Interior designer Louella Boitel-Gill came across her Avalon Beach home via Modern House – a real estate service specialising in Modernist, Mid-Century and architect-designed homes. While Louella attended a few real estate viewings for ‘stickybeak’ purposes (let’s be honest, who hasn’t?), when she visited this home everything fell into place. ‘We knew we loved the place the minute we walked in’ she admits.
The home was designed in the late ‘60s, and bears some reference to Japanese architecture, with its rustic simplicity and extensive use of timber. Perched up high above street level, it requires a serious hike to get to the front door, but Louella explains ‘you have the loveliest view of Pittwater, and you’re right up in the trees with all the birds.’ With a view like this, and an architectural design by Rowan Fotheringham, later extended by Ray Gill, this home needed no renovations or updates. Louella highlights ‘all we’ve done is fill it with furniture, and put up a rope swing.’ A favourite of Louella’s daughters Chilli and Indi!
As an interior designer and respected stylist, Louella has a whole swag of knowledge about key pieces and design movements – but she highlights her Spanish chairs by Børge Morgensen as favourite personal pieces. ‘Not only are they beautiful, they’re ridiculously comfortable too’ she says.
Louella describes her aesthetic as a ‘mix of timber and neutrals, with splashes of colour in layers, so the background palette of the house makes for an easy canvas to work with.’ With serene white walls, the designer adds colour though her thoughtful introduction of treasured artworks and textiles. She enthuses ‘despite the steep site, and the many stairs to climb to get to the front door, we love living here, and we love waking up in a house that’s up in the trees, surrounded by chatty bird life.’