a character filled home. That featherston chair looks very much like mine, just a bit lighter in colour.

  3. wow, that bed head is SUCH a great shape.
    Do you have a better shot of the entire bed?

  4. So many amazing unique pieces - I didn't know where to look first! So, so nice.

  5. really love this. so unique and expressive. nary a shelter-mag reference in sight.

  6. I love that everything really looks as though it belongs there. So personal and unique.

  7. Beautiful post, I especially like the insect cushions and the blue/yellow wired night stand. Thanks for posting!

  8. Wow, that's a lot of eye candy! I love the rooms with floor to ceiling windows. I'd love to hang one of my mobiles in there!

  9. Wow! excellent work! will be fallowing your works its gives me really good inspirations.. thank you!