Seasoned renovators Ash and Simon Vos are on a journey to transform their Coffs Harbour abode into a modern Californian dream home. As one half of The Block 2014 winning duo with his brother Shannon, Simon’s latest project with wife Ash has been one of the most challenging.
With Simon’s building skills and Ash’s keen eye for design, the pair have transformed a once small space into a large, liveable kitchen that takes inspiration from their stunning surroundings, with calming green tones and touches of mid-century modern that play into the home’s contemporary Californian elegance.
Ash says, “We are both really inspired by nature when it comes to design, and the view at our home has dictated so many of our colour choices. We wanted to feel connected to nature on the inside of the home just as much as the outside – we have a stunning north facing deck that really captures the charm of the area. We definitely have a preference towards mid-century modern furnishings and finishes, and love the timeless appeal of the era".
Do not be disheartened by a small space
The most challenging aspect of our kitchen was making a small space feel large, and having the vision to plan for it when all the previous walls were still there! We created space by moving the island bench towards the larger living area and creating a wider walkway between the back wall and the island. We also maximised storage by having an open pantry that is hidden from view, which allowed us to remove some cupboards in the original plans and have a timber shelf for styling and coffee mugs.
Discuss your non-negotiables
Each of us had a wish list for the kitchen, and we were aligned with the feel we wanted to create which was lucky. My wish list included a butler’s pantry, double door fridge (Electrolux 681L dark stainless steel French door fridge - EHE6899BA), a dishwasher (Electrolux built-under dishwasher with comfortlift - ESF8735RKX) and a wide oven (Electrolux 90cm multifunction pyrolytic oven - EVEP916DSD). Simon wanted a water/ice dispenser in the fridge and a gas cooktop (Electrolux 90cm 5 burner gas cooktop - EHG955BD). We created our non-negotiables from our combined wish list!
It’s all in the details
Our kitchen looks out onto the Great Dividing Range, so we had a vision for the kitchen to reflect this view. We opted for green tones for the cabinetry and other finishes which looks stunning against the landscape. We chose muted tones for the hardware and appliance colours to give the space a luxurious feel while blending in a little with the concrete benchtops. We chose Kit Kat sculptural tiles for the splashback, and a timber shelf which also adds some character to the space.
Appliances matter more than you think
We spent some time choosing appliances, I think it is one of the things most people get wrong in a kitchen. We actually built the cabinetry around the appliances we wanted, versus finding appliances that worked with the cabinetry. For couples like us with little time, the appliances in a home can give you back time through integrated solutions like apps and customised settings. Appliances should add value to your life, and the aesthetic of the Electrolux products is a natural win for design oriented people, but the technology that backs the user experience is beyond expectation.
Every kitchen needs a highlight
The stand-out features in our kitchen include the Electrolux 681L dark stainless steel French door fridge (EHE6899BA). It’s the most high-tech fridge-freezer we’ve ever seen, you can monitor the temperature from your phone via an app. We also love our custom benchtops that Simon poured. They add character to the space that a conventional manufactured benchtop couldn’t.