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Why taking home organisation tips from Chrissie Swan “is a fool’s game”



What is your strongest memory of your childhood home? 

Our family moved into a newly built house in East Doncaster (in Victoria) when I was about three so that became my first home where any memories happened. I was so proud of it. To me, it was so big and fancy. It was a two-storey dark brown brick affair and had all the wonderful interior design aspects of a late 70s dream home: chandeliers, wallpaper of nude ladies in the bathroom, lots of arches, Berber carpet and a quarry tiled al fresco area with a built in BBQ with piped in gas. The front yard featured ferns and tan bark. I think we even referred to it as The Fernery. Fancy! My room had Marimekko curtains and a pine trundle bed stained red. My parents had a walk in robe and an ensuite. I thought it was the ants pants.

What do you remember about buying your first home?

The first home I bought was in the mid 1990s. I bought a two-bedroom villa unit in Camberwell (Melbourne) and I went halvsies with my sister. We bought it before the boom and, I kid you not, it changed everything for me in that had I not bought at that time and made a tidy profit I would probably never have been able to buy anything.

Have you ever house-shared (when you were younger or a student)?

I shared a three-bedroom single fronted Victorian across the road from North Williamstown station (in Melbourne). I like houses with built-in noise. I like main roads and houses with train stations that make the windows rattle. It makes me feel like I’m part of humanity.

Do you have any tips for organising your home as a parent?

If you saw my house you would realise that taking any tips on household organisation from me is a fool’s game!

Do you have a favourite room?

My bedroom! It’s where I do all my favourite things: cuddles with my three kids, conversations with my fella (Chris), reading and sleeping.

What’s the worst piece of furniture or household item you have ever bought?

I bought a knock off Kartell bedside table for my son’s room and it was too small to be any use plus it would constantly slip off its bearings and make any lamp we bought for him smash to the ground and break. We went through three lamps before the table got the heave-ho.

If you could live in a dream house, anywhere in the world, where would it be?

A house in South Yarra is my dream house. It’s walking distance to the movies, good coffee, Prahran market and my best friend’s house – and also smack bang in the middle of the tram routes my kids will need for school, when that day comes – perfect!

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I had to take a minute and send you a note letting you know how wonderful Barry is. He is working with my husband and me to help us buy our first house. Barry is amazing…he’s so patient and knowledgeable and fun. As first time home buyers, we know nothing, and living on the opposite side of the state doesn’t make Barry’s job any easier, but you’d never know those obstacles exist because every interaction with him is so flawless. I can’t thank you enough for having such an awesome Realtor for us…