Fri, Oct 28, 2022 6:00 AM

My Home


Tessa Jaine

Gavin and Kay Traill moved from Central Otago to their piece of paradise in the Sounds three years ago. With beautiful views, a lovely home, and great neighbours, it’s no wonder the couple have decided this is their forever home.

Where is your home and how long have you lived here? 

Whatamango Bay, about 11kms northeast of Picton in the Marlborough Sounds. We moved here from Central Otago just over three years ago.

What four words would you use to describe your home?

Unique, special, stunning views.

The couple say they would never part with their Faye Williams custom lampshade, purchased from the Nelson market.

What inspired this look?

The previous owners had done extensive modernisation to the property. When we bought our home that work was around 85 per cent complete, so we essentially had a blank canvas on which to stamp our own personality. Being our forever home (and a getaway for our son and daughter to escape city life) this is a long-term project for us, and although the events of the last three years essentially put a hold on the more extensive plans that we have for the house and garden, there is no rush.

Where do you shop for homewares?

We love going to the Nelson Saturday market two or three times a year, just for a fun day out. Sometimes we find something special to bring home. On our last visit, we met local artist Jackie Ewers and now have three of her prints in our lounge. Other than that, we head to Blenheim to the larger homeware outlets.

The split-level design of the home creates different spaces for living and dining.

What are your favourite pieces?

The piece we bought on our journey up to Marlborough having left Queenstown behind. We stopped at a cafe around an hour north of Kaikoura and bought a figurine made entirely of recycled materials called ‘Lucy’ (our daughter’s name), which now sits above the breakfast counter.

What piece would you never part with?

Ooh, difficult question. Probably our Faye Williams custom wooden lampshade. We went to the Saturday market in Nelson shortly after we arrived here, saw the lampshades and just had to have one made for our living area. It is just a lovely piece of art that makes us happy.

What’s next on your interiors list?

More seating in the lounge area… a comfy reading chair with a footstool or similar.

Kay keeps the styling tidy with neutral colours, favourite pieces of art and pops of colour.

What’s your decorating style?

Gavin has no decorating style and will usually do anything to avoid decorating. I hate clutter and like neutral colours and a tidy home environment. The second guest bedroom (downstairs) and the main living area have been decorated to become an extension of the outdoor Sounds and bay area themes.

What’s your favourite spot in the house?

Our main living area. It’s the heart of the house where there is always laughter, and amazing food, wine and friends.

Have you done any renovations?

Not at this stage. This spring and summer we’ll be concentrating on the outdoor and garden areas, cleaning, tidying and making the garden less labour intensive.

What should every home have?

A heart.

One of the couple’s favourite pieces ‘Lucy’, made entirely from recycled materials hangs above the kitchen.

What do you love about the neighbourhood where you live?

With the bay being tidal, we love the constantly changing panorama. The wildlife (we are always delighted when dolphins and seals come into the bay) and birdlife are amazing, as is the sense of peacefulness and relaxation we enjoy when we come home from work. We are also most fortunate to have the most amazing friends and close neighbours with whom to enjoy wonderful dinner parties or just share a beer or wine and set the world to rights.

Best seat in the house?

Out on the deck on a summer afternoon, sun umbrella up, with an ice-cold beer or a glass of wine.

Best memory in your house? 

Christmas with the family all here.

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