This website uses cookies to improve your experience navigating our site. By continuing to browse, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

OK, I understand

A Contemporary Brunswick Addition That Contorts Out Of Sight

Architecture

After 10 years (and numerous previous owners), this Edwardian home in Brunswick, Melbourne finally received a much-needed renovation.

Lisa Breeze Architect was engaged to restore the facade, and add a substantial multi-level extension, in her signature style combining character, colour and cleverly integrated features.

The addition contorts and warps out almost entirely out of street view to suit its relatively compact site and Victoria’s residential design code, thereby satisfying neighbours while creating interesting shapes and spaces within.

29th November, 2022

The sunken lounge in the new open-plan living area. Photo – Cathy Schusler. Styling – Natalie James

Azure carpet adds colour to the otherwise minimal interior scheme. Photo – Cathy Schusler. Styling – Natalie James

The ground level lounge. Photo – Cathy Schusler. Styling – Natalie James

The kitchen view from the meals area. Photo – Cathy Schusler. Styling – Natalie James

The bar integrated into pink joinery. Photo – Cathy Schusler. Styling – Natalie James

Stained timber joinery adds an earthy element to the interiors. Photo – Cathy Schusler. Styling – Natalie James

Photo – Cathy Schusler. Styling – Natalie James

The front two rooms of the original house have been retained. Photo – Cathy Schusler. Styling – Natalie James

The staircase at the centre of the home. Photo – Cathy Schusler. Styling – Natalie James

The main bathroom double vanity. Photo – Cathy Schusler. Styling – Natalie James

An elegant freestanding bath references the home’ s heritage. Photo – Cathy Schusler. Styling – Natalie James

Pink joinery characterises the main bedroom. Photo – Cathy Schusler. Styling – Natalie James

Shingled cladding on the upper level is an abstract reference to the facade’s heritage cladding.Photo – Cathy Schusler. Styling – Natalie James

Even pets are well-accommodated in this home, with Bella the spoodle getting her own custom bed in the outdoor entertaining area. Photo – Cathy Schusler. Styling – Natalie James

The three-level extension contorts out of street view behind the restored Edwardian facade. Photo – Cathy Schusler. Styling – Natalie James

Amelia Barnes
Tuesday 29th November 2022

‘ResCode was not written specifically for smaller inner-city blocks, so navigating the limitations of these regulations leads to challenges, and in this case, interesting forms and spaces.’ – Lisa Breeze

A  major transformation has occurred inside this Brunswick, Melbourne home, though its facade appears almost exactly as it did 100 years ago.

Lisa Breeze Architect recently succeeded in restoring its original Edwardian exterior before a large three-level extension that contorts almost entirely out of street view.

The front two rooms of the original house have been retained, followed by new service areas and an open-plan domain opening to the backyard designed by Mud Office. The bedrooms and additional living spaces are located above, with a rooftop terrace on the very top level. 

The form of the addition is heavily influenced by the site (367 square metres), the desires of the clients, and Victoria’s residential design code. ‘It is an exploration into how Victoria’s ResCode, particularly the side setbacks and building envelope requirements, can lead to interesting shapes and spaces,’ explains Lisa. 

‘With inner-city homes such as this one, there is often a tension between the desired number of spaces, the surroundings such as neighbouring properties, and our planning regulations. ResCode was not written specifically for smaller inner-city blocks, so navigating the limitations of these regulations leads to challenges, and in this case, interesting forms and spaces.’

The material palette is a contemporary acknowledgement of the original Edwardian’s decorative features. For example, shingled cladding on the upper level is an abstract reference to the facade’s heritage cladding. Stained timber adds an earthy element, alongside vibrant colour across the carpet, select pink joinery, and azure living room carpet. 

Lisa is usually the one encouraging clients to use more colour, but in this instance, the inspiration came from the clients. ‘If anything, the architect needed encouraging this time!’ Lisa says. 

‘The initial inspiration images that the client presented themselves had lovely calm and muted tones with plenty of timber running through them. Perhaps after seeing some of my other projects unfold, and being exposed to ideas in general through the design process, it motivated them to explore colour here, and obviously I was happy to oblige!’

Even pets are well-accommodated in this home, with Bella the spoodle getting her own custom bed in the outdoor entertaining area. Specifying these integrated pet features has become somewhat of a signature in Lisa’s projects. 

‘I see pets as key family members and accommodating them in a home’s design is very important,’ she says. ‘On the surface it may seem frivolous and novel, although the ways that animals use the home does impact on the way humans do and vice versa.’

The completed Brunswick house offers something from everyone, from the clients themselves, to the existing neighbourhood character that’s been respected and maintained.  

This Week

Architecture

A Brazilian-Inspired Update Of A 1920s Brisbane Cottage

Bowen by Shaun Lockyer Architects elevates a 1920s cottage with a stunning renovation and addition.

Studio Visit

Local Artist Hannah Maskell Creates Mesmerising Grids Of Colour

The Melbourne-based artist's geometric drawings and wooden sculptures are a cross between 'colour theory and colour therapy'.
Christina Karras
  9 hours ago

Art

9 Unmissable Exhibitions To See In 2023!

From NGV's Alexander McQueen exhibition, to a showcase of Frida Kahlo's works, here are the must-see exhibitions of the coming year.
Christina Karras

On The Market

A Rare Robin Boyd House Is Available To Rent

You could be the next tenant of this house, designed by Australia's most famous architect.

Interiors

Before + After: A Dated Brick Home Turned Coastal Holiday Pad

Dark timber and dated tiles have been replaced with light and bright interiors in this Mornington Peninsula beach house.
Christina Karras

Interiors

An Off-Grid, Modern Country Farmhouse In Regional Victoria

Step inside a newly built farmhouse that's fully off the grid, with all the classic features of an old country home.
Christina Karras

Studio Visit

Dani McKenzie’s Detailed Paintings Look Like Familiar Photographs

The Melbourne artist recreates local streetscapes and everyday scenes, filled with intimate reminders of our own inner-worlds.
Christina Karras

Sustainable Homes

How An Architect Turned This 1930s Bungalow Into A Sustainable Family Haven

Architect Emily Sandstrom's warm family home runs off solar power, with a vegetable garden and impressive entertaining area hidden inside!
Christina Karras

Homes

An Owner-Designed Renovation Of A 1970s South Yarra Apartment

How designers Lola Digby-Diercks and Sebastian Owen completely transformed their South Yarra apartment in just six months.

Family

Journalist Nas Campanella On Parenting With Blindness + Building Disability Awareness

How ABC journalist Nas Campanella navigates motherhood as a person living with blindness and Charcot-Marie-Tooth.

Gardens

A Lush Secret Garden, Inside A Converted Melbourne Church!

This surprising garden in East Melbourne has its own lagoon pool, a natural fish pond and 10m-tall walls covered in ivy.
Christina Karras
  1 hour ago

Shopping

Shop The Chunky, Colourful Furniture You’ve Seen All Over The Internet

Meet the tradie brothers behind FEARON, who have been making quirky, must-have furniture that blends fun with functionality!
Christina Karras

Architecture

An Unconventional Beach House Elevated On Steel

Steel beams elevate AB House by Office MI—JI to form an unconventional beach house in Barwon Heads.

Food

Julia's Crunchy Crumbed Fish With Cos Salad + Yoghurt Tartare

Julia Busuttil Nishimura's delicious take on a classic summer fish dinner – on high rotation for the rest of the season!
Julia Busuttil Nishimura

Creative People

How Powerhouse Designer, Yuwaalaraay Woman Lucy Simpson Is Making Waves

How the Sydney based designer weaves stories of Country and culture into her collaborations with leading brands, such as JAG and Breville.
Jirra Lulla Harvey

Similar Stories

Architecture

A Colourful Extension Inspired By Clinker Bricks

Wowowa’s Presto House is a vivid and respectful addition to a 1930s art deco home made from 'clinker' bricks.

Architecture

A Minty Fresh Addition For A Beloved Family Home

This Flemington home in the hands of one family for 80 years has been given a sympathetic update by Lisa Breeze.

Architecture

An Architect’s Own Tranquil, Terrazzo-Filled Home

Melbourne architect Lisa Breeze is the master of taking unremarkable homes and making them unique - including her own family home in Northco...

This Week

Art

9 Unmissable Exhibitions To See In 2023!

From NGV's Alexander McQueen exhibition, to a showcase of Frida Kahlo's works, here are the must-see exhibitions of the coming year.
Christina Karras

Family

Journalist Nas Campanella On Parenting With Blindness + Building Disability Awareness

How ABC journalist Nas Campanella navigates motherhood as a person living with blindness and Charcot-Marie-Tooth.

Architecture

A Brazilian-Inspired Update Of A 1920s Brisbane Cottage

Bowen by Shaun Lockyer Architects elevates a 1920s cottage with a stunning renovation and addition.

Sustainable Homes

How An Architect Turned This 1930s Bungalow Into A Sustainable Family Haven

Architect Emily Sandstrom's warm family home runs off solar power, with a vegetable garden and impressive entertaining area hidden inside!
Christina Karras

Studio Visit

Dani McKenzie’s Detailed Paintings Look Like Familiar Photographs

The Melbourne artist recreates local streetscapes and everyday scenes, filled with intimate reminders of our own inner-worlds.
Christina Karras

On The Market

A Rare Robin Boyd House Is Available To Rent

You could be the next tenant of this house, designed by Australia's most famous architect.

Food

Julia's Crunchy Crumbed Fish With Cos Salad + Yoghurt Tartare

Julia Busuttil Nishimura's delicious take on a classic summer fish dinner – on high rotation for the rest of the season!
Julia Busuttil Nishimura

Gardens

A Lush Secret Garden, Inside A Converted Melbourne Church!

This surprising garden in East Melbourne has its own lagoon pool, a natural fish pond and 10m-tall walls covered in ivy.
Christina Karras
  1 hour ago

Homes

An Owner-Designed Renovation Of A 1970s South Yarra Apartment

How designers Lola Digby-Diercks and Sebastian Owen completely transformed their South Yarra apartment in just six months.

Shopping

Shop The Chunky, Colourful Furniture You’ve Seen All Over The Internet

Meet the tradie brothers behind FEARON, who have been making quirky, must-have furniture that blends fun with functionality!
Christina Karras

Creative People

How Powerhouse Designer, Yuwaalaraay Woman Lucy Simpson Is Making Waves

How the Sydney based designer weaves stories of Country and culture into her collaborations with leading brands, such as JAG and Breville.
Jirra Lulla Harvey

Architecture

An Unconventional Beach House Elevated On Steel

Steel beams elevate AB House by Office MI—JI to form an unconventional beach house in Barwon Heads.

Interiors

Before + After: A Dated Brick Home Turned Coastal Holiday Pad

Dark timber and dated tiles have been replaced with light and bright interiors in this Mornington Peninsula beach house.
Christina Karras

Studio Visit

Local Artist Hannah Maskell Creates Mesmerising Grids Of Colour

The Melbourne-based artist's geometric drawings and wooden sculptures are a cross between 'colour theory and colour therapy'.
Christina Karras
  9 hours ago

Interiors

An Off-Grid, Modern Country Farmhouse In Regional Victoria

Step inside a newly built farmhouse that's fully off the grid, with all the classic features of an old country home.
Christina Karras

Similar Stories

Architecture

A Colourful Extension Inspired By Clinker Bricks

Wowowa’s Presto House is a vivid and respectful addition to a 1930s art deco home.

Architecture

A Minty Fresh Addition For A Beloved Family Home

A sympathetic makeover for a Flemington home passed down by the one family for over 80 years.

Architecture

An Architect’s Own Tranquil, Terrazzo-Filled Home

Melbourne architect Lisa Breeze is the master of taking unremarkable homes and making them unique - including her own family home in Northco...

The Design Files acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the lands on which we work, the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.

First Nations artists, designers, makers, and creative business owners are encouraged to submit their projects for coverage on The Design Files. Please email bea@thedesignfiles.net