It suggests being hospitable and families sharing things together.
TWO new homes, both in Paddington, both with threechildren families wanting to spend quality time together.
But the individual approach to each home, created by Owen Architecture director Paul Owen, saw both shortlisted in the 2016 Australian Interior Design Awards.
Rosalie House, blessed with a 1600sq m block, is home to a family with three young boys while Ranley Grove House, on 400sq m, has a family with three teenage girls.
“With both houses, the families are very close and want to do everything together, but also recognise to enable them to be together they need some freedom and independence as well,” Mr Owen said.
Life in Australian suburbs – the patterns, materials and design – has been used not in a nostalgic sense but as an “authentic way to decide what materials to use”, according to Mr Owen.
He admits to a longstanding affection for ‘subway’ or ‘ butchers’ tiles, and loves the old pubs with exterior tiles along the footpath that are both decorative and practical.
“I started using them in kitchens and bathrooms because you’d see them in an old commercial kitchen or butchers shop,” he said.
Eventually, as in the case with Ranley Grove House – which received a commendation in the residential design award – those tiles were extended to other food-related areas such as dining rooms.
“It suggests being hospitable and families sharing things together. It’s also an inexpensive way to not have plasterboard everywhere, and the tiles reflect light beautifully,” he said.
Mr Owen said both homes have a “simple practicality”, drawn from Victorian era design where things were inventive but in a practical way.
“There is this idea that you can have a concrete floor, a robust rough material that you might find somewhere like a football club, brick, plain rendered walls but then combine with marble and brass,” he said.
“If you make everything luxurious, you may miss opportunities to show the materials in their true light.
“In the Rosalie House there is marble, and it meets concrete floor. That contrast in the materials makes both work.
“When we were designing there was that balance between it being robust, and almost daggy, but clearly wanting to make it beautiful and comfortable as well.”
The importance of family time, and being as social as possible, is evident in the kitchen and dining set-up of both homes, however Mr Owen said Rosalie House’s area was also robust and open enough to function as an outdoor room.
“I like to reference these oldfashioned servants kitchens in movies, where there is a big, long table and the cooking is happening where you are sitting at the table,” he said.
“The family and friends can all hang out while things are being cooked, and there are a number of places you can go, you can sit at the island bench, or the dining table, or the banquette seat. It’s all about being social.”
SOCIAL TIME:TIM Owen Architecture shortlisted in the 2016 Australian Interior Design Awards for two new homes in Paddington – Rosalie House (above( and inset) and Ranley Grove House (below).