A stylist's charming cottage in the Victorian goldfields
Images by Tasha Tylee
This week we greet stylist Kirsty Davey at her charming cottage in Victoria's historic Maldon. Kirsty shares Lisles Gully Cottage with her husband, kids, and hound Bandit. The regional abode has been an ongoing project, with the family slowly but surely restoring the building, a former caretaker’s cottage for the local goldmine built in 1860. This week we spoke to Kirsty about decorating without rush, and the joy of being a bowerbird.
“Lisles Gully cottage was built circa 1860. Originally the caretakers residence & office for a small gold mining company, the cottage is quietly nestled into the foothills of Mount Tarrengower and only a short stroll from the historic Maldon village. Over the past 2 years, we have progressively updated and renovated most of the internal aspects, mindful to preserve the integrity of the original dwelling.”
“I am a recovering bowerbird of sorts. As a child I began collecting postcards, natural ephemera, vintage curiosities...gradually amassing a vast surfeit of stuff. Falling in love with a small home, I (try) to live more economically.
Of all our belongings, I treasure a few special pieces and their back story...an Egyptian scarab from my wayfaring uncle, an indigenous carved boab nut from my South Australian family, an ancient roman oil lamp (found in Maldon!?), my rogue tumbleweed family from Broken Hill, our beautiful paintings by Lucy Roleff and Greg Wood. I am very sentimental.”
I am a recovering bowerbird of sorts. As a child I began collecting postcards, natural ephemera, vintage curiosities...
“Our bedroom décor is simple and functional. The morning light creeps in through a sash window flanked with boston ivy. We watch the bunnies and occasional fox scamper along the driveway. There’s a myriad of books, Grant’s war stories and my historical texts. Our wrought iron bed was found by my beautiful friend Di (of Enfilade Plus, Maldon) and is my favourite place to read, study, dream in the late afternoon.”
“My career journey has been varied. I have worked in corporate contexts, small family businesses and for myself. I don’t ever feel defined by a job title. Mostly, I see the world through a creative lens and try to create beautiful spaces that embody warmth and meaning. I practice a balanced approach to life.”
“I am inspired by small businesses doing big things. Professionally, I have enjoyed working with makers who champion a holistic approach to business, balancing ethics with creativity and productivity.
My creative process has always been organic. I have decorated our home slowly, with objects and furnishings collected over many years. They represent moments in my timeline...a road trip to a small town, a gift from a loved one, a happy memory."
My creative process has always been organic. I have decorated our home slowly, with objects and furnishings collected over many years.
“I spent my childhood mostly outdoors. My Dad is a keen fisherman, and we would road trip to small towns and lakes in search of trout. My Mum is from a remote town in South Australia and has slowly gravitated back to country living. We were drawn to Maldon for its historical charm and regional bonhomie.
"We are surrounded by good food, wine and creative happenings. In Maldon, we love to procure deli treats from Serge at Le Sel, French brocante from Di at Enfilade Plus and pre-loved clothing from Fiona at Acorn Wood. In Castlemaine, we enjoy date-night pizzas from Theatre Royal and delicious Italian fare at Origini."
We were drawn to Maldon for its historical charm and regional bonhomie.
Kirsty's bed is dressed with IN BED 100% Linen Duvet Cover in White.
“I'm looking forward to continuing my studies...last year I enrolled in a Bachelor of Archaeology degree and am slowly working my way through the ancient world. Most of all, I am looking forward to lazy dinners under the vines and time with our kids at Lisles, digging for treasure & gold!”