The Coastal Chic Australian Home a Couple Built Together (from the Ground Up)

updated Feb 7, 2019

The Coastal Chic Australian Home a Couple Built Together (from the Ground Up)

updated Feb 7, 2019
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Name: Franz and Patsy Knapp with kids Felix (6) and Betty (4) and dog Ludo
Location: Dunsborough, Western Australia
Size: 1,615 square feet
Years lived in: 6 years, owned

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Franz, a stonemason, and Patsy live in a home they built together from the ground up. Their beautiful home is located on seven and a half acres in the coastal town of Dunsborough, well-known for its white sandy beaches and holiday atmosphere. Not only is the beach a stone’s throw away, the house is also surrounded by natural bushland — big shady trees, lots of native flora and fauna — making it an ideal place to bring up two happy and energetic children.

One entire side of the house — lined with huge windows and sliding glass doors — has been designed to take advantage of the spectacular north-facing sun. It gives you a sense of being a part of the bushland beyond, rather than feeling closed in by four walls and a roof.

Franz and Patsy’s home is filled with a collection of assorted thrifted, gifted and repurposed finds — from the absolutely luscious green velvet chairs that Patsy found at the local thrift shop for $5 to the copper pendant lights that hang on either side of the soft leather sofa in the living room. Almost nothing is store bought, as the couple love the thrill of the hunt, chasing down treasures from local garage sales, and combing through dusty old thrift stores in neighboring towns. They then love to work together to bring those pieces to life, be that repainting or reupholstering — whatever the job requires, these two love to put their stamp on it.

The concrete floors that run throughout the house are both a pleasing design choice and also a practical one. The concrete absorbs the warmth of the winter sun, and in turn keeps the house cool when needed in the summer time. The ceilings are kept high to allow for substantial air flow and the color scheme on the walls brings a sense of cohesion throughout the entire home.

There is a definite blurring of the boundary between indoors and out in the main bathroom the couple designed. Here, they took both the bath and the shower outside, building a little brick cove covered in ivy with no roof other than the sky above. They use this bathroom every single day and love that they are in direct connection with nature. It truly is a special little place. Actually…the entire home is.


Dulux Natural White — Entire home
Dulux Integrity — Master Bedroom
Dulux Seadrifter — Living room
Dulux Mountain Fern — Kids bedroom

Leather lounge — Freedom
Green Velvet Lounge — Buy and Sell Facebook
Blue velvet swivel chairs — thrifted
Coffee table — handmade by Franz
Pendant Light — Beacon
Copper lights — thrifted
Speakers — thrifted
Nest of tables — inherited from grandparents

Banquette — handmade by Franz
Dining chairs — local Antique store
Pottery — thrifted
Suitcases — gifted

Bar stools — thrifted and recovered by Patsy
Pendant lights — gift from friends
Canisters — all vintage secondhand finds
Sunburst clock — thrifted
Green dresser — repurposed by Patsy

Yellow iron bed — Flying Wardrobe, Witchcliffe
Bunk bed — made by Franz
Writing desk — vintage
Artwork on wall — all hand drawn by Franz
Chest of drawers — secondhand
Rug — Freedom

Bed — made by Franz
Linen — thrifted
Seagrass matting— Freedom
Trunk bedside table — made by Franz
Large lamp — thrifted
Artwork — thrifted

Vanity — handmade by Franz
Mirror — second hand
Stepping stool — vintage
Artwork — thrifted
Rug — Freedom
Outdoor clawfoot bath — local antique store

Thanks, Franz and Patsy!

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