Continuing on with our at home blog series, we look to the Daish family who live on Sydney's Northern Beaches. Clyde and Hannah took a run down 1940s beach side farm house and transformed it inside out. We had the pleasure of making some of the interiors for them - from the stair treads to bathroom vanities, custom dining table, kitchen bench top and a number of furniture items. Here we ask this beautiful couple to share about their story and the journey they went on to create their dream home.
An Interview by Mrs White with Clyde and Hannah Daish.
Hannah and Clyde - you have a beautiful family - tell us a bit about yourselves.
We met at C3 church, got married and had 4 beautiful children, Charli, Jesse, Ryder and Carter. Hannah was a teacher at the time and now full time mother, and Clyde a co-founder of construction business HD Projects.
What’s the story behind your Narrabeen home? When did you buy it? What was it like before you renovated it?
We brought the Narrabeen house in 2009 as a deceased estate from the family of the original owner just before Ryder was born. It was an original timber frame, asbestos 1940's farmhouse built before the area was fully subdivided. It looked like it hadn't been touched for 60 years and was pretty rough and ready, but close to the beach which took the pain out of the stretch to buy it. We spent 2 weeks tidying it up before moving in, and lived in it for the next 5 1/2 years.
Clyde – as a co-founder of a construction company - what was it like building your own home and having the freedom to design and make it how you wanted it?
Being in the construction business, we were constantly throwing ideas around about what we really wanted to do, trying to decide between a full knockdown/rebuild or renovation/extension. The "budget" was really an issue and although project homes are very cost effective, we kept coming up with random ideas to extend and make good our little shack that we had grown to actually enjoy. We also had a new pressing need for room as our 4th child Carter was born. It took Clyde about 2 months of sketching and drawing before lodging the final design.
Your home has a very modern feel with clean lines and forms throughout. What was the inspiration behind this design? Did it evolve overtime as you started building or did you have clear plans from the start?
We decided that a progressive renovation to the shack, and modern extension above, keeping the general layout and feel of the original shack downstairs, with a new upper floor could work with the right integration. The original plan was to build the upper floor separately, move in, and then renovate downstairs. However, once started it was clear we had to smash it out so it all happened at once. The major details were sketched before commencement to get the structure and glasing right, and other finishes were discovered and implemented progressively, inspired by the general look and feel we were both trying to achieve.
Let’s talk about the interiors. We love the combination of copper, timber and concrete that you have incorporated throughout your home. What do you love about these materials?
The combination of copper/timber and concrete is natural, and reflects us as a family. Implementing the use of raw material has been a bit of a process, and some tough decisions on how far to take it (for future re-sale reasons). I think we found a reasonable balance of being able to use fairly raw construction materials, but detailing them to a finished and comfortable look. We love that you can't find some of these finishes in a shop, and is a pure creation of an otherwise typical product. It was a bit of a laugh bringing some of the ideas to reality, as some of the tradies weren’t too convinced.
What challenges did you face along the way and what piece of advice would you offer to someone looking to embark on a home renovation?
The challenge of working to a budget, sourcing different materials and coming up with critical details and ideas on the fly, having the right people on the job to understand that process. It was difficult not to get carried away, but to keep it real. Our advice would be to stick with your vision, and bring every decision into line with that.
Hannah - What’s your favourite room of the house?
Hannah's most favourite space would be the upper floor parents’ retreat with the large luxurious egg shaped bath and reading nook.
Clyde - What’s your favourite feature of the house?
Clyde’s favourite features would be the external sliding windows, the stair design and raw cement sheeted wet areas. The massive light well achieving a significant amount of light to the centre of the house and seamless indoor/outdoor living area make the house also.
Would you do it all again?
Living away from home during construction, we felt that we would never want to do this again, but now it is all done and we have settled in, it could be a possibility in the future, but for now we are just enjoying the closeness of the beach and way the house just "works" for our family.