BEST OF AUSTRALIAN HOMES 2012 · Georgie and Alex Cleary

Lucy Feagins
Lucy Feagins
3rd of January 2013
The Northcote home of Alex and Georgie Cleary of Alpha60.  Portrait at end of downstairs hallway is a print of a Chuck Close painting called 'Bob'. 'It was our favourite painting at the NGA when we were kids. We couldn't believe it was a painting and not a photograph' says Georgie.  Photo on left by Alex Penfold. Paintings on the right by Rob McLeish.  Vintage lights sourced from the postal sorting rooms in the Dandenongs. Photo - Sean Fennessy, production - Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.
Bikes in the hallway.  Photo - Sean Fennessy, production - Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.
Kitchen. Old coke bottles found under the house during the re-stumping! Concrete bench poured on site.  Photo - Sean Fennessy, production - Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.
Today we're re-visiting another distinctive and highly creative Melbourne home - a converted community hall in Westgarth belonging to Alex and Georgie Cleary, the brother-sister team behind local fashion label Alpha60.  We originally ran this story in October... which I know is quite recent, but it was so insanely popular, I just had to include it again as part of our 'Best of' series this week! (It seemed unfair not to!) Georgie and Alex worked with architect friends Jenny Berean and Joachim Holland to re-configure this incredible space, which was very rundown when they first acquired the property.  The building needed re-stumping and gutting, bi-fold doors were added to create a light filled sitting area downstairs, and the main staircase was moved from the front to the back of the property. Aside from the impressive scale and clever re-furb of this building, much of the home's appeal can be put down to Georgie and Alex's unique collection of artefacts and ephemera displayed throughout the home.  The oversized shoe sculptures upstairs are probably the most distinctive example - these were created by Georgie's partner Giuseppe for a promotional event a few years ago.  They certainly make a statement! 'It is amazing to create a space pretty much from scratch' says Georgie of her home. 'That has been a dream of Al's and mine, ever since we moved an old weatherboard house on the back of a truck and dumped it in the paddock at Mum and Dad's farm.  We renovated it so we could live with more independence when we were teenagers'. For the full story and many more pics of Alex and Georgie's incredible home, do re-visit the original post!
Giant shoe sculpture made by Georgie's partner Giuseppe Demaio. Glass artworks by Judy Elliot. Photo - Sean Fennessy, production - Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.

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