Set in the backdrop of a darling Brisbane suburb, the Clayfield House sits among a number of homes built in the early 20th century. This renovation and extension by Alexandra Buchanan Architecture saw the home fitted with a new garden outlook and sleek contemporary kitchen while still holding onto its historic quirks that made it unique. The spaces are well ordered and it feels like the perfect space to relax at the end of the day.
It’s a family home to six, with most of the private areas and bedrooms at street level, the upper story is given improved connections between spaces.
Toward the front entrance is the more formal living room featuring a simple white and wooden canvas typical of Scandinavian-inspired interiors. Dark furniture packs a punch with a sumptuous collection of colors and rich textures.
The existing bones of the home were in good shape, with some of the beautiful elements of a Queenslander home, like this fireplace. The personality of the home owners shines through with paintings, making a museum of contemporary art.
“Passive design solutions were employed that enhance the methods of the existing house. Breezeways and cross ventilation are incorporated, orientation and shading of glazed panels and a key design driver of the garden room was its ability to provide flexibility to manage heat gain & sun angles with simple operable screens and extruded eaves.” — Alexandra Buchanan Architecture
“The construction references the historic methods of the Queenslander with use of timber frame and expressed structure,” describe the team behind the project. The historic character of the house is celebrated wherever it fits well, seeing the delicate woodwork in the window frames while maintaining a sleek contemporary look with the choice of furniture in this bedroom.
The creation of this window box shared living room space makes perfect sense. A built in sofa bench is perfect for sharing family time, while being able to sweep open the windows for indoor-outdoor living.
As the doors open out onto an outdoor room, elevated decking is created with dark steel and white painted timber. The renovation provides new areas for the family, and particular attention was paid to maintaining spatial diversity. Both small and large groups can find the right spot.
There were some challenges with the project; “negotiating level changes between inside and out, proximity and overlooking of neighboring dwellings and catering to the needs of all of the family members” proved creative thinking.
The use of gentle sloping steps provides a suitable movement of space between each story. You could consider some of the garden zones to feel like an outdoor room.
One of the things that’s gorgeous about the house is that it’s full of character. Simple nods to architectural detailing, a solid choice of materials and the balance with contemporary furniture makes this a beautiful space for all of the family.