Eclectic Maximalism in Melbourne

updated Apr 30, 2019
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(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)

Name: Sandra Eterovic
Location: Inner-city Melbourne, Australia
Size: 861 square feet
Years lived in: Owned 20 years

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Sandra Eterovic is a talented visual artist whose work encompasses painting, illustration, textiles, knitting and all-round making of amazing things—as seen throughout her colourful and creative inner-city Melbourne home. Her home is situated in a narrow street and is an old single-fronted Victorian worker’s cottage that she bought 20 years ago. At the time, while many of her friends traveled overseas, Sandra’s dad convinced her to buy a house instead. And how lucky that she did: Inner-city Melbourne property is currently very pricey!

(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)

Basic renovations were done at the time she purchased the home, such as polishing the floorboards, painting the interior white and adding new granite to the kitchen benches, thanks to her dad, a stone mason.

Along with own artwork and creations, Sandra has filled her home with a collection of vintage ephemera, fabric, and artwork from other creatives—often found on Etsy. Sandra was an early adapter to Etsy, and uploads new work to her shop regularly. She can also be found on Instagram.

(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)

The layout of her home is like most cottages from this period: You enter through the front door and into a narrow hallway with two rooms at the front, and then walk into the kitchen, dining, living area and onto the courtyard at the rear. Sandra uses the front room as a part-time work space; she has a studio space where she does most of her painting elsewhere.

(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: Red-loving collector of old, with a liking for things both beautiful and subtly odd.

Inspiration: My grandmother’s kitchen, Pinterest, The World of Interiors magazine.

Favorite Element: My made-to-measure bookshelves.

Biggest Challenge: Lack of light.

What Friends Say: Women and children tend to love it, some men find it frustrating because they bump into things.

(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)

Biggest Embarrassment: When my sash window fell onto the hand of a tradesman who was trying to freshen the air after going to the toilet.

Proudest DIY: I built the IKEA sofa bed—it took three days and a lot of tears.

Biggest Indulgence: Hydronic heating, which was tacked to the end of the mortgage as soon as I moved in.

Best Advice: If practically possible, renovate after moving in: you may change your ideas.

Dream Sources: John Derian Company, Souleiado, Svenskt Tenn, any of the little antique shops on the Oltrarno in Florence, in fact anywhere remotely foreign and exotic, cheap or expensive.


(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)
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Seating and inspiration pinboard beside the kitchen (Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)

Thanks, Sandra!

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