The first time I watched an iMovie made by my then seven year old daughter, I was amazed. How can a seven year old make a trailer for a movie? I wanted her to make me one for Bella Vie Interiors.
So this morning, after months of watching her iMovies about pugs, cats and unicorns, I suggested she make one about Bella Vie Interiors. I showed her my website and answered a few questions and away she went. She even knew the client names for each project. Amazing what she's remembered from conversations about my work.
I think I might hire her... what do you think?
A unique project with pared back, industrial interiors and finishes that look like they belong on a building site make a statement in this Canberra AirBNB.
Builders D3 Projects approached Bella Vie Interiors to design and document the industrial style kitchens, bathrooms and bedroom storage for this very unique property in Canberra. The client's brief was to create a pared back, industrial interior with a finishes that looked raw and unfinished.
The client was very hands on with the selection of fixtures and fittings and had a clear vision from the outset. Bella Vie Interiors designed custom joinery from black ply and timber with simple drilled holes to the fronts instead of handles. The raw timber look tile makes a dramatic statement in the wet areas. Brace board, corrugated iron and concrete are used extensively throughout to create the desired aged, industrial aesthetic.
The builders worked very closely with the client to ensure every detail met their vision to create a unique interior to suit their needs.
See more of this unique project here.
Credits: Images by Nathan Lanham Photography; Builder: D3 Projects
A minimalist interior designed by Bella Vie Interiors, complements the crisp, clean exterior of this new Passive house in Googong.
Situated in the self-contained township of Googong, this Passive House makes a bold statement with its monochromatic colour scheme and a skillion roof soaring high into the sky. Its glazed facade designed to capture the winter sun, warming highly polished concrete floors and basking the living areas with sunlight during the cooler months.
Triple glazed windows with zipscreen external shade blinds, allow seamless integration between indoors and outdoors, providing privacy, blocking UV rays and keeping insects out.
Bella Vie Interiors created a minimalist interior scheme to suit the client's brief for a home with clean lines and a neutral colour palette.
A black linear custom pendant hangs over a simple concrete kitchen island. Dark, minimalist bathrooms create a dramatic contrast to the crisp white walls throughout the living areas and bedrooms.
With the building works completed, the client can now move into a new home, enjoying the benefits of living in a Passive House as Winter approaches.
See more of this new build project here.
Credits: Images by Nathan Lanham Photography; Architect: Hugh Gordon Architects; Builder: D3 Projects
A monochromatic colour palette with a strong graphic element, has transformed this 60's Canberra House into a stylish yet relaxed retreat.
The owners moved into this partially renovated 60’s house in 2014 and quickly set about having plans drawn up to add a master suite to the home's existing three-bedrooms. With a builder engaged and facing the daunting prospect of making the finishes selections, they sought professional guidance and called in Interior Designers, Bella Vie Interiors.
By focusing on clean lines and quality materials, Bella Vie Interiors transformed a much loved but out of date house in Canberra into a fresh and beautiful retreat.
Following on from Part 1 we share how a 30 year old extension was given a makeover to totally transform its dated peach coloured interior to a fresh and light retreat for its owners.
A neutral palette is balanced with black accents and American walnut timber in a contemporary interior design by Bella Vie Interiors.
The owners of this new build home in rural Goulburn purchased the property with a frame, roof and set of plans that didn’t really meet the needs of their family or lifestyle. They needed a design that suited the rigours of day-to-day life with children, with an aesthetic and practicality to cater for their frequent large-scale entertaining. To help them with their project they approached Canberra interior design firm Bella Vie Interiors.
Style and Function
To meet the owners’ needs, the original floor plan was modified to accommodate six bedrooms, a scullery, activities room and three-car garage. The owners’ knew that they wanted a brick exterior, neutral colour scheme and contemporary style; outside of this the interior design was completely in the hands of interior designer, Lisa Alward. The owner’s style leans towards a more traditional style with timber and square, masculine elements. This was balanced by turning on the glamour in the formal entertaining rooms, and incorporating wallpaper and feature pendants throughout the house.
The first site visit revealed just how vast this project really was and exposed its shortcomings. The key challenges were apparent even at frame up stage with a lack of light in the central kitchen that was overshadowed by the outdoor alfresco and just how large the proportions of the rooms were. This large house needed to feel homely and spacious and not austere and unwelcoming.
The design was approached with two clear outcomes; firstly to create comfort and practicality within the spaces frequently used by the family, and secondly to add glamour, elegance and luxury to the spaces used by guests. Custom designed joinery and careful consideration to finishes selections throughout, allowed the interior design to remain cohesive through both these zones.
The Key Elements
An elegant entry into the house with a striking central black feature pendant and an adjoining study, with custom joinery rich in American walnut timber and dark plantation shutters, reveal a glimpse of what lies beyond. Beautiful layers of lighting lead guests through to the formal lounge and dining room where the proportions of this home become apparent.
A bespoke 6.2 metre dining table designed to seat 24 people runs parallel to a 4.5 metre American walnut bar. A bronzed mirrored splashback, copper coloured sink, black tapware and Caesarstone ‘Emperadoro’ bench top are combined with graphic wallpaper, statement pendants and 15 metres of floor to ceiling curtains to set the scene for a 70’s inspired entertaining area.
By contrast, the kitchen is white, light and bright with Dulux ‘vivid white’ and ‘beige royal’ accented by Caesarstone ‘Calacutta Nuvo’ and ‘Linen’ benchtops. Meile appliances, integrated fridges and extensive storage cater for entertaining and the large scullery provides a place to clean up the mess, whilst the kitchen remains pristine and on show.
The wet areas have not been immune to the segregation of zoning with the powder room and master en-suite elegantly tiled walls offset with polyurethane joinery, 80mm bench tops, black tap ware and feature pendants. Three additional bathrooms feature a more pared back style with soft grey tiles, functional lighting and practical, family friendly finishes that maintain the overall style of the interior design.
In our next blog post, we'll share the finishing touches and more images from this beautiful project. We'd love to hear your thoughts on this project and love you to share it with your friends.
In our post on Bathroom Trends 2015 we touched on Smart Toilet technology. Today we are sharing other major advancements that are changing the future of toilets, as we know them.
Three years ago I visited Japan and experienced first hand the smart toilet concept. The models found throughout Japan at this stage lacked design appeal and this alone would inhibit their spread throughout the Australian market. Now companies like Roca are producing toilets that have an appealing aesthetic that breaks down this barrier and brings Smart toilet technology to Australia. Comfortable and easy to use, their integrated toiliets offer a unique wellbeing experience with remote control functions, including washing and drying capabilities and a night-light. Bluetooth integration allows you to control toilet features and even play music.
An all-in-one solution
In wall cisterns are becoming increasingly popular in Australian bathrooms. As we move towards bathrooms getting smaller it’s great to see Roca introduce a toilet that integrates the cistern and button seamlessly into the pan itself, eliminating the need to install the cistern and button into the wall. The Meridian In-Tank from Roca uses Soft Air Technology to push water from the in-built cistern into the pan for an effective flush. This innovation in toilet design opens up all sorts of possibilities for improving bathroom design and functionality.
Rimless technology is an innovative toilet pan design with a continuous surface free of edged angles, grooves or gaps that allows for better cleaning and higher hygiene standards. Water enters the pan from a single point flowing smoothly from the upper perimeter in a circular motion toward the lower outlet. A toilet that is easier to clean is a huge plus to us.
These three advances in toilet technology are entering the Australian market and while pricey at the moment, will no doubt gain traction and their prices become more competitive.
If you’re considering renovating your bathroom or a planning a new bathroom, these innovative technologies are definitely worth a look.
Images via Reece and Roca
This week we were invited to Reece to preview some of the exciting new bathroom trends they’ll be introducing following their visit to ISH 2015 bathroom fair. With bathroom design now rating high in importance in Australian homes, the range of products being sought is growing rapidly as we strive to personalise our bathrooms.
Our Top 7 bathroom trends are...
Trend #1 - Fine lines
Fine lines is prevalent in tapware, basins, joinery and storage and this is a trend that’s growing in strength. Possibly our favourite is Laufen’s SaphirKeramik with its super slim edges and elegant design. Their newest designs incorporate integrated shelving into the basin to enhance its aesthetic and practical appeal.
Trend #2 - Muted tones
We love the muted colour palette being introduced in bathrooms as a swing away from the bold splashes of colour of recent years. Australian bathrooms are increasingly featuring natural and muted tones in tiles and timber so it will be interesting to see if our nation embraces the muted palette for basins and shower trays.
Trend #3 - Metallics
Urban-luxe is a trend growing in popularity across interiors and fashion with copper enjoying its time in the spotlight. A new spectrum of metallics was previewed ranging from golds, brass, nickel and chrome and incorporating finishes including brushed, tumbled and polished. So whether you want to create an urban-luxe or high-glam bathroom there is a colour and finish to suit your style.
Trend #4 – Dial Taps
A strong trend is Europe is a shift away from the single mixer to two tap dials or controls. The Pol range from Sussex available from Reece is a perfect example displaying smooth curves and contemporary style. Incorporate this design with your favourite metallic colour for a completely individual look.
Trend #5 – Smart Toilets
A trend popular in the Japanese market for years, we’re finally starting to see this take off here. Smart, multi-functional, integrated toilets feature a bidet function and come with intelligent customisable features such as remote control washing and drying functions, a night light and a user detection sensor. This is real luxury!
Trend #6 – Comfort meets Technology
Smart bathrooms incorporate Bluetooth technology enabling you to talk on the phone while you shower. Fully customisable showers automatically adjust water temperature and pressure and even colour to suit individual programmes. Every member of the family can enjoy their perfect shower at the push of a button.
Trend #7 – Customisable Concepts
Personalise your space with mix and match vanities, basins, toilets, storage and shower trays to suit your unique needs. Some companies even feature products that can be tailored in size to suit designers’ needs for individuality. We should start see more size options to suit more applications here in the Australian market.
If you're redesigning your existing bathroom or designing a new bathroom consider incorporating these bathroom trends previewed at ISH 2015 bathroom fair to personalise your space.
Images via Reece, Pinterest, Stylepark
It’s been far too long between blog posts so today I’m catching up on some rather overdue sharing with a kitchen, bathroom and laundry completed earlier this year.
Recently one of my former clients, photographer Rowanne Bowman, spent some time photographing one of my completed projects. Working on this traditional-style kitchen, bathroom and laundry was a wonderful opportunity to collaborate with a client with a definite style in mind, and was a chance to transform three lack-lustre rooms into rooms with style and personality.
In this renovation the laundry between the kitchen and bathroom was removed and space given to each of these areas to create a more functional home for the client. The laundry was incorporated into the bathroom providing valuable storage and a feature butler’s sink. The bathroom standout is undoubtedly the beautiful floor tiling featuring greens, cream and burgundy. A luxurious bath sits along side a window to the rear garden allowing light and greenery to enhance the room.
The new kitchen opens into living areas featuring bold colour choices with traditional storage and display cabinetry and my role was to design a kitchen that matched this style and provided the client with the dream kitchen she desired. V-groove paneled doors, a large corner pantry, silestone bench tops and glass display cupboards were all features included to deliver the required outcome. The bold burgundy subway tiles and cornices are a standout and the final finishing touch is a contemporary timber tile which adds warm and and delivers a durable, practical floor for the space.
The client was very hands-on making all the selections for fixtures and fittings and I was on hand to bring her vision to life by designing a practical layout that took into account her requirements now and into the future.
With so many requests for contemporary kitchens and bathrooms, it was great to be involved with a project that offers diversity and broadens my portfolio. While a traditional style may not be something you’d incorporate into your own home, you must agree that seeing someone bring his or her vision to life is certainly heart-warming.
Interior Designers are influencing bathroom design and transforming bathrooms into retreats that offer relaxation, luxury and style in both new homes and renovations. With people now spending more time in bathrooms and a list of ‘must haves’ including glamorous freestanding baths, large vanities, creative lighting and luxurious double showers, getting your bathroom design right is now more important than ever.
Bathrooms are now among the top priorities when building a new house or renovating an existing home, with many homes now having multiple bathrooms and ensuites. Designing and selecting fixtures and finishes for this small area is crucial when it comes to planning what should be included in your bathroom to ensure it meets your needs and is aesthetically consistent with the rest of your home. This is where an interior designer can simplify the process of creating your new bathroom.
3 Top Tips for Planning your perfect bathroom…
Time and Budget
Your budget is probably the most important factor when planning your new bathroom. With so many different trades required when completing a bathroom it’s easy for the project cost to creep up. An experienced designer will know what you will be able to include and the things you may need to reevaluate. They can guide you with layout and selection of fixtures and fittings to keep the cost of your new bathroom within budget.
Knowing when you need to have your project completed can determine some of your selections. It could be that the imported designer tiles you love have a lead-time of 8-12 weeks or you’d like to time the project to coincide with a trip away to minimise the disruption to your household.
Family and Lifestyle
When planning your bathroom renovation or new bathroom it's important to consider inclusions to meet the needs of your family and lifestyle and future considerations. The hotel style bathroom you have your heart set on may need some modifications to be practical for you and your lifestyle. Consideration should be given for the number and ages of people using the bathroom, activities that will take place in the bathroom and any special features that need to be included. Inclusions in modern bathrooms can include such things as heated floors and towel ladders, frameless or semi frameless glass, shower niches, laundry baskets all designed to enhance your lifestyle.
Design and Style
Planning your bathroom layout can be easier and more cost effective if you are simply updating the fixtures and finishes to suit existing plumbing or electrical. You may want to undertake structural changes to improve your design? Either way, knowing what you like/dislike about your current bathroom will assist with the new design. Think about the items you need to store in your new bathroom and whether you prefer drawers, open shelving or cupboards. Custom joinery can enhance both the look and functionality of your bathroom. Another vitally important aspect of a bathroom is the lighting and getting the right mix of ambient and task lighting will enhance your everyday experience in your new bathroom.
Once the layout is established, selecting the fixtures, finishes and lighting to create your dream bathroom is all that is left. While some people know they style of bathroom they desire and this is the fun part, others are happy to be guided by a professional to achieve their dream bathroom.
Designer Advice… Creating a bathroom that has that ‘wow’ factor and will meet your expectations is challenging; take the time and seek advice. If full service interior design is out of your budget and you feel confident with making the selections of fixtures and fittings, engaging an Interior Designer to create a cohesive design concept allows you to shop around and secure ‘like for like’ trade quotes with your own set of drawings.
Click here for further information on bathroom design packages.
Images via Bekdon Richards, Bisazza and Pinterest.
Founder and Interior Designer - Bella Vie Interiors.