Name: Kerstin and Andy, their children, Iggy and June, and Yella the dog
Location: West Preston — Melbourne, Australia
Size: 170 square meters (1,830 square feet)
Years lived in: 8 years; Owned
I recently stumbled across Kerstin via Instagram, thanks to a comment she left on a mutual friend's photo. I clicked over and found a picture of the cutest pair of kids' pants that she had made—and quickly discovered that she ran her own children's clothing label, Paul & Paula. As I scrolled further, I found a few images of my dream kitchen—which, of course, was her newly renovated and expanded kitchen. Knowing that we had friends in common, I sent a message asking if I could come and photograph her family's home. Luckily, they said yes.
Kerstin is originally from Germany (her husband, Andy, was traveling when they met), she and Andy moved to Melbourne together, and she started her children's label in 2009. They recently renovated their free-standing studio; it was a former garage in the backyard that Kerstin used to use to work from home. However, she now has a studio nearby, and Andy, happily, has a place for his music, records, skateboard decks, and guitars—which is handy, given he runs Poison City Records. Their home has a bright, happy, and relaxed vibe, thanks to a great mix of vintage and new decor pieces, artwork, and plants—plus that fabulous kitchen.
Apartment Therapy Survey:
Our Style: Thrifty, colorful, with a side of green.
Inspiration: Nature, wood, and everything Mid-century. We love a good browse through flea markets, secondhand furniture, and country op-shop and prefer things that have been loved before, have soul, and also are accessible and affordable.
Having two young children, we also try to create some space where the kids can play independently and somewhere they can make a mess!
Favorite Element: Our recent renovation/kitchen extension has opened up the back of our house into one open living space, making our little place feel much bigger. The large hardwood windows and doors now let a fantastic amount of natural light in, even on a grey Melbourne day.
Biggest Challenge: The backyard, AKA the mudpit, which combines the house and the back studio. It’s finally done now—thank goodness!
What Friends Say: Friends that remember our old poky kitchen comment how much more space we now have and how much lighter the whole house is.
Biggest Embarrassment: Don’t ever open the laundry door. It’s a little out of hand. Mess and clutter piled high up to the roof. I also screen print in there and it gets really messy.
Proudest DIY: Turning our never! used garage into a studio/guest room/music room with the help of a very handy friend.
Biggest Indulgence: That ercol couch had been on our wish list for a long time. A late night eBay "best offer" turned out to be our new couch the next morning.
Best Advice: Fill your home slowly with things that matter…
Dream Sources: Vintage market and thrift stores, especially on overseas adventures.
- Shoe shelf: salvaged old kitchen cabinet
- Mirror: roadside find
- Wooden rainbow: Big Dreams
- Straw hat: Ceres in Brunswick
- Framed crocodile print: Maybachufer market in Berlin
- Rose velour couch and chair: eBay—they were literally brand new.
- Cushions: Fine Little Day, Arro Home, IKEA, handmade by Kerstin
- ercol vintage couch: eBay
- Wool rug: IKEA
- Pot: Pop & Scott
- TV cabinet: handmade by Andy
- Multicolor pouf: hard rubbish roadside find
- Small table for kids: roadside find, restored by Andy’s Dad and turned into a 1st birthday present 5 years ago
- Soft sculpture owl: Cat Rabbit
- Handmade cloud: by Kerstin
- Leftover Xmas decoration: by Kerstin
- Cactus print: by Lauren Kroll from Urban Outfitters
- '60s vintage chairs: Inner North swap and sell Facebook page
- Potter light in Terracotta: Anchor Ceramics
- Dining table: vintage (which definitely needed some loving), sanded
- Bench: IKEA
- Rug: IKEA
- Kitchen cabinetry and design: Cantilever
- Mugs, handmade mugs, and expresso cups: la petite fabrique de Brunswick, Robert Gordon, local secondhand shops
- Birds and Boys prints: Barbara Berrada
- Blush linen sheet: I Love Linen
- Pillowcases: Arro Home
- Cushion: Cactus by Zozo & Fro
- Bed: totally impulsive purchase at Harvey Norman
- Wool rug: purchased on a Sunday stroll at Boxhagener Fleamarket in Berlin
- Bunk bed: IKEA
- Sheets: op-shop
- Doona cover: Kip & Co
- Kaleidoscope quilt: Urban Outfitters
- Wool mountain cushion: Hilary Grant
- Rug: Arro Home
- Wardrobe/kitchen cabinet: secondhand furniture shop
- Bed: Kalon, bought secondhand from Gumtree
- Bed sheet: handmade by Kerstin
- Blink "Colours" wall charts: Kido Store
- Cabinet: op shop, repainted
- Felt rug: Mushkane
- Clothes hanging rack: Such Great Height
- Cloud pillow: Harvest (now Home-Work)
- Vintage rubber toys and nightlight: bought on travels in Japan
- Apple print: Fine Little Day
- Records, skateboard decks, and posters: Poison City Records, collected over time
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