Home of the week
French letters … Guy Mathews' dining room owes a lot to Parisian style and his love of typography.
Walk up the narrow stairs in antiques dealer Guy Mathews' busy corner store in Fitzroy and the mood quickly changes. Here, Mathews has created a home with the charm of a Parisian apartment, filled with art and furniture collected over a lifetime.
The living space above the former general store has been Mathews' home since 2009. "This is my base, as I travel overseas regularly and to Sydney to see my kids," he says, referring to Ella, 23, Tilly, 15, and Charlie, 12. "I love the convenience of living above my beautiful shop, and the proximity to the sophisticated inner-Melbourne cityscape."
Richly coloured walls form the backdrop to Mathews' collection of industrial furniture, imported textiles and unique early- and mid-20th-century furniture. "I painted every surface three or four times to get the colour I wanted – the paint colours are all my own, made by mixing paints to get a shade I'm happy with."
The home also provides Mathews with the space to create his unique bricolages from vintage industrial signage and typography. "Being positioned on a corner, it has great natural light," he says.
Mathews cites his trips overseas as his muse. "I find travelling in the French industrial landscapes my greatest inspiration, although I never really make any plans – change happens sporadically."
Photography: Armelle Habib