Welcome to Kamila's blog!
Follow Kamila Hesketh in her exciting journey as she shares her experience designing and building her dream home with Classic Builders.Read More ...
Follow Kamila Hesketh in her exciting journey as she shares her experience designing and building her dream home with Classic Builders.
Read about her and her family’s learning curves, ideas, challenges and joys. Kamila is one of our very own building co-ordinators and her new home is being built in Gibbston Valley, Queenstown in the beautiful South Island.
"Thanks for reading my blog and I look forward to sharing this exciting part of my life with you. Let the journey begin!" says Kamila.Close Article ...
Choosing our own piece of paradise
Hi, I’m Kamilia Hesketh, Building Co-ordinator for Classic Builders in Queenstown. I’m married to Andy and we have our son, Lucas.Read More ...
Hi, I’m Kamilia Hesketh, Building Co-ordinator for Classic Builders in Queenstown. I’m married to Andy and we have our son, Lucas.
Originally from Czech Republic, I have been working for Classic Builders for just over a year now. Andy and I purchased our dream plot of land last year in March. This was after searching around Queenstown and trying to decide what and where we would settle down.
We considered Shotover Country initially, but we were drawn to Gibbston Valley as we always knew we would love to have a little bit of extra land. My husband’s business is also located here and that made the decision easier. Gibbston Valley is just before Nevis Bluff on the river side approximately 20 minutes from Shotover Country.
We knew immediately this was the piece of land where we would love to build our house. Take a look at what our scenic view will be from our new home. So here’s to the start of our new build! We are so excited!Close Article ...
A dream floor plan to suit us
Well, where to start? Design and build is new to us and we wanted to make sure we had the design we knew we would love.Read More ...
Well, where to start? Design and build is new to us and we wanted to make sure we had the design we knew we would love.
Thinking in detail about all the elements we want in our new design and build home, I was glad I worked with a great team and had the expert advice I needed. We reviewed our budget requirements with our building consultant. Since we have 8,000m2 of land we needed to think about how to get the most out of the land area size.
Our decision was to start with a traditional two-bedroom home with a floor area of 112m2. We have tweaked the floor plan slightly, to have a more European feel and we chose this particular floor plan as we can add easily to it when ready. This is the great part of a design and build and we were able to tailor-make it to our taste.
I always wanted to have an entranceway, which would not go straight into our living area. At the moment our entranceway is through our laundry but after completing our stage two there will be an entrance which would be closed from our lounge by doors. It makes more sense to me to keep the heat in the house with the separated entrance. We are trying to keep the cottage look to fit the Mountainous area, so even that would be a more European look than the modern look of the local houses. Smaller windows is another feature that provides a more European look.
In the next few years, we plan to add our master bedroom onto the house. We won’t have a garage so we are planning to build a big shed and have a carport beside the house.
Our first step after making the decision was to apply for Resource Consent with Gibbston Valley Council once we decided to go ahead. During this time, our son Lucas was born so we were quite busy.
Take a look at our floor plan that we played around with. It’s great to see what it’s going to look like. We can’t wait!Close Article ...
Time to work through our resource consent
Applying for Resource Consent was a long story but with a happy ending!Read More ...
Applying for Resource Consent was a long story but with a happy ending!
This challenge was a result from historical errors when a previous Resource Consent issued for our subdivision was missing a few points. This, however, was a good learning process for myself.
The experience provided a deeper understanding on how to apply for Resource Consent in the future. Also, because our property is in a rural location, we needed to have a vehicle crossing, and proof of potable water supply plus utility services. We did have our own sewage system, which needed to be designed for us and there is a pond on our section that we are willing to keep and maintain in future. We have started do our landscaping and all those things were important for our application.
The day the floor slabs went down was very exciting as our dream is coming true. For those that have been involved in a design and build, you’ll know what this feels like!
Next our framing will go up and before you know it we will have a roof!Close Article ...
The super fun stuff – creating our interior design
We had a chat with Jo from Scope Design. She’s great to talk to and my husband and I both knew what we wanted inside our house.Read More ...
We had a chat with Jo from Scope Design. She’s great to talk to and my husband and I both knew what we wanted inside our house.
With our colour choices, we decided on:
- Resene White Merino for the ceiling
- Resene Bison Hide for our internal walls
- and Resene Arrowtown for our exterior walls.
Our kitchen colours, kitchen cabinets and carpet will complement these main colour choices. Our kitchen mosaic splashback really excites me. Have a look at the picture with this blog, it’s such a cool design, encompassing our mountainous environment in the colours. I know I will love it!
It was just good to talk to an expert and have the design advice at the time. We were given a set of pictures we could choose from and the process was straightforward. We didn’t want to go overboard and kept to our budget (which was set at the start of our build process). Plus, our Classic Builders building consultant was able to guide us through our options. And, because Classic Builders has buying power, we knew we were getting the best value at cost.
The frames up!
Hooray! The house frame has gone up and the roof is partially finished!Read More ...
Hooray! The house frame has gone up and the roof is partially finished!
It came to deciding on roof and cladding colours. The Gibbston character roof range is lovely but there are limited options. So, we have chosen the 5 Rib roof Ironsand colour. Similarly, our wall cladding colour options are limited; we decided to use specialised system and plaster, and have chosen a colour named Arrowtown, which is a darker brown. Also, we purchased a Masport R5000 log burner after Classic Builders recommended it. We wanted something that would heat the whole house.
We are so lucky to have a log burner compared to a lot of others around who can’t have a real fire place due to smog. Our fireplace will keep us toasty-warm in winter. I can’t wait to enjoy sitting around it with family and friends when it’s snowing outside! Here’s a picture of our soon to be completed new home. More pictures soon!
GIB in and our living spaces are taking shape
With all walls and windows now completed and the roof on, we can just imagine how we will furnish each room.Read More ...
With all walls and windows now completed and the roof on, we can just imagine how we will furnish each room. I took a walk through with husband Andy and we are very pleased with the size of each room. Prior to the GIB going in, our electrician made sure we had the plugs at the right place in every room. Now with everything sealed in, the guys are working on the interior finishes and first service fix.
We decided early on to spend money on upgrading to thermal windows and upgrading insulation for the house – something people in Otago will understand as it can get very cold in winter. The thermal windows help minimise any condensation.
But in looking forward as the weather gets warmer, we are starting to consider our landscaping needs as we want to take advantage of our mountainous views. We have made a few mounts where we have planted native trees and plants using cabbage tree, lands wood and tussocks.
We have a beautiful Willow tree, which is a great feature on our section. And I am pretty sure our wee boy will love it once he is big enough to climb on it! We also have a small pond near our house and we will drain and line it in the future, probably next summer. Hoping to get a snapshot of our landscaping once it’s all done. More updates to follow soon!
Seeing the results
Our first service fix has now been done by the Classic Builders team in Queenstown. Our construction manager has been great!Read More ...
Our first service fix has now been done by the Classic Builders team in Queenstown. Our construction manager has been great! We went through each room together taking notes and our pre-inspection walk-through was straightforward. There were a few minor things that required changes, but nothing major and Classic Builders organised it for me.
It’s definitely looking more like a home than a construction site and I can’t wait to start furnishing our home.
All the walls have been painted now and I love how warm the colour is. I’m glad we picked it - it’s called Bison Hide from Resene. And I really like our ceiling pendant lights as it provides a real elegance to the kitchen.
I have started buying bits and pieces for our new home. We have bought a new dining table, TV stand and coffee table. It’s been so fun, getting to choose pieces that will go with our interior colours.
I’ll take another picture soon once we are set up, I think you will like it. Catch you next time.
Getting sorted for the move
Time to start thinking about packing!Read More ...
Time to start thinking about packing! Our new home is nearly finished so we are planning ahead and booking a moving truck for our things. We are lucky to have a friend who allowed us to store some of our bigger items in her shed, which is just up the road from our new place.
We had our final walk-through today with our construction manager. We were happy to sign off on the house, everything looked great so we are just waiting for the Council to issue us a Code of Compliance. It can take up to a month for the compliance to come through, but once that happens, we can move in.
The patio will be completed just before we move in. It will be nice to relax with a cold drink outside once we finish unpacking, something we are looking forward to doing. Other things I am planning to do is change our postal address soon on our accounts and getting quotes for our insurance on our new home. It’s so exciting!
Little Lucas is getting use to the new house, he’s been with us as we visit the site and he’s getting to know the layout of the rooms. He’s also just as excited as us. The house will take some time to organise between Andy and I, as we both work during the day, but even so, I’m looking forward to it!
Landscaping in progress
Very exciting news – our Code of Compliance has come through from the Council, so I’m in packing mode for our move, but here's a quick update on our landscaping.Read More ...
Very exciting news – our Code of Compliance has come through from the Council, so I’m in packing mode for our move, but here's a quick update on our landscaping.
Here’s a picture which shows our landscaping is finally taking shape – have a look at the tussock we planted out near our driveway. We have purchased further tussock and Lavender to plant under our bedrooms window which will be done shortly. Both plants will bring a nice contrast in colour, especially when the Lavender is in bloom. We will bring in more soil and start with growing the grass soon. The pond is taking also shape, it’s going to make a nice feature.Close Article ...
Our dream home is ready and we are living the dream!
We have moved into our new home now!Read More ...
We've moved into our new home now! My husband and I booked a day off work and Lucas went into daycare for the day. It took most of the weekend to move our things and we’ve got everything set up now.
It’s such a cool feeling and I feel proud that we made the decision to design our own home. It gives our home a uniqueness that I know we had input into. We’ve been lucky that the Code of Compliance came through so quickly, and we’re stoked that we can say “Welcome to our new home!”
I used our new stove and oven for the first time over the weekend and I think once I did that, it felt like I was at home. The kitchen splashback is still one of my favourite feature in the house.
It’s also been fun to hang our pictures where we want them and it makes our new home ours.
Being located in Gibbston Valley (just before Nevis Bluff on the river side), we love being near the mountain ranges. There’s lots of activities in Gibbston and I am looking forward to exploring them all with my family. We’re located in a winery area and there are many winery tours and tastings, cycling trails and music festivals – that’ll be us this summer! I can see myself cycling around at each of the stops and popping into the wine tasting rooms. Perhaps UB40 is going to play next door at Gibbston Wineries in a music festival this summer! Fingers crossed…
My husband and I had a great experience building our new home with Classic Builders. Everyone we met was friendly and easy-to-talk to. We definitely recommend Classic Builders to anyone looking at building your own dream home. It might seem daunting at first, with a lot of questions and decisions to make, but the Classic Builders team will help you all the way.
I also appreciated the time to talk to our interior designer and the valuable advice we received; it’s such an important step in any house build. And the handover pack had a lot of goodies as well as cleaning products for our new home. It’s so helpful to have that when you move in.
I hope you have enjoyed reading my blog.
Kamila, Andy & Lucas
P.S: Classic Builders would love to hear from anyone who would like to contribute to a future blog…maybe you are just looking at the moment and want a chat to the team about your options? Email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Catching up with Kamila in her new home
Kamila, Andy and little Lucas built their dream home in Gibbston Valley, Queenstown with Classic Builders. Here she sums up her design and build experience.Read More ...
Our building journey started in Autumn 2015 with Classic Builders and we moved into our new home towards the end of October that year. We have now been living in our new home for almost six months. What can I say? I just love our new home. We’ve had a great summer down South.
It all started with a plot of land my husband and I found in Gibbston Valley. We had 8,000m2 of land and a budget to keep to. As I worked for Classic Builders, we set off with finding the ideal floor plan, something we could build on to and extend with rooms over time. I’m originally from the Czech Republic so we wanted our home to have a more European feel. We started with making slight tweaks to our floor plan and this was the beauty of design and build, being able to make changes to suit us.
We have planted few new trees to keep our section sheltered in the future. My favourite thing at the moment is our Willow tree, which has been part of our section for while so it’s a great big tree already and our new Magnolia and Gingko tree is growing along nicely.
Features we appreciate
We are very happy with our heat pump, which works both ways; quickly heating up or it keeps our house nice and cool through the recent hot summer. We can also say the plaster system we chose for our home is already working well. All the extra insulation was worth it, and so was the double-glazed thermal break windows. The advice from our construction manager about this was great as they had local knowledge.
For future planting around our home, it will be to support our garden as we’ve experienced quite a bit of wind (and so has the rest of Queenstown this summer!) and it’s been pretty hot out there. A vege garden is on the books too.
Would my husband and I do another Design and Build home?
Definitely yes, as you learn heaps each time you build a new home. And there always will be something you’ll want to change and you can! I have to say we are very happy the way we designed our home. All our visitors are loving our new home which is great feedback.
If you have missed Kamila's earlier blogs, click on the links below:
Welcome to Kamila's blog!
Choosing our own piece of paradise.
A dream floor plan to suit us.
Time to work through our resource consent.
The super fun stuff - creating our interior design.
The frames up!
GIB in and our living spaces are taking shape.
Seeing the results.
Getting sorted for the move.
Landscaping in progress.
Our dream home is ready and we are living the dream!