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A Home That Bridges Past And Present

Homes

Melissa Macfarlane and Frank Moylan purchased a rundown Victoria-era property in Kyneton, and applied all of their combined skills to bring the stunning-but-decrepit home to life! With Melissa’s knack for sourcing vintage pieces (she runs Kabinett in Kyneton) and Frank’s architectural finishing business, the pair were perfectly suited to the challenge.

Linked by a breezeway, the home comprises a renovated 1904 cottage, with a new modern ‘barn’, housing kitchen and living spaces. It shouldn’t work, but it absolutely does!

9th January, 2019

Inside the Kyneton home of Melissa Mcfarlane and Frank Moylan. The artwork featured above the sofa is a collection if Danish vintage paintings from varying eras, plus contemporary pieces purchased through Stockroom Kyneton. Bottom right: Darren Munce. Top Left: Larry Parkinson. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Drawer unit from Melissa’s vintage homewares store, Kabinett. Sofa from Globe West. Modified cane lights from Ikea. Artwork by Fairy Turner. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Drawer unit from Kabinett. Painting by Jordan Grant. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

The kitchen. Tiles from Urban Edge. Stools from Kabinett. Hanging globe lights from About Space.  Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Artwork by Mary Barton. Woven brass lights by Cavaletti Gallery, Kyneton. Table by Kabinett. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Vintage mirror and vanity from Kabinett. Painting by Melissa. Hanging lights purchased in Singapore. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

The master bedroom. Italian light from Izzi and Popo. Painting by Melissa. Ship clock purchased in Jodhpur. Upholstered bedhead by Dre Henning Upholsterer using Warwick Fabric. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

The old part of the home used to be the local post office, which Melissa and Frank have converted into their own little makeshift bar that they’ve called The Post Office Hotel! ‘It’s decorated with stuff we’ve collected over the years of travel’, says Melissa. ‘We have pre-dinner drinks there, or we put on Instagram that the pub is open and people bring drinks’. So sweet! Vintage Danish and Bulgarian paintings. Timber frames from Rajhastan. Round table from Kabinett. Piano stool is a family heirloom. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

View from the front veranda framed by Melissa’s gorgeous old glory vine, looking into the Post Office Hotel. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

The makings of all the favourite cocktails! Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Inside the Post Office Hotel. Bulgarian landscape painting purchased in Plovdiv. Danish and Russian portraits. Vintage (non-functional!) pokie machine. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Melissa standing outside her impressive home. This is the exterior of the old part, which was once an old post office. Now it’s a private bar for Melissa’s friends called The Post Office Hotel! Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

The ‘gin and tonic spot’!Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

The garden path. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

The vegetable patch made of cut down water tanks from the property when Melissa and Frank purchased it. The garden gate is from India. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

The back of the house, with two chimneys that were part of the old bakery. The old bath came from the house when Melissa bought it. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Roadside letter boxes. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Lucy Feagins
Wednesday 9th January 2019

Melissa Macfarlane and Frank Moylan discovered their incredible rural property by trawling real estate sites, where the home had sat available for a long time, due to what Melissa describes as ‘terrible images.’ As someone who sources vintage pieces from all around the world for her business, Melissa has a keen eye for uncovering beauty in unexpected places. After a return drive from Melbourne to Adelaide, where she ‘fantasized’ about the home for the entire trip, Melissa and partner Frank went to see it, and immediately fell in love.

When the couple moved in, the walls were pink and the home was falling apart, but the previous owner’s botanical skills had results in a truly spectacular garden, and the site sang with potential. Melissa and Frank got to work, renovating the cottage, and installing a big new ‘barn’ (which houses a new kitchen and living spaces) at the side of the old house.

A breezeway connects the old and the new, and Melissa highlights this ‘journey’ between the cosy bedrooms of the old home, and bright and open kitchen and living spaces of the barn as a favourite feature. She describes marrying the old, moody and ‘slightly creepy’ vibe of the original home, with the freshness of the new build, by combining a variety of timber and industrial details, alongside an eclectic mix of modern and vintage items sourced from all over the world.

Artwork is the number one priority in the home, with special favourites by Melissa’s father, and works by Jordan Grant and Fairy Turner purchased through Stockroom in Kyneton. Melissa highlights that she was happy to compromise and be pragmatic with the architectural design, in order to come in under budget and on time… and so she could spend the saved funds on art!

The property is located just outside of Kyneton, in what used to be the Springhill settlement, and this 1904 home was once a general store, post office, and bakery! Melissa and Frank have re-created The Post Office Hotel folly, where friends loved to swing by for a drink in art-filled eclectic surrounds! Now they have opened the Royal George hotel in Kyneton, their own folly gets slightly less lounge-time, but perfectly captures the ‘art heavy and relaxed with a party vibe’ energy of this incredible home.

Melissa and her family have recently launched The Macfarlane Fund at ACCA, a philanthropic endeavor in memory of Melissa’s beloved father Don with the primary objective to provide financial support to assist artists in creating their works. The first exhibition of commissions, The Theatre Is Lying, are now on at ACCA!

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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