Talm Beach House boasts spectacular views and chic coastal styling.
How Interior Designer Jenn Bliss Built a Luxury Coastal Home in Port Stephens
Talm Beach House boasts spectacular views and chic coastal styling.
Welcome to The Makers. Each week, we’re celebrating innovators, artisans, and crafters of all types, taking you on a private tour of their creative spaces. For this instalment, we tour Talm Beach House, a luxury coastal home conceived by interior designer Jenn Bliss.
Australia has its fair share of beachside homes and coastal style is undoubtedly one of the most popular interior design aesthetics to embrace. Talm Beach House, located in Anna Bay, Port Stephens, is the epitome of coastal living and laidback-luxe style. Conceived by interior designer Jenn Bliss, this accommodation celebrates the best of coastal living and is the ultimate beach escape.
Jenn studied marketing and advertising at university before undertaking a short course in interior design. "I have a passion for people and how they perceive something. So this truly is the perfect career for me. I have the opportunity to style and create spaces as well as market the space," she shares with Bed Threads Journal.
Together with her husband Ry, she bought a vacant block of land by the ocean at the end of 2018 and started designing and building the holiday house in 2019. Aside from the picturesque views, the relaxed location held sentimental value as Ry grew up surfing and swimming in the area with friends.
When designing this property, Jenn wanted to blur the line between indoors and outdoors and fill the house with natural light. "I wanted a space that had lots of natural light, so textures and warm tones to make the property feel inviting!" This was achieved through expansive floor-to-ceiling windows, timber furniture, sisal rugs, and chevron floorboards.
The house is an entertainer's dream with its large indoor kitchen, wine cellar, outdoor kitchen, and various living/dining spaces. One of the loveliest parts of the home, and Jenn's favourite space, is the primary bathroom. This luxurious space features a freestanding tub that overlooks the ocean. "Nothing relaxes me more than a glass of wine in a bubble bath watching the ocean roll in." The house boasts 10 bedrooms with the primary bedroom being swathed in Wildflower – an easy, breezy blue hue that complements the ocean location.
"It absolutely warms my soul when families contact me to say that they have made the best memories at Talm Beach House. Just to know that we will forever be imprinted into their lifelong memories is so special!"
Below, take a tour of Talm Beach House and read about Jenn's tips for coastal styling and her advice to those wanting to rent out their home to holiday-goers.
Hi Jenn! This series is called The Makers. What is it that you make?
Hello there! I am an interior designer and stylist and together with my talented hubby, have designed and created a luxury oceanfront accommodation property called Talm Beach House.
How does the act of “making” relate to your personality and who you are?
I am a creative at heart. I love creating, styling and breathing life into spaces. It's one of my passions and it is what keeps me feeling inspired and “fueled”. I love creating spaces that people can use and enjoy and make lifelong memories in.
Tell us about your career journey to date. Did you always know you wanted to pursue this line of work?
No, I never thought I would be running a successful holiday accommodation. I studied marketing and advertising at university in South Africa and then did a short course in interior design here in Sydney. I always knew I would be doing something in the creative industry or in line with advertising in one way or another. I have a passion for people and how they perceive something. So this truly is the perfect career for me. I have the opportunity to style and create spaces as well as market the space.
Talk us through your creative process. Where do you start?
I love feeling inspired by what other creatives are creating. When I surround myself with a variety of architects, designers, stylists and artists I feel like this is where my ideas are born. Then I think travelling and experiencing different spaces first hand is an important tool in my creative process. I then create mood boards and go from there. I am such a visual person. I need to get ideas out of my head and in front of me.
What’s been the single most crucial tool or strategy you’ve used to further your career
Trusting my gut! When it comes to making decisions, I have found that trusting my intuition and “gut” has always paid off. In order to do that of course, I have had to learn to trust myself and have confidence in the decisions I make. So I guess self-awareness and personal growth has been a big part of where I am today.
What’s been the best thing that’s happened to you since you started your career?
Gosh, there have been so many highs and incredible moments. It absolutely warms my soul when families contact me to say that they have made the best memories at Talm Beach House. Just to know that we will forever be imprinted into their lifelong memories is so special!
Do you have a single piece of advice you’d give to your younger self or someone looking to pursue a similar line of work?
Stay true to yourself. The industry can feel saturated at times so it's so important to find your style and stick to it.
Now, the home stuff. How long ago did you design Talm Beach House?
We bought the vacant block of land back at the end of 2018 and then started designing and building in 2019.
How did you initially know this was the location and space for you?
We searched for a property to secure as a working venture that we could also use and visit to make memories with our own family. When we saw the block of land that Talm now neatly sits upon, there was an instant heartfelt connection. This beautiful space overlooks the ocean and it is positioned right in front of gorgeous rock pools! It was a common spot Ry would visit and go surfing and swimming with his friends. He made many childhood memories in this area of Port Stephens so naturally, this pulled on our heartstrings as we want the same memories to be made for and with our children. Hence, the creation of Talm Beach House.
What was the thought process and inspiration behind the way you’ve styled the interior?
I wanted a space that had lots of natural light, so textures and warm tones to make the property feel inviting! Being that we have the ocean on our doorstep, it was important to blur the lines between indoor and outdoor living so that it felt like one. As a family, we love travelling, exploring new places and staying in accommodations that make us feel like we are in a home away from home so our aim was to try and bottle this emotion and bring it to life in Talm. I personally like to style a home over time and not all at once.
While travelling if we find a beautiful item, we like to then add this piece to the home. To me, this is what makes a home feel more than just a house. It feels like a museum or storybook of places we have been. On our shelves, we have three Meerkats sourced from the side of the road in South Africa. We also have vintage bottles that we now use as vases that were found whilst excavating the land at Talm. I have roses that I dried out that were from my wedding bouquet as well as a painting that was sourced from a vintage store down in Sydney!
Coastal style is one of the most popular interior styles. What are your top tips for people trying to achieve this look in their home?
Design the space to boast lots of natural light and do not be afraid to use lots of white throughout the property. Then add so textures and warm tones to make the property feel coastal.
What are your favorite pieces in the home?
The three meerkats on display in the living space. As I mentioned before, we bought them from a gentleman on the side of the road in Cape Town, South Africa. They add a piece of my heritage to the property which has always been extremely important to me.
Do you have any special décor pieces you’re looking to add?
Yes, definitely. I am looking at adding different artwork. I like to change things around as time progresses and my inspirations change and grow.
Which is your favourite room in the house?
I love the bathroom as it has a bathtub with ocean views. Nothing relaxes me more than a glass of wine in a bubble bath watching the ocean roll in.
What are your top tips for a well-styled bedroom, and home generally?
For me personally, less is more. I love a neutral palette and then adding a few key styling elements and textures. It is easy to then change the room up and keep being creative if you are working with a neutral canvas.
What are some things people should do before renting out there home?
Make sure you are okay with people living in your home. Not everyone is going to love and respect it as you do, so you need to be okay with that. This was the hardest part for me.