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!