Designer tips and all the beautiful home facades from The Block 2020

Stylist, decorator, renovator and The Block 2019 favourite, Deb Saunders, shares her expert advice on choosing facades for your home

When it comes to designing the facade of your home, Deb says it is essential to consider the contrast of the tones, textures and colours that will bring it to life. 

“The street presence that your home demands can increase the value of your property substantially,” adds Deb. “A façade, or cladding choice, can change your home’s story and audience entirely – from its history, to the feeling it ignites, and the audience you attract in the buyer’s market.” 

Here are Deb’s key considerations for putting your best face forward …

Daniel and Jade’s 1930s-style home facade, The Block 2020


“As we’ve seen on The Block this season, choosing an appropriate façade for your properties history, heritage or location is key – especially if your home is heritage listed (you’ll want to touch base with the local council for that one),” advises Deb. “Georgian, coastal, Australian colonial, country-chic – the theme you choose to design your property around will play a big part in its façade.” 

As we saw on The Block’s recent Sunday night judging, Daniel and Jade’s 1930’s house three (pictured above) was deemed “glamourous” and “dramatic” on first-sight by Block expert, Shayna Blaze. “The couple’s choice of Australian made CSR Cemintel Balmoral board presented a modern take on a timeless weatherboard,” says Deb. “Casting distinct, stylish horizontal shadow lines, the weatherboard enhances the traditional elements of its era, beautifully, lifting it into the modern day. Paired with a classic white paint finish, bold, charcoal features, a touch of shrubbery and a contrasting timber verandah, the home, fondly named ‘The Mayfield 1930’, is a perfect example of classic-meets-contemporary Australian style.”

Harry and Tash’s 1920s-era home inspired this classic facade and garden design


“When drafting up designs and mood boards, you need to keep sight of your budget. You can still achieve the dream without the price tag, but you need to do your research,” says Deb. “Products designed for the Australian market, specifically, or that are Australian made, will be cheaper and more readily available, and the same, if not superior in quality. Similarly, when it comes to maintenance, durability is key in keeping costs down. Choosing a fibre cement façade is easier to clean, holds paint better and won’t swell or crack the way timber does.” 

Jimmy and Tam’s 1950s-era facade and garden was inspired by Palm Springs


The location of your home will play into your choice of theme – both in aesthetic and function. “The façade should both complement and protect from local surrounds, so you need to think about the material as well as its finished effect. If you are on the beach or in a coastal area, and want to keep to a traditional Australian look traditional look, a fibre cement cladding, like CSR Cemintel Headland, will help to protect from the salty air and will outlast traditional timber siding options.” Similarly, fibre cement cladding is ideal for use in bushland and rural areas, made from a non-combustible solution and proven to aid in protection from heat and fire.

George and Sarah’s 1940s-style heritage facade was perfect for a pared-back garden design

The Block’s Sarah and George chose Cemintel Headland for use on their 1940’s property (above), paired with a modern take on the traditional brick to add to that quirky 40’s flair. “Like Shayne Blaze, I, too, love the modern shiplap in the weatherboards and think the muted paint tones work beautifully with the pop of colour throughout the brickwork,” says Deb. “Remember, if you’re building a new home, you will need to check in with the developer to ensure your colour scheme fits their guidelines!”

Luke and Jasmine’s 1920s house facade – The Block 2020


“Make your mark – the theme your home encompasses does not need to stop at the façade. Why not think about echoing your exterior by bringing the outdoors, in?” says Deb. “Whilst weatherboard makes for a stunning external finish, it can also be used as a striking feature wall on the inside of your home, adding texture, colour and flow. For example, an open-plan kitchen and dining could span beautifully through bi-fold doors and out onto an entertainer’s deck, tied in with a fluid weatherboard feature wall that runs from the inside to out. Innovative in design and function, it is also great for built-in bed heads, in bathrooms, on ceilings.”