Project Sheet: For the love of pink

A careful selection of artworks, some ingenious custom furniture and a client with a love of pink have come together in this major redesign. Penny Craswell writes.

Perched on a cliff, this Sydney eastern suburbs house has undergone a major interior redesign with several spaces reoriented and a cohesive new aesthetic created by much-lauded interior design studio Hare & Klein. “It’s a home with a fairly youthful feel,” says principal and design director Meryl Hare. “The client’s brief is very important to us. We work with them, their art and with the architecture, creating a layered interior that reflects their personality, not ours.” In this case, that meant embracing pink. “We tried to do it in a way that it would stand the test of time,” says Hare.

The first step was to reorient the staircase, allowing a more generous entry hall. The kitchen was moved to the other side of the living room and the existing kitchen was transformed into a cellar. Upstairs, the roofline was raised to create a master bedroom suite, while the wall separating the two bedrooms downstairs was removed to create one large bedroom. 

The stylish new interior is built on a palette of neutrals, with shades of burgundy, baby pink, terracotta and bright pink adding charm. Artworks play a role in this, several of which were already owned by the client. On the stair landing opposite the entry is the Ultrafragola mirror by Ettore Sottsass, an iconic piece designed in 1970. In the hall leading to the main living space is a round landscape painting Falling and Soaring by Degrees by Jo Bertini from Arthouse Gallery, and a neon salmon pink sculptural wall work custom-designed by Sydney sculptor Dion Horstmans.

In the main living space, Brescia Capria royal marble in white with pink was selected, which then guided other decisions about colours used in the space. “It has pink but also shades of taupe,” says Hare. “It’s a beautiful marble without being too outrageous.” The dining table, custom-designed by Hare & Klein, has a timber top and gloss terracotta red cylindrical base, which complements the baby pink of the Gubi Beetle Dining Chairs and the burgundy red of the velvet Jardan Valley Sofa. 

Also in this living space is a little seating area with a Moroso Yumi Lounge Chair with maroon legs and a Nim coffee table from Pinch with three sculptures by ceramicist Deb McKay, while the rug is an artwork in itself, Seed Pod designed by Louise Olsen for Designer Rugs. The artwork on the wall here is an abstract piece with splashes of purple, red and white paint on a black canvas by Kerry Armstrong. 

Downstairs, two bedrooms have been joined into one with an ingenious bunk bed custom-designed by Hare & Klein creating togetherness or separation for the client’s two boys via an operable round peephole. Upstairs, in the main bedroom, a Jardan Joy Armchair and lamp create a little sitting space to look out onto ocean views. The bedside lamp is the Serena lamp designed by Patricia Urquiola for Flos.

This home proves that a house can be furnished with not too much, but just the right amount of artworks and distinctive design pieces. “I try not to be self-conscious about art and generally I think art should not match an interior,” says Hare. “It’s our job to work with the art people like and want to enjoy. In this house there’s not a lot of art but what there is, is magic.”

Featured image: In the main living area sits a red velvet Jardan Valley Sofa and the Seed Pod rug by Louise Olsen from Designer Rugs and a painting by Kerry Armstrong. Photos: Anson Smart. Courtesy: Hare + Klein, Sydney.

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