In­ner Peace

Given the op­por­tu­nity to de­sign and build from scratch, the owner of this Perth home cre­ated the ul­ti­mate sanc­tu­ary – with a lit­tle help from her friends.

Australian House & Garden - - Contents - STORY& STYLING Anna Flan­ders| P HOT OGRAPHYBo Wong

Oc­cu­py­ing a cor­ner plot in beach­side Perth, this new build of­fers a peace­ful sanc­tu­ary and rep­re­sents a dream come true.

Step­ping into Michelle Wil­liams’ home in beach­side Perth is a peace­ful ex­pe­ri­ence. In­side and out, the aes­thetic is a les­son in how to evoke calm and soul through tex­ture and re­straint. It’s a re­flec­tion of the way Michelle likes to live and the man­i­fes­ta­tion of a very per­sonal col­lab­o­ra­tion.

Michelle and her hus­band Kevin bought the va­cant 355m2 cor­ner block in 2010. Fast-for­ward to 2014 and the cou­ple was fi­nally ready to be­gin build­ing. Michelle turned to three long-time friends to help make her dream home a re­al­ity: re­tired ar­chi­tect Karen, in­te­rior de­signer Adri-Ann Brown of Blu­peter Home­store and builder Rus­sell Smail of Lime St Projects.

Kevin and Michelle’s brief was clear. “We wanted a sim­ple home, one with an in­door-out­door feel and no wasted space,” says Michelle. “We also love hav­ing vis­i­tors – our house is like a bed-and-break­fast at times!” When it came to pin­ning down the de­tails, work­ing with friends was a dis­tinct ad­van­tage. “Not only do Karen, Adri-Ann and I have sim­i­lar taste, I re­ally ad­mire their work,” says Michelle. “And be­cause we are friends, we could be to­tally hon­est with each other.”

A rammed-earth nib wall at the front of the prop­erty hints at the tex­tu­ral de­lights within. The front door opens to an ex­tra-wide hall­way that leads to Kevin’s study to the east and the dou­ble garage and a pow­der room to the west. Be­yond the study is the open-plan kitchen/ din­ing/liv­ing area with off-form con­crete ceil­ing, which ex­tends the width of the north-fac­ing rear of the home.

The first floor, ac­cessed via a stair­case with a whim­si­cal balustrade of white-painted branches, con­tains Michelle and Kevin’s gen­er­ous bed­room suite, a sec­ond bed­room, sec­ond bath­room and a spa­cious re­treat/study. The main bed­room, at the rear of the home, is a large yet min­i­mally fur­nished room with floor-to-ceil­ing slid­ing doors that

‘The in­stant I step through the door, I feel more re­laxed. This is my happy place.’ Michelle

open to a gen­er­ous bal­cony. It’s a beau­ti­ful space as is, but the real gem is the or­ganic-luxe en­suite, ac­cessed via a walk-through wardrobe. With river-peb­ble floor­ing, light­ing de­signed to em­u­late the night sky and pri­vate bal­cony ac­cess, this serene sanc­tu­ary is where you will find Michelle most Fri­day nights af­ter a hec­tic week.

AsperMichel­le­andKevin’sre­quest,there’splen­ty­of­room­forenter­tain­ing and a strong con­nec­tion be­tween the in­door and out­door ar­eas. The kitchen/din­ing area opens up to a cov­ered ve­ran­dah and the liv­ing zone ad­joins a ter­race, so there’s am­ple space to spread out. Yet there is also in­ti­macy: a bulk­head in the liv­ing area cre­ates a co­coon­ing feel and the fur­ni­ture is ar­ranged to fa­cil­i­tate re­lax­ation and easy con­ver­sa­tion.

Rammed earth reap­pears as a fea­ture wall that runs the length of the home; its sub­tle tex­ture and sandy tones soften the pre­dom­i­nantly white in­te­rior. Thought­fully edited lay­ers of nat­u­ral ma­te­ri­als – linen, raw tim­ber, sea­grass and stone – de­liver depth and soul. “I love white and I love linen,” says Michelle. “It makes me feel at peace and has a lux­u­ri­ous look that isn’t pre­ten­tious.

“The in­stant I step through the door, I feel more re­laxed,” she adds. “It’s in­cred­i­bly tran­quil and the at­ten­tion to de­tail makes it so spe­cial. This is my happy place.” # Blu­peter Home­store, North Fre­man­tle, WA; (08) 9433 1782 or blu­peter.com.au. Lime St Projects, Clare­mont, WA; 1300 797 456 or www.limestreet.com.au.

BATH­ROOM Made from river peb­bles, the above, left and right tac­tile floor tiles are a calm­ing in­flu­ence on the room. Bath and Hans­grohe tap­ware, Tuck Plumb­ing Fix­tures. Stool, Blu­peter Home­store. Wall hooks, The Wall Col­lec­tive. Bas­kets, Free­dom. Cus­tom-made van­ity. Air-plant ves­sels, Birds of Pas­sage. Tow­els, Cool Galah.

Smart buy: ROC White River Peb­ble in­ter­lock­ing tiles,

$95/m2, M2 Tiles.

COV­ERED VE­RAN­DAH The north-fac­ing ve­ran­dah is a lovely spot to while away an af­ter­noon. Arm­chairs, Cor­ner Store. Cush­ions, cof­fee table, bamileke ta­bles and stools, all Blu­peter Home­store. Plan­ta­tion shut­ters, Board­walk. For Where to Buy,

KITCHEN/DIN­ING Michelle (pic­tured) took the photo of a Ma­sai woman while on hol­i­day in Kenya. Chan­de­lier, din­ing table, din­ing chairs, cush­ion and tray, all Blu­peter Home­store. Stel­ton jug, Rem­edy. Kitchen de­signed by In­de­sign WA. Tem­pered-glass bench­top. Es­sa­s­tone splash­back. Tap­ware, Grohe. Porce­lain floor tiles, Tile Bou­tique. For Where to Buy, see page 188.

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