When Thornton & Blake Interior Designer Fiona Harding stepped inside her Faulconbridge clients home, she was immediately inspired by the expansive views of their bush facing back yard. Filled with beautiful Angophora eucalypts and large natural rock formations it already offered a natural canvas of spectacular colour and movement.

Fiona’s clients are empty nesters, however with their frequently visiting family growing, they still need plenty of space to enjoy their children and grand children. Their brief entailed natural, somewhat neutral and earthy tones that were not too bright and required a design to compliment some of the clients existing furniture, the much loved dining table, leather dining chairs and sideboard. Within view of the living spaces is the kitchen, with dark contemporary grey cabinetry, it was important to Fiona to ensure that the new interior design worked harmoniously with the adjoining spaces. The word organic and calm kept coming into the brief, Fiona then knew, she could draw on the bushland views for her inspiration, in particular the many shades of the Angophora eucalyptus and the natural rock formations which could be seen beyond the space. So she leaned into this choosing a colour palette with differing shades of grey, lemon, golden amber and soft warm whites.

Fiona’s client had a lot of ideas to bring to the table, so for this design, it was very much a collaborative effort working together as a team in redesigning the living and dining room spaces, and sourcing the pieces to go into it. 

Beginning in the dining room, Fiona and her clients found the ‘Caterpillar Light’ which features over the dining table. The blend of warm grey, glass pearl-like lights paired with linear brushed brass fixings is reflective of the almost metallic gold tones of the Angophora trunk at golden hour. Beyond the light, a series of large framed canvas prints washed with greys and metallic gold add a sense of depth to the interior design, with it’s complimentary layers.


For the walls, a combination of Quarter Strength ‘Ghosting’ by Dulux and Porters ‘Popcorn’ allows a further play on light. By using a marginally darker tone in the dining room, the space feels more intimate, in contrast to the light and bright open space of the lounge room. ‘Ghosting’ was also used for the exterior walls to blend with the landscape.

Thanks to expansive cathedral ceilings, the living room offered plenty of space to play with. A ‘niche’ positioned above the room provided an opportunity for creativity, whilst simultaenously expanding the cathedral ceiling. Fiona supported her client, an engineer, in redesigning this space, sharing ideas of adding vertical join board so that the space could become a feature, and a talking point of sorts. Contrasting Porters ‘Thoroughbread’ was bravely applied to the walls of the niche, along with a curated selection of white ‘bubble lights’ which gives a photo negative effect to the space. This idea also supports the flow and balance of light and dark as you depart the living room for the dark charcoal kitchen.

The windows were dressed in natural white, textural sheers to soften the space, providing plenty of filtered light, but with the benefit of privacy.



Above the lounge in the living room, a collection of textured barrel pendants were installed reminiscent of a hive, hanging from a tree branch in the wilderness. Appearing black during the day, these amazing lights turn amber when they are illuminated. As we were shooting the space, Fiona’s client shared her love for the textured shadows which appear on the ceiling when they are lit at night, further enhancing the mood of the space.

Along the walls, sconces matching the caterpillar light brings the design of the dining room and lounge room together. Finally, a ‘Mariner curve’ floor lamp was chosen for the corner of the room, offering contemporary ambience and interesting illuminated lines.


Lots of comfortable lounge space is required for an ever growing family. Fiona custom designed a Molmic Rydell corner suite and armchair. Choosing two different colours in the same fabric of each piece adds interest and supports the flow of the colour palette around the large interior space. A plinth table by the armchair brings across the gentle flowing motion of the artwork on the walls in tonal greys and metallic gold. Finally, the coffee table supports the nod to mid-century design which runs through the interior spaces, ensuring a cohesive and clean interpretation of the nature inspired interior.