Melbourne-based Interior Stylist, Michelle Hart, has an Instagram that will compel you to throw out everything you own and invite her into your home to work design magic on a blank slate. She's really that good!
We sat down with the joint winner of our Style Curator challenge to talk inspirations, celebrity dinner guests and the one feature every living room should have.
Image credit: Annette O Brien, @annetteobrien
Hi Michelle! First off, congratulations on winning the Style Curator Challenge. How have you styled your brand new Normann Copenhagen Block Table at home?
Thank you! I’ve actually been admiring these Block Tables for quite some time so I thought I’d give it a shot, and was surprised and grateful to have won something so luxurious! At the moment, I am trialling it in the bedroom as a side table, but this could change next week and it could easily be moved into the living room as it’s such a versatile piece.
Have you always had an interest in design? Tell us about your first ever project.
I think I’ve always been creative and have loved the idea of designing and decorating rooms and houses since I was quite young. I didn’t get into the industry until after the kids started school and didn’t want to go back to the corporate life. My first ever project was renovating my first house. A period style Californian bungalow. We redid the entire interior from kitchen to bathrooms to living rooms and bedrooms. We then started developing and also renovating homes and I’ve had the bug since!
How would you describe your design style?
My personal style is a little bit of this and a little bit of that...all mixed in together.
I guess I have more of an eclectic style and love a pop of colour but I also love timeless and classic interiors that are full of natural tones and textures. I can never make up my mind, which is why I love creating different looks for people with different style homes.
Image credits: Suzi Appel, @suziappel_photo
What does a typical day look like for you?
It would start with coffee and breakfast while checking emails and social media, possibly driving my daughter to school, then taking the dog for a run at the park. I come home and either answer emails, make calls and place orders and work on my interior projects or I am heading out to appointments to meet with clients or visit showrooms for projects and picking up pieces from retailers to fit out their homes. If I can squeeze in a coffee/brunch with someone or a yoga or pilates class, that’s a bonus. Before you know it, school is done and the kids are home and the crazy afternoon of getting things organised and dinner prepared begins. I could still be working on things like preparing props for photo shoots, organising appointments and replying to emails until later in the evening, but I am now trying to scale back on spending too much time on the computer and on work in the evenings.
In your opinion, what is the one feature every living room should have?
Without a doubt it would have to be art.
And that doesn’t mean it needs to be expensive, it just needs to be a representation of something meaningful or memorable to you. I believe you should feel connected in some way to the art you display in your home.
Where do you draw inspiration from?
I draw my inspiration from colour, nature, the beach, music, images, art, books, travel, taking in all the details life offers, no matter where you are. I look up to others in the industry that also inspire me, there are so many people doing such beautiful work.
If your home were a song, what would it be?
Wow, I love Coldplay so I’d say “A Head Full of Dreams”
If you could invite five people, dead or alive, for dinner, who would they be and why do they score an invite?
Frida Kahlo – her life story is so intriguing and what an inspiration, her work is amazing
Bono – such a charismatic Irishman with many interesting stories I’d love to hear
My Aunty Jo – she is one of my favourite people ever, she’s in her late 60’s and has recently taken up snowboarding since moving to Queenstown and is a spiritual healer
Michael Franti – he is like one big ball of positive energy and the epitome of true love and human kindness, such a beautiful soul
James Corden – He is so funny, I’d want it to be a karaoke dinner of course!
What would you cook?
Mexican – it’s colourful and fun
What piece from Curious Grace is next on your wish list?
The Mango Chair in Green
Floorboards or rugs?
Beach or city?
UberEATS or home-cooked?
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Nothing breathes life into your home more than the pieces of furniture that bring loved ones together over a meal, so we've chased up the Curious Grace design experts and asked them their best advise on how to choose the perfect dining table and chairs for you.