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Dream Homes: A Modernist Space

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GROWING UP IN AN AUSTRALIAN EMBASSY COMPOUND IN BANGKOK, INTERIOR DESIGNER VANESSA HAWES’ FIRST CHILDHOOD HOME WAS A FAR CRY FROM THE TYPICAL AUSSIE RED BRICK BUILDING WITH GRASSY BACKYARD.

Rather, four 60s-style houses designed for the tropics were positioned around a large communal garden where families would come and go, living rooms opening onto garden spaces and fostering an outdoor lifestyle.

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Years later, the flow between interior and exterior — and the impact it had on the people who lived in this space — influences Vanessa’s approach to her design projects with Paul Tilse Architects & Interiors, founded by her partner, Paul. It’s certainly evident in this light-filled and warm Yarralumla home.

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Restraint and simplicity has created a classic, minimalist and tactile finish in the Modernist home with Scandinavian-style interiors. Vanessa loves sitting at the kitchen island bench looking out at the Japanese red maple in the internal courtyard, a clever way of bringing the outside in.

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With this home, less is more, giving carefully selected pieces a chance to shine. Vanessa singles out the Jardan ‘Archie’ chairs; relaxed and inviting, the texture of the soaped American oak timber gives plenty of character.

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Often, people are drawn towards one aesthetic — minimalist or opulent, cosy or cool. But Vanessa sees beauty in a variety of styles. Her dream? To live in Paris and renovate an apartment in St Germaine, combining modern elements with beautiful original features: parquet floors, high ceilings and tall windows.

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The common factor between her design dreams and Yarralumla reality? A focus on style that reflects lifestyle and embraces the character of a space.

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If you see something you love, you can contact Vanessa through paultilsearchitects.com.au

All images by Martin Ollman

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