After 30 years of living in their family home, the owners of this colonial style property sought to modernise it throughout with an open-plan layout and a fresh interior design.
Taking the First Step
When the time came for a change, homeowners Brett and Angela couldn’t bear the thought of leaving their family home, which they’d built 30 years ago. So instead, they decided to renovate.
They envisioned upgrading the upstairs bathroom, expanding the downstairs powder room into a full bathroom, and completely modernising the main living areas – all while maintaining their home’s charm. To get started, Brett and Angela contacted local Renovation Consultants Johannes Jacobs (JJ) and Ant Bayne, who assisted them throughout the entire process.
Creating the Concept
During their initial consultation with JJ, the homeowners discussed their renovation goals in-depth and explored opportunities to transform their home. Many of the changes that Brett and Angela wanted to make involved significant structural alterations, so the duo brought in an architect from RM Design to draw up feasible concept designs.
As the 80s home was built with a colonial style, the couple wanted to enhance its character with a Hamptons-style makeover. This specific look was thoughtfully integrated with the home’s modern redesign, which was created by a designer from Cat Clare Designs.
After reviewing the completed designs with the couple, JJ assessed the budget for the complete two-storey renovation in two stages, which came in at $310,000. Brett and Angela approved the quote and were happy to move forward. The team managed to bring the final cost in at $323,000. A few minor variations increased the overall costs.
JJ enlisted a team of experts from his trusted network to undertake the complex full home renovation. Well-equipped to execute the necessary structural changes, the team dedicated themselves to the project, which was carried out in two phases.
An early concern was of accessing the home. Not only was it situated at the end of a long, narrow driveway, but there was also a new home being built next door. These circumstances made it challenging to pick up and deliver materials. But JJ avoided any bumps by working closely with the building team next door to coordinate the use of the driveway.
Phase one required the downstairs living level to be completely guttered to accommodate the following: a larger closet, new carpeting in the spare room, widening and reconfiguring the kitchen, removing a hallway wall and installing a mid-floor structural steel beam to open up the lounge area, converting a cupboard into a new downstairs family bathroom — yes you read that correctly — and improving the flow between entrance, lounge and kitchen.
It was virtually impossible to get the mid floor structural beams into the lower floor area. But the builders sought out a solution using their expertise which involved removing a window and opening up a wall to accommodate the new beams. Brett and Angela choose to double glaze the new window upon re-installation.
As for the new interiors, the design focused on modernising the home while retaining its charm, which involved continuing the building’s rimu flooring and the extensive detailing on existing architraves and door trims. The builders used moulds to recreate the detailing throughout the renovated spaces, the results of which match the preceding work perfectly. But as for the rimu flooring, extending the floorboards wasn’t so easily achieved...
The existing flooring was over 30 years old, didn’t match the standard sizes of modern flooring, and was no longer readily available. But after thorough research, JJ’s team managed to track down the original supplier, enabling them to create a flawless extension of the rimu floorboards.
The Complex Renovation Continues
The bathrooms were no simple task either. Following Brett and Angela’s vision, the upstairs bathroom’s ceiling was changed from flat to pitched, and the downstairs powder room was combined with its adjacent storage space to create a larger bathroom. Both upgrades required intensive structural work and received full waterproofing, tiling, and new fixtures.
It was near impossible to get the upstairs bathroom’s new ceiling beams into the second floor. But the builders devised a solution that involved removing a window and opening up a wall to accommodate the new beams. Brett and Angela took this opportunity to have the bathroom’s windows upgraded with double-glazed replacements.
While the homeowners moved out of their home for the early, intensive construction work, they did move back in when the renovation reached a less disruptive stage. JJ made sure that they felt comfortable while living at home during the build phase. As part of this care, JJ’s team moved the old kitchen into the downstairs garage and made it functional for the homeowners to use while they waited for their new kitchen to be installed.
The Renovated Living Level: An Open-layout with a Fresh Look
The living level is unrecognisable with its spacious and completely freshened up interiors. No longer overpowered by dated wallpaper and fixtures, the interiors now share a modern, Hamptons-style design that perfectly suits the home’s original colonial character.
The kitchen is notably stunning, re-built with shaker cabinetry, stone benchtops, a farmhouse sink, and antique-style hardware. And while the kitchen’s layout has been expanded, its creamy colour palette makes the atmosphere all the more spacious. This elegant style carries into the connecting dining room and lounge, also making the spaces appear larger than they had before.
On the same level, the spare bedroom has been upgraded, the previous hallway to the laundry has been removed, and the laundry itself has been tucked away into a corner near the home’s entrance. This structural change has massively opened up the living level, which appears much differently than its original build.
Creating usable areas from underutilised spaces was the hallmark of this project. But of all the structural changes, the new internal stairway leading to the downstairs garage along with the luxurious bathroom built from the previous W/C and storage cupboard certainly make the most functional improvements.
Bathrooms Fit for The Hamptons
The significant work on each bathroom resulted in two stunning retreats.
Upstairs, the main bathroom has become bigger, brighter, and exceptionally stylish, featuring a newly pitched ceiling decorated with a Hamptons-style finish. Angela sourced the tapware for the new custom-built shower as she had her heart set on a style that wasn’t readily available locally, and the complete look is beautiful.
Meanwhile, the downstairs bathroom features a striking clawfoot bathtub from Bath & Co., providing a lavish place to relax at the end of a long day. And in addition, the spacious room boasts a large walk-in shower, floating vanity, and toilet – all of which are decorated with hardware matching that of the upstairs bathroom, making for cohesive interiors.
Functional Improvements for Optimal Comfort
While this renovation was primarily focused on creating a more spacious and modern home, it was just as important to make functional improvements for optimal comfortability.
Upgrades included replacing the old wood burner in the lounge with a new gas fireplace and recarpeting throughout. These changes, while subtle, have established a truly welcoming home.
Brett and Angela didn’t have to move to get the home of their dreams. Instead, with the professional assistance of JJ and his team, the couple had their family home transformed into the modern home they wished for.
What JJ and his renovation team accomplished is nothing short of impressive. The 30-year-old property has been entirely renewed with a Hamptons-style design that’s made it a luxuriously dreamy place to live.
Supplies used in this renovation include general building materials from Placemakers, paint from Resene, tapware from Robertson Bathware, tiles from Tile Depot, Rimu flooring from Kauri Mill, and cabinets from Contrast Interiors.