Inside Out (Australia)

“Meet in the middle and personalis­e each space”


the layout

Darren: “In an open-plan kitchen/ living/dining area, it’s important to create separate zones. Franky and Josephine already have a large rectangula­r dining table that will work here, but as Josephine isn’t keen on the dated high-back chairs, I say get rid of them and start again with something more modern. A substantia­l piece of art on the blank wall adjacent to the table will introduce a pop of colour – much to Franky’s delight – and also anchor the dining space along with a pendant light above. The couple are struggling with furniture placement in the living area as they don’t want it to be too cluttered, and also need to consider that it’s a transition­al space to other rooms. I would suggest a wipeable three-seater tan leather sofa placed opposite a wall-mounted TV surrounded by built-in storage, which could also serve as overflow space for the kids’ toys. As it would be nice for Franky and Josephine to also be able to look at the garden, I’d suggest an additional upholstere­d ottoman with the flexibilit­y to be used close to the sofa in a chaise longue style or pushed away as separate seating. One must-have is a large rug – no smaller than three metres by two metres – which will visually separate the living space from the kitchen.”

the playroom

Darren: “You need as much storage as humanly possible in a playroom, so I’d start with shelving in the existing niche in the wall, adding big pull-out baskets or drawers for the girls’ toys. This means they can easily access and hopefully put away their things, leaving lots of open floor space for them to play on. Franky and Josephine’s existing modular sofa will also find a new home in here, so I would team that with an upholstere­d coffee table, which could also double as more storage underneath. Another idea might be to attach a big roll of brown paper to a bracket on the wall that the girls could then pull down and draw on. You could paint a wall in blackboard paint, but the playroom is adjacent to the living space so I wouldn’t go crazy in here – save wallpaper, if you fancy that, for their bedrooms – but think of it more as an extension of the living space and introduce colour through their toys rather than with fixed wall coverings. And keep in mind that the girls are going to grow and evolve, so you need the space to be flexible enough to change with that.”

the study

Darren: “Franky has his heart set on a wall of floor-to-ceiling shelving in the study to house his collection of books and music. Although you could get away with some cheaper flat-pack shelving in the playroom, in here, I would build something in. The study is more of an adult space, so you can spend more money knowing it’s not going to get trashed by the kids. You can chew up a lot of your budget building joinery, but here I think it would be money well spent. I’d also install a custom desk for the other side of the room, which would incorporat­e storage in the form of drawers. Franky mentioned a small filing cabinet for this room but a desk with drawers would be softer and create less of a corporate feel. In terms of colours, they could go for white for the joinery but I feel like that would be a bit too safe. Franky and Josephine have chosen a laminate called Whitewashe­d Oak for the powder room that could work in here or they might consider grey, which would work with the greys in both the hard flooring and the carpet. Finally, the study might just end up as the best place for Franky’s mid-century-style teal chair and ottoman, as Josephine isn’t a particular­ly big fan of it!”

the outdoor zones

Nathan: “Josephine isn’t keen on decking in the alfresco area as she thinks it will require too much maintenanc­e. As the space is protected from the hot western sun, it makes a lot of sense to extend the paving in the alfresco area out into the garden. This will provide a generous entertaini­ng area with the addition of a raised garden bed, which could also double as a seat. I’d go for a natural and durable stone such as limestone paving here, as it requires minimal maintenanc­e. When building a garden from scratch, I always start at the boundaries and work in, because the most important part is making the space feel your own. I’d look at putting some evergreen planting in front of the Colorbond fence, perhaps Waterhouse­a floribunda (a pretty robust variety of lilly pilly), Ficus hillii or Viburnum, which will create a green wall and a nice vista from the house. Josephine is also keen on a big lawn for Victoria and Zoe, so to the left of the pavers I’d create a kids’ zone where she can still keep an eye on them from the kitchen. There are many different varieties of grass but a warmseason grass like buffalo would be most suitable here as it’s hard-wearing and doesn’t require too much water in summer.”

“Josephine and Franky have two very different styles, preferred eras and takes on colour ” DARREN PALMER, INTERIOR DESIGNER

 ??  ?? WATCH: For a behindthe-scenes look at Darren and Nathan's consultati­on, go to
WATCH: For a behindthe-scenes look at Darren and Nathan's consultati­on, go to
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 ??  ?? the landscaper Nathan Burkett Landscape architect at Nathan Burkett Design (nathanburk­ett.
the landscaper Nathan Burkett Landscape architect at Nathan Burkett Design (nathanburk­ett.

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