Home Tours

Inside a mid-century home where intriguing objects and pops of colour reign

Jolts of primary colour and collections of intriguing objects provide surprise and delight in this mid-century home

Meet + Greet

Francesca Storey, 42 (research fellow), Ben Storey, 43 (manager at Ernst & Young), Lola, 10, and Hattie, 7, plus Boonen the Flemish giant rabbit.

Francesca’s decorating Tips

  • Less is not more at Christmas. Let the creative juices flow, don’t take the decor too seriously and have fun.
  • Keep the aesthetic or colourway you love throughout the whole house. I love vintage and contemporary paper decorations mixed in with vintage metal pieces and disco balls – it works nicely in our mid-century home. Think vintage glitzy baubles, pretty paper chains and paper stars.
  • Bring back Christmas card etiquette. Maybe it’s my British background, but festive art and typography dotted throughout the home really says “Christmas is coming” to me.
  • Declutter before you add festive decorations. Pack away bits and pieces before Christmas stuff goes up, so when 5 January comes around and the tree and decorations are taken down, you get to redecorate and your home doesn’t feel so depleted.

Honesty box

Best renovation lesson learned? There is no romance in DIY. Don’t pretend you’ll be falling further in love as you laugh over a spilt tin of paint. Typically, you’re tired, paint-splattered and annoyed you wasted a tin of paint.

What would you never do again? Attempt plastering. Even though we both now have Kiwi citizenship (we’ve built a deck to prove it), some things are best kept for the professionals.

DIY disasters? Plastering!

What’s one thing you’d change about your home if you could? I’d have a window through the hill to the sea. I want the sea view, but without the stress of having to head up a hill in a decent earthquake. Or double glazing, radiators and a container lap pool.

Most memorable experience you’ve had in your home (good or bad)? The night the skylight was installed. I was up late, turned the lights off to head to bed, looked up and saw the Milky Way glowing overhead and could hear ruru (morepork) calling. It was magic. I feel blessed to live where I do.


How much have you spent on your home? Approx $120K.

Top shops

  • Turangi has a gem of a tip shop but don’t tell anyone…
  • Flotsam & Jetsam, is my late-night Instagram-shopping whoops-a-daisy.
  • Brown & Co, Wellington, – it’s an all-in-one art gallery, museum and boutique.

See more of the Wellington home below


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