How to Fuse Modern and Edwardian Style

Built from 1901 onwards, Edwardian-style or ‘Federation’ homes continue to be extremely popular among Melburnians today. 

Characterised by their stained-glass windows and red-brick exteriors, these beautiful homes never go out of style – and can easily be adapted to infuse modern touches. 

Read on to find out how you can update your Edwardian home while remaining true to its heritage features. 

What makes an Edwardian home?

As the Victorian era came to an end in 1901, Edwardian homes began appearing – marking an exciting time in Australian architecture. Embracing a more informal style, these beautiful new homes felt fresh and modern, replacing the often cluttered interiors of Victorian properties.

Leadlight or stained-glass windows are one of the most recognisable features of Edwardian homes, and doors and bay windows were often decorated with motifs of native Australian flora and fauna. Red brick exteriors, embellished wood and red terracotta roof tiles are further standout features. 

Internally, Edwardian-style homes favoured white-painted ceilings decorated with plaster ceiling roses, ornate cornices and tall timber skirting.

The Edwardian era was a fantastic time for construction. As builders embraced modern materials and exciting new techniques, homes became sturdier and more durable, with light, airy rooms and beautiful details. Couple this with the fact that Edwardian homes tended to be built around new transport routes (in desirable Melbourne suburbs such as Malvern, Armadale and Middle Park) and it’s easy to see why they continue to be so popular with buyers today.

Where to start when fusing modern and Edwardian style 

Edwardian homes lend themselves perfectly to modern renovation projects. The features that made them so popular when they were first built – using strong materials and incorporating intricate designs – remain things homebuyers look for today.

A sense of country living is felt in Edwardian homes and blends perfectly with modern styles. Many Edwardian builds prioritise front and rear gardens, with verandahs offering yet more outdoor space. Furnish with modern pieces for an attractive country house feel. 

Occasionally, rotten timber may need replacing in Edwardian homes – however, there are plenty of ways to feature this material in a modern way. Timber can lend a fireplace a stunning rustic look, be incorporated in bannisters and stairs, or add a farmhouse vibe to your kitchen in the form of tables, chairs or worktops. 

Equally, the classic Edwardian red brick exterior can be updated in a way that pays homage to its roots. An exposed red brick feature wall in the living area for example lends a cosy rustic feel with a heritage twist. Alternatively, simply restore the red brick exterior to its former glory, staying completely true to the Edwardian aesthetic. 

Ceiling roses, ornate architraves and cornices can all be given a modern makeover. Tidy up an intricate ceiling rose by incorporating one plain line around the outside, then finish with a contemporary ceiling lamp at its centre. Stick to minimalist architraves and cornices and pair with neutral wall colours for an instantly updated feel.

The key is to work with a builder who understands the value of Edwardian architecture and can help you blend heritage features and modern elements in a considered way that stays true to your home’s past.

To discuss the restoration of your very own Edwardian home, get in touch with the expert team at SECON Constructions today!

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A Step-by-Step Guide to Transforming Your Heritage Home to Suit Modern Family Living

Here’s what you’ll discover in our guide: