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 Compact Heritage Bungalow Becomes A Functional Family Home

Interiors

A newly renovated 1920s bungalow in one of Adelaide’s garden suburbs was the site for interior designer Georgie Shepherd’s latest project – House of Billie.

With delightful heritage bones and a simple rear extension to cater for a family of four, the compact space required a laser focus on materials, colour and furnishings, to ensure a minimalist approach, with maximum functionality.

3rd September, 2020

The open plan communal area proved the most challenging part of the interiors to rework. Photo – Christopher Morrison.

A small footprint meant that clever spatial design was paramount to make the space liveable. Photo – Christopher Morrison.

Georgie favoured curved edges and rounded surfaces to create the illusion of space. Photo – Christopher Morrison.

Billie the dog, whom the whole project was named after! Photo – Christopher Morrison.

A monochromatic paint palette allows the line between functional spaces to blur, meaning more emphasis was placed on the textures and finishes to demarcate the zones. Photo – Christopher Morrison.

Nooks and crannies were used to their full advantage as locations for in-built furniture! Photo – Christopher Morrison.

‘Having worked already with the architect prior to coming to us, the clients had nutted out a lot of the spacing and placement of bathrooms and kitchens, but were unsure how to pull it all together into a cohesive space,’ Georgie explains. Photo – Christopher Morrison.

These Volker Haug wall lights in the main bathroom are a standout designer feature! Photo – Christopher Morrison.

Curved edges continue throughout the bathrooms. Photo – Christopher Morrison.

The soft grey monochrome palette is continued through the wet areas. Photo – Christopher Morrison.

The house is split into two parts: the original 1920s bungalow with a rear renovation fitting the original footprint, and a steel clad freestanding pavilion which houses a second living space. Photo – Christopher Morrison.

Sasha Gattermayr
Thursday 3rd September 2020

‘Texture, detailing and clever lighting teamed with simplicity meant that big impact could be created, without feeling crowded.’ – Georgie Shepherd

When designing small spaces for maximum functionality, interior designer Georgie Shepherd of GSiD likes to be as detail oriented as possible.

‘Attention to detail was paramount due to the scale of the project,’ she explains. ‘So every little feature needed to elevate the simplicity of the design to form a layered, textured and complete space.’

The space in question was a renovated 1920s bungalow, with a new rear extension to cater for a family of four. The client and their architect (Beach DC) had reworked the original floorplan, while adding a standalone pavilion at the back of the property. Georgie was charged with creating a internal spatial arrangement that ensured flow between the old and new spaces.

‘Having worked already with the architect prior to coming to us, the clients had nutted out a lot of the spacing and placement of bathrooms and kitchens, but were unsure how to pull it all together into a cohesive space,’ Georgie explains. Her role was more than just facilitating ambience, it was intrinsic in ensuring the compact space would work as a functional family home.

In this respect, the open plan living and dining area housed in the rear extension posed the biggest challenge. Georgie favoured beveled edges when selecting the kitchen furniture – a round dining table, a curved island bench, a circular rug – to make the necessary bulky items less imposing. Implementing a monochromatic soft grey colour palette continued this intention, by blurring the boundaries between kitchen and living zone.

By designing the joinery to seamlessly transition between these two spaces, the communal rooms feel less compartmentalised. Georgie opted for a textural shift to demarcate the zones instead, selecting soft furnishings and rugs to softly indicate the transition between living and dining, and cushion the acoustic effects of concrete floors. Nooks and crannies were used to their full advantage with built-in furniture, the best example of which is a curved, panelled window-seat nestled at the base of an in-set shelf.

‘The small footprint meant that clever spatial designing was paramount,’ she explains. ‘Texture, detailing and clever lighting teamed with simplicity meant that big impact could be created without feeling crowded.’ Combining marble and slatted oak with economical laminates left room in the budget for lux details, such as custom brass bathroom mirrors – and those stunning wall lights by Volker Haug in the main bathroom!

The resulting design is one which elegantly enhances the original architecture,  without overwhelming it – and transforms this 1920’s charmer into a functional, flexible and contemporary family home.

See more from GSiD here.

This Week

Studio Visit

The Amazing Art-Making Of Thea Anamara Perkins

The Arrernte and Kalkadoon artist is renowned for her vivid, personal portraits of prominent First Nations figures. We talked to the accompl...

Architecture

A Malaysian-Inspired Adaptable House In Brisbane

'Three House' by architect John Ellway sees three pavilions brought together as one breathable, flexible home in Paddington.

Shopping

The Aboriginal-Owned Homewares Brand Bringing First Nations Art To Homes + Classrooms Across Australia!

Bundjalung/Minjungbal woman Emma Rolls of Emro Designs shares her collection of rugs, cushions and soon-to-be-released picnic mats featuring...

Architecture

A Dessert-Inspired ‘60s Home Makeover!

From banana Paddle Pop yellow, to chocolatey timber, this 1960s home makeover by Wowowa brings colour and personality to this mid century ho...

A Day In The Life

A Day In The Life of ‘Hamilton’ Star, Chloé Zuel

We go behind the scenes of the Australian production of the most famous musical in the world - with Eliza Hamilton herself!

Homes

A Modern Family’s Treetop Rental Property

The heartwarming North Warrandyte rental of Tilly Barber, her six-year-old son Mars, and friends Albee Barton and Justyn Burrow.

Food

Julia's Miso Salmon Bowl With Udon Noodles And Crunchy Greens

The onset of winter and lockdown in Victoria means we're back in comfort food mode – and this warm miso salmon bowl with crunchy greens h...
Julia Busuttil Nishimura

Stays

A Quaint + Charming Holiday Cottage That Feels Like Home

Lotte's Hjem is a 150-year-old weatherboard nestled in the heart of Pambula on the Sapphire Coast.

Creative People

A Truly Magical Tapestry Collaboration Between Local Artists + Weavers

Works by Eugenia Lim, Atong Atem, Troy Emery and Hayley Millar Baker were recrafted as tapestries by weavers at the Australian Tapestry Work...

In Print

A Rustic Shed Accommodation On The Victorian Surfcoast Hinterland

Lose yourself in the classic Lynda Gardener aesthetic with her new book 'Curate: Inspiration for an Individual Home' published by Hachette A...
Ali Heath

Art

The Secret Mystical Paintings of International Art Sensation, Hilma af Klint

The visionary Swedish artist’s enormous colourful artworks were hidden from the world for decades. Now, they are on show at Art Gallery of...

Gardens

A Grandmother's Accessible, Flower-Filled Dream Garden!

Outdoor Establishments have turned a barren acreage in outer Sydney into an elderly client's dream garden featuring Eco Outdoor products.

Creative People

Andalusian-Inspired Lampshades, Handwoven In Sydney

Lana Launay makes her textured light covers from natural materials such as coffee-stained raffia, coconut shell rope and bamboo yarn.

Interiors

This Revamped Edwardian Home Has A Different Mood For Every Room

Interior Designer Georgina Jeffries delivers a classic yet contemporary makeover of a heritage home – where moments of delight are everywh...

Architecture

An Architect’s Reworking Of Sir Roy Grounds’ Former Balmain Home

A heritage 1970s house in Balmain once owned by Sir Roy Grounds has been its re-engineered by its present owner, architect Conrad Johnston o...

View Comments

Similar Stories

Interiors

A Contemporary Update For This California Bungalow In Sydney

A Californian bungalow receives a soft, understated interior makeover by Sydney interior design firm, Bone Made.
Sasha Gattermayr

Interiors

4 Big Ideas For Small Spaces

From storage to styling (no, you don't have to be a minimalist), we bring you the best tips and tricks for making the most of a tight spot!

Homes

A Perfectly Pint-Sized, Art Deco Sydney Pad!

Interior architect Sophie Bowers and fashion stylist Josh Climpson share their renovated one-bedroom apartment in Sydney's Kensington.

This Week

Creative People

Andalusian-Inspired Lampshades, Handwoven In Sydney

Lana Launay makes her textured light covers from natural materials such as coffee-stained raffia, coconut shell rope and bamboo yarn.

Homes

A Modern Family’s Treetop Rental Property

The heartwarming North Warrandyte rental of Tilly Barber, her six-year-old son Mars, and friends Albee Barton and Justyn Burrow.

Creative People

A Truly Magical Tapestry Collaboration Between Local Artists + Weavers

Works by Eugenia Lim, Atong Atem, Troy Emery and Hayley Millar Baker were recrafted as tapestries by weavers at the Australian Tapestry Work...

In Print

A Rustic Shed Accommodation On The Victorian Surfcoast Hinterland

Lose yourself in the classic Lynda Gardener aesthetic with her new book 'Curate: Inspiration for an Individual Home' published by Hachette A...
Ali Heath

Shopping

The Aboriginal-Owned Homewares Brand Bringing First Nations Art To Homes + Classrooms Across Australia!

Bundjalung/Minjungbal woman Emma Rolls of Emro Designs shares her collection of rugs, cushions and soon-to-be-released picnic mats featuring...

Architecture

A Dessert-Inspired ‘60s Home Makeover!

From banana Paddle Pop yellow, to chocolatey timber, this 1960s home makeover by Wowowa brings colour and personality to this mid century ho...

Architecture

An Architect’s Reworking Of Sir Roy Grounds’ Former Balmain Home

A heritage 1970s house in Balmain once owned by Sir Roy Grounds has been its re-engineered by its present owner, architect Conrad Johnston o...

A Day In The Life

A Day In The Life of ‘Hamilton’ Star, Chloé Zuel

We go behind the scenes of the Australian production of the most famous musical in the world - with Eliza Hamilton herself!

Gardens

A Grandmother's Accessible, Flower-Filled Dream Garden!

Outdoor Establishments have turned a barren acreage in outer Sydney into an elderly client's dream garden featuring Eco Outdoor products.

Stays

A Quaint + Charming Holiday Cottage That Feels Like Home

Lotte's Hjem is a 150-year-old weatherboard nestled in the heart of Pambula on the Sapphire Coast.

Architecture

A Malaysian-Inspired Adaptable House In Brisbane

'Three House' by architect John Ellway sees three pavilions brought together as one breathable, flexible home in Paddington.

Art

The Secret Mystical Paintings of International Art Sensation, Hilma af Klint

The visionary Swedish artist’s enormous colourful artworks were hidden from the world for decades. Now, they are on show at Art Gallery of...

Interiors

This Revamped Edwardian Home Has A Different Mood For Every Room

Interior Designer Georgina Jeffries delivers a classic yet contemporary makeover of a heritage home – where moments of delight are everywh...

Studio Visit

The Amazing Art-Making Of Thea Anamara Perkins

The Arrernte and Kalkadoon artist is renowned for her vivid, personal portraits of prominent First Nations figures. We talked to the accompl...

Food

Julia's Miso Salmon Bowl With Udon Noodles And Crunchy Greens

The onset of winter and lockdown in Victoria means we're back in comfort food mode – and this warm miso salmon bowl with crunchy greens h...
Julia Busuttil Nishimura

Similar Stories

Interiors

A Contemporary Update For This California Bungalow In Sydney

A Californian bungalow receives a soft, understated interior makeover by Sydney interior design firm, Bone Made.
Sasha Gattermayr

Interiors

4 Big Ideas For Small Spaces

The best tips and tricks for making the most of a tight spot!

Homes

A Perfectly Pint-Sized, Art Deco Sydney Pad!

Interior architect Sophie Bowers and fashion stylist Josh Climpson share their renovated one-bedroom apartment in Sydney's Kensington.

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.