This Armadale residence is an incredible example of what can be achieved when two like-minded creative practitioners collaborate in the design process. The Victorian Terrace is the home of Penelope Cohen, creative director of Australian fashion label Skin and Threads. Penny engaged stellar interior designer Simone Haag to rework the living room and ‘ensure this grand old dame of a Victorian had a contemporary and feminine sensibility, with a fashionable edge.’
Incredibly, Simone was also involved in the original design of this home many years prior, whilst working at her former workplace, Hecker Guthrie. When Penelope purchased the house eight years later, she engaged Simone to revamp the space, with a fresh new brief. Simone explains ‘this time around, the lady of the house and myself worked up a scheme which is considerably more feminine in its approach.’
Simone describes her intention of imbuing the home with an atmosphere of ‘romance and frivolity.’ The makeover celebrates colour, introducing plush plum, navy and mustard hues, along with gold marble with terrazzo. The collection of slightly miss-matched chairs mimic the tones of the Colin Pennock painting that hangs in the room.
As Penny and her husband are art lovers with a rich collection of works, they needed ‘very little direction on the art front’. Instead, Simone strategically considered how to use the spaces below eye-level, grounding the room with a custom designed patterned rug and plush upholstery, and curating an eclectic collection of ceramics and art objects, displayed on those spectacular Skagerak bookshelves.
Simone highlights the importance of making all spaces in the home comfortable and engaging, ‘where the good room isn’t reserved only for special occasions.’ Her approach here merges fashion, form, colour and texture, through a thoughtful combination of modern and vintage items – including Italian 1950’s chairs, a vintage a bar cart and Danish lamps. Italian and Scandinavian inspiration, with a distinctly Melbourne outcome.
Inside Penelope Cohen’s Armadale home. Artwork (far right) Cradle and Canoe by Peter Atkins from Scott Livesey Galleries, vintage Italian cane chairs and vintage upholstered chairs, Fogia Tabula sofa via Fred International, custom rug by Simone Haag, Porcelain Bear round table, and Skagerak shelves. Photo – Mark Roper.
Living room details, including Skagerak shelves, fashion books, plus plenty of ceramics and objects. Photo – Mark Roper.
Mattermatters Affordances Marble side table from Criteria Collection, vintage chair and custom rug by Simone Haag. Photo – Mark Roper.
Angelucci vintage bar cart, Gubi Mirror from Criteria Collection, and artwork Joshua Yeldham from Scott Livesey Galleries. Photo – Mark Roper.
Cradle and Canoe artwork by Peter Atkins from Scott Livesey Galleries, Fogia Tabula sofa via Fred International, Mattermade Affordances Marble side table from Criteria Collection, and custom rug by Simone Haag. Photo – Mark Roper.
The dining room features Friends & Founders La Pipe Chairs from Fred International, in a palette inspired by the Colin Pennock painting (A Way Back Down from Scott Livesey Galleries) above the mantlepiece. Photo – Mark Roper.
The dining room features Friends & Founders La Pipe Chairs from Fred International, in a gradient of different colours. Pendant from Delightfull. Photo – Mark Roper.
Porcelain Bear table with lamp from The Apartment, Denmark. Photo – Mark Roper.
Lamp from The Apartment, Denmark. Photo – Mark Roper.