In the early 1990s  I was living in a one-room stone cottage which I had built for myself. It was stage one of a bigger design, but quite enough for one person. One day I read an article about the Rio Earth Summit in which the chairman, Maurice Strong, in summing up said  ‘We in the first world must live in a state of sophisticated modesty...’(The Guardian Weekly)

Over the years the house grew and grew, I continued with my landscaping business, went to art school in Hobart and had a family.

Being an owner builder it was all too easy to just add another room when it was needed, without giving thought to redesigning the space we had already. At 205 square meters, 3 bedrooms, a study etc. it is a wonderful house but bigger than we really need. Despite the host of things I would do differently next time, we are happy here and don’t plan to start again.

For this reason in 2009 I decided to put landscape design on hold and study Building Design at the Tasmanian Polytechnic.

I was fortunate enough to be bought up in a 1960s architect-designed house. And indeed part of my own house is architect-designed. As well as my recent studies, my thoughts on house design are informed by living in these two very twentieth-century houses.