top of page




  • Facebook Grunge
  • Instagram Grunge
  • AGFG Brisbane Foodie

House Renovations - The Dream Kitchen and Beyond

Last year we had the opportunity to renovate the main level of our home south of Brisbane. It was a true 90's bonanza when we bought it in 2016: A Teal and Terracotta Mansion.

Some of the most interesting features were:

- Peach tiles and matching corner bath in the main bathroom. Complete with water stains, filthy grout and mould galore.

- Teal laminate benchtops in the kitchen complete with matching kicks! Feature tile circa 1999 Mooloolaba Motel.

-Peeling wooden dresser vanities in both bathrooms

-Brass wardrobes alongside brass light fittings and shower screen edges

-Hot pink rooms, purple rooms, green rooms, blue rooms, a true rainbow house!

-TEAL window frames throughout the entire house (we still have downstairs to tackle!)

-Pastel brushtroke pelmets in the lounge-turned-dungeon downstairs (still intact)

-Matching teal swirly laminate laundry

-Blue painted concrete garage

-Apricot painted decking downstairs and concrete upstairs outside the front door

-Blue ballustrading, teal gutters and a maroon roof. Beautiful with the teal windows and dirty pebblecrete!

-Drummy cracked bone tiles laid in a diamond pattern throughout the main part of the house, with a border around each room to make each space look as small as possible

-Tongue and groove flooring in three bedrooms and the lounge, tiling most other places, damaged parquetry in two bedrooms

-Gold swirly ceramic door handles throughout

-Arches in doorways throughout the home

Long story short: there was a lot that could be updated cosmetically, and not much that needed to be done structurally. It's a big house on a huge block (3000sqm) and we saw a lot of potential.

I'll write the full reno story one day, but here are some before and afters for now! If you have any questions or would like some tradie recommendations in the Brisbane area, don't hesitate to ask!

External House Paint

Currently looks a bit better as most of the window frames that look dark here (TEAL!) are now Surfmist. We streamlined the room, ballustrading, suffeats and finial from five colours down to two. The above photo was taken on an overcast day - generally looks a lot brighter. Quite transforming, really.

Blue! Dull brass! Gold everything! I couldn't find heart to shell out the cash for a new double door yet, so we switched out the door handles for brushed nickel, spray painted what hardware we couldn't replace, and had both sides of the doors painted. Good enough for now!

The odd stained glass windows are a challenge we have yet to rectify! I guess you could argue character?

Internal stairs before - mushroom pink, black grippy stuff, tiles that were throughout the main area of the house.

Darling Dylan painting the stairs grey with white risers in time for my 30th birthday party. Took so many hours! What a man. We replaced the brackets for the handrails and just had the rest painted Wattyl Chalkdust on the walls and Dulux Lexicon Quarter for the gloss. We did this throughout the whole house as we wanted to brighten the joint up and could not commit to any interesting colours after dealing with the rainbow we first walked into!

You can see the edge of the Big River 190mm European Oak floating floor we used for the whole middle of the house. Sadly we had to go over the 100mm solid wood floor in the living room in order to achieve continuity throughout the house. We went from 5 floor coverings on one level to just 3.

Feature tile circa 1999 Mooloolaba Motel. Turns out there were salmon square tiles underneath these feature tiles! These were an update! Haha!

Little Austin and Corey cutting fruit at the old bench. Teal sliding door in the background was replaced with a white bifold door from Stegbar. Sad we didn't think about screens until afterward!

The kitchen, sitting room and dining room from the hallway. Arch has just been squared off in the foreground, tiles ripped up, kitchen ripped out, dividing wall between sitting room and kitchen ripped out. Picture rail and teal windows still intact here. Ceiling fan and light fittings were ripped down too.

After: Shaker cabinetry, 40mm stone benchtops, european oak floating floor in a wide board, white bifold servery and door. Chalkdust on the walls, Lexicon Quarter on the roof and trim.

Bevelled small subway tiles - 75mm x 150mm on the splashbacks are a favourite feature as well as pendants from Laura Ashley. Smeg cooker was a mega bargain, Fisher and Paykel fancy plumbed french door fridge...not so much of a bargain!

Half way!

Happy husband, happy wife.

Here on the left you can see our first painted window fram (Colourbond Surfmist, applied with a spray can) and the teal on the right. SO MUCH WORK. So worth it. Many more to go downstairs.

We had many debates over whether to keep the room divider and in the end Dylan won. We kept it and had the painters gloss it Lexicon Quarter. Has a little planter box but it gets so little light even succulents die there! Will have to get some good faux plants!

One of our rainbow rooms - hot pink with teal windows!

The main bedroom - damaged parquetry and broken wooden venetians. Walls a pale purple. Rusted ceiling fan.

This picture was taken after I painted out the maroon feature wall behind the dresser. You can see the brass wardrobe doors we replaced in this picture.

Terrible photo but indicates plush new carpet, chrome wardrobes with mirrored doors (made each bedroom look so much bigger), chalkdust walls and plain beige roller blinds in lieu of the fancy drapes my mother so badly wants me to invest in! One day, Mum, one day!

The door handle changes throughout the house (about 15 doors) made me so ridiculously happy! These were very hard to find - most nickel door handles are levers now but I wanted to stick with a knob shape. Same Gainsborough brand as the originals, bought from a store I found online in Victoria.

Teal and Terracotta Palace!

Quaint! Door fell apart in my hand two weeks after we moved in. Clever Dylan glued it back together.

We shifted the sliding door to a cavity slider (inside the wall) to create more space.

Big fans of cleaning, the previous owners! To be fair I suppose 25 year old ground just gets like that? This is why we didn't do white grout with the new bathrooms - pale grey on the floor and on the skirts so the floor doesn't get so filthy and show a drastic contrast!

Gorgoeus carrara marble mosaic tiles I picked up at the Tile Liquidators for $15 a sheet instead of $45. Hurrah!

Marble and stone!

Thanks to Milton Lighting for fulfilling my sconce dreams!

At least I got my dream shower niche in the main bathroom!

Ensuite shower half done.

This was before the shower shelf (the lack of niche in the ensuite is a long story!) and the splashback was changed. I also think we ended up hoisting the shaving cabinet up higher after this. Love our sliding frameless shower door! That was a hard one to organise. The usually come at a custom width for about $2000 which was way over budget. I found ones in eight different standard sizes and our installer cut the metal rod to fit the space. A pretty good alternative at $1000 including $250 for installation. Bathroom Discount Warehouse at Slacks Creek were godsends!

Much better with the marble mosaic splashback and the cabinet higher.

bottom of page