A few interior design ideas, while I wait some more..

Happy Anniversary to me! As of last month this blog passed the one year mark. On the one hand that is a bit depressing since I naively thought the build would be done and dusted within 6 months, but on the other hand when I look at what was involved in the whole process it’s not that bad.  At the start I didn’t realise that container houses in flame zones were as rare as hen’s teeth and unicorns, so half of that time was house design and research into wall structure and other bits to comply with BAL FZ, the other half was DA and Council.

I decided not to stress over this build some time ago, as I have a day job that can provide as much stress as I would like if I need some, and the build process is creative and it’s supposed to be fun. I have started camping on my block most weekends and have begun to tidy up the garden and make some space for the house, and have also been doing some lovely hikes in the mountains and getting all inspired to live up there again. Hence the gap in blog posts.

I have had the engineering done for the foundations, and am currently chasing up the structural engineering for the house itself. Then my CC will be issued. Nope, that’s not a flavoured corn chip, it’s a Construction Certificate.

I am trying to get fixed quotes for the house itself then for the onsite works including the external cladding, but most trades disappeared over January and at least half of February so it’s been slow progress so far this year. Building seems to be the one industry where you ask for a quote on something and have to spend a minimum of 3 to 4 weeks chasing it up, like people don’t actually want the work. I guess if you’re out there building stuff you’re not on the computer doing quotes, so I just have to build that sort of thing into the timeline. The house itself should take about 3 months to build, not including on-site modifications.

In the meantime, I’ve been doing some interior design and layouts just to double check that I can fit things like a sofa into my little container house. It is hard to visual the size of the space so I’ve been digging up pictures that show the inside of two containers joined together.

FB pic_12341463_10153457026658640_451899172317218101_n
Building a two container wide space (posted on FB by Mac Evangelista on “Living sustainably using shipping containers”)
FB pic Mac Evangelista Living sustainably using_10153502876623640_3293812624169542141_n
The finished space, two containers wide.

I think the width of the space above looks pretty good. My living area will have one glass wall made of glass doors down the length of it; the pic below has two walls of glass but you can see what a difference the extra light makes to the space. Half of my ceiling in the living area will be double height as well, adding even more sense of space.

banidea.com interior 2 containers
Two container wide space with lots of light (from http://www.banidea.com)

The layout of my place will be a bit cosier given it’s cold climate, and it includes a wet-back wood fuel stove for heating the house and boosting my hot water in winter.

layout5
One of the many furniture layouts I have come up with, centred around the wood stove and with a dining nook/banquette up in the top corner – the dining table will probably fold up onto the wall and only be there when I need it so the space can also be a reading nook. The glass doors are not drawn on this pic but they take up most of the lower wall, and the main couch faces the view. The white bars represent bookshelves or cabinets, and there will be more storage under the dining nook seating, and in the sofa. The front door is top left. Ignore the colours, the design software didn’t have much choice.

Then sometimes I get a bit radical and think of alternatives to the traditional lounge/dining, like this below. At the end of work days when I sit at a desk, I either end up sitting on the floor or on the couch with my feet up, and I like the casual feel of these floor seating ideas below.. although I would add a lounge chair or two for older visitors whose knees might not be up to floor seating..

sofa alternative2
Moroccan theme with low seating – it doesn’t have to be Moroccan in style, I just like the low cushions in this space (from http://www.brit.co/how-to-make-your-living-room-feel-bigger/)
sofa alternative 1
This is a bit more zen in design, and it could be fun to do somersaults on if the middle space was a bit bigger (from http://home-and-garden.livejournal.com/130234.html)

My colour theme will be natural – I am aiming for “things of stone and wood meets the hobbit”, if the hobbit went a bit tribal but liked metallic ceilings. Not minimalist, I don’t live tidily enough for that and I like books and timber feature walls.

It has been a while since my house design was posted, so here it is again but without any external colours added yet. The idea of the chimney/flue appearing on the back of the deck is to give out a bit of warmth in winter, something to huddle around and take in the fresh mountain air.

3D house designKL

That’s it for now, if no news is good news then I should be the happiest person on the planet.

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8 thoughts on “A few interior design ideas, while I wait some more..”

  1. Hi Kellie – what an absolutely brilliant thing you’re doing! And I guess there may be some difficulties (or not, of course) but nothing like trying to put up a dag-ordinary house! Love it. Keep me posted! Lots of love, Patti

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  2. The design looks great Kellie, I love the idea of the seating and the positioning of the chimney/flue and look forward to visiting when its all done!

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  3. Hi, I’m doing the exact same project for my family right now and I came across your blog searching for answers myself.

    You explain very well and I’d love to know more about what you had to change to live in a flame zone area? That’s what step im up to.

    Thanks

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    1. Hi, thanks for your comment, there was quite a bit to change for the BAL FZ rating. The most important is that the steel container walls themselves do not comply. You either have to clad in something that is rated to comply, or otherwise there is a new NASH recommendation that does have steel external walls but with a thermal barrier and insulation inside it. That version is worth investigating but results in a thick wall inside the container so better for larger container homes where space is not so tight. If you look through my earlier posts you’ll find some info there. You also have to alter windows and doors to mett BAL FZ compliance. Good luck!

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