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 Clever Reworking Of A 70sqm Cottage In Hawthorn, Melbourne

Interiors

Although interior designer Rosanna Ceravolo was constrained by the existing envelope of this cottage in Hawthorn, Melbourne, she succeeded in designing a space that belies its diminutive size.

By installing an intriguing barrel-vault ceiling, hidden storage cupboards, internal obscure glazing and a palette of softly coloured but richly textured materials, she’s capitalised on both function and form. Take a tour below.

5th December, 2022

‘We didn’t want to crowd the space with too much unnecessary full-height storage,’ explains interior designer Rosanna Ceravolo. Photo – Sean Fennessy

Rosanna fell in love with the dual-tile design and the way it sat alongside the Carrara marble and sage green cabinetry. Photo – Sean Fennessy

The barrel-vault ceiling is an eye-catching feature. Photo – Sean Fennessy

Sage green laminate cabinetry provides a subtle pop of colour. Photo – Sean Fennessy

Art by Cameron Gill from Sophie Ganon Gallery. Photo – Sean Fennessy

Obscure glazing along the top of the shower room allows for natural light to filter through, and provides a ‘lamp-like’ glow for the kitchen. Photo – Sean Fennessy

These hues are continued through into the living space. Photo – Sean Fennessy

Traditional details remain. Photo – Sean Fennessy

Slim-profile shelves create storage without wasting space. Photo – Sean Fennessy

The shower room also features a soft pastel palette. Photo – Sean Fennessy

Bea Taylor
Monday 5th December 2022

This Victorian era cottage in Hawthorn, Melbourne, seems to extend well beyond its petite 70 square-metres. Interior designer Rosanna Ceravolo worked within the home’s existing pitched-roof addition to create a space that is open and connected to the garden beyond. 

‘Since this was an interiors-only project, we were constrained by the existing building envelope,’ Rosanna explains. She opted to keep the two front rooms in their original condition, allowing the renovation to concentrate entirely on expanding the function and form of the back of the cottage. 

This part of the house had a lowered single-pitched roof with a dropped ceiling. So, in lieu of raising the roof and ceiling height, Rosanna instead designed a barrel vault ceiling along the bulkhead. This feature serves the dual purpose of carrying the eye out to the beautiful tall gum trees into the pocket park beyond (‘one of the cottage’s best features’), and creating a point of interest in an otherwise elementary space. 

A complete revival of the materials and colour palette within the space also contributes to a general feeling of openness, whilst managing to stay true to the traditional cottage interior. Rosanna chose hard wearing and enduring surfaces such as laminate, Carrara stone, terrazzo flooring and resin, with subtle colour coming through in the caramel square tiles and sage green cabinetry in the kitchen, and golden window glazing lining the shower room. 

‘There was no room at the front of the house for a shower room, so this had to be located adjacent to the kitchen,’ she explains. ‘We thought we may as well make the most of it and create some beautiful detailing and a room that could light up.’

Incredibly, this open kitchen, living and dining space also functions as a laundry, with a washing machine hidden in a ‘secret cupboard’ (adjacent to the rear glazed door, below the steel shelf). ‘We also created a deep and relatively generously-sized broom storage cupboard at the front end of the shower room,’ says Rosanna. 

The compact space now feels anything but, with a wide range of materials and a soft colour palette adding textural interest without dominating the room, and function and form both operating at maximum capacity.

This Week

Gardens

A Coastal Garden That Revives The Native Landscape

House Revisited brings the natural landscape of Macmasters Beach on the NSW Central Coast, into a stunning residential property.

News

Terrazzo Queen Tantri Mustika's Closing Down Sale!

Pop down to Collingwood Yards Saturday 11 February, 12pm – 3pm, to support Tantri Mustika’s closing down sale.
Bea Taylor
  16 hours ago

On The Market

An Idyllic Homestead With Country Views For Sale In Gippsland!

This 1890s homestead is the ultimate treechange opportunity, with a rambling garden, sprawling views, and it's already been renovated!
Christina Karras

Studio Visit

The Sydney Sculptor Creating Striking Pieces From Centuries-Old Sandstone

Sculptor Tom Butterworth creates striking tables, stools and vessels from recycled Australian sandstone, with beautiful results.
Christina Karras

Architecture

An Unconventional Beach House Elevated On Steel

Steel beams elevate AB House by Office MI—JI to form an unconventional beach house in Barwon Heads.

A Day In The Life

A Day In The Life With Local Icons + TikTok Stars, Ginger And Carman

Get to know the fashionable, dynamic duo, whose fun-filled adventures (and inspiring approach to life) have made them Internet famous!
Christina Karras

Climate

Everything You Need To Know About GreenPower (+ Why You Should Make The Switch)

The easiest way to invest in in Australia's renewable future - and it's simpler (and cheaper) than you think!

Gardens

A Boundless Garden Immersed In Native Bushland

A new coastal home on the Mornington Peninsula buried deep within a native grassy woodland, with stunning gardens by Plume Studio.

Studio Visit

Local Artist Hannah Maskell Creates Mesmerising Grids Of Colour

The Melbourne-based artist's geometric drawings and wooden sculptures are a cross between 'colour theory and colour therapy'.
Christina Karras

Homes

A Vintage Farmhouse On Sydney’s Upper North Shore

It looks like an authentic country farmhouse, but Alexandra Nea Graham’s family home is an almost entirely new-build!
Lucy Feagins
  22 hours ago

Creative People

The New Small Business Making Mid-Century-Inspired Furniture In Australia

Culture Cush are making velvet-covered modular lounges inspired by retro designs, with the best materials of today!
Christina Karras

Food

Julia's Crunchy Crumbed Fish With Cos Salad + Yoghurt Tartare

Julia Busuttil Nishimura's delicious take on a classic summer fish dinner – on high rotation for the rest of the season!
Julia Busuttil Nishimura

Art

A Look Inside Abbey Rich's Mesmerising New Exhibition

See the Melbourne artist's beautifully bold abstract pieces at MARS Gallery, filled with playful patterns and hidden meanings.
Christina Karras

Gardens

A Lush Secret Garden, Inside A Converted Melbourne Church!

This surprising garden in East Melbourne has its own lagoon pool, a natural fish pond and 10m-tall walls covered in ivy.
Christina Karras

Homes

A Quirky Redfern Terrace With A Hidden Green Roof

The unconventional family home of designer Sacha Coles, split over 4 levels!

Similar Stories

Interiors

Before + After: A Dated 70s Home Gets A Sunshine Yellow New Look

Studio Lala sympathetically transformed a tired Brisbane home, for a client who had never lived with colour before!
Christina Karras

At Home With Sheridan

Interior Designer Natalie Walton’s Restorative Cottage Escape

'The Still House' is designer Natalie Walton's shed turned self-contained studio, styled to perfection with Sheridan textiles.

Architecture

A Thoughtful Transformation Of A Worker’s Cottage In Richmond

A 'periscope' and clever space-saving joinery enhance this Richmond worker's cottage transformed by Architecture Architecture.

This Week

A Day In The Life

A Day In The Life With Local Icons + TikTok Stars, Ginger And Carman

Get to know the fashionable, dynamic duo, whose fun-filled adventures (and inspiring approach to life) have made them Internet famous!
Christina Karras

Gardens

A Coastal Garden That Revives The Native Landscape

House Revisited brings the natural landscape of Macmasters Beach on the NSW Central Coast, into a stunning residential property.

Homes

A Vintage Farmhouse On Sydney’s Upper North Shore

It looks like an authentic country farmhouse, but Alexandra Nea Graham’s family home is an almost entirely new-build!
Lucy Feagins
  22 hours ago

Creative People

The New Small Business Making Mid-Century-Inspired Furniture In Australia

Culture Cush are making velvet-covered modular lounges inspired by retro designs, with the best materials of today!
Christina Karras

Studio Visit

Local Artist Hannah Maskell Creates Mesmerising Grids Of Colour

The Melbourne-based artist's geometric drawings and wooden sculptures are a cross between 'colour theory and colour therapy'.
Christina Karras

Homes

A Quirky Redfern Terrace With A Hidden Green Roof

The unconventional family home of designer Sacha Coles, split over 4 levels!

News

Terrazzo Queen Tantri Mustika's Closing Down Sale!

Pop down to Collingwood Yards Saturday 11 February, 12pm – 3pm, to support Tantri Mustika’s closing down sale.
Bea Taylor
  16 hours ago

Gardens

A Lush Secret Garden, Inside A Converted Melbourne Church!

This surprising garden in East Melbourne has its own lagoon pool, a natural fish pond and 10m-tall walls covered in ivy.
Christina Karras

Gardens

A Boundless Garden Immersed In Native Bushland

A new coastal home on the Mornington Peninsula buried deep within a native grassy woodland, with stunning gardens by Plume Studio.

Climate

Everything You Need To Know About GreenPower (+ Why You Should Make The Switch)

The easiest way to invest in in Australia's renewable future - and it's simpler (and cheaper) than you think!

On The Market

An Idyllic Homestead With Country Views For Sale In Gippsland!

This 1890s homestead is the ultimate treechange opportunity, with a rambling garden, sprawling views, and it's already been renovated!
Christina Karras

Studio Visit

The Sydney Sculptor Creating Striking Pieces From Centuries-Old Sandstone

Sculptor Tom Butterworth creates striking tables, stools and vessels from recycled Australian sandstone, with beautiful results.
Christina Karras

Art

A Look Inside Abbey Rich's Mesmerising New Exhibition

See the Melbourne artist's beautifully bold abstract pieces at MARS Gallery, filled with playful patterns and hidden meanings.
Christina Karras

Architecture

An Unconventional Beach House Elevated On Steel

Steel beams elevate AB House by Office MI—JI to form an unconventional beach house in Barwon Heads.

Food

Julia's Crunchy Crumbed Fish With Cos Salad + Yoghurt Tartare

Julia Busuttil Nishimura's delicious take on a classic summer fish dinner – on high rotation for the rest of the season!
Julia Busuttil Nishimura

Similar Stories

Interiors

Before + After: A Dated 70s Home Gets A Sunshine Yellow New Look

Studio Lala sympathetically transformed a tired Brisbane home, for a client who had never lived with colour before!
Christina Karras

At Home With Sheridan

Interior Designer Natalie Walton’s Restorative Cottage Escape

'The Still House' is a shed turned self-contained studio styled to perfection with Sheridan textiles.

Architecture

A Thoughtful Transformation Of A Worker’s Cottage In Richmond

A 'periscope' and clever space-saving joinery enhance this Richmond worker's cottage transformed by Architecture Architecture.

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