Creating Space In Your Interior

Kitchen Design by Amanda Richmond

Kitchen Design by Amanda Richmond

Creating space is the holy grail of renovations, particularly when redesigning an older style or heritage home.  Older homes tend to have much smaller rooms, each with a designated purpose, whereas the modern style is to have large, open, multi-function spaces such as an open plan kitchen, dining, family room. Interior Designer, Amanda Richmond shares some of her top tips for creating space.  Amanda is the leading Designer for Balance Architecture + Interior Design.

Create a view
Create a view from room to room, overlooking a lower level from an upper level or create the classic view, looking outside to an exterior space from your interior. Create surprising juxtapositions, reveal views and bring light into the interior.
Use Colour
Colour helps to visually move between spaces – remember that darker colours advance, lighter colours retract. Find richness in plain materials and contrast textiles against leather.
Define spaces
With the use of contrasting materials you can better define spaces, such as darker skirtings, architraves and flooring against lighter coloured walls.
 Define individual spaces
A clever way to achieve this is to use half height partitions, such as for a toilet within a large bathroom.

Create fluidity
A fluid movement through the space helps create the illusion of  more space. This can be achieved by contrasting open plan spaces with overlapping wall planes or structural members. Some great examples are:
A glass balustrade staircase intersecting a void
A contrasting colour or material for ceiling rafters
Glass screens animated by the movement of water

With years of experience at renovating heritage buildings Amanda Richmond offers a unique perspective on the creation of space.  Contact Amanda directly to discuss how she can help you with your next renovation project.

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Resolve Building Issues Before You Renovate

Ivanhoe House

Prevention is always better than cure! Identifying and resolving underlining building issues prior to decorating or renovating will save you time and money. So don’t jump into those renovations without checking out the health of your building first.  Interior Designer Amanda Richmond and Architect Andrew Fedorowicz from Balance Architecture + Interior Design say the things to look for are –

• Roofs & Walls out of alignment
• Ceiling discoloration suggesting roof leaks
• Damp patches
• Sudden leaks
• Bouncing floors
• Bulging, peeling plasterwork
• Unexplained cracking
• Persistent musky smell

Possible causes may be –
Blocked gutters, rising damp, defective internal plumbing fittings & fixtures, cracked roofing tiles, rusted gutters, inadequate internal box gutters, no roof overflow considerations, termite infestation, defective floor stumps/foundations, tree roots.

If you are a handy man or woman or have a handy man or woman friend or family member you can check out some of these issues fairly easily and resolve them.  However, most of these issues will require the services of a professional plumber or builder and, in the case of termites, a pest control company.  It is important to have any of these issues dealt with properly and resolved before you spend money on renovating or decorating your home as over time those problems will only get worse and ruin the effect of the renovations.

Imagine if you have just painted a room a lovely, fresh colour and the next thing you have a major leak from the ceiling down the walls or rising damp coming up the walls and ruining the paintwork?  It is just not worth the risk and heartache.  So please follow this wise advice from experienced, professional renovators Amanda Richmond and Andrew Fedorowicz and make sure you have a healthy building before you renovate!

Tuning Into Your Style For Interior Design

Renovation by Balance Architecture + Interior Design

Renovation by Balance Architecture + Interior Design

How do you define your personal taste when it comes to planning an interior design? If you are considering renovating or redecorating your whole house, bathroom, kitchen, bedrooms or living spaces, or if you have a newly built home, it is important to stamp your own personal style on your interior spaces.

To help define your own personal style, Interior Designer Amanda Richmond, who is incredibly experienced at renovating and redecorating interior spaces, suggests that you list spaces that appeal to you. Source your inspiration from houses you see, individual rooms you visit, shops you like, restaurants that appeal, films that inspire, books on design or photography, magazines on design, modern living or decorating spaces, design blogs and articles as well as fashion trends.

Define why these spaces or places appeal to you, what is evocative or meaningful to you – how did it look, what sounds did you hear, what smells reached you, how did you feel? Take into account the ventilation, light, movement, orientation, shape, space and harmony of the space and how it affected you.

To help you remember and delineate what your personal style is, keep a design file. Store images, fabrics or anything else that reminds you what appeals to you. Another clue to establishing your own personal style is to think about seasonal changes and what appeals to you. Consider colours, temperature, texture, smell. Add these to your design file too.

It is also critical to consider the nature of your location and how it impacts on your decision making process when renovating or building. For example if you live on beach frontage you need to offset the effects of salt water and offshore winds, so your external finishes will be chosen with this in mind as well as landscaping, which would have to be designed to suit to these conditions.  Balance Architecture + Interior Design have a wealth of experience, particularly in renovating heritage homes, so check them out for further inspiration.

Developing an Interior Redecoration or Renovation Game Plan

Renovated Living Room

Renovated Living Room – Essendon House

In our last blog we discussed some tips before you begin a renovation or redecoration of your home or a space within the home. Taking into account the purpose of the space and how it would best work for you and your family, comfort, heating, cooling, lighting, power outlets and storage space you should now have drawn up a wish list. Looking at this list what are the dominate issues and what are the priorities?

If it is an older style home or even a newer home will new technical systems resolve your issues, such as solar power, air-conditioning, LED lighting, a security alarm system?  Now is the time to make decisions about how much change is required to meet your desired outcomes.  Do you need to reorganise, redecorate or is a total renovation required? Once you have answered these questions it is time to prepare a budget, based on the decisions made.  Remember to make allowances for the length of time needed to complete the work and be aware that this may change the priority of items in your task list.

Once you have prepared your Game Plan for the redecoration or renovation of your home your next decision will be whether you will undertake the redecorating or renovating yourself or whether you will bring in a professional Interior Designer.  This will depend on budgetary restraints, your abilities and time restraints. If your budget allows, a professional interior design is nearly always better quality and will have some very unique touches. It also saves you a heap of time.  The tips from last week and this week’s blogs are provided by award winning Interior Designer Amanda Richmond from Balance Architecture + Interior Design.