Tribal beach flat | Skillshare Projects

Siobhan Chapman

Producer at Mi9



Tribal beach flat

Hi there

I fell way behind with this project when our modem died and I couldn't access the videos. So apologies for the lateness of this.

images: Design Sponge

8 principles of interior styling

Needs: Comfortable lounge space in limited size flat. 

Shape: Clean simple lines, using mid century modern furniture.

Colours: Warm tones of red and brown (wood), with one contrasting blue chair).

Pattern: Tribal patterns on cushion and rug. 

Texture: The rug, the wool chair and the textured pillow.

Placement:The two prints above the couch are in line with the couch, the rug and coffee table. The blue chair, and the way the coffee table has books on the right hand side creates assymetry, which is pleasing to the eye.

Bling: Silver floor lamp, chandeliar 

Botanicals: Pot plant on coffee table and windowsill.

About our flat

Our Sydney flat is about five mins from the beach. One of our challenges is that we rent, so we can't paint the walls or the ugly textured (spray concrete) ceiling, or put in any hooks or put up curtains. Our carpet is also pretty dire, and the flat hasn't been renovated since the 1980s. But on the flipside, we have great natural light with windows on both sides and, as I said, we are five mins from the beach! I'd say we are drawn to tribal designs, mid century modern furniture. 

Most of our furniture is thrifted (including street finds) or Ikea. I have a love / hate relationship with our furniture. Some pieces I love, and some I hate. 

Needs: I've identified a few needs in our place:

  • Our biggest issue is storage. There are no built-ins and we get a lot of clutter in the house. 
  • Get rid of ugly white cubes. When we first back to Australia (about 2 years ago), we got these cubes from my brother (Bunnings) as an interim solution to stow stuff in. 2 years later and we are still using them. I'd like to do is replace the cubes in the house with better storage solution.
  • No storage around desk. We can't screw anything into the walls, so I need some shelves that can stand on the desk, like a shallow bookshelf, to store books and computer equipment.
  • I'm a collector but not great at displaying things. I have a number of things that my husband actually hates, but I keep them because I can see potential in them on display. Example, a wooden Fijian Kava bowl, which is just too massive to be a fruit bowl. 




  • The Aboriginal painting above the bed.


  • Lamps, don't know what I was thinking!
  • Not a fan of our bedframe, which was free. I don't like rail at the foot of the bed which cuts off the bed, and the curve of the line of the rail. It makes me think of a jail.
  • Note the ugly white cubes on the left hand side.
  • Placement, the drawers on the right are too large, which means the bed is out of alignement with the painting. 

Bedside table, drawers:


This is a bedside table we found being thrown out. I think it's Ikea. It's pine that has been stained. It's pretty ugly, but I see some potential to paint this and change the knobs on this (image below). I would then move it into the bedroom and get rid of those white cubes.

Image: Pinterest

Table before:

We don't have a coffee table, so this is our dining table. 

It's an oak table that we restored. This is it fully extended, but the two sides also fold down so it can be a half table for 2, or a rectangle side table. 

You can also see the bookshelf in the background, which is very cluttered. 



This is a bit of a work in progress, but this is take one on the bookshelf top. I need to also do the drawers and do a long shot. I'm not happy with the placement here and will keep experimenting tomorrow. 

Need: Somewhere to store the keys (pink bowl)

Shape: ?

Colour: Pink (the bowl and the water buffalo)

Pattern: The buffalo, the giraffe and the bowl. 

Placement: There is a high, to low to high placement

Bling: The bowl

Botanicals: Brought in a pot plant from outside. 


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