The KISS Principle
So, thinking about knocking the old shack into shape, perhaps a new paint job or even adding a new room or two? Why don’t you go the whole hog and bulldoze the darned thing and begin afresh with a project home builder? Maybe dig a little deeper in your pockets and get yourself a nice bespoke piece designed by an architect or building designer?
Whether your project is DIY or you intend to engage a professional, be certain to do your homework first. Don’t commit one dollar before you begin your research and preparation. Information is the key! You have probably heard the radio ads for the National Referral Service regarding information on underground pipes and cables “DIAL BEFORE YOU DIG”? Their ‘catch cry’ “Don’t dig your own grave” is so relevant to any project, so don’t go off half‐cocked and pay the price later.
There is a plethora of information available through building industry bodies such as the HIA, BDAV (Building Designers Association of Victoria), RAIA (Royal Australian Institute of Architects) as well as consultants at help desks in all the major hardware stores, depending on your needs.
Housing and design magazines at your local news agency provide an amazing source of ideas and inspiration whereas, a google search will find answers to any and every question. The HIA Home Show naturally, is the best place to start!
No matter how large or small your project budget, your ‘big’ ideas will attempt to blow it out of the water. Self‐control and discipline aside, if you follow the KISS principle, (keep it simple, stupid) then you might just come out the other end unscathed.
The most well‐known exponent of the term ‘Less is More’, German architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe was an idol for many young designers, including the Barcelona Pavilion, designed for the German Government for the 1929 International Exposition in Spain. Inspiring numerous important modernist buildings, and as appropriate today as it was in the early 1900s, the Barcelona Pavilion is globally hailed specifically for its simple form. As a result, many Graham Jones Design projects are built on the influence of the Mies van der Rohe – Barcelona Pavilion.
This ‘Less is More’ thinking will help guide you through your project, just as the term ‘quality over quantity’ wins the day, every day! If you have a budget constraint, select the less important rooms for inexpensive window suites for example, while utilising higher grade designer units for ‘special’ areas. Kitchen, dining and living rooms represent the heart of the home, keep your furnishings simple, pared‐back and minimal and by avoiding clutter, your spaces will flow and most likely be more functional.
Expert guidance by a professional can be invaluable and can have a huge impact even on your DIY house design project, as long as you beware the design professional creating monuments to his own ego. Good, simple design will cost less and will undoubtedly, stand the test of time!