Farmhouse Build Update 19 : Shale Grey Roof

I’ve been avoiding writing about the roof because the entire situation ended up a huge mess. I made a mistake, and now we have to live with it and make the most of it.


I explained in my last post that due to a miscommunication with the builder, the fascia and gutters were added to the house in the original colour scheme. I was told that the cladding was going up before the gutters, and I would have a chance to play with paint colours before choosing a final gutter and roof colour (preferably Windspray)… But this was wrong. The Shale Grey gutters went on, and I felt pressure from every direction (including myself) to leave them on so that the build wasn’t held up further. Add the matching roof in Shale Grey, and disappointment. We had asked the builder to change the roof colour, but we were too late. It had already been ordered and cut.

I couldn’t visit for a while. J went, and his reaction was disappointment. He thought it looked like zincalume in the rain. I had to work up the courage to go, and I went by myself. Funnily enough, mum was also there when I arrived. It was early so there was dew on sections of the roof – so I saw what J meant by a silvery look when the roof was wet. The sun actually played games all over the house. Each section threw a different grey.

The front view. Grey on the right, white on the left…


From this angle below, the roof looks silver!!


And the back view – the roof looks white!


We were scratching our heads all over again about paint colours, but will wait for the cladding to go on before we work out how to fix this.

Farmhouse Build Update 18 : Gutter Disaster

Houston we have a problem! Miscommunications are going to happen during any build, and the likelihood increases when the customer changes her mind after pre-start. But it’s no secret that the colour scheme has been keeping me up at night. Literally.

The house design is like a 3-layer sandwich => top/roof, middle/weatherboard cladding, bottom/rendered base:

Screen Shot 2017-07-24 at 10.06.53 AM

The pre-start colour scheme was grey top / white middle / grey bottom. This decision was made because J was worried about the white base getting filthy. BUT we’ve always dreamt of having grey weatherboard with white trims… Who doesn’t right?!

So we told the builder. But in the process of changing the colour scheme officially, the grey fascia went on… argh! I started the stressing again about having to change the colour scheme back to white cladding (insert sad face). We were hoping to see the cladding added to the rendered base so that we could visualise it better and hopefully play with some paint samples!?! But then we got a phone call to say that the gutters went on… double ARGH! Our initial response was great! Progress! But then the confusion set in because the gutters were planned to go on after the cladding. AND the gutters were the wrong colour! What a disaster.

I raced out there to have a look and in the overcast light – they matched. We were thrilled to see progress given that it was forecast to rain for the next few weeks. We felt guilty for changing our minds… awful feeling. Guilt. So we told the builder to leave the fascia and gutter on in the Shale Grey colours. I thought we could just go back to the original colour scheme and be happy.


But we went to the block on Saturday – a beautifully sunny day. And damn… the colours look different in the sunlight! This is what I’ve been stressing about from the very beginning. Having so many greys – I can’t handle it. I like things to match, and I worried about the fascia and gutters clashing – and then add the grey roller door, and the grey paint colour… Do you hear me? Crazy I know.

See what I mean below? The fascia is a nice cool grey, and the gutters are greige. Enter stress about what the roof colour will look like and how to match a grey paint!?!?!?


And to make matters worse, the Shale Grey (see paint board sitting on the ground above) matches the fascia on the back of the house (in the sunlight). But not the front of the house (always in shade – see below).


So I’ve asked the builder to change the gutters (and roof order) to Windspray (right hand side middle paint colour). Fingers and toes crossed for our dream colour scheme.

Farmhouse Build Update 17 : The Base Is Rendered


A storm is due this afternoon so we headed out the block to see if the renderers have finished yet. It looks like they’re 75% done and not likely to finish. Hopefully the rain doesn’t ruin their hard work!!

The front is finished and looks beautiful!! We are SO excited to see the cladding go on!!

This is mums end of the house, with her sunken afresco in the middle there.


Back side of the house. The dogs love running laps when we take them for a visit.


Still some work to do though, with the base of our alfresco not rendered yet – and I’m pretty certain the whole chimney stack is due to be rendered too.


Watchdog Zoe looking for kangaroos.


Hoping to have pictures of cladding next!!

Farmhouse Build Update 16 : Choosing Paint Colours


What a challenge.  We have been dreaming about house colours for years. I’ve ripped out fifty million (exaggeration 😉 magazine pages, and then when I learned about Pinterest? Well you can just imagine. Here’s a link to my “Weatherboard” album on Pinterest if you don’t believe me.

When we were designing the exterior of our home, our builder suggested modelling their WA Country Builders “The Lamont” display home. Here’s a pic:


We fell in love with the design, but thought the colour scheme might be too dark for the much wider facade that we have.

At the time, we thought we wanted a dark roof and light grey weatherboard, which would have meant a light/white render at the bottom to balance the darkness. But J worried that it would dirty easily from the garden and/or dogs rubbing against it etc. So at prestart, we chose Colorbond Windspray for the render (the base of the house – see the lighter shade of brickwork). It’s kind of the mid-range grey in terms of darkness. Above the render will be James Hardie Primeline Weatherboard cladding in the Newport profile. We chose Dulux Lexicon Half as our white with the tiniest tinge of grey. The lighter grey Colorbond Shale Grey was picked for the garage door, and fascia. And Colorbond Surfmist for the roof… Overall the top two-thirds of the house would’ve been light, with a dark base.

BUT, then the builder offered the addition of the James Hardie Axent Trim around the window frames. This threw off the colour scheme for me. The trim sits above the render, so it makes sense that the render and trim be the same colour IMO. But I don’t want dark frames around the windows. There are a lot of windows and we’ve chosen the larger trim width, so it would darken the whole look of the house.

I grabbed some textas from Officeworks in the approximate shades that we were considering. I even got a blue to see how that would look as an alternative to the grey. At the top of the photo is our original colour scheme.


I found this exercise extremely useful, and much cheaper than hiring a colour consultant.

From there we went to Bunnings. We got sample pots of our fave colours and some cheap plywood. The picture below shows off Dulux Baltic on top, Dulux Lexicon Half in the middle, and Dulux (Colorbond) Deep Ocean on the bottom.


We took our sample paint boards to the house to see how the light worked / remind ourselves of the scale etc. And it was a good idea because the whole front of the house is in permanent shade, so the colours looked darker. And in direct sun on the back of the house, they looked lighter!

On the board on the left –> Taubmans Mojo , Dulux / Colorbond Surfmist in the middle, and Dulux / Colorbond Ironstone on the bottom.

And on the board on the right is Dulux Tranquil Retreat at the top, Dulux Lexicon Half in the middle, and Dulux / Colorbond Windspray on the bottom.


The winner?


Light greys of course! I was only slightly worried about the depth in that Windspray, but once Justin laid it on the roof in the sun – it lightened up and looked perfect.

So, we re-evaluated. Thankfully we’ve been discussing landscaping options due to the height of the pad/house, and know that we will need to add a path around the whole house. The west end of the house is THREE metres off the ground, and we’re contemplating coffee rock retaining vs. a grassed hill… Regardless, access will be required at house level, including across the front of the house. A pathway of some sort, which means no gardens/dirt against the render. Woohoo!! This ideally means that we can have a white render surrounding the base of the house. SO, back to my original dream colour scheme we go!!! Hopefully the builder doesn’t fine us for making a colour change to the roof.

I hope to flip the colour scheme to now have Dulux / Colorbond Windspray grey on the roof and gutters. We’ve chosen Dulux Tranquil Retreat for the weatherboard, and the Dulux Lexicon Half will cover the rendered base and window trim. I’m so excited to see the white window trim on the light grey cladding!! Dream come true. Plus I think the darker grey roof will define the house more as a modern farmhouse than a coastal hamptons look.

The fireplace scaffolding is up.


The kitchen is going to look a lot more amazing than this. You can see the fridge alcove, and the doorway into the butlers pantry.


We’re days away from having the roof finished, and hopefully the renderers will start this week!! I can’t wait to see the transformation.



Explore WA : Apple Picking in Pickering Brook Orchard


It’s the last day of apple picking at this Pickering Brook orchard / operation run by Valley Fresh Produce. We won’t leave it so late next year because the stink of rotten apples underneath (as pretty as it looks) was pretty off-putting. It was also difficult to reach the apples without stepping in the mess. I gave Isla a little boost.


Unfortunately Logie wasn’t feeling well so he just supervised.


We did well though, and it was fun for the short time that we were there. I would like to have wandered a bit longer to see the orchard layout and different apple trees. But Logie had had enough. And our box was full! No one was carrying that further than they had to…


Valley Fresh Produce, 50 Mccorkill Rd, Pickering Brook


Farmhouse Build Update 15 : Benji’s Visit

Isla Skye is in pre-primary and they have a class mascot – a teddy bear named Benji. She wanted to show Benji her new bedroom, and we took the opportunity to measure the window frames for curtains etc.


I’m going to hate not being able to potter around when we reach lock-up stage.

The timber posts are installed in our alfresco area. These will be painted white to match the render. How lovely do they look now though…


And the view from our kitchen through the alfresco area!! We are so excited about our sunken alfresco design, complete with huge skylights to let that much-needed natural light into the kitchen.


And I couldn’t resist snapping some photos around the estate, with the grass looking a little greener and the lawnmowers hard at work.