House Nerd

Follow House Nerd

Follow on Bloglovin

Peeking into People's Places

Search House Nerd

A DIY Makeover for a Daggy 70s Willetton Home

Posted Monday, January 9, 2017 in: Home Envy Before & After

Would you buy a house you hated? Could you make an offer on a home with an interior you didn't like at all - a home that was actually a particularly ugly example of the era it was built?

Home owners Craig and Emma Croxford did – buying a 1970s Willetton house that was so depressing and needed so much work that it actually brought Emma to tears on various occasions!

But with many weekends of work and a vast quantity of DIY, Craig and Emma have managed to turn this diamond in the rough into a friendly, comfortable family abode that is now a perfect family home for them and their two young daughters. The house (and their renovation story) actually reminds me SO much of our house and our journey (the houses were built in the same year, too).

BACKYARD DECK: “The last major essential thing that we did to the house was the deck, which we did in October 2013,” says Emma. “It was essential because without it we had no way of containing our toddler in the backyard – she would have fallen to her death before she could get to the pool, though.” Photos by Heather Robbins.

HOME OWNERS: Brave renovators Craig and Emma Coxford. Photos by Heather Robbins.

I met Emma through my close friend Heather Robbins, whose name you might recognise as the photographer behind many of the lovely photos you guys see on House Nerd.

Emma and Heather have a funny meet cute. They met four years ago when they were both new, sleep-deprived mothers to five-week-old newborns, each venturing out of their houses to get a caffeine fix, with respective newborns in tow. They spied each other in the café (or in Heather’s words, “I accosted Emma and pounced on her,”) started gabbing away in the way you do when you have a small baby and proper adult conversation is rare, and immediately became firm, fast friends. Now their husbands are also friends and so are the kids (now four in total).

Emma and Craig met as youngsters back in 2004. “Craig and I met in a Canberra nightclub at 5am in the morning in 2004,” laughs Emma. “We were both amongst the last people left in the nightclub when they turned the lights on. Yikes!”

After buying a unit in Canberra together and renovating it, they relocated to Perth in 2010 when Emma was offered a position as a junior academic at Murdoch University. Once here, Emma and Craig quickly discovered they hated renting and became desperate to find a home of their own.

“We originally took a six month rental in Bicton but we hated it,” admits Emma. “It had no heating, Perth had a historically cold winter and we just wanted to get into our own place where we could feather our nest.”

ABOVE: The pretty guest bedroom. Photos by Heather Robbins.

Wanting to buy a house in an area that would be close to both their workplaces, good government schools and on a larger plot of land, Emma and Craig started house-hunting in Palmyra, Fremantle and the surrounding suburbs. But they soon established that homes in those areas, that were within their budget, sat on plots of lands much smaller than they wanted.

see more

Ahh, Peace and Quiet: How to Minimise External Noise in Your Home

Hi House Nerd,

I live in an old home in Fremantle that I am renovating and would love some tips on how to reduce road noise in my house. Being close to the street and constructed of weatherboard I hear every car that passes and it is getting quite frustrating especially when trying to sleep. Have you written any blogs on this problem and ...

see more

A 1980s Renovated Home on a Steep Scarborough Site

Amy and Andrew Palmer-Millin stumbled upon their new home by accident. They were house-hunting in seaside Scarborough and were on their way to a different home open when they chanced upon the place that was to become their next home. “We accidentally went to see the house, it wasn't on our list to view at all,” says Amy. “We drove past and saw ...

see more

Presents for Everyone: Gifts for Hard-to-Buy-For People

Hands up if you’ve started your Christmas present shopping? Hands up if you are stuck? Every year I make a list in the Notes section of my phone for the people we have to get presents for; and I jot down ideas as they come. Every year I get a little stuck when it comes to present ideas for at least one particular person or another.

As I have ...

see more

Happy Christmas Guys + Making Plans for House Nerd in 2017

Coming up to Christmas and the end of the year, I just wanted to say thanks to everyone who has been reading and therefore supporting House Nerd the past year – I appreciate it so much. Perhaps more so this year than any other year.

2016 hasn’t been the easiest year for a lot of journalists in Perth, or across Australia for that matter. The ...

see more

Stackwood: One of Perth's Most Creative Spaces + Their Handmade Holiday Workshop

Perth, I’m pretty proud of you. Even though we’ve always had our share of talented artists and makers, ten, fifteen years ago, we weren’t exactly known for having the most vibrant or connected creative scene. And I couldn't stand that awful term ‘Dullsville’ was so often bandied around by people smugly moving to Melbourne!

That’s definitely ...

see more

A Modern, Minimalist Reno to a 60s State Housing Home

Would you be brave enough to buy a house without your partner seeing it? Business owner and real estate agent Matthew Travia was and he did.

With the aid of building designer Janik Dalecki, Matthew and his partner Cora have turned this basic, very small former State Housing Commission home built in the 1960s into a simple and modest, yet very ...

see more

Everything You Need to Know About Vinyl Floors

Recently I shared with you guys our new vinyl plank floors – and some ‘before’ photos of the floors we used to have. There was a reason we nicknamed this house the Crap Shack when we got it! Our 1970s house had a mishmash of some not-very-pretty flooring. You can see all the before pictures here and our before and after reveal of our new ...

see more

Renovating Our Floors: The After Photos

Good morning nerds! Today is a happy day, because today I am bringing you some ‘after’ photos - our recent floor renovation, where we had Karndean Designflooring vinyl plank floors laid over our existing old tiled floors.

My God, I love looking at before and after shots. You know how on Facebook it now brings up old photos that were taken ...

see more

How Renovating Can Double Your Money: Our TV Segment!

The other day I shared that we were going to be in a TV segment on home renovating on Channel 7's Today Tonight. It aired last night and it’s online already for those who missed it!

Like a lot of people, I do find it a little discomfiting to watch myself back on video but it was very funny seeing our house on our TV. Even the toilet I ...


Have you read?