A Stylish Inner City Share House Filled With Mid-Century Furniture

Elle Ross’ home is a classic inner city Melbourne share house, only, a little more stylish than your average.

The interior designer at Studio A.mi rents part of the first floor apartment, located above a former restaurant with a chequered history, which tour groups are known to frequent. ‘The place is all law-abiding charm these days!’ Elle says.

Elle lives here with her friends Claire Summers, communications manager at Sullivan+Strumpf; and Noah Sutton, corporate partnerships officer at the National Gallery of Victoria, who have moved in at various times over the past six years.

‘Through a few changes of hands and the grace of the share house gods, it was passed along to us,’ says Elle. ‘We feel very lucky to be the caretakers of this place!’

In Elle, Claire, and Noah’s hands, the home has never looked better. What was a relatively simple shell containing a ‘90s renovated kitchen and bathrooms has been elevated by their mid-century furniture, sentimental art, and lighting pieces that attract the eye.

The very low-hanging paper lantern in the hallway — installed by a former architect tenant — is just one example. ‘It’s not every day you see a pendant at that height, and it has a certain Akari light sculpture quality to it that I adore,’ says Elle.

The large proportions of the space are ideal for the trio, who enjoy regularly changing up the interiors and hosting their friends.

There’s enough living room space for two sofas: a Featherston Numero IV curving lounge suite that takes prime position, and a Neoz high back sofa designed by Philippe Starck for Driade that is currently on loan from friends.

‘It was originally purchased for an event, and we have lovingly become the caretakers of this monstrous but beautiful beast,’ says Elle of the white, high back sofa.

‘He’s insanely cosy, and considering our home is so big and open, it’s great to have a quiet and private moment by yourself in the cocoon of that couch.’

The space has become increasingly eclectic over the years, as Elle looks to inspiration beyond strictly mid-century interiors.

She explains, ‘When I visited Ray and Charles Eames home in Pacific Palisades, I loved how while it is a quintessential and iconic mid-century home, every trinket, rug, and object (besides the furniture) was decidedly not mid-century’.

The introduction of colourful art (including two paintings by Elle’s late grandmother, Rose Ross), and chrome pieces that offset the home’s warm timber and brick surfaces, help achieve this look.

‘I have tried to be more fluid with my ideas of what goes with what, to break the uniformity, but still create a comfortable and harmonious space,’ says Elle.

‘Having a diverse range of textures, tones and varied objects heights for your eye to bounce off makes for an interesting interior.’

By styling the rental property with investment pieces and embracing its built elements, Elle, Claire, and Noah have been able to create a warm and desirable home, without making any structural changes.

The furniture and decor will go with them when they eventually move, allowing future tenants to put their own stamp on this much-loved share house!

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