A Fairlight home is transformed to blend with its natural surroundings
The Northern Beaches of Sydney embody much of the postcard Australian lifestyle, from the salty air and sprawling beaches to the laidback culture and positive vibes that encase the waterside suburbs. A refurbishment of a ’70s property, this home was in dire need of an update courtesy of Sydney interior architecture and design firm, Mr. Waller.
For an active family of four, creating a home that complemented the natural surroundings was key, along with opening up the space, updating the kitchen and bathrooms and ridding the residence of the “rabbit warren” of rooms. The home consisted of four bedrooms and three bathrooms, but there was limited daylight
“Our clients loved the property location and overall space and size of the house, but felt it was disjointed and wanted a better connection to the water, which was obscured by a number of partition walls,” says designer Andrew Waller.
With the house clearly “caught up in the ’80s”, the original kitchen truly captured the era with a black granite triangular island. Then there was the indoor spa in the corner of the lounge and the Memphis-style bathroom upstairs. Ceiling heights also had to be considered given the new concept for the kitchen and bathroom. “We proposed a new bathroom layout above the kitchen to allow for increased ceiling heights to the kitchen and to allow the partition wall to be removed between the kitchen, lounge and front hallway,” says Andrew. “The brief was for the kitchen to have a better connection to the reception spaces and rear terrace for entertaining as well as a breakfast area where the family could casually gather.”
Referencing traditional Australian weatherboard beach houses with a slight Scandinavian aesthetic, the new kitchen and lounge area is light and open. “Loose” furnishings including the freestanding pantry were chosen to link with the pieces in the adjacent lounge area, ensuring fluidity. “The pantry cupboard is raised off the floor and doesn’t reach the ceiling,” says Andrew. “This retains more open space in the room while visually heightening the ceiling.” Painted in sage, the blue–green hue is ideal for the location and injects just the right amount of colour into a house based around a minimal palette with subtle pops of colour and pale timber.
“The joinery colouring for the project has a powdery quality in the blue tone which is refreshing in the beach house location where the light is bright and clear,” says Andrew. “This colouring has been used repeatedly throughout the property in various tones and is first seen in the entry hall, where it acts as an introduction to the scheme.”
Encouraging the highly sought-after indoor–outdoor living concept, a barbecue area with outdoor lounge, table and seating is the perfect spot to entertain guests and enjoy the balmy nights and cool breezes Fairlight is gifted with. Citrus tones are introduced into the space through accessories that tie back to the interior’s signature aesthetic. Slightly moodier in palette is the bedroom, which calls on shades of grey, ultimately offering a cocooning spot to unwind and relax. The use of soft furnishings provides a plush environment that is contrasted against white cabinetry and surrounding walls.
When the homeowners rethink their holiday options thanks to the exceptional space you’ve masterminded, you know you’ve done a good job. Andrew Waller has once again produced an interior that preserves an Australiana feel with just the right amount of European influence, ultimately creating a home that brims with quality and an unmistakable aesthetic.
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Written by Annabelle Cloros
Photography Nick Watt
Originally from Home Design Volume 18 Issue 6