Costume, set and home designer Catherine Martin

Photos: Courtesy of Design Rugs - Australia's Leading Rug Company

 She's won two Oscars® for her eye-catching sets and costumes in Moulin Rouge, dressed Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman in Australia and netted a Tony® for her set design on Broadway's La Boheme. Now, renowned set and costume designer Catherine Martin, is setting a new stage at home with her line of rugs, wallpaper and paint.

When recently renovating the Sydney, Australia, home she shares with her director husband, Baz Luhrmann, and their two children, Catherine says she struggled to find the right accessories to tell her family's story—so she decided to create her own!

Catherine Martin's sparrow wallpaper

Catherine says the line has allowed her to embrace her love of patterns—like the birds and vines inspired by her native Australia in the sparrow wallpaper.

In fact, Catherine says a day at the beach was the wake-up call she needed to make her line a reality. While sitting in a blue beach tent with her kids, she say she saw some friends from the fashion industry. "They all looked like James Bond or Ursula Andress in their bikinis. And there I was in my board shorts in this terrible, fluorescent blue beach tent, my children caked in ice cream and sand. I had strange brown markings on my legs due to the fact that all the chocolate ice cream had dripped on me," Catherine says. "I just wanted to be cooler, really. ... If the beach tent had a fabulous print on it, at least it wouldn't be an eyesore in the setting."

"From that point, I finally started to think, 'Well, maybe because I do it every day for films, I do prints for fabric, I do wallpaper prints, I could start developing a suite of prints that could be applied to a whole bunch of things,'" she says.

Catherine Martin's acacia rug

Catherine says her patterns have been strongly influenced by three things—Australian motifs, Asian designs and traditional furnishings like lace.

Pictured above is Catherine's Acacia rug—a strong yet feminine motif.

Catherine Martin's circus silhouettes

Catherine has also tailored part of her line toward children—her Circus Silhouettes patterns. Catherine says the playful Victorian silhouettes are hanging in her own children's rooms! "I [thought]: 'Wouldn't it be great if there was a wallpaper that appealed to both adult and child alike? That felt vintage but still had a modern edge, that was decorative and beautiful, but created both a canvas for imagination?'" Catherine says.

"I remember when I was a kid we had wallpaper in our room, and we used to lie there an imagine all kinds of stories from the characters that were emanating, and the other day, because my kids have the wallpaper in their room, my son was talking to wallpaper and going, 'Oh and you're a horsey' and 'You're a this,' and I thought, 'That's exactly what it's for—it's to stimulate that imagination.'"

Catherine Martin's lace rug

Catherine's lace rug is another example of how you can take traditional design idea and make it more contemporary. "Every day I have some new ideas," she says.

In the future, Catherine says she would love to develop new bed linens and crockery, as well as expanding her children's line. "I'd love to do some soft furnishings," she says.

See how Catherine brought Australia's characters to life

The 7 things you need to do to find your own style at home