living : that loving feeling

posted on: Thursday, September 22, 2011

Welcome to our new feature, baby space : living. Every now and then we're going to take a peek into the loveliest grown-up spaces around (why should the wee ones have all the fun?). When I saw Jenni Harley's sweet abode I knew it was the perfect place to start.

If you're not already familiar with Jenni she is the talented lady behind all these lovely creations.

who lives here?
"I live here with my husband Peter, sons William and Henry, daughter Ruby, dog Morag and chooks, Gabby, Wanda, Peggy and Charlotte."

home inspiration

"I really enjoy the way our house evolves along with us. Our kids are young but their interests and likes are very apparent in our surroundings."

The family treehouse complete with 'made by jenni' creations.

jenni's style
"It's a mishmash of putting things I like/love together with no definite idea of the final outcome...very much a flying by the seat of my pants technique! The more mixed up the better for me. I struggle with restraint, it is something I admire from afar."

can you tell us about this little corner?
"It is in fact a temporary solution while my daughter's room is being redecorated. The wallpaper is the original paper from when the house was made in the 1950s."

"Ruby's bed was bought from an antique bazaar in Geelong (Victoria, Australia). It's a wrought iron hospital bed that I loved in its original pale pink flaky state but my kids were frightened by the raggedy appearance... so lots of sanding and gloss white enamel it is."

"I made the patchworks on the beds from pieces of collected cotton fabrics, doilies and linen. I really like random patterned patchworks. When I first got interested in patchwork and was doing a little research, it was always the real raggy, patchy ones that made my heart skip a beat. I also like to apply this randomness to the size of the patches. Once again, the more mismatched the better. There are a couple of my dollface cushions and a little group of softies I have specifically made for Ruby and some prototypes of different dolls."

dressed for success
"The doll dresser is practically in its original state except for some pastel paper to line the shelf tops and some new ceramic knobs from Ishka.The crockery set is from Ikea. I have opped since my early teens and some of the little ornaments have been with me since then."

bathroom bliss
"Our bathroom (top image) is an old laundry and single loo conversion. I guess we wanted the modern workings but with a vintagey feel. The colour scheme is white and dark grey with mainly red accents. It has a pressed metal frieze and large black and white chequered tile floor. The mirror cabinet is from Ikea but it doesn't seem to be available any more. The converted PS cabinet for the wash basin cupboard is also from Ikea. We had the slab of timber 2 packed and dropped a square basin in the top of it, then hung it on the wall for our wash basin. The pictures around the sink are mostly op shop finds with a few contemporary art cards thrown in. I inherited some of the art glass on top of the mirror cabinet from my grandmother and added to the collection with some lucky op shop finds. The ship in the bottle was a gift to my husband over twenty years ago."

"I made the curtain on the bathroom door from a worked tablecloth (opped) and added some patterned patches, braid and bobble trim to it."

crafty vintage swap
"This darling doll wardrobe was a swap for one of my cloth dolls. My friend had a stall in an antique/vintage store and fortunately she liked my dolls. Now she has quite a collection of them and I have some really delightful vintagey bits like the vintage kid's wardrobe and kitchen dresser. The lamp is a FILLSTA from Ikea and the squeaky pony was a find from Camberwell Market."

that loving feeling
"When I loaded this pic onto my Flickr account I was struck by how many items in it had sentimental value to me. The cushion cover was an unsuccessful idea for a cover but sits very nicely on the old garden chairs in the front porch. The chairs were my grandmother's. I certainly do hold on to pieces that have some kind of warm memory for me. I am using some pieces of lace and metal braid at the moment that my mother collected for me from a local market when I was about 16 and I'm now 45. I have moved many times since but these type of items always come too."

One of Jenni's whimsical custom made lambs.

decorating tips?
"I think I like to believe the decorating philosophy that if you choose to furnish your home with things that you truly like/love, they will somehow manage to sit happily alongside one another because that is the common thread that ties things all together. I also like the effect of mixing patterns from any era together and finding simple, worn and tired vintagey household items to add a "friendly lived-in feel" to a room. The same goes with artwork -- traditional alongside contemporary, old masters alongside modern illustrators, kitschy finds and fave pics from magazines."

Thank you so much Jenni, for sharing your space with baby space!


  1. LOVE her house! LOVE her doll face cushions!!

    Delightful idea, and I'm chuffed she's Australian ... there's a netherland's-type whimsy about Jenni's style. Well, that's what I think!

  2. What a crazy awesome home! I'm taking my time to view each photo one by one.. Wow.

  3. Great post! I just love the eclectic,fun bedroom. And yes, i totally dig those doll face cushions. Are they in her shop?


  4. What a lovely post. Love the wallpaper, all the goodies having on it and that dresser! I love homes like that . They are like gorgeous mystery parcels waiting to be unwrapped.

  5. I Just found your blog and im loving all the posts! Each photo has something that tugs at the heart xx


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