Written by Sibella Court
In 2013, I signed up for a dream job as host of 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.
Over two and half years I followed the restoration of seven houses as the passionate families who owned these time capsules embarked on a journey of a lifetime. Not only was this about all things history & building process, it was an opportunity to visit some beautiful locations around Australia and really get to know them, the people and the surrounds.
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.
Gervasoni Homestead is nestled in the hills of Yandoit - this area is unbelievably picturesque & teaming with talented creatives. Any precious downtime or an early arrival would mean visiting super cool places from David Bromley’s retail store in Daylesford, florist Katie Marx and furniture maker Greg Hatton's Butterland in Newstead, the Daylesford market or just hanging out at Lynda Gardener’s ultimate houses to rent, The White House Daylesford & The Estate Trentham.
This stone homestead is steeped in Swiss-Italian traditions, built in 1852, made up with 3 dwellings (or ruins!). The colours of this landscape & the ever growing caramel menagerie of Marine’s is beautiful to see - if you are looking for road trip inspiration, this is it!
If you too are excited by this and looking to introduce a touch of heritage trades & craftsmanship in your home, we’ve put together some pieces from my own hardware & homegoods range that would fit perfectly in any of the historic houses that feature on Restoration Australia.