The phrase “Australian design” probably isn’t one you hear all that often. I’m not saying the approach to style taken by the Antipodeans lacks taste, or, for that matter, flair, but given the relative newness of our existence as a colonized country, the hot weather that engulfs much of the nation for the bulk of each year, and the fact that 90 percent of the population lives in close proximity to the beach, Australia’s aesthetic tends toward the breezy and colorful. Sydney in particular is home to some of the best-designed spaces in the nation—all with huge windows for maximum vantage points, white walls to better reflect the bright sun, and impressive fixtures indicating the wealth of the city’s inhabitants. But the rest of us plebes can find great design deals, too—check out these five stores, which offer a range of vintage finds, new creations, and everything in between.
Walking into a Dinosaur Designs shop will perk you right up. They’ve sell playful wares made of resin, ceramic, silver, and glass across all colors of the spectrum. You’ll want to run your fingers over every product as you imagine completely overhauling your interiors so your home looks like Rainbow Brite’s pad.
Jason Mowen Interiors
Mowen has curated this gorgeous little corner studio on the northern end of placid Redfern Park with care and craft. You’ll find beautiful artworks, vintage furniture, gorgeous textiles, striking lighting fixtures, and beautiful objets d’art with a tribal bent that have been sourced from far-flung corners of Africa and Oceania.
Head to Bondi Road and nip in to this pretty little shop where you’ll find furniture (sideboards, benches, chairs, and desks), artwork, cushions, and throws that have sparse, minimalist appeal. It’s an especially good choice if you’re ready to graduate from the likes of Ikea—the stuff Yellow Bungalow stocks is of a far better quality, lasts longer and, hey, you won’t have to cringe when you tell people where you bought it. Given how pretty it all is, you should expect to be asked.
Love Scandinavian design? You’ll need to visit Great Dane. (Their logo is a dog, but their name references their objects’ pedigree.) Step down the stairs and into this clean showroom filled with furniture, lighting, and well-designed homewares from the likes of Finn Juhl, Hans Wegner, N.O. Moller, and Arne Jacobsen.
This place will blow your mind. What looks, from the outside, like a store tailor-made for your grandma (all pretty flowers and rococo furnishings) is revealed to be a treasure trove of, well, everything once you walk inside. Head straight into the vastly overstuffed back room where you’ll find vintage items, antique gewgaws and crazy taxidermy.