The Same But Different
Can two identical homes be made to look and feel completely different? This was the challenge we threw down to Città, one of the country’s top homeware design and styling companies. The result was remarkable.
The defining characteristic that unites every home built by Creating Communities on Fernwood Place, Wai O Taiki Bay, is that they have been conceived and designed by renowned architects Ashton Mitchell. As these new homes emerge, they are creating a new benchmark in housing in the area as it develops into one of Auckland’s hottest new waterside suburbs.
When designing these homes, the architects were asked to look at each of the sites individually, making the most of their proximity and access to the coastal reserves and of course those fantastic sea views. Inevitably, however, when you come up with the perfect design for a particular site, it makes total sense to replicate that design for the immediately adjacent home. Point in case, 12a and 14a Fernwood Place.
A mirror image of each other, both of these large, four-bedroom family homes are located at the end of a private laneway and offer personal access to Wai O Taiki Nature Reserve. They also have breath-taking views to Half Moon Bay from many of their north-facing rooms.
To give them a point of difference, we decided to bring in a team of home stylists and interior designers from Città – curious to see if they could transform what are two ostensibly identical architecturally designed houses into two quite different looking homes.
Città was founded by Margot Acland 20 years ago, and has grown from what started out as a small import company into one of New Zealand’s leading furniture and homeware design companies. At its heart are six talented designers who are continuingly developing and designing fresh and original ranges of furniture, fabrics and soft furnishings in what Acland describes as a relaxed antipodean style. “Our products are useful, beautiful, and a little bit of fun,” she smiles.
“When Creating Communities approached us to work together on the two homes at Wai O Taiki Bay, we were delighted,” says Acland.
“We have a natural alignment – both being design companies and both being focussed on quality – so it’s always exciting to be involved with companies that hold the same values.”
The task of bringing together the design and styling team was given to Eve Penny, who says it was an interesting and unique challenge to come up with two quite different interior schemes for the virtually identical floor plans.
“For the first house, we went for a masculine theme. The key theme we worked with was, ‘refined and energetic, with cool tones and intimate spaces’. To achieve this we used a material palette featuring velvets, neutral tones with graphic prints, deep and moody blues and jungle greens, all complimented with dark furniture and softened with brassy notes.
“The second house had a more feminine theme running through it, with a focusing on vibrancy, playfulness and warmth. To achieve this we used eclectic pops of pattern and colour, paired with earthy mustards and soft khaki greens.”
The largest and most dramatic spaces in the homes are the light-filled, open-plan living areas. As such, they were given special attention by the Città team, says Eve.
“For the lounge area in the masculine house we used the Eve modular sofa, in a velvet graphite to create a warm yet contemporary feel” she says. “We’re big fans of modular sofas, and we paired this one with the black Segment coffee table and our Camelia Rug which ties in cool blues and natural tones with the landscape viewed from the large windows.
“For the more feminine house we chose a Hem sofa, in linen, a more structured sofa with wooden legs. This paired with the our woollen, hand-knotted, Linear rug and oak coffee table created a soft yet inviting base to begin the accessorising process.”
Walking between the two finished homes, you certainly get a sensation of déjà vu. The impact the contrasting interior schemes has on the ambience of each house is pronounced, yet their strong architectural lines shine through, defining the spaces and providing perfectly aligned view corridors out to the sparkling waters of Tamaki Estuary.
The team at Città certainly rose to the challenge of styling both homes immaculately and differently, complimenting the contemporary architecture of Wai O Taiki Waterside with their unique brand of furniture and fabrics – Acland summing up the feeling on both sides perfectly: “It’s been a great partnership, a fun initiative, and we’re delighted with the outcome.”
With 12a Fernwood Place already under offer don't miss your chance to view the homes and secure 14a Fernwood Place as your seaside sanctuary.
Win a $2000* Citta Voucher
Simply book an appointment to view or visit the Open Homes at 14a Fernwood Place between now and 29 October 2018, fill in the entry form, vote for your favourite and go in the draw to win. *Click here to view full terms and conditions.
Citta Tips for Perfect Styling
Keep it simple
Keep your look reﬁned by selecting two to three key colours, then mixing and matching fabric types, weaves and prints to bring personality into the scheme. When it comes to choosing accent colours, balance is the key. Choose palettes that blend just a touch of the warmth in with a cool colour scheme, or vice versa, to create stability in the room.
Layer, layer, layer
Think of your furniture as a blank canvas for the decorative elements you bring in to create the depth and interest. Adding cushions and throws is an easy way to bring your living area to life. You may begin with a couple of standout designs, then complete the picture with a supporting cast in various styles and sizes in the same colour palette.
Colour your world
Theoretically, deep moody colours make a space feel more intimate, whereas softer cool colours recede and make the room look larger. If you want to inject some colour into a space, particularly smaller rooms, then it’s all about the balance.
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