House Tour: Natalie's Art Deco Apartment

House Tour: Natalie's Art Deco Apartment

Jenny Butler
May 15, 2009


Natalie Walton, owner of this delightful art deco house tour, is best know for her work as deputy editor of Real Living Magazine. Located on Australia's famous Bondi Beach, we really love the original elements of the apartment that Natalie has kept and enhanced while creating a uniquely soothing home. Amazingly, Natalie and her husband renovated the whole apartment for just AU$15,000 including a whole new kitchen, structural changes, a bathroom makeover and new flooring. There is no doubt that Natalie is full of style, great ideas and inspiration, you can see this not only through her home but regularly through her own blog, Daily Imprint. See the full tour below the jump...


AT Survey:

My style: It is an Art Deco apartment and and so I wanted to honour and respect that without living in the past. So I tried to create a modern-day Parisian apartment look. A place that would make me feel that I was in another world when I stepped inside.

Inspiration:I would have to say the apartments and hotels I've stayed in during holidays to Paris and New York where my inspiration. These places were always quirky and colourful and never "perfect".

Favorite Element: The wall of travel photos in the living room. People always comment on it and it brings me great happiness to look at them and remember all the amazing places I've visited and great times I've experienced while traveling.

Biggest Challenge: Working within an incredibly tight budget was interesting but I think it made me far more creative than if I'd had an open chequebook and could have done anything I desired.

What Friends Say:Without a doubt, people always comment on the photos and artworks on the walls. It's such a great conversation starter, especially if people haven't been there before.

Biggest Embarrassment: That I can't keep plants alive. I'm trying to convince myself it's because I have the wrong aspect for them and they don't get enough light, but that's perhaps wishful thinking.

Proudest DIY: I'm constantly revamping things. The dining table was something that I'm very proud of. I bought it at a charity store for $30 and proceeded to strip it back and then re-oil it. Now it looks amazing and I LOVE it. It's such a great size and has so much character – you can't say that about many dining tables.

Biggest Indulgence:I've started to buy artworks. My husband and I forgo Christmas presents and buy a piece of art together. While we've started off with quite small works, I can tell that we're already addicted.

Best advice: I'm a true believer in not buying mass-produced, cheaply made products. I confess I have an Ikea Expedit bookcase, but other than that pretty much everything else in my home has been bought second-hand and restored. And while I'm not saying people shouldn't buy new things, I think it's important that you only fill your home with items that you really love. Everything else is just clutter.

Dream source:When I first started to decorate my place I went to a local shop in Bondi called The Market New & Old Wares. The woman who runs the shop has a great eye and I could happily buy almost anything in that place. Another great source is Home Furniture On Consignment. And more recently I'm addicted to Mitchell Road Auction Centre.




  • Fridge – Fisher & Paykel, bought second-hand via the intranet "for sale" section as our previous one died one night and I needed to get one fast. It's been great and was super cheap

  • Washing machine – Westinghouse, I wasn't so much fussed about which brand I bought so long as it was a front loader. They are not so popular in Australia as the UK. But I don't understand why anyone wouldn't use one. They fit under benches and so are great space-savers and they also don't crease and brutalise your clothes

  • Oven – it's old, it's been in the flat for Lord knows how many years. It works, that's all that matters at the moment

Hardware:I replaced all the door handles with a collection of original Art Deco door knobs from a friend's sister who was modernizing her home. It was amazing how much just a simple touch revived the heritage look of the place. I also replaced all the plastic light switches with Art Deco-style ones from Recollections in Leichhardt.


  • Bedside tables – found on side of road and repainted

  • Sofa-bed – was a hand-me-down from my mum

  • Dining table – was bought at St Vincent de Paul in Sutherland for $30!

  • Coffee tables – Home Furniture on Consignment

  • Antique sideboard – antique fair in Tasmania

  • Bentwood chairs – The Margate Train antique store in Tasmania

  • Hall table, outside bench, desk, bookcase – The Market New & Old Wares in Bondi Beach

  • Bookcase - Ikea

  • Cot – Baby Kingdom

  • Chest of drawers in nursery – antique store in Narrabeen 

  • Accessories

  • Cushions – Bholu

  • Vases – Home Furniture on Consignment

  • Wooden shoe lasts – Doug up on bourke

Lighting: Light in bedroom & nursery - Ikea

Paint:Porter's Paints

(Thanks Natalie!)

[photos by Amanda Prior & Real Living Magazine, house plan by Antonia Pesenti, styling by Megan Morton]


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