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Flexible, supportive and reliable is how Aaron and Louise Howe described their build experience with Classic Builders, and the stunning results of this modern and elegant Clevedon house showcase the magic that can be created when you mix those qualities with great clients with great vision.

This build wasn’t the first for the Howe family; their experience and understanding of what they wanted meant great synergy with their build team.

Building allows you to design a home how you want it. From the number of rooms to the layout to the colours – building gives you that freedom.

The Plan

The beautiful house in Clevedon is a calm oasis surrounded by beautiful scenery. Integrating the scenery into the house was a key consideration in making the most of natural light. 

The positioning of the house on the section optimised the space available and allowed for four large bedrooms and a double garage without compromising on outdoor space for their son to enjoy.

‘Having previously had a four-bedroom home, we knew we could use the extra space, so were wanting to build 4 bedrooms and a study. Because we had bought a corner section, we wanted to get the maximum footprint we could within the requirements of the section. Our building consultant was helpful in helping us to determine the floor plan. Through the consultation process, we worked out quickly what the most important elements were to us and what was within our budget.

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The Interior

The home’s interior has an expansive, open design complemented by light and natural materials.

We wanted to bring the outside in as much as possible. With the subdivision requirements, the main entrance needed to face the road. The house was not north facing, so we wanted to bring in as much light as possible. As we were building in the countryside, we wanted the exterior colours to blend well with the natural landscape and the housing within the area.

A minimalist approach to design creates a zen-like feel, and the seamless cabinetry in the kitchen and the inclusion of a scullery prevent any visible clutter. Continuous marble table tops and tiles provide subtle texture, and LED lighting creates a feeling of warmth.

We wanted an open-plan living area and wide-open spaces with full stacker sliding doors to bring in the natural light. We did this by having a large open living area, using solar tubes and the white interior colours to make it feel bright.

The bathrooms are simple and timeless, with marble tiles, clean lines, and windows allowing lots of light to enter.

We chose black on the outside and sought a contrast on the inside with white to bring in the light, the natural timber colour on the flooring, and the natural tones in the bathroom to make it feel warm. Our building consultant suggested the schist feature at the entrance, which ties in nicely with the stone wall at the subdivision’s entrance and with the design of the neighbouring housing.

The Exterior

The exterior provides contrast with a streamlined black finish across multiple materials, including a Linea and painted brick finish with a shist stone highlight. The black joinery and use of black as an accent for interior elements are very on trend, with the mono colour scheme providing the basis for the main living spaces.

The time with the design consultant was invaluable. It was great getting their advice and expertise, and it provided reassurance that the colours would work.

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The Journey

When Aaron and Louise Howe started their build process in 2019, they weren’t expecting a pandemic. Many people who embarked on a new-build journey during the Covid-19 lockdowns faced delays and uncertainty due to sickness and access to materials. However, forward planning, solid supply relationships and good communication meant the progress was incredibly swift whenever it was possible to build, and this mitigated the impact of the global pandemic.

Aside from the lockdowns that impacted everyone, once we were out of them and the building got underway, it turned around quickly. While we were building, there was a nationwide shortage of Gib, but our Construction Manager had the foresight to order well in advance, so it didn’t halt the build.  One of our new neighbours had been watching the progress on ours also. They commented on the swiftness of our build as their build had started earlier but were still waiting for completion when we were shifting in.

Why Classic Builders

Choosing your build partner can be tricky as it is a competitive market. Aaron and Louise connected with Classic Builders through a referral, which proved to be a choice they would be incredibly happy about for many reasons.  One surprise was the added benefit of having access to their house plans in augmented reality which they could view with a smartphone or iPad at any time through Classic's partnership with HomeAR.

Having resources available made everything so much easier. The Augmented Reality app enabled us to understand how the house would look. My sister and brother-in-law are in Canada, and they could also download it and see what our home would look like in Virtual Reality on their kitchen table.

Classic Builders have a Classic CODE, which outlines guidelines and values that the team always consider while working. These values were reflected perfectly by the team that worked with the Howe family, who had great feedback about their experience.

We had great support behind us from start to finish. The team allowed us the flexibility to build what we envisaged and offered advice and expertise along the way.

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Advice For Others

With two new builds under their belts, Aaron and Louise had words of wisdom for others considering a Design and Build project.

Go with a company you can trust. Know your budget and allow for non-negotiables.  We see ourselves being here for many years to come, but if the opportunity came up to build in the future, we would go with Classic Builders.