Category: Home Visits

My own Industrial Country Kitchen Renovation on a very tight budget!

It’s not everyone that can say their mom set their kitchen on fire. I can! For months I persevered with a totally burnt-out range hood, three stove hot plates that didn’t work, an oven with a broken thermostat and lastly, a slightly charcoal coloured tone on my previously white kitchen cupboards. I postponed the kitchen renovation, as my first initial quote to redo my kitchen to the style and design I really wanted, worked out to be $45,000. It took me three months just to recover from that shock. I mean, my kitchen is 3m x 3m.  As our budget didn’t allow for  a “kitchen of my dreams” at this stage, I decided to accept the challenge and see how I can get a unique look, with a very limited budget, but still something that reflects my style. So I ripped everything out, and $12,500 dollars later, I had a kitchen. (Excluding appliances)

I didn’t realise I would feel so confused when I did my own Kitchen Renovation… Oh the pressure! When I told people I was renovating my own kitchen, everyone said: “Oh I can’t wait to see what you will install in your own kitchen!”  The pressure was on, and the budget was non-existent. So today, I will share with you my new little kitchen. I feel very exposed!  Here we go… Of course it all started with a very clear budget and a style board:

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From $15 Kmart pendant lights, to bargain Industrial ALDI barstools. I did splurge on a proper oven & Caeserstone bench top with a waterfall! My unusual statement tiles are from Beaumont Tiles in Castle Hill. I love these funky patterned tiles, at it gives the otherwise neutral kitchen, an interesting and eye catching backdrop and ties in with the colour scheme in my dining and lounge area.  I made sure the cupboards are a combination of neutral white & timber doors, which adds extra warmth to the grey concrete stone bench top.  With such a neutral base, anyone can now add their own touch. (The budget did not allow for the 30mm thick bench top of my dreams!)

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My somewhat unusual splash back. To me, it’s artwork in the kitchen!
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It’s all in the presentation and accessories!
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$15 Pendant lights from Kmart, with vintage globes from Bunnings hard ware store.
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Black handles on the widest drawers ever!
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My $9 Kmart tray, IKEA placemat & IKEA plant, $12 Howard Storage Containers & $8 Target Timber Container.
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Who can say no to a blue, vintage, half price, Delonghi, floor stock toaster?
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I splurged on a waterfall benchtop. The extra few dollars was so worth it to me.

I guess we all have at least one regret after every renovation. Mine was to let my husband talk me out of using professional painter and tell me he will paint the walls. I am still waiting…

As you can seen, if you are clever with your accessories, you take the attention away from your neutral cupboards and small layout. It’s fun to play around.

Oh yes, in case you wanted to see the BEFORE photos:

before photos kitchen renovation interior designers hills district sydney
My old kitchen. I am now very happy to have a bin inside my cupboard.
Eriana kitchen before stove
I am very happy to be rid of all the old-fashioned cream colours.

Anyone else who wants to share their matchbox kitchen reno on a budget?

Until next time,

eriana bredenhann interior designers hills district sydney

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A Country Escape to an African inspired home

On our mission to find our next photo shoot destination, we drive through little country towns and delight in the landscape flushed with sunshine.  Our mood is light and as we pass the next bend in the road, we see the exquisite house that awaits us.

This lovely home was built by ex-South Africans who had been living in Australia for the past 5 years.

The project to build this entertainer’s dream, took two years to complete, but was certainly worth the wait!

HOUSE SIDE VIEW 2

VSD:  What attracted you to this area of NSW?

We received work opportunities in the Central Coast and looked for a place where we could find peace and solace.  This is our dream home, overlooking a lake just meters from our house.  This is where we sit on the verandah, sip coffee and watch the cattle and horses graze in the valley.

EGG CHAIRS

VSD:  Where did the farm’s name “Braeside” come from?

Braeside means “on the side of a hill” in Scottish.  This house is built right on the side of a hill.

VSD:  How did you decide on the design style for the house?

We’ve taken all the items we’ve collected over the years and combined it in the design of the house.  We wanted it to not only work together to create a comfortable living space, but also fit our need for a farm/holiday/weekend home and blend harmoniously with the surrounding environment.

DEON DOOR OUTSIDE

The custom made barn door entry and colourful water boots give the home a welcoming country feel fitting for the rural area.

ENTRY HALL TABLE

VSD:  We see that you are an avid collector of antiques.  Do you have a favourite piece?

We’ve been collecting for many years, but some pieces have a special story attached to them. During the Boer War in South Africa, English troops invaded the Boer farms and burnt it to the ground.  My great great grandmother had holes dug into her back yard, covered her furniture in sisal and buried them to protect them from the English troops.   She left the furniture pieces buried in the ground for the entire Boer War in an attempt to save the pieces.  She was sent to a concentration camp and was released after the war.  She had the furniture restored on her farm “Oskraal” in the Free State, but died shortly after as the conditions in the concentration camp have taken a toll on her health.  We were fortunate to inherit these pieces that were passed down through five generations.

KITCHEN AND BEAMS

VSD:  We love the paint effect on the kitchen cupboards.  Who did this for you?

We met a local artisan, Deborah Buckley, in the village of Yarramalong.  She specializes in all kinds of paint effects and did a fantastic job.  She has a factory in Tuggerah, not too far from here.

EGG BASKET

BLOG_DEON13

The use of tractor seat chairs creates a more informal atmosphere around the formal marble kitchen counter top.

TAP

The elegant tap ware add to the French Country feel of the kitchen and bring an old world charm to the space.

DINING 1

VSD:  Your dining table is magnificent!  How did you come across it?

We needed a substantial table to not only integrate well with the timber beams and columns, but to easily fit a number of guests. We sourced the table from Burning Mountain Antiques just north of Scone in NSW.  It took twelve men to carry the table into the house.  It’s made of Siberian Cypress which was salvaged from a Russian Orthodox church that was burnt down.  The table was handmade by the owner of Burning Mountain Antiques and a poem is added to the under side of every table he makes.

TABLE POEM

DEON1

The high ceilings are accentuated by an elevated dining area which overlooks the lounge area.  The ceiling beams were sourced from the Northern Territory and adds grandeur and substance to the space. Furnishings and accessories are kept to a minimum, but does not affect the homely, unpretentious feel of the interior.

BLOG_DEON18

BLOG_DEON3

The main part of this house consists of two wings with two bathrooms and bedrooms each. The main bedroom and bathroom in both wings are bathed in natural light and utilised to full advantage by adding cabinets full of character and accessories to match.

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BLOG_DEON6

The second wing’s guest bed and bathroom portray a real French charm and are filled with antiques, among it a beautiful French armoire, sourced locally.

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KIDS BEDROOM

A delicate feel in the girls’ bedroom is created by adding a pale blue palette to the dominantly neutral colour scheme.  The birdcage lighting and subdued artworks add a feminine touch and soft furnishings and upholstered  headboards make the surrounds feel sheltered and cozy.

OUTDOOR FIREPLACE

The verandah and living areas are reminiscent of “Out of Africa” and this is where the owners tend to spend most of their time.  This comes as no surprise, as a relaxed atmosphere is created by a sandstone fire place, comfortable furniture and animal hides.

VSD:  Where did the antelope horns come from?

The Gemsbuck was hunted in Namibia and the moose in Canada.  The deer head is from Scotland.

SUCCULENTS

OUTDOOR DAYBED

A daybed on the verandah and a few tucked away nooks with plush pillows invite you to be enveloped and rocked to sleep.  These hide aways make it very easy to get in a few winks before the party gets started.

BLOG_DEON24

MAN CAVE SNOOKER

VSD:  You have perfected the concept of the man cave and it seems like a great place to entertain.  Is this where you gather after a long day at the office?

We enjoy the man cave mostly on weekends and love to barbeque and watch rugby on the big screen while playing billiards, pool or snooker.  What makes it extra special, is that this area also adjoins the wine cellar, suffice to say, double trouble.

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MAN_CAVE_OUTSIDE

It is with a little bit of sadness that we leave this quiet slice of heaven behind, but we continue to reminisce over it in the weeks to come. We have another mission in mind… winning the Powerball!

Cheerio ’til next time

 

Lyndie & Eriana

*ALL PHOTOS IN THIS BLOG WERE TAKEN & STYLED BY VANILLA SLATE DESIGNS

*ALL PHOTOS IN THIS BLOG WERE TAKEN & STYLED BY VANILLA SLATE DESIGNS

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Nataniel – An artist home without any colour?

Have you ever seen a home where everything is white? No, not mostly white, but everything white?

A few weeks ago I attended a show of one of my favourite artists & singers, Nataniel, a well-known entertainer from South Africa. He has an amazing voice, is a great storyteller and he has a sense of humour that makes you laugh uncontrollably. As my one friend said, “I am still laughing about the previous story, and then I already have to start laughing about the next one!”

His costumes change constantly and they are all so dramatic and colourful. However, when you view images of his house, you are surprised how such a fun, outspoken artist can live in a house with NO colour!… yes, you heard correctly, everything in his house is white! You will love today’s images of such an unusual home.

nataniel living area

Unusual and fabulous! An achromatic colour scheme, which means a “colour scheme without any colour.”

Never heard of it? Today you will see what this looks like! Let’s first introduce you to Nataniel, and how colourful his shows and clothes are:

Nataniel Main poster

Nataniel sees his home as a haven away from his colourful public life. His home is his blank canvas (vanilla slate!) where he can create & write his shows, stories & books. For someone with more than 10 godchildren it is amazing that you will find no clutter anywhere.

nataniel white cupboards

This does not mean he has no colour in his life. Hidden behind tall white cupboards are all his artwork, books and colourful ornaments. He uses them when guests visit, but they all get packed away afterwards!

nataniel artwork

The most colourful part of the house is where he displays some artwork of Catherina de Bliquy. Well, it is still in neutral colours, but looks colourful compared to the white interiors!

nataniel bedroom

The white bedroom with stunning cushions from Fornasetti.

nataniel fireplace

The textured fire place breaks the all white interior and gives it a more cozy atmosphere.

nataniel dining room

I love the dark timber ceiling beams and industrial pendant lighting. Interesting table decorations!

The big windows bring the lovely green garden inside, which gives the white finishes a softer look.

nataniel kitchen

The all white kitchen of a writer of many cook books! It almost has a Scandanavian look.

Not only is Nataniel a singer & entrepreneur, but has written many cook books too.

nataniel clothes

Having so many interesting costumes, it is wonderful to see that some of them are displayed in his home. No surprise it is a neutral one!

Nataniel bought this house in 2005. Yes, you either hate it or you love it!

He is a firm believer of living life in a way that makes you happy. This house makes him happy!

Even though it is unusual, I can understand if you have such a colourful life in the spotlight, that you would want to come home to a place where your senses can rest and recharge.

nataniel white ornaments

Nataniel’s “all white” ornaments.

nataniel kaalkop shop

Nataniel has a shop called “Kaalkop” in South Africa. (Translated as “bold headed”)

Not surprisingly, the shop is also all white!

nataniel me and him

* Eriana & Nataniel

Let us know what you think about his home!

Until next time,

Lyndie & Eriana

* As indicated, many of these images are from the apartmenttherapy website.

* Most of the other images are from Nataniel’s own website.

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Home visit to a child-friendly artist’s home in Neutral Bay

It’s another beautiful winter’s day and we are heading to Neutral Bay, Sydney. We are getting into our comfortable and rather familiar ritual of getting lost on the way and if it wasn’t for the excellent navigational specialist next to me, we would have been in trouble.

autumn in sydney

Scattered among large apartment buildings, we find well kept period homes and hilly, picturesque streets without any sense of overcrowding.  With a distance of only 4km out of the city, we can understand why Dieter and Malindi decided to settle here 7 years ago.

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