Douglas and Shelley’s neutral haven is filled with creative touches

25 Mar 2020

When Douglas and Shelley moved to Dunedin with their two children, Oscar and Eli, an exciting opportunity presented itself. Their north facing property showed plenty of promise, but was in a poor state – leaving full renovation as their only option. Employing a refreshing palette of Resene neutrals with pops of green, Douglas and his family ended up creating a home that feels both spacious and intimate. 

With Douglas being a structural engineer and Shelley working as an artist, the renovation was in the best possible hands. The couple were considerate about the villa’s history, yet practical as the parents of two bustling boys who lead busy lives.  

“It was quite an exciting idea bringing a house back to life,” Douglas recalls. “We wanted to?honour?the villa’s bones – or what was left of any features – and just highlight and complement it with paint.” 

Despite the hard work and frustrations of having to carry materials in and out of a steep site, the result of the renovation speaks for itself. From the grand hallway to the open plan living, dining and kitchen space, Douglas and Shelley have created an inviting aesthetic that beckons you to each room. All walls have been painted in Resene Rice Cake for a unified look. But make no mistake – this home is far from being plain. 

The family’s unique touches are wonderfully present throughout, including bold, colourful art that pops against the neutral walls and cheerfully hued painted features. Interestingly, Douglas and Shelley have avoided being tied down to any one décor style, choosing instead furnishings that speak to them, which go from industrial to classic to contemporary chic. Under the bathroom sink, for example, some trendy industrial metal drawers stand out along with a wooden crate. In the master bedroom and living space, mid-century offerings have been added like the wooden and glass cabinet beneath the TV.  

For anyone after a similar look, Douglas advises taking your time and putting in plenty of research before jumping in. “Think about your existing furniture and artwork and whether?it will work with the project/renovation.” 

It’s clear the family’s careful planning paid off, and Douglas is particularly proud of the kitchen plus the colours used throughout the home. Resene Billy T, as seen on the front door, is a clear favourite of Douglas’ for its “wonderful joyful vibrancy and of course, its nostalgic name.” 

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

kitchen, wood and white kitchen, neutral kitchen, kitchen inspiration, resin

The open plan kitchen and dining walls are painted in Resene Rice Cake with trims and ceiling in Resene Quarter Rice Cake. The colours make the ideal backdrop to the incredible artwork that punctuates the space.  

living room, white living room, living room Inspo, neutral living room, resin

The open living room walls in Resene Rice Cake help to build upon the serenity of the space. The impressive batten-style ceiling and trims are in Resene Quarter Rice Cake.  

Archway, entryway inspiration, arch entryway, white entryway, Resene

The home’s entryway is like an art gallery, with plenty of interesting artwork, light fixtures and pops of colour. The walls are painted in Resene Rice Cake with trims and ceiling in Resene Quarter Rice Cake. 

neutral bedroom, bedroom inspo, bedroom decorating, bedroom design, resene

The walls of the master bedroom are painted in Resene Rice Cake with trims and ceiling in Resene Quarter Rice Cake. The industrial hanging light, curved seating and luscious drapes add texture and keep the eye moving about the space. To build a similar colour palette, bring in décor pieces in Resene Wild Thing, Resene Pendragon and Resene Half Jumbo.  

yellow and white bedroom, yellow duvet, yellow comforter, neutral bedroom, bedroom inspo, resene

Douglas and Shelley have borrowed from a number of interior styles to create an aesthetic that’s uniquely theirs. The cabinet to the right is decidedly industrial while the chairs bring in some mid-century and Scandi glamour. Walls and trims are painted in Resene Rice Cake with ceiling in Resene Quarter Rice Cake

neutral and pink bedroom, pink and white bedroom, pink room decor, resene

Like many areas of Douglas and Shelley’s home, this bedroom is filled with artful touches and furnishings that are both practical and fun. Walls are painted in Resene Rice Cake with trims and ceiling in Resene Quarter Rice Cake. Try painting a few accessories in Resene Candy Floss and bring in a headboard in Resene Rakaia to get a similar look. 

dresser inspo, dressing table, green door, kids bedroom, resene, fish tanks, bedroom fish tank inspo

Oscar’s bedroom walls are painted in Resene Rice Cake with trims and ceiling in Resene Quarter Rice Cake. The green blackboard is painted in Resene FX Chalkboard Paint tinted to Resene Celery and gives Oscar a place to express his artistic side. 

kids bedroom, children room inspiration, sausage dog kids room, white children's room, resene

This cosy bedroom is perfectly situated to let the light shine in. Walls are painted in Resene Rice Cake with trims and ceiling in Resene Quarter Rice Cake. 

study nook, green study, green office, colourful office, colourful desk space, kids desk, children

This clever little recessed study nook in Eli’s room is painted in Resene Kombi with surrounding walls in Resene Rice Cake and trims in Resene Quarter Rice Cake. Try bringing in pops of Resene Turbo and Resene Red Hot through wall décor to get a similar look. 

bathroom, freestanding bath, freestanding tub, neutral bathroom, grey and white bathroom, resene

The family’s bathroom is light and airy with walls painted in Resene Rice Cake plus trims and ceiling in Resene Quarter Rice Cake. Industrial furnishings like this cabinet inject some personality into the neutral space. Try decorating an old crate with Resene Groovy to get a similar look. 

house exterior, exterior inspiration, green front door, colourful front door, white porch, porch,

This exterior looks crisp and clean in Resene Quarter White Pointer. The porch floor is in Resene Double White Pointer, the trims are in Resene Alabaster and the sensational front door in Resene Billy T brings a hint of fun and personality. 

images ?Emily MacDonald, ?FotographicNZ 

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