Walking the tightrope between old and new with precision, this Timaru character home has been a labour of love for owners Rachel and David. Rachel and David knew it was important to get the renovation right from the beginning so brought on the help of Megan Dooley (Interior Furnishings Consultant for McKenzie & Willis) in the early stages. With Megan at the helm, this grand old lady was updated from top to bottom.
Both Rachel and David are gracious hosts, regularly accommodating guests and enjoying dinner parties with family and friends. This love of entertaining informed the design of many of the rooms, but none more so than the kitchen. The kitchen nook is ideal for casual entertaining and houses the space-saving Furninova Paso Doble modular sofa. While Rachel prepares food, her guests can mingle and relax, before being called up to the island which also functions as a table. Here, Kartel One More Please bar stools are the perfect complement to the sleek monochromatic kitchen.
Throughout the house, Megan employed pattern on pattern to add richness and a layered feel. The sitting room is a great example of this with its Anna French Bird in a Bush wallpaper and the matching fabric. Linwood ticking fabric in the same intensity was chosen for the occasional chairs, while old painted portraits complete the aesthetic.
Moving through to the formal dining room, Designers Guild Floreale Grande was selected for the curtains and Designers Guild Delft Flower Linen for the wallpaper. In this space, modern style is combined with antique accents to create a dynamic, high end look. Designers Guild Colonnade fabric was used to recover the old rolled arm sofas, which keeps the colour scheme fluid and sophisticated.
The grand staircase leads up to two bedrooms, each with their own unique character. Working with the existing curtains, the blue room has a soft and dreamy feel achieved through the pairing of Sanderson Wandle wallpaper, Bianca Lorenne linen and French Country bedside tables. The pink room on the other hand mixes sugary pinks, mauves and mint on a backdrop of florals for a calming scheme. Timeless Kartel lamps and the peggysquare blanket (made by Rachel’s mother) is a lovely play between old and new, craft and precision.
A real standout of the home is the bathroom designed by Ron Partington. This space holds precious antique perfume bottles that Rachel collected over the years. Initially Rachel was leaning towards white wallpaper, however upon discussion with Megan they opted for Osborne and Little Carlotta in blush/grey. With its pale hues, this wallpaper works beautifully with the strong charcoal shade of the tiles.
High ceilings, traditional wooden joinery and leaded glass windows add to the wow factor of the interior and give the home a sense of history. The goal of the interior design scheme was to bring the home into the 21st century while allowing these treasured period details to shine through. Together, Megan and Rachel achieved this difficult feat with ease, making considered choices that respected the heritage. Most notably, they expertly paired modern fabrics with older style windows, bridging the style gap by selecting traditional curtain rods. They also opted to paint the ceiling crisp white which provided a much needed contrast to the ornately patterned wallpaper featured throughout the house. All in all, it’s these details that truly transcend this character home, creating the perfect balance of character, design and cutting-edge amenities.
Need help to create your interior design dreams? At McKenzie & Willis we offer in home consultations with our highly experienced interior design team. We aim to make the process fun, rewarding and most importantly easy. We’ll come to your home, do a free measure & quote and work with you to develop the perfect furnishing scheme. If you’re in the early stages of building we can even work off plans.
For everything interiors visit our consultants in store or book an in-home consultation online here.