A home showcase for decades of careful collecting

Ann Wilkin's enthusiasm for auctions and markets really
shows in this luscious, leafy home brimming with treasures.  
Ann refers to a fondness for finding bric-a-brac while her husband
calls it junk (cheeky)! And then there are staff at some auctions who tell Ann they "prefer to call it object d'art."  Well whatever you call it, it all comes together in an intriguing and wonderful display of Ann's very personal style.
What Ann refers to as "the mess behind the sofa" we prefer to call a beautiful display of special pieces. The purchase of the two brass candlesticks with funnel holders was nothing short of a miracle. Ann bought one at auction over two decades ago and it lived for years alone outside on the balcony. Then only four years ago Ann found another one exactly the same at a different auction! Now the pair sit happily with a painting by Sassy Park and head figurines from Manila.  The heads were bought in the 1970s by Ann's sister who lived there and sourced interesting paintings and crafts for Ann during that time. 
Clever positioning of this shelf lets the glassware glow in the sunlight - the luminous pinks and greens echoing the colours of the furnishings. The green glasses and cake stands are uranium glass with the beautiful lime green coming from the uranium. The plates on the bottom shelf were bought at auction where Ann was told they were glazed by a nun in Orange (in country New South Wales) and which the cheeky husband calls "green plates by Orange nun".
Just opening a draw in this home unearths a gorgeous nest of collectables!

Paintings of French costume designs from the 1920s hang above
a collection of fountain pens, inkwells and personal photos. 

The bird paintings here are by Australian painter Neville Cayley who illustrated
the classic reference book "What Bird is That?"  Amongst the lovely Australian
birdlife are gifts from friends and pictures that Ann took a liking to at auction.

The John Duffecy dining table was bought at auction about 15 years ago for less than two hundred dollars.  Amazingly, Ann had longed for this same dining suite when she got married in 1961 - but at the time it was very expensive.  Ann has since bought another table to match so there are extra chairs to use when the table is extended.  The second table went to a friend. We're sure Ann never imagined back in 1961 that she'd be giving them away!

Another auction find.  The heavy wrought iron kitchen table was bought 
30 years ago. The angel candlesticks are one of the few pieces bought
new but Ann thinks they are probably reproductions of something old.  
Ann loves to look at them from the kitchen sink as they remind
her "of statues you see as you turn a corner into laneways in Europe."

Thankyou so much for sharing your gorgeous home and your lovely stories with us Ann!


  1. Great! I love this this place. I want that floral sofa/lounge/couch or whatever we say these days! Where do u find these places?
    Good work ladies!

  2. I love the wrought iron curly whirly motif - the chairs, the banisters, even the gorgeous indoor climbing plant. I'd like to know what that is - looks like a string of clover hearts!

  3. Awesome fabric on the couch. I also love the vignette about the John Duffecy dining table, I have one myself and I am so pleased to have a little window into its history. I wish i had those beautiful chairs to match though!

  4. I am the late John Duffecy's daughter. I am so glad his pieces are still eponymously recognised. A beautiful setting for beautiful furniture.

    1. Hello, I am just beginning to look at the work of John Duffecy in my work as a design researcher, could I ask you to please get in contact with me, i would love to talk to you. Catriona. timcat1@tpg.com.au

  5. Just wondering if there has been anything done to document the work of John Duffecy? It would be wonderful to think that his work could be fully appreciated by the wider design community. His pieces are truly exceptional in terms of Australian furniture making, not only in their design but also their craftsmanship. They will be appreciated for generations to come.

  6. It sure is a sweet dinning set ! I have the complete set also, i picked up at a auction 18months ago in mint condition ,have'nt used it tho ,room not big enough ! He truly is an exceptional Australian furnniture designer ! Is there any books on his designs, does anyone know ??