Duncan & Tanya’s Textural Kensington Cottage

published Oct 6, 2015
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Square feet
Sq ft
Post Image
(Image credit: Hayley Kessner)

Name: Tanya, Duncan, their two sons, and Maisy, the family Labradoodle
Location: Kensington, Western Australia
Size: 220 square meters (2,368 square feet)
Years lived in: 13 years; Owned

House tour cover

Can't-Miss House Tours Straight to Your Inbox

Keep up with our latest house tours each weekday with our House Tour of the Day newsletter

Tanya and Duncan’s house is a perfect example of a renovated Australian cottage home. Set in a leafy suburb just 3 kilometers (1.86 miles) from the Perth central business district, it has a beautiful natural warmth about it. From the high ceilings to the original timber floors and built-in fireplaces, every aspect of the home just begs for you to stay a little while longer.

1 / 31
Tanya and Maisy, the family Labradoodle. (Image credit: Hayley Kessner)
(Image credit: Hayley Kessner)

Tanya and Duncan have lived in their home for just over 13 years. In that time, they’ve extended the original house (where the three bedrooms are now), adding the lounge, kitchen, and dining rooms to the back of the cottage. The addition makes for a delightful open plan living area that also incorporates the outdoors, thanks to the bifold doors they had installed — the perfect addition in any Australian home.

Tanya has kept a beautifully restrained palette throughout. There are lots of natural textures, with the timber floors and furniture sitting alongside linen and soft cotton throws. There are also little vignettes dotted throughout the space made up of handmade ceramics by Tanya and her friends, as well as plenty of greenery, as Tanya loves the way plants can completely change the feel of the home.

(Image credit: Hayley Kessner)

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style: I guess it’s a rustic mix of natural textures, timber, and fabrics.

Inspiration: I am always finding Pinterest, Instagram and blogs a great source of inspiration.

Favorite Element: I love the cottage feel with timber and a few modern pieces all mixed in together.

Biggest Challenge: We would love a bit more outside space with two active boys! Luckily, though, we have beautiful parks close by which we love to frequent on the weekends.

What Friends Say: Friends often say our house feels warm and inviting, which is just lovely. Our street is full of kids and they are always coming and going; I love that they can all house-hop and are always welcome here.

Biggest Embarrassment: Not sure about this one. There are always things we would like to do but overall we do love our little cottage.

Proudest DIY: My husband recently painted the entire outside weather boards a lovely dark charcoal; it took him many, many weekends and I love the result.

Biggest Indulgence: The Jardan couch was a bit of a splurge. With boys and a dog we hadn’t ever invested in “quality” things before, but as soon as they were a little older, we felt comfortable in spending the money on a high-quality sofa.

Best Advice: Just buy what you love and somehow it just works and all comes together.

Dream Sources: Empire Homewares, Jardan, Mark Tuckey, Cranmore Home, Stylist Sibella Court’s books, and Inside Out and Real Living magazines.


(Image credit: Hayley Kessner)


  • Walls: Taubman’s Martini
(Image credit: Hayley Kessner)


(Image credit: Hayley Kessner)


(Image credit: Hayley Kessner)


(Image credit: Hayley Kessner)


(Image credit: Hayley Kessner)


(Image credit: Hayley Kessner)


Send us your own:

Share your home with Apartment Therapy: House Tour Submission Form

Are you a designer/architect/decorator? Share your residential project: Professional Submission Form.

→ And see all of our past house tours here

Updated daily with fresh tours full of photos for you to pin & enjoy!

Thanks, Tanya & Duncan!