Jessica O’Mahony’s Cork Abode Is Refreshingly Uncontrived And Wonderfully Inviting - The Gloss Magazine
Jessica O'Mahony Cork home

Jessica O’Mahony’s Cork Abode Is Refreshingly Uncontrived And Wonderfully Inviting


Take a stylish mix of old and new and a palette from Dulux Heritage paint that combines neutrals with crisp green and you’ve got a gorgeous living space with an easy vibe …

You could be forgiven for assuming that a house belonging to an Instagram influencer would be professionally styled within an inch of its life – a beautiful but soulless show home. But Jessica O’Mahony’s Cork abode is refreshingly uncontrived and wonderfully inviting. Contemporary yet steeped in history, this charmingly cosy home is a homage to lived-in-luxe, eclectic style and a passion for collecting. It’s the interiors equivalent of comfort food.

“I wanted to have the feeling that when you come here, you feel at home,” Jessica says of the house that she shares with her husband, Ireland rugby captain Peter O’Mahony, and their three young children Indie (8), Theo (5), and Ralph (2). It was love at first sight when she and Peter first spotted the house 10 years ago.

“It was entirely accidental,” she says, “we were viewing another house nearby and we walked back down a lane and spotted this house through a fence. It wasn’t even on the market but a few weeks later, up it popped in the property section of the Examiner and we pounced.”

Built in the 1890s, the house had great bones – if a little tired and dated – but the couple could immediately see the potential. “It had a really nice, calm feeling and we felt we could make such a lovely family home here,” Jessica says.

“Of course, we’d spent to our limit when we bought the property, so it’s been a gradual redevelopment since we moved in.”

There is lots of Belgian influence seen throughout the house. Her colour palette choice includes Dulux Heritage Green Oxide on the chimney breast and Duluxe Heritage Fennel White on the door and surrounds.

Stylish individual charm here comes from a cleverly curated choice of vintage-style lighting, colourful curios and punchy modern art, while nostalgic Tintin cartoon figurines and framed prints are dotted around the house. It is the little details that mesmerise the most, like the antique brass shell casing by the fireplace in the living room that she inherited from her grandmother who lived in Ballymore Cove.

“I wanted my house to be a collection of things that tell a tale, rather than buying everything from one shop,” Jessica says. Each room in the house reflects the spoils of her joyful dedication to local design and antique stores, vintage fairs as well as interior shops in any city she visits.

Jessica is inspired by dozens of Instagram interior accounts but has her own style. “I remind myself that taste is subjective and, while it’s easy to get caught up in what everyone else is doing on Instagram, this is a house simply to please me and my family. Pete is great, though. He just rolls his eyes and lets me at it,” she says.

Jessica says the room now feels more serene and revitalised. The warm green tones chosen; Dulux Heritage Green Oxide, Dulux Heritage Rosemary Leaf and Dulux Heritage Fennel White, complement her existing furniture and furnishings and helps give the room a fresh new look.

So does he have a say in the house’s interior style? Who wins in a cushion-off? “He has no say,” she laughs. “And he certainly hasn’t a clue about cushions.” His own “style” has been zoned to his Steeltech shed. Here lives his collection of Land Rover posters and the massive overflow of rugby memorabilia. And of course it is home to his huge array of top notch gardening tools.

“Peter has always been a gardening fanatic,” Jessica says. “But in 2020, during lockdown, we started documenting it and Pete began to post photos, clips and tips of his labours in the garden to his Instagram and TikTok accounts.” They immediately went viral and he quickly racked up a massive following of devoted gardening enthusiasts. “Now neighbours tell us they’re asked all the time if they live next door to ‘Peter the Gardener’,” Jessica says with a smile.

Jessica loves to print and frame photos and switches them around regularly. They fill the shelves of the bespoke cabinetry, painted Dulux Heritage Rosemary Leaf.

The colours she chose from the Duluxe Heritage range add depth. The cabinetry shelving is painted Dulux Heritage Rosemary Leaf.

Such is the well-kept nature of Peter’s impressive garden that they even got married there. After their wedding in France was postponed several times during Covid, Peter and Jessica eventually tied the knot in July 2020 with a ceremony in the garden followed by a drinks reception in their living room. “It’s a perfect entertaining space,” Jessica says, “but it’s also my favourite room in the house. We spend all our time in here as a family, so I jumped at the chance of giving the space a refresh this year with a new colour scheme.”

Up till now, Jessica had been nervous of colour other than neutrals. So why did she pick green? “It felt brave,” she laughs. “But also, so right. Subconsciously it’s one of my favourite colours – I mean, my car is green and I wear a lot of green. But then I noticed that elements in the room already had green tones – specifically, the bookcase, one standing lamp and the TV unit. And of course the room looks out on to Pete’s prized garden – so maybe it was my desire to connect to the outdoors. Ultimately, I wanted something soothing and relaxing, a shade that would add calm to the space.”

With 112 Dulux Heritage colours to choose from, selecting greens to suit the room was a fun process, Jessica says.

And it does. The shade in question is Dulux Heritage Green Oxide which is part of the Dulux Heritage range – a timeless, luxury colour palette of fittingly classic hues with a modern twist. She used Green Oxide in a hard-wearing and wipeable eggshell finish on the doors and shutters and opted to paint the bookcase in Dulux Heritage Rosemary Leaf. The Dulux Heritage Green Oxide was paired with Dulux Heritage Fennel White for the ceiling, a clean fresh green-toned white, which sits very happily with it.

How does it feel now? “I love how it worked out,” Jessica says. “I love everything about it. Not least because I got to declutter the bookcase which was beginning to haunt me and I got a load of toys out of here too! I didn’t buy anything new but I did rehome two cushions from the bedroom.”

Discover the Dulux Heritage Range – see for a list of stockists.


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