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The master bedroom is more than just a place to sleep. It’s a space to make totally your own and the chance to create a true sanctuary separate to the rest of your home. While it’s good to make the space a cohesive extension of your home’s interior style, you can also take the opportunity to include some bolder styling statements to really bring the room to life, and we’ve got some tips to help you get started!
A master bedroom is the ideal place to use some colour on the walls with different paint shades to really inject your personality into the room. A soft, subtle pastel colour encourages a quiet, calm atmosphere and lets you coordinate with similarly lightly toned furniture pieces and décor, while a darker paint colour adds an element of chic sophistication when paired with muted neutrals throughout the room. If you’re reluctant to include colour on every wall, the master bedroom is perfect for a feature wall, usually behind your bedhead, and this is where you can get creative using wallpaper, wood panelling or other materials to create a beautiful focal point
A master bedroom is usually bigger that the other bedrooms in the home, but that doesn’t mean you need to fill it to the brim with furniture! The bed is the centrepiece of the room, so choosing a beautifully upholstered headboard in a textured fabric or bedframe that coordinates with the wall colour will inform the rest of the room’s furniture style. Bedside tables are a must, as well as a dresser or set of drawers if you need the additional storage space. Alternatively, you might like to include an oversized ottoman that doubles as a storage item, a lovely plush chaise lounge, or an armchair in a beautiful fabric to add some more colour and style to the room. Ideally using no more than three or four pieces of furniture will make the room feel spacious no matter the size and give you enough space to move around in, particularly if you share the space with a partner.
There are plenty of smaller items you can add to your master bedroom to tie the whole look together. Choosing some statement pendant lights or wall sconces to use in place of lamps on your bedside tables will make the room feel modern and lessen the clutter on each side of the bed, and chrome, brass or matte black finishes for your light fittings will add some on-trend style. The additional light fittings will allow you to create ambient mood lighting in the evenings to help relax before bed.
Your bed linen should have layered textures in coordinating colours, with some decorative pillows and cushions, and a beautiful throw blanket draped at the end to elevate your bed to hotel-level luxe status. Instead of using blinds on the windows, using curtains in an understated colour or pattern will add softness and have the added benefit of blocking out the light to encourage lazy weekend sleep-ins. If you prefer the look of blinds, layering them under some luxurious sheet curtains will soften the space around the windows and add an additional layer of privacy from the outside.
A master bedroom should be a place of quiet and calm, and a place you truly enjoy escaping to when you need some time to relax and reset. When you’re building your new home, taking the time to style the space in a way that reflects your personality means you’ll have a bedroom that you’ll love for years to come. For more home inspiration visit the Hotondo Homes website today.
Are you building a new home and you’re curious about what the colour selections process entails and what role an interior design plays in the look and feel of your home? We spoke to Interior Designer and Colour Consultant Cory from Hotondo Homes Ocean Grove to gain a little insight into the whole process!
Being the Interior Design/Colour Consultant for Hotondo Homes Ocean Grove, I liaise closely with clients and staff to complete the colour selection proportion of the build. My role requires me to aid clients with their selections, guiding them through and providing support and advice to create their dream home. My goal is to help clients visualise and consider their selections on a larger scale and as a complete house design, with the various elements all coming together.
Every day is different in my role! On days when I am conducting an appointment, it generally takes the entire day. We start off in the office and work our way through External and Internal selections, as well as the Electrical plan. The day also consists of viewing laminates/timber flooring and carpets, and visiting suppliers to complete the tile selection. Other days generally consist of paperwork, whether that is finalising an appointment or any amendments a client wishes to make afterwards. Part of my role also requires me to liaise with our product representatives on a regular basis to ensure we have all the up to date products on hand for clients to select from. As a business, we conduct checks on jobs prior to contract, so I liaise with staff members to ensure everything on the selections paperwork is correct.
I’m currently seeing a lot of whites and neutrals requested by clients trying to capture the coastal theme to suit the area in which we build. The popular Hamptons look is also requested from time to time. I find that greys are still prevalent in modern homes, as it is a very versatile colour to work with and acts as a good foundation to build your internal styling from. Every year when The Block is on TV I have clients asking for something they’ve seen on the show! This always makes things a bit tricky as what you see on that show is often either an extremely high-end product or something that is currently “on trend”.
I’ve worked in the industry for a few years now and before it was mainly creams and browns which were very popular with clients. Then greys made more of an impact, maybe a bit of black or charcoal thrown in if they are going for more of a modern, contemporary style. There weren’t as many whites/neutral themes as I see now.
Because I don’t cover soft furnishings as part of the role, some clients like to experiment and introduce some colour into the build. This is usually through tile selection, feature entrance door or a glass splashback. I get very excited when clients start to feel confident in their selections and want to have a play with colour or pattern, however I always stress that it must be based on personal taste, not trying to meet the current trends. Any colours on trend should be introduced later on when decorating the home. Unless you absolutely love it there’s a good chance you will get sick of it very quickly!
The main selling points of the home are the externals and the kitchen, so I always recommend clients to focus on those areas first as it is easy to build the rest of the house from here. Large island benches to the kitchen are always a worthwhile investment, being the heart of the home and a base for entertaining.
Always consider the lighting throughout the home – you don’t want to have to do it after the build! Remember you are always going to think of things you should’ve added after you’ve moved in, so spend the time early on perfecting the electrical plan. It’s a good idea to ask family and friends what they wish they had in their homes.
Lastly, I’d say lots of storage space! This is one thing that is very difficult to add in afterwards. Consider the kitchen configuration; do you want cupboards or pot drawers? Also the size of the broom cupboard in the laundry – you don’t want to have to store items in the garage!
Getting to know and working with different types of people, and knowing that I’ve helped them to create their dream home. At the colour selection appointment, we spend the whole day together and there is a lot of contact and conversation prior to and following the day, so it’s always nice when you can build a good rapport with them. It helps the process and ensures they have fun with it, rather than seeing it as a stressful experience.
Enjoy the experience! Apart from moving in and seeing the final product, the colour selection should be the fun part of the process. Make sure you research as much as you can before your appointment and prepare by bringing any visuals/inspiration along with you. Remember it is probably the most expensive outlay of your life so you ideally do not want to be making all the decisions on the day! As I mentioned earlier, don’t focus too much on trends, do what you like, it’s your home. And lastly, always consider re-sale; what aspects can you include to add the most value to the property, and what should you try to avoid. It might be time to re-consider that bright orange kitchen!
Thank you so much for chatting to us, Cory! For more home inspiration and interior décor ideas, visit the Hotondo Homes website today!
Part of the process of building your new home will be completing your colour selections which will give your home it’s colour palette. Once that’s complete it’s a great time to start thinking about the overall style of your home. With a range of different interior styles to choose from, you’re sure to find something that suits not only your chosen home design, but also your family as well.
A classic Hamptons Style is full of light, white and neutral tones that will make your rooms feel bigger, brighter and airer. The kitchen might have traditional Shaker-style cabinetry coupled with subway tile, glass-fronted cupboards and touches of natural timber. Even if your rooms aren’t oversized in true Hamptons style, you can still give the illusion of space with large neutral pieces. Think oversized armchairs and couches in light tones made from thick cotton or linen fabrics, and natural timber side tables and buffets that have a well-loved look. You can add touches of soft colours to break up the white and ivory shades – a mix of blue tones, or subtle blush pink will add depth to the room once you add cushions, throw blankets and vases. This is a timeless look that will never go out of style, and is particularly suited to homes in country and coastal regions.
This style of décor combines simplicity and authenticity, taking its inspiration from spaces like workshops and factories and repurposing it for the home. Featuring eclectic elements that showcase structural elements of the home like exposed ceiling beams and metal staircases, and statement pieces such as large pendant lights and iron balustrades, this style is a blend of practicality and creativity that works well in urban homes. Many people opt for a polished concrete floor to enhance that industrial feel and pair it with dark grey, black or brown paint colours. With an emphasis on rough, earthy surfaces that also include metal accents, and furniture that is a mix of form and function such as leather couches and glass tables, your home will have a sophisticated inner-city feel that you’ll love.
If you’re building a home near the beach or you just love that coastal vibe, this style is for you! Coastal style in the home focuses on bringing the beauty of the natural landscape into your home so that the switch from outdoors to indoors feels seamless. With lots of light wood throughout the house, from the flooring to the kitchen table your home will feel like an extension of the environment you live in. Include lots of light whites and ivories in your paint colours and tile choices, along with little accents of colour that emulate the different shades of the sea – pale blue, seafoam green, even a touch of sandy yellow. Your furniture can include neutral colours, with lots of white, such as layered white bedlinen, light beige couches, and taupe rugs that make each space feel like they’re part of the beautiful beach that’s just outside your door.
The most timeless choice, a modern traditional décor follows current trends and evokes a family-friendly atmosphere that will suit your home for years to come. Using warm neutrals like beige and browns, or cool neutrals like grey and white as a base, you’ll be able to build each space when you use modern furniture that blends in with ease. Using furniture that coordinates with these tones and including pieces with a natural timber look will make your home cosy and welcoming to all who visit, and won’t limit you when the time comes to replace well-loved furniture as your family grows.
With so many interior styles to choose from, it can be challenging to find a décor that suits your new home, but as you work with your colour consultant and your builder, you’ll soon start to see themes emerge that you can build on. By incorporating a few statement features in your home and bringing in key pieces of furniture, you will be able to work towards blending all the elements together to create a look that reflects you and your family’s taste to create a beautifully styled home. For more interior inspiration visit the Hotondo Homes website today.
When your family begins to grow and you have a new baby on the way, one of the most exciting parts of the process is decorating a nursery as you wait for the baby to arrive. It’s so tempting to create a space that focuses on the newborn, baby and toddler years with soft pastel colours, whimsical wall murals or even a delightful childlike theme that’s present throughout the entire room, from the curtains to the wall art, to the rug. However if you plan on the nursery being your child’s room right through to their teenage years, you might like to reconsider how you decorate it before the baby arrives to ensure you have a space that grows gently with your child.
There’s nothing sweeter than pastel pink or baby blue walls to build your room around, but in recent years trends have moved towards using neutral paint colours in nurseries. Cool grey with white trim, warm white and ivory, and muted beige tones will provide you with an understated palette you can build on with coordinating furniture to create a chic space. You can add removable wall decals for a splash of gentle colour and hang framed prints to emphasise the newborn and baby atmosphere, but keeping the base colour palette simple and neutral means the space won’t need to be repainted once your child begins to express their own colour preferences, saving you money and time in the long run.
As with the walls, the floor of your nursery should be a neutral colour. Thinking about the baby and toddler years, carpet is the perfect choice to create a warm, soft place for your baby to lie, roll, sit up, and play safely and comfortably on, and has the added benefit of keeping the room warm during the colder months. You can still lay a rug over the top with a bit of colour to energise the space, and which is easy to replace over the years as your child grows. Hardwood and vinyl laminate flooring is still a great choice, as it’s long wearing and will hold up to the everyday traffic and wear and tear that comes with family life, particularly when the kids are little. Adding a larger floor rug on top will help protect it during those rough and tumble younger years, and give kids a soft place to play.
Newborns obviously require specific furniture in the early years up until they reach toddler status, and you’ll easily find bassinettes, cots, and change tables in white, blonde or darker wood tones to coordinate with your wall and floor colours. As your child grows and you need to think about purchases like beds, desks and different storage solutions, it’s wise to continue to stick to an understated colour palette. As tempting as it is to by that race car or princess bed for your little one, those furniture items have a limited shelf life as you child grows, both in size and appeal. There are plenty of beds that appeal to both kids and tweens and can last for years while still suiting their emerging tastes. A little boho style with a cane headboard or ethereal accessories on a four poster bed will give your child’s room that unique touch, and with wrought iron beds now available in a range of colours you’re sure to find something that suits your little one’s tastes. Investing in a king single or a double bed once you have a toddler means you won’t be replacing furniture once they start growing as they approach their teenage years.
The easiest and most affordable parts of the room to change are the accessories. Bed linen has come a long way over the last decade and there are a range of colours and styles that your child will love. Adding in a few cute cushions that can be passed down to younger siblings or donated once your child wants to change up the style is simple and affordable. Little touches around the room like floating shelving that holds cute knick knacks, colourful bag hooks and novelty lights are all easy ways to add character to your baby’s room that can be kept for years or replaced as they get older. You can then change these details every so often as they grow, giving the room individuality and show off their adorable personalities.
Nurseries are designed to be calm, welcoming places for parents to spend time in with their new additions in those early years, but taking the time to think ahead past the baby stage means you’ll be able to create a space that has a colour palette that will allow you to let the room change as your child grows with minimal time and expense. Once your child begins to express their taste a room that has an on-trend, neutral base can be easily reworked to suit whatever stage of life your child is in. For more kids’ room décor inspiration, visit the Hotondo Homes website today.
Spending more time at home means you might have become more acutely aware of the clutter and mess created from day-to-day living recently! Or maybe you’re really noticing the accumulation of belongings that comes with a growing family having lived in a dwelling for a number of years. This is the perfect time to take stock of your stuff and pass the time decluttering and tidying up your home from top to bottom, and we’ve got some helpful tips to get you started!
The first step is to prepare yourself to emotionally detach yourself from your belongings. While it’s important to keep some sentimental and nostalgic items, it’s hard to keep every single birthday card you’ve been given or all the beautiful artwork your children have created for you over the years! Keeping a few of these items from milestone events for sentimental sake is fine, and those special pieces of artwork can be stored in a folder, or scanned digitally and printed in a collage, Ideally you should be recycling things and clearing your desks and cupboards of too much paper to make way for household items to be properly stored. The same can be said of furniture and larger items you’ve inherited simply because no one wanted to donate them. Holding on to someone else’s memories adds to the emotional and physical clutter in your house. If a large item doesn’t have sentimental value to you, ask family members if they would like it and if no one does, donate it to someone who needs it more than you do to free up space in your home.
Instead of looking at your whole house as one huge project, start small and work your way up. Focus on smaller spaces like cabinets and cupboards in bathrooms and laundries, then move on to kitchen drawers and cupboards. Spending half an hour each day on smaller spaces will give you a sense of achievement that will motivate you to move on to bigger projects like studies, wardrobes, the pantry, and play rooms. It’s helpful to divide things into three piles: throw away/recycle, donate, or keep. Anything that hasn’t been used in at least two years can be discarded, since you’ll be safe in the knowledge that because you haven’t used it recently you won’t miss it when it’s gone! This is a particularly helpful strategy when you declutter your wardrobe – since many of us tend to hang on to clothes long after they’ve gone out of style, focusing on what you really don’t wear anymore will make it easier to donate it so that someone else can find value in it long after you’ve let it go.
Once you’ve decluttered your home, you may find you’re in need of new ways to store things. Investing in a good storage solution for certain areas of your home will help keep things tidy and organized, preventing clutter from building up again. For example, using clear, air-tight containers in the pantry to visually keep track of your flours, grains, and pastas will ensure you don’t continue to repurchase grocery items until you’ve used what you already have. In your wardrobe organising shoes on shoe racks or in plastic shoeboxes will remind you of what you already have in your closet and encourage you to use all your shoes rather than a select few items. The bathroom vanity is a great place to implement a clear storage box or tray arrangement for make up and skincare neatly on the bench top. Again, this will keep your products on display and ensure you’re using things up before repurchasing and adding more clutter.
Whether your home needs a full declutter and clean out from top to bottom, or you just have a few problem areas you just can’t seem to streamline, starting small and focusing on dedicating a little bit of time each day means your home will be looking tidy in no time! For more home organisation inspiration, visit the Hotondo Homes website today.
With many of us spending a lot more time at home with our families, it can be challenging to keep the kids entertained every day, particularly when they tire of the toys they already have. Here at Hotondo Homes we’ve done a bit of brainstorming and drawn on our own personal experiences to come up with a few foolproof and creative ways to keep the kids happy, and more importantly, busy and active within the home!
If you love to bake and your kids are a little bit older, this is the perfect time to get creative in the kitchen with them! You can bake a batch of cupcakes or simple sugar cookies the night before, and set up cupcake and cookie decorating stations for them to participate in. All you need are a few batches of icing with a few drops of food colouring to create different colours, some sprinkles, crushed up chocolate biscuit crumbs and chocolate bars, some lollies, and you’ll have a fun family-friendly activity to keep them busy, with the added bonus of having some delicious morning and afternoon tea treats to enjoy in the days to follow.
As the weather becomes a bit cooler in the mornings, or for those rainy days when everyone’s indoors, a little imagination is often needed. If you have any large carboard boxes ready to recycle, cut the sides and flatten them down, then grab a black marker and draw a series of roads all over the flat cardboard. Your kids can grab their toy cars and assorted small figurines to play on the tracks together in their bedrooms or in the living area as you get on with household chores. Alternatively, you can pop a plastic mat down on the floor and set it up as an art easel or canvas to get their creative juices flowing with some painting. If you have a small camp tent you might also like to set it up in the living area and set the kids up inside with some cosy blankets and pillows, a few books and toys, and some snacks so they can do a bit of indoor camping! No tent? No worries! Just grab your dining chairs, a few big blankets to drape over the top and you’ve got a perfect indoor fort for the kids to enjoy while they’re stuck inside.
A big bottle of bubble bath does wonders to elevate normal bath time to something a lot more fun for kids, but to take things to the next level you might like to order some coloured bath foam and bath crayons so the kids can have some fun and get creative! There’s also the option of using washable paint diluted with a bit of water and some paintbrushes to really let their artistic flair shine through as they paint a few masterpieces for you to admire. With any of these bath products, it’s always a good idea to do a patch test first to ensure it will wash off your bathtub and tiles properly once the activity is finished.
If your new home has some outdoor space, now is the perfect time to add a few items that the kids will be able to enjoy for years to come. Many retailers sell sand pit kits that just need some quick DIY assembly and a few bags of sand added to it. Grab the kids’ cars, beach buckets and spades, and they’ll be happy for hours digging in the sand. If you have a covered alfresco, and a baby who’s getting increasingly mobile, you might like to purchase a hanging swing that can be bolted from the beams so your baby can enjoy some fresh air and activity outside with their older siblings. If you have older kids, a larger swing set, while undoubtedly a splurge when it comes to cost, will no doubt be a huge hit and keep them happy for hours on end. For simpler things that toddlers and younger kids can participate in, investing in some bubble wands, sidewalk chalk and a water table will give you a stash of fun activities to encourage outdoor play at home.
Being at home doesn’t have to be a dull or stressful ordeal. By making a plan and having plenty of things on hand to keep the kids entertained, this can become a time that the entire family embraces and enjoys together as we all make the most of this extended time at home.
Beaumont Tiles has long been leading the way in Australian bathroom design as well as being one of Hotondo Homes’ preferred suppliers. As part of its 60 year anniversary celebration the nation’s largest tile retailer has announced the six must-watch bathroom trends of 2020. We chatted to our friends at Beaumont Tiles about this trend forecast and we’re excited to tell you a little bit more about these wonderful options available for your new home!
Worn and treasured, this style reflects our desire to go back to basics and explore the purity of raw, almost primitive design that is tactile and resonant. Think unfinished materials and rustic textures, misshapen ceramics and an open celebration of imperfection and uncomplicated beauty. This style is perfectly suited to flooring that creates a well lived-in atmosphere as soon as you open the front door.
Lovers of luxury will be in their element with references to motifs from art deco, Bauhaus, 40s, 70s and soul that are blurred to create a soft medley of iconic design notes that are warm, inviting and progressive in appearance. Dark charcoal tones or navy blue will evoke feelings of bygone eras and give your home a luxurious feel.
Eclectic and creative, this style takes elements from both Scandinavian and Russian design, blending them into an organic wood-like setting. Earthy tones, with a casual and relaxed aura are the best way to achieve this look. You can also use different colours, with shades of green calling back to the natural environment your new home is located in to create a seamless blend between indoor and outdoor.
With a focus on paring back and taking a mindful approach to our impacts on the environment the term “slow-sumption” has been coined, and Life Kind reflects the broader social consciousness towards responsible living. Think natural texture and tones that are in subtle neutrals such as light grey to form a basis for your colour palette that’s cohesive and functional, particularly in the common areas of your home.
Our online and offline, urban and coastal lives in Australia are blurring the lines in our worlds, and Hybrid Life is the design interpretation of our experiences, observations and interactions creating forward-thinking spaces that reflect the shift in our social paradigm. With a look and feel of modern chic, you can include lots of crisp white tones with sharp lines paired with darker neutrals to create a space that feels truly reflective of twenty-first century life.
This is an incredible hierarchy of elements spanning handwoven cloth textures, romantic timber patinas, rich colour palettes of deep blues, burgundy and bronze, then contrasted with pops of grey and green. If you’re looking to inject bold colour into your new home, this is a trend to embrace whole-heartedly.
With so many beautiful tile selections available, you’re spoiled for choice when you use Beaumont Tiles’ six styles to watch as a guideline for choosing the tiles for your new home. Beaumont Tiles is Australia’s biggest retailer of tiles and bathroomware and one of our preferred suppliers here at Hotondo Homes. For more tile inspiration and to find your interior design style with the Beaumont Tiles What’s My Style Quiz, visit the Beaumont Tiles website today.
Our friends at Laminex have released their annual trend forecast for 2020 with a beautiful palette of colours and textures that promise to bring us closer to nature. Their Beneath The Surface forecast features four collections of colours and textures that celebrate the energising spirit of nature, bringing the look and feel of our planet’s vast oceans and the places where the land meets the sea into the home in a subtle and inviting way.
This colour palette evokes the warm serenity of a perfect beach, with warm neutrals, muted pastels, soft veins and subtle metallic accents that challenges traditional colour pairings. These colours have a beautifully faded quality to them, with the transient blues, greens and pinks we see in the sea and in the sky during sunrise and sunset. Anchored by warm enriching neutrals as well as low-sheen metallics that create subtle points of light, this collection is perfect for kitchens and common areas that require a warm, inviting feel. The Calm 1, 2, and 3 palettes creamy neutrals, fibrous fabrics and cracked and peeling surfaces for a handcrafted character, and warm neutrals paired with cooler tones for warm and cool expressions.
This collection focuses on our desire to reconnect with nature by giving expression to this feeling with a rich and raw palette of greens, browns and dark woodgrains inspired by the natural world. These colours are dominated by greens and browns. These colours represent a perfect balance of water and land, being the background colours of life on earth that bring an expression of neutrality, and are perfect for spaces like bathrooms and ensuites where water and natural light flow freely, connecting us to the spaces outside our homes. In The Shallows 1, 2, and 3 palettes feature the organic colours of water and land, urban atmospheres, and a beautifully calming feel.
Celebrating the resilience and inner strength with confident combinations of deep blues, dark greys and shades of black, Deep Below takes a deeper dive beneath the surface to create a bold, confident tones and emphatic expressions of deep colour. Strong deep blues are supported by smoky tones, flashes of deep green and purple, dark woodgrains and even black. The darkness that connects these decors presents opportunities for an almost monotonal colour scheme. A master bedroom or separate living room would benefit from these rich, stylish tones, with navy and other shades being perfect for feature walls contrasts against metallic accessories throughout the room. The Deep Below 1, 2 and 3 palettes have a monochromal, contemporary character, with dark yet fresh tones that can be layered to create bold colour combinations.
This collection includes fresher, cleaner tones and a confident, eclectic use of colour as it energises spaces and pairs nuanced bright colours with tinted neutrals. These combinations suggest a fresh take on colour blocking, but can also be used on their own to create a soft and tactile quality. Kitchens and children’s bedrooms would embrace this colour palette, creating bright, happy spaces that evoke a calm and welcoming feel. The See The Light 1, 2 and 3 palettes feature delicate colours and soft tones that can be colour blocked or applied on their own for a soft and tactile quality to work with both classic and contemporary interiors with a sophisticated yet fun feel. Gentle decors draw strength from their contrast against the deeper tones for a more organic feel.
Laminex’s Beneath The Surface collection celebrates the energising colours, textures, and shapes that encompass the spirit of the natural world through a range of emerging colour trends that connect us to and evoke feelings of nature through both subtle and bold uses of tonal colour palettes that will look elegant and inviting in your new home. For more design and interior inspiration tips and tricks, as well as 2020 trends to look out for, visit the Hotondo Homes website today.
Editorial content kindly provided the team at Laminex – with thanks to Catherine Valente, Mark Scruby, Natalie Turnbull and Lillie Thompson.
Are you ready to host Christmas Day in your beautiful new Hotondo Home? We’ve got some great quick and easy recipes to help you out so you can impress your family and friends with your cooking as well as wowing them as they gather in your stunning new kitchen with some tried and true Hotondo Homes Christmas favourites!
This is the perfect slow cooker recipe you can make ahead of time for Christmas Day, leaving you free to get your other dishes prepped and into the oven before your guests arrive. You’ll just need to heat it up and plate it right before everyone takes a seat at the dining table. This pilaf is also perfect for warm weather because it’s not too heavy, but still rich in flavour thanks to the lamb!.
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 kg boneless lamb shoulder, cut into 2cm pieces OR 1kg of lamb shanks
1 large brown onion, sliced thinly
4 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground coriander
2 teaspoons allspice
2 teaspoons chilli powder (I omitted the chilli powder for fussy, small child reasons)
3 cups chicken stock
1 bunch silverbeet, trimmed and chopped
400 grams canned chickpeas, rinsed and drained
100 grams raisins
1/2 cup pine nuts
1/2 cup chopped fresh coriander
Heat half the oil in a saucepan on medium heat and cook the lamb in batches until it is browned all over. Transfer to the slow cooker when done.
Heat remaining oil in saucepan and cook the garlic and onions, stirring occasionally for five minutes or until fragrant.
Add the ground spices and cook for another minute.
Stir in the chicken stock and bring the mixture to the boil.
Transfer to the slow cooker and cook on low for seven hours.
Stir in rice and chickpeas, and place the silverbeet on top at hour seven and cook on high for a further fifty minutes until the rice is soft.
Use a fork to stir the silverbeet through the pilaf.
Serve topped with pine nuts raisins and fresh coriander.
A firm family favourite, these delicious treats are kid-friendly and can be made a few days before Christmas so that all you have to do is pull them out of the fridge on Christmas Day to serve as an after dinner treat! These are also perfect to make each year with the kids, and a lovely holiday tradition to start with your little ones as they help you make a batch to give out in treat bags to family and friends during the festive season!
1 packet of milk arrowroot biscuits
1 x 395 gram tin of sweetened condensed milk
1 ½ tablespoons of cocoa, sifted
Two cups of desiccated coconut, set aside
1 teaspoon of rum (optional)
Crush the milk arrowroot biscuits in a food processor until they resemble breadcrumbs.
Sift in the cocoa and mix.
Pour in the condensed milk and mix until all the dry ingredients are combined.
(add the optional teaspoon of rum now for a more grown up flavour!)
Pour the desiccated coconut into a container. Roll teaspoons of the biscuit mix into balls and roll in the coconut, then place them in a container.
Continue until all the biscuit mix has been rolled into balls, then place in an airtight container and keep in the fridge until you’re ready to serve.
Makes about 20.
The rumballs will keep in the fridge for up to one week.
This is perhaps the easiest post-lunch refreshing treat you’ll ever make! Perfect for hot summer days, and always a winner with kids, watermelon Christmas trees and kiwi fruit stars will take you no more than fifteen minutes to cut, plate and serve!
Ingredients & Materials
One large watermelon wedge
2 or 3 kiwi fruit
1 medium Christmas tree cookie cutter
1 small star cookie cutter
Additional fruit to decorate (cherries, berries, honeydew melon)
Slice watermelon in triangular slices that are larger than the cookie cutter.
Place the cookie cutter over the watermelon slice with the rind base lined up with the cookie cutter base.
Press down to cut the Christmas tree shape and place on a platter with the tree top ends meeting in the centre.
Peel kiwi fruit and slice in 1 cm thick slices.
Press star cookie cutter down and cut out star shapes.
Place on platter around the watermelon.
Add additional fruit to decorate – any red or green fruit will tie in nicely with the Christmas theme.
Cut ahead of time and keep in the fridge until needed.
This dessert is perfect as a light alternative to heavier Christmas cakes and puddings, and very easy to prepare in the morning on Christmas Day. The soft ricotta mixed with the sweetness of sugar, lemon or orange zest and a hint of cinnamon will leave your guests indulging in more than one of these irresistible sweet treats!
Ingredients & Materials
12 x Premade cannoli shells (available from European delicatessens)
750 grams of ricotta cheese
40 grams of icing sugar
1 tablespoon of lemon or orange zest
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Additional icing sugar
Combine the ricotta, icing sugar, cinnamon and zest in a bowl and mix until thoroughly combined.
Fill the piping bag with the cream mixture, snip the end off and gently pipe the cannoli shells full of the ricotta filling, ensuring the piping is spread from one end of the shell to the other.
Once you’ve piped filling into all the shells, arrange them on a plate and sprinkle icing sugar over the tops right before serving.
We hope these delicious dessert recipes help with your meal prep in the lead up to Christmas Day, and that the celebrations in your new Hotondo home are beautiful memories that are better than you ever imagined. From everyone at Hotondo Homes, we wish you a very merry Christmas, and a happy and safe new year!
For more home design and interior inspiration ideas, visit the Hotondo Homes website today.
With many new home designs including an alfresco area that’s perfect for family meals and entertaining, there’s often space to bring elements of your kitchen outside. Designing an outdoor kitchen will allow you to make the most of the warmer weather and encourage your family and friends to spend more time together outside. We’ve got some great tips to help you design an outdoor kitchen that’s the ideal communal space!
One of the key elements to an outdoor kitchen is a barbecue so you can cook the majority of your meal outside. When designing your space, ensure you’ve positioned the barbecue away from the doors to the house to avoid smoke and food smells from permeating your adjacent indoor areas, but not so far away that it’s separated from the outdoor dining space. If possible, ensure the barbecue is built in to a bench with storage space underneath or next to it so that you can store all your cooking utensils and cleaning equipment within reach of the cooking area.
If you have room, installing a bench around your barbecue or next to it will allow you to also do most of your food preparation outside as well. This will allow you to cook with ease, since all the food will be within reach to quickly pop on the barbecue, lessening the need to go back and forth to your kitchen inside to retrieve the food. Having storage underneath means you can have a durable set of outdoor crockery, cutlery, glassware, serving dishes and condiment storage readily accessible to use once the food is ready to be served, cutting down on the amount of things that need to be stored inside your main kitchen.
An outdoor kitchen needs to be accompanied by comfortable outdoor seating, so it’s worth considering whether you’d like to keep it casual with couches, or a more formal table and chair arrangement. Since you’ll be eating meals and enjoying a few beverages outside, it’s often more comfortable for guests to sit at a table with their food, so including a table and chairs or bench seating with a table for meals is often the best option. If space allows, having a small couch for more casual entertaining in a different area of the alfresco means you can enjoy drinks and canapés then move to the table for the main meal.
The inclusion of a sink in your outdoor kitchen may not seem like the most obvious luxury, but it’s a convenience that many don’t consider when designing their space. Having an outdoor sink with hot and cold taps will help with the cleaning of dishes as well as barbecue clean up, and perfect for quickly cleaning up any food or drink spillages without having to venture inside for cleaning supplies or access to water. You might also like to include a small bar fridge to store drinks, or a small wine fridge that’s perfect for keeping beverages cool prior to a function without taking up room in your main fridge inside. There’s also the added benefit of having cold drinks readily available if guests drop in unexpectedly.
When it comes to indoor/outdoor living, including a well appointed outdoor kitchen in your new home’s alfresco area is a must-have for entertaining. With a carefully considered layout and some convenient inclusions, you’ll have a space that encourages more family meal time outside during the warmer months as well as the perfect space to entertain friends at a moment’s notice. To see more home design ideas, head to the Hotondo Homes website today.
One of the most common interior paint colours for new homes is white. It works in so many ways throughout the home, and complements every other colour in the spectrum, but finding the perfect shade can be tricky. With so many beautiful shades to choose from it’s easy to spend hours looking at sample colours and paint swatches on your walls to decide which white is the best. We’ve got some helpful tips to explain the difference in white tones and which one is right for your home!
Not sure how white paint can seem warm? As you look at paint colours, you’ll soon see that some whites have brown, yellow, or even red undertones! These whites range from warm taupes, ivories, some shades of grey, and natural colours with a hint of yellow. Whites in this group will warm your home and create an inviting and soft atmosphere, particularly in rooms that don’t get a lot of sunlight, or rooms that are on the larger side. If you’d like to create a more traditional, country style feel inside your home, these whites will be perfect!
Some whites have a definite cool feel to them because they have grey, blue or green undertones. These shades are better suited to rooms in your home that receive plenty of sunlight, particularly in the afternoon because the paint colour will feel like it’s counteracting the light to cool the space down. You might like to include these shades of white if your interior décor leans toward a modern feel with lots of accompanying monochrome shades of grey and black to create a truly contemporary colour palette.
These are the truest shade of white and don’t have any undertones that change the whiteness of the colour. Pure whites can feel sterile or uninviting, so they are best used sparingly to avoid an atmosphere that feels cold and makes the home seem unliveable. These white whites are suited to smaller, utilitarian spaces like laundries, smaller bathrooms or powder rooms where there isn’t a lot of foot traffic or time spent in the space.
The best thing about using white as a feature of your colour palette is that it goes so well with almost every other colour! For a coastal feel you might like to use a cool white with touches of blue, sea green, or turquoise to mimic that calm, beachy feel. Or for a country style, warm whites with lots of natural wood textural elements mixed in will make your open-plan areas welcoming and homely. The possibilities are endless!
Once you’ve decided to go with warm whites or cool whites, the best way to choose the perfect shade of white is to choose three or four shades and paint some swatches on the wall. View the swatches at different times of the day so you can see how the light plays off the white paint to see if the colour changes dramatically. You should also see how your lighting system changes the tone of the whites, particularly at night when there’s no natural light coming in. Once you’ve found a white that looks great throughout the day and night without too much tonal change, get painting! You’ll have a beautiful space that you can complement with accompanying furniture and accessories to make a welcoming home interior your family will love.
For more home design and interior décor ideas, visit the Hotondo Homes website today.
As your family grows and kids get older, sometimes space inside the home can feel like it’s full to overflowing, especially when friends come over and add to the number of people inside. One way to add additional liveable space to your home without undertaking a costly extension is to convert your garage! It’s a great way to provide more room to your home design, while still offering independent space without changing the structure and existing floor plan. We’ve got a range of tips and ideas to help you create a living space to suit your family’s lifestyle!
The first thing you’ll need to add will be proper insulation, plastering to walls and ceiling, flooring, overhead lighting, and waterproofing, the latter being particularly important if you’re adding a sink or small ensuite. These things may seem costly, but will go the distance in ensuring the space is liveable and able to be utilised for years to come as a comfortable, weather-proof space. You may also need to install additional power outlets to allow for media devices, soft lighting and small appliances like fridges and heating or cooling. These things will all transform the space from an oil-stained, grimy garage to an inviting room.
Converting a garage to a bedroom is one of the most popular uses of the space. As children age into their late teen years, and continue to live at home with their parents into adulthood, being able to have a space to call their own is invaluable. Laying plush carpet to keep the space warm in winter, painting the walls a light neutral colour to make the room feel bigger, and adding window dressings will elevate the space to a cosy, welcoming bedroom. If you have space to install some simple shelving or a compact wardrobe system the room will be truly functional as a bedroom. Once your offspring leave the family home, the space can be used for an older family member who’s not quite ready to give up their independence. Another option would be to use it as a room for rent, creating a stream of income while still allowing both the tenant and the home owner privacy.
While many new home designs offer a study nook or semi-private study zone inside, as children get older and need more room, desk space is at a premium! If one or both parents run their own business or work from home a majority of the time, you may find there’s just not enough room for everyone to work comfortably, so additional study or office space is required. Converting your garage to an office will ease the load inside, and create a place of quiet solitude for study or work. Add built-in shelving and cabinetry, a desk that spans the length of one wall to create enough space for people to work simultaneously, and even a small couch and coffee table for client meetings. You’ll have an office space that looks professional and encourages a quiet, studious atmosphere for a variety of members of the family.
If your home design is a compact one and you only have one living space, converting your garage to a media room will give your family the chance to relax without feeling crowded. Your older teens may benefit from having a separate space where they can chill out with friends, play music in, or hold a movie night without disturbing parents or younger siblings. You may like to include sound proofing in the early stages of the conversion to ensure neighbours aren’t bothered by music or TV noise, and add thick carpeting and heavy curtains to further muffle sound. Installing a large TV, a modular couch, and a coffee table, as well as a small cupboard for snacks, a bar fridge and even a small sink area will make this the ideal set up for relaxing with friends!
Whenever you’re adding additional rooms to your home or undertaking a renovation of an existing space remember to contact your local council to check if you need to gain permits or approval before going ahead with any changes. If done correctly, a garage conversion can be a fantastic benefit to your home and family’s lifestyle! For more home design ideas and inspiration, visit the Hotondo Homes website today.
Over the past few years, interior design trends have encouraged the use of colour in the home, ranging from bold jewel tones to a touch of pastel here and there. There’s no question that a neutral colour palette will ever go out of style, but if you want to embrace colour and include it on your walls, we’ve got a few tips and tricks to help you choose the perfect paint colours throughout your home!
Fancy an emerald green or a rich navy blue on your walls? These jewel tones will make a room feel cosy and warm and add an element of luxury to the space. Remember to contrast the rich colour with lighter tones for your furniture and flooring as this will lift the energy of the space. You’ll have a beautifully styled room that lends itself to more formal entertaining or a kid-free relaxation zone.
A big trend for 2018/2019 has been the inclusion of earthy tones in the home. Designers are forecasting a continued focus on the connection between the home and the surrounding environment, which means the inclusion of mossy greens, earthy reds and oranges, and rustic natural wood finishes. Choosing a mossy green for your walls and adding furniture and accessories that are in neutral shades will create a seamless blend between indoor and outdoor.
Pastel colours aren’t limited to children’s rooms anymore. Many interior design trends include a splash of pale colours on the walls, which are then offset by sharp metallic golds or bronze soft furnishings to enhance the feeling of warmth and luxury. Bedrooms and living areas can be great places to subtly include pastel colours on the walls to create more depth, and pairing these pastel tones with furniture in similar softly coloured shades can create a space that’s delicately decorated and endlessly calming.
A wall colour palette that focuses on neutral shades is a timeless interior décor choice, but it definitely doesn’t have to be bland! When you choose neutral shades of white, beige, taupe, and grey for your walls, you have the ability to create a room that feels both cool and warm at the same time. A cool grey wall colour, for example, can be offset by warm beige furniture and drapes or blinds to make the space feel cosy and welcoming.
While it’s tempting to embrace colours that are trendy for a year or two, the key is to pick colours that make a statement while also creating a timeless feel in your home. Some colours never go out of style, and even though millennial pink is definitely having a moment, it’s best to focus on paint colours that will stand the test of time in your home as your family grows and your tastes mature.
For more home design and interior décor ideas, visit the Hotondo Homes website today.