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.
Interior design was not Tess’s first career path, but we are certainly glad that her previous line of business as a property manager led her down that road. Her cosy home on the Gold Coast, with its backyard frequently visited by kangaroos and birds, is infused with a sense of calm and serenity, perfect for a growing family as Tess welcomed a baby boy in February 2022.
For Tess, good things come to those who wait, including when it comes to design. Her top advice for a well-styled home is to “try to think ahead and create cohesion in the home; a little forward planning and thought will reflect in your styling.” She applied this recommendation to her own space as well. “We bought our house in February this year and have spent the past six months making our house a home,” she said. Despite the excitement of moving in, Tess postponed major decisions like renovation work until she was confident it was the right choice. “We waited to live in the space before talking about any renovations so that we could have a good idea of how we wanted to use the space,” she explains.
Investing in furniture that easily adapts to your evolving style is an excellent way to give yourself room to grow without breaking the bank. “My Cali bed frame is one of my favourite pieces because it’s so versatile. It works with almost any interior style, which means I can always change up the space without changing the bed.”
Tess lets the space she is designing do the talking when deciding on a strategy. ‘I try and adapt my style to best suit the space I am styling. For example, our home’s weatherboard exterior lends itself to a more traditional style. Therefore, I am trying to recreate that inside the home, a modern farmhouse feeling.” Classic pieces, such as the crisp linen of our Lorne sofa or our versatile Dolton sofa bed, are perfect for the calming and comforting interior Tess emulates in her home. Her warm and inviting dining room, with our Tate dining table as the centrepiece, is her favourite room and a perfect example of her subtle and elegant sense of style.
Tess works tirelessly to ensure that her style continues to evolve. “I love Mel from @styled.by.mel because she manages to seamlessly add character, texture, depth and warmth to her home,” she says. The rattan inserts of the Kona sideboard and coffee table are a subtle way to bring some texture and interest into her interior. As a way to keep her home fresh, Tess sees herself adding more earthy pieces to her interior, like wood. A big design challenge for 2023? “Taking risks with colour! I’m slowly becoming more confident, like in our guest bedroom where I added one-half wall of colour.” With bursts of colour being one of 2023 biggest trends, we will be following closely for more inspiration.