LifeBox project helps a worthy cause

LifeBox project helps a worthy cause
Architecture & Interiors transformed a 40-foot container into a beautifully restored self-contained home, which was auctioned for charity.

In New Zealand a third of women are at risk of getting cancer.
When that figure is extrapolated into the reality of mum’s, daughters, sisters, aunts, nieces and families its impact is massive.
One organisation doing its bit to help those suffering the effects of chemotherapy and other cancer treatments is LGFB – Look Good Feel Better, a charity established in the early 1990’s. I
n those years LGFB has helped more than 37,000 kiwis feel better through attendance at their make-up classes.
This cause, near and dear to Melissa Burne, creative director and founder of Hawke’s Bay company Architecture & Interiors, has taken Melissa and her team, along with a large number of supportive sponsors, on a journey transforming a tired 40-foot container into a beautifully restored self-contained home, whcih was auctioned in March.
‘LifeBox’, as the container has been named, along with some home-grown fundraising, sold at auction on the day, creating total proceeds of $37,000 which Architecture & Interiors Ltd donated to the cause.
“This cancer charity is well-utilised in New Zealand, bringing support and a sense of well-being to those suffering from cancer.
“We were so happy to create this opportunity to donate to such a worthy cause,” says Melissa.
She describes the container transformation process as deeply satisfying and, though the project occupied a lot of her time and energy, the fact that so much was provided at no cost from friends and suppliers, really made it feel like a community effort.
“It looks really really cool inside. It’s basically an open-plan living space with a bedroom and bathroom at either end. Designer louvres on the front have transformed its appearance into something special, and the plywood interior and sliding glass doors really complete the look.”

LifeBox project helps a worthy cause
A make-up class held in the LifeBox which was auctioned to support the Look Good Feel Better charity which helps those suffering the effects of chemotherapy and other cancer treatments.

Nestled in Taradale, between Hastings and Napier in sunny Hawke’s Bay, Architecture & Interiors, founded in 2003, offers a wide range of services, from new residential builds, small and large alterations and extensions, to commercial work and fit-outs.
Melissa says there’s plenty of work on at any given time and she enjoys the variety of projects the company takes on.
“I have a saying on my wall which reads ‘Do what you love and you will never do a day of work in your life.”
She also enjoys the professional development, teaching and learning aspects to her work.
Along with her day-to-day work-life Melissa is heavily involved in Architectural Designers New Zealand and Women in Architecture in Hawke’s Bay.
“At Architecture & Interiors we advocate best practice and the systems we’ve evolved work really well for our clients and for ourselves.
With everything on her plate, Melissa has also designed her own home built three years ago, with the company’s office attached.
Built from precast concrete panels, Melissa chose this building material given its no-nonsense unfussy appearance and especially for its passive thermal qualities.
“All year round the interior stays constant at 24°C.
“The material has a raw feel to it and there is no maintenance. It cost me around the same as timber framing and for me it’s just a great home to live in.”
Working with Melissa, who holds a Bachelor of Design, is a member of ADNZ and a Licensed Building Practitioner, are Sean Sutherland and Melissa Pierard, both qualified designers, while Mum Roxanne Magon takes care of the accounts and day-to-day administration.
“We all work together well. Melissa Pierard is the interiors and make things pretty person while Sean makes things work and is very good at detailing.
“I do the concepts for the building work and hold things together. We all have strengths that make the team very strong and robust,” says Melissa.
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