Owner’s dream

Morningside Open-Plan Living

Homeowners Sue and Daren wanted to transform their traditional style Queenslander into a Morningside open-plan living home with spacious living areas. It needed to accommodate their family lifestyle and have access to plenty of natural light.

Existing site

Over the years, the Queenslander home has previously been renovated three separate times. The clashing styles from the renovations over time left a disjointed feeling throughout the home.

The internal stairs were located in the middle of the living room, taking up unnecessary space and intruding on the visual flow between the indoors and outdoors. The beautiful large backyard and deck were in surprising contrast to the lack of space inside.

Our design solution

Morningside Open-Plan Living

PlaceMate Architects completely transformed the living spaces of this Queenslander home. The front entry now offers privacy as well as easy access to the home with off-street parking. Once inside, the internal stairs were relocated to one side of the living area, opening up a whole new area as the centre hub of the home.

Senior architect, Jan Hogarth decided to design a pop-out butler’s pantry to give the new modern kitchen more space and flow. This triggered a simple town planning application that was approved in just 10 days! Knowing how to submit projects to the council for fast approval, is one of the benefits of using an architectural designer.  

The cramped windows separating the kitchen and deck were replaced with a large expansive kitchen. The glass sliding doors allow access to natural light and fresh air in the home. As a result, the vaulted ceilings and large sliding doors create a seamless transition between the open-plan indoor and outdoor living areas.

Lighting also plays a significant role in completing the picture. The VJ walls on the inside and outside of the house make the living space feel larger and improve accessibility to all areas of the home. For more open-plan living solutions, check out this Queenslander Cottage Renovation.


Project Partners



Stewart Harris Constructions



Integrated Construction Approvals



Town Planning

The Planning Place




Kelvin Crofton & Associates

Client & Partner Testimonials

Our experience with Placemate Architects was outstanding. They did three
things we appreciated, and nothing we didn’t.

They focused on understanding our needs and what we wanted.

They, Jan specifically, consistently generated creative design options to
assist in the extraordinary number of decisions that need to be made from
the very big to the very small.

And they matched us with exactly the right builder, the excellent Harris

Our decision to work with Placemate Architects meant we got what we wanted,
on time and on budget.

Stephen and Lynne Day New

PlaceMate is trustworthy. If they say they’ll do something, they do it. The finished product makes us all look good. Some architects are really expensive, and the owners have to wait a year to see them. PlaceMate gives just as good a service, quicker and at a reasonable price

Nathan Forbes Rise Constructions

Renovating our home with the assistance of Placement and their relationship with Phil Maher Builder was essentially a stress free adventure.

PlaceMate worked with us to achieve our dream home. Our home was modernised without losing the charm of a post war cottage.

Our house has become a functional, open & light filled home. Which is now the central family meeting place.

We even discovered that Architects, Engineers and Builders DO get on and work well together.

Even though our budget was small, through the architectural skills and listening skills, PlaceMate turned our needs into the home we wanted.

Beth & John Owners

Best use of a steep site

PlaceMate topped the state for best use of a sloping site over $250000 at the Queensland Master Builders Association Housing & Construction Awards. The award was for the design of two contemporary townhouses built on a 500sqm site that dropped 10m from a busy road. All the bedrooms and living areas captured picturesque city views.


Best renovation $250-$500,000

PlaceMate took home the prize at the Queensland Master Builders Association Housing & Construction Awards for the best renovation between $250,000 – $500,000. The winning renovation was a 1910 cast concrete Californian bungalow-style home in Indooroopilly. The design added a new wing and unified alterations undertaken in 50s, 70s and 80s.

Recognised in The Courier-Mail

PlaceMate’s skills were recognised in The Courier-Mail for our transformation of a Shorncliffe residence originally built around 1910.

Registered with Board of Architects Queensland

Registration Number 2457

Our Client Success Team

Placemate Architects works with successful and innovative clients. Together we achieve significant and lasting transformations of cities, houses and landscapes.