An Extension and Renovation Made This Narrow Family Home Feel More Spacious



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Situated on a typical Victorian block of land, only 5m wide, was a home that forced Ben and Lauren to cook dinner in a jacket and beanie. Michael McManus Architect was engaged to give them their dream home, a bedroom retreat and a light-filled living, kitchen, dining area opening onto their north-facing backyard.

The challenge for Michael McManus Architect was the narrow site, at only 5m wide. To help make the interiors feel more expansive and avoid the feeling of walking through a tunnel, courtyards, windows and varying ceiling heights were implemented.

The original Victorian home was kept, with some slight configurations made to the second bedroom to allow for a staircase. Walking past, a bathroom is tucked behind the laundry cupboard that opens onto the hallway. The open dining, kitchen, and living spaces see a small services courtyard and the kitchen in the middle, providing an interesting dynamic to the space. Upstairs is Ben and Lauren’s retreat, complete with a walk-in-robe and ensuite that feels like you’re in a spa, everyday.

Michael McManus Architect chose materials that were not only budget-friendly and practical but also had a beauty. The joinery is a timber veneer, and the punchy blue kitchen uses a standard material. The translucent cladding was used to help bring diffused light into the living area in the mornings and externally provided depth and a level of bespoke detailing for the extension.

Lauren remembers the days of the home before the renovation and extension and how difficult it was sometimes to get out of bed. Today though, she can’t believe she gets to wake up each day in her home, which energises her to get moving.

Despite the home being compact, at only 139m2, far below the average Australian house size, it doesn’t feel small. Michael McManus Architect has employed design decisions to make the house feel far more expansive while fitting everything a family needs.

Website article with floor plan (to be updated with photographs soon);
https://simpledwelling.net/episodes/homes/brunswick-house-michael-mcmanus-architect

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Michael McManus Architect
https://michaelmcmanus.com.au/
https://www.instagram.com/michael_mcmanus_architects/

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Produced by Simple Dwelling
Filmed and Edited by Simple Dwelling / Anthony Richardson

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