Fifty shades of grey (white and blue)

A lo­cal Cal­i­for­nian bun­ga­low takes on a US east coast look with Hamp­tons style, writes Catherine Nikas-Bou­los

The Daily Telegraph (Sydney) - Home - - ADVICE -

In most cases, a home is de­fined by its ar­chi­tec­ture, with clas­sic de­signs from by­gone eras fur­nished with in­te­ri­ors that match the char­ac­ter of the ex­te­rior.

Fed­er­a­tion homes are rarely stripped of their dec­o­ra­tive cor­nices and ceil­ings these days and mod­ern mono­liths don’t of­ten have tim­ber kitchens and shag-pile rugs.

That said, Vera Keshishian of La Belle Abode wasn’t go­ing to play by the rules when she pur­chased a Cal­i­for­nian bun­ga­low with her car­pen­ter/builder hus­band, Meran. The build­ing did look the worse for wear, but the cou­ple was in­tent on turn­ing it into a Hamp­tons haven in Ro­seville Chase.

“It was a de­ceased es­tate in orig­i­nal con­di­tion,” Vera says. “The floor­plan was ter­ri­ble and to get to the back­yard you had to go through an exit on the side of the house and walk around to it, but once you got to the back, it had the most beau­ti­ful view.”

Vera, an in­te­rior de­signer and pro­ject man­ager, says she could see the po­ten­tial to have a liv­ing room look­ing out to the bush, but they would have to make sig­nif­i­cant changes to the floor­plan.

Trans­for­ma­tion time

The cou­ple, liv­ing at Mid­dle Cove, were drawn to the prop­erty on a tree-lined street and be­came in­tent on trans­form­ing the tired home, de­spite the mis­giv­ings of oth­ers.

“It had beau­ti­ful high ceil­ings and tra­di­tional cor­nices, and al­though it was in orig­i­nal con­di­tion, I could see it in a dif­fer­ent light,” Vera says. “Even our friends were like, ‘you can’t be se­ri­ous?’, but I saw the po­ten­tial.

“Ev­ery­one thought it would be a huge pro­ject to un­der­take, but when you break it down to lit­tle bits, it’s not that dif­fi­cult.”

A build­ing in­spec­tion con­firmed there was no ma­jor struc­tural dam­age to the prop­erty. The dou­ble-brick home was in good con­di­tion, and al­though Vera would like to change the roof at some point for aes­thetic rea­sons, there was no struc­tural need.

Given the green light to tackle the in­te­ri­ors, Vera headed straight for the kitchen, with plans for a Shaker-style conversion.

This look is char­ac­terised by tim­ber cup­boards with panelling painted in shades of soft greens, off whites, greys or even pale pinks. Han­dles are small and tra­di­tional, of­ten

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