We always LOVE to see inside the homes architects design for themselves, and the home of Chris Rak and Kathryn Robson of Robson Rak Architecture and Interiors in Elwood certainly doesn’t disappoint! This renovated 3 bedroom Edwardian home is functional, stylish, yet effortlessly understated, with every detail perfectly considered.
Originally built in the early 1900’s, Kathryn and Chris’s home had been a rental property for 20+ years before they purchased it. Though they were instantly smitten – it was in need of some love.
Seeking to extend and contemporise the existing Edwardian house, Kathryn and Chris retained the front 3 bedrooms of the house, along with its unusually wide hallway, and demolished the rear to make way for a modern, open plan living / kitchen / dining space. The pair also added a second level, with master bedroom and ensuite upstairs.
Working with key collaborators including landscaper designer Mira Martinazzo from Mud Office, and builders Prolifica Building Group, Kathryn and Chris were able to complete this extensive renovation in under a year.
What is most memorable about Chris and Kathryn’s home is the painstaking attention to detail – right down to the door handles. Sporting a perfect ‘not quite white’ colour palette, the kitchen and living room brings together an elegant edit of furnishings and artwork.
‘The intention with our home was to create a pared back, simple and restorative sanctuary for us to come home to’ Kathryn explains. ‘We kept the colour palette intentionally restrained, allowing the art work and furniture to inject its own colour and personality to the space.’
Kathryn is particularly fond of the portrait of artist Rhys Lee, painted by Heidi Yardley, which hangs over our dining table, alongside a geometric pencil sketch by Sean Meilak. Having been a sculptor in a former life, a number of Chris’s incredible works can also be spotted throughout the home – Kathryn is particularly fond of his black steel sculpture on the kitchen bench.
As architects who spend their days designing other peoples’ dream homes, there is something especially satisfying about this home for Kathryn and Chris. ‘I still pinch myself everyday at the thought that my wife and I can design a beautiful environment for our own family’ Chris says. ‘It’s easy to come home on a Friday night and not leave our sanctuary until Monday morning!’