OUR HOME – THE RENOVATION
After 15 years my wife and I are tackling our own renovation. I thought it would be a good idea to chronicle the phases of our project from the first concept to the through to construction of the finished renovation. Over the next few months and you will see the process of engaging with an architect with my own home and all that that entails.
Like every design I do, the design needs to go through a series of stages.
SCOPING OUT THE BRIEF
Front living room
Our California Bungalow has some love features that we wanted to keep, the lovely bay windows at the front, the fireplaces, however we wanted to open up the back of the house to the garden and give us another living area.
Key to renovation design was thinking about what we wanted in the next 10 years. Our son Lachlan will be a teenager soon so having a separate retreat for him and us was part of the brief. Danielle (Dan, my wife) and I love similar designs and so it was easy to agree on most of the design elements, but we still went through a series of questions and discussions to determine what was in and out of scope.
Dan has been using Houzz to collect her ideas. This app is a great tool for home renovators to use when collecting ideas. We had a few restrictions on our block. It is only 500m2 corner block so we need to be really clever with our design to maximise space and light, while being aware of overlooking our neighbours. We knew that the design would really only apply to the back end of our home – or the lean to as it is sometimes referred to. This back part currently contains the kitchen, bathroom, laundry, and sunroom.
Spark Street Floor Plan
We wanted to open up the back and create a new galley kitchen, with more storage, connect the room to the garden and create an upstairs area for our work and Lachlan when he gets older. We also wanted a better laundry and bathroom. By doing some initial sketches on the current floor plan (which you can access from your local council) we were able to see what we could do within the parameters of the block. It also was good to have some trace paper handy to draw over the top of the original plan until we had exhausted our ideas. The time it takes to get the foundations of what you want in a renovation can take some time. It is worth coming back to over a series of weeks so that you can check-back in with your initial thoughts and allow ideas to marinate. Once you have the concept and scope defined you can move onto formalising the design.