2015 makeovers

Happy New Year and welcome to 2015!

Un-Corked

I trust you had a great break and are now ready to get the year started and perhaps make some changes to your home?

I know I LOVE going away but always love coming home to my house and my things. I find coming home always wants me to make a few little changes to the house, whether it be a cupboard I’ve been meaning to tidy or an area of the home that needs some tweaking.

Beach and sunset

I haven’t got around to the cupboard yet and was reminded this morning when the sliding wardrobe door caught on something on the top shelf. I hid all the Christmas presents up there and need to get up and rearrange it now. Maybe next week?

I did, however, makeover my console table in the entry. It’s been bugging me for over a year. The same table has had the same silver photo frames (I have updated the photos) on it for the past…… um…..10 years? (Cough, cough) But moving back into the house after renovating, it was just easier to put things back where they were, if possible, and get to it at another time. Pity that “other time” took me two years!

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I knew it was in desperate need of updating and I had a Pinterest Board full of great ideas and inspiration. I’ve even written a previous blog post and given loads of advice and suggestions to clients regarding decorating their entry but never had the time to do my own. Typical!

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So I took some time out last weekend to Just Do It! I’m very happy with the end result and feels it reflects my style and the decor of my home better than it did previously.

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So what area of your home are you going to attack in 2015? Contact us if you’d like some assistance.

 

Window Frame Colours

One of my biggest bug bears is yellow window frames. There must’ve been a time when all aluminium window sales people were pushing the colour Primrose as nearly every residence I attend which has existing aluminium frames are this shade.

Primrose Window Frames

Primrose Window Frames

When you choose aluminium frames there are only a limited number of choices for standard colours without incurring added costs for custom colours. I’m all for keeping costs to a minimum but there is no place for Primrose. The other standard choices are

PN1F1-White-Opal

White Opal Window Frames

or

Pearl White Window Frames

Pearl White Window Frames

Even the White Opal is a bit too yellowy for my liking and I agree the Pearl White might be a bit stark but you can co-ordinate so much more with the Pearl White than with a yellow based white.

Recently I was asked to consult on a timber cottage at Ramsgate which had Primrose Aluminium Window Frames in the front of the house but timber window frames in the rest of the house. The clients wanted a dark colour for the walls and I didn’t want to enhance the yellow. It makes sense to paint the interior of the window frames the same colour as the exterior, and with aluminium windows you don’t have any other choice.

House Beforehand

House Beforehand

Whilst the house was painted a cream colour, the Primrose window frames didn’t stand out so much. But I knew once the exterior was painted a charcoal the yellow would stick out like a sore thumb. Fortunately the windows had wide timber architraves that we could paint and try to disguise the Primrose.

House colour

House colour

So, as I always do, I stuck up a range of dark colours for the walls. The colours on the right are options for the front door. The clients chose the top colour (Dulux Charcoal Light) for the walls and opted for a glossy Black front door. So then which colour will lift the darkness of the building but not accentuate the yellow of the window frames. Good ol’ Dulux Chalk USA came to the rescue. It has just enough cream to tone down the Primrose yet “white” enough to lift the dark colour of the walls.

Dulux Chalk USA

Dulux Chalk USA

Then we went whiter still on the eaves, and remaining timber windows using Dulux Whisper White.

Dulux Whisper White

Dulux Whisper White

The clients were thrilled with the end result and the house sold promptly.

After

After

Rear View Before

Rear View Before

Rear View After

Rear View After

If you need assistance choosing colours for your home, contact us for an appointment.

Recent Interiors and Exteriors

Before

Before

After

After

It’s taken me a week and a bit but I’ve finally uploaded to my website, photos of interiors and exteriors which I have completed this year.

Before

Before

After

After

My lovely friend and talented photographer, Lyn Johnston, took these great shots. We spent a day touring around the suburbs visiting clients again.

Kitchen Before

Kitchen Before

Kitchen After

Kitchen After

It’s a fun day and lovely to pop back in and see houses that have been completed for a while. I’m very grateful to my clients for allowing me to come back, some whilst they are not even there!

Love me a red front door

Love me a red front door

You can see more images of these houses over on my website.

Bedroom Before

Bedroom Before

Bedroom After

Bedroom After

If you would like your home to have a new look, contact me for a consultation.

10 Commandments of Choosing Colour

Australian paint brand, Taubmans has launched a suite of online tools to help take the guess work out of colour selection. Many homeowners end up painting the interior of their homes white to save the hassle of choosing the wrong colour.Now, with these new digital tools, Taubmans hopes Australians will embrace adding a splash of colour to their homes.

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Taubmans Brand Ambassador, Shaynna Blaze has created Taubmans 10 Commandments of Colour which will debunk common colour myths and arm the homeowner with the knowledge they need to choose colour correctly. “It surprises me how many homeowners resort to painting with white when Taubmans has a catalogue of over five and a half thousand paint shades.” explains Shaynna. “By breaking down the paint selection process into simple steps, the DIYer can feel empowered to choose the perfect colour for their home.”

10 Commandments of Colour Infographic-page-001

So head on over to the Taubmans website and have a play. You can upload a photo of your room and then change the colour so you will have a pretty good idea what the room will look like before you head out to buy a can of paint.

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I would still recommend you grab some swatches or a sample pot and test it in your own home in your light before you paint the whole room. Or better still, a Colour Consultant will help you narrow down your choices and give valid reasons why colours will or won’t work in your home. This Saturday Taubmans Colour Consultants will be at a Bunnings store near you and available to assist you with your choices.

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If you would like assistance choosing colours for inside or out of your home, contact us for an appointment.

***Images from the Taubmans website.***

The Selling Season Is Here

Have you noticed the burgeoning real estate section in your local paper at the moment? Or the number of For Sale or Auction signs around your neighbourhood?

Real Estate Signs everywhere

Real Estate Signs everywhere

As is the case every Spring, the market is “going off”!

After

After

And a couple of “my” houses have gone on the market. I selected the external colour scheme for this house in Willoughby back in May and it will go to Auction at the beginning of November.

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Before – Custard and Ocean Blue

Funnily enough I had visited this house a year or two prior for Book Club when one of the members was living there.

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Rear Deck before

It never ceases to amaze me what a fresh coat of paint in contemporary colours can do for a house.

Back Deck Finished

Rear Deck After

Colours used were Dulux Teahouse for Gutters, Barge Boards, Fascias and Verandah Top Rail and Posts.

Dulux Teahouse

Dulux Teahouse

Dulux Powered Rock for Walls

Dulux Powered Rock

Dulux Powered Rock

Dulux Vivid White for Window Frames, Eaves and Verandah Balusters.

Dulux Vivid White

Dulux Vivid White

If you would like assistance selecting a colour scheme for your home, contact us for an appointment.

Ask An Architect

For many people buying, renovating or building a home can be a daunting prospect.

When we purchased our home in Sydney 12 years ago, we knew we wanted to change a few things and make the home suit our lifestyle better. The formal lounge and dining room were separate rooms and we considered knocking a hole in the joining wall to open the rooms but then the hallway would be a waste of space. We wanted to update the kitchen as it was well and truly past it’s use by date. I wanted a home office and the second bathroom was miniscule. We measured and measured and drew plans on bits of paper but just couldn’t get it all to work. img301 For the first twelve months after moving in, a builder was working on a house next door so one day I asked him if he could recommend an architect to help us with our ideas. Mum and Dad had built an architect designed home back in the late ’60’s so I knew the benefits of having professional input. We contacted one of the architects the builder suggested and were amazed at how they could transform our house into the home we knew it could be.

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You see they see things differently. They know which would be the best side of the house for the living areas, how to get flow from one room to the next, how to maximise the space you have and what you can and can’t do to utilise it. We didn’t end up knocking a hole in the wall between the lounge and dining rooms keeping the formal part of the house as it was meant to be. But we did move the kitchen into the centre of the house (you know the hub of the home) and left the north east corner with the best light and views for the everyday living.

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So now there is a new online portal ready to help with your home renovations or building. www.askanarchitect.com.au can demistify the process and make architecture something eveyone can easily access. An independent source of information and advice to help consumers understand what’s involved in renovating and building a home, the website is treasure trove of guidance, tips and tools that will help make your dream home a reality.

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Plus it’s a place for consumers to see real stories, gather inspiration, ask questions, participate in webinars, discover events and engage with an architect.

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Launched last week by the Australian Institute of Architects, www.askanarchitect.com.au is all about helping and guiding people through buying, building, renovating or maintaining their home and to help consumers build trust and confidence to engage and work with an architect.

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“It’s a great chance to build a relationship between you and an architect.” Cameron Frazer from ask an architect comments. “An architect is a valuable and independent partner who can help you through the murky and complex world of building or renovating a home. They can be your trusted advisor.”

Whether you’re looking to buy, build, renovate or maintain a home, www.askanarchitect.com.au is there to help. The website is designed to help those who really aren’t sure where to start, and for those wanting easy to access quick online advice. If you’re buying, the site can guide you through home inspection tips, renovation advice, pre-purchase questions and other options.

“It’s a great way to begin working with an architect if you’re not sure where to start or what you want. Our fixed price services are the perfect answer to achieve the best advice within a budget.” Cameron adds.

The site also includes a handy online question and answer service, relevant upcoming events, the Find an Architect directory of professional architects, a gallery for inspiration and Pinterest tools to help you start collecting ideas.

So now you can complete lots of research before you even meet with your professional. Trust me, the more knowledge you have going into your build or renovation, the smoother the process will be. And if you’d like some assistance choosing paint colours and fixtures and fittings, you know where to come.

Pigeon Pair or Toucan Triplet

As I walk around my neighbourhood I get a little thrill of excitement when I see a house receiving some tender loving care. And if this love is being slapped on from a paint can I can’t wait to see the finished result. I wonder which colour they will paint it? Will they paint the Barge Boards in the same colour as the gutters or will they paint them the same as the eaves?

So I was quite excited when I walked past a gracious large home with scaffolding all around and the painters working madly.

This house was receiving some TLC

This house was receiving some TLC

But soooo disappointed when a few days later I walked past again and noticed the home was being painted the same colour as it’s neighbour. As if that wasn’t bad enough it was the same colour as the neighbour next to the neighbour too! Three houses in a row all the same colour. Well Ok, I didn’t have my fan deck with me and I wasn’t about to jump the fences and go up to the houses to see if they were infact the exact same colour. But in the early morning light they were pretty darned close for this trained colour consultant’s eye.

Painting the same colour

Painting the same colour

There really is no excuse for this. I understand people drive past a house and admire it’s colour but to paint exactly the same as your neighbour is downright unadventurous. You just have to look at the number of colours available from any of the big paint companies here in Australia to realise there is plenty of choice. Dulux, Taubmans, Wattyl, Resene, Bristol, Haymes, Porters, Murobond, the list is endless. And if you have trouble making a decision, call in an expert. You really don’t need to copy the house next door and the one next door to that no matter how much you like their choice. Besides you want your house to stand out, not tell your visitors we’re the third green house from the top! Check out my other considerations when Choosing an External Colour Scheme for some more ideas.

First house Second House Third House

If you would like assistance choosing colours for your home, contact us for a consultation.

 

Great News for Houzz Users

My guess is, that if you’re reading my blog you’re interested in renovating and decorating your home. Right?

So then it stands to reason you are well aware of the phenomenon that is Houzz. But did you know there is now an Australian version? Yep, that’s right, the world’s leading destination for home renovation and design, has launched Houzz.com.au.

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Many times I have visited clients who have shown me images on Houzz.com and want to know if we can do “something like that.” Well in most cases we can do “something” like that but sometimes we just don’t have those particular items or systems here in Australia. But now Houzz.com.au will be providing more relevant inspiration, information and advice to help Australians improve their homes from start to finish.

 

More than just a site of inspirational and aspirational images, Houzz actually lets you source items, suppliers and trades all on the one site right from the comfort (or uncomfort) of your living room. There is a discussion section too where you can post your dilemma and receive input from other users.

By using Houzz.com.au, Australian homeowners and design enthusiasts can:

● Browse thousands of Australian interior, exterior and garden photos uploaded by Aussie design professionals to find inspiration. With more than 3.5 million photos of professionally-designed home interiors and exteriors, Houzz has the world’s largest online database of professional home photos, home tours and more

● Research and hire the best Australian architects, interior designers, builders, tradies and other professionals for their project

● Read through an extensive range of guides and articles from Aussie home design professionals, like 10 Rules of Australian Beach Style, Design Origin: Blues vs. Maroons or explore a world of Weird and Wonderful Dunnies

● Seek support and advice from the largest home community on the Internet

● Discover new products and materials to source for their project

Blue and Yellow artwork

You can check out my portfolio on Houzz right here.

 

The Perfect Solution

If you’ve ever decided to change the paint colour of your home, inside or out, you’ve probably trotted off to the paint or hardware store and stood for hours infront of the colour walls.

Dulux Colour Wall

Dulux Colour Wall

You’ve probably carefully selected a handful of 3cm x 3cm chips, taken them home and stuck them on your wall. Then you’ve tried to imagine what your whole room or even whole house would look like painted in that colour. You may have come up with a short list of anywhere between 3 and 10 colours and headed back to the store for sample pots. Your house then looks like it is diseased while you ponder the colour yet again.

via Apartment Therapy

via Apartment Therapy

Well at long last there is now an easier, less messy way. Brush-Out Boards.

Brush-Out Boards complete with Blu-Tack

Brush-Out Boards complete with Blu-Tack

Brush-Out Boards are 40cm x 40cm boards painted with real paint and come complete with Blu-Tack ready for you to stick up on your wall. The beauty of these boards is that they can be moved around the home so you can easily see what the colour will look like on the bright northern side of the house and the darker southern side.

Inspirations Brush-Out Boards

Inspirations Brush-Out Boards

The boards are $4 each (half the price of a sample pot) for the top 20 colours and $8 for the remainder and delivered straight to your door. Hold the phone!!!! I’ve just heard that if you spend more than $50 in one order on these boards, shipping is FREE!!!!! Just use the code FREESHIP14 at checkout.

Brush-Out Boards make choosing paint colours easier and less messy.

Brush-Out Boards make choosing paint colours easier and less messy.

These brush-out boards are available from Inspirations Paint in Dulux or Berger paint colours.

And don’t forget if it all gets too confusing and too expensive, a Colour Consultation will make life so much easier in under 2 hours. A full specification sheet will be issued for you to hand to your painter so everyone knows which colour goes where. Contact us for an appoinment.

 

A Picture Paints A Thousand Words

The beauty of dealing with design professionals is that they are visual people and can easily picture in their mind’s eye what things will look like following changes.

Fro my "Blue and White" Pinterest Board

Fro my “Blue and White” Pinterest Board

One of the best ways to convey your choices to design professionals is through imagery. When I first started in the design business some ten years ago, I tore out images from magazines and pasted them into scrapbooks. I would cart around books for lounge rooms, bedrooms, home offices, kitchens, bathrooms, courtyards, window coverings, etc.

From my "Entry and Hallways" Pinterest Board

From my “Entry and Hallways” Pinterest Board

My clients would flick through the books and point out rooms they liked and explain to me why. That way, I could get a good feel for the types of things they liked (and hated) so I could start sourcing and designing.

From my "Look Up" Pinterest board

From my “Look Up” Pinterest board

But these days, I’m finding my clients are whipping out their tablets or smart phones and showing me images they’ve pinned to their Pinterest boards. It’s just perfect for people renovating or decorating as they can start collecting images they like of items or colours for their own home. I love Pinterest and am constantly adding images to my boards.

Pinterest Boards

Pinterest Boards

Do you have Pinterest?

If you would like assistance recreating an image you have found on Pinterest, contact us for an online or in-person consultation.

 

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