Designer Flair: cleverly designed to include a multitude of rooms inside

Designer Flair: cleverly designed to include a multitude of rooms inside

A multitude of rooms inside a small home

Aurelio “Ray” Costarella says it was a real challenge to create a small home that didn’t feel like a small home. With only 174 sq m of space to play with, he linked up with local Perth architect/builder Wes Blackie. The two put their heads together and came up with an inspirational two-storey home, which, despite its small size, manages to include two bedrooms, bathroom, powder room, laundry, home office, open-plan kitchen, dining and living area, and even a double carport. Now that’s savvy design!

multitude of rooms

multitude of rooms

Inspired by Japanese architect Tadao Ando – famous for his concrete buildings – Ray wanted his home to have an industrial theme. So a concrete block was built on the land and all the external walls were rendered. Polished concrete floors, which feature exposed aggregate, complete the look.

“I still have people walking past [the house] asking when we are going to paint the facade,” Ray laughs. But he believes his home’s grey patina is “ageing beautifully”, with its weathered markings and discolouration.

Interchangeable interior wanted

Wanting the interior to act as an “interchangeable blank canvas”, Ray decided to paint the walls white. “When the actual environment is quite neutral or minimal it’s easy to change the dynamic of it by adding interesting pieces such as sleeper sofas or sofa beds,” he explains. Combining sentimental items with contemporary buys like reclining chairs, stools, and a special living room sofa set- many brought home from his stylish concept store Post Emporium in North Perth, WA – Ray has decorated his home with an eclectic mix of vintage and modern furnishings.

vintage and modern furnishings

vintage and modern furnishings

Among the designer’s intriguing finds are a white Marc Newson “Orgone” armchair (a 1993 design), a 1950s dining table – given a whitewash for a new lease of life – and multicoloured perspex letters from an old cinema strung up on the first-floor balustrade.

“I love mixing old and new,” Ray says. “Part of the charm of vintage pieces is wondering where they came from, who they belonged to and how they came to be. The only things we have in the home are the things we really love.”

Another transformation of a small home

Nadia Sakey drove past a tiny, two-bedroom 1930s Auckland cottage as a real estate agent was hammering a “For Sale” sign into the ground. She and her husband Dave had been looking for a house for over a year, but with one child, and another on the way, this small house wasn’t what they were after. But as soon as they saw it, they could see its potential and room to expand. So they bought it.

An advantage of many 1930s homes is that the simple floor-plan consists of a central hallway with symmetrical rooms leading off it. “Basically, we just took off the back of the house and expanded out into the garden, creating a third bedroom, an extra bathroom, and an open-plan living space, which opens onto a large deck,” Nadia says. The original bathroom became an ensuite for the master bedroom and the original kitchen was transformed into a new family bathroom, a budget-friendly option as the plumbing was already in place. “It’s essential to build a good partnership with your builder, to ensure both parties work successfully and minimise any bumps along the way,” Nadia recommends.

open-plan living space: living room is combined with the kitchen. A sofa bed is decorated in the living which can make a bed easily for guesses

open-plan living space: living room is combined with the kitchen. A sofa bed is decorated in the living which can make a bed easily for guesses

As soon as the building was completed, Nadia got cracking with her favourite part of the renovating process – the interior. This has taken a dramatic turn from the original neutral palette. “Colour is something I have a deep interest in – I’ve taken time to understand its meaning and what it can do,” she says.

“The base palette is black and white so that I could have fun placing accents of rich, bold colour in areas that pop and draw the eye. While I appreciate soft toning in the right places, I’m not a big believer in playing it safe.” Nadia is also a fan of wallpaper, which introduces texture, glamour and variety into a room. She particularly likes the designs by her friend Deb Bowness, who produces papers that “play” with real life-size images – such as the trompe l’oeil bookcase in the hallway recess. “There is a new breed of wallpaper designer emerging,” Nadia says. “They are pushing boundaries with technology and becoming as recognised as any other celebrated contemporary artist.”

The house may look complete, but there are plans to put in a pool, and as the family grows, to “pop” the roof and add a parents’ retreat. A tiny cottage is turned into a family home!

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Find Your Bedroom Style Classic, Playful, Creative?

Find Your Bedroom Style Classic, Playful, Creative?

FUN & PLAYFUL

If you’re a parent, morning can often mean little visitors bounding into in the bedroom and wriggling into bed with you. A place to cuddle and a place to play, a comfy and colourful bed can make the perfect spot for family time. Grey 300-threadcount Egyptian cotton sheets provide a soft, nurturing base on this bed, teamed with patterned linens in bright green, white and shades of blue to liven up the scene. And just like the stories Dad reads, a bed isn’t complete without a few quirky characters – these fun cushions are just the ticket.

Fun and Playful style for bedroom

Fun and Playful style for bedroom

CREATIVE & COSY

Is your bedroom the heart of your home? Then it’s only natural that it should be an inspiring space that suits your personality. Indulge with a rich, decadent palette for your bedlinen – shades of deep purple, pinks and oranges – to create a space that’s warm, welcoming and comfortable. You want your bed to be a place where you can happily spend time doing the things you love. Go all out with fl orals and don’t hold back on the ruffles and ruching to create a cocooning, feminine vibe. This is your zone so be creative, and don’t be afraid to mix and match. Sweet dreams.

CREATIVE & COSY bedroom

CREATIVE & COSY bedroom

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Great rooms with great furniture and why they work; Why those fab lights? Dark floors? Luxe wallpaper? These 8 top interior designers let us in on the reasons for their super-stylish decorating choices

Great rooms with great furniture and why they work; Why those fab lights? Dark floors? Luxe wallpaper? These 8 top interior designers let us in on the reasons for their super-stylish decorating choices

Living room decoration with Justine Hugh-Jones

Justine Hugh-Jones, Justine Hugh- Jones Design

A favourite space from interior designer Justine Hugh-Jones’s portfolio is this living room. As it’s in a holiday home, Justine created a space that invited “complete relaxation”.

living room interior design is Jones' favorite with set of table, chair or recliners in the same style with the house

living room interior design is Jones’ favorite with set of table, chair or recliners in the same style with the house

“It had to be a spacious seating area that encouraged conversation, but also could be used to watch TV,” she explains. “I wanted a casual, attractive look, but one that also was elegant – and didn’t need lots of arranging to look tidy!”

Living room furniture

The long, deep, pale linen sofa or best recliners chair was chosen, along with cushions, for maximum comfort. And a large rustic timbertopped coffee table was selected to introduce another texture and “ambience” to the space. “I chose the coffee table for its lightness in design, with the thin metal and open box frame,” Justine says. “Also, with its weathered pale timber, the style suits a relaxed beach house.” While a white paint palette keeps the room looking fresh – and contrasts beautifully with the natural linen – cushions, rug and throw in a French ink blue add warmth to the neutral tones. The rug also softens the white floorboards. A few subtle, interesting patterns were also introduced to the scheme in the striped Missoni throw and the Chinoiserie-style patterned cushions.

Glass jars and a pewter-coloured stool bring reflective surfaces to the space, bouncing light around the room, and adding a different type of texture, too. The stool doubles up as a side table or extra seating. Immensely comfortable, effortlessly good-looking.

How about the living room design with Abigail Ahern

Abigail Ahern, Atelier Abigail Ahern

different styles to decorate your home living room

different styles to decorate your home living room

“Make this living room as inviting and snug as possible” was the brief to hot UK designer Abigail Ahern. “So against a super-inky backdrop – where walls and floors are painted in the same hue – we added high-voltage pops of colour,” Abigail explains. Colour is fundamental when decorating with a dark base note, she adds. “It evokes emotion, and adds drama and excitement to a space.” Abigail sourced a classic B&B Italia sofa then purposely “threw it off balance” by adding the vivid pink coffee table and yellow artwork and pendant light. She mixed vintage finds with modern classics, with texture key – wool cushions contrast beautifully with the glossy coffee table and shiny floors. “I wanted nothing to match but for it all to make sense,” she says. Abigail likes to combine a traditional approach with a generous injection of personality in her interiors – hence the quirky lights, bright accessories and the bohemian hand-painted bookcase wallpaper. Sassy and unexpected.

Home design with Sara Silm

Sara Silm, HOME Design, Editorial & Styling

Makingbeautiful.com.au Sara Silm can’t remember a time when she wasn’t designing something. “I think designing is a state of mind; it’s not something that you can switch on or off,” she says.

“Designers seem to file design cues and inspiration every minute of the day – even the most mundane things are inspirational,” Sara says. “The other day I was pegging out the washing and found the perfect colour scheme for a kitchen I’m working on – an inky-navy-blue and white striped shirt and a tangerine peg – a magic solution for an upholstered banquette seating and cushions!”

bathroom is the most favorite space in the a house for Sara to decorate

bathroom is the most favorite space in the a house for Sara to decorate

Bathroom decoration

Favourite rooms Sara has designed include this bathroom (pictured). “To me, it feels like a nest,” she explains. “The bath is like an egg – to lie in and contemplate life and all its mysteries.”

To further enhance this cocooning effect, Sara uses dark grey tiles and a charcoal textured rug to envelop the white bath. The plant and artworks bring a serene ambience to the space.

Furniture and interior design with Waller

Andrew Waller, Andrew Waller Design

While a space should be appropriate to the time it is being built, it shouldn’t be slave to current fashions, says Andrew Waller, a furniture and interior architect, who favours a structured but “not designed” look, which is apparent in this kitchen that he recently designed for a client’s warehouse conversion.

kichen interitor is a job of the furniture and interior architecture, Andrew

kichen interitor is a job of the furniture and interior architecture, Andrew

Cool kitchen decor

While the vintage metal pendant light and reclaimed stainless-steel commercial benchtops give the kitchen its cool, clean and industrial air, the deer antler “artwork” above the doorway, quirky imitation bronze retro lamp and rustic timber stools inject a generous dose of personality.

The predominantly grey palette extends to the translucent glass windows, selected for privacy, and the painted concrete floor. White trims on the recycled windows and doors provide a smart contrast.

“My designs are a result of the balance between function, budget, aesthetic and the client,” Andrew says.

Elegant style home design with Hoppen

Kelly Hoppen, Kelly Hoppen Interiors

“Timeless elegance” is the best way to describe the style of top UK designer Kelly Hoppen, which is no more evident than in her own harmonious living room (pictured above), with its clean lines, neutral tones and sumptuous textures.

“The design will stand the test of time,” Kelly explains. “It will not date and will always look chic. My style is simple yet opulent, combining the styles of the Eastern and Western worlds,” she adds. Kelly believes that your home needs to say “how happy and comfortable you are in the most chic way possible!”. And Kelly’s home is talking. While the dramatic juxtaposition of white curtains with a black mirror gives a unique and sexy feel to the space, vintage lights and furniture imbue a sense of history and depth. Luscious fabrics in furniture and soft furnishings – such as linen and velvet – add further feelings of comfort and warmth, while round bronze stools lend an “organic” touch to the sophisticated space.

The hero piece, though, is the sumptuous, high-gloss, vintage triangular coffee table, complete with vases of glorious full-blown white blooms. Perfection incarnate!

Clean and minimal bathroom design with Hoy

Brian Hoy, Brian Hoy Design

Interior designer Brian Hoy has designed a clean and minimal bathroom, layered with different finishes that stop it appearing “fl at”. The bathroom was extended onto a small balcony, which had a lower, angled ceiling. “I lowered the ceiling to conceal the angle over the wet zone, which, in turn, defines this area well,” Brian says. The black recess in the lower ceiling conceals the exhaust fan and lighting.

To add dimension to the space, Brian hung the vanity sink on a large mirror, which makes it appear to be floating. A Boffi pendant light is both functional and decorative, and adds a focal point. And a Boffi glass shelf wall unit is handy for small items.

The client collects art, so there is a gallery feel throughout the house, which is extended to the bathroom with the glossy, warm-grey plinth and coral display. And a piece of furniture, such as the Brian-designed Caspian stool, always features in his bathrooms. “It helps soften the hard finish and lines,” Brian explains. Minimum style, maximum chic.

Interior design TV show

Stacey Kouros, Stacey Kouros Design

A contestant on Channel Nine’s interior design TV show homeMade, Stacey Kouros has created a comfortable, open and retro-glam kitchen for a fun, young family.

“The clients have a love for retro, particularly the 1970s, so the choice of finishes and colours reflects a modern and newly built home with hints of retro glam,” she explains.

The main feature finish in the kitchen is the stunning Santos Palisander timber-veneer wall and cupboard doors, which give the space a fabulous retro vibe. This provides a warm contrast to the dramatic, gloss-black overhead cupboards. The simple, functional, white CaesarStone benchtop offsets the magnificent island bench, which is wrapped in Calcutta marble “for a hint of glam”. But hanging above the kitchen island is the piece de resistance in this interior – a 1970s Murano glass chandelier. “This pendant light is a dramatic feature, further dramatised by its reflection in the black-gloss overhead cupboards,” Stacey says. Polished chrome rods form a decorative screen between the kitchen and the stairs – and also serve as a balustrade. Fab and fun!

Design and Colour scheme for bedroom with Weston

Scott Weston, Scott Weston Architecture Design

A client’s Art Deco jewellery collection inspired the design and colour scheme of this bedroom, which gives a subtle but contemporary nod to this design era, says architect and designer Scott Weston. The deep raspberry was based on semiprecious stones in the collection. Scott has “cocooned” the room in this colour, which features on walls and joinery.

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What To Do In The Garden This Month; Beautiful, functional and easy to grow, a lush green wall will allow your garden, courtyard or balcony to take on another dimension

What To Do In The Garden This Month; Beautiful, functional and easy to grow, a lush green wall will allow your garden, courtyard or balcony to take on another dimension

WANT MORE GREENERY in your garden? Whether you have a large backyard that’s a bit lacklustre or a postage-stampsized plot in need of a compact solution, a “vertical garden” or “green wall” could be the answer. This used to mean a few climbers over the fence or a wall, but now covering the side of a house or the length of a garden wall with pockets of greenery is all the rage. Fancy creating one at your place? Here are your options

Potted

Dutch-born artist Joost Bakker provides inspiration for a striking wall garden in his pottedstrawberry- covered installation (Greenhousebyjoost.com) that was recently at Sydney’s Circular Quay. To copy this look, simply organise pot plants on outdoor shelves in a grid pattern. Flip back to page 42 for inspiration.

potted

potted

Hanging

The Yates Vertical Garden Bag ($5.95) is a great option for a tiny space. It’s easy to use and can hold flowers such as petunias and pansies or edible plants such as baby spinach and strawberries.

hanging vertical garden

hanging vertical garden

Espalier

The espalier technique is a method of growing plants “flat packed” against a wall, usually on a trellis. Merrywood Nursery in Vic (Merrywoodplants. com.au) sells over 30 varieties of espaliered plants on frames, starting from $250.

espalier technique to decorate your house

espalier technique to decorate your house

Pocketed

Another idea that works well in small areas is to use a hanging shoe organiser with pockets. Get one that’s made from plastic mesh rather than fabric (try Howards Storage World) and hang it on your fence or wall.

Fill the pockets with lightweight potting mix, then add either potted colour or “rockery” plants like succulents, depending on the look you’re after. Alternatively, invest in a modular living wall system (see right and above) from Woolly Pocket (Woollypocket.com). Made from recycled plastic water bottles, these planter pockets come in three sizes and four colours.

Our Cool Garden

WHAT CLINCHED THE DEAL for David Netto to buy this suburban home was the reaction of his eldest daughter, Kate. It was December 2003 and she was about two years old at the time. “Kate was so delighted by that garden, particularly the water features, that it tipped me to buy the house within minutes of first walking in,” says the designer and writer. “Otherwise I probably would have dithered and lost it.”

And lost it, he would have. The home is a 1960s property designed by Modernist architect Richard Neutra. The previous owner had restored the house and garden to “pristine condition”, in keeping with the architect’s original vision. “But I did decide to decorate the inside in a specifically un-Neutra way,” David says. “I wanted it to resemble Modernist houses of the 1930s, before all the rules set in – something rich and more eclectic than what we now know as mid-century design.”

“I LIKE THAT THE GARDEN IS PLANNED AS AN EXTENSION OF THE ROOMS INSIDE THE HOUSE”

But David did not dare to change the garden, which was also part of the original design. “You can’t, actually,” he adds. “It’s sort of an inevitable design, at one with the architecture of the house.”

garden as extension of a room with chairs, recliners, tables

garden as extension of a room with chairs, recliners, tables

And that’s the beauty of this garden. “I like that it’s really planned as an extension of the rooms inside,” David says. The design masks the small square meterage of the interior – which is only 140 sq m – with the use of terraces and material choices, creating the illusion that the outside and inside are one,” he adds. “This sort of house convinces you that you are living out of doors when you’re inside.”

The garden is put to good use by the family, which has extended to include another daughter, Madelyn. “It looks great year round,” David says. “I love it when all the Agapanthus ‘Peter Pan’ bloom in the back courtyard. We are conscious of using mostly plants that can tolerate heat, sun and don’t require lots of water.”

The front garden is often admired by guests when they arrive for dinner. The path at night is lit with candles, which adds a glow to the surrounding plants and trees. And while David doesn’t consider himself a gardener, he’s a keen admirer of them, especially this one.

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A dream to build their own house came true when Glenn & Mel Paterson found the perfect plot of land. The result is a contemporary & colourful family home

A dream to build their own house came true when Glenn & Mel Paterson found the perfect plot of land. The result is a contemporary & colourful family home

Family Favourite

GROWING UP as the son of a builder, and having a brother in the trade, it’s no surprise Glenn Paterson has always had an interest in architecture. He started his career as a quantity surveyor and, after many years apartment-living in Japan with his wife Mel – and then tackling a renovation together in Auckland – the desire to design and build a home from scratch was strong. So the couple bought a large subdividable section in Onehunga, a suburb 8km south of Auckland city centre, with a 1920s weather-board bungalow sitting on the plot.

House design for a family

House design for a family

While the couple lived in and renovated the old bungalow with a view to sell, they came up with a design concept to build a modern four-bedroom house on the back section of the land to become their family home. “The benefit of living in the bungalow with a big garden during this time was that we developed a good feeling for what suited the land, and the best position for sun and natural light,” Glenn says.

Glenn and Mel both took on different roles throughout the build. Glenn’s area was the structural design, and he helped out his brother Rickie with the actual build where he could. Mel was in charge of the interior. While the couple worked together on the overall design, they had items they individually deemed as non-negotiable. “For me it was storage,” Mel says. “Having lived with minimal storage I realised how important it is when you have three young children.” It added a large chunk to the couple’s budget but Mel insists it was worth it.

For Glenn it was all about creating a feeling of space. “I made sure the hallways and stairwell were wide and evoked a feeling of openness,” he says. “I also designed the four bedrooms so they were large. I love the way the kids have their own special space and can shut themselves away with their friends for hours.”

Large rooms with appropriate furniture make you feel comfortable

Large rooms with appropriate furniture make you feel comfortable

With blonde timber flooring, sleek white cabinetry and white walls, the kitchen is Mel’s favourite room, even though she readily admits Glenn is the head chef in the family. “It’s a large space and there’s plenty of room to move, even with large family gatherings,” she says. “And if you’re working in the kitchen you still feel part of the action.”

White walls throughout the home provide a gallery-like backdrop to a decorating style Mel describes as ever-evolving. Bursts of her favourite bold colours, including green, yellow and orange, and her ever-growing collection of art stamp the new build with personality. “My mother grew up loving art and our family is quite artistic so I guess that is where my passion comes from,” Mel says.

Having now completed their dream to build, the only thing Mel would do differently would be to have a laundry room. “We have a fantastic laundry in the garage, reclining chairs and tables in the backyard, but having a dedicated room would be great,” she says. “Something I do have planned very soon is a wall of bold and colourful wallpaper for the dining room.” Looks like the Paterson family have a bright future in their new home!

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