Deck the halls: How to make your home all that mer­rier

Ho­bart de­signer Kate Wat­son has been hon­oured for the sec­ond year in a row with an HIA Bath­room De­sign of the Year award, for her own en­suite, best de­scribed as show­case of un­der­stated lux­ury, writes JARRAD BE­VAN

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - NEWS -

Ho­bart de­sign guru Kate Wat­son has won the HIA’s pres­ti­gious bath­room de­sign award for her own bath­room, for a sec­ond year in a row.

Last year it was the ground floor main bath­room, this year the up­stairs en­suite.

The en­suite is lo­cated within the roof space of her near 160-year-old North Ho­bart home.

It is a show­case of “sim­ple lux­u­ries” such as nat­u­ral light, air, tim­ber and tac­tile sur­faces.

Where the bal­cony is now lo­cated, there used to be a dormer win­dow. It had been boxed out in the ‘80s and looked un­ap­peal­ing.

The orig­i­nal en­suite also had a free­stand­ing bath in one sec­tion and a wall that di­vided the area cre­at­ing a dress­ing room and an odd-sized en­suite.

“It clicked for me that I could get rid of this lay­out and cre­ate an out­door space, that was the ‘Eureka mo­ment’ when the de­sign came to­gether,” she said.

The new lay­out in­cludes sky­lights so that the fam­ily can shower in the sun­light.

“To me that feels like a healthy way to start the day,” Kate said.

“The space flows bet­ter now from the walk-in wet area to a space to get dressed and then through to the van­ity and bal­cony side of the bath­room.

“Sit­ting in the roofline, the en­suite is high­lighted by all these lovely tri­an­gu­lar parts of the roof that drove me nuts when de­sign­ing but look sen­sa­tional in the fin­ish.”

Work­ing within a de­fined space and on her own prop­erty, pre­sented Kate with a dif­fer­ent chal­lenge to the norm.

She said when work­ing for an ar­chi­tect on a new home things would come to­gether far quicker than they did for her own bath­room.

“There were chal­lenges like the plumb­ing could not be moved at all, but that just meant I had to re­ally en­gage the grey mat­ter,” she said.

“I per­son­ally like bath­rooms that are lim­ited in their pal­ette.

“I used a tile with a wavy tex­ture on one wall but by not mak­ing a spec­ta­cle of any one fea­ture you can cre­ate a rest­ful space. A sim­ple lay­er­ing is of­ten bet­ter than mak­ing a fea­ture of just one item.”

Kate said she was thrilled to re­ceive the HIA award two years on the trot be­cause it showed the con­sis­tency of her busi­ness d’ECO De­sign and the skill of her builder P&S Knott Builders.

“I love this bath­room so much that it can make me late for work,” she said.

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