Today is International Colour Day and I can’t imagine a better way to celebrate it than bringing your attention to the third in the Throwback series (and a little behind schedule, sorry) recollecting inspiration and greatness from my recent Australian trip. Today’s post showcases Tracey Lester’s own brand of interior design via the extreme visual feast of The Carlton in Melbourne’s inner city. The total transformation of this once dilapidated and unloved space is the incarnation of what I like to call Tropical POP. Electric Jungle is another way of describing this world, and is just what über brand KENZO did for their A/W 13 collection and might be something you’re interested in taking a peek at, if you like to match what you wear to your watering hole? Fingers crossed this immense maximalist view on the world continues to take hold.
With an appetite for decoration larger than most, a unique sense of style, plenty of hard work and getting her hands dirty and trips abroad for eye candy and inspiration, Tracey has revolutionized pubs in Melbourne. In her twenty year history as a hospitality entrepreneur she has enlightened the locals and in the know out of towners with her signature style, creating hybrid and lively social spaces that people don’t ever want to leave. Think animal print, flocked wallpaper created to her own design – in fact there is tons of flocking to be found…even the fire extinguisher has been flocked!, custom carpet in high-octane colours, crushed velvet seating in same – an OTT ode to the traditional velvet topped pub stools of old perhaps, an abundance of taxidermy sourced from favourite-ever antiques market – Clignacourt and Melbourne institution tarlo & graham, palm trees for days – I think she might be obsessed!, cabinets of curiosity filled to the brim with fabulous finds from far away, and custom furniture and lighting – the booths you see below were inspired by a post I wrote on the Yareta plant. Add to this an extravagance of plants that fall from almost every nook and cranny and that give great lush and calm in keeping with this inner city oasis. Not forgetting my favourite find and surely the first of its kind, the awesome Tropical POP taxidermy Rhino that has been given the Tracey Lester treatment. What a beauty! The handsome elephant that watches over the DJ booth makes for some major jungle vibes on the dancefloor I’m sure.
Aside from the obvious fact that Tracey creates incredible interiors, it is the very clever way in which she combines a myriad of entertainment spaces within the same four walls that keeps the punters walking through the doors. There were plans brewing for another floor of glory when I visited, just another reason to never have to leave. It seems there is no stopping this truly tropical force. Maximalists worldwide unite!