Saturday, June 30, 2012

The House

OK - here it is! This is the first floor of the house. Look how big that walk in wardrobe is! ;-)

I love this floor plan, it has everything that I wanted and I love how the living space is all at the back. It was quite the consultation process with the architect, but he's got it exactly what I wanted. The study nook at the top of the stairs was his idea and I love it! It will probably be more of a reading nook though.

The ground floor, because it's in a flood zone, is considered non-habitable. The laundry and another bathroom are on this floor, but the rest of the space is considered "storage", so a bit teenagers' retreat or guests space methinks. Maybe I could put a home office there too...unofficially.

What do you think?

Just a footnote, this is the original sketch and I've made some minor changes since then. In the ensuite, I've taken out the second basin and shortened the vanity to fit a towel rail near the shower. Same for the main bathroom, the vanity has been shortened to fit a towel rail near the bath. I'll also put a hook next to the shower so you don't have to spread water all across the bathroom to get to the towel rail.

Friday, June 29, 2012


Now that the subdivision has been approved and we're closer to starting to rebuild, I've been feeling very melancholy about our little home as demolition gets closer.

This little home is very special as it's the first one I've owned on my own. The first one I could hang my photos and paintings up in without having to ask anyone else permission. The first one I could plant the plants I wanted to plant, where I wanted to plant them.

It was a really lovely little home, beautifully renovated and full of character. I'm having a hard time accepting it will be knocked down.

The fact of the matter is though, completely renovating an existing home, particularly a post war one, is more expensive per square metre than knocking down and rebuilding. That's also not taking into account the cost of raising the home to be out of the flood zone, which would be another $30K. Resale value wouldn't be maximised if you didn't raise and because it's such a large block of land, not subdividing would be missing an opportunity.

But it's still hard. I came across some of the pics from the marketing campaign from when I bought it. You can see how pretty it was.

Sadly, this is what it looks like currently. It's hard to imagine it full of water, but it was.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Finders Keepers Markets

If you're in Brisbane and decorating, then get thee off to the Finders Keepers Markets next weekend at The Old Museum. I went last year and they had the most gorgeous, handmade items, posters, clothes. There are so many talented people out there making so many gorgeous things!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Kitchen Love

I don't know who owns these gorgeous kitchens or I would reference or credit them, but they are gorgeous! As you know I'm partial to a good row of pendant lights over an island bench and loving the white and timber combo.

I love how both also have windows as splashbacks. Not sure how practical it is and given mine would look into my neighbour's house, probably not a great idea for me, but I love it all the same.

On another note, I started looking into demolition today. Had the demolisher out and asked him a million questions. He must think I'm mad.

Friday, June 22, 2012


Woo-hoo!! After a long and protracted seven month process, today we FINALLY were granted approval for the subdivision of the block and building the new house. Yaaaaay!!

It's not all smooth sailing yet. We still have to put the plans in the actually BUILD the house, even though they are already approved in principle. Who knows how long that will take.  At least it's all moving forward. We'll be celebrating tonight!

On another note, long before the flood happened, I had been considering a career change into property. Maybe renovation, not sure yet. Even though this has been a long and arduous process, I have learned A LOT. So a change might still be on the cards yet.

For now though, we're breaking open a bottle of red...

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Kitchen Appliance Dilemma

The builder has budgeted $2400 for the oven, cooktop and rangehood and I'm committed to trying to stick to all his PC limits as best I can.

One thing I'm a bit anal on is matching all the appliances. So, here's my dilemma.

I (very) luckily work for a property company and they have this Blanco 752X electric oven available that was a cancelled order from a customer. It's a old model but still brand new in the box. It retails for about $1600 but I could get it for $300, which would be FABULOUS! means the other two items would need to be Blanco. Certainly not the cheapest brand around.

This is the Blanco gas cooktop I like - RRP $1099

This is the rangehood I like, it's $769 

So that lot comes to $2168 and I could probably get that down a bit more with some research and bargaining. But the dishwasher isn't included in this budget, so if I go Blanco, I'll have to get there dishwasher as well.

Blanco dishwasher - $1200. Ouch!

Blanco don't make fridges, so I'm not worried about that and I was hoping to conceal it in cabinetry anyway. But my dilemma is, so I go with Blanco just to get the saving on the oven, or do I go for a cheaper brand altogether knowing I can definitely get it all under budget?

Any thoughts?

Monday, June 11, 2012

First Purchase!

I went to Ikea today with my bestie Cheree and bought my first item for the house!! It was the Fillsta Pendant Lamp I'd written about in a previous post. It came in three sizes, but I bought the largest one, the 78cm one for the stairwell.

I'd toyed with the idea of having three of them hanging at different lengths and perhaps different sizes, as I was worried that the large one wouldn't be big enough for the stairwell. They had three hanging on a display in the store and although they were the same size, I still liked the effect. The large one though looked large enough so I'm going to leave it until the house is built and I can see it in situ.

I was also going to buy these pendant lamps for above the kitchen bench. They looked awesome in the photo and on display, but when I went to get them, they felt like plastic. They were really light and because they weren't packed a box, some of the ones in the container were already dented. I still like the look of them, but because I need to store the for the next 6 months, I might be better waiting until when they're ready to hang.

I also bought this series of prints, there were a set of three. I thought it would be cute framed and sitting behind framed photos on a sideboard. It was only $3.99, down from $14.99 so even if it doesn't work out, it's not like it was a big outlay.

BTW...I LOVE Ikea!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Habitat London

Love! Love! Love all the modern replica furniture at Habitat in London. I wish I could have brought it back with me.

Want! Want! Want this poster!!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Stairway to Heaven

Image from DesignBuild Homes

I have to make a decision on the internal staircase. I would loooove to have glass balustrades like the photo above, but it's just too expensive, so I'm going to go with horizontal wire balustrades with timber handrails like the photo below. I think it's a nice compromise.

Image from Designer Staircases
I had always planned on having an open tread staircase, but the plans have come back with it enclosed with storage underneath (like the top photo) and I'm actually leaning towards this. The extra storage underneath would be good for vacuum cleaners, boots etc and if it were open tread there's nothing really you could put underneath it.

What do you think?