This article was written by Australia’s Hamptons expert, Natalee Bowen of Indah Island.
Classic, elegant and fuss-free, a Hamptons-inspired home is designed to make you feel relaxed and comfortable – like you’re on holidays all year round. Synonymous with bright, airy spaces and an outdoor lifestyle, it is little wonder so many Australians are wanting to create this look for their homes, and the good news is that it can be achieved on just about any renovation budget.
Deciding on a realistic budget is an essential part of planning any renovation, if not the most important part! When it comes to how and where to spend, there are a few things to consider. Firstly, the location and size of your existing home so as not to overcapitalise. That is, spend more on the cost of renovations than the value they add to your house. Knowing the market and setting achievable goals will ensure the best outcome.
Secondly, consider your needs and how you intend to use the space. Is it for relaxed family living? Socialising and entertaining? This will play an important factor in the materials used as well as the layout and furniture configuration. A third key consideration is how long you’re intending to stay in the house – the difference between five and 20 years could determine where to spend your dollars. Will this be your ‘forever’ home or are you renovating to sell? This can help separate ‘needs’ versus ‘wants’, so you can get the best bang for your buck.
If your budget is on the smaller side, you’ll need to work out which minor changes are going to give your home the biggest ‘wow’ factor. This is particularly critical when renovating to sell, when little tweaks can make a more favourable first impression. The best place to start? Your exterior! The facade sets the tone for the rest of your home – the style here will be a good indicator of what can be expected inside. Although it might seem like a large area to refresh, it can be easily transformed using colour.
A Hamptons home has a very classic colour palette that never dates. Think grey and white, white on white or a neutral tone such as cream or dove grey. To enhance these hues, there are few Hamptons homes that do not possess crisp white doors, trims and windows. Create your own elegant trims on the windows using Axent™ Trim by James Hardie – this quintessential feature will offset your walls beautifully.
Take a look around the inside of your home – what are the major areas that you spend time in every day? Within this budget range, changing the colour of the walls will be the most high-impact update. As with the exterior, keep to a neutral tone – white on white is my go-to, but you could also try a soft grey or cream. For the most cost-effective option, you can even do this yourself. For a smooth, pristine finish, place Hardie™ Groove Lining on the entrance walls, bedrooms and wet areas as an internal lining to create a clean and versatile backdrop for decorating.
Furnishing is where the fun begins! I would suggest investing in a few key pieces such as a linen lounge and several cane chairs, paired with a jute rug. These can then be complemented by cushions in blue and white, an inexpensive way to create a laidback, seaside feel. Add interest with a variety of different patterns such as stripes and floral motifs.