Queenslanders & Timber Homes

Queenslanders & Timber Homes

“I Should’ve Married A Teacher”

Mrs Cato Constructions blog on her personal journey through a major renovation and being married to the boss.

Queenslanders and timber homes
Queenslanders & Timber Homes
Our new Queenslander undergoing renovation



I know, I know  you thought I’d fallen off the end of the internet but I’m back now, and anyways, choosing bathroom furniture and kitchen appliances is a hard business and a lot less fun than you’d think. When you’re revising your selections for an umpteenth time to cut out the fat so we can afford to eat from our fancy new kitchen, things get kind of, well, stressful.

Happy Holidays to you all. I hope you had a special time. Our family for one had a gorgeous break and relished in the precious family time that is all too hard to find when you’re renovating.  I’m proud to say I didn’t have a single night terror about the house and resisted all urges for cups of tea in the middle of the night so I could flick through House and Gardens Australia. It occurred to me that besides not posting in a while I’ve neglected to let you in on the plans for the internal layout of the house.  Well here it is (and apologies for the blurry images. There is nothing to be done, any attempt to correct by me would be futile):

Ground Floor .

Original Floorplan



New Floorplan                                                 

 13 RALSTON STREET, WEST END-page0009                            



First Floor

Original Floorplan


 New Floorplan



How we came to the basic layout of the floorplan is easy. We wanted to do all our living downstairs and our sleeping upstairs. It’s as simple as that. Once Mr CC and I had agreed to float that idea as our favourite, the rest of the decision making flowed freely:

  • If the kitchen is downstairs then the laundry should be too
  • If it’s a family retreat upstairs then the guest quarters should be downstairs
  • If the main office is upstairs then a study nook for a laptop and a place to throw your keys is downstairs; should be visible to the common areas (to keep an eye on the family while we fuss at the study nook)
  • If there are views to be had, the sitting room should be upstairs taking it in
  • The theatre room should be as far away from sleeping zones as possible (sound insulation takes care of most of the noise)
  • The guest’s WC should be separate and accessible for every one on ground floor because you don’t need 2 toilets downstairs (and a family of four DOESN”T need 1 toilet each!!) This is CONTENTIOUS – not sure if we got this right. “Guest toilet smells are private” is a very plausible counter plan floated on the work site.
  • If the kitchen, living, dining is downstairs then that’s where the deck should be too
  • If there’s 420m2 of house make sure there’s plenty of storage!!!!!!
  • Capture the breezes to your living zones
  • Design for cross ventilation
  • Make the guestroom large enough to fit a family who visit regularly and give them their own entry to the house
  • Make Bed 1 a parent’s retreat if you have the space
  • Create a private back yard for the children to roam freely; visible from high work areas ie kitchen.
  • Storage
  • Storage
  • More storage

The final drawings that you see today are very close to the rough sketch we brought to Ben Crow from Dan Thomson Architectural Drafting, but Ben’s a clever clogs and tweaked it to make the house flow perfectly, fit all of our ideas into existing important structures and ensured the plans ticked all the boxes for council approval. And we nailed it! Months on, I still walk around the building site and think I couldn’t have asked for anything more. How lucky am I.

We’re almost at lock up stage and internal painting starts tomorrow. Deciding on paint colours I’ll leave for another post or three. Man,  that was a process.

Bye for now.