As part of the Dale Alcock Home Improvement team, Design Consultant Tina Urie spends her days getting the best out of existing homes – from the tired and dated to the small and poky.
One of the things that excites her most in recent times is the growing enthusiasm among homeowners to add their own ‘spin’ to their chosen design.
“I’m finding that people are becoming more accepting of individual style,” Mrs Urie said. “It’s good to use a style or trend as a base, but then put your own spin on it. Make it yours and own it.
“Our homes should be a reflection of us and our personalities and lifestyle. Design for design’s sake is useless; it needs to be about the people and it needs to be practical.”
Mrs Urie, an award-winning professional photographer who has an Honours Degree in Industrial Design and a Diploma of Building Design, joined Dale Alcock Home Improvement in 2018.
She helps clients see the potential in their existing homes whether they need more space, more style or a more functional floor plan.
“I have always been interested in architecture, design and people,” Mrs Urie said. “As a kid, I was constantly being dragged to home opens and displays by my parents so they could get ideas for their own renovation projects.
“I learned pretty quickly that there were a lot of poorly designed homes out there and that it didn’t take much to put a little more thought into the design to make the home more liveable.”
Mrs Urie has notched up a few renovation stories of her own. Her favourite involves a 1900s weatherboard home in Kalgoorlie, her husband and his ambitious plan to
re-stump the home on his own.
“With crawling space only, he constructed a pulley-and-bucket system to get tools and dirt out of the sub-floor. His tenacity was commendable, but never again!” she said.
That was 15 years ago, when Mr Urie’s work took the couple to Kalgoorlie and Mrs Urie, originally from New South Wales, started her photography business TK Photography.
Today, Mrs Urie enjoys the challenges of her role as a Design Consultant with Dale Alcock Home Improvement, where she helps clients right through their journey of remodelling. Her aim is to make it as easy as possible for homeowners to achieve a bespoke renovation.
“To be successful in any design career you really need to have a deep understanding of the people you are designing for and their reasons behind the design,” she said.
“That’s two things that computers can’t do well – understand people and think creatively and laterally.”
Mrs Urie loves working with a range of styles, from heritage to uber-modern, but art deco is a long-standing favourite.
“Velvets, linen, marble, brass, geometry – there was an elegance in the art deco era that I love,” she said. ”You could call it a ‘liveable grandeur’.”
Like fashion trends, design trends come and go but Mrs Urie said you could be sure the popular ones would reappear at some stage down the track.
“Changing design trends keep us all stimulated and excited to try something new, but popular styles are always on a cyclical journey,” she said. “Keep something long enough and it will come back in style. Although I am struggling with acid-wash jeans!”
As for the next five to 10 years, Mrs Urie said the drive for higher density housing and an increase in multi-generational living would continue to impact residential design.
“The continued development of virtual reality will also make it easier for clients to visualise how their home could look post-renovation,” she said. “Ultimately though, I look forward to the day when giant 3D printers are used to print our homes on site or in a factory!”
CONTACT Dale Alcock Home Improvement, 6558 0765, www.dahi.com.au