Muted Monochrome

More photos of my favourite monochromatic palette. Black + White. There are many individual elements that I can 'borrow' for my house. I love the floating platforms that create shelves, seating, stairs and bath. I love the vertical bookcase niche in the bedroom. And, I love the art. This apartment is Donna Karans and you can see more of it here.

x KL


Black, white and well read!

'D Residence' by Shareen Joel Design

I do have such a great love of black and white at the moment. And just as I decide 100%, definitely, absolutely and without a shadow of a doubt that our kitchen will be black (and white), I find these images! This stunning house has interiors designed by Shareen Joel of Sharleen Joel Design. It was shortlisted in the Australian Interior Awards 2011 and has made me stop and reconsider again! I would call this kitchen white (and black)! Isn't it stunning?

 I read an article about this project in the second edition of the digital magazine Est which I thoroughly enjoyed and which started my search for more information about Sharleen and her aesthetic. The Design Files posted a fantastic interview with Shareen late last year, and Jo from Desire to Inspire has featured her diverse talents too. Im so taken with the unpretentious detailing in this project, particularly evident in the joinery, the understated use of colour, simplicity of design and minimal yet classic feel.

For me, this house is perfection!
Courtesy of Est magazine

Oh to have the budget to simply employ her to give my place her magic touch!
Check out her web site here for more outstanding, drool worthy examples of her multi faceted design!

P.S: I'm loving Est magazine too. If you haven't seen it before, check it out below - Australian and highly recommended by Mwa! Did you notice that I taught myself how to make links!!!! Yee Ha!!!

x KL


I've gone all mushy!

When scrolling through all my pictures of the last house, I came across these. My littlest man-of-the-house is now 9. How time flies! Here he has lined up three tiny teddy chairs for him and his furry friends to sit on to watch TV together. How thoughtful. So cute!!!! It's lucky I'm too old to do anything with this gooey, lumpy, heart bursting, clucky feeling!!! Have a lovely weekend!

x KL


WOW! What a transformation!

Well, I managed to load my old pictures of our last place before the renovations. They definitely tell the complete story! (A picture telling a thousand words of course.) In the photo above, shot from the right hand side, the wall containing the window on the right is the only part of the original facade remaining. Photographed from the left, it is the furthest window, below.

The pony tail plant was transplanted successfully to the rear garden

This concrete slab was excavated and the garage, gym and workshop built under whilst a new lounge room and covered patio was built on top at this level.

Ground floor gym on move - out day.
Outdoor entertaining patio over garage. We had some great parties here!

Below is the original kitchen and family room. We widened this room, moving the wall on the right 1200 mm and adding wide doors to connect with a rear courtyard.

The old lounge (below). The brick wall was demolished and this whole side of the house pushed back, giving us another 1200 mm depth for the walk in pantry behind the kitchen. The laundry remained in the same spot, the door shifted 600 mm left and we decided to get rid of the dirt floor! Hooray!

 The new laundry, reflected in floor to ceiling sliding mirror doors which concealed a massive linen cupboard and heaps of storage! (And no rat access! Happy days!!!)
My old pantry. I LOVED every 4 metres of her! This was my favourite part in the home!
One of the few areas structurally remaining of the original cottage, it went through a pretty transformation (below). Aaah... much better!

The other end of the lounge room (above) became our stairwell (below)

That little bit of wall, bordering the stairs, was transformed / redecorated every week or so! (And no the porcelain doll is not my decor style -she was unearthed, re-loved and re-packed up till...?) 

The only bathroom in the house on purchase. We renovated this before we moved in! Clever!!! 

These are the photographs of the pool when we purchased the property. Looking back... my God we were brave! It was a labour of love to transform (not to mention a money pit) but we LOVED our private resort at the end! (And so did the kids, their friends, our friends, extended family,the neighbours......)

The back of the property when we purchased it (above) and when we finished it (below)

Our own piece of paradise off the main bedroom.
And to finish off, thanks have to go to our smallest tradie, (born and raised on site) for a job well done!

x KL

The last 'project' - a renovation

Well, recuperating from surgery has become brain numbingly boring! I can't drive yet and there is only so much online shopping one can do! (And I think if another parcel arrives, I'll be in trouble with the head of finance, aka my hubby!) I thought I'd occupy myself with putting together some pictures of our last house. We bought it in 2001 and sold it in 2007. It was meant to be a 5 year project and we didn't do too bad considering the arrival of a new baby and some serious health issues for both my hubby and I that occupied about 3 years of that time-frame!

I wanted to show the 'before' photos but they're in a format that my new laptop doesn't decipher. I try to get one of the clever teens to sort that for me. You'll just shake your head!

EDIT: Got them sorted!!! Stay tuned for tomorrow's post! OMG! All will be revealed!!!

We extended the front and side of the house to create a new lounge, entertaining area, kitchen and laundry. We excavated under to build a double garage, storage / workshop and gym area. We also added on a top storey with three bedrooms, ensuite, bathroom, library and study. The remaining areas of the original house were reconfigured to create a large entry, stairwell, guest bedroom and main study / office.

The concrete shell of the pool was in situ from the previous owner's unfinished plans. A huge 18 x 6.5 metre monster - cantilevered out from the steep site!The brackish water was a cesspool of frogs and dragonflies and had  been languishing in that state for over three years. Being in the front yard, we decided to build a cabana with bathroom and bar to service this area and give privacy. Underneath provided another single garage and pool equipment area. We finished this project first and by doing so, gave ourselves a stunning area to escape the building dust and chaos at the end of every day. I think it saved our sanity too!
The heart of the home - the kitchen had a 4 metre long pantry that ran behind it accessed through the 'porthole' door.

Two images of the lounge, I was always swapping furniture around!

Dining area and family room.

Main Bed with double sided 4.5 metre WIR behind bed. Bliss!! Hubby ckecking for lost millions on move -out day below!

The only remaining bedroom from the original house, we added the BIR.

The children's bedrooms upstairs; they chose their own feature wall colour!

The children's study was used initially as a nursery, then a tiny bedroom for a toddler (below) before being custom fitted as a study (above). The room was given a major tidy-up for marketing shots!!!

I read so many new building / renovating blogs that all discuss, at length, the desire for fixtures and fittings that will not date. It is impossible! This is the main bathroom (above). It had previously been three separate small rooms. Within a year of completion the diagonal tile layout on the walls, the tile sizes and 'vessel' basin dated this room. The classic oval tub, tumbled marble floor and feature tile along with the wall hung vanity have fared better. There's a lesson here....another post idea I think!

The mezzanine library. I miss it!

The thing I miss most about our last place, appart from the fact IT WAS FINISHED LOL, was the gardens. We established them all and I just delighted in pottering, pruning and pampering those plants! Phew!

Hope you've enjoyed my reminisce. I have! It really makes me realise how much we can achieve!

x KL