Neryl and Tim’s Modern Vintage Family Home

published Nov 26, 2015
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(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)

Name: Neryl Walker and Tim Haynes and daughter, Ivy Lee
Location: Balaclava; Victoria, Australia
Size: 1,000 square feet
Years lived in: 10 years; Owned

Neryl and Tim’s 1950s house is the perfect backdrop for their various collections of vintage nostalgia, magazines, packaging, furniture, flea market finds, and artwork created either by the couple or their friends. They have kept many of the original 1950s features plus some of those added in the 1970s. It is a home filled with color and fun, one that often inspires Neryl’s own artwork and designs, which she creates in her home studio.
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Entrance with door to Neryl’s studio (Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)
(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)

Neryl is a talented illustrator, artist, and designer who is inspired by a love of mid-20th century pop culture. She regularly exhibits her artwork, sells online, and can be found on Instagram. She also plays guitar in a 1960s garage band. Tim is an art director who also handcrafts retro-style wooden body surfing Bombora Hand Planes from his garage at home. Neryl and Tim’s home is filled with countless sources of nostalgic inspiration—vintage graphics and typography, packaging, signs, flea market treasures, girlie magazines, records, books, and vintage toys—which they have been collecting for many years. The one thing they have modernized is the old 1970s kitchen. They won a competition a few years ago for completely new kitchen cabinetry, and they successfully managed to integrate a new kitchen with their retro style.

(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style: Vintage, creative, eclectic with a dash of rock-n-roll.

Inspiration: We’re mid-century modern fans and long time collectors of vintage cars, furniture, art, and objects. We both grew up with grandparents who lived in 1950s homes and eclectic beach shacks, so part of our aesthetic is born out of nostalgia for those days.

Favorite Element: The original ’50s bathroom with pink terrazzo, green Vitrolite tiles, and etched glass. It was the main reason we bought the house!

Biggest Challenge: We have a three-story block of apartments behind us. Our first job was to plant trees, screening them out and giving us privacy in the backyard.

What Friends Say: Where did you get that?

Biggest Embarrassment: No big embarrassments but lots of unfinished projects. No working lights in the laundry…yet!

Proudest DIY: Removing the falling apart ’70s kitchen, floor tiles, and hearth, and removing countless walls of Nanna wallpaper. Creating a mid-century garden from a bare backyard.

Biggest Indulgence: Buying a Brendan Huntley mask sculpture. We don’t usually spend on expensive furniture but are happy to spend it on art.

Best Advice: Decorate using personal things that you love, travel mementos, art, etc. Don’t be afraid to use color and display your collections.

Dream Sources: Flea markets, garage sales, and estate sales.


(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)


  • Old illuminated sign: New York Flea Market
  • WWI Trunk with books, racquets, and bats: vintage
  • Marionette puppet: Mexico
  • Vintage vases and mirrors: collected over time
(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)


  • Sideboard: vintage
  • Ceramic mask: Brendan Huntley
  • 1940s mannequin head: gift
  • Neryl’s electric guitar: 1961 Harmony Silvertone Jupiter
  • Artwork on walls: found, vintage, or made by friends, Neryl, or Tim
(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)


  • Painting: Neryl
  • Dining table and chairs: vintage
  • School map: vintage
(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)


(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)


(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)


  • Vintage prints above the bed: Vladimir Tretchikoff
  • Jungle Room cushion: Neryl
  • Vintage mannequin heads: flea markets
  • Bed headboard and side tables: built into the house
  • Doona cover: Ikea
(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)


  • La Cage Aux Filles framed prints: Neryl
  • Framed children prints: vintage
  • Artwork and drawings: Ivy Lee
  • Toys and games: vintage
  • 1950s curtains: original to the house
  • Bunting: made by a friend
(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)


  • Original to the house
(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)


  • Signs: Collected and arranged by Tim

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Thanks, Neryl & Tim!