Hayley Little of @mumlittleloves joined Instagram in 2011 to spy on her teenage daughters. But instead of keeping an eye on their social lives, she got totally seduced by the world of social media. A self-described “serial house renovator” with her builder hubby, Terry, Hayley started posting her home-decorating pics online — which snowballed into 29K followers and a styling blog. It was the dawn of the social-media-marketing movement. As brands began to grasp Instagram’s impact on the public, the age of the influencer was born.
I didn’t expect to find so much inspiration and such a beautiful community of friends.
But it’s not her popularity that sets her apart in the sea of styling inspiration in the digital world. It’s her unstoppable drive, authentic love of interior design and unwavering approach to remaining true to herself in her design approach and influence — all while raising three gorgeous kids!
My favourite room in the house is always the kitchen… where everyone gathers and food brings people together!
Taking inspiration from a range of people and places, Hayley still enjoys the old-school approach of flicking through books and magazines and marking her favourite pages with sticky notes. Among her favourite international designers are Phoebe Howard and Mark D. Sikes and, closer to home, Verandah House Interiors and the unexpected colour and pattern play by Anna Spiro.
“I also love Instagram for the #reallife homes, ideas, hacks and inspiration. Of course, you can’t go past Pinterest for the ability to search for what you’re looking for and it never disappoints with the most over-the-top, budget-breaking, crazy ideas!”
Featured in many magazine spreads, Hayley has proven time and again that she’s mastered the balance between what adds wow factor and staying in budget. Often starting with a colour palette, fabric, piece of furniture or sentimental piece that she loves, Hayley says you should work out what needs to be in a room and work from there.
“Ignore what everyone else is doing, find your own style and create a home that makes you smile. Choose colours and styles that make you happy, but also choose comfortable and practical pieces. Think about the way you will live in the space and how much storage you need. Living in a beautiful space that is not functional might look good on Instagram but it’s very frustrating in real life!”
Located on Queensland’s Gold Coast, Hayley and Terry are about to embark on their ninth renovation. While Hayley would love a big old farmhouse, they’re impossible to find in the area, so instead she’ll incorporate some of the design elements in this reno — a classic ’90s home they just moved into with a pink marble bathroom and a mirrored staircase 😱
My style changes depending on the house. I want to update it while still keeping the classic feel. I think it will be a transitional style with a pinch of farmhouse chic.
Excited to start work on their new home, Hayley says there will be some rooms that will be completely demolished and other temporary transformations until they can afford to do it properly. “This one will be our ‘forever home’ (we say that every time) and we have big plans”.
Whether this really is her last project or not, we can’t wait to see the results.