Clare Kinsey

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we have walls…

What a difference a week makes!

It has been so awesome to watch our little house (affectionately known as “the shed”)  grow this week. I can’t believe how much they have got done. Walking through now it is all starting to make sense. For me it is anyway but I think maybe Steve is still finding it a bit hard to see it. It is going to be such a cute little house!!


Before our eyes it grew … Our carpenter Graham and his team have worked like you wouldn’t believe this week putting in very long hours. We are so grateful to have them helping us!

threeThe view from the back…fourThe view from the front door looking to the back.

Cant wait to see what happens next week! Apparently the roof trusses are arriving …


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We have had a bit of action on the block this past week…

The set out has been finalised and all the stump holes were marked with yellow steaks in the ground and blue painted crosses… Looked like a lot of Swedish flags!setout

Then the stump holes were dug and the whole block just looked like a pile of dirt from the street.

dirtBefore we knew it the stumps were in and the subfloor had started construction and today we finally have power!subfloorprogress

Now I am waiting on the termite spray to be done and then the subfloor can be finished and we will be ready for framing.

At first when I saw it all laid out I thought the size of the rooms looked so small but to be honest I think that we have been waiting so long and during that time the image in our minds of what it is all going to look like has become rather large!! Now that I have had the chance to get my head around it all I can see it is going to be just fine. It was never going to be a huge house for the two of us anyway and what we are building is just perfect for what we need and within our budget – the whole idea is to reduce debt and live simply.subfloorI am loving it already ❤


our first week

You asked for regular updates and so here I am at the end of our first week having had a bit of development since the last post….

I will try and not bombard you all with bucket loads of pictures on Facebook and confine them to here especially right now as to be honest they aren’t really very interesting …. more a documentation of our progress so far. I promise we will get a little more creative as the weeks go on.

So here is this weeks instalment! To re-cap, at the end of last week we got the temporary fencing put up and over the weekend we had the rear fence replaced which looks great. Late on Monday we had the block slashed so that first thing on Tuesday the carpenter could come in and set the house out with the concretor booked to arrive the next day to prepare the slab.

fenceI can’t believe how quickly they got it all set up! The toilet was set up along with the power pole which will be connected soon. In the meantime our gorgeous neighbours have helped us out with some power! In case I haven’t mentioned it before – we are so lucky to have such fantastic neighbours that have really made us feel so welcome !!

slabAnd before we knew it…. We had a garage slab!!

finishedslabOur floor level had to be quite high in my opinion to get passed through council and Melb water and when I first saw them setting it up I thought it was all going to look a bit ridiculous…. I still think we have been forced to go to an unnecessary height but now that it is done I think it looks OK. Regardless, we have had no say in it so we just have to make the best of it.

So thats it for this week. I doubt we will see much happen next week while we wait for the concrete to do whatever it has to do. Think I might go stand on it tomorrow 😉



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Day 1

So thrilled to say that we have made a start….

After months and months and months of planning and preparation we are all set to go. This weekend there is a new fence along the back being built to ensure our neighbours have a little privacy throughout the next months…. The posts went in today and will be finished tomorrow.  I have organised the temporary fence  which has been delivered and erected this evening. It’s now starting to look like a proper building site.

So here is the beginning – lots of regular updates to come and I hope some quick progress!! Photo 17-10-2014 11 05 10 am


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subway or mosaic

Yesterday we had a meeting with a landscape planner on our block in order that he can put together a plan for council so we get another step closer to approval… Did you know that the council even tell you what type of plants you are to have in your garden??!! Hmmmm Anyway … We also discovered that they want us to have a couple of steps down from our house to our back deck. We have 2 sets of big bi-fold doors off the back of our house and in my opinion it will look like rubbish to have steps down to the deck. We have complied with all of their requirements so far with no fuss but this one I think I am going to kick up about …. so we might be waiting even longer!!

Forgetting about the frustration for a moment, it is time to start thinking about the bathroom tiles. When ordering the floor tiles for the whole house the other day it came to my attention that in some instances you have to wait up to 16 weeks for specific tiles so I think it might be a good idea to get them sorted so we don’t end up being held up.

My vision is to have predominantly white wall tiles, a medium size with probably a little movement in them rather than flat. Something like the tiles we used in the house we renovated. We are planning to have a feature wall of blue tiles and I have been torn between having aqua/blue subway tiles or mosaic tiles. Keeping in mind we will only be having one wall done. This will keep costs down and create interest without being too over bearing.

I love the vintage feel of the subway tiles which i think will fit in very well with the overall styling of our house even though it is a modern home.



I also love the variety of colours of the mosaic and feel like it gives a real artisan coastal feel to it as well as bringing a little bit of vintage public pool into the mix.


The double vanity I have shown before but here it is again! I love the simplicity of it!

The bathroom itself is very large and spacious. The shower is a large rainfall shower with a glass screen and no door. A BIG bath that I just can’t wait to try out will be the main focal point. For storage I would like to find a vintage cabinet or something along those lines just to blend a bit of the old & new.

I think that’s about it! All images have been taken from my Pinterest board. Pretty sure I will go with the mosaic tiles… Right now though I had better get on with my day. We have a few friends and family coming to visit us this evening at the “mental rental” so we need to get firewood sorted and some munchies!
Feel free to comment with your thoughts and any other wonderful ideas you might have for me! Have a great weekend 😉

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still waiting …

It is very nearly 12 months ago that we had our first meeting with Storybook on that cool drizzly June morning. Sadly we are still waiting to get started. We were told by so many people that it can take “forever” to get plans approved etc but I have to say I never really believed it! Until it became our reality!! Who would have thought it would take such long time to get an approval for our little house … So I have no progress to share with you except to say that I have everything crossed hoping that we will get the green light very very soon.

In the meantime we have just had the Queens Birthday long weekend and our sleepy little suburb got pretty busy for a few days… I love it!! It’s so nice to live somewhere that people choose to visit for holidays and to get away for a few days. I get to stay and really enjoy the peace long after they all go home!!
Photo 9-06-2014 2 04 48 pm
I took this snap on my walk to the supermarket on Monday … I love this walk.

Even though we haven’t started building yet, I have been putting together ideas for our house and purchasing lots of bits and pieces that are all safely stored away just waiting to be installed! Most recently I purchased the light fittings for above the kitchen island bench …
And … a couple of pendant lights for our bedroom!
The inspiration for the bedroom has come from this image …
Obviously our bedroom won’t be as big as this but this gives a bit of an idea of the materials we will use and the over all look we are going for. You can find more inspiration on my Pinterest board if you are interested in having a look.

Anyway cross all your fingers p l e a s e and hopefully we will have an approval in the next few weeks 😉

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a year of change …

This year has been particularly challenging for me on a personal level for a variety of reasons that I won’t go into here, so I am kind of glad its over! The year finishes off on a positive note though with some much needed time off and not a lot that needs doing. We are still waiting for our plans to be approved by council so until that happens I just have to be patient and go sit on the beach!!

I’ve put together a quick video of my year which I hope you enjoy. The picture quality is not that great on some of the snaps but they are all significant snaps just the same.

To my beautiful family & amazing friends … thank you for keeping me sane this year. I truly appreciate the support that I have had from all of you and thank you for sticking with me. I hope that 2014 is an amazing year for everyone …