The Loft

The Home Base blog

Perfect Blend

The tricks to modernising a much-loved family home without detracting from its old-world charm


This Shenton Park home, originally two separate worker’s cottages more than a century old but joined together several decades ago, now comfortably caters for the needs of its owners and their three young sons.

It is also proof that there is an art to modernising a much-loved family home without detracting from its old-world charm.

It is light and bright and features a stunning outdoor entertaining area complete with sparkling pool and a beautiful courtyard.

It has three spacious living areas, a dining area and every room in the house has high decorative ceilings with cornices and high skirting boards. Decorative fireplaces have been retained and restored.

Designer Andrea Pienaar says the owners called on her to help with some aspects of the renovation and furnishings.

“The owners have great taste, so they almost didn’t need me,” she says. “But they were creating a new lounge room and master bedroom so they asked me to help with furniture selection, wallpaper and some of the specs of the extension.”

Confident with their own eclectic style, they mostly needed help to source items that complemented their already extensive collection of art, furniture and decor items.

They settled on a selection of interesting pieces including a sofa, occasional chairs, coffee table, entertainment unit, coffee table and outdoor furniture from GlobeWest, purchased through Home Base’s Roxby Lane.

Andrea says she helped the owners choose a striking wallpaper for the newly created main suite.

“It was a bold choice but I think it works so well with their aesthetic and it makes the room look bigger,” she says.

Andrea says she also loves the rugs and cowhide ottoman from Amigos De Hoy and Art Hide.

The new furniture blends in effortlessly with the family’s existing pieces and complements their extensive art collection. “The thing about this family is that they haven’t been afraid to invest in pieces like the velvet couch, even though they have young children,” Andrea says.

“It can be tempting to put everything on hold when there are children in the house but with some planning and thoughtful consideration, you actually don’t have to compromise too much.”

Andrea says rugs and floor coverings that are made from natural fibres such as wool can be easily spot cleaned and entertainment units that are slightly higher off the ground can be less accessible to toddlers.

“There are options out there, you just need to know where to look,” she says.


  • Bogart Luxe 3 Seater sofa (GlobeWest)
  • Axiom armchairs (GlobeWest)
  • Elle Cube in marble (GlobeWest)
  • Logan two-door buffet (GlobeWest)
  • Montego chaise lounge (GlobeWest)
  • Cancun round coffee table (GlobeWest)
  • Capri occasional woven chairs (GlobeWest)
  • Amigos De Hoy rugs
  • Art Hide cowhide and ottoman


  • Subiaco Restoration manufactures and supplies architectural building materials such as timber joinery, mouldings, flooring, doors, verandah composite decking, weatherboards, linings, brassware and lighting that are perfect for seamless period renovations.
  • Tufftex has been a market leader in the Australian building industry for the past 40 years, supplying an extensive range of decorative mouldings and corbels perfect for renovations.