Written by Sibella Court
In April 2013 I embarked on the 2-and-a-half-year journey of a lifetime as the host of ABC’s new program, RESTORATION AUSTRALIA. With an Australian history degree under my belt and a great love of heritage trades and historical houses, this was a match made in heaven. I traipsed across rural Australia, following the stories of 7 houses & 7 families, their trials & tribulations, joys & sorrows as they restored their heritage houses.
While being a TV host is not my main job, the premise of the show aligned perfectly with the philosophy of my very own store The Society Inc and design studio. Our products are designed & crafted with the shared values of all those involved with the show including a deep appreciation of heritage trades, honest & humble materials, craftsmanship, age-old skills and a love of sourcing original building materials and vintage wares.
I shot largely on the weekends but it never really felt like work - I would naturally fall into lengthy conversations about hand-forged nails, pressed glass from the 1900s, hardwood timbers, pre-fab houses from the gold rush era - all these subjects and more I enjoyed immensely and experienced great joy in learning from other enthusiasts.
Little did I know I was very newly pregnant at the time! We were a small crew of mostly men – all fathers – who gallantly nurtured me & my Silver through many a weekend shoot.
This is my journey of an incredible travel throughout regional Australia, the people I met, the places I stayed, the landscape, the historical houses and the adventures I had. Welcome to my family album of Restoration Australia.