Thornbury Residence by Pierce Widera

  • Thornbury Residence by Pierce Widera sees the light-filled alteration and addition of a quaint Edwardian cottage, designed for spacious family living.

    Taking home Best Emerging Interior Design Practice in the 2019 Australian Interior Design Awards, Pierce Widera have an impressive portfolio of hospitality spaces, including the contemporary Italian-inspired eatery Bicycle Thieves in Melbourne’s Northcote. As the first residential project for Melbourne design partners Amy Pierce and Nat Widera, Thornbury Residence combines the best aspects of old and new. Through the introduction of a rear addition and spatial reshuffle of the dated interior, Thornbury Residence reflects modern living with Edwardian charm.

    Pierce Widera founding partner and director Amy Pierce says that although she and Nat instantly fell in love with the front facade, the internal layout wasn’t suitable for a family. “We tried to retain as much as possible of the existing cottage, however, the floorplan had to be reconfigured to allow for a functioning present-day family home,” Amy says.

    The new open-plan kitchen, dining and living area are positioned in the new addition, while the three bedrooms, bathrooms and laundry occupy the old part of the building. The seamless new addition begins at the end of the hallway into the kitchen with high ceilings and expansive full-height glazing, opening up directly onto an outdoor deck for entertaining.

    A harmonious balance of white and grey is achieved in the two-toned kitchen with slimline kitchen pendant. The mirrored splashback in the kitchen offers the illusion of space in the compact home, complete with a full-height wall of cabinetry. In the living room, an Armadillo rug provides a soft foundation, with a built-in storage console that has a ledge to display art, objects and mementos. The cosy dining setting easily seats six, featuring an Ethnicraft dining table and the iconic Knoll Cesca Armless Chairs in natural beech. 

    The Cesca Chair by Marcel Breuer for Knoll in the open dining space.

    Amy says she was pleasantly surprised at how easily they were able to increase the amount of natural light in the home, as the original cottage layout was confined and restricted. “It’s quite unique to have windows on all three sides of the open kitchen, living and dining area on such a long and narrow block,” Amy says.

    The main bathroom exudes a pared-back aesthetic, with terrazzo from Signorino and full-height walls clad in Japanese INAX tiles. A large black steel-frame window lets natural light permeate into the space, brightening the neutral palette through glimpses of greenery.

    Through a refreshing palette of warm timber, white and grey, Pierce Widera have designed an inviting and unpretentious family home on a small scale.

    Terrazzo from Signorino in the main bathroom.

    Artwork by Jess Merlo

3 Responses

  1. Absolutely stunning, warm and comfortable feel home. I wish I would live there. Great job around Nat and Amy from PierceWidera!

  2. Hi Deahn,

    The material used is engineered QuartzStone from Stone Italiana Australia. We recommend getting in contact with Pierce Widera directly to find out the colour.


    the est team

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