nuts and bolts house, highton, victoria

The clients arrived in an immaculate Chevy Impala. Tea was served. Neutra was discussed. And the confession much later that the interest in the architecture of Richard Neutra came from magazine exposure at the local hairdressing salon.

Clients like these are as rare as hen’s teeth. They hand over their dreams to you in a simple box. There’s no velvet lining. Just expectation and trust that is humbling. You spend the rest of your life trying to live up to expectations. The site was ‘kind of over there’, high on a hill outside Geelong. The subdivision took a lifetime to complete and, denied access, all I had to go on was a finger pointed in the general direction of the house block. Lucky I had a general idea of the sun’s daily journey.

A family home for 3 great kids. Concrete, timber, glass and an aramax fly roof homage to Robin Boyd. And Neutra! Lots of room for cars (you drive under the pool to get to the basement garage) and a pool the ‘boss’ could do bombs in. I made a mistake. Architect’s confession. A wet edge pool. A silly idea with 3 boys and their 25 mates over for a frolic. The over wash could have flooded the suburb. A glass screen was retro fitted.

Sometimes we do make mistakes, and we do learn from them. But there’s lots of happiness in this house. Courageous clients indeed. Still driving the Chevy and still doing bombs, only now the threat of washing the suburb away has subsided.