by Neometro

Lilyfield Warehouse by Virginia Kerridge Architect

Architecture - by Open Journal

Warehouse conversions don’t get much more striking than Lilyfield Warehouse by Virginia Kerridge Architect. Winner of two HOUSES awards, the remarkable and creative transformation has turned an industrial building without external land into a family residence that retains the site’s impressive scale, while creating harmonious indoor and outdoor living spaces.

While the warehouse itself had no actual outdoor space at all, the design removed a significant portion of the original building’s roof to create an internal garden and courtyard, which form the heart of the new residence. While providing valuable outdoor space to a family with children, the open air garden also brings sunlight and a unique sense of space to living areas, kitchen and bedrooms.

Architect Virginia Kerridge talks Open Journal through some of the key elements of the project.


Built in the 1920s, the original building was formerly a furniture warehouse, a cane and rattan factory and a warehouse for the Oh Boy Candy Company.

The client’s brief was to “think creatively”. They wanted the industrial nature of the building to be respected, retained or recycled as much as possible; and for it to be a light, airy home complete with garden.

It is a residence for a couple with small children. It was decided that the children’s bedrooms would be on the ground floor level with direct connection to the garden, and that the master bedroom would be on the top level, with views to the city. Because the warehouse original had no outside space, the creation of outside space was pivotal to the success of the project.

 Click on images to view full size

The kitchen area opens right up to overlook the deck and pool. Trusses to the left were originally covered with roofing, and these have been left to leave a memory of the previous configuration of the building and to define the spaces.


Recycled ironbark is used throughout, including the cladding, which is wire brushed recycled ironbark. Fine stainless steel rods hold the original existing structure together.


The dining area (without table in this shot) looks out onto the north facing slot garden.


The living area with tall bookshelves further highlight the true industrial character of the building.


Looking down towards the entry door, where the building’s industrial scale can again fully appreciated.


Looking over the garden to the corten steel clad master bedroom, which has a terrace looking over the city.

The garden areas orient and inform the house, providing framed views from each room and making the building coherent as a whole. Even though the building was not heritage listed, it now has become an important part of the fabric of the history of the neighbourhood – so creating an awareness of the original building and a sense of the past occupation was important.


Lilyfield Warehouse
Virginia Kerridge Architect 

Photography by Michael Nicholson


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