Housey blogs

Every woman and her dog writes a blog these days.  There are literally thousands of blogs documenting home building, renovation and decoration but with a bit of sifting, you can find a good community of like-minded people sharing tips, referrals, encouragement and inspiration.  A couple of friendly home-building bloggers sent their readers my way and posed me some questions.

Let me introduce:

  • Trixee, half of a motivated duo building a modest but glamorous solar passive home in Perth, from Eco Home Style.
  • Sheilzy, a go-get-em chick who’s building a Metricon home in Sydney, from Our Hudson.
  • Kerrie-Lee, the world’s most patient builder’s wife, who is building a very stylish home in coastal NSW, from eternalicons.

Thanks for the plug, girls!

1. Why did you start blogging?

I started my first blog 4 years ago when we moved to China for the interest of our extended family.  I enjoyed keeping a record of expat life and playing with words.  I caught the blog bug.

The 3 Little Pigs in China.

Photo from my first blog:  The 3 Little Pigs in China.

2. What are your favourite 3 blogs and why?

  • Spacecrush – I only recently discovered interior stylist, Jane Ledger’s blog, and the timing is perfect for me.  Jane, who is Perth based, shares her passion, knack and skills for interiors with unusual generosity.  I’m lapping up her “how to” series of articles such as “How to hang art” and “Choose the right sofa”.
  • House Nerd – You already know I love House Nerd for her rambling stories about interesting homes, DIY projects and local creatives in Western Australia.  Maya always keeps it real and affordable and I’m guaranteed a laugh, often at Maya or Mr. Nerd’s expense.  Maya reminds me that I’m glad that we are over the reno phase of life, but that it was good for us!
  • Third place was tough- so I’m going for a tie between The Design Files, for wholesome Aussie homes with lots of heart and character, and Planet Deco for an endless supply of beautiful homes, mostly from Europe .

3. What’s your favorite post that you’ve written and why?

40 decades of houses because it was such a nice trip down memory lane.

Exposed brick and psychedelic green!

Exposed brick and psychedelic green!  That’s Aunty Kate in the box, and I’m towing.  Check out my art.  I haven’t improved.

4. What do you enjoy most about blogging?

The connections made with readers.  We are helping each other blunder our way through home building.  The banter is fun and the tips are helpful.

5. How do you find things to blog about?

Somehow I always have at least one month’s worth of blog topics up my sleeve.  Ideas come to me naturally as part of the building process, often while I’m doing the dishes!  So far I’ve resisted writing the:  “I can’t wait to have a dishwasher” post.

6. What do you hope to achieve from your blog?

  • Make sense of the building process.
  • Make good decisions by “thinking out loud”.
  • Maximise the enjoyment of the building process, however remote I may be.
  • Keep the builders honest!

7. Describe your favourite meal.

One large salad with beetroot or mushrooms and goat’s cheese, and a cold glass of Margaret River white wine, please.  Served here:

Landscape design for House By The Water by Tim Davies Landscaping.

Landscape design for House By The Water by Tim Davies Landscaping.

8. If you had a day to do anything you want, what would you do?

I would go homewares and furniture shopping in Melbourne with Aunty Kate (my sister).  We would, of course, have an unlimited budget.  We’d meet my Mum and my other sister for lunch at Cumulus Inc to drool over the lamb and the interior design.

We’d visit Mark Tuckey, Jardan, Southwood Home, and Weylandts.

Jardan's Melbourne store.

Jardan’s Melbourne store.

9. What are your current obsessions?

Blue, preferably dark and moody.  Linen.  Australian made furniture.  Oh yeah, and that small thing called building a house.

10. In 5 words describe your interior style.

Relaxed, modern, Australian, earthy, light.

Normal blogging services will resume next week.  

Edit:  News just in from Webb and Brown Neaves.  
Second floor brickwork is still not quite complete.  
The roof carpenter is expected to start next week.
Bedroom of the second little pig.   An impressive amount of scaffolding.  I'm quite amazed to see it all.

Bedroom of the second little pig. An impressive amount of scaffolding. I’m quite amazed to see it all.

The scaffold floor will be removed to reveal a void space above the ground floor living area.

The scaffold floor will be removed to reveal a void space above the ground floor living area.  It’s starting to look large.

Building, post by post.

With an eye firmly on the goal.  Landscape design by Tim Davies Landscaping.

Looking into our future. Landscape design by Tim Davies Landscaping.

I’ve been thinking out loud here on this blog for one year now.  There has been some dilly dallying by me and plenty of advice from you.

The blog has been viewed over 14000 times, mostly in Australia, but with peeps in over 70 countries.  (It’s going to be a big house warming party.) On average, 30 different readers pop by each day (more than 70 hits) – so not just my Mum, after all.  But, the best bit about blogging is receiving comments.  Your comments have helped me make quite a few decisions.  I love that readers outside of W.A. prompt me to think “outside the box” for options and solutions, and I love that readers inside W.A. provide local tips and advice.  If you comment, don’t forget to check back later for my reply and the comments of others.

I bought the blog a birthday present!  Did you notice?  If you are not a WordPress member, you will have had pesky little ads coming up at the bottom of my posts.  That was the result of me not paying to use their clever blogging platform.  House By The Water is now 100% ad free.

In honour of the occasion, here are a few favourite blog moments:

You might think that after one year there would be something to show for all this planning.  The thing is, we don’t want the house to be finished too soon before we return to Australia in late 2015.  In fact, we put in our preliminary plans agreement (PPA) that the house should not be completed before July 2015.  So we are going to be patient.  I am grateful for our luxurious time line.  I can’t imagine how some people can make all the decisions required in the few weeks between signing up for building a home and the work actually starting.  For example, just picking a fireplace took me two weeks.

I’m expecting to see some action on the block in May.  In the mean time, I’m sure we’ll find something to talk about.

It didn't take our Landscape Architect to figure out his client -  glass of wine and laptop on the deck looking out across the canal.  Tim Davies Landscaping.

It didn’t take our Landscape Architect long to figure out his client – glass of wine and laptop on the deck, looking out across the canal. Tim Davies Landscaping.

Thanks for listening.