In the nineteenth century, tensions around the conditions of professionalization in architecture in Britain coincided with architects' renewed interest in the design of interiors. Furniture manufacturers also aimed to claim the attention of middle-class homemakers. These developments operated within a particular British social and economic hierarchy. Consequently, the relative position of an Australian example of a late nineteenth-century interior design collaboration within a broader narrative requires a move away from interpretations of marginality, innovation and imitation which have underscored Australian design histories. This article considers how a particular combination of artistic and commercial approaches to interior design in Australia resulted from the merging of British design ideas with Australian economic and cultural conditions. Such practices are, in this article, considered amongst the international foundations of the professionalization of interior design.