Jeff and Karen Choose Fun Colours for their Pacific Island Haven

23 Feb 2012

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Do you have a home full of wonderful Resene paint and colour? Send us some snaps by emailing editor Sharon Newey on [email protected].

Splashes of colour for a seaside home

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Jeff and Karen affectionately call their beach house Witsend, "which explains our stressed, city state-of-mind when we arrive on Friday nights for the weekend," they laugh. Wanting a relaxed vibe for their weekend retreat, they chose to paint it in colours that were restful but also cheerful. "Just for fun, we chose Resene Peppermint for the bedrooms. We love how it reflects back the different colours of the bright tivaevae bedspreads, so that each of the rooms looks to be a different shade of peppermint."

Like the Waiheke beach house we featured last week, this one is also predominantly painted in colours chosen to reflect the environment outside - but this time, that means neutrals combined with splashes of bright red. Jeff and Karen chose Resene Lusty as a nod to the mass plantings of red hibiscus flowers in their garden, using the bold shade for a feature wall in the living room and for the kitchen cupboards. "It brings the garden inside," says Karen.

After 15 years and some major remodelling (only the block base and two external walls remain of the original 70s building) and redecorating, Jeff and Karen have finally gotten the house to a place that they are happy with it. "When we're on the deck, it looks and feels like being on our own Pacific Island," they smile happily.

What first attracted you to the house? We were immediately attracted to the close proximity of the water, the view, and the beach at the bottom of the garden. It is also out of the main tourist route, so it is lovely and quiet and has a great population of birds.

How would you describe your style? Pacifica.

Where did your inspiration come from? From many trips to Fiji and Rarotonga.

What was the biggest challenge with creating your home interior look? There really were no challenges. We always knew what we wanted and had planned it for many years. We collected many bits and pieces on overseas trips, all with our new house in mind.

What was the greatest success? That it turned out better than we had imagined - there is nothing in the house that we would want to change. It looks good and feels good and is wonderful to live in. The choices we made with colours and features fit into the beach environment and don’t detract from the view.

Which space in the house do you get your greatest satisfaction from? From the living area which flows to the front deck or the courtyard – we follow the sun around the house all day. It is a great space for our large family - our grandchildren are always in view and have access to a large space. It is a great entertainment area that looks and feels like being on a Pacific island!

What is your advice for someone trying to achieve a similar look? Be aware of what you like and don’t like, and just take your time in achieving that. I love red in the kitchen because it is a passionate colour that creates passion in your food and those around you! We used materials that were easy to maintain because the last thing you want to do at the beach is housework!

What colours did you use? The interior walls are Resene Thorndon Cream and the internal doors were spray painted in white high gloss to give a contrast. We chose Resene Thorndon Cream because we wanted a colour that had some depth but wasn't overpowering - we wanted it to "just be there" and not detract from the views and the colours of nature. The feature walls in the bathrooms are Resene Cork, which was chosen to go with the pebble contrasts in the showers, and to give a beachy feel. The red feature wall and cupboards are Resene Lusty, the master bedroom is Resene Thorndon Cream, and the other three bedrooms are Resene Peppermint. The exterior of the house is Resene Half Tapa (a warm, modern colour that worked perfectly with our interior colour choices) and the courtyard wall is Resene Tapa (three quarter strength).

pictures Architect: Ron Stevenson Interior colour selection: Peta Tearle Get the look: Colours are affected by many factors, including other colours in the room and the amount of lighting. Jeff and Karen have made the most of this choosing the light Resene Peppermint that picks up on the duvet colours. You can try this in your home - choose a neutral or pastel that has an undertone in the colour you'd like to bring out, complement with bolder furnishings and accessories and the wall colour will pick up on the accent colour and bring the colour scheme together beautifully.

Eat, drink and be merry

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The courtyard, with walls painted Resene Tapa (three quarter strength). Opening on to it is one of the bedrooms, painted Resene Peppermint.

Island time

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Although three of the bedrooms are painted in Resene Peppermint, they all look a slightly shade due to the different colours of the bright tivaevae bedspreads.

Pebble beach

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The bathrooms have Resene Cork feature walls, a colour chosen to go with the pebble contrasts in the showers and give a beachy feel.

Red alert

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The Resene Lusty feature wall in the living area is a perfect match for Jeff and Karen's beloved hibiscus painting.

Sea views

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"When we're on the deck, it looks and feels like being on our own Pacific Island," say Jeff and Karen. The living area, which opens on to the deck, is painted in Resene Thorndon Cream.

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Resene Half Tapa

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Resene Peppermint

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Resene Thorndon Cream

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the look

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colour to use or need colour
advice, try out the Resene
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Resene Half Tapa

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Resene Peppermint

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Resene Thorndon Cream

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the look

If you're stuck on what
colour to use or need colour
advice, try out the Resene
Ask a Colour Expert service.