Get 10% off tapware when you order tiles and tapware together. Use the code YABBY10 (T&C apply)
Get 10% off tapware when you order tiles and tapware together. Use the code YABBY10 (T&C apply)

Kristy and Kieren - Real Life Reno

Courtney Cole

Kristy and Kieren took on a full home renovation and an expansion of the home to become more suitable for their growing family. After lengthy wait for DA approval and an 8 month build, this stunning Victorian era house has transformed into a show stopper! Recently featured in Inside Out Magazine February 2021 issue, peek at our Stirling White and Newport Subways in their new family bathroom, laundry and ensuite!

What spaces did you renovate?
We renovated our entire home! It was originally a 3 bedroom, 1 bathroom, single level Victorian era house. We added a modern rear extension, updated the family bathroom and created a bigger laundry room downstairs and added a parents retreat with ensuite on the new upper level.

Our Stirling white on the floor paired with the Newport gloss white subway 

What motivated you to renovate?
With two kids and another baby on the way, we were quickly outgrowing the house and we knew we needed to make some significant changes if we wanted to stay. We loved the house with its original Victorian features and we knew it had the potential to be a beautiful family home so we were motivated to renovate.

Were you living here at the time of your renovations?
Thankfully we didn't live in the house during the renovation, we rented nearby so we could drop into the site regularly and be on hand to make quick decisions.

Our Stirling white on the floor paired with the Newport gloss white subway 

How would you describe your style?
Textural and tonal, to create a warm and approachable style.

Talk us through the process you took in the planning stages of the renovation!
I love magazines and over the years I'd collected a lot of clippings of homes and interiors we both loved, so we had a very clear style and look we were hoping to achieve. When it came time to source the finishes and selections, I found Instagram and the tag function to be an amazing resource. It was so easy to tap on an image and identify the supplier then click through to the profile for stockists and further details. The kids bathroom mirrors are a great example of this, I saw them on the TileCloud stories in the Redfern House bathroom make-over, I clicked through and bought them straight away!

Our Stirling white on the floor paired our old Avalon in bone, recreate this look with our new Newport gloss small square

Were there any delays? How long did the renovation take?
We kicked off the build in August 2019 and it took 8 months. Thankfully we had no delays and the team even wrapped up a day earlier than scheduled. This was a huge relief as Covid was looming and we were desperate to move into our new home before lockdown and home schooling took effect.

What was the most challenging part of the renovation? Did anything go wrong? How did you adapt?
The most challenging part was the DA process to council, it took almost 18 months to get approval even though we were realistic in approaching the various council controls when developing the DA plans. Thankfully we stuck to it and relied on consultants (town planner, arborist) and our excellent architect, who had a great deal of experience with council, to manage council's requests and the plans were eventually approved. It was worth it in the end!

Our Stirling white on the floor paired our old Avalon in bone, recreate this look with our new Newport gloss small square

Did you and Keiren butt heads over the design at all?
No, thank goodness! Kieren was happy to defer to me when it came to the finishes and selections. But then I also felt a bit of pressure not to get it wrong!

Did you come into the TileCloud showroom to look around at tiles? Did you order samples?
I'd visited almost every tile shop in Sydney collecting samples and agonising over styles and colours. It was honestly so overwhelming and I was procrastinating on making a decision. Then a week before our tiles were needed onsite, I scheduled a Design Appointment with Mel at TileCloud as a last resort. This was a turning point. At the appointment we reviewed my reference images, we discussed the layout of the bathrooms and laundry and talked about the colour of the vanity and tapware we were going for. Then together we selected some beautiful textural tiles that were exactly what I'd hoped for. Looking back, I was getting so caught up in different trends and fashions that I'd forgotten what I really wanted. The design appointment is a fantastic service that I've recommended to others.

Why did you choose TileCloud / What did you enjoy best about the TileCloud experience?
Besides the great experience at the design appointment, Mel, Floss and the rest of the team are all very down to earth and were happy to answer all my questions, even after the tiles were delivered and I needed advice on the grout colour, Mel responded to my email and provided assistance. As a first time renovator, being able to go back and double check details and receive timely feedback was a huge bonus.

Any advice for first time renovators?
Don't try and be too ambitious overall, focus on 1 or 2 key elements in each room as the stand-out feature/s. For the family bathroom the highlight is the gloss subway tiles that we used on 2 feature walls. We laid them vertically to draw your eye up to the skylight. In the ensuite, it's the 100mm x 100mm square tiles for the 2 feature walls and the Nood Concrete basin in peach.


All Photography by: Ryan Linnegar
You can keep up with Kristy and Keiren on instagram at @thebalmainproject
Courtney Cole
As an interior designer at TileCloud, Courtney brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the world of home renovation. With a Diploma in Interior Design and Decoration and a passion for creating stunning interiors, shes dedicated to helping people on their journey to transform their homes. Currently channeling her expertise into renovating her own home, she aims to share valuable insights, tips, and inspiration to assist others in achieving their dream space!