Self-proclaimed country girl and freelance creative, Chloe, and her husband of four years - city born-and bred-finance extraordinaire - Shingi, are proof that opposites attract.
Despite their different upbringings and personalities, both agreed that Boutique Homes was ‘The One’ to bring their new family home to life.
‘We fell in love with the Providence in Sunbury and the Marseille at the Jubilee Estate in Wyndham Vale,’ reminisces Chloe, who appreciated the quality, style and finishes of the display homes.
‘The decision to build with Boutique Homes came down to best house design with the most inclusions, and within our desired price range’ she said.
With a 15 x 32 corner block, choosing a design was based on orientation and the best fit.
‘The Riva gave us the ability to move the theatre room to the front, facing the view of the wetlands, and position the kitchen and dining space to maximise daylight,’ says Chloe.
The couple divided key responsibilities between them to make the build process as stress-free as possible, with Shingi keeping a close eye on construction while Chloe concentrated on finishes and aesthetics.
‘We loved our build journey!’ she gushes. ‘My favourite part was dreaming about the kitchen and choosing render colours, fixtures and fittings at our colour appointment.’
‘Shingi enjoyed receiving build updates and watching the house progress from slab stage to framing and through to lock up’ Chloe continued.
Styling their new abode was about bringing together their differing heritages and tastes, blending it with their new family’s signature look. Chloe lovingly describes their interior feel as French farmhouse meets Afro luxe.
‘Our style is a combination of my former country cottage house and some family heirloom pieces, mixed with new furniture, artwork and soft furnishings we purchased together while travelling in Africa,’ explains Chloe.
The couple also divided up colour and style selections based on the rooms most important to each of them. For Chloe, this was her kitchen, with shaker style cabinetry and waterfall stone bench tops; Shingi choosing luxe feature hotel-style tiles for the ensuite to shower in an exotic getaway every day.
Despite the details, Chloe insists their home is furnished but not finished.
‘First home builders and buyers shouldn’t expect perfection straight away. It’s better to gather, curate and slowly grow to ensure your house organically becomes yours,’ she says.
‘When you build with Boutique the quality and point of difference is built into the finishes.’
‘Be smart about upgrades, such as choosing the expensive designer tile for the smallest areas to make a low-cost statement.’
After stumbling across a number of Boutique customers on social media, Chloe decided she too would document her build on Instagram. She says it’s a great way to learn from other’s mistakes and share ideas while forging new friendships.
'I found the community so welcoming and I wanted to document our big life milestone,' Chloe says.
'My direct messages are now filled with lovely chats about babies, styling and flowers.'
Thinking about building your next home?
Chloe's top tips for new home builders:
- Look for a layout that suits the orientation of your land. Work to make best use of any views and the natural weather elements so as to cool or heat the house.
- When looking for custom home builders, look carefully at what’s included in the contract. During the quoting process with other builders, basic items such as doors and flooring were considered ‘extra’. With Boutique Homes, we felt comfortable paying a higher base price knowing any additional choices we made were for upgraded items, rather than paying extra for essentials.
- Be smart about upgrades, such as choosing the expensive designer tile for the smallest areas to make a low-cost statement.
See more of Chloe and Shighi’s home on Instagam: @muskmanor
Learn more about the Riva here.
Have you found ‘The One’?
Photos by @hausofcruze