This home has plenty of space for the family of 6, yet still feels cosy inside with all rooms accessible from the central kitchen hub. Bespoke features are a plenty with the use of cedar and ply in the interior, built in window seats and custom barn slider doors.
Hana and Sam Deavoll, with children Indy (8), Phoenix (6), Sonny (3) and Lucia (1). Hana was the original founder of Build me. and also helps run Sam's building company Deavoll Construction, and online resource My Vegan Child.
To build an energy efficient, bespoke, modern family home. To take advantage of the views to the west and the sun to the north. And to provide an attached 2 bedroom flat for extra income.
A 259m2 family home including 4 bedrooms (one a bunkroom), 3 bathrooms, 2 living areas and a large kitchen with scullery. Also attached is a 42m2, 2 bedroom flat.
We purchased the section in 2014 direct from the Shotover Country developer. We were very lucky not only to get a Shotover section, but to get such an amazing spot with the uninterrupted views to the west. We originally called up too late for the section release but were able to put our names down as back up on a section. 24 hours later we found out that the original purchaser had pulled out so the section was ours.
The flat section sits at the top of a terrace looking out to the western mountains and the airport across the river. It is 800sqm with approx 600sqm of buildable space because of the right of way and a 5m set back from the terrace. Another bonus of our section is that it is only 500m away from a brand new school - Shotover Primary.
We contracted Rob from The Draughting Company to draw up our plans. The end result was a collaboration between us, Rob and the site restrictions. We originally wanted a long east-to-west single story home with 4 bedrooms coming off the hallway. However once our first sketch was put on to the computer we saw this was not going to happen because of the terrace set-back covenant. Hence 2 of the bedrooms got squeezed out and a second story was added for these bedrooms as well as another bathroom. This has since worked out nicely, providing a separate area for guests and a large room that is used as an office.
With only room for 2 bedrooms downstairs, we made the 2nd bedroom into a long bunkroom to bed all 4 of the children until they were old enough to want their own room upstairs (or us!). To make bed time easier we added a large cavity slider to divide the bunkroom into two halves, so that younger children can be put to bed first. Both bedrooms open up into a sunny north facing hallway with big macrocarpa barn sliders for maximum sun. A large media room offsets the need for the children to have their own bedrooms with plenty of space for toys and books.
For the structure of the home, we chose a winged gable look inspired by Designer Rob's own home the Little Black Barn Home. Like Rob, we added cedar to the gable ends but the remainder of the house was cloaked in Alpine Tray cladding (bracken colour).
Inspiration for the ply and dark coloured walls, and wooden floor, came from that warm and casual bach style look - as well as the practicality of 4 sets of messy hands and feet (white walls not a good combo). The rest of the home we got inspiration from Pinterest, Home magazines and of course IKEA - from where we sourced our kitchen and some of our furniture.
The build took place from September 2015 with our crew from Deavoll Construction. The structure is Triboard (from Durapanel), so the initial build happened relatively quickly. 4 months later we moved into the main house and had tenants in the flat. All the bespoke features of the house were finished off over the next year while we were living there, including the feature walls and ceilings, fireplace, window seats, barn sliders and landscaping.
- Blonded ply with negative detail in the bunkroom, stairway and living room ceiling
- Vertical cedar feature wall in the master bedroom, and ceiling in the media room
- Built in window seats in both living rooms
- Airtight construction using triboard and Intello wrap
- R5 ceiling insulation and fully Insulated MAXRaft foundation
- Macrocarpa barn doors with matt black hardware
- Fully tiled bathrooms with wood feature tiles, wooden vanity tops and matt black tapware
- Air to water underfloor heating
- Thermally broken, Low E glazed windows and doors
- Engineered wooden flooring from Haro
- Gas fire with black negative detail ply surround
The build was done on a very tight time scale, so the project had to be well organised from start to finish. Hana project managed all the suppliers and sourced materials while Sam organised all the subcontractors and on site materials.
Originally we aimed to move into the main house by December, but with a delayed start we had to squeeze the family into the 2 bedroom flat for the first month while the main house was finished off, something of a challenge over Xmas and school holidays with 3 kids (then).
The IKEA kitchens were a pain. We had ordered them from overseas along with a few other kitchens for other builds. Unfortunately ours was the last flat pack to put together and there were multiple pieces missing! Sam had to fabricate a few door facings and we also got a local joiner to make a custom rubbish bin too. The end result was worth it though.
The views! We love the feeling of warmth and cosiness that the home has. The home has proved itself to be incredibly warm throughout a cold winter last year, so we are glad we invested in not only underfloor heating but the energy efficient features to keep the heat in. We also love the window seats in both living rooms which are perfect for lounging in the sun and looking out at the mountains.
- Invest in energy efficient features. At a minimum we recommend a fully insulated slab (such as MAXRaft), Low E Glazed windows and extra ceiling insulation (R5).
- Your first home doesn't have to be your dream home. Start with what you can afford. When you build a new home you can usually make some capital gain so that in time you can upgrade to another build closer to your dream home. Each time you learn something and also your equity grows. Our first home was a 2 bedroom 80sqm home that we lived in for almost 5 years before this house and which suited us perfectly at the time. The bank will also lend more on new builds too, so building is the best way to get into a first home!
Designer / Architect: The Habitat Design Co
Builder: Deavoll Construction
Electrician: RLS Electrical
Plumber: Well Connected
Carpet: Hub Design
Airtight Wrap & Roofing Underlay: Proclima
Window & Door Joinery: Design Windows
Photos by Michaela Cox