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A Creative Couple's Sanctuary in Princes Hill

Homes

Partners in both life and business, Jessie Oldfield and Adam Murfet are a great team. The husband-and-wife duo run their own production company, CKOL, based in Collingwood.

The prolific pair have created a very special home together in Princes Hill – a beautifully designed little house, originally built by celebrated Melbourne jeweller Mari Funaki.

10th January, 2018

Inside the beautiful, Princes Hill home of Jessie Oldfield and Adam Murfet, founders of CKOL. Photo – Eve Wilson.

A reading and lounging spot, featuring green daybed sourced by Pip Newell from Curated Spaces. ‘We love having somewhere to pause and look up,’ tell Adam and Jessie. Photo – Eve Wilson.

The pair love that the ‘outside feels like inside’ at their home. Painting on the left, ‘Jennifer’ by their friends Alex and Georgie at Alpha 60. Photo – Eve Wilson.

Adam and Jessie’s stunning kitchen, with ceramic mugs by artist Peter Shire and Thonet chairs. ‘The artist who designed the house disliked the look of ‘handles’ at the time, so instead, sliding doors/sliding cupboards are everywhere to avoid handles popping out of things,’ they explain. Photo – Eve Wilson.

Kitchen details. Part of the roof is glass, which ushers in light from the huge windows in the upstairs master bedroom. ‘This means the master bedroom partly has a glass floor – which everyone cautiously walks over for the first time!’ they joke. ‘Snoopy Lamp’ by Flos on counter. Photo – Eve Wilson.

Living area details, featuring a special ceramic pot that belonged to Jessie’s great-grandmother. ‘Three generations of ladies before me have enjoyed this pot grow!’ she tells. Photo – Eve Wilson.

Photograph by Nic Hawker, which was actually taken near Adam and Jessie’s beach house, ‘Amy’ painting by Georgie and Alex at Alpha 60, Shiva flower vase designed by Ettore Sottsass. ‘The colourful object on the table is from our wedding day – it’s a crystal rod that everyone tied a ribbon onto with three wishes for us. The ribbons say “Love Loves to Love Love”,’ explain the duo. ‘It’s nice to sit around and share meals and drinks with so many things around us that have been created with love and a story.’ Photo – Eve Wilson.

 

The custom bookshelf was made by Like Butter, painting (left) by Nic George, which was painted and gifted as a thank you after he stayed one summer, artwork (right) ‘Harmless’ (a gun made out of leaves and flowers) by Sonia Rentsch, hand-painted tiny ceramic houses from Brazil, giant ceramic fish from a small town in Sicily, black vintage globe of the World, solar-powered rainbow maker, and giant dreamcatcher made by Jessie’s sister fill the shelves. ‘Everything
in our house inspires us!’ adds Jessie. Photo – Eve Wilson.

‘We love that it has a place for all our precious objects and books. It shows off so many moments in time, objects we have collected and is often a place people are drawn to when they enter the space,’ say Adam and Jessie of their custom bookshelf by . Photo – Eve Wilson.

Master bedroom detail. Art photograph by Bill Henson (2001/2002). The glass doors completely open up so the pair can lay and watch the stars or enjoy the breeze at night. Photo – Eve Wilson.

Bathroom with shower and bath. ‘In the early mornings it’s like a lightbox – the warm gold of the sun lights it up, which makes it easier to wake up!’ tells Jessie. Photo – Eve Wilson.

Jessie Oldfield and Adam Murfet, of CKOL, pictured with their pooch Frog. Photo – Eve Wilson.

The front entrance of Adam and Jessie’s house was originally built as a car garage. ‘We have filled the area with greenery – we prefer to have the car on the street and another area to enjoy. It’s nice to walk through the jungle once you come in the front door!’ Photo – Eve Wilson.

Lucy Feagins
Wednesday 10th January 2018

‘I have heard that our house was a meeting place for artists and conversations, and there is something about the space that attracts this in our life too.’ – Jessie Oldfield.

Jessie Oldfield and Adam Murfet live in the sort of house that makes you go ‘How did they get this amazing house!?’.  The pair are passionate custodians of a beautifully designed little house, originally built by celebrated Melbourne jeweller Mari Funaki, who sadly passed away in 2010. Mari was one of Australia’s leading contemporary jewellery makers, and this was her own home and studio.

‘When we moved in, all the paperwork was left here – all Mari’s notes and correspondence with the architect, showing the meticulous detail and thought-process of what she wanted her home to feel like,’ Jessie explains. ‘It’s a really special place to live in, we feel very lucky to enjoy the beauty she created.’

Nestled in an unlikely spot in a back laneway in Princes Hill, this neat little two-bedroom house actually feels a little like a jewellery box. Meticulously designed cabinetry folds out seamlessly, revealing hidden compartments and versatile configurations. Noting its timeless aesthetic, Jessie loves the way the house ‘flows’ – ‘the outside is part of the home in every room’ she points out. ‘The house feels intelligent, inspired by nature and the elements’.

Layered over this clever design, of course, is Jessie and Adam’s own history – including treasures collected from their travels, as well as artwork and handcrafted things by talented creative friends.

Favourite pieces are those that exude a unique personality, like *that* Bitossi Ettore Sottsass vase (aka the penis vase!) – a gift from friends for the couple’s engagement. ‘We admire his work and have dreamt of owning this vase, we love how much of a statement it is. We get excited about finding different flowers for it, it really shifts the vibe of the house,’ Jessie explains.

Other treasured artefacts include the hand-painted tiny ceramic houses from a town the pair fell in love with in Brazil, a giant ‘wet looking’ ceramic fish from a small town in Sicily (!),  a solar-powered rainbow maker, a giant dreamcatcher made by Jessie’s sister… ‘Everything in our house inspires us,’ Jessie concludes!

I still don’t know exactly how Jessie and Adam landed this extraordinary home (and BTW, it’s a rental!), but somehow it feels like they were meant to be here. There really is a special energy in this house, it feels like a magnet for creative people. ‘I have heard from people that Mari was a big advocate for bringing people together, and that our house was a meeting place for artists and conversations,’ Jessie muses. ‘There is something about the space that attracts this in our life too, and we love that.’

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The Design Files acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the lands on which we work, the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.

First Nations artists, designers, makers, and creative business owners are encouraged to submit their projects for coverage on The Design Files. Please email bea@thedesignfiles.net