Libby and Ben

     

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The siblings of the series, Libby (29) and Ben Crawford (31) are the thinkers of the show. Creative, driven and highly motivated, Libby is a senior designer at a Christchurch advertising agency, and Ben is the marketing manager for youth at Tourism New Zealand.

Born and bred on a sheep farm in Edendale, Southland, this brother and sisters duo describe themselves as best buddies and confidantes. They are very competitive and sporty – Libby represented Canterbury for netball and currently plays in the Christchurch Premier league for St Nicholas.

Libby shares a renovated villa in Christchurch with her boyfriend, while single Ben lives in his own apartment on Auckland’s city fringe.

DESIGN STYLE

The pair describe their style as relaxed contemporary – they like a modern, but lived-in look. They say sustainability is an important consideration and favour using natural lighting, heating, and waste minimisation. Both like the Scandinavian aesthetic, however Ben likes to mix things up using raw materials, such as industrial concrete and steel.

They say the most important room in the house is an open-plan kitchen and living area, with the outdoors being a continuation of the living space. While Libby says it has to be a great space for lazy weekends or entertaining, Ben likes the idea of a good breakfast bar: “Breakfast is my favourite meal of the day and there’s nothing better than eating it perched at the breakfast bar.”

Libby is also a fan of up-cycling old furniture, mixing this with expensive light fittings and fabrics.

RENOVATION EXPERIENCE


When if comes to renovation, Libby and Ben have some basic knowledge. Ben has “done up” a couple of properties, and tried his hand at removing walls, changing the floor plan, putting in a new kitchen, carpet, curtains, and painting inside and out, while Libby has done more cosmetic renovations and crafts like making cushions and graphic art pieces.

MOST FRIVOLOUSLY EXPENSIVE ITEM EVER BOUGHT?

Libby: “Travel - I racked up a debt of $15,000 that took me a year to pay off. I didn’t want to come home, so I just put everything on my credit card.”

Ben: “When I was living in London I spent $5,000 on a weekend in Iceland on the spur of the moment. I just felt like going to Iceland.”

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