Home' Special Magazines : Design Build and Renovate Contents 12
he best way to describe it is ‘everything all at
once’. It was the most crazy surreal ride with
every emotion possible all crammed on top of
one another,” said siblings Ben and Libby Crawford on their
experience of participating in The Block NZ. The duo, who
wowed audiences and buyers with their renovation skills,
took away a cool $157,000 in profit with the house renovated
by them selling for $961,000, well above the $804,000
A few weeks on, Ben and Libby, have finally been able to get
their heads around the whole experience and their amazing
result. Having quit their jobs, they are now ready to take on
the world with their new venture – Ben and Libby, a creative
agency delivering communication solutions for brands.
Their love for the renovation and DIY has not fizzled out
with the end of programme. “We’ll definitely do it again in
some capacity in the future ... maybe with more of a project
management hat on next time though, rather than the all-
nighters we pulled on The Block NZ.”
Describing their journey on the popular reality renovation
television series Ben and Libby said “it was incredibly tough,
challenging and frustrating – the hardest thing we’ve ever
done, and yet one of the most rewarding, fun and motivating
experiences at the same time”.
The biggest highlight for them was perhaps when they
The Block NZ
‘Don’t bite off more than you
can chew’, is the best aDvice The
Block NZ winners ben anD Libby
have for Diyers.
get ready for the next one
After the success of The Block NZ’s first season, Kiwis fans of the show
are now enjoying their chance to see how the Aussies do DIY on The
As the final four teams contend with the twin pressures of little money
and even less time, the transformation of four dilapidated inner-city
South Melbourne houses into three-storey renovated terraces with
stunning rooftop views is not to be missed. Who will take away the top
prize – the highest bid at the auction – is anybody’s guess. Will it be the
rustic warmth of Andrew and Mike’s contemporary abode, the eclectic
contemporary feel of Dani and Dan’s renovation, the recycled vintage
touch in Dale and Sophie’s house or Brad and Lara’s creative handiwork?
Watch out The Block Australia (Monday-Wednesday, 7.30pm, TV3) ...
till we get our next fix of the programme’s New Zealand version.
More on the programme: www.tv3.co .nz
won their room in the first week, although they say, “it is hard
to go past the day when we completed the whole project and
could stand back and look at the big picture – and then sleep
for two weeks!” The completion of the kitchen/living/dining
area was also special as Ben and Libby got great feedback on
their design selections.
The project didn’t come without its share of low points for
the duo – most of them usually in the wee hours of the night or
at the end of the week after pulling in a couple of all-nighters.
The tight time frames, budgetary constraints and extreme
lack of sleep were the biggest challenges the participants faced.
But relax, not all DIYers face these problems at such a scale.
However, you cannot eliminate them completely either – such
issues are secondary to any building or rennovation project.
So having been through such a high-pressure renovation
would they recommend DIY renovation projects for others?
“DIY is a sport in New Zealand and a right of passage
in a lot of ways. We’d recommend it to anyone who gets
satisfaction out of seeing spaces transformed.”
They add that DIY doesn’t always have to be to the same
scale as The Block NZ. It can be one room, an exterior area
or even one item in a space. “It’s amazing the difference that
a lick of paint and change of soft furnishings can make to a
Giving tips for DIYers, Ben and Libby suggest getting
amongst it and not being afraid to give things a try. Their
top tip is taking on board only as much as you can handle.
“Start small if you’re not sure,” they said. Other important
tips include having a good plan from the outset that you can
communicate to everyone who gets involved with the project
and getting professional help when needed.
“The best way
to describe it is
‘everything all at
once’.” Ben and
Links Archive Suburbanite Issue 5 Job Zone 11 Navigation Previous Page Next Page