A word from the owner: Lesley-Anne Houghton
What appealed to you most about this space before the renovation?
We liked the open warehouse nature of the space, and the opportunity to use space differently and create something uniquely ours. Â A great location on the river and right at Southbank, which gives us a terrific lifestyle and community. Â Unusual to find a home of this size in that location â€“ we werenâ€™t ready for apartment living!
What was your vision for the home?
We wanted to be bold and take some risks given we had a unique building to work with, but at the same time I very much wanted it to be a warm and welcoming home. Â We entertain a lot and have a lot of family, and it is important to me that everyone feels comfortable and welcomed into our home. Â I also wanted the spaces to be flexible so that we can change the use and feel of different spaces as our needs change.
How would you describe your personal design aesthetic?
I discovered through this process that texture was really important to me â€“ so we have a lot of raw and recycled materials. Â I love our recycled brick wall as a beautiful feature, which also connects all the levels. We have also used recycled railway sleepers as floorboards; aged copper in the kitchen; brass rods on the stairs; timbers; textured tiles; brass features in the bathrooms. All of these materials are also designed to age as we live in the house, no shining and polishing! Â I have also enjoyed discovering Brisbane artists and artisans â€“ our wallpaper was painted and designed for us (Laura Pascoe); many of our light fittings were designed and handmade for the home; most of our furniture and cabinetry has been built by a brilliant Sunshine Coast cabinetmaker (Brett Thomas, Sunshine State Cabinets). Â Everything is beautiful in its own right, and also has its place as part of the whole.
Your favourite design feature in your home?
The stairs really form a strong central spine to the house, and beautifully connect all the levels. Â I was not sure how the brass rods and mesh would work at first, but they really create a special feature. Our internal courtyard also provides that great connection across all levels, and beautiful greenery and interest with the walled garden. Â Both features reinforce a sense of bold connection that I wanted to create throughout the house.
Your favourite room?
My library! We spent a lot of time designing this space, and it is where I spend most of my time during the day. Â I love being surrounded by books and the special things we have collected on our travels, and having a beautiful view over the courtyard and onto the river. Â There is also a beautiful piece of wall art on the backyard courtyard wall by Brisbane street artist Guido Van Helten, designed especially for us. (We have another wall mural in the garage by Gimiks Born) Â My library is a beautiful creative haven.
Do you think the house will evolve further in time? How?
Yes, I think as our needs change the house will change with us. Â Our daughters both live overseas at the moment, but when they come home they may return to live with us and that will change how we use the spaces. Â I think in the future I may also like to use our rooftop garden for more productive growing of fruit and veggies. Â We also might choose to work from home in the future, so some space will evolve into a home office. Â Right now though I am happy with everything exactly as it is!