Jess Viscarde, Principal Designer at The Eclectic Creative Studio, lives in northern suburbs of Melbourne with her partner and black rescue cat Peggy.
We’re especially excited to share her home with you because unlike most of the tours we’ve published so far, Jess rents her late 90s townhouse and has had to use clever styling to make it her own (and to hide some of the wear and tear of the space like water marks and cracks!).
Your home is so vibrant and cheerful, how would you describe your style?
“Eclectic, confident and fun — I like to experiment and take risks,” says Jess.
“Nothing ever has to be permanent. If you don’t like something, then change it — your home should tell your story and be filled with the things you love.
“I don’t believe in strictly following design rules. Sometimes you just know when something isn’t working.”
Every room in your home is full of character, what is your favourite space?
“I particularly love our living room and TV area. It gets beautiful natural light and it’s where we spend a lot of our time.
“I wanted to make the space comfortable, relaxing and inviting and I think it creates a welcoming first impression when people visit.”
There are so many unique objects in your home, what are three of your favourite places to source home décor and furniture from?
“I love finding one off pieces and little vintage finds from op shops and thrift stores, eBay and Gumtree. It’s fun hunting for things and then the challenge of making them work,” says Jess.
“Freedom Australia is one of my favourite stores for great quality and affordable prices. I also love cute little online boutiques like Wallabuy, Form Function Style and Down that little lane for unique, hand-picked little goodies you just can’t resist!”
This next question is probably a tough one but what is your favourite piece in your home and why?
“I love the yellow stool I picked up from a local Salvo’s store for $6 and my yellow Sariano Print 1951 by Lane by Post and of course my prized Fiddleleaf — that whole composition together makes me happy. Yellow is a colour I adore and when used in thoughtful little pops, it can really add much needed interest.
“I also can’t get enough of indoor plants and have many inside my home as well as in my courtyard and balconies — they breathe life and awaken any boring old corner of the home.”
What has inspired the styling in your home?
“Most definitely travel, growing up overseas and coming from a diverse background. It’s made me appreciate living an eclectic lifestyle and has resulted in my home being a bit of clash of cultures,” laughs Jess.
“I was born in Texas and have an American father. I grew up in Jakarta and Brunei, travelling extensively throughout South East Asia thanks to dad’s work. My family heritage is Italian and my mum is half Danish!
“So eclectic living comes naturally to me and has made me very adaptable and confident when mixing styles, pattern and colour. At the end of the day if I’m not having fun or feel excited about something, then I know it isn’t working and time to move on and change things up.”
How would you say your home styling has evolved?
“It’s definitely more confident now and refined.
“I’ve learnt to look at longevity over impulse ‘on trend’ purchases.
“Styling to me is a gut feeling and a trait I’ve had since I was very young. I remember my primary school teachers used to always say I’d be a designer or artist as I’d always perfectly colour coordinate my outfits and was forever talking about how I had rearranged my bedroom!”
Jess’s passion for styling and design is what lead her to pursuing a career in the design industry.
Tell us about Eclectic Creative Studio and how you came to establishing your own business?
“I launched The Eclectic Creative Studio I June this year after I noticed a real interest and demand for a comprehensive design practice.
“Since I was a child I’ve loved design and styling and have dedicated my career to it. I’ve got a pretty broad range of skills with a BA in Industrial Design, qualifications in graphic design and pre-press, and a Diploma in Interior Design and Decoration, where I won the Design Institute Australia Encouragement Award.
“I use these skills to deliver a range of services customised to the particular needs of clients and have a focus on delivering an approachable and personalised level of service.
“It’s also fun collaborating with like-minded creatives on some projects and learning from others.”
What goals do you have for the Eclectic Creative Studio?
“I’d love to see the studio continue to grow and to set up a swanky little warehouse studio in the northern suburbs of Melbourne close to my home.
“It’s my dream to employ a team full time to really kick some butt and shake things up in the design world.
“In the short-term my goal is to do a photography course and get a new cameral so I can better capture the projects I’ve worked on.”
Jess if full of tenacity that she credits to her dad and we have no doubt she’ll be kicking real butt in the design world in no time!
Photography by Suzi Appel and Kate Hansen.