Art deco home renovation/extension suggestions needed!

November 18, 2017
last modified: November 22, 2017

We're planning a renovation/extension of our very original clinker brick home. We've got a pretty long wishlist which may not be feasible, so I'd love your brains for this one to see if there is a way!

We could always go up (more expense, could compromise the facade, but would make layout easier) but I want to see if we can keep to one level.

· The house has a north-facing rear so the full backyard and rear of the house gets great light throughout the day, we want to capitalise on this.

· The front rooms (master bedroom, lounge, dining, hallway) have beautiful period details we’d like to keep untouched and retain in their current function - we use these rooms a lot, like the cosiness of these rooms and want to enjoy the period details and keep relatively true to the integrity of the house & era. (an easy layout option that some people take in an effort to add bedrooms to the real estate ad is to turn the original lounge room into a bedroom, we want to avoid this if possible).

· We love our relatively large back yard (15m D x 14m wide). we’re happy to sacrifice some of to extend the house (though don’t want to use more than half).

· We also have a side driveway 2.6m wide that is currently wasted space (not wide enough for modern day cars!) running along the western master bedroom side of the house which I would love to see built out onto (with inset light wells/breezeway as needed). The other side of the house is 1.1m wide.

· We can build to the boundary in our municipality for almost half the length of the block (more than we would need).

We need:

• At least 3 bedrooms

• A multi-purpose room - guest room / study etc (out of town relatives & I work mainly from home)

• A central family bathroom (with toilet)

• Small ensuite & WIR (likely where the current 2.6m wide driveway is to the side of the master bedroom).

• An open plan kitchen/meals/living area

We like:

1 Light: light / bright spaces (north-facing rear almost mattered more to me than the house when house hunting!)

2 Flow: good, functional flow of the layout

3 Greenery: good link between outside & indoor spaces - light, green views etc.

• cleverly & efficiently designed spaces, rather than just large spaces

• would rather smaller bedrooms/laundry/bathrooms etc and larger living spaces

• clever, discreet storage

• we have a 4 & 1 year old, we love gardening, cooking, having friends & family over for meals & love being outside.

We want:

• to capitalise on the north facing rear (and even the western boundary space) with our kitchen / dining / living at the rear of the home for good light and flow into the backyard (so ideally no bedrooms at the rear). Don't mind whether in a line across or an L-shape.

• to move the current kitchen which is in the centre of the house and dark (could continue the hallway with integrated storage walls...??!)

• to retain the current living / dining as mentioned above

• to avoid bedrooms and bathrooms directly off living areas.

• A dedicated laundry (small but smartly designed), not a Euro laundry.

Would love but not essential!:

• A small powder room

• A small walk in pantry or at least a floor to ceiling pantry cupboard. Something larger to stuff the dirty dishes after a meal would be amazing!

• Kitchen island without services (sink or stove); a shelf level appliance cupboard;

• An airing cupboard in the laundry to avoid a dryer.

• A side door to outside for the laundry or kitchen (we use veggies etc from the garden a lot).

See! It's a long list, but I wanted to see whether it may be possible!!?!

Would LOVE your suggestions please.

Comments (41)

  • oklouise

    very useful detailed proposal but we need dimensions of the internal spaces and the block, is the garage in the garden in good enough condition to use as living space or can it be sacrificed for new buildings and some external photos (including whole roof shape) will be very useful and do you have any plans for a car space in the front yard, what would you do with the existing garage and what are the floors, walls and roof built out of?

    sarah_eddy6 thanked oklouise
  • oklouise

    my suggestions add about 7.5m beyond the existing back door and adds abut 90sqm of new floor area (depending on options with existing old laundry study and bedroom as it may be more cost effective to demolish everything after the kitchen and build new) plus renovations to existing areas and new deck

    hopefully nothing on your wish list has been left out and the family room and kitchen could be more generous but size depends on distance to the backyard garage

    sarah_eddy6 thanked oklouise
  • sarah_eddy6

    Thanks for your questions oklouise.

    • The existing room dimensions are on the 2nd floorpan attachment. Let me know if you need more.
    • Shed: The garage/shed is a large very old asbestos shed measuring 10.6mD x 5mW, it's set 4.5m from the current back wall of the house . It does have a toilet in top right corner against the back fence. Given this I'm slightly tempted to turn this also into a multi-purpose space - studio / bungalow / simple guest studio. These seem to do quite well for re-sale in our area also. Though in thinking it through, if we can't have both, I'd possibly rather that extra space within the main house, particularly with young children. We would also want to 'shrink' the shed so it's about half the current footprint for storage / garden equipment. Whilst it is on a concrete slab, the shed may well need to be pulled down and started again - apart from the asbestos, it has two different rooflines (& leaky galvanised sheeting) but the timber frame may not be in very good condition.
    • Front vehicle parking: Almost half of the front yard is made up of a concrete area/driveway which more than fits 2 cars wide. I have ideas for a new timber top rail fence with sliding gate, possibly changing the driveway to be slightly narrower so the front garden looks prettier from the street, rather than looking half like a carpark! We could potentially add a carport in future but I'm not too fussed, would rather leave it if it looks nicer.
    • As for the existing carport, I would be keen to use this space for ensuite/WIR as it's currently wasted space adjacent to the master bedroom.
    • Roof: I'll attach some photos from the front & back, if you need from above let me know. And to note the bedroom 3/sunroom/laundry/WC that run along the back of the house are all properly under the same roofline (often these are add-ons / lean-to, in our case they're not).
    • I would consider going up however I don't want to have it look ugly from the front, not sure whether going up just on the back half of the house would be an option.
    • Materials: It's a clinker brick veneer, terracotta tile roof, floors are Tasmanian Oak throughout, though the back rooms currently have a vinyl over masonite and possibly timber underneath. Good underfloor access.
    • Ceilings are 3m high, which we'd like to continue in any new sections.
    • Condition: We bought the house a little over 12 months ago as a deceased estate, owned by a man who had built it in 1941 and lived here his whole life. As a builder he'd built the house very solidly (Even concrete path to the clothesline had reinforced steel mesh through it!) and he kept the house incredibly well, so it's surprisingly solid with no damp, creaks etc (only needs rewiring and new guttering) and fortunately he'd not altered the features at all so all the art deco ceilings, picture & plate rails, architraves, fireplaces, doors and art deco knobs have been left untouched. All we've done is rip up the lairy 70s carpet, had the timber floors sanded & polished, painted the interior white (it was a myriad of bright pastels!), painted the dark brown 70s faux wood laminate kitchen cupboards and flamingo pink, yellow & green bathroom tiles as a temporary fix and started planting a garden and boundary plantings for privacy.
    • In time we'll replace the horrible aluminium front windows for a timber sash style more in keeping with the other original windows in the house, replace the gas heater in the loungeroom for a new gas fireplace, have spectacular (!) lighting, new blinds and sheer curtains, front fence & landscaping, new guttering, rewiring, repair/replace the mouldy front porch/roof etc but want to get a better idea of what we're going for the extension before doing this.
    • Interior wise, I want to reference a modern classic look, so to still have skirting and architraves and joinery in the new sections, though simple profile so obviously not trying to replicate the original (which is my pet hate!). Styling wise, I love 1940s design and the modern take on it (black, white, brass, marble, velvet etc used sparingly) and the house has some lovely motifs, an almost moorish profile on the doors, silver tone diamond shaped door plates and black hexagon bakelite door knobs, a front door with a porthole window, and we love the patterned ceilings and cornices.

    I know it sounds like I'm being a bit precious about an WWII era house that many would find quite ugly (even when we change out the front aluminium windows for a timber sash style more in keeping with what would have been there originally!), but we love the character features, the room dimensions, the aspect and block size, the sun-drenched garden and the street / location, and want to also make it a lovely family home. The home has a great 'feel' (lots of people have commented on this), we just want to add some more space and make it a light, bright, happy family home.

  • sarah_eddy6

    And some more photos to add to my huge essays!

    ^ The dog-leg hall kitchen door first, then 2nd bedroom, then bathroom at the end.

  • sarah_eddy6

    Oklouise, I can't believe you knocked this up so quickly!! It certainly has everything we need.

    I've just printed out, will spend some time going through it and will come back with any questions.

    Thank you so very much.

  • sarah_eddy6

    And you've also highlighted that we can do all this without going up which is great. Aside from additional cost and concerns about the facade, it's much easier with small children having everything on one level.

  • PRO
    Dr Retro House Calls

    Wow, your home has some lovely original period features. Are you aware of our "Dr Retro House Call" service which operates in Melbourne and Sydney? It is for people who love the style of their existing home and want to maintain the integrity of the original, and not modernise it all with a contemporary style.

    sarah_eddy6 thanked Dr Retro House Calls
  • siriuskey

    Hi there Sarah, A few more ideas for you,

    I have considered your wishes to keep the Living/Dining/Master features and tried to fit everything within your current foot print to help keep costs down.

    The kids 1 & 4 yr old would most likely like to share at the moment (boys/Girls?) the third bedroom study could become a play room buy changing access to the family area.

    I have had a bit of fun adding a secret door into their rooms (Nik Star)

    Using the garage for the Master Ensuite WIR and possible glass ceiling extention to widen the kitchen/ family plus consideration to push out the back to also enlarge the family living.

    The kitchen at the moment has a table on large lockable wheels which will bring the table up to a better height to work on, you would have comfortable stools for this.

    If you consider extending the kitchen as per my second photo, you could add an island, and if you push out towards the back even more space.

    You mentioned working mostly from home so have included a study desk in the family space

    Your old garage out the back sounds perfect for guest accommodation etc. ceers

    sarah_eddy6 thanked siriuskey
  • siriuskey

    Love all the original features in your house, perhaps your could replace the sofa in the family with a Banquette setting, then you could replace the other table with an island bench. cheers. You can do modern as well.

  • oklouise

    having advised you to consult the professionals i still have some other suggestions retaining more of the original as possible unchanged:

    1. keep the original garage as a workshop, storage area and access through to the new'll always need space for the lawnmower and a mancave and i suggest that, from the description of the rear garage, it's too close to the original house and in too poor condition, to allow the best use of the back yard so it would be best to remove all the asbestos and all or parts of the rear garage and use the old slab and any salvageable parts of the frame to make a barbq, play area or greenhouse covered with lazerlite, and/or corrugated steel and sarlon

    2. one of the most challenging problems for extending an old home is connecting the new roof and, acknowledging that you want to match the ceilings, here's another option with gable either up to the boundary or set back and hip towards north and shallow skillion roof tucked under the original eaves (with lower ceilings for the bathrooms and powder room) and roof sloping towards the courtyard ...this variation is much smaller with only about 75sqm of new floor area and has less demolition of the original double brick walls and uses the existing wide opening through the old study windows as the connection to the extension

  • siriuskey

    Hi Sarah, I have tried a couple of other ideas.

    The dining room as dining /study with double doors opening into the family and living rooms, this will give a lovely large space to entertain friends and family in the colder months especially with the fire going (as you say you can call the dining a bedroom if needed)

    The kids a shared dormitory style bedroom with kids guest and play room with door opening onto alfresco (this is a two bedroom kids area)

    As per my previous photo of the glass ceiling over the kitchen and laundry/ Pantry. You can make it as wide as you want with council permission, think of it like adding a verandah with the slopping roof joining back to the original house with no need to change the existing roof line. This could also be applied to extend the rear of the kitchen/family but instead of glass a gyprock ceiling, this could be done on both walls if preferred.

    You could use the old bricks to build the new shorter wall or use timber cladding and then again use the cladding on the new/old garage guest suite , you could also use the cladding across the back of the kids bedrooms

    The pantry/ laundry can have a second sink and DW in line with the kitchen cupboards with a drying rack/cupboard to the left side.

    The japanese style bathroom is a great space saver, it just has the screen across between it and the toilet.

    I have added an appliance cupboard to the kitchen and have attached a photo cheers

  • sarah_eddy6

    so sorry, I ended up being pulled onto a big work project, so imagine my
    delight to see more amazing feedback. Thank you so much for your time and
    creative energy.

    I will certainly be engaging a professional or two for this, I just wanted to
    have some fresh eyes to broaden my view of it and to be honest, it's really
    helped me clarify my ideas a little further - particularly on the must
    haves/nice to haves and deal breakers, so thanks so much which will make these
    discussions easier and hopefully the outcome better.

    Oklousie…amazing again, seeing how we could potentially fit
    a couple of bathrooms and a bedroom along the western fence line is great and
    the arrangement of the other rooms into zones is great.

    Yes and agree we would likely want to demolish everything
    from the back of the kitchen – the rooms are relatively small, have all sorts
    of gorgeous little cupboards, drawers and nooks built into the walls, but
    little architectural detail we couldn’t
    recycle if we wished to.

    I had been keen to keep the North-western corner more for
    living area because of the beautiful light through the day and the afternoon
    and would be keen to encroach on the garden a little less, with 2 small
    children, we love being outdoors, gardening, entertaining all the mini
    relatives running around etc. BUT I realise something has to give (if we don’t
    do 2nd floor) – we can’t adds lots more rooms, without having to
    give up outdoor space, so it’s proving a great exercise to discuss with my
    husband hypotehticals like ‘big garden vs kids in separate rooms’ etc etc…
    quite fun with a glass of wine!?!

    Dr Retro, thanks for getting in touch, I’ll have a look at
    your site. It’s really important to us to respect the beautiful elements of
    the house, whilst making it a livable, lovely family home. I would be
    devastated if the extension ends up looking like a project home stuck on the
    back of our lovely house. Have you done many war-time homes?

  • sarah_eddy6

    Siriuskey, thanks very much for another angle on how to approach it! Working within the existing roofline wasn't something I'd planned but there's some great ideas in there that could be interesting even if we do extend beyond.

    I love the kitchen glass roof extension idea, I think I'd seen that sort of thing done on London terrace houses - what a great idea to let light in when building to the boundary! The photo is perfect. And other ideas like the shower/bath 'Japanese' style bathroom and even the children sharing a room to have the 2nd as a playroom was something I had considered. My littlest is still too little and cheeky but in time it could be a nice option. And the secret door!!

    And re style, I love the mix of quite striking contemporary pieces, I think it highlights the old features even more. And the steel-framed light fittings, tufted upholstery etc are all in line with the modern classic look I love. And mixing in some amazing pieces such as a contemporary Lindsey Adelman style chandelier or tulip table in our dining room etc.

    I also like the idea of the dining room doubling as the study potentially as it's a beautiful room with the broad windows and I'm pretty compact in my requirements - laptop and notebook is about it. Then it would be a day/night type arrangement.

    The powered appliance cupboard is fantastic, I have a number of quite heavy appliances that we use daily, so they're a permanent fixture on the bench top, but I would love to have them tucked away.

    And finally, the pantry/laundry being open (in fact a continuation of) the kitchen benches is great. I was talking about this with my husband and we both agreed we'd rather have this arrangement than a dark and pokey butler's pantry.

    Thanks again for your wonderful input, it's much appreciated.

  • oklouise

    with very careful planning it could be possible to add an upstairs with dormer and gable end windows with only about an extra 1.5 m (shown with dotted line) added across the back downstairs...this variation shows 3 bedrooms and a bathroom upstairs in the attic space, depending on roof structure but there could be many variations and, if you're ready to not only replace the roof tiles and alter the shape of the roof it could be worth considering to save some garden

    sarah_eddy6 thanked oklouise
  • sarah_eddy6

    Thanks again oklousie, this feels much simpler flow-wise with of course slightly better sized rooms, though I understand the arrangement of the roof would be challenging and there'd be other challenges. Again, great food for thought, thank you!

  • Andy Pat

    I think you need an architect or design professional to carry this out...for example, how to make an addition at the rear fit with the existing roof line, how to let light and air into the middle of the home, where to site the kitchen, materials to use in the cladding, what to do with the garage at the side etc etc. For the new building to work extensive thought and design work needs to be carried out. Think back to the 1980's when many horrible extensions were carried out - 30 years later they are being pulled down. A good architect will suggest things that most people would not think of. Having looked at his reviews, I would suggest Dr Retro as a first port of call, I think he understands these homes better then most.

    sarah_eddy6 thanked Andy Pat
  • siriuskey

    The secret door idea was from a lovely Houzz friend Nikstar who has two little ones similar ages to yours, the youngest like his mum have serious health problems to deal with.

    I try to follow the "Keep it simple St---d" theory and tend to draw in squares and rectangles, not keen on angles and small closed off spaces.

    You supplied an amazing amount of information which is always very helpful, but missed the all important budget, so I guessed that being a young couple with two small children it would ideal to try and get the most bang for your buck so to say by keeping as much as possible within the same footprint and Roof.

    Keeping this in mind I tried to keep the major part of your home with it's beautiful features under the existing roof to save money.

    My thoughts for more space was to consider using Verandah style Roof extention along the side boundary and rear of the house, because of the your lovely high ceilings these would easily fit under the eaves of the existing roof. The glass panels/skylights opening and closed add extra light and feeling of space.

    I have also considered adding attic room/s in what appears to be quite a large roof space. We did this in our last home, a large federation house, we managed to fit 2 bedrooms with a study running along the end of both bedrooms, Each room had a large pivoting Velux window for ventilation and light. Our older kids loved it they even had QB's, the bathroom was at the bottom of the stairs (the stairs were built off site with water proof board and were just slotted in very quickly.

    I'am a big fan of Attic rooms making use of wasted space and not having to change the roof line.

    Have you considered that while the children are young you could use the living room as their bedroom to keep them close and moving them to either attic or rear bedrooms when they are a bit older. Or you might even have enough suitable attic space for your master bedroom, a stair case could be positioned next to the dining room

    If you were to push the kitchen family to the boundary that would give you a beautiful light filled space.

    So just a few more thoughts for your to consider with your builder/designer x

  • newlywed1311

    I'm reading your first post and I had to double check that it wasn't actually my post! I scrolled down to your floor plan and it's almost identical to our Californian Bungalow, except ours is flipped! We also have a bedroom where your rear laundry/toilet is... but everything else is almost identical. Our yard is South facing though, so you've got one up on us there, ha ha.

    We are also looking at renovation - probably an extension on the back (after knocking off the back built in area) to include two bedrooms kitchen/dining, laundry and second bathroom. We will also use old kitchen as part of hallway, with storage down the sides.

    Unfortunately, I can't seem to attach a picture of our floor plan but I'm very curious to see how you move forward so I'll be watching this thread.

  • Andy Pat

    Hi newlywed, perhaps start a new thread. Also try taking a photo of your floorplan and upload it that way.

  • newlywed1311

    I do have a thread somewhere, but it's stalled as we try and find a building designer to do our floor plan. Seems there's too much work around in my region. I'll see if I can convert my pdf to a jpg and whether that makes a difference.

  • Andy Pat

    yes please upload, and with as much detail as poss.

  • sarah_eddy6

    Hi Andy Pat, Yes completely agree, we're absolutely going to be using a professional for the design. I just wanted to see what other houzzers with fresh eyes thought to open my mind a bit and in fact this discussion has really helped clarify my thinking for the brief in terms of must haves/like to haves, deal breakers etc so may help the process with the professional even more efficient and effective. I've shortlisted a couple ofbuilding designers who seem very good (and versatile with period homes too).

  • Andy Pat

    Hi Sarah, yes I think you are being very wise..I think you are on track to an excellent solution to what is already a lovely home. If you could share with us the designs that you and the designer come up with I think that may be beneficial. I've said elsewhere that design by committee doesn't work (happy to be proven wrong), but I am happy to cast an eye over what you come up with as I believe I have some skill and knowledge in this area. Usually budget is the biggest issue; saying that it is only part of the picture, not the whole picture. A good designer has a good idea of construction methods and costs, elsewhere I have read about architects designing something that was unworkable for an engineering and fabrication point of view. But that was probably on a challenging block, with a challenging design. Technically your build should not be difficult, to me it is about enhancing the features you have already and updating the house for modern living. The challenge is how to do that!

  • sarah_eddy6

    Newlywed13, it's amazing how many homes of this era followed the identical layout! When we first bought I even looked on real estate sites at similar clinker brick places to see what creative layouts people had done and was amazed how common it was for them to be built in this layout. And now with families lifestyles being a bit different, the challenge is to open them up, better connection with the outdoor (backyard), creating a decent central bathroom, what to do with a well-sized but potentially dark) central kitchen etc.

    Thanks for uploading the floorplan. Wow, it IS identical!! Though we have our toilet in the back corner, adjacent to our laundry, looks like someone may have added yours later to your central bathroom - you definitely have one up on us on THAT front! ; D

  • newlywed1311

    This is our hosue when we bought it 18 months ago. We've since grown the grass and removed a lot of (out of photo) overgrowth. I've started work on the front master bedroom window. we'll be removing all paint and re-doing weather boards. Here's a more recent photo.

  • newlywed1311

    This is our current footprint on our block of land. We are facing slightly North West, so our back end is southerly facing.

  • sarah_eddy6

    Andy Pat, thanks so much for your positivity (I may need to remind myself of that through this process!) Yes I agree about being too democratic can sometimes just make for a watered down design, I'm keen to find someone who's approach I love and then trust them to some extent to make the recommendations. That's why I'm taking my time to find a designer that's going to be the right fit for us and the project. Nevertheless, I'd love to hear comments when we have our design. It'd be a good sanity check, so thanks!

    Yes I'd always wanted to use an architect as I'm pretty passionate about amazing design (actually as a kid I wanted to be one!), but unfortunately I don't think our project scale or budget warrants one. And yes I had heard some similar stories about poor communication and translation and the risk of having a design that's a bit too revolutionary for our home. If I was doing a new build I would love to.

    Thanks again for taking the time to share your thoughts.

  • sarah_eddy6

    Newlywed, it's a really pretty facade (ours certainly needs some love) and your block is a great size! I'd say you'd have much more flexibility in building to the side also if you wished. We're torn as we love our relatively large back garden so don't want to encroach on that too much yet need more house, so something will have to give!

  • sarah_eddy6

    Siriuskey, thanks yet again for your ideas! Yes I love the glass ceiling extension idea, I've seen a bit on Pinterest in my travels last night!

    We do have a huge roof space, so this could be an interesting option that I'll definitely let the designer know we're open to. The way you did it sounds really clever! Were the stairs fixed? Oklouise also mentioned this but by using dormer style windows. Especially as I don't want anything that looks hideous from the street, I've seen some lovely old homes look like they're piggy-backed by an upper level extension.

    And lastly, our children are young, but we're not! (40+!) ; D

    Our budget will be around $350k. Whilst we're not planning to move anytime soon, our challenge will be to create a great home for ourselves, but also not overcapitalise. Our area is getting above average growth off a relatively low base though. We bought the house for quite a good price compared to the market (I think the facade and the array of gelato colours, dingy lighting, and horrible dark red carpets throughout may have scared people away!) and so we knew we'd have to allocate part of our home-buying budget towards updating and extending it.

  • Andy Pat

    Hi Sarah, I think your garden will still be ok with a modest extension, and removal of the (dated, asbestos ridden?) garage/ storage area. I think it will need to go!

  • Andy Pat

    Hi Sarah...I wouldn't stuff around with the roof on your home, it is likely to lead to oven like rooms that are quite awkward and small with windows that don't suit the character of the home. That is done a lot in England where they don't have the space to go out, and perhaps is more in keeping with some of the old cottages with small upstairs rooms they have had for many years. Same with the glass box extensions which are in vogue= hot in our climate and expensive to build. Your budget is good, suggest telling designers and builders $50K less and see what they come up with! I'll shutup now and wait for designs to show up.

  • sarah_eddy6

    Yes, the shed has to go in all it's asbestos glory! We'll replace it with a regular sized garden shed and even consider a garden bungalow in time, but for the moment, it will be easier to remove it and start again.

    Ok, I hadn't considered the heat issue with both of those options. I had noticed a lot of the glass-roof extensions were on London terrace houses!

    Thanks for the tip on the budget, I was thinking of doing that, expecting if they're like any other business to suggest a couple of good-better-best options, so having some wriggle room is a great idea.

    Thanks again!

  • siriuskey

    Hi Sarah, hope you enjoyed your travels last night, that's something we have spent our lives doing plus living in different countries.

    Do look into the attic room/s they are lovely and the Velux skylights very unobtrusive, look great and if positioned correctly take care of venting any hot air, as I mentioned ours were pivoting ones and could be locked open in several positions. I much prefer these to dormer windows, you don't really notice them. The stairs were built off site and lifted into position and installed, built in.

    At the time we did ours a very good friend a builder did the same but just completely opened the whole ceiling space right out towards the gutters into a large bedroom play study area for his daughters, also using Velux windows.

    Glass ceilings, like Velux windows have been around for years, believe me I know, we're both getting older.

    Velux windows can be used as glass ceilings in opening and non opening configurations.

    I would love to see you keep the outdoor loo as well and updating the old shed into a new connecting space to the house, perhaps a glass breezeway. I will have another look at your plan again over the weekend.

    I love your front iron gate as well, auto sliding driveway gates work really well and would really fit with your carport. My brother in law put in a tall timber sliding gate at his last home, lovely cheers

  • siriuskey

    I missed your earlier comment about wanting to be an Architect, me to but I think I ended up with a fantastic life choice anyway.

    I have just found a realestate floor plan of our old house, with a few changes, the "store" was a bedroom with the doorway near the family room, all others in that corner near the sloping wall bathroom have sadly been added. The study which was our formal dining was open between it and the living.

    The attic bedrooms, our QB's used to be under the Velux Skylights so the kids could look at the stars from their beds if they wanted to, they had storage at both ends of their room. The study had a full length desk under that window. cheers

  • oklouise

    despite having posted an idea for rooms above the original house i would always prefer a single level home (even at the cost of some garden) but if a rear extension stepped down to ground level you may be able to squeeze in a loft space within the existing roof profile by extending the roof to a gable at the rear over the extension ..the problem with attempting rooms in a roof space is needing a proportion of the room to exceed legal ceiling height and dormer windows are one way of achieving this to avoid having to raise the roof height OR an upstairs space could be created by lowering the floor of the extension

    sarah_eddy6 thanked oklouise
  • siriuskey

    Hi Sarah, I have been thinking about your house and what I would do if it was mine with family. Being very important to keep the art deco features that the house comes with, I would look to do a single story extention on the rear right hand boundary. Yo mentioned possibly being able to go to the boundary and seeing that you already have a large building on the boundary with a small space between it and the existing house I would look at that as the best way to go. This would give you a lovely garden, a possible courtyard off the laundry/pantry. The original dining can be named dining/study.bedroom, that would make for a 4 bedroom house. The kids bed rooms would have easy access to the powder room during the night.

    A Lovely family/kitchen/dining in the addition, this could have a single flat roof or a traditional hip with exposed rafters. the walls facing into the garden could be made up of louvres/stackers/bifolds/sliding or french. A wide opening beside the dining table means you can be inside and out at the same time with no need for an extra setting.

    You should have view from the front door right through into the rear garden.

    Just some more ideas for you to consider and pass on to your local professional. cheers

    sarah_eddy6 thanked siriuskey
  • PRO
    Pleased to Bijou Design

    what a great thread! Loving everyone's ideas - so great that other people are starting to appreciate their period home :)

    sarah_eddy6 thanked Pleased to Bijou Design
  • bellacatandme

    What a great project and super help from everyone.

    Sarah I agree bedrooms don't have to be vast but under 3m width in the kiddies rooms crosses a negative line for me. Perhaps, if this is your forever home, and the current trend of staying home longer continues your kids might find a really tiny bedroom a bit challenging down the track. Don't forget they'll probably use them for studying and entertaining their friends in too. I'm thinking more about when they're teens really, but time flies, they won't be tiny for long.

    The suggestions have been great, show them all to your chosen architect pointing out the bits you like, the practicality and of course the budget. I'd love to see the plans and the 'after' photo's too. Good luck!

    sarah_eddy6 thanked bellacatandme
  • PRO
    Dean Dyson Architects
    Hi Sarah, my name is Dean from Dean Dyson Architects. Without firstly fully understanding all the parameters and restrictions of your project we are unable to offer correct and useful advice. As a registered architect I am liable for the advice I offer and like to make sure it is accurate. We have a process to help clients in your exact position. We go through a 'Needs and options review meeting proces'.

    This a one hour meeting with us at our studio is designed to help you understand your options and how to achieve them. We will bring you all the facts regarding your block, listen to your needs and ideas, advise you accurately on what you are able to do and tell you whether what you want to do is feasible. This process allows us to provide you with correct reliable advice and with actual achieveable options.

    Our clients have told us that following their meeting with us they instantly knew what was possible and how to achieve it. It saved them time and from having the same repeat conversations of can we even do that?

    If you would like to discuss your project further with me feel free to call our studio or visit our website should you wish to find out more.

    All the best with your project,

    Dean - 0400 039 508
    Email -
    Dean Dyson Architects.
    sarah_eddy6 thanked Dean Dyson Architects
  • newlywed1311

    How's it going Sarah? Any progress on your plans?