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 Stylish, Sentimental Home In St Kilda

Homes

Our eternally chic stylist Annie Portelli came back from this photo shoot completely buzzing about the St Kilda home of Barb Hyman and her family. Annie (whose own apartment is one of our most popular home tours!) enthused ‘I was as impressed as I was envious. This is the DREAM home!’

Barb’s home has undergone some serious renovations since the family moved in 2013 – transforming a once derelict, grand mansion into a chic, pared back, yet richly layered family home. She shares this sprawling terrace with her three kids, her partner, and his dog named Thai.

24th July, 2019

The effortlessly chic St Kilda home of Barb Hyman. Scarf from est Living used as affordable artwork. Kitchen storage cupboard from Izzi and Popo. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Incredible PET Lamp woven lampshades (using recycled plastic bottles!) from Safari Living. Wooden shutters from Manon bis.  Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

‘I am very sentimental about everything. I don’t have anything that doesn’t mean something to me’, tells Barb. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Looking through the dining room out to the garden. Lamps in distance by PET Lamp from Safari Living. Washed blue cabinet from Manon bis. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Barb’s spectacular heritage home is COVERED with thriving creeper vines. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Barb in her lush European garden, which she created with the help of local landscaper Gavin Smith. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

A quiet nook. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

A divine example of a historic home, with a new heart. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Couch purchased from a friend for $300, recovered in blue velvet. Slate grey couch by Paola Navone. Missoni pink rug from Spence & Lyda. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Master bedroom. A simple desk where Barb sometimes works. Bed from Weylandts. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Master bedroom. Rug purchased in Morocco. Oversized leather chair from Modern Times. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Beautiful light in the master bedroom. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Objects from Barb’s travels. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

There are two staircases in this home (!), and no internal doors! Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Bed from Weylandts. Rug from Morocco. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

One of Barb’s daughter’s rooms – fun and colourful whilst elegant and restrained. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

The perfect spot for curling up with a book. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli.

Lucy Feagins
Wednesday 24th July 2019

‘I am very sentimental about everything. I don’t have anything that doesn’t mean something to me.’ – Barb Hyman.

When Barb Hyman moved into this sprawling St Kilda terrace in 2013, there was a lot of work to do! She evocatively describes this history of the property as shaped by ‘a probable mix of debauchery and neglect!’

The largest job was knocking down the lean-to attached to the back of the house, and replacing it with large steel framed glass doors, that welcome light into the home. In addition to plastering unfinished walls, and providing support to the original wooden stairs – the garden was what sold Barb on the home, and has been her biggest challenge (and reward!).

Barb explains that when she purchased the property, the garden had ‘only one tree, a fig tree, and loads and loads of hard-waste rubble in the soil.’ After spending endless weekends clearing out the space and filling tips, Barb created a l’orangerie (orange orchard) out the front, and a ‘wild Mediterranean style garden out the back’ with the assistance of brilliant local landscaper Gavin Smith.

Inside, the home is brought to life with personal touches that sit gently within the grand proportions of the space. Barb explains, ‘I am very sentimental about everything. I don’t have anything that doesn’t mean something to me.’ Our photographer and stylist found little notes and drawings from her kids, poked into a gap in the window sill or pinned to the side of an antique dresser. For Barb, the most precious objects are the books she made when the children were babies, and ‘tell the story of their growing up, with drawings, pictures and loads of quirky mementos.’

While Barb is charmingly elusive about how she ended up in this St Kilda residence (she explains ‘lets just say it wasn’t via the usual means – serendipity, lots of patience, and a story best shared over a bottle of wine’), it is clear that she is right at home. She enthuses ‘I feel eternally grateful to live here and come home to this space. The greenery, watching the garden grow and change shapes in the seasons, it’s an absolute gift!’

This Week

Architecture

An Elegant Extension To This Federation Home

Source Architects turn a regional Federation property into a light-flooded home with a garden pavilion, all within a year!
Miriam McGarry

News

Will Studd Makes Cheese Dreams Come True!

Where to find Aphrodite Galotyri – Will Studd’s new northern Greek, spreadable cheese that we CANNOT STOP EATING.
Amelia Barnes

Family

Alison Bell On The Joys And Humiliations Of Working Mum Life

Ashe Davenport talks with the co-creator and star of 'The Letdown' on ABC and Netflix, about turning her parenting struggles into a hit TV s...
Ashe Davenport

Gardens

Will Studd's Sub-Tropical Wonderland In Byron Bay

The cheese mogul's New South Wales garden is a vibrant mix of colours and textures.
Georgina Reid

Events

Your First Look At 'Flowering Now' In Collingwood

Don't miss the second annual Flowering Now immersive installation – open this weekend only!
Amelia Barnes

Fundraiser

Robin Boyd Collection Furniture Goes Under The Hammer At Heide!

Register now to bid on one-of-a-kind pieces from the design legend later this month, at Heide Museum of Modern Art.
Lucy Feagins
  17 hours ago

News

Dinner And Show With Ella Mittas And Blackhearts & Sparrows!

Experience a three-course Italian dinner and show in this special event.
Amelia Barnes
  14 hours ago

Art

A Powerful New Photographic Exhibition From Edward Goldner

View stunning images of North West Africa in cinematographer Edward Goldner’s latest photography exhibition, Nājī.
Miriam McGarry

Food

Julia Busuttil Nishimura's Seasonal Flavours: Strawberries

Strawberries are back in season, and Julia shows us how to make the most of them, baked in a strawberry galette!
Julia Busuttil Nishimura
  1 hour ago

News

Join Lindsay At The MOST Glamorous Magazine Launch!

It’s time to pull out your fancy dresses, for a couture gala at The Windsor’s Grand Ballroom to celebrate Lindsay’s fourth issue.
Miriam McGarry

Homes

A 1980s Beachside Brick Home Gets A Dreamy Renovation

Alex Bennett shares her beautifully renovated family home in Suffolk Park, not far from Byron Bay.

Architecture

An All-Seasons Beach House Designed For The Whole Family

Inside Whiting Architects' Dunes house – a beach house to suit up to 14 family members and all weather conditions!
Amelia Barnes
44.06

Podcast

TDF Talks with Street Artist, Rone

Lucy talks with one of Melbourne's most exciting artists about the evolution of his career, and making seemingly impossible things happen.
Lucy Feagins
  14 hours ago

Art

Stephen Baker Presents ‘We’re In This Together’

Melbourne artist Stephen Baker opens a new exhibition in Fitzroy.
Amelia Barnes

Interiors

The Dreamiest Kitchens In The World

These incredible Australian kitchens took out four top prizes in the global Sub-Zero and Wolf Kitchen Design Contest!

View Comments

Similar Stories

Homes

A Loving Heritage Restoration

A historic 1870s Armadale home is refurbished to former glory, with contemporary flourish!

Homes

An Artist's Leafy, Bohemian Sanctuary In Alphington

Take a tour through the 120-year-old Alphington home of Suzanne Corbett, now on the market!

Homes

An Incredible Adventure In Renovating An Iconic Piece Of Architectural History

Mary and Marc Parlange take on the challenge of bringing Walter Burley Griffin's Salter House back to life.

This Week

Architecture

An Elegant Extension To This Federation Home

Source Architects turn a regional Federation property into a light-flooded home with a garden pavilion, all within a year!
Miriam McGarry

Homes

A 1980s Beachside Brick Home Gets A Dreamy Renovation

Alex Bennett shares her beautifully renovated family home in Suffolk Park, not far from Byron Bay.

Art

A Powerful New Photographic Exhibition From Edward Goldner

View stunning images of North West Africa in cinematographer Edward Goldner’s latest photography exhibition, Nājī.
Miriam McGarry

Food

Julia Busuttil Nishimura's Seasonal Flavours: Strawberries

Strawberries are back in season, and Julia shows us how to make the most of them, baked in a strawberry galette!
Julia Busuttil Nishimura
  1 hour ago

Events

Your First Look At 'Flowering Now' In Collingwood

Don't miss the second annual Flowering Now immersive installation – open this weekend only!
Amelia Barnes

News

Join Lindsay At The MOST Glamorous Magazine Launch!

It’s time to pull out your fancy dresses, for a couture gala at The Windsor’s Grand Ballroom to celebrate Lindsay’s fourth issue.
Miriam McGarry

Architecture

An All-Seasons Beach House Designed For The Whole Family

Inside Whiting Architects' Dunes house – a beach house to suit up to 14 family members and all weather conditions!
Amelia Barnes

News

Dinner And Show With Ella Mittas And Blackhearts & Sparrows!

Experience a three-course Italian dinner and show in this special event.
Amelia Barnes
  14 hours ago
44.06

Podcast

TDF Talks with Street Artist, Rone

Lucy talks with one of Melbourne's most exciting artists about the evolution of his career, and making seemingly impossible things happen.
Lucy Feagins
  14 hours ago

News

Will Studd Makes Cheese Dreams Come True!

Where to find Aphrodite Galotyri – Will Studd’s new northern Greek, spreadable cheese that we CANNOT STOP EATING.
Amelia Barnes

Interiors

The Dreamiest Kitchens In The World

These incredible Australian kitchens took out four top prizes in the global Sub-Zero and Wolf Kitchen Design Contest!

Fundraiser

Robin Boyd Collection Furniture Goes Under The Hammer At Heide!

Register now to bid on one-of-a-kind pieces from the design legend later this month, at Heide Museum of Modern Art.
Lucy Feagins
  17 hours ago

Art

Stephen Baker Presents ‘We’re In This Together’

Melbourne artist Stephen Baker opens a new exhibition in Fitzroy.
Amelia Barnes

Gardens

Will Studd's Sub-Tropical Wonderland In Byron Bay

The cheese mogul's New South Wales garden is a vibrant mix of colours and textures.
Georgina Reid

Family

Alison Bell On The Joys And Humiliations Of Working Mum Life

Ashe Davenport talks with the co-creator and star of 'The Letdown' on ABC and Netflix, about turning her parenting struggles into a hit TV s...
Ashe Davenport

Similar Stories

Homes

A Loving Heritage Restoration

A historic 1870s Armadale home is refurbished to former glory.

Homes

An Artist's Leafy, Bohemian Sanctuary In Alphington

Take a tour through the 120-year-old Alphington home of Suzanne Corbett, now on the market!

Homes

An Incredible Adventure In Renovating An Iconic Piece Of Architectural History

Mary and Marc Parlange take on the challenge of bringing Walter Burley Griffin's Salter House back to life.