Josie & Tony’s beach house gets a sandy Scandi update.
Price guide*: $45 - $55KSpecifications
*Price guide includes: cabinetry, tops and splash backs. Exclusions: appliances, electrical, and plumbing
...understandably, she wanted to connect the spaces and use a neutral colour palette to reflect the beachside location....
We all know the three commandments of real estate: position position, position. So, if we tell you about a home situated on the esplanade at Sellicks Beach with unobstructed beach views, and direct access to the dunes and the pristine waters beyond, you’re probably now breaking the biblical tenth commandment: thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house.
What you probably wouldn’t covet, however, was Josie and Tony’s old kitchen. Because while it wasn’t really ‘old’ old – and certainly nowhere near as old as many of the kitchens we replace – after 24 years, it was ready for more than a facelift. And with such a brilliant position, an investment in timeless design rendered in durable materials is one that will compound long into the future. Not to mention creating a better lifestyle for Josie and Tony right now.
When Josie and Tony found their dream beach house in 2007, it had been built nine years previously. And, being a beach house and still quite young, they were more intent on spending summer in pursuit of fun rather than spending more money in pursuit of perfection. After 14 years of faithful service – and with 14 years of hard work behind them – Josie and Tony are now ready to make good on some of their intentions.
The kitchen of this two-storey home is located upstairs, adjacent to the lounge and dining areas that command those glorious views out to the gulf, but was separated by the hob. Helping to define the kitchen space is a bulkhead suspended from the roofline.
When Josie started thinking about the renovation, she was lucky enough to get some advice from a friend, Jason Porter of Fleurieu Magazine, who suggested she look at SpaceCraft amongst others. (Thank you, Jason!) As soon as she saw our website, and read our testimonials and eco-friendly philosophy, it immediately resonated with her ideas.
In her own words, what she was looking for was, “a kitchen designer who could offer something a little edgy and unique to my project. After my first meeting with Nathan, I knew I was in good hands”.
Some clients come to us with an open mind and really need guidance to settle on a style but Josie knew exactly what she wanted. First of all, understandably, she wanted to connect the spaces and use a neutral colour palette to reflect the beachside location. The highlights were to include two pivotal materials: American oak and Dekton. If you haven’t heard of Dekton, it’s a remarkable surface material that can be ordered in a range of colours and large-format slabs, is more abrasion-resistant than other engineered products, highly UV-resistant (a real boon for any room that gets a lot of sun) and, also, highly resistant to wine stains (a real boon for anyone we know).
Basically, as Josie said, “my goal was to retain and improve the functionality of a working kitchen but add my own personal style”. That style – which we’ve called ‘sandy Scandi’ as a nod to the clean lines and coastal sensibilities of its Nordic inspiration – includes shadow-line detailing with no handles at hip level and feature handles on just the tall cupboards. She definitely wanted the ease of an open-ended galley layout but also wanted to soften the space with some gentle curves: perhaps on the island-end and rangehood. The wish list also ran to wine storage (no worries because it wouldn’t stain the benchtop), textured tiling, open shelving, an oven tower, freestanding fridge, tall cabinetry to frame the space, oh, and a dining table to match the kitchen in American oak and Dekton.
To anyone else, that might sound intimidatingly prescriptive. But our Nathan always respects someone who knows what they want. Always better to speak up at the beginning then ever risk living with regret later.
...Sandy Scandi scenario with a soft beachy palette of white, grey and oak....
Nathan started thinking through the sandy Scandi scenario with a soft beachy palette of white, grey and oak. Whilst American oak was the first thought colour-wise, he ended up using home-grown Tasmanian oak veneer hung vertically for the feature panelling, as well as for the handles in the kitchen and on the vanities. The long island bench he designed – complete with end-curves – is perfect for entertaining and he made sure to offer extra storage for glassware and platters on the side facing the dining area.
Those curves on the island and the rangehood did give us a couple of headaches, however, as the veneer really didn’t want to take to the tight angle at first. With Nathan’s usual never-say-die attitude, we did overcome the problem, of course. But the curves weren’t the only curve-ball we fielded.
One of the ‘joys’ of renovating is when you remove all the old fittings and discover a heart-stopper. On this job, we found ducting behind the old cupboards that we hadn’t picked up previously. After some quietly muttered choice words and a bit of judicious head scratching, it was solved without additional cost.
The third main problem was with the fabulous Dekton. The specification we had to use was just 4 millimetres thick. And in the large slabs it comes in, that could have been a real issue for both stability and transportation. Fortunately, we had a recommendation to call a relatively new company, Aspex Stone, to be our specialist fabricators and they mercifully took on the challenge. To support the thin layer of Dekton, Aspex used a 32-mm substrate and the kitchen island (in the Kreta finish) was installed perfectly. The tabletop (in Zenith), however, was another matter: the guys from Aspex noticed a hairline crack while installing it, so they just got on with remanufacturing and installing another one. Well played, Aspex.
As part of our service, we removed the old kitchen and organised what we call our A-Team of tradies to get everything working: Tommy the tiler, Andy from McCabe Plumbing and Leith from LJH Electrical. Don’t you love it when a plan comes together?
For completeness, here’s the rest of the shopping list for Josie and Tony’s specifications:
Electrolux 60-cm dark multifunction steam and pyrolytic oven;
Electrolux 90-cm FlexiBridge induction cooktop;
Electrolux 44-L built-in combination microwave oven;
Wilson & Bradley 84-L twin bins mounted with soft-close doors;
Franke Atlas pull-out tap;
Franke box centre double-bowl sink;
Splashback in Tile Cloud’s white ‘Albert Park’ subway tiles.
As the sun sets on the gulf and another big renovation, Josie and Tony can look forward to spending all next summer down at Sellicks, entertaining and relaxing in their new kitchen. When we asked Josie to sum things up, she answered, “I couldn’t be happier with the result: Nathan and his team exceeded my expectations. You made the process enjoyable from beginning to end. The staff and installers working on my project were all friendly and professional. And the space has changed from a being an uninspiring, out-of-date kitchen to a stylish, open-plan culinary and entertaining experience. SpaceCraft nailed it.”