Melbourne’s rental market is not for the faint hearted. Great rental properties are in short supply (2.2 per cent vacancy rate currently, as reported by the REIV) and the most covetable rentals often bypass traditional advertising, instead being handed down from tenant-to-tenant via word of mouth.
This sweet two bedroom worker’s cottage in Carlton is one such property, having been passed directly through the hands of various tenants over the past 10 years. Friends Courtney Webb and Maddy Worthington have lived here together for the last two years. Being renters, they haven’t made any major changes, but this hasn’t stopped them putting their own stamp on the place.
Working as a set dresser means Courtney spends much of her time sourcing interesting furniture, furnishings, homewares and props for TV shows and film – many of which find their way into her home once a production wraps up. ‘I love our big one-and-a-half seater armchair which I purchased at the end of a job this year’ she mentions. The pair also treasure the various artworks which adorn their walls, many by friends, and others acquired again from film and tv jobs.
When not working on Melbourne’s latest TV show, Courtney is also a passionate crafter, and runs a small weaving business called Warped Threads, with fellow crafter Nicky Cawood. Her unique woven wall hangings are on high rotation at home, adding a distinctive layer of colour and texture to the space.
Self described as a combination of ‘Scandinavian minimalist and the Justina Blakeney ‘Jungalow’ style’, Courtney and Maddy’s home is a vibrant, ever-changing space. ‘I love feeling cosy but not closed-in, so there is definitely a fine line between having just enough and way too much stuff!’ Courtney says. The versatile creative also enjoys changing things around every now at then – ‘I am a big fan of throws, cushions and rugs to change up a space’ she says.
‘Having rented ever since I moved out of home 15 years ago, this is the first place I have felt like I could really ‘live’ in’ Courtney surmises. ‘I feel very much at home here.’