HOME Magazine NZ - - Design Notebook - Ar­chi­tect . . . . . . Belinda Ge­orge Text ............ Suzan­neDale Pho­tog­ra­phy . . Si­mon De­vitt Lo­ca­tion . . . . . . . Mahu­rangi Brief . . . . . . . . . . . . A kitchen at the cen­tre of fam­ily life, placed in the liv­ing room and re­quir­ing the same aes­thet

With no de­mar­ca­tion, this kitchen merges seam­lessly as part of the liv­ing area.

Tell us about the use of re­claimed tim­ber. The kitchen is made from solid river rimu. It was re­cov­ered from the rivers be­tween Dar­gav­ille and Whangarei, cut down more than a cen­tury ago and lost to the bot­tom dur­ing trans­porta­tion to the mill. It’s a sus­tain­able source of na­tive tim­ber and we love it. We first saw it in its raw form on the back of a trailer on its way to the kiln to be dried. We love the his­tory, the sto­ries and the in­cred­i­ble colours that time sub­merged un­der wa­ter have cre­ated. We have an on­go­ing friend­ship with the sup­plier and con­tinue to marvel at this prod­uct. Since it’s your own kitchen, did the de­sign evolve more or­gan­i­cally than if there had been a client to con­sider? Yes, it did evolve or­gan­i­cally, es­pe­cially as my hus­band David White was con­struct­ing it. Build­ing this home was a col­lab­o­ra­tive ef­fort be­tween you both – how did that process work in the kitchen? I guess I dic­tated the ma­te­ri­als and lay­out and David fig­ured out how it all went to­gether. He spe­cialises in in­ter­pret­ing ideas and draw­ings and mak­ing the im­pos­si­ble pos­si­ble. What prompted the de­ci­sion to in­stall an Aga? It’s a com­bi­na­tion of our over­all sus­tain­able en­ergy phi­los­o­phy for the house and nos­tal­gia from win­ters in the UK spent hud­dled around an Aga. We’ve com­bined the wet­back idea for home heat­ing with so­lar hot wa­ter and PVs. Liv­ing ru­rally, we can source fire­wood eas­ily and David cre­ates a lot of off-cuts from his fur­ni­ture mak­ing. It means that you are very aware of your en­ergy con­sump­tion as it’s not just flick­ing a switch to cre­ate heat.

Bench­top ‘Monet Verde’ granite by Granite & Mar­ble So­lu­tions. Cab­i­netry River rimu (NZ Na­tive River­wood) made by David White Fur­ni­ture. Fridge Fisher & Paykel. Aga ‘Ray­burn’ from F L Bone. Hard­ware Blum. Hobbs, elec­tric oven, in­te­grated dish­washer...

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