The power and potential of interior design is limitless.
And perhaps nothing proves this to be true more than what is hidden behind the doors of this unassuming three-bedroom Victorian home in Stretford, which has been completely transformed into a vision of the 1970s by one retro-obsessed mum.
Known aptly as the 70s House Manchester, walking inside this characterful home is truly like taking a step back in time, and it’s absolutely brilliant.
70s House Manchester is a lifelong passion of Founder and Creative Director, Estelle Bilson.
Estelle, 43 – the daughter of an Antiques Dealer, who has bought and sold vintage for over 25 years and attended auctions with her father from the age of four, before starting to collect for herself at the tender age of 13 – moved from London to Manchester in 2015.
She set about curating a seventies-style home and managed to revamp the entire property for just £1,500, as she bought nearly all the bits and bobs secondhand.
This then inspired the concept behind the ever-growing brand.
Starting humbly as an Instagram page, before turning into a ‘Location Home’ and then a thriving, multi-faceted business selling luxury, British wallpaper, fabrics and various other lifestyle boutique items, the 70s House Manchester specialises in recreating the era that spawned everything from disco, to Biba, glam rock and Studio 54, by taking influence from mid-century design, more than a dash of 70’s funk, and “the love of fun, bold, graphic style”.
The home itself – which is filled with the collection of seventies furniture and object d’art that Estelle has spent hours tracking down from auctions, eBay, and charity shops – actually had a previous life as the local corner shop and even once appeared on Coronation Street.
Each room inside the home is described as being “a constant evolution in design, depending on which amazing vintage finds inspire Estelle”.
But it has to be said, the family doesn’t actually live like they’re in the 70s.
“We don’t live like it is 1974, but we appreciate the styling, design and quality of build of the furniture.” Estelle insists.
“It’s more exciting, diverse and colourful – not to mention sustainable, value for money and better built than most things you can buy in the shops today, [and] it’s also very budget friendly [too], if you know where to find the bargains.
“Second hand doesn’t have to be second rate and although our home is filled with vintage treasure it still looks relevant, stylish and homely and not too much like a junk shop, which can be the danger when you buy too many second hand things.
“Some have compared it to a shrine or a museum – it’s neither.
“It’s simply our home, which we chose to furnish with things that make us happy.”
Not only has 70s House Manchester enjoyed success as a ‘Location Home’, a popular Instagram page with over 43K followers, and a growing interiors brand, but Estelle also markets the house and its contents to hire for photoshoots, film and TV sets and events.
And after a successful 20 year career in Technical Design and Product Development for some of the UK’s most luxurious fashion brands and with a qualification in Interior Design, she was perfectly poised to be able to use her skills and expertise on the esteemed panel of dealers on the popular BBC One show The Bidding Room last year too.
70s House Manchester prides itself on “looking back to move forward” – and that’s exactly what it does.