Carrick-Stalker House

Residential & Community
Caroline Stalker and Bruce Carrick

The redesign transforms a dark internalised cottage into a light and garden filled aperture for a north-eastern garden, conferring all the restorative, health and sustainability benefits of working with our extraordinary climate and place.

The Carrick-Stalker House is a place of respite, retreat, restoration and calm.

The comparatively modest house on 400 square-metres demonstrates the potential of engaging with garden rather than increasing built space and the sense of generosity this approach can confer on a house.

The spatial response creates a high volume framing the connection with the garden maximising light and breezes. The green roof stretches out over the dining room, and is seen from the parents’ retreat and mezzanine study. A ‘peninsular’ dining space has the effect of folding a new water garden room into the house. Shared living spaces bring the adult and teenage family together informally by providing numerous ways of ‘being’ at the same time.

The tectonic stems from a desire to layer new over old working in recycled materials but picking key elements of new fabric to reinforce the garden connection. Many elements of the original house have been recycled and repurposed; the swimming pool recycled as a water tank and water garden; hardwood framing recycled from the house is reused throughout; the pool fence repurposed as the study balustrade; crows ash from the old kitchen used on the deck; old deck makes battens for the garden room and screens; pool pavers repurposed for the new outdoor room.

The design was carefully modelled for sun and energy achieving a 6 star rating.