Deco House-Melbourne

Deco House is a reinvention of an existing double brick 1930’s house. It’s design was to keep the features of the existing house, but work them through and open up to the rear yard in a more contemporary way. The kitchen links the old and the new and joins together the various zones.
Photography: Elizabeth Schiavello
Styling Assistance: Bethanie Ereaut


When the opportunity to work on this design presented itself in my inbox I was on holiday in Japan with limited connection to the internet.

I looked it up as best I could, and thought I had a request that had arrived from Germany. The deco style of the house seemed too solid and did not match common Melbourne house styles. I was amazed to find that it was indeed in Melbourne, and it was a double brick deco style house, not too far from the city centre of Melbourne with great views to the city.

My first visit to the house had me impressed. Friendly owners open to ideas is a good start. The structure of the house and build quality was another thing which was a good platform to work off.

I instantly had a few ideas. Being an outsider to the house, you often ponder why things are the way they are rather than just living with them and accepting them as the location and use. The brief saw that the owners wanted more of a connection to natural light, and also to connect to the rear. I needed to look at room use and what to change.
To keep the rear yard as it is-the kitchen and l’dry would be moved, making way for a bathroom. I also wanted to connect the kitchen to the existing living room. The clients liked an industrial aesthetic, so exposed beams such as the one required to prop up the double brick upstairs wall would be a good place for an exposed beam.

I love black window and door frames-so this would work with the existing to give contrast and also fit the deco colour scheme. A large Northern window was added and also other windows with light controlled by louvers.

Period details such as existing cornice were to be retained.

The galley kitchen opened to the rear deck with a servery, and the benchtop could continue to you could prepare food and interact in the lounge or dining zone.

The rear of the house is open and enables much interaction. The render utilized a more traditional method of application where the cement is thrown at it to create texture. The galley style kitchen incorporated ideas such as an open pantry that had been inspired by the clients holiday in Malta.
The bathroom takes on a darker more subdued pallet adding depth to an otherwise sun filled light and bright design. Detailing such as black switches reflect the deco style.

In all the house through lovely clients, great builder and many small details has come together to give the house new life and a warm and comfortable future.