Monday, April 23, 2012


a.k.a. the Butterfly or McCraith House. Built in 1956. Designed by David Chancellor who you'd have to agree, certainly met his client's brief: "create something wild and crazy" 

I  rediscovered this awesome modernist beach house while I was flicking through a pile of old interior design magazines.
I flick, then I ditch. The ditching is inspired by William Morris who famously said:

"If you want a golden rule that will fit everything, this is it: Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful"

(in other words, while I was having a bit of a tidy-up)

Anyway in the case of this issue of Inside Out, (issue 71 Jan-Feb 2008) I flicked, scanned and then ditched (the scanning made me feel better about the ditching)
Sharing these images with you guys should make me feel better still...

all photographs Michael Wee

The really cool thing about the Butterfly House (apart from the obvious) is that it remains exactly as it was when it was originally built. Same (gorgeous) interior (and exterior) wall colours, same furniture, same crockery, same bed linen! Pretty special eh?

Larrakeyah (I love houses with names, Larrakeyah is an inner suburb of Darwin and also the name of an Aboriginal tribe) is in Dromana on Victoria's Mornington Peninsula. You can read more about it here

Speaking of beach houses, one of the reasons we have decided to d.i.y. instead of going for a full-on profesh (expensive) reno is to increase our chances of owning our own. One day.

I've got my eye on this little gem, in Albany in W.A's south-west...

check the view

and the fire place

these pics and more via 

What did Blondie say about dreaming?


  1. Wow that house is crazy cool! Scarlett x

  2. I love both of those houses! The windows in the Butterfly house are awesome. Sigh.

    Albany is a pretty cold spot for a beach house? Although, the view is probably worth it in itself!

  3. Love the butterfly house - so unusual!
    Liz @ Shortbread & Ginger

  4. I've always liked that quote: I try to remind myself when I am trying to get rid of the you'll do things in our home!

  5. That house is fab, i love the whole triangle thing, and i really like the shade of blue in there. a sea view on a hill, couldnt think of anything more perfect x

  6. Amazing houses. Thanks for scanning for us!

  7. Oh the view! It could be a garden shed and I'd be tempted for that view.

    I try to read and rip and recycle, although I do have tons of homes and antiques which are fully intact and taking up space.

  8. Isn't the Butterfly house fabulous. That story's taken from Karen McCartney's (former Inside Out editor/I know her from my days there) book 50/60/70: Iconic Australian Houses. If you don't know it - surprised if you hadn't seen it as it's right up your alley - you should take a look sometime. Karen's mid-century modern all over and lives in a classic house herself. She's one of the most tasteful people I know (and also one of the nicest). x

  9. Amazing the house is still original, how many homes can lay claim to totally original interiors?