The owners of this Subiaco home were in perfect sync when it came to designing all the elements of their new residence. As a result, it ticks all the right boxes when it comes to family living, style and design.
The husband-and-wife team began formulating design ideas when they bought the building block eight years ago, and as they began to discuss their vision for their new family home, it became apparent that they were on the same page all the way, from the first brick laid, to the choice of kitchen sink. The result is a happy family abode that accommodates their two young sons and includes a fully equipped studio in which artist/owner Chrissie Hogan can paint.
What’s all the more surprising is that the stunning results achieved in the design come despite the couple having no prior experience in building. That’s not to say there weren’t a number of minor bumps along the way, however, including the usual delays with a build, plus challenging exchanges with the local council.
This International Cabinets kitchen was the winner of the 2014 HIA Kitchen Award; the marble splashback is a subtle touch of elegance without dominating the space. The high-traffic area features bar stools from Mobilia and hand-blown glass pendants from Niche Modern in New York.
The sloping block resulted in the owners engaging architects Hofman Brown to work through some of the more tricky design solutions, and building company Quattro Homes, who made the whole project possible. The couple also sought
the professional help of Mark Lodding, who interpreted their design and helped with the technical aspects of the build.
“We have always been inspired by classic old homes, especially those in the Georgian era,” says Chrissie, when asked about her influences. “We love the design being very sympathetic to and accommodating modern and antique furnishings. The large rooms, high ceilings and windows create good bones and a blank canvas.”
A customised colour for the oak flooring features throughout, and complements the steel doors and windows. The staircase leads to the bedroom areas, and boasts large clean-line steps that are a feature in themselves.
She and her husband were able to interpret a number of the traditional elements of homes of the period, but added a modern twist by incorporating the Georgian ethos of a symmetrical rectangular house plan, with balanced windows. Other typical highlights include cornices, skirting boards, and a fireplace that acts as the focal point of the main living room.
Striking steel windows and doors are featured throughout the home, and are a favourite feature for the couple. They, too, are a nod to the Georgian ethos, the floor-to-ceiling steel-framed windows appearing delicate while allowing an abundance of light into the home.
The dining room is set to the side of the main living area, and while the space is open, it still retains privacy with the fireplace separating the areas. The table and wall unit are from Contempo, the chairs are from Mobilia and the rug is from Birds of Passage. The light, from Ochre, acts as the centrepiece of the room.
A great deal of research and time went into finding a supplier who could build to the home’s specifications, and deliver on time. Once the build was underway, however, the couple were able to turn their attention to researching products for the interior of the home.
“Our favourite designers are quite different from each other, with the link being a strong and definite design sense,” explains Chrissie. “We got inspiration from interior designers such as Kelly Wearstler, Piet Boon, French designer Stephane Chamard, and design house Ochre.”
Black cabinetry in the office provides chic storage.
The two-storey home is designed with the living quarters downstairs and bedrooms upstairs. The living space is maximised by the floorplan flowing seamlessly outside to a contemporary pool, practical bar, and barbecue area.
Entertaining is paramount in the ethos of the family home, meaning these outdoor
areas of the home are used not only by the children and family, but also by a constant flow of friends.
Another standout aspect of the home is the lighting. A chandelier – from design
company Ochre – is suspended above the dining table, and was shipped in from
London. It’s an element that’s spectacular without dominating the space.
The home boasts the perfect mix of local and internationally recognised artwork,
including three Phil Cuttance vases. Chrissie is an established artist in her own
right, yet none of her own works adorn the walls. “I have only just begun to paint
again,” she explains modestly. “Building the house and caring for small children
was time-consuming.” Now, with her customised studio a key feature, Chrissie
is free to resume some wonderful still-life and landscape pieces.
The outdoor living areas are designed to be used throughout the year, with the undercover spaces perfect for entertaining on rainy days.
Chrissie Hogan talks about her family home and inspiration.
What inspires you?
New products and fantastic designers. I also get a lot of inspiration from Instagram.
How would you describe your interior decor?
Contemporary in a classic shell.
Do you have a favourite building material?
Marble is always a hands-down favourite, from the benchtops to the front paving. Bluestone is also a great stone to be creative with, because it can be cut and used in so many ways.
Do you have any advice for someone wanting to design and build their own home?
Take time to work out how you live and what you need. Use an architect or draftsperson who understands these needs. In the design stage, don’t give up! Walk away now and then, to gain a different perspective: compromising on a room will not benefit you in the long term. Find out what is available and what is new. Research, research, research!
Do you have a favourite place within the home?
My studio is the automatic answer, but I also love the living room, next to the fireplace in winter.
What makes a house a home?
Furnishing the home with things you love.
Hofman and Brown Architects (08) 9385 4021, hofmanandbrown.com.au (architect)
Artedomus (08) 9226 0288, artedomus.com (stonemason)
Baxter Shop (02) 8339 1550, baxtershop.com.au
Birds of Passage (08) 9381 2332, birdsofpassage.com.au (rugs)
Contempo (08) 9446 9244, contempocollection.com.au (dining room table and wall unit)
International Cabinets (08) 9240 9000, internationalcabinets.com.au (kitchen and custom sideboards)
Lavare (08) 9230 7998, lavare.com.au
Louis Antiques (08) 9383 9239, louisantiques.com.au
Mark Lodding Design (08) 9478 3567 (designer)
Mobilia (08) 9284 5599, mobilia.com.au (bar stools and dining chairs)
Myaree Ceramics (08) 9330 3611, myareeceramics.com.au (courtyard flooring) Ochre ochre.net (dining room chandelier)
Quattro Homes (08) 9444 4002, quattrohomes.com.au (builder)
Scurrs (08) 9242 5181, scurr.com.au (mirrors)
Skyrange (03) 9480 2066, skyrange.com.au (steel doors and windows)
Temple Direct (08) 6140 1763, templedirect.com.au (rugs).