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

Your Favourite Mid-Century Modern Homes Of 2020

Roundup

2020 was another year of standout mid-century homes on The Design Files!

Even with the local real estate market grinding to a halt for months, there were still plenty of incredible modernist properties that hit the market over 2020, as well as some stellar personal homes we were lucky enough to visit. 

Here are the 1950s, ‘60s and ‘70s homes you loved the most!

7th January, 2021

A Warm And Wonderful 1950s Home In North Warrandyte. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli

A Warm And Wonderful 1950s Home In North Warrandyte. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli

A Warm And Wonderful 1950s Home In North Warrandyte. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli

A Warm And Wonderful 1950s Home In North Warrandyte. Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli

A Warm And Wonderful 1950s Home In North Warrandyte

The 1950s house of designer Vy Costen, marine scientist Andrew Costen, and their three boys is located in North Warrandyte, where many of Melbourne’s underrated mid-century gems lie! 

The house is situated on the former Koornong Experimental School site, which operated here in the 1940s. Following its closure, the site was subdivided into 12 blocks, with Vy and Andrew’s house completed on one of four vacant lots between 1953 and 1955. 

Many of the home’s original features remain today, including the wonderful exposed stone walls, timber panelling, and charming retro kitchen!

Revisit the original story here

Life In One Of Melbourne’s Best Mid-Century Homes! Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli

Life In One Of Melbourne’s Best Mid-Century Homes! Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli

Life In One Of Melbourne’s Best Mid-Century Homes! Photo – Caitlin Mills for The Design Files. Styling – Annie Portelli

Life In One Of Melbourne’s Best Mid-Century Homes!

This 1965 house was designed by John Hipwell, an architect who designed many properties in the Warrandyte area, and is the next door neighbour of Vy Costen’s home above! 

This particular property remained in the hands of the original owner until last year, until being purchased by Anna Byrnes at a hotly contested auction.

Being the owner of styling business Styling Spaces, Anna has placed her individual style on the home, but many of the original features remain. Among highlights are timber-clad walls and floor-to-ceiling windows running the length of the house, creating an indoor-outdoor living space. Another feature is the 1960s oven (a very expensive, high-tech purchase at the time!), which Anna has nicknamed ‘The NASA Oven!’

Revisit the original story here

An Epic 1970s Masterpiece

When a real estate listing declares a property ‘unlike any others on the market’, it’s reasonable to presume a little bit of hyperbole. But in the case of this late 70’s Australian modern classic in Glen Iris, this was absolutely the truth!

Designed by prolific Australian architect Kevin Borland (the father of one of Australia’s most well-known contemporary photographers, Polly Borland), this wild and wonderful four-bedroom home had only two owners in its four-decade life, until being sold in March this year. 

With original masonry, timber work, tile and parquetry, plus a striking facade and indoor gardens, this Glen Iris house truly took our breath away! 

Revisit the original story here

An Original Mid-Century Queenslander With Millennium Modern Flair

The spontaneous purchase of a rundown, but award-winning modernist dwelling in Brisbane’s leafy west, heralded an interstate move from Melbourne and the start of Bronwyn Labagnara’s new interior design studio, Hannah & Co. Design.

Hannah & Co. Design worked collaboratively with a local architect, Bruce Mason, and builder, Jon Tucker, to honour the integrity of the original home, celebrating the modernist elements that worked well, while enhancing spatial functionality.

This classic house has been elegantly adapted to a contemporary standard, and given a dose of decorative flare.

Revisit the original story here

An Expertly Renovated, Architect-Designed, Mid-Century Home

This 1969 house designed by architect Bill Baker was likely to be demolished, until interior designer Amelia Hesketh, founder of Frank Designs, swooped in to save the day!

Since purchasing the property in Sydney’s Lindfield seven years ago, Amelia has completed a thoroughly sympathetic renovation.

By sticking to her guns, and employing skilled craftspeople along the way, she’s created a family home that captures the best of 1960s design. 

Revisit the original story here

This Unparalleled Mid-Century Masterpiece Is The DREAM Home

The ‘Mirrabooka House’ in Castle Hill is a bona fide bombshell, and as of last month, it’s up for sale! 

The 1961 house was designed by architect Bruce Rickard, one of Australia’s most prolific modernist architects, who was heavily influenced by Frank Lloyd Wright. 

The single-storey residence contains five bedrooms inside its sandstone L-shaped building, with incredible details ranging from a Japanese koi pond, to a waterfall, lime green bathroom tiles, and intricate stone work. 

In welcome news for fellow mid-century enthusiasts, the house received a state heritage listing in the past 12 months.

Revisit the original story here

An Expertly Updated 1970s gEM

Interior designer Catherine Mazzotta of Modernist Interiors Eltham has made a career out of renovating and restoring mid-century properties, including her own family home in Hurstbridge!

Originally built in the 1970s by renowned Melbourne home builders Fasham Johnson, the house combines slate floors, timber ceilings, and floor-to-ceiling windows, allowing northern light to stream into the living areas. The large kitchen opens up onto a communal dining and living zone, taking advantage of an entire wall of glazing overlooking the beautiful bushland.

The house hit the market in May 2020, and quickly sold the following month.

Revisit the original story here

A Mint Condition Mid-Century Mansion Goes Under The Hammer

Also going up for sale in late 2020 was the 1964 former private residence of architect Ernest Fooks. 

Located at 32 Howitt Road, Caulfield North, the outstanding three-bedroom structure is brick-clad inside and out, complemented by a slate-shingled roof, and a garden with original plantings! 

The interior retains most of its original fixtures and finishes today, including in-built polished teak joinery throughout. Of particular interest ate the floors, which move from a terracotta-tiled entry foyer, to herringbone parquetry in the library, and original terrazzo tiles throughout the rest of the residence.

Revisit the original story here

View Comments

Similar Stories

Architecture

A Sorrento Beach House Devoted To Its Modernist Past

Cera Stribley architects bring this 1960s delight into the 21st century, with careful restraint.
Sasha Gattermayr

Modernist Australia

A Fond Farewell To Modernist Australia!

Going, going... GONE! We bid a sad adieu to Trish Callan, and look back at some highlights from Modernist Australia, the website that raised...
Sasha Gattermayr

Architecture

A Faithfully Updated Mid-Century Melbourne Home

A restrained renovation for a 1960's home in Frankston South by MRTN Architects.

This Week

News

Relax Into The New Year With The Perfect Bath Accessory

Adios 2020, we’re heading into the new year with a totally new vibe courtesy of these sustainable timber bath trays from The Wood People.
Sponsored

Gardens

An Equally Functional + Lush Suburban Garden Makeover

The stunning garden of landscape designer and owner of Ballast Landscape, Julian Bombardiere, in Kings Langley, NSW.

Homes

A Blissful Art Deco Apartment Up In The Trees

This carefully curated rental in East Melbourne of friends Lauren Everett and Frances Normoyle is the ultimate 'grown up' share house!

Studio Visit

An Innovative New Collaboration From MIMCO, Featuring Boundary-Pushing Sustainable Materials

As a result of their longstanding partnership with the NGV, MIMCO has teamed up with biomaterial designer Alice Potts on a limited-edition c...

Architecture

A Victorian Terrace That Plays Design Gymnastics!

Melbourne's colour masters Wowowa are back with another clever Victorian renovation!

News

A Starlight Summer Festival To Begin In Heide’s Sculpture Park

Get your socialising mojo back with this cultural program of dance events, music acts and Indigenous storytelling at Heide Museum of Modern
Sponsored

News

Swoon-Worthy Luggage For The Perfect Weekend Escape

Local luggage experts July prep us for the summer of local travel with the slick new ‘Daybreak’ range.
Sponsored

On The Market

Mid-Century Magic On A Bushland Block (And On The Market!)

Originally built in 1967, this absolute dream home features terrazzo floors and an entire facade of floor-to-ceiling windows!
Sasha Gattermayr

Furniture

The Tradie Brotherhood Behind Our Newest Furniture Obsession

Brothers Jack and Mark Fearon combine their experience as a plumber and boilermaker to create the most colourful, characterful furniture goi...
Sasha Gattermayr
  1 hour ago

Architecture

A Sleek, Surprising Reworking Of A Victorian Cottage

A humble but innovative extension by Blair Smith Architecture has totally modernised this Victorian cottage in Brunswick.

Studio Visit

The Young Designer Using Traditional Leather-Working Techniques To Create Accessories Inspired By The Australian Landscape

Leather craftsman Liam Dillon shares the detailed history behind an ancient trade - and the ways he uses traditional techniques in his moder...
Sasha Gattermayr

Studio Visit

Dive Into The Colourful, Creative World of Melbourne's Designer-Of-The-Moment, Danielle Brustman

Know her name but not her story? Welcome to the vibrant world of designer Danielle Brustman, at her incredible studio in Collingwood Yards!
Sasha Gattermayr
  9 hours ago
42:51

Podcast

TDF Talks with Plant Designer, Jenna Holmes of Plant Mama

In this podcast conversation, Jenna of 'Plant Mama' and 'Pasta Mama' shares how she has built and grown two very different businesses from t...

News

A Sunny New Storefront For Not-For-Profit Design Organisation The Social Studio

The not-for-profit organisation has a new sunshine-filled space designed by Studio Goss at Collingwood Yards!

Studio Visit

Inside The Dreamy Garden Shed Studio Of Emerging Ceramic Artist, Anni Hagberg

Introducing the graduate artist who was the recipient of The Design Files Emerging Maker Award at Craft Victoria's annual 'Fresh!' exhibitio...
Sasha Gattermayr

Similar Stories

Architecture

A Sorrento Beach House Devoted To Its Modernist Past

Cera Stribley architects bring this 1960s delight into the 21st century, with careful restraint.
Sasha Gattermayr

Modernist Australia

A Fond Farewell To Modernist Australia!

We bid a sad adieu to Trish Callan, and look back at some highlights from Modernist Australia.
Sasha Gattermayr

Architecture

A Faithfully Updated Mid-Century Melbourne Home

A restrained renovation for a 1960's home in Frankston South by MRTN Architects.

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.