The Waterfall family (YES) have lived in their quaint, colourful four bedroom terrace house in Enmore for just three years.
As is often the case with Victorian homes, when they first moved in, the house was in need of a little love. ‘We had to rewire the whole house, put in a gas line, and re-do all the floors,’ Renata recalls. More recently, they have updated the kitchen – opting for a classic black and white scheme, cleverly incorporating off-the-shelf IKEA cabinets.
The home is layered with life, treasured second hand finds and keepsakes collected over a lifetime, giving it a tangible sense of history. Renata’s most treasured possessions are all second hand – an original 1950’s string shelving unit in the dining room, her vintage tin collection, artfully displayed on the wall above the mantlepiece, and the family’s beautiful antique dining table, which Renata picked up in an op-shop for $20 (!) many years ago, and painstakingly restored by hand.
Interestingly, Renata’s affection for all things second hand certainly wasn’t passed on by her family. ‘Being of Macedonian heritage, we had your typical post industrialist ‘european nostalgic’ home’ Renata explains. ‘…everything was new, new, new and very clean lines and basic!’ Renata says. ‘My father still shakes his head at why we would want to live in something ‘old’, but the history, high ceilings, ornate ceiling roses and paddington cornices are things of beauty!’
Renovating on a budget has been a challenge, but has made each completed project all the more appreciated! ’It just takes time to raise funds… without eating baked beans every night for year.’ Renata says. ‘You don’t need a lot of money to decorate, but you do to renovate. I had a camping stove for 2 years before we got our new kitchen! Now I have a Smeg. Yay!’
Though they still have much they would like to do here, the Waterfall family are in no hurry to ‘finish’ renovating. ‘This is our forever home, so we aren’t rushing’ Renata concludes. As with so many things in life, the joy is in the journey.
Sydney folk can see more of Renata’s paintings in a solo exhibition entitled ‘Therefore, Painting‘ at Gallery 371 in Marrickville, opening this Saturday August 12th, from 5.00pm.