A Designer’s Own Colorfully Moody Australian Abode

updated Apr 30, 2019

A Designer’s Own Colorfully Moody Australian Abode

updated Apr 30, 2019
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Home Type
Square feet
Sq ft

Name: Margaret Scholley
Location: Bangalow, Australia
Size: 1453 square feet
Years lived in: Owned 7 years

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Margaret Scholley has been designing residential interiors for over 20 years in Australia, founding Alida & Miller Interior Design, an impressive firm that takes on design and styling projects around the world. In 2013, her daughter Kit (see her house tour!) joined her, and they’re now a mother daughter design duo focusing on interior styling and staging in the Byron Bay hinterland. This house is Margaret’s home, and each room mixes sophisticated design elements with fun ones like color, pattern, energetic art and even a swing.

I asked Margaret to share more about the renovation of her home:

“We had previously owned a six-bedroom Queenslander in Bangalow, and that house had become too big when the kids moved to Sydney to do that city pilgrimage that most Byron kids do. When we decided to move I had a wish list for the new house: Had to be on acreage. Had to have four bedrooms. And it had to have a creek.

The property filled these three requirements, but it was the most ugly four-bedroom rectangular white brick house you had ever seen. It had been on the market for a while and had not been lived in for years. The house was placed in the middle of a paddock with barbwire fencing surrounding it. Despite this it was in a beautiful spot in the Byron Bay hinterland, the views were (and still are) spectacular…I could see the potential.

We were always going to renovate the house, but it was a challenge to find an architect that just got us. Six years later my son mentioned that a friend of his was moving to the area and wanted to work for someone locally to get his foot in the door. Dream!

Simon Addinall, from Those Architects based in Redfern in Sydney, arrived on our doorstep like a little architect fairy. He didn’t push his own ideas onto us, and really listened to what we wanted.

I try to keep the original external footprint of the houses we have owned, but change the floor plan of the house internally. This was no exception. The house was very boxy, with lots of little rooms here and there so we needed to open up the space and remove almost all the walls in the living area, dining room and kitchen to become one big area.

My inspiration for the new layout was my family, and the way we live our day-to-day lives, and (of course) this included a library for all my beautiful books. I have two young grandsons and I wanted a home that they felt comfortable in (hence the Pop and Scott swing in the living room) and I needed an open entrance where I could see them at all times, either playing in the pool or out in the garden. The outdoor-indoor living area was really important, as nine months of the year in Byron Bay you live outside, so, to be able to achieve that connection with the outdoor, we installed 2 x 4 meter bi-fold doors from the living room to the patio that leads you to the pool area.

My favorite part of the build was when the living room, dining room and kitchen became one big room, and the 8-foot ceiling was ripped out to make way for the new 12-foot cathedral ceiling. And now we have our home, the ‘Cloud Bungalow.'”

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: Colourful Moody

Inspiration: My family

Favorite Element: The library

Biggest Challenge: Convincing my husband we needed to renovate

What Friends Say: WOW

Biggest Embarrassment: My husband (not really, maybe a little bit)

Proudest DIY: Painting the house pink

Biggest Indulgence: The pink rug (can you tell I love pink?)

Best Advice: Don’t listen to anyone’s advice.

Dream Sources: Bisque Traders and Marr-Kett Byron Bay

Explore this style:

More resources:

Dulux – Maximus
Simon Weils – Grey

Tiles – Byron Bay Tiles by Teranova Tiles Sydney

Pink Rug – Marr-Kett
Leather Chairs – Bisque
Coffee Table – Bisque
Cockatoo Lamp – Fenton & Fenton
Cushions – Coco Mojo

Tables & Chairs – Bisque

Table — Bisque
Tiles – Byron Bay Tiles

Linen – Dos Ombre
Rug (used end throw) – We are Pampa
Cushions – Marr-Kett

Wallpaper – Florence Broadhurst from Signature Prints in Sydney
Basin – Schots Sydney
Bath – Eagle Plumbing Lismore
Tiles – Byron Bay Tiles

Thanks, Margaret!

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