LEFT: Arflex’s Katrin armchair from Studio Italia
LEFT: Minotti’s Mills dining chairs from ECC, Lindsey Adelman branch chandelier from ECC RIGHT: Grado console by Ron Gilad from Molteni&C

The perfect mix of old and new: explore this refined South Yarra home

This two-storey home, situated in the upscale Melbourne suburb of South Yarra, serves up a taste of its Victorian origins alongside a soft sense of modernity. Brought to life by Hecker Guthrie, the interior design firm has succeeded in putting a contemporary twist on the project while retaining elements of its heritage aesthetic.

To adhere to this objective, Hecker Guthrie didn’t adjust much structurally. Rather, they focussed on reimagining the finishes and inserted an extension to create a more modern, open-plan living area with traditional front seating and a contemporary kitchen. A high stud, typical of the era, dictates elongated walls throughout the home that are teamed with au courant hints of today; stark white slicked paint, veined marble furnishings and sleek, hardwood flooring. The furniture similarly adheres to the polished yet approachable motif in the form of plush, ivory couches neighboured by a crisp, white woven rug and a polished, marble coffee table.

The light colour palette employed in the sprawling kitchen creates a visual illusion of sorts, whereby the open-plan space combines with the pared-back decor to create a picture of pastel-tinted minimalism. The lack of clutter heightens the purified aesthetic, leaving room for striking, one-off elements to shine through. Speaking of which, exquisite lighting installations are peppered throughout the home, from the blushing rose-gold overhead light in the kitchen to the Lindsey Adelman bubble pendant that hangs over the dining room table — each serves as a graphic focal point and immediate conversation starter.

At once inviting and prestigious, it is the considered finishes that really see this Victorian home embody the perfect modern-vintage blend. Striking little hints — the abstract butterfly painting adjacent to the lounge or the coat-of-arms-shaped, bronze-rimmed mirror that stoically resides above the fireplace — turn this stunning historic house into a beloved modern-day home.

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