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customized gifts for her This Tutukaka family home proves concrete and steel can be comfortable sofa pillow covers

Cosy texture, midcentury pieces and warm timber give this tough Tutukaka home of concrete and steel a comfortable family feel

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customized gifts for him

Marcelle Flude, owner of The Beauty Room, Tutukaka, Brendan Flude, forestry health and safety manager, and Marlow, 8customized gifts for her, plus Burmese cats Boston and Poppy and rabbits Odin and Thor.

Best lessons learned?Colorsteel is not the easiest product to clad with so do your research on installers.

What would you never do again?We would probably not use black aluminium joinery. Although we love the look of the black, it is not very forgiving with scratches and fingerprints.

Did you have any DIY disasters?Trying to tackle large landscaping projects ourselves in our spare time while juggling work and family. It’s taking forever to finish!

You took a lot of care over the details. Which ones are you proudest of?The negative detail used throughout the house and the exposed blockwork.

One thing you would change about your home if you could?We would not change anything. We love our home and it suits our family perfectly.

Most memorable experience you have had in your home so far?Hearing the kiwi calling every night and having the incredible experience of seeing one walking across our paddock.

What areas of your home did you splurge on?We splurged on the kitchen; it came in at around $35,000. This included all the Fisher &; Paykel appliances. At the time, this was a little outside our budget but we made the decision not to compromise and we’re really happy with the end result.

Do you tend to buy high-end homeware or seek out a bargain?High-end mostly.

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Marcelle and Brendan’s vision of clean lines, bold shapes and robust materials, combined with their desire to create a minimal footprint, have resulted in a striking home: a simple, black, rectangular box surrounded by lush, sloping paddocks, with a backdrop of protected native bush.

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Set against a backdrop of vast, breathtaking views, this home is a modern take on the traditional bach.

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The family have been in their home for 18 months and, although the landscaping is an ongoing project the vision is complete: the home is just how they wanted it to be, easily coping with visiting friends and family and, at other times, quietly taking care of the three of them, and the local nesting kiwi.

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Style it:Bring a natural palette to the dinner table by foraging for local greenery and botanicals.

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The centrally placed dining table floats between two walls of black sliding doors which frame the views on both sides of the home.

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The kitchen, which occupies a corner of the open-plan living space, was designed by the couple and built from the same palette of robust materials as the rest of the house.

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Hides, plants and a sprinkling of mid-century design finish this fuss-free yet warm and inviting interior

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Try it:When planning a new-build, consider making a feature of building materials as the Fludes have done with this exposed concrete-block wall.

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The large, open-plan kitchen serves as a family gathering point and opens directly onto the outdoor dining space, which is used all year round and has been cleverly incorporated into the building envelope.

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A concrete-block wall separates the sleeping area from the wardrobe space and provides a backdrop to the bed, its practical texture juxtaposed with a duvet of emerald velvet.

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Burmese cats Boston and Poppy

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Hides, plants and a sprinkling of mid-century design finish this fuss-free yet warm and inviting interior

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Marcelle and Brendan love mid-century design and have included some treasured pieces in their modern home to create a perfect balance between new and vintage.

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Style it:Add instant life to a space with a collection of indoor plants. Look for variegated colour, and place pots at different heights.

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With concrete flooring, it is vital that your concrete placer and polisher has a good understanding of the look you want to achieve. Sit down with them, run through the options and clarify exactly what you want. This is a must before the concrete is poured.

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A floating vanity help keeps clutter to a minimum.

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An oversized round mirror and curvy vanity soften the rectangular forms of the narrow bathroom, while frameless shower glass helps increase the sense of space.

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The floorplan reads like a simple Lego project with block-like spaces organised in a line with each room maximised for views and spilling out onto a deck which runs the length of the building.

Created by:?Tina Stephen.?Photography by:?Helen Bankers.

Paperiaarre Etsy Sho

Though the snow is coming down in great, big, white, fluffy flakes, my mind is already on the garden. ?I know spring will come sooner than expected and any gardener knows that spring is the busy season! ?With garden planning on my mind, I decided to come up with a better version of my planting calendar that I’ve been using for the past few years. ?I typically just use one of those free calendars that come in the mail and jot down when seeds are planted, when the first blooms appear, etc. ?The problem with those paper calendars is that they die a quick death anywhere near garden soil, sand, water and sun.

It feels a bit strange to be writing about Autumn (Fall) when in our part of the world we are swooning in a heatwave. But there’s no denying, the nights are drawing in and the evenings have a distinctly autumnal chill. This is such a beautiful season: the fruits are hanging ripe and ready to be picked, scoffed or bottled; hedgerows are laden with plump berries; and allotments are still flush with bounty.? There’s also all the excitement of Halloween, Bonfire Night (in the UK) and Thanksgiving (in the US). Rituals celebrating light and life as we enter the dark part of the year.