Interior designers Grainne Devlin and Stephanie Smale of Design & Co. took a bowerbird approach to this cottage redesign, fusing old-world charm with modern elegance.
“Our clients came to us in their search for someone to oversee their rather unique styling commission, and were immediately intrigued by our ideas,” says Grainne. “While they love their little worker’s cottage, they wanted to give the home a more colourful and eclectic vibe rather than a typical cottage feel, and preferred to decorate with items that weren’t ‘off the shelf’.”
Mixing the earthiness of wood with the luxury and sophistication of marble and velvet and pulling it together with bold pops of colour, Design & Co. has injected new life into the old worker’s cottage, which now sings with personality and joy.
“The beautiful gardens and large trees surrounding the cottage also helped us bring the outdoors in,” adds Grainne. “In the master bedroom, we’ve opened the entire suite up to allow the double doors to open onto the deck, which overlooks the most incredible old tree — a beaut ful backdrop for an early morning cup of tea. It’s now a favourite spot for breakfast or sundowners.”
The master has been given a plush, layered appeal by Design & Co., with a custom teal velvet-upholstered bedhead, rug from The Rug Establishment, cushions from designer Catherine Martin and lampshades customised with fabric sourced from South Pacific Fabrics.
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Design & Co. sourced much of the furniture and accessories from suppliers and various antique shops, like the original Catt & Son dining chairs, a favourite find from an antique store in Melbourne. “We purchased them for our clients and, thankfully, they absolutely fell in love with them,” says Grainne of the treasure hunt. A bespoke emerald green hand-knotted silk rug made by Silk Road Handmade Rugs now frames the chairs and the beautiful marble dining table, discovered by the designers in a pre-loved furniture store while on a trip to the UK.
Another favourite find of Design & Co. is a clutch of spears from Papua New Guinea, sourced through Brisbane’s Chelsea Coco, a Paddington-based “curator of the amazing” says Grainne. “They found the most amazing and unique pieces from around the world for us. We’ve teamed the spears with baskets and other artefacts to create a stunning feature wall which will grow with the clients as they continue to source beautiful and interesting treasures from their own travels.”