House of the week | Terrigal | Photos

The appeal of old-world charm and a desire for a modern family home created the renovation vision for this Terrigal home.

The property’s circa 100-year history won owners Jaimie and Aimee Woodcock over when buying the place about three years ago.

“It just had such a beautiful old-world charm,” Jaimie says.

They were also in awe of the gardens, containing trees and plants aged about 70 to 80 years old.

“We were so struck with the garden and what the feel of the gardens were,” Jaimie says.

But the property needed “a serious amount of work” to suit the needs of a young family.

The Woodcocks engaged White + Dickson Architects for the house design, Hall Constructions NSW to build it and landscape architect Michael Cooke to design a new garden, with a pool, around the old plants and trees. 

A blend of historic style and contemporary functionality was key to the design and build of the revamped property, inside and out.

“We were keen to retain the old style, the feel that we loved about it,” Jaimie says. 

“We didn’t want to lose that. But we wanted to make it functional for a family. We have two young kids.”

Jaimie describes the style as “classic Australian mid-century”, with many of the materials used characteristic of 1940s and 50s dwellings.

The kitchen - his favourite part of the house - is symbolic of what he and Aimee were trying to achieve in the home.

“There’s a beautiful blend of materials in that kitchen,” Jaimie says.

“Yet it still maintains the main part of the brief, which was to create a really robust family home.

“It’s beautiful but not precious.”

Jaimie loves the Robertson’s brick tiles (in speckled grey) in the kitchen, laid in a herringbone pattern, which he and Aimee sighted in the Jardan Furniture showroom in Melbourne.

The material tapped in to the look of iconic Australian design but was also tough: “kids can run a lot on that stuff,” Jaimie says.

The tap fittings - from Astra Walker’s Metropolis range in antique brass - are an example of the extensive use of brass detail throughout the home, as are the custom-made kitchen drawer handles, made by Jamie Sargeant.

Sargeant also created the home’s brass front door handle, stamped with the property’s name, Chillamurra.

Jaimie says all the little bespoke items throughout the house are a gift of the design.

“They’re very small but they’re beautiful little items,” he says.

The home’s shingles, stained with Porter’s Palm Beach Black, are also an owner favourite.

Marble and sandstone (including stones brought by horse and cart from a supplier in Erina in the early 1900s) are used extensively throughout the home, as well as basic materials such as formply.

Hall Constructions owner-director Luke Hall says a sense of longevity is achieved through the use of enduring materials, suggestive of the home’s history, detailed to achieve a sense of contemporary timelessness.

“The use of materials whose natural patina build over time enables the home to continue to age gracefully,” he says.

Sustainable and cost-effective materials were used in bespoke ways, such as black formply used as bulkhead joinery.

Sheet ply was used as a wall finish, texture and structure, and stain finishes were used in lieu of paint wherever possible.

“The works to the historic Chillamurra embody textures, materials, forms and proportions evocative of the relaxed coastal experience of Terrigal in the early 1900s, while the alterations enable the home to be reimagined into today’s lifestyle,” Hall says.

The completed home has three bedrooms (the master with an ensuite), a main bathroom, and kitchen, living and dining areas upstairs.

Downstairs is another living space, two bedrooms and a rumpus area.

Jaimie says having the right people on the job working together as a team made the renovation, completed at the end of 2015, a really enjoyable experience.

“I think we had a pretty clear brief of what we wanted to achieve in the home,” he says.

“We didn’t necessarily know what that looked like, but we knew how we wanted to live in the home.”

The architect, builder and the rest of the trades team were able to translate that, Jaimie says.

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