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An Office Space Turned Multi-Level Family Home

Interiors

You’d think that for an interior designer, designing one’s own home would be a breeze. But in fact, as we’ve learned from many of the designers we’ve interviewed, having a close personal connection to the project can make it so much harder. There is so much to choose from!

Kirsty Ristevski of online interior styling service Furnishd is a seasoned renovator, and recently turned her hand to designing a home of her own for her young family. Inspired by the Ham Yard Hotel in London and the bold material expression of David Flack, she wasted no time transforming this Albert Park building from an office block into a family home – restored mural and all!

24th August, 2021

Kirsty and her builder Mick of Brace Construct salvaged this tiled mural from the Earp Bros warehouse. It now wraps around the main wall in the living room. Photo – Dylan James.

Pops of greenery make a big impact in the small pockets of garden. Photo – Dylan James.

A built-in window seat saves space in the compact lounge room, and frames the garden as a green vista. Photo – Dylan James.

Maximum glazing allows light to pour into the communal spaces. Photo – Dylan James.

The interior styling was inspired by Ham Yard Hotel in London by Kit Kemp, and the bold palettes of David Flack. Love those green chairs! Photo – Dylan James.

Large steel beams were brought in to support the two storeys above. Photo – Dylan James.

The built-in bar is a spot of total luxury! Photo – Dylan James.

A serious entertaining zone. Photo – Dylan James.

The open bar feeds into the dining room. The zones are demarcated by their palette, one dark and one light. Photo – Dylan James.

A view into the movie room. Photo – Dylan James.

Lush coloured carpet winds upstairs. Photo – Dylan James.

A pocket of Paris on this little balcony! Photo – Dylan James.

The main bedroom upstairs has an adjoining ensuite. Photo – Dylan James.

No space is too small for a bath! Photo – Dylan James.

Textures of grey in the ensuite shower. Photo – Dylan James.

Despite the garden’s small footprint, there was room for a pool! Photo – Dylan James.

A summer moment. Photo – Dylan James.

The glazing and black steel brings the previously disconnected office building into the contemporary design age. Photo – Dylan James.

Sasha Gattermayr
Tuesday 24th August 2021

Kirsty Ristevski is a seasoned renovator, but after taking the BuildHer Collective masterclass last year – she was ready to take on a new challenge!

Previous to their ownership, this building in Albert Park was leased out to five different businesses, over its three levels. A number of structural changes were needed to resolve the space, and transform it from disparate offices into a cohesive family home.

‘We worked with the existing structure of the building where possible in order to save money,’ explains Kirsty. ‘But to open up the downstairs area and create an open-plan kitchen, living and dining area meant a whole lot of steel to support the two solidly built storeys above.’

This meant lifting the ceiling in the living space, partitioning some private zones to make more bedrooms, and adding some internal walls to create a main bedroom suite on the very top level.

Despite this internal rearranging, the bones of the place were an excellent starting point. Kirsty retained the original solid brick walls and worked with the existing upstairs windows when working out the new layout. They even peeled off plaster ceilings, to reveal a higher concrete ceiling above, which was kept!

But the piece de resistance here is the floor-to-ceiling mosaic mural depicting Flinders St. Station, which Kirsty and her builder Mick (from Brace Construct) salvaged from the Earp Bros warehouse and pieced back together themselves! It now sits proudly in the snug, wrapped around a corner to frame the built in window seat that overlooks the garden.

Complemented by a natural-toned material palette and pops of colour that act like punctuation marks, this home is a lesson in slick but liveable contemporary design.

See more of Kirsty’s creative direction work at FURNISHD here.

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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. Please email bea@thedesignfiles.net