At Home With…
Meet Kate Willbourn-Trevett, host and owner of Project Coastal, design enthusiast and founder of Foodies Collective, a business which curates seasonal small batch, local finds.
With a passion for great food and entertaining, Kate understands the important role of the kitchen. Whilst it's the backdrop for her current professional life, it's also the heart of her family home.
Having recently completed a new build, Kate - with her signature natural aesthetic - opened the doors to her beautiful coastal home, Project Coastal, so our Palm Beach Collection team could take a closer look around. Whether you’re a design enthusiast, or an inspiration seeker, this classic and enduring home is not to be missed.
How would you describe your personal interiors style?
I’d say a relaxed modern coastal luxe style. When we started to plan our new build Project Coastal, we were driven to achieve a feeling more so than a style. To feel like we were on holiday at home, which became even more desirable as we ended up doing most of the building throughout the peak of covid-19. Selecting natural materials and finishes became more & more important as I knew these would help to create a beautiful calm and grounded feeling within the home.
Where did your inspiration for this renovation come from?
Our original motivation to build was to create a larger family home which could also comfortably accommodate guests and family visiting from overseas. It’s also been a lifelong dream to have a pool which I’m still pinching myself over. As mentioned we really wanted to feel like we were on holiday at home, so much of our design inspiration came from Summer holidays in the med and luxe tropical resorts.
What are your tips for ensuring the kitchen is the heart of the home?
Ideally you want the kitchen to seamlessly connect with your dining and entertaining spaces. Thankfully our kitchen is literally positioned in the heart of the home and has a strong connection and flow with our living and dining space, the garden and deck. We included a bi-fold servery window which opens up to the deck which is not only extremely useful when eating outside, but also adds to the laid back atmosphere whilst entertaining.
I also believe it’s important to have a well designed island bench that’s both inviting and functional. When we built the house we designed the kitchen island to not only be the hero in the space aesthetically speaking, but to comfortably fit the whole family around. What makes a real difference is having seating wrapped around two sides, so it’s a more inclusive seating arrangement. We also kept the island bench free of utilities i.e. kitchen sink, so the entire top is a usable space for eating at, kids colouring in, doing homework, food prep etc. It meets many needs for the entire family and therefore we spend a lot of time here together.
What’s your favourite room in the house and why?
It’s so hard to pick one room, so I’ll have to say our entire ground floor open plan living and kitchen space. As soon as you step into this part of the house your eyes are drawn upwards to the tall raked ceilings with exposed rafters. There is a real sense of calm in here due to the height of the ceilings, light oak floors, soft white walls, abundance of natural light, pillowy linen sheers and accents of warm oak timber used throughout. It just has a really good feeling.
Your business supports local producers - why is it important?
It’s incredibly important to support local where and when you can, not only when it comes to food, but all products & wares. It helps to support local businesses and communities as well as the wider economy. When it comes to food, buying locally grown produce will keep you in touch with the earth & seasons. Produce which is in season is not only more flavoursome, it’s nutrient rich and it tends to be less expensive. Purchasing locally produced foods generally means your food has a lighter carbon footprint - less emissions, energy & food miles. Food grown overseas has the potential for food safety issues from harvest, preparation, shipping & distribution. Simply put, Australian standards are safer too.
What’s next for you – do you have any exciting plans for the future?
My business is currently going through a stage of evolution, as am I, with new and exciting opportunities on the horizon. Since doing several renovations and recently completing Project Coastal, a whole new world has opened up for me in the building, interiors and design space. For starters, Project Coastal is now available to hire for photoshoots, film, intimate workshops and branded collaborations. I'm also about to dip my toe in interior designing and can't wait to see what comes of it. I figure life's too short and we're never too old to try something new, so watch this space!
What Palm Beach product can't you live without?
I absolutely love having the Watermelon Diffuser in the kitchen. It’s fruity, citrus scent is really invigorating and keeps the kitchen feeling fresh.