Mon Palmer: Garden Transformation

After a highly successful start to the launch of TOC Contributor Mon Palmers’ business, Slightly Garden Obsessed, we are popping the cork over her enviable pool and taking the time to celebrate success. In a short 9 months, Mon has managed over 30 design clients including 5 interstate and 1 international. Mon has held design workshops, created collaborative relationships and most importantly followed her dreams.

It all started with a dream that I turned into a plan.

Wanderlust | Slightly Garden ObsessedSo while the bubbles are following we chat to Mon about the incredible transformation of her very own garden in Perth. Mon shares the brief, the budget, the process and how Mon, family and friends now interact with the space as a result.

What was your brief?

We live on a 225m2 block so space is of a premium. When we originally designed and built the house, it was done with the intent to one day build out and up. We love to travel so are always conscious of keeping our mortgage easily serviceable to allow for lifestyle choices, and make sure the house and garden is lock and leave or desirable for short-term renting, like Air BnB.

IMG_4124We had lived in the space for 3 years and, after returning to Perth after living in the US for 3 months, we felt it was time to start the first stage of renovation.

IMG_4145We were in Cabo, Mexico, exactly one year ago for our August birthdays and it was here we found our inspiration. Then and there we decided we wanted to turn our little home into a wanderlust inspired villa. Our house is 500m from the ocean so it definitely suits the beach lifestyle.
Cactus | Slightly Garden Obsessed

How did you find working for yourself? Being the client?

It was hard to come up with one design idea and stick to it! I think I did 3 concepts (all completely different) before the last and final. We are so happy it evolved and we took the time to think it out. Once we had travelled to Mexico, we knew that concept was going to be a winner. Not just for the style, but for the association it has to our travel memories.

I loved the process and the outcome, so much so one of my long term goals is to purchase property to renovate inside and out. A very long term goal.

Whitewash | Slightly Garden Obsessed

What was your budget?


Overall how long did the design process take?

We designed different concepts over a couple of years but once we had the idea of a wanderlust inspired villa, the design was complete within a day or two.

Newport Stone | Slightly Garden Obsessed

How long did it take to construct?

We started demolition at the end of January 2015 and completed the install by end of March.

Window View | Slightly Garden Obsessed

Did you have to overcome any obstacles?

Moving the meter box 1.5 metres was probably the most painful task. Apart from that, nothing different from the usual obstacles like council and tight access issues!

I also set up a business and got a puppy at the same time of doing the renovation… That was a BIG triple decker obstacle!

Pool Design | Slightly Garden Obsessed

Are you happy with the outcome?

We absolutely love it! It has doubled our living space and is always a nice outlook to wake up to. Coming home knowing it is done and we don’t have to think about it anymore has created so much ‘room’ in my head.

How are you using your space differently? Inside and out?

Our house as a whole has changed. We have a secure front garden (our garden is at the front, north facing) so we can now open all the doors and windows and let Tonka (our Blue English Staffy) roam around and have a beautiful breeze come through the house, while feeling secure.

Back Porch | Slightly Garden ObsessedOne of the best decisions we made was to install garden lighting. A MUST! It looks completely different at night and, again, doubles our liveable space and draws us outside.

Arctic Ice | Slightly Garden ObsessedAnd now, instead of apologising for our small house to our visitors, we can now hang poolside on the lawn. We cannot wait to have the first summer in our new space. We’re now starting to think about our renovation upstairs, which will include a design studio overlooking the pool. I have a feeling our home will forever be evolving.

The short of it…

Slightly Garden Obsessed
Landscape Design, Outdoor Styling, Creative Workshops
Based in Perth. Works nationally.