Although they had taken on extensive renovations in the past, this stunning Lockwood home is the first time the Crombie’s had embarked on a design and build journey. After plenty of site-specific challenges and with construction interrupted by COVID lockdowns, they were able to move into their striking, three-bedroom home in the middle of 2020.
A visit to the Al-Fresco show home in Wellington initially sparked the Crombie’s interest in working with Lockwood for their project. They loved the look and feel of solid timber, especially how different it was from the typical modern builds they were used to seeing. “We liked that it was a NZ made product, and it was energy efficient.” Said Mrs Crombie.
Once they met the Tuohy Homes team, they felt confident to take the next steps “Brent and his team were wonderful and really put us at ease.”
Brent Tuohy visited the two potential build sites the Crombies were seriously considering and advised what each would require. The section the Crombies ended up purchasing was a conservation zoned site which meant it came with some unique challenges. “The site required Resource consent and an Impact Conservation Report. Brent took us through the entire process, recommending the best consultants to work with. He even recommended an arborist when it came time to remove the trees” said Mrs Crombie “I think we would have given up had we been doing it all ourselves!”
The Crombies had some idea of what they wanted in their home, but had no set design in mind. “It was important to have a self-contained guest suite for family to visit, and we wanted the other bedrooms separate.”
Tuohy Homes’ designer Ross Kerry created a unique design from the initial brief, taking into account the Crombies ideas, and settled the house within its remarkable site, nestled in amongst the native bush.
The kitchen living and dining spaces are open-plan which the Combies say works well, both for entertaining and hosting family and friends and giving the grandchildren plenty of room to run around. The home’s angled shape and furniture placement, including the built-in entertainment cabinet, break up the open plan and create cosy, more intimate zones within the space.
The Crombies found visualising the size of the rooms on paper much harder than when renovating. Once the design process started, Brent and Ross pegged out the site to show the room sizes, and Ross showed furniture to scale on the plan. “Seeing the furniture on the plan helped us a lot”.
The Crombies spent time on the Lockwood website, taking inspiration from the photo galleries and builds around the country. “That’s where we saw the built in-entertainment unit. It was a good way to incorporate our sound system and TV and have a place to put our many books. The draws keep everything nicely hidden away.”
Dark stained VG pine exterior cladding contrasts beautifully against white joinery. The monochromatic look runs through into the kitchen with white grooved cabinets, dark benchtops and retro black Smeg appliances. “We quite like the traditional style, and Jeanette Tuohy was so helpful and patient, helping choose colours, tiles and appliances that fit with what we liked.” Said Mrs Crombie. “It’s lovely to sit around the island bench with the doors open looking out into the garden.”
Large sliding stacker doors open the home to the outdoor area and garden full of mature native trees. Highlight windows and thoughtfully placed skylights, including one in the entranceway, offer an abundance of natural light into the home. A heat pump system linked to the smart AtaTouchhome automation heats and cools the home, with heating supplemented by an energy-efficient wood burner.
The guest suite has a small kitchenette, ensuite and lounge, with the master and second bedroom sharing a large bathroom. The leaf-patterned bathroom tiles were chosen to reflect the natural garden setting where the Crombies home sits so beautifully.
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