This website uses cookies to improve your experience navigating our site. By continuing to browse, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

OK, I understand

A Transformed Victorian Terrace

Architecture

Today’s home highlights the possibilities of reconfiguring a space from the inside out, without dramatically altering the built fabric of a building.

The team at studiofour shifted the layout of this Prahran house into a more flexible design – and in doing so transformed a dark Victorian terrace into modern and functional family home. This is a perfect lesson in the power of good design; a well-considered extension or renovation can truly transform a house, when done right!

27th August, 2018

An old terrace house, completely reimagined. Photo – Shannon McGarth.

White walls and American oak joinery have been utilised to maximise brightness in what was once a dark, pokey home. Photo – Shannon McGarth.

The new kitchen and dining areas. Photo – Shannon McGarth.

The perfect combination of heritage charm with a modern update! Photo – Shannon McGarth.

An EPIC functional book wall creates a framed portal to the new kitchen and dining areas. Photo – Shannon McGarth.

The clients initially approached studiofour architects to redevelop the upper level of their Victorian Terrace house, but the Melbourne-based firm saw potential to increase the flow for the whole house. Photo – Shannon McGarth.

An internal courtyard was added to create a relationship with the outdoors. Photo – Shannon McGarth.

An utterly contemporary expression. Photo – Shannon McGarth.

Sliding glass walls open up the downstairs areas of the house. Photo – Shannon McGarth.

An upstairs bedroom. Photo – Shannon McGarth.

Master bedroom. Photo – Shannon McGarth.

The home was designed with the needs of the young family in mind. Photo – Shannon McGarth.

One of the kid’s rooms. Photo – Shannon McGarth.

Sally Tabart
Monday 27th August 2018

For Annabelle Berryman and Sarah Henry, directors of architecture firm studiofour, the renovation of a small Victorian Terrace house in Prahran presented a few textbook challenges. ‘It was full of dark, compartmentalised spaces and had very limited access to fresh air,’ Annabelle recalls.

The clients had initially approached studiofour to add an upper floor with two additional bedrooms, and a bathroom for their young family. However, Annabelle, Sarah and their team saw greater potential! Completely redeveloping the ground floor, studiofour were able to double the size of the living, kitchen and dining areas, as well as adding a central courtyard to access to light, and circulate natural airflow throughout the home.

Designed within the existing building’s framework, this ‘new home’ is a complete departure from its pokey, dark origins. Light now pours through the house, and large glass doors that slide behind a downstairs central joinery/fireplace unit have allowed the heart of the home to be connected to the new landscaped courtyard area that is both private and secure. The addition of a functional book wall ‘enabled a framed entrance into the new kitchen and dining space’, whilst another sliding glass wall connects a generous new outdoor area, and offers access to a previously unusable rear courtyard.

So often it can be tempting to demolish and build from scratch. Despite this itch to eliminate and reemerge like a phoenix from the ashes, Annabelle advises that for many homes with existing heritage and character, this approach often does not offer the best value. In this instance, the studio have shown what is possible when an even-handed renovation is designed to complement and enhance an existing structure.

View Comments

Similar Stories

Architecture

Perf Pad, A House With Dimples

A house with dimples - the Perf Pad by Northbourne Architecture + Design lets the light in.

Architecture

Restoring Architectural Law And Order In 'The Wild West'

An apartment-house hybrid in WA, from Kate Fitzgerald of Perth-based architectural practice, Whispering Smith.

Architecture

Bringing The Light Into A Heritage Cottage

A pocket-sized heritage home in Princes Hill, transformed by Tom Robertson Architects.

This Week

Creative People

A Travel-Inspired Ceramics Collection That Will Take You On Holiday!

Queensland-based ceramics brand Marloe Marloe launches a new collection of vessels inspired by the seaside!

Creative People

Behind The Scenes Of 'Rone In Geelong’ – Opening This Weekend!

See a retrospective of artist Rone's work to date at Geelong Gallery from Saturday February 27 to Sunday May 16, 2021.

Architecture

A New Melbourne Home That Follows The Sun

This Eaglemont home has been cleverly designed 'to almost disappear', by Architects Eat.

Homes

A Biophilic Family Home Among The Trees

The newly-renovated Warrandyte family home of Millie and Dave Wells perfectly blends indoors and out!

On The Market

An Interior Designer’s Glamorous Victorian Pad Hits The Market!

Chelsea Hing’s apartment in an 1890s Italianate mansion in St Kilda East is up for sale. This is *the one*!

On The Market

This Elegant Victorian With An Eclectic Architect-Designed Extension Is For Sale

Period features meet unique, contemporary design in this Ascot Vale, Melbourne home.

News

'Giant' by Evi O Opens At Saint Cloche

Artist Evi O showcases her largest paintings to date in new exhibition Giant, on now at Saint Cloche.

Shopping

Lockdown-Inspired Woven Outdoor Picnic Mats, From One Of Our Fave Local Stylists!

Stylist Nat Turnbull launches Laze, a new brand of outdoor mats for lounging and picnicking, with designs by Alice Oehr.

Architecture

A Casually Confident Beachside Home

A falling down period home in South Fremantle has been brought back to life with a new extension by David Barr Architects.
Amelia Barnes
  19 hours ago

Stays

This Origami-Style Beach Shack Is The Perfect Coastal Getaway

This architecturally designed coastal retreat on Stradbroke Island looks out over the glittering Coral Sea. The most dreamy vacation destina...
Sasha Gattermayr
  11 hours ago

Family

An Honest Conversation On Single Parenting By Choice + Donor Conception With Takeawei Ceramics Founder, Chela Edmunds

Chela Edmunds of Takeawei ceramics shares her story of becoming a mother to 18-month-old Ocean via sperm donor and IVF.

News

Patricia Piccinini And Alpha60 Join Forces On A New Collaboration

The celebrated Australian artist and local fashion legends launch a new series of textiles titled ‘Hugs’, which are now installe...
Sponsored

Tiny Homes

The Architect-Designed, Prefabricated Tiny House Of The Future

FABPREFAB have teamed up with TRIAS to create Minima – a series of prefabricated, small dwellings suitable as home offices, living spaces,...

Studio Visit

The Melbourne Artist Creating Ceramics Inspired By Ancient Mesoamerican Culture

From dub music to the Chinese Song Dynasty, the influences of Enrique Tochez Anderson stretch far, wide and into the past.

News

A Group Show Combining Ceramics + Still-Life Under One Roof!

Ceramicist Grace Brown joins artistic forces with figurative artist Margaret Voterakis for a new exhibition at Modern Times, ‘Utopian Purs...
Sasha Aarons

Similar Stories

Architecture

Perf Pad, A House With Dimples

A house with dimples - the Perf Pad lets the light in.

Architecture

Restoring Architectural Law And Order In 'The Wild West'

An apartment-house hybrid from Perth-based architectural practice, Whispering Smith.

Architecture

Bringing The Light Into A Heritage Cottage

A pocket-sized heritage home in Princes Hill, transformed by Tom Robertson Architects.

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 – we would love to hear from you.

Please email us here.