Welcome to Lifely’s At Home With series, where we explore the homes of inspiring creatives, interior designers and everyday Australians to see how they’ve brought their homes to life.
While some people easily change their decorating style based on the latest trends, others make curating their abode a long-lasting and profoundly personal experience. It is, for example, the case of Emily May from @emilymaygunawan.
Emily has been training her eye for over a decade, first as a photographer and, later, as a full-time content creator, using stills and motion as the medium. “I spent my days conceptualising, and creating campaign and social content for brands from beauty and fashion, to lifestyle,” she says. After buying her first house in Sydney and moving in with her partner eight months ago, Emily has been working at turning her house into a home. “Before moving in, I had the walls and ceilings freshly painted professionally. It made such a huge difference as a blank canvas, and I know that I wouldn’t do it once the furniture is all moved in,” she declares. However, since moving in, she considers her home a work in progress. “ I think it’s so easy to have the desire to do major renovations and re-do the styling in one go as a homeowner. For me, I’d love to live in the house for a little bit and see if it makes sense to do the renovations as I go,” she explains.
Located in Sidney’s Inner West, “a super cool and vibrant neighbourhood with loads of amazing food, great coffee, independent stores, and parks”, the apartment seduced Emily with its exposed brick in the living room and arched hallway. “ It adds character and warmth to the apartment. Love at first sight,” she says. She has slowly been adding pieces that complement the apartment's unique architecture and its occupants' personalities. Rather than a fast pick, Emily prefers to invest in high-quality and timeless pieces. “If I don’t see myself using it for the next five years, it’s a pass. When it comes to the home, forever pieces are where my heart really lies.” Our Kona sideboard and bedside tables made the cut with their obround rattan cutouts, which perfectly complement the arched hallway. “It is one of my favourite pieces in my home,” says Emily, “along with my vinyl player. Nothing beats putting your favourite record to start the morning.”
Emily’s unique decorating style is an eclectic mix of “contemporary but also vintage. Timeless yet eclectic. You can tell that I’m a Gemini. I love to mix the old and the new, along with the treasures I found during my travels.” With this enduring vision in mind, she does not hesitate to turn to her past self for inspiration. Her go-to place to find direction in her decorating style are the vintage interior images she saved during her 2012 Tumblr era (before the Instagram saved button existed). What’s more inspirational than the good old days? With that in mind, she is looking forward to adding a clawfoot bathtub when she does her bathroom renovations. And more artwork!