Creating a standout exterior that is both timeless and one-of-a-kind takes careful consideration. To get you started, we’ve asked the experts for answers to three of the most common queries when it comes to designing your dream modern facade.
Sarah Burman, Home Beautiful Editor
Josh and Jenna, The Block
QUESTION: HOW DO I CHOOSE THE RIGHT MIX OF MATERIALS?
SB: There are many materials available for your home’s exterior. Current trends, context, personal taste and budget will all play a vital role in choosing colours and finishes.
Narrow down the options by creating a moodboard using magazines, Instagram and Pinterest. The most successful exterior schemes are ones that stand out, feel special, and use multiple materials and colours.
Your home’s location will also play a factor in deciding on materials, for example avoiding corrosive materials if you’re on the coast. Ideally, you’ll select hardwearing and durable materials that improve with age. Fibre cement cladding is cost effective and low maintenance and works everywhere – it can mix with rendered brick, stone, or timber boards for a completely different vibe each time.
QUESTION: HOW CAN I CREATE THE PERFECT OUTDOOR AREA?
J&J: Orientation is key when designing an outdoor area. There’s no point having a stunning outdoor entertaining space if you can’t use it because the hot summer sun comes beaming in.
TIP: North facing is always preferred as the sun is lower in winter and sits high above the roofline during hot afternoon summers, while east will capture the morning sunshine. If you’re wanting to use your space for a morning coffee, this is something to consider. South facing doesn’t receive any direct sunlight so if you’re planning on sitting outside in the sunshine, you may need to rethink your orientation if possible.
Creating a seamless indoor/outdoor flow can be achieved with materials that work both inside and out. As a flooring option, you could use timber boards inside and decking boards outside that run in the same direction and are similar in colour and tone. To draw your eye out towards an entertaining area, consider horizontal Linea™ weatherboard on the walls, which can create a modern coastal look when mixed with other materials like timber or stone.
QUESTION: HOW DO I CREATE BALANCE ON MY EXTERIOR?
J&J: The exterior of your home is the first impression, so it shouldn’t be forgotten or compromised. You want to turn heads for the right reasons, so carefully consider the balance on your exterior.
The juxtaposition of these elements is key, particularly if you have an asymmetrical exterior. Good asymmetrical design includes balance so that no one part of the project is too heavy for the rest. To achieve balance, a larger portion of your exterior should be more minimal. For example, try cladding your exterior in light-coloured Stria™ cladding and balance with smaller portions of darker colours.
If your eye seems to wander around the design evenly, then you’ve likely achieved balance. Think about equally interesting elements scattered throughout the design (kind of like confetti!) with careful consideration of colour, scale, texture, and placement.