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When Les Lynch and Leonie Boyd decided to build their family home in Port Fairy, they knew they wanted something far different to a conventional house. Thankfully, their builder Tom Taylor appreciated their preference for the unique and also wanted to experiment with ideas that were outside of the box.
There was no architect involved in this distinctive build, with the concept developed between Tom and the couple. “The objective of the build was to create a property unique to the area, a one-off which still encompasses great, solar passive design to optimise performance,” says Tom.
The result is a striking design that oozes character and street appeal. Sitting on the north-eastern edge of the town, the three-bedroom house has southern elevation to the roadside, allowing maximum exposure to the northerly aspects while allowing a unique, private frontage to the street. The exterior is a combination of interlocking panel metal cladding and Gaudi La Paloma bricks, steel window and door frames, Blackbutt decking and splashes of a striking burnt orange hue painted on the eaves. “This was super out of the box and added a real pop of colour, which just really worked with the overall feel of the home,” says Leonie. “The orange was something that took a bit of experimenting to get right. Choosing the perfect orange for a space that went almost all the way around the home was important, as this was a statement and a bit different.”
The cabinetry was custom made, with a combination of timber and stone used in multiple areas. “We mixed different materials to bring in the different colour schemes of black, white and timber, which really tied these together as a feature,” says Leonie. To further unite the colour scheme, black fixtures and fittings were used in the bathrooms, from the taps and shower heads to the vanities and bath. The brief for the kitchen was to create something spacious with a sense of luxury. “We also wanted to bring the outside in and play with different textures inside, which is why we looked at putting in the brick feature wall,” says Leonie.
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Tom says he loved having the ability to wear multiple hats and be involved in the design phase with Les and Leonie. “I have an interest in thermal performance (6-star energy ratings) and both strive and enjoy working with the client to get the best possible outcome for their home,” he says. “It is highly rewarding seeing a great result, knowing you have guided your client from the initial concept that we developed together, through to completion and to see those ideas come to fruition.”
Another standout feature of the build is the fact that all the trades involved were based in Port Fairy and the surrounding region. “Our business supports other local trades and services, as we have a trust in the product and faith in the result,” says Tom. “It means supporting the area that you live in. We generate a good level of our work from positive local referral and both appreciate and take pride in that.” Indeed, Les and Leonie describe the experience as holistic. “From throwing around ideas, to thinking and talking about the design, to planning where rooms would go, what materials would be used, it was all just easy,” says Leonie. “Tom understood we were thinking outside the box and he was thinking outside of the box with us. We didn’t have to go out talking to other people and try and build relationships with them and try and get them to understand what we wanted in each stage, because we only had to deal with one person. This build was probably also quite different from what most builds would usually be as we got to watch it grow every day (the couple and their daughter Jemmah lived close to the block). We were able to look over each stage from the slab, to frames, to plaster, to paint to fi t out. People say building is stressful, but this was all just easy.”