Australian Homes

Paul Hecker

by Lucy Feagins, Editor
Wednesday 28th August 2013

The St Kilda home of interior designer Paul Hecker of Hecker Guthrie.  Dining room details – Flos Black and White pendant light, Fritz Hansen table and Ant chairs,  Edra Janette chair in background, Tom Dixon small table.  Wall colour – Dulux Namadje.  Photo – Sean Fennessy, Production – Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.

Amazing corner in Paul’s upstairs living room, overlooking a leafy view to the adjacent St Kilda park.  B&B Italia Charles sofa, Paul Kjaerholm chair, TV unit custom designed by Paul, small table by Cappellini.  Photo – Sean Fennessy, Production – Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.

Upstairs living room.  B&B Italia Charles sofa, green table by Zanotta, low table by Cappellini, Eero Saarinan side  to right. Wall colour – Dulux Namadje. Photo – Sean Fennessy, Production – Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.

After interviewing Paul Hecker from revered Melbourne interior design studio Hecker Guthrie earlier this year, I must say I am pretty chuffed with today’s scoop…  I feel very lucky to be able to share Paul’s own St Kilda home with you today!  With it’s moody, masculine colour palette, sleek, understated styling and seriously impressive collection of classic design pieces, ceramics and fine art, this really is the ultimate design-lover’s bachelor pad.

Paul has lived in his compact 2 storey home since 2000 (‘Oh my Lord…really!’ he says, when realising it’s been 13 years since he first moved in!). A testament to his impeccable taste and innate sense of style, the space still feels completely contemporary, despite having been designed and built over a decade ago.

‘I started with a minimal space and my aesthetic was quite pared back, however my natural lust (greed) has meant that there is a heavy accumulation of 13 years worth of stuff’ says Paul of his incredible collection of furniture and design objects.  Structurally, the one bedroom home has remained largely unchanged since he first moved in, although the interior is always changing, as Paul keeps adding things…. lots of things!

When asked which are the most treasured pieces from this growing collection, Paul is characteristically jovial and outspoken!  ‘I love or at least like everything in my house, or why have it?’ he says.  He’s probably most attached to his vintage ceramic collection – an impressive family of mostly Scandinavian pieces, collected over many years and dotted throughout the space.  ‘My favourite things change constantly, but if God forbid there was a fire, and I could only save one thing, it’s tough … but it would have to be a tiny white vase by the Swedish ceramicist Wilhelm Kage… it’s irreplaceable’.

Though known for his meticulous attention to detail with his clients’ work, interestingly, Paul has quite a different, almost philosophical approach to his own living space.  ‘There are so many things I’d change, but for some reason, living with the imperfect doesn’t matter’ he says. ‘All I know is, I have tried on many occasions to find a new home, and yet I have always retuned to this. Maybe it is the area, the coffee shop at the end of the street, the park next door, or just the fact that it feels like me’.

Couldn’t have said it better myself!  This striking home indeed presents the most perfect reflection of its uniquely creative inhabitant – suitably stylish, yet relaxed, lived in, and unmistakably low-key.  We wouldn’t have expected anything less Paul!

Super massive thanks to Paul for sharing his private world with us today, and to Simone Haag at HG for faciliating our shoot and assisting with captions!

Dining room.  Flos Black and White pendant light, painting by Andrew Brown, Fritz Hansen table and Ant chairs,  Edra Janette chair in background, Tom Dixon small table.  Wall colour – Dulux Namadje.  Photo – Sean Fennessy, Production – Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.

Dining table details.  Owl – a gift from Paul’s business partner Hamish on a recent trip to Copenhagen, jug by North Carlton Ceramics, Roger Capron tiles, Mark Tuckey bowl. Paul’s weekends are often spent rearranging items from his amazing collection of design objects!  Photo – Sean Fennessy, Production – Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.

First floor – top of the stairs. Artwork by Collin Pennock.  White framed table to left custom designed to house Royal Copenhagen tiles sourced on a trip to Denmark. Underneath framed side table sits a timber object that Paul and Hame designed for the centrepiece of Hecker Guthrie’s table for the NGV fundraiser ‘Best of the Best’ event earlier this year. White table on right hand side by Knoll.  Small clocks on left wall by Georg Jensen.  Photo – Sean Fennessy, Production – Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.

Dining room detail.  Georg Jensen Clocks (spelling?), Danish ceramics.  Photo – Sean Fennessy, Production – Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.

Downstairs loungeroom looking through to master bedroom.  Ox chair, red side table by Zanotta, Arco lamp.  Photo – Sean Fennessy, Production – Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.

Master bedroom.  Alpaca blanket by Creswick Wollen Mills.  Vate table lamp from Ikea. Photo – Sean Fennessy, Production – Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.

Bedoom reverse, looking into courtyard.  Swan chair, Cassina Cavalletto desk, Knoll side table, Foscarini Diesel lamp.  Photo – Sean Fennessy, Production – Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.

Entrance.  Painting – ‘Paynes Way’ by Chris Bellamy (represented by Libby Edwards Galleries).  Gumboots by Barbour, Ptolomeo book shelf.  Photo – Sean Fennessy, Production – Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.

Paul Hecker at home.  Downstairs loungeroom – Ox chair (soft focus in foreground), white side table by Zanotta, Arco lamp.  Photo – Sean Fennessy, Production – Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.

by Lucy Feagins, Editor
Wednesday 28th August 2013


  • Mary Anne P 3 years ago

    Great scoop Lucy! Love the gumboots ! Very stylish and modern!

  • Gaz 3 years ago

    Beautiful moody space. That Collin Pennock painting is sublime! As are the views to the park.

  • Markus 3 years ago

    The furnishings and surface treatments have a luxe hotel consistency/repetition that I think would be very calming and lovely to live with. Love the masculine colours throughout somehow never seeming cold or trashy too.

  • Conor 3 years ago

    Part two with kitchen coming next week?? ;)

  • Tash 3 years ago

    Where can you source that beautiful owl from?

  • Fiona 3 years ago

    Oh to have the natural light to paint the walls dark. Such a beautiful and different treatment. Love it.

  • Neil 3 years ago

    Tash, it is the Howdy Owl by Menu. Try Google.

  • Pamela Oberman 3 years ago

    Sharp as a tack love Paul’s obsession with tables and good taste

  • Lucy 3 years ago

    Thanks for all the comments so far guys! Markus – SO true, it totally does have that ‘luxe hotel’ vibe… I should have mentioned this in the story! Conor – Oh you’re right we wished we could have shared the kitchen – it’s just behind that wall at the end of the dining table, very tiny so quite tricky to get a good angle I’m afraid! Similarly we were disappointed we couldn’t get the bathroom, which was beautiful, but a struggle to shoot due to lack of natural light… x

  • Meg T 3 years ago

    The Roger Capron tiles are so beautiful. I will be thinking about them all day, no, all year. It would be lovely to know the details of all of the artworks, especially the photographic works in the upstairs living area.

  • Rita 3 years ago

    Paul/ Lucy thanks for an inspiring post!!! Paul you are RIGHT.. why have something in your home if you dont love it? Time to clear out my junk!

  • Sarah 3 years ago

    A great piece Lucy, very inspiring. I love the dark palette layered with beautiful furniture and found objects. Collectively, they tell such a strong story. Thank you for sharing.

  • marie 3 years ago

    love the look – very inspiring

  • Fiona Cole 3 years ago

    Magnificent stylising!!! Great house to work with. Images fabulous. Great work Lucy and Co !!

  • Catherine 3 years ago

    Would love to relax in those gorgeous sofas. Great combination of soft furnishongs, hard floors, texture and strong lines.

  • Simone Haag 3 years ago

    Congrats Lucy – Gorgeous post!
    Meg T – The photographic works in the main living room are by Rebekah Stuart. x

  • Angela Neylon 3 years ago

    Great colour scheme, so moody and delicious!

  • Anna 3 years ago

    Paul is a really good designer, thanks for showing us around his place. Thanks also to Paul for letting the world in a little bit.

    Love the Ikea ‘Vate’ lamp on the bedside table too!

  • Kimmy 3 years ago

    Would have loved to have seen the vase he would “save” if (god forbid) there were a fire….I think I would have to save that gorgeous artwork by Collin Pennock! Divine.

  • Jane 3 years ago

    Colin is spelled with one ‘l’.

  • Z 3 years ago

    Thank you Lucy & team…..this was an amazing coup and so beautifully presented. It was very generous of Paul to let us into his home…thank you to him, it did not disappoint…simply stunning! I love his use of plants…..I have a feeling all his visitors leave with major whiplash after seeing his beautiful abode!

  • Mister B 3 years ago

    I lived just up the road from this house for years and always wanted to have a sticky inside! Thanks, it is just as wonderful as I thought it would be. Curiosity: satisfied.

  • Paul 3 years ago

    ….absolutely right… My kitchen is small, mirrored and absolutely chokka with bits… I’m no cook, but I love collecting beautiful kitchen stuff… Unfortunately my obsession with kitchen bits has tipped my kitchen over to the dark side… I won’t say hoarder,but some might!

  • Sarah 3 years ago

    anyone know anything about that rope chair next to the Colin Pennock painting?

  • Chris 3 years ago

    I am thrilled to see my painting in Paul’s gorgeous home! Thanks Lucy and thanks so much Paul!

  • BM 3 years ago

    Haven’t seen too many of the Flos Black&white pendants in Australia – just the one I inherited from my parents! Sublime home.

  • Ray Garrod 3 years ago

    OMG The Ceramics! You can tell a lot about a persons (good) taste about the Ceramic items they collect or have in their house :)

  • Ignite Retail Designs 3 years ago

    Lovely colors. Highly impressive.

  • Alana 3 years ago

    We have just bought a house with tiles, which is not my style BUT I want to live with for the medium term. So nice to see such a stylish guy rocking the tiles. Also completely encouraged by his comment about living with imperfection – THANK YOU – need a good dose of realism and contentment every now and again.

  • Alice 3 years ago

    Beautiful home housing some amazing collections. Coveting side tables and ceramics.

  • Miri 3 years ago

    Love todays post… very inspiring… seriously,how is it possible this stylish and incredibly talented man is a bachelor (and where can we meet him) ?!!

  • Africa fox 3 years ago

    Draw droppingly amazing home. Do you have any info about the photos in living room & entrance? They’re divine!

  • Natalie 3 years ago

    Thankyou for sharing this beautiful home and stunning collection of beautifully designed pieces. To me its a perfect balance of clean, modern simplicity with interest, texture & luxe. Gorgeous!

  • 3 years ago

    Love that chocolate colour. I reckon it’s a new trend, and how comfy it feels with there textured objects !!

  • Nat 3 years ago

    Beautiful home! Another great example of a small space with lots of personality. Lucy/Paul, just wondering who are those prints by in upstairs living room?

  • Megan 3 years ago

    Where did you get those cannons on your arms from Paul?! Knockout!

  • Abdiel smith 3 years ago

    Passionately waiting for the part two,this scoop broadened my creativity.
    Love the leafy view from the window.

  • Olivia Hrouda 3 years ago

    Love the house! And so reassuring to hear that Paul, you are a self confessed hoarder also. As a fellow (but obviously far less notable) interior designer I thought that I was breaking every rule in the book to have such a crazy obsession with collecting crockery! My particular fettish is 1960s-1970s ceramics and glass (…and tea pots… i have a ridicullous number of tea pots!) My cupboards are bursting! I’d love to see yours – you have me very intrigued…

  • Lauren 3 years ago

    I love seeing how a small one bedroom apartment doesn’t mean it has to be small in the style department. Amazing space. Right, tomorrow I’m going to declutter and only display things I love. Thanks for sharing.

  • Michelle 3 years ago

    What a gorgeous place. Do you know where the gorgeous white buffet/bookcase in the downstairs lounge is from?

  • Love the warm brown colours contrasting with the green outdoors

  • Paula 3 years ago

    That painting……….

  • Rebekah 3 years ago

    So wonderful to see my art works on your walls! A very stylish house you have.

  • Surprisingly for a thirteen year old design, it still looks modern. It could be because modern homes tend to look like this. There are a lot of lines in the architecture, even the furniture tend to be linear than curvaceous. The blending of modern and classic pieces is so seamless and unnoticeable that it simply speaks of genius. The lovely glass walls are a magnet for natural lighting, on midmornings the rooms would probably be bathed in sunshine.

  • Alex 3 years ago

    I LOVE that book stack. Brilliant idea.

  • Simone 3 years ago

    Just goes to show – hybrids are THE NOVELLE VAGUE! Combine Scandic-Danish influenced pieces with a warm earthy grey backdrop combined with an all essential pallette of minimalist Italian big players including Zanotta & Cassina, and Ptolomeo shelving that make shelving invisible & make all that’s displayed sing!!

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