Projects | The Pause

Here it is! The fourth house in the luxurious list of projects by Simone Mathews Founder of SOUL HOMES Australia. With her keen eye for creature comforts and designer details this holiday rental is nothing short of an oasis. In a world that is constantly moving and full of the unknown Simone and her team have created a sanctuary to take a little time and be still. I don't know how she managed to find the time to answer my questions between family, her design business, managing of multiple properties and her online education commitments. Thankfully she is wonder woman! So here I present to you, an insider’s guide to The Pause.

What was your must have piece or feature within the space?

The timber doors. They are the absolute hero of the property. The PAUSE is a property where less is more as I want people to walk in and just feel like they can take a big breath out and leave the hassles and stresses of everyday life behind them. So, the doors were the key as they are a statement of the property, they add warmth to the space and allow the property to have a minimalist look yet have a feeling that welcomes people.

Your key principals when creating your visual story?

I use my 70/20/10 rule when designing all my properties. This is the key to creating the visual story and ultimately the final feeling of a home. The rule goes like this … 70% of one style, 20% of another and a final 10% layer to bring it altogether. At the PAUSE I describe the style as 70% organic, 20% minimalist and a final 10% classic layer to bring it altogether.   You can honestly apply this rule to everything, if I use it to describe the colour scheme it is 70% White, 20% natural timbers and a final 10% of antique brass.

How have you used lighting? Why these pieces, what is their purpose? What mood do they help create?

Lighting is my absolute secret weapon when designing homes. It is the way you can create the mood for the people who are going to be living or staying there, how you can make a statement and how the home will function. Here at The PAUSE, it was important that the property had the right amount of general lighting so the function is there, but it was just as important if not more to have feature lighting that could set the mood and add the ambience.

Wall lights played a bit part at The PAUSE. Pretty much every room has wall lighting. I selected wall lights as they have a minimalist feel about them yet a classic touch. I love how they can create the mood lighting and I do love the wall wash effect. I chose an antique brass finish to compliment the natural timber that has been used throughout and contrast against the concrete floors.

Rattan and linen pendants are used in the kitchen, void and master guest room. I went for over scale pendants as I wanted to make a big impact. In the kitchen I repeated the same pendant working with the magic number of three over the concrete island. The lighting steals the show in the kitchen/living space. Upstairs in the master guest room I chose pendants over the wall lights to work with the height of the ceiling space. It allows the eye to be bought down and adds a very relaxed vibe to the room. And in the void the one linen light was what was required to create this statement.

For general lighting, track lighting was used in the kitchen/living area and canned downlights in the remainder of the house. I wanted the lights to blend but also add to that minimalist look. I didn’t want them to look like they hadn’t been thought of.

I am so happy with the lighting in The PAUSE. It has really set the mood of what the property is all about.

What do you hope people will feel when in the space? What was it designed for?

I want the PAUSE to be a place where guests come, and they can escape their everyday. From the moment they arrive they feel like they can switch off. I want them to feel like it is their home away from home. Ultimately, I want it to be a place where people can just be.

Right from the beginning, I designed this property as an escape. Every bit of detail has a thought behind it. Each building material, to the spatial planning right down to the styling pieces has a purpose to allow guests to be able to experience that all important holiday feeling.

What is on the horizon for you?

Personally, purchasing a home for my family of six. It is time for us to finally settle down and create that holiday feeling for our everyday. I also am going to be taking some inspiration from The PAUSE and taking a day each week to just be.

Professionally, so many exciting things. I have another online series called The CLIENT, some amazing holiday home projects across Australia and I will be launching a series of online education around building, design, styling and all things holiday properties. So, it is going to be an exciting year ahead that is for sure!

Favourite lighting collective piece/s? (maybe 1-3 products)


Who are you following? Your three favorited Instagram accounts?

Love Studio McGee from the USA (@studiomcgee)

Mon Palmer, an inspiration from both a professional and personal perspective (@mon_palmer)

Samantha Wills, just an all-round beautiful soul (@samanthawills)


What Blogs are you reading?

I am not really a blog person, rather a podcast addict.   I love the Gold Digger from Jenna Kutcher, The Mentor from Mark Bouris and Hear Me Raw from Lisa Messenger.

What Magazines are you reading?

Magazines you will find me perusing are Inside Out, Real Living, Adore, Country Style and Domino Mag. I also really enjoy Paradiso which is produced in Byron by a very talented friend.

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