How to create your Scandinavian-style dream home on a budget

How to create your Scandinavian-style dream home on a budget

When design gurus Nat Wheeler and Kristy Sadlier decided to transform their 1920’s Californian Bungalow in the Melbourne suburb of Glen Iris, they soon realised the challenge of the mammoth task they'd taken on to create their dream home.


Flipping dead money into a dream home

After purchasing the home in October of 2017, the exterior was on the brink of falling down – the weatherboards were worn, paint was chipping off, the garden was heavily overgrown and there were non-existent pathways.

The idea of this project was to renovate without extending the property to demonstrate that it is possible to create a superior look without breaking the bank. “Restoring an older bungalow meant paying homage to its original style inside and out, while giving it a more modern aesthetic with the application of our signature norsu style,” said Nat. “Being a co-owner of Scandinavian-inspired art and homewares business norsu Interiors, we thought it was the perfect opportunity to demonstrate our styling services in reality, empowering our loved customer base to renovate or update their own home.”

Building the dream one paver at a time

Turning a four-bedroom, one-bathroom property into a Scandinavian-inspired dream home for Nat’s young family was no easy task for these two experienced stylists however, Nat and Kristy were committed to improving every single facet of the home including the grand, yet underwhelming concrete slab driveway. “Given the length and width of the driveway, we wanted to make the driveway a real feature and therefore opted against a simple concrete finish,” explains Nat.

The driveway is the main entrance to a home and one of the first, and most notable features. As driveways tend to consume a large portion of our land footprint, it makes sense to utilise this premium space with a designer option which will stand out from the crowd. “A great driveway can add value to the home so we customised the design to fit in with our aesthetic, whilst leaving a lasting impression,” said Nat.


Keep your project simple and classy

A classic Californian Bungalow has a very distinct look, so the importance of blending the rest of the exterior including the driveway with the unique façade was imperative to the project’s final reveal. Nat and Kristy fell in love with Adbri Masonry’s Euro® Stone paver and have used it on their driveway to enhance the colours of their home. The Euro® Stone paver is a large format, linear paving slab with a shotblast finish which exposes the natural aggregates within – these shimmer in the sunlight and give the driveway its character.

Stay on budget using existing house features

Nat and Kristy were able to save some coin by simply securing the ‘driveway safe’ Euro® Stone pavers to their existing concrete slab driveway. “Pavers are also low maintenance and because they are individual pieces instead of a continuous slab, worn or damaged pavers can be easily replaced,” said Nat. It should be noted that driveway pavers must be 50mm thick to hold the weight of a vehicle, unless you attach them to a suitably prepared concrete base. In this instance, Euro® Stone is only 40mm thick, but has been installed on a ‘rigid base’.

After the driveway had completed its facelift, the norsu team turned their attention to creating a separate pedestrian entrance to the house, i.e. a slip-resistant pathway, which meant that it’s safe for children running from the car to the house. The team used the same Euro® Stone pavers on the pathway leading up to the bungalow to ensure that the colour palette would suit the driveway and be carried through the theme of the home.

The final reveal

Upon final reveal, the soft tones of grey used outside and a dramatic double door entry had the neighbours in awe of the homes simple but effective makeover. “Our neighbours and people passing by always stop to comment about our driveway and pathway,” says Nat. “The grand driveway nature, coupled with the stand out front double doors, has certainly become a talking point in the area.”

Make some magic of your own

If you’re considering breathing life into your front yard, check out Adbri Masonry’s wide range of paving options. Available in different colours and styles, they will be sure to spruce up your place and give the rest of the neighbourhood some inspiration for their next DIY project!

To learn more about the Norsu Interiors renovation project, visit their blog post here, or if you have any questions about your project you can get in touch with our friendly customer service team on 1300 230 633.

 You can also check out our social media pages for more masonry inspiration

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