After moving into a new home in 2015, Perth’s Jen Farr relished the opportunity to create her ultimate pad, and built a significant Instagram following as a result. “I had never built before so it was a dream come true to be able to do a custom design to suit us and to choose all our own fixtures and fittings. Also, it was a great opportunity to purchase all new furniture and homewares, including art to fit the space,” says Jen who started her Instagram account @designdevotee throughout the process.
Jen had some initial help from an interior designer at pre-start (primarily with bathroom tile and cupboard laminate selections), and she also had some professional styling help too. “When it came closer to furnishing the house, I contacted Jane Ledger from Spacecrush who I found on Instagram to help pull everything together and steer me in the right direction. Working with Jane was such a wonderful experience and I learnt a lot from her,” says Jen.
But as for her Instagram following (46k and growing), Jen puts it down to the exposure that her home has gotten in print media. “My home was photographed for Adore magazine in January 2016, and featured in the homes section of a Perth weekend paper in September 2016. My grandkids’ room was on the front cover of Minty Magazine in December last year too,” says Jen. And what a bedroom it is!
“The grandkids’ room was designed as a fun space for my six grandkids to spend time whenever they come over. It is still a work in progress as I am planning on buying a new floor rug for the area as well as another piece of art. And now that the kids are getting older, I will need to add new books, games and Lego to keep them entertained. They all love this room and whenever they are here, it is the first place that they run to,” says Jen.
“My favourite thing in the room is the wallpaper. I love the feel that it adds to the room. As the wallpaper, carpet and wall colour are all neutral, this room can slowly be changed from a girly room to a more gender-neutral one as the kids grow up. Originally it was for my four granddaughters and one grandson, but now with a grandson born in 2015 and another one due later this year I think perhaps it’s time for the pink to be toned down!” says Jen.
As for Jen’s following, unsurprisingly it has led to many requests for product promotion and her decorating advice is highly sought after too. “I receive many free items from Instagram businesses. I have also found that many people want decorating advice including furniture selection and I have recently been helping a woman in Ecuador redecorate. I am also working with a woman in Sydney who has just moved into a new home and wants help with furniture, rugs, artwork and décor items – so pretty much everything,” says Jen who is managing both jobs entirely through Instagram’s direct messaging service.
It’s pretty impressive for a woman with no formal training, who used to construct her own interiors as a child. “Ever since I was in primary school I would make my own doll houses by joining empty shoe boxes together and then I would sew curtains for them and make all the furniture,” says Jen.
Photography: Tarina Lyell & Hannah Blackmore