A balance between warm and cool brought this coastal charmer to life

10 Apr 2019

For a couple balancing busy careers in swim coaching and economics, home is the place to relax and take time out, surrounded in Resene colours. It was the lifestyle that this Tainui Road home offered in Auckland’s desirable Devonport neighbourhood that first attracted them.

The dreamy house is currently on the market, awaiting the right new family to call it home, but the sellers certainly enjoyed making the most of their time in it. The couple could generally be found tending plants in the garden, out for a stroll, or curled up on the comfy couch in the home office next to wall-to-wall shelves full of books waiting to be read. Wetsuits hung in the hall cupboard, always at the ready for a quick paddle board at nearby Cheltenham Beach and the outdoor pizza oven remains stacked with wood, primed for an impromptu al fresco dinner.

“We felt instantly at home here,” the owners say. “It all just worked – the layout, size, style and location. It’s been a really easy home to live in.”

“Often when you move into a new house, there is lots you need to do to make the spaces work for you and your furniture. This home had the right spaces, but they were different than what we were used to, and it also had more colour on the walls than our previous home.”

The couple called in stylist Kate Alexander of Places & Graces to help them get a feel for what to put where and how to make their favourite things work within the colour-scheme that already existed.

Kate reminisced with us about helping the couple fit seamlessly into this seaside charmer.

What Resene colours and products were used and what inspired those choices? 

“The existing palette was already underway when the owners arrived – the base colour being Resene Pearl Lusta, a timeless warm white, punctuated with duck-egg blues, greens, and greys. We added more colour in two key places. Firstly, the lounge. This room sits open and opposite the dining and living. The back wall, being the first one you see when you enter, was asking for more punch. Now in Resene Smoky Green, the wall is defined and proud. We snuck the same colour onto a wall in the entranceway, inviting the eye around into a hidden private office all the while connecting it to the lounge opposite.”

How did you decide on the overall look of the interiors? 

“The homeowners have a lively collection of art and objects and some well-considered furniture favourites. We started by matching the artworks to the spaces - using them to lead your eye around the home, and pairing them to the palette and feel of each room. For example, the bold artworks with strong hits of colour work well in the lounge on the deep smoky green wall. The textured, more monotone artworks, fit easily into the living area where the duck-egg blue wraps only around the base of the room. The large patchwork-style watercolour pops off the Resene Casper wall in the guest bedroom and the master – with its soft, just grey walls in Resene Quarter Duck Egg Blue –  is home to a couple of small, subtle artworks.”

“This home is a favourite colour combination. I love the mix of warm and cool colours together in the lounge – there's yellow, green blue, black, orange all piled in together, and it works”, says Kate.

What part of the house were you most happy with?

“I think the pace of the house is lovely. It's lively without being overwhelming. They've got the combinations just right - snippets of bright colour combined with broad areas of soft tones – heirloom furniture paired with modern lines and some timeless classics. Plus the benefit of controlled light which comes with louvres and dormer windows.”

What is your advice for someone trying to achieve a similar look? 

“Don't be afraid to paint your walls a colour and don't worry if all the feature walls don't match exactly. Create a broad palette with room for individual tones and use art and furnishings to flesh out the colours and textures.”

What was the biggest decorating challenge for this project? 

“None! The couple were open to taking some leaps of faith with colour, and they had such a broad art collection to work with. They also weren't fixed on their thoughts around style – which is why we were able to craft a home that really does feel like a home. The only mild challenge for them was probably the patience needed in finding the few new furniture items they needed.”

What’s next for the owners?

Leaving the home will be a tough move, and one the couple is only choosing to do because an opportunity came up they just couldn’t turn down.

“We’re okay that it’s someone else’s turn to enjoy the comforts of Tainui and we’ll certainly be taking some of the character of this place with us on our next house adventure,” say the current owners.

See the listing.

Do you have a home full of wonderful Resene paint and colour? Send us some snaps by emailing [email protected].

bedroom, master bedroom, grey bedroom, interior inspiration, white bedroom, pearl lusta

The master bedroom stuns with walls in Resene Quarter Dusted Blue and architectural features in Resene Quarter Pearl Lusta, providing an enviable place to start and finish the day.

bedroom, grey bedroom, blue bedroom, master bedroom, interior inspiration, interior accessories

Against the backdrop of Resene Quarter Dusted Blue on the walls, the yellow and blue cushions in the master bedroom add a touch of sweetness and warmth.

bedroom, grey bedroom, blue bedroom, blue and white bedroom, blue interior inspiration

The plentiful artwork throughout the home adds vibrancy to the spaces. Kate carried colours from each into the space through the accessories and soft furnishings. In this bedroom, the Resene Casper walls provide a neutral base for small touches of pink, blue, orange and green to really pop. The ceilings and trim are in Resene Quarter Pearl Lusta.

home office, home study, home library, wall bookcase, white home office, built in bookcase

For a book lover, the wall-to-wall built in bookcase in the home office is a dream come true. The room is in Resene Pearl Lusta from top to bottom.

lounge, living room, green lounge, green living room, green feature wall, resene smoky green

A feature wall in Resene Smoky Green defines the main living space, and colourful accessories throughout the rooms were picked for their connection to the palette used in the artwork. The adjacent walls and ceilings are in Resene Pearl Lusta.

white lounge, white living room, green lounge, green living room, green feature wall

Walls and ceilings in Resene Pearl Lusta make the living room feature wall in Resene Smoky Green really shine.

lounge, living room, neutral living room, neutral lounge, resene duck egg blue, resene pearl lusta

The eclectic mix of casual soft furnishings makes the lounge feel extra inviting. The upper section of the walls and ceiling are in Resene Pearl Lusta while the lower wall is painted Resene Duck Egg Blue.

dining room, blue dining room, white dining room, tongue in groove paneling, blue feature

The walls and ceiling of the dining area are in Resene Pearl Lusta with tongue-in-groove panelling in Resene Duck Egg Blue.

bathroom, grey bathroom, bathroom feature wall, grey feature wall, grey ensuite, ensuite

This Resene Quarter Fuscous Grey accent wall adds contrast and interest in what could have been an all-white ensuite, while the trim and ceilings have been kept crisp in Resene Quarter Pearl Lusta.

outdoor living, house exterior, deck, swimming pool, indoor outdoor flow, outdoor entertaining

A deck stained Resene Woodsman Riverstone bridges the gap between the home’s indoor-outdoor lifestyle. Inside the kitchen, the walls have been painted Resene Pearl Lusta with Resene Quarter Pearl Lusta trims and ceilings.

house exterior, grey house, grey exterior, painted weatherboards, grey weatherboards

This home sweet home looks extra sweet with weatherboards painted Resene Half Inside Back and shutters in Resene New Denim Blue.

styling Kate Alexander
images Bayleys, Kate Alexander

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Resene Duck Egg Blue

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Resene Half Dusted Blue

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Resene New Denim Blue

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Resene Pearl Lusta

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Resene Quarter Duck Egg Blue

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Resene Quarter Fuscous Grey

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Resene Smoky Green

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Resene Duck Egg Blue

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Resene Half Dusted Blue

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Resene New Denim Blue

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Resene Pearl Lusta

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Resene Quarter Duck Egg Blue

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Resene Smoky Green

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