Designing and building your own home is the epitome of the Australian dream. As housing trends shift and affordability comes under pressure, that dream is adapting to a changing market.
Our philosophy of residential design is to take a forward-thinking approach that looks to different markets around the world for inspiration. Many of our clients are incorporating elements of European-style home design, exploring efficiency and making use of multi-purpose rooms to maximise the functionality of each space.
It’s not just about making things ‘smaller’. It’s about saving resources, using space wisely and building a lower maintenance, more environmentally sustainable residence that incorporates everything you need to enjoy your lifestyle, without any unnecessary trappings.
Compact, clever floor plans
European design is often characterised as ‘efficient’ for a practical reason: over 40% of Europe’s residents live in apartments or flats, compared to only 10% in Australia. While we have the luxury of more space here, many Australian residents are embracing minimalist living trends and borrowing design principles that allow them to make the most of the spaces they have.
Efficiency doesn’t have to mean a compromise on form and function. Hidden storage, high ceilings, multi-purpose rooms and strategic use of space all make a compact floorplan work to maximum effect. This type of approach is well-suited for building on a smaller block.
With the floorplan as the foundation, interior design and decorating can maximise your enjoyment of the space. A home that’s designed around your specific lifestyle preferences can include clever additions that make it a delight to live in.
For entertaining and relaxing, multi-functional and modular furniture pieces can be shifted to open up a space or provide extra seating. Lighting can also transform the function of a room—installing multiple options for task, ambient and mood lighting means that you can shift from work mode to leisure mode with the flick of a switch.
Expand on interior spaces by extending up and out: terraces, balconies and rooftop gardens are smaller-footprint options for enjoying the great outdoors and hosting guests. And of course, if the building itself has a reduced footprint, there’s more room left on the block for that backyard you’ve dreamed of.
A culture built on community spaces
In Australia, the idyllic image of a family home includes an expansive entertainer’s patio and a big yard where the kids can run through the sprinkler…and a six-foot fence to keep the neighbours out.
In many European cities, residents spend more of their leisure time in communal spaces. It’s part of the culture to share meals in casual restaurants or dine in courtyards. Dinner parties spill onto city streets as families and friends gather al fresco. Extra green spaces and community playgrounds reduce the need for large blocks and individual yards.
When a neighbourhood is built on these principles, your local community becomes an extension of your home, and your own residence becomes a sanctuary where you retreat for privacy.
By borrowing the best principles from different design aesthetics to shape the way we build modern Australian living spaces, we create unique, intelligent homes that are personal to each client.
Inspired by European living? Contact us to discuss how we can design a space that will re-shape the way you live.