Architecturally inspired interiors and exteriors brought to life with a brick aesthetic proved a smart choice for the winners of The Block 2019.
Queenslanders Tess and Luke took the win for their work on House Two on the show, achieving a sophisticated and welcoming internal design scheme, as well as a visually impactful courtyard. From early on, the couple described a leaning towards "dark, moody colours and the use of different textures and materials to make a place feel like home".
Their spacious open-plan living area incorporated PGH Brick's Morada Nero Standard facings and full brick to create a dramatic dining and living zone. The adjoining airy courtyard took the application of brick to the next level, with an impressive three-storey high brick wall, using the CORIUM rail system.
Morada Nero Standard was applied to the wall of the fireplace and feature column, matched with charcoal mortar for a seamless, monochrome surface. In addition to the materials complementing the darker tones of the room’s light fittings and flooring, the renovators also chose to utilise the stacked bond pattern and ironed joint finish to complete the sophisticated look.
Elevate Building Group director Matthew Menichelli, who oversaw the construction of House Two, emphasised that throughout the build, the non-negotiables for their choices were family function and smart design.
While there were time constraints associated with the environment of this reality television show, it was also critical that the builders and contestants collaborated to produce a warm and inviting family home, suitable for everyday living and easy to maintain. Working with brands and products that could help teams deliver striking, architecturally driven design with limited time was key to nailing the brief.
"The Block as a whole is all about tight budgets and tight timelines, so it was really valuable to work with suppliers who could still help us achieve a home of this calibre," says Menichelli.
Due to the architectural nature of the project, and the attention to detail required to meet the judging criteria, Elevate nominated to use the Morada Nero Standard as a stack stone cladding substitute for the fireplace and living room feature. This luxurious brick suited the home’s style and provided smooth dark tones that infused warmth and luxury into the living space.
"The brick slivers proved an easy lightweight option, given budget and time constraints were a major factor," says Menichelli.
Balancing the rich, textured feature on either side of the TV helped to continue the dark tones from the kitchen right through to the courtyard.
For the open internal courtyard of House Two, Tess and Luke utilised textures on a neutral monochromatic dark palette and paired it with sculptural items. CORIUM rail system with stack bond grey/brown metallic bricks was used on the three-storey feature wall, finished with charcoal mortar. Completed with a striking stacked vertical bond pattern and an ironed joint finish, the innovative walling system was a fast and affordable solution for laying bricks at height with maximum impact.
According to Menichelli, Elevate Building Group was striving for a showstopping feature piece.
"The Morada had already been used in the living room so, as the builder, we were keen to continue the tactile feature of bricks through to the courtyard. The main inhibitor was the sheer size of the area and timeline."
He says the the CORIUM system from PGH Bricks put all these issues to rest.
"We were even able to orientate the rails at ninety degrees to create a vertical stack bond look. An otherwise impossible feat with standard bricklaying.
"I've worked with PGH previously and am a big fan; their quality and range put my mind at ease as the builder, knowing regardless of what the client is wanting, we’re able to achieve it with PGH."
Installer Simon Nott from Ceramic Facades says the CORIUM System is a polished and professional finished product, belying the simplicity of its installation. The confined work area and restricted access on this project were overcome by using the lightweight modular components that make up the CORIUM system.
"It enabled a fast installation where time and working space were minimal," Nott says.
For more information, visit www.pghbricks.com.au.