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April 4, 2012, 2:49 pm Home Beautiful, Yahoo!7
Vibrant pattern meets classic Hamptons style to form Hayley and Lance’s dream Queensland family home.
Like all good epics, our story starts with a couple in love: Hayley, an interior designer and decorator, and Lance, a surveyor, both enamoured with American style. Their passion fuelled by magazines, blogs and films, they head to the Land of Opportunity with deep, empty suitcases. Now picture them hobbling through US airports headed back to Brisbane with kids in tow, and carry-on bags stuffed to the brim with pendant lights, wall sconces, door handles, fabrics and taps. Not once, but three times. “It was amazing we got away with it – we made the children carry the oversized baggage through check-in, and smiled a lot!” says Hayley.
The couple’s three-level Brisbane home is proof the adventures were worth it. Hamptons-style joinery, tall timber windows, polished nickle pendant lights in the kitchen and vibrant textiles from Santa Barbara create the casual, classic American coastal vibe they fell for. “It fits so well into a Queensland lifestyle,” says Hayley, co-director of Porchlight Interiors. “Putting effort into the little details not only creates character but seems to age it, which is great for a new house. I think it’s important to draw on things that have been. It reminds us of who we are and makes us feel comfortable.”
In trying to achieve warmth in the home, they also turned their back on contemporary open-plan layouts, opting for a series of smaller living spaces. “I like to feel that there’s a mood in each room,” says Hayley.
“As much as there’s a theme that’s carried through the whole house, there’s something different on offer in each space,” explains Hayley. It was a practical solution for a lively family, adds Lance, who designed the layout. “We have three children of different ages and interests and we’re fairly social. In summer, there could be a pool party happening out the back, a movie night in the cinema and a grown-up gathering in the living room. We can all do that without being in each others’ space.”
The hub where everyone always ends up is naturally the kitchen, in this case, kitted out with a massive bistro-style island bench so everyone gets a seat. “Lance has always had a love of small intimate restaurants, sitting by a bar for dinner, so we decided to incorporate that idea into our design,” says Hayley. “It has worked really well socially, allowing me to interact with family and friends while I’m cooking. It’s also changed the way we work as a family, bringing us together for meals there every night and making it a very special time.”
In the spirit of a good drama, there’s no happily-ever-after sign-off; the family are already plotting their next project. And yes, their next scouting mission is to the US, with empty bags and big smiles.
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