We were dealing with a very small footprint and it was important for us to maximise the space available - plenty of storage and space for a book collection was paramount. What we did have available to us was plenty of height so the design had to take advantage of the vertical space available .
We enjoy cooking so a generous and spacious Kitchen was an important part of the Brief The Project had a small footprint but plenty of height available A mezzanine level was squeezed into the design to maximise the vertical space available A Void was created at the western end of the Living Space to provide a sense of space, height and volume to the main Living area The library is located in this space with access provided via a steel ladder A small 20sqm Courtyard was created in the middle to provide a burst of greenery created be a lush garden and outlook for all levels of the House 3 Kentia Palm .
Trees were strategically placed in the Courtyard to provide privacy between the House and the adjoining Apartment block The House is the middle terrace amongst a group of 3 so getting natural light into the house was of paramount importance We located the Living Space on the First Floor (which goes against tradition) enabling views towards Bondi Junction and the Harbour Bridge The Living Area is orientated East-West with a 4m long skylight above allowing light to be pouring into the living space throughout the day Part of the Living Area has a 3.3m high ceiling .
A Floating Timber Stair allows light to be filtered from the mezzanine all the way into the Ground Floor Level Full Height Glazed panels on the ground floor open out onto the Courtyard to allow natural light The abundance of natural light - we do not need any artificial lighting throughout the day A Tiny Courtyard became a central focal point of the House How landscaping became such an important design element in the project – providing outlook and privacy for not just our house but the neighbouring buildings The spaces in the House feel a lot more generous in reality than on plan due to the abundance of Light and Height afforded by the design.
Director Lawless & Meyerson
The client was the architect, one of the Principals of architecture firm MHNDU who we have a very close relationship with. He wanted a black and white, clean, crisp interior with a great garden. So that’s what we did! We had greyed off oak floors to create some warmth, white walls and all black joinery. Kevin and his wife Anna are big cooks so the kitchen needed to look good but be practical. The suspended shelving above the island is great storage within easy reach and the benchtops are all Dekton which is incredibly durable especially when there is a lot of stove cooking.
Dangar Barin Smith are responsible for the beautiful garden. I’ve always loved a green backdrop to a black interior. The garden really becomes a huge part of the interior as you see it from almost every angle. It wouldn’t be the same without it.
I’ll let Kevin discuss this as the architect
The brief called for a really strong, graphic interior and I was happy to oblige! I like black. Also sticking to just B&W really does give it strength. It’s a very architectural space but it still feels liveable and comfortable due to the abundance of natural light and the garden.
Dekton for the kitchen bench – because it’s a good black and its really durable
Greyed off oak floors – this balances out the black and white and creates a lovely warm base Terrazzo bathrooms – Kev saw the terrazzo and loved it, it worked really well with everything else going on so we just used it everywhere, floors and walls, Again we wanted a strong, gutsy bathroom that was also practical and durable.
Regarding furniture, it was furnished on a budget so maybe best not to describe the furniture!
I think the whole thing was a surprise, we had a tight budget and we all worked really hard to get the best outcome while managing the costs. Whilst I knew what to expect from the interiors aesthetically the feeling of the spaces surprised me.
3 things that really stood out for me were:
- The Light - when you’re in the space it feels almost like you are in a treehouse, it feels more elevated than it is because of the combination of large skylights over the living area and floor to ceiling windows
- The Garden - it really is gorgeous, it was more luscious and green and dense than I ever expected and provides the most wonderful backdrop to all of the rooms
- The Architecture – it sits really nicely next to the original terrace, the proportions, scale and materials are all contextual whilst maintaining its own identity, I thought this was very successfully imagined by MHNDU.