Renovation + Home Improvement
Feb 19, 2016 11:45 pm
I had intended for this to be a progress thread, but because we have been so busy actually renovating, I have not had the time or energy to do this. So it's retrospective. We haven't finished 100%, but the inside of the house is pretty much done. Now we just have downstairs, and some outside work, which we can do in our leisure.
2 years ago we moved into this 1964 modernist house in the northern suburbs of Brisbane, about 12km from the CBD. We were originally looking in the 6-10km radius suburbs, but one day we decided to widen our search area and came across this place. As soon as my wife sent me the realestate.com.au link I had to have it. We had a contract on it the next morning, and the rest is history!
It's 4 bedroom, 3 bathrooms on 779m2. Downstairs is enclosed utility space and laundry, with the third bathroom.
The house had been designed by a well known Brisbane architect in 1964, in the mid-century modernist style. It sits high on a hill on a large block that slopes about 5-6 metres to the rear, a low profile from the front elevation but cantilevering out over the hill overlooking the pool and beyond. I loved the key design features such as the flat klip-lock roof, raised louvred atrium light-well, hardwood floors, parapet soffit, semi-enclosed courtyards, expansive floor to ceiling glass and minimalist interior details. The house was very thoughtfully designed to capture maximum natural light, breezes, and views.
Proper architecture and good quality materials and craftmanship went into this home. You just don't get it in new houses these days unless you can afford to spend a million dollars. So considering we got it for half that amount, we were rightly stoked!
Now, the downside... the house was owned by an elderly couple, both local medical doctors. They had gotten far too frail to maintain the house, and it had fallen into a pretty bad state in some parts. Overgrown trees and water leaks had attracted termites, which had caused some reasonably significant damage to one of the rear walls. The gardens were overgrown jungles. The pool was a frog pond. The kitchen and bathrooms were original but had fallen into a state of disrepair. To put it politely, the real estate photos (the ones shown below as the "before" photos) are very 'generous'.
Anyway, hope you stick around and enjoy the photos and story.... keep an eye out for the photobombing cats, it's like Where's Wally...
Re: Renovating our 1960's modernist home [project thread]2
Feb 19, 2016 11:48 pm
After all you have done to help the rest of us I am certainly interested in your build (particularly the exterior lighting).
Using my LG-G4 to bring you this update.
Re: Renovating our 1960's modernist home [project thread]3
Feb 20, 2016 12:00 am
These are photos from the real estate listing before we bought it.
Kitchen & meals area
Bedroom 1 & ensuite
Back yard, courtyard and pool
Re: Renovating our 1960's modernist home [project thread]4
Feb 20, 2016 12:12 am
We didn't waste any time getting stuck in. We moved in to the northern wing of the house, which (conveniently) had a rumpus room with small kitchenette, ensuite and master bedroom. We lived in this, basically a 1 bedroom flat, for about 3 months while we gutted most of the southern wing of the house (most of the house).
We knocked out a couple of walls and reconfigured the kitchen to make it more open-planned into the living area. The kitchen became a very large kitchen, which is what we referred to as a modern-day take on an "eat in" kitchen, with the plywood breakfast bar up one end. This is actually really good in practice as it allows someone to prepare and eat breakfast or a snack while someone else is using the kitchen proper, without getting in the way.
Kitchen design itself is fairly modern and minimal, in keeping as much as we could afford with the style of the house. We went for minimal handles, integrated dishwasher and microwave to keep things clean, plenty of concealed warm LED strip lighting. Carrara marble bench tops. Finished off with some subtle but edgy splashback tiles and some retro throwback avocado green pendants.
Re: Renovating our 1960's modernist home [project thread]5
Feb 20, 2016 12:18 am
At the same time as the kitchen, we also did the hallway and living room. There wasn't a great deal to do here except gyprock, patch up, paint and sand the floors.
Re: Renovating our 1960's modernist home [project thread]6
Feb 20, 2016 12:32 am
Once we ran out of money the first time around, we then went outside and got our hands dirty in the gardens, the pool, and fixing up and painting outside.
We painted the trims and fascias Monument for a sleek look, as this type of colour was quite popular with 60s modernism. When the house was built the hardwood chamferboards on the fascia were just clear varnished, but had been painted several different colours over the years - stripping them back to bare and varnishing them was far more work than we wanted to do...
The landscape design and pool area was originally designed by Lawrence Smith OAM, we is a very well known Queensland landscape architect, responsible for lots of municipal parks and gardens, including Roma Street Parklands. So we had a good base to start from, we just had to give it a serious clear-out. I don't know how many trees we felled, but we ended up with about 8 cubic metres of wood chip on our front yard from it. It was bloody hard work, but looks great now. Since the photos below the gardens have all gotten quite a bit more lush, and my grass is now green and thick.
Re: Renovating our 1960's modernist home [project thread]7
Feb 20, 2016 1:11 am
We got some more money then set to work on the 3 southern bedrooms and the family bathroom.
The two larger back bedrooms both overlook the pool, with nice big windows and breezes from Moreton Bay. One is my home office, the other is my wife's craft room. The small bedroom is my wife's office as she runs a business from home making and selling hand made diary books.
All these rooms were completely gutted and gyprocked, as the walls were masonite sheets and the ceilings were asbestos cement sheeting. Bedrooms all have new wardrobes/joinery, new paint, new lighting (of course), air con etc.
The bathroom has a heated towel rail, nice big shower head, frameless glass shower enclosure, bath and vanity. Mirror is an off the shelf item and I custom made a mounting frame with LED "halo" lighting around it. 600x300 matt porcelain floor tiles, 600x100 rectified ceramic wall tiles, and carrara marble hexagon mosaics around the bath. The shelves in the shower are the same marble as the kitchen bench.
The photos are distorted as they were taken on my phone using panorama mode.
Re: Renovating our 1960's modernist home [project thread]8
Feb 20, 2016 1:30 am
Once this was all finished, we moved out of the northern wing of the house and started demo. We gutted pretty much the whole thing, ripped out the ensuite walls and extended the ensuite about 900mm in each direction. Replaced the ensuite windows. Built a wall in the rumpus to create a walk in robe and a gym/study/parents retreat. The end result is about a 50m2 master wing, that closes off from the rest of the house and has its own glass sliding door out on to the courtyard.
Under floor heating down
Re: Renovating our 1960's modernist home [project thread]9
Feb 20, 2016 1:54 am
And the finished result:
- Big A$$ Fan "Haiku"
- Erco track lighting
- LED strip lighting in curtain pelmet
- Air conditioning
- Wall mounted bed sides
- Bamboo flooring
- Under floor heating
- Double vanity
- Spa bath
- Double shower with marble bench seat & niche shelving
- Colour selectable LED wall wash lighting
Walk in robe
- Full joinery with drawers, jewellery drawer, show drawers, etc etc (wife went nuts in here)
- Track lighting (original stuff re-used)
Study/Gym/Parent's retreat (whatever you want to call it)
- Built in book shelf
- Opens out on to courtyard
Re: Renovating our 1960's modernist home [project thread]11
Feb 20, 2016 11:12 am
That's a nice take on some classic architecture. Well done.
Cheers. It was a really big effort. We did most of the work ourselves, getting in specialist trades for things like plastering, tiling and structural building work. My father is a retired plumber and I started my career as an electrician so those bases were covered. Trying not to sound arrogant, but I am a perfectionist and I don't really trust other people to do things the way I want them done, so I research how to do it then do it myself. Probably takes 5 times longer but I get there in the end.
My wife studied interior architecture at uni so she was the lead on most of the interior selections. I think we probably saved about $50,000 - $100,000 compared to getting an architect or designer in and then having all of the work done under a building contract. Probably could have done it 1 year quicker, but I'm not bothered.
Re: Renovating our 1960's modernist home [project thread]12
Feb 23, 2016 5:31 pm
an amazing result for a huge project! It looks fantastic. Well Done
Our Easystart Build in Annie's Landing https://forum.homeone.com.au/viewtopic.php?f=31&t=81061&p=1478674#p1478674
Re: Renovating our 1960's modernist home [project thread]13
Feb 23, 2016 7:32 pm
Thanks a lot
Re: Renovating our 1960's modernist home [project thread]15
Feb 24, 2016 10:05 pm
Re: Renovating our 1960's modernist home [project thread]16
Feb 25, 2016 2:42 am
That, sir, was a rather great job! Seriously and I could vouch for your perfecionism just looking at nice job you did documenting the whole process. This is a good piece of content. I know that'd be a clilche, but having this sort of need of documentation and confidence in one's own work could be a good starting-point for starting a blog.
But I got some questions - I am not an expert in architecture styles, but those mirrors in the bathroom and those tiles in the kitches depicting come cubicles aren't of the same sort of tyle as the general look of the house - aren't they?
stay best man!
And interrior design and decoration fan. I love handamde things, unsuals, minimalism & cross-cultural design.
Also a huge fan of handmade mirrors from http://piaggi.co/uk/store
Re: Renovating our 1960's modernist home [project thread]17
Mar 03, 2016 10:42 pm
Wow looks amazing......beautiful job
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Re: Renovating our 1960's modernist home [project thread]18
Mar 04, 2016 4:53 pm
Re: Renovating our 1960's modernist home [project thread]20
Mar 05, 2016 5:47 pm
Thank you, yes it does. I'm not into feng shui or anything like that, but every now and then you walk into a house where everything just feels right, this house was that house for us
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