“Design Consigned celebrates good design whilst being conscious of how much stuff the world already has.”
When most people think of Australia, they don’t usually imagine glorious amounts of snow falling from the sky – that is what dream Christmas holidays to Europe or Canada are made of. But there is one Australian who looked towards the mountains for solace and inspiration, interior designer and business owner, Mel Decampo. Following a holiday to Mt Buller in Victoria’s High Country, the family fell in love with the mountain’s history and the idea of having a true white winter right here in Australia. They discovered there was a school right there on the mountain and so the decision was made to live the winter up there.
Mel, took up the mountain lifestyle, renovating her dream ski home, putting her interior design skills to the test. Here, the family spent seven winters, carting firewood, performing gate duty for the ski race club, celebrating Christmas in July, and ordering the groceries from Mansfiled, an hour away, via fax. Her children spent their winters schooling, skiing and snowboarding, even competing in The Junior World Championships in Austria. It was a complete flip of the typical Australian lifestyle.
“The ski chalet has a rustic ambiance and each piece in it has meaning and its own story, many from far off places.”
Mel wanted to share this hidden Australian winter wonderland and so decided to turn her ski home into a holiday house so that other families could live this dream lifestyle for a weekend. The holiday home is now on Airbnb for the first time. The chalet interior is constantly evolving, filled with warm and heartfelt family memories, a place where Mel displays some of the beautiful second-hand items she has found. It is a living example of what her business, Design Consigned, is all about. The chalet has a rustic ambiance and each piece in it has a history and tells its own story. The wooden reindeer was found on a trip to Bali in 1990. The raw and untouched wooden bench was a treasure discovered at a seconds’ warehouse in Collingwood. The tan leather sofas become more imbued with character, beauty and comfort every year. The wine bottle and corkscrew lamp, sourced from Martin Allen Antiques in South Melbourne, sheds a warm and inviting glow. And the open fire and vintage ‘swiss’ style checked cushions from the local junk store contribute to the quirky and cosy atmosphere.
"Design Consigned invites clients to consider the environment and rethink their philosophical approach by specifying some ‘non-new’ design pieces in their residential or commercial design projects."
Not only does Mel have a passion for design, she also has an interest in the ‘primitive’ life in the snow especially the American Indian culture and how these people lived through the snowy months.
Mel’s career as a national buyer for Myer Department Stores in her 20s, a recent qualification in interior design at RMIT University, and a love for sustainability, mixed with an intuitive feel for good design, inspired her to start her new online business Design Consigned. Mel provides a gentler solution for on-selling or buying privately owned contemporary design. Her goal is to put a stop to imported counterfeit design and to show people an environmentally aware alternative, all of which means less junk ending up in landfill. As the proprietor of a small business herself, Mel supports the Australian Design Alliance and local makers wherever possible.
Design Consigned celebrates good design whilst being conscious of how much stuff the world already has. As Mel notes, “We also support and encourage emerging designers whilst upholding the value of existing design. We are passionate about our integrity to the designer, the consignor [seller] and the consignee [buyer].”
Design Consigned only represents recognised designers, brands and authentic objects. “Our aim is to make good design more affordable for everyone by offering the best pre-owned objects consigned by the owners of your city’s most prestigious homes and commercial spaces.”
By showing love for these pre-owned objects and demonstrating how objects from former eras can be re-envisioned, up-cycled and used in cutting-edge creative ways, Design Consigned invites clients to consider the environment and rethink their philosophical approach by specifying some ‘non-new’ design pieces in their residential or commercial design projects. In a world drowning beneath the weight of its own detritus, we think that’s a great starting point.
Want to stay at this beautiful Chalet? Click here!
Read more articles in the latest issue of Junkies Magazine